Craven Attention

Steve Mosher reports that things got a bit bizarre at the 2010 American Geophysical Union convention in San Francisco

The face of the "new AGU", seriously

Guest post by Steven Mosher

At AGU today I was witness to a “new AGU.” In the very first Steven Schneider Memorial speech Michael Oppenheimer explained the variety of ways that climate scientists can engage the public and the press. There was much I can recommend in Oppenheimer’s advice. He advised scientists to understand that their expertise on particular scientific issues does not give them expertise on all issues, especially on issues that touch on policy. It is one thing to note a scientific finding that climate models predict a 3°C warming for the doubling of CO2; it is quite another thing to opine that controlling CO2 is the answer.

Oppenheimer also was clear that scientists should state their bias openly. He self identified as a “progressive” and was open about his time spent at the EDF. All in all a good presentation, especially for fans of C.P. Snow. Oppenheimer did, however, say one thing that was bizarre.

He seemed to offer the following advice:

You can’t sit on the sidelines and do nothing, because your name might show up in a climategate mail. He argued that some poor scientist had been vilified because his name was merely mentioned in a climategate mail.

I have no clue who he is talking about, but his argument came down to this. If you think you are safe as a scientist by merely staying in the lab and speaking only about science, you are wrong. Why? because some guy got vilified by just being mentioned in the mails. Let’s be clear about who was the center of the mails: Jones and Mann. As Oppenheimer stated a scientist should not think his expertise in science gives him expertise in other areas, areas like the climategate mails and areas like advising other scientists how to conduct themselves with the press and public. Personally, I’d just block mails from people who ask me to delete things.

After Oppenheimer’s speech the “new AGU” assembled a panel of authors to discuss how to communicate with the press and the public. It was a great panel. A sullen Heidi Cullen didn’t say a word. A late arriving Jim Hansen and Naomi Oreskes who suggested that scientists should study history. One member of the panel dominated the discussion, Greg Craven. If you don’t recognize the name, you might recognize the jester hat: Yes, Greg is the high school teacher who made that video about global warming. Basically Pascal’s wager.

Greg nearly always starts every long-winded rant with the phrase “I’m no expert.”

Today was no different, but it came with a twist. He did claim to be an expert in communicating to the public. He was not. I cannot begin to describe the delicious sense of irony I felt when I listened to a panel of people who have no demonstrated skill or expertise in selling messages to the public, trying to tell scientists how they should sell a message to the public. And the questioners were also entertaining. Only one, Steve Easterbrook, managed to ask a rational question.  But let’s roll tape to the questions and Craven’s performance.

One of the first questions referenced Revkin’s column on the need for more Republican scientists. Oreskes, with boring predictability, said the Republican party has been anti-science since god was a kid. Epic fail, since the question was not a history question, nevertheless, she trotted out her usual gruel. Craven then launched into his act. He wasn’t an expert on psychology but he read that conservatives are irrational and prone to confirmation bias.

There are so few Republican scientists, he explained, because Republicans are irrational.

That is a quote. That is the “new AGU”.

I’ve explained before that this view of one’s opponents leads to only one end. If you believe your opponents are irrational, then at some point you contemplate using force to get them to agree.  I’m not shocked to find this in a teacher. The urge to commit violence on those who refuse to learn is an occupational hazard. I taught, I know. And we should not forget who hit the red button first:

There is a lesson here. People who talk to a captive audience of students do not have expertise in talking to the public at large. You do not convince Republicans by calling them irrational. You do not assume that an audience at AGU is full of Liberals. Greg went on for some time, foaming at the mouth about getting passionate ( the first step to violent action) and I don’t think anyone on the panel thought that there might be a conservative ( much less a Libertarian who believes in global warming) in the audience . One panelist copped to being an independent.  Finally, no one on the panel seemed to realize that you do not convince the unconvinced by calling them denialists.

They did seem to agree that Al Gore was not a good choice as a spokesperson and that the meme of “the science is settled” was a bad idea.

The next questioner, sensing that Craven had stolen the show, decided to ask a 10 minute “question,” This activist from Oakland  spoke with fire and passion about scientists needing to speak out. Craven, interrupted her passion because she had gone on “long enough”, and tried to steal the show back. Then she complained about him cutting her off.

Thunderdome.

Cullen looked pained. The only professional was silent. At some point Craven made a promise to shut up and stop hogging the limelight. A promise he would break on nearly every subsequent question, even those questions directed specifically away from him. At one point he banged his head on the table. Rational thought at it’s best. And he scribbled furiously as other people spoke, like he was getting ready to pass a note in class.

John Mashey asked a question as forgettable as his screed on Wegman. Craven took charge again and argued the “if not now, when” argument.

Basically, it goes like this. As a scientist you have to decide  at some point that enough is enough. You have to put your scientific commitment to the discipline of doubt aside and “blow past” your boundaries.  Say what you feel, not what you can prove.

[ Steve Mosher: Mr. Craven has complained that this is not a direct quote of what he said. It is not a direct quote, it is,as the text indicates, a synopsis of my interpretation of his argument. ]

Rational thought at its best.

Steve Easterbrook, thankfully, asked the only intelligent question. On one hand we have Oppenheimer telling us take care when going beyond our expertise. On the other hand we have Craven, saying “blow past” your boundaries. Oppenheimer tried to paper over the difference, and Oreskes, who seemed to be shooting me looks as I sat there laughing, agreed that there was a difference between these views. Craven, breaking his promise again, read what he had been scribbling. Some sort of challenge to climate scientists that he promises to post.

By this time Hansen had joined the dais and the next questioner wanted to know if the push for action against climate change should be like the civil rights movement. Again, the scribbling genius of public communication took the microphone. And explained that he was finally going to keep his promise about shutting up. So, he handed his statement to Hansen, who dutifully read Craven’s forgettable text.  Ah the humility of that. Not content with dominating the dais for an hour our expert in communicating with the public hands a note to Hansen to have Hansen read it. “Here Jim, read this for me.”

After all the PR disasters of climategate they still don’t get it. You don’t convince people by calling them irrational or ignorant. You don’t win hearts and minds by calling them denialists. You can’t scare people of faith, whether they have faith in religion or faith in human ingenuity. And you don’t pass notes in class, Greg. Maybe a dunce hat is in order for that move.

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

Related: Time to end your membership with the American Geophysical Union

Due to Mr. Mosher being pressed for time, this article was edited from raw form by Anthony Watts, correcting spelling, formatting, punctuation, and adding relevant links. No other changes were made.

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183 thoughts on “Craven Attention

  1. “Say what you feel, not what you can prove.”

    So that sums up the rationale for AGW, upon which monumental political global decisions are made, to affect all of us?

  2. Sounds like the typical dreadful fair we’ve come to expect from these zealots. I’m still annoyed that people quote Oreskes like she is some great academic without an ax to grind, a cause to pump and a book to sell.

    What really ticks me off about these events (as well as television interviews/debates) is that they rarely have any really knowledgeable skeptics on to completely thrash the warmists – I suppose they learned their lesson after the IQ^2 debate.

  3. Thanx Mosh, much appreciated.

    So lets see, in wanting to “communicate better” with the great unwashed, we had the following addressed?

    * Climate sensitivity is ~2.5DegC, how do we convince people that that is a correct figure? NO

    * Warming of the planet is bad for everybody and everything, how do we communicate this? NO

    * Here is the evidence that what we are saying is correct, how do we communicate this? NO

    The science must be well and truly settled, it’s just that we are too dumb to understand it. And with the aid of well organized, well funded political aparatchiks like Watts McIntyre et al, us dumb unwashed are holding back policy decisions.

    Seems reasonable to me, I get that.

  4. The policy problem with Pascal’s wager is scientifically increasing atmospheric CO2 is positive for the biosphere and for humanity. A significant negative scientific set of consequences are required to justify spending trillions of dollars to cap or roll back CO2.

    The governments of the world do not have trillions of dollars to spend. There are other real problems that governments can spend money on.

    The planet will warm less than 1C for a doubling of atmospheric CO2. (Cloud feedback is negative rather than positive.) The biosphere expands rather than contracts when the planet is warmer. There is overall increased precipitation with increased planetary temperature. When the oceans warm there is reduced stratification and increased movement of nutrients. The paleo data supports the assertion that the biosphere expands and is more productive when the planet is warmer. Climate optimum is a planet that is 1C to 2C warmer.

    The Greenland and Antarctic ice sheet are not going to melt if the planet warms 1C. The ocean level is going to continue to rise as it has for the last few 1000 years at 1.6 mm/year.

    CO2 is at its lowest level in roughly 300 million years. Plants respond to higher CO2 levels by growing faster. Food crop yield increases with higher atmospheric CO2 levels. In addition to higher growth rates and higher yields, plants respond to higher CO2 levels by more efficient water use which reduces desertification.

    Why have these facts not been include in the IPCC analysis of increased atmospheric CO2? To justify spending trillions of dollars, white lies are being created and promoted.

    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2003/05/030509084556.htm

    “Greenhouse Gas Might Green Up The Desert; Weizmann Institute Study Suggests That Rising Carbon Dioxide Levels Might Cause Forests To Spread Into Dry Environments

    The Weizmann team found, to its surprise, that the Yatir forest is a substantial “sink” (CO2-absorbing site): its absorbing efficiency is similar to that of many of its counterparts in more fertile lands. These results were unexpected since forests in dry regions are considered to develop very slowly, if at all, and thus are not expected to soak up much carbon dioxide (the more rapidly the forest develops the more carbon dioxide it needs, since carbon dioxide drives the production of sugars). However, the Yatir forest is growing at a relatively quick pace, and is even expanding further into the desert.

    Plants need carbon dioxide for photosynthesis, which leads to the production of sugars. But to obtain it, they must open pores in their leaves and consequently lose large quantities of water to evaporation. The plant must decide which it needs more: water or carbon dioxide. Yakir suggests that the 30 percent increase of atmospheric carbon dioxide since the start of the industrial revolution eases the plant’s dilemma. Under such conditions, the plant doesn’t have to fully open the pores for carbon dioxide to seep in – a relatively small opening is sufficient. Consequently, less water escapes the plant’s pores. This efficient water preservation technique keeps moisture in the ground, allowing forests to grow in areas that previously were too dry.”

    http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2009/07/090731-green-sahara.html

    “The green shoots of recovery are showing up on satellite images of regions including the Sahel, a semi-desert zone bordering the Sahara to the south that stretches some 2,400 miles (3,860 kilometers).

    Images taken between 1982 and 2002 revealed extensive regreening throughout the Sahel, according to a new study in the journal Biogeosciences. The study suggests huge increases in vegetation in areas including central Chad and western Sudan.
    In the eastern Sahara area of southwestern Egypt and northern Sudan, new trees—such as acacias—are flourishing, according to Stefan Kröpelin, a climate scientist at the University of Cologne’s Africa Research Unit in Germany.”

    http://www.advancegreenhouses.com/use_of_co2_in_a_greenhouse.htm

    “Carbon dioxide is one of the essential ingredients in green plant growth and is a primary environmental factor in greenhouses. CO2 enrichment at 2, 3 or four times natural concentration will cause plants to grow faster and improve plant will quality.

    Carbon dioxide is an odorless gas and a minor constituent in the air we breathe. It comprises only .03% [ 300 parts per million, or PPM] of the atmosphere, but is virtually important to all life on this planet!

    Plants are made up of about 90% carbon and water with other elements like nitrogen calcium, magnesium, potassium, phosphorus and trace elements making up only a small percentage. Almost all the carbon in plants comes from this minor 300 ppm of carbon dioxide in the air.

    The reason you will get more rapid and efficient growth and better plant quality with a higher CO2 level is because plants must absorb CO2 in combination with water, soil nutrients and sunlight which produces sugars which are vital for growth. If any of these elements are missing or low, plant growth will be retarded. When CO2 is increased to over 1000 ppm it results in higher production and plant quality.”

