Over-cooked or well done?

Bishop Hill has yet another amusing entry on the post facto revisionism going on over at the oxymorinically named Skeptical Science blog run by John Cook. Add to that, Dr. Roger Pielke Sr. also has an entry where he says he’s given up trying to have a dialog on science with that very website.

While this may be humorous, maybe even satisfying to some, it really illustrates the sad polarization that we have today over climate science. The polarization is so intense, that it almost precludes any rational communications.

Of course we skeptics can argue that we’ve been treated badly, and we’d be right. AGW proponents tend to argue that we are simply too stupid to communicate with, and that they have the moral high ground, and thus the means justify the ends. Here for example is a response to a commenter by Grant Foster, aka Tamino:

Espen | November 4, 2010 at 4:45 pm

I’m not sure why you need to be so rude, and I should probably leave and never come back … [edit]

[Response: I'm not sure why you need to be so stupid. Please leave and never come back.]

In some cases, like above, we can’t even get a word in. Dr. Roger Pielke Sr. seems to have the same problem over at Skeptical Science, he writes:

I have been commenting for the last several days on Skeptical Science in their post

SkS Responses to Pielke Sr. Questions

While there have a few constructive interactions, many of the comments are not only not constructive, but demeaning.  I also spend considerable time repeating myself in answering their questions. I am disappointed as I was hoping that Skeptical Science was a weblog where a diversity of views can be discussed constructively. However, the moderators on that weblog failed to adequately police the comments.

After reading myself at SkS how grubbily Dr. Pielke  has been treated in the dialog there, is it any wonder he’s chosen not to try anymore?

At Bishop Hill, he’s pointing out a timeline regarding Cook’s revisionism of posts and moderator response to posts. Again we see the same sort of problems.

But, hasn’t it always been that way since the very beginning of the issue? The combination of perceived moral high ground mixed with the educated liberal mindset, combined with a dash of anonymity, in my opinion, leads AGW proponents to revert to tribal mannerisms in dealing with others whom they perceive as inferior in intellect and creed.

On the plus side, this very behavior, which seems to be omnipresent in AGW proponent circles, (though skeptics have a few bad examples too) is part of the reason why skeptics are winning the war of public opinion.

Reading both of these posts is instructive:

http://pielkeclimatesci.wordpress.com/2011/09/21/final-comments-on-my-interaction-with-skeptical-science/

http://www.bishop-hill.net/blog/2011/9/21/the-cook-timeline.html

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

Note to commenters, on some other blogs the Skeptical Science website is referred to as SS.com with the obvious violations of Godwins Law immediately applied. Such responses will be snipped here in this thread should they occur. We don’t need to demonize our opponents, as they are doing a fine job all by themselves through their own words an actions.

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110 Responses to Over-cooked or well done?

  1. John Day says:

    In other words:
    [Hands over ears] La-la-la-la-la-la… I can’t hear you! Go away!

  2. Ted says:

    The most egregious recent example of course is Ross McKitrick’s description of Wolfgang Wagner as a “groveling, terrified coward”. Setting quite the example for your students there, Ross. Did he ever apologize?

    http://noconsensus.wordpress.com/2011/09/02/345-4/#comment-54838

  3. Robert M says:

    Look at it from their viewpoint. The “Team” has to know that they are supporting a lie. They are “scientists” on the wrong side of science. What do you have left when you live a lie. We are dealing with sad little men that are unable to break out of the corner they have painted themselves into. That has got to be a strange place to live in, and I imagine that even though the money keeps rolling in, the knowledge that their little trillion dollar scam will end one day has got to be weighing heavily on their thoughts.

    When you think about it, their reaction to a real scientist when he drops by to point out some of their more obvious failings is exactly what I would expect from people who know deep down that they are nothing better then morally bankrupt pitchmen who are hawking a product that is making life harder for people all over the world.

  4. Gary Swift says:

    Mis-quotation is a common theme from those types of posters. I commonly see them try to subtlely change what I said, so that it seems like I said something dumb. Then they have a straw man to easily defeat, in stead of responding to anything I really said. I’ve seen it done so regularly by the same people that I am sure they do it intentionally. Some of them are very skilled at derailing a conversation that isn’t going the way “they” want it to go.

    I usually then quote myself and then quote thier misquote, and then point out that they are using a straw man argument.

    That is usually followed by some name-calling such as “tard-boy” or something similarly offensive. I think the desire at that point is to completely shut down the conversation, as they know most other readers will stop reading the comments at that point. I’m almost convinced that some of them are organized volunteers, but that’s a bit too tin-foil-hat-ish. Am I the only one who feels that way sometimes?

  5. Kev-in-Uk says:

    The best thing to do is to remain aloof – as far as is practical. We can and must remain vigilant against nastiness and snark – but it has to be said that some folk do deserve it!
    In the couple of years I’ve been following here, I have noticed that most of the commenters here are at least relatively civil – perhaps those pro-AGW guys can educate the ‘queen’ bees when they return to their natural ‘hives’ ?

  6. James Sexton says:

    It used to bother me that we weren’t really permitted to have a dialogue with those people at their sites. But, as time proceeded, I learned that it wasn’t that important, in fact, their aberrant behavior has been a boon to the skeptical perspective.

    A while back, I had stated the time for serious dialogue has passed. It is time to move to ridicule, mockery and scorn. I believe the actions and words of the likes of skep sci and even better, Dessler and Trenberth, Mann and the whole cast of idiots that would be earth engineers have made a very good case that I was correct. We should just point and laugh at them. As far as the science goes, all we have to do is to continue as we have for the past few years.

    It doesn’t do any good to debate whether or not the missing heat is in the deep. He’ll just “find” it somewhere else without actually observing it. Dessler? Just keep pointing to his idiotic response to SB11. Mann? Just point to what Trenberth said about openness in his response to SB11. Hansen? Well just point to whatever he last stated or did……. and the beat goes on.

    Don’t forget to ridicule! It is a powerful tool in a debate.

    James

  7. observa says:

    And speaking of the grovelling terrified cowards Ted, they won’t even allow the science to be tabled-

    http://joannenova.com.au/2011/09/labor-censors-dennis-jensen-denies-peer-reviewed-science/#more-17301

  8. Anything is possible says:

    No need whatsoever to go down the Godwins Law route…..

    The concept of an entire population suffering economic hardship and political oppression in pursuit of some half-assed ideology is far more reminiscent of the Soviet Union…

  9. S Basinger says:

    I think that Ross McKitrick’s description was an accurate one, to be honest. To try to take out the feet of someone’s paper by insinuation that there was something wrong (but no retraction), a dramatic resignation, then to write an apology letter to someone who could do damage to your career because you dared let a dissenting opinion be published – is certainly the act of a “grovelling, terrified coward”.

    This poor example was magnified further by the fact that real scientists Dessler and Spencer, even though they disagreed with each other, started to work collegially on Dessler’s rebuttal of Spencer. (To be honest, this example these two men made have caused a lot of people in the fields on both sides of the debate look childish in comparison).

    Anyways, Ted, if you took a while you’ll probably find that your note here will tend to stand vs on the other side of the debate, where you’d be edited out and ridiculed until you left. That is why people who have been AGW agnostic, such as myself, tend to like to hang out places like here rather than on the other side of the debate. The only shining exception being Scienceofdoom, which is pretty well run, fun and educational.

  10. gnomish says:

    [snip - this doesn't help, if you disagree with the commenter, don't fall into the same trap of words, please rewrite/resubmit- Anthony]

  11. Anything is possible says:

    How does Climate Change Community Protection sound?

    REPLY: Like demonizing your opponent – Anthony

  12. ShrNfr says:

    Aside from having a more civil and educated bunch of posters, I have to tip my Chuck to CTM for keeping things civil.

  13. pat says:

    As it becomes more obvious that a confluence of natural cycles caused an incredibly minor global gross temperature increase and that AGW is insignificant, if at all, those who have invested all of their credibility in AGW are reacting poorly.
    It would be far smarter to get out early as some former Warmists are in fact doing, rather than be proven the fool.

  14. pauline says:

    I am not a scientist but I have been impressed by the level of debate on this site in contrast to some others, I have learned a lot here and what is written is learned, academic and civil. Furthermore it has persuaded me to the more sceptical stance by virtue of the reason and logic exhibited by bloggers and scientists and, thank you has introduced me to Bishop Hill. Well done Mr Watts, this site is brilliant.

  15. James Sexton says:

    Ted says:
    September 22, 2011 at 10:01 am

    …………….. Did he ever apologize?
    =========================================

    Who? Ross or the groveling, terrified coward? Ross doesn’t need to apologize for being accurately descriptive. Wagner has apologized (allegedly), but not to the proper people.

  16. gnomish says:

    :) thanks. i had an inflamed credulity gland but it’s no longer tumescent. it was from that rhetorical fallacio of the lusty trolls, you understand…

  17. Pull My Finger says:

    Sometimes demonizing your opponent is appropriate, especially when their side wants to make life short and miserable for millions of people. It is not an exaggeration to state that the Progressive Left have hitched their social engineering wagon to climate change and would certainly institute Politboro of the Enlightened if given an opening. In many ways they already have as so many of them man government agencies that operate outside of congressional oversight.

