The ‘class act’ of Michael Mann and Joelle Gergis

Joelle Gergis and Michael Mann commiserate on Facebook via Tom Nelson

It starts out well enough…except that Kenji never signed off on the UCS report.

“When Research is Attacked” | Facebook

Joelle Gergis Thanks for your encouragement Mike, it’s been a hell of a year. I’ve just chased up the UCS report and forwarded it on through my network to get the word out. Hope things are going well for your these days, you are an inspiration to many of us. I look forward to catching up with you soon…

“When Research is Attacked” | Facebook

Michael E. Mann thanks Joelle–My hope is that this (and the UCS report) proves helpful to you and other young scientists in the field who are increasingly being harassed by the usual suspects. Keep up the great work you are doing, and DON’T let the b@$#aRds get you down!

Tom Nelson: Search results for gergis

McIntyre’s triumph over Gergis, Karoly, and Mann | Watts Up With That?

Mann, in correspondence with the authors Gergis and Karoly, in his typical style tried to sell a collection different workarounds for the problems they brought on themselves, and in the end, his advice was rejected, the JC editors told the authors the paper was not viable, and the authors were forced to withdraw the paper. Full stop.

76 thoughts on “The ‘class act’ of Michael Mann and Joelle Gergis

  1. The problem in climate science is that governments very quickly created tens of thousands of new high pay jobs and legions of very ordinay people were able to fill these, while under normal circumstances they would never ever have had an option for such a career.

  2. Prof Mann has done such shoddy work that no one in the Scientific community relies on his garbage anymore. His papers are not cited….which is a blow to him. I am not sure he is smart enough to actually do good work.

  3. When will Gergis and her co-authors released all the data they used in their risible paper so we can all see whether their Hockey Stick is as bogus as Mann’s?

  4. “When Research is Attacked” = Science

    Research is *supposed* to be attacked, have holes poked in it, subjected to scrutiny. The fact they find this offensive is the whole problem. Pathologizing dissent and scrutiny of one’s work is the mark of a sanctimonious charlatan looking for moral authority not scientific truth.

  5. Climate shroundwavers and sceptics alike, are engaged in a
    totally futile argument over questionable data, questionable models and
    questionable interpretation all revolving around ‘data’ collected over a
    mere 1/ 10^8 of the history of this planet, and influenced by short term
    political perspective. For god’s sake consider how this planet formed
    4,500 million years ago, how the crust and mantle differenciated from
    the metallic core, how primitive forms of life permitted the formation
    of an atmosphere containing oxygen, how volcanoes in the process of a
    differentiating crust fed the atmosphere with carbon dioxide, how after
    plants populated this planet the carbon in carbon dioxide was deposited
    in vast deposits of coal, limestone, chalk, oil and gas. From the
    beginning volcanic activity has contributed carbon dioxide to the
    atmosphere at a gradually decreasing rate. The rate has changed at
    times because volcanic activity has waxed and waned. The vast forests
    of carboniferous times soaked up the carbon dioxide from the atmosphere
    and plants have continued to remove it from the atmosphere since then.
    The carbon from the atmosphere has been converted, by plants, to peat
    and coal on land and to limestone, chalk, oil and gas in the oceans and
    oceanic sediments. That process continues today. The tenor of carbon
    dioxide in the atmosphere has, irregularly, declined to the point where
    it is now sub-optimal for the growth of most plants. This has happened
    because, on average, the rate of deposition of carbon in soils and
    marine sediments has overtaken the rate of emission of carbon dioxide
    from volcanic sources both on land and in the oceans. Many things have
    influenced climate throughout the history of this planet, among them are
    the output of the sun, the orbit of this planet around the sun, the
    positions of the land masses on the surface of the planet which
    determine the location and strength of the oceanic currents which
    transfer heat from equatorial to polar regions, and changes and
    reversals of the earth’s magnetic field. Of all these matters we have
    much less than total understanding and over none of them do we have any
    control whatsoever. Nevertheless we are beset with idiots knowing next
    to nothing, obsessed with the number of angels able to dance on the head
    of a pin and insisting that we, puny creatures that we are, are about to
    destroy the planet by burning a trivial proportion of the coal, oil and
    gas reserves stored in the earth’s crust, thus returning to the
    atmosphere that which came from it.

  6. Face it–Michael Mann doesn’t meet the definition of a scientist (a real “scientist doesn’t hide his work). That’s probably why he’s ignored, maligned, and discredited.

  7. It’s a great pity that science in Australia is dominated by the likes of Karoly, Gergis and Lewandowski, when it should be dominated by Carter, Archibald, Evans, Jensen and co …

  8. @Roger Dewhurst: I would like to see a cartoon video to go along with a voice over of the summary… maybe tone it down a little for the kids. Then get PBS to broadcast it… Uhm…OK – maybe this could happen in a parallel universe.

  9. Here is the actual UCS “report” which is really a bunch of talking points for how to deflect and avoid virtually all critical scrutiny:

    http://www.ucsusa.org/assets/documents/scientific_integrity/science-scrutiny.pdf

    It’s clearly influenced by and written with cases of such paragons (sic) as Michael Mann and Ben Santer, the IPCC and the Hockey Team, etc., in mind.

    Remarkable (though not surprising) how much it is a whitewash of bad behaviors of Mann and other climate scientists.

    The document assumes that critical scrutiny is rarely legitimate and mostly to be evaded. In light of the sordid history of the Hockey Team, the IPCC, CRU/UEA and Climategate etc. this is really a squalid dishonest document from the UCS.

  10. Roger Dewhurst, if you could remove the line breaks in the middle of sentenced, it would be much more readable. For example, I skipped reading your comment all together.

  11. “I am not sure he is smart enough to actually do good work.”

    Observation: He is now and was in the past never smart enough to actually accomplish anything by himself!

    OH SHIT!

    Cat out of the BAG!

  12. “1/ 10^8 of the history of this planet”.

    That IS the true value of the ‘Anthropocene’ and IS the value of the ‘State of the Anthropocene Mann’ the value of the Life of a one Mr. (Sans Dr.) MEM … and no other.

    What a pimple this … Mann thing … should never have been born.

    Spartacus

  13. The likes of Karoly, Gergis and Lewandowski would never share a platform with the likes of Carter, Archibald, Evans, Jensen and co because they know they’d be outclassed by people far more intelligent than they are. Says it all really.

  14. “Keep up the great work you are doing” – I thought the paper was withdrawn because it contained serious flaws which even the authors had to accept.
    “increasingly being harassed by the usual suspects” – the Usual Suspects are obviously in league with the devil! It is hell being green just ask Kermit the Frog.

  15. Grown-ups don’t worry…They wait until the wheels on the bus fall off.

    Mann has failed and he knows he’s failed because his “science” went wonky. Now hie simply waves his arms and pretends that it will all turn out OK because, well, politicians are really pretty stupid and, hey, wo are journalists,

    He does not see that the CAGW train has gone off the rails.

    We do.

    The Emperor has no clothes.

  16. ‘When “Research” is attacked’ would have been a better title.

    Not surprisingly, Mann makes no comment on the validity or veracity of any “Research”; I assume he realises that a subject as important as this is outside his area of expertise, assuming such an area exists.

  17. I hope journal editors notice that there’s still no admission that flawed work has been done, only annoyance at been caught out. Seems like certain people might make unreliable authors and peer reviewers. If journals are nothing more than vanity publishing then this is not a problem. If they want to hold themselves up as records of good science they need to pay particular attention to those who demonstrate a willingness to repeat the same mistakes (or worse), especially if they think they can get away with them.

