Watch yesterday's blockbuster performance by Dr. Roger Pielke Jr. and Dr. Roy Spencer at Senate climate hearing


Quite a performance yesterday. Steve Milloy is calling it the “Zapruder film” implying it was the day the AGW agenda got shot down. While that might not be a good choice of words, you have to admit they did a fantastic job of shooting down some of the ridiculous claims made by panelists prior to them. While this may not be a Zapruder moment, I’d say that it represented a major turning point.

Give props to both Roger and Roy.

Marc Morano reported:

‘Senate global warming hearing backfires on Democrats’ — Boxer’s Own Experts Contradict Obama! — ‘Skeptics & Roger Pielke Jr. totally dismantled warmism (scientifically, economically, rhetorically) — Climate Depot Round Up

‘Sen. Boxer’s Own Experts Contradict Obama on Climate Change’ — Warmists Asked: ‘Can any witnesses say they agree with Obama’s statement that warming has accelerated during the past 10 years?’ For several seconds, nobody said a word. Sitting just a few rows behind the expert witnesses, I thought I might have heard a few crickets chirping’

Video link and links to PDF of testimonies follow.

Here is the video link, in full HD:

Dr. Spencer writes about his experience here and flips the title back at them:

The PDF’s of each person’s testimony can be accessed by click on their names below:

Panel 1

Dr. Heidi Cullen

Chief Climatologist

Climate Central

Mr. Frank Nutter


Reinsurance Association of America

Mr. KC Golden

Policy Director

Climate Solutions

Ms. Diana Furchtgott-Roth

Senior Fellow

Manhattan Institute for Policy Research

Dr. Robert P. Murphy

Senior Economist

Institute for Energy Research

Panel 2

Dr. Jennifer Francis

Research Professor

Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences, Rutgers University

Dr. Scott Doney

Director, Ocean and Climate Change Institute

Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Dr. Margaret Leinin

Executive Director, Harbor Branch Oceanographic Institute

Florida Atlantic University

Dr. Roger Pielke, Jr.

Professor, Center for Science and Technology Policy Research

University of Colorado

Dr. Roy Spencer

Principal Research Scientist IV

University of Alabama, Huntsville


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Gene Selkov

The performance was great; I thought it would be all over the news. Some county papers did report it.

Several minutes of filler page at the start of the video – I almost reported the link as faulty.

Mark Bofill

It’s sort of frightening to me, to see exactly how thick our elected government representatives are. I mean, of course we all know this abstractly, but to see those geniuses in action…
Does anybody think Whitehouse would have dared to ask Spencer about his views on evolution if Spencer had happened to be muslim? I don’t, personally. Amazing that he’d have the audacity to go there at all in a hearing on climate change. Talk about sleazy lawyer tactics.
And the sum up point to walk away with according to Whitehouse, that if only we could get our CO2 emissions under control fishermen wouldn’t have to sail so far to fish. I was flabbergasted. I don’t know if Whitehouse honestly believed that or not. I hope he didn’t, some part of me would still like to pretend that he couldn’t possibly be such a simpleton.
On a different but related note, I wish we had a skeptic authority there on the effects of climate change on the oceans. The stupid 30% more acidic quote comes up and nobody can put it in context. Measurable increase in temperature? Sure, to an extent, but once again it’s misleading.
Still, Dr. Spencer did as well as anybody could I think, and Dr. Pielke certainly did as well.

Gunga Din

Gene Selkov says:
July 19, 2013 at 3:17 pm
The performance was great; I thought it would be all over the news. Some county papers did report it.

But it’s here. A 2013 version of the 1776 small town paper. (But with a lot more readers.)


Did you notice that Chairman Boxer said the purpose of the hearing was “to focus on Climate Change and the serious threat it poses to our nation”. I’d hate to be an innocent murder defendant in a trial whose judge starts the trial with something like: “we’re here today to find out why the defendant committed this heinous and vile act against the unsuspecting and innocent victim, and why the jury will convict and hand down the death penalty”.


Link to HD video doesn’t work, it says “Coverage Begins at 10:00 am” and doesn’t play any hearing.


Video won’t run for me. XP pro Firefox.

Follow the Money

“Did you notice that Chairman Boxer said the purpose of the hearing was “to focus on Climate Change and the serious threat it poses to our nation”.”
That’s interesting. Lately she has been stumbling to keep the word “warming” coming out of her mouth. It looks like her aides and lobbyist minders have trained her now to stick to “climate change.” If the money can move the drones into believing in significant anthropogenic “climate change” as much as they did AGW in specific, it is a still a win, especially for the insurance industries.


