Legal beagle says: Manmade global warming science doesn’t withstand scrutiny

From Lawrence Solomon at the Financial Post:

Penn Law

A cross examination of global warming science conducted by the University of Pennsylvania’s Institute for Law and Economics has concluded that virtually every claim advanced by global warming proponents fail to stand up to scrutiny.

He found that the climate establishment does not follow the scientific method. Instead, it “seems overall to comprise an effort to marshal evidence in favor of a predetermined policy preference.”

The cross-examination, carried out by Jason Scott Johnston, Professor and Director of the Program on Law, Environment and Economy at the University of Pennsylvania Law School, found that “on virtually every major issue in climate change science, the [reports of the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change] and other summarizing work by leading climate establishment scientists have adopted various rhetorical strategies that seem to systematically conceal or minimize what appear to be fundamental scientific uncertainties or even disagreements.”

Professor Johnson, who expressed surprise that the case for global warming was so weak, systematically examined the claims made in IPCC publications and other similar work by leading climate establishment scientists and compared them with what is found in the peer-edited climate science literature. He found that the climate establishment does not follow the scientific method. Instead, it “seems overall to comprise an effort to marshal evidence in favor of a predetermined policy preference.”

Financial Post
Lawrence Solomon is executive director of Energy Probe the author of The Deniers.

Read more: http://opinion.financialpost.com/2010/06/06/legal-verdict-manmade-global-warming-science-doesn%E2%80%99t-withstand-scrutiny/#ixzz0qKA3gJCU

The 79-page document, which effectively eviscerates the case for man-made global warming, can be found here:

Incl.  Electronic Paper Global Warming Advocacy Science: A Cross Examination
U of Penn, Inst for Law & Econ Research Paper No. 10-08
Jason Scott Johnston
University of Pennsylvania – Law School
Date Posted: May 22, 2010
Last Revised: May 24, 2010
Working Paper Series

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226 thoughts on “Legal beagle says: Manmade global warming science doesn’t withstand scrutiny

  1. Those pesky lawyers and their habit of investigating consistency and causation, what a nuisance they are. Oh, sorry, I’m one. Scrub that.

  2. This is not a surprising conclusion for the WUWT-readers.
    The Question is: why so many politicians still don’t believe “there is no climate crisis!”? It’s something social and psychological!

  3. The analysis makes much of the fact that daily max surface air temperatures are more representative of average temperature through the troposphere than the daily min temperatures are. This strikes me as totally irrelevant. If we choose to define the mean surface temperature as the average of the max and min, that is likely reasonable for several of the purposes to which it will be put: comparing with tree-ring data; comparing with ice core proxies; glacial/icecap melt; maybe even sea warming. The difference in mixing does have to be considered when trying to figure out where all the extra heat (as implied by the satellite measurements) is going. And I’m sure it is.

  4. Climategate the gift that keeps on giving.By Christmas 2010 the lawsuits and criminal investigation will be raging. And politicos running for cover has already started.2010 is a good year for truth and salvaging the scientific method.I wonder when schools will teach the concept again.

  5. Emotional AGW-ers will not be swayed by logic, facts, and reason, BUT debating these matters in a court of law (requiring evidence, substantiation, and cross-examination) has tremendous merit. Most folk know smoke-and-mirrors when they are shown other plausible/credible explanations.

    The blogosphere and reports in the traditional media both suffer from lack of accountability. No penalty for fudging, cherry-picking, or outright lying. Standards of the courts are useful, important, and generally understood by all.

    So BRING IT ON! Let the best facts/forecasts/interpretations carry the day!

  6. I can just hear the wails now…
    “But he’s not a Climaneuralscrambolologist!”
    ^

  7. Heh, I’m really not a prick!!! But…….”Professor Johnson, who expressed surprise……”, is that “The cross-examination, carried out by Jason Scott Johnston, Professor” ‘s brother? ‘Cause if that’s not the same person, we probably should know more about Professor Johnson. If it is the same guy, tell him to quit changing his name!……must be a mood I’m in. :-)

    Peace?(stated sheepishly)

  8. Hope I’m wrong, but I think his career will quietly wind down over the next couple of years… dying belief systems always lash out harder near the end, the last gasps always aim for revenge and punishment.

  9. “Marshalling in evidence…”
    That’s well said. And the marshalled evidence was often times phoney or based on non-peer reviewed literature (not that peer-reviewed literature says anything about its quality).

  10. this group of activist scientists – what may be called the climate establishment

    sweeeet!

  11. But he doesn’t have a degree in climatology! He doesn’t have the knowledge or training to understand how the climate works! He was obviously not smart enough to comprehend the established theories and data proving climate change is real and dangerous! HE’S A LAWYER, HE IS NOT A SCIENTIST!!

    As a service freely provided to this blog, I have now put forth the expected argument(s) of the (C)AGW proponents in advance, saving them the effort. They may now concentrate on arguing the merits of the paper. Have a nice day.

  12. This should be one huge story: Isn’t Michael Mann at Penn State? Could you imagine how this story would run if the MSM would even pretending to be fair?

  13. I have been trying to find the time needed to read through Johnston’s paper since mid morning with little success. Not the paper’s fault but mine. So far I found it informative and apparently well researched. It looks like the comment about evisceration is perhaps mild. It seems well worth the read and I will continue and digest, before I make any final judgments.

  14. mbabbitt said on June 8, 2010 at 10:19 pm

    This should be one huge story: Isn’t Michael Mann at Penn State? Could you imagine how this story would run if the MSM would even pretending to be fair?

    Two separate institutions involved there, University of Pennsylvania and Pennsylvania State University. With a certain amount of mutual irritation -slash- rivalry over the similarity of names and somewhat-often confusion over which is which. Which will likely be attributed as “motivation” for this paper.

  15. This is why it might not be a bad thing for one of these climate-related suits to get its day in court so that some “experts” could be called and carefully cross-examined. With the right counsel, it could be a disaster for the CAGW camp.

  16. A lawyer is trained to take a side and present an argument that supports it. So I wasn’t surprised that Research Paper No. 10-08 takes a side.

    I was a surprised that the author has given so little thought to evaluating predictions. The Paper concludes with the following sentence:

    “Policy carrying potential costs in the trillions of dollars ought not to be based on stories and photos confirming faith in models, but rather on precise and replicable testing of the models’ predictions against solid observational
    data.”

    If the author wants to evaluate whether a model’s forecasts are good or bad as a policy guide, he needs to ask good or bad compared to what ? For example, have Hansen’s 1988-2020 projections of global temperature turned out to be not as good as someone else’s projections or no projections at all?

  17. Legal opinion forms a powerful voice in the corridors of power. I think tis will ripple outwards. Once the politicos get the message that they will be overturned by legal challenges to policy they will bend with the wind.

  18. Fred says: June 8, 2010 at 9:52 pm
    “Hope I’m wrong, but I think his career will quietly wind down over the next couple of years”

    Have you ever tried to dismiss a University Program Director?
    Have you ever tried to dismiss a University Professor?
    Have you ever tried to dismiss a Lawyer?

    How about all three at once, for less than 25 million dolars?

    I expect he knows Exactly what he wrote, and Exactly what it means, and Exactly what the possible raminficatons could be.

  19. Wren: June 8, 2010 at 11:05 pm
    I was a surprised that the author has given so little thought to evaluating predictions.
    “Policy carrying potential costs in the trillions of dollars ought not to be based on stories and photos confirming faith in models, but rather on precise and replicable testing of the models’ predictions against solid observational data.”
    If the author wants to evaluate whether a model’s forecasts are good or bad as a policy guide, he needs to ask good or bad compared to what ?

    He didn’t say the forecasts needed to be evaluated as “good or bad” — he said the forecasts needed to be evaluated against the observed data.

  20. More lawyers getting involved, hopefully they’ll soon get together with the legislators and solve AGW by making it illegal.

  21. From: Wren on June 8, 2010 at 11:05 pm

    If the author wants to evaluate whether a model’s forecasts are good or bad as a policy guide, he needs to ask good or bad compared to what ? For example, have Hansen’s 1988-2020 projections of global temperature turned out to be not as good as someone else’s projections or no projections at all?

    Thus I am moved to propose, for consideration by my fellow WUWT commentators, a new term for use on this site:

    Smokey Bait

    It’s obvious someone is fishing for some contentious replies, as the Hansen stuff has been brought up and replied to several times lately, yet keeps showing up like some brand-new thing deserving of brand-new discussion.

    Strange, after all those broken lines and snapped poles, you’d think they’d finally show up with some stronger tackle…

  22. Given, however, that the most significant ghg emission reduction policies are intended to completely alter the basic fuel sources upon which industrial economies and societies are based, with the costs uncertain but potentially in the many trillions of dollars, one would suppose that before such policies are undertaken, it would be worthwhile to verify that the climate establishment’s view really does reflect an unbiased and objective assessment of the current state of climate science.

    Not only would one suppose that it would be worthwhile to verify the climate establishment’s view, considering the amount of spending involved, we would have a duty to future generations to engage in such a verification before we spend their money now even before they have had a chance to earn it.

    I have had exactly this same thought for a very long time and it certainly does feel good seeing someone else reach the same conclusion.

  23. What a tour-de force ! I am only at page 50, but what an excellent dissection(neater than evisceration) of the IPCC’s lazy scholarship. One gem inspired by Spencer that seems obvious except to those blinded by ideology….
    “…….. precipitation systems act in effect as
    a kind of atmospheric thermostat and would cause the atmosphere to cool in response to a
    temperature increase due to CO2 increases.”
    And, Derek B says:
    June 8, 2010 at 9:34 pm ,
    Maximum daily temperatures are more representative of daily insolation that a mean of max/min. Daytime temperatures are a proxy for incoming radiation, night time temperature measurement estimates back radiation with all the problems that have been discussed here for years.

  24. I read this yesterday, and it was hard going in part, mostly because he was having to spell out in detail concepts which WUWTters are already familiar. This is standard fare when proving a legal case, so absolutely neccessary, but it lends the paper a dry technical slant which would not work well as a popular explanation.

    I hope it’s not wishful thinking, but I get the feeling that the rest of the world (i.e. every other bit apart from the climate ‘science’ community) is slowly starting to come to the realisation that this is not all as solid as it was originally portrayed. I’ve sensed this as a time-lagged response to the CRU emails. Even Richard Black and the ‘Environment’ team at the BBC has been backing off somewhat from the AGW bandwagon – today the reported snake population decline has not automatically been attributed to AGW – bravo to the scientists for resisting tagging this attribution to every piece of work they do, and praise where praise is due to the BBC for not appending it for them. There is not a single AGW story on the BBC Environment page today – compare that with one from this time last year, where every story was some sort of AGW scare.

    I suspect the Hutton Equiry was not as useless as it appeared on the surface. While the public report exonerated the ‘Team’, I have a sneaking suspicion the unofficial reportage back to TPTB was that the thing was a total fiasco and to back off from it before it exploded. Since then, all the icky government ads with drowning puppies have not appeared, and there has been very very little MSM coverage of AGW stories. At the same time, there has been a deluge of what I’d call ‘real’ science programming on the BBC – actual factual real scientific documentaries with absolutely zero AGW slant. Wishful thinking perhaps, but I feel that MSM and Science is trying to reassert itself, prompted by behind-the-scenes rumour of the actual Hutton findings.

    I suspect this is all the ‘satisfaction’ we are ever going to get from the AGW camp. I see the whole AGW debate as the first ever macro ‘flamewar’ – the argument techniques of 1990s Usenet used in the macro world. Like all flamewars, nobody will ever emerge as a ‘winner’ – and the ‘losers’ will just slink away into obscurity without ever being held to account. If you want to rub their faces in it when then next 10 years shows cooling, then you’re in for a disappointment. You are never going to get that sort of satisfaction from the blogosphere, they will argue that the data at the time supported their views, and like good scientists they adapted their views with new data. You can’t win. You are also highly unlikely to get satisfaction from the scientists concerned, who will all have retired on nice pensions, doing the lucrative paid tour circuit of the shrinking band of true believers who still want to listen to the armageddon/atonement message.

    Our satisfaction will have to come simply from being proved right.

  25. This is very important, Prof Johnson is to be applauded. Science as practiced in Europe and USA needs legal oversight and auditing. For too long scientists have been obscurantists, creating unnecessary and obscure technical jargon to give the impression that only a high priest of science with years of cloistered training can have any hope of understanding the operation of the scientific process. This fraudulent smokescreen has limited outside investigation and allowed unfettered corruption, cronyism and mafia control of many scientific fields.

    Well educated and intelligent professionals such as lawyers have not the slightest difficulty understanding scientific questions after some research into the substance of research stripped of obscurantist jargon.

    Outside legal and financial oversight of scientific research is needed, perhaps this will be one positive outcome of the climate fiasco. At present there is astonishingly little checking of what universities do with their research grants after receiving them. Everything is geared to the next grant application, not what was done with the previous ones. Peer-reviewed paper output is one metric used to assess researchers, and as we well know, such crony-review is more or less totally corrupt.

  26. EXCELLENT !! This provides the basis for massive law suits.

    I have kept email records of the dozens of emails I have sent news paper, TV stations, AGW fraudsters (Hansen, Mann etc) and politicians.

    Because I intend to sue them one day.

    I suggest each and evey one of you start sending emails to them.

    I have for a long time, included in all my emails, a note to them, that I personally intend to sue them in future if they continue to committ AGW fraud.

    I dont know if I have any case, but at least I`ve prepared well !!

  27. The dominos keep falling. I find it interesting that the intellectual qualities many sceptics bring to the examination of the known facts of CAGW can be so superbly examplified by an expert lawyer. This makes the formal enquiries conducted up to now in the UK and the USA look to be examples of the CAGW believers circling the wagons, rather than rigorous attempts at establishing the scientific facts.
    My hope is that the politicians who are also climate catastrophists must focus on reducing the damage from the recent financial disaster for the next few years and so will be denied funds to waste on futile attempts to modify the global climate.
    OT, but possibly interesting – as both my work and income were once weather-dependent, I have been in the habit of recording daily max and min temps plus daily rainfall in my back garden for many years. My equipment is simple, inexpensive, but of reasonable quality although probably not suficiently accurate for scientific purposes; I have noticed that I have never lived anywhere in the UK or New Zealand where the official max temp promulgated by the Met Service or NIWA has been reached on a regular basis.

  28. Wren, you fail to appreciate the issue. Sceptics do not have to prove anything. They did not make any claims. They only question the claims of those who say they have evidence of a climate crisis.

    It is the climate warming scientists that have to prove, on the balance of evidence, that human caused global warming is happening and that it is dangerous.

    They haven’t, far from it based on the analysis of many including this lawyer. Their science is rubbish.

  29. The author does indeed lack the expertise to determine whether what he describes as ‘global warming advocacy science’ is wrong. We know this because he says so.

    The problem is not the global warming advocacy science is wrong – something that in
    any event I lack the expertise to determine – but that by overselling models and evidence,
    global warming advocacy science has created some very serious misimpressions …

    This lack of expertise is evident in a few basic factual errors that can be picked up in just a cursory reading …. e.g.

    The global mean temperature data that the IPCC reports are a particular
    temperature dataset put together and jointly maintained by the Climatic Research Unit
    (CRU) at the University of East Anglia and the United Kingdom Meteorological Office’s
    Hadly Center, a dataset known by the acronym Had CRUT.

    But here’s the figure showing the IPCC reports on no fewer than HadCrut and 3 other different global datasets: http://www.ipcc.ch/publications_and_data/ar4/wg1/en/figure-3-1.html

    The author asserts that Mann’s Hockey Stick was removed from AR4,

    Why would the IPCC both delete the famous (or infamous) hockey-stick graph
    and yet continue to assert (albeit with lessened confidence) that 20th century temperatures
    were the highest in the last 1,300 years?

    but here it is labelled MBH99 … http://www.ipcc.ch/publications_and_data/ar4/wg1/en/figure-6-10.html

    Has the Professor even read the report he is criticising?

    This is a ‘prosecution’ document, intended to present ‘the case against’ and so one should not expect it to exhibit a balanced review of the evidence, yet the presence of such basic factual blunders means a ‘rebuttal witness’ would have little difficulty in undermining its credibility, seems to me.

  30. @DerekB:”The analysis makes much of the fact that daily max surface air temperatures are more representative of average temperature through the troposphere than the daily min temperatures are. This strikes me as totally irrelevant. If we choose to define the mean surface temperature as the average of the max and min, that is likely reasonable for several of the purposes to which it will be put…”

    Wasn’t he making the point that the night minimum temperature was cooler just a few metres above the weather station and so the max-min gap was being artificially lengthened and the average temperature inflated. Not sure it’s important if you’re measuring anomolies, or now we have satellites, but that was my take on it.

