Dr. Judith Curry on the PBS debacle

From her blog

Centering this show on the faux conversion of Richard Muller set this story down a certain path that turned out to be unfortunate.

IMO, Watts handled himself very well in the on-air interview and also in the extended written interview.  Nothing that he said was unreasonable.  It is rather bizarre that on this particular show, I came across as the ‘denier’ and Watts as the ‘lukewarmer.’

The outrage over Watts seems to be not so much what he said, as over his being given any airtime at all.  On a program discussing climate science, is Watts the appropriate spokesperson?  I would say not.  However, on a program discussing the public debate over climate science, Watts should be front and center.  His blog WUWT has far and away the largest traffic of any climate blog in the world (as per Alexa).  As such, Watts is a figure of central importance in the public debate on climate change.

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Thank you, Dr. Curry. Read the entire essay on her blog.

 

 

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The PBS ombudsman sounds like a hypocritical drone compared to Curry’s candid analysis.

kim

Muller, skeptical of the Hockey Stick, biased and true believer in much of the rest.
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Thanks, Dr. Curry, for again being a voice for reason in an uncertain field, let the debate continue in search for climate explanations and mechanisms.

wfrumkin

I think the work done on bad siting of weather stations is good science. You don’t need a PHD in global warming to qualify for a PBS segment.

tallbloke

It’s defining moment at the equinox, my thoughts are with all my fellow sceptic bloggers, especially Jo Nova at this time.

On a program discussing the public debate over climate science, Watts should be front and center. His blog WUWT has far and away the largest traffic of any climate blog in the world (as per Alexa). As such, Watts is a figure of central importance in the public debate on climate change.
Absolutely!

Just Passing By

A completely off-topic comment merely to alert fellow skeptics to the presently disabled condition of JoanneNova.com.au. The site presently says “This Account Has Been Suspended.”
It may be just a temporary glitch, perhaps not, but it was not a scheduled outage to the knowledge of regular readers.
Let’s hope warmist activity has nothing to do with this incident. The site was the target of a hack a month ago, certainly a sign that she is making progress.
Presumably fans can watch for an explanatory tweet at http://twitter.com/JoanneNova

Judith:
It is rather bizarre that on this particular show, I came across as the ‘denier’ and Watts as the ‘lukewarmer.’
====================================================================
If you are not with them 100%, they are against you 100%

Anthony: I saw your interview some days ago. All I can say is “Gosh he is so balanced” The warmists seeing you there would have made their blood warmer, as as far as they are concerned NO ONE disagreeing with then should be reported one by the MSN
As far as I am concerned in your field and particularly in the area of land based temperature readings and the politics of global warming you are an expert. All supporters of WUWT will agree with me here. The warmists think: “Better watermelon than expert” BTW I wonder what happened to Al Gore?

katabasis1

I see there are the usual hateful comments over there claiming that this site is only successful because Anthony “tells his audience what it wants to hear”.
Why oh why is it that these same people get away with such claims yet run a mile when offered the chance to debate publicly? Do they think sceptics have some kind of magic powers to sway audiences? It’s not as if rhetoric is an unknown tactic to the alarmists. They even run screaming from me on my own campus when I offer to have it out in a public debate and I’m just a lowly humanities/computing PhD student…..

kadaka (KD Knoebel)

OT, but still…
Happy (Practically) Sea Ice-Free Arctic Day!
Let the carbon-neutral biodegradable confetti fly!

Just Passing By

As I type this, 8 minutes ago Jo tweeted an explanation, and it turns out it was another hack.
Wishing her blog a speedy recovery.

jorgekafkazar

With due respect to Judith Curry, just as you don’t have to be a gourmet to recognize tainted food, you don’t have to have a PhD to recognize tainted science. Obstruction of replicability is rife in “climate science,” along with a wide assortment of unscientific behaviours clearly evident to the layman. It stinks like a week old mackerel.

Mike

But Judy, there is no debate. Things were settled long ago. Al said so. And since then no one from the warmist side has had the courage and conviction to open it back up for debate, certainly not Muller, not Mann, nor any of the folks in Colorado, or East Anglia or wherever else they choose to hide.

Roger Longstaff

“is Watts the appropriate spokesperson? I would say not.”
I completely disagree with Curry – IMO Anthony is the perfect spokesperson. And, for what it is worth, I think he was incredibly restrained in that interview. Even showing such restraint he can attract the vitriol of the fanatics, simply for stating a perfectly reasonable view in a courteous manner. It is about time that scientists got off the fence and exposed this fraud for what it truly is.

