Questions for Marcott et al? – submit them here

Skiphil writes:

Andy Revkin of Dot Earth/NY Times blog is inviting questions to be submitted to the authors of Marcott et al. (2013). Since Revkin is one of the only journalists who might have a chance of getting the study authors to be responsive, this is a good opportunity.

Specifically, he’s asked for someone to prepare one list of questions which are “perceived as unanswered.”

Folks could start a list here at WUWT to post at Dot Earth, or simply post questions/points at Dot Earth until we have a good list.

submit questions on Marcott study to Dot Earth/NY Times blog

Andy Revkin Dot Earth blogger

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81 thoughts on “Questions for Marcott et al? – submit them here

  1. Why won’t Shakun and Marcott engage at ClimateAudit where there work is undergoing a detailed analysis? Why won’t they release their code?

  2. Anthony, I think somebody like AMAC or Brandon or Just the facts would be a good compiler of questions.

  3. So Marcott is going to answer a question truthfully where the only true answer is, “I cheated to support AGW”. Don’t think so. But what and if he does answer should be entertaining. I think that these questions need to be very tightly structured, with exact references, so there is no way to sidestep the unjustifiable.

  4. I saw Revkin’s comment and will send in some questions, since Shakun hasnt answered points that interested me. The problem with a whole lot of people responding is that it gives Shakun an excuse to avoid my issues. I’ll take a look at what people propose, but would prefer that readers let me decide what to pursue. Thx, Steve Mc

  5. Did any reviewer encourage or instruct the authors to re-date any of the modern proxy records with the intent of influencing principal components to produce hockey stick shapes?

    Did you feel that any reviewer was insistent on producing a modern hockey stick as a condition of publishing? Do you have reason to believe this reviewer was Michael E. Mann?

    Did any reviewer help produce the press release or otherwise suggest including the claim that modern warming rates were higher than past warming rates? Did this reviewer know that these claims were not robust?

    Did you make any effort to temper claims that were not supported by the evidence before the press release was approved?

  6. I’d recommend to stick to Judith Curry’s recommendation:
    “Lets get to the bottom of this, but while doing so I remind you that one element of this is the struggle for the scientific souls of two promising young scientists. Please don’t overegg the pudding and inadvertently send them to the RealClimate refugee and training camp.”

    http://judithcurry.com/2013/04/02/were-not-screwed/

    I believe Steve McIntyre is the most qualified person of us all to ask questions and he can ask questions which really mater. Most other people here will just make things worse.

  7. I think Steve Mosher has a good idea there. Get a group of knowledgeable statists, er statistatists, er statisticians, together, exchanging emails to submit legit questions. After answers are provided, at a later date release the e-mails the statisticians exchanged in choosing the questions. I call that taking the hi road. Also maybe not submit them under a name of anyone who must not be named. (;

  8. Posted this at Revkin’s blog:

    In February 2011, Science magazine announced a new policy requiring authors to make their data and computer codes available to Science readers. Here is the relevant sentence:

    “To address the growing complexity of data and analyses, Science is extending our data access requirement listed above to include computer codes involved in the creation or analysis of data.”

    Have you made or will you make your code available?

  9. “Thus, the 20th century portion of our paleotemperature stack is not statistically robust, cannot be considered representative of global temperature changes, and therefore is not the basis of any of our conclusion…”

    Why did you elect to not exclude that period which was “not statistically robust” from the plot in order to preclude anybody from drawing any conclusions from them and would you have elected to omit it had that “not statistically robust” portion happened to have spiked downwards?

  10. …one of the only journalists…

    Er, ‘one of the FEW journalists’, or ‘the ONLY journalist’, perhaps?

    /pedant

  11. Only technical questions that challenge the validity of their findings are worth asking. All science stands or falls based on the technical.

  12. Firstly, I think it is a sound plan to compile questions here then let SteveM ask those he wants;

    Secondly, having now actually heard the interview I thought the guy came over quite well, talk of his negative body language and other personal traits seem wide of the mark.

    My specific points are these; talking about warming he says ( I paraphrase) ‘The rapid global change we’ve got now is unprecedented-it will cause a 4 degree C rise according to global emissions path.’

    Well the change is NOT global and never has been despite the misleading statements by both the IPCC and the Met office. Various studies -including mine and Verity Jones- estimated that one third of the world is cooling, a figure confirmed by BEST (with caveats that no doubt Mosh will explain at some point).