  18. Tom Davidson says:

    I have been using the AGW arguments for a while as prime examples of the modern use of Rhetoric (in the Classical sense, as opposed to Logic) as a tool for dabate.
    All of the classical Fallacies of Informal Logic are manifested eventually. They are useful not because they lead to correct conclusions (as does Logic) but because they are especially persuasive when used on uneducated audiences. The Straw Man, for example, is almost inevitably preceded by a misquotation.
    This is because the fallacies invoke immediate emotional responses that short-circuit logical responses (which take a bit longer to self-assemble).
    As in classical debate, ad hominem attacks are the indicator of desperation driven by a deficit of topical substance (intellectual bankruptcy). They are usually followed by emotionally-generated insults (profanities from the less erudite). When the insults are formally exchanged by both parties, the argument collapses into either a ‘draw’ or a brawl.

  19. Latitude says:

    James Sexton says:
    September 22, 2011 at 10:16 am
    =====================================
    Along that same line…..
    I can’t understand why we’re still having a conversation about it at all.

    If there was ever an epic fail, it’s computer climate games………..

    Not even accounting for temps falling, sea levels falling, etc etc

    How in this world can anyone still believe in computer climate games, when the heat is missing?
    If you can’t find the heat that the computer games says has to be there………..

  20. Mike Bentley says:

    Gary Swift,

    Your comment on wearing a tin hat may have some merit. Think of it this way, one has to wear a tin hat (hardhat) in a construction zone. Seems to me that’s what we have in Climate Science – a construction zone, or at least it should be with all the variables that exist.

    Of course, many of the people who model climate conditions point to the model and say “there’s your proof!” Which is like an architect pointing to the concept model of a proposed building and saying he’s actually built it.

    Mike

  21. PeterB in Indianapolis says:

    “When in danger, when in doubt, run in circles, scream and shout!”

    Basically, if I leave any comments whatever at a pro-AGW site, the more sense my comment makes, the more they resort to running in circles, screaming and shouting. All this does is convince rational people that the Pro-AGW crowd is well aware that they are in danger and their proposition is highly in doubt.

    As stated in this article, their childish and socially unacceptable behavior merely makes people who don’t know much about the issue or who are on the fence gravitate towards the side of the fence where the people at least behave (mostly) with civility and act like reasonable human beings.

    You have 2 choices: you can hang out with a guy at the pub who berates you and calls you an idiot (or worse) every time you disagree with him, or you can hang out with a guy at the pub who rationally and logically tries to refute your argument if you disagree, and even occasionally admits that he is wrong if your argument ends up making more sense than his.

    Who is more likely to become your drinking buddy at the pub?

  22. observa says:

    Here is a typical example of the output from one of The Team, none other than Peter Cox Professor and Met Office Chair in Climate System Dynamics at the University of Exeter, UK, and a Lead Author of the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report.

    Mr Steamshovel channels Mr Squiggle!
    Steve McIntyre it seems to me is somewhat misguided in his critique about the failure of The Team to keep on giving and giving and giving…
    Keep your stupid data chaps, just keep up the Pythonesque output with it because we all need a damn good belly laugh nowadays.

  23. PeterB in Indianapolis says:

    Ted,

    Calling someone a coward is ok with me, if it is your genuine opinion that they have indeed acted in a cowardly manner.

    Calling someone an idiot simply because that person disagrees with you is NOT ok with me, especially if the person who disagrees with you has made a well-presented, logical, and cogent argument which argues against your case and deserves a serious response.

    You may or may not see the difference between those two statements.

  24. James Sexton says:

    Latitude says:
    September 22, 2011 at 10:55 am

    James Sexton says:
    September 22, 2011 at 10:16 am
    =====================================
    Along that same line…..
    I can’t understand why we’re still having a conversation about it at all.

    If there was ever an epic fail, it’s computer climate games………..
    ———————————————————————————-

    Exactly, that ship has sailed. It isn’t like these people are going to have an epiphany and say, “Gee, we’ve been a little harsh on the skeptics, maybe we should listen to what they have to say!”

    For those fantasizing, that’s not ever going to happen. These people are totalitarian misanthropists convinced that a proven failed economic system is the appropriate direction for the world. They are lost to society.

    For those that believe Dessler’s concessions and cooperation with Spencer is genuine, just re-read the introduction to Dessler’s original response to SB11. It was an intentional mischaracterization. These people don’t suddenly change in the way they deal with their fellow man. Zebras/stripes, leopards/spots.

  25. Jeff says:

    Sorry a bit off topic.

    [REPLY: Yes it is off topic. There are a number of threads here dealing with CERN and Svensmark's theory. CHeck those and post your questions there. -REP, mod]

    Jeff

  26. Frank K. says:

    I frankly don’t really care much what an insignificant website like Skeptical Science and an equally unimportant person such as John Cook has to say about anything, particularly climate science.

    In fact, I wouldn’t really care about climate science at all were it not for the fact that a bunch of insane lunatics who purport to be “climate scientists” want to destroy our economy and way of life. My mission is to cut these people off from any source of public funding, thereby making them fend for themselves in the private sector (where they can publish, speak, and pontificate to their heart’s content).

  27. NetDr says:

    I have posted [under this handle] on skeptical science but my experience was not good.

    The posts are still there so you can see how I was treated.

    I was hoping to learn from and interact with knowledgeable people who might refute some of my beliefs [and just possibly agree with others] but I was disappointed.

    First let me explain my knowledge [belief] of climate.
    I believe that the climate since records can be explained by 1/2 ° C warming per century plus a 60 year sine wave as many skeptics do

    The overall warming is so slow that it is of interest to climatologists but politicians can’t exploit it.

    At Skepticalscience I would post on a thread about the 60 year sine wave and someone would respond that this wouldn’t explain the fact that it got slightly warmer over time. When I responded about the causes of the 1/2 ° C warming per century I was declared off topic and chewed out.

    If I posted on a thread about the long slow warming someone would claim that the supposed acceleration of warming from 1978 to 1998 couldn’t be explained without CO2 and if I responded with the 60 year positive El Nino [PDO] cycle I was declared Off Topic and chewed out.

    If the intent was to make me go away and stop posting IT WORKED !!!

    I don’t believe the intent was to have an intelligent conversation about climate the intent was to silence dissent.

    I nominate Whatsup to fill this void. [I wish I could post graphs in my replies.]

    I also wish more true believers would comment on these threads.

  28. Wil says:

    Really, then few here have participated in the Globe and Mail (Canada) newspaper on AGW. Same with the National Post newspaper (Canada). This stuff is extremely mild to what I’m used to on a daily basis. The hard cold facts are skeptics on similar sites as I mentioned above where I participate must have a very thick skin and be capable of responding from a range of outright hate to sarcasm to facts and the manipulation of each combined. There in the rough and tumble world of the free for all you can’t survive without activating a full range of responses and give better than you receive across the board. This is a world not for the faint of heart – yet this is the real world where AGW journalists push their drug. Here skeptics meet the AGW many headed hydra in all out war. Each side constantly unloading their best and then some. And in this little war facts matter because this is the one total failing on the AGW side – few, very few understand any science what so ever. Which gives us skeptics the hard edge. And we use our weapons ruthlessly. That’s just the facts.

    WUWT is calm and well mannered as is Steve’s blog and others. But here IS the science needed for out there in that other world I mentioned. Here and on other sites is where us Skeptics rearm, retool, and go back into battle armed to the teeth. BTW, we NEVER lose a battle what ever the level merely because our range of knowledge is infinitely better to that of the level of the AGW side. In essence Global Warming then is a many sided confrontation and each has its place in the scheme of things.

  29. Ben Blankenship says:

    Skeptics, do not feel singled out for unfair treatment by warmist sites. Welcome to the club. For example, Huffington Post carries readers’ comments that are mostly left-liberal. There is a reason. I regularly contributed critiques there for nearly a year before they decided to blackball my contributions. Yes, I was banned by HP, a distinction I wear (conservatively) with pride.

  30. Gary Swift says:
    September 22, 2011 at 10:13 am

    I have seen the same beaviour both SkS and RealClimate. Gavin Schmidt does not do that. his flunkies do the dirty job for him

  31. Pull My Finger says:

    Here’s an example of the righteousness executed in the name of global waming.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/22/world/africa/in-scramble-for-land-oxfam-says-ugandans-were-pushed-out.html

  32. James Sexton says:

    Pull My Finger says:
    September 22, 2011 at 11:55 am

    Here’s an example of the righteousness executed in the name of global waming.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/22/world/africa/in-scramble-for-land-oxfam-says-ugandans-were-pushed-out.html

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

    Yes, it would be different if this was a unique instance, but it isn’t unique. In every aspect of the implementation of the ideas generated by the CAGW hypothesis only works to rob people of the land, wealth, and liberties. The ideas are the antithesis of freedom, prosperity and treatment of all with basic human dignity. If one wonders what the world would be like if the alarmism had become accepted by the world’s populace all one would have to do is look at SkS and the other blogs and periodicals. Dissent isn’t tolerated and history is revised.

