Editorial: ‘Hansen is simply wrong’ and ‘his hypothesis is a complete and abject failure’

UPDATE: 9:55 AM  PDT 8/8/12 A graph of Palmer Drought Severity Index -vs- GISTEMP data has been added from Dr. Michaels. Looks like another “GISS miss”.

There’s a lot of blowback against James Hansen’s recent (non tested) PNAS paper, trying to link weather and climate, covered here on WUWT. Even NOAA scientist Dr. Martin Hoerling is panning it. This from The NYT:

Dr. Hoerling contended that Dr. Hansen’s new paper confuses drought, caused primarily by a lack of rainfall, with heat waves.

“This isn’t a serious science paper,” Dr. Hoerling said. “It’s mainly about perception, as indicated by the paper’s title. Perception is not a science.”

Here’s a short editorial by Dr. Pat Michaels, former Virginia State Climatologist:

Hansen is simply wrong.

Hansen claims that global warming is associated with increased drought in the US. This is a testable hypothesis which he chose not to test, and, because PNAS isn’t truly peer-reviewed for Members like him, no one tested it for him.

I have [examined] drought data [that] are from NCDC, and the temperature record is Hansen’s own. His hypothesis is a complete and abject failure.

[UPDATE: Graph added 9:55AM PDT 8/8/12:]

Scatterplot graph of U.S. Palmer Drought Severity Index (PDSI) -vs- NASA GISS  temperature data. If there was a correlation between temperature and droughts in the USA, the dots would align along a line from upper left to lower right (or mirrored LL to UR, depending on the correlation). But, as the plot shows, there is no correlation between drought & temperature of any kind.

It is hard for me to believe that Hansen did not know this, and yet he went ahead with his paper. This must be true because Hansen has published papers on the Palmer Drought Index and future warming. Administrator Bolden is obligated to investigate the ethics of publishing a paper that the Director of the GISS laboratory knew could not pass the most simple test of hypothesis.

The following excerpt from his PNAS paper tells you everything you need to know about James Hansen’s paper:

“Although we were motivated in this research by an objective to expose effects of human-made global warming as soon as possible…”

- Dr. Patrick Michaels, via email

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

On the same day of one of NASA’s proudest achievements, the landing of the rover Curiosity on Mars, Dr. James Hansen and PNAS went on a media blitz to push a paper that is so technically flawed, that if it were a spacecraft, it would surely have burned up in the atmosphere due to a faulty understanding of that atmosphere. Unfortunately, as Dr. Michaels points out, it was never tested and Dr. Hoerling points out that it “isn’t science, but perception”. NASA used to deal in facts and testing, because if they didn’t, people died. Now NASA’s image has been tarnished on the day of one of its greatest triumphs by a rogue scientist with unsupportable ideas and a global media megaphone.

I have in the past, called for Dr. Hansen’s firing after his arrest episodes where he acts as  an activist and protestor. I repeat that call today and will continue to do so. NASA administrator Bolden, fire Dr. James Hansen. He is an embarrassment to NASA, and an embarrassment to science. Show him the door.

Many of your greatest engineers, scientists, and astronauts agree that Dr. Hansen has overstepped his bounds with his advocacy, as I repost below. – Anthony

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

From this WUWT story:

Joint letter to NASA Administrator blasts agency’s policy of ignoring empirical evidence

HOUSTON, TX – April 10, 2012.

49 former NASA scientists and astronauts sent a letter to NASA Administrator Charles Bolden last week admonishing the agency for it’s role in advocating a high degree of certainty that man-made CO2 is a major cause of climate change while neglecting empirical evidence that calls the theory into question.

The group, which includes seven Apollo astronauts and two former directors of NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston, are dismayed over the failure of NASA, and specifically the Goddard Institute For Space Studies (GISS), to make an objective assessment of all available scientific data on climate change. They charge that NASA is relying too heavily on complex climate models that have proven scientifically inadequate in predicting climate only one or two decades in advance.

H. Leighton Steward, chairman of the non-profit Plants Need CO2, noted that many of the former NASA scientists harbored doubts about the significance of the C02-climate change theory and have concerns over NASA’s advocacy on the issue. While making presentations in late 2011 to many of the signatories of the letter, Steward realized that the NASA scientists should make their concerns known to NASA and the GISS.

“These American heroes – the astronauts that took to space and the scientists and engineers that put them there – are simply stating their concern over NASA’s extreme advocacy for an unproven theory,” said Leighton Steward. “There’s a concern that if it turns out that CO2 is not a major cause of climate change, NASA will have put the reputation of NASA, NASA’s current and former employees, and even the very reputation of science itself at risk of public ridicule and distrust.”

Select excerpts from the letter:

  • “The unbridled advocacy of CO2 being the major cause of climate change is unbecoming of NASA’s history of making an objective assessment of all available scientific data prior to making decisions or public statements.”
  • “We believe the claims by NASA and GISS, that man-made carbon dioxide is having a catastrophic impact on global climate change are not substantiated.”
  • “We request that NASA refrain from including unproven and unsupported remarks in its future releases and websites on this subject.”

The full text of the letter:

March 28, 2012

The Honorable Charles Bolden, Jr.
NASA Administrator
NASA Headquarters
Washington, D.C. 20546-0001

Dear Charlie,

We, the undersigned, respectfully request that NASA and the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) refrain from including unproven remarks in public releases and websites. We believe the claims by NASA and GISS, that man-made carbon dioxide is having a catastrophic impact on global climate change are not substantiated, especially when considering thousands of years of empirical data. With hundreds of well-known climate scientists and tens of thousands of other scientists publicly declaring their disbelief in the catastrophic forecasts, coming particularly from the GISS leadership, it is clear that the science is NOT settled.

The unbridled advocacy of CO2 being the major cause of climate change is unbecoming of NASA’s history of making an objective assessment of all available scientific data prior to making decisions or public statements.

As former NASA employees, we feel that NASA’s advocacy of an extreme position, prior to a thorough study of the possible overwhelming impact of natural climate drivers is inappropriate. We request that NASA refrain from including unproven and unsupported remarks in its future releases and websites on this subject. At risk is damage to the exemplary reputation of NASA, NASA’s current or former scientists and employees, and even the reputation of science itself.

For additional information regarding the science behind our concern, we recommend that you contact Harrison Schmitt or Walter Cunningham, or others they can recommend to you.

Thank you for considering this request.

Sincerely,

(Attached signatures)

CC: Mr. John Grunsfeld, Associate Administrator for Science

CC: Ass Mr. Chris Scolese, Director, Goddard Space Flight Center

Ref: Letter to NASA Administrator Charles Bolden, dated 3-26-12, regarding a request for NASA to refrain from making unsubstantiated claims that human produced CO2 is having a catastrophic impact on climate change.

/s/ Jack Barneburg, Jack – JSC, Space Shuttle Structures, Engineering Directorate, 34 years

/s/ Larry Bell – JSC, Mgr. Crew Systems Div., Engineering Directorate, 32 years

/s/ Dr. Donald Bogard – JSC, Principal Investigator, Science Directorate, 41 years

/s/ Jerry C. Bostick – JSC, Principal Investigator, Science Directorate, 23 years

/s/ Dr. Phillip K. Chapman – JSC, Scientist – astronaut, 5 years

/s/ Michael F. Collins, JSC, Chief, Flight Design and Dynamics Division, MOD, 41 years

/s/ Dr. Kenneth Cox – JSC, Chief Flight Dynamics Div., Engr. Directorate, 40 years

/s/ Walter Cunningham – JSC, Astronaut, Apollo 7, 8 years

/s/ Dr. Donald M. Curry – JSC, Mgr. Shuttle Leading Edge, Thermal Protection Sys., Engr. Dir., 44 years

/s/ Leroy Day – Hdq. Deputy Director, Space Shuttle Program, 19 years

/s/ Dr. Henry P. Decell, Jr. – JSC, Chief, Theory & Analysis Office, 5 years

/s/Charles F. Deiterich – JSC, Mgr., Flight Operations Integration, MOD, 30 years

/s/ Dr. Harold Doiron – JSC, Chairman, Shuttle Pogo Prevention Panel, 16 years

/s/ Charles Duke – JSC, Astronaut, Apollo 16, 10 years

/s/ Anita Gale

/s/ Grace Germany – JSC, Program Analyst, 35 years

/s/ Ed Gibson – JSC, Astronaut Skylab 4, 14 years

/s/ Richard Gordon – JSC, Astronaut, Gemini Xi, Apollo 12, 9 years

/s/ Gerald C. Griffin – JSC, Apollo Flight Director, and Director of Johnson Space Center, 22 years

/s/ Thomas M. Grubbs – JSC, Chief, Aircraft Maintenance and Engineering Branch, 31 years