  5. “After all the PR disasters of climategate they still don’t get it”

    I don’t think they ever *will* get it. They seem to come from a mindset of “if you just send positive vibes, the universe will manifest the outcome you want”. So they go around constantly pretending they are winning as they lose time after time. To voice any suspicion that it might not be true brings a harsh response because you are creating negative vibes that will potentially prevent it from happening. I am serious, I know people who believe that sort of crap. They think they if they can just believe and if enough other people believe, it will come true. That is why they are so interested in polls and “consensus”, they think they can “manifest” a reality if simply enough people believe it is so. It is like living in a Peter Pan fairy tale. Some of these people are, I believe, quite insane. They have this collective psychosis that I find hard to fathom.

  6. Craven teaches high school chemistry and physics, but doesn’t have a degree in those or any other physical sciences. He majored in Asian Studies and Computer Science at a minor liberal arts college.

    Not quite the qualifications of any of my, or my son’s, science teachers. Let alone usual for the AGU.

  7. Hey guys, you *REALLY* need to look at this:

    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2010/12/14/BAKO1GQMTH.DTL

    (12-14) 21:05 PST FRESNO — A federal judge has ruled that a landmark 2008 environmental study laying the groundwork for controversial water cutbacks from the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta relied on faulty science.

    In his much-anticipated decision released Tuesday, U.S. District Judge Oliver Wanger ordered the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to re-examine and rewrite its plan for the threatened delta smelt.

    The agency’s solution for shoring up the collapsing species – namely cutting water exports to California cities and farms – is “arbitrary” and “capricious,” the Fresno judge wrote in his 225-page decision.

    It was “junk science” just like the diesel regulations. Man, there are a lot of families in California that are in a world of hurt because of that junk science.

  8. Hysterical. The Jester hat is a nice touch.

    Wiki says: “The three points of the hat represent the donkey’s ears and tail worn by jesters in earlier times.”

    How perfectly appropriate…. The hat of an ass.

  9. My God… Greg Craven “wonderingmind2″? Are you freaking serious? This has to be a bad dream or something.

    1. His idiotic usage of Pascal’s Wager was long ago destroyed,

    Re: The Most Terrifying Video You’ll Ever See (Video)

    2. He not only claims “not to be an expert” but also “not a Constitutional scholar”,

    Tea Party: For or Against the Constitution? Make Up Your Minds, Fellas. (Video)

    It is clear he is no Constitutional Scholar since he is unable to even read it properly,

    Penn & Teller on the 2nd Amendment (Video)

    The AGU has become a big fat joke.

  10. Thanks for the report, steven. The utter ineptitude and silliness depicted was suficiently humorous to bring a chuckle here and there, but it’s really not funny at all – these guys promote themselves as scientists and expect the public at large to take them seriously?

  11. ‘Say what you feel, not what you can prove.’

    Be all that you can be it says on the signs, not just to the offices of Uncle Sam but on the “heavenly” entrance to the local science hippie commune as well.

    You got the über propaganda politico addition to the board of director and a panel of crazed climate hippies all trying their very bestest to act irrational in an otherwise rational world, however in their reality it is, of course, always backwards monday.

    What kind of ‘shrooms do they really serve at these conventions I wonder?

  12. crosspatch says:

    “[T]hey think they can “manifest” a reality if simply enough people believe it is so. It is like living in a Peter Pan fairy tale. Some of these people are, I believe, quite insane. They have this collective psychosis that I find hard to fathom.”

    This actually is part of the whole Gaea/Gaia, New Age philosophy. I’m all for positive thinking, but there’s nothing positive about predicting the end of the world and getting upset when it doesn’t happen. The notion that thoughts are things–as expressed in the very old movement called New Thought–has somehow gotten turned upside down by some of the most spiteful, pessimistic, negative people on Earth.

    1Dandytroll calls them climate hippies, which I think a perfect label we should start using for them. They really are hippies, as partly evidenced by their political rants and bigotries, and are so stuck in the ’70s, they’re anachronisms. Steven Mosher doesn’t tell us, but I suspect they also smell.

  13. Nope, they never will “get it”.

    This is exactly the attitude of every politician after a poor vote result – never ever ever has a politician said simply that the voters don’t want what the politician is offering, they always resort to the “we failed to get our message across” meme.

    And almost without exception, they lost because they DID get the message across.

  14. And just a thought, could someone translate ‘Say what you feel, not what you can prove. ‘ into Latin and then Climate scientist’s could use this as there motto.

    I surpose the skeptical among us could use ‘Please show your working’s’ as my maths teacher use to say to me.

  15. Long story on the benefits of CO2, William. But it’s a bit one-sided. While you give all the positives, you omitted the negatives.

    Higher atmospheric CO2 concentrations are acidifying the oceans, which makes it harder for the creatures there to form shells and other structures. This will upset marine ecosystems and has consequences down the food chain – including us.

    More CO2 leads to more warming, which will lead to (well, is already leading to) sea level rises . Not great if you live on the coast.

    In other words, your story lacks balance.

    PS: Informative story, Steven.

  16. Tim says:
    December 16, 2010 at 12:22 am
    “Say what you feel, not what you can prove.”

    So that sums up the rationale for AGW, upon which monumental political global decisions are made, to affect all of us?

    Gareth says,
    This is an interesting quote, and chimes with what climate camp were saying to anyone who would listen at Glastonbury last year. When I pointed out that one of their posters had no basis in reality and I was happy to share the information which I could download on my Iphone for them, the response was “Just like deniers to fall back on graphs and evidence when they lose an argument”
    Is that painfully sweet or what? If this scam did not involve billions of pounds being taken from people who can ill afford it I would have laughed and blessed their cotton socks. Sadly, to many politicians seem to think the same way so the joke falls flat.

  17. Anyone who uses the logic or structure of Pascal’s wager should simply informed completely of the original.

    Then point out to them that by their own logic, they will be required to be in Church every Sunday for the rest of the mortal lives.

  18. After all the PR disasters of climategate they still don’t get it.

    Fanatics, True Believers, Zealots will never get it.

    I recommend the film “Downfall” – The last few days in the Fuhrer Bunker of WWII
    Magda Goebbels murdered her six children and then herself rather than live without Nazi socialism.

  19. Good post! I too hope this was video taped!


    I have lately mused upon why we have no such rights here in the provincial state of UK/EUSR. Those in charge know very well what we would exercise such a right!!!!!! Sadly I am one of those naive twits who believes in peace & democracy, & the vigorous defence of both.

    I posted elsewhere today on consensus. I said that with such a tool I could prove anything given enough propaganda time. I can prove that fairies exist. I go to my village hall, find 100 people, & ask them to show how many believe that fairies live at the bottom of the garden, & say 95 people raise their hands. I then ask how many do not believe that fairies live at the bottom of the garden & the remaining 5 raise their hands. By consensus, I have proven that a) fairies do in fact exist, & b) they really do live at the bottom of the garden! Who needs science?

  20. Michael in Sydney says:
    December 16, 2010 at 2:55 am
    “…As a scientist you have to decide at some point that enough is enough…”

    WHY?

    Sublime question Michael, right on the money!

  21. There are no Republican scientists because they are irrational? Really? I don’t personally know a lot of “scientists” having been out of school a long time, but I know a whole heck of a lot of engineers. High level, top notch inventing kind of engineers. If I had to wager, 90% are Republicans, if not more. these are pretty rational people (sort of in the definition of engineer). Maybe its just my circles..

  22. I’m kind if curious what the liberal-conservative breakdown looks like between scientific disciplines. I tend to think that “soft” sciences (biology, psychology, etc.) that attract people with poor mathematical skills are top-heavy in liberals while the “real” scientists on the chemistry and physics end of the spectrum tend to be conservative. This might just be the wishful thinking on the part of a pharmaceutical chemist, however! :-)

  23. Dear Steve, an amusing story. It looks like a puppet show at which some of the most ludicrous clowns and conspiracy theorists on the planet have gathered.

    It really sounds bizarre if Nuremberg Trials Cullen, Merchant of Doubt Oreskes, and Death Camp Hansen are close to the modest average when it comes to the insanity of the people in the room. ;-)

    The Pascal’s Wager by the nutcase is funny because the AGW has been promoted to the infinite, omnipresent, and omnipotent God that defeats everyone, anyone, and every rational argument or calculation.

    How did you get there?

  24. “Say what you feel, not what you can prove.”

    I consider myself to be a Constitutional Libertarian, and I know why these jokers hate Libertarians and Republicans, simply by going to the next level:

    Feel: Greg Cravem, I feel your pain–you are completely unqualified to represent the AGU, an organization that used to have class and purpose.

    Proof: The above statement is proven by your actions in the panel discussion and the content of your message.

    How on earth, considering his lack of credentials and professionalism, did Craven ever become a spokesman for the AGU?

  25. “They did seem to agree that Al Gore was not a good choice as a spokesperson and that the meme of “the science is settled” was a bad idea.”

    Stunning conclusion, eh?
    Hitting yourself in the head with a hammer is also a bad choice and a bad idea.

  26. You don’t convince people about something they intuitively suspect is not true, without asking them for some kind of leap of faith and belief in things not seen..
    and in this case it with the people pushing the AGW issue. It is here where this whole issue has become “religion” which is the ultimate irony since the premise that man controls the atmosphere is a challenge to the idea that there is a God who created all this in the first place, and that man can somehow control what he did not create ( Assuming we can agree that man did not create the earth and heavens, whether one believes God did or not.) But what does a belief in God ask for?Faith in things unseen, really. A search for something that one can not easily grasp. So in reality
    that is what this all has become. The “problem” is that these folks wish to slam down the throat of the ignorant and to them, non scientific masses ( I guess I am a card carrying member, in spite of years and years of day to day hand to hand combat with this foe known as weather, a belief that is beyond what man can grasp intuitively. In that sense, it is a religion, and on par with what spiritual belief asks of all those who seek such things.

    And the problem grows even bigger with people like me, because after years and years in this, I see the majesty of the creation and it humbles me to actually understand
    that in spite of all these enlightened people believing we are big enough to challenge
    and change what we did not create, its opposite. To me, this move to control is a cry
    by people that are seeking to fulfill that inner need to reach beyond their grasp, except their “heaven” involves saving something they have no proof they can actually save. But by trying to do so, they set themselves up morally and ethically superior to those
    that reach for heaven in another way. And of course, there is no downside. Failing at
    the impossible is noble afterall. (except when it limits the freedom of those around them which is what this does)

    All this avoids the actual question, which I think will be answered simply and plainly in the next 30 years. As co2 continues its relentless march upward, there is no excuse for the planet not to warm if it is the driver its claimed to be . The objective satellite data that started in 1978, at the end of the last cold PDO is there now, as we head deeper into the new cold cycle, so we should see a response that trends down. I suspect the past 10 years of temps essentially leveling off is because it cant get warmer without the input of extra energy into the whole system and co2, being a product of the system, is not going to do that relative to the other major players
    ( ie solar, oceans, even volcanic). If the enso responses in shorter terms are not good enough to show direct linkage, this
    should. In the end, its much less than the religion it has become, it either is or isnt
    and the answer lies in the rather simple, and non lofty evaluation of objective
    data that we now have.

    Can I get a big amen on this, brothers and sisters

    All the best
    JB

  27. One more thing!!! To those that disagree with me… cheer up… for if you are right, you are about to get your answer too. The earths temps will resume its rise and then
    you will have a convert in me, and perhaps the great unwashed masses that right now
    are not willing to follow

  28. William says:
    December 16, 2010 at 12:53 am

    Huge off-topic rant ironic given the article’s references to Craven.

  29. Well, they all should rejoice – their efforts are paying off.
    The UK’s minister for ‘climate change’ came back from Cancun, fully convinced, and with this solution:
    ‘Electricity bills will have to rise by up to £500 a year to pay for a new generation of environmentally friendly power stations, it emerged.’

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/energy/8205123/500-on-electricity-bills-to-pay-for-green-energy.html

    Unfortunately for the AGW proponents, their bills will rise just as much as ours. There won’t be a rebate for following the AGW religion.
    But perhaps they’ve exchanged their carbon certificates for shares in blanket factories, and in companies producing hot-water-bottles?