Boxer is just doing her job, that is to be the most biased and partisan that she can be. She does a good job.


Oops, never mind, video works fine. Early onset …


What brians356 says.

Janice Moore

“… some part of me would still like to pretend that [Whitehouse] couldn’t possibly be such a simpleton. …,” [Mark Bofill]
LOL, Mr. Bofill, I think you’re right, for your subconscious graciously edited Whitehouse’s inane remarks. He thinks that the flounder fishermen “DRIVE” to find the fish!!! Wow. I have heard many people, myself included, say, “drive the boat,” instead of “pilot” the boat, but, when “the boat,” is not included in the phrase, EVERYONE I’ve ever heard talk about it says simply “go” or, if more knowledgeable, “sail.” No one says, baldly, “Let’s drive to get some fish,” lol, unless they’re headed out to eat. Whitehouse is out to lunch.


Pielke concedes things that he shouldn’t such as agreeing with Whitehouse that the IPCC reports are credible. Some parts are, but some parts assuredly are not. Spencer’s monologue on Cook’s bogus research sounds like he agrees with it. I’m disappointed in the performance of both witnesses. Whitehouse will take their statements to reinforce his position rather than change his position to a reasonable one.


Wow, 3 hours and 48 minutes… I’m going to need an extra large bowl of popcorn! 🙂


Great showing, and it’s especially delicious that this push-back occurred in Boxer’s (“Please don’t call me ma’am, General”). What a pompous twit.
I was especially gratified to read Roger Pielke Jr’s remarks in this kind of forum. He’s spot-on when it comes to defusing the alarmist rhetoric about “accelerating severity, damage, frequency” that is so cavalierly strewn about by alarmists. And yet he continues to argue for “decarbonization of the economy” for reasons that elude me. Carbon-based fuels have done more to raise humanity from poverty, drudgery, disease, and suffering than any other class of chemicals in history.
But RP Jr will come around.


I just read Spencer’s testimony. He nailed it.


Heidi Cullen to Senator Vitter’s question about who agrees that temperature around the globe have continued to rise even faster even than was predicted ten years ago: “I think right now I we need to focus on the fact that warming is happening very, very quickly.” [Repeat the mantra over and over …] … “With to respect to President Obama’s specific statement, I can’t comment on that.” [Avoid answering inconvenient direct challenges] … “Bottom line is, greenhouse gases have continued to move quickly in the atmosphere” [Just blurt out a sound byte however incoherent or comical. Yep, those gases are moving around up there, perhaps even quickly, if there happens to be a big mixer like hurricane or something]
And dear little Heidi is one of the “experts” in the 98%.

William Astley

In reply to Miss Cullen’s testimony to congress:
“2. Global Warming Has Not Stopped (William: Planetary temperature is not increasing, has stopped based on the definition of stopped as opposed to increase, however, Heidi Cullen – who is the Chief Climatologist, Climate Central Senior Research Fellow, Wharton RiskManagement and Decision Processes Center, University of Pennsylvania Visiting Lecturer, Princeton University – appears to be unable to acknowledge a fact.) Global warming has not stopped. It is important that we distinguish between global mean temperature and global warming. While the temperature rise in the atmosphere may have temporarily slowed, the warming continues to penetrate into every component of our climate system. The human impact on our climate system is significant. Current greenhouse gas concentrations are trapping enormous (William: The use of adjectives is not a substitute for data and analysis to support assertion.) amounts of heat into our climate system every day.
William: There is a factual difference from a wiggly line that is increasing slower than expected and wiggly line that is not increasing at all. A wiggly line that is not increasing indicates the forcing mechanism (solar magnetic cycle modulation of planetary clouds) has saturated. The CO2 forcing mechanism cannot be turned on or off. …. ….Scientists are interesting in understand what is the physical reason for changes and unexplained anomalies, such as the 16 year plateau with no warming or such as the Bond cycles of warming and cooling that captured in the paleo record. The principal concern of an activist as opposed to a scientist is to push an agenda. The fact that Heidi Cullen cannot acknowledge the observational fact that planetary temperature has plateau, stopped increasing supports the assertion that Miss Cullen is an activist first and a scientist second.
William: Miss Cullen, are you aware the planet has warmed and cooled cyclically before and that the cycles correlate to solar magnetic cycle changes? Are you aware the sun has entered a peculiar unexplained minimum? Are you aware that regions that warmed in the last 70 years are the same regions of the planet that have warmed when the solar magnetic cycle was active and that cooled when the solar magnetic cycle entered into a Maunder like minimum?
Miss Cullen, have you seen this graph? Are you aware that the general circulation models used by the IPCC cannot reproduce or explain this graph? Are you aware that solar magnetic cycle change correlate with both the past warming and cooling phase in this graph?
Greenland ice temperature, last 11,000 years determined from ice core analysis, Richard Alley’s paper.


