An Aggie Joke

By Steven Goddard

[Update: See message from Professor North Below]

Some well known Aggie Jokes:

Did you hear about the Aggie who won a gold medal at the Olympics? He liked it so much that he decided to get it bronzed.

Did you hear about the Houston Cougar that transferred to A&M? He raised the IQ of both schools!

How many Aggies does it take to screw in a light bulb? One, but he gets 3 hours credit.

How do you get a Texas A&M graduate off your front porch? You pay for the pizza.

And here is the most recent Aggie joke. Check out this piece of work from the Texas A&M school newspaper.

Published: Tuesday, June 15, 2010

It is not just Texas; it is global. The rising temperatures that have afflicted the state are only part of a larger problem. Earth’s temperatures are rising at an alarming rate, rates unseen for thousands of years. “The warming that has occurred in the last 100 years seems to be very unusual,” said Gerald North, professor of atmospheric sciences and oceanography. “We do not see warming changes like that for 10,000 years. The rate at which it is going up has not stopped.”Even though the global rise in temperature is small, 3 degrees Celsius over a period of 100 years, the implications of such warming are large. “3 degrees Celsius is about 5.5 degrees Fahrenheit, and if you ask most people, they would say that it does not sound like very much,” said Andrew Dessler, professor of atmospheric sciences and oceanography. “If you look at the global average temperature, it really varies a small amount.”

Every fact and statistic quoted are suspect. According to NCDC, Texas has not warmed over the last 90 years, or the last 110 years.

Next up is their claim that global temperatures have risen by 3C in the last 100 years. Even Hansen’s bloated numbers only show 0.8C in the last 130 years.

NCDC shows the same thing, only less.

HadCrut shows less than one degree rise over the last 150 years.

The authors seem to be confusing IPCC estimates for the next hundred years, with measurements from the last hundred years – which is clearly the context of that paragraph.

Then they go on to claim that summer temperatures have increased in Texas.

Global climate changes are having equal effect on Texas‘ climate, which is part of the reason for the increased temperatures over the summers.

According to NCDC, Texas summer temperatures are dropping:

And finally :

“Texas temperatures are going up pretty much like the earth’s temperatures are,” North said. “Generally speaking, the global average temperature changes about the same as in Texas, so it is probably going to be warmer in Texas in the next 50 to 100 years. Last summer was a really hot summer, and while I say that is a fluctuation, it does probably indicate things that we might expect in the next 20 or 30 years. And what you can expect in the next 50 years is that the heat we experienced last summer is going to be the average summer temperature.”

Not one shred of evidence to support that statement. If NCDC trends continue, summers will be cooler in 50 years in Texas. Now, let’s give them the benefit of the doubt and assume that they are only thinking about their little part of Texas. The closest USHCN station to College Station is in Brenham.

According to USHCN, Brenham was warmer 100 years ago.

One might expect that professors of atmospheric science would have access to the Internet, and would be able to look these things up for themselves – before presenting information to their students. Looks like another bad Aggie joke.

[Update: Professor North responded to an email from one of our commenters, James Allison,  and stated this:

“Please correct the false impression left on your website. The item in the Texas A&M student newspaper was based on short interviews by phone. While there was no error in fact, the impression left is false. In the interview with me, I was referring to the temperature changes of our planet over the last century (about 0.7 deg C). The author switched abruptly to an interview with Professor Andrew Dessler who was not talking about the temperature over the LAST century but instead the IPCC prediction for temperature over the NEXT century (averaging over models about 3 deg C). I would not have known about this error except that my email box has been unusually loaded with hate mail today.
Gerald North”]

Did you hear about the Aggie who won a gold medal at the Olympics?

He liked it so much that he decided to get it bronzed.

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151 thoughts on “An Aggie Joke

  1. “One might expect that professors of atmospheric science would have access to the Internet, and would be able to look these things up for themselves – before presenting information to their students.”
    But then he would not get that multi-million dollar grant to study temperature increases over the next 10 years in Texas … which will show that the temperature around the “climate monitoring station” they build on the edge of campus with part of the grant money this year (that will end up being surrounded by student housing in 10 years) goes up during the grant’s lifetime and validates his faith in global warming. Which will result in an additional grant to study temperature increases for the next 10 years …
    I would add a sarcasm alert here but this is probably how it will actually play out.

  2. Isn’t this the same Gerry North that asked not to be mentioned on peoples blogs. Yea, he wants only a captive audience for indoctrination. Does he really think no one will fact check his claims? And if he wanted to stay out of the blogs, he should stop with this nonsense.
    I remember in 1997 when a summer intern I hired – from Natural Resources Dept. at Michigan State – told me that sea level was going to rise 20 feet in the next 20 years due to AGW. She was confident this was true because her professor showed her the models. This started a huge debate in which I had to be the bad guy to go against a professor. I told her she should do some research on her own and not blindly accept her professor’s claims. Last I checked, New York is still above water.

  3. As one who lives in Texas, and has friends and family all over the state, it was not in fact a ‘really hot summer’. It was cooler and wetter overall, thanks to The Child.
    My favorite Aggie joke (though it pains me as a Red Raider) is What do you call an Aggie ten years after graduation? Boss.

  4. On the sea level rise of 20 feet in 20 years claim – I know there is still 7 years to go, and there has been no rise during the last 13 years, so they AGW crowd must surely be holding on to some “tipping point” being reached, maybe the total collapse of all ice on Greenland and Antarctica in a one month period. After all their models showed it.

  5. Aggies don’t eat M&Ms because it takes too long to peel them, that and Global Warming makes them melt in your hand.

  6. How many Aggies does it take to eat an Armadillo? Three, one to cut it up and two to watch both ways for traffic. Several years ago Dallas had a summer with about 30 days over 100 degrees F, which was considered a record at that time. For sure there have been no repeats, so things don’t seem to be getting warmer.

  7. What to you do to an Aggie graduate who comes to your door?
    Tip him for the pizza.

  8. In the words of Homer Simpson: “Facts shmacts. You can use facts to prove anything that’s even remotely true.”
    The people that promote this kind of nonsense don’t really care about what reality says. They only care about their agenda and no one nor no evidence will get in their way. The sad thing is that since the people that run our education system buy into all of this gobbledygook and pump it down our childrens’ throats ad nauseum. The only way we will restore logical, science-based thinking is to change who controls the cirriculum at our schools.

  9. At my school paying for the pizza would just attract more students. Oh….. I get it. That explains the Dominos sign on top of the Aggies car.

  10. I am from England so I do not ‘get’ the Aggie angle. Would this be the same University that was featured in the Dolly Parton and Burt Reynolds movie, The best little whorehouse in Texas?

  11. The sad part is that this is standard stuff at universities, especially in the environmental studies and atmospheric studies, etc., departments. And nobody questions it or looks anything up on their own. It’s very depressing.

  12. This is the guy whose NAS committee backed up the substance of Mann’s hockey stick.

  13. Forget the ridiculous “science”, the article reads like it was written by a fifth grader.

  14. Aggies get astronomy credit for staring at the sun.
    Sun spots are those holes in their retinas.

  15. How many Aggies…errr climatologists does it take to get a major grant to fund their “research”?
    Any of them.
    This is not a joke.

