Lewandowsky paper flushed, then floated again

lewpaperToday has been entertaining to say the least. On Twitter, Ben Pile of Climate Resistance has been telling us all about how he learned that the Lewandowsky-Cook Paper#2 – titled ‘Recursive Fury’, which detailed all manners of conspiratorial ideation theory, was retracted, or was retracted and put back up, or is about to be, or something. Nobody seems quite sure of the behind the scenes machinations going on at “Skeptical Science” and Lew-world.

Pile pointed out that Cook’s buddy and SkS Tank Commander Dana Nuccitelli (context here) authored a post at Skeptical Science announcing the paper’s retracton/demise/flushing, but then, that post was inexplicably removed from SkS. But, it is still on Google cache here. I’ve saved a PDF of the page here.

The puffed up embargo notice for the SkS blog post is a hilarious touch, as it is now March 21st in Australia.

Some excerpts of that “disappeared” SkS post:

EMBARGOED UNTIL 20 March 2014

Contrarians bully journal into retracting a climate psychology paper

Posted on 20 March 2014 by dana1981

Given that fewer than 3 percent of peer-reviewed climate science papers conclude that the human influence on global warming is minimal, climate contrarians have obviously been unable to make a convincing scientific case.  Thus in order to advance their agenda of delaying climate solutions and maintaining the status quo in the face of a 97 percent expert consensus suggesting that this is a high-risk path, contrarians have engaged in a variety of unconventional tactics.

That final tactic has evolved, from merely sending the journal a petition signed by a bunch of contrarians, to sending journals letters threatening libel lawsuits.  Unfortunately, this strategy has now succeeded.

NASA Faked the Moon Landing

The story begins with the publication of a paper titled NASA Faked the Moon Landing—Therefore, (Climate) Science Is a Hoax: An Anatomy of the Motivated Rejection of Science.  The paper was authored by Lewandosky, Oberauer, and Gignac, and published in the journal Psychological Science in 2012.  Using survey data from visitors to climate blogs, the paper found that conspiracy theorists are more likely to be skeptical of scientists’ conclusions about vaccinations, genetically modified foods, and climate change.

conspiracies7

Frontiers Bails Out

However, nobody likes being called a conspiracy theorist, and thus climate contrarians really didn’t appreciate Recursive Fury.  Very soon after its publication, the journal Frontiers was receiving letters from contrarians threatening libel lawsuits.  In late March 2013, the journal decided to “provisionally remove the link to the article while these issues are investigated.”  The paper was in limbo for nearly a full year until Frontiers finally caved to these threats.

In its investigation, the journal found no academic or ethical problems with Recursive Fury.  However, the fear of being sued by contrarians for libel remained.  The University of Western Australia (UWA: Lewandowsky’s university when Recursive Fury was published – he later moved to the University of Bristol) also investigated the matter and found no academic, ethical, or legal problems with the paper.  In fact, UWA is so confident in the validity of the paper that they’re hosting it on their own servers.

After nearly a year of discussions between the journal, the paper authors, and lawyers on both sides, Frontiers made it clear that they were unwilling to take the risk of publishing the paper and being open to potential frivolous lawsuits.  Both sides have finally agreed to retract Recursive Fury.

It’s unfortunate that the Frontiers editors were unwilling to stand behind a study that they admitted was sound from an academic and ethical standpoint, especially since UWA concluded the paper would withstand a legal assault.  Nobody wants to get caught up in a lawsuit, but by caving in here, Frontiers has undoubtedly emboldened climate contrarians to use this tactic again in the future to suppress inconvenient research.  Academics also can’t be confident that the Frontiers staff will stand behind them if they publish research in the journal and are subjected to similar frivolous attacks.  Frontiers may very well be worse off having lost the confidence of the academic community than if they had called the bluffs of the contrarians threatening frivolous lawsuits.

Hopefully editors of other climate-related journals will learn from this debacle and refuse to let climate contrarians bully them into suppressing valid but inconvenient research.

We are all scratching our heads at the “threat of libel” narrative. As far as I know,  nobody in the climate skeptic community has instigated a libel lawsuit or even gotten a lawyer involved over the Lew paper. Mostly we just laugh about it. But I do know that some letters were sent to the journal about the procedures involved in the paper, where people that you are studying for psychological evaluations/studies must be notified and/or give consent, something that apparently wasn’t done.

There’s another oddity; Ben Pile gives details about a notice at the top of the online version of the paper at UWA which floated up today (last edited March 18th according to the PDF properties) which explains that Courts in the USA have ruled that foreign libel rulings are unenforceable in the USA:

lewpaper2_legal

And to top it off, the original paper can still be seen at the journal, Frontiers in Psychology.

Seems like some serious randomness is going on. Given the unreliability we have witnessed from SkS in the past, maybe they are simply mixing things up in this pea-and-thimble game to keep us guessing. If so, have at it SkS kidz, we’ll watch with amusement.

Or, maybe they are just incompetent. Who knows?

As Johnny Carson used to say “That is some weird, wild stuff“.

UPDATE: Steve McIntyre leaves this note in comments

Anthony,  you say “But I do know that some letters were sent to the journal about the procedures involved in the paper, where people that you are studying for psychological evaluations/studies must be notified and/or give consent, something that apparently wasn’t done.” This gives an incomplete picture,

The Lewandowsky article made a variety of defamatory and untrue allegations against me with malice. I accordingly sent a strongly worded and detailed letter to the journal formally requesting that they withdraw the allegations and retract the article. I didn’t “instigate a libel lawsuit” or get “a lawyer involved”  but the letter was a formal one.  It was my hope that the journal would recognize the many defects of the Lewandowsky article and behave responsibly, as they eventually did.

UPDATE2: 3/20/14 10:00PM PDT. Now the paper at UWA that was available earlier at http://websites.psychology.uwa.edu.au/labs/cogscience/Publications/LskyetalRecursiveFury4UWA.pdf  has been removed from the server. Quite amusing that these guys can’t seem to find a permanent place to house their paper, which seems to be toxic now.