  30. So, they’re looking for “a variety of ways that climate scientists can engage the public and the press”, eh? Well, as someone who’s enjoyed reading scientific mags and papers for several decades, as far as I’m concerned, there’s only one way they need to engage me fully: Show me the proof that manmade emissions are causing catastrophic global warming. But of course, they can’t do that, because it isn’t happening and never will.

    Here in the UK, we had Chris Huhne (the minister in charge of pseudoscientific claptrap) on the BBC’s “Today” programme this morning. Sad, sad, sad. From the way he was banging on about ways in which we can – will – be forced to “save the planet”, starting with vaulting energy prices in our chilly little country, it was obvious that he, or his advisors, have learned nothing from the last few years’ (real) science. Anyone who thought that a change of government would change anything to do with AGW should be pretty well disabused of the notion after hearing the pathetic Huhne.

    Oh, well, we should get a white Christmas this year, if Piers is even half as right as he generally is. Season’s greetings, and a good 2011, to all WUWT readers, commenters, and of course to the “staff”.

  31. Classic cognitive dissonance. The Warmist cult, having enjoyed so much power and influence for so long is now losing that power and influence. Former cult members are defecting left and right, and public opinion is going increasingly against them. So, they latch onto the one thing that always worked in the past, what they like to call “communication”, and try to think how that “communication” has failed, and what they need to do to shore it back up. Talk about irrationality and confirmation bias. Craven’s statement that there are so few Republican scientists because Republicans are irrational” is unbelievably absurd, and classic projection.

  32. “Question with boldness even the existence of a god; because, if there be one, he must more approve the homage of reason, than that of blindfolded fear.”
    Thomas Jefferson

  33. Great report, Steve.

    “You do not convince Republicans by calling them irrational. You do not assume that an audience at AGU is full of Liberals.”

    And you DON’T convince the next Congress to continue your Climate Ca$h funding by bashing them.

  34. “Say what you feel, not what you can prove. ”

    Hoe. Lee. S#!^. Seriosuly? You must be kidding me. THIS is what science is becoming? I weep for my children….

  35. Great piece but what is there not to understand?
    You’ re watching the process where science is transformed into a political tool of one party and it’s not the Republicans.

    We’re going full steam ahead building the green dream society where fantasy science and looney know nothing nuts plan to end our civilization, our freedom and our futures in the name of our children and the survival of the planet.

    In this world cold is caused by heat and human kind is always responsible.
    Sane people are stamped mad, profit is a dirty word, capitalism eradicated and every person who speaks out against the new doctrine is called a denier.

    This new idiocracy of course is noting more but yet another attempt to shackle humanity under socialist rule and like all previous regimes it will fail.

    But the price, the price to pay will be of epic proportions.

    So we better stop it before the green boots start marching.

  36. “Due to Mr. Mosher being pressed for time, this article was edited from raw form by Anthony Watts, correcting spelling, formatting, punctuation, and adding relevant links. No other changes were made. “

    I thought it scanned a lot better than Mosh’s usual efforts – well done Anthony.

    Just kidding Mosh, a nice laconic, well written piece which gave me a genuine smile.

    Thanks.

  37. Sorry about the “it’s” guys I usualy catch those, but it was a hectic day from very early to very late and here at 6AM I’ve got another day like the last.

    Here is the point I would like to leave you with. The Craven voices really do drown out the reasonable voices in science. Moreover, those in the audience who do respond to it, the activists, tend to amplify the passion rather than channel it. He gets the crowd going. And we all know what mob mentality ends with. A bang.

  38. “Say what you feel, not what you can prove. “

    In a nutshell this statement concentrates the AWG (or more broadly, the “progressive”) mindset. Republicans and certainly Libertarians are less captured by it. Or at least they recognize it as being a detriment to rationality. Thankfully, Nature is rational rather than emotional. Hope remains…

  39. Sense Seeker says:
    December 16, 2010 at 3:28 am

    Mate I encourage you to keep seeking, coz you aint found it yet.

  40. It is so typical of the AGW alarmists to characterize the opposition with a broad brush generalizations (“Republicans are irrational”), but without giving specific examples that are typical of the whole class. (Are some Republicans irrational? Of course. But that can be said of every class.) So, is the insistance by “deniers” that the weather station data should be accurate “irrational”? (So often they is not.) Are the arguments that climate is cyclically correlated to solar activity “irrational”? Which specific arguments held by the vast majority of the “deniers” are “irrational”? Do the alarmists every list them?

    Perhaps what is actually irrational are not the core arguments of those who deny catastrophic AGW, but the attibution of irrationality by the global warming alarmists against the deniers. Then again, what would I know? I’m irrational.

  41. @ sense seeker, who says:
    “Long story on the benefits of CO2, William. But it’s a bit one-sided. While you give all the positives, you omitted the negatives.”

    You should be telling the IPCC that!
    IMO, his story brings back some balance to the discussion!

  42. Great post Joe Bastardi! Amen and amen. I am enjoying the weather (its the only weather I have.. in spite of what Mr. Craven wants to believe).

  43. Then, was it not enough Gore’s “Inconvenient Truth” and Jerome Ravetz “Post Normal Science”?
    You know, Global Warming skeptics have become as bad as Chemo for Cancer cells.

  44. Sense Seeker says:
    December 16, 2010 at 3:28 am
    “Long story on the benefits of CO2, William. But it’s a bit one-sided. While you give all the positives, you omitted the negatives.

    Higher atmospheric CO2 concentrations are acidifying the oceans, which makes it harder for the creatures there to form shells and other structures. This will upset marine ecosystems and has consequences down the food chain – including us.

    More CO2 leads to more warming, which will lead to (well, is already leading to) sea level rises . Not great if you live on the coast.

    In other words, your story lacks balance.”

    “Say what you feel, not what you can prove.”

    Sense Seeker I feel you are totally wrong. Oh, and I think I can prove it.

  45. Sense Seeker at 3:28 AM

    At great risk of feeding the trolls, your nonsense about ocean acidification and sea level rise is nothing but the warmist’s alarmism.

    See here for a discussion on the change in pH of the ocean. The graph from Hawaii, spanning 1992 to 2007 shows a flat trend, varying from 7.4 to 8.1 throughout the year. And the Monterey plot from 1996 to 2009 shows similar, with ranges from 7.7 to 8.2.

    Next, see here for a discussion on how the sea level rise trend over the past 100 years is very constant. Sure, you could ‘cherry pick’ the last 10-15 years and get around 3mm per year rather than around a little under 2mm per year. People on the coasts have nothing to worry about – well, maybe in 300 – 500 years they might, when the sea level using the trend will have reached about 1 meter increase.

    http://www.appinsys.com/globalwarming/GW_4CE_SeaLevel.htm

    Please feel free to leave now.

  46. I’m hoping this was an AGU fringe meeting? Otherwise the lunatics are really taking over the asylum. Then again, if that’s the best they can assemble to defend the faith it may be a positive sign. Oppenheimer at least seems to recognise a change in the political climate.

  47. “There are so few Republican scientists, he explained, because Republicans are irrational.”

    No, we are all in the private sector applying our skills to make society a better place to live, applying our skills creating jobs, applying our skills making money & paying taxes. Liberal scientists, such as Craven et al, are the ones who hang out in academia & pontificate that these rest of us are irrational & then beg for hand outs from the government (grants) – the same government that gets it’s money from taxes from hard working private sector scientists (amongst others).

    You academics needs to be more respectful of those who ultimately foot your bill.

  48. You guys see a man in a jester’s hat.
    I see Mister Heatmiser.
    Not sure which one is more funny!

    And great post, Mr Bastardi!!

  49. Steve,

    Thanks for spending your valuable time attending the 2010 AGU Convention presentation and for your excellent post. Quite honestly, I do not believe I could have sat through something like that – I might have gotten a rash or something.

  50. To Joe Bastardi at
    December 16, 2010 at 4:33 am

    AMEN ! ! ! ! ! ! !

    And I always enjoy reading your articles and posts.

  51. “It is one thing to note a scientific finding that climate models predict a 3°C warming for the doubling of CO2; it is quite another thing to opine that controlling CO2 is the answer.”
    On the other hand, with an Alarmist “Scientific” finding like that, it would be rather obvious that controlling C02 would be extremely important. Rather like yelling fire in a theater, I’d say. No need to tell people of a need to vacate the premises.

  52. The last conference I attended had as its panel members high ranking military leaders including the deputy defense secretary (MILCOM 2007.) Such behavior would be frowned upon.

    I wonder if Oreskes knows why there are so few liberal engineers?

    Mark

  53. What you describe is typical faculty lounge behavior. To the regulars, it is who they are and rather satisfying. To the non-regulars, the not-yet-tenured, it is disappointing, threatening, and many other negative things. Fortunately, quality professors rarely show up in faculty lounges.

  54. Sense Seeker says:
    December 16, 2010 at 3:28 am

    Long story on the benefits of CO2, William. But it’s a bit one-sided. While you give all the positives, you omitted the negatives.

    In other words, your story lacks balance.

    Excuse me, Sense Seeker, but I have NEVER seen ANY benefits of CO2 mentioned in the stories CAGW protagonists put out. NONE!

    So at least this piece listing all the benefits of CO2 is no more unbalanced than the deluge of such pro-CAGW stories. Maybe it’s about time we innundate the public with the other side of the story (and one that’s far more factual). They’ve been drowning in a one-sided CAGW propaganda campaign for decades now.

  55. It is time for a play on the organization’s acronym. They should be called the Silver Union. They’ll betray their scientific integrity for thirty pieces, paid by the priests of the (C)AGW Temple, and complete the deal with a sustainable kiss.

  56. @Joe Bastardi

    ‘Can I get a big amen on this, brothers and sisters’

    Even though I’m not religious, or agree with the main point, I’ll still say amen to that.

    I’m not sure anything about the climate will be resolved in the next 30 years. Two point of fact I like to point out. First look at the past 30 years, and now these past 30 years even include that mysterious famous “very scientific” cycle of 30 years, so we got 30 years of sat data, but still, have we resolved anything or has it just gotten worse. Second I always remember that sometime fact doesn’t always win as for instance with electricity which you calculate as flowing one way but fact is it actually flows the other way but apparently at one time some “great” electroengineering minds decided to stick with how “everyone” already calculated, alas it would’ve been to hard, they appear to have reasoned, to change the “fact”. Some crap just stick for ages.

  57. Sigh, will science ever recover from this?
    Craven? Really? If he’s representative of the Climate Change community, the discussion is over. The quote advocating scientists state what the feel and not what they can prove is worthy to keep handy.

    Joe Bastardi

    AMEN, Brother !

  58. Pascal’s wager has to do with living one’s life as if there were a God, whether one believes or not. There is no downside. If right, one goes to the kingdom of heaven; if wrong, there was no harm and nothing was lost.

    While CAGW is a religion, its adherents do not walk the walk. Unless they quit adding to their concept of climate damage, by discontinuing the use of fossil-fueled transportation for example, they are causing harm. Second, their ideal policies would cause billions of dollars whether they are right or not. Even if they are right, they are fiscally irresponsible in cost/benifit. Pascal’s wager does not fit.

  59. Sense Seeker says:
    December 16, 2010 at 3:28 am

    Long story on the benefits of CO2, William. But it’s a bit one-sided. While you give all the positives, you omitted the negatives.

    Higher atmospheric CO2 concentrations are acidifying the oceans, which makes it harder for the creatures there to form shells and other structures. This will upset marine ecosystems and has consequences down the food chain – including us.

    So, please tell me how the Cnidarians, Brachiopods, and Molluscs managed to survive since Cambrian times when CO2 concentrations were as high as 7,000 ppmv. Even as recently as the Jurassic and Cretaceous, CO2 concentrations have been as high as 2,500 ppmv and there was no ill effect on the marine invertebrates. As I asked before, how did these creatures survive?