    And if Kenji wants to sue me for this assessment I will make a public apology ;-)

  18. Roger Dewhurst + n Nice Summary.

    Great rant, Roger. What the “éàç was that stupid remark about line spaces and couldn’t read it ??

  19. Class Act – “Bring on the clowns.”

    But having read the UCS report which seems to have an awful lot of writing about how scientists can cope with attacks on their integrity and that scientists should stick to the facts and not make personal attacks, a phrase containing the words “kettle”, “pot” and “black” comes to mind.

    I’m certain Kenji didn’t have a paw in approving this report. Maybe he can complain that he wasn’t consulted, but he mustn’t resign over it; he can fight better in the organisation than out of it.

  20. Our job ‘is’ to annoy scientists, to put them on the spot, make them explain the errors, biases and discrepancies. Their job is to placate us, the people that fund them, not to prevaricate and obfuscate and then claim they are some sort of self righteous martyrs…

  21. Roger Dewhurst,
    The spectrum of blog activities is, as you would know, greater than you mention as wasting the thinking time of people.
    For some time I have wondered what happens when a paper is failed, particularly a paper that is a public documemnt in the sense that it was paid for by public monies. The Gergis paper had about 6 figures of $ invested in it, much from the Australian Department of Climate Change and Energy Efficiency. I asked that department if the funding of the paper, having been rejected by the publisher, would be refunded to the Australian taxpayers from whence it came.
    In the words of a popular poet
    “And an answer came directed in a writing unexpected,
    (And I think the same was written in a thumbnail dipped in tar)
    ‘Twas his shearing mate who wrote it, and verbatim I will quote it…..:”
    …………………….
    From the Climate Change Science Team (no names given)
    The Department of Climate Change and Energy Efficiency provided funds to the University of Melbourne in January 2011 for scientific research into the provision of extended estimates of regional scale climate variables (temperature and rainfall) to reduce uncertainties about climate change and its potential impacts in the Australasian region over the past 500-2,000 years. (more)
    ………………………
    The rejected paper (which might be massaged to rise again) did not properly fill these objectives once the errors were removed. Maybe the proper procedure would have been to return the original funds and make a new application with objectives capable of scientific attainment of high standard.

    I have a bumper sticker quoting Margaret Thatcher wrongly. The proper version seems to be “Socialist governments do traditionally make a financial mess.They always run out of other peoples’ money.”

    I shall have to ask for a refund of my expenditure on the one that was wrongly researched.

  22. Writing a dud paper or having a paper rejected by the referees is not the main issue, it may happen to everyone. That’s not the main reason why Ms Gergis is a bad scientist. The really stinking issues we need to mention here are:
    1) Gergis & Karoly got a $350,000 public grant (Australian Research Council) 3 years ago. After 3 years, as the money was about to run out, they applied for another 3-yr, $350,000 ARC grant to do the same things they had been paid to do in the previous 3 years.
    2) In order to apply for that new grant, of course, they had to show they had done something with the previous grant, so they put out that rubbish paper that fell apart in 3 weeks. It was done purely to allow them a new grant application that could keep Gergis employed for another 3 years. The ARC rules are quite specific about new grants being given only if previous projects had been successfully completed.
    3) In order to help the chances of their 2012 ARC grant application, they carpet-bombed the MSM in Australia with their press releases, with the ABC in particular (who else?) giving them heaps of publicity.
    4) After their paper was officially rejected, they kept this information secret to everyone for several weeks, so that the referees of their ARC grant application wouldn’t know. (It was precisely the time when ARC grant proposals were assessed). It was their legal and more duty to inform the ARC panel that the paper on which they based their new grant application had been rejected. Perhaps a FOI request is needed to find out whether they did so.
    5) Thanks to their dirty tricks and media spin, or perhaps very friendly referees, their new ARC grant application was successful, so Gergis & Karoly have just been rewarded with another $350,000 of Australian taxpayer’s money. (Only the top 15-20% of ARC grant applications are successful).

    As a fellow (honest) Aussie scientist, I find the behaviour of people like Karoly & Gergis truly despicable.

  23. Tom Harley and Antonia I agree with you, but the real problem in Australia, I must say with utter dismay, is Tony Abbott. He says that he believes in climate change but has a better way to tackle it than the government’s carbon tax. He is easily discredited in terms of the paradigm that the MSM and the JG Gov. have propagated. If you believe in the diagnosis you have to believe in the treatment – after all, “the science is settled.” That’s what my Labor and Green friends tell me. TA is also open to attack because he is perceived to exaggerate the price rises flowing from the C02 tax. He ignores a more potent argument against the CO2 tax.

    I was overjoyed when TA knocked off MT, but now I’m disappointed. He has had three years to smash the paradigm. He is having a bet each way, but why? Green voters don’t give their second preferences to the Coalition, everyone knows that, except TA! John Howard was unseated because green prefs flowed to Labor, so his ETS promise did him a fat lot of good!

    People get used to new taxes, and the green Labor government might get re-elected, God help us. TA should have recruited Carter et al, three years ago, to demolish the green propaganda. If voters knew that they are paying more for everything because of a great green lie they wouldn’t accept the tax as meekly as they actually accepting it.

    Tony Abbott has to change his tune NOW. The fact that the world has stopped warming gives him a rationale for what would be characterized by his opponents as a ‘back flip’, and he needs to give Carter et al the mission of re-educating Australian voters who’ve been duped by green propaganda.

    It is rumored that he privately believes that AGW is “crap.” I wish he would hold a press conference with Bob Carter on one side of him and David Evans on the other side, and state that the government policy shouldn’t be based on an proven, (and arguably, discredited), hypothsesis – in the case of the CO2 tax, a hypothesis that is still alive only because politicians of the green persuasion, and others too weak to stand up to them, have kept it on life support. That would be a sensational press conference and it would pave the way for the debates between scientists which Australian voters need to hear.

  24. The full sequence of comments is revealing. Listen for the tone of Mike’s replies. Background: They are at “When Research is Attacked” which is an “Article by Theresa Defino in latest issue of “Report on Research Compliance” (http://www.reportonresearchcompliance.com/)”

    Joelle Gergis Thanks for the link Mike, very helpful
    12 hours ago

    Quick question: This is the first comment. Why is Joelle thanking Mike at Theresa’s article? And not thanking Theresa?

    Michael E. Mann thanks Joelle– [cut – as above]
    11 hours ago

    Theresa Defino I can send copies to those who’d like the issue. Just send me a message.
    11 hours ago

    Michael E. Mann Thanks Theresa ☺
    11 hours ago

    Joelle Gergis Thanks for your encouragement Mike, it’s been a hell of a year. I’ve just chased up the UCS report and forwarded it on through my network to get the word out. Hope things are going well for your these days, you are an inspiration to many of us. I look forward to catching up with you soon…
    11 hours ago

    Michael E. Mann sounds great Joelle. I look forward to catching up w/ you soon too ☺
    11 hours ago

    Theresa Defino mike, you can send to people too; just request no posting.
    10 hours ago · Edited

    Michael E. Mann thanks again Theresa ☺
    10 hours ago

    Doesn’t that sound like a best-selling author or a rock star catering to then brushing off the groupies?

    J: Oh Mickey, this is great, thanks!

    M: Yeah doll, the stuff from you young artists is the future, don’t let the haters get you down.

    T: I can send it to anyone you want!