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/09/04/in-search-of-cooling-trends/

    One of those 30% is Britain which in some ways is fortunate (for others) as it has some of the finest and oldest instrumental and observational records in the world. The current decade long cooling in Britain is as rapid as was the warming, now sadly but a fond memory, as can be seen in the official Met office figures

    http://www.metoffice.gov.uk/hadobs/hadcet/

    CET has been shown to be a reasonable proxy for NH and global temperatures. As I demonstrated here in my own reconstruction to 1538, an upwards trend in temperatures can be noted as starting in 1690, which incidentally also shows the most rapid rise in the record. Whilst the Holocene generally may have been cooling for 8000 years, over the last 350 it has been warming (in fits and starts).

    http://judithcurry.com/2011/12/01/the-long-slow-thaw/

    This demonstrates that the last part of the original hockey stick at least is tilted the wrong way-down instead of up. As a result the final uptick is grossly exaggerated, coming as it does from a much lower base than it should.

    Now SteveM can pick what he wants out of that but certainly some of the basic propositions I heard in the interview need to be challenged

    tonyb

  13. Steven Mosher says: April 6, 2013 at 9:41 pm

    I think somebody like AMAC or Brandon or Just the facts would be a good compiler of questions.

    I appreciate the thought, but I haven’t been paying much attention to the Marcott affair, McIntyre’s on it. I’ve been focused on building the WUWT Paleoclimate Reference Page.

    I haven’t included Marcott et al. yet, but I am planning a crowdsourcing thread :

    “in order to assess a number of the currently disputed, questionable and falsified graphs, including Briffa et al., 1998, Jones et al., 1998, Mann et al., 1998, Pollack et al., 1998, Jones et al., 1998, Mann et al., 1999, Mann et al., 2000, Briffa et al., 2001, Esper et al., 2002 and Jones and Mann 2004, AR4 section 6.6.1.1 2007 and Marcott et al. 2013.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/03/30/crowdsourcing-the-wuwt-paleoclimate-reference-page-continued/

    Perhaps, once Steve has had an opportunity to get to the bottom of Marcott et al., we can have a crowdsourcing thread dedicated to Marcott. The thread would help to capture all of the facts in one place and help determine an appropriate label/treatment for Marcott et al. on the WUWT Paleoclimate Reference page. Today I created a new section at the bottom of the page for Incorrect/Falsified Graphs. It already has one resident, but there’s plenty of room for more…

  14. Why on earth would so called scientists not communicate directly with Steve at CA one of the best science blogs on the net ?

  15. If CO2 increases from 0.0032% to 0.004% of the Earth’s atmosphere (of which only a small percentage is man-made) how can this tiny amount cause the doomsday scenario that we are continually told will happen?

    Why have none of the predicted climate disasters happened yet?

    Why have we experienced a succession of cold winters in the UK, when we were told that snow would be a “rare and exciting event” which clearly it isn’t?

    Why do climate scientists want to ignore the medieval warm period?

    Why have average global temperatures remained virtually constant for the last 20 years despite the minuscule increase in the already minuscule amount of CO2?

    Why do allegedly serious climate scientists want label those of us who do not believe what they say as “deniers” and in extreme cases want us executed?

    And finally

    Why do you all talk a load of b*****s?

  16. Sorry, but colour me somewhat skeptical about the purpose and value of this particular exercise.

    If Revkin were genuinely serious about this, he would (and certainly could) have posted his “invitation” as an update to the headpost – rather than buried deep in the heart of 600+ comments (many – if not most – of which seem to have been written by the un-premoderated recycler of drivel, Susan Anderson).

    Come to think of it, considering his many years on the climate beat, it’s somewhat surprising that Revkin is not capable of compiling such a list of questions himself without further input. Certainly, a comparison of the Filibuster After Questions™ with the questions already posed by Steve at CA would be a damn good start for any self-respecting journalist with a curious and investigative mind.

    So, colour me very surprised if this exercise turns out to be anything more than Revkin providing yet another delay/opportunity for Marcott et al (and/or their ghost-writers?!) to produce yet another non-responsive FAQ.

  17. Leave it to Steve Mc. There is no-one else that the team fear more and that we can trust more.

  18. LEAVE IT TO STEVE. I’ve read some of the comments over at Revkin. Inept. All on the wrong tack.

  19. Dear Dr Marcott et al
    You went to a lot of trouble to produce a set of temperature readings for a long time period.
    Then you “Mean-shifted the global temperature reconstructions to have the same average as the Mann et al. (2008) CRU-EIV temperature reconstruction over the interval 510-1450 years Before Present.” (Your statement on RealClimate blog)
    What was the size of the “Mean-shift” adjustment?
    Why do you have more confidence in Dr Mann’s work than in your own?