    Some people read Nineteen eighty-four and took it as a warning, other took it as a playbook.

  33. Mac the Knife says:

    Wil says:
    September 22, 2011 at 11:32 am
    “But here (WUWT) IS the science needed for out there in that other world I mentioned. Here and on other sites is where us Skeptics rearm, retool, and go back into battle armed to the teeth.”

    Well said, Wil !
    WUWT provides the resources to educate our selves and others on AGW . Like voting in Chicago, we should educate ourselves ‘early and often’. Likewise, we can’t be apathetic about using the knowledge gained here to educate our families, friends, legislators and educators. This is essential work to the slow but steady progress being made in the public arena, refuting the false assertions of impending doom from AGW proponents, their flawed science, and the draconian economic measures they advocate.

    Anecdote:
    Two men were standing at a bus stop conversing. One man said to the other “There’s only 2 things wrong with humanity: Apathy and Ignorance!”
    To which the second man replied “Well… I don’t know about that… but who really gives a damn, anyway?”

    A curious mind can overcome ignorance, but an apathetic perspective is much more difficult to engage, educate, and stimulate to take real action. Yet, it must be done.

  34. Bernie says:

    The folks at SkepticalScience are pussycats and pretty well informed compared to those who hang out with Joe Romm at Climate Progress.

  35. Sparks says:

    I’m very open-minded about all theories and I’m very tolerant towards other people’s beliefs and views, I enjoy reading up on mysteries and watching documentaries, I’ve even watched and enjoyed the recent history channel documentary Ancient Aliens, I don’t have to agree with anything at all in the documentary but it’s food for thought, But lets suppose one day the ‘Ancient Aliens theory’ was accepted and promoted as being mainstream cutting edge science and political figures around the world said there was a consensus, that we had all better pay a tax to prepare the planets population for the return of our Alien masters, I would expect to see some sceptical critique and resistance against the scientific consensus of the ‘Ancient Aliens theory’ and a demand for Empirical evidence supporting the theory.

    So why is there such hostility towards a respectable and healthy sceptical critique, calling for Empirical evidence supporting the theory of the once ‘Anthropogenic Global Warming’ and now ‘Anthropogenic Climate Change’ which has wild and outlandish claims in support of expensive taxes regulations and carbon dioxide markets?

    I follow and comment on hundreds of blogs, and sometimes I even behave myself, the only sites I read but never comment on are Climate Sites that I consider extremist or hostile in their opinions
    (Except for one time, when I actually got an alarmist to admit that a certain Climatic Zone hadn’t changed, despite the article he wrote suggesting it had..HA) But even when taking the time to try to understand opposing views or science by way of asking questions it can end up in a hissy fit or foot stomping tantrum and it always ends up with obvious violations of Godwins Law, of course that’s when the fun starts /src and the insults start to fly.

    I also think the ‘Ancient Aliens theory’ is more fascinating and those scientists who research it and debate it are a lot friendlier to criticism, and they get a lot of criticism. Go Figure!!.

  36. Robert Hall says:

    “Skeptical Scientist” is not oxymorinically [sic] named. It is a tautology; a redundancy, if you prefer.

  37. Economics Research Fellow Paul Roderick Gregory observes:

    Soviet Politburo September 8, 1927

    “Trotsky: Let us present our platform to the party congress. What are you afraid of?

    Stalin: Comrade Trotsky demands equality between the Central Committee and his opposition group. In whose name do you speak so insolently?

    Trotsky ally: Why are you trying to hide our platform? What does this say about your courage?

    Stalin: We are not prepared to turn the party into a discussion club.”

    George Orwell, Animal Farm, Chapter 7

    “They had come to a time when no one dared speak his mind, when fierce, growling dogs roamed everywhere, and when you had to watch your comrades torn to pieces after confessing to shocking crimes.”

    E-mails from Phil Jones (East Anglia University)

    July 8, 2004
    “I can’t see either of these papers being in the next IPCC report. Kevin and I will keep them out somehow — even if we have to redefine what the peer-review literature is!”

    March 11, 2003
    “I will be emailing the journal to tell them I’m having nothing more to do with it until they rid themselves of this troublesome editor.” . . .

    Highly recommend reading Gregory’s article: Can We Really Call Climate Science A Science? to see how other researchers/scientists see “climate science”.

  38. Ian W says:

    Skeptical Science is not an oxymoron – it is tautological.

  39. fortunate cookie says:

    The dynamics of this discussion are reminiscent of past dust-ups that I’ve had when attempting to question elements of a local school budget proposal. Some people are so emotionally invested in promoting increased education spending as a way of demonstrating their own sagacity and enlightment and beneficence, that whenever anybody or anything threatens it by even a trivial amount, a truly astounding volume of viciousness spills out.

    The ad-hominems and furious name-calling (“anti-education”, “Neanderthal”), irrational defensiveness, and phony straw-man arguments that have been hurled against me are strikingly similar to the tactics employed by the “true believer” CAGW proponents. My only “crimes” involved pointing out that the local school board had published a misleading graph of expenditures (which exaggerated benefits while improperly diminishing expenses), or demonstrating that the school board had used cherry picking in choosing the “bookends” of a graph of student enrollment levels to falsely imply that current levels were unprecedented, or suggesting that planning of desk space square footage had not taken into account the shrinking in size of personal computers.

    I strongly suspect that “noble cause corruption” may be implicated in both situations. I have had obviously highly-educated people make obviously nonsensical arguments (for example, the fact that they have worked with computers the size of a whole classroom is evidence that the size of school PCs is not expected to get smaller) in order to counter an undeniable proposition that I have made. I have had a former professor write highly erudite sounding paragraphs amounting to nothing of substance in order to muddy the water and give the impression that my criticism of a demonstrably flawed and incorrect graph used by the Board of Education was somehow wrong.

    Surely in other endeavours and pursuits, these people are fully self-aware, capable, and rational, however when certain deeply-held beliefs are challenged, those qualities get pushed aside and something darker takes over.

    It would be amusing if it were not so depressing…

  40. mhklein says:

    I’ve been following WUWT for quite some time and I find that climate skeptics are guilty are the very same bad manners that they accuse their opponents of having. I’ll take you folks more seriously when you start treating AGW proponents with more respect.

  41. Gareth Phillips says:

    Skeptical Science moderators intervened and gave me a dressing down when I suggested that supporting the shooting of thousands of polar bears per year while shouting that they were endangered sounded like double standards. I was also condemned for using rhetoric and suggesting peoples views of climate science often said more about them than the science itself. It seems to me that the moderators on that site abuse their positions by not facilitating debate and promoting discussion, but using a Taliban like adherence to climate orthodoxy to stop any deviation from the holy flame of climate truth, and to condemn anyone straying from the path of accepted concepts. As a left wing old hippy, environmentalist and luke warmer that sort of approach sounds suspiciously like totalitarianism propaganda of the sort we saw in extreme right and left wing dictatorships. Fascist approach to climate science? maybe not, but definitely heading down that road.
    This was a spot on post which I copy with due thanks to the author:

    The degree of dishonesty at SkS can only be appreciated by closely following the postings in real time to understand the degree to which the moderators abuse their powers by removing posts by those making sensible arguments against the established “truth”, often without explanation leaving no trace, yet allow the SS team players infinite latitude in abusing or denigrating those who bring original thinking to a table dominated by contributors who merely present parrot fashion, the work of those who they consider to be the holders of the truth.

    I wish I had written that!

  42. Wil says:

    mhklein says:
    September 22, 2011 at 12:49 pm

    I’ve been following WUWT for quite some time and I find that climate skeptics are guilty are the very same bad manners that they accuse their opponents of having. I’ll take you folks more seriously when you start treating AGW proponents with more respect.
    ————-
    Respect is earned NOT given.

  43. Jeremy says:

    Misapplication of Godwin’s Law Anthony. I’m afraid you are using this law to tell people how to say things, rather than trying to keep people on topic. Godwin’s law was birthed on usenet as a general rule to know when a thread had run it’s course. It was not a way to control the use of words, parallels, and analogies when having a dialogue. If the topic in question involves behavior on which the name fits that is a different story and making such an analogy is not only appropriate, it’s likely good for the discussion.

    Godwin’s law is essentially being used now to stifle discussion, the irony is amazing.

  44. JeffC says:

    mhklein …

    If you can’t see the difference in behavior then nothing said here can help you change your mind …

  45. wws says:

    “The polarization is so intense, that it almost precludes any rational communications.”

    I actually think it has been quite a good thing for them to have brought this point out in the open. Men like Pielke are fundamentally honest and fair, and men like that have a difficult time really accepting that their opponents are not. We have long since passed the point where rational communications are possible with the AGW crowd; which is why it is now purely a political fight, and one side is going to win and one side is going to lose. Our goal now must no longer be trying to witn them over, but rather to find ways to support putting people in power who will defund and destroy the AGW’s base of support. This is no longer an academic debate, this is political war.

    good news – our side is winning. Hence all the screaming from theirs.