  31. He doesn’t say? Well I never! What a surprise.

    Slightly OT, from what I uderstand from the technical summaries & then the far more scientific SPMs (yes I’m joking), we have to be worried more about higher night time temps in the winter season rather than higher day time temps, or have I missed something? I point folks to the Met Offices’ website, for their incredibly accurate & revealing summary of things to come. e.g. Some regions may experience wetter conditions, some areas may experience dryer conditions, some areas may become warmer, some may become cooler, some areas may experience greater hurricane activity, some areas may expereice less hurricane activity. $400M a year & a $45M super computer to arrive at those statements! Amazing. Hot on predictions slightly light on accuracy. Seaweed any body?

  32. I have not yet had a chance to read this article, but from the abstract it appears to confirm what I have been saying to my acquaintances for two years, that the evidence offered in support of agw would not stand up in court.

    I am a retired trial lawyer. Marshaling scientific and engineering testimony for complex trials, and cross-examining the other side’s experts is stock in trade for litigators. When I started reading in this field, I had no supposition about it. I was frustrated by conflicting claims on what seemed to be an existential question. So, I decided to gather information from both sides, and examine it, as I would preparing for trial. I also consulted scientific experts, including science historians, to better understand the science involved.

    My long-time friends would have expected, based on my progressive political activities, that I would be pro-agw. But as I began reading, I quickly came to the conclusion that the evidence offered was shallow, manipulated, incomplete, lacking an uninterrupted flow of logical support, and not secure against distortion and the temptations of careerism.

    I believe the agw proponents would have a difficult time testifying in court. They would be forced to answer questions directly and fully, without political and ideological commentary or ad hominem attacks. They would also be required to testify under oath, mindful of the attendant penalties for perjury.

  33. Whilst I agree with the argument put forward, it carries no scientifically valid weight.

    Lawyers are paid large sums of money to be able to argue that black is white. They are trained to win an argument, not establish the whole truth. In fact when a witness under cross examination swears an oath to, “tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth…” The cross examining lawyers are then set upon them to test and maybe break that “truth” apart.

    Climateologists would tell this lawyer to stick to law and leave the science to the scientists.

  34. “Professor Johnson, who expressed surprise that the case for global warming was so weak,”

    Welcome to the club, Prof.

    I am convinced that most politicians haven’t looked at the evidence either. I cannot believe that anyone can look at the “evidence” from paleo-climatologists and think it holds water. (Therefore scuppering the “unprecedented” claim)

  35. NOOOOOO, this must be part of the universe wide vastly Jewish conspiracy to destroy Green/Progressive/Socialist/Hamas/Humanitarian/Peace Activist/Code Pink/Animal Rights/Communismismisms!

    We need to find more victims to counter this. And if we can’t find victims we’ll create them by hook or by crook!

  36. This evisceration will evince the absolutist agenda which is currently perverting science and politics disguised as the precautionary principle. The process is insidious and needs to be recognized for exactly what it is. TYRANY
    “a rose by any other name etc”

  37. “He found that the climate establishment does not follow the scientific method.”

    We’ve known this for years. And as an actual scientist, I am appalled.

  38. “Lawyers are paid large sums of money to be able to argue that black is white. They are trained to win an argument, not establish the whole truth. In fact when a witness under cross examination swears an oath to, “tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth…” The cross examining lawyers are then set upon them to test and maybe break that “truth” apart.”

    As a lawyer I must correct the common misconception expressed above.

    We have what is known as an ‘adversarial’ legal system in the UK and USA. The idea is that the truth is best found by picking apart the opponent’s propositions and defending against his attacks on yours.

    A neutral observer (judge and/or jury) is supposed to then weigh the arguments from an independent viewpoint and arrive at a decision as to what the truth is most likely to be.

    Lawyers are not permitted to mislead the courts or promulgate untruths but they do need to accurately submit the statements made by the Client but only if they have no evidence that demonstrates their Client’s statements to be untrue.

    There is a duty to the court as well as to the Client and lawyers can readily fall foul of either or both.

    There is a great deal in common between the true scientific method and an adversarial legal system. The same skills and ideals are in play in both.

  39. Alexander K says:
    June 9, 2010 at 1:38 am says “I have noticed that I have never lived anywhere in the UK or New Zealand where the official max temp promulgated by the Met Service or NIWA has been reached on a regular basis.”

    Bad luck re New Zealand. Not possible then to study the extinction of snakes?

  40. Ken Hall (June 9, at 2:15 am) “…climaTEOlogist” Freudian slip or intended, Ken??

  41. Alexander K says:
    June 9, 2010 at 1:38 am
    “I have noticed that I have never lived anywhere in the UK or New Zealand where the official max temp promulgated by the Met Service or NIWA has been reached on a regular basis.”

    Likewise the official daily min temps promulgated by the same Weather Experts are nearly always higher than actual.

    Thank you Professor Johnston for writing your cross examination in a way that can be quite easily understood by laypeople. This link needs to be promulgated.

    http://opinion.financialpost.com/2010/06/06/legal-verdict-manmade-global-warming-science-doesn’t-withstand-scrutiny/

  42. Ken Hall says:
    June 9, 2010 at 2:15 am
    “Climateologists would tell this lawyer to stick to law and leave the science to the scientists.”

    Good prediction. I’m sure establishment climate scientists will say exactly that.

  43. Here’s your ad hom
    Lawyers are now doing climate science???
    And you trust this man because he is a lawyer??? When did we start trusting lawyers?

  44. This looks like an interesting paper (which I’ve downloaded) and I look forward to reading it.

    Although I’m not a lawyer, I am a certified auditor and regularly deal with matters of federal regulatory law.

    The case for CAGW is one that would never pass audit. There are too many open questions, too much flimsy “evidence”, too much bluster and evasion, and in sum the CAGW assertions just do not stand up to even cursory examination.

  45. It is nice to receive support in ones opinions! Again I look to the reasons for those paid by the taxpayer for supporting this transparent scam, I find some incomptance but mostly personal gain, what do we call anyone who wants to destroy our civilisation and substitute theirs and impose it upon us? I would suggest treason, and all guilty need to be terminated from their employment and given hefty sentences served as house arrest, without internet access and no golden handshakes or pensions, they are utter disgraces and have to be treated as such, being criminals all memberships of professional bodies should be forfeit.

  46. Based upon a review of several but not all sections, it looks like Johnston has produced a thorough summary and shows an excellent grasp of the key scientific issues and highlights and criticizes the unscientific approach of the AGW advocates.

    I did notice that he may have been mislead by one of the IPCC slights of hand on page 59:

    “It might seem that whatever might be the explanation for the apparent long-term impact of solar variation on climate, the IPCC stood on unassailable ground in concluding in its 2007 AR that solar variation had the effect of cooling the planet since 1980, so that solar variation could not possibly account for warming since then. There is certainly evidence for the IPCC’s conclusion.”

    If I recall correctly, the IPCC was usually careful to say that ‘natural variation” not solar had the effect of the cooling the planet since 1980. The IPCC lumped volcanic and solar forcing together. Solar activity was still unusually high through the end of the century. Similarly the IPCC statements about anthropogenic forcings being responsible for the warming, usually lumped together GHGs and aerosols. This always struck me as a very deceptive and non-committal way to claim very likely (90% confidence) that most of the warming was anthropogenic, while the media and policymakers to assume that means CO2 and other greenhouse gasses. This bundling avoids comparing GHGs directly with the competing solar hypothesis, and covers the IPCCs backside in case the steep rise in temperatures in the 80s and 90s is actually a natural or anthropogenic reduction in aerosols (global brightening) unmasking a sun that had been at an unusually high level of activity for half a century per Solanki (Nature 2005). Since solar activity did not change much in the latter 20th century, the issue of whether the warming would be attributed to solar or to aerosol forcing is problematic. The rapid rise in temperature would be explained by the aerosol forcing. However, if we accept that the temperatures were unusually warm, the warmest since the Medieval Warm Period, then the question becomes, not why the rise was rapid but why an unusually high temperature resulted. There is no indication that the aerosol levels are unusual. Shares of attribution would be apportioned to the unusually high level of solar activity and the unusually high GHGs.

  47. Derek B says:
    June 8, 2010 at 9:34 pm
    The analysis makes much of the fact that daily max surface air temperatures are more representative of average temperature through the troposphere than the daily min temperatures are. This strikes me as totally irrelevant. If we choose to define the mean surface temperature as the average of the max and min, that is likely reasonable for several of the purposes to which it will be put: comparing with tree-ring data; comparing with ice core proxies; glacial/icecap melt; maybe even sea warming. The difference in mixing does have to be considered when trying to figure out where all the extra heat (as implied by the satellite measurements) is going. And I’m sure it is.

    Extra heat? WHAT EXTRA HEAT?

    I’m here in the Pacific Northwest and the only ‘extra heat’ I’m getting are the raised taxes on things for which I need to live!!!

    Five times this month —JUNE— I’ve had to kick-in the pellet stove to stay decently warm.

    HEAT you say? WHERE is the EXTRA HEAT?!?!?!

  48. Interesting however, I really do believe that our “leaders” have made their decision. The fix is in, it’s called energy independence, or to use another word, tax.

    In Australia, support for KRudd747 the climate change crusader, is plumetting so fast he’ll be knocked off his PM perch in the blink of an eye in this years election. The only alternative in the ALP is Julia Gillard, who speaks to people like they’re still in kindergarten, and very condescending too. Looking forward to my prdiction that KRudd747 will be a one-hit-wonder coming true.

    I really wish the Australian MSM would pick up on some of these stories, but I guess their are too deep into the scare mongering program.

  49. I just love the discovery process–NOTHING is immune from subpoena. Since most politicians just happen to be lawyers, this is language they understand, along with the ramifications of being found sideways with respect to legal argument; they’ll be fleeing AGW like roadrunners. I’m also expecting hordes of trial lawyers chasing huge legal fees as they take down AGW “climatologists”and their falacious theories. Fun times, indeed!

  50. According to Clause 2 of the IPCC’s original, 1988 Governing Principles, “[t]he
    role of the IPCC is to assess on a comprehensive, objective, open and transparent basis
    the scientific, technical and socio-economic information relevant to understanding the
    scientific basis of human-induced climate change…”

    So there is real doubt about whether all causes of global warming were looked at in equal detail. IPCC never had a mission to study all causes of global warming. It would appear to me that they pre-selected or cherry picked “human -induced climate change “as the prime cause and then studied it only in detail. It seems to me that they have arrived human induced warming as the prime cause not by looking in equal detail at all causes of global warming and then selecting human induced warming based on equal assessment of all causes.

    As Lawrence stated,
    “He found that the climate establishment does not follow the scientific method. Instead, it “seems overall to comprise an effort to marshal evidence in favor of a predetermined policy preference.”

  51. Ken Hall says: June 9, 2010 at 2:15 am

    “Climateologists would tell this lawyer to stick to law and leave the science to the scientists.”

    …and ballistics to Physicists, and fiber chemistry to Chemists, and DNA to Biologists, and forensic accounting to Accountants, and Fingerprints to printers, and…

    Layers understand evidence and contradiction; and have the ability to read and understand; and a firm grasp of their language; and the ability to communicate effectively.

    If only climate scientologists were as adept .

  52. If the President of the United States of America finds time to go to school and learn to understand the basics (reading, righting, rithmitic, ) he might decide to really ‘kick – ass’ but for now BP is paying all the bills ( are the American suppliers and operators of the faulty equipment going to get a mention ? ) the blowout is not a disaster, it may affect a miniscule % of the worlds population ( be it birds, fish or politicians, ) but the global warming virus will affect us all, who is going to ‘clean up ‘ after the political climate change ?
    Hundreds of trillions of dollars will be (and is being) spent on the climate band wagon, by politicians and people with green teeth.
    BP is in a heads down ass up mode, unfortunately some big mouth ignorant politicians see the ass and think it is their to kick.
    Americans are getting a real Democratic “ass-kicking”

  53. Another key conclusion of Professor Johnson was – fix the temperature data sets.

    “Hence perhaps the central policy implication of the cross-examination conducted above is a very concrete and yet perhaps surprising one:
    public funding for climate science should be concentrated on the development of better,
    standardized observational datasets that achieve close to universal acceptance as valid
    and reliable. We should not be using public money to pay for faster and faster computers
    so that increasingly fine-grained climate models can be subjected to ever larger numbers
    of simulations until we have got the data to test whether the predictions of existing
    models are confirmed (or not disconfirmed) by the evidence.”

  54. If climate science does not hold up, then why not all science?
    Results have been maniuplated there as well and taught as unbreakable laws.
    Our planets science had two roads to take for the understanding of how climate and this planet works.
    Unfortunately, we took the easy road that is filled with theories and individualizing science into many categories that do not interact but work nicely in a lab. Trying to put this science into a timeline and it totally falls apart.
    Politics, religion and faith in our leaders that they will follow the right path have just corrupted the area of science worse.

    Funny thing is we are really creating “educated idiots” in the area of science!

  55. Ref – Dick H. Ahles says:
    June 8, 2010 at 9:26 pm
    “This is not a surprising conclusion for the WUWT-readers. The Question is: why so many politicians still don’t believe “there is no climate crisis!”? It’s something social and psychological!”
    _____________________________
    It’s ‘monitary’.

  56. Prof! Where have you been! Is this the same Pen State? Wow, bet your lunch breaks from tommorrow are going to be interesting! I would suggest a sound recording device!

    As a Brit it is not really my concern (and I await the put downs on other forums with glee) but how about looking at the EPA and asking how legal their “democratic”/scientific actions are?

    I would truly like to know your opinion on the EPA actions.

    I honestly think that a lot of us have been waiting for the lawyers for some time!

  57. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:
    “HE’S A LAWYER, HE IS NOT A SCIENTIST!! … I have now put forth the expected argument(s) of the (C)AGW proponents in advance”

    To which the obvious answer is: neither are the climate “establishment”.

  58. The American legal system, along with most systems of justice in western civilization, are adversarial. This means that one party takes each side, they follow the same rules, and they are refereed, and the case is judged, by an impartial party.

    For anyone to present a “cross examination” like this is horribly disingenuous, because it gives the pretense of a fair legal proceeding, while in fact offering no voice to the “other side.” And before anyone says it, no, merely quoting the other side, without opportunity for objection, clarification, or rebuttal is not “giving them a voice.”

    This entire approach to the AGW argument is appalling. It’s another parlor trick, and it’s shameful.

  59. Here are three other key points that Professor Johnson makes in three separate quotes:
    “The problem is not the global warming advocacy science is wrong – something that in
    any event I lack the expertise to determine – but that by overselling models and evidence,
    global warming advocacy science has created some very serious misimpressions among
    many people about what is known and understood about global climate, and has directed
    media and policy attention solely to greenhouse gas emissions as the sole cause of
    climate change”

    “Rather than laying out contrasting positions that one finds in the
    literature, the IPCC and other leading establishment climate scientists either simply
    ignore or tersely dismiss scientific work that disputes or casts doubt upon the
    assumptions underlying or projections made by climate models and establishment climate
    science more generally.”

    “The\rhetorical strategy that has come to dominate establishment climate science is not
    designed to promote such fine-grained understanding; it is designed instead to convince
    the public of what some, but by no means all, climate scientists have come to believe by
    conveying a very scary and also very simple picture of the state of the science. “

  60. In reply to Geoff Sherrington; in common with Eireland, there are no snakes in NZ and never have been, although the Irish insist that St Patrick rid Eireland of theirs. Our Border Protection agencies take damn fine care that the few discovered arriving are dealt with in very short order.
    And in reply to James Allison; sorry, didn’t mention that forecast min temps tend to stay above forecasts.
    OT again; I was interested to discover some time ago that Robert Louis Stevenson’s father invented the Stevenson Screen. As the Stevenson family were probably the world’s most prolific lighthouse builders, were they also building meterological equipment to equip their lighthouses?

  61. I’ve followed global warming for a good 15 years.
    I’ve seen the lies, watched them break the law, watched none of their predictions come true, witnessed the attacks and their admission to lies and faking data………

    I don’t believe any part of global warming now.

  62. To me the problem with AGW science is that they have it backwards.

    The scientific method is to form a hypothesis and try to DISPROVE IT !

    The post scientific method is to form a hypothesis and TRY TO PROVE IT !

    Big difference.

    The former method works, the latter doesn’t.

