What Will the Climate Climb-Down Look Like?

Guest post by Harold Ambler of “Talking about the weather

Climbing down is seldom anything less than complicated.

Here’s something that you can bring to the bank: With regard to global warming, the major purveyors of news in the industrialized world will be climbing down from their various versions of frenzied alarmism. Here’s something else that you can bring to your banker: the climb-down will be sneaky. On the other hand, when the series of editorial re-positionings is visible to casual members of the public at all, it will be beyond awkward.

How do I know? Because the process has already begun.

When in 2009 Arianna Huffington approved my piece about the merits of skeptical climate science, the HuffPo was attempting to get a start on its own climb-down. As I had written to Huffington, more than once, and heard back from her personally, more than once, I knew that she had considered my argument that it was not a question of whether the big news dogs would have to eat a little humble pie on climate but rather when. Huffington’s response was to publish “Mr. Gore: Apology Accepted.” It is safe to say that she badly underestimated two things: (1) the amount of traffic that the article would receive and (2) the amount of pressure that would be applied to her for the heretical decision to publish it. As for the former, the piece remains the third-most e-mailed blogger piece in HuffPo history. This, despite the fact that “Apology Accepted” was removed from the front end of the site. (Google searching the story still calls it up.) Within hours of being put up on HuffPo, the article had gone viral (to the extent that a climate piece can). Eventually, the piece wound up being translated into dozens of languages, getting cited by television pundits, and being published in part in The Wall Street Journal and The National Review Online, among many other places.

You could argue that the tempest in a teakettle was representative of the surprise – and in some cases horror – that a solidly left-leaning American media outlet like the HuffPo had betrayed its own principles. You can also see, especially in retrospect, how the global warming alarm industry was rightly perceived as vulnerable, standing, as it were, on quivering legs above the precipice of truth. This was the news in the brief, but red-hot, global response to a lone blog article: maybe the climb-down would happen faster than even the most hopeful skeptics could have imagined.

That’s when the second thing that Huffington underestimated – the storm of protest from her own camp – came into play. Whatever was said to her publicly, and privately, was enough to induce her to disavow knowing anything about me, or having read my piece at all. Again, however, she had already corresponded with me by e-mail more than once by this time. My final e-mail to her, prior to publication, was this:

Hi Arianna. Happy New Year! I have written a 2,000-word piece on why Al Gore is wrong about climate. May it increase your enjoyment of the New Year so much that you feel compelled to publish it!

All the best,

Harold Ambler

Arianna’s response:

Many thanks, Harold. I’m CCing our blog editor, David Weiner to coordinate. All the best, Arianna.

Three days later, however, Huffington had a sudden change of heart, issuing a statement that included the following:

When Ambler sent his post, I forwarded it to one of our associate blog editors to evaluate, not having read it. I get literally hundreds of posts a week submitted like this and obviously can’t read them all — which is why we have an editorial process in place. The associate blog editor published the post. It was an error in judgment. I would not have posted it. Although HuffPost welcomes a vigorous debate on many subjects, I am a firm believer that there are not two sides to every issue, and that on some issues the jury is no longer out. The climate crisis is one of these issues.

The key word in understanding Huffington’s original acceptance and later misstatements is “coordinate.” If you’re going to take her word for not having read the piece you have to argue that “coordinate” means read and evaluate. This would mean that a busy editor is delegating authority, rather than exercising it, and runs counter to any reasonable reading of Huffington’s message. If she were to delegate authority to an underling for deciding whether to publish what was a potentially scandalous piece, she would not do so in view of the writer. What “coordinate” clearly means, in the context of the warm phrase “many thanks,” is “I have green-lighted this, and the editor I’m cc’ing is going to do be the one to get your piece up and on the site.”

What could get a high-powered editor to move from friendly acceptance to public disavowal in three days’ time? My own theory is that it was the threatened withdrawal of her blog’s funding. (Huffington declined to respond to repeated requests for comment for this article.)

It is highly unlikely that any media outlet will be able to compete with The Huffington Post for awkward climb-downs on climate, after this particular debacle. But, strange as it may seem today, even Huffington’s website will have to honor its master’s flickering epiphany of early 2009, and step away from the global warming cant prevalent during the past two decades. Having been first to the skeptic party among liberal media players, The Huffington Post will now, after its hasty departure, likely be the last to return. So, which publication will be next, and what kind of rhetorical outfit will it put on?

Climate skeptic bloggers like to suggest, in an effort at comedy, that media outlets warning of a global meltdown will casually ease themselves back into the journalistic garb of “a manmade ice age is nigh.” The idea here is that, whenever possible, writers and editors will prefer to skip the skeptics’ ball altogether. If the prognostications of Russian solar physicist Habibullo Abdussamatov and others like him, predicting a solar-driven descent into cooler temperatures during the next few decades, prove to be correct, this seems likely. Pointing to the shift in direction of the global mean temperature and asserting that “it’s mankind’s fault, we were right all along, only it’s going to be dangerously cold,” is likely to be the dress worn by The New York Times, for one. For the Times has been shifting out of warming and cooling scare story gowns for more than a hundred years. Whoever else in the media world has been especially wrong about global warming is likely to put on this same dress, too. A brief list of outlets that have made a name for themselves in global warming alarmism: The Weather Channel, NBC News, CBS News, ABC News, NPR, PBS, the BBC, The Washington Post, The Los Angeles Times, Newsweek, Time, and, last but not least, my former employer: The New Yorker. This last takes great pride in getting the facts right, and yet has gotten the central fact about Earth’s climate, that it is cyclical and has been cooling since several thousand years ago, wrong.

When The New York Times Magazine published a long story about Freeman Dyson last year, it was arguably the start of a down-climb on the part of the newspaper as a whole. Howls of scorn were heard throughout the media world over the piece. It turns out, when it comes to climate, that such agonized sounds are the tell-tale signs that the journalists have gotten something right. Since the piece about Dyson, of course, the Times, led by Tom Friedman, Paul Krugman, and Andy Revkin, has returned to the position that if it’s weather and it’s bad, then it was caused by global warming.

If past experience is any guide, when the Times’ climb-down eventually begins in earnest, most people will barely notice. But you will!

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183 thoughts on “What Will the Climate Climb-Down Look Like?

  1. Actually, it will be interesting to watch Charles Johnson at LGF climb down. He has flipped into insane raving anti-republican, pro AGW mode over the past two years. Things used to be rational at his site and investigative of the facts behind stuff, but he has taken too much of something a year or two years ago and has gone of the deep end. Oh well. I wish him a rapid recovery from his current state of mind.

  2. That picture at the top of the post reminded me of a particularly nasty surprise I had while back county skiing in the Wallowa Mountains of NE Oregon. In no way, snow on
    the ground or not was I prepared to go down that chute. Trouble was the climb back
    was a killer too. So, climbing out of a self made hole isn’t fun either, and I think that is where the warmists are at now…

  3. Any young thrusting Journo’s out there, who can’t wait to knock well ensconced lazy environmental correspondents of their lofty perch?
    Make a name for yourself.It will be like shooting fish in a barrel.

  4. I am not so sure about the “sneaky climb down”. They may keep up the drum beat as they know that most folks are relatively innumerate, the quantitative equivalent of illterate. Good example this morning on NPR where they tried to make a case for the Dutch continuing increase in height of their citizens while the USA has stalled out somewhat as being due to the socialized medicine of the Netherlands and Holland. No mention was made of the fact that to be a Dutch citizen one must be born of Dutch parents, period! Does not matter how long other nationalities have lived in Dutch territory or where they were born. While in the USA we have accepted immigrants since the late 1800’s from many countries with poor nutrition (that’s why many came here) and shorter stature, genetically (possibly due to poor nutrition adaptations), and made them citizens of our country.
    If one were to do the study asking the question as to how much taller or shorter people in the USA and Dutch countries are than their parents, grandparents, etc. one might get a different answer.
    Figures lie and liers figure and I don’t see that changing much though WUWT is doing great service by exposing the lies and hopefully educating those who are capable of understanding.

  5. Harry:
    Nicely stated. However, I think any climb down will be extremely slow and heavily camouflaged by an increased focus on a host of other somewhat related environmental issues like water resources, carbon soot, methane and above all “excess” population. In the meantime, any upticks in the rate of glacier retreats, hurricanes, sea level will be used to sustain the image of the earth with a temperature. Too much money, ego, reputation and political capital is at risk.

  6. Harold, enjoyed your post and agree, in fact Im sure it has already started. Look at the rush to rename. Looking forward to Anthonys article on the temperature measurement stations as I think that will creat another big stir of the pot! Say Harold, is that a picture from the top of old army pass above the cottonwood lakes? It looks very familiar.

  7. The BBC will be in a crisis. Every story has to have a global warming angle to it, and if it is a quiet news day, they pad out their bulletins with press releases from Greenpeace, WWF etc

  8. Another question is this: How will skeptics handle the collapse of alarmism? I, for one, am in no mood to be nice. My career, my social life, and my sanity have been harmed by vicious attacks by alarmists. I’m not going to forget that.

  9. ShrNfr says:
    October 25, 2010 at 10:19 am
    Actually, it will be interesting to watch Charles Johnson at LGF climb down. He has flipped into insane raving anti-republican, pro AGW mode over the past two years. Things used to be rational at his site and investigative of the facts behind stuff, but he has taken too much of something a year or two years ago and has gone of the deep end. Oh well. I wish him a rapid recovery from his current state of mind.
    Agreed. I have been called every name in the book on LGF. A certain gent by the handle of LudwigvanQuixote is particularly vocal about AGW and says he is a physicist. He claims billions will die if we don’t act immediately. Yes billions with a “b”.
    Rational discussion does not take place there only name calling.

  10. I seriously doubt most alarmists will ever admit doubt – its a religion to them and having doubt is like losing one’s faith. Media outlets will begin publishing more articles that express doubt, but these articles will not be by the established alarmists. For the most part I think that most people will just forget (eventually) there was ever a debate.
    You will also see several types of deflection: Its Global Warming, no wait its Climate Change, no wait its Climate Disruption… And you will see more and more emphasis on things CAUSED by use of fossil fuels like Ocean Acidification, or amphibian die-offs. I am surprised that haven’t blame the bat die-off (White Nose Syndrom) on fossil fuels (or perhaps they have and I just missed it).
    In any case, most media outlets have lost any chance at trust they once may have had. When I see something on CBS or CNN (which hardly occurrs anymore as I don’t tend to ever watch them) I just assume its total spin (i.e. wrong) until and unless I hear about from a channel I trust – then it may be worth looking into. I can hardly read news magazines anymore as they simply lack any factual news – everything is intermixed with opinions of the writer, staff, and organization. Whatever happened to reporting the facts and letting the reader decide?

  11. I think many would like to climb down, but they can’t. They’ve too much invested. Money, credibility, and time. They’re desperately seeking a different avenue, but there’s no back door to sneak out. I think most, will go the way Charles Johnson has gone.(as ShrNfr points out)
    I know I’m not the only one that has noticed the attempts to tie the skeptics to the TEA party movement in the U.S. These are the conspiratorial leaps one must take when your world view is destroyed in front of you and you lack the fortitude of introspection. It will only get worse and less coherent as we play along. It won’t be as much as a “climb down” as a leap bore out of desperation like a jumper from a burning skyrise or a push.

  12. Not to worry Harold there is always ‘biodiversity’ to take off where CAGW/GCD left off and as CAGW was always merely a vehicle then the switch will be simple to engineer.
    Funnily enough the prime mouthpiece for the CAGW alarmism the BBC has already been pimping the new paradigm already, out goes the IPCC and in comes the…er…insert funny acronym here…biodiversity band waggon which by some strange coincidence has the same ultimate goals as the CAGW band waggon.
    So we are not going to boil and drown and catch fire and starve after all BUT the planet species will become extinct etc etc so hand over all your freedoms and money and er shut up. Looks like they have swapped their Trabbant for a Lada?