    MHKlein; do you not understand that what is going on is not just “bad manners” but a fundamental trashing of the entire basis of scientific analysis, being done by the AGW proponents? They are screaming “science” while *Every* *Action* they take violates every principle true Science is founded on! To imply that the two sides are equivalent because, in your opinion, not everyone’s manners are impeccable is ludicrous. That implies that there are no fundamental issues in play here; but in fact what is in play is the most fundamental issue of all – What is Truth, and how do we Come to it? You appear to think that the messaging is all that matters, regardless of the message.

  46. JoeH says:

    Anthony, you say:
    “…, it really illustrates the sad polarization that we have today over climate science. The polarization is so intense, that it almost precludes any rational communications.”

    While you are absolutely correct, it is important to bear in mind that the idea of “polarization” is a psychological ploy by design.

    The AGW promoters deliberately and aggressively place anyone who disagrees with their agenda in the position of being an enemy – more specifically a (non-credentialed)non-person, often namely: “Denier” or worse. They use word constructions that attempt to force any skeptic that disagrees with them into responding in a form that all too easily makes the skeptic appear as “raging extremist challenging the poor little AGW centrist”. More often than not it is the AGW promoter who takes an extreme position, even (or especially) when the difference in viewpoints is minimal. By maintaining an extreme position in opposition to skeptics the AGW promoters try to force consensus by peer pressure.

    The best response to this pressure is simple – it’s all about “knowing your argument inside out.” and simply and politely ( and where possible “wittily” or at least good-humouredly ) holding steadfast in the face of aggressiveness. In WUWT you have created a great website which provides information for all of us to be able to do so, and I thank you (And the other knowledgeable contributors) for it.

    But one small thing needs to be very closely guarded against and it is the idea often foisted on Skeptics that they should “compromise”, be less extreme – in other words: Adjust their argument to be just a little closer to that of the cuddly centralist idea of the AGW promoter.

    While we must be careful not to fall into using silly nastiness like the AGW promoters, we also must be careful that we are not allowing them to determine the language under which we act. To me the idea of us being poles apart is part and parcel of the AGW strategy and I refuse to accept it as an agreed polarization as such. Rather the polarization is a product of their strategy and where possible we need to make unerringly clear that they are responsible for it.

    Sorry for the rant, but I think it is a small but important point that gets overlooked.

  47. Mac at Bishop Hill (“Cooking the Books”, Sept 20) sent this in

    Debunking Climate Lies No Longer Hit and Myth

    Climate-change deniers have nowhere to hide thanks to an ingenious piece of software that detects inaccurate statements on global warming that appear on the internet and delivers an automated response on Twitter citing peer- reviewed scientific evidence.

    The so-called ‘Twitter-bot’ is the brainchild of Australian webmaster John Cook and software developer Nigel Leck, and is part of an armoury of tools Cook has developed to rebut common myths and inaccuracies about climate change.

    A physics graduate from the University of Queensland who majored in solar physics in his postgraduate honours year, Cook launched the Skeptical Science website in 2007 after becoming frustrated at lies and half-truths surrounding global warming. The site provides a scientifically accurate database of climate information…

    …Cook has won the 2011 Eureka Prize for Advancement of Climate Change Knowledge… [part of] the most prestigious awards in Australian science…

    Skeptical Science has published rebuttals to more than 150 climate myths featuring explanations in both plain language for the public and more technical versions for science aficionados. The rebuttals have been translated into 19 languages…

    Cook has published the highly popular 12-page booklet The Scientific Guide to Global Warming Skepticism, which has been downloaded more than 550,000 times…

    http://eureka.australianmuseum.net.au/EEF99C60-76BC-11E0-A87E005056B06558?DISPLAYENTRY=true

    The public are on our side. But the above shows just how entrenched is the official science establishment.

    When I did a U-turn from warmist to skeptic, Cook had a mere 54 “debunks”, each of which I had studied and found plausible, and therefore needed to deconstruct. It took a long time but I did it – if even one had remained, I would have stayed doubtful of climate skeptics. The full range of my deconstructions is what became my Climate Skeptics Primer (click my name).

    Had I still been doing Climate Science near-full-time, I would be well into building a wiki to deconstruct each and every one of Cook’s “debunks”, to the level at which Cook (and official Science) could no longer ignore them. I actually set up a page. If anyone wants to take on this task please email me or just lift the whole page. Only problem of course is that Cook’s items are listed by popularity which constantly shifts, the list is forever growing, and MediaWiki finds the page a bit long, now.

  48. NetDr says:

    There are two sites where skeptics and warmists can both post without being harassed and censored by the moderators. They are Whatsup and Climate etc.

    I don’t see what the others hope to accomplish by harassing and driving skeptics from posting on their sites.

    Realclimate is the worst. I posted about positive feedback being unstable and was directed to a humma humma answer and when I pointed out the moderators deleted my posts. I seem to have been permanently banned.

    Skeptical Science is almost as bad, my posts are roundly panned by the moderators any good points I make are snipped. I am never disrespectful but the moderators don’t return the favor.

    Their favorite trick is that if you have a 2 part argument 1 part or the other is always off topic so having a reasonable discussion is impossible. Why do they do that ? Are they afraid the committed will learn the flaws in their belief system?

  49. I failed to emphasise, my last post was in response to the problem Anthony states here, of polarization and no dialogue. Quoting myself

    When I did a U-turn from warmist to skeptic, Cook had a mere 54 “debunks”, each of which I had studied and found plausible, and therefore needed to deconstruct…

    Had I still been doing Climate Science near-full-time, I would be well into building a wiki to deconstruct each and every one of Cook’s “debunks”, to the level at which Cook (and official Science) could no longer ignore them.

    I actually set up a page.

    I still think this is the way forward.

  50. Mr Lynn says:

    mhklein says:
    September 22, 2011 at 12:49 pm
    I’ve been following WUWT for quite some time and I find that climate skeptics are guilty are the very same bad manners that they accuse their opponents of having. I’ll take you folks more seriously when you start treating AGW proponents with more respect.

    CAGW supporters making news often get quite a drubbing on WUWT (and deservedly so, in my view), but those who comment here and offer rational, civil arguments are treated with respect.

    Unfortunately, while luminaries of the Climate Realist persuasion post and comment here, none of the self-styled ‘Climate Scientist’ elite have deigned to do so, despite invitations from Anthony. When they do, we will know that they have decided that science is more important than dogma, but I am not holding my breath.

    /Mr Lynn

  51. Quoting myself again

    I still think this [a wiki deconstructing Cook's "debunks"] is the way forward.

    However, things are rarely that simple. I’d like to add this page to the Heartland wiki. But hey, I hear shrill voices already rubbishing any such link. However, if my wiki URL were developed and devoted to simply refuting Cook’s debunks, that narrowing of focus might work. But one then would have to consider, does one allow warmists to contribute? A really difficult question. Wikis are not the same as blogs. My personal feeling is that since warmists already have Wikipedia, RealClimate, Cook and even WUWT, they don’t need to divert our limited resources, trolling our own wiki – which we only need because we’re allowed no mileage on any of the official climate info resources.

  52. John W says:

    “Skeptical Scientist” is not “oxymorinically [sic] named” or tautology; it is “doublespeak”. It deliberately disguises the nature of the site.

    mhklein
    As for who treats the other side with more respect; well, I suggest a simple experiment that might reveal the truth. Simply post the same message (names changed as appropriate) on different boards and record responses.

  53. omnologos says:

    Since I started the (“They-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named”) analogy, I will avoid mentioning it here (and I still believe certain analogies are a tool of irony, not of demonization).

    Anyway there is one important bit you’re missing, Anthony. It’s not just perceived moral high ground mixed with the educated liberal mindset, combined with a dash of anonymity: there is also a strong war-like mentality, since the Cooks and dana1981s and taminos of the world are literally (in their view) protecting the planet against us evil skeptics.

    When one believes to be at war, a war for survival no less, then there is little time for niceties and considerations about the feelings of fellow human beings. And just as well, the first casualty of war is truth and that’s why there isn’t much of it alive at Skeptical Science, or RealClimate, or Tamino, etc etc.

  54. wws says:

    a bt of good news, on the line of “it’s an ill wind….”

    the economic collapse that’s underway across Europe and the US (see what happened to stocks over the last 2 days?) is going to finally cut the legs out from under all legislative proposals to implement the AGW dogma. No one can afford to play around with that nonsense anymore, all the free money is gone.

    And as all the shining promises of free money that drew con artists like the Solyndra gang fade away, the support for AGW will fade as well, until only a hard core of out of touch academic idealogues are left defending it.

    In the real world, where ideas have to be profitable to survive, the entire Green Project is dead.

    and it ain’t comin’ back.

  55. Roger Knights says:

    These people don’t suddenly change in the way they deal with their fellow man. Zebras/stripes, leopards/spots.

    “A zebra cannot change its spots.”
    –Al Gore.