  20. 1) This question concerns the uncertainty about the scale normalization of Marcott et al. proxy temperature anomalies (calculated initially relative to 5500 – 4500 YBP) to those of Hadcrut4 (calculated relative to 1961-1990).
    Shakun writes

    Mean-shifted the global temperature reconstructions to have the same average as the Mann et al. (2008) CRU-EIV temperature reconstruction over the interval 510-1450 years Before Present. Since the CRU-EIV reconstruction is referenced as temperature anomalies from the 1961-1990 CE instrumental mean global temperature, the Holocene reconstructions are now also effectively referenced as anomalies from the 1961-1990 CE mean.

    Is the net effect of this process a simple linear increment of the reconstruction by ~0.3C? If yes – what is the error on this offset value ? If no – how was the renormalization achieved ?

    2) To justify a statement that 20th century warming is unprecedented since the last Ice Age it must be demonstrated that any previous climate excursion of a similar magnitude would have been observed in Marcott’s data. Hence the importance of Tamino’s work. I performed an independent study which concludes that it would not be possible to detect any such ~1C excursion lasting less than ~400years because of proxy timing uncertainty. This is supported by this statement on realclimate:

    Jeremy Shakun writes…. “The paleoclimate records used in our reconstruction typically have age uncertainties of up to a few centuries, which means the climate signals they show might actually be shifted or stretched/squeezed by about this amount.

    Do the authors agree that this age uncertainty implies that the reconstruction are indeed insensitive to excursions lasting only 200 years ?

  21. Leave it to Steve. His questions will go to the heart of the matter. Don’t set up some easy straw men for these guys to knock over instead.

  22. What is the new scientific practice used in Climate science that allows data to be changed to fit the conclusion?

    I’ve tried Wiki but that’s no help as usual.

  23. Does he consider re-dating proxies in order to force a hockey stick shape to be scientific fraud?

  24. I would be interested to know if the MS was rejected by Nature, and whether the reconstruction resembled the thesis version or the Science version if so.

  25. I have seen a response somewhere that the resolution of the proxies is 120 years, but the answer was crafted rather carefully.

    Does the reconstructed record have 120 year resolution along its whole length, or does the resolution vary? If the latter, how poor does the resolution get?

    JF

  26. I agree with statements saying “Leave it to Steve”. This is very much a matter of statistical methods of analysis, about which he is an expert, and a matter in which he is already engaged. Go get ‘em Steve!

  27. What I find so disappointing in the comments for the original Revkin article is the number of posters that say that the original Hockey Stick is robust and has been replicated.
    Mann’s own work prior to the year 2000 proves it is absolute crap.
    The lack of a MWP and the changes to his own 20th century temperature Records shows a complete lack of Integrity.
    Add to that the claim of “Unprecedented 20th century warming” shows it to be absolute nonsense.
    What a really sad day for SCIENCE.

  28. To prevent a flood of questions both good and bad, like a couple of other commenters here I figure the most productive option is simply to let Steve McIntyre pose questions on behalf of skeptics. As far as I can see no-one else is quite so deeply into this paper and its problems than Steve. And his clinical approach means maximal trust from almost all in the skeptical community.

  29. There’s only a handful of people whom questions should be taken from. Steve number 1 of course, and Clive Best has done some good work on this. Even with the others still best to go through Steve so duplicates aren’t submitted.

  30. I agree with Moshpit and others: Let people who can see through the statistical illusions ask the hard questions (Steve Mcintyre, AMAC, Brandon, and Just The Facts). But be sure to include the following:

    Please provide a list of all reviewers.
    Please provide a list of everyone involved with the statistical analysis of the data.
    Please provide a list of the editors at Science who approved this paper for publication.
    Please provide the code.
    Exactly when and where will all of the above information be made available?

    I don’t expect any real answers, I predict we’ll get very carefully parsed, obfuscating, weasel-worded statements prepared not by the authors, but by Peter Clark, Gavin Schmidt, Mike Mann, and other members of the Team.

    Judy Curry says::
    “Please don’t… inadvertently send them to the RealClimate refugee and training camp.”

    Too late. Marcott & Shakun have already entered the ‘House of the Rising Sun’.

  31. Steve Mc’s comment makes it clear that he is ready to communicate with Revkin on the high priority questions he has, so it’s better if most of us stay away from Dot Earth on the subject and let Steve assemble the questions he thinks are most significant. If there is a barrage of assorted questions then the authors will cherry pick the ones they want to answer and pretend that they’ve been responsive.