  13. Mr. Ambler says…
    It is highly unlikely that any media outlet will be able to compete with The Huffington Post for awkward climb-downs on climate, after this particular debacle.
    I strongly disagree with this very optimistic assessment. I expect we shall see many more awkward reversals. We’ll enjoy lots of fun. Prepare to make popcorn.

  14. I think this ignores the vast amount of funds flowing on the back of this. The wind farms and carbon credits and increasing energy bills across the developed world are going to complicate the climbdown. There are an awful lot of people hired for nothing more than their views on global warming.
    In my view this is unique because of the funding. When the funds were flowing freely a lot of people agreed for differing reasons. The funds dry up and the infighting will have to begin. It has been made profitable for a lot of big business to back this, but it is hard to see that financing being maintained for a long time to come. These are rational people, and when contracts start getting rengotiated – as solar contracts are starting to do so now – this may well be driven to a brutal legal conclusion.

  15. Sorry Anthony, Im obviously anticipating the results. If the maintenance, accuracy, interpretation of results, etc. is anything like the work we have previously seen coming from the alarmists then I expect your report to be somewhat damning to them. Im sure there are many of us out here eager to peruse it.

  16. I think the climb-down is going to be a long, long process. There are SO many egos involved.
    On the political front – I think attitudes will probably change when personnel change. It’s hard for people to admit they were wrong – particularly politicians.
    The media might turn around sooner, but they’ll need a scapegoat. They’ll need to find someone to blame for misleading them.

  17. Unfortunately, you give the MSM the benefit of the doubt about having the self awareness to be embarrassed. Keep in mind, they’re operating from the mindset that most people have the attention span of a gnat, and rarely, if ever, let the facts or the truth get in the way of the fashionable meme of the day. I doubt there will be so much as a published ‘whoopsies!” from all but a few of the major news outlets mentioned. Because the whole ‘kerfuffle’ is just so last week and all.

  18. Remember the Y2K Bug?
    Remember how we were told over and over that we passed the point of no return and all the major banks were going to melt down?
    Then about 1 year before it was to happen, the news changes to, “It may not be so bad after all.” Most people are stupid and didn’t catch on to the the fact that the news media did NOT really report the true facts. UNIX uses a binary number to calculate dates and does NOT have a Y2K bug and for MACs, it’s the same thing. Most people didn’t know that the Y2K bug only existed in BCD date calculations and only those that use two BCD digits for the year.
    Funny how we seem to repeat the same mistakes of the past OR is it the news media and others use hype and lies to generate a panic?

  19. I am astonished that investigative journalists have not exposed the AGW scam. In the UK only the courageous Christopher Booker has championed the cause of science. One presumes editorial or owners’ control have prevented more balanced coverage. The BBC is of course beyond hope.

  20. Is not the down-climb apparent in Holdren’s statement regarding “climate disruption” when neither “the coming ice age” nor “out-of-control global warming” worked for him.
    The hardcore political ideologues behind the entire CO2-causes-climate-change movement are getting desperate. They need to get their agenda codified before the majority realizes what “environmental justice” really means.
    A slow, managed decline by the once vociferous will buy them time to push the agenda past the finish line and provide soft references from which they will try to save face. They should all be called on the carpet. As Frank Lee said here at 10:48 “I, for one, am in no mood to be nice.”

  21. Like many intellectual wannabes, Ambler holds out the NYTs as the benchmark for truth or worse for authority. This willingness to defer to received wisdom in place of the hard work of personal reasoning is a hallmark of insubstantial men.

  22. Maybe someone should have a word in Cameron’s shell-like, as at the CBI conference today he has reinforced his position on “green” jobs, and ludicrously expensive (and poitless) windfarms. The British public are stuck with this idiot for another four years (unless the coalition self destructs, which is quite possible), THEN you have the spectre of Miliband and his leftie cronies looming on the horizon, and it was his idea to kill the UK economy stone dead in the first place.
    So any “climbdown” really needs to be vociferous and forceful, followed by a loud reversal, otherwise these idiots holding the pursestrings will never get the message.

  23. I doubt we’ll see an actual climb down – the major media have adopted many “we’re all gonna die!” memes, and have never admitted error when we didn’t.
    For example – off the top of my head –
    DDT?
    Global cooling?
    Mathusian resource economics?
    Acid Rain?
    The ozone hole?
    Global Warming?
    Sarah Palin ? 🙂
    These issues just disappear from the headlines – no apologies, no mea culpas, just on to the next scare.

  24. Looks like Mt. Whitney, California. Eastern part of the peak looking down.
    That is Iceberg Lake in the lower left.
    The easy climb down is to the far right out of the picture. The hard climb
    down is to the left. The shoes on the foot show the climber wants the
    hard climb down. Turn 160 degrees left and walk back about 500 meters
    and take the Mountaineers Route down. Less difficult, but still lots of
    fun.

  25. The liberal media had a similar problem when the Berlin Wall fell and the Soviet Union collapsed. For decades during the cold war they had insisted that detente was necessary because communism and the Soviet Union were here to stay, were armed with nuclear weapons, and so had to be placated and accommodated. Reagan was an idiot and a fool to call the Soviet Union an evil empire, etc., — anybody who was reading or listening to the mass media back then remembers what the liberal and progressive party line used to be. Then current events — the way the Soviet Union so thoroughly lost the cold war — revealed this attitude and its associated policies to be complete foolishness. As I remember the basic response of the media establishment, it was almost complete silence on the editorial pages while events unfolded. During this time there was a brief era of objective news reporting. (After all, so many interesting and unforeseen historical events were happening.) Then, after a year or so of avoiding the subject, the establishment editorialists succeeded in pretending they had known all along that the Soviet Union would collapse and lose the cold war. They did not even touch on the issue of how they had given aid and comfort to the other side while the cold war was on — how, for example, the establishment media had led the charge in opposing the Vietnam war during the late 1960s and early 1970s and then in opposing the so-called Star Wars missile-defense systems during the 1980s. All that just disappeared from view, and it became vaguely rude and ill mannered even to bring this sort of stuff up in conversation. The changeover in the overall media narrative displayed how to use the Orwellian memory hole on a massive scale, and it was quite breathtaking in its way. By the time of Reagan’s death the media establishment had succeeded in convincing themselves that they had known all along that he was a great president. The liberal politicians and media establishment never had to accept any blame for how they had behaved during the cold war.

  26. Four things must happen. 1) The Climategate whistle blower must be revealed. (Where are you, Keith Briffa?) 2) Shooting holes in the AGW hypothesis is not enough. The media has to have a competitive theory to move towards. Svensmark’s will do nicely after results of the CLOUD Project are released by CERN. 3) The Alarmists must lose their last icon, the Arctic ice. 4) Simple cooler weather for the next few years is a must. In fact, if we DON’T see cooler temps soon, we’ll be the ones with cognitive dissonance.
    This should all occur within the next two years. Then we will all have to find something else to obsess about.

  27. . A certain gent by the handle of LudwigvanQuixote is particularly vocal about AGW and says he is a physicist. He claims billions will die if we don’t act immediately.

    I completely agree. Billions are going to die….eventually.

  28. Frank Lee says:
    October 25, 2010 at 10:48 am
    Another question is this: How will skeptics handle the collapse of alarmism? I, for one, am in no mood to be nice. My career, my social life, and my sanity have been harmed by vicious attacks by alarmists. I’m not going to forget that.
    Agreed. Forgive yes, forget.. NEVER!

  29. there will be no “climb down.”
    I see two scenarios:
    1) over the next 10 years alarmists manage to push through legislation restricting energy production and consumption, massively increasing energy costs and slowing economic growth. the trivial decrease in CO2 emissions will correspond with cooling temperatures and the alarmists will claim “victory” over how they “saved us all just in the nick of time.” the damage having been done, they will move on to the next crisis.
    or 2) falling temperatures will result in cries of “thank gaia that natural processes have temporarily halted the man-made increase in temperatures. this buys us valuable time to get our act together before warming returns worse than before.” then proceed with scenario #1.
    alarmists are incapable of recognizing as legitimate any view but their own. under no circumstances will they ever acknowledge ANY error for they cannot be wrong. their beliefs are not based on objectively measured facts or observations; they are based upon faith. those who are unbelievers are labeled as heretics, considered mentally damaged, and must be eliminated.
    for, in the end, human nature has not changed. sacrifices to the gods, witch hunts, genocide, the atrocities of Hitler, islamic extremism…it’s all expressions of the same human nature of zealous beliefs.

  30. Phrases like these will start to appear and the translation.
    ‘we had to be guided by what the scientist’s were saying’ = ‘it’s not our fault it was the guys in the lab coats who got it wrong’
    ‘there always was a broad band of possible outcomes’ = ‘everything from ice age to fiery Armageddon, we presented them all’
    ‘we took a measured view of the science’ = ‘we measured what would make the scariest headlines’
    ‘we presented the sceptic side’ = ‘we got a AGW believer to set out his version of the sceptic side and then knock it down’
    ‘we regularly invited guest sceptic articles’ = ‘we included sceptic articles so we could sneer at the author and hint he/she had connections with Big Oil’
    ‘we were one of the van guard of scepticism’ = ‘we did a really big sceptic section a few months ago’
    ‘we investigated the sceptic claims but we didn’t want to publish until we were sure’ = ‘we were nowhere’
    ‘we supported the sceptical argument where we could’ = ‘our carbon offset bank backers wouldn’t let us’
    ‘the scentists were convincing, charismatic people’ = ‘we thought they were so square they couldn’t possibly be wrong’
    and many more…

  31. A more interesting question would be when will the last pseudoskeptic cease to proclaim every snowflake as the start of the next ice-age? Will it be when the global mean temperature is a degree higher, perhaps in 2050? Or will they then have changed the argument to how wonderful Canadian podsols are for agriculture? Surely the last bleat that reality contradicts the second law of thermodynamics must come before the global mean temperature rises three degrees, perhaps by the end of this century.

  32. Climbing down is not sufficient to overcome the harm caused by the acolytes of AGW.
    When lawyers violate their ethical standards they are disbarred. Medical doctors loose their license when they are incompetent. Government contractors are debarred when they cheat, steal or lie. But, there are no means of disciplining journalists, politicians, and scientists for their misdeeds committed while promoting the fraudulent AGW hypothesis.
    Journalists will continue to get a free pass. Politicians can be voted out of office, but that process is lengthy and uncertain. Scientists on the other hand should be debarred from receiving government research grants. They are also subject to discipline within their academies, but this outcome is neither certain nor likely.
    VA AG Cuccinelli efforts are groundbreaking. He is investigating potential fraudulent claims and misuse of research grants by Mann during his employment at U VA. If the investigation results in a successful prosecution under state law (federal law is equivalent), it would establish useful way to discredit and punish similar conduct by those who have pushed the AGW agenda with fraudulent misrepresentations based upon their work.
    Bad actors must suffer consequences for their misdeeds.

  33. Humans are very adaptable creatures, inhabiting all climatic zones from tropics to Arctic.
    Do not underestimate their capacity to overcome a minor inconvenience such as changing tune on AGW. Most of the AGW scientists are not stupid, they are well aware that CO2 story is a dodgy item, but it provids funds, put selected few on the pedestal and the rest flocked for a free lunch.
    Nevertheless it will be entertaining to watch gradual transformation, which sceptics may welcome at their peril, sidelined and inconsequent. We shall forgive but not forget!

  34. There will be those who just change horses and go the other way. Ehrlich and Sneider, (and others) who were beating the drum of the coming ice age because of human pollution had no trouble switching to the burning up of the planet will destroy the earth’s delicate ecology. Now, deliciously, they (except for the recently departed Schneider) can say they were right 40 yrs ago, the ice age cometh- it was just interrupted by a delaying natural climate cycle and now it’s is going to be worse than we thought.

