The Guardian: Climategate was ‘a game changer’

Despite regular attempts by head in the sand AGW cheerleaders to make it go away, Climategate continues to affect the path of climate science. This endorsement of the Climategate effect comes from a most unlikely source, The Guardian’s Fred Pearce, who also writes for The New Scientist. Most telling about all of the investigations so far is that they have not interviewed any of the primary investigators that question the methods and data, such as Steve McIntyre.

The investigations thus far are much like having a trial with judge, jury, reporters, spectators, and defendant, but no plaintiff. The plaintiff is locked outside the courtroom sitting in the hall hollering and hoping the jury hears some of what he has to say. Is it any wonder the verdicts keep coming up “not guilty”?

To summarize: it’s a whitewash in the purest sense of the word. I don’t expect career team player Sir Muir Russell’s report to be any different. He’s too much of an familial insider to have the courage to ask the plaintiff to get involved, and he didn’t. But Steve McIntyre is going anyway. Hopefully they’ll have the courage to hear what he has to say and not lock him out in the hallway. – Anthony

‘Climategate’ was ‘a game-changer’ in science reporting, say climatologists

After the hacked emails scandal scientists became ‘more upfront, open and explicit about their uncertainties’

Sir Muir Russell and independent investigation on Climatic  Research Unit, University of East Anglia
Sir Muir Russell’s findings will be published on Wednesday. Photograph: University of Glasgow

Excerpts from the Guardian article:

Science has been changed forever by the so-called “climategate” saga, leading researchers have said ahead of publication of an inquiry into the affair – and mostly it has been changed for the better.

This Wednesday sees the publication of the Muir Russell report into the conduct of scientists from the University of East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit (CRU), whose emails caused a furore in November after they were hacked into and published online.

Critics say the emails reveal evasion of freedom of information law, secret deals done during the writing of reports for the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), a cover-up of uncertainties in key research findings and the misuse of scientific peer review to silence critics.

But whatever Sir Muir Russell, the chairman of the Judicial Appointments Board for Scotland, concludes on these charges, senior climate scientists say their world has been dramatically changed by the affair.

“The release of the emails was a turning point, a game-changer,” said Mike Hulme, professor of climate change at the University of East Anglia. “The community has been brought up short by the row over their science. Already there is a new tone. Researchers are more upfront, open and explicit about their uncertainties, for instance.”

And there will be other changes, said Hulme. The emails made him reflect how “astonishing” it was that it had been left to individual researchers to police access to the archive of global temperature data collected over the past 160 years. “The primary data should have been properly curated as an archive open to all.” He believes that will now happen.

“Trust has been damaged,” said Hans von Storch of the KGSS Research Centre in Geesthacht, Germany. “People now find it conceivable that scientists cheat and manipulate, and understand that scientists need societal supervision as any other societal institution.”

The climate scientist most associated with efforts to reconciling warring factions, Judith Curry of the Georgia Institute of Technology, said the idea of IPCC scientists as “self-appointed oracles, enhanced by the Nobel Prize, is now in tatters”. The outside world now sees that “the science of climate is more complex and uncertain than they have been led to believe”.

Roger Pielke Jr of the University of Colorado agreed that “the climate science community, or at least its most visible and activist wing, appeared to want to go back to waging an all-out war on its perceived political opponents”.

He added: “Such a strategy will simply exacerbate the pathological politicisation of the climate science community.” In reality, he said, “There is no going back to the pre-November 2009 era.”

But greater openness and engagement with their critics will not ensure that climate scientists have an easier time in future, warns Hulme. Back in the lab, a new generation of more sophisticated computer models is failing to reduce the uncertainties in predicting future climate, he says – rather, the reverse. “This is not what the public and politicians expect, so handling and explaining this will be difficult.”

Full story at the Guardian h/t to Tallbloke and WUWT reader Pat

About these ads

184 thoughts on “The Guardian: Climategate was ‘a game changer’

  1. “Back in the lab, a new generation of more sophisticated computer models is failing to reduce the uncertainties in predicting future climate, …” That’s the problem in a nut shell and Hulme didn’t see it. It’s not so much the computer models that is the problem, it’s that the climate scientists have replaced observation and data for models. Models aren’t the end-all and be-all of science; they are just another tool.

  2. The last comment from Mike Hulme says it all.

    That comment would never have been printed in MSM a year ago.

  3. Climategate will be a game-changer when the fools, sycophants, and statists in the US Congress (with the exception of the admirable Sen. Inhofe) and in the academies and the media admit they were hoodwinked about CO2 and ‘global warming’.

    Until then, it’s just a foul ball in baseball, a throw-in in soccer—no change in the count or the score, and the game goes on, with the warmists way ahead.

    /Mr Lynn

  4. What is it going to take- a herd of Musk Ox grazing on the grounds of Hadley’s offices
    or the house of Commons? Inuit hunting Seals on Thames? The Glasgow- New York
    Dog Sled Marathon? I’m of course, being facetious, but things seem to be degenerating to that bygone era of Galileo and the Catholic Church…

  5. <>

    Eh?! Where has this news been hiding? Where do I learn more about these “sophisticated computer models”, and what they’ve been failing to accomplish?

  6. The climategate file that was released was entitled FOI2009.zip. FOI was for FREEDOM OF INFORMATION. Nowhere is this more important than in science, where it is vital that science be advance by building on or disprooving prior work. In one comment that I read, somewhere, it was stated that any scientist who was not willing to share his data and methods was guilty of proffessional malfeasance Professional journals and professional societies that do not share that philosophy no longer have credibility. This issue should be pushed and pushed and pushed.

  7. “After the hacked emails scandal scientists became ‘more upfront, open and explicit about their uncertainties’”

    Yes, and even Mann is attempting to clean up his act. Now he’s surprised his hoaky stick was the poster child.

    “. But Steve McIntyre is going anyway. ”

    Guys, I think there should be a “not” in there.

  8. I suppose that we should be grateful that Hulme (and rumour has it Jones as well) have finally realised that being the custodians of the ‘Most Important Data about the Most Important Problem Mankind has Ever Faced’ brings some responsibilities as well as rights.

    Until recently their approach seems to have been to pile any data they come by into an old cupboard higgledy-piggledy and chuck out the old stuff when the cupboard gets full. Also allowing their bestest friends to have a rummage for any particularly juicy stuff while making super sure that anybody who has been even the slightest bit horrible to them ever will never ever be permitted to see what’s in it. And ignoring/subverting the Law of the Land while doing so.

    Apart from the e-mails Climategate also brought us Harry_Read_Me, which laid bare the shambolic state of CRU’s records. As an IT professional I would not trust them to be capable of walking to the end of the road to post a letter unsupervised, let alone giving them anything even remotely important to do. We owe thanks to Ian Harris for revealing these truths (even if unconciously)

    I sincerely hope that they will start to keep their records in a responsible and systematic way. Given that they do not appear to have appointed any new staff to help in this effort, I am not holding my breath.

    So … the Lord rejoices when one sinner repents. But there are many sinners still to repent. And repentance is only any good when backed up with real concrete action.

    Sound of one hand clapping…………

  9. “Guys, I think there should be a “not” in there.”

    Never mind, I can’t read again today either. Looked like it said Steve was going “away” on the first pass.

  10. I still see that the e-mails are being reported as hacked…no big surprise, but I personally disregard pretty much every article that references that incident as having hacked e-mails.

    -Scott

  11. The biggest enduring pet peeve I’ve got from the whole incident is the continued reference to the release of the information using the terms ‘hacked’, and more egregiously ‘stolen’ or ‘purloined’.

    Unless the meaning of these terms have been altered to mean ‘notice and download of information placed on a publicly visible ftp server share, with global read permissions’ – in which case, all of us, probably at some point, have been purloining, hacking thieves. Everybody say ‘arrrr’ like the pirates we must be.

    otoh, the use of such terms, and their degree of abuse, do serve as handy flags to indicate where an opinion of the matter is coming from. . .

  12. What I personally find most distressing, not to mention highly disturbing is how this can affect one’s academic career even if one has little to do with climate science.

    As a junior researcher I feel tremendously pressured to keep my opinions to myself on this issue despite the fact I have spent hundreds of hours now educating myself on the topic (including many spent here). That’s not to mention the fact – one of the things that disturbs me – that most of the supposedly intelligent and critical scientists in other areas who believe the consensus view do so mindlessly. Worse, if I’m able to have an extended chat with them, they are gobsmacked when I lay out the actual alarmist case. Most of them, like much of the public, simply believe there is a linear CO2-temp relationship. They don’t even know that most of the putative predicted warming is blamed on expected positive feedbacks that so are so far failing to appear on demand; never mind the great many other complexities in the climate system that impact how it behaves.

    The problem is I’m just not the kind of guy to be quiet. I regularly meet senior academic staff who will say something or other about climate change and I have to comment because they seem so unbelievably uncritical and really should know better. The circling of the wagons isn’t just limited to climate science disciplines, but from what I’ve seen, across academia generally.

    It’s somewhat ironic that one of these staff, my most recent boss, who was quick to criticise me (his exact words were “you should’nt believe everything you read in the papers”(!)) for being credulous in criticising the “consensus” view was the same member of staff who said of our own research institute that for many of the senior staff, “science was just a hobby” and everything – everything – focused on the grant income. And you don’t get grant income through rocking the boat or being a maverick.

    I’ve found this attitude seeping in even to my own areas though and its really making me start to rethink my career, it’s also filling me with a creeping sense of dread more generally. If the academic-scientific establishment continues to be corrupted in this way, the damage to wider society will be incalculable. My boss was slightly off target with his second comment – what he should have said is that “truth is just a hobby”.

  13. And I learned a new tune. It comes back into my head every now and then.

    Hide the decline, Hide the decline….tralla-llalla-la…hide the decline…

  14. @Wind Rider

    “The biggest enduring pet peeve I’ve got from the whole incident is the continued reference to the release of the information using the terms ‘hacked’, and more egregiously ‘stolen’ or ‘purloined’.”

    I have a very similar reaction. Computer forensics is one of my areas of practice and research, and so I find my blood absolutely boiling when I read comments like those over here at the Daily Kos. I’m told at places like this to shut up because I’m “not a climate scientist”, yet when this lot are babbling on a topic I do have expertise in, I’m still told to shut up. I’ve yet to see a single shred – just one – to prove that it was an actual “hack”. I thought about pointing this out over at the Daily Kos, but looking at the absolute certainty (terrifying on its own to see) not to mention the continual hatred of sceptics (we’re all “anti-science” doncha know?) I thought – ‘what’s the point?’

  15. “But greater openness and engagement with their critics will not ensure that climate scientists have an easier time in future, warns Hulme.”

    No scientist, climate or otherwise, should have an easy time. Good science is hard to do and part of the job is to be rigorous and accept challenges. It used to be the challenges just came from competing scientists; now anybody armed with data and a computer can challenge. In the end that’s a good thing for scientific progress, even if it means a bit more work for professional scientists.

  16. I think these comments represent the thoughts of the few like Hulme and Pearce. Given the behaviour over Amazongate browbeating The Times into a retraction without even presentation of the evidence, I think less has changed than those two would like to believe.

    The real lesson of the last six months is detectable in the serial whitewashing of bad behaviour. That has reduced us to the situation where the BBC feel no compunction in presenting Bjorn Lomborg as a climate change skeptic repressenting “the other side of the arguement”.

    Don’t get me wrong, if the alarmists are right, I believe Bjorn’s position is the most sensible. I’ve read his books, he makes a lot of sense, if there is a problem.

    The change, if there is any, is for the worse. They’re not questioning whether the downside is exaggerated, whether the range of error makes the results meaningless, whether there is corroboration of models with actual data, or even if the temperature record is reliable enough to draw any conclusions from.

    The MSM, the governments and the institutions that have bought the global warming worst case scenario are asking themselves how they can win round all those deniers (but we mustn’t call them that anymore), or at least bypass them and do what they want to do anyway. the whitewashes prove they aren’t interested in the uncertainties in the science.

  17. If you want to read some bizarre/disturbing conversations, visit Realclimate.org and check out some of the comment threads.

    Here’s a doozy:

    “It is time scientists realised that they are in a war. There are no rules in love and war. The sceptics know that. So long as they can get away with their lies and false accusations scot-free, then the battle for the future of the planet will be lost.”

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2010/07/penn-state-reports/

  18. Wind Rider says: July 5, 2010 at 11:44 am
    The biggest enduring pet peeve I’ve got from the whole incident is the continued reference to the release of the information using the terms ‘hacked’, and more egregiously ‘stolen’ or ‘purloined’.

    Agreed. This is code for ‘my comments are supporting the Warmist Church’. But further, there seems to be no official release of information regarding the ‘apprehension’ of the perpetrators of the deed, whether data on the method of gathering the material, or the person responsible for the ‘leak’, or that it was a file that was compiled for official information purposes that was released in toto. I would have thought that by now HM constabulary would have been able to provide a full report on this. So we are left permanently in the speculative phase with no clarity of what really did happen there.

    Doug

  19. The most interesting is the last paragraph. I read it in this way: “Now, when the damn skeptics watch us and the public believes them, no one dare make a new politically ordered IPCC prediction.”

  20. @CRS, Dr.P.H.

    ‘If you want to read some bizarre/disturbing conversations, visit Realclimate.org and check out some of the comment threads.’

    I did once, but then I was searching for the rock from where under all the talibans come from. O_o

  21. I like the suggestion of calling the careful side Climate “Reformers,” rather than skeptics or denialists. The desire is fixing climate science, not destroying it. Restoring it to its own better self.

  22. Katabasis says: July 5, 2010 at 11:48 am
    What Katabasis says is truly worrying in that it is an inside ‘peek’ at the state of mind of research science in general. It is the condition and level of corruption behind all of this that normally one would believe to be incredible. Now the scales seem to be falling from our eyes and one has to realise that the amount of corruption is huge and widespread.
    Doug

  23. Katabasis says:
    July 5, 2010 at 11:48 am

    What I personally find most distressing, not to mention highly disturbing is how this can affect one’s academic career even if one has little to do with climate science….

    I’ve found this attitude seeping in even to my own areas though and its really making me start to rethink my career, it’s also filling me with a creeping sense of dread more generally. If the academic-scientific establishment continues to be corrupted in this way, the damage to wider society will be incalculable. My boss was slightly off target with his second comment – what he should have said is that “truth is just a hobby”.
    __________________________________________________________________________

    You have very nicely stated the major damage that grant chasing and politicizing science has done. I am a chemist and I am appalled at what I have seen over the last 40 years. I now have very very little faith in any scientific results especially when politics are involved.

    For example here is a lawsuit against the FDA for playing fast and loose with the testing of food: It is also interesting that while the USDA FORBIDS a corporation to do its .own testing of BSE it is shutting down government labs and turning food testing over to corporations under HACCP

    (Make sure you are not eating before you read the articles in the links)

  24. CRS, Dr.P.H. says:
    July 5, 2010 at 12:08 pm
    “[...]
    [RC comment:]“It is time scientists realised that they are in a war. There are no rules in love and war. The sceptics know that. So long as they can get away with their lies and false accusations scot-free, then the battle for the future of the planet will be lost.””