    Perhaps it is a useful exercise to brainstorm here and refine some questions in case Steve et al. find any useful suggestions. Just to prime the pump, here are some questions which Jean S already posted at Climate Audit:

    http://climateaudit.org/2013/04/04/marcott-monte-carlo/#comment-410510

    oh, I haven’t even had time to ask all the questions and I’m sure there are more to come later. Some questions (apart from those obvious relating to the re-dating and the “upstick”), not in any particular order:
    1. Where’s the code? Where’s the code for Shakun et al., Nature (2012) as promised in the corresponding SI?
    2. In your temperature perturbation MC analysis for alkenones and Mg/Ca proxies, why did you account only for the model uncertainties?
    3. What is the rationale for using two independent normal (symmetric) variates for perturbation in the exponential model (Mg/Ca proxies)?
    4. What exactly is the uncertainty described for the ice core proxies (SI, p. 6 (f))?
    5. Why did you join the instrumental temperature record (CRU) with the EIV reconstruction into a single curve without any indication of this in the case of Mann et al (2008) EIV-CRU?
    6. Why did you use EIV-CRU (land only) as the reference? Wouldn’t it be more natural to use, e.g., EIV-HAD (land+ocean) from the same reference?
    7. Why did you use the early portion of EIV-CRU (510-1450 yr BP) for the reference? Wouldn’t it be more natural to use the later part of the overlap (or the full overlap), where the Mann et al (2008) reconstruction is more reliable? How sensitive are your conclusions regarding comparision with the modern temperatures to the choice of the reference time interval and the reference series?
    8. What are the uncertainties for the (EIV-)CRU record post 1850?
    9. Why do you use 1\sigma uncertainties for your reconstruction, but 2\sigma uncertainties for Mann et al (2008)?

  32. Since it was my comment which Andy Revkin responded to, and after reading reactions at a number of locations, let me put forward a suggestion which may be acceptable to all parties. It is clear that any questions should be framed with only one intent, to extract answers to facts which should have already have been largely answered in supporting data supplied as part of the published paper. It is therefore clear that it would be far preferable if Marcott et al make available ALL code and any other supporting data immediately. It would improve their credibility to do so.

    In the event they are unwilling to do this, I suggest that a maximum of four questions to be asked by EACH of Mr S Mcintyre, Jean S, Mr S Mosher, Nick Stokes, and two others considered non skeptics who may have questions.

    Supplimentary questions should be allowed where the original question has not fully answered.

    A video of the questions and answers should be posted by Andy Revkin on his Dot Earth site.

  33. Leave it to Steve. Andy Revkin has a soap box, but not more. Steve has the facts, and a world wide following.

    I have taken a different tack. Wrote a concise short request to Science editors that the article be substantially revised in light of abstract sentence 1 and supporting figures 1a and 1b being directly contradicted by S18c and now the FAQ, or retracted entirely since the core top redatings were unnoted and unjustified although proven in some cases to be in direct contravention of published core top dates and/or age controls. The editors have acknowledged the communication, and requested time for due process under Dr. Smith’s supervision.
    If Science does not act in some appropriate manner in a reasonable period of time, I will provide Anthony with the archived communications for an expose.

  34. I am more interested in the Research Management.

    Chapter 4 of the Marcott PhD Thesis was the basis for the Marcott et al paper. The PhD thesis did not show any uptick in the 20th century.

    * Why was it decided to revisit that thesis and adjust the data times (core tops) changing the output?
    * What was the reasoning behind the redating of each of the proxy data series?
    * Who was the proponent for the alteration in the proxy data series and timing?

    • @Jim McCulley – don’t be a wallflower. You have the tools at your disposal here at WUWT to write a letter to the editor. If more skeptics spoke up about these issues publicly, the media might think twice next time – Anthony

  35. Just for the record I happen to think Andy Revkin does a much better job of reporting on highly technical climate and other issues than most reporters.

  36. Never fear I am all over it. I have been writing on this subject for years. And had Bill Mckibben laughed out of the Adirondacks with his step up for carbon campaign. :)

  37. Adam says:
    April 7, 2013 at 12:05 am
    “Thus, the 20th century portion of our paleotemperature stack is not statistically robust, cannot be considered representative of global temperature changes, and therefore is not the basis of any of our conclusion…”

    Why did you elect to not exclude that period which was “not statistically robust”………………….
    ——————————————
    The published Abstract appears to be 100% truthful although it leaves a false impression by omission.
    Without their hockey stick a cooling problem materializes.
    1. Was the Marcott hockey stick blade included on the released graph?
    2. Why was the not statistically robust statement not in the Abstract?