    M: Thanks doll!

    J: Oh Mickey, it’s been hard but I’m getting the word out, you’ve inspired so many of us, love to talk with you again soon!

    M: Thanks doll, talk soon!

    T: You can send it to anyone you want Mickey, just no copying please!

    M: Thanks doll!

    One young artist desperate for Mickey’s help in getting recognition, another is bummed out her karaoke night performance with Mickey and a friend bombed on YouTube… And there’s Mickey showing how he provides fan service!

    Maybe Mann, Hansen, Trenberth, and Jones should get together for a “Legends of Science” tour. Coming soon to a university auditorium near you!

  25. Jeremy says: “Roger Dewhurst +1 Nice Summary.”

    Except that “skeptics alike” are NOT focused on the short term. They repeatedly stress the entire geological history that utterly disproves the alarmist nonsense. But they can’t ignore short term rubbish like Sandy mania, so they also answer it, as well as addressing the long term.

  26. Gergis wrote a crappy paper and commiserates with the master of the crappy paper, Michael Mann, you have to love the irony!

  27. I recently saw a quote from a scientist who stated that science can be advanced when a hypothesis or theory is disproved as well as when it is supported. Gergis et al should be updated and published even though it does not support the hockey stick. When Thomas Edison was asked about his failures in the course of inventing the light bulb, he stated that he had found 150 ways not to make a light bulb. How many papers are published that shows data does not support a hypothesis? A study should be made of the prominent journals to get the ratio of positive vs negative papers. If what I suspect is true, then the process for getting research published supports advocacy science.

  28. “Climate scientists have become the most recent
    high-profile public targets, as industry-funded groups
    have attempted to discredit the research and reputation
    of notable investigators.”

    This lie just doesn’t go away and UCS spreads it thick. Hey UCS, where does your funding come from?

    Donations to the UCS in recent years include the following:

    2000 – a $25,000 Carnegie Corporation of New York grant for “dissemination of a report on National Missile Defense.”

    2002 – a $1 million Pew Memorial Trust grant “to support efforts to increase the nation’s commitment to energy efficiency and renewable energy as a cornerstone of a balanced and environmentally sound energy policy.”

    2003 – a $500,000 Energy Foundation grant over two years “to continue to support a national renewable portfolio standard education and outreach effort.”

    2004 – a $50,000 Energy foundation grant “to design and implement the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative carbon market in the Northeast.”

    2004 – a $100,000 Energy foundation grant “to study the impacts of climate change on California using the latest climate modeling.”

    2004 – a $600,000 Energy foundation grant over two years “to promote renewable energy policy at the federal and state levels, with a focus on the Midwest, the Northeast, and California.”

    So let’s re-word the UCS drivel to make it a little closer to real…

    Real climate scientists have become the most recent
    high-profile public targets, as activist-funded groups, such as UCS,
    have attempted to discredit the research and reputation
    of notable investigators.

    Yep, I like mine better.

  29. Gergis is true follower of Mann , and that is pretty much all you need to know about the ‘quality’ of the work they do.
    And its hardly a surprise that the central pillar of science ‘critical review ‘ is something they object to, that is after all the anti-science ‘standard ‘ the Teams works to in the name of ‘the cause ‘ were all that matters is how well something supports this cause .

  30. Roger Dewhurst says:
    November 21, 2012 at 6:27 pm

    Climate shroundwavers and sceptics alike, are engaged in a totally futile argument over questionable data, questionable models and questionable interpretation …

    Your overview is correct except for one major problem: The CAGW/UN/Greenpeace/etc. cabal use the topic as an excuse to tax and control. Look up Agenda 21 from our “friendly” UN to see what they plan for you and the rest of the world. Then fight it with all your might (unless, of course, you want to completely suspend your individual freedoms and bow to your UN masters).

  31. { A fairy tale }

    Imagine Mann standing in front of his bathroom mirror.

    Imagine he says, “Mirror, mirror on the wall who is the greatest climate scientist of all?”

    Imagine the face of Mother Gaia appears in the mirror. Mother Gaia answers Mann, “Richard Lindzen.”

    Imagine Mann making a call to Roger Harrabin complaining to him that he didn’t do enough at the BBC to censor skeptics like Lindzen. Mann yells, “You are fired Roger. I’ll order Revkin to do it instead.”

    {fairy tale ends }

    John

  32. Frugal McDougall of Hobart says:
    November 22, 2012 at 2:34 am

    I wish he [Tony Abbot] would hold a press conference with Bob Carter on one side of him and David Evans on the other side, and state that the government policy shouldn’t be based on an proven, (and arguably, discredited), hypothesis

    If Harper in Canada can do it, he can too. Why not bring Harper down to flank him too?

    [“unproven hypothesis”? Mod]

  33. Frugal McDougall of Hobart says:
    November 22, 2012 at 2:34 am

    . . . a hypothesis that is still alive only because politicians of the green persuasion, and others too weak to stand up to them, have kept it on life support. That would be a sensational press conference and it would pave the way for the debates between scientists which Australian voters need to hear.

    SAY! This could pave the way for a debate that the world needs to hear! Suppose a dozen dissenting scientists from around the world set up camp in Australia to back him up by holding debates, giving interviews, etc., and suppose contrarian organizations produced a set of counterpoints to SkS’s site, and suppose Anthony and the rest of us here at WUWT produced 100 “Do You Know” sound-bites to startle believers and mid-roaders into a rethink, or at least to put them on the defensive . . .

    It could be a tipping point–worldwide!

  34. PS: If the rate of sea level rise is downgraded by 50%, which may be in the cards, as Bill Illis has posted (see below), that could give Abbot the ammo he needs to go on the offensive! Abbot should start laying his plans now for a one-two punch.

    Bill Illis says:
    November 2, 2012 at 5:09 am

    They are going to fix the satellite records now because they have improved ocean mass (glacial melt) numbers and improved ocean heat steric rise numbers.

    Eric Leuliette (of NOAA) and Josh Willis (managing the ARGO program) are arguing the rise should be reduced to 1.6 mm/year.

    Basically, the previous models of glacial isostatic adjustment were not correct (shown by recent measurements using GPS of Antarctica and by redoing the assumptions used for GRACE) and the steric ocean heat rise was over-estimated (shown by the ARGO floats).

    The old models allowed the researchers to adjust the Raw satellite data to get the results the models said should be there or something close to 3.0 mm/year. But the old models were flawed and we are back to 1.6 mm/year, the same number as most of the 20th Century.

    http://ibis.grdl.noaa.gov/SAT/SeaLevelRise/documents/NOAA_NESDIS_Sea_Level_Rise_Budget_Report_2012.pdf

    http://www.tos.org/oceanography/archive/24-2_leuliette.pdf

  35. Stephen Richards says:
    November 22, 2012 at 1:33 am
    Roger Dewhurst + n Nice Summary.

    Great rant, Roger. What the “éàç was that stupid remark about line spaces and couldn’t read it ??
    ==========================================================================

    Maybe because it is one long block of text, which can be hard to read as such. Paragraph breaks help to make reading easier. I read it the post and thought it excellent – but my 61 year old eyes struggled with it, I have to say. There’s nothing “stupid” about the remark.

  36. Really, if Mann and Gergis didn’t exist we would have to invent them. Michael Mann and all his words remind us every day in every way that climate science is not about the science, it’s about the politics.