    (My guess is that Mr. SenseSeeker is a drive-by poster.)

  60. Anthony,
    You should urge Craven to “blow past” his own boundaries and drop by here for an open and frank discussion.
    Unless his advise is for others to do as he says not as he does Craven should be eager to engage WUWT.

    His recommendation is exactly what many skeptics have been suggesting for along time.

    For the Team to get out of their comfort zones of control and take on the skeptics in healthy public debate.

    Perhaps a WUWT banner welcoming Craven to use his own advise is in order.

    Then again he may have been one of the trolls here all along.

  61. In my own experience, this IS the major difference between left and right:
    Left feels. Right thinks.

    I feel rich today, so I’m going to go out and spend what’s in my checking account. I better not feel rich too often.

    I feel that all I have to do is desire that application to be a certain way, and it will. No no, I don’t need to actually do all the coding work required, because I FEEL that it should just work.

    I feel that the inequity of rich and poor countries is a terrible problem, therefore I want, without thinking, to send them money and aid. That will fix everything, because then they will live like us, even though I constantly rant and rave about what we are (capitalism and consumerism… horrors!)

    When Clinton was president, I never EVER heard the same kind of emotion-based bashing and hatred that I did when Bush was president. Even though the numbers were about equal. Why? Because the right is more interested in planning the replacement and working on issues, while the left is busy emoting in public.

    Apparently, statements like “Say what you feel, not what you can prove” blow completely past the logic-detector for some people. The sheer STUPIDITY of such a statement is mind boggling…

  62. The classic criticism of Pascal’s Wager (or its descendent, the precautionary principle) is that it could easily lead one to believe in the wrong god, since the wager assigns no probabilistic benefit to any specific god. In other words, if I accept that I should simply believe in god because living as if god exists has no down side *and* I happen to believe that Charles Manson is god, well … you see the problem.

    This is the exact problem with the precautionary principle. If you assume that there is no down side to blindly believing that global surface temperatures are a strong function of anthropogenic CO2 (and therefore we should blindly do ‘something’ radical to drastically reduce CO2 emissions), then you do not understand the negative societal consequences of your false god. Its not a free lunch.

  63. It seems to me that many of the people, who class themselves as scientists and who pontificate on Climate Change, AGW, etc. , have never progressed beyond the “Information” stage of the hierarchy leading to Wisdom. Which is (as a reminder) Data->Information->Knowledge->Understanding->Wisdom. As a result we are besieged with comments and arguments replete with mountains of meaningless Data and Information and occasional tidbits of Knowledge, but an utter absence of Understanding or Wisdom. Quite sad, really, and I believe it is the underlying fault line which leads to the appeals to authority and implied religious/moral connotations of their arguments.

  64. From Craven’s site, about his own argument:

    “Turns out, the reasoning in that video has a hole in it large enough to drive a Hummer through…”

    Yes. Actually, multiple holes. We are driving Hummers through those holes regularly, thank you very much.

  65. It is one thing to note a scientific finding that climate models predict a 3°C warming for the doubling of CO2; . . .
    After Oppenheimer’s speech the “new AGU” assembled a panel of authors to discuss how to communicate with the press and the public.

    Okay, I’m ready to have them communicate as to exactly how the human component of CO2 is going to be increased fast enough to, on its own, cause a doubling in the atmosphere. How much faster can carbon based oil, gas, and so on be used? How do they plan on negating supply, demand, and cost relationships? How do we know the rise in CO2 will continue far into the future, rather than plateau? What else might happen: for example, will natural processes sequester none, some, or most of it? Explain how CO2 actually defies physics and continues to raise atmospheric temperature beyond known scientific facts?

    Request that they please show their work.

    —————————————————————
    Keeping communication clear: A change in temperature should be stated as, say ‘three Celsius degrees’ or 3C° ; an actual temperature reading is stated as ‘three degrees Celsius’ or 3°C.

  66. Curiousgeorge says:
    December 16, 2010 at 10:27 am

    It seems to me that many of the people, who class themselves as scientists and who pontificate on Climate Change, AGW, etc. , have never progressed beyond the “Information” stage of the hierarchy leading to Wisdom.

    You said a mouthful! But it’s worse than that: they’re liable to make false (superficial,) connections and to cling to those linkages as though they were holy, just because they (and others of their ilk) propounded them.

  67. If I was in a position to do so, and I took it in mind to do as much damage to the AGW propaganda machine as I possibly could in under 90 minutes, I would conspire to have the AGU hold this very session and counsel all those in attendance to listen carefully and follow all the advice they are about to hear.

  68. R. de Haan says:
    December 16, 2010 at 6:06 am

    Great piece but what is there not to understand?

    [...]

    This new idiocracy of course is noting more but yet another attempt to shackle humanity under socialist rule and like all previous regimes it will fail.

    But the price, the price to pay will be of epic proportions.

    So we better stop it before the green boots start marching.

    Well said ‘dittos’ to you, R.. There is nothing funny about these malignant Clowns, and they are not kidding. I consider them, not CO2, to be the very virulent disease agent we should be addressing as if our lives depended upon it. Really, by now just “what is there to not understand?”

  69. Roger Knights says:
    December 16, 2010 at 11:26 am

    You said a mouthful! But it’s worse than that: they’re liable to make false (superficial,) connections and to cling to those linkages as though they were holy, just because they (and others of their ilk) propounded them.

    I should have added that I see this as a major source of the disagreement between skeptics and proponents. Skeptics (generally I think ) are at least aware that we have little understanding and still no wisdom in this regard, and are willing to wait for that Wisdom before making any irrevocable decisions. Skeptics, on the other hand, tend to think that very limited data and information are sufficient to commit to those irrevocable decisions.

  70. Roger Knights says:
    December 16, 2010 at 11:26 am

    You said a mouthful! But it’s worse than that: they’re liable to make false (superficial,) connections and to cling to those linkages as though they were holy, just because they (and others of their ilk) propounded them.

    I should have added that I see this as a major source of the disagreement between skeptics and proponents. Skeptics (generally I think ) are at least aware that we have little understanding and still no wisdom in this regard, and are willing to wait for that Wisdom before making any irrevocable decisions. Proponents, on the other hand, tend to think that very limited data and information are sufficient to commit to those irrevocable decisions.

    Note: Anthony this corrects a error in the previous submission – please correct?

  71. Craven should definitely come here to debate. After all, what’s the worst that could happen? A bruised ego, perhaps, but he might at least gain some respect. On the other hand, if he chickens out, then we skeptics keep dragging our feet, and little or nothing winds up being done about AGW, with resultant worldwide catastrophe. Would he really want that on his conscience?

  72. The AGU proceedings are so deeply shocking as to make conservative geophysicists insist this disclaimer should hereafter IMMEDIATELY follow WUWT’s every invocation of winter cold and cooling phenomena:

    – However, skeptics warn that the panorama of sub-scientific provided here is worthy of a former TV weatherman, and that besides the gibberings of amateur statisticians and the grotesqueries of K-Steet shills, Mr. Watts hosts comments so daringly innumerate and sublimely counterfactual that it takes a petrified diaphragm not to laugh at the spectacle. Modulated with hypocrisy of an amperage Al Gore might envy, WUWT givesThe Onion a stiff run for its money. –

    REPLY: Well you know what they say about people like you. “You can always tell a Harvard man, but you can’t tell him much”. Am I correct in divining that you are the imaginary illegitimate great great x4 grandson of Cotton Mather? Do you have brothers and sisters named “Rayon” and “Nylon”? Heh, so transparent, so lame, so typical of elite thinkers to be to afraid to address a person with their own name. If I am in error, and there really is a person named “Dacron Mather” feel free to correct me and show proof.- Anthony

  73. My last comment was directed to the panel of Craven, Hansen and the rest – not to Mosher who I would very much like to congratulate for a well-written piece.

  74. Lovely. The CAGW clowns set their hair on fire in the public square. Thank you, Mr. Mosher, for the liner notes to the spectacle. I agree with Dr. McKitrick: you couldn’t script a better farce.

  75. mpaul says:
    December 16, 2010 at 10:21 am
    “…then you do not understand the negative societal consequences of your false god.”

    Exactly, and well-said.

  76. Craven’s presence on this panel is celebrity science at its best. Does the AGU open its membership to people with degrees in science education (most HS science teachers have degrees in education not science)? Or, is he on the panel as a guest?

    I too am a high school science teacher with a professional background in meteorology. If I make outrageous You Tube videos can I become an AGU member too?

  77. ‘Say what you feel, not what you can prove.’

    That, to me is the very definition of irrational behavior.

    They should do a urine test on some of these guys before allowing them to speak.

  78. ‘It is one thing to note a scientific finding that climate models predict a 3°C warming for the doubling of CO2′. This shows their lack of scientific discipline and /or their understanding of what science is – they call the output of a mathematical model a scientific finding. They still think this repesents evidence. Scientific findings are the things that prove or disprove the quality of the mathematical algorithm. Once the science proves the model then the model can be used, carefully, and not before.

  79. 1DandyTroll says: “What kind of ‘shrooms do they really serve at these conventions I wonder?”

    Perhaps he’s “inebriated by the exuberance of his own verbosity.”

  80. “You can’t scare people of faith, whether they have faith in religion or faith in human ingenuity.”

    “…faith in human ingenuity.”

    Well said Steve.
    Thanks.

  81. John F. Hultquist says: “…Keeping communication clear: A change in temperature should be stated as, say ‘three Celsius degrees’ or 3C° ; an actual temperature reading is stated as ‘three degrees Celsius’ or 3°C.”

    Yes!! Good point, one which I was lamenting about yesterday. Dropping the degree symbol is a postmodern conceit. What does 2.0 K mean? In my book, it mean 2,000, since K is the symbol for kilo (thousands). The ° [done with alt num pad 248] removes any ambiguity. Ditto for the differentials.

  82. “There are so few Republican scientists, he explained, because Republicans are irrational.”

    The liberals want AGW science all for themselves? Rule of holes…

  83. > Say what you feel, not what you can prove.

    Life imitates art. Here’s a quote from Atlas Shrugged, just following the famous money speech by Francisco d’Anconia:

    -”Senior d’Anconia, I don’t agree with you!”
    -”If you can refute a single sentence I uttered, madame, I shall hear it gratefully.”
    -”Oh, I can’t answer you. I don’t have any answers, my mind doesn’t work that way, but I don’t feel that you’re right, so I know that you’re wrong.”
    -”How do you know it?”
    -”I feel it. I don’t go by my head, but by my heart. “

  84. To say any group of people are irrational is just plain ridiculous. I’ve met some really ignorant and irrationsl scientists in my day. To say they are all ignorant and irrational would be …..ignorant and irrational. I’m really getting tired of the ignorant and irrational members of the AGW crowd though. It seems they are the only ones from which you hear these days.

  85. Ah yes, Greg Craven. Some time back I stumbled on his YouTube argument for taking drastic action against AGW using Pascals Wager. I wrote to him that using the same logic, you have to agree with going to war against Sadam Hussein because of the premise he had weapons of mass destruction. Surprisingly he didnt agree with going to war, even if supported by his own “logical” treatise on action against AGW. Go figure. I wonder if he believes in God?

  86. Dacron Mather says:
    December 16, 2010 at 12:45 pm

    REPLY: … Am I correct in divining that you are the imaginary illegitimate great great x4 grandson of Cotton Mather?

    Good shot, Anthony!

  87. steveta_uk said: (December 16, 2010 at 3:10 am) This is exactly the attitude of every politician after a poor vote result – never ever ever has a politician said simply that the voters don’t want what the politician is offering, they always resort to the “we failed to get our message across” meme. … And almost without exception, they lost because they DID get the message across.

    Very perceptive, Steve; and so clearly — even starkly — set down. Thanks!

  88. “”” Sense Seeker says:
    December 16, 2010 at 3:28 am
    Long story on the benefits of CO2, William. But it’s a bit one-sided. While you give all the positives, you omitted the negatives.

