The Inventor of the Global-Warming ‘Hockeystick’ Doubles Down

Professor Michael Mann, if you see something, say something – or maybe just keep your mouth shut

Guest essay by  Dr. Fred Singer

Professor Michael Mann, the inventor of the Hockeystick temperature graph, had a contentious editorial essay in the January 17th issue of the New York Times. [The Hockeystick graph purports to show that temperatures of the last thousand years declined steadily — until the 20th century, when there was a sudden large rise.]

I am using the word “inventor” on purpose, since the Hockeystick is a manufactured item and does not correspond to well-established historic reality. It does not show the generally beneficial Medieval Warm Period (MWP) at around 1000AD, or the calamitous Little Ice Age (LIA) between about 1400 and 1800. In the absence of any thermometers during most of this period, the Hockeystick is based on an analysis of so-called proxy data, mostly tree rings, from before 1000AD to 1980, at which point the proxy temperature suddenly stops and a rapidly rising thermometer record is joined on.

image

Since its publication in 1998 and 1999, the hockeystick graph has had a turbulent history. It was adopted by the IPCC (UN-Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) in its 3rd Assessment Report (2001) to support the claim of a major anthropogenic global warming (AGW) during the 20th century. Since then, the IPCC has distanced itself from the graph, which has been completely discredited. It not disagrees not only with much historic evidence that shows a MWP and LIA, but also with other analyses of proxy data. Most of the criticism has come from the work of two Canadian statisticians, Steven McIntyre and Ross McKitrick, who have uncovered a misuse of data, a biased calibration procedure, and fundamental errors in the statistical methods.

McKitrick, an econometrician at Guelph University in Canada, has a pungent comment on Mann’s op-ed, which had been titled “If you see something, say something.”
“OK, I see a second-rate scientist carrying on like a jackass and making a public nuisance of himself.”

I have added my own comment as follows: “OK, I want to say something too: I see an ideologue, desperately trying to support a hypothesis that’s been falsified by observations. While the majority of climate alarmists are trying to discover a physical reason that might just save the AGW hypothesis, Mann simply ignores the ‘inconvenient truth’ that the global climate has not warmed significantly for at least the past 15 years — while emissions of greenhouse gases have surged globally.”
Of course, this is not the first time that “hide the decline” Mike has done this.  Remember his “Nature trick” — so much admired by his ‘Climategate team’ mates? [For those who don’t remember the 2009 Climategate scandal: It consisted of a leak of some thousands of emails from the University of East Anglia, involving mainly Michael Mann and several of his English colleagues, documenting their completely unethical attempts to suppress any contrary opinions and publications from climate skeptics by misusing the peer-review process and by pressuring editors of scientific journals– unfortunately, with some success.]

We don’t quite know yet what the “Nature trick” refers to — until we get Michael Mann to tell us why he has refused to reveal his never-published post-1980 proxy data. We may have to wait until we have him on the witness stand and under oath. But I strongly suspect that it has to do with absence of any temperature increase after 1980; its publication would have created a conflict with the reported (and problematic) thermometer data and with the assertion by the IPCC that humans are responsible for such a temperature rise.

In actuality, we now have adequate proxy data from other sources, most particularly from Fredrick Ljungqvist and David Anderson. Their separate publications agree that there has been little if any temperature rise since about 1940! However, there was a real temperature increase between 1920 and 1940, which can be seen also in all the various proxy as well as thermometer data.

Anti-Science

Michael Mann saw something he didn’t like in the Senate testimony (Jan 16, 2014) of fiercely independent climate scientist and blogger, Georgia Tech professor Judith Curry; so he decided to say something in his NYT op-ed. He forgot that often it is better to say nothing than to accuse Curry of peddling anti-science.

Curry has lost no time in taking Mann’s challenge and turning the tables on him:
http://judithcurry.com/2014/01/18/mann-on-advocacy-and-responsibility/#more-14347

“Since you have publicly accused my Congressional testimony of being ‘anti-science,’ I expect you to (publicly) document and rebut any statement in my testimony that is factually inaccurate or where my conclusions are not supported by the evidence that I provide.

During the Hearing, Senator Whitehouse asked me a question about why people refer to me as a ‘contrarian.’  I said something like the following: Skepticism is one of the norms of science.  We build confidence in our theories as they are able to withstand skeptical challenges.  If instead, scientists defend their theories by calling their opponents names, well that is a sign that their theories are in trouble.

Curry’s final message to Mann: “If you want to avoid yourself being labeled as ‘anti-science’, I suggest that you are obligated to respond to my challenge.”

War on Coal

It is interesting that Mann now plays the role of the victim in purported persecution by powerful interests, darkly identified as the fossil-fuel industry. Actually, the reverse may be the case. Mann has become a strong proponent of emission controls on carbon dioxide, which fits in very nicely with the ongoing War on Coal conducted by the EPA and the White House – and with the editorial policies of the NY Times — coal being the most prolific source of CO2.

It is ironic that while coal use is increasing rapidly in China and India, it is also increasing in Europe where governments have been anti-CO2 fanatics in the past but have decided to stop nuclear power, which emits no CO2 whatsoever.

In the United States, requirements are being set up to capture CO2 from smoke stacks of power plants and store it underground. Carbon Capture and Sequestration is a difficult and costly undertaking, and has never been demonstrated on a commercial scale. There have even been calls for sucking CO2 out of the global atmosphere, which sounds like an impossible task — and in any case, would be very, very expensive.

And to what purpose? As pointed out many times, CO2 is beneficial for agriculture. As a natural fertilizer, it accelerates the growth of crops. Czech physicist Lubos Motl has calculated that if it were indeed possible to reduce CO2 levels to their pre-industrial value, global agriculture would suffer a strong decline and billions of people would starve to death.

But perhaps this level of population control is what the climate fanatics are really after. They have always maintained that the Earth suffers from over-population and that the number of people needs to be reduced to protect natural values –a truly misanthropic scheme. In 1974, the ‘Club of Rome’ group published a detailed study, predicting that a billion people would die of starvation, beginning in the 1980s and peaking in 2010. One of the proponents of this thesis is now the White House science adviser.

******************************************************************

S. Fred Singer is professor emeritus at the University of Virginia and director of the Science & Environmental Policy Project.  His specialty is atmospheric and space physics.  An expert in remote sensing and satellites, he served as the founding director of the US Weather Satellite Service and, more recently, as vice chair of the US National Advisory Committee on Oceans & Atmosphere.  He is a senior fellow of the Heartland Institute and the Independent Institute.  He co-authored the NY Times best-seller Unstoppable Global Warming: Every 1500 years.  In 2007, he founded and has since chaired the NIPCC (Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change), which has released several scientific reports [See www.NIPCCreport.org].  For recent writings, see http://www.americanthinker.com/s_fred_singer/ and also Google Scholar.
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134 thoughts on “The Inventor of the Global-Warming ‘Hockeystick’ Doubles Down

  1. “There have even been calls for sucking CO2 out of the global atmosphere, which sounds like an impossible task — and in any case, would be very, very expensive.”

    It’s not impossible, I have a friend who pulls tons of CO2 out of thin air every week and then sells it as dry ice. But it is very, very expensive.

  2. Mann isn’t worth a lengthy comment–he’s lost all credibility and usefulness.

    Sure–go ahead and sue me, Mr. Mann; That’s all you’re good at.

    See?

  3. There’s a group testing industrial size CO2 scrubbers here in Calgary. It’s not imposible and perhaps it can be done for a lower cost than originally calculated, but the point is why?
    Anthropogenic CO2 has been proven NOW to not effect the global climate in any significant way. There are arguments/evidence that atmospheric CO2 might actually trails global temperature.
    The hockey stick would fail any graphing course. The “climate science” crowd continues to issue graphs of climate noise as evidence of AGW.
    They tighten up the vertical temperature scale to a degree or less to show a massive roller coaster of temperature swings while the real graph doesn’t register as anything but a flat line (taking into account margin of error) over many years.
    See my global temperature graph of 34 years of satellite data:
    pic.twitter.com/XrhEGNA9mC

  4. Mann is a total liability to the alarmist cause, which in a curious way means he’s more an asset of ours than theirs. I have to admit, I do enjoy his antics, especially his kamikaze attacks on anyone wavering on his own side such as Judy. Lubbly jubbly.

    Pointman

  5. Mann has become the Climate Circus Clown, doing anything he can to get attention, ….. even spitting in the tiger’s eye. (better run far away, Mikey — those claws may be velveted, but they are dangerous)

    What next, Michael? Big shoes and a red nose? Tiny car? Miniature bicycle? How about juggling, ever tried that?

    What’s that you say? You’ve got a neat hockey stick “trick?” LOL, that is SO, like, yesterday, man.

    Time to go home, kid; you’re starting to believe your own stuff.

  6. “But perhaps this level of population control is what the climate fanatics are really after. They have always maintained that the Earth suffers from over-population and that the number of people needs to be reduced to protect natural values –a truly misanthropic scheme.”

    I’m convinced that that’s the ultimate aim of bio-fuel as well, even more convinced seeing how they ignore farmers destroying rain forests in some parts of the world to grow their lucrative bio-fuel crops, lucrative only because of government mandates and subsidies.

  7. “Their separate publications agree that there has been little if any temperature rise since about 1940!”
    Data please.