  37. Google Trends shows the interest in the name “Michael Mann” steadily losing interest since a peak in August 2004. (It’s probably not a very accurate assessment since Germany shows up as being of high regional interest. I guess Mann is originally a German surname and maybe there’s a German MM hitting the headlines too.)

    There are some interesting peaks though; August 4004, July 2006 and July 2009. I wonder what that little scamp was up to around those dates.

  38. Isn’t part of Mann’s defense of his own “hockey stick” a claim that “independent” researchers arrive at the same historical profile? Why is it at all in Mann’s interest to associate at all with Gergis or similar “independent” researchers, weaken his defense, and VALIDATE the Wegman complaint that social networking tends to bias both results and publications?

  39. “keep up the good work” by all means. Keep putting forward papers unsupported by basic science, have them rejected, claim they haven’t been rejected, and finally meely-mouth the publication process as “bullying” when it doesn’t go your way. I suspect that the whole crumbling edifice will come down to a discussion I had with a professor in early 1989. His career was spent advocating and explaining Marxism to the young. My rejoinder was “Marxism is crap” Later that year we had a vote on that question in various parts of the world. The crap argument won. As a non-scientist I appreciate the fortitiude of those better qualified. As a practical matter stating that the science is “crap” will in the end explain it all.

  40. John Whitman says:
    November 22, 2012 at 6:57 am

    { A fairy tale }…
    ___________________________
    ROTFLMAO, I love your fairy tales… Where is Josh to illustrate them?

  41. Rob Soria says:
    November 22, 2012 at 2:20 am

    If what you write is true, you’re not the only one who finds “the behaviour of people like Karoly & Gergis truly despicable. Such behavior is a poster child for the definition of despicable.

  42. “… you are an inspiration to many of us…”
    ****************
    There’s the problem.
    “Who is the greater fool, the fool or the fool who follows him.”
    Shakespeare

    “DON’T let the b@$#aRds get you down!”
    ******************
    Oh dear, wrong again. It’s “carborundum”, meaning “don’t let the…….GRIND you down.”

  43. ” Mario Lento says: November 21, 2012 at 7:27 pm
    @Roger Dewhurst: I would like to see a cartoon video to go along with a voice over of the summary… maybe tone it down a little for the kids. Then get PBS to broadcast it… Uhm…OK – maybe this could happen in a parallel universe. ”

    Forget PBS. No kids watch that. They all watch youtube! That is still available for dispersing of ideas and data. Get it quick before they close that.

  44. mfo says:
    November 22, 2012 at 10:58 am
    “… you are an inspiration to many of us…”
    ****************
    There’s the problem.
    “Who is the greater fool, the fool or the fool who follows him.”
    Shakespeare

    That was Yoda, wasn’t it?

  45. Roger Knights says:
    “””””””””
    That’s funny. There’s me trying to be clever quoting Shakespeare and it was George Lucas. Shakespeare is upset that he didn’t think of it and Yoda is envious that it was
    Obi-Wan. I wish there was a way to work the joke ‘Yoda Mann’, but he just isn’t. :o)

  46. Mann’s hockey stick has been vastly overrated. It was never the central issue that the IPCC would have had people believe. After the “Climate Research” episode, much less the backstory that came out in the Climategate emails, it’s no wonder that he felt persecuted, and now wants to play the elder sage, dispensing advice. But then, the criticism he took over that episode was over the top, and mostly unfounded.

  47. JazzyT says:
    November 22, 2012 at 4:27 pm

    If I’m reading you correctly – where within the climate science world (outside IPCC) was Mann’s hockey stick not the central issue. And, specifically what “criticism” of his research was over-the-top?

  48. JazzyT says:
    November 22, 2012 at 4:27 pm

    Mann’s hockey stick has been vastly overrated. It was never the central issue that the IPCC would have had people believe. After the “Climate Research” episode, much less the backstory that came out in the Climategate emails, it’s no wonder that he felt persecuted, and now wants to play the elder sage, dispensing advice. But then, the criticism he took over that episode was over the top, and mostly unfounded.
    ___________________________________
    HE LIED. He KNEW he lied and when he was called on it he attacked Steve McIntyre. One e-mail shows this. Science has no place for liars. Better for M. Mann to become a politician where lying is the norm. (I refuse to call him Dr. because he does not deserve it.)

    This is not how a true scientist reacts to criticism of his work.

    Climategate e-mail

    date: Wed, 29 Aug 2007 12:03:05 -0400
    from: “Michael E. Mann”
    subject: Re: Something not to pass on
    to: Phil Jones

    Phil,

    I would not respond to this. They will misrepresent and take out of
    context anything you give them. This is a set up. They will certainly
    publish this, and will ignore any evidence to the contrary that you provide. s They are going after Wei-Chyung because he’s U.S. and there is a higher threshold for establishing libel. Nonetheless, he should consider filing a defamation lawsuit, perhaps you too.

    I have been talking w/ folks in the states about finding an investigative journalist to investigate and expose McIntyre, and his thus far unexplored connections with fossil fuel interests. Perhaps the same needs to be done w/ this Keenan guy.

    I believe that the only way to stop these people is by exposing them and discrediting them.

    Do you mind if I send this on to Gavin Schmidt (w/ a request to respect the confidentiality with which you have provided it) for his additional advice/thoughts? He usually has thoughtful insights wiith respect to such matters,

    mike

    What the heck does it matter to SCIENCE who the person works for if he is correct? Hey Mikey, ” the only way to stop these people ” is to start doing legitimate science.

  49. JazzyT says:
    November 22, 2012 at 4:27 pm

    Mann’s hockey stick has been vastly overrated.

    Won’t find me arguing with that.

    It was never the central issue that the IPCC would have had people believe.

    Of course not, I mean, it’s not as if it got rid of the Medieval Warm Period or anything that may have caused doubt in the Cause. Nope, sure it didn’t do that.

    After the “Climate Research” episode, much less the backstory that came out in the Climategate emails, it’s no wonder that he felt persecuted, and now wants to play the elder sage, dispensing advice. But then, the criticism he took over that episode was over the top, and mostly unfounded.

    Let’s see.
    He hid his data, his methods and the R^2 because he said he had a better method. Mangled the PCA and when he was found out decided he’d been persecuted.

    Is that about right?

    If he was right and knew it, he would have opened his work to independent analysis, he didn’t so I’m guessing he knew it was wrong. Only his little coterie of friends were privy to all that so they could independently replicate his analysis.

    DaveE.

  50. Mann is a wheedling, whining child, caught with his hand in the cookie jar & blaming the people that caught him!

    DaveE.

  51. Mann’s hockey stick has been vastly overrated. It was never the central issue that the IPCC would have had people believe.

    For a while it, and its like, where everywhere in the media. Most people still think that is what is happening – that after a long period of flat temperatures we are having an unprecedented rise. The Hockey Stick is responsible for that.

    But then, the criticism he took over that episode was over the top, and mostly unfounded.

    Not even remotely. Poor science, backed up with poor statistics, were combined with a refusal to accept any fault. Any scientist who does that should be removed from his post, not just criticised a bit.

  52. Instapundit links to this article and I think it applies to Mann and his ilk.

    STATIST THUGS AND THE ROCKS THEY CRAWL OUT FROM UNDER:

    “Regardless of the age, the culture, or the social conditions, there is ALWAYS a percentage of the general populace that embraces the totalitarian dynamic. There is always someone in our neighborhood, in our workplace, and within our family that finds vindication or advantage in supporting the state, even if the state has turned viciously criminal. They are not only useful idiots; they are conscious participants in the process of pacification and enslavement of their own society. They understand their role perfectly, and they enjoy what they do.”