UPDATE3: 3/21/14 7:45AM PDT The paper at UWA that was available earlier at http://websites.psychology.uwa.edu.au/labs/cogscience/Publications/LskyetalRecursiveFury4UWA.pdf seems to have been put back on the server. No explanation given.

UPDATE4: 3/21/14 10:20AM PDT Retraction Watch says:

Controversial paper linking conspiracy ideation to climate change skepticism formally retracted

A year after being clumsily removed from the web following complaints, a controversial paper about “the possible role of conspiracist ideation in the rejection of science” is being retracted.

The release of the news about the retraction has been a messy affair, with a Google cache version of an “embargoed” post about the situation circulating on the web yesterday, and then the story apparently breaking on climate skeptic blog Watts Up With That.

More here: http://retractionwatch.com/2014/03/21/controversial-paper-linking-conspiracy-ideation-to-climate-change-skepticism-formally-retracted/

Note: WUWT didn’t break the story, that honor goes to reader Barry Woods, who advised Ben Pile, and Andrew Montford at Bishop Hill had it before WUWT did.

UPDATE5: 3/21/14 10:35AMPDT  The formal retraction is up on the Frontiers of Psychology Website. http://journal.frontiersin.org/Journal/10.3389/fpsyg.2014.00293/full

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123 thoughts on “Lewandowsky paper flushed, then floated again

  1. Ironically Dana goes full conspiracy theorist to defend a paper which tried to depict climate skeptics as conspiracy theorists.

    This is the same guy seeing denial machinations whilst being paid by a company who’s business he never once managed to criticize, not even incidentally.

    Shamelessness is easier for the idiots.

  2. Ah, good Dana Nuccitelli. In an effort to show how skeptics view global warming he (probably) tried to find a graph clearly misrepresenting data. He did not find one, so he made it: the famous “escalator” graph.

  3. But, if you got immunized then you would be okay for the GMO foods, right? And if you ate the GMO foods then you would be able to take the increased heat from AGW, right? And if your body heat increased so much that you became delusional and thought you saw men walking on the Moon, then you should pay more taxes, right?

    At least that is how it is supposed to work. (The book “Brave New World” had it all wrong.)

  4. I cannot believe that Logic and Critical Thinking are not REQUIRED courses for every student in college, but ESPECIALLY for those who gain degrees in SCIENCE. Dana wouldn’t see the irony in anything he says if it was tattooed on his eyeballs. I’ve long given up trying to understand him, now he’s just free entertainment.

  5. Curious George says:

    …Dana Nuccitelli… tried to find a graph clearly misrepresenting data. He did not find one, so he made it: the famous “escalator” graph.

    The funny thing about that graph is that a graph showing the exact opposite can be constructed, depending on the time frame.

    Just as ‘figures don’t lie, but liars figure’, bogus charts like that can be contructed. What is amazing is the number of credulous, unthinking people that bogus chart has fooled.

  6. “Brave climate heroes foiled by Big-Oil funded denialist machine.”

    Film at eleven.

  7. And to top it off, the original paper can still be seen at the journal, Frontiers in Psychology.

    No, just the abstract, prefaced by this:
    “This article, first published by Frontiers on 18 March 2013, has been the subject of complaints. Given the nature of some of these complaints, Frontiers has provisionally removed the link to the article while these issues are investigated, which is being done as swiftly as possible and which Frontiers management considers the most responsible course of action. The article has not been retracted or withdrawn. Further information will be provided as soon as possible. Thank you for your patience.”

  8. April 2014 issue of Discover Magazine page 74 (print edition);
    20 Things You didn’t Know About… Hoaxes.
    Item # 10; “You can predict whether people think climate science is a hoax based on whether they believe in conspiracy theories, according to a 2012 University of Western Australia study. Conspiracy theorist dismiss many scientific findings, such as the connection between HIV and AIDS”
    Item # 9; “Some 37 percent if American voters believe global warming is a hoax.”
    If you don’t understand how Discover is playing this….. hint they are as politically correct as anyone can be.

  9. Senate elections are due this July and Western Australia is key to the outcome. We expect, as has happened in all other state and territory elections, that the Labor and Green parties will be swept into political oblivion, certainly true for Tasmania, we’re still waiting on the outcome for South Australia. Abbott will then be able to repeal all the crazy “carbon” policies put in place by the Rudd-Gillard-Rudd pantomime of the previous 7 years. The Greens, in the Senate, have recently rejected Abbott’s attempt to repeal the “proice ohn cahbon” that Gillard said she would not introduce. The Greens, in typical anti-human style, are ignoring the mandate the Australian people gave Abbott. I wonder if Australia will get a rebate from the UN?

  10. “he ( Lewandowsky’) later moved to the University of Bristol.”

    hey ! we dont want him ….you can have him back !!

  11. @ John

    No thanks!

    Bristol University is a good university (i.e. World Top 100), so I have hopes they might be able to straighten him out.

  12. Curious George says:
    March 20, 2014 at 5:31 pm

    Ah, good Dana Nuccitelli. In an effort to show how skeptics view global warming he (probably) tried to find a graph clearly misrepresenting data. He did not find one, so he made it: the famous “escalator” graph.
    =============================
    And enhanced at Bishop Hill. :)

  13. I do think that using information for research without informing the subjects is questionable. Call it a poll or something else, but what’s to keep people from being non-serious with their answers when the intentions of the question have to be obvious? Also, how can you tell that your subjects are randomly chosen and representative when you use blogs as your population? Really to represent that type of material as Academic research is kind of laughable. I’m not sure that a high school class couldn’t improve on that scheme.

  14. Anthony, you say “But I do know that some letters were sent to the journal about the procedures involved in the paper, where people that you are studying for psychological evaluations/studies must be notified and/or give consent, something that apparently wasn’t done.” This gives an incomplete picture,

    The Lewandowsky article made a variety of defamatory and untrue allegations against me with malice. I accordingly sent a strongly worded and detailed letter to the journal formally requesting that they withdraw the allegations and retract the article. I didn’t “instigate a libel lawsuit” or get “a lawyer involved” but the letter was a formal one. It was my hope that the journal would recognize the many defects of the Lewandowsky article and behave responsibly, as they eventually did.