  35. Eric Dailey says:
    October 25, 2010 at 11:18 am
    “Like many intellectual wannabes, Ambler holds out the NYTs as the benchmark for truth or worse for authority. This willingness to defer to received wisdom in place of the hard work of personal reasoning is a hallmark of insubstantial men.”
    Don’t you kids learn to read these days anymore? The article is about how the media will react. You know, reading is not just telling an A from a B. It also involves a process called comprehending.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comprehension

  36. Watermelons will attach themselves to any anti-capitalist, anti-globalisation meme they can and will prostitute themselves for the price of support in that. They have no shame and will never give up. To them, winning an argument only requires them to slam a door behind them before returning with a different tack to start again. What drives them? Goodness knows, but they are the curse of my generation.
    And the future fights? Watch out for biodiversity, habitat loss, species extinction, water resources. And the bogey man? Soaring human population.

  37. James Evans says:
    October 25, 2010 at 11:06 am
    I think the climb-down is going to be a long, long process. There are SO many egos involved….
    What goes up must come down
    spinning wheel got to go round
    Talking about your troubles it’s a crying sin
    Ride a painted pony
    Let the spinning wheel spin….

    And….those who climbed up so high they believed they were in heaven!
    Those of the “Pebbles’ Universe” (Dr.Fred Flinstone et Al.), those who wanted to scare kids with those horror tales of black holes , dark matter, Big-Bangs, entangled n-dimensional strings, etc., etc, from the realm of the never more…..
    We are living in interesting times indeed!,
    Buy more popcorn!!

  38. Gareth Evans says:
    October 25, 2010 at 11:25 am
    “Biodiversity is the new big one. Delingpole’s on the case already.”
    Guess the next Peace Nobel is booked. Who will do the Gore part?

  39. Harold Ambler,
    Your post was a pleasurable read. Thanks.
    I would have recommended that you should have included a closing remark urging all to document well the detailed scenario that played out leading to the ongoing demise of the pseudo-scientific alarmist claims by AGW-by-CO2 supporters.
    What has played out in the blogosphere does need to be constantly summarized, consolidated and chronicled. It is needed because the next ideological environment apocalypse program that is hatched can be debunked using the same template that was used to debunk AGW-by-CO2 pseudo-science.
    We still need a ton more posts, articles and books to document what has and still is occurring with the alarmist AGW-by-CO2 supporters.
    The fat lady ain’t singing yet . . . .
    John

  40. @mkelly I am now officially a persona non gratia at LGF. Charles kicked me out for pointing out that the “witch doctor” picture of Obama was really a picture of a guy from New Guinea in his sunday best with Obama’s face photoshopped in and that native healers have added greatly to our knowledge of medicine. Anyway, I could care less about his comic book collection. I won’t diagnose Charles, but manic depressive does come to mind.

  41. John Whitman says:
    October 25, 2010 at 12:06 pm
    What has played out in the blogosphere does need to be constantly summarized, consolidated ….
    Historians should do that. WUWT has made history.

  42. Richard Telford presumes to be the arbiter of who is a skeptic, and who is a “pseudoskeptic.”
    It is that kind of insufferable pomposity that distinguishes scientific skeptics from eco-alarmists.
    The job of skeptics is to falsify hypotheses, and WRT the CO2=CAGW hypothesis, skeptics have done an outstanding job. No wonder Richard is miffed.

  43. richard telford says:
    October 25, 2010 at 11:41 am
    “Surely the last bleat that reality contradicts the second law of thermodynamics must come before the global mean temperature rises three degrees, perhaps by the end of this century.”
    Tell that to the cotton.

  44. #
    #
    Wind Rider says:
    October 25, 2010 at 11:06 am
    “Because the whole ‘kerfuffle’ is just so last week and all.”
    ##
    I think you nailed it!

  45. I believe Al Gore and James Hansen have attempted to stampede people into giving them lots of money.
    I predict that they will both be very unhappy.
    Others have joined in that chorus.
    I do not see any kind of graceful climb-down. Rather, I see the bottom dropping out.

  46. DirkH says:
    October 25, 2010 at 11:51 am
    “The article is about how the media will react. ”
    No DirkH,
    this article is about Harold Ambler. Comprehend that.

  47. Even though warmistas tend to shun this site (and others), the “participation” of such counter-intuitive but agendized individuals is also a harbinger of the “circling of the wagons” in the climate-control crowd.
    Ensconcing oneself in a bunker (metality or other) only leads to desperate acts. We can expect the shrillness to continue for some time as the hand-wringers figure out a new angle of approach to the gravy-train of grants. It is all part of a game in which we are but pawns. Although, every once in a while, a pawn can take down a king in the endgame and win the match.

  48. …and so, having used up their precious stocks of gullibility in one wild orgy, the crew of the Good Ship AGW set out across the ocean, in search of another supply of those rich, fragrant funds on which they have come to depend. With crudely-drawn maps they plough the waves in search of such legends as old sailors speak of — the South Sea Methane Bubble, the Sea of Acidity — and now and again a hoarse cry comes from the lookout in the crow’s nest:
    “Thar she blows! Grant Councils hard a-port!”
    But the shy creatures of the sea have become too cunning to be caught by their crude methods, and time and again, with tattered sails and leaky hull, the ship limps back to port with an empty hold.
    ‘Tis said she still floats, off the coast of Maine, and on a still night you can hear Mad Cap’n Hansen and Skipper Gore arguing over the compass bearing:
    “Tis three degrees, I tell ‘ee!” “Nay, ’tis four!” “‘Tis five!” “‘Tis six!”
    …while the needle spins wildly round its pivot and the waters lap about their ankles. But ’tis not the sea that rises: ’tis the ship that sinks.

  49. @richard telford
    Richard Feynman, if he were alive, would place CAGW consensus firmly in the “Cargo Cult” branch of science.

  50. I would suggest all of them to retire to an Ashram among the Himalayas “melting glaciers”. Think “Patchy” could help them…….Peace and Love!

  51. The end will come when the majority of the population laugh at the global warming idiots every time they start talking.
    People know when they are being taken for a ride. For example, last week the British Comprehensive Spending Review contained a hidden section of small print which put a carbon tax on electricity generators of 11%. This will have a major impact as the multi-billion pound tax is passed on to every consumer in the country, though, strangely, no ruling party politician, Government Minister, or civil servant even bothered to mention it. The tax, we were eventually informed, is to be used “to fight climate change”.
    OK, so we have a new tax inflicted on us (by stealth) because of supposed “man-made global warming”.
    Then, a few days later we are told this …
    25th October 2010
    “Britain braves coldest October night for 17 years as mercury plummets below freezing up and down the country.
    “Given the unexpectedly cold nights Britain has been enduring over the last few days, you’d be forgiven for thinking it was January instead of October. It will come as no surprise then that the wintry conditions made last night the coldest in October for 17 years in some regions.
    “Temperatures in West Freugh in south-west Scotland dipped to a bone-rattling -5.2ºC, falling below the previous record of -5.1ºC which was endured in October 1993. But it was even colder in Sennybridge, south Wales, where the mercury dropped to -6.4ºC, beating the -6.2ºC record set 13 years ago in 1997.
    An cold autumn morning at Loch Leven
    “Met Office spokesman Charlie Powell said: “Last night was the coldest in Sennybridge for 17 years and was very cold everywhere. It was well below freezing across the bulk of the UK.” The outlook for this week is marginally better, with temperatures picking up slightly, although it will remain cold.”
    … You have to wonder how stupid these global warming eco-fascists think we are.

  52. If a climbdown is to come then it will only be in the face of overwhelming evidence against AGW . . . . . what will that look like? Incontrovertible proof that the recent temperature record is inaccurate and there has actually been no warming? Or, a cooling trend that extends beyond 30 years? That’s quite a long sit, since at best we are only 10 years into something like temperature stability. However, it’s possible that the recent warming trend is natural and will continue for several hundred years more . . . how will that play out in terms of a climbdown . . . it won’t, because the proof against AGW won’t be visible in such a scenario unless our understanding of climate change is dramatically improved – which is possible . . . . In the absence of hard evidence that the recent temperature record is wrong, the road to an AGW climbdown looks long, winding and ill tempered to me . . . .

  53. “What Will the Climate Climb-Down Look Like?”

    This is the post I have been waiting for.
    Most regular visitors to WUWT where aware the climdown started just after Climategate. We noticed the stages which the “Hottists” went through – “appeal to authority” then “compromise” then “anger”. Even the BBC reviewed its “From Seesaw To Wagon Wheel” policy about climate imartiality. I have noticed the BBC have reduced the number of phrases saying “climate change” with almost every story related to the environment.

  54. It’s somewhat hilarious that the same people who are ever so terrified of climate change don’t seem to have a problem with trying to change the climate back so it fits a manipulated statistical average.

  55. Ref Climbing Down. Take a long, hard look at Judy Curry’s “Climate etc” site. Current theme? Hard-working scientists of impeccable rectitude misinterpreted and abused by political influences, the Media and their own unworldliness.

  56. Here is some of the Climb-Down.
    “WHAT HAPPENED TO GLOBAL WARMING?” [BBC!]
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/8299079.stm
    Here is some early insight:
    “It is absolutely not the BBC’s job to save the planet,” warned Newsnight editor Peter Barron at the Edinburgh Festival last month.
    Head of TV news Peter Horrocks, writing in the BBC News website’s editors’ blog, commented: “It is not the BBC’s job to lead opinion or proselytise on this or any other subject.”
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/6979596.stm
    Blog of Doom [now ceased]
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/climatechange/strange_but_true/

  57. Unfortunately, it matters what The New York Times has to say about climate. The paper’s collective knowledge on the subject may be sparse, but that hasn’t prevented it from carrying a vast amount of water for the AGW movement for a long time.

  58. richard telford says:
    October 25, 2010 at 11:41 am
    ‘… Surely the last bleat that reality contradicts the second law of thermodynamics must come before the global mean temperature rises three degrees, perhaps by the end of this century.”
    Reality never contradicts the 1st or 2nd law, but man sometimes willfully ignores them. The updated KT drawing claims .9 W/m^2 more than the input. Extra heat, missing heat, hiding heat all examples of a violation of 1st and 2nd laws. All things in the universe want to get to the lowest energy state. A lower energy state says entropy is increasing. i.e. disorderliness. S>Q/T would be violated if back radiation from CO2 can heat the surface of the earth.

  59. There are some AGW proponents that will _never_ climb down. One can imagine them stood at the end of the Mississippi Glacier watching it calve into the Gulf of Mexico saying “when this lot melts its going to get really hot!”.

  60. The BBC has been mentioned several times here, and it should be pointed out that their coverage of climate change has been heavily criticized to the point of a new directive being forced upon all their editors from on high. Look at this report:
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    13 Oct 2010
    BBC told to ensure balance on climate change.
    Climate change sceptics are likely to be given greater prominence in BBC documentaries and news bulletins following new editorial guidelines that call for impartiality in the corporation’s science coverage.
    The BBC has been repeatedly accused of bias in its reporting of climate change issues. Last year one of its reporters, Paul Hudson, was criticised for not reporting on some of the highly controversial “Climategate” leaked emails from the University of East Anglia, even though he had been in possession of them for some time. Climate change sceptics have also accused the BBC of not properly reporting “Glaciergate”, when a study from the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) saying that glaciers would melt by 2035 was discredited.
    But the BBC’s new editorial guidelines, published yesterday after an extensive consultation that considered over 1,600 submissions by members of the public, say expressly for the first time that scientific issues fall within the corporation’s obligation to be impartial.
    “The BBC must be inclusive, consider the broad perspective, and ensure that the existence of a range of views is appropriately reflected,” said BBC trustee Alison Hastings. “In addition the new guideline extends the definition of ‘controversial’ subjects beyond those of public policy and political or industrial controversy to include controversy within religion, science, finance, culture, ethics and other matters.”
    In 2007, a BBC Trust report called “Safeguarding Impartiality in the 21st Century” said: “Climate change is another subject where dissenters can be unpopular … The BBC has held a high-level seminar with some of the best scientific experts, and has come to the view that the weight of evidence no longer justifies equal space being given to the opponents of the consensus. But these dissenters (or even sceptics) will still be heard, as they should, because it is not the BBC’s role to close down this debate.”
    The BBC Trust is also currently conducting a separate review into impartiality in the corporation’s science coverage, led by Professor Steve Jones from University College London, which will report in the spring of 2011. Professor Jones has been asked to consider whether the BBC’s output “gives appropriate weight to scientific conclusions including different theories and due weight to the views expressed by those sceptical about the science and how it was conducted or evaluated.”
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    BBC producers are in a bind about this. They have a fanatical devotion to AGW, and yet are now being ORDERED to balance their “man-made global warming” messages and bulletins with heretical inputs from sceptics. What are they to do? Simple. Don’t mention any phrase which links any events (especially weather events) with “climate change”, “global warming”, or man-made carbon dioxide because that would trigger an automatic right-to-reply from the sceptics. And that’s why they’ve become very quiet on the “global warming” front. They still allude to “climate change”, of course, but the days of letting the “global warming” mob run rampant all over BBC TV and radio channels unchallenged are well and truly over.