    Higher atmospheric CO2 concentrations are acidifying the oceans, which makes it harder for the creatures there to form shells and other structures. This will upset marine ecosystems and has consequences down the food chain – including us.

    More CO2 leads to more warming, which will lead to (well, is already leading to) sea level rises . Not great if you live on the coast.

    In other words, your story lacks balance.

    PS: Informative story, Steven. “””””

    Well the oceans are highly alkaline; and not at all likely to turn acidic any time of interest to us. Besides according to Dr Jane Lubchenko, corals and shellfish should simply thrive in ordinary tap water so long as you dye it blue with “an ordinary labortatory blue dye”. She did an experiment before a Congrssional committee (I believe) to demonstate that. But if you chill the water with lots of dry ice, then it won’t stay blue so maybe the shellfish don’t like that.

    So more CO2 leads to mre warming; OF WHAT ??
    I believe it can warm the atmosphere (not much; try a winter night out in the Mojave Desert, with no sleeping bag.) I’ve seen no evidence it can warm anything else.

    And I thought it was land based ice melting that caused sea levels to rise; not CO2. When sea ice melts the oceans take up more CO2 and the atmospheric CO2 goes down; as much as 18 ppm in the high arctic; and that all happens in a short five months.

    You need to do some reading; a whole lot of reading; and stop mouthing things you clearly don’t understand.

  89. @
    Dacron Mather says:
    December 16, 2010 at 12:45 pm
    =========================
    How about a summation of your diatribe (in gibberish), cuz I know you had something to say, but the big words left me unmoved.

  90. Craven’s little grid is a neat way of summarising how the issue is polarised. In terms of outcomes, he only sees two – either catastrophic warming, or none at all. The policy decision is similarly polarised. We either do something that will cure the problem (at considerable economic cost), or do nothing and possibly suffer the considerably worse consequences.
    The big flaw that he recognises is that the likelihood of this catastrophe could be small. Rather than get messy with the science, he bolsters this with opinions of groups of respected groups. We can say that catastrophic warming is likely, because many groups of leading sciences have passed resolutions saying it is a problem.

    The flaws that Greg Craven does not recognise are
    1. We do not have a perfect policy solution in theory. Solutions are in terms of containment of the warming to a certain level.
    2. In practice, policy-makers have not stuck to any boundaries on limiting economic costs. Here in Britain the legislated objective is to reduce CO2 emissions by 80%, regardless of the cost.
    3. The IPCC points to a number of scenarios for warming. They also have a number of possible catastrophic consequences that may occur if temperatures increase by the large amounts the computer models postulate. So, for the IPCC, the worst case global catastrophe is probably as likely as no warming at all in the next century.

    Greg Craven does not recognise two important possibilities
    – That the entire costly exercise of averting catastrophic climate change may be a failure. So we get the climate catastrophe and the huge economic costs. If the policy cannot be controlled within the bounds laid by UNIPCC AR4 or the Stern Review, then, for the sake of humanity, it would be better to do nothing.
    - That there is a huge middle ground between it all being a hoax and climate catastrophe occurring within a generation. Polarizing opinion stops critical and balanced analysis of the science.

    I have tried (inadequately) to extend Craven’s grid to encompass this middle ground in a long blog posting.

    http://manicbeancounter.wordpress.com/2010/10/09/greg-craven%e2%80%99s-grid-extended/

  91. “”””” jorgekafkazar says:
    December 16, 2010 at 2:01 pm
    John F. Hultquist says: “…Keeping communication clear: A change in temperature should be stated as, say ‘three Celsius degrees’ or 3C° ; an actual temperature reading is stated as ‘three degrees Celsius’ or 3°C.”

    Yes!! Good point, one which I was lamenting about yesterday. Dropping the degree symbol is a postmodern conceit. What does 2.0 K mean? In my book, it mean 2,000, since K is the symbol for kilo (thousands). The ° [done with alt num pad 248] removes any ambiguity. Ditto for the differentials. “””””

    Well not so K is Kelvins; which are absolute Temperatures on the thermodynamic Temperature scale. It’s a man’t name like Ohm or Ampere etc; which is why it is traditionally capitallized.

    Yes I know there’s a bunch of revisionism that wants to use lower cae so Kelvins would be k; which would be indistinguishable from both the symbol for kilo, and Boltzmann’s Constant (k).

    So 2.0 K is two centigrade degrees above the absolute zero on the thermodynamic scale. I agree that degrees C as in say 3 deg C means three centigrade degrees above the freezing point of water which can be considered the same as Celsius Degrees, so long as 0 deg C means 273.15 K. The actual temperature difference represented by one Celsius degree is identical in size to a difference of one on the absolute Kelvin scale.

  92. “”””” Dacron Mather says:
    December 16, 2010 at 12:45 pm
    The AGU proceedings are so deeply shocking as to make conservative geophysicists insist this disclaimer should hereafter IMMEDIATELY follow WUWT’s every invocation of winter cold and cooling phenomena:

    – However, skeptics warn that the panorama of sub-scientific provided here is worthy of a former TV weatherman, and that besides the gibberings of amateur statisticians and the grotesqueries of K-Steet shills, Mr. Watts hosts comments so daringly innumerate and sublimely counterfactual that it takes a petrified diaphragm not to laugh at the spectacle. Modulated with hypocrisy of an amperage Al Gore might envy, WUWT givesThe Onion a stiff run for its money. – “””””

    So I know what an ampersand is (&) but what the hell is an amper age ?

    Then there is that French Scientist Ampere after whom the standard unit of electric current is named ; colloquially referred to as “Amps” (A in algebra).

    So a “petrified diaphragm”; I can barely bring myself to comment; sounds like an impending criminal assault. You should debate Lord Monckton; whose Unabridged Oxford English Dictionary will readily sink whatever your handy reference is.

  93. Atomic Hairdryer says:
    December 16, 2010 at 6:59 am
    “Oppenheimer at least seems to recognise a change in the political climate.”

    If true, that is a big deal. In the late Eighties and early Nineties was the major pitbull for global warming on national television. Or maybe he let the young ones take over the jester role.

  94. As my daughter once commented (she is married to a scientist), scientists sit around and think up things. I would add to that statement that engineers built things, usually useful things. I would wager that there are a lot of republican engineers!

  95. It is possible they are not really concerned with convincing people who doubt climate-change. They seem more concerned with the threat that those who doubt it may convince some of their supporters to doubt it as well. To deal with that threat, if they cannot prove AGW in a way a layman will understand (or at all), those attempts to discredit doubters may be their best option. There were, demostrably, conservatives in the audience at the conference, but not in the audience for which Craven’s message was actually intended.

  96. What about the skepticalscience approach? Their approach is to present the science as they see it in a (mostly) nonpolitical format. They mostly avoid the kinds of extreme statements that Mosher described above because of site policy. I have observed lots of links from other less technical sites and political sites that may have in the past linked to realclimate before realclimate was essentially equated with climategate.

    My sense is that they can get pretty good inroads into the electorate with notions of precautionary principle and overall common sense solutions (although there are a few anti-nukes zealots there, they are in the minority). It is all well and good to take Ross McKitrick’s approach above and try to get the other side to immolate themselves on a bonfire of anti-civilization tripe. But there are those on the other side who are not so stupid to do that.

  97. this article was edited from raw form by Anthony Watts, correcting spelling, formatting, punctuation,

    I though Mosh was an English professor!?

    Did Mashey actually ask a question? Or did he just carry his soapbox with him?

    What was Easterbrook’s question??

  98. Steve, that was a very entertaining read … thank you!

    “Say what you feel, not what you can prove”.

    Has this not been their motto (and that of the IPCC) since the days when the joy of “carbon trading” was but a mere gleam in the eyes of a fortunate few?! Perhaps Craven has taken a leaf from Mike Hulme’s book:

    “We will continue to create and tell new stories about climate change and mobilize them in support of our projects.
    [...]
    “These myths transcend the scientific categories of ‘true’ and ‘false’”

    Not “show and tell”, but “create and tell”! Their myths transcend – and obviously trump – facts! Methinks perhaps Craven has been engaging in some transcendental dedication. But I digress …

    Canada’s “best-known” climate scientist, Andrew Weaver, was no doubt an early adopter of Craven’s motto (whatever its origin). Back in 2007, Weaver had declared that AR4 would reveal climate change to be a “barrage of intergalactic ballistic missiles”.

    In a very “creative” way, Weaver was definitely telling us what he felt (and possibly still does) certainly nothing he could “prove”.

    But really, folks, the way that these poor beleaguered “professionals” are whinging and whining about being unable to get their message across has got to be the epitome of “revisionism”!

    If a martian had landed at any of these recent gatherings where they bemoan and try to improve upon their collective “communication” skills, I’m quite sure s/he would be utterly convinced that very few people on earth could ever have heard of the purported perils of “global warming” (or “climate change” or “global climate disruption” or catastrophic whatever the rebranded flavour of the month might be!)

    The martian would no doubt be absolutely astounded (if not dumbfounded) to learn that for many years they’ve left no stone unturned nor paper unpublished with great flourish and fanfare (nor any mainstream media outlet without reams of ready-made copy which invariably received a place of unquestioned honour as it was promulgated far and wide!)

    Amazing. Simply amazing.

  99. The guy in the clown picture: I used to post comments on his videos at YouTube. He blocked me from commenting in all of them one by one from after a day or two. One day I got a rambling message from him in my inbox. He seemed to be a troubled person.

  100. This was hilarious and informative. Mosher combines a critical view of the proceedings with a fresh 4chan vocabulary to compile an account accessible to the layman and scientist alike. There is no higher praise.

  101. This may be a little OT, but here goes anyway.
    I was told when I was a youth that age bought wisdom, but I have been waiting for a very long time and wisdom doesn’t seem to have arrived for me yet, at least not in the defining of Left and Right, which appears to be so vitally important to many that comment about who says what about global warming, climate change and associated topics. I believe, because I have read a few books, that the climate changes over time and will continue to do so. I also know that inventions such as the flushing toilet and the treatment of sewage are major factors in eradicating disease. The internal combustion engine, the electric motor, mechanical refigeration, the use of gas and electricity for heating dwellings, and cooking have transformed much of the world’s population from an agrarian society to a more individually specialised urban/industrial society. I know these inventions have not only transformed societies but they have also changed the ideas of time and distance.
    I have read various theories that discuss Mans’ social and political evolution.
    But I still don’t understand the importance of ‘Left’ or ‘Right’ as labels or how being assigned such a lable might have an impact on the way I see the world. I have no idea whether my thinking is ‘Right’ or ‘Left’. I am also puzzled as to why Liberals are so different from Democrats, or, in the UK, why Tories cannot ever agree with Liberals or Labour.
    Can some wise contributor to WUWT who knows all about the essence of being Right or Left assist me, please?

  102. Dacron Mather says:
    December 16, 2010 at 12:45 pm

    Old Polyester there is actually Greg Craven trying to be his normal droll self without revealing his shortcomings.

  103. Anthony said:
    ‘If I am in error, and there really is a person named “Dacron Mather” feel free to correct me and show proof.- Anthony’

    My own view is that what we’ve got here is, perhaps, an anonymous astronomer/cosmologist troll struggling with the possibility that Dark Matter may be as unreal as Phlogiston or the Aether or even Global Warming.

  104. Gads, I wish you’d take that picture down. Just the image of that person makes me foam at the mouth and rant insanely to the dogs.

    Logic and reasoning mean nothing to him. that wouldn’t seem so bad – there’s plenty of those types around – but he’s a teacher fer cryin’ out loud! a teacher! That’s what is truly sickening. It demonstrates the rise of incompetence in our [American] educational machine.

    (I do think the word ‘incompetence’ understates the situation).

  105. “Alexander K says:
    December 17, 2010 at 3:03 am
    “Can some wise contributor to WUWT who knows all about the essence of being Right or Left assist me, please?”