/s/ Thomas J. Harmon

/s/ David W. Heath – JSC, Reentry Specialist, MOD, 30 years

/s/ Miguel A. Hernandez, Jr. – JSC, Flight crew training and operations, 3 years

/s/ James R. Roundtree – JSC Branch Chief, 26 years

/s/ Enoch Jones – JSC, Mgr. SE&I, Shuttle Program Office, 26 years

/s/ Dr. Joseph Kerwin – JSC, Astronaut, Skylab 2, Director of Space and Life Sciences, 22 years

/s/ Jack Knight – JSC, Chief, Advanced Operations and Development Division, MOD, 40 years

/s/ Dr. Christopher C. Kraft – JSC, Apollo Flight Director and Director of Johnson Space Center, 24 years

/s/ Paul C. Kramer – JSC, Ass.t for Planning Aeroscience and Flight Mechanics Div., Egr. Dir., 34 years

/s/ Alex (Skip) Larsen

/s/ Dr. Lubert Leger – JSC, Ass’t. Chief Materials Division, Engr. Directorate, 30 years

/s/ Dr. Humbolt C. Mandell – JSC, Mgr. Shuttle Program Control and Advance Programs, 40 years

/s/ Donald K. McCutchen – JSC, Project Engineer – Space Shuttle and ISS Program Offices, 33 years

/s/ Thomas L. (Tom) Moser – Hdq. Dep. Assoc. Admin. & Director, Space Station Program, 28 years

/s/ Dr. George Mueller – Hdq., Assoc. Adm., Office of Space Flight, 6 years

/s/ Tom Ohesorge

/s/ James Peacock – JSC, Apollo and Shuttle Program Office, 21 years

/s/ Richard McFarland – JSC, Mgr. Motion Simulators, 28 years

/s/ Joseph E. Rogers – JSC, Chief, Structures and Dynamics Branch, Engr. Directorate,40 years

/s/ Bernard J. Rosenbaum – JSC, Chief Engineer, Propulsion and Power Division, Engr. Dir., 48 years

/s/ Dr. Harrison (Jack) Schmitt – JSC, Astronaut Apollo 17, 10 years

/s/ Gerard C. Shows – JSC, Asst. Manager, Quality Assurance, 30 years

/s/ Kenneth Suit – JSC, Ass’t Mgr., Systems Integration, Space Shuttle, 37 years

/s/ Robert F. Thompson – JSC, Program Manager, Space Shuttle, 44 years/s/ Frank Van Renesselaer – Hdq., Mgr. Shuttle Solid Rocket Boosters, 15 years

/s/ Dr. James Visentine – JSC Materials Branch, Engineering Directorate, 30 years

/s/ Manfred (Dutch) von Ehrenfried – JSC, Flight Controller; Mercury, Gemini & Apollo, MOD, 10 years

/s/ George Weisskopf – JSC, Avionics Systems Division, Engineering Dir., 40 years

/s/ Al Worden – JSC, Astronaut, Apollo 15, 9 years

/s/ Thomas (Tom) Wysmuller – JSC, Meteorologist, 5 years

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147 Responses to Editorial: ‘Hansen is simply wrong’ and ‘his hypothesis is a complete and abject failure’

  1. jmotivator says:

    How can Hansen keep his job?

  2. James says:

    Anthony, While Dr Hansen has many flaws, I don’t believe wearing “rouge” is one of them.

    REPLY: Typo fixed, Anthony

  3. Michael Larkin says:

    “a rouge scientist”–was that an unintentional slip, or a Freudian one? Redness is associated with the political left as well as heat, after all ;-).

  4. Matt says:

    Anthony,

    You said “Dr. James Hansen and PNAS went on a media blitz to push a paper that is so technically flawed, that if it were a spacecraft, it would surely have burned up in the atmosphere due to a faulty understanding of that atmosphere.”.

    This is incorrect. It would have blown up on the launch pad.

  5. Skiphil says:

    He is a rogue scientist behaving as a rouge activist.

  6. Theo Goodwin says:

    I think Hansen should be known as The Rouge Scientist. Though his self image is probably closer to that of Col. Kurtz from Apocalypse Now/Heart of Darkness.

  7. Skiphil says:

    [Pat Michaels]: “Administrator Bolden is obligated to investigate the ethics of publishing a paper that the Director of the GISS laboratory knew could not pass the most simple test of hypothesis.” [my emphasis]

    And how about the ethics of trying to hijack all the publicity for the Mars Curiosity mission right now to try to associate James Hansen’s NASA GISS with the great current success of the Mars mission?? Can anyone imagine it was an accident that Hansen’s latest PR b.s. coincides with all the focus upon NASA due to the Mars mission???? Govt officials and public figures are highly highly attuned to media priorities and waves of interest. If anyone can believe that Hansen did not time his latest to coincide with the Mars mission then Bernie Madoff has some new hedge funds on offer for that sucker….

    Hansen is a disgrace to science and an embarrassment to NASA.

  8. Tom J says:

    I believe Hansen’s paper relates to the Obama administration’s desire for the some ‘shovel ready’ stimulus projects. This paper’s shovel ready alright.

  9. Are Hanson’s bosses that afraid of him? Are real scientists that afraid of questioning Hanson’s academic ethics?

  10. Frank K. says:

    jmotivator says:
    August 7, 2012 at 8:13 pm

    “How can Hansen keep his job?”

    I’ve been wondering “What IS his job??” Clearly his six figure NASA salary is being earned by writing large numbers of politically-motivated “science” papers. Check out the acknowledgements in his last PNAS paper – seems like he’s getting money from a number of foundations. What does he fill out on his time card (if he fills one out at all)?

    It is NO secret, though, that climate science is getting millions of dollars in government money (including stimulus funds – remember the stimulus???)…

  11. philincalifornia says:

    It’s probably worth taking a step back here and looking at the bigger picture.

    We’ve come a long way from “the evidence for AGW/CAGW is overwhelming”. Now that real scientists have got involved and have asked what the overwhelming evidence is, and have been answered with a resounding silence (other than b*llsh!t), we now have warmista-in-chief having to flail away to try to concoct some “evidence” ….. and failing.

    This is the state-of-the-art in the purported overwhelming evidence category. Add this zero to the other zeroes.

  12. Keith Pearson, formerly bikermailman, Anonymous no longer says:

    Kudos to these men and women for standing up. However, this letter *is* being sent to Mr. “Muslim outreach and making muslims feel good about their heritage is our main purpose” Bolden. Would that I were wrong, but I’m guessing these people have simply placed themselves upon a list, followup from the IRS (Internal Revenue Service, tax agency for those outside the US).

  13. AndyG55 says:

    Matt says:
    This is incorrect. It would have blown up on the launch pad.

    This is also incorrect. It would have fallen apart as soon as they tried to move it to the launch pad.

    IF they were ever able to build it in the first place. Doggie doo !!!

  14. Hoser says:

    It’s hard to ignore that impressive list of signatures, except they can. Sickening.

    That said, they can try to ignore reality, but it will all blow up in their faces. Just because you’ve gotten away with something in the past, doesn’t mean you’ll continue to do so. That was the logic flaw leading to the Challenger disaster. Hansen seems to have that flaw and many others in spades.

    [Moderator's Note: "... hard to ignore..." except they did. Please keep in mnd that the letter and list of signatories Anthony has cited date from March and is not a current response. Harrison Schmitt and his colleagues made their appeal to Administrator Bolden less than six months ago. Draw your own conclusions. -REP]

  15. Ally E. says:

    NASA. Please. Fire Hansen. He’s not good for you, he’s not good for anybody. I always get the feeling you send him out to play in the street because he’s so annoying to have in the office. Continuing to ignore his outrangeous behaviour and disgracefully bad “science” shows you administratively as well as intellectually and scientifically in a poor light. I just can’t take you guys seriously anymore.

  16. Policy Guy says:

    It looks as if Mr Hansen has taken on the role of offering himself as a human sacrifice to the Obama campaign. His career is over, he has his government assured pension, his “friends and audience” will always lawed him. What has he to lose? Might as well go out in a flame of contestable glory to try to win one for the gipper. Kinda like a certain Nevada Senator who can say anything he wants because he won’t run again.

    What a mess. Lets hear it for…what are they now saying? Mr Foreign Exchange Student from Indonesia, Mr. Barry S? No wonder his college records cannot be released.

  17. Matt says:

    @AndyG55.

    No, it would have gotten to the launch pad just fine. They would go through the count down and when they got to zero there would be a blinging flash of light and billows of smoke. When the smoke cleared, what originally appeared to be a magnificent spacecraft would slowly fall over revealing itself to be nothing but a cardboard cut-out.

  18. Maus says:

    Huh. It’s almost like science ought rest its credentials on the replication of claimed empirical results rather than spell-checking in peer review or nepotistic back-scratching in pal review.

    Nah, that’s just silly.

  19. Village Idiot says:

    “The fiend must be found! Are you ready? Light your torches and go!”

  20. Timbo says:

    From SteynOnline. The principle certainly could be applied to Dr Hansen.
    “All political lives,” said the British politician Enoch Powell many years ago, “unless they are cut off in midstream at a happy juncture, end in failure, because that is the nature of politics and of human affairs.”