  16. I lived in Laredo Texas in the 60’s and whew it was hot! Lots of nights in the summer even at 10 pm or later the temp. was 100 degrees. Hey, but it was a dry heat and the scorpions loved it.

  17. There was a group of Aggie science students that wanted to send a probe to the sun, but some UT students said that was impossible and that the probe would burn up long before reaching the sun.
    The Aggies replied that they planned to send the probe at night.

  18. In this morning’s Argentina/South Korea match, one of the ESPN announcers claimed that an Argentina shot accelerated as it approached the goal.
    I suppose that had it not struck something behind the goal, it would have eventually reached the speed of light – and beyond.

  19. Ken Hall says:
    June 17, 2010 at 6:39 am
    “I am from England so I do not ‘get’ the Aggie angle. Would this be the same University that was featured in the Dolly Parton and Burt Reynolds movie, The best little whorehouse in Texas?”
    See you do get it!
    There was a claim that the Aggies invented ice cubes, but lost the recipe.
    They did study what makes potholes in roads. The conclusion was – cars.

  20. These days you can say just about anything and someone will believe it. Sadly, the writer probably believes it. Bad news sells.
    (now the nasty part) What can you do with a degree from A&M?
    Put it on your windshield and park in handicapped spaces.

  21. Ken Hall says:
    June 17, 2010 at 6:39 am
    I am from England so I do not ‘get’ the Aggie angle. Would this be the same
    University that was featured in the Dolly Parton and Burt Reynolds movie, The best
    little whorehouse in Texas?
    Got it in one! 🙂

  22. According to CNN’s language complexity expert, this prof likely also didn’t understand a thing Obama said during his oil spill speech.

  23. Wouldn’t it be a good idea (or does this already exist) if there was an independent web site – and I mean independent in the way that no beliefs were held on AGW – which simply presented ALL the ‘facts’ we know about temperature changes. Rather than the author or the reader believing what some professor may say, they could go to this web site and look at the graphs themselves. ALL the graphs should be available easily on one click of a mouse. So a reader could get the above Texas graph as well as Met Office summer temps in England, for example.
    At the bottom of the page could be a reminder to the reader that this is ALL we know. That projections or models are just speculation. I accept what is real; whether or not it supports my scepticism.
    ALL web sites that promote or dispel the idea of AGW should have a link to the site, at cost of getting finger-pointed if they don’t. This would allow any interested viewers to verify what is being said. I propose ‘www.temperaturegraphs.com’ – which is actually available (I just checked).
    This would stop the plainly absurd nonsense being tossed about by the ignorant, for the ignorant. What say all of you?

  24. In defense of Texas, I do wish to point out that most Aggie students are from out of state. Students from Texas are to be found primarily at such fine institutions as UNT or even SMU. As for the 5 degree warming idea; does this Aggie climatologist live in Texas, or is this a “distance teaching” program? In a “normal”year in Texas, we get one or two days during the winter with a snowfall that in the north would be unnoticed, a light romantic dusting that coats rooftops and slows the perpetual whirring of airconditioners and cicadas. Last year (winter 2008-2009) it snowed twice with significant amounts, more than 1 inch, which caused near panic. This winter past it snowed 5 times!!! We had snowstorms!!! There was snow 3 inches deep on the ground that stuck around without melting for three days at a time! We had snow in October, and Snow in May!

  25. Steven: It’s not impossible that a soccer ball accelerates while in air. But it sure requires extremely windy weather 😉
    Thanks for the joke. I’m afraid I didn’t laugh, though, this looks too much like disinformation rather than a joke.

  26. This portion of the Don Henley song Garden Of Allah seems so fitting for describing the warming crowd.
    “Today I made an appearance downtown
    I am an expert witness because I say I am
    And I said gentlemen, and I use that word loosely
    I will testify for you, I’m a gun for hire, I’m a saint, I’m a liar
    Because there are no facts, there is no truth
    Just data to be manipulated
    I can get you any result you like
    What’s it worth to you?
    Because there is no wrong, there is no right
    And I sleep very well at night
    No shame, no solution, no remorse, no retribution
    Just people selling t-shirts
    Just opportunity to participate in the pathetic little circus
    and winning, winning, winning”

  27. They weren’t in school during the record snow in Texas last winter? Oh, that was global warming snow.

  28. stevengoddard June 17, 2010 at 7:02 am
    In this morning’s Argentina/South Korea match, one of the ESPN announcers claimed that an Argentina shot accelerated as it approached the goal.

    Not to defend the announcer, who is probably not using the word in its mathematical sense, but technically it is true that all (well, at least nearly all) shots do accelerate in mid-air. That is, the velocity vector changes with time. The visual evidence for this is the curved path of the ball.

  29. Ah thanks for the confirmation. So these would be the same Aggies that broke their legs when sweeping up some leaves….
    … They fell out of the tree!

  30. “They weren’t in school during the record snow in Texas last winter? Oh, that was global warming snow.”
    Well that’s just it you see. The earth is warmed by global warming, and then in winter there is all this snow which falls on it which only acts as an insulating blanket which means that the earth does not get a chance to cool down in the winter. And when the next summer comes around, the earth gets even hotter because of all the global warming.
    And I’ll just bet that there are some CAGW alarmists who would believe that crap if it was said by an “IPCC scientist”!

  31. We can have great fun with the Aggie jokes. Unfortunately, if President Zero had the IQ of an Aggie, he’d ask them for help cleaning up the spill. You can’t find better Petroleum Engineers anywhere in the world than those cranked out by A&M. They may even be able to figure out a way to “plug the damn hole” and “stop the leak, Daddy!”

  32. For Ken Hall – Texas A&M has long had the tradition of being a very pro-military, conservative school with an overwhelmingly conservative student body – which makes it doubly irritating that this nitwit has managed to get himself ensconced there.
    Among other things, it is the home of the George H.W. Bush Presidential Library.
    I live about 2 hours drive north of it – didn’t go there but have many friends that did. And *everyone* in Texas tells aggie jokes – my favorite is about the breathalyzer test, but I don’t think that would get past the moderator. 😉

  33. The Ghost Of Big Jim Cooley says:
    June 17, 2010 at 7:11 am
    GISS and NOAA this is another Aggie joke.

  34. “How many Aggies does it take to screw in a light bulb? One, but he gets 3 hours credit.”
    Actually, it takes 50. One to hold the bulb, and 49 to spin the room round.

  35. stevengoddard says:
    June 17, 2010 at 7:02 am
    That’s a new one Steven, the one we are treated to in virtually every game in the UK is “the ball gathered pace off the pitch”?
    Greece – Nigeria, on at present and getting interesting

  36. I didn’t know marijuana was popular in Texas colleges. OOps! looks like I’ve committed an injustice by equating Aggie professors to pot smokers. My appologies to the pot smokers.