  38. The real question is for Andy Revkin: Why don’t you start writing exposes in the NYT on the malpractice that’s rampant in this “scientific” community? That would keep you busy for years.

  39. One other thing,

    “Thus, the 20th century portion of our paleotemperature stack is not statistically robust, cannot be considered representative of global temperature changes, and therefore is not the basis of any of our conclusion…”

    Then, what was the basis of any of your conclusions?
    Oh, and what were your conclusions rather than just the Abstract?
    cn

  40. 1. Do you believe in Karl Popper’s falsification?
    2. What is your justification for not releasing any of the code?

  41. Suggestions for Steve’s McIntyre’s list of questions to the authors:
    With >300 year resolution, can you say anything about intra-decadal or intra-centurial variability of the Holocene?
    With >300 year resolution, is there any statistical basis for asserting that temperature change rates on the order of that claimed for the current century did not occur (at all, some, often) in the past 11,000 years?
    With >300 year resolution, how can you assert that 2000-2009 was warmer than 75% of the Holocene, or that 1900-1909 was cooler than 95% of the Holocene?
    Don’t you have a moral responsibility to boldly and loudly let the world know how misleading your paper’s assertions are, since they have been broadcasts in high amplitude around the world?

  42. Yes leave it to Steve. With one caveat. In every “ring” dating endeavor, there are seasoned professionals in industry who do this kind of thing right or else they get fired. Let’s bring these seasoned professionals from the working world, not the Ivory Tower, to the table. Hell, I know of a barely graduated from high school tree guy and a “don’t even know if he graduated from high school” welder who both know more about tree rings and the molecular structure of metals than the Ivory Tower folks combined.

  43. To Steve or other question submitters:

    I’d recommend honing in on specific statements that are made in the paper that can’t possibly be supported by the data, such as that 2000-2009 was warmer than 75% of the Holocene and 1900-1909 was cooler than 95% of the Holocene. Force them to admit not just that these assertions “might” be false, but that they have absolutely no basis.

  44. son of mulder says:

    April 7, 2013 at 12:27 am
    /////////////////////////////////
    Plus 1.
    The motives behind the paper, changes from the PhD thesis, and PR spin are irrelevant and only serve to cloud the important issues, which is the science.
    Let’s ensure that we keep the question to the science.

  45. Two questions:-

    How, when and by whom, were the errors in the two Ph.D. thesis’s spotted?

    What did each of the authors listed contribute to the final publication?

  46. Rud Istvan: That was a fine article that you posted at Judith’s. While I agree that we should filter our questions through Steve to avoid overflow and redundancy, I think in your case the work that you have done justifies asking your own questions. I also think that having the questions come only from Steve gives the appearance that none of the other skeptics think for themselves.

  47. My impression is that this is furfy. It is an attempt by the authors to try to salvage some sort of respectability for the paper. The question were asked already by SM and not answered by the authors. I would guess that the journal may have requested this from them so they don’t have to withdraw it

  48. Rud Istvan has basically answered all concerns. I forgot to mention R Istvan huge contribution equal or greater than SM’s. We are all here flogging a dead horse this paper will most certainly be retracted or withdrawn or Science Journal will be LOL

