The wit and wisdom of 'Real' Climate scientist Dr. Ray Pierrehumbert

Ray Pierrehumbert playing accordion at the liquidus. Source: http://geosci.uchicago.edu/people/faculty.shtml

Over at Judith Curry’s place she draws attention to a comment left at Keith Kloor’s Collide-a-Scape by RealClimate founder Dr. Ray Pierrehumbert of the University of Chicago. At left is his photo direct from his department website.

Along with the photo is this comment from Dr. Pierrehumbert:

“We’re drawing attention to the vast body of literature accumulating, which says when it comes to global warming, we may not be just looking at a different climate, but one that is more variable from year to year than our present climate. Think about what would happen if one year we had 105-degree heat waves, then the next decade we had unusually cold winters, and then we had 50 years of drought. It would be very hard to adapt to that kind of climate.”

Yes imagine that, but imagining and actuality are completely different things.

But back to the matter at hand, here’s the comment he left at Kloor’s:

raypierre Says:

June 17th, 2011 at 6:56 pm

Keith, your problem is that you have no judgment and you are just too gullible. Anytime anybody who looks like  part of “the team” comes along and turns around and criticizes “the team,” you will fawn all over them without thinking about the actual factual basis or merits of their claims. Think Judy Curry, and now, Lynas.  There may or may not be something fishy about the specifics of the renewable energy claims under discussion here (I think not, though it’s certain that the practice of doing press releases in advance of the full report is available is a bad thing and needs to stop, no questions there) but you aren’t even asking the hard questions before jumping in on Lynas’ side.  Some of the defense of the IPCC may be knee-jerk, but a lot of it is in fact well-considered, from people who know the process and the checks and balances there — which can be improved, but are not by any means as bad as most people seem to think.

Your other problem is that in your efforts to show what a big heart you have and be inclusive, you are blind to the real failings and chicanery of people like McIntyre and McKittrick.  The actual scientific consequence of these guys, relative to the noise they make and their character assasination operation against honest, earnest climate scientists is tiny, and they’ve pretty much lost any right to be taken seriously.  Note that the IPCC blunder on Himalayan glaciers  — something that really did reveal problems (though not fatal ones) in IPCC procedures — was outed first by professional glaciologists, both within and outside the IPCC. i.e. REAL SCIENTISTS, not noisemakers.

McIntyre, McKittrick, and Watts are the Andrew Breitbarts of climate. Occasionally they may out something that is technically true, but it is always of minor consequence compared to the noise, and always a distraction from the truly important questions facing society.  That’s why, big as the IPCC tent may be, I hope there will never be a place in it for any of these clowns.

Well, I never aspired to be under the IPCC big top, and I can’t play the accordion, so I don’t think Ray will have to worry about any competition there.

As for Steve and Ross, well I’m sure they’ll do just fine without needing to join the IPCC too.

But no hard feelings, and I think we should offer Ray some cheese with that whine.

And I should add this, be sure to read Dr. Pierrehumbert’s essay (which was linked on the department home page near his photo) titled Atmospheric Science Fiction.

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The IPCC has checks and balances, all right, to make sure that persons and papers not in line with The Narrative™ are sidelined and eased out of sight.
Pierre’s probably afraid that his funding and fortunes are in danger of taking a real haircut. Or make that buzz-cut.

Ray

We can also imagine cows with wings. In that case we would need very strong umbrellas and really good wipers on our cars. If imagination is all that is needed in science, we can imagine all we want but it might never make it true.

A recent Dilbert strip springs to mind…
On the positive side, as long as there’s people with raypierre’s attitude there will be little or no chance of any large-scale mitigation policy to become law, given his superior political skills and emphasis on inclusivity.

Hairy Pierre gives away his game in making a political comparison of Skeptics to Breitbart–admitting that his own game is at heart political.

nobody in particular

Think about what would happen if one year we had 105-degree heat waves, then the next decade we had unusually cold winters, and then we had 50 years of drought.

Just how is that any more variable than the way things already have been for longer than we’ve even been around…?