  37. stevengoddard says:
    June 17, 2010 at 7:02 am
    Of course it accelerated as it approached the goal…a small amount of negative acceleration! But if the announcer was able to see that with his eyes, he’s a lot better than any human I know.
    -Scott

  38. The Ghost Of Big Jim Cooley says:
    June 17, 2010 at 7:11 am
    Wouldn’t it be a good idea (or does this already exist) if there was an independent web site – and I mean independent in the way that no beliefs were held on AGW – which simply presented ALL the ‘facts’ we know about temperature changes.
    ************************
    There are a couple that try to do just that. I fact check all articles I can, both skeptical and CAGW.
    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/
    http://climate4you.com/

  39. I think it’s shameful that people are joking around about something as serious as Texas weather — particularly with our friends at Texas A&M where this is a very sensitive issue. Let us remember the tragedy only few short months ago when the Aggie couple was found frozen to death in their convertible at a drive-in theater after telling friends they were going to see the classic drama “Closed for Winter”.

  40. The Ghost of Big Jim Cooley: 7:11am;
    Nice idea, Jim, but I can see a problem; so many of these temperature charts are not raw data – they’ve been adjusted, homogenised and probably pasteurised – so which ones can we believe? Messrs Hansen, Jones and Mann have not been exactly forthcoming about their original data, have they? Best wishes, Dave.

  41. Josh Grella says:
    June 17, 2010 at 6:33 am
    “….The sad thing is that since the people that run our education system buy into all of this gobbledygook and pump it down our childrens’ throats ad nauseum. The only way we will restore logical, science-based thinking is to change who controls the cirriculum at our schools.”
    ____________________________________________________________________
    The decline of the US educational system can be traced back to John Dewey.
    Looks like Nikita Khrushchev was correct when he stated:
    “You Americans are so gullible! We don’t have to invade you! We will destroy you from within without firing a shot! We will bury you by the billions! We spoon feed you socialism until your Communists and don’t even know it! We assist your elected leaders in giving you small doses of Socialism until you suddenly awake to find you have Communism. the day will come when your grandchildren will live under communism!” Nikita Khrushchev
    And of course the first place to start the spoon feeding was in the schools.
    On average, American high school graduates are two years behind much of the world, including some countries that could be called “third world.” Prior to the 1930’s, students were given an exam to graduate from the eighth grade, which typical high school graduates couldn’t pass today, because it’s too difficult. …. The bulk of the responsibility for these massive, tragic declines in education can be laid at the feet of the leaders of the Humanist education community. Their obsessive meddling with the basic process and pedagogy of education, conducted in their zeal to make education more philosophically (e.g. “modern” Humanist) and politically correct, is the primary cause of the decline. John Dewey and his successors (ala’ Bill Spady’s Outcome Based Education) have pretty much had their way, but the excuses are wearing pretty thin….” click
    “…. There is no God and there is no soul. Hence, there are no needs for the props of traditional religion. With dogma and creed excluded, then immutable truth is also dead and buried. There is no room for fixed, natural law or moral absolutes.” – John Dewey (Rondald Nash, The Closing of the American Heart: What’s Really Wrong with America’s Schools, United States: Probe Books, 1990, 91)
    With dogma and creed excluded, then immutable truth is also dead and buried. There is no room for fixed, natural law or moral absolutes…. If this is now what is taught in school, no wonder skeptics are seen as “flat earthers” and “science” is no longer based on evidence! No wonder lying and cheating are considered acceptable behavior! (As an atheist I would like to note honesty and integrity do not need religion as a base despite religion’s claims to the contrary.)
    I actually when to a week long work shop for supervisors and managers, at a well known university, where this slop about no absolutes was one of the modules taught!

  42. Yes, in defense of the soccer announcer, when a soccer ball is kicked in a specific manner one can produce amazing spin. There’s something called the Magnus Effect (forgive me, it’s been a long time since high school) that deals with spinning objects and their effective curving motion. I’ve played soccer (poorly) and have been fooled many times by a well-kicked, spinning, curving ball that was moving faster than it seemed. That is, as the ball came nearer my human senses suddenly discovered they’d miscalculated the speed at which the trajectory was being manifested. This effect has also fooled me in baseball. As the ball curves and begins to come towards the plate it has the illusion of increasing in speed. Obviously nothing looks faster than a pitcher’s best fast ball! But an off-speed (slow ball) pitch can truly make even the best batters look foolish. My experience is that it’s hard to accurately judge speeds of curving objects, especially those hurling past you. Human frailty. I got it, too.

  43. Assuming that North and Dressler knew what was going to be printed, which is a good bet.
    Then you have to assume that North and Dressler can not even do some simple, basic fact checking on their own work.
    And these two bozos are both professors of atmospheric sciences and oceanography.

  44. Green Sand
    The announcer was a Brit, and I think you are correct – the terminology he used was “gathered pace” rather than my paraphrased use of “accelerated.”
    If balls “gathered pace” on their way down the pitch, it would make sense to have shots taken by the goalkeeper – at the opposite end. By the time the ball had traveled 100 metres, the other keeper would be taking his life in his hands by stepping in front of it.

  45. This is slightly tangential to the topic here but I have often wondered if this belief by some that things are “so much hotter now than it used to be” is not caused by the fact that the majority of current generations have grown up in nicely climate controlled buildings and vehicles.
    It amazes me how many people, on a 65 degrees Fahrenheit morning, will arrive at work having run their cars A/C the entire commute… and then complain about gas prices.
    Have people simply become acclimatized to the 68 – 72 Fahrenheit and very low humidity in door climate? So much so that they are easily convinced that the normal outside weather is abnormal?

  46. Also from the article:
    “For example, in the last ice age there was 3000 feet of ice over Boston, the oceans were 300 feet lower than they are today and that was five to eight degrees Celsius cooler than it is today,” [Dessler] said. “So if you lower the global temperature five to eight degrees Celsius, which is about 12 degrees Fahrenheit, you end up with an ice age.”

  47. Ken Hall says:
    June 17, 2010 at 6:39 am
    I am from England so I do not ‘get’ the Aggie angle. Would this be the same University that was featured in the Dolly Parton and Burt Reynolds movie, The best little whorehouse in Texas?
    ________________________________________________________
    Yes it is the same University. Because it has a large number of farmers/ranchers getting Agricultural degrees, it is the butt of a lot of jokes. Farmers are seen as very stupid. Even the US department of Ag recommends addressing farmers at the sixth grade level, that is as if they were 12 years old.

  48. dave ward says:
    June 17, 2010 at 7:01 am
    Don’t worry about a little warming – us “Poms” are going to kill off most of our cows, and become a “Zero Carbon” economy with in 20 years….
    http://tinyurl.com/26vcmbw
    I foolishly downloaded the full report, and nearly had a coronary:
    http://www.zerocarbonbritain.com.
    _____________________________________________________________________
    Now you know why the World Trade Organization has been trying to get all countries to tag and track their livestock… so they can kill most of the domestic animals off.

  49. As a graduate of Texas A&M, I have to say that even on campus, the Battalion (the school newspaper) was a joke. Minimal wikipedia and “I saw it on the internet, it must be true” research was the norm.
    That being said, the physics department was excellent, and for the most part, politics were kept out of the (physics) classroom.
    Oh, and I do love a good Aggie joke. You’ve heard of some of their recent inventions? Like the solar-powered flashlight, or the parachute that opens on impact?