  53. JazzyT, Manns ‘smartest ‘ move was to realise that the IPCC was all about politics not science and to come up with away to remove the MWP, so that current warming could be sold has ‘unprecedented’ which the IPCC urgently wanted. That his a first class ar*e and bully even to those on the same side , his willing to lie without thinking and his approach to science is a joke are just add ons . What will bring him down in the end his is massive ego and arrogance has we in the court cases he has started , which he cannot back up with ability and when he falls I think we will be surprised to find who lines up to kick him on the way down .
    Keep in the public spot light , keep him under pressure and he will much good work ,

  54. I have been talking w/ folks in the states about finding an investigative journalist to investigate and expose McIntyre, and his thus far unexplored connections with fossil fuel interests.

    This statement of Manns’, from the Climategate 2 bunch, was released a few months before the Gleick episode. I suspect it may have motivated Gleick.

  55. Anyone planning to attend this little event at AGU FallMeeting?

    An Inside Look at the Michael Mann Case

    Join us for a brown bag lunch with Peter Fontaine, counsel to Michael Mann and a leader of Cozen O’Connor’s Brownfield Development and Climate Change practices.

    Peter will use examples from recent Freedom of Information Act litigation American Tradition Institute v. University of Virginia to discuss the application of state public records acts to researcher electronic correspondence, the interplay between the Federal FOIA and state laws, practical issues related to document review, potential exemptions to protect correspondence from disclosure, and other legal theories for the protection of correspondence, such as the First Amendment and Academic Freedom, and emerging trends in this dynamic intersection between science and the law.

    5 December 2012 from 12:30 – 1:30PM

    Moscone South, Room 226

  56. zefal says:
    November 22, 2012 at 9:30 pm

    Nice article. I’d say that’s Mikey boy to a tee.

    DaveE.

  57. Mooloo says:
    November 22, 2012 at 7:30 pm
    Most people still think that is what is happening – that after a long period of flat temperatures we are having an unprecedented rise.

    Good point! Whenever I see people talking about global warming in the paper, I really would like to ask them if they know that according to the satellite data sets, 1998 has not been beaten yet. But where do we start? Here is what President Obama said recently:
    “What we do know is the temperature around the globe is increasing faster than was predicted even 10 years ago,”

  58. James Allison, David A. Evans, Mooloo, Gail Combs, and knr:
    First off, you all had some interesting points on interesting topics—stats, hiding the MWP, the ongoing love-fest between Mann and McIntyre. I’d like to discuss these sometime, perhaps soon if we keep at it.

    Quickly, James Allison: I’d say the central issue in climate science is how the climate works, and lately, whether we’re changing it, and perhaps, whether we want to adjust our behavior. Observations, records, theories and models all come into play, each one needing validation and interpretation. Paleoclimate records are part of this, but far from being central, except at times for PR.

    Now for the Climate Research episode…

    Actually, the criticism I was calling “over the top” concerns the scientific journal “Climate Research,” which published a truly wretched paper by Willie Soon and Sallie Baliunas in 2003. You’ve all brought up some interesting topics, and I look forward to discussing these sometime soon. But this one topic takes a good bit just to get at the basics, so I think that it’s best to stick to that one topic for now.

    This paper purported to show evidence supporting the existence of a worldwide Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice Age. In the Climategate emails, you can see Mann, and the Team, discussing what to do about it. In the end, they published a statement outlining the paper’s errors, but the paper ended up being waved about by a lot of people as though it were a legitimate scientific challenge to Mann’s work. There were also discussions about whether they could push for changes at the journal itself. The story gets more complicated, but after they published their statement, there were mass resignations at the journal “Climate Science.” This was partly in reaction to the paper, but also over the way the journal dealt with it.

    This looked like Mann and others were suppressing opposing viewpoints. It would be different, however, if the Soon and Baliunas’s paper had actually been fraudulent, with faked data or something. Science can never tolerate that, and it would justify really strong measures.

    But the paper didn’t really seem to be fraudulent, it was just astonishingly bad, and so it would take some explaining to show how their behavior could be justified. So, let’s look at the paper. We’ll start with a simple analogy:

    A boy sits at a table, with a plate before him. His mother calls from the other room, “remember, no M&Ms until you finish your peas.” The boy looks at his plate, and begins counting peas. After a while, his mother calls out, “Did you eat your peas before you opened your M&Ms?”

    The boy replies, “I counted all my peas, and I counted my French Fries, and I counted my chicken nuggets. I had 55. Then later, I counted my M&Ms, and my French Fries, and my chicken nuggets, and I had 47.”

    Mother, perplexed, asks, “what does that mean?” The boy replies, “well, before, I had peas, ‘cause I had 55. Later, I had M&Ms, ‘cause I had 47.”

    Mother asks, “you mean had 55 French fries, and chicken nuggets and peas, and that is supposed to be your peas? And then you counted 47 French fries, and chicken nuggets along with your M&Ms, and that is supposed to be your M&Ms?” “Yes, Mommy.” Did you have M&Ms on your plate before you finished your peas?” “I dunno, Mommy.” “Did you finish your peas before you had your M&Ms? “I dunno, Mommy.” “Well, when you counted your peas, did you count the M&Ms to see how many there were?” “No, Mommy.” When you counted your M&Ms, did you count the peas, too?” “No, Mommy.” “Then how do you know you had more peas at the beginning, and more M&Ms at the end?

    Why did the little boy that this way of counting made any sense? Well, he applied the methods of Soon and Baliunas, as published in Climate Research, 2003. You can apply the following substitutions to see what happened in the paper:

    peas: warm places
    French fries: places with wet weather
    Chicken nuggets: places with dry weather
    M&Ms: cold places
    Earlier time, when the boy should be eating peas: Medieval Warm Period (MWP)
    Later time, when he’s allowed to have his M&Ms: Little Ice Age (LIA)

    Here’s a link to the paper:

    http://www.int-res.com/articles/cr2003/23/c023p089.pdf

    Now, to follow this, you can take a look at page 90. On the second paragraph,

    “The proxies used to study climatic change over the last 1000 yr are addressed individually and therefore locally…” So, they’re looking at lots of individual locations. In the next section, they define three questions, of which the first two are: (1) can they find an climatic anomaly in the MWP? And, (2) can they find an anomaly in the LIA? They state the time periods they use for MWP and LIA. (Question 3 we can set aside for later.)

    Again, on the lower left (last paragraph in the left-hand column). They lay out how they choose their anomalies:

    For the MWP: periods of warmth, wetness or dryness for more than 50 years
    For the LIA: periods of cold, wetness, or dryness for more than 50 years.

    So, they look for these at locations around the world, as given by the various studies they referenced.

    On the next page, p. 91, after lots of verbiage, we see what was actually done with these anomalies. In the lower left, below the heading “3. Approach” they describe how they scored whether or not an anomaly was present during the MWP or the LIA. These are then tabulated to show that there are a lot of anomalies, world wide, for both the MWP and the LIA.

    But the tables they don’t tell us what kind of anomaly each one is. An anomaly in the MWP might be warm, or wet, or dry. Or, it might be warm and wet, or warm and dry, but we don’t know whether it was warm or not from the way they present the data. Similarly, anomalies for the LIA might be cold, or they might be merely wet or dry.