  61. I really DO have a profound admiration for the Japanese.
    Anthony, I believe you are a pretty well educated fellow, both in Weather, climate, and dare I guess CULTURE!
    Now it is little remembered that over 1000 Japanese military officers “did the honorable thing” on the steps of the Imperial Palace in the month after the war was over. (Special guards eventually were posted to try to intercept the remainder as it was getting to be a problem, even health wise, all the “bio-essense” left in that small area…)
    I would humbly suggest that the “Al Gore” side are going to “lose face” in a major way in the next year or two. A variety of things will “come together” to cause that.
    I just wish that they had 1/2 the integrity of the Japanese military command, with regard the “proper thing to do” after such a major loss of face. Alas, they’ll probably just try to re-write history, as Arrianna did…and say, “Hey, we were just mis-understood! Did we say ‘Global Warming’…whoops, TYPO, we meant cooling..”

  62. Turboblocke says:
    October 25, 2010 at 1:26 pm
    “JimG: You don’t have to have Dutch parents to have Dutch citizenship:”
    You may be right as I was going by :
    1. Wikipedia
    2. What I had heard from other sources word of mouth.
    Should have known better. My comment still stands, however, regarding the exogenous variables of immigration, nutrition and genetics not being equal and the better methodology of change in generational stature as a better measure of what is going on as opposed to using the stature per se to sell socialized medicine.

  63. Harold Ambler,
    Outstanding work! I’m delighted to hear third-most e-mailed blogger piece in HuffPo history, but I’m also a little disappointed that I didn’t know it has been sitting there for almost 2yrs.
    Thanks,
    Dave

  64. Here is exactly is what the climate climbdown will look like:
    Did you hear that? It will be just plain silence. They will simply not say a word and try to behave as if nothing had ever been said on it. They will just go silent on the issue. The damage is done, we have a generation of children who have been indoctrinated that it is a fact. They really don’t need to say anything more at this point, they have won. Facts are beside the point.

  65. Frank Lee says:
    October 25, 2010 at 10:48 am
    “Another question is this: How will skeptics handle the collapse of alarmism? I, for one, am in no mood to be nice. My career, my social life, and my sanity have been harmed by vicious attacks by alarmists. I’m not going to forget that.”
    I’m with you. I intend to be as rude and obnoxious as I can be to the these idiots. The academics who have pushed this bs on the politicians need to lose their jobs and pensions.

  66. I won’t hold my breath waiting for any mea culpas. This “climb-down” will be neither smooth nor easy (nor even civil), there is just too much money involved. Ask yourself this question: Will outlets like the New York Times and others risk alienating the few remaining readers they have on the left in order to attract new readership from a more independent or conservative market demographic? They might, but I haven’t seen this happen as their market and economic prognostications have fallen into ruin. On the other hand, they might end up like the buggy whip manufacturers; they still exist but when was the last time a representative of this industry was ever ask for his view of the larger economic issues.

  67. James Evans says:
    October 25, 2010 at 11:06 am
    ………………..
    The media might turn around sooner, but they’ll need a scapegoat. They’ll need to find someone to blame for misleading them.

    James Hansen? Al Gore? Pachauri IPCC?
    The biggest villain in all this alarmist claptrap is of course James Hansen who is little known among members of the ordinary public.
    By the way, the climbdown is going to be SLOW, the SLOW speed of which will depend on the the weather/climate turn-around.

  68. Which part of ‘I get hundreds of these and haven’t read it’ don’t you understand? It seems very plain to me. Maybe you have gone a bit astray in finding something in a plain statement that simply isn’t there?
    If you apply Occam’s razor you can do without your theory.

  69. richard telford says:
    October 25, 2010 at 11:41 am
    “………Surely the last bleat that reality contradicts the second law of thermodynamics must come before……..”
    Yep, that’s probably why we have all of those perpetual motion machines running to and fro right now. Do you guys ever tire of showing yourself to be wrong? It is sooo tedious to read anymore.
    Here, chew on this for a while….
    The Clausius theorem (1854) states that in a cyclic process
    The equality holds in the reversible case and ‘less than’ is in the irreversible case. The reversible case is used to introduce the state function entropy. This is because in cyclic process the variation of a state function is zero.

  70. Frank Lee says:
    October 25, 2010 at 10:48 am
    Another question is this: How will skeptics handle the collapse of alarmism? I, for one, am in no mood to be nice. My career, my social life, and my sanity have been harmed by vicious attacks by alarmists. I’m not going to forget that.

    Alarmism won’t collapse, there will be a swing to global cooling, and it will still be our fault, so the same stupid solutions will be put out there, except this time lowering CO2 will warm the planet so we don’t all die in another ice age. Or we could find something else to be alarmed about, not sure what it would be, but there must be something.
    I’m not holding my breath waiting for any kind of climb-down by any side in the debate.

  71. ZZZ @ October 25, 2010 at 11:26 am
    In 1980, prior to the first presidential election in which I was to vote, I clipped a column from the paper explaining Reagan’s foreign policy vision, that he truly believed the USSR was on its last legs and the Cold War could be won. The firestorm which erupted in the letters to the editor was something to behold. When I shared the column with liberal friends, they all scoffed that it just showed how out of touch the old man was.
    Today, they say the USSR fell because of it had strayed from the ideal of Communism, and anyone can see in retrospect that it was doomed, and Reagan had nothing to do with it. And, of course, they have no memory of my sharing that column with them.

  72. As i’ve commented before this turned political years ago, a couple of scape goats and Buisness as usual. Don’t expect much from people that towed the political line, your be disappionted if you do.

  73. Vuk etc. says:
    October 25, 2010 at 11:44 am
    “Humans are very adaptable creatures,”.
    Yes, and journalists are VERY adaptable. They will be like vultures on the AGW carcass when the avalanche starts. Believe me. They will just sell it as yet another story.

  74. crosspatch says:
    October 25, 2010 at 2:20 pm
    “Here is exactly is what the climate climbdown will look like:
    Did you hear that? It will be just plain silence. ”
    Damn, maybe you are right crosspatch. thats what happened to the ozone hole, wasnt it?

  75. The BBC as I understand has invested billions of pounds of pension fund moneys in green companies and carbon .They will start pushing biodiversity and ocean acidification,because their all caused by the same co2 bogeyman.

  76. Invariant
    We can’t freeze nature in time, species will be made extinct throughout our lives. I’m all for minimising man’s contribution to the extinction rate, but I’m not for another expensive propoganda exercise that has the sole intention of levering more money and power towards the UN. Read the link I provided and you’ll see they’ve used the exact same template as that used for AGW. We’ll be paying through the nose for a self appointed ‘gold standard’ of science which is actually nothing of the sort. Like the IPCC before it, the Intergovernmental Science Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services has been set up with premeditated conclusions and goals that are non-negotiable. It is quite unashamedly a tool for global wealth redistribution.

  77. I do have a problem with a paragraph in the original article, but it’s possible that I am confused. You say:
    “In every case, the ice-core data shows that temperature rises precede rises in carbon dioxide by, on average, 800 years. In fact, the relationship is not “complicated.” When the ocean-atmosphere system warms, the oceans discharge vast quantities of carbon dioxide in a process known as de-gassing. For this reason, warm and cold years show up on the Mauna Loa C02 measurements even in the short term. For instance, the post-Pinatubo-eruption year of 1993 shows the lowest C02 increase since measurements have been kept. When did the highest C02 increase take place? During the super El Niño year of 1998. ”
    Now I can understand why the changes you mention might have caused those ripples in the CO2 record, but what is the mechanism which delays the impact of a temperature in 1200AD to a CO2 level in 2000AD? What are the physics involved? Perhaps you can understand why I’m struggling. It isn’t enough to say that the 2 variables are correlated – you are suggesting that the correlation is causal and that’s what makes me confused. I don’t think we know enough over 800 year timescales to know what is causal and what isn’t.

  78. I think there’s some wishful thinking here. To the extent that there is a “climbdown” it will be more along the lines of a “forgetting”. A slow deflation of climate news which will be replaced by something else over the years.
    The harm done will not be acknowledged…nor the ongoing programs ended. We will still have CFL or LED lightbulbs….still drive smaller cars….etc. We still may have carbon taxes because it is a form of consumption tax which raises more money for the government
    Nuclear will still be feared, Coal will be dirty and unsafe, oil will still have to be conserved at all costs. Domestic production will still be profoundly restricted….scaring the land, dirty, and ugly…oh did I mention dirty?
    So even tho the wizards of smart maybe have gotten it slightly wrong, their solutions were still correct

  79. Matt: “Which part of ‘I get hundreds of these and haven’t read it’ don’t you understand?”
    The bit where she doesn’t say “And I don’t even read the ones I publish”

  80. John Whitman says:
    October 25, 2010 at 12:06 pm
    “What has played out in the blogosphere does need to be constantly summarized, consolidated and chronicled.” – Agreed; – and constantly recalled, lest we forget. However it will probably be sanitized as such: The politicians will claim they acted on the advice of their scientific advisors. The Scientists will claim they were following the science. The media will claim they were reflecting the scientific view. In the end they will all claim that “science “is the winner, that the scientific method is “healthy”. This skepticism will have become redundant, the counter arguments and rebuttals assimilated. The “system” will take the credit and so in the end maybe it will be science that “wins”.

  81. I’ve been wondering if the end will come when the story about the biggest fraud in history is bigger than the story about some climate disruptions somewhere possibly causing some damage. Could be a Tipping Point there somewhere.

  82. Good one RK. “their solutions were still correct” My Sister-in-law who lives on a disabled pension has had to suffer in a cold house all winter because of the increased power bills (with massive increases to come). With any luck she will die 10-15 years prematurely thereby reducing the drain on the planets resources.

  83. “crosspatch says:
    “Here is exactly is what the climate climbdown will look like:
    Did you hear that? It will be just plain silence. ”
    kwik says:
    Damn, maybe you are right crosspatch. thats what happened to the ozone hole, wasnt it?”
    I don’t know about elsewhere, but it’s also what happened in the UK in regard to AIDS. Once upon a time there were virtually daily stories about how there would be an enormous body count throughout the country – we’d be stepping over corpses in the streets. You couldn’t read a newspaper without being aware of the impending megadeaths.
    Now, I can’t remember when I last noticed an article about AIDS in the UK.
    And how many articles/TV reports have I seen wondering what happened to all the predictions? None. Not a single one. It’s like it never happened.