  8. Mann, the 19th century geologist who first postulated CO2 warming (a DNA sample will do), the IPCC megabuck rasta-guru, the “ship of fools” ratbag from Kensington High School and that NASA guy (father of the Ozone layer) plus Chicken Little aided by FlimFlam Flannery along with Bob “I talk to aliens” Brown should all pool their resources, build a spaceship and change planets.
    Now that’s a Kickstarter project i WOULD back.

  9. “””””…..dak says:

    January 21, 2014 at 2:31 pm

    “There have even been calls for sucking CO2 out of the global atmosphere, which sounds like an impossible task — and in any case, would be very, very expensive.”

    It’s not impossible, I have a friend who pulls tons of CO2 out of thin air every week and then sells it as dry ice. But it is very, very expensive……”””””

    I gotta believe it must be infinitely cheaper to get CO2 for dry ice, by simply burning natural gas, and bubbling the combustion products through water, to filter out the water vapor, before you freeze out the CO2 to get the dry ice. Cooling that much air for a 0.04 % ore yield has to be extremely energy intensive, since refrigeration is way less efficient than heating is; must be something to do with that second law thingie !!

  10. Just looking at Mann’s reconstruction – it doesn’t look natural. The Earth has been cooling for 1,000 years and suddenly warms out of control? It can’t be real. If he had left in the LIA and MWP maybe I would have believed him.

  11. The “Hide the Decline” was a method of grafting, a plot of one proxy, onto another, so that in hid the decline.
    They did stumble onto the truth. They were able to “Hide the Decline” of their scientific standards. Those standards are still in decline and falling precipitously. History will not be fooled, and it is not kind to those that try to “fix what ain’t broke, by breaking it”.

  12. Lubos Motl didn’t write that billions of people would starve to death, he said only 1 billion people would starve to death… Hey wait a minute, I’m a people, this madness has got to stop.

  13. For the inevitable commenter who mentions the lack of error bars, the hockey-stick graph does include error bars. They are the white part surrounding the trend line extending though the top and bottom of the page.

  14. As I have written before when Mann falls we will surprised to see just who does line up to kick him on the way down , for the most shocking part is not his views on sceptics but his views on AGW proponents who dare not to give him the adoration his ego thinks its entitled too,

  15. Monseigneur Michael Mann also invented the paleo-climate rain gauge.

    Steve McIntyre
    Here’s the MBH98 PC1 (bristlecones) again marking 1934. Given that bristlecone ring width are allegedly responding positively to temperature, it is notable that the notoriously hot 1934 is a down spike.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2008/03/19/treemometers-or-rain-gauges/

    ——————

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2014/01/20/who-knew-plants-are-heavy-water-rain-gauges/

    Monseigneur Mann himself acknowledged in a paper that olives and figs grew in southern Germany and that it was warm but denies it was global.

    Global Medieval Warm Period.

    http://www.co2science.org/data/mwp/mwpp.php

    Michael Mann et al

    http://www.meteo.psu.edu/holocene/public_html/shared/articles/medclimopt.pdf

  16. @dak at 2:31 pm
    I have a friend who pulls tons of CO2 out of thin air every week and then sells it as dry ice. But it is very, very expensive……”””””

    I guess your friend is liquifying oxygen and nitrogen and getting dry ice as a byproduct. As george e smith said, it is a lot cheaper to start off with a 100% CO2 gas stream.

    But at $1.50 / pound or $3.30 / kg CO2 (retail) that would work out to be $1000 / ton Carbon in dry ice. Compare that to about $15/ton of carbon in Wyoming coal, or $30/ton in wood ($13/ton wood pulp at 50% carbon weight percent) Growng forests would make far more sense than dry ice sequestration.

    Once on US287 in West Texas, I met up with a truck driver pulling a “Liquid Helium” tanker. I asked how much liquid helium he was carrying, thinking about what the cargo might be worth. I think he said, “about 1000 liters.” I gave him a puzzled look and looked back at the tank, estimating it to be half the size of a 7000 gal gasoliine truck. It seems a very small amount. “Its mostly liquid nitrogen back there. Its a small liquid helium tank inside a big liquid nitrogen tank.”

  17. And to what purpose? As pointed out many times, CO2 is beneficial for agriculture. As a natural fertilizer, it accelerates the growth of crops.

    Backed up by the science literature HERE [2013]

  18. In the United States, requirements are being set up to capture CO2 from smoke stacks of power plants and store it underground. Carbon Capture and Sequestration is a difficult and costly undertaking, and has never been demonstrated on a commercial scale.

    All I know is that BIG OIL COMPANIES have been pumping CO2 into old oil wells to suck out residual oil. Mr. Pachauri was so concerned that he set up a residual oil extraction company called Glorioil – while still head of the IPCC! We can’t let a little residual oil stay in the ground now can we. The irony ins amazing.

  19. Robert A. Taylor says:
    January 21, 2014 at 3:39 pm

    Typo: “It not disagrees not only with . . . ” Omit first “not”.

    clipe says:
    January 21, 2014 at 2:42 pm

    It not disagrees not only…

    One not too many. /quibble

    “The Australian Academy of Science has announced their 2014 HONORIFIC AWARDS FOR SCIENTIFIC EXCELLENCE”

    I beat you to it by 67mins Robert.

  20. @ Aaron (3:37pm) — LOL.

    @ JIMBO! — thank you for continuing to share so much great information with us. Don’t ever stop. You are a one-man army for truth.

    (and don’t worry about repeating — we need to be reminded and, also, there are new readers all the time)

  21. Mike’s Nature Trick is explained by Steve McIntyre here: http://climateaudit.org/2009/11/20/mike’s-nature-trick/ and in many other posts on climateaudit.org
    Basically, Michael Mann spliced the recent thermometer record onto the proxy record AND removed that part of the proxy record which diverged from the thermometer record so that it wasn’t obvious that the proxy record was completely useless. Phil Jones’s email “I’ve just completed Mike’s Nature trick ..” suggests that the trick was used more than once. Hopefully science will one day recover from this abuse.

    aaron (Jan 21 3:37pm) – nice!

  22. They have always maintained that the Earth suffers from over-population and that the number of people needs to be reduced to protect natural values –a truly misanthropic scheme.

    The climate campaigner and environmentalist David Suzuki has only FIVE CHILDREN. He also has at least 2 homes (some say 4). Al Gore has 4 kids and 2 mansions with the co2 footprint of King Kong and Godzilla combined! Forget his Medieval carbon indulgences.

  23. lol, Clipe, good for you. That kind of thing happens to me (on more substantial content, too) ALL the time. Someone posts an hour or whatever later (when one’s post was never invisible due to moderation happening) and says what one already said (at length, usually!) as if one is either invisible or beneath the dignity of that later poster take the time to read.

    At first, for a brief moment, I get a little ticked off (but, NOT if they quickly catch their mistake and apologize — just when they NEVER return to say, “ooops”) — (and, on a bad day, a little sad) — then…. I just figure they were lazy and didn’t read ANY-one’s comments. Meh. Whatever, huh? I’ve probably done it to someone myself!

    Just a little WUWT camaraderie and empathy for you, there.

  24. Janice Moore says:
    January 21, 2014 at 4:05 pm
    ……………
    (and don’t worry about repeating — we need to be reminded and, also, there are new readers all the time)

    New readers is exactly why I repeat. ;-) Many missed these shocking facts as they have been fed garbage and lies for many years.

  25. Rob aka Flatlander says:
    January 21, 2014 at 2:49 pm

    There’s a group testing industrial size CO2 scrubbers here in Calgary. It’s not imposible and perhaps it can be done for a lower cost than originally calculated, but the point is why?

    Is that Calgary Canada? If yes are they using nuclear power, wind, wave, geothermal or sunlight to power the scrubbers?

  26. Janice, luckily I work for a major airline company so should be able to collect my Australian prize if non-rev seats are available.

  27. Jimbo;
    All I know is that BIG OIL COMPANIES have been pumping CO2 into old oil wells to suck out residual oil.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

    Well yeah. It is one of the (many) reasons they are just fine with the whole CAGW thing. They’re angling to get revenue from the tax payer for carbon sequestration which currently they are doing for free.

  28. The real issue here is the fact that the New York Times is so [desperate] trying to push its failing message of climate fear propaganda that it turns to a completely discredited individual that no rational person could take seriously in any scientific debate on this issue.

  29. Why do so many people get so stuck up about how best to suck co2 out of the air. No need for hard work here, just plant more trees and protect the soil. In fact the Earth is doing the ‘planting’ all by itself. Shocking!

    On a serious note: Environmentalists have spend many years expending huge amounts of time on co2 reduction. This has failed while real environmental problems grow. Go back to your roots and give up on fighting co2 fertilization. You are fighting against greening for goodness sakes! You are fighting against warmer winters (or is that colder?), you are fighting against an increase in Antarctic sea ice extent (or is that Peninsula warmer?), you are fighting against malaria spreading while it is in decline. What are you really fighting for?

  30. davidmhoffer says:
    January 21, 2014 at 4:41 pm

    Jimbo;
    All I know is that BIG OIL COMPANIES have been pumping CO2 into old oil wells to suck out residual oil.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

    Well yeah. It is one of the (many) reasons they are just fine with the whole CAGW thing. They’re angling to get revenue from the tax payer for carbon sequestration which currently they are doing for free.

    Thank you. I am aware of this con job that I have highlighted in bold. I have said before: Why not get paid for something you already do? The whole this is disgusting.

