Congressman Markey and Senator Inhofe agree to debate climate science

English: Portrait of US Rep Ed Markey

Markey

Ralph Nader speaking in front of the White Hou...

Nader

Jim Inhofe, United States Senator photo portrait.
Inhofe

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By Steve Milloy JunkScience.com

So the debate’s not over after all. We’d pay for ringside seats.

From Politico:

Ralph Nader put on his Don King hat Monday with the hope of inspiring a made-for-TV showdown between two Capitol Hill stalwarts on global warming.

The consumer activist and former presidential candidate pitched the idea of Republican Sen. Jim Inhofe meeting Democratic Rep. Ed Markey in a 90-minute televised debate on the ins and outs of climate change science and policy.

“Clearly you are a man of your convictions on this subject,” Nader wrote in a letter to Inhofe, of Oklahoma, who is the most outspoken climate skeptic on Capitol Hill. “Just as clearly, Rep. Ed Markey is a man of his convictions on this topic.”

“People I know in Oklahoma say that you do not run away from challenges and challengers to your beliefs,” Nader added. “But the Senate floor is not exactly the place for an extended debate; it is more a place for parallel soliloquies.”

Nader suggested a debate “with [a] mutually agreed upon moderator and rules at a mutually convenient time and place, preferably on Capitol Hill.” The debate should appear on cable television, “certainly over C-SPAN”…

Full story at JunkScience.com

86 thoughts on “Congressman Markey and Senator Inhofe agree to debate climate science

  1. Gotta love Markey’s response to the invitation. Itz a “the science is settled, glad you asked” response.

    “Congressman Markey would gladly discuss with Sen. Inhofe the over 100 years of science that proves carbon dioxide and other global warming pollutants are raising the temperature of the Earth and changing the chemistry of the oceans,” said Markey spokesman Eben Burnham-Snyder.”

  2. This could be good.

    Mano a mano, cage match to the death, no quarter given, winner take all, to the victor go the climate change spoils.

    Yeah. Could be good. :)

  3. Usually these things tend to get canceled by the “consensifiers.” I hope it isn’t in this case since I get the impression that Inhofe is a pretty bright guy while Markey…..

  4. I for one would love to see change in the policy of my Nation in regards to Climate change.The fact is that there is no money to be made by making change…Or is there?I believe that the one sided opinions against or for are both causing more harm than good in the middle or better yet an outside perspective that challenges both sides is one that may bring about an acceptable solution and perhaps considering the other sides perception may have some truth may do so as well. I look forward to watching the debate and hope both will walk away more enlightened and show more care in the future of our planet! I know we all count on our leaders to care for our Earth!

  5. Start popping the popcorn ! ( . .ok it isn’t set yet, just hoping . . )

    And how about allowing each man to have extra person in their corner to help them if needed . . I can see it now, Moncton vs. Gore . . . !

    . . . better triple that amount of popcorn . . !

  6. Debates regarding scientific issues, particularly between politicians, are meaningless other than for entertainment value.

    Mark

  7. At 9:14 PM on 12 December, Zorro asserts:

    Inhofe will carbonize Markey.

    I wouldn’t repose that much trust in any of these Red Faction wheelhorses.

    In the words of libertarian writer L. Neil Smith:

    If there were a generic one-word expression for ‘one whose fear of the uncertainties of success moves him to surrender at the very moment of victory’, it would be ‘Republican’.

    Understanding, of course, that the great exception to this rule is Dr. Ron Paul.

  8. I’m guessing Markey will pull a James Cameron and chicken out at the last minute.

    But I sure hope he doesn’t! Markey is a poster idiot for the AGW Project.

  9. These guys might be able to talk policy but having them give a sense of the science at a time when real climate scientists can’t even agree if clouds warm or cool the planet. I foresee 90 minutes of two elected representative talking past one another to their bases, who don’t need any convincing to begin with. I would prefer a real scientific debate between scientists that are passionate in their positions.

  10. Just explain one thing:

    Why was the warming from 1910 to 1940 not “catastrophic” or anthropogenic but a warming period 60 years later of exactly the same rate and duration is “catastrophic”. And if the 1970-2000 warming (which has now apparently ceased just as it did in 1940) was caused by CO2, what caused the nearly identical earlier period? And finally, if CO2 emission rates have increased even more since 2000, why has there been to rising trend in temperatures and in fact a cooling trend since 2005?

  11. Markey is not a Senator. He might be one if he had tried to run for Ted Kennedy’s seat.

    I think Markey might win this debate. Inhofe’s statements are not the strongest scientifically. Like when he took on those protesters who thought they’d ambush him on camera.

  12. Well, they’d both get 3nd chairs wouldn’t they?
    Markey would of course get Al Gore, who negotiated and signed Kyoto and has a Nobel Prize plus a major movie and a recent television series complete with a “science” experiment.

    Inhofe could recruit…Willis?

  13. The fact it is being discussed by two POLITICIANS settles the issue.

    Science should be debated by scientists (in every case – not politicians).

  14. Inhofe should mop the floor with Markey, but he’d better be sure about the setting and terms of the debate. Leftists are good at setting up sham events that make it difficult to have rational, balanced discussions. I’ve heard and read enough of Markey to know he’ll be a ranting imbecile unless he is really well coached and resolves to behave himself.