  15. “Accusing “contrarians” of abusing libel laws to suppress criticism is comical given the antics of Michael Mann.”
    QFT

  16. It looks to me as though this libel-threat is a cover story to enable a face-saving distancing from the poo-paper.

  17. SkS quote: “Given that fewer than 3 percent of peer-reviewed climate science papers conclude that the human influence on global warming is minimal, climate contrarians have obviously been unable to make a convincing scientific case.”

    With 97% of the “science” behind the “scientists”, one wonders why they need to produce this ill conceived, poorly executed and badly reasoned pice of research to back up their cause!

    The sooner this Lew paper is flushed into the annals of history (so to speak), the sooner the “science” will be better off.

  18. And thus continues the old idea if you repeat something enough times people will believe you. That is why the AGW crowd keeps repeating all of their lies in many different flavors.

  19. Since when are climate pscientists qualified to conduct psychology research? Are psychologists equally qualified to conduct climate research? Is psychology required course work for climate pscientists????

    It may be more appropriate and enlightening for theologists to conduct research on the climate pscientists and their true believers, m’thinks…

  20. Ben Pile has been writing for some years on the political and philosophical aspects of the Green Movement. Much of whAt he has written will be valid after hell freezes over.

  21. Please, guys, enlighten me…

    Has this “scientist” just shown that there is no correlation between being a Conspiracy Theorist and being a “Climate Denier” (whatever this may be)? The very opposite of what he claims?

    In my day, a correlation of less than 0.14 was considered practically nil. Have statistics changed since then?

  22. Steve McIntyre says:
    March 20, 2014 at 6:47 pm

    Good on you, sir, & good on them, even if it took them too long & their retraction, if that’s the right word, may have been motivated by fear of potential legal action rather a genuine desire to do the right thing.

  23. PS: God bless the Canadians, like Bell, Steyn, Laframboise & McIntyre, & Australians, like Nova & (I hope) Abbot, in the forefront of combating CACA craziness.

    Maybe after the elections this year, some Americans can join the honor roll, besides the much maligned by his opponents, esteemed owner of this blog.

  24. a couple for lew, dana et al:

    20 March: Forbes: Chris Prandoni: Environmental ‘Magna Carta’ is Increasing Carbon Emissions and Burning Money
    One of anti-development environmentalists’ favorite weapons, the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), may actually be exacerbating this interest group’s greatest concern and increasing carbon emissions. This unintended consequence is the result of bureaucratic delay that forces oil producers to burn off, or flare, much of the natural gas contained within oil wells…
    Most oil producers do not want to flare natural gas, it is quite literally burning money, but have no choice when met with NEPA-induced bureaucratic delays.
    Looking to remedy this problem, Senators Barrasso (R-Wy), Hoeven (R-ND) and Enzi (R-WY) have introduced the Natural Gas Gathering Enhancement Act which will expedite permits for natural gas gathering lines on federal and Indian land. These three Senators hail from two of the states that undertake the largest amount of flaring – North Dakota and Wyoming. The North Dakota Petroleum Council estimates that 40 percent of natural gas production is flared at oil wells on the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation, a percentage that is substantially higher than the amount flared on state and private lands within the state…
    One large independent producer has said that it waited 2.5 years for the BLM to approve its gas gathering pipeline. More broadly, it takes an average of seven years to receive a NEPA-required Environmental Impact Statement in Wyoming. In Wyoming alone, SWCA Environmental Consultants estimate that the lost opportunity cost associated with the delay of oil and natural gas development is $22 billion in labor income and $90 billion in economic output over a ten-year period…
    Back to the issue of flaring, a reasonable estimate is that about $1 million dollars of natural gas is being burned or vented in North Dakota every day. Using another metric, gas flares in North Dakota release about six million tons carbon dioxide into the atmosphere every year….

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/chrisprandoni/2014/03/20/environmental-magna-carta-is-increasing-carbon-emissions-and-burning-money/

    20 March: The Ecologist: Oliver Tickell: Forest Peoples at risk from ‘carbon grab’
    A new ‘carbon grab’ is under way as governments and corporations seize valuable rights to the carbon stored in standing forests, with UN and World Bank support. But there’s no benefit for forest communities – who even risk expulsion to make way for ‘carbon plantations’…
    As the United Nations and the World Bank prepare to develop world carbon markets as a tool to halt deforestation under so-called REDD+, new research warns of a new ‘carbon grab’ in the making…
    Indeed this is already happening in Kenya, where the government is evicting Sengwer indigenous people from their ancestral forest lands and burning their homes, food stores and belongings to the ground – all to make way for a ‘Natural Resource Management Project’ run by the Kenya Forest Service and financed by the World Bank.
    The problem is that neither the REDD+ regulations, nor national laws in forested countries, nor the World Bank’s Framework Guidelines, offer adequate legal protections and safeguards for Indigenous Peoples and local communities…
    A survey of 23 low and middle income countries in Latin America, Asia, and Africa, covering 66% of the developing world’s forests, found no laws governing how Indigenous Peoples and local communities could profit from the carbon in the forests in which they live and depend on for their livelihoods…
    World Bank – no guidelines on who owns forest carbon
    At present, the process defining carbon rights is being driven by the finalization of a carbon purchasing policy by the World Bank’s Carbon Fund.
    These emissions reductions credits represent a new class of assets, inextricably linked to and yet established separately from property rights to forests.
    Yet the Carbon Fund’s Methodological Framework says nothing about the need to respect or enforce the rights to carbon – and provides only an feeble, ambiguous guideline for an examination of rights:
    “The status of rights to carbon and relevant lands should be assessed to establish a basis for successful implementation of the emissions reduction program.”…
    LINK: The report: Status of Forest Carbon – Rights and Implications for Communities, the Carbon Trade, and REDD+ Investments.

    http://www.theecologist.org/News/news_analysis/2325253/forest_peoples_at_risk_from_carbon_grab.html

  25. Gosh if that is all they have these days then they are finished because they are not even discussing any science at all,but attack people for the purpose of trying to deflect from the important climate and weather issues at hand.They are attacking the Koch brothers too as they go deeper into denial of what is really going on in the natural world.