  21. pat says:

    [SNIP: I'm more than half-tempted to agree, but this is conjecture and opinion. If you have a solid line of reasoning, present it, otherwise you are just practicing medicine without a license. Sorry. -REP]

  22. Peter Miller says:

    There is climate science practiced by the few and there is ‘climate science’ practiced by the many.

    Hansen is part of the many, obviously a man with an exceptionally large ego who believes his own written word to be the gospel truth, no matter how unsubstantiated it is.

    In any field of real science he would have long ago be shown the door for his shoddy, unfounded, but high profile utterings and publications.

    A sad case of delusion caused by a syndrome that has caused more misery on this planet than just about anything else: people in positions of responsibility and respect believing their own BS.

    The reason Hansen is still at NASA is very simple – his bosses, rightly or wrongly, believe he is a money magnet from government.

  23. hyperzombie says:

    To all the folks that think Hansen should be fired. Think about it.
    -He gets tons of press (way more than NOAA)
    - He put GISS on the map (if it wasn’t for Hansen and his stunts no one would care about the GISS temps)
    - He gets tons of funding for his dept. (will say and do anything for more press and funding)
    - He gives all his fellow dept. workers job security
    - He has no Ethics (good for government work)
    - Face it He is the King of the Scientificness “Grant Whores”

    Thought: Did he grow a beard so he doesn’t look like the “Homer Simpson of Climate Science”?

  24. Misanthrope says:

    Hansen does remind me, both visually and mentally, of a certain Colonel Klink from that series with Shultz as his memory loss(I know Nothing) sergeant. His behaviour demonstrates that more and more, every time he surfaces with another scaremongering routine, designed to influence the IPCC new report due next year(maybe). One must remind oneself that comedy comes in many forms. Hansen may be better suited to comedy, than science.

  25. AndrewmhardIng says:

    I would guess that the reason Hansen hasn’t been sacked, is because the top brass at NASA believe in AGW and to sack him, would make the world question this belief.
    Personally, I hope NASA keep him, if he continues to write nonsense sooner or later the world will come to realise that AGW is the fiction that most contributors to this website agree it is.

  26. jrinchart says:

    Michaels is simply wrong.

    “Hansen claims that global warming is associated with increased drought in the US.”

    No he doesn’t. In his paper Hansen writes about drougts in two places:

    “Some researchers suggest that high summer temperatures and drought in the United States in the 1930s can be accounted for by natural variability of sea surface temperature patterns (16, 17). Other researchers (18–20) have presented evidence that agricultural changes (plowing of the Great Plains) and crop failure in the 1930s contributed to changed surface albedo, aerosol (dust) production, high temperatures, and drying conditions.”

    and

    “With the temperature amplified by global warming and ubiquitous surface heating from elevated greenhouse gas amounts, extreme drought conditions can develop.”

    There’s nothing about “increased drought in the US” in the PNAS paper.

  27. Garry Stotel says:

    To burn up in the atmosphere first they would have to get there, and using perception is a guarantee they never ever would…

  28. Paul Deacon says:

    QUOTE: The following excerpt from his PNAS paper tells you everything you need to know about James Hansen’s paper:

    “Although we were motivated in this research by an objective to expose effects of human-made global warming as soon as possible…” UNQUOTE

    I would go further than that, Anthony, and say that the excerpt tells you everything you need to know about political confirmation bias in climate science generally.

  29. Shevva says:

    I am happy that NASA landed there buggy on Mars, although personally I think landing a man on the moon is harder and it’s been a long time since they did that, but as NASA constantly reinforce Hansens ego by allowing his eco-activist work that has zero scientific merit to be released with NASA headed paper, I’m cheering on the Chinese they plan on going back to the moon.

  30. Shevva says:

    @jrinchart says:
    August 7, 2012 at 11:23 pm

    So whats an ‘Extreme Summer Heat Event’ then, 24 feet of snow?

  31. Olaf Koenders says:

    If Hansen is to be fired, he should be made to return his salary for all the years he published rubbish. His pension should reflect his accuracy and, be similar to an ordinary pension. Maybe this would shake up all the other warmist crooks with their snouts in the trough..

  32. Should there be transparency as to the peer reviewers? I know there are pros and cons and that this question has been broached before, but those that give the green light to papers such as this one really need to be made as accountable as the author(s) themselves.

  33. cui bono says:

    NASA, Curiousity & Hansen:

    “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to heaven, we were all going direct the other way – in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only.”

  34. Allan MacRae says:

    Ladies and Gentlemen,

    I just turned 65, so I can now hand out official “pearls of wisdom”.

    First, Hansen with his nonsensical blathering is the best friend that climate skeptics could ask for.

    If Hansen did not exist, we’d have to invent him. Please consider this:

    Would you rather have someone with the intellect of a Richard Lindzen arguing against you?

    Next, never use an acronym like PNAS. It is just wrong.

  35. bill says:

    Michaels says: “PNAS isn’t truly peer-reviewed for Members like him” (ie Hansen). Thats an interesting comment, I wonder if anyone knows any more? Quite a few team papers have been published in PNAS if I recall. So do we have additions to the ‘peer-reviewed literature’ which have not been peer-reviewed after all, in any meaningful way? Does having achieved a certain level of eminence in your field mean your papers are not scrutinised (by PNAS reviewers) as lesser mortals’ might be? I often wondered why climate scientists chose to publish there, rather than in ‘proper’ climate science journals.

  36. Caleb says:

    I am happy to see people are becoming as fed up with Hansen as I was back in 2007.

    Today is August 8. It is exactly five years since Climate Audit announced it’s questioning of the “adjustments” Hansen made to the NASA GISS temperature record had forced Hansen to “readjust-the-adjustments.”

    http://climateaudit.org/2007/08/08/a-new-leaderboard-at-the-us-open/

    I heard about the posting via a web-link to the Toronto Star, and that was the day I discovered I wasn’t alone, and websites such as Steve McIntyre’s, “Climate Audit” existed. (It was through a comment on “Climate Audit” that I learned about WUWT, which back then was less than a year old, and still small.)

    The August 7 Climate Audit post got noted on Intapundit, and it likely was from there that Rush Limbaugh got the news and noted it on his show, which resulted in Climate Audit getting so many hits that its very next posting, on August 10, was “Sorry For The Loss Of Service.”

    My immediate response to awareness of Hansens “adjustments” was anger. I knew what Hansen was up to. Sometimes you don’t need Math; you don’t need to crunch the numbers; you don’t need to study obsolete computers nor understand the mystery of writing code.

    My fury at Hansen got me snipped. People informed me I did not know; I only “suspected.” People were quite kind to Hansen, giving him every opportunity to explain himself and, when Hansen refused, doing his explaining for him. Gently they said he was merely “mistaken,” or “prone to confirmation bias.” Where I wanted to smash the clam like a hammer, they put him under the slow-but-steady pressure a starfish uses, when it opens a clam without damaging the shell.

    Now here it is five long years later. It is August 8 once again. The clam is still clamming up.

    Now, however, I notice an increasing number of people are utterly fed up with Hansen. Comments that would have gotten me snipped in 2007 are everyday.

    Yet the clam is still clamming up.

    We seem to be arriving at a sort of “tipping point.” Either we tell-it-like-it-is, and remove the weed from the garden, or else we accept the weeds, and give up on the garden of science.

  37. Peter Hannan says:

    I’ve loved NASA since the sixties; in particular, my first experience of staying up late (at 12 years) was with my father, to see the landing of Apollo 11. That love, and respect, continues; I don’t have the expertise to critique J Hansen et al’s latest paper in detail, but certainly I’m worried by the fact that a paper in PNAS has the word ‘perception’ in its title and its focus; this is ‘post-modern’ ‘science’, which I would argue is not science as understood in the grand tradition of science. Post-modernism substitutes relativism and subjectivism for the scientific tradition of seeking (eventually) objective truth, and this is a grave menace. I suspect that many ‘climate scientists’ have been entrapped in this post-modernist discourse, and have felt (or made) themselves free of the crucial tests of experiment and observation which are essential in a Popperian view of science (or, the view of Richard Feynman). But any organisation is complex and multi-facetted. Let’s celebrate the amazing success of Curiosity and all its engineering and scientific contributions, recognising that in NASA there are many people who do understand science, and put themselves on the line of disproof (such as, oops, this $200 billion project crashed, as could have happened, but didn’t).

  38. I second your call to get Hansen fired. I remember Hansen’s former boss John Theon being reported here and speaking out at the Heartland conference.

    I originally believed Hansen… because until I looked I could not even imagine that Science could have become so crooked (the effective silencing of all opposing points of view).

    I seem to remember that you withdrew your original call to get Hansen fired, fairly soon… perhaps because you were not, at that point, ready to put your weight behind the words… but times have changed.

    In reality, Hansen was a bad scientist right from the start. His Venusian science was already compromising itself with data that needed to be hidden. There was never runaway warming on Venus, and a bit more attention to the evidence, as Harry Huffman has done, shows the Venusian CO2=warming is simply bad science.