  15. I guess intellectual luminaries such as Barbara Boxer and Henry Waxman were unavailable on the far-left California side of the aisle.

    In other news, if you have “missing heat” or “missing money” and need an explanation, the guy for the job is Jon Corzine.

  16. I really wish republican politicians in the US would get the heck out of the climate business. That is because they are completely insane. Their advocacy therefore harms the issues they support.

    For example consider this . Note how the article cleverly attacks NZ Prime Minster John Key by associating him with republicans on the issue of climate change. Nasty.

    Personally I can live with being called a `denier’. But if people start calling me a republican, I’ll probably have to shoot myself.

    • At 10:15 PM on 12 December, Cynical scientist laments:

      I really wish republican politicians in the US would get the heck out of the climate business. That is because they are completely insane.

      Now, now. Never attribute to clinical psychopathology what is better explained by corruption and stupidity.

      Consider, Cynical scientist, that were they subject to criminal prosecution (as at the very least the preponderance of them should be), would any of these “republican politicians in the US” be able to essay a diminished capacity defense?

      ===
      “In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for. As for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican.”

      — H.L. Mencken

  17. Martin Clauss says:
    December 12, 2011 at 9:32 pm
    Start popping the popcorn ! ( . .ok it isn’t set yet, just hoping . . )

    And how about allowing each man to have extra person in their corner to help them if needed . . I can see it now, Moncton vs. Gore . . . !

    . . . better triple that amount of popcorn . . !

    Why Gore would have to tap out after 30 sec, light out, go home early.

  18. davidmhoffer says:
    December 12, 2011 at 9:58 pm
    Inhofe could recruit…Willis?

    Nah, Inhofe doesn’t inhale, while Willis, I believe, wouldn’t work for a heartless snob who doesn’t pick up young and healthy hitchhikers unwilling to earn enough money to buy a used car.

  19. What is the scientific/mathematical backgrounds for these political debators. Have any of them done graduate level work? If so, they may have at least taken a statistics course. Really, I think one reason why there are as many gullible AGWers as there are, is that after JFK’s push for the U.S. to reach the moon, there was a slow-down if not a backlash against STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) in our educational system. Hopefully the eventual demise of the AGW paradigm will awaken John Q. Public to the importance of STEM in the education of the general public. It can help save your pocket book, folks!

  20. At 9:47 PM on 12 December, Leon Brozyna had written:

    Politicians debating science … ought to be carried on Comedy Central.

    Well, they couldn’t put it on Sprout, could they?

    PBS’ leftie-luser bigotries notwithstanding, my least grandkid is six years old, and to the extent that she’s representative of first-graders and pre-schoolers generally, that’s much too tough a “room” for anything Ed Markey is ever going to bloviate.

  21. This is unlikely. Anyone who has paid attention to Markey knows that he is an ignorant dolt. He hardly knows even the latest AGW talking points, much less real facts. He is a pompous fool that relies upon media to cover for his mistakes.

  22. Problem one – Two politicians are debating climate science!

    Problem two – Another politician is moderating the debate!

    Problem three – The moderator and Markey are political allies (different parties, same agenda)!

    Three strikes.

  23. Bill Davis says: December 12, 2011 at 10:02 pm

    It is now, as it has always been, a political debate. If you believe otherwise kindly point out where and when the scientific debate took place and who debated it?

  24. Alexander Feht says: December 12, 2011 at 10:27 pm

    So much snark in so little space; Alex, you are a master. If you are not a native Siberian I’m beginning to get a glimmer of just how you ended up there.

    Cynical scientist says: December 12, 2011 at 10:15 pm

    Yeah, my mother is convinced that all Republicans are going to hell, too, but I really wish that commenters would stop trying to make this a Democrat/Republican kind of divide. Many skeptics, including the ever-present Smokey, apparently, are skeptical but not Republican. Most Republicans are not skeptical. I’ve been saying for awhile that what we are facing is an elite based in Business, Government, Academia, the Media and Science that is watching out for its own interests to the detriment of ours. Cynical Scientist’s comment sent me off to look for such connections. Google “Condoleeza Rice” + “Climate Change”. Among the returns was this:

    http://vator.tv/news/2009-12-30-condoleezza-rice-joins-stealth-carbon-startup

    Which lead to this:

    http://www.c3-e.com/home/

    and this:

    http://www.c3-e.com/directors/

    These people are banking on either cap and trade or carbon taxes to make their product viable. Whaddayathink?

  25. Classic. Politico lowers itself to a subtle ad hominem…

    Markey is a Man of Conviction, but Inhofe, while having convictions, is a “climate skeptic”.

    I’ve yet to see Inhofe ever say he was skeptical about climate. I’ve yet to see anyone here say they were skeptical about climate.. I’m not skeptical about climate… I’m skeptical about some of the scientific claims about climate…. And Markey belongs to a group that is skeptical about scientific claims made by a group of climate scientists who disagree with some other climate scientists…

    Since one group is referred to as “climate skeptics”, I guess you’d have to refer to the other group as “science skeptics”. Given the religious fervor of that camp…maybe the label fits.