  26. agood ol’ Brookings says Latin America must not develop – not hand-in-hand with China anyway – and China must do “stuff on climate change”. China no doubt says “get stuffed”.

    20 March: Environment & Energy News: Lisa Friedman: China’s quest for resources may undermine low-carbon policies in South America — study
    Correction appended.
    China’s soaring demand for Latin America’s copper, soybeans, petroleum and other natural resources has sparked concerns among climate change experts that the high-carbon relationship could sour global warming negotiations.
    In a Brookings Institution report released yesterday, researchers argued that Chinese energy investments in places like Brazil, Venezuela and Costa Rica threaten to hike Latin America’s carbon footprint. That, in turn, could influence progressive countries’ negotiating positions in the U.N. climate talks — if not overtly, then by bolstering what the authors referred to as “dirty” ministries.
    “Maintaining or moving to low-carbon pathways is critical for those Latin American countries which are seen as progressive voices at the U.N. climate negotiations,” Brown University co-authors Guy Edwards and Timmons Roberts wrote. While trade with China may be key to boosting economic growth in the region, they warned, “building a high-carbon partnership could be disastrous for Latin America and the world in the long-term.”…
    According to the report, “It is unclear how actively Brazil and China are coordinating their climate positions,” since only lower-level diplomats attend meetings of the negotiating bloc to which they belong. “Trade and commercial issues may simply trump the climate change issue in driving the nation’s position, and trade with China represents a major and fast-growing sector.” And across all its Latin American trade partners, the report notes, there are few bilateral efforts with China on climate change, an absence Edwards said is worrisome.

    ***”China is so focused on its own domestic growth that climate change considerations haven’t really been factored into its relationships with Latin American countries,” he (Guy Edwards) said. But, he added, “If China’s presence is going to keep surging ahead and keep knocking the U.S. and the E.U. off the top places for trade, it’s going to have to be doing stuff on climate change.”…

    http://www.eenews.net/stories/1059996427

  27. Something I noticed above and it relates to the much-abused 97% figure. As referenced (correctly), it claims that 97% of climate ‘papers’… How ‘papers’ got translated to ‘scientists’ is beyond me. Not that I ever liked the 97% figure to begin with, but it should also be argued that it is research paper abstracts, and certainly not scientists.

  28. Hilarious – SkS have invented a conspiracy theory to explain the flushing of a IMO shoddy paper which claims opponents are victims of conspiracy theories.

  29. Hilarious – SkS create a conspiracy theory to explain the flushing of a IMO shoddy paper which promotes the idea that opponents of climate alarmism are victims of a conspiracy theory.

  30. MSM is all over this, of course:

    20 March: Equation Blog, Union of Concerned Scientists: The New 400ppm World: CO2 Measurements at Mauna Loa Continue to Climb
    by Melanie Fitzpatrick, climate scientist
    That same level has been reached again in the last few days. This year we’ve hit the target in March, two months earlier, and it will stay above 400ppm for longer. At that rate, it will only be a handful of years until we are living in an atmosphere permanently above 400 ppm. While 400 ppm is a somewhat arbitrary marker, humans did not exist the last time atmospheric CO2 was at that level…

    http://blog.ucsusa.org/400ppm-co2-mauna-loa-455

  31. 20 March: NYT: Diane Cardwell: In a Shift, Exxon Mobil Agrees to Report on Risks to Its Fossil Fuel Assets
    Energy companies have been under increasing pressure from shareholder activists in recent years to warn investors of the risks that stricter limits on carbon emissions would place on their business.
    On Thursday, a shareholder group said that it had won its biggest prize yet, when Exxon Mobil became the first oil and gas producer to agree to publish that information by the end of the month.
    In return, the shareholders, led by the wealth management firm Arjuna Capital, which focuses on sustainability, and the advocacy group As You Sow, said they had agreed to withdraw a resolution on the issue at Exxon Mobil’s annual meeting…
    The shift is a sign of a growing acceptance among investors and companies that the value of fossil fuel assets may be out of line with evolving policies on global warming.
    For example, oil reserves deep in the Gulf of Mexico are much more expensive to extract, and would become uneconomical if carbon emissions are reduced by as much as 80 percent, a goal articulated by President Obama…
    The agreement comes after one in January by the large electric company FirstEnergy and is part of an effort by Ceres, a coalition of environmentalists and investors, to make companies more environmentally responsive.
    Also on Thursday, Denise L. Nappier, the Connecticut state treasurer, said that Peabody Energy, a Missouri-based coal company, had agreed to produce a similar report in exchange for withdrawing a shareholder resolution filed by the Connecticut Retirement Plans and Trust Funds.
    The Ceres campaign began last fall with a letter from shareholders representing $3 trillion in assets to 45 of the largest fossil fuel companies asking for more information about whether and how they were addressing the risks posed to their assets by changing climate policy…
    Two billionaires — Michael R. Bloomberg and Tom Steyer — have started an effort called Risky Business, which includes three former Treasury secretaries, Henry M. Paulson Jr., Robert E. Rubin and George P. Shultz, to assess the economic risks posed if climate change is left unaddressed…

    http://www.nytimes.com/2014/03/21/business/in-a-shift-exxon-agrees-to-report-on-carbon-asset-risk.html?_r=0

    give thanx for messrs bloomberg/steyer/paulson/rubin/schultz for being so concerned for the planet. dream team.

  32. Ah, Lewandowsky, the scientific malpractice that keeps on giving. When are the SkS kids going to learn NOT to drag out the rotting heap of Lew when they’re trying to make a point? Never, I hope.

  33. “john says: March 20, 2014 at 6:14 pm

    “he ( Lewandowsky’) later moved to the University of Bristol.”

    hey ! we dont want him ….you can have him back !!”

    How about split the difference? Like, halfway twixt the two places in a direct line?