    There is still a serious issue with an effective silencing of all opposing points of view, however, which I think will take a post-WUWT generation to deal with. You have much important groundwork to do here still, to restore lost integrity. But… Much stuff that is lambasted and declared OT and “pseudoscientific” here at WUWT, actually holds material that is perfectly scientifically valid, and is important for the future of science. Huffman and Graeff and Tallbloke are pointing the way at just the physical level of reality… The best scientists (Newton, Kepler, Einstein, Maxwell, Tesla, etc) have always been open to higher dimensions of reality.

  39. tango says:

    I think it is very sad that he looks to have lost the plot he should see a shrink urgently

  40. Jim D says:

    The paper is about extreme temperatures, not drought (which involves dry conditions). It barely mentions the word drought because Hansen is not looking at rainfall statistics, yet Michaels is blabbering about drought the whole time. Looks like a disconnect. Did he read the paper? Perhaps he agrees with the temperature part so didn’t say anything about the bell curve shifting and the extreme areas increasing.

  41. E.M.Smith says:

    Any paper that asserts things about temperature vs drought for the North American continent (or even just the USA) as a whole is going to be broken.

    On the West side of the continent, we get more drought when it is COLD. On the East they get more drought when it is HOT.

    You can’t just average two different regimes together and get anything but nonsense.

    (Anyone who was skiing in the ’70s in California remembers how dismal the snow was and how we had lots of drought. That was during the “ice age coming” cold scare phase of the PDO. In the 1930s it was hot in the “midwest” – that is actually slightly east – and they had the Dustbowl…)

    It is, IMHO, simply imperative to not just average a bunch of numbers and think it means anything. The underlaying patterns of the system must be understood first.

    For example, it snowed in South Africa (after a cold early winter in Australia and South America) all while the USA Midwest is hot and dry. Could there be a simple hemispheric oscillation going on? And if you have different coverages in the two areas (as we do) will an average be bogus? Yes, it will. Furthermore, as the coverages vary over time, doing comparisons of a ‘baseline’ to now will have coverage errors in it too. Using The Reference Station Method (a Hansen invention) will also be hobbled by an unrecognized slow oscillation in the hemispheres as the ‘baseline’ relationship between thermometers will not match the “later” relationship.

    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2012/08/08/gore-effect-by-proxy-in-south-africa/

    So you simply must look at over all patterns prior to averaging things or you just get “average error”…

  42. Peter Stroud says:

    We have to remember that Hansen is almost divine in the minds of many of the world’s politicians. In the UK, for example, Gore has completely convinced our Prime Minister, and the majority of politicians of the evils of manmade CO2. But most of them know it was Hansen who supplied Gore’s ‘data.’

    A copy of the letter should be sent to all senior politicians, worldwide, both in government and opposition.

    This part should be in bold and underlined. “With hundreds of well-known climate scientists and tens of thousands of other scientists publicly declaring their disbelief in the catastrophic forecasts, coming particularly from the GISS leadership, it is clear that the science is NOT settled.”

  43. Alan the Brit says:

    The trouble with Hansen is that I beleive he has acheived near deity status, it’s as though he cannot be touched lest his superiors are branded & tarred as victimising him for telling the truth, or Big Guvment is silencing him! I did pen a wee suggestion about what Michael Mann should do around a year or so ago if he had any integrity, but ctm rightly cut it as it was a bit too dramatic, despite having its merrits. I apply the same suggestion for Hansen if he had any real professional integrity, & do the decent thing! Hansen is a loaded gun in unsafe hands imho!

  44. DBCooper says:

    @jrincart who said “With the temperature amplified by global warming and ubiquitous surface heating from elevated greenhouse gas amounts, extreme drought conditions can develop. There’s nothing about “increased drought in the US” in the PNAS paper.”

    Your reasoning is the same total nonsense as Hansen’s. He’s talking about the dust bowl of the 30s. The fact that he is a poor writer is irrelevant.

  45. Bloke down the pub says:

    A letter signed by a load of NASA scientists might get noted in the press, but the administration aren’t likely to do anything until they get a letter signed by a million voters. When election time beckons, politicians would sell their granny down the line if they thought it would get them more votes.

  46. mycroft says:

    He should be known from now on as James “Ha Ha” Hansen climate clown…….The lord Haw Haw of climate propaganda.

  47. Jean Meeus says:

    If I remember well, in 1988 Hansen said that, due to global warming and the subsequent rising of the level of the oceans, the building were he was working (was it Washington D.C. or New York?) would be reached by the sea. Well, now, 24 years later, where is the water?

  48. ntesdorf says:

    By writing such nonsense continually and acting erratically scientifically, Hansen is doing good work in aiding to demolish the Great Green CAGW Shibboleth. NASA should definitely keep him on, as he is on our side.

  49. michael hart says:

    As a graduate student, I once stumbled across some chemistry papers allegedly written by Elena Ceausescu, wife of Romanian dictator Nicolae Ceausescu.

    Whether she really was a scientist, or not, is in doubt, yet Wikipedia recounts that at their trial [after being deposed] she was mocked for being unable to even pronounce CO2 correctly.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elena_Ceau%C8%99escu

  50. SanityP says:

    From Material and Methods:

    We choose 1951–1980 as the base period for most of our illustrations, for
    several reasons. First, it was a time of relatively stable global temperature,
    prior to rapid global warming in recent decades. Second, it is recent enough
    for older people, especially the “baby boom” generation, to remember.

    Relevance ? Playing on peoples emotions and feelings much ?

  51. Wade says:

    Do you really want James Hansen fired? Remember, this is the same person who claimed George W. Bush was “silencing” him on global warming. What was really happening was the Bush administration was telling him to shut up, do his job, and stop being an advocate on taxpayer time. James Hansen would love to be a martyr. If he is fired, I can guarantee you the man will claim he was fired to silence him.

  52. mfo says:

    What’s the current connection between Hansen, Al Gore, Crispin Tickell, James Lovelock and Tim Flannery? They are all judges for Richard Branson’s Virgin Earth Challenge which is due to award a prize of $25 million this year for “a commercially viable design which, achieves or appears capable of achieving the net removal of significant volumes of anthropogenic, atmospheric GHGs each year for at least 10 years”, with significant volumes specified as “should be scalable to a significant size in order to meet the informal removal target of 1 billion tonnes of carbon-equivalent per year”
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virgin_Earth_Challenge
    http://www.virgin.com/subsites/virginearth/

  53. John Brookes says:

    The paper your are talking about appears to be one that Tamino has criticised. Tamino had a detailed look at the analysis in that paper, and concluded that there was an error that made it look as though the variance of temperatures was increasing. An increased variance would lead to more extreme heat and cold. Tamino’s analysis was that there was no evidence for increasing variance.

    So I’d be surprised if this paper passes peer review. I think an increase in extremes is a bee in Hansen’s bonnet – something he seems to have trouble letting go of.

    Now if only the shining lights of the “skeptic” movement could be as critical of people on their own side making outlandish statements. Why don’t you start here, with a critique of Christy’s testimony to Congress?

  54. Bob says:

    Fire a government employee for incompetence? I tried that once. Took a year. I got harassing phone calls at work, at home, very late at night from civilian personnel management for that year. You can do it if you have perseverance and a wad of evidence that the employee is not doing his job properly. Now, what exactly is Hansen doing that his superiors don’t want done?

  55. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    No need to fire Hansen, GISS is too contaminated to be redeemed even if he was removed.

    So transfer GISS to the US Department of Art and Technology. NASA would be better for it, and Hansen can work for people who’d understand him and welcome his unique talents. Just look at their impressive and peer-approved staff listing, they’d welcome him as a long-lost brother. Even GISS’ trendy New York City headquarters would be a good fit with the Department.

    And everyone should automatically know what sort of pronouncements Hansen is making simply by his association with the Department. Win-win all around!

  56. Leo Morgan says:

    http://imgs.xkcd.com/comics/curiosity.png http://imgs.xkcd.com/comics/moon_landing.png
    Either of these on their own represents my view. Together, they are somewhat ambivalent. Somewhat like the ambivalence caused by the fact the warmists have a NASA scientist on their side.
    But then again, we have 40 on ours.

  57. Patrick Davis says:

    “jrinchart says:
    August 7, 2012 at 11:23 pm

    “With the temperature amplified by global warming and ubiquitous surface heating from elevated greenhouse gas amounts, extreme drought conditions can develop.”

    There’s nothing about “increased drought in the US” in the PNAS paper.”

    Where does the EXTRA energy come from to AMPLIFY warming?

  58. tootsie says:

    Maybe NASA should stick to mozzie outreach and leave space to the JPL.
    Congratulations JPL engineers! Putting a billion dollar go-cart on another planet was an amazing feat. My only question is how will it pay its way?

  59. RockyRoad says:

    Hansen is nuts. And you can quote me on that.