  31. Stephen Rasey says:
    January 21, 2014 at 3:51 pm

    It hardly needs to be pointed out that the dry ice has to be stored somewhere in a refrigerated vault, or it will sublimate back into the atmosphere. Or, we could fire it off in rocket ships to the Kuiper belt. Or, something equally preposterous.

  32. Mikey is the poster boy for global warnings science. He is setting the bar for all the other scientists working on the understanding of our global energy distribution and exchange system.

    Everyone should be pleased to be represented by a scientist of such high integrity, a scientist who always makes his research data available for other scientists to verify, a scientist who does not fall prey to blatant fear mongering, who does not traffic in Eco Greenie hysteria or pander to a narrow minded bigotry of slagging anyone who would disagree with his exemplary scientific endeavours.

    We should all consider ourselves fortunate to have such brilliant scientific leadership, outstanding scientific integrity and magnificent ability to proscribe critical public policy initiatives required to save humanity.

  33. Bart;
    It hardly needs to be pointed out that the dry ice has to be stored somewhere in a refrigerated vault, or it will sublimate back into the atmosphere.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

    Well yeah. My plan is to build a refrigerated storage facility in Antarctica. It is darn near cold enough to freeze CO2 already, so not much power will be required to drop temps another few degrees and keep it frozen. Best part of this is that if everyone changes their mind and wants the CO2 back in the air, all I need do is shut the fridge off and open the door.

    I figure I can do a proof of concept for about $500,000,000. I’m looking for help to write the grant proposal. Anyone? Turney? Mann? Hey, this isn’t about good science at this point, it is about good grant proposal skills, for a half billion, I’ll work with anybody. I also have a “plan B” which is to tell Big Oil about my idea and get them to pay me $100,000,000 to not tell anyone in government about this idea as it would kill their own carbon sequestration revenue schemes.

    So anyone who just read this, if you can help with the grant proposal please get in touch, and if not, please keep this a secret until I get my $100 million check from Big Oil at which point I promise to throw a really expensive party and everyone who read this thread and kept the secret will be invited.

    Plus, if anyone ELSE comes up with something like this, I will now be able to insist that they ripped off my idea from this blog post and will sue them.

  34. Jimbo says:
    January 21, 2014 at 4:22 pm
    Is that Calgary Canada? If yes are they using nuclear power, wind, wave, geothermal or sunlight to power the scrubbers?
    ===========
    In Calgary they use cold. They just stick the air outside and wait awhile, then scrap up the dry ice off the ground. :)

  35. Jimbo says:
    January 21, 2014 at 4:44 pm
    What are you really fighting for?
    ==============
    we are fighting to end fighting. after there is no more fighting, we will quit.

  36. In the vein of “If you see something, say something.” I see/say that Michael Mann is the only person alive who believes he is being insulted when people don’t say anything about him.

  37. Dr. Singer says: “…We may have to wait until we have him on the witness stand and under oath….” I hope we see him standing in the docket to receive a very long sentence for a variety of white-collar crimes; not to some “spa jail” but to Sheriff Arpaio’s pink jumpsuits and bologna sandwich course in good behavior.

  38. dak says:
    January 21, 2014 at 2:31 pm
    “There have even been calls for sucking CO2 out of the global atmosphere, which sounds like an impossible task — and in any case, would be very, very expensive.”

    It’s not impossible, I have a friend who pulls tons of CO2 out of thin air every week and then sells it as dry ice. But it is very, very expensive.
    ++++++++++
    I’m just picking nits. I do not think CO2 is actually pulled from thin air in the manufacture of dry ice. Gases are a byproduct of another process, like producing ammonia from nitrogen and natural gas, or large-scale fermentation. So pulling it out of the thin air might be possible, but your friend probably does not do this :)

  39. Mann’s editorial mentions Homeland Security and then says, if you see something, say something.

    I mean, that’s how far down the rabbit hole, the poster-child has fallen.

  40. davidmhoffer says:
    January 21, 2014 at 5:16 pm

    Not bad. I foresee a kink in transportation, however. Can’t use fossil fuel powered vehicles, and electric vehicles don’t do so well in the cold. Dog sleds are right out.

    How about we combine our ideas, and shoot my dry ice laden rockets to your storage facility at the South Pole? We’ll set up a ginormous catcher’s mitt to field them.

  41. davidmhoffer says:

    “I figure I can do a proof of concept for about $500,000,000.”

    I know someone who can do the website for only about $678 million. He has friends in high places, too.

  42. Michael the Mighty Mann works for us taxpayers.
    As a caution, he has few peers.
    As a incentive to question, doubt and investigate his utterances, none promote scepticism better.
    As Pointman says, he’s our …mann…. now.
    If you have the stomach for it, may I suggest to those with Twitter accounts; careful flatter the Mann encouraging ever more outrageous rants.
    Consider this thought, could you have invented this caricature of a government scientist ?
    Would your imaginary character have been this ……special?
    Gilbert&Sullivan must have had examples of this same level of self awareness and humility to base their musicals on.

  43. I invented a device that sucks CO2 out of the atmosphere and requires very little energy to do so. I call it a plant. This ingenious device that I call a plant requires some dirt and a little bit of water every so often. In wetter climates, this plant invention of mine really does not need any human interaction to work. Just put the plant in dirt and let the miracle of science happen. In fact, the more CO2 given to my plant invention, the less water is needed! [end sarcasm]

  44. Let’s keep in mind that Dr. Mann is a rock doc, not an atmospheric physicist. His expertise is in counting beans and as Wikipedia describes it, “Mann introduced innovative statistical techniques…”

  45. Here! Here! Dr. Singer! It is time for all real men and women, whether scientist or layman, to stand up to the bullying tactics of Michael Mann and tell him – no more! He can politic all he wants, but unless he complies with Dr. Curry’s request, he can no longer call himself a scientist. If he ever was one.

  46. Janice Moore says: @ January 21, 2014 at 2:54 pm

    …What next, Michael? Big shoes and a red nose? Tiny car? Miniature bicycle? How about juggling, ever tried that?…
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Actually, I would love to see Mikey as a rodeo clown dancing with the real bulls instead of just spreading ‘it’.

  47. Wow – Dr. Singer really sticks it to the Womann Named Sue! So did Judith Curry! Only question is, will the object of their obloquy presently be falling into the habit that gives him this name?

  48. Ross McKitrick has it backwards. I see a first-rate jackass carrying on like a second-rate scientist.

  49. Michael Mann is a fraud..his own peers, behind his back, have stated his work is garbage. He was a useful fool, now they don’t need him anymore. As a scientist, he’s finished. He’ll spend his waning days crying he’s being persecuted for his dodgy science…pity the man. He does however seem to have a decent future in politics.

    Still amazes me that one man’s garbage can blind a whole arena of science. When the money dries up, all future climatologists can thank Michael Mann….they don’t know yet what he’s done to their careers.

  50. Reed Coray says:
    January 21, 2014 at 7:23 pm

    Ross McKitrick has it backwards. I see a first-rate jackass carrying on like a second-rate scientist.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Please don’t insult the poor Donkeys. I have two who are much smarter than the Mann.

    I would put a sarc tag on that but my jennies are smarter. At least they know when to stop braying.

  51. I am very curious as to how he will respond (or not) to Judith Curry.

    What was it that William Connolly said?

    William Connolley says:
    January 14, 2014 at 2:48 am

    “Mann is doing that. Oddly, no-one here seems to be keen for that day
    in court to happen.”

  52. Dr. Singer. It was an honor to make your acquaintance on 7 October last year at “The Proud Bird” adjacent LAX. We discussed your views concerning the probable length of the Holocene.

    I keep re-reading your piece here getting more from it each time. As I keep doing so the thought forms that what we are really dealing with here is adolescense (as in “The Delinquent Teenager” by Donna Laframboise). Childlike tantrums, but obviously from a Mann…..

    It would be one thing if this was a rare example, but the likes of major news distributors, such as the Los Angeles Times, the New York Times (amongst many others), exhibit similar arrested puberty behavior, suggesting a far greater species saturation of adolescense through adulthood. One wonders if any other species has suffered such a reversal of evolution, and how quickly……..

    Meanwhile………….Back at the ranch……….Tonto, cleverly disquised as a late Holocene flat-earther living on the leading edge of the already half-precession cycle old Holocene, science-advises the Lone Ranger to issue some more Executive Orders.

    We do indeed live in interesting times……..good to hear from you :-)

  53. Great post.
    One typo in the top graph though…
    “Media eval warm period”
    Or a Freudian slip perhaps!

  54. Mike M says:

    January 21, 2014 at 2:55 pm

    “But perhaps this level of population control is what the climate fanatics are really after. They have always maintained that the Earth suffers from over-population and that the number of people needs to be reduced to protect natural values –a truly misanthropic scheme.”

    Mike,
    You hit the nail on the head there! UN Agenda 21 has a lot to say about population control, always couched in warm fuzzy terms of course.
    Even traditional population organisations have jumped onto the and wagon. http://www.populationmatters.org/issues-solutions/
    There are papers around with the UN or UNESCO letterhead or similar that talk about optimum earth population of between 500 million and 1Billion not to mention what these mega wealthy and influential people think.