  49. Steven Mosher (April 6, 2013 at 9:41 pm): “somebody like AMAC or Brandon or Just-the-facts would be a good compiler of questions [for Andrew Revkin].”
    .
    I appreciate Mosher’s compliment. He brings up my name because I chased down elements of the “Tiljander proxies” story. Due to carelessness and incompetence, Mann and couauthors’ upside-down use of the two (not four) uncalibratable Tiljander data sets corrupted the paleotemperature reconstructions of Mann et al (PNAS, 2008) and Mann et al (Science, 2009).
    .
    I decline the nomination for two reasons. First, I haven’t followed the twists and turns of the Marcott13 saga with sufficient diligence. More importantly, Steve McIntyre raises an important point (9:46 pm): “The problem with a whole lot of people responding [to Revkin] is that it gives [the paper’s authors] an excuse to avoid my issues.”
    .
    The conduct of the authors of Mann08 illustrates the reasons for McIntyre’s concern.
    .
    The key conclusions of this paper rely on the improper use of the Tiljander proxies (see, for example, Climate Audit). It’s understandable that the paper’s authors would try to avoid the issue (human nature being what it is). The passage of time has demonstrated that the broad climate science community accepts this conduct. (I also note that Tiljander is only one of many fatal problems that burden this paper and Mann09, as has been clearly shown at Climate Audit and the Air Vent. Tiljander is special because it’s simple to prove, and doesn’t need statistics to understand.)
    .
    Paradoxically, Mann and coauthors’ defense of their paper made use of the ensuing firestorm at skeptical blogs. One key strategy was to cherry-pick criticisms, focusing on some with faulty premises and others that were worded imprecisely. Trivial, evasive, and misleading answers followed. A second notable tactic was the use of non-author RealClimate bloggers as proxies, thus blunting the public-relations impact of grudgingly-made concessions on technical points.
    .
    The message to journalists and the general public: “Even though skeptics’ criticisms are ill-informed, we’ve answered them in the language of science. The indifference of other climate scientists to this kerfluffle shows that there are no genuine issues here.”
    .
    In my opinion, a scan of the Marcott FAQ shows that RealClimate‘s principals have dusted off the same playbook for use here.
    .
    McIntyre and his Climate Audit co-bloggers have identified the most crucial of the possible problems with Marcott13 (again, my opinion). Given his familiarity with bad-faith defenses of flawed science, I would prefer that McIntyre’s crucial few questions be the ones that Revkin puts to the paper’s authors.
    .
    There’s no great likelihood that Marcott and co-authors will provide satisfactory answers. But it would be a step forward for journalists (and the general public) to grapple with the notion that paleoclimatologists aren’t high priests: they should be expected to respond to criticisms according to the norms of the other physical sciences.

  50. I do not feel comfortable with the way they proceeded. They posted their answer at Real Climate, a blog that is severely moderated, not allowing for an open discussion.
    They ignored Climate Audit where pertinent questions were asked, but answering questions that nobody asked. They ignored WUWT. Whose questions were they answering?

    As a consequence I am not comfortable this will lead to anything good. They could have answered directly on the Climate Audit posts on the respective subjects.
    This comes to me as another attempt to diversion and not open questions answering.

    Jim McCulley says:
    April 7, 2013 at 6:40 am
    My local paper is using Marcott for alarm today.
    From the paper:
    “Let’s look at one graph from the Marcott study labeled “Years (BP).” Temperature changes are noted on the vertical axis. The average temperature of the 30-year period from 1961 to 1990 is taken as the “0” degrees centigrade baseline (dotted), with temperature changes lower or higher measured relative to it. The graph’s shaded area on either side of the center line incorporates the statistics and uncertainties of the measurements.

    The time in years (from today to 11,300 years ago) is measured along the horizontal axis.

    Both the new Marcott data and the Mann data, where they overlap on the right, agree very well. Note that the temperatures today are higher than at any time in at least the past 4,000 or more years.

    Knowing now how Marcott’s data was obtain, looking at how it is being used and usage accepted by them, I really do not have any questions to them.
    Wish Steve McIntyre all the best.

  51. Steve McIntyre says:
    April 6, 2013 at 9:46 pm
    “I saw Revkin’s comment and will send in some questions, since Shakun hasnt answered points that interested me. The problem with a whole lot of people responding is that it gives Shakun an excuse to avoid my issues. I’ll take a look at what people propose, but would prefer that readers let me decide what to pursue. Thx, Steve Mc”

    Thank you so very much, Mr. McIntyre. The only question that others should submit is “When will you answer McIntyre’s questions.” Their FAQ dodged your questions. Let’s see if they can address them this time.

    In my humble opinion, Revkin’s idea of collecting questions from the blogosphere and selecting his own is a recipe for a smoke screen. An honest approach would be to ask McIntyre for his questions and to submit them to Shakun.

    Shakun has nothing to fear in answering McIntyre’s questions; that is, nothing except the results of first rate analysis. No one is more polite or more gentlemanly in these matters than McIntyre.

  52. “leave it to Steve” — yes and no. Marcott et al are free to engage at Climate Audit and are encouraged to do so. However, having Revkin try to mediate will be fruitless and frustrating for all.
    I think that Marcott et al do not respond (and will not) because they cannot justify what they did.

    Which means that the next step of this investigation should be an inquiry by OSU, Harvard, Science, and AAAS into the actions of Shaun A. Marcott, Jeremy D. Shakun, Peter U. Clark, Alan C. Mix, and the Science editors.

    “default of academic integrity” is cause for termination at OSU.