  60. KnR says:

    The call to get Hansen fired. sounds good and logical at first , but like Mann he actual is useful to AGW proponents the scale of silly claims combined with a ego you could land a Jumbo jet on make them a liability to ‘the cause ‘ in the eyes of anyone but the AGW faithful whose minds could never be changed .
    So like Mann, keep him in the spot light , keep him under pressure and enjoy the results .

  61. bill says:

    It appears Academy members – Hansen presumably is one – can make “Contributed Submissions” to PNAS whereby their paper is reviewed by three people of their choice – so, as Michaels says, such a contribution is not really peer reviewed in the normal sense of the term.

  62. JimB says:

    At age 71, isn’t Hansen past the age of mandatory retirement?

  63. Chuck Nolan says:

    You wonder how Hansen keeps his job?
    What’s the problem? Hansen is doing exactly as his bosses would like.
    Who is he pissing off? No one in my opinion.
    Obama? Jackson? Bolden? Pachauri? Gore? Holdren? Reid? Boehner?
    Not a chance.
    They get what they want and Hansen looks like the maroon.
    With his stupid hat he’s the perfect dupe.
    cn

  64. Gail Combs says:

    kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:
    August 8, 2012 at 5:00 am

    No need to fire Hansen, GISS is too contaminated to be redeemed even if he was removed….
    _______________________
    At this point I think it is time to shut down NASA and GISS completely along with several other US government bureaucracies. When the gangrene and rot gets this deep the only thing that can be done is AMPUTATE!

  65. David L. Hagen says:

    Judgment affirmed by climatologist Tim Ball: NASA scientist out of control posted Wednesday, 8 August 2012

    James Hansen, Director of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies in New York City, personifies American author Mary McCarthy’s observation that “Bureaucracy, the rule of no one, has become the modern form of despotism.” Hansen has used his NASA position to misdirect public policy on climate change for 24 years. His recent pronouncements that humanity is causing a dangerous increase in extreme weather have a similar disregard for scientific accuracy. . . .
    Hansen told the hearing that he was “99 percent sure . . the [human caused] greenhouse effect has been detected and it is changing our climate now.” No scientist would make such a claim. It even contradicts what the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) said in 1995. They asserted,”…no study to date has positively attributed all or part of climate change observed to man-made causes.” Hansen’s 1988 predictions have turned out to be 150 percent wrong. . . .
    All this suggests either Hansen:
    hasn’t looked properly at the IPCC science;
    doesn’t properly understand the science; or
    is misinterpreting for some reason. . . .

    It is clear that Hansen has used his position for political activism and abuse of public trust. As a US Federal bureaucrat it appears he has violated the Hatch Act . . .

  66. more soylent green! says:

    Michael Larkin says:
    August 7, 2012 at 8:16 pm
    “a rouge scientist”–was that an unintentional slip, or a Freudian one? Redness is associated with the political left as well as heat, after all ;-).

    Perhaps he’s moonlighting at Estee Lauder?

  67. David L. Hagen says:

    Hansen ignores climate persistence (Hurst-Kolmogorov dynamics) which show natural variations are a factor of two greater than classical statistical analyses. e.g. See: D. Koutsoyiannis et al. Hurst-Kolmogorov dynamics in long climatic proxy records
    Hansen similarly ignores the Pacific Decadal Oscillation and other natural oscillations that provide better forecasting. Scafetta shows the Multivariate ENSO Index (MEI) coupling to CO2 concentration and to the length of day variations.
    David Stockwell found CSIRO’s hindcast drought predictions were opposite historical rainfall reality. Hansen provides no validated evidence for his “perception”.
    Time for serious “peer” review of Hansen, not “pal” review or publish by authority.

  68. more soylent green! says:

    I’m afraid firing Hanson would make a martyr of him. OTH, at least he wouldn’t be on the public dole then.

    Anyhoo, first we’ll need a regime change for this to happen. The man is golden. Not because of his science, but because he knows people.

  69. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:

    RockyRoad said on August 8, 2012 at 5:49 am:

    Hansen is nuts. And you can quote me on that.

    Corn Nuts? That would be appropriate. Start with corn, end with “nuts”. Start with actual temperature measurements, end with…
    ===

    James said on August 7, 2012 at 8:14 pm:

    Anthony, While Dr Hansen has many flaws, I don’t believe wearing “rouge” is one of them.

    Of course it’s not a flaw. He needs it to look good for the camera, get some color on that pale skin. And not just for the TV interviews or presentations either. His arrest photo might wind up posted on The Smoking Gun, and those always look terrible without makeup.

  70. Stas Peterson says:

    You can’t really fire a government employee, but you can reorganize a government agecy out of existence. The employeesacan then be riffed. If they can’t find another home and job, they are done.

    What Agency would want most of the GISS Riff-Raff sycophants, contaminating their agency and being a source of constant and uncontrollable angst? Simply Riff GISS.

  71. James says:

    Given the recent hub-bub about lampposts, I think this quote Andrew Lang sums up Hansen pretty well:

    • “He uses statistics as a drunken man uses lamp-posts… For support rather than illumination.”

  72. _Jim says:

    Caleb says August 8, 2012 at 12:46 am

    I am happy to see people are becoming as fed up with Hansen as I was back in 2007.

    Today is August 8. It is exactly five years since Climate Audit announced it’s questioning of the “adjustments” Hansen made to the NASA GISS temperature record had forced Hansen to “readjust-the-adjustments.”

    http://climateaudit.org/2007/08/08/a-new-leaderboard-at-the-us-open/

    I heard about the posting via a web-link to the Toronto Star, and that was the day I discovered I wasn’t alone, and websites such as Steve McIntyre’s, “Climate Audit” existed. (It was through a comment on “Climate Audit” that I learned about WUWT, which back then was less than a year old, and still small.)

    The August 7 Climate Audit post got noted on Intapundit, and it likely was from there that Rush Limbaugh got the news and noted it on his show, which resulted in Climate Audit getting so many hits that its very next posting, on August 10, was “Sorry For The Loss Of Service.”

    Ahhh … Gee Caleb … are you sure that wasn’t an announcement on the Air America network (launched 3-31-2004 and dissolved 1-21-2010) or maybe a Daily Kos post or perhaps a DU (Democratic Underground) article that shut down the servers? Just kidding, the astute among the readership are fully aware of audience listening numbers and who is hungry for the ‘trvth’ …

    I do wish, however, that some people would not engage in unwarranted gratuitous slams when clearly it is not the Air America or Daily Kos/HuffPo crowd that reads en masse these websites …

    BTW, you seem to be quite competent and able to “work a computer” even though you may be part of the Rush-listening contingent … I ran across his broadcast in the early 90′s and was struck at how he ‘stood out’ in stark contrast to the ‘bulk’ of the Politically Correct MSM who are incapable of facing any issue head on …

    Eagles Up and “The chair is on the wall.”

    .

  73. Jean Parisot says:

    A bigger problem then Hansen’s abuse of NASA reputation is PNAS.

  74. michaelspj says:

    From Hansen’s PNAS paper

    the temperature amplified by global warming and ubiquitous surface heating
    from elevated greenhouse gas amounts, extreme drought conditions can develop.

    The other extreme of the water cycle, unusually heavy rainfall and floods, is also amplified by global warming.

    From his interview with AP’s Seth Borenstein:

    Hansen’s study — based on statistics, not the more typical climate modeling — blames these three heat waves purely on global warming:

    —Last year’s devastating Texas-Oklahoma drought.

    —The 2010 heat waves in Russia and the Middle East, which led to thousands of deaths.

    —The 2003 European heat wave blamed for tens of thousands of deaths, especially among the elderly in France.

    The analysis was written before the current drought and record-breaking temperatures that have seared much of the United States this year. But Hansen believes this too is another prime example of global warming at its worst.

  75. Alan Watt, Climate Denialist Level 7 says:

    It’s bad enough the Rover landing happened in the middle of the Olympics, when most people were obsessing over pointless athlete trivia. Given the constraints of the mission there was nothing NASA could do to avoid that schedule conflict. But to have one of their own overshadow the Rover landing triumph with this useless drivel must really hurt in some quarters.

  76. kwinterkorn says:

    As some have commented above, it would be unfortunate if Hansen were fired. Hansen is well on his way to becoming a public buffoon, a la a certain former Vice President, internet inventor, and sex poodle.

    On being fired Hansen would become a martyr for freedom of expression, aided by the media, no doubt. Where he is now, he is an embarrassment for the CAGW movement, an out front easy target.

  77. tadchem says:

    “Although we were motivated in this research by an objective to expose effects of human-made global warming as soon as possible…”
    PNAS will have to answer for permitting this “special pleading” paper to be published. The tarnish will take years to remove from their reputation.

  78. Alleagra says:

    Be nice if someone had taken the trouble to correct the basic grammatical error in the joint letter
    “admonishing the agency for it’s role in advocating “.

    For the zillionth time, it’s “its” unless the intention was to write “it is the role” (i.e., meaningless) in this context. Or does somebody really think it doesn’t matter? Well, alright, arguably not – unless you’re demonstrating your credentials to an employer or college.