    “A total world population of 250-300 million people, a 95% decline from present levels, would be ideal.”
    Ted Turner

    “In order to stabilize world population, we must eliminate 350,000 people per day. It is a horrible thing to say, but it is just as bad not to say it.”
    J. Cousteau, 1991 explorer and UNESCO courier

    “We must speak more clearly about sexuality, contraception, about abortion, about values that control population, because the ecological crisis, in short, is the population crisis. Cut the population by 90% and there aren’t enough people left to do a great deal of ecological damage.”
    Mikhail Gorbachev

    “World population needs to be decreased by 50%”
    Henry Kissinger

    “If I were reincarnated I would wish to be returned to earth as a killer virus to lower human population levels.”
    Prince Phillip

    “Childbearing should be a punishable crime against society, unless the parents hold a government license. All potential parents should be required to use contraceptive chemicals, the government issuing antidotes to citizens chosen for childbearing.”
    David Brower, first Executive Director of the Sierra Club

    Cheers

    Roger

    http://www.thedemiseofchristchurch.com

  55. What’s amazing to me is that macro economics has an equally controverial/ nonsense hockey stick curve similar to Mann’s, the Keynesian Aggregate Supply curve.

  56. D. B. Cooper says:
    January 21, 2014 at 5:05 pm

    Mikey is the poster boy …
    outstanding scientific integrity and magnificent ability to proscribe critical public policy initiatives required to save humanity.

    You were doing fine up until “proscribe”: To forbid or prohibit. (transitive) To denounce.
    Maybe you mean prescribe?

  57. CO2 capture is a long-established technology. Any source of CO2 in the gaseous state may be used out of which CO2 is liquefied and stored at a very low temperature and high pressure. The problem is what to do with that. The problem is sequestration.
    The only ‘identifiable’ method of sequestration is pumping the gas into the earth’s deep geological cracks, old coal mines and depleted oil fields. But this is a very risky and dangerous thing to do. Imagine a mega-bubble of CO2 suddenly escaping. This has occurred naturally. In one particular case, in Cameroon a whole villages were devastated. Wiki has this to say:
    >>21st August 1986: Lake Nyos suddenly emitted a large cloud of CO2, which suffocated 1,700 people and 3,500 livestock in nearby towns and villages.[2] [3] Though not completely unprecedented, it was the first known large-scale asphyxiation caused by a natural event. To prevent a recurrence, a degassing tube that siphons water from the bottom layers of water to the top allowing the carbon dioxide to leak in safe quantities was installed in 2001, and two additional tubes were installed in 2011.

    Today, the lake also poses a threat because its natural wall is weakening. A geological tremor could cause this natural dike to give way, allowing water to rush into downstream villages all the way into Nigeria and allowing much carbon dioxide to escape.<<

    Better to let trees do the trick of sequestering CO2. It's the one and real non-Mann-made 'nature's trick'

  58. The Hockey Stick

    There was a crooked Mann
    Who played a crooked trick
    And had a crooked plan
    To make a crooked stick

    By using crooked math
    That favored crooked lines
    Lysenko’s crooked path
    Led thru the crooked pines

    And all his crooked friends
    Applaud what crooked seems
    But all that crooked ends
    Derives from crooked means

    Eugene WR Gallun

  59. “In the United States, requirements are being set up to capture CO2 from smoke stacks of power plants and store it underground. Carbon Capture and Sequestration is a difficult and costly undertaking, and has never been demonstrated on a commercial scale. There have even been calls for sucking CO2 out of the global atmosphere, which sounds like an impossible task — and in any case, would be very, very expensive.”
    ===============================================
    Simple: plant lots of trees! They’re very efficient at removing CO2, and have beneficial
    side effects, like refreshing oxygen, creating useful materials (timber), look good, and
    provide homes for lots of lifeforms. And most importantly, they’re way cheaper to make,
    and operate than any industrial CO2 extractor …

    oh, sorry: too sensible.

  60. I’m sure that scientists are able to genetically modify some tree species, or twenty, that would be able to thrive in the vast expanses of the earth’s semi deserts, producing timber for construction and other purposes while sucking that ‘nasty’ fertilising gas that is (not) ‘killing’ our planet. But that nasty word, ‘genetically modify’ must be a very improper and politically incorrect phrase. So pump that gas underground were it will come back to hit us hard like it did in Camerron.

  61. I am a sworn enemy of depressive green propaganda, and of turning to the government for solutions — but the idea of reducing Earth’s population, by voluntary means, isn’t so bad in itself.

    Granted, 10 or 40 billion people can still feed themselves, but why constant growth of population is necessary? It only strengthens thieves and bandits who already rule in practically every country of the world. All of us would be richer and freer if there were, say, 500 millions of us on Earth, not 6.5 billion.

    I believe that distribution, by private non-governmental organizations, of freely accessible contraceptive pills on a massive scale is a very useful activity. There are much too many people in this world who don’t know what to do with themselves, and have no capacity, ability or opportunity to enjoy life as such. Why bring more and more hapless morons, suffrage-clogging parasites, violent fanatics and half-witted thugs into this valley of tears?

  62. “All of us would be richer and freer if there were, say, 500 millions of us on Earth, not 6.5 billion.”

    Nonsense. The people of the Earth are the most prosperous they’ve ever been, in large part because there are enough people to support all the activities which lead to good living. If you dislike crowds, there are still many places you can live with low population density, and will continue to be as the birth rate continues its plunge in developed countries. But, recognize that this is a neurosis, and others of us do not share it.

  63. The people of the Earth are the most prosperous they’ve ever been, in large part because there are enough people to support all the activities which lead to good living.

    Nonsense. If in a country, such as the United States, 300 million people can “support all the activities which lead to good living” (even if they agree to your definition of “good living,” and even if most of them agree that they have a “good living,” which they do not), then there is no need for much more people in order to achieve the same level of the quality of life.

    Intellectual and entrepreneurial achievements of the relatively few people (tens of thousands, perhaps) resulted on the technological progress that allows billions of people to survive, even in the post uneducated, corrupt and enslaved societies. Life in overpopulated modern cities is truly terrible, and every rational man would agree that it is the modern urban existence that is, in essence, neurotic.

    If you like the way of life in Mexico City, in Calcutta, or in Shanghai, it is your personal tragedy; don’t impose it on others who do not share your lamentable neurosis.

  64. I’ve always had a problem with the dichotomy set up by Mann’s claim the MWP was not ‘global’ and the implication in his work that his bristle-cone pines/Yamal were.

  65. Donald L. Klipstein says: @ January 21, 2014 at 9:12 pm

    I don’t think population control and reduction is such a bad thing. And nobody needs to get killed; we just have to reduce the birth rate.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    So who determines who can have children and who can not? What traits are is the government looking for? The same as a farmer? docility, herd mentality….

    But do not worry, governments are now collecting DNA from babies to make that determination. In the USA the police are collecting DNA from people arrested but not yet convicted of serious crimes.

    Seems Eugenics is still alive and well.
    Eugenics: the skeleton that rattles loudest in the left’s closet: Socialism’s one-time interest in eugenics is dismissed as an accident of history. But the truth is far more unpalatable

    The eugenics movement Britain wants to forget

    How eugenics poisoned the welfare state: A century ago many leading leftists subscribed to the vile pseudo-science of eugenics, writes Dennis Sewell, and the influence of that thinking can still be seen today

    Margaret Sanger, Founder of Planned Parenthood In Her Own Words

    “The most merciful thing that a large family does to one of its infant members is to kill it.” Margaret Sanger, Women and the New Race ~ (Eugenics Publ. Co., 1920, 1923)

    “We do not want word to go out that we want to exterminate the Negro population,” she said, “if it ever occurs to any of their more rebellious members.” Woman’s Body, Woman’s Right: A Social History of Birth Control in America, by Linda Gordon

    “…human weeds,’ ‘reckless breeders,’ ‘spawning… human beings who never should have been born.” Margaret Sanger, Pivot of Civilization, referring to immigrants and poor people

    “More children from the fit, less from the unfit — that is the chief aim of birth control.” Birth Control Review, May 1919, p. 12

    Are you SURE you want these people to decide who has children and who does not?

    Just defund the new occupation paid for by our taxes called “Unwed Mother” if you want to slow the birth rate. Otherwise increase the wealth and prosperity of a nation. It works better and does not destroy freedom.

  66. The NYT was pro-Stalin long after it was clear he was a monster. The NYT claimed rockets could never work because the exhaust would have nothing to push against in space. The NYT has backed disaster after disaster. Backing Mann fits right in.

  67. rogerthesurf says: @ January 21, 2014 at 9:39 pm

    …There are papers around with the UN or UNESCO letterhead or similar that talk about optimum earth population of between 500 million and 1Billion not to mention what these mega wealthy and influential people think….
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Do not forget that Eugenicist Julian Huxley was first director-general, the UNESCO (1951) and set the tone which has not changed.