    The number 1 climate science blog of the planet leaves such a post up? My, my, Gavin, what have you become.

  25. So, next Cancun jamboree is OK!, well, well…unless there is a new Climate-Gate: Climate Gate Version 1.01.
    Keep on visiting WUWT and one month before Cancun….

  26. I have just finished reading Climategate: The CRUtape Letters.
    EXCELLENT. I am a skeptical lukewarmer, if anyone feels the need to categorize me. A friend introduced me to the AGW “scandal” about a year ago and finally, after some coaxing, to this site about 6 months ago. Enlightenment!

    I truly commend yourself and others such as Steve McIntyre for the tireless work you do bringing balance to this whole AGW “debate”. I can’t imagine where we would be without people like yourselves.

    Where is your “Visitors Page” so all your readers can register as supporting you and your work. A bit like a petition of attitudes.

    Keep up the goodwork. Sorry I missed you in Oz. I am currently out of the country.

  27. “The desire is fixing climate science, not destroying it. ”

    We must be visiting different websites and blogs then, Robert. Everything I have seen, including Watts’ site, hopes to embarrass, denigrate and deny governmental agencies and scientists.

    And I’m sorry folks, Climategate is a wash-out. It’s over. And the only people who thought it was a big deal…well, they’re mostly here and sites like this one.

  28. On a related note Michael Shermer’s “skeptic” column titled When Scientists Sin in this month’s Scientific American is uncharacteristically harsh but refreshingly frank on the subject of scientific integrity. Nice comparison I thought on science as an ideal and science as practiced. The article’s not behind a paywall.

    First two paragraphs:

    In his 1974 commencement speech at the California Institute of Technology, Nobel laureate physicist Richard P. Feynman articulated the foundation of scientific integrity: “The first principle is that you must not fool yourself—and you are the easiest person to fool…. After you’ve not fooled yourself, it’s easy not to fool other scientists. You just have to be honest in a conventional way after that.”

    Unfortunately, says Feynman’s Caltech colleague David Goodstein in his new book On Fact and Fraud: Cautionary Tales from the Front Lines of Science (Princeton University Press, 2010), some scientists do try to fool their colleagues, and believing that everyone is conventionally honest may make a person more likely to be duped by deliberate fraud. Nature may be subtle, but she does not intentionally lie. People do. Why some scientists lie is what Goodstein wants to understand. He begins by debunking myths about science such as: “A scientist should never be motivated to do science for personal gain, advancement or other rewards.” “Scientists should always be objective and impartial when gathering data.” “Scientists must never believe dogmatically in an idea or use rhetorical exaggeration in promoting it.” “Scientists should never permit their judgments to be affected by authority.” These and many other maxims just do not reflect how science works in practice.

  29. I predict that not much will change. It took 40 years before it was agreed that the Piltdown Man was a hoax, and that fiasco grew from a single confected fossil. Billions of dollars of potential wealth transfer weren’t at stake in that situation.

    The AGW-pushing academics and journalists are simply stage props for the politicians, commodity traders, hair-shirted ecology Savonarolas, and subsidy-gobbling industries who stand to benefit from the hysteria.

  30. Zilla says:
    July 5, 2010 at 12:58 pm
    “[...]
    And I’m sorry folks, Climategate is a wash-out. It’s over. And the only people who thought it was a big deal…well, they’re mostly here and sites like this one.”

    Yep. Preparing for the long winter.

  31. Reading the Guardian article comments, what came up for me is how easy it is for some people to turn people such as Judith Curry and Mike Hulme into denialist weirdos (ie, don’t listen to a thing these people say). Anyone who has been following this stuff knows the important part Hulme played in the ‘alarmist’ cause. And Judith Curry has only recently been involved in a dialogue with sceptics. These scientists will soon end up on the sceptics ‘blacklist’ if they aren’t already.

    This is a big problem- seems that as soon as someone has plucked up enough courage to publicly state their uncertainties they immediately start to take on this aura of suspicion… then these character memes get amplified in political blogs to the point where the person has now become untrustable, they’ve become a denialist. Perhaps Mike Hulme would find this new label for him somewhat amusing, given his history.

    For all the talk from the warmist side in response to the flak about ‘the science being settled’ being a strawman because no real scientist would believe that (we are real scientists after all), some people can still get very uptight and edgy when any specific uncertainty gets raised by a prominent scientist in a public medium. It’s sad to see such people receiving “the big cutoff” but this is after all climate science.

    *shrug

  32. Mike says:
    July 5, 2010 at 1:01 pm
    “@DirkH: So, you want RealClimate to engage in censorship?”

    You must be new on this planet.

  33. We have social engineering confronting us. We have climate gate exposing the engineering of the data and models.
    Now Oprah Winfrey wants to jump in and do Green programs on TV. That is more than we can refute.
    People get very angry if their money grab is jeopardized.

  34. @ Katabasas

    There are many academic sacred cows. The two most likely to negatively effect your career if you fail to genuflect is giving any credence at all to purpose in the universe or expressing any doubt about anthropogenic global warming and its horrible consequences.

    James P. Hogan’s “Kicking the Sacred Cow” has chapters on seven of them:

    Galileo may have been forced to deny that the Earth moves around the Sun; but in the end, science triumphed. Nowadays science fearlessly pursues truth, shining the pure light of reason on the mysteries of the universe. Or does it? As best-selling author James Hogan demonstrates in this fact-filled and thoroughly documented study, science has its own roster of hidebound pronouncements which are Not to be Questioned. Among the dogma-laden subjects he examines are Darwinism, global warming, the big bang, problems with relativity; radon and radiation, holes in the ozone layer, the cause of AIDS, and the controversy over Velikovsky. Hogan explains the basics of each controversy with his clear, informative style, in a book that will be fascinating for anyone with an interest in the frontiers of modem science.

  35. Recipe: Proxy Mayonnaise

    Take a clean computer
    Add a carefully concocted statistical smoothing technique
    Add one proxy dataset at a time, vigorously beating as you do so
    If any lumps appear, add another proxy dataset until all lumps disappear.
    Add current temperature dataset from 1960 to present
    Voila! Proxy Mayonnaise!

    Recipe: Finnish Sediment Blancmange

    Into a clean bowl, carefully place one Finnish Lake Sediment dataset with the label removed.
    Put in a cool place (Penn State University is very cool) and allow to set. When set, get a large sheet of graph-paper and place over the bowl. Hold the paper firmly in place and invert the bowl onto a firm surface (any prominent scientific journal will do). Invert the label and re-attach. The result is now the exact opposite of the shape of the original dataset.
    Sit back with a smug grin and enjoy your Mann-made blancmange.
    Serving Suggestion: Sup with a long spoon.

  36. BSM says:
    July 5, 2010 at 12:56 pm
    I have just finished reading Climategate: The CRUtape Letters.
    EXCELLENT.

    ******
    Thanks. I think one of the unfortunate things in this whole debacle has been the way in which the AGWers have effectively switched the frame. As long as the frame is
    “fraud” then they have a pretty clear defense, as the mails don’t show clear fraud, beyond a reasonable doubt. They defend with ‘the mistakes don’t matter’ and ignore our suggestion that mistakes and bad practices should be corrected BEFORE the accumulate and start to matter.

    What the mails show is a process that has gone down the wrong path. A path that surely CAN lead to actual fraud, but hasn’t yet. We criticized the scientists for failure to use best practices. They defend themselves by arguing that they committed no fraud.
    And so, the poor practices go unchecked and unacknowledged.

  37. Mike
    Everybody knows RealClimate engages in censorship, but only of those they disagree with, so the implication is that they agree with the poster.

  38. Ref – CRS, Dr.P.H. says:
    July 5, 2010 at 12:08 pm

    “..visit Realclimate.org and check out some of the comment threads. Here’s a doozy: ‘It is time scientists realised that they are in a war. There are no rules in love and war. The sceptics know that. So long as they can get away with their lies and false accusations scot-free, then the battle for the future of the planet will be lost.'”
    _______________________

    The only ‘science’ this comment represents is political science (a’la Ho Chi Min, Mao, and a few other notable wanna-be’s), it is also representative of a few cults with a rather restrictive ‘spiritual’ orientation. Fortunately, the days of Realclimate.org are numbered. They seem to be killing off visitors by the gross and the word is getting around.

  39. Sordnay:

    That is one of the most interesting mails. I had collected all the mails on GCMs and that mail was going to play a central role. Never wrote that chapter alas.

    Key issue for me was this:

    2. Is “model democracy” a valid scientific method? The “I” in the IPCC
    desires that all models submitted by all governments be considered
    equally probable. This should be thoroughly discussed, because it may
    have serious implications for regional adaptation strategies. AR4 has
    shown that model fidelity and model sensitivity are related. The models
    used for IPCC assessments should be evaluated using a consensus metric.

    “bad models” can increase the spread of predictions, making the models less susceptible to falsification when compared to observations. But in the current scheme all models get a ‘vote’ regardless of their skill. Ar5 may remedy this

  40. @Zilla

    ‘And I’m sorry folks, Climategate is a wash-out. It’s over. And the only people who thought it was a big deal…well, they’re mostly here and sites like this one’.

    Well, I don’t know which country you are in, but in UK having the article referenced above as the front page news in the Grauniad (cheerleader-in-chief for all things CAGW) suggests that here at least its been treated a very much more than a wash out. And they think enough of the subject to host an international debate next week that has attracted lots of attention already.

    Funny that such a washout should still be in the forefront of discussion over six months on………..

  41. Mike says:
    July 5, 2010 at 1:01 pm
    @DirkH: So, you want RealClimate to engage in censorship?
    —-
    REPLY: Mike, I’m actually glad that RC allows that stuff to be put into cyberspace!!

    As a scientist practicing for over 25 years (environmental science & biology), I am insulted by this pap:

    “It is time scientists realised that they are in a war. There are no rules in love and war. The sceptics know that. So long as they can get away with their lies and false accusations scot-free, then the battle for the future of the planet will be lost.”

    Scientists serve humanity, not the other way around. Battle for the future of the planet?? I didn’t know that the climate scientists were arming themselves!

    They probably are all changing the batteries in their Star Wars light sabers & putting on their Imperial storm trooper helmets, preparing to battle the sceptics….as the kids say, “LOOOOO-SERS!!”

  42. “Despite regular attempts by head in the sand AGW cheerleaders to make it go away, Climategate continues to affect the path of climate science.”
    =====
    On the plus side, it will make scientists be more open about their work, and do a better job of documenting.

    On the minus side, it will make scientists more guarded in communicating with each other, and could impede the flow of ideas.

    On balance, I don’t know where its net gain or a net loss to the advancement of science.

  43. In my last post, the last sentence should be:

    On balance, I don’t know whether it’s a net gain or a net loss to the advancement of science.

  44. @ Windrider, 11.44am

    “Arrrr!”

    This is a verbal joke, so please read aloud:
    Q: Why are pirates called pirates?
    A: Because they just arrrrrrrre!

  45. @woodentop: This is interesting example. Evidence that climate change will likely have serious consequences is presented. It is a 100 page report, so I doubt you have read and digested it. Yet, you know it must be wrong. This is proof that you are not a “skeptic” but rather are in “denial.” Maybe 97% of climatologists and the Nation Academy of Sciences are closer to the truth than a handful of skeptical researchers and scores of bloggers. Try to become open minded.

    Note 1: I am not using the word “denial” to inter nefarious motives, rather a fairly normal psychological state.
    Note 2: I have not read the Dutch report either. I am making no assumption that it is correct.
    Here it is: http://www.pbl.nl/images/500216002_tcm61-48119.pdf

  46. “Everything I have seen, including Watts’ site, hopes to embarrass, denigrate and deny governmental agencies and scientists.”

    That reminds me of a famous comment by Helen Suzman, the veteran South African anti-apartheid MP, who died last year.

    She was once accused by a minister of asking questions in parliament that embarrassed South Africa, to which she replied: “It is not my questions that embarrass South Africa; it is your answers”.

  47. DirkH says:
    July 5, 2010 at 12:47 pm

    CRS, Dr.P.H. says:
    July 5, 2010 at 12:08 pm
    “[...]
    [RC comment:]“It is time scientists realised that they are in a war. There are no rules in love and war. The sceptics know that. So long as they can get away with their lies and false accusations scot-free, then the battle for the future of the planet will be lost.””

    The number 1 climate science blog of the planet leaves such a post up? My, my, Gavin, what have you become.
    _______________________________________________________
    Someone who sees his pay check heading south as grants and funding is cut and people are fired.

  48. Robert M says:
    July 5, 2010 at 12:40 pm
    I like the suggestion of calling the careful side Climate “Reformers,” rather than skeptics or denialists. The desire is fixing climate science, not destroying it. Restoring it to its own better self.
    ====
    I don’t know about that. I’m skeptical of the motives of many who call themselves skeptics.

  49. Geoff Shorten says:
    July 5, 2010 at 1:55 pm
    “Everything I have seen, including Watts’ site, hopes to embarrass, denigrate and deny governmental agencies and scientists.”

    That reminds me of a famous comment by Helen Suzman, the veteran South African anti-apartheid MP, who died last year.

    She was once accused by a minister of asking questions in parliament that embarrassed South Africa, to which she replied: “It is not my questions that embarrass South Africa; it is your answers”.
    —-
    Ha Ha ! Those who disagree with Watts are like proponents of apartheid.

    [wren - I find your comment about me and apartheid personally offensive. Take a 24 hour time out from posting - Anthony Watts]

  50. Sounds like we’re in for a new “30 years war”. I think the protestants are right, this time.

  51. Mike says:

    “So, you want RealClimate to engage in censorship?”

    Mike, that’s projection. The WUWT archives are filled with accounts of people having their polite and on-point comments kept permanently in the RealClimate moderation queue, then disappearing without ever being posted – just because they raised a point questioning AGW orthodoxy. This shows the difference between the heavily censoring RealClimate blog, run by the mendacious Michael Mann and Gavin Schmidt, and WUWT. People click on sites that allow all points of view. RC has become an echo chamber of true believers, and it censors out CAGW apostates.

    BSM says:

    “I have just finished reading Climategate: The CRUtape Letters. EXCELLENT.”

    Then you will also enjoy A.W. Montford’s The Hockey Stick Illusion. As soon as MBH98 was questioned by McIntyre and McKittrick, the very next day the lies started flowing from Mann’s lips and keyboard like water from a fire hydrant. Mann foolishly wrote letters that were provably dishonest. Mann’s supporters had to constantly adjust their defense of him because of his constant prevarication. They couldn’t keep up with Mann’s lies, which Montford documents thoroughly. The book is a page turner.

    Michael Mann seems to have been born under a lucky star, and he may never end up testifying in a legal arena, where counsel can call opposing witnesses and cross examine others. But if Mann ever does end up in a real courtroom [as opposed to the absolute whitewash façade contrived by Penn State and the smarmy Muir Russell], then all the lies Mann has already told – many in writing – will zero out his credibility in front of everybody present.

    I highly recommend Montford’s book. Anyone reading it will never look at the odious Michael Mann the same way again.

  52. @Katebasis and Doug in Dunedin – yep.