Bill in Vigo

Just curious but why do they always end up demonizing the opposition. I see no merrit in the above argument by the good Dr. I just haven’t figured what exactly he is good at.
Bill Derryberry

janama

The hubris of the Real Climate team never ceases to amaze me.

ivp0

By the looks of him I think Ray has had enough wine already.

One of these days….the term “mad scientist” will resurface.
I mean, seriously.
Don’t blame the red wine though. [snip]
Chris
Norfolk, Va, USA

DocattheAutopsy

Interesting that he calls you guys Brietbarts.
Brietbart is regularly condemned at first, but his claims always come to light as being factual. Nobody gives him credit, either.

Wondering Aloud

Interesting. It really appears that he really is not able to understnd the issue at all. I could take the easy way and point out who the “clown ” is but what leaps out at me is his overwelming confidence in the “team” . He is apparently so unfamiliar with the actual scientific method that he doesn’t realize that the whole concept of CAGW is dead, because the theory has now failed to predict observation for over 15 years. Faced with absolute failure to predict one has to be pretty unfamiliar with scientific method to hole Pierrehumbert. University of Chicago it says, how embarassing.

rbateman

I can imagine the entire US gripped in 100F + heat one week, then killing frosts hitting most of it the next week. It actually happened in the late 19th Century.
I can imagine Mega Droughts hitting the Southwest, or once fertile grasslands that are now the Sahara. How about the passages the Pharoahs created through the Sinai (now Suez) that kept failing due to the shrinking of the Red Sea? Or the Nile that froze in the 9th Century?
Climate change happens.

Uhmmm, hold on a second here. My memory may be flawed, but wasn’t the ridiculous Himalayan glacier claim reported on *before* the “professional glaciologists” got involved?
If my memory is correct, the good Dr. Pierrehumbert could do with a bit of humility – and maybe even realize that the issues brought up in blogs such as this one are far more than of “minor consequence”.
REPLY: yes, Dr. John Nielsen-Gammon, Texas state climatologist spotted it, as reported here on WUWT. Dec 22, 2009
Texas State Climatologist: “IPCC AR4 was flat out wrong” – relied on flawed WWF report
– Anthony

Patrick

“Think about what would happen if one year we had 105-degree heat waves, then the next decade we had unusually cold winters, and then we had 50 years of drought. It would be very hard to adapt to that kind of climate.”
Other than the drought, that’s Wisconsin’s climate. Of course, if the climate were truly becoming more variable, 50 years of any condition would be impossible.

The sole basis of the “catastrophic anthropogenic global warming” hypothesis is the cumulative effect of a series of factors. It requires (i) past temperatures to be as the team says they were, (ii) the warming effect of CO2 alone to be as the team says it is and (iii) positive feedbacks to be activated by CO2-induced warming.
All three are required for the hypothesis to get off the ground at all.
Dr Pierrehumbert is, if I might respectfully say so, plainly wrong to assert that damage done to one of the three limbs does not undermine the correctness of the whole. Quite patently the whole is felled by any one of the three limbs being less than perfectly secure because every stage of every limb is required to stand true in order for the hypothesis to be sound.

Bill in Vigo – Just curious but why do they always end up demonizing the opposition
Was wondering the same, so I’m trying with some exchanges with “Policy Lass”.
What I’d like to know is if these people actually care about the environment, climate change and the planet, to the point of being willing to participate to the building of effective, practical, realistic, implementable environment and climate change policies…or they are just interested to participate to a good fight.

Geoff Sherrington

The next IPCC prediction is IAN. The acronym is for “Increased Absolute Normailty”, a catch-all wherein every conceivable climate or weather event can be demonised as due to bad man/woman.