  56. Billy Liar says:

    JoeH says:
    September 22, 2011 at 1:40 pm

    Very well said.

  57. manicbeancounter says:

    The comments are not the major issue with skepticalscience. It is the analysis. It picks from the peer-reviewed data to give the most alarmist spin, often ignoring the more rounded, more recent and less alarmist articles or data. (a pattern familiar to those who have read the Hockey Stick Illusion)
    On Antarctic ice melt, this is certainly the case. SkS relies on a single author – Velicogna (two papers 2006 & 2009) – to substantiate the claim that the Antarctic pack ice is not just melting, it is accelerating. The 2009 paper looked at only six years of data. Yet less than two months ago there was published a paper that looked at a much longer period, looked at various studies (including Velicogna) and at different ways of estimating. It concluded that there may be some ice loss, but no acceleration. Anthony Watts summarises this paper quite nicely at http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/07/27/antarctic-ice-%E2%80%93-more-accurate-estimates/
    Watts’s article also links to the original article. Do not take the word of a (slightly) manic beancounter. Do the comparison and you will find that the SkS is anything but sceptical and far from scientific.
    I would suggest that this is not an isolated incident either. I have found at least two more. Perhaps others could have a delve?

    http://manicbeancounter.wordpress.com/2011/09/22/antarctic-ice-melt-at-the-dogmatic-%E2%80%9Cskeptical-science%E2%80%9D/

  58. Jeremy says:

    Jeremy says:
    September 22, 2011 at 1:06 pm

    Misapplication of Godwin’s Law Anthony. I’m afraid you are using this law to tell people how to say things, rather than trying to keep people on topic.

    Apologies for replying to myself… but as further evidence of this, everyone, I offer what a commenter at BH reminded me of. The fact that Godwin’s law’s misuse is pure political correctness run amok. No one on this site would blink an eye if I made an analogy to Lysenko or Stalin policies w.r.t. Skeptical Science, but make a single allusion to a certain regime west of there and everyone loses their hair. It’s nonsensical newspeak and it should stop.

  59. SSam says:

    wws says:
    September 22, 2011 at 3:13 pm

    “In the real world, where ideas have to be profitable to survive, the entire Green Project is dead.
    and it ain’t comin’ back.”

    But we are left with the power companies charging a premium price for their GREED energy agenda. All those actions to place energy sources off limits still stand, and the cost was simply passed along to us… as planned.

  60. Darren Parker says:

    I’ve proudly been banned by Treehugger at least 10 times now. THey tried banning my IP but that isn’t fixed then they banned my email domain so I just got a new webmail account.

  61. Eric Anderson says:

    Lucy Skywalker,

    Looks like you’ve done some great work in getting that set up. It is exhausting just to look at the list. I’m not sure I can offer much help, but certainly want to pass on my encouragement.

  62. observa says:

    Look at it from their perspective. The faint stirring with the Commodore 64, then the awakening with DOS and Windows 3.1 through Windows 98 and now their robust XP output but still the deniers and skeptics didn’t get it. Now that they’ve run Mr Squiggles through everything from, iTunes, Android and Windows7 Professional with the same results, why can’t you trogs still get it? Are you obtuse, beneath contempt or just plain obstreporous? You all need to appreciate that delicately nuanced intellectual dilemma for them now. It’s not easy being up there in the commanding heights of climatology looking down on it all.

  63. Peter Milford says:

    oxymoronically named ??
    No. It is perfectly named.
    All science should be sceptical (or skeptical)
    The website in question just does not live up to its name

  64. Roger Knights says:

    Lucy Skywalker says:
    September 22, 2011 at 2:14 pm

    Quoting myself again

    I still think this [a wiki deconstructing Cook's "debunks"] is the way forward.

    This was one of my top-priority items in my “Notes from Skull Island.” It’s an indication of our side’s disorganization and lack of funding that it hasn’t been done. Won’t someone give her a grant?!?! Big Oil? Baby Oil? Anybody?

    Maybe it could be posted on the Forbes site?

  65. Norman says:

    Here is a sample of an interaction I encountered on Skeptical Science on the thread titled (2010 – 2011: Earth’s most extreme weather since 1816?)

    Norman at 13:35 PM on 8 July, 2011
    DB @ 283

    “Until you can mount a position of substance based on sound analysis and rooted in physical processes, which you have not yet demonstrated to date, others would be well advised to ignore your contrarian efforts to further derail this thread.”

    You are an excellent moderator and I do understand your reasoning. Perhaps many climate scientists are of the thinking that Global warming will lead to more severe weather events in the future (intensity, duration and return frequency) and my view, without any formal training in climatology or having the knowledge of all the mathematics and equations used in climate models, must be supported by ample evidence before anyone should take the time to consider it.

    My argument is that Global warming (as it is currently taking place, Poles are warming faster than Equator) would decrease the temperature gradient and lead to actually less severe weather patterns in the future. Tom Curtis and post 292 also seems to express this conclusion. Some Climate models may be predicting and increase in severe weather because of Global warming.

    I will attempt with more data to demonstrate why I feel my view is valid and at least should be considered and that experts in the field are stating the same things I have been. If I do not satisfy your request for sound analysis rooted in physical processes then I believe it is time for me to discontinue posting until I can update my knowledge. I will not be performing the math on this post as others have already accomplished this. I will include some quotes that do support my view and see how it goes from there.

    Rather than use my own mind with its limited knowledge and resources on the topic I will let the experts do the talking

    I think this is a good web site for learning. They are hard on skeptics of AGW alarmism but they do engage in exchange of ideas. They do make an individual work for their position. I am not sure that Dr. Roger Pielke Sr should have quit posting. I found the interaction thought provoking.

  66. Smokey says:

    Jeremy,

    Re: Godwin’s Law… In climate debates, there’s Smokey’s Law: Labeling an opponent a Denier, Denialist or Contrarian automatically loses you the debate.

    People use those pejoratives when they lack the facts they need to win a debate.

  67. James Sexton says:

    Smokey says:
    September 22, 2011 at 7:02 pm

    Jeremy,

    Re: Godwin’s Law… In climate debates, there’s Smokey’s Law: Labeling an opponent a Denier, Denialist or Contrarian automatically loses you the debate.☺

    People use those pejoratives when they lack the facts they need to win a debate.
    ================================================================

    Yes, and they are very useful tools to express a thought or perspective to an audience. On the rare occasions I feel argumentative, and wish to express a skeptical thought, those are the ones I seek out. When I wish to learn something from an alarmist, I seek out the ones who don’t use disconnected pejoratives……… few that they may be.

    @ Jeremy, 100% correct on the use of Godwin’s law. If parallels exist, then one shouldn’t feel uneasy about showing such parallels. Godwin has done a great disservice in that one can’t freely discuss socialist fascism without fear of someone attempting to apply this universal gag order.

  68. Norman,
    Your belief that global warming reduces the temperature gradient between the equator and the poles is easily verified using the raw data from HADCRUT3, GISSTEMPv2 etc. I had no trouble doing this with my very limited statistical skills and an Excel spreadsheet.

    Your contention that a reduced temperature gradient will tend to reduce the incidence of severe weather is supported by scientists and historians. The historians in particular have their ducks in a row so let me recommend a documentary on the “History Channel” called “Little Ice Age–Big Chill”. Here is a link to a 5 minute preview:

    http://www.minnesotansforglobalwarming.com/m4gw/2010/09/little-ice-age—big-chill.html

    You can download the entire 90 minutes if you are don’t mind using Pirate Bay.

  69. Lucy Skywalker,
    Thanks for providing that link to your debunking of John Cook’s denier topics on SkS.

    Lubos Motl did a fairly detailed demolition 18 months ago:

    http://motls.blogspot.com/2010/03/john-cook-skeptical-science.html

  70. Jeremy says:

    Smokey says:
    September 22, 2011 at 7:02 pm

    Re: Godwin’s Law… In climate debates, there’s Smokey’s Law: Labeling an opponent a Denier, Denialist or Contrarian automatically loses you the debate.☺

    People use those pejoratives when they lack the facts they need to win a debate.

    Is it a perjorative to call it as it stands? If another group silences debate, stifles discussion, and berates and marginalizes those who disagree, is it wrong to call them narrow-minded activists? Is it wrong to draw parallels between behavior of present day people and other large movements in history who did the same thing with very bad results?

    I agree with what you say, people who resort to calling people names are often low on facts and losing an argument. Some day that lone group calling others names might just be correct in the labels used and the perspective espoused. Why silence when you can listen/examine and choose the best argument? Let those who would incorrectly apply harmful labels do so and lose the debate with their actions, not with the cultural manipulation of prior restraint and newspeak.

    I was on another board referring to Skeptical Science with the two letters. I thought nothing of it and wasn’t even thinking of WW2 when using it, it was just convenient, like referring to papers as MM-year etc. Someone else decided it was offensive when it was convenient for them to stop discussion and shut down debate. It worked. Unfortunately in our PC world, when one person is offended, somehow we’re all supposed to be.