  79. _Jim says:

    Lucy Skywalker says August 8, 2012 at 1:59 am

    The best scientists (Newton, Kepler, Einstein, Maxwell, Tesla, etc) have always been open to higher dimensions of reality.

    Lucy, we will have to discuss Tesla (oneheckovagoodengineer no doubt) in this context sometime, but now, this thread, is not the time …

    .

  80. Wagathon says:

    Blaming various storms on America’s CO2 is just Leftists spitting in the wind. It is such whacko prognostications that should make every scientist very skeptical of the good intentions of global warming alarmists.

  81. spartacusisfree says:

    Coming in under the radar is apparent proof using MODTRAN that above ~10% RH, there can be no CO2-AGW: http://notrickszone.com/2012/08/07/epic-warmist-fail-modtran-doubling-co2-will-do-nothing-to-increase-long-wave-radiation-from-sky/

    The climate models manufacture imaginary CO2-AGW and amplification by assuming UP and DOWN emissivity at the surface =1, also that DOWN emissivity at TOA = 1.

    This increases absorbed IR by a factor of 5, offset in the hind0-casting by exaggerated cloud albedo, hence evaporation and heating rate is artificially increased. This is a clever fraud; took me some tome to woek out how they hid it so well.

  82. ob says:

    could you clarify what’s in the scatter plot. temp vs pdsi isn’t really informative. that is: time-scales? and pdsi over which area of the US? link to pdsi data would help

  83. BarryW says:

    jrinchart says:
    August 7, 2012 at 11:23 pm

    Michaels is simply wrong.

    “Hansen claims that global warming is associated with increased drought in the US.”

    There’s nothing about “increased drought in the US” in the PNAS paper.

    Oh, he doesn’t? He certainly implies it:

    “With the temperature amplified by global warming and ubiquitous surface heating from elevated greenhouse gas amounts, extreme drought condi- tions can develop.
    The other extreme of the water cycle, unusually heavy rainfall and floods, is also amplified by global warming. ”

    So if there had been a correlation then he gets to crow that he was right. Of course if there is too much rain he can claim that too.

  84. Bart says:

    At the least, GISS should be disassociated with NASA, sort of like Disney spun off Hollywood Pictures to make adult oriented films. NASA’s job should be specifically space exploration. GISS could perhaps be incorporated into NOAA, but it has no business being in NASA. GISS is giving the space agency a bad rep, all the worse because it has nothing to do with NASA’s core mission.

  85. 1IDVET says:

    Reblogged this on Truth, Lies and In Between and commented:
    James Hansen should have been fired from NASA a long time ago. He gives NASA a bad name.

  86. John Garrett says:

    NPR, as usual, continues to serve as a broadcasting advocacy platform for this type of shoddy “science.”

    Feel free to protest on the story comment page ( http://www.npr.org/2012/08/06/158215252/are-recent-heat-waves-a-result-of-climate-change?plckFindCommentKey=CommentKey:4d988d44-a566-4b0b-8941-b5d2bda3b004 ) or to their Ombudsman’s website ( http://www.npr.org/blogs/ombudsman/2012/08/07/155501949/open-forum ).

  87. Richard M says:

    What unique function does GISS provide today? There’s a whole herd of climate models and there’s several temperature databases. It’s all duplication and with the current debt there is absolutely no logical reason to keep funding this disaster.

  88. dana1981 says:

    [SNIP: You know why. -REP]

  89. Steve C says:

    Not sure I agree with Dr. Hoerling about perception ‘not being a science’; it’s a fascinating and often very surprising area of study. As applied to Hansen’s perception manipulation, on the other hand … rat awn!

  90. gregole says:

    Allan MacRae says:
    August 8, 2012 at 12:17 am

    Right on. You said it.

    I never thought about that acronym – good catch!

  91. Gus says:

    There’s the old phrase that say that his money isn’t worth the paper it’s printed upon ; in this case I would say that his paper is not worth the paper it is printed upon.

  92. Wagathon says:

    Hansen is not trying to conflate weather with climte. Everyone knows that would be silly. But he does have a point which is something like, being in love with the idea of something means never having to say you’re sorry.

    “I know you believe you understand what you think I said, but I am not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.” Anon

  93. richardM says:

    But this entire line of “scientific” thought is being bandied about by many! Another example where the drought conditions and the new “normal” in higher summer time temps )aka global warming) at accuweather are linked:

    http://www.accuweather.com/en/weather-news/july-2012-marks-hottest-month/69385

    Brett Anderson is qutoed : “We’ve had a lot of extremes globally and in the U.S. We can’t say definitely that climate change is causing it, but it’s definitely a suspect,” where he is somewhat reasonable, then blows it with this comment:

    “But the planet is warming; that’s unmistakeable. The frequency of extreme heat and drought events is likely to increase.”

  94. Floyd Doughty says:

    @ Allan MacRae, August 8, 12:17 AM

    Oh, man, that last line of yours REALLY cracked me up. I wonder if they’ll change it?

  95. The Hansen paper is so bad, that it is a shame that it gets so much attention. The statistics are so ridiculous, And it is published in PNAS? Poor PNAS.

    It is not even pal reviewed.

    Fire Hansen before he does more damage to a once good brand.

  96. Volker Doormann says:

    Jean Meeus says:
    August 8, 2012 at 3:28 am
    If I remember well, in 1988 Hansen said that, due to global warming and the subsequent rising of the level of the oceans, the building were he was working (was it Washington D.C. or New York?) would be reached by the sea. Well, now, 24 years later, where is the water?

    Not really OT. My very thanks to your life work, especially in astronomical algorithms. One of my favorite books ever.

    Volker

  97. Kev-in-UK says:

    Have briefly read some of the comments – and the reference of Hansen to Homer Simpson is one heck of an insult to Homer Simpson – and I feel a retraction is in order!! /sarc

  98. RiHo08 says:

    Peter Miller said:

    The reason Hansen is still at NASA is very simple – his bosses, rightly or wrongly, believe he is a money magnet from government.

    And there in lies NASA and the analogous Penn State dilemma: Michael Mann and Penn State Football.

    Crash! I will take the equivalent of an arrest, conviction and imprisonment of a child molester before NASA acts, as the public purse draws tight.

  99. Pat Frank says:

    michael, Elena Ceausescu stole that work from a female Romanian graduate student, who was thereafter exiled to a remote part of the country. In 1990 Chemical and Engineering News, the house organ of the American Chemical Society, published an article about Ceausescu’s fraudulent career, in which she was granted, “credit for published material she never researched and technical degrees granted but never earned…

    Real science from a false scientist is the inverse of the AGW pattern, in which certain real scientists publish false science.

  100. Chris R. says:

    To JimB:

    Unfortunately, NASA does not have a mandatory retirement age. Federal mandatory retirement age laws cover air traffic controllers, law enforcement officers, fire fighters, and nuclear materials couriers. Not climatologists who have become climate activists. Too bad, isn’t it? We may have to put up with him until he’s 95.

  101. dana1981 says:

    REP – yes, I know I was censored yet again for pointing out that a WUWT post is factually wrong.

    Hansen did not say anything about droughts becoming more frequent. Read the paper yourself – it barely even mentions droughts and is almost entirely focused on temperatures. Michaels’ argument is a strawman. It is factually wrong. Am I allowed to say that here?

    [REPLY: You were "censored" for being an odious little twit with a penchant for making libelous statements. Your last two statements suggest you know exactly why you were snipped. Don't do it again. Capice? -REP]

  102. Doug Proctor says:

    Is Hansen’s latest an example of post-normal science in action, or an example of terrible papers that used to slide from in-basket to trash-basket without anyone noticing?

  103. charles nelson says:

    As a youngster and into my middle years, the exploits of NASA regularly gave me a ‘frisson’ of excitement. The bravery, the ingenuity, the collaboration on a massive scale that could design and engineer everything from microscopic circuitry to million pound rocket boosters simply filled me with admiration and awe. We owe NASA for much of the modernity we take for granted these days, we also owe it for the ‘blue earth’ image that let mankind see how rare and beautiful our planet is. To see reputation of this iconic ‘brand’ defiled by the plausible Mr Hansen fills me with anger.

  104. rabbit says:

    I have a question about the paper.

    I haven’t had the chance to read it, but as I understand it the authors fit a normal (or Gaussian) distribution to weather measurements from the 1950s to the 1980s, and then concluded that the current conditions in the midwest were too improbable to be natural.

    Why did they assume that weather obeys a normal curve? A more heavily tailed curve such as a Student’s t distribution with 6 degrees of freedom, say, looks much like a normal curve, and yet gives very different answers as to what is probable. In other words, a slight change in their assumptions could lead to completely different conclusions.

  105. Wagathon says:

    At this point in the warming hoax it brings no virtue or righteousness to science to point out errors. No one cares because global warming stopped being about science a long time ago. It’s all about politics and being a skeptic is the last service an honest man can do for science. All we can do now is correct the politics and even that gives little comfort because academia has lost all pretenses to scholarship.