    This is from ASU, not OSU, but this is the framework of the questions that need to be asked:

    http://www.asu.edu/aad/manuals/acd/acd204-01.html

    Ethical Standards
    To recognize the special responsibility for the advancement of knowledge.
    To seek the truth and to state the truth as one sees it.
    To improve scholarly competence.
    To exercise critical self-discipline and judgment in using, extending, and transmitting knowledge.
    To practice intellectual honesty.
    To prevent intrusion of subsidiary interests in the freedom of inquiry.

  53. I must agree with everyone who says let Steve McIntyre ask the questions. It needs someone who knows what they are talking about, dealing with someone who thinks they know what they are talking about.

  54. Please provide a list of all reviewers.
    Please provide a list of everyone involved with the statistical analysis of the data.
    Please provide a list of the editors at Science who approved this paper for publication.
    Please provide the code.
    Exactly when and where will all of the above information be made available?

    If Science kept the reviewers anonymous (which is the standard practice at journals), Marcott et al. may not know who they were. (They’re definitely not supposed to know.)

    And even if Marcott et al. have a well-founded suspicion as to the identity of one or another reviewer, they may consider themselves under an obligation not to say who.

    On the other hand, the “action editor” (or editors) at Science weren’t kept anonymous, so there is no reason for the authors not to name their names.

    The questions about contributors to the analysis and about the actual code are also legitimate.

    I’m definitely inclined to leave the compilation and presentation to Steve McIntyre.

  55. Rud Istvan says:
    April 7, 2013 at 6:11 am

    Bravo! I look forward to more excellent contributions from you.

  56. clivebest says:
    April 7, 2013 at 2:02 am

    “Do the authors agree that this age uncertainty implies that the reconstruction are indeed insensitive to excursions lasting only 200 years?”

    Superb question. Tamino’s attempt to salvage something of Marcott depends on the answer to this question. I am sure that the answer is yes. And Tamino’s attempt is a fail.

  57. I think the relevant experts should compile a list of questions pertaining solely to the science of the paper. Lord knows, there are enough of those to answer.

    Then these should be submitted to Revkin personally – ie not on the blog. A record should be kept by all concerned of exactly what those questions were, and how they were framed. They could be submitted by Steve (or by a proxy, haha)

    In this way Marcott et al will not know who has submitted which questions. If they refuse to answer, it is open to others to pursue the matter individually. However, as many others have suggested, I suspect this is merely a smokescreen intended to appear to address contentious issues while doing no such thing.

    If Marcott and his collaborators were acting in good faith they would have engaged with legitimate queries and criticisms on the blogs where they were raised, notably CA. I wonder if Marcott himself would like to do that, but is in fear of the consequences to his career? It’s unclear here, who is pushing this new development: Revkin, his editors, or Science magazine? Or even the university in whose name this paper was published.

    Meanwhile Revkin should rid himself of some of his more swivel-eyed posters, starting with Susan A, or at least rein them back. Much though I hate censorship, it’s difficult to take any discussion seriously which includes such dross – it amount to trolling.

  58. Without doubt, IF any questions are submitted to Marcott via Revkin, Steve McIntyre is the one to do it. BUT the offer does look like a trap, or at least likely to be unproductive. So perhaps the only response should be to explicitly mention that the opportunity to DEBATE at CA is already offered.

    As for submitting a list, anyone can compile questions, even good on-point ones that would seem to be of a “can’t be evaded” nature. In return, without debate measures in place, anyone responding can easily evade real answers and then claim that the whole world had the opportunity to ask, and all questions were answered. Case closed.

    Without follow-up questions or a debate-like forum, we rely on a moderator to hold feet-to-fire. Perhaps Revkin would – perhaps not. CA (and other blogs) are quite capable (and – for people of good faith – credible) hosts for an honest debate – as long as “junior high” level taunts are discouraged, hopefully through self-restraint.

  59. Steven Mosher suggested I would be a good person to compile questions for the authors. I’d be happy to do so, but I’m afraid I don’t see anything worth compiling. Steve McIntyre has a number of issues he’d obviously like to pursue, and I don’t think I’d need to repeat his questions. Skiphil has offered some good questions too. But other than that? I’m not sure I see any questions that ought to be asked. Here’s a (partial) list of questions I’ve seen on this page that shouldn’t be asked:

    Was Michael Mann a reviewer of the manuscript ?
    Dear Sean, why on Earth did you listen to Mike?
    My question for Marcott is was it worth it?
    Did any reviewer encourage or instruct the authors to re-date any of the modern proxy records with the intent of influencing principal components to produce hockey stick shapes?
    Did you feel that any reviewer was insistent on producing a modern hockey stick as a condition of publishing? Do you have reason to believe this reviewer was Michael E. Mann?
    Did any reviewer help produce the press release or otherwise suggest including the claim that modern warming rates were higher than past warming rates? Did this reviewer know that these claims were not robust?
    Did you make any effort to temper claims that were not supported by the evidence before the press release was approved?
    If CO2 increases from 0.0032% to 0.004% of the Earth’s atmosphere (of which only a small percentage is man-made) how can this tiny amount cause the doomsday scenario that we are continually told will happen?
    Why have none of the predicted climate disasters happened yet?
    Why have we experienced a succession of cold winters in the UK, when we were told that snow would be a “rare and exciting event” which clearly it isn’t?
    Why do you all talk a load of b*****s?
    Why do you have more confidence in Dr Mann’s work than in your own?
    What is the new scientific practice used in Climate science that allows data to be changed to fit the conclusion?
    Does he consider re-dating proxies in order to force a hockey stick shape to be scientific fraud?
    Please provide a list of all reviewers.
    Do you believe in Karl Popper’s falsification?
    Did you forget to use a long spoon when you supped with the Devil ?

    These questions are a complete waste of time. There’s no reason to ask the authors any of them, and I don’t even know why people would post them here. It seems people are more interested in venting, scoring points or just insulting people than actually asking questions.

    I have questions I don’t think Steve McIntyre would ask so I’d be happy to compile a list of questions “perceived as unanswered.” I’m just not sure who has questions worth compiling.

  60. These asked for “questions” are a self-serving attempt to kill the corrosive crumbling of this egregious add on to your thesis . Participating in this theater only gives a wrongful sense of legitimacy to the the quick patch-up ad hocery (hockery may be more like it) of the authors with the guidance and assistance of the rapidder-rapid response team at RC who encouraged these young fellows to ruin their thesis in the first place to put them on message. The team effort FAQ, motivated to deal with Steve McIntyre’s demolition of the “scythe”, was thrown together a week ago with the main single question buried in a cocoon of Frequently Unasked Uninteresting Questions in the typically unimaginative way we have come to expect of these guys. Asking a bunch of further questions is just to put the cap on it all as it continues to gain notoriety. The few main questions have already been investigated and asked, only to have the answers dreamt up later but posited in such a way as to appear to have been seriously considered during he study. However, let me ask the only question that has been bothering me about the conclusions that hasn’t been answered:

    Do you not see a scary, looming icy future for us all? Why didn’t the conclusions not only contain but HEADLINE the most obvious conclusion of the study that is sticking out there ahead of all else (in the graph of the results): A study of 73 proxies…etc. indicates an alarming, and accelerating cooling period over the last 8000 years that suggests the earth is nearing the end of the Holocene interglacial period. After all, 13,000 years is considered a fairly long interglacial – we are due for a new continental ice sheet. I predict that someone else is going to get a PhD with a similar study with the obvious conclusions and yours will be a footnote at the end of the global warming scam.

  61. Thanks Brandon, but I want to underline that those 9 questions at my

    Skiphil says:
    April 7, 2013 at 5:47 am

    were not mine, they were from Jean S at Climate Audit.

  62. Skiphil, I meant you offered them in the sense one offers a link or resource. You shared the questions; you didn’t create them. I don’t think any of the questions on this page are new.

    I definitely should have been more clear though.

  63. I’m more than happy to let Steve McIntyre decide what questions to ask, his instinct is pretty unerring and his manners are much better than my own.

    Thinking about it, I took another look at the Marcott proxies … here they are with their original temperatures, in their original glory, from my post on the question. Colors are only there to help distinguish different proxies.

    Looking at that, I realized that no, I didn’t really have any questions for Marcott, other than the obvious one … what were you thinking?

    Because whatever those different proxies might be measuring, clearly it’s not the same thing.

    w.

  64. Can you not provide some indication as to what the variance in centuries previous to the last one or two might have been? Thank you.

  65. Possible question:
    “Does this mean that The Team have had lurch on the erratic path towards truth and now consider the blogosphere to be the best venue for debating the PeerReviewedLitchurchur?”
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    “Skepticism is essential for the functioning of science,” Dr. Mann said. “It yields an erratic path towards eventual truth. But legitimate scientific skepticism is exercised through formal scientific circles, in particular the peer review process.” He added: “Those such as McIntyre who operate almost entirely outside of this system are not to be trusted.”

    http://dotearth.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/10/05/climate-auditor-challenged-to-do-climate-science/

    http://climateaudit.org/2009/10/14/upside-side-down-mann-and-the-peerreviewedliterature/

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