  63. Interesting cross-examination in which the ‘witness’ is not allowed to talk..

  64. This legal analysis of AGW theory is instructive because it is precisely what will occur upon upcoming court review of EPA’s co2 public endangerment findings which are based largely on IPCC studies. EPA’s findings can easily be found ‘arbitrary and/or capricious’ by the exact type of analysis applied by Johnson here. Furthermore, EPA’s endangerment findings which extrapolate health threats beyond IPCC’s reports, are even more susceptible to legal analysis due to their inherently conjectural nature. The US court systems handle highly technical issues every day. Nothing new here. When necessary , the use of techy-eggheads to battle over obtuse technical facts is common
    practice. AGW theorists have no court approved exemption from cross examination of their problematical concepts. This is just the beginning. Have fun!

  65. Jason Scott Johnston – Obviously working for big oil. I wish there was a SCARIER font to use for ‘big oil’. It would seem more dramatic…and scarier. (sarc off)

  66. PPV says:
    June 9, 2010 at 1:29 am

    Two can play that game. I have taken down a record of your your post so that when I join the class action climate change litigation against big oil [BP (assuming it is not already bankrupt), Shell, Exxon et al…] I can add your name to the list as someone that deliberately stood in the way of global action to stop AGW.

    Unlike you –I am pretty sure we have a good case.

    MJK

  67. This won’t be news to the Virginia AG -I hear he always had a good BS detector.

    Pointman

  68. Ken Hall says:
    June 9, 2010 at 2:15 am
    “Climatologists would tell this lawyer to stick to law and leave the science to the scientists.”

    Except that the scientists are not sticking to the science. That is what the paper aims to show, and does a good job of (despite what might be some nits someone could pick here and there). It is an interesting approach. Basically, what we have here is what the major science press — Nature, Science, Scientific American — should be commissioning and publishing: a review article that actually does review the evidence, pro and con, rather than engage in special pleading, which is what the IPCC’s “review” of the evidence does.

    The paper succeeds in what it sets out to do. It shows that if any of the scientists who are advocating the IPCC/AGW party line were to submit themselves to cross-examination in the real world advocacy setting of a courtroom, a good lawyer would tear them to shreds. Now we — we who have been following this for a while — already know this. We know it because on the few occasions that the AGW claim has been “debated” it keeps losing the debates.

    Ultimately, the

    “Climatologists would tell this lawyer to stick to law and leave the science to the scientists.”

    remark is an appeal to authority, the very thing science is supposed to stand against. And one thing a good lawyer knows how to do is question authority. It is what they are trained to do. I say this not as a lawyer, but as one who has been on the receiving end of being cross-examined by lawyers numerous times. Not all of them are good at it — cross-examining witnesses on highly technical matters. But when they are, it makes for good fun. And it serves a purpose, of seeing just what will hold up to scrutiny, and what will not. As far as the AGW claim goes, we need more of this, not less.

  69. Phil Clarke’s angry criticism on Johnston writing “in the IPCC’s 2007 AR there is no hockey stick graph” seems very childish: in contrast to TAR with graphs displaying the single hockey stick, 4AR has no such figure(s). The link given by Clarke points to the well known and often cited example of how the hockey stick was buried (drowned?) in a multitude of other temperature reconstructions. If its significance had remained untouched, it would not have had this fate!
    I can only recommend to read the Johnston paper in extenso, it’s time well spent.

  70. @Fred June 8, 2010 at 9:52 pm

    Something I posted elsewhere about dying belief systems
    ***************************************
    There’s a deluge of climategate stories out and I thought this would put them into some sort of context. It’s a bit longish but what the hell.

    If you’re tracking the development of the Climategate story as closely as I am, it’s important to recognize that what we’re actually looking at here is the collapse of a belief system. The progress and pathology of this phenomenon has been documented and reliably understood for some time. I say reliably understood because it did not originate from Freud, Jung, the Id, the Ego (super or otherwise) or any other school of psyco-babble psychology fashionable at the time. Don’t get me wrong, Psychology is a very useful tool but too many psycholigists don’t seem to know which end to hold it by.

    If you’re a climate scientist, look away now. It came from something called the scientific method. A phenomenon was observed several times. Certain recurring patterns were noticed. A hypothesis was put forward. It was checked against the previous studies to see it accurately reflected the results already known. In the main it did but where it diverged, amendments were made to the hypothesis so it would reflect the real world. Note, the hypothesis was changed not the data. The next step was to see if it could accurately describe what would happen when the phenomenon next occurred. When this was done, where it diverged, the hypothesis was amended and again rechecked against the historical data. It went around this loop until it was thought robust enough to be advanced as a theory. This was done by submitting it for peer review and publication. The peer reviewers (are you guys still looking away?) were not cronies of the authors. After some debate, it got through and a theory was born. But it would never and could never be anything more than a theory. A theory stays a theory until ONE person proves it wrong or it is supplanted by a better one. The ptolemaic theory accurately predicted the moon, seasons and planetary movements among many things but it had a central flaw. The Earth moved around the Sun, not the other way. And that’s why, when it comes to theories, the science is never “settled”.

    This is what’s ahead for the true believers. There are five stages to it though there may be multi-stage iterations within the five and the interior stages may overlap or sometimes be out of sequence. People also go through them at different rates.

    1) Denial – A total refusal to see, believe or accept what has happened.

    2) Anger – Blaming someone else, oneself, everyone else or anything else for what has happened. The deeper the belief, the more vehement this stage is.

    3) Bargaining – Believing that you can still do some trading to keep all, something or at least a shred of the collapsing structure. eg concessions, scapegoats, prayer.

    4) Depression – It can’t be stopped. Apathy, depression, tiredness, feeling unfairly punished.

    5) Acceptance – Utter Calm. It’s all over. Death.

    Sad to say, the original studies were done on terminally ill patients and then extended over into work on belief systems, deprogramming and other areas.

    This is the shape of the pathology you’re going to see in the coming months. I’ll flag up some examples as they occur in posts. It’s fun – try it yourself.

    Pointman.

  71. Once the lawyers start showing an interest then you just know that something big is coming.
    Lawyers are like sharks and when they smell class action lawsuits and lying cheating mega corporations that have been cashing in on grotesque subsidies and government bodies syphoning off public funds to spread to supplicant/arms length sub divisions then the lawyer class will know that their meal ticket has been stamped for years to come.
    Its hard to grasp the scale and the huge opportunities just there for the taking by a class of people trained to spot weakness and are motivated to exploit that weakness.
    Make no mistake, the lawyers can see just how exposed to lawsuits the eco/green bandwaggon has become, they have built their houses on sand, they became so engrossed in the endless free money gravytrain that they took no notice of how precarious their situation had become.
    When the feeding frenzy starts a great many people will either try to trun states evidence or run off to a place with no extradition, this is going to get messy..hoooraaay.

  72. The evidence offered for dangerous agw doesn’t stand up to scientific scrutiny to legal scrutiny to historical scrutiny. Common sense also tells us it’s a nonsense?

  73. @Andrew30 June 8, 2010 at 11:39 pm

    Careers were made with the rise of AGW. Careers will be made on its fall. The Professor’s timing is very good.

    Pointman

  74. It looks like the greenie weenies will lawyer up and use our money.
    Yesterday’s statement from Lisa Jackson was that we don’t care to save and protect our children.
    If they say a lawyer can’t know, then they need to use data to support their assertion that a lawyer can’t know.
    Obama will issue 50 million to bolster up advertising and pr services. It is our money he is borrowing from China using our signature.

  75. Sorry to come back to the snake issue, but the BBC website says:- “The year when many of the snake declines began – 1998 – raises the question of whether climatic factors might be involved, as very strong El Nino conditions contributed to making it the hottest year recorded in modern times.”

    As has been mentioned, there is no reference to CAGW, just the very strong El Nino conditions. I truly hope that this is a positive change in the BBC.

    And as for the Met Office predictions of how climate change might affect us, I too am grappling with the whole gamut of differing scenarios (talk about hedging your bets) but it is frustrating that this is what our local council has to take on board and try to “prepare local people and businesses” for. It could be a flood (but I guess that’s nothing to do with building on floodplains) or it could be a drought (heaven forbid, we might have another hosepipe ban) and so it goes on. Give me strength!!

  76. Hey, I thought this blog never allowed the phrase The Deniers, even when it is the title of a book written by the author of the article that begins the thread:

    The Deniers: The World Renowned Scientists Who Stood Up Against Global Warming Hysteria, Political Persecution, and Fraud*
    *And those who are too fearful to do so
    By Lawrence Solomon

    http://www.amazon.com/Deniers-Renowned-Scientists-Political-Persecution/dp/0980076315

    [Reply: When ‘deniers,’ ‘denialists,’ etc. is used as a pejorative the post is snipped or deleted. ~dbs, mod.]

  77. If one claims to have more authority and superiority by reason of certain science degree, have them explain the scientific method.
    Then have for example Hansen or Mann explain why they do not want to apply the scientific method.
    Any lawyer can ask any question. They charge several hundred dollars an hour to ask questions. Any scientist can answer questions. Some times the answer is I do not know. The problem I see is they avoid questions. Because they don’t have answers or because the answers clash with reality.

  78. 899 says:
    June 9, 2010 at 4:16 am
    HEAT you say? WHERE is the EXTRA HEAT?!?!?!
    Gone to outer space, unfortunately. But don’t tell the Warmists that. It’s so much fun to see them “look” for it.

  79. Jimmy Mac says:
    June 9, 2010 at 1:05 am

    Jimmy, wonderful posting. You might have hit it right on the head.

    Thank you.

  80. “Pete Hayes says:
    June 9, 2010 at 5:14 am
    Prof! Where have you been! Is this the same Pen State? Wow, bet your lunch breaks from tommorrow are going to be interesting! I would suggest a sound recording device!”

    He’s from University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, Mike Mann is at State Penn in State College PA.

  81. That’s suppossed to be “Penn State”….not State Penn in my previous post…(although is that a Freudian slip on my part?)

  82. Pascvaks says:
    June 9, 2010 at 5:13 am
    Ref – Dick H. Ahles says:
    June 8, 2010 at 9:26 pm
    “This is not a surprising conclusion for the WUWT-readers. The Question is: why so many politicians still don’t believe “there is no climate crisis!”? It’s something social and psychological!”
    _____________________________
    It’s ‘monitary’.

    Yep….with the governement it’s always about money and the “power-grab”. Climate crisis sets the stage to garner more power. Look what Rahm Emanuel said about a crisis: “You never let a serious crisis go to waste. And what I mean by that it’s an opportunity to do things you think you could not do before. “……like tax the air, or energy, etc.

  83. Van Grungy says:
    June 8, 2010 at 9:38 pm

    I can just hear the wails now…
    “But he’s not a Climaneuralscrambolologist!”
    ____________________________________________________________________
    AHHhhaaa Yes , but he is something better. Jason Scott Johnston is a Professor and Director of the Program on Law, Environment and Economy at the University of Pennsylvania Law School.

  84. All you have to do is show ENSO graphs compared with temperature anomaly graphs to anyone, regardless of political view. The naturalists will say, “Gee the oceans have quite a bit to do with land temperatures!” The anthropogenic warmers will say, “The greenhouse affect is warming the oceans!” In fact, they have said that. They just can’t find the warming that should be there and have said, oh so scientifically, that it is hiding. As soon as they go there, you have em licked. That is an incredibly easy mathematical with proof argument to refute. If I were the lawyer, at this point in time, after refuting the silly child-like hide and seek notion that re-radiation of longwave infrared caused by anthropogenic increases in greenhouse gases is “heating the/hiding in the” oceans to a degree significant to heat the land, I would sit down after moving for a summary judgment.

  85. Hit send too soon. Should have said, “…to a degree significant enough to explain the recent increased land temperatures, …”.

  86. ” sphaerica says:
    June 9, 2010 at 5:41 am
    […]
    This entire approach to the AGW argument is appalling. It’s another parlor trick, and it’s shameful.”

    Instead of trying to understand what Johnston has to say you are attacking his approach. Thank you, this says a lot about the strength of your argument.

  87. Let me make things clear to some of you. AGW was never about saving the planet & resources for the yoof of today & our grandchildren. Marxist Socialism was failing around the globe. The MS ideological goal was alwasy for Global Government, presumeably on the maxim that if we’re all going to die lets all die broke, except the rich of course, & the best socialists are the rich ones naturally enough! So when you can’t convince people of a political ideology, i.e. Marxist Socialism, the next best thing is to ignore it & invent a problem caused by free-enterprise capitalism, namely Global Warming! (Don’t forget that the Ozone hole failed to achieve anything, but it’s always good to have something in reserve, like ocean acidification, etc). Who in their right minds, frightened, scared, terrified even, about destroying the planet for our childrens’ childrens’ childrens’ children, guilt is a powerfuul weapon/tool as is the human mind in the right hands! Ask the Lenins/Stalinists/Hitlers of this world. Curiously enough our (UK) glorious (& wealthy) deputy leader is being as upright as ever by having his wife (a wealthy lawyer – I’ve known a broke one) to join the board of a Spanish infrastructure group as an advisor, who just happen to specialise in………………wind farm technology! No conflict of interests there then, I am pleased to say. I understand why Dr Richard North frequently asks the question ” & the reason we don’t all rise up & slaughter them all is…….?”

  88. Apologies, my bile got the better of me. That should have read “I have NEVER known a broke one” referring to lawyers.

  89. The AGW crowd spends alot of time “debunking” the claims of the sceptics. Unfortunately, most of the “debunking” that I have read is aimed at strawman arguments. Johnson’s article collects in one place what I view as the best of the serious sceptical arguments. As a sceptic who is open to persuasion, I would likely switch camps if someone at RealClimate would go through this article with a fine-toothed comb and show me where Johnson is wrong.

  90. OT but the above quote about Obama trying to find out who’s ass to kick, I can tell him. I voted for him and he is kicking MY ass!

  91. Jim Cole says:
    June 8, 2010 at 9:36 pm
    Emotional AGW-ers will not be swayed by logic, facts, and reason, BUT debating these matters in a court of law (requiring evidence, substantiation, and cross-examination) has tremendous merit. Most folk know smoke-and-mirrors when they are shown other plausible/credible explanations.

    —–
    You can’t reason with someone that doesn’t want to be reasoned with. Your point illustrates why whenever AGW goes to court it falls to its knees.

  92. Mann, Hansen, Romm, are not lawyers. What they offer as evidence will never pass the initial court rules as evidence.
    Romm for example demand we accept his forecasts and extrapolations of 2050 and 2100 weather as valid evidence and proof. Mann peddles his proxies or actually his personal take on proxies as evidence. (I am not sure he was at the crime scene and observed the actuall tree cuttings and the locked vault they went into and the armed guards that protected the tree rings from being switched.)

    Anthony Watts debunks the accuracy of the data gathering stations. You can’t take the station data to court when so much data is corrupted. All the posturing pretend scientists I read of indicate they have no clue of what court rooms call rules of evidence.

  93. this group of activist scientists – what may be called the climate establishment

    Stephen Schneider a leader among them

  94. This is interesting:

    Dan Cole Professor of Law at the Indiana University School of Law comments on Jason Scott Johnston “Cross-Examines” Climate Science

    He states:
    “….Finally, from a legal-policy perspective Johnston’s presumption that advocacy-based, “establishment” climate models are leading to overly ambitious and expensive climate policies seems to conflate the climate-policy rhetoric of 50-80 percent reductions in GHG emissions by 2050 with the reality of very modest – arguably insignificant – climate policies that have so far been adopted or are presently being contemplated for near-term adoption. His concern about “expensive, immediate and irreversible policy commitments” is, at least so far, unwarranted. Over-commitment to avoiding climate change hardly seems to be the problem right now. Rather, the immediate problem seems to be either no or too little climate policy. Before we concern ourselves with attaining (but not exceeding) some “optimal” level of GHG control, it would be nice if we could at least get the direction right.

    UPDATE: I’ve asked Gavin Schmidt, a climate scientist at NASA, and contributor to the highly respected RealClimate website for his opinion of Professor Johnston’s “cross-examination” of climate science. If he e-mails me or posts about it, I will let you know. ”

    There is a place to leave comments. It will be interesting to see if he gets an answer from Gavin Schmidt.

  95. And yet while balanced ‘reviews’ like this are being published … the AGW catastrophe juggernaut just keeps ploughing ahead … fresh from the BBC, this article on the latest “meeting” in Bonn…..

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science_and_environment/10276225.stm

    Love the comment from the Bangladeshi rep … Quamrul Chowdhury,
    “At Bali, we had the mandate to complete our task at Copenhagen. Unfortunately, we couldn’t deliver at Copenhagen; and if we can’t deliver at Cancun… it will be unfortunate, it will be tragic, it will be a holocaust.”