    So, let’s pick a location, say, Panama. If we found some evidence that Panama was unusually dry in the past, what would it mean? If that evidence dated to the MWP, it would mean that it was warm, since it would be taken to support the MWP. If it occurred during the LIA, it would mean that it was cold, and support the LIA. However, if you’re using the MWP to classify it as warm, then you can’t use it to support the existence of the MWP. That’s circular reasoning. You can’t use the MWP as evidence that there was an MWP. Similarly, you can’t classify something as part of the LIA when you’re trying to establish that there actually was a LIA, since that’s also circular reasoning. In fact, for this part, you could start with the idea that there was a Medieval Ice Age, and a Later Warm Period, and support these ideas with the same wet and dry places you used to support the MWP and the LIA. Because it’s circular reasoning, you can support whatever you want.

    Now the paper did actually look at warm and cold places. Again, these got mixed up with wet and dry, so we can’t really tell anything from the data presented. But in addition, warm and cold were never compared to each other in the same time period. They looked for warmth in the MWP, but not for cold. So if they found a bunch of warm places, did these outweigh cold places, or were there an equal number of warm and cold places? There might even have been more cold places than warm ones for the MWP. We don’t know, and Soon and Baliunas don’t know either. Or, if they do, they’re not telling us. They also gave the impression of having more cold places in the LIA, when they never even looked at warm places during that time to compare.

    Here’s a quick example to illustrate how badly we’ve gotten mixed up by now. Let’s invent some data, to see the method works. We’ll how many places we found, worldwide, of each type of anomaly:

    MWP: warm places: 25 (cold places: 25) wet places: 25 dry places: 25

    LIA: (warm places: 25) cold places: 25 wet places: 25 dry places: 25

    The ones in parentheses are there, but we don’t count them, according to the method in the paper.

    Of course, it’s the same data for each place, and the same data for the MWP and the LIA. This just makes it easier to see what’s going on; a randomly selected set of numbers would work too. For the MWP, we add up 75 anomalies, around the world. If you don’t see the trick, you could think that this gave strong support to the existence of the MWP. When we add up data for the LIA, we would also see 75 anomalies, and could think that this showed that there was a LIA. But you could just as easily show a Medieval Ice Age and a Later Warm Period, because it’s the same data. In other words, you can switch the warm and cold periods, and get the same results! You find exactly what you are looking for, because your definitions force you to. Circular reasoning here leads directly to confirmation bias, seeing exactly what you expect to see.

    Now it’s also true that we didn’t look at anomalies that were both warm and wet, or cold and dry, etc. If we had any of these, we might be counting them twice. We can’t look at that in the paper because temperature is already mixed up with precipitation by the time we see it. Perhaps if the evidence for warming was weak, wetness or dryness might support the temperature trend, or not, depending perhaps on location. You’d have to be careful about this, but it could happen. But that’s not what Soon and Baliunas did. Each “anomaly” might be warmth, wet, or dry for the MWP. For the boy, each object counted might be a pea, a chicken nugget, or a French fry. The fact that there are combinations (well for the climate indicators, anyway) doesn’t change the fact that the logic is irreparably broken.

    Anything that the paper says about the existence of the Medieval Warm Period and the Little Ice age is just pure gibberish, completely unsupported by the anaylis. It doesn’t show that there’s a MWP and a LIA at all, and it also doesn’t show that there isn’t—because it can’t show anything. Circular reasoning, failure to consider opposing evidence, jumping to conclusions—this paper, despite its erudite appearance, isn’t just wrong. It’s not even coherent enough to be wrong. A lot of people have failed to see this, probably because the language is a little confusing and, also, you would never imagine that a published scientific paper would actually be this bad.

    And this is about one third of what’s logically wrong with it. Unbelievably, it actually gets worse. But this is enough for one post. None of this means that there is not a MWP or a LIA. That’s a broader topic, and an interesting one. Climate scientists (including Mann & buddies) have been willing to entertain these at least as possibilities. But Soon and Baliunas’s paper was not capable of saying anything at all on the subject.

    In the aftermath: this paper was used to try and discredit a lot of climate science, but specifically, Mann and his hockey stick, and the IPCC’s use of it. Any such efforts were completely wrong because the paper doesn’t mean anything. But it reached the level of the US Senate, with Senator Inhofe using this to support his idea that climate change was all a hoax.

    If this were just a case of a scientific paper with an opposing view, then a few letters to the editor, and perhaps some more studies would have followed, as is usual in the scientific debate. But this paper, which wrongly claimed to contradict the work of Mann and others, was starting to cause some damage. Not because it opposed somebody’s view, but because it poisoned the scientific debate, by pretending to be science when it wasn’t. In this way, it was sort of like fraud, though without evidence of actual faked data or the like. It was deeply flawed, and people still believed it even though it was senseless. I don’t even know of a word for that, but I’m tempted to use the word “flawed-ulent.” Yes, it was a “flawed-ulent” paper.

    So, there followed an e-mail discussion about the paper, and the journal it was published in. In these, Mann comes across as a bit of a hothead, but he went along with other scientists, and cooler heads seem to have prevailed. He, and others, had some problems with the journal, and were worried about how the peer-review process had broken down to let an article this bad get published. In the end, a dozen of scientists published a 5-page rebuttal in a scientific newsletter with wide distribution among scientists. In the editorial staff at Climate Science, some editors were appalled to see what had shown up in the journal, and how peer review had just not done its job. They tried some reorganizing at the journal, but in the end, their chief editor and several others became discouraged and resigned.

    When the climategate e-mails came out, the discussions leading up to this rebuttal were all laid out. People accused Mann, and others, of colluding to discredit anyone who disagreed with them. The story involves more than this paper, but their discussions about how to deal with the are prominent in that story. Now, colluding to discredit and bury opposing scientific viewpoints would be unethical. But this paper is not a scientific viewpoint. It’s not a scientific anything, except a parody. There’s no evidence that it was actually fraudulent. A couple of Harvard astrophysicists could have blown it this badly. But it was so bad, so clearly useless, that once it gained some traction, it deserved the same strong response as a fraudulent article. “Direct action at Harvard…” clearly indicated for fraudulence, but still, arguably justified for “flawed-ulence” as well.

    The criticism that Mann and company got, and from his reaction to it, was unwarranted, and over the top. A later version, published again (!) in “Energy and the Environment,” had criticisms—unfounded—of Mann that were more pointed than the earlier version.
    The whole team was presented, partly on the basis of this paper, as attempting to smear anyone who disagreed with them. That criticism was also over the top, and unfounded.

  59. Re(garding) JazzyT’s post (November 23 – 4:18 PM):

    I would like to know if there’s truth to it? Mann, et.al., do come off as thinskinned arrogant ****s, but if JazzT’s claim above is valid it would certainly help contextualize what was said in the emails. (Obviously the peer-review process is broken if all of these BAD papers – on both sides of the debate – are getting through.)

    JazzyT did say something well:
    “Paleoclimate records are part of this, but far from being central, except at times for PR.”

    And THAT’s the problem. The PR is so digestible it goes straight to the executive summary and becomes the CENTRAL point of the debate ergo the debate is over.

  60. JazzyT:

    Your long post at November 23, 2012 at 4:18 pm attempts to refute the excellent Soon&Baliunas (2003) paper and to defend the execrable Michael Mannand his associates.