  106. I would ask Romney (and Obama) – they are going to have a debate aren’t they?
    1. Would you fire Hansen of NASA?
    2. Is CO2 a pollutant?
    3. Are you going to subsidize wind, solar and bio-fuels?
    4. Etc…?

  107. Another good question:
    Is all of Alaska a National Park or just a state like Texas?

  108. bazza norwood says:

    the fools that give hansen the grants are the ones that should be sacked.

  109. eyesonu says:

    When did Hansen seem to go off the deep end (mid 1990′s?) Why?

    Read about Madrid 1995 “The last day of Climate Science” . This is a must read. Part one.
    http://enthusiasmscepticismscience.wordpress.com/2012/08/07/madrid-1995-the-last-day-of-climate-science/#more-820

    Who gave marching orders to the State Department at that time ( Madrid 1995)?

    Who was in the White House at that time (1992 thru 2000)? Could it have been Clinton/Gore? You better believe it was. Could anyone trust Gore? How about a Gore with power/influence?

    I hope that Hansen is just marching the orders he was given at a previous point in time from a previous administration simply to make a point not in the interest of those who issued the orders. Could he have been forced to play the fool so decided to make a mockery of it? He is doing a good job of it if that is his point. Will he issue interesting memoirs with his passing? I guess this last paragraph is just hoping. ;-)

  110. old engineer says:

    ob says:
    August 8, 2012 at 11:38 am
    could you clarify what’s in the scatter plot. temp vs pdsi isn’t really informative. that is: time-scales? and pdsi over which area of the US? link to pdsi data would help

    When I first saw the scatter plot in the 9:55 PDT update, I thought “This really is the coup de grace for Hansen’s paper.” Then I read ob’s comment, and thought I ought to know more about the PDSI. It took awhile. NOAA does not make it easy to find average U.S. PDSI yearly numerical values. I finally found I could get a plot of them at:

    http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/temp-and-precip/time-series/

    After plotting the U.S average PDSI for Feb to January (annual choice closest to calendar year) for all available data (1896 to 2012 ) I was convinced that the data for the scatter plot did exist (all 116 years of it).

    After looking at the scatter plot, not only was there no tread, the quadrant “warmer & drier” had the fewest data of all (20); “warmer & wetter” had the most (32); the driest year had a negative temp anomaly, and the wettest year a positive temp anomaly.

    My conclusion: I was right to begin with, the scatter plot is the coup de grace to Hansen’s paper. He should withdrawn it.

  111. Entropic man says:

    Rather than editorialise and make silly remarks , perhaps some of you would like to read the paper.

    http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2012/07/30/1205276109.full.pdf

  112. Ron says:

    Remember this about human nature: people can be shamed and opinions re-shaped even as they double up on defensive. The comments here would be more than enough to shame not only Hansen, but his superiors, his followers, and all of the useful idiots promoting CAGW, would that they be read. Very impressive thread.

  113. Ron says:

    If I could add this: fire Hansen, yes. But fire his superiors too. And their superiors. Clean. House.

  114. Entropic man says:
    August 8, 2012 at 5:07 pm

    “Rather than editorialize and make silly remarks , perhaps some of you would like to read the paper.

    http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2012/07/30/1205276109.full.pdf

    I may have made some silly remarks, but do you think that the 49 former NASA scientists were making silly remarks?

  115. Paul Fischbeck says:

    I’m afraid that I must agree with those that are arguing that the Hansen paper has little to nothing to do with droughts. His analysis is focused and based on temperature. The new graph (temperature vs.PDSI), though very interesting, appears to be off the topic of the paper.

    I’m still waiting to see the killer argument against the paper as written. I started digging up the data to determine the effects of different starting points for the base case, but ran out of time. The US data alone might suggest something about starting conditions, but Hansen’s analysis is global.and only for “summer” temperatures.

    I’m waiting several days to see what other arguments are brought forward, but as of now, the drought discussion is not in play.

  116. Steptoe Fan says:

    At the article top, the link to the NYT takes browser to a log in page, is it possible to get a link to the article ?

  117. Steptoe Fan says:

    sorry, link is from the NYT.

  118. Paul Pierett says:

    In 2009, the research of Sir Richard Gregory, let me to write a few papers on correlation of sunspot activity to Accumulated Cyclone Energy, etc and the coming droughts and colder winters. About a year ago, the comments of a doctor on this blog kind of pulled it together. When the earth cools ( I stated solar minimum) there is less humidity, a green house gas. Then there is drought and then there is dust and then there are down pours on hard ground not ready for this and the flooding takes place.

    I warned the Royal Society, my Florida Governor, all State Governors, the NOAA, the NASA, 1/4th of the US Senate and numerous agencies that we ares sliding into a drought period based on Sir Gregory and Joseph D’Aleo that we will be in a drought period until 2035. The thinning of the hear started years ago.

    What do we have to look forward to. One major black in the dead of winter here in the USA could kill thousands. We are already sending our cattle to slaugter. Everything I warned the governors is coming true. Everything I warned the Senators is coming true.

    President Putin in 2009 told his people to get the grid fixed. Our Secretary of Defense, the EPA, The NOAA, NASA and just about all of our scientists are stuck on man-made global warming. Our governing officials are stuck on the IPCC. The Prince of Wales is stuck on the Anglican maniac.

    As I look out over the empty plains of South Dakota and think many fools believe that the bad breath of a Supreme Court Justice can warm up the earth, catastrophy will loom over us all. Can we fix stupid?

    The formula for disaster here in the USA is in place. Rather than build better water supplies the Congress is battling over money to pay farmers to sit it out. It is still tied to welfare, bailout mentality. Rather than trim trees, we will let the frozen power lines fall on so many lines, lives will be jeapardized. The present administration is closing coal plants for environmental dollars. There will be a price to pay in life.

    We must get out out of the box, the dead sub, the burning tank to survive. Throw your carbon foot print in the fireplace and live. But encourage you congressmen to scrap Ethonol and banish plastic bags. We will need the corn and bags are a waste of oil that we need elsewhere.

    Notcho, Pablo.

    Most Sincerely,

    Paul Pierett
    Auburndale, Florida

  119. Wagathon says:

    We already have reached the point that dead and dying Old Europe reached years ago. That is when government gets to the point that it’s in it for itself, the public be damned. Only government has the power to abuse authority. That kind of power does not exist in the business world because when it does it’s not called “business” its called organized crime.

  120. Packman1 says:

    While Hansen’s article didn’t focus on droughts, his comments in the announcement and interviews made a strong association to extreme weather events and droughts. So, Hansen is the one responsible for the association. The PNAS paper still needs competent review, but the conclusions HE made in the press were definitely not supported by the content of the paper. Ergo, those commenting on the news accounts of the paper aren’t as off base as Dr. Hansen.

  121. Ross J. says:

    The overstatements on all sides should not reassurance of anything. Extreme weather always establishes extreme viewpoints in the eye of beholder. A farmer toiling on the land who is a climate sceptic then turns into a global warming believer is based first hand observational rather then ivory tower commentary on our past. It is after all the present that is most important to us all and how we live through it. It is our past that determines our actions for coping and overcoming. The Russian heat wave, Marty cites is a single paper that claims it had nothing to do with climate change, but there are other papers that purport to demonstrate that events of that magnitude are now three times more likely than before the industrial era. That debate on the present day is not settled and never can be unless the unthinkable happens. We enter a new undeniable regime of climate change that worsens our crops, damages our economies, causes mass starvation, mass migration and defence security for democratic leading nations is weakened. I’m certain of this: A 1930s dust bowl statistic won’t matter a hill of beans if and when crops ultimately fail and require government rescue.

    The collision of the fledgling application of the science of extremes and the inexperience we all have in conveying what we do know about this to the public is dubious and suspect. Science is never settled on any matter through any insensitive former statistic to reassure the general public. The human psychological need to ascribe every unusual event to a cause in written in our DNA religious or otherwise. Our Puritan forebears ascribed them to sin, while in the 80’s is was fashionable to blame the unusual weather gods on El Niño. Global warming is the latest whipping boy. Those who detest the “consensus science” and those who think it is very foolish to imply some kind of conspiracy to all our freedoms. Scapegoats exist in every religion on earth. Let us not blame the science telling things we do not want to believe or like. That is an old decrepit ORCHRICH mind at work.

    But even conveying our level of ignorance is hard to admit. Marty’s quotation of Harold Brooks is weak argument. To make a resounding judgement that makes it as though he is saying that the recent up tick in severe weather had nothing to do with climate change implies a settled science on the matter. Something all true sceptics hate. The truth is that we do not know whether it did or did not; absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. That is real fact. Who is right. You see in any ball game we side with whom we would like to win. We are herd mentalists by nature.That does not make for a winner or loser, does it? As one famous person stated: “We will adapt”. Do you see the real issue anyone? I have my doubts as to whom is right on this one.