    I’m speechless.

  96. DirkH says:
    June 9, 2010 at 7:06 am

    Instead of trying to understand what Johnston has to say you are attacking his approach.

    Anyone with the slightest bit of knowledge about AGW could tear this to shreds, but it’s 82 pages long. It also introduces no new arguments whatsoever, but is simply a rehash of I-don’t-want-it-to-be-true talking points. You really expect me to waste my time doing so in a series of blog comments?

    Basil says:
    June 9, 2010 at 6:10 am

    Ultimately, the

    “Climatologists would tell this lawyer to stick to law and leave the science to the scientists.”

    remark is an appeal to authority, the very thing science is supposed to stand against.

    The fact is that this itself is one long appeal to authority. “He’s a lawyer, so he must know logic better than the rest of us, and look, he disagrees with AGW. Case closed, nothing to see, everyone can go home.”

    A lawyer said it, and everyone knows how trustworthy and truthful lawyers are, so we can all stop thinking here. Check your own brain at the door, and trust this authority.

    Meanwhile, there is no opposing argument in the document. It’s a “cross examination” that presents only one side of the debate.

    Disingenuous and misleading. Just because it says what you want it to say doesn’t make it right. Imagine if this was done on the AGW side, how you’d be howling.

  97. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:
    June 9, 2010 at 12:12 am

    “…Smokey Bait

    It’s obvious someone is fishing for some contentious replies, as the Hansen stuff has been brought up and replied to several times lately, yet keeps showing up like some brand-new thing deserving of brand-new discussion.

    Strange, after all those broken lines and snapped poles, you’d think they’d finally show up with some stronger tackle…”
    ______________________________________________________________________
    They have not put any new AGW arguments up on the iphones.

    It is bad enough that Obama fumbles without his teleprompter but now the activists have to have one too. Isn’t it about time the puppet master behind the curtain showed his face….

    Guess not. He knows if the activist actually saw who was really pulling their strings the would scream in horror.

  98. mjk says: June 9, 2010 at 6:03 am
    “…join the class action climate change litigation against big oil [BP (assuming it is not already bankrupt), Shell, Exxon et al…”

    Did you not get the memo?

    British Petroleum and Royal Dutch Shell have been funding the Climate Research Unit since it first opened in 1974.

    Bottom of this page from the Climate Research Units web site.

    http://www.cru.uea.ac.uk/cru/about/history/

    You will also find the Nuclear, Food to Ethanol, International Insurance and Finance companies in the list; and of course Greenpeace and the World Wildfire Fund.

    “Unlike you –I am pretty sure we have a good case”

    You know there are people who might actually believe you know what is actually going on.

  99. This, unfortunately, will not stop the continuous promotion through ads in newspapers, tv, the web, etc., through all the media, in favor of Global Warming/Climate Change, which is echoed by innocent and good hearted people who are thus constantly scared about the inminent armageddon.
    This obeys to the same tactics applied on other issues, equally logical sophisms.

  100. I have an open mind on AGW.

    But I must agree with the person who commented that a cross-examination without the witness being present is problematical.

    If these lawyers are actually searching for the truth rather than just making a point, or mounting a prosecution case, how come they didn’t submit their paper to the IPCC for comment? They have had plenty of time to do so – apparently this is a 2010 version of a paper first prepared in 2008.

  101. “”Pamela Gray says:
    June 9, 2010 at 7:01 am
    “The greenhouse affect is warming the oceans!” In fact, they have said that. They just can’t find the warming that should be there and have said, oh so scientifically, that it is hiding.””

    Pamela, this, and so many other things they have claimed, was my tipping point.

    How can they make the claim that they know what’s going on, can predict the future, and not know something as basic as this?
    Admiting that they don’t know where the heat is? can’t find it?

  102. The 7th Cavalry has arrived in the nick of time!
    Several comments about the failure to allow the ‘defendants’ the right of reply, but that is exactly the problem – they have consistently refused open debate with experts who disagree.
    No doubt they will be able to put forward their evidence and rebuttals when they take Prof. Johnston to court to seek huge damages for their ruined reputations.
    Probably Michael Mann will be the first to sue.

  103. JudyS says:
    June 9, 2010 at 8:06 am
    I have an open mind on AGW.

    But I must agree with the person who commented that a cross-examination without the witness being present is problematical
    Hey, do you want their confession under oath?
    That would be great. We do not ask for so much, we just ask for the prophet to reappear, he is so cool and nice and so helpful to their cause!

  104. ” sphaerica says:
    […]
    Anyone with the slightest bit of knowledge about AGW could tear this to shreds, but it’s 82 pages long. It also introduces no new arguments whatsoever, but is simply a rehash of I-don’t-want-it-to-be-true talking points. You really expect me to waste my time doing so in a series of blog comments?”

    It sounds like it should be easy to do for someone of your knowledge, so please, yes, go ahead, i’d love to hear a factual argument. Consider your time not wasted; WUWT has a large audience eager to hear you.

  105. The shock and horror that someone, anyone, proposing to analyze the vast lump of non-scientific garbage that is AGW would come to the conclusion that the whole thing is fictional, I’m speechless. Imagine that. Someone read the documents, examined the statements and found them lacking, however could that be? The science is settled. And he’s not a scientist, he’s a lawyer. And, and, and… he’s supposed to be on our side.

    /sarc

  106. I think that it would be very interesting to know the scholarly opinion of historians and economists, on the past and future of this fraudulent scheme.(Not even a Ponzi one, because it will profit by continuously pouring the empty into the void. A big achievement indeed.)

  107. “Alan the Brit says:
    June 9, 2010 at 7:12 am
    Apologies, my bile got the better of me. That should have read “I have NEVER known a broke one” referring to lawyers”

    I’ve known lots who went bankrupt because the cost of providing the service exceeded the revenue being generated. Admittedly that is in the UK and not USA.

  108. sphaerica says: Anyone with the slightest bit of knowledge about AGW could tear this to shreds, but it’s 82 pages long. It also introduces no new arguments whatsoever, but is simply a rehash of I-don’t-want-it-to-be-true talking points. You really expect me to waste my time doing so in a series of blog comments?

    If you are so conversant with the AGW science then why not debate someone from this blog. (not Anthony, Steve or Willis) I don’t know you from Adam, but I would accept as would others. I am sure voluteers are available. Do it here with agreed guidelines.

    As Willis’ guideline from the other day, let’s have numbers, facts, hard evidence. Not your can’t “waste my time” words.

  109. Dr T G Watkins says:
    June 9, 2010 at 8:25 am

    they have consistently refused open debate with experts who disagree

    The amount of information available on the subject lays bare this lie. The debate is ongoing, and there is a wealth of information available. The fact is, however, that debates rarely expose the truth. They instead present a theatrical forum where style wins over substance, and in fact false, weak arguments can carry more weight with an observer than true and necessarily complex arguments. Similarly, complex yet wildly fabricated or false arguments can sway many by appearing valid and even damning to the uncritical eye.

    [Yes, this applies to both sides of any argument. The point is that debates are useless.]

    If you want to reach a viable conclusion, the information is out there. You may need to study hard. You may need to extend your background knowledge and learn new, difficult to understand things about chemistry, physics, and statistics (but not too much statistics… laymen get oh so carried away with proving bizarre correlations, with absolutely no substance behind them, and then believe they’ve found the holy climate grail).

    But the information is available to anyone who is truly skeptical, with an open mind, and seeks to understand and resolve before they seek to prove, and who asks questions looking for answers rather than confirmation.

  110. For a more extensive examination of Johnston’s lengthy paper, see my article on ICECAP:
    “Could Climate Science Survive a Legal Cross Examination?”

    http://icecap.us/index.php/go/political-climate/could_climate_science_survive_a_legal_cross_examination1/

    AND

    “A Lawyer’s Examination of the IPCC “Evidence” for Man-made Global Warming” by Dennis Ambler

    http://sppiblog.org/news/a-lawyers-examination-of-the-ipcc-evidence-for-man-made-global-warming#more-1868

  111. Then I will dedicate the following facts to you:
    mkelly says:
    June 9, 2010 at 9:20 am
    Facts about CO2:
    CO2 it is not black, but trasparent and invisible
    CO2 is the gas you exhale. You exhale about 900 grams a day of CO2
    CO2 that you exhale is what plants breath to give you back O2 (oxygen) for you to breath.
    CO2 is heavier than air, it doesn´t fly up, up and away CO2 is a trace gas in the atmosphere, it is the 0.038 per cent of it, or 3.8 parts per ten thousand.
    The atmosphere, the air you know, does not have the capacity to “hold” enough heat, it only “saves” 0.001297 joules per cubic centimeter, while water , the sea you know, has 3227 times that capacity (4.186 joules).
    Would you warm your feet with a bottle filled with air or filled with hot water?
    The so called “Greenhouse effect” does not exist, see:

    But if you have been cheated to the core and still believe in it, think the following:
    Svante Arrhenius, the guy of the greenhouse effect, said he thought CO2 acted as the “window panes” of a green-house, but as its concentration in atmosphere it is just 3.8 per ten thousand, you would have a greenhouse with 3.8 window panes and 9996.2 empty holes

  112. Let me get this straight …

    So any “policy maker” is supposed to be able to fully grasp what IPCC puts out and use it as a basis for their policy but only highly qualified individuals with doctorate degrees would be able to fully grasp any criticism or even question the IPCC conclusions?

    This “you are too stupid to disagree” is part of the entire problem. It is how they quash any criticism.

    It is actually quite simple: The temperature data used to show current warming is bad and has been manipulated in such a way as to bias it warm. Paleoclimatological proxies have been cherry picked in order to provide the desired outcome for data going back before the invention of the modern thermometer. Conditions predicted by climatological models have not been empirically observed by physical measurement.

    That is pretty much it in a nutshell. Garbage in, garbage out. You don’t need to be a rocket surgeon to figure that out.

  113. Bill Tuttle says:
    June 9, 2010 at 12:06 am
    Wren: June 8, 2010 at 11:05 pm
    I was a surprised that the author has given so little thought to evaluating predictions.
    “Policy carrying potential costs in the trillions of dollars ought not to be based on stories and photos confirming faith in models, but rather on precise and replicable testing of the models’ predictions against solid observational data.”
    If the author wants to evaluate whether a model’s forecasts are good or bad as a policy guide, he needs to ask good or bad compared to what ?

    He didn’t say the forecasts needed to be evaluated as “good or bad” — he said the forecasts needed to be evaluated against the observed data.
    =========
    Well, of course. Then what ?

  114. sphaerica says:

    “The point is that debates are useless.”

    The winners of the debates don’t say that. Lord Monckton’s Oxford debate win was reported world wide, and it opened a lot of folks’ eyes.

    Debates are very instrumental in exposing the truth by allowing people to hear both sides of the argument. When people are fully informed they usually reach the correct conclusions.

    Up to now, those flogging CAGW have hidden out from debating their position, preferring to take pot shots from the sidelines. Al Gore is the quintessential example. Why do they avoid real debates? Because in the few legitimate debates held – Oxford being the most legitimate – they lost.

    But now that the CAGW purveyors are steadily losing ground, they feel increasing pressure to debate, hoping to salvage their eroding position. Watch for them to try and stack the debate deck, just like they stacked the peer review process.

    Any legitimate debate must have a neutral Moderator and rules acceptable to both sides, a neutral venue, and most importantly, each side must have the exclusive right to choose its own participants.

  115. sphaerica says: You really expect me to waste my time doing so in a series of blog comments?

    Yes – why don’t you explain to the vast number of Mathemagicians that frequent your blog why you oppose this paper.

  116. I believe there is some misunderstanding of Johnston’s paper by some commentators based on the rather short notice by Lawrence Solomon.

    Johnston is not attempting to arrive at a scientific conclusion regarding the global warming hypothesis (something he is not competent to do). Rather, he is cross examining the “established climate story” by asking “very tough questions, questions that force the expert to clarify the basis for his or her opinion, to explain her interpretation of the literature, and to account for any apparently conflicting literature that is not discussed in the expert report” (page 6).

    In other words, he is cross examining the form of the argument: IPCC’s use of evidence on both sides, their critical thinking skills, their logic, and the internal consistency of the report. After juxtaposing conclusions from numerous scientists he concludes that “a rhetoric of persuasion, of advocacy that prevails throughout establishment climate science” (page 9).

  117. Enneagram says: June 9, 2010 at 9:51 am

    As someone who does not accept the CO2 causes warming theory I donot know why you sent this under my name. Send to sphaerica.

    And I know all of the info you wrote. Arrhenuis thought a drop in CO2 caused ice ages and an increase in CO2 was wholly beneficial.

  118. Smokey says:
    June 9, 2010 at 10:03 am

    The winners of the debates don’t say that. Lord Monckton’s Oxford debate win was reported world wide, and it opened a lot of folks’ eyes.

    Thank you. I couldn’t have made my point better myself.

  119. sphaerica says:
    June 9, 2010 at 7:38 am
    ….
    A lawyer said it, and everyone knows how trustworthy and truthful lawyers are, so we can all stop thinking here. Check your own brain at the door, and trust this authority.

    Who is making this argument? No one. Are you just making it up?

    Meanwhile, there is no opposing argument in the document. It’s a “cross examination” that presents only one side of the debate.

    The “opposing argument” is what is under cross-examination! It is there, and then challenged. Did you read it?

    Disingenuous and misleading. Just because it says what you want it to say doesn’t make it right. Imagine if this was done on the AGW side, how you’d be howling.

    I’d howl only if it misstated “my side.” As long as “my side” is stated fairly, I have no problem with laying out the strengths and weaknesses of the arguments of either side. That is what an adversarial process (with which I’m intimately familiar, as an “expert witness” who has been cross-examined numerous times) is all about.

    You do not know me, and are in no position to imply that I care only about something because “it says what [I] want it to say.” I do like to “win” my adversarial battles, and sometimes do not. I’m okay with that, as long as the battle was fought “fairly.” That attitude is what I expect to see in scientific discourse and disagreement, and frankly, that is not what we see in “climate science.” We see a handful of people trying to game the system and determine the outcomes, through perversion of the “peer review” process, and through a political process masquerading as “scientific review,” i.e. IPCC. In “climate science” the “consensus” is not about “truth” but is about stymieing the very procedures that are designed to lead to “truth.” When that happens in the legal arena, it is called “obstruction of justice.” Here it is “obstruction of truth.”

    My comments are about the process, and not about the outcome — i.e. whether or not someone agrees with me, or presents a view I subscribe to. If you cannot understand that, then perhaps you should keep your comments to yourself.

  120. janama says:
    June 9, 2010 at 10:16 am

    Yes – why don’t you explain to the vast number of Mathemagicians that frequent your blog why you oppose this paper.

    I already have… because a paper by a lawyer, fabricating the illusion of a fair judicial setting while arguing only one side of an issue, against prefabricated and pre-structured “witness testimony”, with no opportunity for rebuttal or true adversarial judicial process, is itself a misleading hoax. The content and validity of the arguments are not the issue. It’s a tactic, not used to arrive at the truth or further debate, but instead to mislead the weak minded and win points.

    The contents of the paper are irrelevant, and quite honestly, have been bandied back and forth for a long time. You can find rebuttals to any particular issue anywhere on the Internet, if you care to look. On the other hand, if you don’t want to look, if you’ve made up your mind as to what you believe, and want to cover your eyes and look only at those things that agree with your predetermined position, then nothing I write is going to change your mind, because you are already lost in a sea of “I am a skeptic, I know all, and what you are saying is false, I know it, I don’t have to actually look or think, because I am a skeptic…”

  121. Jimmy Mac says:
    June 9, 2010 at 1:05 am

    I suspect this is all the ‘satisfaction’ we are ever going to get from the AGW camp. I see the whole AGW debate as the first ever macro ‘flamewar’ – the argument techniques of 1990s Usenet used in the macro world. Like all flamewars, nobody will ever emerge as a ‘winner’ – and the ‘losers’ will just slink away into obscurity without ever being held to account. If you want to rub their faces in it when then next 10 years shows cooling, then you’re in for a disappointment. You are never going to get that sort of satisfaction from the blogosphere, they will argue that the data at the time supported their views, and like good scientists they adapted their views with new data. You can’t win. You are also highly unlikely to get satisfaction from the scientists concerned, who will all have retired on nice pensions, doing the lucrative paid tour circuit of the shrinking band of true believers who still want to listen to the armageddon/atonement message.

    Our satisfaction will have to come simply from being proved right.