  50. David T. Bronzich, most A&M students are from out of state? Waa?? There are more students at A&M from Texas than the total combined student populations of UNT and SMU. This ain’t the 50’s anymore.
    And I’d like to say that while Gerry may teach at A&M, he holds no degree from the school, and I wish to heck he’d find somewhere else to teach.

  51. Gerry North was a great physics professor 37 years ago when I was his student, but he has most recently been consulting for wind turbine companies, which might have biased his viewpoint.

  52. As an Englishman, I didn’t recognise the term Aggie (since looked up on the web) and thought you must be using a new term for Anthropogenic Global Warmists. The jokes made even more sense on this basis!

  53. just remember,
    TAMU is one of the largest educational institutions in the world. the presence of a couple of profs like north and dessler amongst the faculty should be expected out of its sheer size. considering the size (and planned growth) of the nuclear engineering program, having a couple of folks like north and dessler are valuable in distracting the kook elements from continued protests against nuclear power.
    as for the lightbulb – i’m surprised no one got that one yet. It’s 500 aggies. One to hold the lightbulb and 499 to rotate the house.

  54. ” The Ghost Of Big Jim Cooley says:
    June 17, 2010 at 7:11 am
    Wouldn’t it be a good idea (or does this already exist) if there was an independent web site – and I mean independent in the way that no beliefs were held on AGW – which simply presented ALL the ‘facts’ we know about temperature changes.”
    Ole Humlum tries to do that:
    http://www.climate4you.com/

  55. Hey, its a school newspaper. What else would you expect from a budding young journalist? Gayle Gabreiel is clearly on track to become a great reporter, since she found someone to interview who already agreed with her own biases, asked puff questions, did no original research on her own, intended her article to support existing prejudices and provided no valuable information in the process! This is what passes for first rate journalism these days in all our papers and media.
    I do not care what school or university this comes from. Not fair to single out Texas A&M for what modern day journalism has become. This young woman is clearly on the way to plum job at the N.Y. Times, Newsweek, Washington Post, CBS/NBC/ABC/CNN or similar (soon to be taxpayer supported) media organizations. After all, she can’t possibly be wrong to write a piece which supports the existing consensus, right?

  56. ” Green Sand says:
    June 17, 2010 at 7:50 am
    That’s a new one Steven, the one we are treated to in virtually every game in the UK is “the ball gathered pace off the pitch”? ”
    When the grass is wet (and it always is in England), the ball jumps up from the ground at a flatter angle; the horizontal component of the velocity vector may be bigger (or at least bigger than the player expected).

  57. Clearly the person interviewing the scientists is rather dumb. He seems to have not understood that the 3 degrees Celsius figure derives from a projection of future change!
    But the scientists are also making claims which are just ridiculously wrong. The Texas Summers one is the easiest to show is wrong.

  58. stevengoddard says:
    June 17, 2010 at 8:20 am
    Explains why all these major games are played in stadiums with high sides?

  59. stevengoddard says:
    June 17, 2010 at 8:20 am
    Also wish my golf ball would “gather pace off the fairway”. Might make 250yds, in my dreams!

  60. It’s a student newspaper, folks. Let’s not get carried away here. Journo majors are not science majors. The culprit is really this nitwit professor, assuming he was quoted correctly (which may not be the case).
    It’s hotter than usual in Texas this month, but although the temperatures are well above average they’re usually well below record temps. A couple of days ago it was 97 here at DFW- 4 or 5 degrees (F) warmer than average, but 8 degrees below the record, which was set in 1924. I’ve noticed that many of the record highs are pre-1950 dates.

  61. That depends on whether or not North understands the meaning of “deigns”. That word is more than 4 letters long and according to CNN, words that on average are at least 4.5 letters long are not clearly understandable to the common US citizenry.
    And I have no idea what I just said.

  62. I can tell you why the Brenham USHCN station is cooler.
    That’s where the Blue Bell ice cream factory is.

  63. Well, at least our Aggie humour leaves its light traces worldwide. 8<)
    Graduated there in 1978, sad that they have lost the engineering/scientific excellence we were so proud of.
    (Engineering (Mechanical originally) , to you outside the US, was the "M" in the Agriculture and Mechanical College of ….) In the mid 1870's each state was granted a lareg land allotment to fund an "A&M" College to train the farmers and engineers inthe pracitcal arts and sciences. Rules were:
    You must have an Agricultre Department.
    You must have a Mechaicnal (Engneeering) Department.
    You must have an Army training section for future officers (Now, that's the ROTC office for the Army, Navy, or Air Force.)
    So the "State" Universities were funded, and of course, grew rapidly. But were deliberately oriented towards engineering and agriculture. Not very "exotic" and "academic" even in the 1890's! So there was a rivalry even at the beginning: Ohio State, Florida State, Colorado State, Oregon State,
    So, each state got a university for "practical knowledge" but kept its original "University" (usually an older school) focusing on fine arts and for theoretical studies in the arts and sciences. Thus, the natural rivalry between Michigan and Michigan State, Penn and Penn State, Oklahoma and Oklahoma State, Texas and Texas A&M, etc.
    They (The state universities) should still teach the engineering and the agriculture as real disciplines, but the entire university culture now worships a different Gaea (er, god.)

  64. I happen to be an A&M grad (M.S. in Atmospheric Science, ’07). Let me try and set a few things straight.
    For one, Dr. North was on my thesis committee and taught a class purely on Climate Change, which I took along with ~15 other ATMO and Oceanography grad students. He made it pretty clear what his views were, but at no time did he try to convince or indoctrinate anyone into AGW. He himself had apparently pulled a 180 a few years earlier. His class, which was more like a massive literature review on paleoclimate, encouraged discussion, debate, and did not look down upon skepticism. In fact, most of us in the class were AGW skeptics, and left the class that way as well (with A’s even).
    Now I am not defending why he would be quoted as saying “The rate at which it is going up has not stopped,” when clearly the rate has flatlined the past 10 years…or that these warmer temperatures will be the norm 50 years from now. It seems to be the standard these days when presented with a media outlet, reckless, and personally a little disappointing. This article seems to be the outcome of very poor reporting skills combined with irresponsible statements, and Steven has done well to make it look like the amateurish piece it is with his figures. Perhaps if Ms. Gabriel had interviewed Dr. Nielson-Gammon, who just so happens to be the Texas State Climatologist and an A&M professor, she would have gotten more accurate information. It is unlikely that is what she was looking for.
    Thanks and Gig’em.

  65. Green Sand says:
    June 17, 2010 at 7:50 am
    stevengoddard says:
    June 17, 2010 at 7:02 am
    That’s a new one Steven, the one we are treated to in virtually every game in the UK is “the ball gathered pace off the pitch”?
    Greece – Nigeria, on at present and getting interesting
    Having posted a question here recently which had previously been answered (and having a nice explanation to the question anyway thanks again George E. Smith). I am wondering if this is anything to do with a spinning ball rebounding without spin. Angular momentum and all that. I am quite happy for someone to tell me this is impossible and/or not measurable.