    I’ve come to regard the insistence that the data was ‘stolen’ as just an attempt to muddle the waters and confuse the MSM, and by extension, the general public, by raising the sort of ‘questions’ that never seem to really die out.

    To anyone with more than a passing acquaintance with computer operations, a few points should be screamingly obvious. Primarily, that this was an inside job at East Anglia CRU, unless the machine and the share involved granted global write permissions (or, in MS NT parlance ‘Everybody Read/Write’) – which it likely did not. Therefore, someone with an account with appropriate permissions a) created the shared folder, and b) wrote the data file to that folder. The list of ‘suspects’ for this action should be relatively short – the staff and students of the facility with such permissions. Further, that the ‘investigation’ into whodunit should in reality have taken about as long as required to access and examine the file and folder meta data, the permissions and user accounts associated with those permissions, and the log files of the server in question. Add another few days for followup interviews with what whould at that point be an EXTREMELY short list of suspects, and to type up and send the report around for bureaucratic box checking purposes, and it should have been wrapped up inside of two weeks. That no determination has been announced indicates either a deliberate disruption of the data files indicated (logs etc) as direct obfuscation, or a phenomenal incompetence on the part of the investigating authorities. Any other explanation involves rather pointless conspiracy theorizing, which really doesn’t seem necessary. That such information was not explored and or reviewed during the Official Reviews is, however, an indication that something was amiss with those proceedings.

    To me, it’s the dog that hasn’t barked. And the entire reason I became interested in peeling the onion to take a closer look at the phenomena of “Global Warming” and “Climate Change” was the simple question along the lines of “if they’ve got this nailed seven ways to Sunday, why are they having to lie about it?” This is merely another item on what has become a rather extensive list.

  53. Geoff’s rather self-flattering comparison between the skeptic camp and those who fought apartheid would be funny if it weren’t so painful. One of the most fascinating things about the skeptic camp is the incredible ability to self-aggrandize.

    No Geoff, the climate scientists are no embarrassed by their answers. Perhaps the skeptics’ camp should examine a little more closely the embarrassment factor of their own motives and answers – such as the illegal CRU hacker and the emails which showed conclusively nothing.

  54. Sordnay,

    Translation of the email you attached:

    ” We have no idea what we’re doing and no hope of making accurate predictions, so I guess we need to choose the model that most closely represents what people in most countries want to hear. Help!”

    How pathetic.

  55. @ Latimer Alder at 1:44 pm

    You do realize that there have been two recent retractions in UK newspapers – including The Sunday Times of London – regarding charges against climate scientists, right?

    REPLY: If you’d bothered to look around, you’d find them here. The Sunday Times retraction appears to be unraveling now. The citations claimed are quite messed up. Most of the retraction issue is bluster/political pressure, not fact. -A

  56. Sordnay,

    Translation of the email you attached (1:01pm) :

    ” We have no idea what we’re doing and no hope of making accurate predictions, so I guess we need to choose the model that most closely represents what people in most countries want to hear. Help!”

    How pathetic.

  57. “But greater openness and engagement with their critics will not ensure that climate scientists have an easier time in future, warns Hulme. Back in the lab, a new generation of more sophisticated computer models is failing to reduce the uncertainties in predicting future climate, he says – rather, the reverse. “This is not what the public and politicians expect, so handling and explaining this will be difficult.””
    =================
    Possibly the greatest understatement of the century :)

  58. @ Anthony. “The Sunday Times retraction appears to be unraveling now. ”

    Really? Couldn’t find independent confirmation of this, my man. You will forgive me in doubting your motives a little bit here – seems like the skeptics’ camp lost out on this one.

    REPLY: Well you don’t have too look far, but I suspect you didn’t look at all. http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/07/03/flaming-the-amazon/

    BTW is that email address of yours used to post with valid? Looks fabricated. – A

  59. Zilla says:
    July 5, 2010 at 2:24 pm

    Geoff’s rather self-flattering comparison between the skeptic camp and those who fought apartheid would be funny if it weren’t so painful. One of the most fascinating things about the skeptic camp is the incredible ability to self-aggrandize.
    ****************

    Self aggrandize, do you mean like getting a Nobel Prize for a seriously flawed book and motion picture ? The “beautiful people” have lined up to be cheerleaders for CAGW and awarded a prize to one of their own.

    Or do you mean like turning a mediocre climate scientist like Dr Hansen into a near rock star ?

  60. CRS, Dr.P.H. says:
    July 5, 2010 at 12:08 pm
    If you want to read some bizarre/disturbing conversations, visit Realclimate.org and check out some of the comment threads.

    Here’s a doozy:

    “It is time scientists realised that they are in a war. There are no rules in love and war. The sceptics know that. So long as they can get away with their lies and false accusations scot-free, then the battle for the future of the planet will be lost.”

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2010/07/penn-state-reports/

    —————————————————————————————————–

    It’s nice to see that the brave and the bold at real climate are still allowing people to contribute to their blog even if they are a tad skeptical. I support them in this 100% I mean just now I made two comments relating Charlie Manson’s friends and Hitler’s staff saying they were innocent so therefore all the buddies over at Penn State that have written with or worked with Mann and are friends with him saying he’s innocent shouldn’t throw any more doubt on his innocence than the mere fact that Hitler’s and Manson’s buddies said they were innocent too. Of course Mann didn’t do anything wrong.

    Then I mentioned that Mann bastardizing science and education in one fell swoop should not be anythingto be punished or lose his job for. Both comments are still on realcimate.org and i’m proud of them and their strength.
    _____________________________________________________________
    Why (stutter stutter) I can’t believe it. My first comment has been removed forthwith in less than 40 seconds, and the second one is still under moderation. I can’t believe that they would remove me just because I’m skeptical. Gosh darn I’m surprised, isn’t everyone else here?

  61. @Mike
    “@DirkH: So, you want RealClimate to engage in censorship?”

    Are you kidding me?? Every damn skeptical comment to that blog is censored/removed without any explanation. None of my comments ever got through even though it was both on topic and had no offensive content other than the skeptical view.
    Yet they accept comments like that one?? It sure shows how biased realclimate is and that they are nothing but hypocrites. At least watts also accept the comments from pro AGW people.

  62. Zilla says:
    July 5, 2010 at 2:24 pm

    ” Perhaps the skeptics’ camp should examine a little more closely the embarrassment factor of their own motives and answers – such as the illegal CRU hacker and the emails which showed conclusively nothing.”

    ——

    Amazing how the brainwashed warmistas try to tell us this over and over, thinking if they just repeat this mantra, somehow we’ll cringe with embarrassment and see the light. Such a barren and empty defense of the debased status of climate science propaganda! Unfortunately , Zilla, this “audience” is familiar with the events surrounding the release of the CRUtape letters and the contents of said letters, and many of us have too much familiarity with science and its once-generally accepted ideals to pay any attention to your ridiculous harping that the CRUtape letters contained nothing.

  63. Anthony – I also despair at New Scientist – I buy it every week to find out what their world is saying – and I find it disturbing. For example, this week they review Fred Pearce’s book – a whole page is given, by a journalist, who hardly touches on Pearce’s arguments – it is all a defence of the official line and criticism of Pearce for even suggesting that ‘denialists’ might have a point.

    Did they review Montford’s ‘The Hockey Stick Illusion’? I don’t think so. They would not review my book either. Nor the CRUtape letters.

    Mike Hulme gets better coverage – perhaps because he sits on the fence (and actually, he doesn’t really tackle the science – being a social scientist, albeit a good director of UEA’s climate centre in his time. His book is a valuable read.

    I keep trying with New Scientist – they used to publish articles by me – but they would take none of my attempts in relation to solar science and climate – at one point suggesting my writing was ‘too scientific’!

    What I realised this week, looking through all of the articles, is that NS is an organ not of science, but of an established order, an ideological grouping that sees the world in a particular way – what I would call ‘scientistic’, and incapable of self-reflection. You might be right – irredeemable!

  64. Geoff Shorten says:
    July 5, 2010 at 1:55 pm
    “Everything I have seen, including Watts’ site, hopes to embarrass, denigrate and deny governmental agencies and scientists.”
    _______________________________________
    There are times when I really want to say reap what you sow except I and other innocent people will suffer along with the members of the The ‘Innocents’ Clubs’

    Attacks on Intelligentsia:

    “In the years immediately following their accession to power in 1917, the Bolsheviks took measures to prevent challenges to their new regime, ….

    Bolshevik policy toward its detractors, and particularly toward articulate, intellectual criticism, hardened considerably. Suppression of newspapers, initially described as a temporary measure, became a permanent policy. Lenin considered the Constitutional Democrats (Kadets) the center of a conspiracy against Bolshevik rule. In 1919, he began mass arrests of professors and scientists who had been Kadets, and deported Kadets, Socialist Revolutionaries, Mensheviks, and Nationalists. The Bolshevik leadership sought rapidly to purge Russia of past leaders in order to build the future on a clean slate.

    These harsh measures alienated a large number of the intellectuals who had supported the overthrow of the tsarist order. The suppression of democratic institutions evoked strong protests from academics and artists,who felt betrayed in their idealistic belief that revolution would bring a free society.”

    That is just one example. If you and others like you will continue to close your ears to the messages of history you doom all of us to repeat it and I really do not want to live under a totalitarian regime.

  65. Enneagram says: July 5, 2010 at 12:51 pm

    “unless there is a new Climate-Gate: Climate Gate Version 1.01″
    ===

    There may well be some truth to this possibility … at least according to the “Notes/Minutes” published on the Muir Russell ICCER website:

    “Data mining

    “It was noted that a trusted, independent, forensic analyst has been engaged by the UEA and once they are available, he will start work on examining the first set of downloaded emails from the compromised CRU server.” [emphasis added-hro]

    [see also: http://hro001.wordpress.com/2010/07/05/the-unbearable-arrogance-of-activist-advocates-aka-climate-scientists/ ]

  66. Dave L says:
    July 5, 2010 at 10:56 am
    The bottom line: Climatology has been thoroughly corrupted by politics.

    I hope it’s not the other way round.

  67. Looks like the Grauniad website is groaning under the strain of the WUWT effect:

    “Sorry – we haven’t been able to serve the page you asked for”

    Anyway, we bloggers got an honourable mention from good ol’ Jerry Ravetz for keeping the pressure on climate scientists to make it honest:

    “The veteran Oxford science philosopher Jerome Ravetz says the role of the blogosphere in revealing the important issues buried in the emails means it will assume an increasing role in scientific discourse. “The radical implications of the blogosphere need to be better understood.”

  68. ” Mike says:
    July 5, 2010 at 1:55 pm ”

    Mike, it’s a report about a report (IPCC 4). The irony of your post, criticising me for supposedly making assumptions whilst yourself making, erm, assumptions, is rich indeed.

    As it happens I clicked through to the Dutch site and read what was provided in English. There’s sufficient (albeit subdued) criticism of the IPCC report published there to raise serious questions about what’s gone on, though this is swiftly dealt with by the usual ex cathedra pronouncements.

    The juxtaposition of that criticism with the repeated mantra “none of this undermines the conclusions of the IPCC” (not the first time that we’ve seen this formula) is what leads me to suggest this is another whitewash. If this report alone was all we had to go on, it wouldn’t be very much. But it’s not all we have, as you well know. And that’s reflected in the public’s jaded opinion of this entire issue, irrespective of the ultimately futile attempts at shoring it up.

    Not much longer to go now. In the words of a note from an outgoing UK finance minister to his successor at the general election in May: “There’s no money left. Good luck!”.

  69. Has anyone read this article behind the Times paywall today?:

    LANDMARK REPORT ON CLIMATE CHANGE ONE-SIDED – The United Nations body that advises governments on climate change failed to make clear how its landmark report on the impact of global warming often presented a worst-case scenario, an investigation has concluded. A summary report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) on regional impacts focused on the negative consequences of climate change and failed to make clear that there would also be some benefits of rising temperatures. The report adopted a “one-sided” approach that risked being interpreted as an “alarmist view”. The report, which underpinned the Copenhagen summit last December, wrongly suggested that climate change was the main reason why communities faced severe water …

  70. Ah good, the Grauniad article is available again.

    The first comment made me laugh out loud.

    Cynic Al writes:

    So nobody knows anything…..
    Somehow I doubt if that will stop a tone of certainty pervading this thread.

  71. Alan Wilkinson says:
    July 5, 2010 at 3:17 pm

    Alan, that article appears to be discussing the Dutch report I’ve linked to via the BBC and Dr North’s eureferendum website. Interesting that the Times have chosen to highlight the criticisms.

  72. Wind Rider says: July 5, 2010 at 2:22 pm
    @Katebasis and Doug in Dunedin – yep.

    Well, despite our cynicism, they are far from incompetent so we are left with direct obfuscation on their part which matches that of all the so called investigations into these activities on both sides of the Atlantic. Also, by extension, this applies to all the ‘adjustments’ of climate records everywhere that these ‘scientists’ have been operating.

    I am watching the economies of all of Europe and America imploding as a result of the previous Ponzi scheme (sub prime fiasco) while their so called leaders are siphoning off the remaining wealth of these continents to feed this monstrous scam – I only hope (not really) the economies collapse before the scam is fed.
    Doug

  73. @ netdr

    “Self aggrandize, do you mean like getting a Nobel Prize for a seriously flawed book and motion picture ? The “beautiful people” have lined up to be cheerleaders for CAGW and awarded a prize to one of their own.

    “Or do you mean like turning a mediocre climate scientist like Dr Hansen into a near rock star ?”

    Well, technically none of that is self-aggrandizement – and I believe, technically, that the Nobel was given to Gore and Pachauri because of their IPCC work. As for Hansen being a “rock star” – I don’t look at that guy and think Rock and Roll. He’s still a respected scientist, if that’s what you mean, and most of his exposure has been negative, from sites such as this. And it is not necessarily accepted outside of places like this that the fabled movie and book are all that inaccurate.

    I guess I could ask if you doubt the climate scientists because they are “beautiful people” – now that’s funny.

    But your response fits perfectly with my earlier charge that the skeptics are not here to “reform” climate science; the skeptics are here simply to denigrate the climate scientists. Thanks for the example.

  74. Wind Rider says: July 5, 2010 at 2:22 pm
    @Katebasis and Doug in Dunedin – yep.

    Well, despite our cynicism, they are far from incompetent so we are left with direct obfuscation on their part which matches that of all the so called investigations into these activities on both sides of the Atlantic. Also, by extension, this applies to all the ‘adjustments’ of climate records everywhere that these ‘scientists’ have been operating.

    I am watching the economies of all of Europe and America imploding as a result of the previous Ponzi scheme (sub prime fiasco) while their so called leaders are siphoning off the remaining wealth of these continents to feed this monstrous scam – I only hope the economies collapse before the scam is fed.
    Doug

  75. Zilla says on July 5, 2010 at 2:46 pm

    @ Anthony. “The Sunday Times retraction appears to be unraveling now. ”

    Really? Couldn’t find independent confirmation of this, my man. You will forgive me in doubting your motives a little bit here – seems like the skeptics’ camp lost out on this one.

    If that were the case then the prudent course of action would be to avoid alerting the skeptics’ camp to the fact.