    Or from having bet against them about the future temperature trend, as can be done on https://www.intrade.com

  122. sphaerica says…
    June 9, 2010 at 10:45 am:

    You are doing an awful lot of “useless” debating for someone who says debating is useless.

  123. The authors stumble at the starting gate. Below the first item in the table of contents, followed by the beginning statement :

    “A. What do we Really Know about Global Mean Surface Temperatures, and Can we Really be So Sure about the Purported Warming Trend? ………………………………… 11

    “There seem to be significant problems with the measurement of global surface temperatures over both the relatively short run – late 20th century – and longer run – past millennium – problems that systematically tend to cause an over estimation of late 20th century temperature increases relative to the past;”

    ————-

    The fact that land-based (GISSTEMP and HADCRUT) and satellite-based (RSS and UAH) measurements of global temperature show almost identical warming trends in the late 20th Century is evidence (see link) there are no significant problems with these measurements and the warming is not overstated.

    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/gistemp/from:1980/offset:%20-.24/trend/plot/rss/from:1980/trend/plot/uah/from:1980/trend/plot/hadcrut3vgl/from:1980/offset:%20-.15/trend

    The agreement between the metrics is a significant problem for those who don’t want to believe the warming occurred or is overstated.

  124. @Wren:
    “The agreement between the metrics is a significant problem for those who don’t want to believe the warming occurred or is overstated.”

    This is simply wrong. The correct statement would be ‘adjusted RSS and UAH agree with adjusted GISSTEMP and HADCRUT. One must examine the possibility that confirmation bias has resulted in adjustment methods that manufacture the conclusion that the funding bodies seek: namely agreement between the two. So long as the adjustment methods and code are kept secret, it is impossible to ascertain whether these adjustment methods are appropriate.

  125. Basilb says:
    June 9, 2010 at 10:50 am

    Who is making this argument?

    The authors, and the document, by implication.

    The “opposing argument” is what is under cross-examination!

    No, that’s the whole point. By presenting it as a cross-examination, the authors get to cherry pick the arguments, and their presentation, to give the illusion of something that is fair, when it patently is not. If you can’t see this, then you have no chance of reasoning your way to the truth on your own.

    I’d howl only if it misstated “my side.” As long as “my side” is stated fairly, I have no problem with laying out the strengths and weaknesses of the arguments of either side.

    And you don’t see the irony in this statement? You have no fear that the other side, and so your understanding of the other side, and many others’ understanding of the other side, is being warped?

    I’m okay with that, as long as the battle was fought “fairly.”

    Which is my point. This isn’t fighting fair. It’s a trick, to fool the unwary. If you are who you say you are, you should be in complete agreement with me. If you only care to see arguments that support what you already believe, then you should think this document is a giant leap forward.

    You choose.

  126. Smokey says:
    June 9, 2010 at 11:11 am

    You are doing an awful lot of “useless” debating for someone who says debating is useless.

    For every Smokey that sees what he wants to see, there are a thousand thinking people who can see through the “Smoke.”

    The fact that you want people who disagree with you to simply shut up sort of crystallizes things, doesn’t it?

  127. Wren says:
    June 9, 2010 at 11:14 am

    Most persons like myself agree that the world has warmed since the lows of the LIA. But what is the cause and what is the harm? Ah that’s the rub.

  128. tarpon says June 9, 2010 at 10:50 am “Can we apply this test methodology to Nobel Peace Prize winners?”

    If you are referring to the “test methodology” of legal or rhetorical debate, then we’ve already had two decades of its lesser surrogate – shameless propaganda – from the one-way megaphone of the mass media.

  129. @sphaerica:

    I don’t want you to ‘shut up,’ I am simply pointing out an inconsistency.

    You stated: “The point is that debates are useless.” Yet you incessantly debate many others here. Why would you engage in a useless activity?

  130. mpaul says:
    June 9, 2010 at 11:38 am
    @Wren:
    “The agreement between the metrics is a significant problem for those who don’t want to believe the warming occurred or is overstated.”

    This is simply wrong. The correct statement would be ‘adjusted RSS and UAH agree with adjusted GISSTEMP and HADCRUT. One must examine the possibility that confirmation bias has resulted in adjustment methods that manufacture the conclusion that the funding bodies seek: namely agreement between the two. So long as the adjustment methods and code are kept secret, it is impossible to ascertain whether these adjustment methods are appropriate.
    =====
    The only adjustment is putting GISSTEMP and HADCRUT on a common baseline with RSS and UAH. If you don’t do that, they aren’t comparable.

  131. mkelly says:
    June 9, 2010 at 11:48 am
    Wren says:
    June 9, 2010 at 11:14 am

    Most persons like myself agree that the world has warmed since the lows of the LIA. But what is the cause and what is the harm? Ah that’s the rub.
    =====
    1. AWG is largely the cause since the last Century. No other non-cylical drivers have been found.

    2. No harm so far, but potential for harm in the future.

  132. Wren says:

    1. AWG is largely the cause since the last Century. No other non-cylical drivers have been found.

    2. No harm so far, but potential for harm in the future.

    Your #1 is a classic example of argumentum ad ignorantiam: the fallacy of assuming something is true simply because it has not been proven false.
    #2 is its corollary.

    When you start with a fallacy the result is a false conclusion.

  133. @Wren:
    “The only adjustment is putting GISSTEMP and HADCRUT on a common baseline with RSS and UAH.”

    The satellite adjustments are numerous and complicated and the methods lack adequate disclosure. Adjustments are made to compensate for the variety of sensor types of the different satellites, for *assumed* drift in calibration, for orbital decay and asymmetries, for changes in equatorial crossing times, and a whole host of non-disclosed adjustments (like the 1992 adjustment).

  134. I have a dream! I hold these truths as self-evident!
    *ANY* person correctly applying the scientific method is a scientist.
    *ANY* -ologist correctly applying the scientific method is a prejudiced scientist.
    *ANY* -ologist not functioning correctly under the scientific method is an advocate.

    For a logical dissertation such as this, best for the lawyer to analyze logically and on first principles. To make valuable conclusions about complex subjects needs only transparency and logic, iteration provides the rest.
    A lot of his analysis points out logical contradiction, misuse, improper documentation, etc. Some of it is opinion which he is unqualified to put for as evidentiary to his conclusion.

    I applaud public figures publicly dissenting, as this will create the equivalent forum from which science functions most efficiently. Moving forward through the upcoming tumultuous times (as AGW falls from public favor,) we must be careful to hunt causes, not witches.

  135. sphaerica says:
    June 9, 2010 at 9:36 am

    But the information is available to anyone who is truly skeptical, with an open mind, and seeks to understand and resolve before they seek to prove, and who asks questions looking for answers rather than confirmation.

    Exactly. All the more pity that you still cling to your CAGW/CC beliefs. The information, as you say, is certainly available.

    “Debates are useless”. Said by losers of debates everywhere.

  136. Excerpted from: Wren on June 9, 2010 at 12:00 pm

    1. AWG is largely the cause since the last Century. No other non-cylical drivers have been found.

    Minority report: 50 year warming due to natural causes
    If cyclical drivers can account for the warming, then non-cyclical drivers need not be found as there is nothing for them to account for. BTW, nice nuance on your statement!

    2. No harm so far, but potential for harm in the future.

    Averting potential harm in the future is a major goal of the fight against carbon taxes, although noticeable harm by the (forced) deployment of immature “green” technologies has already been noted.

    And lawyers en bloc are well noted for their ability to argue for actions to be implemented and damages be awarded now to mitigate or eliminate potential future harm.

  137. sphaerica says:June 9, 2010 at 11:45 am
    For every Smokey that sees what he wants to see, there are a thousand thinking people who can see through the “Smoke.”

    As evidenced by the number of people who visit here relative to RC, Romm, etc.

  138. Wren says:
    June 9, 2010 at 12:00 pm

    Wren do you agree with the following: All atmospheric gases dissipate heat. If not why not.

  139. Smokey says:
    June 9, 2010 at 11:54 am

    I don’t want you to ‘shut up,’ I am simply pointing out an inconsistency.

    You stated: “The point is that debates are useless.” Yet you incessantly debate many others here. Why would you engage in a useless activity?

    Okay, a simple misunderstanding then. What I’m saying about debates is that a formal debate in a “theatrical setting”, involving some small number of “experts” on an issue as complex as climate change would be misleading. The idea of a having a formal debate, with a winner and a loser, to settle an issue once and for all is actually absurd, and would only serve to confuse people. In particular, a debate is not aimed at education and clarity, but rather the participants (much as in a legal trial) are instead using every trick in the book simply to win, no matter what the facts and the truth may be.

    Debates among people (as in discussions like these) are healthy, and very obviously necessary.

    The two are different.

    Bruce Cobb says:
    June 9, 2010 at 12:25 pm

    “Debates are useless”. Said by losers of debates everywhere.

    Ah, a very useful tactic. Simply declare yourself “the winner” and “in the right.” I’ve actually seen that happen a lot on these pages. In the end the argument is “I’m right and you’re wrong.”

    See the above comment on debates.

    P Walker says:
    June 9, 2010 at 12:18 pm

    Smokey – Probably because no one visits his blog .

    Attack people that don’t agree with you. Belittle them. Smear them. Be nasty.

    All part of the WUWT mystique.

  140. Does this mean I have to take back all those lawyer jokes I’ve been telling?

    Damn. There goes most of my repertoire.

  141. mpaul says:
    June 9, 2010 at 12:17 pm

    The satellite adjustments are numerous and complicated and the methods lack adequate disclosure. Adjustments are made to compensate for the variety of sensor types of the different satellites, for *assumed* drift in calibration, for orbital decay and asymmetries, for changes in equatorial crossing times, and a whole host of non-disclosed adjustments (like the 1992 adjustment).

    But….but….that’s data !

    Good ole, rock solid data.
    Not like that GISS interpolation stuff in the Arctic. GISS actually tries to extrapolate from and interpolate between the closest measured temperature anomalies, if they are less than 1200 km away, rather than apply the global average for unmeasured grid cells, which is the approach of HadCrut. Who can trust anyone (such as Dr. Hansen) who interpolates measurements and passes them off as data ?

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2008/03/08/putting-a-myth-about-uah-and-rss-satellite-data-to-rest/

    An additional question has been brought up related to why the data seems to be missing from the poles. Dr. Christy [colleague of Dr. Roy Spencer at UAH] also responded:

    As the spacecraft rolls over the pole it does so at an inclined orbit so
    that the highest nadir latitude is about 82 deg with the scanner looking
    out a bit closer to the pole. Since we apply the scan line data mostly to
    the nadir area directly below the satellite, the actual data only go to
    about 83 deg. In the gridded data I interpolate over the pole, but I
    wouldn’t trust the data too much beyond 85 deg.

    So, how much is the famous UAH satellite “data” interpolated ?
    Over a section of the globe 1556 kilometers in diameter.
    At both poles.

  142. sphaerica

    Are you getting paid to be here?

    Comment from your blog:

    On April 11, 2010 at 9:37 pm Susan Anderson Said:
    Forgot to say, via RealClimate (your #240, which unfortunately did not close the subject) and DotEarth, which is struggling with the usual cloaca of denial. I love the idiot savants … and appreciate your hard work on WUWT.

  143. I must say, this has been an interesting discussion so far, as far as observing the participants goes.

    The “opposition” is complaining this is not a balanced presentation, it is too one-sided. Fine then, let’s see their complaints about the heavily-moderated (actually heavily-filtered) Real Climate and their treatment of dissenting views, as they have posted them at Real Climate. Screenshots would be appreciated.

    There are also complaints about this being done by a lawyer, with lawyers working in an adversarial system, and how can science be presented and performed in an adversarial system? Insight Of The Day: The Socratic Method, aka Socratic Debate, used in both the scientific and legal professions. Read up on it, then wonder if those complaints make sense at all.

  144. @sphaerica
    ‘By presenting it as a cross-examination, the authors get to cherry pick the arguments, and their presentation, to give the illusion of something that is fair, when it patently is not.’

    Really? Hmm, isn’t it true that the whole point of a cross-examination is to cherry pick you’re arguments against a hostile witness. And as to the fairness of it all, of course it’s fair to listen to all sides, however if another side has something to say they can write their own cross and present it when it’s their bloody turn. But of course if IPCC could open up for the inclusion of skeptics’ arguments in the next IPCC report, now that’d be fair, wouldn’t you say?

  145. I believe that those who have expressed the idea that the “witnesses” haven’t been allowed to speak are missing the point.

    In Johnston’s cross-examination, the “witnesses” are the peer-reviewed papers and they speak volumes.

    And yes, I would love to see this debated in court where the true witnesses, the authors behind these peer-reviewed papers on both sides of the argument, are called to the stand and the jury gets to decide who is most credible and whose story best matches reality.

  146. Work day over gotta leave. Wren as I have not heard I’ll give you days to figure out how to answer the question.

    sphaerica as I heard not a yes I take it then no. So sorry. If debate is healthy you could have lowered your blood pressure or something.

    G’day.

  147. Vuk etc. says:
    June 9, 2010 at 1:36 am

    OT
    Snake populations decline in tropical and temperate climates – 9 June 2010
    “Although we do not know the cause of these observed declines we wish to alert snake ecologists to what appears to be happening and to stimulate further research.”

    Easy. The world snake oil reserves have been much depleted lately, we have reached “peak snake oil”.

  148. Sphaerica –

    You’re missing the point, and missing a huge opportunity for you.

    The IPCC and other papers have already done the “Direct Examination”. The paper in question in this article is the “Cross Examination”. You complain that this Cross is a process where there is no “defendent” allowed to answer; ironically, you’ve failed to recognize that your complaint actually is the valid complaint of skeptics, who have until now experienced years of a “Direct Examination” when any attempts at “Cross Examination” was actively discouraged.

    A Cross is not the unfair one-sided evalution you’ve implied; instead, it is the necessary balancing step to the existing Direct. I would have expected that someone for whom fairness is clearly of such importance would appreciate that.

    Moreover, if you know court procedure, you know that the Cross is only another stepping stone in the process. Next comes the “Redirect”.

    So, why are you complaining about this incredible opportunity that’s been dropped right into your lap? The legal process, the process designed to ferret out truth from two potentially biased and self-serving sides, cries out now for the Redirect. You seem to have the knowledge (since you aver that anyone with any AGW knowledge could rip the paper to shreds), you have the self-confidence to speak up, you obviously have the passion, and you have an attentive audience. Opportunities this good come only once in a lifetime.

    You can continue complaining that someone dared do a Cross, which, honestly, is truly a waste of everyone’s time on a blog like this where Contentless complaining is clearly seen for what it is, or you can accept this chance to shine. You would be doing yourself and everyone on any side, and especially no side, an enormous service by dissecting the Cross in your “Redirect”.

    Please.

  149. An earlier commenter wrote: “Based upon a review of several but not all sections, it looks like Johnston has produced a thorough summary and shows an excellent grasp of the key scientific issues and highlights and criticizes the unscientific approach of the AGW advocates.”

    I can hardly agree. Professor Johnston has misunderstood several sections of the IPCC reports, and has demonstrated a lack of understanding of the issues being discussed in the peer reviewed literature. His endorsement of McLean et al. (2009) is a prime example, as is his lack of awareness of the issues being discussed in the literature about TSI.

    I have yet to be convinced by his argument that climate scientists are, on the whole or in part, failing in their practice of the rigors of scientific research and practice.

  150. An earlier commenter wrote: “Based upon a review of several but not all sections, it looks like Johnston has produced a thorough summary and shows an excellent grasp of the key scientific issues and highlights and criticizes the unscientific approach of the AGW advocates.”

    I can hardly agree. Professor Johnston has misunderstood several sections of the IPCC reports, and has demonstrated a lack of understanding of the issues being discussed in the peer reviewed literature. His endorsement of McLean et al. (2009) is a prime example, as is his lack of awareness of the issues being discussed in the literature about TSI. I suspect many of his points will be rebutted in the not-too-distant future.

    I have yet to be convinced by his argument that climate scientists are, on the whole or in part, failing in their practice of the rigors of scientific research and practice.

  151. Don’t feed the trolls. Just let them see that they can post here without censorship. At some point, there’s a chance, however slim, that they will draw an appropriate conclusion from that.