Jim Clarke

“On a program discussing climate science, is Watts the appropriate spokesperson? I would say not.”
I totally, 100% disagree. I believe that people as educated on the subject as Anthony Watts are actually more qualified than ‘climate scientists’, whoever they are. What does it take to be a climate scientist? Well, you have to live in the make-believe world of academia or government, where science is secondary to ones ability to garner grant money. That is the real job of the modern day, climate scientist. On campus, they don’t say “science or perish”, they say “publish or perish”. It doesn’t have to be good science. It just has to be published science that adds to the prestige or notoriety of the scientist and university.
Consequently, the university scientist lives in a strange environment where they study reality through the lens of grant acquisition. Somehow, these otherwise intelligent people, do not believe this process changes [their] work or effects their conclusions, but it obviously does. There is a strong incentive to describe the world in such a way that will produce more support for the university, while not biting the hand that feeds them. This often results in strange language that does not contradict what the scientist truly believes or what the ‘grant-givers’ need to hear, even if they are two different things. So reports are filled with meaningless jargon that implies a lot, but says almost nothing at all.
Secondly, the university scientist is somewhat myopic, concentrating in [their] area of study with little time to develop a complete understanding of the overall science. They may become ‘experts’ in one narrow aspect, but remain fairly ignorant of the rest of climate study.
People like Anthony Watts, who developed their opinion without a stake in the outcome, and have studied a more complete spectrum of the available science, are the MOST qualified to address the public on climate change. I would bet that most regular readers of WUWT could win a public debate on removing the ‘crisis’ from man-made climate change over most ‘climate scientists’, provided the moderator came down hard on ad homenim attacks and appeals to authority.
The real science is squarely against the crisis argument, and that is the only argument that has ever mattered in the climate change debate.

As there is precious little science in “climate science”, I believe that the opinion of every educated, thinking adult is relevant to this subject. Indeed, the dishonesty that exists within this subject stems, to a great extent, from the creation of “climate science” a separate branch of science. This enabled the believers to isolate themselves from the rest of the scientific community, peer review themselves and hand out degrees, professorships and fellowships to each other as they please. Most of the real scientists initially involved with the IPCC have either been forced out or resigned in disgust with the process. Every aspect of the work done by the closed shop climate community should be overseen by top scientists, engineers, programmers, etc from every discipline, not just generalist climate scientists.
P.S. If the Earth has a climate, would someone kindly define it for me. Thanks.

I’ve been engaged in a rather straightjacketed discussion over on the funny farm that is SkS.
The gist is that the NOAA measurements are fine, no problemo in situation at all; the biases are removed by some very clever boffins. Basically, I was rounded on for even doubting it. But the paranoia is really palpable….
I posted: “Have you forgotten the most basic principle of science, falsifying the null hypothesis – Galileo went down that path under duress.”
Later I found…
“Have you forgotten the most basic principle of science, falsifying the null hypothesis. (-snip-).
Moderator Response: [DB] Inflammatory snipped.”
I’m still trying to get my head round that! It seem’s I’m persona non grata there now, what a very sad and insecure bunch they are.

Dodgy Geezer

“…On a program discussing climate science, is Watts the appropriate spokesperson? I would say not….”
Why not?
It cannot be repeated too often that there is NO SUCH THING as a ‘qualified scientist’.
There are qualified medical doctors. There are qualified plumbers. There are qualified teachers. But science is a ‘way of thinking’. If I approach a problem ‘scientifically’, I am being a ‘scientist’. And so is anyone who follows this process.
Of course, some people are better at this process than others. Some have studied a problem longer, and know more detail about it. I would say that Watts has a good track record in this regard. He is not a ‘spokesperson’, of course – spokespeople are appointed to represent a particular clientèle, and there is no such thing as a single authoritative body ‘running’ climate science who could appoint such a person. No matter how much the warmists may wish there was.
The warmists, as a last ploy, are trying to argue that only their opinions are entitled to be heard, and dissenting voices must be silenced, because they are not ‘qualified’ to think about this problem. Wherever this attitude is found it must be attacked and silenced at source – it is an open attempt to enforce a dictatorship of thought.

It’s difficult to know how anyone could have been more reasonable and considered in their statements than Anthony Watts was in that interview. I thought it was a text book example of how to calmly present a rational argument to an unbelieving audience, and as such AW was an ideal spokesperson for the show.