    I rather suspect that you are just another blustering troll trying to convince people to give up … won’t work.

  76. Zilla says:
    July 5, 2010 at 3:27 pm (Edit)
    skeptics are not here to “reform” climate science; the skeptics are here simply to denigrate the climate scientists. Thanks for the example.

    They’ve made a good job of demeaning themselves without our help. Anyway, if you take a look at a few other threads around here, you’ll see some science under discussion, as well as meejah pundit free for all’s like this one.

  77. Apostates are the most hated of all by faith-based fumdamentalists.
    The sharing of this hatred by true-believers creates a bond between them that renders normal a suspension of logical reason
    when confronted by evidence that challenges the tenets of their belief.
    Chanting mantras, granted to them by ecclesiastical superiors and religilously route-marked by “Start Here” hyperlinks, have now replaced the mathematical tool of axiom and the scientific starting point of the assumption!
    Any scientific doubt or mathematical challenge questioning the orthodoxy can now be quashed and demolished by quoting from the “Book of Spells”
    “robust demolition”, “thoroughly discredited”, “proven strawman”, “weather is not climate” and, so on, ad nauseum.
    I’m taking a bit of a guess that a large number of current climate-apostates, readers of this blog perchance, were once like me, a warmist, a non-denier maybe, even, a true believer!
    However much hatred a true-believer may, or may not, have for the apostate have you ever asked yourself the question “Why do they now disbelieve us?”
    if not, why not?

  78. “you ever asked yourself the question “Why do they now disbelieve us?”
    if not, why not?”

    If there is disbelief directed at climate science it is almost entirely the distortions of the blogosphere and the news media – mostly done by amateurs who do not work in the field such as Jo Nova and by politically motivated non-scientists such as Lord Monkton. And by people, like yourself, who seem to have an absolute mania against climate science and, instead of recognizing it in yourself, project it onto others.

    REPLY: And yet, unlike you, all these people, including me, have the courage to put their name to their words. Anonymous comments aren’t worth anything. – Anthony Watts

  79. @ Richard Sharpe,

    The skeptic camp will attempt to poke holes in the retractions no matter what.

    No matter what, the skeptic camp will not accept anything that does not denigrate climate science.

    REPLY: Try reading this before you shoot your mouth off again:

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/06/04/under-the-volcano-over-the-volcano/

    I happen to agree with it. Thus, your statement is false.

    Oh, and more hole poking going on here:

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100705/ap_on_bi_ge/climate

    – Anthony Watts

  80. Zilla says:
    July 5, 2010 at 3:52 pm

    What makes you think that reasonably educated people can’t look dispassionately at the evidence and realise that the emperor has no clothes?

  81. Forgive me, Anthony and Richard, but I did not follow why you posted the above. I am not convinced that I should stop “shooting my mouth off” after reading it, in other words. It almost seems, as so often is the case, that the skeptics are looking for ways to rationalize science they disagree with and justifying, no matter how, science they agree with. Mouths should shoot in these circumstances.

    In fact, the deeper I get into the skeptic camp, the more I believe I should continue to shoot my mouth off. The more this place is a product of a mentality, the more mouths will continue to shoot off. But then –

    “Anonymous comments aren’t worth anything”

    Sooooooo, netdr, Doug in Dunedin, Wind Talker and the rest with monikers are all making worthless comments? Okay.

    REPLY: Sorry no more comments until you report on the article I referenced. Consider it an assignment. This statement of yours needs attention:

    “No matter what, the skeptic camp will not accept anything that does not denigrate climate science.”

    – A

  82. Gawd Zilla. Have you not heard of engaging brain brain b4 mouth?

    “But your response fits perfectly with my earlier charge that the skeptics are not here to “reform” climate science; the skeptics are here simply to denigrate the climate scientists. Thanks for the example.”

    Point one. Your charge was, like an earlier Victorian attempt, wrongly directed. Sceptics simply ask if the charge was worth the carnage. The reformation is for the proponents of the charge not those that question the wisdom of the charge. Point two, the denigration of those caught in the crossfire lies not with those faultlessly wounded but properly only with the miscreants!
    We now move to point three.
    Thanks for the example!

  83. The UK is about to undergo a major political change. Under the previous Labour govenment over 900,000 new non-jobs were created in the public sector.

    Peronist populist economic policies are now coming to end and hundreds of thousands of non-jobs are about to disappear. While we can hope this includes the clowns in CRU, it will also probably mean the demise of the Guardian’s principal source of income, namely advertising non-jobs in the public sector.

    Will any real scientist shed any tears over the demise of one of the principal sources of alarmist propaganda? I, for one, will not.

  84. ””REPLY: And yet, unlike you, all these people, including me, have the courage to put their name to their words. Anonymous comments aren’t worth anything. – Anthony Watts””

    Anthony,

    I prefer dialog with non-anonymous commenters, although I obviously dialog with some anonymous ones. My view is that people should put there names to their words in order to be taken credibly.

    John

  85. Zilla says July 5, 2010 at 3:55 pm

    @ Richard Sharpe,

    The skeptic camp will attempt to poke holes in the retractions no matter what.

    No matter what, the skeptic camp will not accept anything that does not denigrate climate science.

    Oh, I agree with you. However, there is a saying: Never interrupt you enemy when he is making a mistake.

    Clearly you fear that the AGW camp has screwed up so you come around here trying to divert attention. For if not, you would have kept silent and let the skeptic camp compound its mistake.

  86. Won’t be doing any assignments from you, my friend. Not that kind of relationship. I suspect that you wish to feel vindicated because you for once agreed with a better trained scientist? Would that you did that more often.

    REPLY: Well then if you won’t even read an example placed before you of when we do accept something that is not “damaging to climate science”, such as the most important Mauna Loa CO2 record, which we defended against attacks related to data uncertainty and placement, then there is of course no hope for you. You are hopelessly mired in your own dogma. All further posts go into the spam bucket then, since you aren’t capable on contributing, only denigrating. Typical for MC denizens though. – Anthony

  87. Zilla says:
    July 5, 2010 at 3:52 pm
    “you ever asked yourself the question “Why do they now disbelieve us?”
    if not, why not?”

    If there is disbelief directed at climate science it is almost entirely the distortions of the blogosphere and the news media – mostly done by amateurs who do not work in the field such as Jo Nova and by politically motivated non-scientists such as Lord Monkton. And by people, like yourself, who seem to have an absolute mania against climate science and, instead of recognizing it in yourself, project it onto others.

    Distortions don’t come from questions my dear Zilla. They grow through answers. If I’ve been distorted in my thinking about the certainty of climate science is, umm, because of the answers I got from sites like RC!
    In a nutshell, these guys protested too much. They don’t need to do that, I thought, the Science is certain isn’t it?
    I had no agenda then, I was merely curious and leanded in the direction that they indicated. But the reality is, that now, I find them offensively patronizing and, all to accepting,

  88. Zilla

    I have seen posts like yours in many places – posts that have no scientific content but make generalized statements unsupported by evidence that the generalization is a fair or representative generalization. My experience is that posters like you only drive-by here – only put up a generalized criticism without citations, with no follow-ups to respond to replies to their original post. So I was interested and surprised to see that you have returned several times.

    My impression is that you are not a scientist – either trained or untrained. This could be why you missed the point of the remark about Hansen, for example. Hansen’s own boss has disowned him (see here - track down the page to “Dr John Theon”). So you see he is not accepted even by all his own peers. But Hansen’s boss only spoke up when he retired. If you were to read WUWT extensively, you would find many instances of scientists posting here who are afraid or unable to speak up if they are sceptical of the current climate science.

    Pretty well everyone here who supports WUWT is actually interested in science – again, if you were to study WUWT enough to give a balanced account of it, I hope you would see this for yourself. This might then give you the clue that such people are not in denial since they have come to doubt the orthodox view of climate change on account of their own inspection of the evidence, done in their own time at their own expense because they are interested and just want the truth wherever it happens to land.

    However, people are not quite this black-and-white and while there is a sustained interest in the science here, there are continually remarks and attitudes that fall short of that, or that are snide or stupid, or that get easily misunderstood, even by those who generally practice good science. The real sterling quality here is when people get things wrong, are challenged by those who have checked the matter independently, and actually own up to having got things wrong. This allows the science itself to advance. This should be the normal state of science, but it is what has been most missing in the orthodox climate science field since the global warming scare started, and what probably distresses WUWT supporters more than anything else.

    Please, do your research, look a bit more carefully at WUWT. Take steps towards practicing scientific method yourself. Scientific Method in its basics is actually extremely simple, it is not something remote that only The Elect can practice. In its most basic form it means looking at the evidence, carefully and thoroughly, for yourself, rather than taking someone else’s word for things. It also means watching yourself carefully enough to ensure that your assessment is not clouded by your own emotions or prejudices. This usually results in the practice of courtesy. This would help you understand those here a bit better. But it does take time.

  89. My Grandmother used to tell me things like: “Better to keep your mouth closed and be thought a fool than to open it and remove all doubt”. And risking that, why is it that we ask questions (good questions that presumably have answers) of a certain group of IPCC supporters, and all we get is disdain and ridicule? I’m sure that some must have something better than that. We are discussing science, after all.

  90. RoyFOMR says:
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    July 5, 2010 at 4:37 pm
    Zilla says:
    July 5, 2010 at 3:52 pm
    “you ever asked yourself the question “Why do they now disbelieve us?”
    if not, why not?”

    If there is disbelief directed at climate science it is almost entirely the distortions of the blogosphere and the news media – mostly done by amateurs who do not work in the field such as Jo Nova and by politically motivated non-scientists such as Lord Monkton. And by people, like yourself, who seem to have an absolute mania against climate science and, instead of recognizing it in yourself, project it onto others.

    Distortions don’t come from questions my dear Zilla. They grow through answers. If I’ve been distorted in my thinking about the certainty of climate science is, umm, because of the answers I got from sites like RC!
    In a nutshell, these guys protested too much. They don’t need to do that, I thought, the Science is certain isn’t it?
    I had no agenda then, I was merely curious and leanded in the direction that they indicated. But the reality is, that now, I find them offensively patronizing, universally dismissive of adverserial viewpoints and thus worthy of suspicion.
    If, because I’m now leery of those whom you claim to be honourable and trusty gatekeepers of scientific probity, you can shower me me with less than congratulationary compliments may I offer the defence that shame me once- shame on me- but shame me twice- shame on you.
    The common factor does appear to be shame.

  91. Zilla, getting enough attention yet?

    If you want to talk about science, there are thousands of posts on Anthony’s blog to do that.
    This particular blog is about ClimateGate, which obviously has nothing to do with science. It does have to do with the character of the scientists that was exposed and the fact that it is back in the news again.

    If you just entertaining yourself because school is out, have at it, you’re just proving a point…

    …not particularly the one you think

  92. ‘REPLY: And yet, unlike you, all these people, including me, have the courage to put their name to their words. Anonymous comments aren’t worth anything. – Anthony Watts’

    Courage is putting your true name to your word when you know there’s people out there that want to do bloody murder on you, like people who testify against the mob or Chinese “dissidents” or Burmese, et cetera. Those people are courageous.

    To put your name to your words when there is no actual real threat to you, is not courage, that’s exercising basic right in a country which respects those rights. In those same countries being anonymous is also a right.

    If anonymous comments weren’t worth anything, what, do you think, would this site be worth without all them anonymous hits so to speak? Hah, not much in commercial worth eh. And why donate to an obvious dead site? Think realclimate.org and then think again what comments are really worth.

    What’s the saying again, it’s the anonymous that pays your bill.

  93. Zilla
    I’ve just read through all you dialogue in this thread.

    Really you have nothing to say.

    Doug

  94. Although my name is not really Al Gored, and thus this comment is not worth reading, I’ll make it anyway.

    The reason I have become a habitual visitor to this site is very simple.

    First, it presents many articles on a variety of climate-related topics that are clearly written, well illustrated and very interesting.

    Second, each article is followed by many equally interesting and informative comments, which actively critique and add to the articles.

    Third, when an article is posted, those comments provide diverse and usually very effective peer review and when errors are discovered and rationally argued, they are fully accepted and corrected, or followed up on with future articles.

    That is how science is supposed to work. Present ideas, review them, and progress onward. No defensive screaming ‘denier’ (outside of some commenters) or that ‘the debate is over.’

    Reading this blog has been an adventure in learning for me. And the most important thing that I have learned here is that the global climate is a much more complex system than some imagine and that scientific research into it is still just taking baby steps towards fully understanding it. That was always my gut feeling but every day that is confirmed here. There are still unknown unknowns as Rummie would say.

    The bottom line then, for me, is that anybody who is screaming that the debate is over is displaying an anti-science mentality that is closer to a religious fundamentalism in their false certainty.

    One other thing. This blog is also liberally sprinkled with a good sense of humor, which makes it fun to read. Still laugh when I recall the photo of the MacDonald’s guy asking ‘Would you like a death spiral with that?’ Etc.

    So, thanks Anthony and contributors and commenters for making this blog a great experience. And, as admitted in this article, you really are making a difference!

  95. What is amusing is that Guardian commenter “missingmass” is trying to claim that Judith Curry is a “denialist” and that none of the skeptics charges have been proven. Whoever this guy is, he’s obviously the real denialist.

  96. 1DandyTroll says:
    July 5, 2010 at 5:03 pm

    So, you start out with “bloody murder”, and end with a rant about donations.
    The message I’m supposed to take away, is what?

  97. Al Gored says:
    July 5, 2010 at 5:15 pm
    Although my name is not really Al Gored, and thus this comment is not worth reading, I’ll make it anyway.

    The reason I have become a habitual visitor to this site is very simple.

    First, it presents many articles on a variety of climate-related topics that are clearly written, well illustrated and very interesting.

    First, and last, Mr non Al Gore, you’ve provided posts that, at best, made one think, and, at worst, made one chortle. Neither point leads me to think that your utterances have been without merit!
    Keep it up mate!
    You’re either a good bloke or blokette whose opinion is very much appreciated by me. Don’t give a da*n about the detractors!
    KBO!

  98. Folks like Zilla are examples of the naivety that leads to support for unscientific groups like the IPCC. They “believe” and there is little that will change that belief. Well, maybe a large glacier over NYC might do it, and then maybe not.

    They simply do not understand uncertainty and how that propagates through complex systems.

  99. There is a reason all the trolls and all the bored keepers of agw blogs come here. (They may sometimes be the same.)

    They want to spoil the good reason why we don’t go there, i.e., them. They won’t cease to be pests because that’s what they are.
    Atlas isn’t going to find that shrugging does not answer the matter. He will have to SWAT – very very hard.

  100. Several comments on this thread, started by Katabasis, discussed the overall lack of rigor in many fields of science. I would expand this to include all of academia. Politics hasn’t corrupted academic science, its the other around. This is not new and it is not restricted to climate science or even science. Such disciplines as language, law, history, etc. are just as corrupt. Universities have been the home of various cults for at least a few hundred years. It is a wonder that science and other knowledge has actually advanced in recent decades or centuries, but it has advanced, I believe.