    The Life and Legacy of Julian Huxley
    …Huxley’s position on eugenics is detailed below in an analysis of several of his most influential publications on eugenics, education, and race: his 1933 paper entitled “The Vital Importance of Eugenics,” his 1946 publication of the goals of UNESCO after becoming the organization’s first director-general, the UNESCO 1951 “Statement on Race,” and his 1962 Galton Memorial Lecture to the British Eugenics Society. Contradictions abound between, and even within, several of these publications, but each address adds a specific dimension to Huxley’s overall position on eugenics, and together these sources detail the evolution of his stance on human biological inequality, education, and eugenic reform throughout the course of his career.
    “The Vital Importance of Eugenics” (1933)

    Sterilization of the unfit and identification of carriers of defective genotypes
    Huxley argued that the principle goal of eugenics in the short term should be to ensure that mentally defective individuals cease having children. He advocated in particular for:
    · Prohibition of marriage of the unfit
    · Segregation of institutions containing degenerate individuals
    · Sterilization of the unfit

    …“UNESCO: Its Purpose and Its Philosophy” (1946)
    After becoming the first director-general of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization in 1945, Huxley published “UNESCO: Its Purpose and Its Philosophy.” This manifesto outlined both the broad goals of this newly established organization and Huxley’s stance on how UNESCO should attempt to address them. More telling, however, was the degree to which Huxley’s publication reflected his views on eugenics….

    Huxley put a uniquely eugenic spin on these goals, however, arguing that true human welfare could only be accomplished if individuals pursued the most desirable direction in human evolution. He argued that in particular that, in addition to educational reform, UNESCO’s key goals should be to promote population control and ‘the eugenic problem’ (Toye, 2010: 327)….

  68. Blair M says: @ January 21, 2014 at 9:45 pm

    What’s amazing to me is that macro economics has an equally controverial/ nonsense hockey stick curve similar to Mann’s, the Keynesian Aggregate Supply curve.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Do not forget that Keynes through his friendship with Woolf and Russell brought him into contact with leaders of the Fabian Society, including Sidney Webb, Beatrice Webb and George Bernard Shaw. . Sir Julian Huxley and Aldous Huxley were also Fabians. All of whom were supporters of Eugenics.

  69. Alexander Feht says:
    January 21, 2014 at 11:14 pm

    Demographic transition occurs naturally when people feel safe having two babies instead of 20, thanks to increased likelihood of the two surviving to adulthood. Improved health & economic conditions have already achieved zero population in growth in most of the developed world. The developing world will follow suit in this century.

    World population should stabilize under ten billion, then start to fall as a result of such improvements. Already Mexico City & (especially) Shanghai aren’t as bad as you seem to suppose, & even Calcutta isn’t the hell hole it used to be. Poverty is actually worse in some rural areas than in the teeming cities.

  70. The decline was about the divergence of the proxies used with the modern temperature record. Showing it made clear that the proxies were in adequate and that they did not capture all temperature increase and levels. And that they almost certainly missed other, higher temps in the past.

  71. hunter says January 22, 2014 at 5:43 am:

    “The NYT was pro-Stalin long after it was clear he was a monster.”

    I guess that means that Stalin would have made a great icon for Greenpiss and WWtF. (“A million deaths is a tragedy; twenty million, a statistic.”

  72. milodonharlani says:
    January 22, 2014 at 6:17 am

    I hope you are right, and stabilization of the population would not happen too late, and would not be a result of some plague or global catasrophe.

    I advocate the voluntary use of birth control pills, nothing else. Contrary to Gail Combs’ fears, in that case her question “Who decides?” would be answered by the potential parents temselves. Governments, of course, should not touch this issue; everything government touches, shrivels and festers.

    BTW, suburbs of Shanghai are just horrible. As are countless clusters of multi-story, multi-apartment “modern slums” around big cities all over the world. Life is too short to waste it living like that.

  73. Alexander Feht says:
    January 22, 2014 at 7:15 am

    People wouldn’t move to Shanghai suburbs if life there were not better than back in rural Szechwan. The Communist regime lures them there, doesn’t round up peasants & transport them there in cattle cars.

    Demographic transition has occurred in Europe, the Americas, developed Asia & Australia, so why not in developing Asia & Africa?

  74. Every now and then, I post about the “overpopulation”/population control/eugenics topic, because it splices in even better with the global warming fable even better than an inverted tree ring proxy splices into the historical temp record.

    I hope the zero-population-growth people here begin listening to others, like me, who have seen the population-control movement for what it is: total scare tactics on a grand scale by God-complected pseudo-scientists.

    Just like the predictions of the global-warming cultists have failed to materialize across decades, the catastrophies predicted by the population-scare forces have failed time after time.

    This fable does not begin at Club of Rome.

    The best I can tell, from reviewing dozens of publications I have gotten holt of over the past decade, the roots can be seen in the Poor Laws of England, dating back to the 1300s. [A starting point for reading up:
    http://www.thepotteries.org/dates/poor.htm ]

    Why the 1300s? I don’t know. I am weak in that history. My guess has something to do with climate/productivity, Black Plague, and the Schism of the Catholic Church. Just guesses, though.

    From the 1300s, England has a series of legislative attempts to deal with vagabond ne’er-do-wells.

    Pondering how to deal with able-bodied people who are dependent on us productive people led to the great political philosophers, such as Rousseau, to ponder the nature of Man. If only we could understand the nature of Man, we could figure out how to address petty thievery, laziness, irresponsible reproduction, and so on. And so relieve ourselves of the burden of supporting those who are dependent on us despite being able-bodied.

    Malthus circa 1800 looked at these irresponsibly reproducing ne’er-do-well dependent people (see where I am going with this? -nowadays, it is not British vagabonds, but almost entirely is those darkies of Asia and Africa spoiling our good thing here in the white developed west). Malthus (and others in the era) expanded the problem from not just being one of public burden/immorality, but of environmental collapse.

    Malthus can be seen as ground zero for this topic moving into the modern period.

    Much talk ensued in intellectual circles. Darwin and Galton were in that legacy.

    Darwin’s theory of the mechanism of selection added a scientifick-y justification for treating the ne’er-do-well vagabonds differently. His book title says a lot:
    “The Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection: The Preservation of Favored Races in the Struggle for Life.” Circa 1860.

    His cousin, Galton, who contributed to modern measurement and statistics approaches, used this idea to declare that he could figure out by physiology who had the bad genes.
    Galton coined the term “eugenics,” (circa 1860) and the idea of positive eugenics – encouraging us white middle class productive people to reproduce – and negative eugenics – discouraging the dependent, lazy, irresponsibly-procreating petty-thievery rabble from reproducing.

    Along this time, we educated white people enjoyed, directly or indirectly, the Black slave movement of 1500s-1800s.

    When slavery was abolished, circa 1830 in England, and circa 1860 in U.S., we no longer had Blacks as an exploitable resource, but had Blacks as fellow members of society – and “they” often seemed to be quite a burden – again, the same burdens on us white, middle-class productive people – we saw “them” as petty thieves, vagabonds, beggars, lazy, and being irresponsibly reproductive. We had the “science” support to perform sterilizations, though.

    We also saw the Native Americans the same way, and maintained involuntary/uninformed sterilization programs on Native American across decades (up to the 1970s, and possibly more recently). The basis of this was the dependency argument, and science.

    We educated people hear NOTHING about the eugenics movement, although it continued to be a major area of scientific discourse, policy and public “health” attention from 1860 onward.

    Jumping ahead a bit, this eugenics concept was solid enough to be the basis of Buck v. Bell, a 1927 U.S. Supreme Court decision supporting COMPULSORY STERILIZATION for those judged by any given state to be too much of a burden, or to not have that great of a prospect of an independent, fulfilling life.

    So, we carried on with sterilization.

    Margaret Sanger provided a great boost to the idea of birth control as a more refined solution to these perceived problems. She was strongly eugenic, and was strongly tied to the eugenic movements of the time. But times were changing, and she realized a different face would have to be put on the idea of managing those unproductive ne’er-do-well irresponsible classes of people.

    With Marxist influence, she developed a picture of a lower-class wife as shackled to the home by children, and offered us the modern woman role we now accept without a blink. This benefit begin due partly to shaking off the oppression of the Catholic church, and the promotion of birth control.

    Hilter got the idea of positive and negative eugenics from the U.S., and aggressively put this into action – we know the killing part, but in our education we do not cover his breeding programs – positive eugenics – why not? Because our liberal educators all believe we should go there, eventually.

    Due to the bad press that eugenics got from WWII, eugenics had to go underground – a different smiley face was needed to advance the totalitarian concept of reducing those meddlesome ne’er-do-wells.

    Eugenics hung on for a bit longer — Frederick Osborn, a recognized military leader, was heavily involved in this movement, and wrote, circa 1950, his text on the scientific background supporting eugenics “Preface to Eugenics.”. This included – get this – the science/public burden argument for killing off the deaf. The deaf.

    But he was late. The problem was still there, and needed a newer, up-to-date face.

    This is where the current “overpopulation” / quality of life movement picks up. With Harrison Brown, the “Manhattan Project” physicist who wrote the Malthusian “Must Destruction Be Our Destiny?” circa 1940. These writings were fairly popular.

    Post-WWII, the fear of those darkies reproducing too much led the U.S. and other developed nations on the major population control movement. That is not that hard to find. It involves the UN, Planned Parenthood (Intl PP Federation), major U.S. industrialists including Ford Foundation, etc.

    We drastically suppressed the population of many nations from, I believe, the time of Japan reconstruction to the present.

    Henry Kissinger’s NSSM 200 of 1974 CLEARLY states that it is a matter of world power to control the populations in the darker-pigmented corners of our globe.

    “Overpopulation” is just the ruse to get us to go along with all of this. But it is actually classism, all the way down.