    After all, Lewpy certainly can’t be going to heaven given his complete disregard for others; so it’s only a matter of time before Mephistopheles brings him home. There he can play with his favorite skszy kids forever.

  34. I think the Lewny Toons papers should be published by anyone dumb enough to do so in order that they remain in the public domain as benchmarks of imbecility. In time they may well become points of colloqial reference for moronic, simplistic, eco creationist junk “science” that will be like a monstrous dog turd on the professional cursus honorum for future generations of scientists, i.e. to be avoided at all costs, that “one little mistake” that will peg one for life as a scientific equivalent of a “goat botherer”.

  35. Ursus Augustus says:
    March 20, 2014 at 10:11 pm

    You have now outdone yourself. Not that Mann et al aren’t fully worthy of goat CACA botherer status, which goes double for the ruminant pellet poop chute packer lot of them.

  36. Since he can’t find anything else to do with it maybe he’ll plant it on someone’s server as user FOIA.

  37. Here’s an interesting thing. Lew writes:

    “If it is not bronzed Aussie swimmers, it’s the picture of a U.S. submarine surfacing at the North Pole in 1959 that has been circulating the nether regions of the internet to disprove global warming. The photo of a sleek submarine is unlikely to overturn established science, but it can at least claim some involuntary humorous credit: The U.S.S. Skate surfaced on 17 March, which is before sunrise at the North Pole, and so whatever photos are circulating on the internet are doubly wrong: Not only are they meaningless as evidence, but they didn’t even capture an event that actually occurred in darkness.”

    http://www.theguardian.com/science/head-quarters/2014/mar/01/antarctic-expedition-climate-change-pictures-graph

    So, the man who thinks that i) deniers think that the moon landing was faked, also thinks that ii) deniers faked a picture of the USS Skate at the North Pole!

    Petard. Hoisted.

  38. Unlike W.A. which is ‘scorchio’ most of the time, the climate of Bristol (and SW England in general) is incessantly gloomy and mild. I think Lew will have will have a very tough time there trying to persuade the population that a couple or three degrees of Warming would be a bad thing.

  39. so getting back to these predictions from unvalidated models that cannot recreate past know climate and the claim co2 is the main driver of temps…….

    Decontextualising ice age cycles by taking a ‘snapshot’ of 30years of data then extending 100year prediction lines is not proof.

  40. I may just have a very small sample here, but of my circle of acquaintances it is only the warmists who want to ban GM (even Golden Rice,for crying out loud); they are anti-vaccination, want a moratorium on space research and exploration, don’t want any new houses or power plants of any non windmill or solar panel kind built (thorium salt bed reactors, either never heard of them or standard enviro nuclear = I don’t understand it = scary = ban it). They see conspiracies everywhere, value all other life on the planet more than their own species, I am clearly quite mad, as Rousseau attested “To be sane in a world of madman is in itself madness”. That’s me and the small number of rational friends I have. As an aside, Most of the latter group are graduates, most of the former not.

  41. Anthony,

    “Quite amusing that these guys can’t seem to find a permanent place to house their paper, which seems to be toxic now.”

    I suggest it should be placed between the tightly clenched cheeks of their buttocks to stem the dire rear that flows there from. That’s a corker!

    Perry

  42. Bertram Felden “That’s me and the small number of rational friends I have.” You probably have more friends than you realize. As Phil Jones lamented in my favorite climategate email (#2621): “The internet has allowed all these people to find one another unfortunately.”
    :)

  43. Michael Hart – thanks. I forgot to mention homeopathy. The warmists love that. Right up their street.

  44. for some reason the mechanisms of energy transference [short term weather/ long term climate] are made out to be some rare sport that only gm modified geniuses can comprehend with £30m supercomputers, satellites and billions in grant money

  45. Ben was tipped off about that Skeptical Science web page, being in the google cache..

    Was it a Skeptical Science insider, was it their hacker, or was there a more simple explanation to who tipped Ben Off about it…….

    I wonder why SkS withdrew it, the page said embargoed to the 20th March, I wonder what happened (now the 21st)

  46. I complained to Frontiers about the ethical conducts and conflicts of interest and vested interest of the authors. I requested my name to be removed from the paper. Because one of the authors Marriott, (Watching the Deniers blog) had been writing over a dozen articles attacking the critics of LOG12 during the research period (ie not neutral as claimed) and more particularly, had personally attacked me, naming me (and others) on his blog Watching the Deniers.. and as such I said this compromised the paper.

    I also said because of this it was also in Frontiers best interests to remove this paper for consideration, in light of these issues

    I emailed Frontiers, links to Marriotts personal attacks about myself and Anthony Watts, labelling us deniers, disinformation, denial Industry, writing ‘Verified Bullshit’ and worst labelling us with a psychological defect Dunning-Kruger, and he had adulterated an WUWT graphic (my article) with a red rubber stamped ‘Verified Bullshit’

    https://watchingthedeniers.wordpress.com/?s=woods

    This article I found was was endorsed by Skeptical Science, and it transpires that Mariott was also a Skeptical Science insider (writing rebutalls)

    and most importantly (I think) after I actually spoke to somebody at Zurich, the paper was taken down 30 minutes later, to be investigated I assume, when I raised my concerns about personal public attacks on me, Anthony and others, by a ‘researcher on this paper. I do think speaking to people is much better than email, LOTS of people HAD already complained, so that phone call was perhaps just the final straw for a tipping point, to allow Frontiers to make the correct decision to investigate the ethical conduct for themselves, in it’s (Frontiers) and the field of psychologies own interests.

    I did complain to UWA ethics department, asking for my name to be removed form th epaper, in light of Marriot’s conduct, (I also said it had no impact on the paper, and this should be a simple request for UWA/ and the lead author to fulfill, given the circumstances) but UWA found no problems with Marriott’s conduct, or the other issues I raised about the paper. which says a lot about UWA, I think

    Has anybody told Richard Prof Betts yet (he was also named in the data, as was Prof Judith Curry))

  47. i don’t see people inventing conspiracy or in a fury. I just see people waiting for proof to claims co2 is the main driver of temps and will result in catastrophic change.

    if people want to talk psychology then the word cult comes to mind? Patrick Moore uses the term cult.