  71. observa says:

    Einstein pokes his tongue out and laughs from the grave at those who say ‘the science is settled’-

    http://www.news.com.au/technology/sci-tech/particles-seen-to-travel-faster-than-light/story-fn5fsgyc-1226144226826

  72. Ted says:
    September 22, 2011 at 10:01 am

    The most egregious recent example of course is Ross McKitrick’s description of Wolfgang Wagner as a “groveling, terrified coward”. Setting quite the example for your students there, Ross. Did he ever apologize?

    ###

    Objectively speaking I think the most egregious recent example is probably the commenters
    at “in it for the gold” who labelled me as ‘evil’ and a sociopath.

    Yes I believe in AGW. but I had the temerity to suggest that our obligations to this generation of poor people might outweigh our obligations to people not born yet.

    evil. sociopath. moshpit.

    And those guys are on my side (science wise)

    So which is worse? teddy? Personally, I think we ought to police our own side and take the high road

  73. Anthony Watts says:

    Mosh check your email – Anthony

  74. Mosh

    Whilst I disagree with the notion of AGW (especially with a ‘C’ in front of it) there are two aspects of it that ought to give us ALL pause for thought.

    The first is that cheap energy has been a key building block of (mostly) Western prosperity for several centuries. On the way it has helped make us what we are -democratic, wealthy, healthy and with access to clean water and good housing. Personally I think it immoral to try to prevent other parts of the world to achieve what we have done by forcing them to use an unproven economic model based on non fossil fuel use.

    Equally importantly is the sheer futility of trying to change our climate. I tackled this in my article ‘the futility of carbon reduction’ and subsequent work-and correspondance with leading climate change scientists-demonstrates just how little we can affect global temperatures and the vast sums needed to attempt to do so.

    I think our moral obligation lies with the need to develop-although in a more sustainable way than previously. However the reality of cheap renewables as an alternative to fossil fuels lies a generation or more in the future, and in the meantime we need to secure our (cheap and plentiful)energy supplies for the sake of the living rather than for the sake of the as yet unborn, who can not concern themselves with a still unproven carbon theory.

    tonyb

  75. Steven Mosher says:

    While Ted is contemplating the horrible thing that Ross said about Wagner, I’ll suggest a little trip to see the real evil

    Here is what you find said about me

    “Moshpit’s been sidling up to RC lately doing his unctious passive-aggressive routine on their thread about the Spencer – Dessler papers.
    It’s almost as if he’s forgotten what a vile entity he is.
    It’s rather like if you were sitting on a park bench and a pool of black slime, fizzing with AIDS, cholera and necrotising halitosis oozed over to you, tapped you on the ankle and said it wanted to be your fwend. And anyway you made it the way it is.”

    Nice. Huh? Basically I went on to RC and noted that Steig and I agreed about something and said that was a good thing.

    Unlike most of you here I believe in AGW. But Im critical of individual scientists and bits and pieces of the science. I dont like data hiding.

    For that I am branded a vile Aids infested creature. the usual suspects are there.

    http://metaclimate.org/2011/09/06/the-eternal-return-or-the-unbearable-wrongness-of-spencer-and-braswell/#comment-5962

  76. Brian H says:

    Elsewhere, kim linked to a back-of-envelope calculation of how much CO2 reduction was necessary to cut global temps by 1°C, taking the AGW models and claims at their word.

    It comes to about 1,767,000 million metric tons.

    Which dwarfs the entire annual output of the US by several orders of magnitude. In other words, it’s a fools’ errand.

    Handy number for detonating pompous Precautionary Principle piffle on SkS and RC, etc.

  77. Espen says:

    Heh, thanks for highlighting my attempts at communicating with Tamino. Here’s what I wrote, unsnipped. I wouldn’t have complained if he only snipped away “puddle of dirt” ;-) – but the rest is IMHO very on-topic:

    I’m not sure why you need to be so rude, and I should probably leave and never come back to this puddle of dirt again, but I’m a persistent person, and being a mathematician myself, I don’t like people who play cheap tricks with statistics and simple math, so I’ll try once more: The situation back then wasn’t NOT X, quite the opposite, it was very close to X when we measure it with the best metric we have for such a long time range: Long term temperature measurements of the high Arctic. The fact that ice conditions may have been very different (we don’t know for sure, we have no good measurements from before the seventies) doesn’t make NOT(X) out of X, especially considering that the whole point of your little statistical game is that the ice conditions are due to AGW, i.e. mainly a function of atmospheric temperatures!

    After a few more posts I was blacklisted, and I don’t really mind never commenting there again, I think it was a pity that I never was able to answer some of the decent commenters addressing me further down the thread.

  78. Espen says:

    Sorry, there was a “but” missing in my last sentence. Corrected version: “After a few more posts I was blacklisted, and I don’t really mind never commenting there again, but I think it was a pity that I never was able to answer some of the decent commenters addressing me further down the thread.”

  79. Espen says:

    Steven Mosher says:

    Nice. Huh? Basically I went on to RC and noted that Steig and I agreed about something and said that was a good thing.

    Good grief, that’s really over the top. Some people could need a personal assistant helping them from damaging themselves in online conversatiosn :-(


    Unlike most of you here I believe in AGW. But Im critical of individual scientists and bits and pieces of the science. I dont like data hiding.

    “most”? Are you sure? I thought most didn’t rule out at least a minuscule human contribution to warming…. I may be a slightly “cooler lukewarmer” than you are, but ever since I discovered that Climate Science has some serious quality issues, I never really stopped considering the existence of AGW as highly likely. It’s just that I think the C in CAGW is highly unlikely (AGW being benign or even mostly beneficial is IMHO a more likely outcome than the armageddon scenarios), and that I don’t really think we at this point can give any numeric estimate at all of how much of the recent warming that is anthropogenic.

  80. Ken Hall says:

    Last year I did get some constructive comments when I wrote on several AGW supporting climate sites when I posed as a totally ignorant novice who was genuinely trying to understand some issues and asked for their forbearance and patience. I was kind and polite and despite some ad-homs and insults being flung at me immediately, some others were kind enough to indulge me and engage in rational discourse to try to explain their views to me, pointing me to certain papers etc… I appreciated their patience and was always polite to them. After some backwards and forwards, inevitably we ended up looking at the world through computer modelled glasses, and when I was ignorant enough to ask what the actual measurements and observations showed, they lost patience with me and preferred their modelled projections over actual empirical observation and the real historical record (particularly pertaining to “newly” discovered islands near the coast of Greenland, which inconveniently also existed and were mapped in the 1930s). I have not been back to those sites since.

    Wattsupwiththat grants me the patience and time and space to comment without being banned, whether my views agree with aspects of AGW or not. I have learned a LOT more here than I could have at the other sites which censor discovery rather than explore it.

  81. Kevin says:

    Roger Pielke turned his comments off. That’s as lame as Gore saying that the debate is over. I’ve lost some respect for the man.

  82. Norman says:

    gallopingcamel,

    Thanks for the links to the little ice age and the one questioning the certainty of climate chage by some climatologists.

  83. Mosh

    Those are really horrble over the top comments made about you. Sceptics are a very broad church and I’d be surprised if evetryone agreed with everything that all the others say about AGW. Agreeing that warmists have a point sometimes is not a sign of weakness but of maturity.. I remember siding with Joel Shore once about something Hansen said. Facts are facts and sometimes even climate science has those :)

    Brian H

    We did a much more than ‘back of the envelope’ calcuation a few months ago
    This is from Verity’s blog;

    http://diggingintheclay.wordpress.com/2011/09/21/quantifying-co2-mitigation/#more-2403

    Our article on the ‘futilty of carbon reduction’ is quoted in the first paragraph which went very throughly into the costs of Co2 mitigation and potential temperature reductions. I ran the answers past 15 of the worlds leading climate scientists. Its evident that whilst spending much time on calculating the likely temperature INCREASE, they had spent no time on calculating what potential reductions could be achieved by even the most agressive carbon mitigation programme.

    My co author Ed Hoskins further calculations -made as a result of the comments received on the original thread- is then incorporated in to his further series of updated articles available from the link above. My answer to Mosh at 12.15am was based on this reality.
    tonyb

  84. Johna Till Johnson says:

    Steve—

    “Moshpit’s been sidling up to RC lately doing his unctious passive-aggressive routine on their thread about the Spencer – Dessler papers.
    It’s almost as if he’s forgotten what a vile entity he is.
    It’s rather like if you were sitting on a park bench and a pool of black slime, fizzing with AIDS, cholera and necrotising halitosis oozed over to you, tapped you on the ankle and said it wanted to be your fwend. And anyway you made it the way it is.”

    This is what you get for *agreeing* with somebody? Staggering.

    And on top of everything else that’s wrong with this comment, it’s an insult to people living with AIDS.

    How nice for them to hear that AIDS is lumped in with “black slime…cholera and necrotizing halitosis”. And this from those who shriek loudest about political correctness and the need to be sensitive to everyone’s feelings.

    Does anyone else see the breathtaking hypocrisy?