  84. The average man in the street doesn’t care that much. He may notice a slow trend towards ethanol blend fuel and political jabbering about CAGW but largely, this debate is yawn yawn, not affecting him today and is just the same noise as all political debate. This is a debate held on the fringes by zealots who care one way or another and scientists and financiers who look to make money out of it. Your local nightly news will not lead with it but may have the ocassional gratuitious reference given by some alarmist “expert” (we have Tim Flannery) dragged out to comment on the science. The only climb down we will see is when there is no longer any support AND there is someone to blame for misleading us (eg “the Team”). If you look carefully, it will begin with less zeal from the reporters who will quietly back out the debate and begin blame shifting to “experts” so as to demonstrate a level of deniability if/when the worm turns.

  85. I think that most commenters here are underestimating the good sense of an increasing percentage of the general public and their increased abilities to see through scams of all types.
    First, a much larger number of ordinary citizens of the last couple of generations have travelled quite extensively and been exposed to different and for them, new ideas and thinking.
    Secondly, the public have been very exposed to a continuing saga of major scams and social and economic disasters all of which were very heavily promoted by the MSM [ but was eventually and widely exposed through the medium of the internet ] as the “next great thing” so there is a wariness and a cynicism and a rapidly decreasing trust in the MSM, the politicals and bureaucracy that was not evident a couple of decades ago.
    We have been fooled just a few times too many!
    Thirdly, the internet has brought immense amounts of alternative information formerly only available from the MSM and public libraries, to the public at the press of a few buttons.
    Fourth is the fact that our populations in the west are aging.
    A higher percentage of older and more experienced people now make up the population base and those older generations have experienced and seen a few too many scams in their lives to just blindly accept another possible scam without harboring quite a few doubts and wanting to be completely convinced.
    This older generation have also seen most of the huge changes and variations in the everyday and seasonal weather / climate patterns.
    They have experienced the almost continuous advocacy by the modern day MSM in support of numerous unproven and politically correct causes followed by the exposure and collapse of those same causes as well as the over the top promotion by the MSM of “cannot lose” corporations that have then collapsed in monstrous financial scams.
    They are now cynical about many of the claims that are now part and parcel of the MSM’s offerings to their reading public.
    And now that cynical attitude is slowly swinging into the scientific arena with all the down side consequences that will create for the funding and respect for the science of the future.
    [ It would be interesting to see a breakdown into age groups of the levels of belief in the AGW premise and the trust in science and scientists in general. ]
    The open access to to mankind’s information base through the internet has also required the development of an individual’s personal filter to filter BS from genuine and solidly based information.
    So a good percentage of the public now may say they believe in or accept the AGW premise but they may well have some deep internal doubts about the real truth of the AGW claims and are quite open to being convinced otherwise about AGW when the mass of opinion swings away from the AGW premise.
    And this personal filtering of information due mostly to the role of the internet now plays in disseminating information almost instantaneously has had another effect of bringing doubt upon the many claims of the MSM even more so when the MSM’s news stories are shown [ by web based sources ] to be false, corrupted or biased and slanted towards a particular ideology or advocacy.
    Hence the continuing fall in the present day’s MSM’s standing and the continuous drop off in circulation numbers.
    The MSM, scientists, politicals and extremist advocates are slowly drifting into a situation that they have never faced before in that all their pronouncements on any subject can be recalled almost instantaneously possibly for many decades ahead.
    Unlike previous times when to check a story and a source you had to slowly, with a lot of time and labour, wend your way back through vast quantities of old papers or spend hours in dusty libraries to find the information, now you press a few keys, spend perhaps a few minutes to an hour or so and there is the story in all it’s original former glory and from which the promoter of that particular story or advocacy cannot escape.
    The longer term consequences for the lives, careers and social advancement are still completely unrealised by the vast majority of those who are outspoken and extremist advocates of scenarios which will and have been proven to be false and possibly nefarious in their intent.
    Their record will remain there on the WWW in the decades ahead for all to see.
    Will the AGW cult go away?
    No, cults just disappear after all the believers are dead.
    And as was once said, Science advances death by death and so it will be with global warming/ climate change.

  86. Cassandra King wrote:

    “Funnily enough the prime mouthpiece for the CAGW alarmism the BBC has already been pimping the new paradigm already, out goes the IPCC and in comes the…er…insert funny acronym here…biodiversity band waggon which by some strange coincidence has the same ultimate goals as the CAGW band waggon.”

    And the funny acronym you’re looking for is IPBES (or ipBes if you prefer the less bureaucratic, logo-friendly version): “Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services”.
    Not sure what the difference is in UN-speak between a “Panel” (as in IPCC) and a “Platform” (as in IPBES), and there may or may not be any significance to the proximity of Science and Policy on this Platform, but it does suggest that someone’s been listening to those “scientists” who insist that governments should pay more attention to their recommendations.
    And/or perhaps this “Platform” is intended to give greater legitimacy to the green NGO’s – who have performed midwifery tasks (above and beyond the call of duty) in the birth of IPBES.
    I’m inclined to think that the “climbdown” will be will be buried under many hops, skips and jumps to the new, improved “scare”: “unprecedented loss of biodiversity seriously compounded by global warming”. IOW, the new, improved scare’s starting point is already “unprecedented loss”, so it can only get worse! Quelle surprise, eh?!
    “Tipping points” are all lined up as are “mechanisms” such as “biodiversity offsets or other schemes to mitigate and/or compensate…”
    Move over IPCC … here comes IPBES
    Although we may see an intermediate skirmish of “sibling rivalry” between these two UNEP acronymic offspring. Something along the lines of “Mirror, mirror on the wall, which is the biggest crisis of all?”
    Of COPs, MOPs and a global battle of duelling doomsayers
    Meanwhile … on the other side of the pond (where “climate scientists”, as I recall, were predicting the disappearance of snow from the British landscape) …

    “Start digging.
    “That’s the message one local government is giving London residents worried about what is predicted to be an unusually snowy winter for the British capital.
    “Camden Council, which accounts for a large swath of north and central London including Covent Garden, Bloomsbury and Primrose Hill, has unveiled a plan to encourage residents to shovel their sidewalks by providing them with the tools to do so. More than 2,000 wooden-handled, plastic snow shovels have been purchased by the local authority to be handed out for free to residents, shopkeepers or community groups.”
    Source: http://www2.macleans.ca/2010/10/25/the-weather-outside-is-frightful/

  87. The recently coined phrase “global climate disruption” is clearly the first toe inching down with respect to the forthcoming claims by the MSM that man’s actions are the primary climate driver no matter which direction it seems to be headed today. It gets them all warm and fuzzy (a Chris Matthews-like tingling, no doubt) thinking how self-important we are.

  88. The only satisfying media “climb down” would be a small amount of time in free-fall followed by a catastrophic stop once they reach the bottom.

  89. richard telford says:
    October 25, 2010 at 11:41 am
    Methinks Mr. Telford (or whoever he is) won’t be climbing down anytime soon. I think the most interesting question for Mr. Telford is if he is in fact employed by the global warming industry (i.e. a recipient of government money). As long as there are billions of dollars in Climate Ca$h and parties in Bali and Cancun for the climate ruling class, no self-respecting climate scientist would agree to climb down…

  90. Give them another winter or two.
    Nothing smarts quite like holding onto tools crusted up with plenty of ice.
    Order them each a complimentary pair of Winter Fireball gloves along with the next article submitted.

  91. John Diffenthal says:
    October 25, 2010 at 3:21 pm
    “…what is the mechanism which delays the impact of a temperature in 1200AD to a CO2 level in 2000AD?”
    Maybe this will help.
    [From this page, which has lots of interesting and relevant articles.]

  92. richard telford says: “A more interesting question would be when will the last pseudoskeptic cease to proclaim every snowflake as the start of the next ice-age? Will it be when the global mean temperature is a degree higher, perhaps in 2050? Or will they then have changed the argument to how wonderful Canadian podsols are for agriculture? Surely the last bleat that reality contradicts the second law of thermodynamics must come before the global mean temperature rises three degrees, perhaps by the end of this century.”
    And perhaps not for another 100,000 years. You’re going to have a long wait, Dick.

  93. “the major purveyors of news in the industrialized world”
    Is there an objective and scholarly database of these people and institutions? This is the internets. We have really cool compuer technology these days that allows the interactive visualization of facts. Sorta like a Fuller Geoscope for social influence.

  94. Harold – After reading this post I went and read your blog at HuffPost and a few reactions. Interesting and well reasoned. You are on the right track and have done your homework, never mind those idiots who want to put you down as a musician. As a scientist I have found that nearly every problem you face in real life lacks a textbook solution and you have to educate yourself about it from the ground up. Most “climate scientists” in fact were never educated in climate science. Hansen was an astronomer on the NASA Pioneer Venus probe before he joined GISS. He just quit the project before the spacecraft reached Venus because “The composition of our home planet was changing before our eyes.” And now he wants to close all coal-burning power plants. My previously published work had nothing whatsoever to do with climate but Al Gore made me take up climate science and I guess I have been a climate scientist ever since “What Warming?” came out. That was late last year and you unfortunately did not get a chance to read it before you wrote to Huffington Post. There are a few things you missed that I suggest you put into your future arsenal of climate discussions. Your first problem is that what is written about the El Nino and La Nina is all trash. They have no connection with the PDO and are strictly a tropical Pacific phenomenon. They involve the two equatorial currents, the trade winds, and the equatorial countercurrent in between. The trade winds push the water west where it piles up near the Philippines and New Guinea. Return flow is via the countercurrent and is periodic because of wave resonance. The El Nino wave is a mass of warm water that runs ashore in South America, spreads out, and warms the atmosphere. The rising warm air interferes with trade winds and raises global temperature by half a degree. The El Nino wave then retreats, water level drops by half a meter in its wake, cold water from below rises to take its place, and a La Nina is born. As much as the El Nino raised the global temperature La Nina will now lower it by the same amount and a temperature oscillation results. The eighties and the nineties saw such oscillations. They have existed since the Isthmus of Panama rose from the sea and can be found in all global temperature curves if some idiot did not wipe them out with a running average. There can be irregularities and the super El Nino is an example. It was not part of the ENSO system and was probably caused by a storm surge that brought much warm water to the start of the equatorial countercurrent near New Guinea. As to the PDO I have reservations about calling it an oscillation. The reported period of thirty years is too long to be accommodated by any ocean basin. The length of the ENSO period is about five years and it involves the width of the entire Pacific basin. By that measure an oscillation taking thirty years could exist only in a basin five times as wide as the Pacific and I don’t see where it could be. The only thing that has the requisite length is the thermohaline submarine current starting in the Arctic, rounding Africa, and resurfacing in the Northern Pacific. I can’t imagine how it can oscillate but I can imagine how its flow could influence North Pacific temperatures. Be that how it may be, for me PDO is a pure hypothesis, not proven to be an oscillation. The second important thing to note is that Arctic warming has nothing whatsoever to do with the greenhouse effect. It started suddenly at the beginning of the twentieth century and has been going on, with a pause in mid-century, ever since. Carbon dioxide cannot start a sudden warming unless its concentration in the air takes a jump and this did not happen. What apparently did happen was a rearrangement of the North Atlantic current system at the turn of the twentieth century that directed the Gulf Stream onto its present northerly course. A lesser amount of warm water enters the Arctic on the opposite side through the Bering Strait. Thanks to prevailing winds more than the usual amount of warm water came through the strait in 2007 and melted a large patch of sea ice on that side of the ocean while the Gulf Stream side hardly changed. Look at NOAA maps for September 2006 and 2007 and compare. Oh, one more thing about carbon dioxide. Miskolczi has found, using NOAA database of weather balloon observations that goes back to 1948, that the optical thickness of the atmosphere in the infrared was constant for 61 years and had the value of 1.87. Which means that constant addition of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere for all these years has had no influence on the transparency of the atmosphere to heat radiation that carbon dioxide absorbs or the optical thickness would have increased, and this did not happen. Way beyond logarithmic! And as to that positive water vapor feedback they use in the models, Miskolczy also proved that instead of being positive the feedback is strongly negative.