  66. It’s warmed 16 degrees so far today (70 was the overnight low), so 5 degrees over a century really doesn’t sound like all that much to me.

  67. Penn State’s student newspaper was one of the only outlets reporting on the Mann fiasco and were getting both views out there. The Daily Collegian has a decent bunch of writers, much better than a few years ago.
    Penn State and Penn haven’t been rivals in anything for like a century, on the field or in the classroom. Penn State’s strengths have always been in Engineering, Ag, Earth & Mineral Sciences. Science and Business have made great strides though in the last decade. University of Pittsburgh was our traditional rival in sports anyway.

  68. Oh my God! The polar caps will melt by 8 p,m. tonight at that rate of warming!
    ———————————–
    It’s warmed 16 degrees so far today (70 was the overnight low), so 5 degrees over a century really doesn’t sound like all that much to me.

  69. ScottH says:
    June 17, 2010 at 8:30 am
    David T. Bronzich, most A&M students are from out of state? Waa?? There are more students at A&M from Texas than the total combined student populations of UNT and SMU. This ain’t the 50′s anymore.
    Dear Scott; that was my poor attempt at humor, and did not feel that in the context of the statement, that one needed to burden anyone with the facts of modern life. Why should I, if the Obamassiah may say what he shall, or the Grand Old Institution of A&M resort to dragging 4th graders in to write for it’s newspaper?

  70. Ouch!
    I am a graduate of that program, though I never had the pleasure of having a lecture from either of the quoted profs.
    During the course of my college career there, we did cover a lot of climatology and at least 3 courses were heavily pro-AGW theory. But, we, the students, were able to ask some of the tough questions that end in the prof usually agreeing that “We don’t actually know that, but the models…”
    Question: Why didn’t the Batt seek out the actual Texas State Climatologist, Dr. John Nielson-Gammon for his opinion? On campus, down the hall from where Gerald North must be. N-G would have set them straight. Or maybe, they did. They just didn’t like his answers.

  71. ‘How many Aggies does it take to screw in a light bulb?’
    Two – but they would have to be very tiny to fit!

  72. Of course that’s 16 degrees Fahrenheit, not Celsius, so it’s may or may not be worse than the thought.

  73. “Post normal science” educational philosophy goal is to get excellent sportsmen out of kids with exceptionally gifted for pernicious mathematics and normal science.
    No kidding, I just googled “Aggie” and found they tried agriculture tecahing and got olympic medal winners.

  74. wws @ June 17, 2010 at 7:47 am wrote:
    Among other things, it is the home of the George H.W. Bush Presidential Library.
    And here’s an iteresting trivia item concerning said library: All of the parking lots (and buildings, for that matter) on the A&M campus are numbered. There are two parking lots for the library (it is a little ways away from the main campus). One of them is open to any campus parking pass, the other is off limits to students during regular semester weekdays. Anyway the interesting tidbit is that theses parking lots are numbered 41 and 43. I pointed that out to my son, an undergrad there, after he recieved a ticket for parking in the restricted lot.
    Chuck near Houston, ’85

  75. The article was peer-reviewed by other members of the Battalion staff, wasn’t it? You don’t think those student editors just printed it without going over the material first, do you?

  76. Kevin G: “Perhaps if Ms. Gabriel had interviewed Dr. Nielson-Gammon, who just so happens to be the Texas State Climatologist and an A&M professor, she would have gotten more accurate information. It is unlikely that is what she was looking for.”
    Howdy, Kevin! Beat me to the punch, I see.

  77. A college newspaper is the source? I once was interviewed for one and the writer made four factual errors in one paragraph that I subsequently had to have them correct. It’s a dangerous mix when you get journalism students quoting climate scientists. Comes out like an article in The Onion (http://www.theonion.com/).

  78. Re:- dave ward says:
    June 17, 2010 at 7:01 am …
    I foolishly downloaded the full report, and nearly had a coronary:
    http://www.zerocarbonbritain.com.
    Wow! This is FRIGHTENING stuff. And those who produced this ordure actually believe that they can do all of this! They make Kim Jong-il look positively benign.
    It is obvious that the realists have got an awful long way to go before they can relax a little.

  79. In fairness to North, the student reporter may have garbled or misunderstood what he said.

  80. tallbloke says:
    June 17, 2010 at 7:49 am
    That one has belonged to the Marine Corps since 1870, please don’t touch it. 😉

  81. Pull My Finger says “or how 2+2=5. Orwellian gets bandied about a lot these days, but truly, we are closing in on 1984 with the garbage kids are fed in school.”
    But its true, 2 + 2 does equal 5 for very large values of 2 🙂 . 2 + 2 = 4 would show the decline, which, as we all know, must be hidden.

  82. Andrew Dessler is the world leading expert on water vapour so I imagine it was the college newspaper author who mixed up the quotes so badly.
    Gerald North, however, probably believes the recent warming is at the fastest rate in the last 10,000 years because he affirmed the hockey stick studies which requires one to suspend objective examination of other climate data.

  83. The Daily Collegian has a decent bunch of writers, much better than a few years ago.

    Although it has been more than a “few years”, our pet name for it was “The Daily Co-liberal”

  84. Hey! I resemble these remarks (visting MS student at TAMU, and PhD as a Utah State University Aggie). I wish I could remember some of the gems I heard back in College Station, but that was a long time ago.
    For the trivia-minded, those Aggie “A”s at the top of the article are on the USU campus. If you stood on them this morning and looked to the east, you would have seen the dusting of new snow we got last night (down to about 2000m). Not many folks in northern Utah worried about warming this week — more are wishing for it.

  85. “L Nettles says:
    June 17, 2010 at 6:29 am
    Aggies don’t eat M&Ms because it takes too long to peel them, that and Global Warming makes them melt in your hand.”
    I thought that they don’t eat M&Ms because they have trouble sorting them out from the W&Ws.
    I guess everyone has heard about the Aggie bonfire “accident”.
    they “built and burned a bonfire on campus each autumn. Known to the Aggie community simply as “Bonfire”,, ,,,,,,,
    Although early Bonfires were little more than piles of trash, as time passed the annual event became more organized. Over the years the bonfire grew to an immense size, setting the world record in 1969. Bonfire remained a thriving University tradition for decades until, in 1999, a collapse during construction killed twelve people—eleven students and one former student—and injured twenty-seven others.
    The accident led Texas A&M to declare a hiatus on an official Bonfire”
    SOURCE: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aggie_Bonfire
    Wasn’t that about the time that so called “Global Warming” ended? Any connection?
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aggie_Bonfire

  86. Scott:
    That soccer ball had to be accelerating positively. I saw it going left to right.
    Mike from Aggie

  87. The Ghost Of Big Jim Cooley says:
    June 17, 2010 at 7:11 am
    “Wouldn’t it be a good idea (or does this already exist) if there was an independent web site – and I mean independent in the way that no beliefs were held on AGW – which simply presented ALL the ‘facts’ we know about temperature changes.”
    Oh Ghostly One,
    You have arrived at the One Site to meet your stipulated requirements: WUWT!
    Yes, commentors often express advocacy, but Mssr. Watts, the Moderators, and most of the article contributors strive for full disclosure and balance. That’s why the rest of us, in ever increasing numbers, keep coming back to WUWT……
    As Dragnet’s Sgt. Joe Friday stated it : “The facts, Ma’am. Just the facts.” Anthony and crew are the modern day Dragnet squad, time and again confronting and handcuffing the Climate Change Criminals…. with the facts.