JamesD

Watts has co-authored 2-3 papers in peer reviewed journals. He has cred.

davidmhoffer

Before everyone starts thanking Dr Curry for her kind comments toward Anthony, I would urge everyone to think carefully about what she said.
On the one hand, she endorsed him as being front and centre in the public debate, but on the other hand she excluded him, and deliberately so, as a “scientist”. This is an egregious comment in my opinion, not because is excludes Anthony’s observations regarding science, but because it by default excludes the opinions of anyone not defined by Dr Curry as being a scientist.
This is utter cr@p for the simple reason that the bulk of the issues surrounding the CAGW debate are well within the grasp of common people. The CAGW meme isn’t failing because the person in the street rejects out of hand some esoteric aspect of quantum physics that only a tiny select priesthood understands. The person in the street rejects the CAGW meme because they find out that Briffa’s 1000 year reconstruction is based 50% on a single tree that doesn’t even match local temperature measurements. Because they find out that Michael Mann used Tiljander data even though he knew it was upside down. Because they find out that Jones used a “trick” to hide the fact that the prescious tree ring data that is supposedly accurate for 1000 years actually goes the opposite direction of the temperature record for nearly half the instrumental record. Because it takes virtually no education at all to compare different versions of the GISS temperature record and see that the oldest records have been adjusted downward for no apparent reason. Because it doesn’t take a degree to look at the graphs of Total Cyclone Energy and conclude that extreme weather events are declining, not increasing. It takes very little education to look at sea ice extent and see that it is declining in the arctic and increasing in the antarctic.
In fact Dr Curry, the truth of the matter is that the vast bulk of climate science is well within the grasp of most people. “Scientists” like yourself lose all credibility with me when you define the opinions of the rest of us to the trash heap out of hand.
The fact of the matter Dr Curry is that there are very FEW aspects of “science” as it applies to the climate debate that CAN’T be understood by someone with just the basics in calculus, physics and statistics. That you attempt to reserve valid discussion of these things to yourself and your science priesthood is pretentious, arrogant and self serving in the extreme.
What the alarmists fear most from the discussion of climate science is not that Anthony Watts may have some valid points. What they fear is that the common person will cease drinking whichever flavour of cool-aid they happen to be most comfortable with handed out by what ever priest has been blessed with that task in whatever forum they happen to be most comfortable with, and instead spend a few hours getting themselves up to speed on the facts which are easily found in forums such as WUWT and verified in any number of ways with very little effort.
By attempting to define climate science as something out of the grasp of the common person Dr Curry while at the same time spinning a slightly different view (lukewarmist) you are revealing what you believe. That you are simply a sect within the priesthood, and the rest of us the great unwashed.

I agree that Anthony was a good choice for the segment & not just because he conveniently lives in N. CA & has Heartland’s Good Temperature Housekeeping Seal of Approval. His survey of instrument siting is an important contribution to genuine climate science, still in its infancy.
However I feel that another skeptic should have been interviewed on camera in order to balance out the other consensus interviewee besides Muller. IMO Curry would have been a good choice, thanks to her prior collaboration with Muller & her own honest conversion to skepticism (excuse me if the good doctor doesn’t believe she’s a convert). She could have pointed out the problems with BEST, or Muller’s interpretation of the data, & maybe even have noted that he was never much of a skeptic in the first place.
But I guess even showing a real, live skeptic in the form of Anthony was a breakthrough for PBS. They may in fact have preferred him because he’s not an academic, to reinforce the false perception that skeptics are hicks from the sticks & kooks clinging to God & guns, in his case a shotgun, slaughtering defenseless skeet, probably while on their fall migration toward rapidly evaporating tropical rain forests.