I have to say, that I wasn’t overly impressed with Pielke Jnr. To me he seemed to be almost crying ‘I’m a warmist but I don’t have the data to support that’? or perhaps, he simply accepts, like most of us – that human co2 is likely to cause some climate effects – but we dont yet know how much?
Whitehouse seemed keen to brush aside Spencers graph and the major point he made – i.e. that it has warmed, but it is not necessarily ALL human co2 emission induced based on the past best estimated RWP and MWP. Without clear and unequivocal explanantion for these past warming and cooling changes – the ‘sole’ CO2 induced warming claims become very dubious.


Poor Heidi, you can see she really doesn’t believe what she’s spouting. Deer in the headlights. The lack of warming over the last 10-15 years is because ” … the warming has gone into other components of our climate system, notably the deep oceans.” Pure Teflon. And Boxer playing the smarmy yenta from Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn. Madam Chairwoman, may we enter in the record Senator Vitter’s and Senator Sessions’ material … “Sure, guys, enter anything you want into the record here, Alice in Wonderland, anything you want.” Very dignified and professional, Babs.


Klem said re: Boxer
“the most biased and partisan that she can be.”
You forgot “stupid idiot”, as in “the most biased and partisan stupid idiot that she can be.”
Listening to her is worse than fingernails on blackboard.


Cheapshot of the day goes to ………….. Senator Whitehouse.
What a Jackass.



I always love the people who say that the heat has gone to the depths of the ocean (which is conveniently a place we can’t measure with any precision whatsoever) but then attribute “extreme weather” of the last 10 years to the warming that is hiding out at the bottom of the ocean.


“I thought it would be all over the news.”
No mention of it here in Oz.
@Mark Bofil
“It’s sort of frightening to me, to see exactly how thick our elected government representatives are. I mean, of course we all know this abstractly, but to see those geniuses in action…”
Remember that these people need to get the votes of the Homer Simpsons to stay in office. And yes, it is scary to see it in the raw.

Bob Johnston says:
July 19, 2013 at 5:42 pm
I always love the people who say that the heat has gone to the depths of the ocean (which is conveniently a place we can’t measure with any precision whatsoever) but then attribute “extreme weather” of the last 10 years to the warming that is hiding out at the bottom of the ocean.
Now THAT’S the question that should be thrown around a lot. “How do we get these extremes in weather from heat hiding in the ocean?”
You raised an excellent point there, Bob. This is something that should be waved around, in my humble opinion. Thank you.

I am left wondering where the blockbuster performance was. I thought perhaps that I had selected the wrong video but no, it was Pielke and Spencer so it must be the right one. What I took away from this was that Pielke Jr agrees entirely with the IPCC and that Dr Spencer is a creationist. Sorry, but if this is what passes as blockbuster stuff then we should all start getting our heads around paying carbon taxes.


Sadly, I have to disagree.
Yes, Pielke did a great job but all else was a landslide win for the catastrophists. They understand well that science is at the service of politics and stopped at nothing to manipulate information, outright falsify, and blatantly slander. If I were a naive observer, the burning question after watching this would be, why is the official mainstream message in the hands of incompetent charlatans when these guys clearly can deliver?
The only victory for science is that a debate took place, no matter how inadequate.




Calling this a blockbuster and a Zapruder film and a shot over the bow or whatever else you want to call it is nothing more than propaganda. I’m ashamed and disgusted.