  88. No, no, no. These guys are right. Texas is getting hotter…I noticed it in March, and the rise in temperature since then seems to be accelerating.

  89. Well it seems to me that they don’t have any data on global average temperature; since there is no way to measure that.
    That second graph is labelled global land-ocean temperature index” and the Y-axis goes from -0.4 deg C to +0.6 deg C which is a long way from guesstimates that the mean global temperature should be about +15 deg C; and they call it temperature anomaly; whcih sounds like something is wrong with it.
    I wish they would stop trying to peddle “anomalies” as actual temperature data. The temperature any place on the globe is somewhere between about -90 deg C and about +60 deg C; and pretty much covers most of that range at all times.
    Even if they could measure the true global average temperature it has no scientific significance anyway; there is no formal relationship between the local temperature anywhere and the heat or other energy flows at that place; because every different kind of terrain has different thermal processes taking place; that all differ in how they relate to local temperature.
    So average temperature tells you nothing about the earth energy balance. The system is not in equilibrium any way; it isn’t even at a stable state; and goes through wild gyraionss at least every 24 hours.
    So stop trying to present temperature anomaly plots as if they were actual physical data; about anything real.

  90. Ken Hall says:
    June 17, 2010 at 6:39 am
    “I am from England so I do not ‘get’ the Aggie angle. Would this be the same University that was featured in the Dolly Parton and Burt Reynolds movie, The best little whorehouse in Texas?”
    —————————————-
    You did better than I did. I had to resort to Google.

  91. @Pamela Gray
    “Obama’s nearly 10th-grade-level rating was the highest of any of his major speeches and well above the Grade 7.4 of his 2008 “Yes, we can” victory speech, which many consider his best effort, Payack said.”
    Yeh, I picked this little gem out of his babble. Sadly, Pamela, I find this to be true when talking to average people. If you go over 2 syllables, you’ll lose many in any idea you’re trying to express. (Present company excepted of course.) So, I guess the president thought the American people function at a 10th grade level. What does that tell you about the people he spoke to at his “victory” speech. heh, heh.

  92. Slightly off topic…
    The state of Texas has revamped the hurricane evacuation plan for this year. Folks are now to leave the Houston/Galveston area based upon which college they went to. UT grads take I-10 West. LSU grads take I-10 East. SMU grads take I-45 North, and Aggies take Loop 610.

  93. sandyinderby says:
    June 17, 2010 at 10:36 am
    “I am wondering if this is anything to do with a spinning ball rebounding without spin. Angular momentum and all that.
    That does happen, it can be easily demonstrated by just spinning a ball between your hands and dropping it, if it grips the ground when it bounces it’ll accelerate laterally.

  94. “How many Aggies does it take to screw in a light bulb? One, but he gets 3 hours credit.”
    Hey, That’s my joke!
    I’m not kidding.
    27 years ago, I was a show writer for the University of Virginia Pep Band, and I came up with that gag (except it was “Maryland football players.”

  95. You people are being very unkind – this poor Prof may lose his position over this.
    However, we are long overdue in having a precedent – someone in the comfortable alarmist country club needs to be fired for publicly distributing BS science theories.
    Once the first one falls, then the Domino Theory applies. Ultimately this would lead to CRU and IPCC, which in turn would lead to real climate science – half hearted apologies for the pun.

  96. Yeh, I picked this little gem out of his babble. Sadly, Pamela, I find this to be true when talking to average people. If you go over 2 syllables, you’ll lose many in any idea you’re trying to express. (Present company excepted of course.) So, I guess the president thought the American people function at a 10th grade level. What does that tell you about the people he spoke to at his “victory” speech. heh, heh.
    Despite the source, this would actually be correct – in fact, at 10th grade, its overly generous. Public communications are generally written to the 8th grade level (used to be 6th grade), as the average competency in English is not more than that, across all spectra. This is the “lowest common denominator” approach that purports to ensure your message is understood by the widest possible audience, without alienating those whose language skills are above that level.

  97. I send this WUWT link to Prof North and invited him to join this discussion to clarify what he meant. Its possible the student reporter is a CAGWer and purposely misinterpreted what the good Prof. said – a number of times.

  98. I guess that there are no farmers on this forum. The farmer’s test for a hot day is that you can fry an egg on the hood of your pickup truck. Such a standard would give the global warming crowd something substantial to work with. They could report that each of the last five decades added on egg-frying day.

  99. Prof North posted this response to my email to him.
    “Please correct the false impression left on your website. The item in the Texas A&M student newspaper was based on short interviews by phone. While there was no error in fact, the impression left is false. In the interview with me, I was referring to the temperature changes of our planet over the last century (about 0.7 deg C). The author switched abruptly to an interview with Professor Andrew Dessler who was not talking about the temperature over the LAST century but instead the IPCC prediction for temperature over the NEXT century (averaging over models about 3 deg C). I would not have known about this error except that my email box has been unusually loaded with hate mail today.
    Gerald North”
    Reply: I’ve updated the post above to include this response from Professor North. ~ ctm

  100. If the soccer ball had enough “english” in the form of topspin, and it bounced along the way, then angular momentum might convert to an acceleration. Never say never.
    No gain of energy overall, of course.

  101. Cheers ctm.
    When WUWT posts controversial articles the author(s) should be invited to the discussion.

    Reply:
    That would be a lot of work. You did a good job this time. Feel free to do it with every article. If you want I’ll send you my email address. ~ ctm

  102. I have an Aggie co-worker. Hanging on his office wall is a coat hanger with a pair of men’s briefs attached. It is his Aggie briefcase.
    On the other hand, A&M produced more Army officers during WWII than West Point did.

  103. I am delighted to see Gerry North respond. On Real climate and other AGW blogs, the person being discussed is often blocked from posting.
    I am glad to see some students respond that took classes at A&M. My niece has a PHD from A&M and turned out very well.
    If you have a proff on your board for an oral defense of a thesis, I have reason to believe the graduate has a feel for the opinions of North.
    I devoted a lot of time thinking about how men I selected for orals would give me questions.

  104. Unless the writer directly misquoted Professor North, the statements below appear to differ from NCDC and USHCN data.

    “Texas temperatures are going up pretty much like the earth’s temperatures are,” North said. “Generally speaking, the global average temperature changes about the same as in Texas, so it is probably going to be warmer in Texas in the next 50 to 100 years. Last summer was a really hot summer, and while I say that is a fluctuation, it does probably indicate things that we might expect in the next 20 or 30 years. And what you can expect in the next 50 years is that the heat we experienced last summer is going to be the average summer temperature.”

  105. “While there was no error in fact, the impression left is false.”
    Hmmm. So Dan Rather was false but accurate. These guys were accurate but false.
    Nice twist.