JJ

Anthony,
It would seem that this PBS kabuki has given you an opportunity. I hope you take advantage of it.
The Ombudsman wrings his hands over their lapse in “editorial integrity” – which they define as having aired an interview with you. There is a huge failure in editorial integrity present here, but has nothing to do with you. PBS needs to be called on it, and the massive attention that this event is currently receiving gives you a window of opportunity to do that.
The problem of editorial integrity here is that PBS lied about Richard Muller. They said on the program, and Ombudsman Michael Getler repeated in his “Mea Culpa” essay, the following:
“Physicist Richard Muller had long been among those who denied that climate change was happening, but he made big news last month when he broke with his allies and published an op-ed in the New York Times saying not only was he no longer a skeptic but that “I’m now going a step further.
That statement is a lie.
Richard Muller has never denied that climate change was happening, let alone for a long time. We have quotes from him promoting global warming in the late 1900’s and the first decade of this century. We have quotes of him supporting Algore’s methods. We know that he and his daughter have a consulting business promoting “solutions” to global warming problems. We all know this stuff, but we have become jaded to Muller’s mischaracterization of himself as a “sceptic” because it is difficult to do anything about it. Muller fabricates by equivocating on the term “sceptic”, which makes it hard to render his lies actionable.
PBS has done something different. In repeating Muller’s lies, they embellish. They make statements of fact that are not true. They say that Muller “… had long been among those who denied that climate change was happening, …”. Muller’s faux sceptic period was a little over a year. That is not long by any measure relevant to this topic. He has never denied that climate change was happening. PBS made those things up. They took his equivocations, and turned them into plainly stated lies.
These are the sort of issues that an Ombudsman should be addressing as violations of integrity, not whether they should have interviewed an author of peer reviewed scientific publications and prominent voice on the topic.
Call them on it.

Climate science has lost all credibility. It’s scientists act like high priests of cult churches and it’s supporters act like blind-faith followers. Reason is beyond thier capabilities: fear and self-righteousness rule their minds.

David Ball

Jim Clarke says:
September 22, 2012 at 8:26 am
“Secondly, the university scientist is somewhat myopic, concentrating in there(sic) area of study with little time to develop a complete understanding of the overall science.”
The difference between “climate science” and climatology right there.
Insightful post. Thx.

Robin Hewitt

I have climate science fatigue. I’ve just been reading comments over on the PBS and they are all impassioned and weird. There is hardly any middle ground, not one of the contributors could be swayed by science, debate or oratory, why do they bother to post? Should I care? I did care but I don’t think I do anymore. I expect not caring is either a crime against my children or against the taxpayer, depending on which camp you happen to be in, and that makes me a horrible person one way or the other. Luckily that doesn’t worry me either. Perhaps I will get over it, I may just be having a bad climate science day.

Go Home

Judith:
It is rather bizarre that on this particular show, I came across as the ‘denier’ …’
============================================================
I think they are just setting you up as an eventual turncoat against said deniers.

Bill Illis

If they would only put as much energy into gathering objective evidence about what the actual climate is doing as they put into trying to silence debate, then we could call them climate scientists.
But instead, most of their energy is going into acting like 12th century inquisitors.

Dave Dodd

Anthony,
Much like the goings on in the Middle-East, you insulted their prophet by speaking heresy and you did not come across as Rasputin or Charlie Manson (which BTW, some of their own, Hanson, Gore, etc.do fit that image.) Your calm demeanor and point-on narrative connects with us “commoners” which invades the believer’s already marked territory. Thus, they launched a terrorist attack in an attempt to intimidate not only you, but anyone of their flock who might dare stray off the reservation.
I wonder if anyone else noticed the similarities of the emails PBS posted, as though all were written from some back-channel template circulated among the “true” believers? The obligatory “97% of scientists” and “thoroughly debunked” (or discredited) shows up in almost every email, leading one to believe they were written by a single person or a very small group of guerrilla fighters. I believe the “15,000 people” figure is a red herring.
In my book, Anthony, you are the perfect “voice” of skepticism. The term “scientist” is earned. I have yet to see it posted on anyone’s sheepskin. It is something earned through hard work, perseverance and dedication to one’s avocation. You have slogged in the trenches and earned that distinction, much to the consternation of those megalomaniacs who seem to believe their PhD automatically entitles them to be so-called (pun intended.)
Keep up the good work. You have tons of support from us skeptical commoners! The war is being won, one battle at a time.

Louis Hooffstetter

People who use the label “Climate Change Denier” are more inclined to initiate a shouting contest than to engage in a scientific debate. For them, there is no debate. Anthony & Dr. Curry, (and the readers of their sites) on the other hand are “Climate Change Debaters”, which explains the backlash against Dr. Curry. It’s ‘Guilt by association’. Because she is willing to debate the science with “Deniers”, she’s one of us. And while we don’t always agree with Dr. Curry, we appreciate her impeccable integrity. She’s a breath of fresh air emanating from the sewer of climate science.

john robertson

Dr Currie’s and the PBS ombudsman’s point appears to be , Mr Watts is not a member of the priesthood of CAWG and thus is not qualified to speak to the theology? How is this relevant to science?