  152. This comment from sphaerica says it all…”The contents of the paper are irrelevant,”

  153. It all boils down to this: If CO2 is going to tip the earth’s climate upsidedown, it would have done so long before now. Nothing in the current levels of CO2 in unprecedented; nothing we see climate-wise is even remotely convincing. So it doesn’t matter if there are those unwilling to debate; it doesn’t matter if satellites vs land-based temperatures are equivalent or unadjusted or whatever, and it doesn’t matter if there are some that are absolutely convinced there’s hidden heat lurking in the system somewhere just waiting to pounce. The hysteria, invented for whatever reason, isn’t going to change the weather. No amount of argument or government funding or modeling or pontificating or carbon capping is going to change the climate one iota. But perhaps running this whole sordid mess through the rigors of the legal system will cause enough people to realize my initial statement regarding lack of a tipping point is true and we can abandon this rat’s nest and start to address far more pressing problems. Certainly there are enough of those.

  154. sphaerica says (June 9, 2010 at 9:36 am) : “but not too much statistics… laymen get oh so carried away with proving bizarre correlations, with absolutely no substance behind them, and then believe they’ve found the holy climate grail.”

    Whoa! That’s a darn good description of Michael Mann et al. Good one!

  155. ‘He found that the climate establishment does not follow the scientific method. Instead, it “seems overall to comprise an effort to marshal evidence in favor of a predetermined policy preference.”’

    Well, it seems NASA have taken the same wrong route. The tone of the article on NASA’s ice monitoring expedition seems to indicate what they are expecting:
    “Researchers from the space agency hope to provide the most detailed research yet on how global warming is devastating the ocean’s ecosystem. ”

    See http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/environment/climatechange/7814345/Nasa-launches-its-first-ever-global-warming-investigation-to-the-Arctic.html

    Ed

  156. DirkH says:
    June 9, 2010 at 7:06 am

    sphaerica says:

    June 9, 2010 at 5:41 am
    […]
    This entire approach to the AGW argument is appalling. It’s another parlor trick, and it’s shameful.”

    Instead of trying to understand what Johnston has to say you are attacking his approach. Thank you, this says a lot about the strength of your argument.

    DirkH, I had to go back and re-read sphaerica’s comment when I saw that. In skimming, I thought it had read “This entire AGW argument is appalling. It’s another parlor trick, and it’s shameful.”

    Now, THAT I would have agreed with ;-)

  157. sphaerica says:
    June 9, 2010 at 7:38 am

    DirkH says:
    June 9, 2010 at 7:06 am

    Instead of trying to understand what Johnston has to say you are attacking his approach.

    Anyone with the slightest bit of knowledge about AGW could tear this to shreds, but it’s 82 pages long. It also introduces no new arguments whatsoever, but is simply a rehash of I-don’t-want-it-to-be-true talking points. You really expect me to waste my time doing so in a series of blog comments?

    It is not supposed to propose new arguments. It is supposed to examine existing ones. It does just that, while you do not seem to be doing so.

    Basil says:
    June 9, 2010 at 6:10 am

    Ultimately, the

    “Climatologists would tell this lawyer to stick to law and leave the science to the scientists.”

    remark is an appeal to authority, the very thing science is supposed to stand against.

    The fact is that this itself is one long appeal to authority. “He’s a lawyer, so he must know logic better than the rest of us, and look, he disagrees with AGW. Case closed, nothing to see, everyone can go home.”

    A lawyer said it, and everyone knows how trustworthy and truthful lawyers are, so we can all stop thinking here. Check your own brain at the door, and trust this authority.

    Meanwhile, there is no opposing argument in the document. It’s a “cross examination” that presents only one side of the debate.

    Disingenuous and misleading. Just because it says what you want it to say doesn’t make it right. Imagine if this was done on the AGW side, how you’d be howling.

    As far as I can see, this is exactly what is happening in the AGW argument all the time. There is never ‘room for debate’ and the ‘science’ is represented as ‘settled’. This paper attempts to examine the ‘settled’ nature of the science, and seems to do it rather well. An that makes you howl. Go figure!

  158. sphaerica says:
    June 9, 2010 at 9:36 am

    If you want to reach a viable conclusion, the information is out there. You may need to study hard. You may need to extend your background knowledge and learn new, difficult to understand things about chemistry, physics, and statistics (but not too much statistics… laymen get oh so carried away with proving bizarre correlations, with absolutely no substance behind them, and then believe they’ve found the holy climate grail).

    That is quite funny: Consider that prominent actual statisticians can expose the amateur mathematical fumbles of climate scientists for what they are, and you then feel justified in making the sweeping statement that you do not need to study statistics!

    I’m afraid you do need to study statistic, so that you can see when the wool is being pulled over your eyes. It is one of the most important areas of mathematics that laymen can get most benefit from at a superficial level to allow them to see bogus arguments for what they are. Trust me, bogus arguments supported by dodgy statistics are absolutely everywhere, and terribly abundant in climate ‘science’.

    As my statistics teacher used to say: “Figures never lie, but lies often figure.”

  159. sphaerica says:
    June 9, 2010 at 10:50 am

    janama says:
    June 9, 2010 at 10:16 am

    Yes – why don’t you explain to the vast number of Mathemagicians that frequent your blog why you oppose this paper.

    I already have… because a paper by a lawyer, fabricating the illusion of a fair judicial setting while arguing only one side of an issue, against prefabricated and pre-structured “witness testimony”, with no opportunity for rebuttal or true adversarial judicial process, is itself a misleading hoax. The content and validity of the arguments are not the issue. It’s a tactic, not used to arrive at the truth or further debate, but instead to mislead the weak minded and win points.

    The contents of the paper are irrelevant, and quite honestly, have been bandied back and forth for a long time. You can find rebuttals to any particular issue anywhere on the Internet, if you care to look. On the other hand, if you don’t want to look, if you’ve made up your mind as to what you believe, and want to cover your eyes and look only at those things that agree with your predetermined position, then nothing I write is going to change your mind, because you are already lost in a sea of “I am a skeptic, I know all, and what you are saying is false, I know it, I don’t have to actually look or think, because I am a skeptic…”

    This is an amazing circular argument. You refuse to discuss this paper’s argument. Your reasons are EXACTLY the reasons you incorrectly accuse your critics of.

    You do remind me of the entire (Hidden)AGW argument itself, in fact.

    I could not say it better that you yourself did: “if you don’t want to look, if you’ve made up your mind as to what you believe, and want to cover your eyes and look only at those things that agree with your predetermined position, then nothing I write is going to change your mind, because you are already lost…”

  160. RDCII says:
    June 9, 2010 at 2:47 pm

    A Cross is not the unfair one-sided evaluation you’ve implied

    Correct, when performed in a court of law, which is an interactive setting, where the participants have been forced to view and hopefully understand all of the proceedings from beginning to end.

    But this isn’t a court of law, it’s a written document, and people aren’t going to go do all of the necessary research to see what the other side really presented as their case, so if there are untruths, misrepresentations, or anything else, it will slip by and seem perfectly reasonable. The author basically gets to present both sides, then focus only on his own arguments. He gets to cherry pick and plea and rant and rave, without the other side ever having gotten their day in court.

    So, why are you complaining about this incredible opportunity that’s been dropped right into your lap?

    Because this isn’t Colonel Mustard in the Conservatory with the Wrench. It’s far, far more complex than that. Understanding climate science means understanding physics, chemistry, scientific method, and a million other things. People here already talk like they understand, when they really, really don’t. It’s like listening to grade school kids talk about how cool it would be to build a rocket to go to Saturn.

    So no, this isn’t the forum, and a “cross”/”redirect” is not the proper approach… and people here are very, very unlikely to be reasonable about any arguments to the contrary anyway. They’ll behave like Smokey and Bart and Richard S. Courtney.

    If anyone wants to see how this “cross” is easily refuted, their best approach is to do the work themselves. Study. Learn. Be truly, truly skeptical, instead of looking for things that satisfy the answer you’d like to have. And go to sites that actually offer information, instead of the pseudo-science flavor of the week.

  161. sphaerica says:
    June 9, 2010 at 12:50 pm

    Attack people that don’t agree with you. Belittle them. Smear them. Be nasty.

    All part of the WUWT mystique.

    Wow! You don’t get out much, do you?

  162. RDCII says:
    June 9, 2010 at 2:47 pm Bravo! I anxiously await a competent re-direct. I will refrain from editorial comments on the quality of the direct.

  163. RDCII says:
    June 9, 2010 at 2:47 pm

    Sphaerica –

    You’re missing the point, and missing a huge opportunity for you.

    You can continue complaining that someone dared do a Cross, which, honestly, is truly a waste of everyone’s time on a blog like this where Contentless complaining is clearly seen for what it is, or you can accept this chance to shine. You would be doing yourself and everyone on any side, and especially no side, an enormous service by dissecting the Cross in your “Redirect”.

    Please.

    Hear, hear!

  164. I think this is the first time I have seen the IPCC arguments exposed in such a calm and reasoned manner in one place. I agree with some commentators (although my level of expertise is far lower than theirs or the author) that the author may have missed some points. At least he is clear in the introduction that this may be the case. Having said that, the grasp of the science seems commendable, as are the ‘lay’ explanations of the science and the various conclusions. A thoroughly informative and educational read.

    I also think that the mechanism of ‘reinforcement’ of the IPCC position is described here very well. Those without any real proof are making wild accusations, and that makes the IPCC look reasonable and assured. It could not be further from reality, as most of us here are fully aware. The whole business of supporting a group of models that fit your argument and rejecting outright other sets, when both are equally based on assumptions, is very telling indeed. The discussion on models itself is damming too.

    I would very much welcome this as a ‘real’ court case, with an appropriate and balance jury. If anyone has a few million ‘Big Oil’ dollars kicking around in need of some exercise, this would be a fantastic use for it.

    As it is, I welcome it and will spread it far and wide to all those who still have ‘faith’ in the IPCC and their increasingly biased and unfounded predictions.

  165. Smokey says:
    June 9, 2010 at 12:07 pm
    Wren says:
    1. AWG is largely the cause since the last Century. No other non-cylical drivers have been found.
    2. No harm so far, but potential for harm in the future.

    Your #1 is a classic example of argumentum ad ignorantiam: the fallacy of assuming something is true simply because it has not been proven false.
    #2 is its corollary.

    When you start with a fallacy the result is a false conclusion.
    ======
    Nah, I believe something is likely if the evidence for it is compelling. I believe something is unlikely if the evidence for it is weak or non-existent.

    If you like the absolute certainty of “true” or “false,” you may find science disappointing.

  166. David L. says:
    June 9, 2010 at 6:52 am

    “Pete Hayes says:
    June 9, 2010 at 5:14 am
    Is this the same Pen State?

    He’s from University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, Mike Mann is at State Penn in State College PA.

    Thanks David, I should have looked closer! To many Penns in the U.S. ! ;-)

  167. Sapherica wrote : “I already have… because a paper by a lawyer, fabricating the illusion of a fair judicial setting while arguing only one side of an issue, against prefabricated and pre-structured “witness testimony”, with no opportunity for rebuttal or true adversarial judicial process, is itself a misleading hoax.”

    First, the author of the article makes no claim that he is trying to be neutral. He state flat out: “My strategy in this paper is to adopt
    the approach that would be taken by a non-scientist attorney deposing global warming
    scientist.”

    You are quite obviously not a lawyer, because no lawyer would ever think that a law review article was intended “to create an illusion of a fair judicial setting.” Law review articles are written to advocate a position and they are rarely intended to be neutral summaries of a particular controversy. Law review articles by their nature have none of the safeguards of a “fair judicial” setting and to suggest that they could is just silly.
    You spend a lot of time suggesting that the points made in the article can be easily rebutted. I would be more convinced if you took just one point in the article and demonstrate how it can be easily rebutted.

  168. Professor Johnston’s Research Paper contains some excellent points, but it must be remembered that the style and goal of a paper such as this is not the same as more rigorous documents produced by attorneys, such as a law review article, or a memorandum of points and authorities prepared for a court. The style of this paper strikes me as more of a document to inform, which it does quite well, and its audience appears to be much broader than merely other attorneys.

    The overall goal, in my estimation, is to point out the contrary views on many points of the CAGW position, with those contrary views limited to credible scientists published in top peer-reviewed journals. This is done so as to reduce the self-proclaimed certainty of the IPCC reports.

    Professor Johnston’s field, or at least one of his fields, is Law and Economics. This field attempts to define, or at a minimum to shape, laws so that there is some balance obtained between legal requirements and the economic and social consequences of those laws.

    The term “cross examination” is perhaps not quite accurate, as to me what he has presented is more in the form of a rebuttal witness. Many of the topics in the research paper could very well be part of a cross-examination, however, but a cross-examination is generally limited to the scope of the direct testimony. Direct testimony is what the witness testified to when asked questions by the attorney for his side. This paper would appear to bring up topics the AGW proponents would rather not see the light of day, and thus not available on cross-examination.

    Therefore, Professor Johnston has left much unsaid in his paper, but presumably all these procedural matters would be satisfied in a hypothetical trial on climate change science.

    A commenter above mentioned the various studies be admitted as evidence, and there are some limits on what will and will not be admitted. First, and in general, evidence in the courtroom sense is “something, including testimony, documents, and tangible objects, that tends to prove or dis-prove the existence of an alleged fact.” — Black’s Law Dictionary. But, not all evidence is admissible and thus some evidence may be excluded by the judge. Admissible evidence must also be relevant, that is, have some bearing on the matter before the court; it must not be unfairly prejudicial, that is, not bias the jury by bringing up certain things from the past; and it must not be based on hearsay, although there are legions of exceptions to the hearsay rule. There are many other rules of evidence, but what is likely the most important for the climate science debate is what is the best evidence. By Executive Order (by the President), the EPA Administrator is required to base his/her decisions on the “best reasonably obtainable science.” The fact that the EPA based the recent Endangerment Finding for Greenhouse Gases on the IPCC reports, and those reports are not the best reasonably obtainable science, was one of the grounds for the lawsuits seeking to overturn that finding. Other fields of regulatory law use a slightly different wording for the scientific findings that must be followed, as for example in the Endangered Species Act, where the standard the agency must use is “the best scientific and commercial data available.”

    As a practicing attorney, I know only too well what attorneys do with those seemingly simple words, “best reasonably obtainable science.” An attorney attacks each word, then the sequence of the words, then the overall meaning, dictionary definitions, meanings in this and other contexts, what any prior courts have had to say on the subject, and then of course he advocates or argues for the definition that best advances his client’s case. The opposing attorneys will argue the opposite, of course. Thus, what is “best?” What is “reasonable?” What is “obtainable?” It could also be asked, what is “science?” Junk science need not be applied, one would hope. But, it happens. Then, the attorney asks, what is “reasonably obtainable?” The answers to all these are not easy, nor will various parties agree. Clearly, the AGW proponents maintain that their arguments are based on the “best” science, and the skeptics maintain that there is better science that counters theirs.

    The best science is usually determined, at least in a courtroom, by being peer-reviewed, published in respected journals or textbooks or treatises, and accepted by recognized experts in the field, all of which imply that the methodologies employed were not only sound, but were appropriate for that data. Yet, there are obviously disagreements between expert witnesses and the science each relies upon. What to do then? In the courtroom, the attorneys will attack the weaknesses in the other side’s position, very likely by cross-examination but also by calling their own rebuttal witnesses. The attorneys each have the further opportunity to convince the jury during closing arguments, where the attorney is expected to re-emphasize the evidence, and point out the strengths of his own science and the weaknesses of the science relied upon by the other side. Then it is up to the jury to decide (usually, sometimes there is no jury and the judge will decide).

    But, there is no trial at the moment. There are several lawsuits underway on various aspects of global warming science, including the one I mentioned above in which U.S. EPA is being sued by more than a dozen plaintiffs over the science that was used in the CO2 Endangerment Finding.

    There are many, many unanswered questions in climate science. One that has intrigued me for years is the natural release of CO2 into the atmosphere. In particular, cold ocean water with higher levels of CO2 brought to warmer climes where the CO2 off-gases into the atmosphere. While the process is known, how accurate are the quantities known? And another, in which natural deposits of alkali salts are contacted by acid rain, releasing CO2 in the chemical reaction. This is a natural event where the acid rain is a result of volcanic expulsion of sulfur oxides into the atmosphere, then rain removes the sulfur oxides.

    There are many, many other questions I would have in a cross-examination or for a rebuttal witness, such as why is there no warming in the GISS dataset as shown by Chiefio, and by my own modest efforts using the HadCRUT published data, and further shown by what I refer to as the Abilene Effect. Further, I would hammer home the process control argument that Dr. Pierre Latour advanced and I wrote on on my blog. If the earth’s temperature is to be controlled by adjusting something, CO2 is not that something, per process control fundamentals. Adjusting CO2 is doomed to failure.