  106. Perhaps Dr North should consider not giving short interviews if he thinks he has been misquoted. Would he have fared better after a longer interview?

  107. I’m still waiting to see the correction of the misinformation on the A&M web site. For starters:
    1. Texas has not warmed over the last 100 years.
    2. Texas summers have cooled over the last 100 years
    3. Global temperature increases over the last century have been much smaller than the article indicated.
    4. Global temperature increases so far this century have been negligible. The claims of 3C for the remainder of the century are based on computer models which have shown very little skill so far.

  108. As I type this the offending article at Battalion online remains uncorrected while the posting here at WUWT has been updated to include Professor North’s response to James. I think that says it all. Perhaps Professor North’s email to the Battalion urging them to correct “false impressions” has been lost in cyberspace? I know what impression I’m getting.

  109. “The state of Texas has revamped the hurricane evacuation plan for this year. Folks are now to leave the Houston/Galveston area based upon which college they went to. UT grads take I-10 West. LSU grads take I-10 East. SMU grads take I-45 North, and Aggies take Loop 610.”
    Keep the Engineers close. They’re the ones who will know how to pick up the pieces.

  110. They had a near riot of sports scholarship recipients at TAMU. A rumor was going around that in order to receive a letter in a sport they would have to identify which letter it was.

  111. ctm yep send me your email.
    There is much misinterpretation on the net and it spreads faster than an outback Aussie bushfire. The Prof didn’t take up my offer to join the discussion here (perhaps its sleep time up over where he lives) however appeared grateful that somebody would post his response.
    Debate and critical questions by commentators attracts me to WUWT. Lets hope this place never becomes an echo chamber of complimentary comments.

  112. Roger Sowell:
    “… Abilene, Texas, a small town [population about 120,000] just west of Dallas [184 miles].”
    Well, I guess given the size of Texas, 184 miles is “just” a little distance. I always thought a population of 120,000 meant a fair sized city. On the other hand, Marfa, Texas, /is/ a small town, of less than 1,900, “just west” of Abilene by 345 miles.
    We report, you decide . . . .
    😉

  113. From Prof. North’s response to James Allison:
    “. . . I would not have known about this error except that my email box has been unusually loaded with hate mail today.”

    It would be interesting to know how Prof. North defines “hate mail.” It is hard to believe that WUWT readers would send anything vicious or genuinely hateful.
    /Mr Lynn

  114. The article said the only temp measuring station was at Brenham. Hmmm.
    I remember things there getting unusually warm at times back in the 1950s.

  115. I’m all too familiar with the “Abilene Effect”, as I lived there from birth until college. A few years before I left for school, 2000, there was a drought in Abilene. There were incredibly warm summers (close to 110°F) followed by incredibly cold (I think we actually had a wind chill of -5°F), and late, winters. I always thought it was more of a shift in seasonal weather than anything attributable to anthropogenic global warming. The annual snowfall had normally come between November/December in the 80’s and early 90’s and then shifted to January/February in the late 90’s.
    To you Aggie naysayers:
    I know your bosses phone numbers, they’re in the former student directory.

  116. Mr. Goddard,
    Actually, the charts are correct.
    It is one of interpretation and “cause and affect”.
    Where does one begin?
    The numbers correlate to a cause, Sunspot activity; affect, greenhouse gases provide the buffer against immediate impact as well as Nitrogen and Oxygen..
    Right now greenhouse gases based on various opinions provide a buffer trail behind sunspot activity 5 to 14 years. If Hanson used his chart with greenhouse gases, the would probably correlate.
    The “Devil is in the details and not stopping and starting until one is at least back to the Mini-Ice Age. There are 300 years of sunspot data, historical documentations to piece together an idea of the affect sunspot activity causes on the earth.
    Then there is the Mini-Ice Age documentation and the Medi-evil warming period. The sunspot activity trail draws cold, but based on present historical data, we could almost build the sunspot cycle. Basically, drought period to drought period is a sunspot cycle.
    Most of my work is located at nationalforestlawblog.com, October Newsletter, under my name.
    Key points.
    If one looks at the world annual temperatures, the have leveled off, the chart is missing the last couple of years and the last year shown is a notch down.
    The USA annual winter temps have lost 6 degrees and the annual temps have lost 2 degrees.
    It took 200 years to melt the Fjord glacier of Glacier Bay after the resumption of normal sunspot activity, beginning 1700.
    When the cycles have a low count, fewer hurricanes. NOAA and CSU are going to really eat crow on this hurricane season. The Atlantic has more variables than the Pacific. It took the Pacific nearly 4 months to cook off a couple of tropical storms with all the water currents staying right on the Equator. Not so with the Atlantic. The Atlantic is one big clockwise swirling action with a lot of players.
    Dr. North is probably right about temps for a century ago. The 1800s stayed warm up to end of Gen.Grant’s term in office. By 1911, 30 some years later, Niagara falls froze over. There was one tropical storm in 1914.
    There are five to six general areas I know of today affected by sunspot activity.
    Droughts, lack of sunspot activity. Over a century a one inch difference in precipitation. That is now lost.
    Number of hurricanes and tropical storms. More sunspot activity, more named storms.
    Length of the hurricane season
    More sunspot activity = LONGER.
    Gets meaner and longer as the sunspot cycles get stronger.
    Reduced glacier and Arctic Ice as sunspot activity picks up. That is changing and will be more obvious in the next few years.
    Earthquake activity follows sunspot spot magnetic activity. Since sunspot activity has dropped off, so has earthquakes. Earth’ temperatures.
    We are now in a solar minimum and they las at least two cycles. 30 years of bitter winters ahead.
    Most sincerely,
    Paul Pierett

  117. “James Sexton says:
    […]
    you’re trying to express. (Present company excepted of course.) So, I guess the president thought the American people function at a 10th grade level. What does that tell you about the people he spoke to at his “victory” speech. heh, heh.”
    Germans love him. I guess he gives them the feeling they understand American English.
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/world/us_and_canada/10336934.stm
    95% endorsement. The last German to get such a quote was Erich Honecker, head of the East German SED (Sozialistische Einheitspartei Deutschlands).

  118. Late of me to chime in, I know, but in case Prof North happens to read this far I thought I should make the following points:
    Mr Goddard has done nothing in this piece but accurately report the content of the article in question in the Texas A&M student newspaper and correct the erroneous statements of fact about found therein. It is not generally understood to be the onus upon a reporter to verify third party quotes when they appear, uncontradicted, in the public domain. You will observe that, when you provided contradictory statements he was quick to prominently publish your rejoinder where anyone reading his piece will find it.
    So
    (a) it is not Steven, but the author of the piece in the student newspaper who is at fault, if anyone, of misrepresenting Mr. North’s statements; and
    (b) it is quite unnecessary for Steven or Anthony to “… correct the false impression left on [their] website…”. There is no need to correct accurate statements. In point of fact, their piece here does the only correcting that is called for: of the incorrect statements found in the student newspaper piece.
    (c) and finally, Dr. North, if you feel your reputation has been harmed in this affair I suggest you take the matter up with those at fault — i.e., at the student newspaper — and demand a published correction of fact and impression. I assure you that Anthony and Steven have the highest standards of reportage and, if alerted to such corrections, will see to it that there are any appropriate updates here to reflect such.
    On a separate note, would you please provide a more specific indication of what you refer to as “hate mail” here? How many emails are we talking about, from how many authors? What sort of attacks to they contain?
    As a fellow academic I hold in high regard the free and collegial exchange of ideas, and confess to being impressed at the high standards of discourse within the climate skeptic community as a whole, and of (most!) commenters at WUWT. In contrast I have experienced a general lack of civility on the other side of this debate, for which reason I have stopped regularly visiting sites such as Real Climate and Only In It For the Gold, where dissent is commonly met (by the maintainers of the site — not just anonymous readers!) with ridicule, ad hominem, slander and censoriousness. If you have been receiving any of that I would be surprised if it has any connection to WUWT regulars, but in any case would be interested in what kind of “hate” you feel has been generated by this story.