    Simple Left/Right is a false dichotomy. Try this test to find out about your own values, and read their stuff, it’s good.

    http://www.politicalcompass.org/test

  106. @Alexander K

    ‘Can some wise contributor to WUWT who knows all about the essence of being Right or Left assist me, please?’

    Dear Mr K, Alexander,

    It is with heart felt irony I see where your problem lay. You might find it to be a vexing conundrum with no end in sight. But never fear. Because I am here. You might even find it to be a non-solvable riddle. But there is no such thing. It is, point in, fact a mere directional problem, that is very much solvable in a proper linguistic solution.

    On the off chance that I might upset a few linguistic genius, don’t you worry do chap they’re most likely hippies anyway, and ought to be dealt with in quick but orderly fashion by kindly, verbally, telling them to sod off.

    I know this might seem as confusing as time and distance in space so I’ll be using the dummies style of short explaining.

    If you are left, then obviously you have left out what is right, therefor the conclusion (which is the easiest solution) must be that you are wrong.

    If, on the other hand, you are right. . . Then you are positively absolutely completely utterly unequivocally correct in being right due to the fact that you have, obviously, not left out being right.

    Sincerely
    One Dandy Troll)

  107. Steve,

    Re the part of Oppenheimer’s talk that you didn’t have a clue about:

    “You can’t sit on the sidelines and do nothing, because your name might show up in a climategate mail.”

    I interpret it as a response to the fear many scientists feel about speaking out in public, esp after “climategate”, since that showed clearly that whatever you say can and will be used against you. He’s saying: Don’t let this fear guide you into remaining in the ivory tower.

  108. Jeff Alberts says:
    December 16, 2010 at 7:06 pm
    this article was edited from raw form by Anthony Watts, correcting spelling, formatting, punctuation,

    I though Mosh was an English professor!?

    Did Mashey actually ask a question? Or did he just carry his soapbox with him?

    What was Easterbrook’s question??
    ===========================
    Sheesh, sometimes effort is required to answer ones questions.
    Sometimes the effort is deemed to be a waste of time.

  109. Alexander K:

    I have read various theories that discuss Mans’ social and political evolution.
    But I still don’t understand the importance of ‘Left’ or ‘Right’ as labels or how being assigned such a lable might have an impact on the way I see the world. I have no idea whether my thinking is ‘Right’ or ‘Left’.

    Yes, I’d rather focus on how someone thinks, including me, not what to call it, but my take on word uses is: words are nothing inthemselves except for appearances, noises, sensations or anything else which can [also miraculously] be used as a tool to communicate. “They don’t carry meaning around on their back”, so the point is to find or create for any word a context of system of reference within which it has a “meaning” – that is, where the word somehow has a certain function within that context. I have no idea why this is even possible, but it is.

    Therefore, “Left” and “Right” have no meaning apart from the particular context of their use, which anyone using the terms is responsible for providing but often doesn’t supply, and in fact probably can’t supply if that person thinks that words do automatically “carry meaning around on their backs.”

    Supplying the context for the word to have meaning is therefore a big responsibility – I’m always aware of the problem when I use those words: I better have an answer if someone asks me about it otherwise I really don’t know what I’m talking about! Of course the more difficult overall thing is to be rational – my intended meaning of “rational” being something I can only try to indicate by referring to the rules involved in the use of the Scientific Method and its derivitive principles. There are rules in both cases, they overlap, and they work.

  110. I KNEW there was a reason to go over yesterday’s posts!!!

    THANK YOU! THANK YOU ALL!

    I am now no longer sad about the End of Science as we know it……(eg: pre-darwin days)!
    Any time I need a ‘lift’ a true ‘lift’ ~ I read WUWT and EACH of the Comments!

    and………a hearty PRAISE BE – AMEN – YAHOO!!! to the learned ‘brother’ Joe Bastardi (and many others) for their erudite critiques, as well…!

    Science may ‘in deed’ be resurrected yet! BY ALL OF YOU!!!
    ….an’ now, if you’ll forgive me ~ I’m a goin’ out to the paddocks for a well-deserved smoke…bro’s…!

    Cynthia Lauren Thorpe

  111. Sorry I’m late commenting. Having my hard drive crash 11 hours before my presentation was one of the more minor events of my week.

    I’m the nutjob in question, and here’s yet another long-winded response. I hope you’ll find this one isn’t a rant, but an appeal to justice for an innocent organization. I’ll soon be sending an open letter to a number of climate blogs (including this one) that I hope they will publish in full, to clarify and rectify what happened on Wednesday the 15th.

    Until then, here’s the essential message I want to convey: my statements and demeanor during my presentation were not endorsed by, condoned by, representative of, or even expected by the AGU, its board, or any of its members. I went off the rails completely on my own, and I’m sure they deeply regret having invited me. Really the only thing the AGU had to do with my talk was making the mistake of giving me the stage without first verifying what I had to say. And it is a testament to their commitment to free and unfettered discussion that they did not cut my talk short once it was abundantly clear that I was off my rocker. I think I probably would have had I been in their shoes.

    In a way, I regret that they didn’t, since my self-implosion (can you say thermonuclear?) was exceedingly unpleasant to me, and potentially damaging to an upstanding professional organization that I believe is deserving of respect.

    You are free to characterize this as back tracking. But as you will see in the letter, I am not. I am trying to ensure justice for an innocent organization that was victim to my sleep deprivation, stress, passion, terror for my children’s security, and general nutjobiness. And I am not retracting the basic message or fervent appeal of the speech. I mostly regret that it was delivered in a way that not only unfairly maligned an upstanding organization, but blunted my message to those I wanted to hear it the most.

    My open letter is quite lengthy so if this site chooses to publish just an excerpt, I am asking that they first send me the excerpt for review and acquire my permission before posting. I hope you’ll agree that’s a reasonable request. I have no problem with analysis and criticism of my presentation, but I do feel strongly that the facts of it be correctly conveyed, as I have already been significantly misquoted. I expect that you do not appreciate having your statements mischaracterized or misquoted either. What I said was indeed impertinent, audacious, fervent, and–one could easily argue—over the top, inappropriate to the venue, irrational, fearmongering, megalomaniacal, and silly. (I agree with the over the top, inappropriate, and silly, but not with the others. Feel free to disagree.)

    But I believe some of your characterizations of what I said to be misrepresentative. You are of course free to give your assessment of my presentation, demeanor, or state of mental health. But everyone in the debate says “look at the facts and let them speak for themselves.” I ask that you do the same thing and limit yourself to quoting my actual words, criticizing them and myself as you will, without taking upon yourself to characterize what I said. I am painfully aware that I am a pathological overtalker and can’t be succinct to save my life.

    I do not expect you to agree with my words or me. But I do expect you have the discipline and principle to convey the speech accurately, rather than settling for your interpretations and summaries of what I said (as you did in the “Basically it goes like this…” set-out). I’m sure that you’ll agree that characterizing your opponent’s words yourself does no service to forwarding the discussion.

    My main interest here is not in absolution for myself (I am sadly beyond absolution), but in an accurate conveying of the facts, so that any discussion and conclusions are made on what actually happened and not on one’s perception of what happened.

    To that end, I will be posting an audio file of the speech as well as a transcription as soon as I can. (Due to the hard drive crash and the intensity of the day, the lone copy of the text has been lost—too bad the shame still exists in audio.) Please be patient. I will get it done as soon as I can get my computer up and running again.

    Thanks for your consideration, and I hope you’ll consider printing my open letter as soon as I can get it to you.

    Dunce hat willingly accepted, Steve.

    Sufficiently Chagrined,
    Greg Craven

  112. And I regret to say that you shouldn’t get your hopes up about me serving up anymore fish in a barrel to shoot. I am determined—despite all evidence to the contrary (such as my regrettably unrestrained performance on the panel—oh, the gut-wrenching inability to limit myself)—to retire from the debate, and instead focus on making amends to the family that I have so egregiously neglected in my (what I’m sure you’ll consider misguided) attempt at safeguarding their security.

    This has been a tragic obsession on my part, which has done more harm than good to my family. And knowing that makes my insides feel like I’ve swallowed razor blades.

    If someone comes and pays me a bunch of money to compensate for the time and love taken from my family, then you may see me again. Otherwise, I think I’ve plenty burned out in the shouting match, and you needn’t worry about me again.

    In the end, of course, it doesn’t matter what you or I or anyone believes. We’ll find out soon enough who was “right.” Because in any gap between belief and the workings of the physical world, physics wins every time. The law of gravity doesn’t care what any of us believes will happen when we fall out a window.

    You may consider this disingenuous or manipulative, but I pursued this–and willingly endured the damage to my health and my family that resulted–out of desperate love for my two amazing young daughters. I pray that history judges my actions just. Even if wrong.

    Sincerely,
    Greg Craven
    Poster Child for the Climate Nutjobs

  113. @bart verheggen

    I interpret it as a response to the fear many scientists feel about speaking out in public, esp after “climategate”, since that showed clearly that whatever you say can and will be used against you.

    If anybody ‘publishes’ their views, they make them open to scrutiny and criticism by other folks. Nothing especially new here for climatologists.

    But maybe the reminder that there are some serious and knowledgeable people who are no longer disposed to view their opinions as Gospel Truth might make them a little more cautious in interpreting their data and a little less likely to proclaim the imminent End of the World………..

  114. Re Greg Craven

    I stopped reading once he got to the bit about

    my regrettably unrestrained performance on the panel—oh, the gut-wrenching inability to limit myself

    At least he and I agree on one thing. Being prolix is not being a good communicator. And yet he describes himself as such.

    Call for the lithium for Mr Craven, nurse!

  115. Re Greg Craven (2)

    It would have been better for Mr Craven to have waited until the Open Letter was complete and just published that. Spending good editing time on digging the hole even deeper wastes his own time (about which I am indifferent) and lots of readers…which is impolite/rude of him.

  116. Greg

    The principle issue I have is your lack of rhetorical skill. The ‘aw shucks’ I’m no expert, just a school teacher from Oregon doesnt work. Neither does the “i’ve neglected my family” meme work . You need a better writer. Your stage presence was commanding. You dominated a dais of your superiors. The issue was you let that power go to your head and lost your audience. You know that lady who went on too long for your liking.. She was on your side, you needed to let her “represent” after all she was showing the kind of passion you wanted to inspire. It was that turning point that clued me in to your psychology.

  117. I have noticed this tendency in a number of concerned persons that just accepted the evangelical message that Big Al conveyed and then, while trying to claim the upper and moral superiority of their position as an intellectual refused to consider any possible retreat from that position or need to even look at the quality of the science they were blindly defending.

    As Judith Curry points out an extreme form of dogmatism. The reaction when finding their blind faith demolished is a total nervous collapse bordering on psychosis. (this IS NOT a medical diagnosis! just an observation.)

    I feel so sorry for those people, they are genuine in their concerns and with their strong belief its natural that the events that have eroded the CAGW hype have also bought these otherwise good hearted concerned people to a state of collapse.

    Greg for yourself, and those who do really care for you, take a break and some sound professional advice, you will look back one day, it will all make sense. All is not lost.

  118. Latimer “Nothing especially new here for climatologists”,

    I think we agree that if the study object was the mating behavior of fruitflies we wouldn’t have this conversation.

    What’s new (or perhaps not so new) is the sheer hostility towards climate science and scientists, to find anything, no matter how insignificant or to what extent it needs to be bent or spun, that can be used to paint them in a dark light. Most scientists just like doing science, and this mudwrestle game they could heartily do without. They didn’t sign up for this when they did their PhD, and many are completely taken aback by this hostility.

    Oppenheimer is trying to say, please don’t let this stop you from voicing your scientific opinions in public.

  119. Sh**. You rant, Greg.

    The cool thing is that most folks around here can even decipher Sanskrit…so, rants are ‘No Worries’.