    Your post uses the usual AGW-alarmist tactic of asserting that evidence which refutes the alarmism ’could be wrong’. Well, of course anything could be wrong but science never rejects evidence on that basis. I remind that
    science
    consists of finding the closest possible approximation to ‘truth’ by attempting to find evidence which refutes existing understanding(s) and altering the understanding(s) in the light of obtained evidence.
    And
    pseudoscience
    consists of adopting an understanding as being ‘truth’ then attempting to find evidence which supports it while presenting excuses for ignoring evidence which refutes it.

    Soon&Balisunas (2003) finds evidence of the Medieval Warm Period (MWP) and the Little Ice Age (LIA)from around the globe and deduces that the MWP and LIA were global. You attempt to dismiss that evidence with a silly analogy about a child eating peas. If you knew of any valid criticism of the paper then you would make it instead of posting that tripe.

    However, you do attempt one factual criticism when you say

    Now the paper did actually look at warm and cold places. Again, these got mixed up with wet and dry, so we can’t really tell anything from the data presented. But in addition, warm and cold were never compared to each other in the same time period. They looked for warmth in the MWP, but not for cold. So if they found a bunch of warm places, did these outweigh cold places, or were there an equal number of warm and cold places? There might even have been more cold places than warm ones for the MWP. We don’t know, and Soon and Baliunas don’t know either. Or, if they do, they’re not telling us. They also gave the impression of having more cold places in the LIA, when they never even looked at warm places during that time to compare.

    OK. You claim, “They looked for warmth in the MWP, but not for cold”. Really? They did not look for “cold” places? That is strange when they were searching for anomalies indicative of the MWP and the LIA.

    Their Table 1 lists

    Table 1. A full list of paleoclimatic proxies that have sufficient length of continuous records to entertain the 3 specifc questions:
    (1) Is there an objectively discernible climatic anomaly during the Little Ice Age interval (A.D. 1300–1900) in this proxy record?
    (2) Is there an objectively discernible climatic anomaly during the Medieval Warm Period (A.D. 800–1300) in this proxy record?
    (3) Is there an objectively discernible climatic anomaly within the 20th century that is the most extreme (the warmest, if such information is available) period in the record?

    It seems you have assumed this means they considered any anomaly – be it warm or cold – was taken as indicating the same thing.

    But, importantly, in their Section 3 titled “Approach”, they write

    A global association for the Little Ice Age or Medieval Warm Period is premature because proxy data are geographically sparse and either or both phenomena could be multi-phased events acting under distinct local and regional constraints and modes. Bradley & Jones (1993) and Hughes & Diaz (1994) initiated and strongly held the view that the phenomena were not global, but Grove (1996; see especially p. 51 to 54) disagrees. However, in the traditionally data rich areas of Western Europe or the Northern Atlantic including Iceland and Greenland, both the Little Ice Age and Medieval Warm Period do exist as distinct climate anomalies (Pfister et al. 1998, Grove 2001a, Ogilvie & Jónsson 2001). No objective proof discredits the existence of those phenomena in other regions.

    [emphasis added: RSC]

    It would not be possible for Soon&Baliunas (2003) to have made the statement which I have bolded if your assumption were true. Indeed, a note to GRL would have required withdrawal of the paper containing that statement if your assumption were true. But Mann, Trenberth, Briffa, et al. have not presented such a note.

    And, importantly, the paper says

    The climate indicators considered here include information from documentary and cultural sources, ice cores, glaciers, boreholes, speleothems, tree-growth limits, lake fossils, mammalian fauna, coral and treering growth, peat cellulose; and pollen, phonological and seafloor sediments. In a rather inhomogeneous way, each proxy is influenced by both climatic and non-climatic factors. We rely on individual researchers for their best judgments in interpreting climatic signals. The 3 questions are addressed in the context of local or regional sensitivity of the proxies to relevant climatic variables, including air temperature, sea surface temperature, precipitation, and any combination of large-scale patterns of pressure, wind and oceanic circulation.

    [emphasis added: RSC]
    Therefore, your assumption is an assertion that Soon&Baliunas (2003) misrepresented at least some of the studies which their meta-study reported.

    Soon&Baliunas (2003) reported findings of hundreds of studies (including studies by Mann). None – not one – of the authors of those studies has claimed that Soon&Baliunas (2003) has misrepresented their findings.

    Simply, your supposed criticism is a false assumption which is not supported by the facts.

    You then assert

    In the aftermath: this paper was used to try and discredit a lot of climate science, but specifically, Mann and his hockey stick, and the IPCC’s use of it. Any such efforts were completely wrong because the paper doesn’t mean anything. But it reached the level of the US Senate, with Senator Inhofe using this to support his idea that climate change was all a hoax.

    Rubbish!
    There is so much wrong with Mann’s ’hockey stick’ that books have been written about it! And the IPCC withdrew from it in the AR4.

    Soon&Baliunas (2003) shows the MWP and LIA were global events but Mann’s ’hockey stick’ purports to show that they did not exist in the Northern Hemisphere. Simply, Soon&Baliunas (2003) is scientific information and Mann’s ’hockey stick’ is – at best – a product of incompetence.

    And your final paragraphs are outrageous. For example, these concluding two

    The criticism that Mann and company got, and from his reaction to it, was unwarranted, and over the top. A later version, published again (!) in “Energy and the Environment,” had criticisms—unfounded—of Mann that were more pointed than the earlier version.
    The whole team was presented, partly on the basis of this paper, as attempting to smear anyone who disagreed with them. That criticism was also over the top, and unfounded.

    The “criticism that Mann and company got” was very mild; they deserved much worse than what they “got”. They DID attempt to smear anybody who criticised them, they arranged replacement of the Editor of GRL, and they attempted to get the Editor of “Energy and the Environment” (Sonja Boehmer-Christiansen) sacked from her post at Hull University because she took the honourable position of not being intimidated by them.

    In conclusion, your post is a misrepresentation of reality.

    Richard

  61. Questions for JazzyT

    Was there a mediaevel warm period? Was there a little ice age?

    My history teachers said that there was. Based upon historical evidence, not proxy data of any kind. None of them had ever heard of Michael Mann.

    Please enlighten me.

  62. richardscourtney says:
    November 24, 2012 at 10:34 am

    Your long post at November 23, 2012at 4:18 pmattempts to refute the excellent Soon&Baliunas (2003) paper

    The paper refutes itself, by its own broken logic. When this is laid bare, anyone can read the paper itself and see that it cannot support its conclusions, or any other conclusions, about the MWP and the LIA. All such information is lost before it is analyzed.

    Soon&Balisunas (2003) finds evidence of the Medieval Warm Period (MWP) and the Little Ice Age (LIA)from around the globe

    And then, essentially, throw this evidence into a blender, in a way that ensures that the resulting puree cannot be used to conclude anything.

    Richard, you make a number of other points, but none of them really seem to be relevant. You have not addressed the main point, which lies in their definition of “anomaly”:

    Soon and Baliunas reviewed a number of papers, and searched for “anomalies,” using the following definitions (p. 90, lower left corner—the paper is linked in my previous post):

    “Anomaly is simply defined as a period of more than 50 yr [years] of sustained warmth, wetness, or dryness, within the stipulated interval of the Medieval Warm Period, or a 50 yr or longer period of cold, dryness, or wetness within the stipulated Little Ice Age.” [emphasis added]

    This is the central fallacy of the paper. “Anomalies,” as defined above, in one or more proxy records cannot be used to show warmth during the MWP or cold during the LIA. 50 “anomalies” in the MWP might be 50 warm places, or it might be 25 wet places and 25 dry places, with no warm ones at all. The same problem applies with using these “anomalies” in the LIA to show cold during the LIA: just because you can count some “anomalies” in the LIA doesn’t mean that any of them are actually cold. They might just be wet or dry.