  85. For that I am branded a vile Aids infested creature

    I need a laugh. Could anybody please remind me again why ironic references to They-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named would be “demonizing our opponents“?

  86. James Sexton says:

    Steven Mosher says:
    September 23, 2011 at 1:48 am

    While Ted is contemplating the horrible thing that Ross said about Wagner, I’ll suggest a little trip to see the real evil .

    Here is what you find said about me ………………………………………..

    ===========================================================
    I can’t believe that comment was allowed. That said, the statement by this “chek” person only shows the intellectual and moral bankruptcy of this “chek” person.

    Mosh, I’m glad you have thick skin. It makes the discussions that much more interesting. But, that statement by “chek” was way over the top. (Note to self……. when agreeing with lunatic scientists, be prepared to be compared to vile diseases.)

  87. JohnWho says:

    Espen says:

    September 23, 2011 at 3:21 am

    “most”? Are you sure? I thought most didn’t rule out at least a minuscule human contribution to warming…. I may be a slightly “cooler lukewarmer” than you are, but ever since I discovered that Climate Science has some serious quality issues, I never really stopped considering the existence of AGW as highly likely. It’s just that I think the C in CAGW is highly unlikely (AGW being benign or even mostly beneficial is IMHO a more likely outcome than the armageddon scenarios), and that I don’t really think we at this point can give any numeric estimate at all of how much of the recent warming that is anthropogenic.

    In my opinion, this is where we all somewhat go wrong – it is not “AGW” that is somewhat likely, it is “ACC” that is somewhat likely. (Anthropogenic Climate Change) We are certainly doing some things that may have an effect on the climate, either cooling or warming, noticeably on local scales.

    The “C” is not simply highly unlikely it is extremely doubtful due to a lack of evidence that anything we are doing is dominating any form of global climate change. It, the “C”, is the fear mongering that allows the conversation to go from climate to energy.

  88. Truthseeker says:

    Sparks,

    If you like the left-field science of ancient aliens, then I can thoroughly recommend the following site;

    http://theendofthemystery.blogspot.com/

    The latests posts are excellent in showing the fundamental flaws in the underlying principles of the CAGW arguments using simple physics. If you delve into the older posts you get into some really “out there” ideas that I think you may enjoy.

  89. PhilJourdan says:

    I think we are getting a little too sensitive to Godwin’s law. many a time I will refer to democrat underground dot org as du dot org. So the reference to skeptical science by its initials is not in and of itself a reference to nazism. That being said, I really do not care to use outdated and stale analogies when referring to close minded sites. I think just the evidence of their own words is enough to make them a laughing stock.

  90. PeterB in Indianapolis says:

    mhklein,

    “I’ve been following WUWT for quite some time and I find that climate skeptics are guilty are the very same bad manners that they accuse their opponents of having. I’ll take you folks more seriously when you start treating AGW proponents with more respect.”

    You make a claim, but fail to back it up with any citations, quotations, or evidence. If you really did follow WUWT, you would clearly notice that the vast majority of the discussions and disagreements are clearly less vitriolic than those found at Real Climate, Skeptical Science, or virtually any other Pro-AGW site. At WUWT, we have a tendency to prefer logic and the scientific method over ad hominem, straw man, appeals to authority, and name-calling. When such things do pop up, the moderators do a very good job of getting rid of the stuff that doesn’t constructively add to the discussion.

    Sure, we have disagreements here, especially because ANYONE can post, regardless of whether they are a skeptic, a lukewarmer, or someone who is fully convinced of AGW. And I will admit that sometimes the disagreements get a bit testy. However, WUWT tries very hard to keep the discussions and disagreements as civil and as scientific as possible.

    If you truly think WUWT is no better than the warmist sites, I encourage you to give us some evidence so that we know what you are actually objecting to.

  91. John Whitman says:

    note: also posted on BH

    ——————-

    Still, my treatment of Skeptical Science (SS) is that if a mostly rational commenter or poster on an open/uncensored/un-manipulated blog makes a referral to SS, then I might visit SS specifically for that. Otherwise, if I want to get the same content as at SS then I can just go read the problematical AR4 and the associated info on climategate (and many associated other ‘gates).

    John

  92. Venter says:

    Kevin, I would suggest you do some proper reading before running in to trash Roger Pielke Senior. He never has had a comments function on his blog at any time. So he did not “turn his comments off” lately. He has never had them on at any time.

  93. John Whitman says:

    Anthony said,

    “While this may be humorous, maybe even satisfying to some, it really illustrates the sad polarization that we have today over climate science. The polarization is so intense, that it almost precludes any rational communications.”

    —————-

    Anthony,

    Sad? On the other hand, an extremely argumentative world is very good supporting evidence of an extremely free world. In climate science, with it extremely argumentative nature, there is an extremely free space of intellectual and scientific openness, in spite of the unseemly rancor.

    When I have doubts about the climate science situation (or any other intellectual subject) there is a quote that always inspires me.

    The following quotes are from the introduction to ‘Readings in Ancient Greek Philosophy from Thales to Aristotle’ edited by S.Cohen, P. Curd, and C. Reeve.

    “[ . . . ] What they [ancient Greek philosophers] did, to put it boldly and oversimply, was to invent critical rationality and embody it in a tradition; for the theories they advanced, whether on nature or origins of the cosmos or on ethics and politics, were not offered as gospels to be accepted on divine or human authority but as rational products to be accepted or rejected on the basis of evidence and argument.” [ . . . ]

    “Obviously, there is more to say about the achievements of Greek philosophy that this. But bold and oversimple as our claim is, and standing in need of modification and elaboration as it does, it points nonetheless to something central and vital, something that will surely be borne in upon any reader of the texts collected here: The world of Greek philosophy is an argumentative world.

    My view is the more argumentative an environment the better it is in all ways. Extremes of incivility, aggression and misuse of anonymity will be simply self-regulated just like the Ancient Greeks and the resulting Western Civilization, in the long run, have always done.

    Anthony, thanks for your venue which help makes the above stuff to exist.

    John

  94. John

    Reading your post I am reminded of the Greek Sisyphus

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

    He was fated to push a giant boulder up a hill then watch it roll down again. As an exercise in pointlessness it is only matched by (some) Western Govts sheer futility in trying to reduce their own puny carbon emissions for so little effect Very few other countries -with much bigger boulders -appear as willing to roll them up the hill as we are.
    .
    tonyb

  95. Steven Mosher says:

    James.

    Ya I have a thick skin. I found it ironic. chek actually described a couple of my friends to a T, both homeless vets. With luck this week the one with AIDS will get housing. The other one hides in the bushes and alleys and sleeps in doorways. Finding him is always a chore. One of the debates that Tom and I have with our fellows who believe in AGW is the balance between our obligations to those who are currently suffering versus those who will suffer when the warming catches up with us. For me, I have more compassion for that guy in the doorway, than I do for the millionaire who’s beachfront property may be inundated a century from now

  96. John Whitman says:

    climatereason says:
    September 23, 2011 at 11:46 am
    John

    Reading your post I am reminded of the Greek Sisyphus

    ——————-

    tonyb (climatereason),

    Thanks for your comment.

    Mythology can instruct.

    The condemned repetitive activity of the Sisyphus myth has some faint familiarity with the eternal rebirth myth of the Phoenix; the former being less inspiring than the latter.

    I think a more positive mythological view of the current situation in climate science is the Phoenix myth rather than Sisyphus. Reborn periodically with freshness sounds good to me as myth supporting the idea of periodically inspiring new science.

    Note: I find the Icarus myth as being punitive of the idea of new science in a mythological sense.

    John

  97. Smokey says:

    Jeremy says:

    “If another group silences debate, stifles discussion, and berates and marginalizes those who disagree, is it wrong to call them narrow-minded activists? Is it wrong to draw parallels between behavior of present day people and other large movements in history who did the same thing with very bad results?”

    I presume you’re referring to those skeptical of the CO2=CAGW hypothesis. If so, you have your facts completely wrong. It is the CAGW crowd that runs and hides out from debate. Far from ‘stifing’ debate, skeptical scientists very much want debates. Lots of them. The alarmist crowd avoids debates because they invariably lose. Why? Because they lack any convincing evidence to support their failed hypothesis. The planet simply is not doing what they predicted, what they expected, and what they told millions of people would happen.

    Therefore, the “narrow-minded activists” are the true believers in CAGW. And yes, it is wrong to equate scientific skeptics with “other large movements in history who did the same thing with very bad results”. Comparing people who simply have a different point of view with the Holocaust is about as vile as you can get. Instead of excusing that behavior, you should become a stand-up guy and reprimand anyone on any blog who labels someone with a different opinion as a “denier”, a “denialist”, etc. But for guys like you it’s much easier to spread hatred. You do it simply because you don’t have the facts or evidence on your side.

    Steven Mosher says:

    “…those who will suffer when the warming catches up with us.”

    Really? Why would a slightly warmer planet cause suffering? It is cold that kills, and the planet has been much colder in the past. That is worrisome; more warmth isn’t. It has been several degrees warmer in the geologic past – and during those warming episodes the biosphere teemed with life.