  95. Mark Wagner said on October 25, 2010 at 11:35 am
    there will be no “climb down.” I see two (cooling) scenarios:
    1) …the alarmists will claim “victory” over how they “saved us …”
    or 2) falling temperatures will result in cries of “thank gaia that natural…”
    I see #3, they will increase their numerical manipulation to show global warming (which amazingly mostly takes place where no one lives). Cooling episodes in the past have had hot summers albeit short. Every calving glacier will have a video camera with a live feed to every classroom, with no child left unindoctrinated.

  96. “Most people didn’t know that the Y2K bug only existed in BCD date calculations and only those that use two BCD digits for the year.”
    That is not entirely true. It was true of BCD (4 bits to encode 0-9, leaving A-F unused), formats that stored dates as “YY” text strings, or anything that deliberately stored an offset from 1900 internally, with overflow transitioning from 99 to 00.
    The funniest of all had to be Al Gore’s presidential campaign site, that said “January 1, 19100”

  97. Hadn’t seen it mentioned yet in this thread or the Sci Am thread from a couple days ago, but the bastion of CO2 alarmism that is Discover magazine has taken one baby step down too.
    On page 21 of November’s issue is a page regarding “Urban Canyons” which discusses winds through cities, how planting trees may increase heat by restricting winds, and one breakout point on UHI effects. This is not an article, but a graphic. There is no introduction provided, and no discussion made of the graphic, it simply shows up as a “data sliced” piece.
    There is absolutely no mention of the UHI effect on weather data stations, but hey, it is a baby step.
    Discover will now be able to say, “yeah, we covered it.” Predictably, no baby step from the Bad Astronomer yet.

  98. The media climbing down is quite obvious also here in Japan, especially after Climategate.
    There was almost no coverage of the Busan IPCC Plenary Conference a few weeks ago.

  99. ROM says:
    October 25, 2010 at 4:23 pm
    . . . Will the AGW cult go away?
    No, cults just disappear after all the believers are dead.
    And as was once said, Science advances death by death and so it will be with global warming/ climate change.

    The AGW cult now controls the highest levels of the US and UK governments, so it will continue pushing its destructive and repressive agenda as long as it holds power. The only solution is to kick them out. November 2nd looks to be a good start here in the USA, but even a full Republican Congress might only cause the Obama administration to dig in its ideological heels. True Believers don’t give up easily.
    Since the mass media, the academies, the scientific societies, and important industries (like GE and some banks) are in the tank with the Climatist ideologues, it is going to be very difficult to reduce them to impotence. The secret is money. If the Republicans win the House and can hold together against the forces of Climatism masquerading as ‘environmentalism’, they can stop the flow of cash—all spending must originate in the House. But it will be hard: the pressures of politically-correct ‘environmentalism’ are formidable, and politicians are notoriously susceptible.
    Help them withstand the Climatists—write and talk to your representatives, and let them know you are on the side of progress and growth, not neo-Luddite and neo-Marxist regression. And teach them about the fallacies of CAGW, that CO2 is not a problem, but if it has any effect on temperature, it is a solution: a warmer, well-fed world is a more prosperous, healthy, civilized world.
    /Mr Lynn

  100. I am waiting for the following from George Monbiot.
    ‘We may have been factually incorrect when it comes to warming but, in practical terms, that was never more than a metaphor for mankind’s destruction of the planet. The details were never important; if the idea of climate change caused a few more people to question the capitalist system’s terrible impact on the planet, then it was, and is, the greater truth.

  101. Natsman says:
    October 25, 2010 at 11:21 am
    “Maybe someone should have a word in Cameron’s shell-like, as at the CBI conference today he has reinforced his position on “green” jobs, and ludicrously expensive (and poitless) windfarms.”
    Isn’t it true that the Brits are rushing into a windfarm disaster that will make Spain’s disaster seem reasonable by comparison? Isn’t it true that the Brit disaster will kill any attempt to do something similar in another country?

  102. artwest says:
    October 25, 2010 at 4:19 pm
    I don’t know about elsewhere, but it’s also what happened in the UK in regard to AIDS. Once upon a time there were virtually daily stories about how there would be an enormous body count throughout the country – we’d be stepping over corpses in the streets. You couldn’t read a newspaper without being aware of the impending megadeaths.
    Now, I can’t remember when I last noticed an article about AIDS in the UK.

    That’s because the UK is giving out free antiviral therapy to all HIV patients thereby delaying the deaths.

  103. Old alarmist scares don’t die they just fade away.
    Impending Anthropogenic Ice Age
    Overpopulation
    Hetero Sexual AIDS pandemic
    Rain Forest Destruction
    Ozone hole
    Dieing Seas
    Saddam’s Oil Well fire Catastrophe (nuclear winter)
    SARS
    Swine Flu…etc …etc
    Most all of these scares have not completely been expunged from society. Many vestiges of these scares live on. So it will be with CAGW.

  104. “ROM says:
    October 25, 2010 at 4:23 pm”
    One reason why the Govn’t in countries like Australia are wanting to “filter” internet content like China and North Korea.

  105. The sign of the climb down are “precaution” followed by “uncertainty” followed by the actual “climb down.”

  106. The glibbering climb down began right after climategate. Notice how many of the useful idiots from govt science are silent already. Also note the extremism of the 2nd string nitwits who attempt to defend the indefensible. Remember the state funded medias silence on the CRU emails but now they are strangely silent about AGW. I will not forget and I am happy that the web exists to review the stupidity of those who keep coming back saying “Trust me I want to be your leader”. Next some criminal and civil court actions against those who breached our trust will complete the collapse. I will donate to that cause with pleasure. I want to see the scientists and propogandists testify under oath.USA citizens vote out the Democrats and its over.

  107. Larry says:
    October 25, 2010 at 10:57 am
    In my view this is unique because of the funding. When the funds were flowing freely a lot of people agreed for differing reasons. The funds dry up and the infighting will have to begin. It has been made profitable for a lot of big business to back this, but it is hard to see that financing being maintained for a long time to come. These are rational people, and when contracts start getting renegotiated – as solar contracts are starting to do so now – this may well be driven to a brutal legal conclusion.

    Having worked in a number of hyper-aggressive environments (businesses) where the growth stopped, and the sharks began to feed on themselves, yes, I have to say I think you have a very good point there. I think we’re going to see quite a little feeding frenzy.

  108. “Most people didn’t know that the Y2K bug only existed in BCD date calculations and only those that use two BCD digits for the year.”
    Any code can have non-compliant date calculations regardless of the native date type system of the underlying stack. Any programmer can roll their own date processing code for any reason. It’s that home-baked date handling that usually has bugs. Thus you can never look at the operating system/database/language and declare a program immune without looking at it’s internals.
    While Y2k is often trotted out as a hoax, it was nothing of the sort. Hundreds of thousands of people put in millions of hours going computer code line by line and looking for bugs. Millions of dollars worth of equipment was upgraded and replaced. It was a massive effort that worked in 99% of the cases.
    Yes, it was overblown. Yes, media overhyped it and scammers moved in and made big money. No, power stations and lifts and water treatment plants were not going to explode.
    But there was a real problem. I know, because I worked on projects fixing those problems before Dec 31, 1999. It’s a disservice to people who worked hard on those projects to pretend that it never happened, and that it was all a hoax. The best possible outcome was a ‘nothing happened’. And that’s what billions spent resulted in.

  109. Nah.
    I can’t see a climb down so much as a climb sideways. They’ll be crabbing across the landscape, pinchers held high in a threat pose, click-ity-clack.
    We’ll go from Climate Change, to Threatened species, to habitat loss to ground water depletion to soil denuding to new diseases all the way around back to a man made ice age.
    And then we’ll start all over again, the wheel of Dharma spins effortlessly, in a vacuum free of common sense or memory, combined with greed and avarice, we’ll have no end of this stuff.
    On the plus side, the arguments will change content, but the same stupid and greedy [profound Self-snip [don’t even know where I heard that term]] ‘s will continue raping Mans collective awareness, all the while content to ignore everything they’re spouting and bask in the warm glow of hypocrisy.
    Bidniz as usual my peeps.
    But!
    We’ll have the historical amplifier of WUWT, that Antony et al has created, so we can continue to point this moment in time, and remind those future kids, this has all happened before, and it can all happen again.
    Kudos!

  110. Rhoda R says:
    October 25, 2010 at 11:32 am
    If the media need a scape-goat I heartily recommend Al Gore.

    I wonder why Tipper and Al announced that they were separating?
    I’d bet that Tipper has a pretty good idea what’s in store for Al.

  111. Suzanne says:
    October 25, 2010 at 11:33 am
    Frank Lee says:
    October 25, 2010 at 10:48 am
    Another question is this: How will skeptics handle the collapse of alarmism?

    I’m not so sure ‘alarmism’ will collapse at all. It’ll just do what it’s been doing as long as I’ve been alive (since 1960) — it’ll shape-shift, mutate into another doom-and-gloom scenario.

  112. The step down of the AGW advocates from their elitist position depends upon whether there is anything in it for them. If perpetuating the myth of AGW doesn’t cost them any financial support from governmental or commercial agencies, they will stand pat. When the progressive politicos start to funnel resources into new ecological frontiers, then the sources will be redirected to concerns about a new ecological disaster. They won’t climb down from their pedestals, they will obfuscate this issue and move on to a new power grabbing crisis. AGW will be yesterday’s news. The global climate change has never been about climate science, it was and is an attempt to redistribute wealth with carbon credits. There has been a pattern of “alarms” from the ecology fanatics through recent history from DDT to ozone holes. As the cap and trade business falls off and the funding disappears, the green movement will have to create a new ecological crisis as a way to take control of politics and siphon off money to feed their coffers. Huffington and other progressive BLOGS only need to wait for the new crisis to appear.

  113. TomRude says:
    October 25, 2010 at 12:26 pm
    ZZZ I recently read that it was not Reagan who won the cold war… soon he’d have lost it!

    I thought Reagan merely (and mainly) broke with the long tradition of U.S. presidents acting as if we had to continue tolerating (and propping up) a corrupt and crumbling empire. But I could be wrong.

  114. We cannot let them slither away. Those who beat this drum must be beaten with the drum. I’ll make a point of obnoxiously revisiting their past at every opportunity. It isn’t revenge. I want to slay the monster. It cannot hide somewhere in a crack to return anew on another day.

  115. brc says: October 25, 2010 at 9:34 pm
    “But there was a real problem. I know, because I worked on projects fixing those problems before Dec 31, 1999. ”
    Yes, the ‘hoax’ was in the media presentation, as usual.
    The masses did not understand, nor were they informed, about the difference between things that use ‘duration’ and things that use ‘time’.
    Most critical systems use duration, and not time.
    Most critical systems were never going to be affected.
    Heartrate, beats per minute. (not heartbeats since some time)
    Aircraft Fuel consumption, gallons per minute .(not gallons since some time)
    Power station output, demand in next hour. (not MWh before some time)
    Autoclave, bake for x minutes.(not bake until some time)

  116. The MSM will climb down from the alarmism the way that The Party did when Oceania no longer was the enemy:
    Eastasia is the enemy. It has always been the enemy.
    Global cooling is the enemy. It has always been the enemy.
    Mark my words. There will be no apology forthcoming from the arrogant editorial boards of the MSM.

  117. I read it somwhere that G.O.D. will follow G.C.D. (global climate disruption) which followed A.C.C. (anthropogenic climate change) which followed A.G.W. 9anthropogenic global warming). G.O.D. = Global Oxygen Depletion.
    Well I always knew, somehow, that the globalists wanted to be become gods.
    It will not be a climbdown, but a run to the next higher hill. Maybe Pachauri may not manage to reach it.