  26. David Suzuki is a microbiologist/geneticist that seems to have been attributed some level of understanding of climate – on the affect on the genetics of fruit flies maybe. Bit other than that, one might assume that both Markey and Inhofe have every bit as much formal technical training as Suzuki and many of the other climate activists – none. It all comes down to who studies his speaking points the best, nothing more. Bit it should make good entertainment.

  27. Canada should conduct a royal commission on climate change science. I am willing to have my fellow taxpayers pay up to several billion dollars for this royal commission. The 30 billion potential savings from reduced border delays between Canada and the United States would help offset the cost.
    I believe I read about this idea in the National Post, in which the articles author suggested that Obama would not allow such a thing, hence don’t expect it to ever occur. This debate will also not occur, mark my words.

  28. noaaprogrammer: “What is the scientific/mathematical backgrounds for these political debators. Have any of them done graduate level work?”

    So only graduate students or ‘above’ are allowed to get involved in the debate? That’s pure intellectual snobbery. That’s exactly the kind of rubbish the Schlockey Team say: “You’re not a climate scientist, so you wouldn’t understand.”

    As at least one other commenter has said above, the AGW rubbish has little to do with science and more to do with money, politics and power. It’s perfectly right that debates about this subject be brought into the political arena.

    The 12 year old kids I teach at High School can see through the AGW twaddle, so I’m sure many other people from outside the rarified world of the research lab can understand that the whole gorebull warming thing is a scam as well.

  29. Gary Mount: Maybe because it’s late, but I don’t see the relationship between a royal commission on climate change science and border delays. For that matter, what on earth gives Odumber the right to allow or disallow royal commissions? BTW: I’d be willing to donate some money to the Canadian Government if they did, in fact, plan an honest inquiry into climate science.

  30. Leon Brozyna says:
    December 12, 2011 at 9:47 pm
    Markey’s not a senator.

    Correct, it’s Kongressman Murkey.

  31. MARK: Debates regarding scientific issues, particularly between politicians, are meaningless other than for entertainment value.

    You know the first thought I voiced when I saw the header for this blog was – neither of these guy’s are scientist, they may have strong opinions (most certainly they do) but no matter the outcome it will be meaningless. They can only spout – argue the words of their particular tame scientists……. what we truly deserve is an open honest public discussion/debate from the two sides of science, and yes I do still believe in Santa Clause and the Tooth Fairy!

  32. The last time Suzuki did science was on the last day of his fruit fly PhD dissertation preparation, many decades ago. He immediately fled precipitously to the field of showbiz, where he has strutted and postured ever since.

    At most, he’s an ex-wannabe-scientist.

  33. Cynical scientist says:
    December 12, 2011 at 10:15 pm

    “I really wish republican politicians in the US would get the heck out of the climate business. That is because they are completely insane.”

    Apparently, you’re forgetting it is the left who dreamed up this psychotic fantasy crisis. Marxism is a delusional religion, and “climate change” its Tolkien Ring.

    My pick for skeptic debater is Chris Horner.

    • At 12:14 AM on 13 December, in response to Cynical scientist’s expression of disgust with the “completely insane” Red Faction of our big, perpetually incumbent Boot On Your Neck Party, Layne Blanchard writes:

      Apparently, you’re forgetting it is the left who dreamed up this psychotic fantasy crisis. Marxism is a delusional religion, and “climate change” its Tolkien Ring.

      I doubt that anybody could possibly forget that the gaudy AGW fraud has been a cause célèbre for the politicians of the National Socialist Democrat American Party (NSDAP, on account of after they rammed Obamacare down the national throat in spite of enraged opposition on the part of most of their own core constituencies, the last tattered shred of pretense about being “democratic” went bye-bye) from the earliest days tracked by the Climategate Timeline.

      It’s one of those Menckenian “hobgoblins” that perfectly suit their National Socialist hysteria-pumping machinations, isn’t it?

      But keep in mind always that the Red Faction is – first and last, ever since they were calling themselves “Federalists” and “Whigs” – the political instantiation of what Frank Chodorov once called “Rotarian Socialism,” a perfectly mercantilist movement pushing currency counterfeiting and debauchment, consumer-screwing corporate welfare, and rank imperialism in the guise of “foreign policy.”

      To the extent that Republican goons could find ways to gain political advantage and – more importantly – mechanisms by which they and their “contributors” could plunder the public purse and screw America’s consumers even more thoroughly, they were stumpin’ and pumpin’ for all that “man-made global climate change” crap in a wonderful Gingrich-Pelosi show of “bipartisanship.”

      One more thing; I would not classify the AGW fraud as a “psychotic fantasy,” especially in the light of the available tranche of FOIA2011.zip expanding the demonstration that it’s a carefully fabricated “long con” concerted by a definitely identifiable cadre of flim-flam artists who are not and (as the recent release of e-mail communications wonderfully confirms) never really were “true believers” in their own enormous manure pile of half-truths and pure lies.

      Neither the National Socialist government thugs propelling this hideous fraud with funds ripped off from the taxpaying private citizenry nor the C.R.U. correspondents colluding in the peculative receipt of those funds were in any way “psychotic.”

      Their actions were simply felonious, replete with proofs of criminal mens rea and unarguable evidence of conspiracy to commit these offenses in their e-mail correspondence.

      To extend my earlier remark, never attribute to psychopathology that which is more appropriately explained by criminal intention.