    Finally, when is that missing warming going to catch up with us? That sounds like Trenberth’s mysteriously hidden heat in the pipeline. But there has been no acceleration of global warming since the LIA, despite ≈45% more CO2. Your model has failed, Steven. Time to re-assess.

  98. John

    Good analogy with the Phoenix but what about the Hydra? Every time you think you have cut one head off this mythological beast it promptly grows two more. :)
    tonyb

  99. John Whitman says:

    climatereason says:
    September 23, 2011 at 1:35 pm

    Good analogy with the Phoenix but what about the Hydra? Every time you think you have cut one head off this mythological beast it promptly grows two more. :)

    tonyb

    ————————-

    tonyb (climatereason),

    I like the Hydra myth for reference to the climate science situation. But to be fair, we probably need two versions.

    First version of the Hydra myth for climate science is the AGW by CO2 view. They fear the skeptical Hydra because they worry that if they cut the funding to one skeptic’s paper then two more get funded by the evil ultimate conspiracy theory of big oil. : )

    Second version of the Hydra myth for climate science is the skeptical view. Skeptics fear that if they cut head off of one AR4 & AR5 gray source of literature, then two more gray sources replace it. : (

    Hey, what about the myth of Athena springing forth fully armed and grown from the forehead of Zeus? Sort of like climate science of AGW from CO2 springing forth fully (politically) armed and formed from the forehead of the ideological environmentalism of the UN’s UNFCCC without involving normal process of growing up and development via the unbiased/non-politicized open and transparent scientific process? : )

    We are getting in pretty deep here with the mythology thing. : ) But heck, it is Friday night . . . relax and (if Anthony & Mods let us) go with it.

    John

  100. John Whitman says:

    Dear Moderators,

    My post to tonyb (climatereason) did not go into the normal “Waiting for moderation” mode, it just disappeared. So would you please check the wordpress nether regions? Some nethor spirit may have grabbed it.

    Thanks, as always.

    John

  101. Lets hope that AR5 turns out to be like achilles and has a fatal weak spot

    tonyb

  102. Steve Short says:

    Interesting to note that John Cook was recently awarded the Eureka Prize here in Australia. See here:

    http://eureka.australianmuseum.net.au/eureka-prize/advancement-of-climate-change-knowledge1

    Even more interesting is the fact that the people awarding him the prize are a mixture of employees of various State government agencies of the state of New South Wales (NSW) and science academics from NSW universities.

    NSW recently had a change of government from the Labor Party to the (conservative) Liberal-National Party coalition which has numerous AGW sceptical politicians.

    IMO this award is partly a reflection of the deep degree of division which now applies within NSW govt. agencies where a bitter internal guerillla war rages between the Department of Planning and Infrastucture (DPI) i.e. the planners, and numerous other agencies who are fighting vigorously the right to completely ban new coal mines, CSG exploration drilling, and numerous other projects now proscribed by the religion of the warmistas who now dominate those agencies.

    I wonder just how aware the new NSW State government is really aware of the level of partisan pro-AGW bias and underlying agendas driving those who awarded Cook this prize?

    Presumably this sort of thing is going on elsewhere in other developed countries too?

  103. Smokey says:

    Steve Short,

    The fact that the cartoonist who runs Skeptical Pseudo-Science, John Cook, was handed an award by the establishment just means they are trying to protect the status quo, which is crumbling due to grass roots pressure.

    The truth is known by most educated scientists and engineers: CO2 is harmless and beneficial – as is testified by over 31,000 professionals working in the hard sciences, who co-signed this statement:

    “There is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of carbon dioxide, methane, or other greenhouse gases is causing or will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth’s atmosphere and disruption of the Earth’s climate. Moreover, there is substantial scientific evidence that increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide produce many beneficial effects upon the natural plant and animal environments of the Earth.”

    There is no comparable alarmist statement in existence. The handful that have been attempted have resulted in relatively few co-signers; all of them put together come nowhere near 31,000.

    People may be reluctant to take the brave stand that the 31,000 co-signers did. But it’s much easier to just decline to sign alarmist petitions by simply saying, “Thanks, but I don’t want to get involved.” The fact is that the great majority of those in the hard sciences know damn well that the CO2 scare is fed by $billions in annual grant money. Take away the grant payola, and people will literally laugh at the peddlers of tha CAGW scare. Because it’s not about science. It’s about the money.

  104. … the obvious violations of Godwins Law immediately applied …

    Sorry, but Godwin’s Law, like many laws of logic and nature, has not applied at all in the field of Global Warming pscience since the first warmmonger used the term “denier”.

  105. onion2 says:

    Re Smokey:
    “as is testified by over 31,000 professionals working in the hard sciences”

    Your claim that they are “professionals” working in the “hard science” is wrong.

    Anyone with a basic qualification in a number of little-related fields could sign even if they haven’t ever worked in it, let alone as a scientist. So millions would qualify for being able to sign that list, yet they only got 31,000.

    There are plenty of medical doctors who are on the list for example. With some feeble excuse that they can review health implications of global warming or something. Also too computer scientists are able to sign. Is computer science a “hard science”? What relevance does it have to expertize on global warming? None, I can tell you, I know dozens of people who got a BSc in computer scientists (but they aren’t working as scientists in any sense of the word) who would be eligable to sign that list yet their background doesn’t endow them with any expertize on the subject over a given layperson.

    You might as well argue that plumbers should be able to sign because they can assess the risk of sea level rises.

    More damming, there was a “paper” (non peer reviewed) that went along with that petition and it was full or errors, cherrypicking and confirmation bias. What the 31,000 signers have done is sign their reputations to a “paper” full of errors, cherrypicking and confirmation bias. Well done them.

  106. Andy says:

    Onion2, you say:
    “Is computer science a “hard science”? What relevance does it have to expertize(sic) on global warming? None, I can tell you,”

    Well, i’m sure all those people programming those wretched ‘models’ that warmistas love so much would regard themselves as scientists with an expertise in global warming/climate change/climate disruption.

    Or have I read your post wrong – are you actually saying that those people constructing and programming those over-simplistic and terribly inaccurate models are not really practising science at all? If I have read you wrong, I apologise.

  107. Andy says:

    Just another thought Onion2:

    You talk about people signing a document “full of errors, cherrypicking and confirmation bias”
    That just about sums up anyone who signed the IPCC report ;)

  108. Smokey says:

    onion2 says:

    “Anyone with a basic qualification in a number of little-related fields could sign even if they haven’t ever worked in it, let alone as a scientist. So millions would qualify for being able to sign that list, yet they only got 31,000.”

    onion2 is wrong. He just doesn’t understand what’s going on in the real world.

    All of the contrary alarmist petitions together failed to collect more than a small fraction of the OISM petition co-signers, and his [incorrect] claim regarding qualifications is flat wrong. Each co-signer was vetted, and the fraudulent names were weeded out, leaving more than 31,000 legitimate co-signers. Also, a medical doctor is listed only if he has a degree in one of the hard sciences.

    onion2 gives no examples of his claim of errors in an un-cited paper, but that is immaterial. No one was asked to sign anything except this petition: click. That unequivocal statement is what they were willing to put their signatures on. And they had to go to the trouble of mailing in their original signature, making the 31,000 number even more impressive.

    There is still no convincing evidence that GHG’s are a problem. In fact, we are learning that the added CO2 is on balance entirely beneficial. More is better. And since there is zero evidence of global harm due to CO2, then it is ipso facto harmless.

    onion2 hates the plain fact that over thirty thousand scientists and engineers, including more than 9,000 PhD’s, is a much larger number than the total of all alarmist petition signers combined [and the same names appear over and over on all those various alarmist petitions]. The lopsided numbers are real world evidence that makes the “consensus” myth an outright lie. The actual, verifiable evidence shows clearly that the real “consensus” is comprised of the large majority of scientists and engineers who reject the CAGW conjecture.

  109. peter stone says:

    However, Dr. Pielke who is evidently widely admired on this site, agreed with skeptical science that we need to take action to reduce human emmissions of greenhouse gases…..

    DR. ROGER PIELKE: “The emission of CO2 into the atmosphere, and its continued accumulation in the atmosphere is changing the climate. We do not need to agree on the magnitude of its global average radiative forcing to see a need to limit this accumulation.

    The biogeochemical effect of added CO2 by itself is a concern as we do not know its consequences. At the very least, ecosystem function will change resulting in biodiversity changes as different species react differently to higher CO2. The prudent path, therefore, is to limit how much we change our atmosphere.”

    http://pielkeclimatesci.wordpress.com/2011/09/20/skeptical-climate-responses-to-my-questions-and-my-reply/

  110. Sparks says:

    Truthseeker says:
    September 23, 2011 at 6:41 am
    Sparks,
    “If you like the left-field science of ancient aliens, then I can thoroughly recommend the following site”

    What’s not to like about archeology, history and ideas about ancient technology with a little bit of mystery by way the of questioning what is accepted thrown in about technologically advanced humans and civilizations in the past? Like I said it’s food for thought! thanks for the link! :)

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