  118. @Ian says:
    October 25, 2010 at 7:17 pm
    I am waiting for the following from George Monbiot.
    ————————————————————————
    He can just re-name one of his old articles…
    “I was wrong about veganism. Let them eat meat – but farm it properly”
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2010/sep/06/meat-production-veganism-deforestation
    To:
    “I was wrong about CAGW. Let them burn oil – but burn it properly”
    So many “wrongs” to chose from..
    “So was I wrong to call, soon after this story broke, for Jones’s resignation? I think, on balance, that I was”
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/cif-green/2010/jul/07/russell-inquiry-i-was-wrong

  119. brc says:
    October 25, 2010 at 9:34 pm
    “Most people didn’t know that the Y2K bug only existed in BCD date calculations and only those that use two BCD digits for the year.”
    ————————————————————————————–
    In 1999 the company I work for was still using a database with two-digit year numbering for intra-company record keeping. All managers were worried that our IT fdepartment would not be in time to change over to a Y2K compliant db. Time was pressing and we pressed the IT dept. Funnily enough, they kept the database, but formated the year numbering to text.

  120. The speed at which they climb down will depend on the severity of this NH winter. Fuel poverty from China to Britain will have a sobering effect and the msm will be forced to take notice in a hurry.
    Global cooling is making a comeback for a couple of decades and the British Brainwashing Corporation will recant.

  121. Sorry for the long post, but I don’t know how to compress it further.
    The media never accepts blame. Look at a whole host of false alarms that they have peddled in the past, as if they were unquestionable truths, but then a few years later the same “news” outlets report the opposite as if that is what conventional wisdom was all along.
    For example, the race into war with Iraq. Bloggers working on pocket change broke more scoops, ran more truth and exposed every lie and debunked every false claim as the drive to war was being ramped up. The mainstream media reported every lie and false claim verbatim as if unquestioned truth. The mainstream media never questioned the reliablity, the accuracy or the credibility of anything that came from Buch, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Blair, Straw, Hoon, et al. The media was a very willing accomplice in the drive to war.
    The lie that had me laugh out loud and realise that the media are either utterly brain-dead stupid, or willingly complicit in the lies was when Bush claimed that they had found the mobile biological weapons labs. And they showed helium gas generators on the back of curtain sided trucks. I mean, come on. Could NOBODY in the assembled press have a neuron fire and wonder, HOW do they create the world’s deadliest biological weapons in a curtain sided truck? Not only HOW do they stop the deadliest germs getting out, but HOW do they stop the outside contamination coming in? It was ridiculous in the extreme. Not one of the assembled media questioned that assertion. When it was revealed that these were battlefield helium generators for weather balloons, sold to Iraq by the British, the media went very quiet. No admission of error, just shut up!
    Now 7 years later, much of the media are critical of the false claims, but not in their own part in willingly and unquestioningly reporting those false claims. Although some commentators have written faux shock pieces claiming, “I’m shocked, I thought they were telling us the truth. Who could ever have thought that our leaders would lie about the need for war and the size of the threat we faced?”
    This shows everything that’s wrong with the incestuous relationship between Government, agenda setters, opinion setters and the mainstream media.
    The mainstream media gave up its role as honest watchdog long ago.
    Thank GOD for the small army of bloggers who, over time and with a great deal of diligence, we can trust far more than the mainstream liars.
    Thank GOD for Anthony and his team of moderators, keeping this site going. It is a daily blast of sanity in an insane world of lies and deceptions.

  122. The AGW – Climate Change Industry was struck by a metaphorical earthquake with the release of the Angila emails. Attempts to reframe have been largely unsuccessful in my view. Given the global economic recession, corporations and businesses are not in a position to expend b/millions in what is no longer considered “settled” science. Going Green has lost its allure and is no longer worth putting the real green (dollars) into. Company’s are rethinking “Green” as a value added premise.
    Case in point, a local Canadian charitable organization in BC that builds an annual dream home to raise money is having difficulty with ticket sales – they have dropped precipitously this year. The reason – the new home is “Green “and cost double what the previous dream homes have cost to build, yet the home is half the size. The draw has historically taken place in July every year, but this year they are looking at a November or beyond draw date. This is in BC no less, the most environmentally conscious province in Canada.
    While the Climate Climbdown is enjoyable, I personally, am waiting for the Darwin and Evolution Climbdown. Scientists on this front are experiencing exactly what the first skeptics of climate science faced. Many scientists are begininning to come forward to communicate the fact that the evolution model is so full of holes and pure conjecture that there is no way it will be able to hold up much longer – honest scientists are increasingly having difficulty trying to fit new findings and discoveries into the evolution mode – in short they know the science behind evolution is deeply flawed and are embarressed – as they should be.

  123. This debate WILL continue because of government’s belief and therefore laws that raise the cost of power etc. As this begins to bite people will become more vocal and less submissive of great cost rises.
    AGW has been succeeded by ‘climate disruption’ despite neither being anything to do with climate. The trouble is that climate cycles are too long for the average person to remember – it gets hotter and it gets cooler – but the changes are slow.
    The fact that growing population means all resources must be shared; means less for each, across the globe; but in each country the proportions will be different because of the different levels of development. This, and the effect of closer crowding, will make people more and more agressive aka rats in overcrowded conditions.
    Finding a quiet, uncrowded spot will become more and more attractive.

  124. Biodiversity. What does the word “biodiversity” mean to the public? Nothing. It’s a Terra incognita, wide open for anyone to stake a claim and declare the territory as their own. As the global warming fraud fades from view in the media, “biodiversity” may well take its place.
    I don’t think that most governments really want a public that is scientifically educated and pressing them to address environmental issues. Governments would far rather their public took the cues from them on what to be concerned about and what not to be concerned about. They seek to switch public opinion on and off whenever it suits them.
    Most governments prefer a population largely disconnected and ignorant about science and the natural world. Western economies work by the unfettered exploitation of the tax-and-spend system. It would be difficult to operate this way in a society in which people valued scientific knowledge and raised important questions about it. Therefore, it helps to have knowledge of science and the natural world confined to a small minority who can easily be dismissed when it becomes expedient, and the next scientific scare story can be promoted.

  125. “The job of skeptics is to falsify hypotheses, and WRT the CO2=CAGW hypothesis, skeptics have done an outstanding job. No wonder Richard is miffed.”

    But that is the problem. AGW as a theory cannot be debunked by empirical evidence as whatever weather we have can always be attributable to AGW. Even cooling trends will be attributable to AGW, or at worst, be considered a small, temporary time where climatic noise “hid” the rise in temperatures, but they will be back…
    Any hypothesis without a null-hypothesis is not science. The AGW theory cannot be falsified. That is the whole problem that invalidates it as a scientific theory.

  126. The BBC has introduced new editorial guidelines a few weeks ago, but the memo has not yet reached all their reporters. I watched a news article on BBC Breakfast a few days ago which was nothing other than blatant AGW scaremongering.

  127. “Alex the skeptic says:
    October 25, 2010 at 11:49 pm”
    Add to that “solution”, many countries in Africa and certain eastern European countries simply could not afford the costs. The Y2K bug was not a hoax, but it sure was a monumental waste of effort and money.

  128. “Chicken or the Egg says:
    October 26, 2010 at 1:15 am”
    I think you’ll find simply examining the fossil record supports Darwin and his theories. Incidentally, it was not Darwin who first coined the phrase “The Theory of Evolution”, it was a relative of his. But he concluded that the theory fitted Darwin’s observations. And he spent his entire working life on the theory. No models, just observations.
    Which brings me to a species of bat in New Zealand. They used to be able to fly, some still do partially, but now they just mostly walk along the ground. Devolution?

  129. I suspect that the most common reaction will be to drop AGW down the memory hole and move on to the next scare. We are at war with the loss of biodiversity. We have always been at war with the loss of biodiversity.
    The few journalists and politicians who do feel the need to explain away their previous positions will probably claim that they were poor trusting innocents led astray by evil scientists. People like Hansen and Mann are likely to end up as the scapegoats.

  130. I see very little chance of much in the way of public climbdowns – most MSM will merely slide off into other alarums and excursions, just as the Moonboot has abruptly given up beating his journalistic breast after a farwell shout at us about CAGW from the ramparts of the Guardian and gone off to chase the fabled will’o’the’whisp of endangermant of biodiversity.

  131. I keep hoping that Science News will take a step back, but their environmental reporter, Janet Raloff, is active in the Society for Environmental Journalism and they haven’t moderated their stand yet.
    In fact, she just got back from a SEJ field trip:
    http://www.sciencenews.org/view/generic/id/64674/title/Science_%2B_the_Public__GNP%E2%80%99s_glaciers__Going%2C_going_._._._

    GNP’s glaciers: Going, going . . .
    Climate warming will eliminate them within a generation, data indicate
    By Janet Raloff
    Web edition : Monday, October 25th, 2010
    Glacier National Park, Montana The nation’s tenth national park – once home to some 150 named glaciers – is running out of ice fields. Century-old Glacier National Park has but 25 glaciers left. And computer models by federal scientists working at the park indicate that within another decade – at most two – the only place to see the region’s glaciers will be in historic photos.
    The problem: The region’s climate has been warming, notes Erich Peitzsch of the U.S. Geological Survey, who studies snow and ice at the park. Speaking with reporters, October 14, as part of a field trip associated with the Society of Environmental Journalists’ annual meeting in Missoula, Mont., he described the park’s slowly elevating fever.

    Hmm, here’s a quote from Peitzsch (I think) to put on the SN article:
    http://www.nrmsc.usgs.gov/research/glacier_retreat.htm
    In conjunction with the past century’s long-term temperature increase, ocean-driven climate trends (Pacific Decadal Oscillation) influence GNP’s regional climate. Tree-ring based climate records reveal PDO effects that have resulted in 20-30 year periods of hot, dry summers coupled with decreased winter snowpack (Pederson et al. 2004). These periods have induced rapid recession, as high as 100 m/yr between 1917-1941, and influence the current rate of recession. Even during cooler phases of the PDO cycle, glaciers have continued to shrink, albeit at a slower rate.

  132. Chicken or the Egg says:
    October 26, 2010 at 1:15 am
    While the Climate Climbdown is enjoyable, I personally, am waiting for the Darwin and Evolution Climbdown. Scientists on this front are experiencing exactly what the first skeptics of climate science faced. . .

    To compare the rich, empirical field of evolutionary biology with the arrant speculations of model-based ‘climate scientists’ is ludicrous. The fossil record is a fact. The theory of natural selection, constantly being improved, explains the fact rather well. What’s the alternative? The deus ex machina of Creationism?
    /Mr Lynn

  133. Douglas, I thought the same thing. A few years back I walked up to several high lakes till I came to the last one before the trail went down the other side of the peaks towards the Baker City side of those craggy mountains. The peak, in which the trail was scratched into, was nothing but gray, ground up to dust, volcanic debris, complete with the ice-cold lake at the bottom. I looked up, as in straight up, from the shore of the lake, and decided I had climbed high enough for that day. So I turned tail and headed back down the switchbacks to planet Earth and the soft underbelly of the Wallowa Valley.

  134. jonjermey says:
    October 25, 2010 at 12:44 pm
    …[snip]“Tis three degrees, I tell ‘ee!” “Nay, ’tis four!” “‘Tis five!” “‘Tis six!”
    …while the needle spins wildly round its pivot and the waters lap about their ankles. But ’tis not the sea that rises: ’tis the ship that sinks.
    That’s brilliant! LOL!