  75. Alexander Feht says: @ January 22, 2014 at 7:15 am
    …I advocate the voluntary use of birth control pills, nothing else. Contrary to Gail Combs’ fears, in that case her question “Who decides?” would be answered by the potential parents temselves. Governments, of course, should not touch this issue; everything government touches, shrivels and festers….
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Alexander, I agree with you. Providing birth control at little or no cost is a very good idea. Just do not let governments decide who is allowed to have children and who can not.

    We are already seeing the fertility rate nose dive. CIA Fact Book

  76. LOL, Gail (re: 7:12pm, yesterday). “….. and part of my job is to be funny (presses red nose like a car horn) honk, honk, honk….” lolololololololoLOLOLOLOLOLO!.

    Except… those rodeo clowns (and I realize you agree, the analogy can only go so far) are very noble, brave, skillful, intelligent, great-hearted, people. Unlike the inventor of: “innovative statistical techniques” (GREAT quote, Michael Snow at 6:55pm yesterday). Oh, MAN, that was funny. Whoo, wee, this has been a great thread for humor.

    Thanks for all wit laughter, all you clever commenters. WUWT is the best site in the WORLD.

  77. Alexander Feht says:
    January 22, 2014 at 1:04 am

    “If in a country, such as the United States, 300 million people can “support all the activities which lead to good living” (even if they agree to your definition of “good living,” and even if most of them agree that they have a “good living,” which they do not), then there is no need for much more people in order to achieve the same level of the quality of life.”

    The siren call of autarky. Ask North Korea how that works out.

    We would not be nearly as well off without trade with the rest of the world. Look around you and ask how many of the items you see which make your life comfortable came from foreign lands.

    “Intellectual and entrepreneurial achievements of the relatively few people (tens of thousands, perhaps) resulted on the technological progress that allows billions of people to survive, even in the post uneducated, corrupt and enslaved societies.”

    A) Those people are a given percentage of the population – reduce the population, and you reduce their number proportionately

    B) They couldn’t have done what they did without the time afforded them to do so by others taking care of mundane necessities

  78. Your claim that “the global climate has not warmed significantly for at least the past 15 years” need to be corrected. The “15 years ago” was the last major El Niño event in 1998 when the Earth was at the peak of a natural warming cycle, it can only be compared to the next major El Niño event when it comes around again.

    Furthermore, the fact that a non-El Niño year, i.e. 15 years after the last major El Niño event, has the same temperature as the major El Niño event is in itself terrifying; humanity has warmed the Earth to the point that not even the power of the Pacific Ocean can return Global Temperatures to their norm.

    The fact that a non-El Niño year has the same, or minutely higher, temperature as a year 15 years ago that was a major El Niño event, is global climate warming significantly not the opposite.

  79. Population is a pyramid. Those at the peak can only reach as high as the base allows. Remove the base, and the summit topples.

  80. It’s not impossible, I have a friend who pulls tons of CO2 out of thin air every week and then sells it as dry ice. But it is very, very expensive.

    It isn’t even very expensive. I have these things called “plants” on my property that pull pounds of CO_2 out of thin air every week and turn it into complex carbohydrates and proteins, at least during the spring and summer. Fortunately, a really significant fraction of the Earth’s surface is covered with these CO_2 removing devices, and still more of them thrive in the upper surface layer of the ocean. Furthermore, they have a natural tendency to ramp up their production of sequestered CO_2 in response to its bioavailability — basically concentration in the atmosphere. While they do give some of that CO_2 back on an annualized basis, some fraction of it falls to the ocean bottom or is turned into houses or is otherwise sequestered for a longer term.

    The problem comes from doing it with something OTHER than plants, especially when it is being demanded by people who don’t understand basic thermodynamics and chemistry. CO_2 is a byproduct of combustion that is quite stable, the low-free-energy result of burning/oxidizing high-free-energy carbon or hydrocarbons. That burning releases energy, some comparatively small fraction of which is typically put to human use as organized work or transiently useful forms of junk energy e.g. electric light. To reverse this reaction and turn the CO_2 back into carbon and oxygen (for example) requires even more energy than was released in the burning process as it too never proceeds perfectly efficiently.

    Other means of “sequestering” CO_2 without chemically transforming it are almost without exception going to cost more energy than was released by burning it in the first place as well. Burning a metric ton of coal produces three and a half metric tons of CO_2, and transforms a solid chunk with a volume of roughly one cubic meter to a gas with an STP volume thousands of times greater. The work done compressing the gas back down to order of one cubic meter again very likely exceeds the useful work obtained from burning the coal once a double penalty of efficiency is assessed. You might get enough energy burning a ton of coal to successfully compress the CO_2 it produces back down to a cubic meter of volume (assuming you could store it safely at the enormous pressure this would entail) but there wouldn’t be much, if any, leftover energy to use.

    A slightly better idea would be to sequester plant fibers, letting the Sun provide the energy required. But in that case it would make still better sense to burn the plant fiber directly instead of mining coal and e.g. refilling the mines with wood.

    The BEST idea is to find and develop economically competitive carbon-free energy resources and completely ignore coal burning in the meantime. You want to eliminate coal-based energy? No problem. Develop less expensive nuclear energy alternatives. Develop less expensive solar energy alternatives. Develop less expensive alternatives of any sort that you like and then stand back and wait for the free market to elect to use the least expensive energy resource because it saves money.

    For this to work, of course, coal-based power has to be sold at an unsubsidized rate and forced to confront and pay hidden costs associated with its use such as producing soot, sulfuric acid rain, widespread dissemination of aerosolized mercury, and the human costs of mining coal. But by and large, that sort of thing has already happened — coal power plants have never been cleaner.

    CO_2, however, is not a pollutant, and its long time “cost/benefit” is very much open to doubt (and controversial, as there are undeniable benefits that have to be balanced against the undeniable costs, if anybody ever successfully determines what both of these are at a level that might be called “undeniable”). Time, no doubt, will tell, but in the meantime trying to demand that coal burning plants accomplish the impossible, especially when it may not ever be necessary, will benefit no one.

    rgb

  81. rgbatduke says:
    January 22, 2014 at 11:00 am

    …”as there are undeniable benefits that have to be balanced against the undeniable costs, if anybody ever successfully determines what both of these are at a level that might be called “undeniable”

    i.e.,

    “…as there are undeniable benefits that have to be balanced against the speculative costs…”

    Concision is a virtue.

  82. Kuni Leml says:
    January 22, 2014 at 10:47 am

    “Furthermore, the fact that a non-El Niño year, i.e. 15 years after the last major El Niño event, has the same temperature as the major El Niño event…”

    Wrong.

  83. “Overpopulation” is just the ruse to get us to go along with all of this. But it is actually classism, all the way down.

    Or, maybe, perhaps, overpopulation is a very real, very serious problem in parts of the world. I grew up in India, and my father worked for Ford Foundation, whom you bad-mouthed, creating the Green Revolution that has saved more people’s lives and improved more people’s economic status than you will save or improve if you live to be a thousand. I have visited India again more recently, and seen how the people who were living on the street when I was 10 have had children, grandchildren and great grandchildren in the meantime living on the same stretch of sidewalk.

    India’s problem with overpopulation isn’t imaginary, and isn’t classist. There are just far too many people for the resources available at the time. Indeed, overpopulation and over-reproduction maintains the poverty cycle there and in China, which is why both of the governments of these countries have taken (very different) steps to try to interrupt the cycle, in both cases with significant success. As people break out of the poverty cycle, they generally self-limit reproduction, as they don’t need to have ten children to ensure that three or four survive to care for them in their old age, a process that is greatly aided by developing a social network that means that your own children are not your sole form of “social security”.

    Worldwide, I generally agree that the Malthusian disaster has been averted because we have developed technology and agriculture even faster than the population has grown, although it has come at a significant expense. I would even agree that the best possible solution to the overpopulation problem that we do, really, have is to break the cycle of poverty and ignorance that produces it and perpetuates it. But dude, before you go around asserting that there is no such thing as an overpopulation IN THE SAME BREATH that you condemn as “Marxism” any steps that even might be taken to help people who live in crowded warrens in Mexico, in India, in Africa, in China, you might try visiting, say, Mumbai in India and taking a drive through town. Then you can consider just how you are going to help them move from the four story tenement built of bamboo and tin roof that has “organically” grown up between two tall buildings, housing maybe ten thousand people, all served by a single tap of water and a single large field that is their communal bathroom. Oh, and bear in mind — all of the property and land worth cultivating belongs to somebody already, and in any event just giving them something for free paid for by tax dollars or guilt-donations — isn’t that “Marxism”?

    Sure, the planet itself has more than enough theoretical holding capacity for its 7 billion people, largely thanks to those evil Marxists in the Ford and Rockefeller foundations back in the 60’s, to US AID, to the advances in technology and science and agriculture that sustain them — hell, it can probably hold several times that and maintain a decent standard of living in principle — but those seven billion people are not uniformly distributed relative to the economically and ecologically sustainable levels of the environment, and somebody either owns everything already or else a resource is in the commons, openly inviting the Tragedy of the Commons if you permit its unlimited exploitation. So you can’t just go and move people and reorder society so that real overpopulation turns into the theoretically possible underpopulation that might ensue if you were king of the world and could make it so.