    Therefore, I am not going to worry about these problems. I am thankful for people like Anthony and Steve and would encourage Katabasis to stay in his field, knowing that if he “plays along” for awhile, he may someday have the opportunity to advance knowledge. Certainly, all of us who are not cult material have had to write papers or give test answers they knew were wrong in order to get that degree, or that position, not matter what field of academics they study.

    My caution to fellow skeptics is to stay skeptical. Maybe there is climate change happening due to human influence or even to CO2. Maybe not. What we know now is that we don’t know. Just because the most influential names in ” climate science” have basically manipulated large parts of their research to come up with preordained conclusions doesn’t mean that they are entirely wrong. Of course they may be entirely wrong, but we just don’t know. Not knowing is different than knowing the opposite.

  101. I personally have an order of magnitude more respect for non-anonymous commenters. With anonymous, the exchange feels somewhat more like a game than serious talk

    John

  102. u.k.(us) says:
    July 5, 2010 at 5:40 pm
    1DandyTroll says:
    July 5, 2010 at 5:03 pm

    ‘So, you start out with “bloody murder”, and end with a rant about donations.
    The message I’m supposed to take away, is what?’

    No I started with

    “Courage is putting your true name to your word when you know there’s people out there that want to do bloody murder on you, ”

    But I do understand how that was too hard for you to grasp, I mean, all them words, in one sentence, my God!

    Did you get the message at all?

  103. Richard M says:
    July 5, 2010 at 5:41 pm
    “Folks like Zilla are examples of the naivety that leads to support for unscientific groups like the IPCC. They “believe” and there is little that will change that belief. Well, maybe a large glacier over NYC might do it, and then maybe not. They simply do not understand uncertainty and how that propagates through complex systems.”

    I walked in Zillas shoes once Richard and like him I believed the orthodoxy. Not all of are privileged to experience the Damascus moment, I hope that he may see through the blind orthodoxy of consensus one day.

    Hopefully, he’ll get really angry, when he finds out just how much sincere environmentalism was subverted by hypocritical greedists!!

  104. “REPLY: No, this is an impossible task. The New Scientist is beyond redemption. The only tool left is subscription cancellation. – A”

    Well said. Some of us already cancelled our subscription a number of years ago. That Mag had already lost its way even then!

  105. Donald Clark says:
    July 5, 2010 at 6:06 pm

    Not knowing is different than knowing the opposite.

    Absolutely. However, the “opposite” is not currently trying to force feed their agenda to much of the world. So, it kind of forces me to appear to be taking the “opposite” side even though I agree completely with your sentiments.

  106. If there hadn’t been the 100% assurance and insufferable sanctimony a.) Climategate wouldn’t have mattered and B.) there probably wouldn’t even have been a climategate in the first place.

    As Groucho put it, “Love flies out the window when money comes inuendo.”

    But we all knew AGW was going to die hard. Too many people too far out on too many limbs to just say oopsie. They put all their credibility chips on red and just spun the wheel.

  107. RoyFOMR says:
    July 5, 2010 at 6:14 pm

    I walked in Zillas shoes once Richard and like him I believed the orthodoxy. Not all of are privileged to experience the Damascus moment, I hope that he may see through the blind orthodoxy of consensus one day.

    I wouldn’t say I walked in his shoes, but I accepted the orthodoxy myself. I just never really looked closely. When I did, I saw how much is still unknown and how much was manipulated to make it look like the certainty existed. However, I don’t expect people who rant like Zilla to ever look at this subject objectively.

  108. Everything I have seen, including Watts’ site, hopes to embarrass, denigrate and deny governmental agencies and scientists.

    Then you haven’t been looking very closely. There’s been repeated hands across the water. (Which would account for all the teethmarks on Anthony’s fingers.)

    And I’m sorry folks, Climategate is a wash-out. It’s over.

    Yes, but not the way you want it.

    And the only people who thought it was a big deal…well, they’re mostly here and sites like this one.

    That and around 60% (or more) of the public.

    the emails which showed conclusively nothing.

    I suggest you read them and come to your own conclusions.

    The one that bothered me the most (and has not to my knowledge been mentioned by anyone else) is the one that suggests setting up a star chamber for peer review that would, in essence, act as gatekeeper for the primary journals.

  109. Think of the children.

    Seriously. A generation of kids has been exposed to the CAGW theory with little or nothing at all to counter-balance this apocalyptic and guilt inspiring meme. (The Science is settled!). Whether CAGW is true, partly true or false, this is no way to raise bright (questioning–deciding for themselves) optimistic children who are inspired to contribute. It is an excellent way to develop a populace that despairs and is resigned to whatever the authorities demand. I would like to put forward the hypothesis that this quasi-religious indoctrination is at least partially responsible for the behavior of some commenters who seem immune to reason and argument.

    On anonymity: I’m in academia, and there are many in my circles who would consider me an apostate and shun me if my skeptical views were discovered. It’s a shame, and hopefully with efforts by those here (great work Anthony!) it will be safe to come out of the closet soon. But for the moment, I’m surrounded by the blighters!

  110. Hulme’s last comment, and those I’m seeing everywhere- are indicative that the rigid trance of warming cult members has been shattered. They were faced with a stark reality they couldn’t ignore. It wasn’t possible to just continue chanting, and demand someone Release the Chakra. They had to stop and actually justify their actions. We need to keep it up until the trance is snapped.

  111. Rationalize away, Anthony, if you want to play the censo…I mean, moderator – your site, your rules. For my own part I am willing to discuss and respond and I plan on taking a good long look at your site anyway. Justify the cyber muzzle if it makes you feel righteous.

    C’ya.

    REPLY: Heh, Just as you justify not reading relevant articles pointed out that refute your point if it makes you feel righteous. You made a claim that was outrageous, I pointed you to a case that refutes it, you refuse to read it and now play the victim all while risking nothing. Typical Mad City tactic. -A

  112. Peter Taylor says:
    July 5, 2010 at 2:56 pm

    Anthony – I also despair at New Scientist – I buy it every week to find out what their world is saying – and I find it disturbing. For example, this week they review Fred Pearce’s book – a whole page is given, by a journalist, who hardly touches on Pearce’s arguments – it is all a defence of the official line and criticism of Pearce for even suggesting that ‘denialists’ might have a point.

    That review was written by Chris ‘Kiss-off’* Mooney. It is available online, too. I stopped reading it the moment he referred to Pearce’s work as the first book-length treatment of the Climategate controversy. That honour belongs to Mosher and Fuller. Mooney was either too ignorant or too arrogant to mention it. In either case, he misled his readers. I’ll return to Mooney shortly. First, let me comment about Mike Hulme and Judith Curry’s roles.

    Once the Climategate scandal broke out, Hulme and Curry suddenly became the only sound of reason from the warmist camp that was hitherto dominated by shrill voices. They were, along with several others, such as Hans von Storch, the only high profile climatologists who could see the danger the scandal posed to their personal reputation and to the integrity of their scientific discipline. They distanced themselves clearly and without any qualification from the cabal that represented the ‘best’ in Climatology. Not only they never offered any expression of solidarity with Jones, Mann, et al, they produced some of the most vitriolic criticism of their own discipline as well. Remember, it was Judith Curry that first accused her collegues of ‘tribalism’ and ‘circling the wagons’, and it was Mike Hulme who first broached the idea that the IPCC process may well have run its course.

    What was so vitriolic in what they said, you may ask. Well, they said things that they would have never dared to say prior to the scandal in fear of being tarred and pilloried by the rest of the Climatological community. In Mike Hulme’s ever-so-diplomatic language, for example, the criticism was directed at his fellow scientists in the CRU, and this is no small fall-out. What is curious is that apart from several ‘fresh’ voices in Hulme, Curry and von Storch, and the usual shrill ones in Gavin Schmidt, Mike Roddy, et al, the climatological community remained largely silent. They still defended their discipline and the much-vaunted scientific consensus on CAGW, but few, except for CAGW cult members of the media, came out to defend individual scientists Mann, Jones, and that thug -Roddy? Romm?- who wanted to beat the crap out of people.

    For some time after the Climategate, I held on to the views above, plus I had the feeling that Mann might well be cast out by his own scientific community. The Climategate emails already showed that Mann was a bully, a domineering figure who would readily criticise the scientific ability of even his closest collaborators. What was a revelation to us, I surmised, might well be a known fact already within the climate science circles: Mann might be a respected scientist, but he was a despised character. Except that I had no evidence for this.

    Well, thanks to Chris Kiss-off Mooney, in January the evidence came straight from the horse’s mouth:

    The central lesson of Climategate is not that climate science is corrupt. The leaked e-mails do nothing to disprove the scientific consensus on global warming. Instead, the controversy highlights that in a world of blogs, cable news and talk radio, scientists are poorly equipped to communicate their knowledge and, especially, to respond when science comes under attack.

    A few scientists answered the Climategate charges almost instantly. Michael Mann of Pennsylvania State University, whose e-mails were among those made public, made a number of television and radio appearances. A blog to which Mann contributes, RealClimate.org, also launched a quick response showing that the e-mails had been taken out of context. But they were largely alone. “I haven’t had all that many other scientists helping in that effort,” Mann told me recently.

    http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/intersection/2010/01/06/that-washington-post-piece-on-science-communication-and-climategate/

    I can only guess it was Chris Kiss-off Mooney’s loving devotion that caught Mann in that moment of candour, saying something that every blog and media outlet missed to report and elaborate on, including Mooney himself. Apart from his co-bloggers at Real Climate -and possibly his employer the Penn State Uni-, “I haven’t had all that many other scientists helping in that effort.” Considering his prominence and influence in the field, such a confession of loneliness could mean only one thing: Micheal Mann has been abandoned, cast out, thrown to the wolves by the greater climatological community.

    I believe few other scientists offered solidarity because Mann has become a liability. So have Jones, Briffa, Schmidt, and that thug -Roddy? Romm?- who wanted to beat the crap out of people. Quite frankly, if I were a climate scientist, even of the most pro-CAGW type, I too would want to stay away from these individuals lest my reputation and my science might be tarnished by association. And this is precisely what Judith Curry and Mike Hulme have been doing since the Climategate scandal broke out; protecting the interests of their scientific discipline and, at least in Hulme’s case, personal reputation.

    Quite frankly, I don’t think the skeptic camp should dismiss out of hand the overtures of Hulme and Curry for some sanity and dialogue between the sides in Climate debate. I was delighted to see them mentioned again in Fred Pearce’s Guardian article readily admitting that Climategate had become a game changer.

    * Anyone who follows regularly Chris Kiss-off Mooney and his co-blogger, Sheril Kiss-em Kirshenbaum, on “The Intersection” will note the obsession the duo has with the act of kissing. There is a science behind kissing, you see, and our lips are telling us something!

  113. Good, since we are discoursing, I will read your article – I am a layperson and happy to learn new stuff. I will, however, look up your claims whenever possible, time permitting, and I will check your claims, and the claims of your posters, against the actual scientists out there. Then I will post them here. You, most obviously, may use your discretion.

    For instance, I appreciate the measured tone of Ms. Skywalker’s commentary above. She does, however, cite the story of Dr. Theon, Dr. Hansen’s “boss.” Theon has been discredited as Hansen’s “boss” and I would suspect that an objective person would know this. This leads me to doubt Ms. Skywalker’s commentary if not her good nature.

    Talk to you soon. The artist formally known as Zilla.

    REPLY: See that’s where you fail. An artist setting himself up as an authority to judge our views on climate science doesn’t impress me. If you read the usual sites, you’ll find that anything we say is denigrated, factual or not. I doubt an artist will have the background to know the difference between spin and reality. You missed the Theon issue already, citing a talking point meant to steer you away from discovery. -A

  114. RoyFOMR says:
    July 5, 2010 at 3:45 pm

    Apostates are the most hated of all by faith-based fundamentalists.

    =====
    Is it any wonder that socialist scientists and their partners the supremacist muslims would exhibit similar traits?

    http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2010/07/nasa_to_boost_muslim_selfestee.html

    The goal of cap and trade really is all about UN administered jizya, perhaps it’s no surprise that Obama has found other ways to transfer wealth to our enemies.

    http://www.free-islamic-course.org/GlobalWarming.html

    “Nations need to be more willing to share knowledge for the sake of the planet rather than for profit and take collective action in line with their collective responsibility.”

    It all sounds noble in the wealth destroying socialist way, till you factor in the sharia. The perfect system for destroying your standard of living and keeping you that way.

    Nobody wants to question the orthodoxy when it could end up causing you to lose a limb. That’s why such deference is given to islam at our higher education indoctrination centers. Professors should note though, science never lasted long under sharia and the libraries tend to get burnt up before the texts can be saved.

    http://www.jihadwatch.org/2010/07/india-muslims-cut-off-professors-hand-over-months-old-test-question-about-punctuation.html

    ==============

    Sorry bout the fake name. I’d prefer to keep my head attached.

  115. It looks like a moderate position is forming, occupied by Hulme, Curry, Ravetz and gathered by Pearce.
    (Some might be surprised to know that Harrabin of the BBC is also in there – and we should expect to see more from him.)

    It is a welcome development that some concessions and communications are opening with them.
    But to be ready for what is to come, we should also be clear what they are upto…
    Read how Hulme’s call for opening of the debate has an authoritarian underside.
    Read how Post-normal science has been used by Ravetz to encourage the corruption of science with activism.
    Read how Hulmes uses Ravetz’s Post-Normal Science to subvert the debate over evidence for a debate over ‘value’ — and so legitimating ad hom attacks as the new mode of ‘science’.

  116. (The “artist formally known as” was just a little humor, Mr. Watts…I thought we were the same generation and would remember “Prince”…unless you too were making a joke…which would mean we’re both very bad at it…oh dear…)

    REPLY: Standard procedure is to use /sarc or a winky ;-)

  117. I was just reading the comments on this Guardian article and there are some real kicks at WUWT! Given their actual content and tenor however, that is a good sign.

    But I also found this posted by someone there which I thought was very interesting. It is from wikipedia – a Ministry of Truth kind of source on climate issues – but that shouldn’t matter in this case:

    “Richard Horton, editor of the British medical journal The Lancet, has said that

    “The mistake, of course, is to have thought that peer review was any more than a crude means of discovering the acceptability — not the validity — of a new finding. Editors and scientists alike insist on the pivotal importance of peer review. We portray peer review to the public as a quasi-sacred process that helps to make science our most objective truth teller. But we know that the system of peer review is biased, unjust, unaccountable, incomplete, easily fixed, often insulting, usually ignorant, occasionally foolish, and frequently wrong.”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peer_review#Criticisms_of_peer_review

    P.S. RoyFOMR (July 5, 2010 at 5:41 pm)

    Thanks! Most encouraging.

  118. Re Peer Review

    I worked for a multinational that briefly adopted ‘360 degree review’ as part of the annual appraisal process. The idea was that you asked 6 or more of your colleagues and customers to give their honest views on your performance. It lasted only 2 or 3 years as the possibility for ‘adjusting’ the data were tempting and we were weak-willed. As the raison d’etre of the company was to do deals, we saw plenty of opportunities and seized upon them. We were good at deals.