  119. Dear R. Craigen,
    Having worked public relations from rural village social clubs to the Pentagon, it is up to the Author of the story to verify all the facts, clarify the issues and insure the story can not be miss-interpreted.
    However, journalism has turn sensational, dark and at best disgusting. Case in point, similar to what you have brought forth to the forum, I received a call one day at the Pentagon concerning the story a major publisher/newspaper printed sometime earlier in a news magazine.
    It was full of falsehoods. The follow-up writer asked why didn’t we dispute the story? I said, speaking as a colonel, that is not my job. That is the job of the writer and the editor. If they don’t verify the facts and clearly write the thought in each sentence of the article, they are to blame, not the Pentagon.
    Concerning the issue at hand, I defended the good doctor in my initial comments on one point. The problem lies in the interpretation of data. Smaller sampling has its problems. Broad comments have their problems as well. It is up to the writer to be clear.
    When I worked as the PR at a college, my work was reviewed by the professor for whom I was writing about and my boss. My work carried two approval initials before going to print and filed away. Zero failure rate. Zero challenges.
    As stated in my initial comments about sunspots, I studied my work for a long time and had to start over after a year for I realized NASA was not placing good, unchallenged data on their web site. The same data has made its way to web encyclopedias. Thus, I prefer the raw data and started again from scratch. My work is based on raw and verified data.
    Having published, integrity of the article must be above approach or as some say, above reproach.
    Sincerely,
    Paul Pierett

  120. OK, it’s not A&M, but I did go to an AGGIE school… just in the UC system. U.C.Davis.
    One of the lines we learned was: “UC Davis, where the men are MEN; and the sheep are scared…”
    (One could consider it an off color joke, but given that one Ag major in my dorm had to learn how to use a glove up to his shoulder to ‘turn a calf’ and on another occasion got to ‘milk the bull’, AND we had a herd of cows with glass portholes sewn into their sides so the students could take samples of cud as the cow was processing it… well, if I was a sheep and looked over at those cows I’d be scared too! We won’t talk about the female Ag major who liked to watch the boys cringe when ‘docking male lambs’ of some un-needed glands “the old fashioned way” involving teeth… though I think tequila was involved… and a dare. Never Ever antagonize a female Ag major… but yeah, the sheep were scared…)
    FWIW, one of the “fun electives” was Tractor Driving. I know a high priced SF Lawyer who took that class in his sophomore year. No tequila involved, but a small dare… Now that’s an interesting transcript: Calculus. English Lit. Tractor Driving…

  121. As an Aggie graduate of the Dept of Meteorology (1964, 1968) I have been offended by this posting on the Department’s web site: http://atmo.tamu.edu/weather-and-climate/climate-change-statement. It’s been clear to me that with the reign of Dr. North the school has entered the dark ages and the era of PC. I’m temped to take down my diplomas (BS, MS) and hide then until such time as the Department gets real leadership and returns to educating students in science rather than submitting them to a religious belief in the IPCC.

  122. As I see there are a lot of Texans with degrees in climatology and meteorology, again from Texas. I have a problem with Texas temperature records, maybe some folks here can help to settle the controversy.
    It is frequently asserted by AGW proponents that the station coverage for calculating global temperature index is quite satisfactory, and various attempts are made to show that even lesser number of records is sufficient (for proving AGW I guess). It is frequently referred to works like Hansen and Levedeff (1987) that multiseasonal variations across stations are highly correlated, with correlation of about 0.8. “Tamino” also came out with a pamphlet “The Tale of Two Cities” in 2007, about Oxford and Paris, to show similar results, high time correlation between them.
    (hHre is the used-to be link: http://tamino.wordpress.com/2007/04/11/a-tale-of-two-cities/ The only problem with this piece of Tamino is that there is no sufficient record for Oxford area to compare with accurate Paris records, about which fact I tried to inquire Tamino. I checked today, and the entire article is gone! Fortunately, Google can make wonders, and a cached variant can be still found here: http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:ebSmolLsJSYJ:tamino.wordpress.com/2007/04/11/a-tale-of-two-cities/+a-tale-of-two-cities+Tamino&cd=1&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us ).
    I did a little research across Texas, and found several interesting “tales of two locations”. Take, for example, a station in Ada, and a station in Pauls Valley. Both stations have a 100+ years of record, according to GISS database, the one that is maintained by Hansen himself. If I construct a standard correlation between two time series (using Excel’s standard data analysis tool), I get a good deal of correlation, 0.7658 over 1907-2009 time span. So, it looks like the time for Hansen-Lebedeff-“Tamino” to celebrate grand victory. Actually there should be no surprise with high correlation, because these stations are just 63 km apart, and they see nearly the same weather, and see the same skies, and therefore the same backradiation. The problem however with these two time series is that one station, Pauls Valley, has a clear monotonic warming trend (about +0.7C/century), while the Ada station has a very consistent and monotonic downtrend, about (0.15-0.2C/century). Interestingly, if I take a climatologically-long average (non-overlapping 30-years long) for Ada, I have three data points with linear fit to y=-0.0015x + 2.9591. The funny thing is that R^2 coefficient for this fit is 0.9985, which means a perfect straight line. Nearly perfect.
    There are several pairs of stations with similar counter-trend behavior. My first take on this was that real spacing of stations does not satisfy necessary conditions for Nyquist-Shannon-Kotelnikov sampling theorem, and real spatio-temporal terrain-temperature field requires many more station to calculate global temperature index to any certainty, especially the long-trend part. On the other hand, this counter-trend behavior does not fit into any physical-meteorolical explanation, and definitely not fit with increased back-radiation from more CO2 in air. I tend to think that the entire idea of global index is so flawed that it is not worth any effort to massage data and trends, this is all garbage.
    What do you think, people?

  123. I suggest putting Dr. North’s clarification update ahead of the article so that people can read the rest of the piece in context… yet another press organization (albeit a college one) with an extremely poor application of journalistic ethics mixed with a bit of stupidity.
    If folks are going to email people to complain, make the complaints out to the A&M Administrators responsible for the newspaper. In a few years, the kids writing this junk are going to be the AP reporters trained to write junk and the road back to an unbiased press will be that much longer.

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