    Professor Johnston’s paper is an excellent read. It will require more time for me to digest it more completely.

  169. Fred,

    Your quote “dying belief systems always lash out hardest near the end, the last gasps always aim for revenge and punishment” was so good I’d like to borrow it with your permission.

  170. Lawyers – is there any Science that they think Scientists understand better than themselves ?

    Darwin on Trial
    by Phillip E. Johnson

    From Publishers Weekly:
    A law teacher at UC-Berkeley, Johnson deems unpersuasive the alleged proofs for Darwin’s assertion that natural selection can produce new species. He also argues that recent molecular studies of DNA fail to confirm the existence of common ancestors for different species. Doubting the smooth line of transitional steps between apes and humans sketched by neo-Darwinists, he cites evidence for “rapid branching,” i.e., mysterious leaps which presumably produced the human mind and spirit from animal materials. This evidence, to Johnson, suggests that “the putative hominid species” may not have contained our ancestors after all. This cogent, succinct inquiry cuts like a knife through neo-Darwinist assumptions.

    From Library Journal:
    Dissecting the writings of Gould, Futuyama, Darwin, and Dawkins with a trenchant sword, law professor Johnson uses an attorney’s reasoning to scrutinize the scientists’ logic in defining the theory of evolution…
    While the book presents a skewed view of the scientific process, occasionally losing all pretense of objectivity, it may be of value to lay readers seeking a creationist perspective on evolution.

    I wonder if Jason Scott Johnston realizes that Einstein did not “follow the scientific method”…

  171. Skeptics above have anticipated these points, but they nevertheless bear repeating.

    It’s not a science paper.

    It’s not a peer-reviewed paper.

    The author is not a scientist.

    Contrary to views expressed above, I found glaring misconceptions in the paper.

    On the ‘hockey stick’, the author seems to think the the controversy is about the blade, rather than the handle – that 20th century warming is “exaggerated”. M&M’s critique argued that mid-millenial temps had been underestimated.

    The author posits that uncertainty has been underplayed in the IPCC report – the major source document for the paper. This is entirely at odds with the cautious language in AR4, and at odds with even the author’s cites of that document, where degrees of confidence about late 20th century temperatures compared to pre-industrial temps are qualified as “very likely” (higher temps in the last few decades 20th century than in the last 400 years), and “likely” (>66% for the last 1400 years).

    On the theme of missing uncertainty, the author states:

    “…the IPCC’s job is to assess the science – to adjudicate whatever disputes or disagreements may exist in the literature — and to then make a decision as to which side is most likely correct. Having made such a decision about which is the “best” science currently available, and in particular decided that there is “unequivocal” evidence that anthropogenic ghg emissions have caused recent global warming…

    But in the IPCC AR4, the term “unequivocal” refers to warming of the planet over the 20th century, not the cause.

    Warming of the climate system is unequivocal, as is now evident from observations of increases in global average air and ocean temperatures, widespread
    melting of snow and ice, and rising global average sea level. [SPM p. 5l

    What does the IPCC actually say about the attribution of GHGs to global warming?

    The understanding of anthropogenic warming and cooling influences on climate has improved since the TAR, leading to very high confidence that the global average net effect of human activities since 1750 has been one of warming [SPM p. 3]

    There are many more mischaracterisations and misunderstandings. I got halfway through the paper and gave up. It reads exactly like an intelligent lawyer has a received notion about the issue but is not fully conversant with the subject. A good number of errors, like the one immediately above, are easily discovered just by checking the source text against the author’s comments. I would recommend some dedicated fact-checking before promoting articles from non-experts at odds with mainstream science.

  172. I just finished my initial reading of Johnston’s research paper and, much to my dismay, I fail to see any merit or potential application. Rather than presenting a detailed cross examination on climate change, Johnston writes an 80+ page exposition on the depth of his lack of understanding of science, the scientific method, and the global scientific research community.

    I plan on studying his paper more closely later when time permits because… well, in all honesty, I’m just so disappointed. There must be something of value somewhere in there.

  173. mpaul says:
    June 9, 2010 at 12:17 pm
    @Wren:
    “The only adjustment is putting GISSTEMP and HADCRUT on a common baseline with RSS and UAH.”

    The satellite adjustments are numerous and complicated and the methods lack adequate disclosure. Adjustments are made to compensate for the variety of sensor types of the different satellites, for *assumed* drift in calibration, for orbital decay and asymmetries, for changes in equatorial crossing times, and a whole host of non-disclosed adjustments (like the 1992 adjustment).
    ————–
    Are you suggesting UAH and RSS temperature measurements are adjusted to make them consistent with GISSTEMP and HADCRUT measurements, so that the trends will be similar? A conspiracy theory ?

  174. kadaka (KD Knoebel)
    June 9, 2010 at 12:38 pm
    Excerpted from: Wren on June 9, 2010 at 12:00 pm

    1. AWG is largely the cause since the last Century. No other non-cylical drivers have been found.

    Minority report: 50 year warming due to natural causes
    If cyclical drivers can account for the warming, then non-cyclical drivers need not be found as there is nothing for them to account for. BTW, nice nuance on your statement!
    =====
    The report showed some indexes based on sea – surface temperature correlate with an index of land and sea- surface temperature. That’s not surprising, but where’s the driver?

  175. I’m sorry kadaka, I forgot to address your response to my second point, but I will do it now.

    kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:
    June 9, 2010 at 12:38 pm
    Excerpted from: Wren on June 9, 2010 at 12:00 pm

    2. No harm so far, but potential for harm in the future.

    Averting potential harm in the future is a major goal of the fight against carbon taxes, although noticeable harm by the (forced) deployment of immature “green” technologies has already been noted.

    And lawyers en bloc are well noted for their ability to argue for actions to be implemented and damages be awarded now to mitigate or eliminate potential future harm.
    =====
    We already have a tax of sorts on carbon, the tax on gasoline. Suppose we didn’t.

    1. We could drive larger more powerful cars.
    2. There would be less money to build roads.

    Would this be a good trade-off? I guess it would depend on who you ask. But either way, tax or no tax, the money doesn’t disappear. I think we could say the same for a direct tax on carbon.

  176. Almost 200 comments so far.
    It looks like the Professor and Director of the Program on Law, Environment and Economy at the University of Pennsylvania Law School struck a nerve.

  177. You know, all those mafia bosses at some stage have had lawyers who eloquently argue that their clients are pure as the driven snow. If you read the report you would see that this professor has taken the approach of a cross-examining lawyer on a hostile witness.

    i.e. it is his job to make it look like AGW is bunkum – his clients are the deniers, this is a court of law folks. This guy is a legal representative, not the judge!

    Every criminal on the planet would get off if all you heard was his lawyer’s cross examination!

  178. .

    This newspaper article says much the same thing about the recent swine flu ‘pandemic’. It says:

    Quote:
    Mr Flynn said: “There is not much doubt that (swine flu) was an exaggeration on stilts. They vastly over-stated the danger on bad science and the national governments were in a position where they had to take action.”
    Endquote.

    Hmmm. Overstated the danger, based upon bad science. Remind you of anything? Why cannot they make the obvious link to AGW?? Both have been based on bad science and promoted to levels of propaganda not seen since the heady days of Pravda.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1284133/The-pandemic-Drug-firms-encouraged-world-health-body-exaggerate-swine-flu-threat.html

    .

  179. Regards the B.P. quotes on this thread:

    Obama:
    “B.P. has made a real mess, and they must pay every cent to clear this up.”

    Obama:
    “The banks have made a real mess, and the governemnt will pay them $20 trillion to clear this up.”

    Is this the ‘change’ (or duplicity) that Obama was talking about when he was elected??

    .

    Let us not forget, as Obama appears to have, that this oil spill was caused by a Swiss company – Transocean – and to level all the blame at the door of B.P. (just because they have deeper pockets) is a tad opportunistic.

    .

  180. I’m still looking for a detailed response to this article from the AGW crowd. So far I’ve just heard broad, general statements that the article doesn’t raise points worth refuting.

    My own experience is that when I pose some of the “questions” raised by the article over at Real Climate, my question is either deleted from the comments section or met with an evasive answer.

    My own experience reading AGW websites is that they have plenty of time to “debunk” strawmen arguments, but when it comes to serious sceptical arguments, they go silent.

  181. Excerpted from: sphaerica on June 9, 2010 at 5:47 pm (emphasis added)

    (…) Understanding climate science means understanding physics, chemistry, scientific method, and a million other things. People here already talk like they understand, when they really, really don’t. It’s like listening to grade school kids talk about how cool it would be to build a rocket to go to Saturn.

    So no, this isn’t the forum, and a “cross”/”redirect” is not the proper approach… and people here are very, very unlikely to be reasonable about any arguments to the contrary anyway. They’ll behave like Smokey and Bart and Richard S. Courtney.

    If anyone wants to see how this “cross” is easily refuted, their best approach is to do the work themselves. Study. Learn. Be truly, truly skeptical, instead of looking for things that satisfy the answer you’d like to have. And go to sites that actually offer information, instead of the pseudo-science flavor of the week.

    Wonderful.

    We have many people commenting here with appropriate degrees who do not accept (C)AGW. Do you feel that only those with degrees in Climatology, preferably doctorates, are able to comprehend the Deep Knowledge of Climate Science?

    People here are routinely examining the evidence provided, normally concerning climate science. This is no echo chamber, the work of those not accepting (C)AGW is also frequently dissected and critiqued. So far, the evidence presented for (C)AGW has generally been shown to be weak, often easily dismissed, and increasingly self-contradicts. (C)AGW has been crumbling at an increasing rate as the scrutiny of the details has increased, helped along tremendously by natural cyclical trends reversing course thus causing the “anthropogenic warming” to go away.

    So far, the greatest “pseudo-science” I have read on this site is that which seemingly automatically attributes (C)AGW as the cause of virtually anything deemed wrong. “Since (C)AGW is a proven fact, we went looking for the damage it had done. We found damage, thus further confirming that (C)AGW is real and dangerous.”

    People here do study, they do learn. They do consider the theories and evidence. And they overwhelmingly conclude that (C)AGW, namely blaming CO2 for the warming, simply isn’t valid. They simply have reached different conclusions than the ones you purport to have.

    And what is your response? Generally summarized, “You people are stupid and this site is dumb!” Which I would take as an admission you have lost your argument, if I would accept you had a real argument to begin with.

  182. Ralph says:
    June 10, 2010 at 1:41 am
    Let us not forget, as Obama appears to have, that this oil spill was caused by a Swiss company – Transocean – and to level all the blame at the door of B.P. (just because they have deeper pockets) is a tad opportunistic.

    Au contraire, Ralph. This is an American company founded in Louisiana in 1929 I believe, (feel free to correct me anyone) who forgot to maintain its policy objectives, q.v. their website. BP have been man enough to accept responsibility without reservation for someone elses balls up & are incurring the wrath of ther enviromentals without any consideration of the facts, so no change there then! BP didn’t cause the explosion, they didn’t cause the oil spillage, they were not the ones who had a defective Blow-Out Preventer on site! No I am not in the pay of BP & big oil but do at times wish I were!

  183. From: Wren on June 9, 2010 at 11:05 pm

    We already have a tax of sorts on carbon, the tax on gasoline. Suppose we didn’t.

    1. We could drive larger more powerful cars.
    2. There would be less money to build roads.

    Would this be a good trade-off? I guess it would depend on who you ask. But either way, tax or no tax, the money doesn’t disappear. I think we could say the same for a direct tax on carbon.

    All this really shows is you don’t understand how government works. When government decides roads must be built, it finds the money to build roads. If not a gasoline tax then it would be something else, although these days there’s a good chance government wouldn’t call it a tax.

    Besides, the tax on gasoline, actually the taxing of liquid fuels for transportation use as diesel is also taxed, is abusive anyway. It hits hard those who drive the most getting to and from work, which includes many low-income workers. Good roads benefit everyone, thus taxes to pay for roads should more properly be based on the economic benefits derived from their use, thus an income or sales tax is indicated. It also hits the use of those fuels for non-transportation purposes, like lawn maintenance and electricity generation, and is paid in full by those using certain vehicles like mopeds and scooters who are denied the full use of all public roads, namely highways due to minimum speed limits.

    Thus this carbon tax “of sorts” is flawed. Will a real carbon tax be any better? I don’t think so.

  184. On June 9, 2010 at 5:47 pm sphaerica says:

    “…they really, really don’t… are very, very unlikely … Be truly, truly skeptical.”

    Just curious sphaerica, since you are obviously a careful and precise writer, what is the rhetorical purpose of the terms “really, really don’t,” “very, very unlikely,” and “truly, truly skeptical.”

    Is there some kind of special meaning to the double emphasis, beyond that of Mommy admonishing little Billy?

    Is that how you think of those who disagree with you? The “adults” versus the “children?”

    Haven’t we heard enough of this implicit and very common insult from the CAGW camp?

  185. Alan the Brit says: June 10, 2010 at 4:31 am

    Ralph says: June 10, 2010 at 1:41 am
    Let us not forget, as Obama appears to have, that this oil spill was caused by a Swiss company – Transocean – and to level all the blame at the door of B.P. (just because they have deeper pockets) is a tad opportunistic.

    Answer:
    Au contraire, Ralph. This is an American company founded in Louisiana in 1929 I believe, (feel free to correct me anyone) who forgot to maintain its policy objectives

    Contraire again. Transocean – the company that caused the Gulf of Mexico oil spill – may be listed on the NYSE, but it is based in Vernier, near Geneva.

    Does that make it American or Swiss? Your choice.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transocean

    .

  186. I am curious how the AGW’s respond to this argument set forth in the article (citations ommitted):
    “The Ability of Climate Models to Explain Past Climate
    The IPCC and the climate establishment have vastly oversold climate models by declaring that such models are able to quite accurately reproduce past climates, including most importantly the warming climate of the late twentieth century. Mainstream climate modelers have themselves explained that climate models disagree tremendously in their predicted climate sensitivity – response of temperature to a CO2 increase – and are able to reproduce twentieth century climate only by assuming whatever (negative) aerosol forcing effect is necessary to get agreement with observations.

    These kind of explanations, by leading climate modelers, suggest that climate models do not in fact reflect understanding of the key physical climate processes well enough to generate projections of future climate that one could rely upon. It seems unlikely that climate model projections would be accorded much policy significance if the way in which they were able to “reproduce” past climate was generally understood. It seems more than plausible that policymakers (let alone the general public), take a model�s purported ability reproduce past temperatures as an indication that the model’s assumption about climate sensitivity is correct.

    If policymakers were told that this is not so, that ability to reproduce past temperatures indicates only that a particular pairing of assumptions about climate sensitivity and aerosol forcing allowed the reproduction of past temperatures, then the logical question would be: which model gets the correct pairing of sensitivity and aerosol forcing? In answer to this, climate modelers would have to say that they do not know, and the best that could be done would be to use all the models (this is called the ensemble approach). But of course it is possible that all the models were very badly wrong in what they assumed about sensitivity.

    A policymaker aware of this would then have to ask whether it would be better to base policy on climate models, or a more naive climate forecasting method, and whether further public funding of efforts to improve climate models was worthwhile. “

  187. pauld,

    “I’m still looking for a detailed response to this article from the AGW crowd. So far I’ve just heard broad, general statements that the article doesn’t raise points worth refuting.”

    This is a thorough review reaching well argued conclusions by an attorney that has managed to succinctly summarize and manage to understand most of the key science at issue. A well argued and documented summary is always welcome and valuable, but it is not a new scientific result. The AGW crowd has probably already discussed most of the issues involved, so asking for a response is too general, and if they respond at all, there is plenty of opportunity for that response to be selective and to avoid the tough issues.

    The type of issues to bring up would be specifics of the science that the author relied upon, or specifics of his criticisms of the quality and the ethics and the evidence that he used to support his opinions. It might be interesting to see them respond before a congressional committee or in an open peer review process but in other forums it will be too easy for those that usually avoid the issues, to avoid the issues. It will help to do some homework, if you want an interesting and insightful response on specifics. I wouldn’t bother with realclimate.

  188. Bottom of page 1, the author (Jason Johnston) says he’s especially grateful for the comments from

    from David Henderson, Julia Mahoney, Ross McKitrick, Richard Lindzen, and Roger Pielke, Sr.

    in having allowed him to

    correct errors in earlier drafts, but it is important to stress that no one except myself has any responsibility for the views expressed herein.

    Some would say a case of confirmation bias, I would have to agree.

  189. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:
    June 10, 2010 at 4:57 am
    From: Wren on June 9, 2010 at 11:05 pm

    We already have a tax of sorts on carbon, the tax on gasoline. Suppose we didn’t.