  34. The debate, if there is one, should be:

    Between Scientists;
    Divided into 20 (say) debates on different facets of the issue, with different debating teams on each topic.
    Before judging-panels of scientists in the related disciplines, preferably stars who have retired.
    Conducted over the space of three months.
    Conducted over the Internet, both by text and by video presentations.
    Rerun after a gap of six months, after absorbing questions and comments from the judging panels.
    Perhaps shown on PBS, after it’s over.

    Otherwise it will be impossible to filter out, over time, the discredited (or less-credible) claims and refine and sharpen the debate. There are currently too many “outs” that the audience can’t detect. A debate between politicians would go (in many viewers’ minds) to the boldest, sincerest-sounding prevaricator.

  35. Another sort of debate would be a half-hour of national TV per week (it could be broadcast late at nite–TIVO and YouTube would allow sleepyheads to catch up with it later.) Each half-hour given to one or other side of the debate, alternately, for years, on specific narrow topics. The presenters needn’t be scientists, but good debaters who are up on their topic. This should have been started years ago–heck, decades ago. “The debate is over”? What a laugh. It never began.

  36. They can’t debate the science, but they can debate the politics of it, and the economics to an extent. Doing anything (or nothing) about climate change / global warming / we-must-act-now-due-to-climate-ambiguity inevitably has an economic impact. Politically, the uncertainty can be debated. Seriously, doing something about a 0.7-8 degree C warming depends on narrowing that down substantially with the appropriate level of certainty, which doesn’t exist unless of course they give up on the positive feedbacks which are purely hypothetical, and the perverse world of socio-environmentalism flips that particular negative into a positive for their social change agendas.

  37. What 100 years of science?

    I have yet to see any ‘science’ that shows that CO2 and other pollutants raise temperatures, let alone any ‘science’ that shows that CO2 is a pollutant.

  38. Rhoda Ramirez says:
    December 13, 2011 at 12:02 am
    Gary Mount: Maybe because it’s late, but I don’t see the relationship between a royal commission on climate change science and border delays.
    ——————
    Sorry, I guess if the news involves Canada, and it’s not climate change related, it doesn’t make it beyond Canadian borders.

    “On Wednesday, Prime Minister Stephen Harper travelled to Washington, D.C., to jointly announce with U.S. President Barack Obama the signing of the bi-lateral Beyond the Border agreement. Once fully enacted, it is hoped that this new agreement will streamline and modernize the movement of goods and people across the Canada-U.S. frontier. ”

    http://www.nationalpost.com/news/good+deal+Canada/5840506/story.html

    ———————

    …For that matter, what on earth gives Odumber the right to allow or disallow royal commissions?

    Its called politics and the relative sizes of our two countries, by economic clout, not geographic.
    I also want to make it clear, thats a $30 Billion Annual potential savings.

  39. Do we really want to have warmests climate scientist debating with skeptics? The warmests have proven to be serial liars. Why give them a national forum, as you know how the MSM co-operates, witness the BBC, CBC, Australian BBC, CTV, etc.

  40. If Ralph Nader really sees how the wind is blowing, and that Markey will likely find a reason to abort the debate (eg around how it is framed – note his impossible wording

    discuss …the over 100 years of science that proves carbon dioxide…. etc

    we could still be getting some key publicity.

    Of course, I’d like our Lord Monckton to support Inhofe. Politician and true scientist, who knows exactly the dirty tricks the warmists play.

  41. I have mixed feelings about this. I would hope Inhofe does some serious boning up, and have himself asked a ton of tough questions, between now and any debate. One bad stumble and we’ll have it shoved in our faces for years to come.

  42. The problem with this modest proposal is that neither of them is competent to have such a debate, so it really will be nothing more than “political theater”.

    Now, put Bob Tisdale up on the stage with them, with a medium-sized stack of figures and references teed up and ready to flip…

    rgb

  43. Friends:

    Reality is very different from the warmist fears presented by trolls in above comments.

    In reality, the AGW issue IS political. If it were not political then there would be no need for politicians to agree Treaties, regulations and taxes in response to it.

    But the warmist trolls claim that only “scientists” and especially NOT “politicians”) should debate the AGW issue. The trolls need to explain why they were not making that claim when politicians were deciding the Kyoto Protocol or when politicians assembled in Copenhagen, Cancun and (recently) Durban to debate how to use the AGW issue as an excuse for political actions.

    Also, the trolls’ claim ignores the facts that
    (a) ‘climate scientists’ who support the AGW-scare do all they can to avoid debates
    and
    (b) those ‘climate scientists’ have lost each of the few debates they have participated in.

    The claim that only “scientists” should debate AGW is a variant of the warmist mantra that only the views of “climate scientists” should be heard on the issue. And, they say, only those who proclaim ‘AGW is a threat’ are “climate scientists” (i.e. a failed US Vice President, a railway engineeer, and a cosmologist are leading “climate scientists”, while some people – including me – who study climate and have repeatedly published on it in peer -reviewed literature are not).

    Simply, the warmist claim amounts to
    1. only pro-AGW propoganda should be allowed to be heard,
    2. politicians should not debate the suggested reasons for taking actions in response AGW claims,
    and
    3. politicians should impose whatever political actions are demanded by warmist propoganda without any consideration of the merits of the propoganda..