    Or maybe one can — Lenin and Marx thought so. Jesus thought so, I guess (hard to know what, or if, Jesus thought about anything, except by complex chains of mythologized hearsay). But you aren’t going to make the overpopulated warrens of the world disappear by shouting that they don’t really exist and that any claim that they do is closet racism or classism.

    rgb

  84. rgbatduke says:
    January 22, 2014 at 11:31 am

    It’s not that overpopulation isn’t a problem, it’s that many of the proffered “cures” are worse than the disease, and infused with a “we must destroy the village to save it” mentality.

  85. Thank you to all of the commenters who pointed out that I was talking nonsense regarding sucking CO2 out of the air. You are right, it is generated as a by-product of another process. As my friend said – “it’s only 400 ppm in the atmosphere”.

    That’s how science works – an opinion is given, better-educated experts knock it down, and the numpty that opened his mouth learns something useful.

    Once again, thank you.

  86. rgbatduke – regarding India: I have not been there. Your expertise supercedes mine on what Mumbai urban areas look like.

    However, here is the sickening deal: India has gone whole-hog over this population control-through-abortion-and-birth-control fantasy.

    It was introduced and brought about by a planned campaign from the West. This is documented all over the place. A couple of leading places include: Connelly’s 2008 “Fatal Misconception,” and Hvistendahl’s 2011 “Unnatural Selection.”

    This has led to the “missing” women in India, where the male-female birth ration has been thrown out of whack. Leadingly by the middle and upper classes who are paying for the abortions.

    Your beloved India has a successful economic engine. They could have long ago begun addressing the welfare of the poverty classes, but have chosen not to.

    For the leading portrayal of India in this “Population Catastrophe” scare, read what was read by millions in 1968: Paul Ehrlich’ Population Bomb. The opening of the book is Ehrlich describing a walk through urban India, as you describe. It drips with racism.

    Where on earth might you rather expect a prosperous nation? I believe it is a toss-up between India and Mexico. Both have wonderful, industrious, intelligent people, have ample land for crops and for grazing, have snow-melt-based surface and spring water, have easy access year-round to warm-water ports reaching both the Atlantic and Pacific, sight-seeing destinations including archaeological sites, and both have amazing mineral wealth. India may exceed the natural wealth setting of Mexico by having navigable rivers crossing a greater portion of its land.

    Yet the most poor in each country are far worse than in the United States.

    My opinion is that it is all in the governance. The educated industrious middle-class Indians know they can come here to the States and do better than they could in India. And they do.

    Along with my reading on this issue, I know and have talked with many Indians and Indian-Americans.

    I don’t think the UN and Ford Foundation and Gates Foundation pushing more birth control and more abortion will make things better. But hey go for it.

  87. There are easy and economical ways to sequester CO2 from the atmosphere and many people do so. Narrurally the committed green fanatics at their esconsed and secure high paying sinecures in the EPA, don’t recognize it. It has been going on for 10,000 years and it is called Agriculture, Silviculture and Ranching.

    Despite the attempts to ignore and disregard the pioneering work done by a team of peer reviewed scientists working at Prnceton University at the turn of the 21st Century, the fact remains that the Western Hemisphere, and North America in particular, is the greatest CO2 Carbon Sink in the world.

    They measured at showed that Air blowing in on the westerlies from Eurasia is heavily loaded with elevated CO2. As it reaches the shores of N. A., the California cities add a little to it, but California farmers remove lots of the CO2. But as is moves across the USA CO2 levels decline significantly, as it is sequestered in Pacific coastal forests, ranchland grasses, and then Midwestern Corn and Wheat fields. The CO2 levels rise a bit in the American Ruhr where so much heavy industry in concentrated, but then the level declines again, until it reaches the East Coast cities where it climbs a bit.

    But it is highly depleted in CO2 levels as the Air exits into the Atlantic Ocean. The EPA green Fanatics refuse to acknowledge these facts. since they haven’t yet managed to coerce the mighty Oak and Pine to report the SEQUESTRATION on the “OFFICIAL EPA REPORTING FORMS”. So of course that Sequestration never happened. (Aren’t bureaucrats wonderful?)

    The fact remain that American farmers, ranchers, husbandry men and loggers sequester more CO2 than anywhere in the world, and more than three times the Amazon Rainforests of South America. All documented in the Princeton peer-reviewed and published, scientific papers.

    These Americans also grow wealthy doing so, and providing large portions of the Earth with food and fiber.

    BTW, do you know that only America, a country that never recognized Kyoto, has reduced its CO2 emissions to 1990 levels urged by the IPCC and the good Doctor Paul Hansen, before he went completely round the bend? So by that treaty terms we can stop trying to do more, We have finished the job.

  88. Bart says:
    January 22, 2014 at 11:13 am

    Wrong.

    Then you should have no problem posting the link to the ocean heat content numbers also.

    What? You thought that only land and sea surface temperatures were the only numbers? Or you thought that you could get away with pretending that land and sea surface temperatures were the only numbers?

  89. Correction to my above post. Bart is right.

    I should have originally said: The fact that a current non El Nino year has a very slightly lower surface temperature compared to a strong El Nino year only proves that we are warming the planet.

    If one is rounding to the tenths of a degree there is no difference, but if one rounds to the hundredths of a degree 1998 is around 0.02 degrees warmer.

  90. Kuni says:
    January 22, 2014 at 4:11 pm

    “Then you should have no problem posting the link to the ocean heat content numbers also.”

    Pffttt! Ocean heat content. The Immaculate Convection rears its head again. The dog ate my homework becomes the ocean ate my heat. It is a flail of desperation.

    Kuni says:
    January 22, 2014 at 4:19 pm

    Give it, Kuni. Godot isn’t coming. Temperatures have started the downward slide of the current natural cycle. AGW is toast.

  91. Jimbo says:
    January 21, 2014 at 4:15 pm

    Janice Moore says:
    January 21, 2014 at 4:05 pm
    ……………
    (and don’t worry about repeating — we need to be reminded and, also, there are new readers all the time)

    New readers is exactly why I repeat. ;-) Many missed these shocking facts as they have been fed garbage and lies for many years.

    =====================================================
    Well, as long as we’re throwing in a few re-runs for new readers…

    Gunga Din says:
    May 9, 2012 at 5:35 pm

    Stopping by Yamal One Snowing Evening.
    by Mikey Mann

    What tree this is, I think I know.
    It grew in Yamal some time ago.
    Yamal 06 I’m placing here
    In hopes a hockey stick will grow.

    But McIntyre did think it queer
    No tree, the stick did disappear!
    Desparate measures I did take
    To make that stick reappear.

    There were some corings from a lake.
    And other data I could bake.
    I’ll tweek my model more until
    Another hockey stick I’ll make!

    I changed a line into a hill!
    I can’t say how I was thrilled!
    Then Climategate. I’m feeling ill.
    Then Climategate. I’m feeling ill.

  92. Kuni Leml says:
    January 22, 2014 at 10:47 am
    +++++++++
    Just reading your opening comment, tells me that it is not possible for anyone to explain to you the meaning of things. But I will make this statement. “The IPCC, NASA and NOAA, are trying to understand why Global Warming stopped. All of the skeptics (read that as everyone else) already know that when we say the warming stopped, we mean that there has been no warming trend starting from today going back some years.

    I have a new word for people like you –Refuser. I think I will trademark the name since it’s not been claimed by any other definition, but it’s pretty obvious what it means. You are truly on the fringes.

  93. Mann’s op-ed in the NYT titled “If you see something, say something.”

    – – – – – – – – –

    Michael Mann,

    And the converse is “If you say nothing of substance, there is nothing to see in it.”

    Also, please don’t act like a coward wrt the intellectual duel that Judith Curry directly challenged you too. Show some backbone Mikey .

    John

  94. Bart says:
    January 22, 2014 at 10:42 am

    A) Those people are a given percentage of the population – reduce the population, and you reduce their number proportionately

    Aha! That’s why they had only one Mozart in 18th century, and now there are so many Mozarts that we all get to listen to Lady Gaga. Or, as old Soviet joke goes: “Under the repressive tsarist regime, there was only one writer in Toula region, Leo Tolstoy. And now, in the progressive socialist society, there are 242 productive full members of the Sovite Writers’ Union in the same region alone!” That’s the level of your “logic,” Bart.

    B) They couldn’t have done what they did without the time afforded them to do so by others taking care of mundane necessities

    Aha! That’s why most of the geniuses, inventors, and pioneers of all kinds were persecuted, mocked, and driven to poverty and madness throughout history. Because others supported them, took upon themselves all the menial responsibilities, and selflessly devoted their lives to create free time for those prodigies, so they could continue their groundbreaking work and creation of beauty. Squeeze up, Rembrandt, Galileo, Beethoven, Michelangelo, Champollion, Tesla and Schubert! You didn’t build what you created! What could you do without all the others (who poisoned every second of your tormented lives)?

    That’s the level of your intellect, Bart.

  95. Alexander Feht says: @ January 22, 2014 at 9:55 pm
    And that is why I said we need to defund science and Universities. We normally are only funding the mediocre, the team players, the entrenched and not the genuises who are seen as a threat by established academia.

    “Science progresses funeral by funeral.” ~ Max Planck

  96. Kuni Leml says:
    January 22, 2014 at 10:47 am

    ‘ … Your claim that “the global climate has not warmed significantly for at least the past 15 years” need to be corrected” …’
    —-l
    Just to clarify – do you claim that the global climate has warmed significantly for the past 15 years ?