    They then count up anomalies in the MIA and the LIA, but the anomalies themselves do not tell us anything about warmth or cold. The paper has already failed.

    Again: it is circular reasoning to classify wet or dry conditions during the MWP time frame as MWP anomalies supporting the MWP. The same is true for wet or dry conditions during the LIA time frame. Furthermore, the definitions given above do not account for coldness in the MWP time frame or warmth during the LIA. If a place is seen to be cold in the MWP, that does not somehow balance a warm place, or anything like it. A place that is wet during the MWP time frame could even be cold, but still count as anomaly supporting the MWP.

    I had said, earlier:

    They looked for warmth in the MWP, but not for cold. So if they found a bunch of warm places, did these outweigh cold places, or were there an equal number of warm and cold places? There might even have been more cold places than warm ones for the MWP. We don’t know, and Soon and Baliunas don’t know either. Or, if they do, they’re not telling us. They also gave the impression of having more cold places in the LIA, when they never even looked at warm places during that time to compare.

    You responded:

    OK. You claim, “They looked for warmth in the MWP, but not for cold”. Really? They did not look for “cold” places? That is strange when they were searching for anomalies indicative of the MWPand the LIA.

    Yes, Really. They looked for warmth but not for cold during the MWP, as noted in their own definitions above. They looked for cold, but not warmth, during the LIA, again, as noted in their own definitions.

    They list their results in their Table 1, stating for each proxy whether they found a MWP anomaly (warm, wet, OR dry) during the MWP time frame, and also whether they found a LIA anomaly (cold, wet, OR dry) during the LIA time frame. (They also give answers to another question intended to compare 20th century temperatures to earlier ones. The logic for this question is also hopelessly broken, but we are not addressing this point yet.)

    It seems you have assumed this means they considered any anomaly – be it warm or cold – was taken as indicating the same thing.

    No, I have assumed no such thing. They do allow for warm, wet, and dry anomalies to count for the same thing in the MWP. They also allow for cold, wet, and dry anomalies to count for the same thing in the LIA. This is by their own definitions, given above. When they list a proxy as showing an anomaly, they have no way to see whether they have more warm anomalies than cold ones, at either time, because they never count both warm and cold at the same time.

    Anyone can read the definitions, both above and in the paper. Anyone can look at table 1, and figures 1 and 2 in the paper, and see that Soon and Baliunas found many anomalies, all over the world. But just presenting proxies as anomalous cannot support a MWP or LIA. We don’t even know how many of them, if any, involved temperature; they could all have been merely wet or dry.

    And, if we had a crystal ball, or Soon and Baliunas’s data, and knew which proxies showed warmth in the MWP, we still wouldn’t know whether it was balanced by coldness elsewhere, because, by their own definition, they ignore coldness in the MWP, and they ignore warmth in the LIA.

    Sure, there could have been a worldwide MWP, and a worldwide LIA. And it would be interesting to see that established. But it was not established by this paper, because, by this paper, by its own methods, it could not have established a warm trend on its own second page, even if the paper itself were on fire.

    You quote the paper’s Section 3, “Approach”:

    …However, in the traditionally data rich areas of Western Europe or the Northern Atlantic including Iceland and Greenland, both the Little Ice Age and Medieval Warm Period do exist as distinct climate anomalies (Pfister et al. 1998, Grove 2001a, Ogilvie & Jónsson 2001). No objective proof discredits the existence of those phenomena in other regions.
    [emphasis added: RSC]
    It would not be possible for Soon&Baliunas (2003) to have made the statement which I have bolded if your assumption were true.

    The assumption that you state is not mine, you misread my post. Regardless, it would not challenge the possibility of a worldwide MWP and LIA. Your statement is a non sequitur.

    Indeed, a note to GRL

    The paper was published in Climate Research, not GRL

    would have required withdrawal of the paper containing that statement if your assumption were true. But Mann, Trenberth, Briffa, et al. have not presented such a note.

    The note that they sent, at least the important one, went EOS, to a scientific newsletter. When it came out, the editors at Climate Research realized what an incoherent, senseless paper they had published. This led to attempts at reform, and ultimately, resignations.

    And, importantly, the paper says

    No, it’s not important. What they did with the data after this is important.

    …. We rely on individual researchers for their best judgments in interpreting climatic signals. The 3 questions are addressed in the context of local or regional sensitivity of the proxies to relevant climatic variables, including air temperature, sea surface temperature, precipitation, and any combination of large-scale patterns of pressure, wind and oceanic circulation.

    Sure. They seem to have done a nice job of going through their references, and extracting data, as appropriate, regarding wetness, dryness, warmth (but only during the MWP) and coldness (but only during LIA). They then took this data, well-sourced but fatally incomplete for temperature, and threw it in a blender, mixing up temperature and precipitation so that you could no longer tell whether there was any temperature data for any given proxy.

    Therefore, your assumption is an assertion that Soon&Baliunas (2003) misrepresented at least some of the studies which their meta-study reported.

    You misrepresented my statements to get the “assumption,” as noted above. What I stated (not assumed) came from their own definitions of “anomalies.”

    Soon&Baliunas (2003) reported findings of hundreds of studies (including studies by Mann). None – not one – of the authors of those studies has claimed that Soon&Baliunas (2003) has misrepresented their findings.

    You can’t be serious.

    Soon&Baliunas (2003) shows the MWPand LIA were global events

    Maybe they were, but you can’t prove that with proxies that might be for temperature or else they might be for precipitation—as per Soon and Baliunas’s definitions, given in their paper and quoted above.

    The “criticism that Mann and company got” was very mild; they deserved much worse than what they “got”. They DID attempt to smear anybody who criticised them, they arranged replacement of the Editor of GRL,

    Climate Research, not GRL. And the implosion of the editorial staff at that journal was set in motion when they saw for themselves what nonsense they had actually published.

    In conclusion, your post is a misrepresentation of reality.

    My post is a a straightforward reading of the definitions of “anomaly,” as printed in Soon and Baliunas (2003) and quoted in this post. Anyone can read the paper, linked in my first post, and verify this, and see how proxies were classified with MWP anomalies and LIA anomalies. Anyone can see what results when the results are used to examine the MWP and the LIA: utter gibberish.

  63. Jolly farmer says:
    November 25, 2012 at 12:40 am
    Questions for JazzyT

    Was there a mediaevel warm period? Was there a little ice age?

    Its widely agreed that there was a Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice Age in and around Europe. Hans Brinker skating in Holland, the success and then failure of the Greenland colony, etc. I recall reading a letter describing a Christmas Eve wedding in Colonial times, in central North Carolina, near Raleigh. The writer said that there was about a foot of snow on the ground, and that this was normal for that time of year. It’s not like that now–so I’m strongly suspicious that the LIA applied to the southeastern US as well.

    The paper in question, Soon and Baliunas (2003) claimed to show strong evidence of a worldwide MWP, and a worldwide LIA. Both of these might have been worldwide, which would bend, if not break, the so-called “hockey stick.” But the paper only showed that all over the world, in the MWP, there were places that were either warm, or wet, or dry, and not necessarily at the same time. Maybe cold ones, too, but they didn’t look. Same with the LIA: during that time, places all over the world were either cold, or wet, or dry, and not necessarily at the same time. Maybe warm ones as well, but they didn’t look. It was a very strange paper.

Comments are closed.