    An’ since I assume it was you ‘in the hat’ and it was the ‘same you’ that just sent the note on Comments… I only ask that you take a deep breath ~ relax ~ and gently consider a few items that will cost nothing to initiate:

    1. So, in my opinion, you are either crying for empathetic help… OR ~ (my cynical side says) you could be playing some convoluted form of ‘word self-defense’ that you’ve (kinda) been perfecting for a while… Regardless, Greg. You’re a man and it seems that if you hang out at AGW, then, you should be a professional one, at that… so, rants in these venues are unbecoming at best.

    So ~ facts are that you’re either joking or you’re not. Plain an’ simple. So, if you’re joking – its a bad one, and if you’re not… well… I’d wager by your words that you’re at least playing emotional volleyball with words simply because you ‘can’ and that’s not playing ‘fair’ in a professional forum. Perhaps things have been tough lately (‘specially with the computer) and humans the world over get stretched at this time of year… I hope you’ll be having a good rest, regardless.

    I’d also suggest folks around you that won’t let you get ‘away’ with sh**, either and B.S. definitely walks at this address of Anthony’s, Greg, it’s simply not tolerated, ‘cept in jest.

    I strongly suggest some ‘Accountability’, too. Like… friends that are good enough friends to tell you when you need to ‘chill out’. And…….’chill out’, Greg, I again, as a fellow human, suggest that – you must. For your own sake and for the sake of others ~ for you ‘wrote’ what others have accused Glenn Beck of…….and HE doesn’t do what you ‘wrote’, Glenn. Only drama-greenies do… and I know a few of them here in Kingston, so that’s not a ‘stretch’.

    2. Letters from ANYONE (not just linguists or historians or scientists, but anyone) need to maintain at least a ‘stream’ of consciousness… and what I just read was either a ‘silly tsunami of sorts’ or a real cry for help. You do the ‘mea culpa-ing’ initially, and then you do this ‘about face’ where you start demanding ‘your form of justice’ when it’s obvious that you don’t make yourself play by the same rules.

    No one can have it both ways. The letter was tough/sad to read, regardless and it does appear like you are a master at manipulating emotions, too. You may be having a tough day ~ but, everyone does at times. But, using ‘many words’ in order to confuse and confound isn’t playing ‘fair’ in this type of environment. (‘specially after listening to the ‘green sea choir’…….you’ve GOTTA know we’re all a bit frazzled…Yech! Thank GOD they’re in the UK…may they STAY THERE, too. Preferably near…yep. Stonehenge, would be fine. (MY attempt at humor…I hope no ‘offense was taken’ but, if so ~ sh** happens, Yes?)

    3. Regardless, Please have a quiet happy Christmas, Greg. I sincerely mean that. Hope the computer stops crashing, too. They can be a pain in the butt.

    An’ Lastly…I’d drop the hat, friend. Quickly. It doesn’t suit you.
    Merry Christmas to you.

    Cynthia Lauren Thorpe

  120. @bart verheggen

    Most scientists just like doing science, and this mudwrestle game they could heartily do without. They didn’t sign up for this when they did their PhD, and many are completely taken aback by this hostility.

    You mean that they’d like back the pre-Climategate days of secrecy, pal-review, adherence to the Team line, ‘keep your head down and one day we’ll let you play in the IPCC sandpit’..and permanent government and Big Oil grants just so long as you mention AGW often enough. And of a cosy lack of auditing( Bad!!) or openness (Very Bad – you might find something wrong with it!).

    Out here in reality land away from the hallowed walls of acdemia, bad things happen,. People are made redundant, projects get cancelled, your work gets outsourced to a BRIC, you don’t get to work in what you find interesting but on what the guy who pays the cheque finds important. Sometimes you have to do uncongenial things..and maybe under less than ideal conditions. The auditors come around. You get asked to justify your job.

    That’s just life, and I am completely unconvinced that doing a Climatology PhD should act as a permanent insulation from these things. As the interest in the field diminishes and Congress is less amenable to shell out Big Bucks for ‘further research’, you guys will have to get used to it. And it looks like you are trying your best to do it the hard way, not the easy way.

    Changing your communication strategy to be more emotional is like rearranging the deckchairs on the Titanic. My advice is to go find the lifeboats instead.

  121. Greg Craven:

    Thankyou for making a response here. I think that was wise, but I also think that response compounded your mistake by failing to address a specific point.

    I remind that part of a post I addressed to you on Judith Curry’s blog said this:

    “The statement which I write to comment on was;

    “Basically, it goes like this. As a scientist you have to decide at some point that enough is enough. You have to put your scientific commitment to the discipline of doubt aside and “blow past” your boundaries. Say what you feel, not what you can prove. ”

    If that statement was not made by you then please repudiate it in a very public forum; e.g. WUWT.

    And if you did say, it then please reconsider it as a matter of urgency. That statement is an attack on science, it is a denial of scientific ethics, and its mere assertion undermines public confidence in science.

    The overselling of AGW by ‘climate scientists’ has already harmed public confidence in all science and in all scientists. “Say what you feel, not what you can prove” is an absolute denial of a fundamental scientific principle. Indeed, it is call for scientists to abandon the scientific method and to return to pre-enlightenment thinking.

    This attack on science and scientists is so serious that all scientist should be disassociating themselves from you unless and until you make a clear public statement that you did not intend to assert to scientists “Say what you feel, not what you can prove” and that you completely and unequivocally reject that assertion.”

    You have now posted further comments including one here and another on Judith Curry’s blog. But you have yet to address the important issue of the statement attributed to you.

    Richard

  122. If Mr. Craven wishes to provide an open letter, and audio file of the event, I’ll be happy to publish it here. A good title might be “jousting with jesters” in honor of the hat.

    My long stated policy has been to make WUWT open to our friends on the other side of the debate. That said, I’m still waiting for the open minded Tamino to take me up on the offer I made to him.

  123. Greg Craven says:
    “In the end, of course, it doesn’t matter what you or I or anyone believes. We’ll find out soon enough who was “right.” Because in any gap between belief and the workings of the physical world, physics wins every time. ”

    Strange argument. I thought his argument was “We can’t wait until something evil happens; we need do act now and throw all our resources at it before anything happens.”

    I don’t think this is the same Craven that made the youtube video.

  124. Greg Craven says:
    December 17, 2010 at 10:01 pm

    “And I am not retracting the basic message or fervent appeal of the speech.”

    Greg Craven says:
    December 17, 2010 at 10:20 pm

    “If someone comes and pays me a bunch of money to compensate for the time and love taken from my family, then you may see me again.”

    Mr Craven

    Do you see why you have no credibility nor any respect from readers and commentors both here at WUWT and at Judith Currys blog?

    Do you think we can’t read past your stupidity and see and understand the core of your basic message? You obviously do, else you wouldn’t have posted this diatribe further digging yourself into the amply deep hole.
    Sure we’ve made fun of you (deservedly) but the reason why you don’t have any credibility with the WUWT community is BECAUSE OF YOUR BASIC MESSAGE.
    You insult us by assuming we didn’t understand your core message.

    You are also a hypocrite and an untrustworthy person, condemned by your own words.
    You wax lyrical about “focus on making amends to the family that I have so egregiously neglected in my (what I’m sure you’ll consider misguided) attempt at safeguarding their security.” and “This has been a tragic obsession on my part, which has done more harm than good to my family.” and more, yet you follow all this up with “If someone comes and pays me a bunch of money to compensate for the time and love taken from my family, then you may see me again.” So you are willing to put your family through all that again so long as there is money at the end of it? Are you kidding us? What does your wife think of that? What would your daughters think of that? What were you thinking man?

    I’m sure your open letter will be the long winded diatribe we all expect, it may be an item of passing interest to some, and within days you will be forgotten by us.
    But you won’t be forgotten by your family, so I suggest you use the time it may take to draft the open letter to write one to your wife instead and sit down with her and mend the most important bridge in your life. What we think of you is irrelevant.

  125. Greg Craven.

    For the sake of yourself and your family revisit the science of (catastrophic)AGW with an open mind.

    Fear is a terrible thing. Unfounded fear is worse than that.

  126. “If someone comes and pays me a bunch of money to compensate for the time and love taken from my family, then you may see me again.”

    I think he means he can’t do all this and keep his day job and do justice to the rest of his life. There’s nothing evil about that.

    I thoroughly sympathize. I really do hope the world finds a way to pay Greg for his services to the discourse. I think those of us who appreciate him should take this opportunity to say so. So from the bottom of my own heart, thanks, Greg, many thanks!

  127. Let me be clear:

    Basically, it goes like this. As a scientist you have to decide at some point that enough is enough. You have to put your scientific commitment to the discipline of doubt aside and “blow past” your boundaries. Say what you feel, not what you can prove.

    This is not a direct quote of what Greg said, it is ,as I say ,his argument in a nut shell
    basically it goes Like this.

  128. “I do not expect you to agree with my words or me. But I do expect you have the discipline and principle to convey the speech accurately, rather than settling for your interpretations and summaries of what I said (as you did in the “Basically it goes like this…” set-out). I’m sure that you’ll agree that characterizing your opponent’s words yourself does no service to forwarding the discussion.”

    Greg, I’m glad you see that as a summary of what you said rather than a quote. The only quote I could recall was “republicans are irrational” I also believe you used the phrase that they suffer from “confirmation bias” You can confirm those for people.

  129. I feel I entered Bizarro world somewhere. Craven mentioned Paleoclimatologists becoming survivalist? Hansen’s sixties flash-backs were bizarre enough, now the nut-job left is joining the nut-job right in bunker building? I picked a bad year to quit alcohol and drugs.

  130. Michael Tobis

    At December 18, 2010 at 11:33 am you say:

    “I really do hope the world finds a way to pay Greg for his services to the discourse. I think those of us who appreciate him should take this opportunity to say so. So from the bottom of my own heart, thanks, Greg, many thanks!”

    You were being sarcastic, weren’t you?

    If not, then I suggest that you and all others who share your opinion have a whip-round on his behalf. I think there are probably enough of you to contribute sufficient money to buy him a current bun.

    Richard

  131. @Craven
    ‘But everyone in the debate says “look at the facts and let them speak for themselves.’
    Surely this tosh should read something like:
    ‘But everyone in the debate says “look at the facts (after we’ve twisted them, altered them using methods and data we won’t disclose to other scientists and after we’ve vilified anyone who dares to use the scientific method to prove them wrong) and urge the complicit shallow press and venal politicians to constantly repeat the lies and deception for themselves”
    I’m sure that can be improved upon but it’s a start. And I’m deeply tired of hearing the ‘leetle cheeldren’ trope from the warmist cultists. I don’t feel sorry for Craven. Interesting name.

  132. As I scroll through additional comments posted today, I gotta say thank you
    to (appropriately, at this time of year) Baa Humbug, one among many brilliant ‘missives’.

    I literally caught my breath at the depth of understanding, Sir. I mean it. Wowie Zowie, deep AND succinct. The comment like so many others… are a pleasure to read.

    Heck. Who knows? If you guys keep this up ~ you’re gonna polish up that somewhat tarnished image your profession has endured as of late. It’s none too soon, either. Children and Grandchildren need Truth to springboard off of.

    I’m smiling broadly and once again heartened by the depth of character that always pops up after pettiness & ignorance is on display. It’s truly amazing and since I don’t believe in coincidences… Baa Humbug really fit the bill. The time for substituting emotional diatribes in lieu of observation and rational thought as seen in REAL SCIENCE ~ should be at an END.

    Just think of it ~ you guys could have your OWN ‘Great Awakening’… who knows WHAT you’d accomplish then…quarks vaulted in a single bound and quacks uncovered with a wave of the hand… Amazing.
    Full of Admiration This Christmas…

    C.L. Thorpe

  133. Greg Craven, from my point of view the most important thing I can tell you about your performance at the AGU meeting – as described by Steven Mosher and for which you apologized – is that it didn’t surprise me at all!

    Cutting to the chase, even Climate Science’s way of doing its “science” is at least equally dysfunctional.

  134. This isn’t fair, but I never promised fairness. From my handy desktop widget dictionary:

    craven |ˈkrāvən|
    adj: contemptibly lacking in courage; cowardly: a craven abdication of his moral duty.