    The trolls and their fascist views should be treated with the disdain they deserve.

    Richard

    PS Senator Inhofe is very informed concerning the science of climate change. He certainly both knows and understands much more than people who post on warmist web sites such as SS and RC.

  44. I can still vividly remember the Markey interview I saw last winter on CNBC where he stated that we have to build more wind/solar so that we can get of of foreign oil. That’s a shockingly disinformative and ignorant statement from the former Chairman of a House energy committee. Oil is only used to create a percent or two of US electricity, and building solar/wind will do nothing to get our country off of foreign oil. Yet this is a very common statement made by the warmers and environmentalists.

  45. This may make for interesting theater, but it’s a pointless exercise. High-ranking politicians discussing hard climate science as if they speak with any real authority on the subject? What’s next? A couple of senators debating lung cancer? A pair of city council members arguing about quantum mechanics? From the statements I’ve read, Inhofe’s knowledge of climate science is roughly equal to my cocker spaniel’s knowledge of astrophysics, and Markey–good progressive though he is–can’t be too much further ahead. How about, say, Kevin Trenberth vs. Joe Bastardi? Or James Hansen vs. Anthony Watts? Now *those* I’d buy tickets for.

  46. I go to Scripps in La Jolla quite often just to walk our dog. There are beautiful trails above the Pacific Ocean there. My wife and I met a scientist who is very involved in the study of “climate change”. I have no science background. This young man was a PHD scientist in the field of climate. He was taken back when I said I did not accept the veracity of CAGW. A debate ensued.
    I won handidly, which was easy to tell by his red face and rapid breathing.

    First of all I did not let him use the term “climate change”. I made the debate about CAGW. I did not debate the GHE of CO2. I debated the feedbacks and the known benefits of CO2 verses the projected, never to be found disaster predictions, yet another case of CO2 causes large frogs, small frogs, bees to vanish etc; the latest disater of the week CO2 fantasy. I quickly shot down the increasing storms, floods droughts senario, with facts. I asked him what would happen to the world if today, all of a sudden, the world required 10% percent to 15 % more land and water to grow the same amount of food? He admitted millions would die and war would be a likely outcome. I explained the null hypothesis to him and outlined the many reasons, (such as crosspatch mentioned above) that we have experienced nothing ourside of normal temperature fluctations in the last 2000 years. I referenced climate audit and the Wegman report along with what the NAS said about Mann’s HS. Finaly he told me that I was hopeless, I just had an answer for everything he said. I suggested he think about that fact. Finaly he told me that his family depended on grants and people like me were a threat to his funding (really)

    One does not need to be a scientist to debate CAGW with a scientist.

  47. David:

    At December 13, 2011 at 5:47 am.

    Well said!

    Your post is a full rebuttal of the trolls posting excuses for their trying to prevent and/or demean the proposed and much-needed debate.

    Richard

  48. Neapolitan:

    Your post at December 13, 2011 at 5:36 am is an illogical rant. It says in full:

    “This may make for interesting theater, but it’s a pointless exercise. High-ranking politicians discussing hard climate science as if they speak with any real authority on the subject? What’s next? A couple of senators debating lung cancer? A pair of city council members arguing about quantum mechanics? From the statements I’ve read, Inhofe’s knowledge of climate science is roughly equal to my cocker spaniel’s knowledge of astrophysics, and Markey–good progressive though he is–can’t be too much further ahead. How about, say, Kevin Trenberth vs. Joe Bastardi? Or James Hansen vs. Anthony Watts? Now *those* I’d buy tickets for.”

    A “pointless exercise”? Are you mad?
    The two politicians are involved in deciding whether or not to take actions which would harm economies across the entire world, damage energy security in their own country, and kill billions of people in the poorest parts of the world. But you say it is a “pointless exercise” for them to debate before their electorate their knowledge and understanding of the reasons for taking those actions.

    There is this thing called ‘democracy’. You need to find out about it.

    And, although it seems to have escaped you, politicians did discuss lung cancer and have passed laws as a result. Also, if city councillors want to discuss quantum mechanics they have a right to do it, but I know of none who have any reason to want to.

    Your suggestion that Trenberth and Hansen would discuss climate science with knowledgeable sceptics of their views is a ridiculous ‘red herring’. I feel sure you presented it because you know they do anything possible to avoid such debate.

    And your smear of Senator Inhofe is very misplaced. The Senator has great knowledge and understanding of the issues of AGW that is of similar kind to that displayed by ‘David’ in his post (at December 13, 2011 at 5:47 am and immediately following yours). Please note that I do not state this fact about Senator Inhofe as a matter of political support: he is a right-wing American Republican and I am a left-wing British socialist.

    Richard

  49. Cynical scientist says:
    December 12, 2011 at 10:15 pm
    Personally I can live with being called a `denier’. But if people start calling me a republican, I’ll probably have to shoot myself.

    Cynical, if you vote democrat rather than republican in the upcoming election, then you are part of the problem, not part of the solution. There is no better topic than global warming that separates Repubs from Dems. Dems are nearly 100% for instituting CAGW solutions (taxes and eliminating fossil fuels) and Repubs nearly 100% against.

