We’ve had issues with Mr. Laden before, and being called on it hasn’t changed his bad behavior, hopefully he’ll learn something this time. This is a pretty simple black and white issue, so I’ll do it with bullet points.
- Yesterday, Mr. Laden claimed WUWT had sunk to a “new low” for daring to question the wind speeds of Typhoon Haiyan hyped in the media with ground measurements reported by the Philippine Meteorological Agency. Our position was the media poorly reported on the storm, made egregious errors that we documented, and that this led to inflated wind speed numbers given to the public, such as 235 kilometers per hour being reported as 235 miles per hour, to give an example.
- He further claimed that we were “disrespectful” for not immediately updating the death toll to the new estimate of 10,000, which was the result of a political meeting in the governor’s office. I said we’d stick with the last report of the Red Cross number of 1200 as I trust them because their mission has no agenda other than aid. The 10,000 estimate may be met, or even exceeded, and if so we’ll report it then. (Now at 1774 as of 1015AM 11/11) UPDATE: 11/12 7AM Philippine president Aquino says to CNN: Typhoon Haiyan deaths likely 2,000 to 2,500 — not 10,000
- He added in a comment:
Let me ask you this but you better answer quick because the ground is sliding from underneath you as I type this. How important is 1,200 vs. tens of thousands? If it turns out to be tens of thousands instead of 1,200 will you STFU forever? Please?
- He then proceeded to write a long winded blog post at “ScienceBlogs”, and launch a Twitter tirade, from the position that he had some sort of moral high ground. As one WUWT commenter put it: The leftie pose of “We care more about real people than you do” is on full display.
- Yet, despite that angry posturing from that self-imagined moral high ground, Mr. Laden never once offered to help the people of the Philippines as WUWT has with the links to the Philippine Red Cross in the side bar graphic and in blog post links. Other bloggers such as Bob Tisdale have followed my lead with links in postings. Even 350.org’s Bill McKibben has thanked WUWT for providing him this info as he was pushing the “Save the Children Organization”, which isn’t disaster equipped.
- I waited over 24 hours to see if Mr. Laden had a conscience, and if he would offer his blog to help the people of Philippines or was simply interested in his holier than thou tirade against WUWT. So far, he has not.
- I made a donation to the Philippine Red Cross.
I chose 5000 Philippine Pesos (PHP) from the menu, which works out to $118 USD as it allows Mr. Laden and others who may donate to easily match the contribution. The maximum value on the Red Cross donation page in the menu is 10,000 PHP, or about $230 USD.
Between his donation (assuming he makes one), his readers donations (assuming he pitches it to them), and my donation along with WUWT reader donations, that should add up to a significant and useful sum, but any amount people may choose is useful and appreciated. Feel free to note your donation in comments if you choose.
I challenge Mr. Laden to meet or exceed my donation, and to post a link and graphic on his blog to the donation page for the Philippine Red Cross, and encourage his readers to contribute.
He is welcome to use this graphic I created:
The link is: http://ushare.redcross.org.ph/
Be sure to select the campaign first in the menu pulldown to be Supertyphoon Yolanda (Haiyan), then select the monetary amount and the payment method.
I also encourage WUWT readers to donate if they feel so inclined. It will be interesting to see if any other blogs who have been critical of WUWT pitch in to help. I’m betting few will as it isn’t in their nature but would be happy to be proven wrong.
Full disclosure: My wife’s maternal side of family is from the Philippines, and we have learned that one of her relatives there has lost a home in the storm. We have no word on the others there at this time.
UPDATE: Laden’s claims in his tirade aren’t supported by actual science and data, he writes:
But Watts and Homewood don’t want storms to be important for the simple reason that the best models strongly suggest that there will be more storms … especially in the Pacific, where Haiyan struck, over coming decades because of the changes to climate that humans are carrying out and that Anthony Watts and Paul Homewood deny to be real.
This paper shows the reality from data – no trend:
Kubota, H. and Chan, J.C.L. 2009. Interdecadal variability of tropical cyclone landfall in the Philippines from 1902 to 2005. Geophysical Research Letters 36: 10.1029/2009GL038108.
“Despite global warming during the 20th century the number of tropical cyclones annually making landfall in the Philippines did not experience any net change. All variability was merely oscillatory activity around a mean trend of zero slope”