Dr. Judith Curry: “Centering this show on the faux conversion of Richard Muller set this story down a certain path that turned out to be unfortunate.”

This represents the danger of basing a decision or a conclusion “on a case sample of one”; had 5% or more representative number of the ‘skeptic’ community ‘turned’ then it might have some basis and validity as a ‘basis’ for a program (me thinks) …
He (Muller) was what – an outlier of 4 or 5 sigma relative to the base (the statistical population of ‘skeptics’)? … someone should have run the statistical significance of one lone questionable wolf ‘turning’ before placing as much prominence upon his pronouncements …
.

Crispin in Waterloo

Anthony does not ‘speak for me’ nor did I appoint him as my representative nor as my delegate. It happens I agree with everything he said in the interview. The fact that PBS chooses to refer to a ‘spokesperson’ for [some group they create in their minds] does not change reality.
There are not ‘two sides’ to truth, even if one speaks from a different paradigm. The sum of knowledge is the only basis from which we can speak. Partial knowledge creates partiality in view.
I and many other share Anthony’s view on the issue of the temperature record and quite a lot of other things. There are no doubt things we do not agree on which matters not at all when discussion turns to the temperature record on which he is an acknowledged expert.
This whole ‘scientist’ qualification/naming hogwash is nothing other than priestcraft. For CAGW supporters it means there are those who are annointed with the Holy Spirit of Climate and those who have not gone through the prescribed rituals and initiations. That is how those who have attacked Anthony on PBS see it – he is not one of the ‘very elect’.
Interesting from the perspective that there appear to be hundreds, nay thousands, who will blindly accept anything from a climate priest but not from a truth-speaking man. That is the very definition of fanaticism.

Walter

Dr. Curry, this is why arts and sciences are separate from engineering. As we have witnessed with nutrition and climate, science can easily transmogrify into art.
My father (mathematician, electrical engineer) could easily have been interviewed about the biology, chemistry, physics, and geology he picked up in high school and college. He knew much more chemistry than me, and I have the chemistry degree.
Anthony is more than qualified to discuss climate science.

Pamela Gray

Add my two cents worth to the Ivory Tower “clique” comment. If it weren’t for lowly mothers speaking out against the scientific “consensus” on autism, they would still be accusing mothers of being “cold” towards their children. Judith owes you an apology and needs to come down out of the Ivory Tower. She’s not all that (no scientist is and they would do well to remember that), and as soon as she realizes it, we can finally make headway on this issue.
I’m a special educator. And I’m not all that. If my “pet theory” doesn’t work to improve learning rate, I try something else. And if that doesn’t work I try something else. What I have discovered is that off the shelf, bells and whistles, expensive curriculum touted by the publishers as being the best of the best, isn’t always the case. In fact, it seldom is the case, even though their own “PhD’ed” research on curriculum they are paid to promote appears to prove their case. Now where have we heard that before?
Judith, you should be thanking folks like Anthony who bring fresh eyes to research. Dismissing his ability to do so speaks ill of you.

Richard Howes

World English Dictionary
scientist (ˈsaɪəntɪst)
— n
a person who studies or practices any of the sciences or who uses scientific methods
So, just how is Anthony NOT a scientist?

Sam the First

It’s very noticeable that in the comments on the Curry blog thread, almost those trying to discredit Anthony and this blog do so under a pseudonym, and resort entirely to ad hominem attacks, with no attempt to provide any evidence for their assertions. Supporters of WUWT do try to do cite references, and do so politely.
Par for the course; but as we all know, only desperate people lacking the support of evidence for their cause behave in this manner.

Don

“On a program discussing climate science, is Watts the appropriate spokesperson? I would say not.”.
I agree with Dr. Curry in this. IMO Anthony is “merely” an excellent choice (and did a wonderful job); the perfect choice would have been Vahrenholt and/or Luning, who switched views in the opposite direction of Muller’s alleged flip. I’d love to see one or both of them debate Muller on PBS!