  50. Alexander Feht says:
    December 12, 2011 at 10:27 pm

    davidmhoffer says:
    December 12, 2011 at 9:58 pm
    Inhofe could recruit…Willis?

    Nah, Inhofe doesn’t inhale, while Willis, I believe, wouldn’t work for a heartless snob who doesn’t pick up young and healthy hitchhikers unwilling to earn enough money to buy a used car.
    ==========================================================

    ahahahahaha!!!! Beautiful! In reality Jim Inhofe would likely turn to Mark Moreno…..

  51. pat says:
    December 12, 2011 at 10:39 pm
    This is unlikely. Anyone who has paid attention to Markey knows that he is an ignorant dolt. He hardly knows even the latest AGW talking points, much less real facts. He is a pompous fool that relies upon media to cover for his mistakes.

    I have the misfortune to live in Congressman Malarkey’s district. What Pat says is correct. If such a debate were to happen, Malarkey would simply resort to the usual Alarmist’s Argument from Authority (“99% of scientists say. . .”), ad hominems (“The skeptics are all shills for the coal and oil industries”), and faux climatology (“Look at all the tornados, floods, and hurricanes”).

    But I’ll bet Malarkey will never show up.

  52. “High-ranking politicians discussing hard climate science as if they speak with any real authority on the subject? What’s next?” ahem….Al Gore….

  53. partisans – time to parteh!
    this wwf spectacular will be a rip roaring flame throwing tire screaming jello wrestling expensive frign joke on you bread and circus junkies (popcorn, to the post modern effete).
    what a stupendous (accent on the stup) opportunity for sweeping generalizations and snarly semiotics so beloved by the pseudointellectuals in pursuit of punditries.
    nobody can win, gentlemen.
    you will lose.

  54. Markey will get cold feet at the last moment and withdraw. He doesn’t know the difference between an atom and a molecule.

  55. Lonnie E. Schubert says:
    December 13, 2011 at 5:47 am

    “I don’t like Nader. In my opinion he is responsible for more pain and suffering than any other human in history.”

    On the other hand, if it wasn’t for Nader we would’ve had 4-8 years of Gore.

    Carbon taxes, assorted other taxes, industry killing regulations….

  56. Not so fast. Don’t forget that 75 out of 77 scientists once agreed that man has some effect on climate, and Markey will no doubt employ that bomb shell of an argument. There is also the fact that small elite groups at many prestigious scientific organizations have put forth their opinions agreeing with the 2007 IPCC Summary For Policymakers from the 4AR. These two arguments alone will be devastatingly difficult for Inhofe to fight against. The coup de grace will be the iron clad argument that, even if we don’t know for sure the extent of man’s effect on climate, we need to act now before it is too late.
    If I were Inhofe, I’d be quaking in my boots. sarc/off

  57. At 5:47 AM on 13 December, David recounts how one day he’d set out to walk his dog and wound up pooper-scooper-ing “a PHD scientist in the field of climate,” finishing up:

    Finally he told me that his family depended on grants and people like me were a threat to his funding (really)

    One does not need to be a scientist to debate CAGW with a scientist.

    Er, David, just what gives you to think that you were debating a scientist and not simply an academically credentialed rent-seeking professional parasite battening on the public dole?

  58. So we get to watch two people who don’t know what they’re talking about pretend otherwise? Great, should be just like a regular political debate.

  59. Alcheson says:
    December 13, 2011 at 6:57 am

    Cynical, if you vote democrat rather than republican in the upcoming election, then you are part of the problem, not part of the solution.

    I’ve got an idea. Instead of turning this into a right vs left thing, let’s turn it into a “change is necessary” thing. I propose some very simple rules for the upcoming election that are party agnostic. If one of the candidates is an incumbent and has served in that position for 8 or more years, vote for the other candidate. If one of the candidates is an incumbent and has served in that position for less than 6 more years, the next term would vote not carry that candidate much past 8 years, and you prefer that candidate – feel free to vote him/her in for their last term (or not). If neither candidate is an incumbent, vote your conscience.

    What we really need is to fire them all. Both parties, ignore parties. Fire. Them. All.

  60. Tucci78 says:
    December 13, 2011 at 12:51 pm
    At 5:47 AM on 13 December, David recounts how one day he’d set out to walk his dog and wound up pooper-scooper-ing “a PHD scientist in the field of climate,” finishing up:
    Finally he told me that his family depended on grants and people like me were a threat to his funding (really)
    One does not need to be a scientist to debate CAGW with a scientist.
    Er, David, just what gives you to think that you were debating a scientist and not simply an academically credentialed rent-seeking professional parasite battening on the public dole? e

    Tucci, I am fairly straightforward, but that trait “with out civility is like a surgeons knife, effective, but unpleasent.” When the young man made this statement I informed him that this was in no way cogent to our debate and I wished him and his family well.

    Richard, thank you for your comments and I always appreciate your comments in general. My daughter in law is graduating from Oxford and thinks my CAGW views are right wing fox news propaganda, so if you ever get that way I would love to have you talk to her. (-; By the way I am fairly conservative, in a classic liberal sense, yet I bet we could rationally discuss politics and social theory. A common quote is “East is East, and West is West, and never shall the twain meet”, but the second 1/2 is seldom quoted, “when a wise man of the east meets a wise man of the west, then the twain can meet” I am perhaps persumptous to place myself in that category.