    Definition of a cult

    “A misplaced or excessive admiration for a particular thing:”

    “A person or thing that is popular or fashionable among a particular group or section of society:”

    http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/english/cult

  48. An amusing coincidence : at football (soccer) side Borussia Dortmund, and in the Polish national squad, Lewandowski is the top goal scorer. In the warm monger team, Lewandowsky is the main own-goal scorer.

  49. …nobody likes being called a conspiracy theorist, and thus climate contrarians really didn’t appreciate Recursive Fury. Very soon after its publication, the journal Frontiers was receiving letters from contrarians threatening libel lawsuits.

    Yep. I felt personally libeled because that paper was directed at me and others like me. LOL!

    Unbelievable the garbage these guys emit in the global information commons…

  50. Stop laughing as this is not funny. Every week these clowns collect a paycheck, many of them paid by we taxpayers.

    Still think it is just harmful fun?

  51. dbstealey said (March 20, 2014 at 5:46 pm)

    “…The funny thing about that graph is that a graph showing the exact opposite can be constructed, depending on the time frame…”

    What’s even funnier is that their attempt to take a swipe at “deniers” actually proves a point – that the “pause” exists, as evidenced by the top “step” of the escalator.

    Someone needs to ask Dana Nuccitelli how much longer that top step will get, and when will the next “step” get installed. Seems that the escalator has merged with a moving sidewalk.

  52. @David Blake

    Quoting The Lew (lots of puns today)

    “The U.S.S. Skate surfaced on 17 March, which is before sunrise at the North Pole…”

    I take this statement as proof that The Lew has never visited the high Arctic and seen how ‘dark’ it is shortly before sunrise in a place surrounded by reflective surfaces. This is yet another example of just how ‘knowledgeable’ The Lew is with his ‘cleverly’ picked ‘facts’ and ignorance of the real world.

  53. @David Blake

    Thanks for the quote:

    The U.S.S. Skate surfaced on 17 March, which is before sunrise at the North Pole, and so whatever photos are circulating on the internet are doubly wrong: Not only are they meaningless as evidence, but they didn’t even capture an event that actually occurred in darkness.

    Lewandowsky doesn’t know the difference between solstice and equinox (March 21st and Sept 21st when there is equal sun/dark). In any other branch of knowledge, this would be crass ignorance. For Lew it’s a condition of entry.

  54. In social science today, a correlation of 0.1 is thought to be pretty good considering all the confounding factors at work. Don’t forget, second-hand smoke was proven to be a health risk with a correlation of 0.04.

    Gone are the days when a RR of 200%+ was necessary to publish. Ever wonder why most experimental results can’t be replicated?

  55. @Seth Roentgen

    Well, you are sort correct but at the pole the sun goes round and round, rising higher, not going up and down. On the 17th of March the sun would indeed have been below the horizon but it would have been as bright as any other place on earth a few minutes before sunrise. Consider a deep winter’s day with snow all around and the sun just about to rise over the horizon on a clear day. It would very bright even though the sun is below the horizon.

    That smoke you see is the stupid burning in Australia.

  56. Bertram Felden says:
    March 21, 2014 at 1:13 am

    That’s me and the small number of rational friends I have. As an aside, Most of the latter group are graduates, most of the former not.

    I’ve made similar observations about the distribution of opinion among my friends and acquaintances but I cannot confirm a correlation to graduation rates you mention above. I’m not sure if it’s a testament about the current state of higher education or simply the nature of man, but I lean towards the latter. Comparable idiocies were popular through the history of our civilization.

  57. Correct, Crispin, agreed.

    but they didn’t even capture an event that actually occurred in darkness.

    But then:

    It would very bright even though the sun is below the horizon.

    Brightness isn’t darkness (unless you’re a psientist).

  58. The only conspiracy is the one Lewandowsky & Cook are involved in. Projection is their main weapon, and like Medusa need a mirror. Floaters often need sequential flushing.

  59. I simply cannot believe that 1) Lewandowsky himself doesn’t want this paper stricken from the record. His career may well depend on this not being commonly available. And 2) That any journal would publish this in the first place. A voluntary internet survey as a data source?

    Would any sociology undergrad get away with that?

    I think not.

  60. Allow me to paraphrase Frontiers: “The paper is ideologically-infested, defamatory trash.”

  61. Barry Woods: I just read Lew’s post – and the responses you got from ‘Nathan’ – who does seem to like to put lots of ‘sic’ (sic) in his comments. I have to say, I think I need a damn good shower now to get clean. Yeuch!

  62. I don’t get the point of these Lewandowsky studies, even if they had been conducted correctly. The conclusion: some people who reject the theory of global warming also believe in improbable conspiracies. If that’s true, what do you have? Raw material for an ad hominem argument, an obvious fallacy. But it’s even worse. Let’s say there are two individuals, A and B. The study confirms that A doubts global warming and believes in improbable conspiracies. From this are we to infer that B, who doubts global warming, also believes in conspiracy theories? Let’s say that A is an anonymous reader of climate blogs and B is Steve McIntyre. Such an inference would be a second fallacy.

    Well, suppose that these fallacious uses of Lewandowsky’s materials are avoided. Then what do you have? A study that shows that some people from a not very well-constructed sample believe improbable things. This is hardly Nobel Prize winning work.

  63. It seems a large number of CAGW proponents believe in a huge conspiracy to keep the public informed about contrarian evidence showing the AG extremists are making stuff up. Who’s the conspiracist then?

    If the survey were to show anything real, it would be that CAGW believers also believe, in huge numbers, that there is a huge conspiracy by ‘large corporations’ to debunk their pronouncements. As is amply proven by the preponderance of evidence, it does not take a ‘large corporation’ to debunk the alarmist narrative. Any competent Gr 10 student could do so. It is interesting how projection takes over a world view of an alarmist.

    (Conflict of interest declaration: I do not now and have never been employed by any ‘large corporations’ and I am not involved in any conspiracies to prevent people learning the truth about the influence, if any, of CO2 on the climate.)