pat

good to see the MSM giving McIntyre credit where credit is due. kudos to u as well, anthony, and keep up the good work:
17 June: Washington Times Editorial: EDITORIAL: U.N. climate propaganda exposed
Industry lobbyists behind ‘scientific’ claims in IPCC press release
Since this statement was supposedly based on actual scientific research, Steve McIntyre, editor of the Climate Audit blog, did what the IPCC must have assumed nobody would bother doing. He checked the sources cited in the report…
That’s why the Environmental Protection Agency needs to pull the plug on the job-crushing cap-and-trade style regulations it seeks to impose. The agency based the whole of its “endangerment finding” on the work of IPCC, as if it were scientific. It would be more honest for the EPA to say its rules are based on the desire of Greenpeace and the renewable-energy industry to raise taxes on competing sources of electricity. They shouldn’t be allowed to get away with this fraud.
http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2011/jun/17/un-climate-propaganda-exposed/
17 June: Economist: The IPCC and Greenpeace
Renewable outrage
Steve McIntyre, who runs a blog on which he tries to hold climate science to higher standards than he sees it holding itself, picked up all these IPCC/Greenpeace connections and posted on them angrily, calling for all involved to be sacked. “As a citizen,” he says, “I would like to know how much weight we can put on renewables as a big-footprint solution. Prior to the IPCC report, I was aware that Greenpeace—and WWF—had promoted high renewable scenarios. However, before placing any weight on them, the realism of these scenarios needs to be closely examined. IPCC has a mandate to provide hard information but did no critical evaluation of the Greenpeace scenario.”
His desire for solid, honest answers is plainly one to be shared…
But the press release which focuses on an outlier, not on the range of options, is also and more worryingly the sort of mistake you get in organisations that assume everyone wants to hear the party line…
http://www.economist.com/blogs/babbage/2011/06/ipcc-and-greenpeace
17 June: Reason: Ronald Bailey: A Bad Week for Climate Change Alarmists*
This statement comes from an IPCC press release. The study on which the claim was made wasn’t made public until a month later. By then the media had moved on, and the meme that renewables could solve climate change by 2050 launched. What McIntyre found was that the scenario highlighted in the press release was ulitmately derived from a report issued jointly by Greenpeace and the European Renewable Energy Council. That’s right – activists and lobbyists collaborating. Who would have thought?…
The second foot-shooting occurred when it was discovered that climate change researchers at the University of Colorado have been quietly adjusting the figures for sea level rise…
Nerem replies that the adjustment adds just an inch over a century to the figures which doesn’t amount to all that much when computer models project that the future rise is sea level will be 2 to 4 feet over the coming century.
Now Nerem says that his group is thinking about making both the adjusted and unadjusted data public. Well, yes…
http://reason.com/blog/2011/06/17/a-bad-week-for-climate-change

Mike McMillan

If you can play the accordion, you will have something to keep yourself entertained when the rolling blackouts begin.

kuhnkat

“And I should add this, be sure to read Dr. Pierrehumbert’s essay (which was linked on the department home page near his photo) titled Atmospheric Science Fiction.”
No thanks, I have read all of IPCC AR4 I intend to.

vimy100

As always with the AGW crowd, it is all name-calling and guilt by association. This kind of thing should be deeply embarrassing, especially given that every prediction made by the AGW crowd for the past 15 years has failed, even after eliminating so many rural sites from the record. Why are they not embarrassed by their failure and their tactics?
I don’t mind their being wrong ~ their presuppositions were reasonable and watching for what effect increased atmospheric CO2 might have is a reasonable idea. But in the face of their failure, they vilify honest men and women and try to ruin their reputations. Why?

Sean Peake

I thought Gabby Hayes was long dead?

Occasionally they may out something that is technically true, but it is always of minor consequence compared to the noise…
So, the “noise” is really important; “technically true” things are of minor consequence. I get it.
Aucune merveille son goût en musique et vin n’est celle d’un clochard.

DonK31

Weiner blamed Breitbart also, just before he admitted that he lied about…http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZqR_SwwByMM

Amino Acids in Meteorites

I might be seeing this wrong, but…….
Scare people about global warming, end up with some global warming grant money so you don’t have to work anymore but can just sit around being a hippie accordion player……..
Is that what I’m seeing?

Doug in Seattle

I find that stories about the team are a waste of time. This one is no different.

Ron Dean says: June 17, 2011 at 9:35 pm
“Uhmmm, hold on a second here. My memory may be flawed, but wasn’t the ridiculous Himalayan glacier claim reported on *before* the “professional glaciologists” got involved?”