    1. We could drive larger more powerful cars.
    2. There would be less money to build roads.

    Would this be a good trade-off? I guess it would depend on who you ask. But either way, tax or no tax, the money doesn’t disappear. I think we could say the same for a direct tax on carbon.

    All this really shows is you don’t understand how government works. When government decides roads must be built, it finds the money to build roads. If not a gasoline tax then it would be something else, although these days there’s a good chance government wouldn’t call it a tax.

    Besides, the tax on gasoline, actually the taxing of liquid fuels for transportation use as diesel is also taxed, is abusive anyway. It hits hard those who drive the most getting to and from work, which includes many low-income workers. Good roads benefit everyone, thus taxes to pay for roads should more properly be based on the economic benefits derived from their use, thus an income or sales tax is indicated. It also hits the use of those fuels for non-transportation purposes, like lawn maintenance and electricity generation, and is paid in full by those using certain vehicles like mopeds and scooters who are denied the full use of all public roads, namely highways due to minimum speed limits.

    Thus this carbon tax “of sorts” is flawed. Will a real carbon tax be any better? I don’t think so.
    ——————
    Use a carbon tax to pay down the national debt, and get two birds with one stone.

  190. Almost 200 comments so far.

    It looks like the Professor and Director of the Program on Law, Environment and Economy at the University of Pennsylvania Law School struck a nerve.

    I’d say you were right. The vast majority of comments are congratulatory notes.

    We have many people commenting here with appropriate degrees who do not accept (C)AGW.

    Who? And what does the ‘C’ stand for?

    The well-known contrarians with requisite credentials (Spencer, Lindzen, Pielke) agree that more CO2 must cause some global warming – they only question the degree. Which puts many of the commentators here at odds with sufficiently qualified skeptics. For instance, just above, kadaka:

    People here do study, they do learn. They do consider the theories and evidence. And they overwhelmingly conclude that (C)AGW, namely blaming CO2 for the warming, simply isn’t valid.

  191. Barry says:
    “The well-known contrarians with requisite credentials (Spencer, Lindzen, Pielke) agree that more CO2 must cause some global warming – they only question the degree. Which puts many of the commentators here at odds with sufficiently qualified skeptics. For instance, just above, kadaka:

    People here do study, they do learn. They do consider the theories and evidence. And they overwhelmingly conclude that (C)AGW, namely blaming CO2 for the warming, simply isn’t valid.”
    The letter “C” in (C)AGW stands for “catastrophic”. I don’t think that Spencer, Lindzen, or Pielke would fall within the Catastrophic AGW camp

  192. The well-known contrarians with requisite credentials (Spencer, Lindzen, Pielke) agree that more CO2 must cause some global warming

    Do they?

    Or do they merely acknowledge the possibility that more CO2 may cause some global warming?

  193. No, they agree with the principle that CO2 is a greenhouse gas that absorbs long wave radiation, and that adding CO2 to the atmosphere should result in warming of the surface. Lindzen points out that a doubling of CO2, if all else is held equal, should result in 1C temp rise. Their arguments are about the degree of climate sensitivity, or the efficacy of models, but not about the sign (direction) of global temperature change from increased greenhouse gases.

    I don’t think that Spencer, Lindzen, or Pielke would fall within the Catastrophic AGW camp

    Spencer and Lindzen argue that climate sensitivity is lower than IPCC recommends, and therefore that warming will be gradual rather than (relatively) abrupt. To my mind, Pielke’s take is more genuinely skeptical. He vouches that we do not know whether warming will be fast or slow. He put it something very like this:

    We should take efforts to deal with human induced climate change, not because we know what is going to happen, but because we don’t.

  194. From: Wren on June 10, 2010 at 8:13 am

    Use a carbon tax to pay down the national debt, and get two birds with one stone.

    This time you have shown you really don’t understand how government works. The concept of “targeted government funding” is rather nebulous in practice, money going in to government gets spent where government wants to spend it. The Social Security surpluses became IOU’s as the money was diverted to the federal budget, the great sums of tobacco settlement money were largely diverted away from the agreed upon purposes and used for general state budget items, etc.

    Besides, one of those birds is a 500 tonne enormous Super Bird set to ravage the country as in an old Godzilla-type monster movie, while the other is a little paper one based on some models you have sitting on your desk.

  195. Re: comments from sphaerica

    I thought I spelled it out pretty clearly in the previous posting, but you still miss the point. The Cross is not the unfair one-sided evaluation you’ve implied, BECAUSE it balances the one-sided “Direct” we’ve experienced for years. The IPCC been publishing in a “non-interactive setting” for some time now.

    sphaerica says: But this isn’t a court of law, it’s a written document, and people aren’t going to go do all of the necessary research to see what the other side really presented as their case, so if there are untruths, misrepresentations, or anything else, it will slip by and seem perfectly reasonable.

    A “written document” Redirect is the perfect way to address a “written document” Cross.

    You see the threat posed by the Cross clearly, and you have the qualifications to solve it, and the refutation is “easy”. I don’t understand your reluctance. I would sincerely appreciate an intelligent and educated Redirect. Please.

    sphaerica says: If anyone wants to see how this “cross” is easily refuted, their best approach is to do the work themselves.

    Most of the world thinks it’s quicker to learn from someone who is already educated; That’s why they have “schools”. But, you’re probably right that we’d learn better the long, slow independent way. Your time is no doubt valuable, and it’s not like there’s a hurry or anything.

    I will follow your advice, and I hope others will too; read the document in question, and spend the next few years trying to find something wrong with it.

  196. barry,
    That there has been some warming in the last 50 years is not that controversial a statement. This can be seen in the temperature records, although it has been shown the ground-based measurements have generally been “adjusted” to exaggerate the increase and increasingly are not a fully accurate gauge of the real temperatures, and warming can be a regional effect with many locations shown to have no warming and even cooling.

    Of this warming, some fraction of it can be attributed to mankind. We do release the stored solar energy in fossil fuels, generate some from nuclear power, there are land use issues etc, so we are adding heat to the system that wouldn’t otherwise be there.

    CO2 is a greenhouse gas. There is a logarithmic relationship, but still it can be generally said that increasing CO2 will increase temperature, if looking at just adding CO2 to the atmosphere.

    However, as Dr. Pielke Sr. has put it, “…there are other equally or even more important significant human climate forcings…” than the “…added greenhouse gases from human activity…” of which CO2 is just one greenhouse gas. Dr. Spencer finds natural cycles predicted the warming, has shown how simple changes in cloud cover can account for the warming, etc.

    (C)AGW, my terminology encompassing the IPCC-promulgated AGW belief with the usually-included Catastrophic element, lays the blame for the warming with CO2, blames mankind for the CO2 increases, and proposes the way to “fix” the planet is to limit the CO2 emissions of mankind. Yet it doesn’t take much understanding from an honest search for the truth to realize CO2 is a bit player at best, its contribution to warming matched or dwarfed by other factors, thus mankind’s contribution to the warming by its CO2 emissions is minuscule at best. If we really feel the need to combat global warming, as if we are capable of overwhelming the natural causes of warming, controlling CO2 emissions alone is clearly about the least effective strategy imaginable.

    (C)AGW is failing. Here at WUWT is where individual belief in it often comes to die.

  197. kadaka, I am skeptical of claims that go against the weight of evidence in mainstream climate science when they are based on a very small group of outlying papers. I am amazed that anyone can call themselves a skeptic that flourishes one or two papers on a given subject, claiming “here lies the truth”. The IPCC rests its assessment on thousands of studies (which themselves are built from thousands more). If the message was that these outliers add doubt to the central theory, I could come at that, but there is a decidedly unskeptical eagerness to latch on to whatever supports the skeptical view and announce that it’s a giant-killer. The example provided above (Johnson’s article) has been celebrated all the way down this thread, yet it is not a science paper, not peer-reviewed, not written by a scientist, incorrectly cites the IPCC, and gets the hocket stick controversy wrong, among other errors easily discoverable by some honest fact-checking. When you tell me that

    People here do study, they do learn. They do consider the theories and evidence.

    it doesn’t seem that way to me most of the time. It seems that each post here feeds outrage or sarcasm, rather than inspires critical analysis – not all the time, but mostly.

  198. #
    #
    kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:
    June 10, 2010 at 1:34 pm

    From: Wren on June 10, 2010 at 8:13 am

    Use a carbon tax to pay down the national debt, and get two birds with one stone.

    This time you have shown you really don’t understand how government works. The concept of “targeted government funding” is rather nebulous in practice, money going in to government gets spent where government wants to spend it. The Social Security surpluses became IOU’s as the money was diverted to the federal budget, the great sums of tobacco settlement money were largely diverted away from the agreed upon purposes and used for general state budget items, etc.
    _______________________________________________

    AND the Grace Commission report notes that 100% of personal income tax goes to pay interest on the national debt, the lion’s share of which goes to the banking cartel that we know as the Federal Reserve. http://www.bloggernews.net/17032

    “Resistance to additional income taxes would be even more widespread if people were aware that:

    * One-third of all their taxes is consumed by waste and inefficiency in the Federal Government as we identified in our survey.
    * Another one-third of all their taxes escapes collection from others as the underground economy blossoms in direct proportion to tax increases and places even more pressure on law abiding taxpayers, promoting still more underground economy-a vicious cycle that must be broken.

    With two-thirds of everyone’s personal income taxes wasted or not collected, 100 percent of what is collected is absorbed solely by interest on the Federal debt and by Federal Government contributions to transfer payments. In other words, all individual income tax revenues are gone before one nickel is spent on the services which taxpayers expect from their Government.” http://www.uhuh.com/taxstuff/gracecom.htm

    I do not know about you but I am VERY opposed to taking money from the poor and middle class, in the form of taxes, and giving that money to wealthy bankers because of an unethical law written by a European banker (Paul Warburg) 100 years ago.

    It seems every time any one tries to get rid of the darn thing they end up dead. Rep. Louis T. McFadden (R) after not only ” accusing the Federal Reserve of deliberately causing the Depression… introduced House Resolution No. 158, Articles of Impeachment for the Secretary of the Treasury, two assistant Secretaries of the Treasury, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve, and the officers and directors of its twelve regional banks.” He paid for his boldness not only with losing his seat in Congress but was shot at twice and later poisoned. http://www.marketoracle.co.uk/Article5556.html

    Reagan, who commissioned the Grace Report above and dared to criticize the Fed was shot, as was Kennedy when he tried to have silver certificates issued by Executive order. They would compete with the Federal Reserve Notes but the plan was never implemented.

  199. Ralph says:
    June 10, 2010 at 6:31 am

    It looks like there have been numerous take-overs & n=mergers since it’s original inception, I’d say it was international on the current score, so who will sue who?:-))

  200. Interesting thread … I’m late to the topic but couldn’t help noting the projection in all of sphaerica’s comments. Naturally, those still naive enough to believe that climate scientists understand our world (wren, barry, anu, etc.) come forth with there normal responses that are nothing more than “but, but, but … all the authorities say it’s so …”.

    It will be interesting to see where this goes.

  201. “Spencer and Lindzen argue that climate sensitivity is lower than IPCC recommends, and therefore that warming will be gradual rather than (relatively) abrupt.”

    I think Spencer and Lindzen are disputing more that the timing of global warming. If climate sensitivities are in the range of 1 degree for doubling of CO2, as both suggest, it is unlikely that greenhouses gases will pose a significant threat ever, given the logarithmic nature of greenhouse gas warming.

  202. Johnston’s paper has value only within the political realm as an argument to disregard science and keep the status quo; otherwise all 80+ pages are worthless.

    He argues based on the existence of advocacy scientists, an establishment science association, and an international sinister conspiracy. None of these exist, except in his paper and in the minds of his stakeholders.

    Johnston also views science solely through the lens of political theatre, which explains his misunderstanding of scientific inquiry and the scientific process. Just as politicians do, scientists also argue a lot–actually all the time. Unlike politics, however, science has no real dogmas, sacred cows, or beliefs. Further, even common words like “theory” have a different meaning in science in comparison politics.

    Unlike political theory, a scientific theory goes through cycles of observation, hypothesis, experimentation, initial theory formation, more retesting, re-experimentations, and possibly countless theoretical revisions, only to arrive at a possibility. And that’s just the beginning.

    Climate science is considerably complex and continues to present challenges. When one considers the six years of additional work and refinements in our understanding, of course IPCC’s 2007 report would differ from its 2001 report. And climatologists continue to argue all the time. However, humanity’s role on climate change is not one of them. Herein lies the main problem with Johnston’s paper. Johnston mischaracterizes scientific inquiry as political advocacy. Hence, the value of Johnston’s paper is dubious at best.

  203. “Unlike politics, however, science has no real dogmas, sacred cows, or beliefs.”

    Sancta Simplicitas.

  204. Conradbaugh says: “He argues based on the existence of advocacy scientists, an establishment science association, and an international sinister conspiracy. None of these exist, except in his paper and in the minds of his stakeholders.”

    So, did you actually read the paper? The one mentioned in the post?

  205. @conradbaugh re “However, humanity’s role on climate change is not one of them.”

    Even assuming, arguendo, that human activity has an impact on the Earth’s average climate, that impact is so small as to be ignored. The clear evidence is overwhelming that humans have done, and can do, essentially zero to change the climate. Not via CO2 emissions, not via land use changes, not via aerosol emissions or any other activity.

    Instead, what a few humans have done is manipulate the historic temperature record to create the appearance of a warming trend. See the Abilene Effect on my blog. See Chiefio’s excellent (and futile) search for the warming trend.

    What other humans have done is conveniently ignore massive impacts to the climate – clouds, solar activity, oceanic basin oscillations, jet stream path, and others.

    What the engineers know is that a deliberate change in atmospheric CO2 concentration will have zero effect on the average temperature. Scientists may be very good at “doing science” but not one of them ever defeats the fundamentals of process control. Dr. Latour and I have shown that CO2 cannot be manipulated in order to control the earth’s temperature.

  206. “conradbaugh says:
    […]
    I plan on studying his paper more closely later when time permits because… well, in all honesty, I’m just so disappointed. There must be something of value somewhere in there.”

    You forgot to say that Anthony’s blog loses credibility by posting things like this. I will have to report you to your politkommissar for not sticking to the script.

  207. “Unlike politics, however, science has no real dogmas, sacred cows, or beliefs.”

    +++++++++

    That is the Ideal Science believed in Grade 5 classrooms. Science is and always has been filled with dogma, sacred cows and (unfounded) beliefs and ‘hunches’. Many experiments are performed to confirm hunches. Belief is a powerful and essential component of science. Most scientists have faith in their results and believe them to be true, until someone shows otherwise. On the other hand, belief in something that science shows is otherwise, is superstition. Because it all depends on one’s state of knowledge, one man’s science is another man’s superstition.

    Academia, where most of the climate scientists work is, in my experience, a zoo of competing species of thought trying to become top predator – great fun as long as no one takes it too seriously or too far. Quite a bit of real science is properly classed as philosophy – (often idle) speculations about how and why something does or does not happen, beginning and ending in words. Inflation of the universe, for example, is a hunch supported by some observations and not by others.

    In my view, CAGW is not supported by much at all because of the weak circumstantial case for any AGW and the greater likelihood that it is natural variation. Then there are the laughable speculations of models that everyone agrees do not have a grip on what appears to be by far the most important variable: clouds. It is not about heating then, it is about cooling.

    Read the Copenhagen Agreement very carefully. It is not really about changing the climate, it is about providing development funding to poor and deprived countries – something that is not happening and would have, long ago, were it not for the obscene amounts of money spent annually on preparing for and making war.

    Development of the poor, which I fully support, paid for by carbon taxes, which I do not, is a great idea. It is also advocacy of the First Order. That is why the phrase, ‘the science is settled’ was adopted – to avoid independent peer review of some key (anointed) scientists’ beliefs.

    Advocacy hiding behind a thin veneer of trumped-up GW is a poor substitute for genuine international development and war-prevention programs. Humanity deserves better than that.

    Patience, patience. As it gets colder emperor CO2’s want of clothing will be even more evident. Another theory will take its place.

  208. Units don’t agree!
    +++++++++++++
    I can’t see that anyone else has spotted this (but excuse me if this is point has already been made). Equasion 1 on page 27 of the Jason Scott Johnston paper has units of temperature (oC, Kelvin, whatever) on the left and heat (e.g Joules) on the right. That’s obviously wrong – how much of the rest is wrong too?
    (If we want to want to say that the AGW science is wrong, we need apply the same standards of accuracy to sceptical science)

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