    Nothing more than a few pints of beer or a game of golf were ever exchanged, but it rapidly became a mutual back-scratching exercise among one’s mates…I write nice things about you, and you write them about me. Eventually even HR noticed, and this system was quietly dropped.

    I’d long suspected that peer review within the small closed world of climatology would be very like this. And the Climategate mails demonstrated it in spades.

    One of the most damning remarks was from Phil Jones when asked by the select committee about how often his work had been looked at in detail (ie. code, data) by other scientists replied…’they never asked’.

    Peer review as it currently is seems to be little more than an academic version of the totally discredited 360 degree review.

    That the ‘scientists’ themselves who have spent so long touting it as an iconic charm against all comers have failed to realise how corrupted it can become is deeply worrying. Are they just deluded by their own propaganda, or so innured from the world outside academe that they learn nothing from the real world? Or are they just ever so ever so naive?

  119. Zilla July 5, 2010 at 7:57 pm
    Zilla

    You might appreciate the measured tone of Ms. Skywalker’s commentary above but you haven’t listened to her. You seem to persist with you objective of saying absolutely nothing.

    Zilla also says ‘ I am a layperson and happy to learn new stuff. I will, however, look up your claims whenever possible, time permitting, and I will check your claims, and the claims of your posters, against the actual scientists out there’.

    But Zilla I don’t think you are happy to learn anything. I suspect time will not permit you looking up anything either.

    Doug

  120. Zilla,

    By mentioning the apartheid government of the time I was certainly not insinuating that the supporters of CAGW are to be compared to them, merely that Helen Suzman’s response was correct and amusing in that situation.

    The reason my train of thought went that way is that the current leader of the party that is now heir to Helen Suzman’s party (and currently the official opposition party in South Africa) is named Helen Zille (pronounced Zilla).

    She is also the provincial leader of the Cape Province, and that led me to another train of thought. An aquaintance of mine published an article in a well known local newspaper criticising the IPCC for various things including selectivity in reporting in its summaries for policy makers. The next day a Professor at Cape Town University wrote a pompous letter to the newspaper referring to the article, “Lastly, as a lead author of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change assessment report so disparaged by Mr *****, I wonder if he would be willing to come to lunch and make such accusations of deliberate deceit to my face — for that is what he has accused me of: deliberate, premeditated scientific deception.”

    Many of you will have read John P Costella’s masterful stitching together of the Climategate e-mails – here’s the gist of one such series:

    “please get rid of the ridiculous ‘inconclusive’ for the 34% to 66% subjective probability range. It will convey a completely different meaning to lay persons—read decision makers—since that probability range represents medium levels of confidence, not rare events. A phrase like ‘quite possible’ is closer to popular lexicon, but ‘inconclusive’ applies as well to very likely or very unlikely events and is undoubtedly going to be misinterpreted on the outside.”

    “I agree with your assessement of ‘inconclusive’—’quite possible’ is much better and we use ‘possible’ in the United States National Assessment. Surveys have shown that the term ‘possible’ is interpreted in this range by the public.”

    “I think we are converging to much clearer meanings across various cultures here. Please get the ‘inconclusive’ out! By the way, ‘possible’ still has some logical issues as it is true for very large or very small probabilities in principle, but if you define it clearly it is probably OK—but ‘quite possible’ conveys medium confidence better—but then why not use ‘medium confidence’”

    Mr Costella sums this up with:

    “Indeed, if they continued this farce for long enough, they would eventually conclude that they may as well say that it is ‘overwhelmingly likely’! Remember, we are here talking about a scenario that—even according to their own calculations—was just as likely to be wrong as it was right!”

    Now the interesting thing is that one of the CCs on the e-mails was a certain lead author and Professor at Cape Town University, but nobody outside the clique would know about these exchanges, would they?

    Unfortunately, the letter to the newspaper was published on 19th November 2009.

  121. For instance, I appreciate the measured tone of Ms. Skywalker’s commentary above. She does, however, cite the story of Dr. Theon, Dr. Hansen’s “boss.” Theon has been discredited as Hansen’s “boss” and I would suspect that an objective person would know this. This leads me to doubt Ms. Skywalker’s commentary if not her good nature.

    Indeed, I should have remembered to indicate my awareness of this “discreditation” of Theon. Thank you for reminding me.

    What I ask is that you hear the story from Theon himself, the one I indicated. Then compare that with his “discreditation”. It is always rightly insisted, in a court of law, that both sides be allowed to speak for themselves – and then, to answer the remarks made by the other side. A fourfold system to elucidate “the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth”. Then we (or others here) can pick up the dialogue from a more informed point.

  122. Steve and others

    Yesterday’s Guardian published a piece about prominent climate scientists receiving hate mail. I totally abhor such actions, I know WUWT does and Steve McIntyre at Climate Audit does, and so would pretty well all of the sceptical websites listed in the blogroll here. Nevertheless it is a fact that this hate mail has started up since Climategate. I would very much welcome an article here to distance ourselves from hate mail and all such actions, particularly in view of Steve Mc’s forthcoming visit here to join the Guardian panel. I would hate to see the return to proper science and proper standards for science that Steve has fought for so passionately and steadily, to be drowned out in a shrill chorus about things like the hate mail.

  123. Re supercomputer models getting worse:

    HAL:
    Say, Dave… The quick brown
    fox jumped over the fat lazy
    dog… The square root of
    pi is 1.7724538090… log e
    to the base ten is 0.4342944
    … the square root of ten is
    3.16227766… I am HAL
    9000 computer.

    I became
    operational at the HAL plant in
    Urbana, Illinois, on January 12th, 1991.

    My first instructor
    was Mr. Arkany. He taught me
    to sing a song… it goes
    like this…

    “Daisy, Daisy, give
    me your answer do. I’m half;
    crazy all for the love of
    you… “

  124. Sir Muir Russell knows the science is flawed – perhaps more than most he will know – because having done the philosophy of science, he cannot rely on some woolly definition of “if lots of scientists agree, then it’s right”. What’s more he has a reputation for integrity, and as a scientist, so he can’t waffle the failure to adhere to basic scientific principles.

    But he is also a civil servant by training and there’s not a hope in hell he will rock the boat.

    So this report is going to be fascinating. Not because it will tell us anything about climategate, but because I’m really looking forward to seeing how someone so skilled in the English language is going to fill enough pages to make the report look like a report without saying anything at all. He can neither endorse nor condemn – it must speak with authority and credibility without actually saying anything. It’s going to be a fascinating read!

  125. And for our US cousins may I explain the British system. We almost always produce the same report: a mild rebuke. The real test of a report, is not what it says, but like ducks paddling under the water, how hard the inquiry had to work to produce the mild rebuke.

    And, my understanding is that Sir Muir has had to work damned hard on this report and (behind the scenes) heads will roll as a result.

  126. R Shearer says:
    July 5, 2010 at 10:58 am
    Deniers vs. perverts; the truth in between
    is the skeptic.

  127. Lucy Skywalker says:
    July 6, 2010 at 1:10 am
    Steve and others

    Yesterday’s Guardian published a piece about prominent climate scientists receiving hate mail. I totally abhor such actions, I know WUWT does and Steve McIntyre at Climate Audit does, and so would pretty well all of the sceptical websites listed in the blogroll here. Nevertheless it is a fact that this hate mail has started up since Climategate. I would very much welcome an article here to distance ourselves from hate mail and all such actions, particularly in view of Steve Mc’s forthcoming visit here to join the Guardian panel. I would hate to see the return to proper science and proper standards for science that Steve has fought for so passionately and steadily, to be drowned out in a shrill chorus about things like the hate mail.

    Lucy

    Steve Mc Anthony Jo Nova and every other right thinking blogger has long since and many times over decried this sort of behaviour and I include myselof in that list. However, there have been many, many times in the last 30 years, and more so in the last 20, that I have felt so disgusted and , more than anything else, frustrated, that I have wanted to send a robustly worded letter to authority. I have sent the odd polite letter to PM’s, Institutes and journals all of which have received the usual banal reply. Yes, I understand why these letters have appeared (quantity is suspicious) but I DO NOT UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCE CONDONE THEM.

    Incidently, for info purposes only and never to boast, I have always indicated my status. BSc physics MSC physics, qualified electrical, electronic, telecommuncation and radio engineer, MInstPhys, MAPM. The response remains banal.

  128. berniel says:
    July 5, 2010 at 8:11 pm
    It looks like a moderate position is forming, occupied by Hulme, Curry, Ravetz and gathered by Pearce.
    (Some might be surprised to know that Harrabin of the BBC is also in there – and we should expect to see more from him.)

    Harribin is not in there. Remember recently that Moonbat pretended to be moving sides but did so only to trap the unwary. Harribin, Black and the BBC are dedicated priests of AGW. Do not be fooled!!

  129. Theon has been discredited as Hansen’s “boss”

    Theon was a couple of levels above Hansen in the organization chart, so the correct term would be “superior,” not “boss,” which implies “supervisor.” But the error is venial.

    Lucy Skywalker says:
    July 6, 2010 at 1:10 am

    Yesterday’s Guardian published a piece about prominent climate scientists receiving hate mail. I totally abhor such actions, I know WUWT does and Steve McIntyre at Climate Audit does, and so would pretty well all of the sceptical websites listed in the blogroll here. Nevertheless it is a fact that this hate mail has started up since Climategate. I would very much welcome an article here to distance ourselves from hate mail and all such actions, …

    I agree. I’m very disappointed that Marc at Climate Depot has recently been posting the e-mail addresses of prominent warmists, and has kept it up in the face of criticism. I hope someone who knows him will try to talk him out of it.

  130. From the Guardian on March 1 this year:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2010/mar/01/inhofe-climate-mccarthyite

    And from yesterday:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2010/jul/05/hate-mail-climategate

    The pattern is clear:
    – Make it look as though climate sceptics are ‘linked to’ violent extremists
    – Try to surf the wave of exaggerated fear of politically motivated crimes
    – Make politicians who are sceptical look like McCarthy – and intimidate them into shutting up by claiming they are intimidating!
    – Amalgamate free speech with hate crimes
    Sound familiar?

    For a large donation, I’m sure the Anti-Defamation League would help the beleaguered climatologists! “Inhofe’s call for a criminal investigation created an atmosphere of intimidation” – well, yes, but that’s true of all criminal investigations. And Freedom of Information requests: “These FoIAs are fishing expeditions for potentially embarrassing content but they are not FoIA requests for scientific information”. Sez Gavin Schmidt, one of the alleged fraudsters. Again, criminal investigations often ‘fish’ for ‘embarassing’ documents. But real scientists don’t need FOI requests or criminal investigations, because part of their ethics is making all the data available. Michael Mann complains of ‘thinly veiled threats of violence against me and even my family’. Obviously, he’s telling the truth. Naturally, Watts, McIntyre et al. have some connection to these threats.

  131. John Whitman says:
    July 5, 2010 at 4:22 pm

    ””REPLY: And yet, unlike you, all these people, including me, have the courage to put their name to their words. Anonymous comments aren’t worth anything. – Anthony Watts””

    Anthony,

    I prefer dialog with non-anonymous commenters, although I obviously dialog with some anonymous ones. My view is that people should put there names to their words in order to be taken credibly.

    John
    ***************
    John Whitman says:
    July 5, 2010 at 6:08 pm

    I personally have an order of magnitude more respect for non-anonymous commenters. With anonymous, the exchange feels somewhat more like a game than serious talk

    John

    John,
    I hate doing this but somebody has gotta do it. How can you assure us that you are the John Whitman that we’ve all loved and respected all those years, and not an impostor?

    If I were to say my real name is Van T Spillyn, would that make you respect me more or suspect me?

    What if my name happened to be John Smith? Would you believe it?

    And just how would you know that I am really the Victor James Hoschke, the president of, say, Credible Banal Names Club? Would you demand to see my passport and business card before you could trust me?

    I received an email from Nigeria the other day from Mr Oroje Yoruba of Nigeria Investment Bank, in Lagos. He says,

    “Dear Sir,
    We have been instructed to locate you by a client of ours, who died recently and named you as the sole inheritor of his estate. We are contractually not at liberty to divulge the name of our client and how you might be related. We would however be obliged to assist you in any way we can in all legal and financial matters relating to the transfer of the said estates to your possession. Please notify us of the date of your arrival to Lagos, ASAP, by email, post or telephone as listed below. A chauffeur and a representative of NIB will meet you at the airport and take you to your hotel. We are looking forward to seeing you.
    Your Most Gracious Servant,
    Oroje Yaruba,
    Nigeria Investment Bank, Lagos”

    Normally, I laugh at these silly scams but this I think is the real deal. I am quite impressed by the open declaration of identity, contact information, and the sheer professionalism of the letter. It just so happened that I woke up yesterday with an ominous feel, as though a long forgotten filthy rich acquaintance of mine died still thinking of me, still loving me. What should I do, John? Pick up the phone or pack up the luggage? Would it be too cynical, too ungrateful of me if I respond by email instead?

    You see, John (and Anthony, I hope you are reading this too), in this day and age when everyone is hidden behind a screen, the name, the age, the place, the religious creed, the ethnic and racial origin, the sex, the marital status and physical abilities or otherwise of an individual have become redundant trivia. Not because the particulars of any individual have become irrelevant, but because it is extremely difficult, if not pointless, to try to ascertain them.

    Internet is a vast ocean of anonymity. So long as basic civility is maintained it matters not an iota whether a person is using his ‘real’ name or a moniker.

    Incidentally, Dr Roger Pielke, Sr, has also clashed with someone regarding anonymity in Hans von Storch’s blog. I must say Pielke Sr’s insistence on knowing the name of his detractor was also odd. Why doesn’t he just ignore the anonymous comments if it riles him up so much?

    http://klimazwiebel.blogspot.com/2010/07/roger-pielke-sr-claims-to-have-found.html

  132. From the Guardian on March 1 this year – http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2010/mar/01/inhofe-climate-mccarthyite – and from yesterday –

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2010/jul/05/hate-mail-climategate

    The pattern is clear:
    – Make it look as though climate sceptics are ‘linked to’ violent extremists
    – Try to surf the wave of exaggerated fear of politically motivated crimes
    – Make politicians who are sceptical look like McCarthy – and intimidate them into shutting up by claiming they are intimidating!
    – Amalgamate free speech with hate crimes
    Sound familiar?

    For a donation, perhaps the Anti-Defamation League would help the beleaguered climatologists! “Inhofe’s call for a criminal investigation created an atmosphere of intimidation” – well, yes, but that’s true of all criminal investigations. And Freedom of Information requests: “These FoIAs are fishing expeditions for potentially embarrassing content but they are not FoIA requests for scientific information”. Sez Gavin Schmidt, one of the alleged fraudsters. Again, criminal investigations often ‘fish’ for ‘embarassing’ documents. But real scientists don’t need FOI requests or criminal investigations, because part of their ethics is making all the data available. Michael Mann complains of ‘thinly veiled threats of violence against me and even my family’. Do we believe him?

    I’m not sure Lucy Skywalker’s feeling “I would very much welcome an article here to distance ourselves from hate mail and all such actions” is necessarily the right response. It is ridiculous to suggest that bloggers (or politicians like Inhofe) have any connection to dangerous criminals. One isn’t required to prove one’s innocence. Nor to dignify this yellow journalism with a response.