REPLY: yes, Dr. John Nielsen-Gammon, Texas state climatologist spotted it, as reported here on WUWT.
– Anthony”

From the JN-G report cited:
“Khandekar, the BBC, and I all rely on J. Graham Cogley, a glaciologist in the Department of Geography at Trent University, Ontario for pointing this out. Cogley and three colleagues have written a letter to Nature on this subject, and I’ve since corresponded with Cogley by email.”
REPLY: Thanks

Amino Acids in Meteorites says:
June 17, 2011 at 10:19 pm
I might be seeing this wrong, but…….
Scare people about global warming, end up with some global warming grant money so you don’t have to work anymore but can just sit around being a hippie accordion player……..
Is that what I’m seeing?
===============================================================
Yeh, well, I think too, that he’s obligated to post some whines and degenerate other people’s contribution to science that makes his buddies look bad…… but other than that, yeh, that’s what it looks like.

Phillip Bratby

So McIntyre, McKittrick, and Watts are clowns are they? He has lost any credibilty he may have had with that one statement.

Richard Hill

Anthony, Thanks for the pointer to R P-H’s “Atmospheric Science Fiction”. As a long time SF fan, I found it quite a fun read. Asimov forever! (BTW I found R P-H’s remarks about McIntyre et al poisonous and totally unjustified.)

John Whitman

Amino Acids in Meteorites says:
June 17, 2011 at 10:19 pm
I might be seeing this wrong, but…….
Scare people about global warming, end up with some global warming grant money so you don’t have to work anymore but can just sit around being a hippie accordion player……..
Is that what I’m seeing?
——-
Amino Acids in Meteorites,
Nah, what you are seeing is an audition for Ophra’s replacement for the talk show.
John

another explanation for that odd photograph is that it was taken at the auditions for a new tv show, “America’s Got (no) Climate Talent”.

Blade

[‘RealClimate’ founder says:] “Keith, your problem is that you have no judgment and you are just too gullible.”

I wonder if Keith realizes them’s fightin’ words.

[‘RealClimate’ founder says:] “… you are blind to the real failings and chicanery of people like McIntyre and McKittrick …”

Them’s really fightin’ words.

[‘RealClimate’ founder says:] “… the noise they make and their character assasination [sic] operation against honest, earnest climate scientists …”

Oooh, Cry Me A River! (and hand me a barf bag)

[‘RealClimate’ founder says:] “McIntyre, McKittrick, and Watts are the Andrew Breitbarts of climate.”

In my book, that is a gigantic compliment, and is fairly accurate since Breitbart helped bring down ACORN, and the three listed are certainly among the top of those bringing down AGW.
We’re officially entering the end-stage of the AGW scam. This stage is characterized by widespread personality meltdowns and egregious mistakes. This one alone will keep CA busy for quite a while.
I’m gonna need a bigger popcorn maker.

Scott

If Steve McIntyre is Andrew Breitbart, Dr. Ray Pierrehumbert is Anthony Weiner.

Jack Savage

Using that photo to poke fun is to descend to the same level of argument as the fanatical catastrophists. Best avoided.
I have to admit it is hard to resist……but resisted it should be.

Dr Ray is the spitting image of one of the homeless winos that hang around parts of the local town centre cadging grants money from the taxpayers public. Can we arrest him for climate vagrancy?

Beesaman

Is this someone more worried about the the balance of his cheques rather than the balance of checks?

Back in the sixties, when some bearded academic said: “we may …” it was treated as a bit of a joke.
These days, when they say: “we may … ” it is treated as a god given law of nature.
There’s nothing wrong with having the odd accordion wielding academic who wants “love and peace” amongst everyone and thinks they are god’s gift to science and indeed humanity in general (and they don’t underrate their science either). But it’s quite another thing having the massed ranks of economic advisors taking these people seriously and doing anything to our economies based on their ideologically driver “chum-science”.

Allan M

Bill in Vigo says:
June 17, 2011 at 8:55 pm
Just curious but why do they always end up demonizing the opposition.
Robespierrehumbert.