  122. David Falkner says:

    With a shotgun blast like that, maybe we need Dexter to look at the blood splatter…

  123. Larry in Texas says:

    I have an idea about what to do with Hansen. Let’s put him on an experimental spaceship to Mars, to see how a human being can survive over 18 months in space. Give NASA a good idea of the problems involved before they gear up to develop a manned mission to Mars. /sarc

  124. The methodology of the paper of Hansen et al is not scientific for the associated models make no falsifiable claims.

  125. William McClenney says:

    Placed on the HuffPost 20 minutes ago…….

    William McClenney
    4 Fans
    20 minutes ago (12:00 AM)
    Goodness gracious! A blocking high in the northern hemisphere? Well, the Russians got one last year. But that too could have been due to a trace gas. It isn’t like we are once again, at yet another end extreme interglacial, or is it? Anyone know how long the Holocene will last? The scientists don’t, they are all over the place on whether or not the Holocene will “go long” like MIS-11 did. Or will it end like all the other eccentricity minima interglacials did, with from 1 to 3 strong thermal pulses right at its end? But those were decades to centuries long global warmings. Just because it has happened before, several times, is no reason to think it could possibly happen again before the next ice age takes a grip! I know this simply because James Hansen says so, often, whenever he is out on bail. For the life of me I just cannot fathom why this rather normal, half-precession cycle old interglacial will not continue in perpetuity. I mean who give a feces that 5 of the last 6 interglacials have each lasted about half a precession cycle anyway? That’s just feldercarb! We KNOW this time it’s different for the simple reason that it has happened only once before in the past million years! In fact, we have actually mixed enough anti-freeze (CO2) in ye old atmosphere since the Industrial Age to make sure we will not tip into a glacial, right? /sarc off

  126. jorgekafkazar says:

    Theo Goodwin says: “I think Hansen should be known as The Rouge Scientist. Though his self image is probably closer to that of Col. Kurtz from Apocalypse Now/Heart of Darkness.”

    Actually, it’s more like a Messiah image. “Messiah complex: a condition where an individual believes himself to be the saviour of a group, time period, or in an extreme case, the world.”

    http://www.energytribune.com/live_images/ET021609_main.jpg

  127. Lightrain says:

    Hansen IS wrong, but a couple more years of ‘increases’ until they get the world to reduce CO2; then when temperatures decline they’ll claim they saved the entire world. I wonder if Dr Hansen is paid by Greenpeace?

  128. David G says:

    [SNIP: This does not seem to be apropos to anything on this thread and the wish is not appropriate. You may even thank me in the morning. -REP]

  129. William McClenney says:

    Lightrain says:
    August 8, 2012 at 10:42 pm

    Well, that WAS about the size of it. Imagine if Waxman-Markey had passed within the envelope of both major ocean circulations going negative…… Grand recession/solar minima/end extreme eccentricity minima interglacial or not, we could be sitting around now, swilling non-carbonated champagne, patting each other on the back, celebrating the FACT that we had quelled the heathen devil promulgated sea level rising to the AR4 worst case scenario of 0.59 meters, only to watch it go +6M etc,. anyway, because that is just what it tends to do………..

  130. LazyTeenager says:

    Well I am thinking that Patrick Michaels analysis might be a bit simplistic and that his claim that Hansen has not checked his claims might be false.

    A quick google turns up this page on just this topic.
    http://www.cgd.ucar.edu/cas/catalog/climind/pdsi.html

    A quick read says maybe Patrick is wrong.

    Any of you rah, rah, rah guys actually read what Hansen says, before shooting your mouths off.?

  131. William McClenney says:

    LazyTeenager says:
    August 8, 2012 at 11:34 pm

    “Any of you rah, rah, rah guys actually read what Hansen says, before shooting your mouths off.?”

    Oh my goodness! You don’t “Hansen-said” pontifically mean that an anthropogenic end extreme interglacial thermal anomaly, could, in yet some possible peer-reviewed sense, be anything remotely analogous to anomalous, do you?

  132. Hansen needs to be taken away by men in nice clean white coats as soon as possible.
    I’ve just watched a vid by him on U-tube where he states in a calm, quiet voice that “Hundreds of cities will be underwater by 2100″ and that; “All of Antarctica could melt within a century” but the coup de grais was his claim that “Over the next few centuries, the oceans will boil away, like they did on Venus”.
    Is this crackpot YOUR hero?

  133. Garry says:

    Hansen cites the 2010 “blistering” Russian heat wave as evidence of AGW.

    But in both 2010 and 2011, the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Earth System Research Laboratory, Physical Sciences Division said (in peer-reviewed papers) that:

    “Analysis of observations indicate that this heat wave was mainly due to internal atmospheric dynamical processes that produced and maintained a strong and long-lived blocking event, and that similar atmospheric patterns have occurred with prior heat waves in this region. We conclude that the intense 2010 Russian heat wave was mainly due to natural internal atmospheric variability.”

    http://www.esrl.noaa.gov/psd/csi/events/2010/russianheatwave/grlpaper.html

  134. SRJ says:

    The scatterplot from Dr. Michaels shows the US drought index vs. GISS global temperature. Wouldn’t it be more relevant to use the US temperature when comparing with US drought index?

  135. MiCro says:

    Hansen was wrong when when he added a fudged factor, climate sensitivity to CO2 to climate models to make them increase temperatures to match measurements.

  136. Brian H says:

    Ron says:
    August 8, 2012 at 5:32 pm

    If I could add this: fire Hansen, yes. But fire his superiors too. And their superiors. Clean. House.

    Once in a while, the Russian Army’s ‘Vertical Stroke’ is appropriate (failed soldier and 3 levels up demoted or dismissed). General application kills all initiative, but once in a while…

    Hansen is embedded in an organization where the Peter Principle has had more than enough time to do its work. He’s almost a poster child for the theory.

  137. Brian H says:

    Garry says:
    August 9, 2012 at 4:24 am

    “Analysis of observations indicate that this heat wave was mainly due to internal atmospheric dynamical processes that produced and maintained a strong and long-lived blocking event, and that similar atmospheric patterns have occurred with prior heat waves in this region. We conclude that the intense 2010 Russian heat wave was mainly due to natural internal atmospheric variability.”

    H0 strikes again!

    I think we need a new grassroots organization: the Knights of Null! It’s standard would be a statue/carving of Trenberth Impaled.

  138. Brian H says:

    Ugh. Typo: Its standard …

  139. Toto says:

    Cliff Mass has an excellent response to Hansen’s hot air on his blog:
    http://cliffmass.blogspot.ca/2012/08/climate-distortion.html
    (It would make a great guest post)

  140. Toto:

    Cliff Mass’s critique of Hansen’s article is well targeted. However, I’m surprised at Mass’s belief “…that human-induced global warming is both observed, real, and a serious problem for mankind.” This belief will remain untestable and thus unscientific until the statistical population underlying the model by which one reaches this belief is identified. So far as I’ve been able to determine, the idea of a statistical population is foreign to the field of climatology. IPCC Working Group 1, for example, references no statistical population in reaching its conclusions. Climatologists just aren’t into making their conjectures testable.

  141. michaelspj says:

    SRJ–

    I’ll go you one better. What we are really interested in is how much US drought behavior is explained by global warming. So, first let’s regress global temperature anomalies and US temperature anomalies. The r-squared is .33 (adjusted).

    Then we can use the temperatures fit by the regression and compare them to the national PDSI. The explained variance is ZERO.

    Now, let’s regress the residual from the global-US fit–i.e., the NON-global warming component of the US recordm, on the national PDSI values. While the r-squared is low–.045–because of the sample size, that is signficant, indicating that it is the NON-global warming component of the global GISS temperatures that is related to drought here, and NOT the global warming component.

    I caution you that the regression statistics are very smarmy due to obvious intercorrelation in the temperature history, and that the residual degrees of freedom are surely less than n-1-1.

  142. Re SanityP says: August 8, 2012 at 3:58 am “We choose 1951–1980 as the base period for most of our illustrations, for several reasons. First, it was a time of relatively stable global temperature,..”

    Whaaaaat?!
    In the 1970s alarmists were crying wolf about global cooling, with magazines like Time worrying about the effect of colder temperatures on agricultural. Hardly stable in the minds of the alarmists of the day, some of who are today’s alarmists. Indeed, 1951-80 is most of the cooling period from the high of the 1930s-40s.
    The claim is naked rationalization or worse.

    BTW, didn’t the Russians conclude that the 2010 heat wave in _western_ Russia was just weather, nothing to do with global warming?f

  143. Sorry, I did not make it clear that SanityP was quoting Hansen.

    As far as mandatory retirement, likely there is none for Hansen, has not been for many years in the US. There’s a lady at Boeing who is far past 65 and intends to work until she drops.
    There are jobs considered physically demanding that people leave, surgeons doing fine work stop early as fine motor skills deteriorate, but even airline pilot retirement age has been raised. It depends on individual health, and of course desire to work. Some people have diabetes or heart conditions, others are in there 90s and alert though perhaps somewhat fragile. People are living longer today.

    Canada is now moving signficantly to removing barriers to retirement.

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