  61. I have to agree with several of the posters here… almost all, if not all, of the republicans are simply god awful, and I truly mean that. However, the worst part is that every single democrat out there is at least an order of magnitude WORSE then the very worst republican!!! In every single election in my adult life it has been get drunk and go vote the the lesser of two evils time. I’m not kidding! The dems are a bunch of pathological crooks that couldn’t resist stealing and lying if their lives depended on it. Democrats gave us Barney Frank, (on the way out, thank you lord!) Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, Maxine Waters, Barbara Boxer, Barrack Obama, the list goes on and on… What I can’t figure out is why do supposedly reasonably informed intelligent people keep voting for those folks… Ok, Ok, I have been to California and it is fairly obvious that being a “healthy” crunchy granola type rots your brain, but please!!!

    • At 4:47 PM on 13 December, Steve in SC writes:

      I propose that we dispense with this debate silliness and go straight to a duel.

      Of what sort? Put pistols in the hands of these Gang That Couldn’t Shoot Straight clowns, and we’re guaranteed to see magazines emptied in every direction but at each other.

      I propose nuclear hand grenades at ten paces on the Mall.

      I call “dibs!” on the bunker in Bladensburg.

  62. Steve in SC says:
    December 13, 2011 at 4:47 pm
    I propose that we dispense with this debate silliness and go straight to a duel.

    Good idea. I’ll bet the straight-shooter from Oklahoma will take out the weasel from Massachusetts with no trouble.

    /Mr Lynn

  63. Otter says:
    December 13, 2011 at 2:23 am

    I have mixed feelings about this. I would hope Inhofe does some serious boning up, and have himself asked a ton of tough questions, between now and any debate. One bad stumble and we’ll have it shoved in our faces for years to come.

    That’s my concern too, and one of the reasons I favor a long-format debate: so the debate can’t be won with false claims or lost with a flub or two. It’s also the reason a favor a debate between scientists or between well-prepared amateurs like Monckton and Morano–not between politicians like Inhofe, who can’t be aware of all the ins-and-outs of the issue, and who might get blindsided. I worry too that Markey might come prepped with impressive looking graphics, and win points for flashiness. We’ve seen how John Abraham swept believers off their feet with his one-shot presentation:

    Ian Says:
    Abraham’s seemingly wanton misrepresentations are a classic of the genre, and the lavishly uncritical reception by other AGW proponents is, in my view, worthy to be highlighted for the intellectual dishonesty that it is.

    @R.S. Courtney: I shouldn’t have restricted my debate-recommendation only to scientists in a private venue, in my first post. I immediately followed it with a second-thought recommendation for an ongoing series of televised debates among parties expert in the issue. I wrote, in part:

    Another sort of debate would be a half-hour of national TV per week … The presenters needn’t be scientists, but good debaters who are up on their topic. This should have been started years ago–heck, decades ago. “The debate is over”? What a laugh. It never began.

    Incidentally, I’ve made about 2000 posts here over the past 3.5 years. I was the first commenter out of the gate here on Climategate.

  64. Roger Knights:

    At December 13, 2011 at 10:53 pm you say to me:

    “I shouldn’t have restricted my debate-recommendation only to scientists in a private venue, in my first post. I immediately followed it with a second-thought recommendation for an ongoing series of televised debates among parties expert in the issue.”

    Your suggested alternatives to the proposed Markey vs. Inhofe debate are a variant of the warmist ploy of claiming only ‘climate scientists’ should be heard. The assertion that only certain people have views that should be heard is pure fascism, and I oppose it whenever it appears whatever its source.

    Having said that, I ask you to please clarify two points pertaining to your suggested alternatives to the Markey vs. Inhofe debate.

    Firstly, what possible purpose would be served by a series of televised debates between ‘experts’?
    Only people with an existing interest in AGW would tune-in to watch it and not get bored. And ‘experts’ (i.e. us) already have such debates on the web. But millions of others would tune-in and be interested to watch the proposed Markey vs. Inhofe debate.

    Secondly, please explain why you want to deprive people of an opportunity to assess their elected legislators?
    As I said to Neapolitan in my above post at December 13, 2011 at 6:30 am;
    “The two politicians are involved in deciding whether or not to take actions which would harm economies across the entire world, damage energy security in their own country, and kill billions of people in the poorest parts of the world. But you say it is a “pointless exercise” for them to debate before their electorate their knowledge and understanding of the reasons for taking those actions.

    There is this thing called ‘democracy’. You need to find out about it.”

    Richard

  65. Richard S Courtney says:
    December 14, 2011 at 1:43 am
    Roger Knights:

    At December 13, 2011 at 10:53 pm you say to me:

    “I shouldn’t have restricted my debate-recommendation only to scientists in a private venue, in my first post. I immediately followed it with a second-thought recommendation for an ongoing series of televised debates among parties expert in the issue.”

    Your suggested alternatives to the proposed Markey vs. Inhofe debate are a variant of the warmist ploy of claiming only ‘climate scientists’ should be heard. The assertion that only certain people have views that should be heard is pure fascism, and I oppose it whenever it appears whatever its source.