    PS Love the word ‘psientist’!

  64. Sanity prevails.

    Of course, the three “97%” papers are also either provably wrong or don’t say what 99% of the people citing them claim they say, but at least we can have a good laugh at this one.

  65. Crispin in Waterloo: Just ask any alarmist about the billions we skeptics get from fossil fuel companies. We’re all rolling around in gold bars, you know.

  66. Is this a conspiracy theory?

    97% of those who believe in CAGW, also believe fracking is evil/bad?

    Put another way, those who want to destroy economies to solve a non-existent problem also want to make matters worse by stopping the flow and discovery of low cost, reliable, energy.

    Presumably, Lew would put an interesting, albeit absurd spin on this.

  67. In the graphic and link (from Watching the Deniers blog – Marriott – co-author) shown in my first comment, were a few weeks before the ‘research’ period of the Recursive Fury paper..

    http://www.shapingtomorrowsworld.org/rf1.html#3166

    Here is another graphic, in the middle of the ‘research’ period by Fury, co-author Marriott. Where Marriott is attacking Anthony Watts, who was later named as a ‘source of conspiracy ideation in the paper and the WUWT graphic shown, is adulterated by Marriott to say “Verified Bullshit” (the article in question is my authorship)

    https://watchingthedeniers.wordpress.com/2012/09/13/watts-explains-why-lewandowsky-paper-on-conspiracy-theories-is-wrong-its-a-conspiracy-between-john-cook-and-the-prof/

    Marriot and Cook were brought in because they were supposedly independent of LOG12, yet Mariott was cheerleading Lewandowsky, and attacking LOG12 critics.

    I don’t care what was said by Marriott on his blog, the issue is that ethically, how can a researcher be seen to be publically attacking his research subjects, before after, or especially during the research period of the paper. (I am even interacting with him in the comments!)

  68. Crispin in Waterloo says:
    March 21, 2014 at 7:31 am
    On the 17th of March the sun would indeed have been below the horizon but it would have been as bright as any other place on earth a few minutes before sunrise.

    Technically you are correct, but only if we had no atmosphere. According to my newspaper in Alberta, Canada, the sunrise on March 17 was 7:43 AM but the sunset was 7:42 PM. Even though the sun did not cross the equator until a few days later, refraction due to the atmosphere allows the sun to be seen an extra few minutes than would normally be the case.

  69. Wow! What apparent idiocy and distorted thinking.

    And we are funding such apparently deranged and destructive thought? One might think that this guy is one of those kids who grew up without any friends. His current apparent talent is as a news reporter. One that could probably stretch the “news” cycle for the missing 777 into months with a new conspiratorial theory each day. Sorry sane news folk.

    Cut to the chase: If humans were born for any purpose other than killing the planet, why do we exhale CO2, that plants and trees thrive on? Also, how many humans were around as the earth sank into the last of multiple periods of glaciation and then emerged 100,000 years later, each time, to de-glaciate the planet presumably using bad breath and broken spears that apparently had a hard time killing Mastodons, likely the major CO2 source at the time?

    How else could we humans have melted all of the ice from the last glaciation that caused over a 360 foot sea level rise? And by the way, why didn’t major civilizations of humans populate sea port urban centers until about 10,000 years ago when the sea level stabilized?

    This isn’t conspiratorial, its all in the literature.

  70. Since when is skepticism about GMO a right-wing conspiracist issue? The left-leaning governments of the European Union are the primary opponents of GMO, and in California the core of GMO opposition comes from Liberals, and Conservatives are GMO’s supporters.

    • Thanks to Seth, Crispin and “wbrozek” for pointing up the error of a “know it all but know it wrong” Professor.
      According to:

      http://www.wsanford.com/~wsanford/exo/sundials/DEC_Sun.html

      the Sun’s declination on March 17 (average for the four year cycle) is 1° 35 minutes south. From the North Pole, the sun’s true altitude is equal to the declination, so on March 17 at (I assume) noon, the sun’s true altitude would have been 1° 35 minutes (= 95’) below the horizon.

      As “wbrozek” points out, refraction must be taken into account. I quote Norie’s Tables, 1969 edition, page 558. “The true amplitudes given in the main table are calculated for the instant when the true altitude of the body is precisely 0° 00’. In the case of the sun (owing to the effects of dip, refraction and parallax) the lower limb at this instant will appear to be approximately half a diameter above the visible horizon.” This means that on March 21, when the sun crosses the equator and its true altitude is precisely 0° 00’, its upper limb (on which sunrise is defined) will already be about three semi-diameters above the horizon. Again from Nories, p 149, the sun’s semi-diameter on 17 March is about 16.1’. So three semi-diameters is 48.3’, and the upper limb, assuming this correction for the true altitude is good for when the true altitude is -95’ will be only about 47’ below the horizon. Of course, the time could have been as late as midnight on March 17, but which time the upper limb would have rise a further 12 minutes.

      Still before sunrise, but definitely not in “darkness”. The sun would have been below the horizon the same distance as three minutes before sunrise on the equator, and everything would have been that bright!
      Re Dudley Horscroft says: March 20, 2014 at 11:59 pm [snip – off topic and out of bounds -mod], I don’t keep a copy of what I wrote, so apologize anyway if it was “out of bounds”. “Off topic”? well, judging by the way some of the topics stray …..

  71. To quote my friend L. Neil Smith: “It’s extremely important in this connection to remember that psychology is not a science, not even remotely. It is not the product of careful hypothesis-formation and controlled, repeatable, peer-reviewed experiment. It is nothing more than a collection of folklore and the armchair opinions of committees, less credible and valid than global warming. The authority it speaks from is purely political.” He was speaking of the current drive to get mental health evaluations for all gun owners.

    Given the massive failure of those organizations to even remotely predict behaviors of known unstable individuals in their treatment, see CN, MD, CO, etc., for anyone to take their rantings seriously about the makeup of the intellect of members of the hard sciences and engineering, is moral abdication.