davidmhoffer

Further Dr Curry, the ultimate debate is not about the science.
Seriously.
This arrogant self serving petulant attempt by those such as yourselves to exclude the rest of us from the debate by defining us as “non scientists” fails to include the MOST important part of the debate which has NOTHING to do with science.
It has to do with economics.
The question we must answer, when all is said and done, is which is better for humanity, mitigation or adaptation?
OK miss high and mighty “scientist”, go ahead and dispute me on that. Think you can hold your own in a debate with me on the intersection of science and economics?
I dare you and your arrogant cohorts to even try. The only way that the whole lot of you can score a single point in the debate is to do what you arrogantly try to accomplish, which is to define the debate in terms which allow only you to claim expertise.
There’s the truth of it Dr Curry. You and your ilk can barely hold your own in a discussion of the science with well informed laymen. When it comes to the big picture, which includes who starves to death and who doesn’t based on what actions we do or do not take, you are collectively so far out of your league that you are complete jokes. You are worse than jokes. You suck on the hind teat of society as if the milk were free and only you are entitled to drink it while carefully explaining to the great unwashed that only you know what to do with the milk.
Its my milk you arrogant snob.
Gonna take my dare?

John Garrett

Muller on Watts
by Andrew W. Montford
http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2012/4/2/muller-on-watts.html
Quote:
[Dr.] Richard Muller is interviewed in the current issue of Physics World (H/T Jonathan Jones). The article is not online as far as I can tell, but there are some interesting comments that I will reproduce here :
lf Watts hadn’t done his work, we would not have reliable data today. The fact that he did that means he’s a hero; he deserves some sort of international prize.”

kim

jim @ 9:55 AM illustrates a nice point. Not only is Muller a false skeptic, but PBS is pushing a false narrative; the trend is toward skepticism about climate catastrophe. The astro-turfed petition that the ombudsman received is a symptom of the consciousness of the falseness of the narrative. I don’t think it was outrage over a ‘non-scientist’ at all.
========================

RACookPE1978

Jim Clarke says:
September 22, 2012 at 8:26 am
“On a program discussing climate science, is Watts the appropriate spokesperson? I would say not.”
I totally, 100% disagree. I believe that people as educated on the subject as Anthony Watts are actually more qualified than ‘climate scientists’, whoever they are. What does it take to be a climate scientist? Well, you have to live in the make-believe world of academia or government, where science is secondary to ones ability to garner grant money. That is the real job of the modern day, climate scientist. On campus, they don’t say “science or perish”, they say “publish or perish”. It doesn’t have to be good science. It just has to be published science that adds to the prestige or notoriety of the scientist and university.
Consequently, the university scientist lives in a strange environment where they study reality through the lens of grant acquisition. Somehow, these otherwise intelligent people, do not believe this process changes [their] work or effects their conclusions, but it obviously does. There is a strong incentive to describe the world in such a way that will produce more support for the university, while not biting the hand that feeds them. This often results in strange language that does not contradict what the scientist truly believes or what the ‘grant-givers’ need to hear, even if they are two different things. So reports are filled with meaningless jargon that implies a lot, but says almost nothing at all.
Secondly, the university scientist is somewhat myopic, concentrating in [their] area of study with little time to develop a complete understanding of the overall science. They may become ‘experts’ in one narrow aspect, but remain fairly ignorant of the rest of climate study.
People like Anthony Watts, who developed their opinion without a stake in the outcome, and have studied a more complete spectrum of the available science, are the MOST qualified to address the public on climate change. I would bet that most regular readers of WUWT could win a public debate on removing the ‘crisis’ from man-made climate change over most ‘climate scientists’, provided the moderator came down hard on ad homenim attacks and appeals to authority.

It is interesting and informative to note that the CAGW theists (those who so viciously “defend” the so-called of catastrophic anthropogenic global warming theory) who most closely DEMAND we only listen to their “approved” scientific results and “scientists” and “government experts” are those who most fanatically fought AGAINST “government conclusions” and “MidEast experts” and “official government sources” and “intelligence analysis” of both parties …. when the Iraq War was being debated as necessary and important by their opponents, but denounced as “war for oil” and international disaster by their own side..
These same extremists who demand “only (CAGW-approved) scientists” can address climate change make up the same group … that claims engineering analysis and forensic investigations ‘cannot be trusted” in the case of the World trade Center terrorism. There, in that case that offends their sense of the world where true terrorism is present and innocents really are killed, it is the “911 Truthers” who have NO engineering knowledge or intelligence who are the “only ones” who can address the situation and “find the truth.”
PBS is deeply flawed, criminally at fault for destroying the world’s economy in their blindness to the “real” scientific investigations of the unknowns in our world. These supposed 15,000 are even more prejudiced, and yet so ignorantly but elegantly informed.