  135. Why the epidemic
    of fraud exists in
    science today
    Jerry Bergman
    The Piltdown hoax is one of the most famous cases of
    fraud in science.1 Many Darwinists, though, claim that this
    case is an anomaly, and that fraud is no longer a problem
    today. However, the cases of fraud or deception in the field
    of evolution include not only the Piltdown Man, but Archaeoraptor,
    the peppered moth, the Midwife Toad, Haeckel’s
    embryos, Ancon sheep, the Tasaday Indians, Bathybius
    haeckelii and Hesperopithecus (Nebraska Man)—the missing
    link that turned out to be a pig.2–8 Actually, fraud as a whole
    is now ‘a serious, deeply rooted problem’ that affects no
    small number of contemporary scientific research studies,
    especially in the field of evolution.9 Scientists have recently
    been forced by several events to recognize this problem and
    try to deal with it.10
    Most of the known cases of modern-day fraud are in the
    life sciences.11 In the biomedical field alone, fully 127 new
    misconduct cases were lodged with the Office of Research
    Integrity (US Department of Heatlh & Human Services) in
    the year 2001. This was the third consecutive rise in the
    number of cases since 1998.12 This concern is not of mere
    academic interest, but also profoundly affects human health
    and life.13,14 Much more than money and prestige are at
    stake—the fact is, fraud is ‘potentially deadly’, and in the
    area of medicine, researchers are ‘playing with lives’.15 The
    problem is worldwide. In Australia misconduct allegations
    have created such a problem that the issue has even been
    raised in the Australian Parliament, and researchers have
    called for an ‘office of research integrity’.16
    One example is the widely quoted major immunological
    research studies related to kidney transplantation done
    by Zoltan Lucas (M.D. from Johns Hopkins and Ph.D. in
    biochemistry from MIT) that recently were found to contain
    fraudulent data.17 Dr Lucas was an associate professor of
    surgery at Stanford University. His graduate student, Randall
    Morris, discovered that Lucas had written reports on research
    that Morris knew had not been carried out. The reason Morris
    knew this was that he was to have been involved in the
    research! The studies were published in highly reputable
    journals and, no doubt, many other researchers also relied
    upon the results for their work. As a result of the modern
    fraud epidemic, a Nature editorial concluded:
    ‘Long gone are the days when scientific frauds
    could be dismissed as the work of the mad rather
    than the bad. The unhappily extensive record of
    misconduct suggests that many fraudsters believe
    their faked results, so attempts at replication by
    others represent no perceived threat.’18

  136. Frank K. says:
    October 25, 2010 at 4:51 pm
    richard telford says:
    October 25, 2010 at 11:41 am
    Methinks Mr. Telford (or whoever he is) won’t be climbing down anytime soon. I think the most interesting question for Mr. Telford is if he is in fact employed by the global warming industry (i.e. a recipient of government money). As long as there are billions of dollars in Climate Ca$h and parties in Bali and Cancun for the climate ruling class, no self-respecting climate scientist would agree to climb down…
    FYI there is a Richard Telford in the “To” list of an e-mail from Professor Keith Briffa; the e-mail was about an application for millions of Euros from Brussels.
    See: Wednesday, 20 October 2004 12:49:34 : Filename: 1098294574.txt
    Perhaps RT will let us know if he is a part of the global warming industy and also if he received an e-mail from CRU in October 2004.

  137. One faction that won’t be climbing down will be the Flat Earth Society, having been endlessly linked to what turned out to be the winning side.

  138. I sure hope Richard Telford is right and we get a 1 degree warming by 2050. Then we can point out how silly it was to worry about such nonsense.
    As for the media, all they need a a good volcanic eruption and they will claim the heating has been delayed and then never pick up on the topic again. If no eruption comes then look for a few scapegoats with big Al leading the way.

  139. Lot’s of papers have published sometime and then wished they hadn’t. I don’t see anything special about this case. I don’t see any connection with a “climb down.”

  140. Well, the BBC are obviously looking for new targets, but even then can’t get things right…
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-11511624
    Note the mismatch between the headline (‘Sea Urchins tolerate acid water’) and the context of the main article (yes, it’s about ‘acidification’, but then perhaps ‘dealkalinification’ is too long, and ‘neutralisation’ definitely doesn’t cut the scary mustard).

  141. Don’t intend to ignite a Creation/Evolution debate here, but a couple previous comments reminded me that I don’t think the AGW consensus’s charge that skeptics are like Creationists makes quantitative sense.
    For example, the age of the earth seems to be a fundamental bone of contention between Creationists and Evolutionists. It’s several thousand years. No, it’s several billion years. That’s a disagreement by a factor of a million!
    But nothing I can think of in the AGW debate approaches such a dramatic difference. The expected warming from a doubling of CO2 is a few degrees. No, it’s a small fraction of a degree. The amount of warming that’s already happened due to anthropogenic CO2 is a large fraction of a degree. No, it’s a small or very small fraction of a degree.
    Of course, bigger disagreements do appear when going beyond the basic physics–tipping points, how many species or humans will die from warming, how many $$$ should we spend fighting climate disruption. So maybe my argument is already falling apart! I guess I’ll shut up.

  142. Gareth Evans says:
    October 25, 2010 at 3:12 pm
    I’m all for minimising man’s contribution to the extinction rate, but I’m not for another expensive propoganda exercise that has the sole intention of levering more money and power towards the UN.

    The easiest one to fool is yourself. AGW might become the best example of (self) delusion in science. It is not so common that scientists deliberately are cheating – “religious and other emotional convictions drive scientists, despite what they may think their motivations are”.
    http://www.randi.org/site/index.php/swift-blog/805-agw-revisited.html
    So, basically I think you are wrong when you state that the scientists behind AGW do it for the money and control over the world, that’s utter nonsense! I regard most climate scientists skilled and honest, you see the problem is not the climate scientists themselves but the topic they have started to investigate, and my take is that it will take many decades before they figure out that they cannot possibly ever understand it.

  143. If CERN’s experiments support the cosmic-ray-seeding theories of Svensmark (sp?), that’ll give the MSM justification for distancing themselves.

  144. What cracks me up is that computer models were fallible when it was Yucca Mountain. I love the Discovery article where the writer goes on about assumptions that went in the model determined the output.

  145. Jim G says:
    October 25, 2010 at 10:31 am
    I am not so sure about the “sneaky climb down”. They may keep up the drum beat as they know that most folks are relatively innumerate, the quantitative equivalent of illterate. Good example this morning on NPR where they tried to make a case for the Dutch continuing increase in height of their citizens while the USA has stalled out somewhat as being due to the socialized medicine of the Netherlands and Holland.
    I just respond in kind to people making this rediculous case for socialized medicine, to the effect that, “No, the height differences are actually explained by the fact that the U.S. is much richer and therefore can afford to let more of its runts live!” It makes as much sense as their argument does.

  146. And yet, those dang ice caps keep melting, southern species continue their migration northward. I guess maybe they read the news they’ll get on board.

  147. Looks like Keeler.
    Not much of a climb down. Easy walk offs in several directions.
    The rap off Keeler or Third can be a scary one.

  148. John says: October 26, 2010 at 4:01 pm
    And yet, those dang ice caps keep melting, southern species continue their migration northward. I guess maybe they read the news they’ll get on board.
    John needs a reality check. Antarctia ice is at record levels. Arctic ice has increased over the last 3 years. The range and extent of “southern species” was always uncertain, and no hard data exists on any “migrations”.

  149. Hey Anthony,
    Do you keep statistics on website traffic? It would be interesting to see if your readers increase or decrease, and by how much and if there’s any correlation to news worthy events. Cheers!
    [Reply: Of course there is correlation, eg: during Climategate there was a huge spike in traffic. ~dbs, mod.]

  150. I’ve noticed that there are a few characteristics that proponents of AGW and certain Adventist faiths share. Adherents of the Jehovah’s Witness branch of Adventism have been described as “a zealous people who blindly proclaim an ever changing future catastrophe”. When the “end” fails to materialize at the proscribed time adjustments are made and life carries on. I believe it is niave to expect a climbdown or capitulation on the AGW issue. Peddlers of catastrophe are far more imaginative than that.

  151. If you look through the modern history of MSM hysterical reporting – they never back down or retract – they simply cease to report the issue altogether.
    Ozone layer, Mad Cow Disease, SARS, Avian Flu, Swine Flu, GM foods, Y2K, acid rain and so on. As the media become the last ones to realise that they were wrong, they simply report less and less of the issue until it disappears.
    If there are statistics somewhere about the number of MSM reports on “climate change”, it would be interesting to plot this over the past decade, and look for trends. I would be thinking that there is a swift, rapid decrease in the amount of “climate change” articles in the MSM during 2010, especially after the rabid peak of late 2009 (ie. Nopenhagen)

  152. A number of posters here have mentioned the BBC’s new push on ‘biodiversity’. This morning they had a WWF spokesman on, along with Caroline Spelman (the relevant minister for eco-bollocks), both gushing about the current conference on the topic and the urgent need to tax and transfer many billions to save the planet (again). Both speakers slid smoothly between discussing the biodiversity issue and referring to the Copenhagen failures, with no reference at all to their being different scientific ‘problems’. It seemed completely accepted that there was no real difference between them at all.

  153. Sorry to swim against the tide here, but surely a good example of what a ‘climbdown’ will look like is provided by many of the posts in this thread. It looks like denial. After the warmest 12 months on record, sustained high temperatures during a century-level solar minimum and no artic ice recovery, the skeptic fraternity responds by speaking as though their moment of victory were at hand. I find myself reminded of Saddam’s press secretary.
    Whatever the climate does is going to take decades, even by the most alarmist predictions, and the media can’t sustain the intensity of airtime it’s recently been giving the subject. People get bored. Reporting is bound to tail off.
    Meanwhile there is virtually nothing the climate could do in the next ten years that couldn’t be described as a temporary aberration by either camp, so we’ll just have to wait and see

  154. True, Jon T. But as a geologist, my money is betting there will never be some big catastrophic event you’re dreaming of, except for the one you’re not even remotely considering–the next Ice Age. And it will come as if in the night, completely unexpected, blindsiding everybody–especially those falsely accusing CO2 of some magical, invisible “tipping point”. And before “warmers” know what hit ’em, they’ll be dragging around in waist-deep, ever-accumulating snows still yelling cluelessly “IT’S GLOBAL WARMING, DON’TCHA KNOW??”
    Problem is, for that catastrophe, just waiting and seeing isn’t acceptable. Such people would make Saddam’s press secretary look like a verifiable saint.

  155. Jon T says: October 27, 2010 at 5:11 am
    … After the warmest 12 months on record, sustained high temperatures during a century-level solar minimum and no artic ice recovery, the skeptic fraternity responds by speaking as though their moment of victory were at hand. I find myself reminded of Saddam’s press secretary.
    Indeed. It is very difficult to find a coherent account for the internal dynamics of recent warming that does not include the effects of elevated GHGs. Relative increases in winter temperatures over summer, night over day, polar over equatorial, lower atmosphere over upper etc are signatures of warming due to green house gas. It is not just “warming”; it is the pattern of the warming. To the extent that other factors at play (ocean cycles, solar effects, internal variability, land clearance…) they have their impact in addition to the effect of elevated CO2. The “AGW climb down” anticipated by this post seems most unlikely on observational grounds alone.

  156. Ammonite says:
    “Relative increases in winter temperatures over summer, night over day, polar over equatorial, lower atmosphere over upper etc are signatures of warming due to green house gas. It is not just “warming”; it is the pattern of the warming.”
    The “relative” comment reminded me of Einstein’s reply to 100 scientists who signed an open letter disputing his work: it does not take 100 scientists to falsify Relativity, it only takes one fact.
    The tropospheric hot spot that everyone in CAGW-land agreed was to be the defining ‘fingerprint’ of AGW is nowhere to be found. Einstein would point out that the AGW hypothesis is falsified as a result. And cherry-picking the Arctic as an example of global warming is falsified by the Antarctic. The Arctic is clearly just a regional variation that has happened countless times in the past.
    Ammonite needs to understand how the scientific method works, which he clearly doesn’t. When a hypothesis is falsified, it’s back to the drawing board. According to the scientific method, you don’t get to back and fill, and move the goal posts; your falsified hypothesis is a dead duck. Trying to change the rules when reality isn’t going your way is not what an honest scientist does. It’s what a political advocate does.

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