  72. “The funny thing about that graph is that a graph showing the exact opposite can be constructed, depending on the time frame.”

    No, it can’t.

    Although, I’d like to see your effort: a series of decreasing sub-series with the average temperature of each series lower than the previous.

    Off you go.

  73. I just posted the following comment on the retraction notice post at Frontiers’ website:

    There is no reference to the University of Western Australia’s (UWA’s) full ethical and academic investigation of the ‘Recursive Fury’ paper and some of its authors in Frontiers’ above retraction notice on Recursive fury: Conspiracist ideation in the blogosphere in response to research on conspiracist ideation by Stephan Lewandowsky, John Cook, Klaus Oberauer and Michael Marriott.

    I suggest to Frontiers that it would help to understand your findings of your investigation of the retracted paper if you could acknowledge that your investigation included full review of the UWA’s ‘Recursive Fury’ Ethics Report by your entire review panel and that your findings are inclusive of all of UWA’s findings.

    John

    http://journal.frontiersin.org/Journal/10.3389/fpsyg.2014.00293/full

    John

  74. Dudley Horscroft says:
    March 21, 2014 at 9:02 pm

    Re Dudley Horscroft says: March 20, 2014 at 11:59 pm [snip – off topic and out of bounds -mod], I don’t keep a copy of what I wrote, so apologize anyway if it was “out of bounds”. “Off topic”? well, judging by the way some of the topics stray …..

    – – – – – – – – – – –

    Dudley Horscroft,

    The owner of this blog politely advised me privately that it was ‘out of bounds’ for me to initiate discussion that expanded beyond the discussion of Lewandowsky’s ‘science’ / ‘pseudo-science’ into the realm of comparing him to that very very controversial figure of the 20th century.

    I happily honor his request without prejudice.

    NOTE: But we can take our interesting (to us anyway) conversation that was snipped elsewhere. I have copies of all comments of yours and mine that were snipped. I also have copies of all of Jason Calley’s comments on the subject that were snipped. Do you do FB or Twitter? I do. Shall we continue elsewhere? Do you have suggestions about where to continue our discussion?

    John

  75. I’m willing to believe virtually anything you can prove without glaring holes in the logic. In fact, I’m still willing to believe that OJ is innocent, but when I see “fake” and “men on Moon” in the same sentence, my eyes glaze over immediately.

  76. I can see clearly I have to employ many expensive supercomputers to manage the ever growing statistical idiosyncractic data streams flowing into my “Mann O Man O Meter” data adjustment filters to account for phsycological climate sensitivity variables and extreem events. Such unforseen developments in the anti-climatic climate alarmist future probable crimes against humanity caused by thinking rational concerned CAGW AKA CCC (catastrophic climate change which can be either too hot or too cold) skeptics sometimes derogetorilly hate speech termed Climate Change Denialists. Leaves me to compile several leading indicators for corellaries between CAGW raw data sets deliberately with-held from public access , frivilous FOI requests for said Data, Phycological profiling of Catastrophic Climate Change skeptics (which in itself appears to be illegal , akin to racial profiling) Elapsed time vectored with popcorn sales and projected (computer modeled of course) virtual popped kernals against specific hemispheres of the globe. Seeing this added unforseen of Climate Change Deniers being lumped in with Conspiracy Theorists and GMO safety makes my think somehow a spring loaded hockey stick lever should be installed to deliver each sigularly popped pop corn kernal into the counting bowl, where they can be collected together and disappeared into a many black holes, whoose event horizen is seen to the observer as teeth.

  77. I see many people here are cheerfully providing raw data for a third Lewandowsky paper. And making sure the second one is read more widely that it otherwise would have been.

  78. Magma says:
    March 22, 2014 at 11:34 am

    I see many people here are cheerfully providing raw data for a third Lewandowsky paper. And making sure the second one is read more widely that it otherwise would have been.

    – – – – – – –

    Magma,

    I really appreciate your timely appearance to say that because it provides an intellectually clear dichotomy wrt my thought.

    I think all the comments on this thread (and comments in threads on the same topic on other blogs) provide data that there may be a reasonable case for a propagation of retractions backward in time for Lewandowsky to include retracting his ‘Moon Landing’ paper, since his retracted ‘Recursive Fury’ fundamentally extended from ‘Moon Landing’.

    It is quite an opposite context from which to view this thread versus your context. N’est ce pas?

    John

  79. Magma says:
    March 22, 2014 at 11:34 am

    I see many people here are cheerfully providing raw data for a third Lewandowsky paper. And making sure the second one is read more widely that it otherwise would have been.
    ———————————-

    I’m sure all those unemployed Soviet psychologists, who generally operated on the principle that if you opposed the Soviet system then you were mentally ill, are eagerly awaiting the next paper from one of their ideological brethren in the West.

    But then again, maybe Putin has found some use for them.

    • John Whitman says: March 22, 2014 at 9:44 am ” ….. Do you do FB or Twitter? I do. Shall we continue elsewhere? Do you have suggestions about where to continue our discussion?”

      Thanks for the invitation, John. I don’t do either Facebook or Twitter, so that is not on. I think, however interesting the conversation might have been, I will have to decline – I am up to my eyeballs in work, etc. Regards

  80. Dudley Horscroft says:
    March 22, 2014 at 5:59 pm

    – – – – – – – – – –

    Dudley Horscroft,

    OK. See you sometime perhaps in the future on a blog somewhere.

    Did you look at the recent book by Michael D. Gordin entitled ‘The Pseudo-Science Wars’?

    Given your expressed interest and views then you should look at it.

    Sincerely, I hope to see you on the flip side. : )

    Regards.

    John

  81. Steve McIntyre: “I accordingly sent a strongly worded and detailed letter…”

    I’m wondering if you could be our new ambassador to Russia. It seems to me Putin deserves a sternly worded letter on his recent behaviour, n’est pas?

    • John Whitman says: March 22, 2014 at 6:40 pm Thanks for the lead – have put in a request for this to my local library.

  82. Wait…Is the conspiracy about the prediction Mann will cause earth to warm, or Man proving he can change the climate?

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