MarkW

katabasis1 says:
September 22, 2012 at 7:45 am
The mythology of the global warmists is that even permitting non-alarmists to have air time is dangerous because it gives people the impression that there is no consensus, and that it gives us respect we don’t deserve.
On this I claim bunk. If our evidence is so bad, then publicly shredding it would discredit us, not give us more credit.
I never shrink from debating a young earth creationist, or a truther, or any of the weird conspiracy theorists out there. Precisely because their so called evidence is easy to discredit. Once people see both sides, and see who is able to defend their evidence, then they will make up their own minds.
The fact that the warmists refuse to debate at all, tells you all you need to know about how much confidence they have in their “evidence:.

Louis Hooffstetter

One of Dr. Curry’s comments: “… discussing climate science, is Watts the appropriate spokesperson? I would say not.”, seems to imply she does not consider Anthony a scientist. Let’s be clear. A scientist is a “seeker of truth” who follows the scientific method in his/her studies or practice of science. There is no doubt Anthony is a competent scientist contributing to the field of climatology. On the other hand, the public’s increasing mistrust of science is a direct result of the fact that far too many “…ologists” with multiple sets of letters following their names, fail miserably to meet this definition.

Shelton Ehrlich

The most cogent comment in the interview was Watt’s “noble cause corruption.” If you’ve had any experience in science or in R&D you’ll know (for me remember) the temptation to fudge just a little because the “work” is that important.

mfo

davidmhoffer says:
September 22, 2012 at 8:47 am
“””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””””
Completely agree. Anthony Watts’ surface stations project and his science papers on the quality of temperature measurement goes to the heart of the research into AGW. He is more of a scientist researching AGW than all the PhD’s who study secondary elements such as polar bears or coral reefs and in doing so make unfounded claims or inferences that CAGW is the cause of any changes in the assumed status quo.
Professors of climatology are in good company, Kermit the Frog has a Doctorate of Amphibious Letters awarded by Southampton College in New York in 1966. PBS should interview Kermit as an university-accredited scientist about CAGW.

Paul Coppin

On a program discussing climate science, is Watts the appropriate spokesperson? I would say not.
Pretty much everyone has picked up on Judith’s faux pas, and she is entitled to her opinion, and she does go on to qualify her opinion, which is appropriate. Most of us just don’t happen to agree with her.
But there is a bigger reality: there is no appropriate spokesperson for climate science, just as there is none for any other scientific discipline. Science isn’t an agenda, its a philosophical process. There is supposition, there is inference, there is information, there is conjecture, observation and experiment, but there is no agenda. There may be spokespeople who may represent certain methodologies of science, there are spokespeople who may represent certain financing of science, there are spokespeople who may represent viewpoints concerning the use of the results of science, but there are no spokespersons for climate science, itself.
This is the heart of the argument missed by damned near everybody, most especially those labelling themselves “climate scientists”. Climate science isn’t an orthodoxy; its an unorganised, at times as chaotic-as-its-subject, multi-disciplinary train of research assembling data and testing hypotheses, from which ,eventually, some meaningful conclusions may be drawn. Eventually.
The absurd, fall-on-their-sword behavior of PBS management, especially that of their has-no-clue-what-his-job-is ombudsman, demonstrates how far from this reality modern mainstream media has strayed. The job of sceptics is huge: first, to return modern society to the tenets of rational thought, then, to teach a couple of generations how to think again.

ttfn

“is Watts the appropriate spokesperson? I would say not.” — let’s see… history profs said nothing about Bellesiles Arming America (other than heaping awards on it) until some guy on the internet pointed out it was total crap. And not one “scientist” bothered checking out the methods Mann used to create his hockey stick as it sat on the cover of the IPCC’s report until some guy on the internet thought it looked too pat and decided to try replicating it on his own dime. I think the “scientists” have demonstrated conclusively they’re too busy elsewhere and have nothing useful to add to any debate.

Jim G

” On a program discussing climate science, is Watts the appropriate spokesperson? I would say not.”
This is exactly the problem with “climate science”, and by the way, other branches of science as well, if one is not in lock step with “consensus” opinion or accepted theory, they are NOT to be included in the discussion. But then, this has always been the case and at least one is no longer burned at the stake for opposition views. However, Anthony, beware of people with torches and pitchforks approaching your home.