Jordan

I was driving along when my car started making an unusual noise. When I pulled over to see what was going on, my car broke down and I had it towed-in for repairs.
Ray should pay attention to noise. Sometimes it will prove to be the most important thing he is hearing. The noise might stop him completing his journey, and his ideas might need to be towed-in to the repair shop.
But he seems to be saying hat he is unwilling to pay attention because of emotional commitments to completing his journey. He’s gonna try to keep driving as he is unable to take into account unwelcome information from certain sources.
Ray will find himself standing on the roadside as others pass him by. Expect more emotional outbursts.

Perry

For music buffs everywhere & because it appears not noted here yet, the BUFF known as Mister Raypierre Wit Humbug has demonstrated in his witterings that he can create an extraordinary amount of self harm with a pencil & paper and the photo of him playing with his squeeze box, suggests that there were a number of “first cousin” relationships in his antecedents. Blue Fugates of Troublesome Creek?

Alarmist; If XYZ happens, it could be very difficult to adapt to.
Skeptic; Is there any evidence that XYZ is likely to happen?
Alarmist; 98.5% of climate scientists agree that we’re going to have to deal with XYZ.
Sketpic: But… is there any evidence that XYZ is likely to happen?
Alarmist; Sophisticated computer models clearly show the devastating effects of XYZ.
Skeptic: Yeah, OK, but is there any EVIDENCE that XYZ is likely to happen.
Alarmist: We can see it happening already due to the impending extinction of the polar bear.
Skeptic: The polar bear population has been increasing, but next you’ll blame that on XYZ too. Is there any evidence that XYZ is happening?
Alarmist; You are unfairly denigrated honest hard workking scientist who have spent their whole careers studying XYZ, and they earned substantive degrees and grant money doing it.
Skeptic; Well wonderful that they’ve been able to study and get grants, but I’m asking the same question as before, have they been able to priduce any evidence that XYZ is happening?
Alarmist; How much more evidence do you need, its all around you. Winters getting colder/hotter, rainfall increasing/decreasing, more flooding/drought, polar bears increasing/decreasing? How many models expressing the same predictions do you need? How many more scientist are required to convince you?
Skeptic; None. Just some evidence would do nicely.

BENG

” chicanery of people like McIntyre and McKittrick”
Surely this is actually libel?? If I was McIntyre/McKittrick, I’d seriously consider taking him to court over this rather irrational and unprofessional (to say the least) outburst.

kim

Though I haven’t much truck with Keith Kloor, the fact that he draws fire regularly from alarmists is to his credit. If only he’d take the obvious lesson from the climate wars, that the left has the more violently flecked rhetoric, and generalize it more widely, he might be on to a vista such as Mark Lynas now beholds.
===============

Yeah. Call the dedicated, unpaid, unvainglorious – and otfen vilified – names like “clowns.” That’s the way to show an open mind to evidence and reason.
I always knew Ray Pierrehumbert had it in him.

So this would be the same ‘raypierre’ who rubbished Roy Spencers simple climate model on the basis that the part of the ocean which is important climatologically is only 35m deep, rather than the 1000m Roy used (quite correctly).
And the same ‘rapierre’ who rubbished Courtillot and Allegre for their paper on solar variation, geomagnetism and global temperature, while administering another foot shooting to his fellow Team members. Their feet must be so swollen by now that the clown shoes fit nicely.
http://tallbloke.wordpress.com/2011/02/26/les-chevaliers-de-l%E2%80%99ordre-de-le-soleil-gris/

Stacey

He’s playing the wrong instrument. It should be a fiddle.
Well if A and the 2M’s are clowns how must it feel for the fiddlers at UnReal Climate to have thier work exposed for the rubbish it is,well,by a bunch of clowns.
“………..happens if…….’
If my auntie had testicles she’d be my uncle.

jonjermey

“there will never be a place in it for any of these clowns….”
Because they have an endless oversupply of clowns already.

Shevva

Notice they never answer there critice’s, just Ad-Homs, my science teacher would be ashamed and an instant F if the answer was there wrong because there clowns, I would need more to my argument, like actually showing my workings and data but that was just my science teacher.

Kilted Mushroom

Only an uninvolved lurker but I understood that the glacier thing was detected in the IPPC deliberations at WG1. This was ignored by “those who matter” and progressed into the full report. Experts found it and experts ignored it. Am I wrong?