    That depends on the meaning of “heard.” The warmists are suggesting that skeptics shouldn’t be quoted in media reporting on climate-related matters, and similarly that they shouldn’t be invited to speak on campus or be interviewed on radio or TV, or be given space for opinion-eds, because they aren’t climatologists—or if they are, because they are in a distinct minority, plus they have dodgy “links.” That’s authoritarian—at a minimum.

    (Warmists also have been following a strategy of avoiding debate with skeptics, as recommended by Fenton (iirc), in order to avoid giving credibility to the skeptical side.)

    I’m not saying anything authoritarian. I favor lots of viewpoints being exchanged in the media, and lots of debates being held, as a general rule. I’ve relished the debates that have been held so far in the UK, where mostly non-scientist experts-in-the-topic like Monckton and Lawson have performed impressively.

    My objection in this case is different from the warmists’ rationale. I didn’t imply that Inhofe or (Murkey) shouldn’t be heard in this debate because he’s wrong and will mislead the innocent, which is the “principled” position of some warmists. My objection is prudential rather than principled. I worry that the waters might be muddied, and our side might be made to look bad, in a nationwide short-form debate viewed by novices where our side’s champion doesn’t know all the ins and outs of the issue and therefore doesn’t have a ready reply to every trick up his opponent’s sleeve. Inhofe must have a half-dozen topics that occupy as much of his time as CAWG. He’s stretched too thin.

    Having said that, I ask you to please clarify two points pertaining to your suggested alternatives to the Markey vs. Inhofe debate.

    Firstly, what possible purpose would be served by a series of televised debates between ‘experts’? Only people with an existing interest in AGW would tune-in to watch it and not get bored. And ‘experts’ (i.e. us) already have such debates on the web.

    The way to “turn the herd” is to turn the opinion leaders. The opinion leaders on this topic are scientists and scientific journalists. The opinion leaders don’t follow the debates on the Internet—it’s a firehose. Or if they do, they assume that RC and SkS have all the answers. The average opinion leader is actually usually a timid fellow on inflammable issues like CAWG—he’ll look for cover before breaking ranks with conventional wisdom and the dicta of dozens of scientific associations.

    A long-form scientific debate before panels of retired scientists (from outside climatology) would provide this cover if, after it concluded, the judging panels issued either a skeptical evaluation of CAWGism, or if their individual opinions significantly shifted toward skepticism from their initial presumptions. (When I posted fuller presentations of my ideal-debate-format, years ago here, I went into more detail about the advantages of this format.) The opinion leaders wouldn’t need to watch these debates themselves. Such panels would have the ability to see through smoke-and-mirrors warmist tactics, and the objective mindset that would be unmoved by attempts to pluck at their heartstrings with polar bears and so forth.

    But millions of others would tune-in and be interested to watch the proposed Markey vs. Inhofe debate.

    I worry that it’s a lose/lose poposition. If a massive shift toward skepticism occurred, the warmists would claim it was all due to trickery by our side, and anyway that the manipulable, short-sighted, selfish opinions of Joe Sixpack shouldn’t be given weight in a debate about science, any more than his opinions about the age of the earth, etc. OTOH, if a big swing toward warmism occurred, the warmists would say, “For goodness sake, won’t you accept that NOW the debate is over?”

    Secondly, please explain why you want to deprive people of an opportunity to assess their elected legislators?
    As I said to Neapolitan in my above post at December 13, 2011 at 6:30 am;

    “The two politicians are involved in deciding whether or not to take actions which would harm economies across the entire world, damage energy security in their own country, and kill billions of people in the poorest parts of the world. But you say it is a “pointless exercise” for them to debate before their electorate their knowledge and understanding of the reasons for taking those actions.

    But the populace can’t reliably “assess their elected legislators” in a short-form (90-minute, one-shot) debate on a topic with so many facets and so much ingrained misinformation. (And it’s only two legislators who’d be involved, representing less than 1% of the population.) The two sides can lob sound-bites and graphics at each other, probably satisfyling the partisans in their respective corners, but likely leaving most of the audience more confused or than ever. To really unmask the other side’s false claims is a long job—especially since most such claims can’t yet be authoritatively judged as being false, but rather only as more or less probable or improbable.

    There is this thing called ‘democracy’. You need to find out about it.”

    I favor the democratization of science and scientific discourse. I’d like to see journals move online, with a great diminution in the blocking and “puffing” abilities of gatekeepers and peer reviewers. And I’d like to see the government subsidize the online posting of the contents of all scientific journals, to eliminate paywalls—something I repeatedly posted about a few days ago, in a thread started by Robert Brown.

    In line with that democratic attitude, I think there should be nationwide televised debates on the matter. I think the public deserves to be involved. It’s scandalous that even PBS and other non-commercial broadcasters haven’t been scheduling such debates regularly over the past 20 years. It’s even more scandalous that this omission hasn’t been due to foolishness, but to knavery: It was a conscious decision, meant to marginalize skepticism.

    But the debaters or presenters in such a series should not be politicians, but persons with a really in-depth knowledge of the subject. That doesn’t exclude any viewpoint, because there are lots of skeptical scientists (mostly outside climatology) and lots of competent skeptical amateurs.

    If such a nationwide forum already existed, then I wouldn’t object to giving politicians one ring of the circus, in addition.

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