    This is a scary article and thread. It shows who the heroes of the AGU are – the kind of people they pick to show as their public face; their representatives.

    They could have selected any number of their members with solid accomplishments. Instead, they honored the disreputable Steven Schneider, who advocated lying to advance a pseudo-scientific cause, and now they give the world Craven in a clown hat.

    What were they thinking?

  135. Leave it to YOU, Smokey ~ to have us understand just ‘WHAT’S IN A NAME’….

    And, yeah. What you found, at first blush – may appear to be ‘somewhat mean spirited’… but, to dare report the obvious, requires both strength and wisdom in this ‘climate’ of 2010… I daresay, you’ve got both.
    A high Five to you, kiddo.

    Cynthia Lauren

  136. Here’s yet another commercial study in ‘lunacy’ and how ‘wordplay’ is what these
    useful idiots use…….. I give you Gentlemen, my last ‘spam email’…:
    —————————————————————-
    Give a Green Gift:
    Be a “Buffalo Babysitter”

    Hi Cynthia Lauren,

    Yellowstone’s buffalo are America’s largest — and one of the last — free-roaming herds. But each winter, these iconic animals face harassment and slaughter when they wander from the park in search of food.

    Become a “Buffalo Babysitter” and help end the slaughter of Yellowstone’s buffalo. »

    These roaming buffalo are either hazed back into the park, where food is scarce in winter, or slaughtered because of an exaggerated fear that they’ll spread a disease to domestic livestock — and there are no credible reports of this ever happening in the wild.

    Thousands of Yellowstone buffalo have been killed over the past decade, but you can help protect America’s last free-roaming herd by choosing one of the Natural Resources Defense Council’s Green Gifts. Become a “Buffalo Babysitter.” »

    This gift allows you to help protect buffalo when they leave the park in search of fresh grass and their spring birthing grounds. It’s the perfect gift for any wildlife lover.

    So instead of more “stuffing” for your stockings, give a lifesaving gift to your friends, family and Yellowstone’s buffalo. Celebrate the true meaning of the holiday season by generously saving buffalo through NRDC’s “Buffalo Babysitter” gift, or by choosing any of their wildlife-saving and environmentally-friendly gifts. »

    Your generosity can help Yellowstone buffalo find food in winter without being hazed or slaughtered.
    From Care2
    Thank you,
    Kayla
    ————————————————————
    A BUFFALO BABYSITTER???? Imagine it, if you will……..

    Okay. Enough imagination. Her photo wouldn’t transfer over, either…. but, now
    rather than looking for a coonskin cap…….I’m going to my next Wyoming Rendezvous
    lookin’ for a buffalo wrap……..

    Give me a BREAK. ……..someone rocks up to your door at $50 an hour and will babysit your buffalo………..YECK.

    Craven can be Groucho and this babe who wrote can be Harpo…

    HEY ALL YOU COOL SCIENTISTS! FIND A WAY TO STOP THIS MADNESS IN WHATEVER WAY YOU ARE ABLE! (baby sittin’ buffaloes and abortin’ kids… Good LORD……….I need a bubble bath…..where’s the Cab Sav…Where DO they ‘make’ these people???!!!)
    ~rant ended……..I’m out for a smoke on the back veranda remembering Chevy Chase’s great line………..~
    C.L. Thorpe

  137. Greg Craven, by his own pocket bio:
    “[G]raduated from the University of Puget Sound with majors in Asian studies and computer science. In my 20s, I worked on my father’s nursery, did some computer consulting, traveled extensively around Asia (living in India for a year and working in a rural development community), worked for Student Pugwash USA in Washington D.C. (a non-profit concerned with creating conversations about the social and ethical implications of science), then went back to school at the University of Washington and Willamette University to become a high school science teacher. Taught Physics, Chemistry, and a variety of other science and math courses since, always focusing on developing thinking skills. ”

    That job he had in D.C. was at spusa.org, founded “with the fundamental belief that young people play a vital role in determining the socially responsible application of science and technology”. It’s the US student affiliate of Pugwash Conferences on Science and World Affairs, recipients of the 1995 Nobel Peace Prize. John P. Holdren gave the Pugwash acceptance lecture.

    After working for Pugwash, Craven took some science classes (he didn’t actually get a degree from UW or Willamette), passed the exam Oregon requires for teachers without degrees in science who want to teach it, and then went on to Pugwash his students: “His main qualification for proposing a layman’s approach to climate change is having borrowed the 30 brains in his classroom every period to mull questions of science and critical thinking for the last ten years. He’s found there’s no better way to refine a thought than to toss it out in front of a roomful of critical teenagers is [sic] a bit surprised to find he’s written a book as a result.”

    In short, it appears he became a high school science teacher to inculcate his charges with his views on socially acceptable energy use, and to do the same to as many other people as possible.

  138. So…. That’s it, then. The man has a podium NOT because he’s Degree’d in this subject.
    He’s a believer in social indoctrination with a ‘scientific cover’…

    I’ve now gotta wonder…or rather, research who these ‘clowns’ are, rather than believe
    they have a forum because they’ve earned it… simply obscene.

    My last thought is that Craven ‘acts/writes’ as he does because when humans are presented with a human who appears to be a loose cannon… they handle all matters
    concerning them (the l.c’s) with caution and care rather than simply ‘calling stuff as it is’, rather than simply stating Truth because of the loose cannon. No more for this gal.
    Speaking the Truth in Love is always the way to go…then, either guys like this will simply ‘poof’ (evaporate) off the scene or………they’ll ‘explode’ like they seem to promise and lose all credibility in the process… Either way….. they’re done with.

    It DOES gall me, though… and it causes me to ponder all of the myriad of other ‘educators’ and where THEIR Degrees LIE/lay/whatever… and in what year their crap goes unchallenged……. how galling.

    Regardless, thanks for the useful information, Greg. I’ve now been warned.

    C.L. Thorpe

  139. Craven promised to post audio and a transcript, but no sign yet as far as I can tell – is there anyone that has seen this and can provide a link?

  140. A Grima Wormtongue is a Grima Wormtongue is a…… you know the rest.

    The time for the Mea Culpas is before you have burned the accused at the stake, not after.

  141. For those interested in viewing the catalyst for Craven’s implosion (internal voices notwithstanding, of course), a video of Michael Oppenheimer’s presentation is posted on the AGU web site – http://www.agu.org/meetings/fm10/lectures/lecture_videos/GC33D.shtml .

    As a bonus, a portion of the panel discussion that followed the presentation and offers the viewer a glimpse of “The Craven Implosion” is included. Unfortunately, the entire discussion is not spanned. Regardless, get out the popcorn, find a comfy couch, and brush-off the notion of “knowing your role” vis-à-vis the National Military Establishment’s Plan B of your Worst-case Scenario Response…

    Craven is on a caffeine or “other” beverage-fueled rant. He reminds me of the character of “Hoops” McCann from the 1986 movie “One Crazy Summer.” Hoops (played by John Cusack) is upset at the slavishness of the bank’s repossession of a friend’s (Cassandra) property when he comments:

    “Hoops [passionately energized]: If we give in, we’re giving in to all the cute, fuzzy bunnies in the world.
    Egg Stork [totally confused]: Yeah, yeah… that’s just what I was thinking.”

    Yeah, Mr. Craven, that’s just what I was thinking…

  142. “There are so few Republican scientists, he explained, because Republicans are irrational.”

    Nah. To find the Republicans you need to go to the Engineering departments.

  143. Let’s see what Craven has put on his web site. A complete transcript, maybe? No, it was “edited for stumbles”. The video? Not yet, editing audio and video to delete “stumbles” is harder, especially if you’re trying to make a trainwreck less embarrassing. Perhaps a farewell, especially given his promises to retire from the debate?

    Apparently not:

    “And now a different take on scientists! I recently gave the talk of my life (unless one of you organizes a successful campaign to get TED Talks to call) at the American Geophysical Union’s (AGU) Fall Meeting–the largest conference of physical scientists in the world!

    I took it as the opportunity to give a big ol’ slap in the face to a crowd that I fear may very well be our last hope–the climate scientists themselves.”

    It looks like he has not yet hit bottom.

  144. This has been a tragic obsession on my part, which has done more harm than good to my family. And knowing that makes my insides feel like I’ve swallowed razor blades.

    Amen, brother.

    I can relate, Greg.

    While I disagree with you about the science and I think you’ve let your passion get in the way of your thinking, I suspect you’re entirely sincere in your comment above. The reason is I’ve often felt the same way on the other side of the debate.

    Many is the time I’ve neglected the one I loved most to focus on this stuff. Yes, I did it for the same reason you did — out of love for my family, our future, the world, and the people in it. Sure, I had entirely the opposite concerns as you did: My goal was to stop you and yours from destroying our economy and, worse, taking away our liberty in the name of your environmental religion, but more importantly, collectivist goals masquerading as science.

    But, as wrong as you are, I’m sure you let the debate overcome you and hurt your family as a result. I don’t say this to criticize, but rather, empathize.

    Best of luck repairing that damage. Since I think you’re utterly wrong on the science part of it, don’t worry too much about the world itself: It’ll still be here for your daughters, whoever wins the debate.

    And the science, genuine science, will win out in the end.

    Cheers,

    Christoph

  145. craven |ˈkrāvən|
    adj: contemptibly lacking in courage; cowardly: a craven abdication of his moral duty.

    Yeah, you’re right, it’s not fair at all.

    He’s got the courage to speak publicly about his convictions, however misguided they are. When he makes a total embarrassment of himself, he admits his lack of self-control and urges his organization to distance itself from him rather than suffer further PR damage.

    I think there are many negative adjectives one could use to describe Mr. Greg Craven, but in good conscience, anything implying cowardice isn’t one of them.

  146. Greg Craven has been honing his message in front of the kids he’s been charged with teaching chemistry, math and physics despite not having degrees in any of those subjects. It takes no courage to argue that point in front of students who, along with needing to learn, also want good grades.

    Most of Craven’s other proselytizing has been in his internet video lectures where he toppled his strawmen with ease, and at his website where he slew his imagined Denier dragons with aplomb. It takes little courage to do this. Giving your message where it can’t be challenged is easy.

    Has Gavin Schmidt ventured out into a public discussion with scientists who hadn’t drunk the koolaid since he was booed at the IntelligenceSquared debate (against the likes of Richard Lindzen, Philip Stott and Michael Crichton) for belittling the audience’s ability to understand the subject? As far as I can tell, Craven isn’t the only one who prefers venues where contrary opinions can be controlled.

  147. Steven,
    Thanks for clarifying your synopsis of what I said. Your characterizations are, of course, the privilege of an opinion piece, but for the sake of your audience–as well as in the interests of integrity–why don’t you simply replace your synopsis of your assessment of what I said with…what I said. Just quote the appropriate passages, with no internal ellipses (so no one can accuse you of manipulating the quotation). Given the medium, length shouldn’t be a problem.

    You could even refer your readers to the text itself at http://www.gregcraven.org. Give them credit enough to look at a primary source and make their own interpretation.

    Sincerely,
    Greg Craven

    [Thank you for the link. Robt]

  148. Dear GOD, Greg!

    GET OVER YOURSELF.

    WE have.

    It’s not ‘ALL ABOUT’ You, Dear. Now, just quietly ‘go away’ (unlike a good little self-obsessed person) and allow us to enjoy our week…

    Cynthia Lauren Thorpe

  149. Greg, so when will you be posting the complete audio of your AGU appearance, as you promised? I somehow doubt the transcription captured the full essence of your appearance.

  150. “Craven Attention, The Prequel”
    “A prime example of how science is distorted by – likely well meaning – scientists or science educators. Deliberately or not this video is a masterful piece of propaganda pretending to be science. Credits are due to Greg Craven, the master propagandist who appears in the video.”

    http://pathstoknowledge.wordpress.com/2009/11/08/when-scientists-fail-to-present-all-the-known-facts-including-the-ones-that-contract-their-hypothesis-they-become-propagandists-and-bad-scientists

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