  97. Gail Combs says January 23, 2014 at 4:50 am,

    Alexander Feht says: @ January 22, 2014 at 9:55 pm

    And that is why I said we need to defund science and Universities. We normally are only funding the mediocre, the team players, the entrenched and not the genuises who are seen as a threat by established academia.

    “Science progresses funeral by funeral.” ~ Max Planck

    – – – – – – – – –

    Gail Combs,

    Einstein said, “The only thing that you absolutely have to know, is the location of the library.”

    I tend to agree with your original comment way upthread about defunding science and universities if you are implying that the fundamental pursuit of human knowledge should not be so dominantly dependent on political funding processes or subject to the fashionable ideologies of government bureaucracies.

    John

  98. Charlie Johnson (@SemperBanU) says:
    January 21, 2014 at 2:53 pm

    Hey Dr. Mann –

    Y ou
    A re
    M asking
    A
    L ie

    Yamal was Briffa. Not Mann.

    Fail.

  99. Gunga Din says:
    May 9, 2012 at 5:35 pm

    Stopping by Yamal One Snowing Evening.
    by Mikey Mann

    What tree this is, I think I know.
    It grew in Yamal some time ago.
    Yamal 06 I’m placing here
    In hopes a hockey stick will grow

    And another fail.

    Bristlecones = Mann
    Yamal Mann

    • @Jeff – we all know of your expertise on tree ring samples. However the posts you keep “failing” are using what is commonly referred to as a “poetic license”. So the only fail is yours. For not understanding what the subject is.

  100. Alexander Feht says:
    January 22, 2014 at 9:55 pm

    “That’s why they had only one Mozart in 18th century, and now there are so many Mozarts that we all get to listen to Lady Gaga.”

    Taste in music is a very subjective thing, but there are many, many accomplished composers in various milieus today. If things were so great in the 18th century, how did Antoine Salieri rise to the pinnacle of the music establishment? Do you have any idea what kind of music the common people were listening to in the 18th century? It wasn’t Le Nozze di Figaro.

    You seem to be putting forth a theory that, the fewer people there are, the smarter they will be. That is rather crackpot.

    “That’s why most of the geniuses, inventors, and pioneers of all kinds were persecuted, mocked, and driven to poverty and madness throughout history.”

    Most? Cite, please? Leonardo and Michelangelo were the toast of the Vatican. Newton was president of the Royal Society. Bach was Kapellmeister to Leopold. Mozart, himself, had a very good gig going at the court of Salzburg.

    Just because some had some rough patches, often of their own making, does not mean all or even most did. Besides, these were the times in which there was a small population such as you desire.

    “That’s the level of your intellect, Bart.”

    Ah, so the argument’s boiled down to ad hom, eh? Well, I guess we’ve reached the end of it, then.

  101. John Whitman says:
    January 23, 2014 at 6:44 am

    “I tend to agree with your original comment way upthread about defunding science and universities if you are implying that the fundamental pursuit of human knowledge should not be so dominantly dependent on political funding processes or subject to the fashionable ideologies of government bureaucracies.”

    That would be ideal, but probably not practical. But, the process is self-limiting, even if it takes a long time for corrective action to kick in. One of the salutary effects of the Climate Fiasco, I hope, will be a more rigorous adherence to the scientific method, and less willingness to accept personal opinions of authority figures as established fact.

    And, a greater understanding that computers are dumb machines which do not produce information, but merely manipulate it to be interpreted from a different perspective. Garbage in, Garbage out. Value in, value out.

  102. If you see something, say something… Related to science this is sub-primates standard. Science means: If you see something, think, say something. A principle that you even can find (rudimentary) in the behavior of chimpanzees.

  103. John Whitman says….
    What I am saying is that if the wealth is left in the hands of the individual instead of taken as taxes then the individual can allocate funding as he sees fit. Most people including me give part of their income to charities and universities. Bureaucracies not only play favorites but waste most of the tax dollars. Actually our $$$ only go towards paying down the debt at this point. Our debit according to the debt clock is $54,424.28 per citizen.

    We as a country can not afford to continue throwing money away so some academic can sit on his fat rear behind a computer simulating frog populations in the amazon under the threat of global warming.

    If I want to take my share of federally allocated grant funds and toss it at thorium nuclear reactors then I should have that right and no green activist masquerading as a bureaucrat should be allowed to divert the funds into HIS favorite navel gazing cause.

    The idea that the federal government should fund research is actually quite recent. This is not surprising because a reliable source of taxes was not available prior to 1913.

    Ongoing, large-scale spending on R&D in the United States only began in earnest in the wake of the Second World War… SEE: GRAPH

    http://www.thenewatlantis.com/publications/the-sources-and-uses-of-us-science-funding

  104. Bart on January 23, 2014 at 10:19 am said,

    @John Whitman on January 23, 2014 at 6:44 am

    That would be ideal, but probably not practical. But, the process is self-limiting, even if it takes a long time for corrective action to kick in. One of the salutary effects of the Climate Fiasco, I hope, will be a more rigorous adherence to the scientific method, and less willingness to accept personal opinions of authority figures as established fact.

    And, a greater understanding that computers are dumb machines which do not produce information, but merely manipulate it to be interpreted from a different perspective. Garbage in, Garbage out. Value in, value out.

    – – – – – – – – – –

    Bart,

    Thanks for your comment.

    I think your thrust is based on your introduction into the dialog of a concept of ‘ideal’.

    It looks like your context might possibly be that a pragmatic view is more realistic / rational, although you did not use the word pragmatic but instead used the word practical.

    I am interested in any additional expansion of your context and conception ‘ideal’ along with any other concepts to which you might contrast it.

    John

  105. toWhere on earth might you rather expect a prosperous nation? I believe it is a toss-up between India and Mexico. Both have wonderful, industrious, intelligent people, have ample land for crops and for grazing, have snow-melt-based surface and spring water, have easy access year-round to warm-water ports reaching both the Atlantic and Pacific, sight-seeing destinations including archaeological sites, and both have amazing mineral wealth. India may exceed the natural wealth setting of Mexico by having navigable rivers crossing a greater portion of its land.

    Probably a bit late to answer, but I prefer to view India as a country 1/3 of the US, less than 1/3 of which is at all arable or inhabitable, with a population 3x that of the US. Much of India is de facto desert for at least six months of the year, and what rain it gets it gets all at once during monsoon, where it is often destructive as much as constructive. During the dry season dust storms blow that are so dense that you cannot see more than a couple of hundred feet in them, reminiscent of what the US only has experienced during the Great Dust Bowl. In India that is business as usual, every year. Then there are the days that the sky overhead is clouded with locusts. Yes, I mean real locusts — oversized grasshoppers around the size of your middle finger — in numbers so great that they darken the sky. Hungry locusts. Finally, many of your “navigable rivers” are highly conditionally navigable. Even the mighty Ganges only flows in its deepest parts in April and May, and some years into June depending on the monsoon of the year (sometimes there isn’t much of one, sometimes it is so wet that the river floods the surrounding countryside meters deep, both equal disasters).

    You might take a gander at things like this:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/nature/humanplanetexplorer/seasons/dry_season#p009bb3d

    instead of visualizing a nice, damp countryside with deepwater channels all the way up to New Delhi and beyond open all year round. I’ve seen the Jumna river so dry you could nearly step across it. The Ganges proper does not usually completely dry, but most of the smaller tributaries can be shrunk to a trickle by the hordes of people who live along their banks, all thirsty for water where there is no water, none at all having fallen from the sky for six months straight and with temperatures soaring up to 40 C/104 F.

    Finally, I have to say you have some sort of a bug associated with birth control and/or abortion. Are you a Catholic, by any chance? Is there some good reason to have ten children or abstain from sex entirely? Is there some particular reason to want the population of India to grow even faster than it currently is, having basically tripled in population since the 60s when I lived there? I’ll say it bluntly. India has 2 to 3 times more people living in than it “should”, if those people want to live a comfortable middle class life in balance with their water supply and reasonably spread out across its landscape. With sufficient wealth, perhaps they could engineer vast lakes in the middle of the continent, fill them during the monsoon, and hope that they would eventually moderate the climate of the entire subcontinent, perhaps they could desalinate the oceans and make the rivers flow backwards, but at the moment, those things do not exist and if you keep adding more people you are asking for disasters akin to the famous famines and droughts of the past — a stretch of 2 to 5 years where the monsoon fails is already going to be a death sentence to millions unless a miracle happens. And such stretches happen — with or without climate change, the monsoon is an uncertain thing and there is plenty of evidence of its past failures (often accompanied by enormous human misery).

    And don’t you dare accuse me of racism. India is my second country and I love it. Its people are intelligent and capable, although that is true of all the people in the world or none of them as there aren’t really huge racial or national differences in the distribution of things like intelligence. But solving its population problem isn’t going to be simple, and it definitely isn’t going to be simplistic or just a matter of waving a magic wand and settling all the people on the streets of Kalicut or Mumbai out in the countryside someplace where nobody is already farming — because one can’t farm there, there simply is no water to farm with, too many months of the year. Wherever people can make a living in India, they already do, often at population densities too high for anybody to be making a comfortable or secure living.

    Things are improving. Wealth, energy, technology, manufacturing, global services are all creating an upwardly mobile, mostly urban middle class. But this middle class is miniscule compared to the population, and little of this reaches out into the villages and rural areas, many of which are indistinguishable now from what they might have been in the seventeenth or eighteenth centuries.

    rgb

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