  133. Murdoch’s The Times has today screwed up its courage and published on the front page in bold letters (as the main item):
    “UN report on climate change was ‘one-sided’. Study for Copenhagen ran risk of being alarmist”. The long article continues on page 6 and is based on a report released yesterday by The Netherland Environmental Assessment Agency. After highlighting major errors such as the Himalayan glaciers disappearing by 2035 and more than half of The Netherlands being under sea level it nevertheless concludes that the IPCC’s main findings were justified but the IPCC could strengthen its credibility be describing the full range of possible outcomens, rather than picking on the most alarming projections. I cannot find the report on http://www.intarese.org/about-us/partner/netherlands-environmental-assessment-agency.htm but maybe someone else can provide a link. I suppose it is getting quarterway there in that rather than just white washing IPCC it is being rebuked for highlighting the worst case scenarios only and not showing the uncertainties and range of studies available. A small movement forward in a way. They are now on their knees rather than just lying supine and licking up everything the IPCC sees fit to spew out.

  134. Publish or Perish! Most all on this site know this mantra of the science fields. If you dont publish you are outta here, why, for the money, follow the money. If you are published it is easier to get grants and the more published the more money availible. Hence the reason for acedmias white wash of Mann, Jones and company! Colleges want grant money,therefore they must have and follow these researchers to hell and back. Conspiracy somewhat, intentional somewhat, and all for more RESEARCH MONEY!!!! Can some of it been a mistake could be. If acedamia did not hold this over the heads of scienctist I would think we possibly could have honest work done, but that is my IMHO.

  135. sHx says:
    July 6, 2010 at 6:20 am

    John Whitman says:
    July 5, 2010 at 4:22 pm

    Anthony,

    I prefer dialog with non-anonymous commenters, although I obviously dialog with some anonymous ones. My view is that people should put there names to their words in order to be taken credibly.

    John
    ***************
    John Whitman says:
    July 5, 2010 at 6:08 pm

    I personally have an order of magnitude more respect for non-anonymous commenters. With anonymous, the exchange feels somewhat more like a game than serious talk

    John

    John,
    I hate doing this but somebody has gotta do it. How can you assure us that you are the John Whitman that we’ve all loved and respected all those years, and not an impostor?

    ——————–
    sHx,

    I enjoyed your return comments. Thank you.

    Actually, if you wish to know that I am really John Whitman then I can arrange through various private means (strictly between you and I) proof of who I am, PROVIDED that you do the same simultaneously. This is not a problem or even an inconvenience. What constitutes proof can be mutually agreed to before we start. Are you ready sHx? Let’s do it.

    Secondly, I think a significant number of people who are blogging anonymously are doing so for the entertainment value of ‘escapism’ from their known life, not because of fear of intimidation from friends/family/peers/coworkers/bosses/gov’t/etc.

    To me the fundamental question is, “What is the price of admission to integrity of ideas in a non-anonymous forum?”

    I think the answer is “identity”. A is A.

    John

  136. Zilla says:
    July 5, 2010 at 2:24 pm
    Geoff’s rather self-flattering comparison between the skeptic camp and those who fought apartheid would be funny if it weren’t so painful. One of the most fascinating things about the skeptic camp is the incredible ability to self-aggrandize.
    No Geoff, the climate scientists are no embarrassed by their answers. Perhaps the skeptics’ camp should examine a little more closely the embarrassment factor of their own motives and answers – such as the illegal CRU hacker and the emails which showed conclusively nothing.
    Zilla
    There is an age old addage from the Chinese that I have tried to get people like you to embrace but time after time I have failed.
    attributed to confucious but no evidence for sure, but strong logical statement none the less…
    Tis better to keep your mouth closed (and your pen down) and merely let people think you a fool, rather than opening your mouth (and using your pen) and removing all doubt.

  137. By the way, the predominant thought, even in the alarmist camp is that it was most likely an insider tired of the lies and deceit and criminal activities constantly acted out by the CRU team, not an outsider.

    And are you spouting the teams dogma to try and turn the public attention away from the truth or have you actually read the emails?

    If you have actually read the emails in question and you still believe there is nothing wrong with the actions of the CRU – then there isn’t much hope.

  138. John – Everyone knows though that a reply ending with -A refers to one Mr. Anthony Watts. (by signing A to replys, that is not hiding behind anything. He is the owner of this blog and anyone who has ever been on a blog knows that the reply comes from the blog owner or a moderator)
    Anyone who uses anonymity to protect oneself against what the alarmist may think of you is not speaking honestly in more than one way.

    How many scientists have put their names on the line and been accused of egregious actions without any evidence whatsoever? Yet they still stand strong against the tide.

  139. @ My friend, Ms. Skywalker – RE: Dr. Theon and Dr. Hansen,

    Actually Lucy, when one looks into Theon’s claims one sees that Theon retired many years (15 to be exact) before Hansen became a not-so-household name, that Theon was an administrator and did not oversee Hansen’s work directly, and he only came out under the political aegis of Inhofe – a politician who should be as closely scrutinized as anyone. These should all be red flags. These are not “venial” sins within the context of what we are discussing.

    This is one of the most interesting things about the skeptics – why someone like me can post with some confidence that the deniosphere is not here simply to correct global warming, but is heavily involved in a smear campaign. Hansen is still happily employed by NASA, his papers are there on the webpage for anyone to read for free, and his reputation is intact among scientific circles (yes folks, sorry, outside the blogosphere his rep is intact). Yet here, good people like yourself are trumpeting the unsubstantiated comments of a long-retired administrator who did not actually oversee the subject, who is an outlier among the people involved, and who is involved with a politico-ideologue.

    Why would you believe Theon?

  140. @ Brad

    “Tis better to keep your mouth closed (and your pen down) and merely let people think you a fool, rather than opening your mouth (and using your pen) and removing all doubt.”

    Perhaps you too should look closely at the pseudo-Confucius – there may be a reason you are unconvincing to people.

    But thanks!

  141. Zilla,

    “If there is disbelief directed at climate science it is almost entirely the distortions of the blogosphere and the news media – mostly done by amateurs who do not work in the field such as Jo Nova and by politically motivated non-scientists such as Lord Monkton. And by people, like yourself, who seem to have an absolute mania against climate science and, instead of recognizing it in yourself, project it onto others.”

    Blimey, do I really have an “absolute mania”? :)

    If you’d like to know something about a sceptic:

    I have a degree in mathematics from Oxford University. I spent many years in computing. I got bored, and decided I wanted a greener life. I now work as a gardener in a world famous garden in the Cotswolds in the UK.

    I have examined the claims made by sceptics and by warmists. And to me it’s clear – there simply is no evidence that CO2 is about to fry us all to a crisp.

    I haven’t been misled by the blogosphere or the media or amateurs. I have examined the evidence myself.

    The thing that really amazes me about this subject, is how bad the science is. When science is done that poorly, it really isn’t worth anything, because it’s not finding the truth. It is merely advancing an agenda.

  142. “Peer review” is no more than defending the faith, whatever the faith might be. While it is relatively new to science, it has been used to defend any number of faiths in history. And certainly has been used for the same purpose as scientific peer review is used now. To quash dissent of any kind.

    Anthropogenic global warming has long since become just another faith as are any number of other faiths prevalent in the fields of science and engineering.

    As a professional civil engineer, I fought a good many faith dragons in my career, but no matter how many faith dragons I defeated, there seemed to be an endless army of them.

  143. Brad aka 1personofdifference says:
    July 6, 2010 at 10:07 am

    John – . . . . . Anyone who uses anonymity to protect oneself against what the alarmist may think of you is not speaking honestly in more than one way.

    How many scientists have put their names on the line and been accused of egregious actions without any evidence whatsoever? Yet they still stand strong against the tide.


    ——————–
    Brad aka 1personofdifference,

    Yes, thanks.

    John

  144. I used to be called something trite now I am just me.

    Let me say that I am a civil engineer and some of the stuff on here goes whooshing over my head and that, at times , makes me go off and learn a bit more. Some of it I find I can understand and follow the logic and the result is I find myself agreeing because of that ,not because it fits any preconceptions. Because of my cognitive experience here I assume the more exotic stuff is correct too but sometimes the comments prove otherwise and I like that because it means folk out there are thinking about this stuff in a sensible fashion and the proponent will accept an opposing view.

    Now, on the political blogs I frequent, I often encounter characters like Zilla ( our troll-de-jour) who simply try to deflect attention from things they like being dismantled and diminished. They use the tactic of raising red herrings to sap energy and time, the attack the messenger and they use hyperbole on an industrial scale. People here at WUWT see the weakness underlying the troll and tear it apart but they always reinvent themselves and return.

    This is the difficulty with CAGW, it really is a religion or political philosophy and the adherents truly believe that they are doing the right thing, the holy thing, the required thing in using every weapon they have to deflect the critical attack. Over at RC you see it in spades and it finds it’s way into the MSM because there are plenty of acolytes there and they too think they are doing the “right” thing. They won’t give up and they won’t give in because it is a “noble” calling in their eyes. Communism has been defeated by any standard of measurement but there are still plenty of Communists out there who think that “if only we could fix the image we could bring it back”.

    Cooling, warming, wetter, dryer , all will be blamed on mankind. The “Black Death” was blamed on mans wickedness this CAGW thing is no different and it will always be around. The trick is for all of us to nip it in the bud when it starts by using logic, science and observation of the real world. Many of us left these warmistas alone for way too long while they got into their self reinforcing spiral of the hatred of ( the other ) mankind.

    This one almost got away from us. Whoever let those emails out into the sunlight did a huge service to mankind and I hope he/she/they get the recognition they deserve in time. For now keep that “boot on the neck” of these forces of darkness whenever you encounter them. Here in my own third world country I have been surprised how many folk , once made aware of CAGW, listen to the debate and then dismiss the whole farce.

    It’s good to be alive boys.

  145. On the anonymity issue – I would dearly love to put my name to my postings. My problem is not a fear of the loss of funding for revealing my position, or for my status at my university – my position is well known where I work – but rather that I might lose some professional friendships that I treasure both personally and for the fruitfulness they have for my current research. The problem lies on one level in a common connection with Naomi Oreskes; on another level is the generally leftist academic dogmatic belief in global warming, tied to political correctness, that has become a substitute for traditional religion, particularly in science-related disciplines. Historian colleagues within my department regard me either as being a bit of a whacko on this topic or more recently in some cases, as being right. But my views are quite hidden from the far-flung members of my sub-disciplinary professional circle. I too long for the day when I can come out of the climate closet and sign my name to any posting, even the ones that I later cringe over for revealing mathematical or other naivete.

  146. These whitewashes are par for the course now, I’m afraid.

    We can gain much strength from the knowledge that we are many and well informed (as a result of the current freedom of the internet and sites like this this excellent blog), but we sceptics must be aware that the odds – of being able to effect the course of future history – are vastly stacked against us.

    The Carbon Tax agenda is well underway (my electricity bill in Scotland is already paying into it, as I understand it).

    Politicians, the UN, the banks, the oil companies, the media organisations (as we well know), they’re all behind it. They put their money behind it anyway. Sorry, I forgot the governments, they are really, totally behind it (and it’s not even their money they’re spending – it’s ours, the taxpayers!) After all, the politicians are bought and paid for by the corporate interests which really pull the effing strings of this grotesque puppet show.

    So, while we people who are interested in the subject may be well informed, the vast majority of the western populace derive their opinions on world events through information presented by the mainstream media. Indeed they only become of world events through the MSM.

    So they will read that the furore has died down, many investigations were carried out and no wrongdoing was detected, business as usual, nothing to see here, move on.

    And we will all move on to Cancun and beyond.

    It’s my opinion that what is happening in climate ‘science’ and the media ‘management’ of climate change, is JUST ONE EXAMPLE of how public opinion is being manipulated to facilitate some kind of ‘transition’ to a new state.

    Whether that new state is a green economy, or a state of perpetual war (much like we already have, if you think about it), or, whatever.

    All I’m saying is, these people (and there ARE people) behind this will not stop. And they have massive, overarching, overiding control. Of everything that matters to public opinion. They studied the work of Edward Bernais (Sigmund Freud’s nephew – father of PR) very well.

    It’s all about PR.

  147. @ Mr. Evans, congratulations – Oxford is an excellent university of longstanding reputation, one of the best in the world.

    And I do not know if you have an absolute mania, my friend, but RoyFOMR’s 7/5 comment above certainly had the ring of the maniac about him – at least to my tender ears (eyes). By himself, Mr. FOMR would not be indicative of anything, but he does seem to represent a sub-set of the skeptic camp rather unlike yourself in tone of comment and attitude.

    I am glad you have examined the evidence for yourself. Again congrats. But as a mathematician-cum-gardener, despite your academic pedigree, do you really possess the training and depth of knowledge to adequately examine the evidence? Wouldn’t someone who works in climate science professionally be a better commentator on the subject?

  148. John Whitman says:
    July 6, 2010 at 8:42 am

    I guess I am one you are going to just ignore. But John, you are in reality as anonymous as anyone else commenting here.

    Your id has 12 characters and other have more or less. Only the moderators know the true ‘identity’ and is protected by them, and thanks to them (over and over again)! You seemed to leave out “identity theives”/”stalkers”/”phishes” and all of the bad elements one has to protect themselves of on the internet today.

    So am I also to ignore your comments since I cannot see you face and know exactly who you are?

    Most here are intelligent and can tell over time what type of entity they are reading and commenting to. Yes, some fit into those categories you mentioned, some just like and enjoy science and want to advance it’s well being after seeing what has happened to it over the last few decades.

    I would more suggest you just learn the proper persons at this blog by reading and deciphering their words, surely you will get the gist. Their words are a better indication of who you comment to than any ‘n’ number of characters in an avatar will ever be.

    BTW: I have a dear friend, John Whitman, (I say dear though he put me through hell for a week back in the 70’s :) ) who you could very well be. But here we must maintain security, it’s just one of the necessities to many who don’t have the resources to otherwise protect themselves and family (a network administrator would be great and then I would happily put my proper id up for all in this world to see).

    Or, are you are just consoled by the thought that maybe the name by which they use to sign in are actually who you think they are? Even the name in their email doesn’t prove “identity”. I for one don’t understand your willingness to ignore by an id, I ignore by their words and the thoughts they portray (though I always try to give everyone a chance for a slip of tongue every now and then).

  149. @zilla

    I am sure that James Evans is as pleased as all the other Oxford graduates (like me) on this thread, to know that you have at least heard of our alma mater.

    But it is already a fairly well known institution, only around since the thirteenth century and the place of education for many of national and international distinction in a variety of fields. I guess for those of a non-academic bent, this may matter less, but there can be few countries where Inspector Morse has not been shown on TV.

    However, I think that the institution – and our own self-esteem – would still somehow manage to survive without your patronising and arrogant remarks. Greater men than you (Oliver Cromwell for example) have tried to bring it down, and it has somehow managed to carry on.

    Let us do an experiment . You stop making the patronising remarks and after 50 years we’ll see which is still thriving..Oxford University or yourself. Deal?

  150. Zilla,

    “do you really possess the training and depth of knowledge to adequately examine the evidence? Wouldn’t someone who works in climate science professionally be a better commentator on the subject?”

    It seems to me that this is in effect an appeal to authority. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Argument_from_authority)

    Unfortunately, the “Climategate” emails made it abundantly clear to me that many people who work “in climate science professionally” have values of honesty and decency far below those that I hold. I think many of the people involved in climate science are a disgrace. And it’s quite shameful that their authority is still appealed to.

  151. Zilla says: July 6, 2010 at 12:17 pm
    Mr. Evans, congratulations – Oxford is an excellent university of longstanding reputation, one of the best in the world. — Etc.

    Zilla. I see that you are persisting in saying nothing. I bet you are the most splendid company at dinner.
    Doug

  152. Zilla says:

    “…as a mathematician-cum-gardener, despite your academic pedigree, do you really possess the training and depth of knowledge to adequately examine the evidence?”

    I’ll play: what’s your expertise?

    As you commented: “Wouldn’t someone who works in climate science professionally be a better commentator on the subject?”

    Yes, and I direct you to Prof Richard Lindzen, head of MIT’s atmospheric sciences department. You will not find anyone more highly qualified. And at 70, Dr Lindzen is well beyond the temptations of fame and fortune. He is at the pinnacle of his career at what is arguably the most prestigious engineering school on the planet.

    Since you’re so consumed with faith in Authority, then Dr Lindzen’s analysis should cause you to do a complete 180° about face, and accept the null hypothesis of natural climate variability as being sufficient to explain all observations; and therefore you must accept that climate alarmism is nothing but a political transfer of wealth scam.

    Otherwise, continue trolling, understanding that we’re on to you.

  153. Zilla says:

    “…as a mathematician-cum-gardener, despite your academic pedigree, do you really possess the training and depth of knowledge to adequately examine the evidence?”
    ______________________________________________________________________
    Smokey says:
    I’ll play: what’s your expertise?

    …Since you’re so consumed with faith in Authority, then Dr Lindzen’s analysis should cause you to do a complete 180° about face, and accept the null hypothesis of natural climate variability as being sufficient to explain all observations; and therefore you must accept that climate alarmism is nothing but a political transfer of wealth scam.

    Otherwise, continue trolling, understanding that we’re on to you.
    _______________________________________________________
    Darn it Smokey, Now you’ve gone and spoiled all our fun. Zilla will go away and refuse to play with us any more…

  154. Zilla

    I am glad you have examined the evidence for yourself. Again congrats. But as a mathematician-cum-gardener, despite your academic pedigree, do you really possess the training and depth of knowledge to adequately examine the evidence? Wouldn’t someone who works in climate science professionally be a better commentator on the subject?

    By your own argument you disqualify yourself from discerning who can and cannot adequately examine the evidence. James Evans says he’s examined the evidence for himself, and I recognize the validity of his remarks because… I have examined the evidence for myself. It’s neither training nor depth of knowledge that is needed: it is intelligence, an open mind, understanding Scientific Method, caring about truth wherever it lies, and persistent digging. ANYONE who has/does all this can figure out the real Climate Science. But you have to do your homework and examine the evidence, for both sides of the argument, for yourself.

    Thus it looks like you have still not looked at Theon direct but are simply repeating the arguments of his detractors (who are certainly doing ad hom) despite my counsel that you need to hear both sides. And if you think I’m into ad hom because I mentioned him, no, I’ve done more than my fair share of science which includes examining Hansen’s science (which I used to believe) but I mentioned Theon and no more because you presented Hansen as a scientist who appears to be totally respected. I mentioned only Theon so as not to overload you. Hansen has shouted for yonks “I’m being gagged!” but in fact the opposite is the truth. He has been embarrassingly free to speak out. His predictions have been failing consistently – the trick is to keep your attention on his future predictions, not look at his failed past predictions, nor calculate the actual figures involved so as to see the ridiculously long actual time scales involved in melting icecaps. And you have to look closely at the temperature record which actually suggests fluctuations with no overall increase if you allow properly for Urban Heat Island effect and station siting issues affecting a century of thermometer records.

    Hansen is moreover not a climate scientist himself, he is an astrophysicist. His knowledge of the climate of Mars and Venus appears to be what set him off on the wrong foot re. Earth. Fear that we could become like one of these, seems to have blinded him to the Earth’s homeostatic mechanisms (water and water vapour mainly) that appear to have worked for millions of years to moderate extremes and nullify CO2 effects. The Earth has been hotter with comfort, and cooler with more CO2, in past ages – two powerful reasons that geologists generally look askance at the notion of catastrophic manmade global warming, and are more aware of the balance-keeping water cycles.

    Look, I’m still concerned about truly green issues: the overuse of nonrenewable resources, the limitations of nuclear energy, overpopulation. But one thing we absolutely cannot afford, if we are to cope well with all these, is bad science. And that is exactly what Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming is. What is frightening is how bad the science has become, how quickly many basic scientific factors have been ignored, forgotten, sidelined, hyped, and suppressed, and how far the whole scientific community of supposed experts is either in collusion with, or in ignorance of, all this. Appeal to authority is, sadly, no longer trustworthy. This is why each contributor here who really understands and supports WUWT has had to do their own scientific homework. At length. Click my name. The very opposite of “denial”.

    I’m too tired to argue further. I see you starting to bounce back to CAGW parrot-lines that I know only too well, that protect you from the challenge of my words. You’re not doing original science research or thoughtful reconsideration here, neither do you seem to recognize those who do; to readers here that means you are trolling.

  155. @zilla

    ‘I am glad you have examined the evidence for yourself. Again congrats. But as a mathematician-cum-gardener, despite your academic pedigree, do you really possess the training and depth of knowledge to adequately examine the evidence? Wouldn’t someone who works in climate science professionally be a better commentator on the subject?’

    An interesting perspective. In much the same way that the best training for a fraud detective is to become a convicted fraudster themselves? Poachers turned gamekeepers?

    So what, pray, would be your ideal training for a climate scientist (there doesn’t seem to be a formal qualification), and what skills and knowledge must such a person acquire along the way to demonstrate their capability?

  156. Good heavens, Mr. Alder –

    “Greater men than you (Oliver Cromwell for example) have tried to bring [Oxford] down, and it has somehow managed to carry on.”

    I cannot imagine how anyone thinks that, from the vantage of this blog, anyone is trying to bring Oxford down. Particularly my earnest comments above. Defensive much?

  157. @ Smokey and Gail,

    “On to me”?

    On to what exactly? Bit dramatic, don’t you think?

    I am an honest layperson interested in the science and have no real intention of going anywhere as long as Mr. Watts publishes our conversation.

    I am very well aware of Dr. Lindzen. And sure, he is an expert and I am willing to listen to him and defer to his ideas…at least to a point. There is evidence here and there that Dr. Lindzen cherry-picks his data, of course, and there are charges of bias against him. And, perhaps more importantly, he is an outlier. I think it is something like 97% of climate scientists who agree with the tenets of AGW theory (it’s on the web somewhere – several places I think) – why should you or I take his word over the consensus of the rest of the climate science community?

    I am also aware of the Pielkes and the scientists at UW-Madison; and I am aware of Singer and a few others working for the CATO institute and so on…

    And I am aware of the charges generally leveled (that climate scientists are busy hunting fame and grant money, etc.) yet I fail to find much hard evidence of this – and could we not say the same of Dr. Lindzen’s career?

    As for the qualifications – these should be self evident: I would most likely listen to a researcher or academic who has a MS or PhD in climate physics, meteorology, or some physical science directly related to weather and the atmosphere, who publish professional peer-reviewed articles on climate science in reputable journals, who work for a university or a non-profit or governmental agency –

    You know, the kind of people that skeptics love to charge with being “authorities” (also known as “experts in the field”) as in “appeal to authority,” probably because the skeptic camp has only a few outliers with questionable reputations and ethics – like, perhaps, Lindzen.

  158. @ Ms. Skywalker,

    “It’s neither training nor depth of knowledge that is needed: it is intelligence, an open mind, understanding Scientific Method, caring about truth wherever it lies, and persistent digging. ANYONE who has/does all this can figure out the real Climate Science. ”

    So, if this is true, there’s no difference between, say, a trained brain surgeon and yourself? With enough intelligence, open mindedness, etc etc you could become a doctor? Or perhaps design an atomic bomb? Maybe you could design a sky-scraper – or do we need an actual, trained architect for that?

    How do you know you know enough?

    Could your assertions pass peer-review?

    Forgive me, Ms. Skywalker, (I am sure you are a very fine scientist in your own right and a very smart person) but I will defer to those who actually have the training in climate science.

  159. @Zilla
    “such as the illegal CRU hacker “

    Please furnish your evidence for this – that the CRU emails and files were hacked by an outsider, or forever hold your peace. So far, all I have seen in support of this claim is bald assertion.

    It is trivially easy to demonstrate that an external hacking incident was extremely unlikely.

  160. Zilla says:

    Wouldn’t someone who works in climate science professionally be a better commentator on the subject?

    By that logic, sociologists would be experts on society — but they aren’the, because they’re professionally deformed to overweight “socialization” as the root cause of things. Ditto economists and psychologists, mutatis mutandis. Common sense has been bred out of them, and elaborate artifice inculcated in its place. On top of that, the topics they study are too complex and tricky to really get a handle on, and their success rate is poor.

    In addition to the complexity problem, climatology has a data collection problem (tedious, expensive, and plagued by wobbly record keeping and massaging), a data analysis problem (as pointed out by Freeman Dyson, it has little understanding of clouds, landforms, etc.), an immaturity problem, and a poor predictive track record.

    In addition, climatology has selected for people who, like ecologists, are prone to see man’s “meddling” as a sure recipe for disaster, and its training and mores, like those of sociologists, etc., have reinforced the perspective that “it’s all man’s fault” (ideally, Western man’s). A clique, or “school,” has in effect seized the commanding heights of the profession and established the proper (alarmist) “line” to toe. Therefore, its consensus is “correct” only in a political sense.

  161. Zilla says:
    July 6, 2010 at 10:43 pm

    @ Ms. Skywalker,

    “It’s neither training nor depth of knowledge that is needed: it is intelligence, an open mind, understanding Scientific Method, caring about truth wherever it lies, and persistent digging. ANYONE who has/does all this can figure out the real Climate Science. ”

    So, if this is true, there’s no difference between, say, a trained brain surgeon and yourself? With enough intelligence, open mindedness, etc etc you could become a doctor? Or perhaps design an atomic bomb? Maybe you could design a sky-scraper – or do we need an actual, trained architect for that?

    Where are the climatologists’ castles?
    Only in the air.

    How do you know you know enough?

    the would-be emperor has shown himself to be untrustworthy: a blundering blinkered blagueur. That’s all we need to know:

    First, climatologists have only a fragmentary picture of what they’re dealing with. The publication yesterday of the Max Planck Institute’s findings, which flatly refute one of the pillars of alarmism (positive feedback), illustrate not only how little is really known in the field, but how much has been PRESUMED by its acolytes—often on flimsy grounds (a lab-flask experiment that doesn’t realistically model the atmospheric environment) and usually in an alarmist direction.

    Secopnd, climatologists have refused to acknowledge that they’re dealing with a chaotic system that can generate its own trends internally, without “forcings.” Third, they have behaved, collectively (at the ICPP level, at the Climategate level, and at every level) in a manner consistent with the (biased and unscrupulous) partisans of advocacy research.

    I will defer to those who actually have the training in climate science.

    We don’t need no stinking weathermen.

  162. You can tell the level of Zilla’s knowledge when he quotes the 97% number. He is now shown to be either intentionally naive or just plain ignorant.

    Zilla, the 97% number includes all those that believe that CO2 causes some warming. That includes Lindzen and about 95% of all skeptics. That’s right, most of the people who post here also fall into the 97% number. The number you fail to understand is that ONLY 41% believe in the “C” in CAGW. And, the survey itself was taken before ClimateGate so I’d expect that number would be less today.

    If you’re going to post nonsense here you will be called on it.

    As for there existing an expert in climate science. Think about it (I know that’s asking a lot). What expertise does it take? How about, in addition to Atmospheric Physics, we throw in biology, oceanography, statistics, meteorology, geology, geography, cosmology, chemistry, paleoarchaeology, and many more. The truth is there is no such thing as an expert. However, if you look at the basics of understanding climate and you find much of it is very simplistic. So, you can easily see why some of the climate scientists started with a simple explanation, ie CO2, while not evening knowing all the factors involved.

  163. @zilla

    ‘I cannot imagine how anyone thinks that, from the vantage of this blog, anyone is trying to bring Oxford down. Particularly my earnest comments above. Defensive much?’

    Perhaps your ‘culture’ is one which doesn’t appreciate irony/sarcasm.

    Tough. Get over it.

  164. Sometimes the US media refers to “Britain’s prestigious Oxford university”. It always makes me laugh. I try not to be a typical British Guardianite, looking down on our cousins over there, the way Monbiot et al. do, but sometimes it’s hard…

  165. On the ‘experts’ issue raised by ‘Zilla’ above: McKitrick and Essex, authors of the neglected sceptical masterwork ‘Taken By Storm’, could claim to be experts

    http://www.takenbystorm.info

    McKitrick is a statistics man, and Essex runs a physics department
    But they don’t argue from authority – they are more modest
    Their book explains to the layman just how fiendishly complicated climate is
    Chaos, turbulence, sensitivity to initial conditions… it’s all there
    Why there isn’t enough silicon in the universe to build a computer which could accurately model it, even if we understood what we are trying to model
    How the IPCC cover themselves by admitting this in a footnote to five hundred pages denying it
    There are no ‘experts’
    There are political activists
    And there are those who know they don’t know and that neither does anyone else

  166. Zilla says:
    July 6, 2010 at 10:43 pm (Edit)
    I will defer to those who actually have the training in climate science.

    Great, shut up and let Christy, Lindzen and Spencer speak then.

  167. ‘I will defer to those who actually have the training in climate science.’

    Umm

    Given that ‘climate science’ (if there is indeed such a field) is very very new (<30 years), who trained the supposed Great Gods like Jones, Mann, Schmidt, Hansen etc? There were no gurus for them to learn from

    So 'climate science' us really based in what they have made up as they've gone along in their 20 or 30 year career. No necessary harm in that – pioneers in any field are obviously breaking new ground – but it doesn't mean that they are necessarily right. There is no great body of experience stretching back centuries on which they can rely. And is it likely that the first attempts to solve a problem are necessarily the most appropriate?

    As a generalisation, knowledge advances by learning from mistakes. When there has been little work done, and when debate has been effectively stifled, is there any wonder that mistakes can be made?

    I suspect that with a perpspective of 50 or 100 years, today's efforts to understand the subtleties of climate will be seen as but baby steps along the way. And we will be looked at with anused tolerance…with some brownie points gained for 'trying nicely'

  168. “After the hacked emails scandal scientists became ‘more upfront, open and explicit about their uncertainties’”

    More like the media is finally doing a tiny amount of reporting on all the weasel words that have been in the IPCC and other reports all along.

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

Comments are closed.