William Astley

In reply to:
Txomin says:
July 19, 2013 at 6:07 pm
Sadly, I have to disagree.
Yes, Pielke did a great job but all else was a landslide win for the catastrophists. They understand well that science is at the service of politics and stopped at nothing to manipulate information, outright falsify, and blatantly slander….
Propaganda does not change physical reality. The warmists cannot conceive, cannot imagine, a scenario where the hypothesis that they have pushed for the last 20 years is completely incorrect. If the planet cools significantly what the warmists have said or believe is irrelevant. The public and media will demand an explanation for the cooling. There is only one explanation.
The abrupt change to the solar magnetic cycle is causing the cooling due o modulation of planetary clouds. There is 20 years of research supporting that assertion. It is difficult to imagine how the warmists will explain how they ignored past cycles of warming and cooling that correlate with solar magnetic cycle changes that match the regional pattern of warming in the last 70 years.
The sun has changed. That is an observational fact. In that past when the sun when into a Maunder minimum the planet cooled. That is also an observational fact.
There are 23 cycles of warming in the paleo climatic record. All 23 cycles of warming were terminated by a Maunder like solar magnetic cycle of warming. It appears based on observations that the sun is entering a very, very, deep peculiar Maunder minimum. What happened in the past happened for a physical reason. There was a cause for the warming and for the cooling, there was a forcing mechanism. Solar magnetic cycle modulation of planetary cloud cover caused the past cyclic warming and cooling and caused the majority of the warming in the last 70 years. The regions of the planet that warmed (high latitude Northern regions) are the same regions of the planet that warmed and then cooled cyclically in the past when there were solar magnetic cycle changes. The CO2 forcing mechanism should warm the planet globally not regionally. The general circulation models cannot explain the past cyclic strongly regional warming and cooling and cannot explain the fact that the warming in the last 70 years was in high Northern latitudes. The Northern hemisphere region, excluding the tropics has warmed twice as much as the earth as whole and four times more than the tropical region 20N to 20S. The general circulation models predicted that the most amount of warming on the planet should be in the tropics as atmospheric CO2 is evenly distributed by latitude and the tropics is the region of the planet that has the most amount of long wave radiation emitted to space prior to the increase in atmospheric CO2.
The planet was started to cool and will cool significantly due to the current solar magnetic cycle change. If there was not a climate war going on this scientific problem would have been solve five or ten years ago. The observations and analysis fit together analogous to pieces in a physical puzzle.

Janice Moore

“Spencer’s testimony was destroyed by his stance on evolution – it made him seem like a lunatic!” [Alberta Lad at 5:39 PM 7/19/13]
Destroyed in the eyes of whom? Of you? Do you now, knowing that he believes God created the universe, find all of Dr. Spencer’s analysis re: CO2 untenable? From the comments I’ve seen on WUWT over the past 3 months, it appears that the majority of WUWT scientists believe in Darwin’s Origin of Species theory. Yet, the majority of WUWT scientists, from the comments I’ve read over the past 2 days, while they do not agree with his belief in a Creator God, still find his scientific analysis re: CO2 as valid as ever. Why do you not?
It would not destroy him in the eyes of the average person. Most people, whether they believe in God or not, do not find that a scientist’s belief in God destroys his or her credibility. Most people would find such questions irrelevant — more than irrelevant, such sneeringly slimy badgering of the witness tends to make a jury sympathetic…. hence, it is a really stupid tactic….. .
To whom did Dr. Spencer come off as a “lunatic?”
(I mean, except for people such as you who already think that of those of us who find Intelligent Design theory compelling are lunatics)
Whom did Whitehouse’s characterizing of Dr. Spencer as a “creationist” make look like a jerk?


Naturally Spencer was chosen from among thousands of qualified skeptics precisely because he questions aspects of evolutionary theory. And Pielke, jr because he’s a lukewarmist, at best. This gives the appearance of balance & fairness without endangering the orthodoxy.


milodonharlan, exactly right. Total bag job. Spencer should have declined. Where was Judith Curry?
Celebrating this as a skeptic victory is pathetic.

Whitehouse needs an education. He is obviously an un-informed politician (except what the greenies have fed to him).


Janice Moore says:
July 19, 2013 at 6:49 pm
“Intelligent design” as a supposed alternative to evolutionary theory is even more anti-scientific than CACCA, hard as that may be to credit. That the universe is designed is a defensible metaphysical position in the present state of scientific ignorance. But believing on faith in the absence of evidence that a Creator intervened in the evolution of life on Earth to zap into being the flagella of certain pathogenic bacteria is not just unscientific but anti-scientific because this unfounded belief stops a “scientist” holding it from trying to find out the natural as opposed to supernatural pathways through which these structures developed.
Spencer, solid though he may be on CACCA, & as much as I’ve learned from him, can easily be used to discredit skepticism, & has been, over & over again among the Warmunistas.

Gail Combs

Janice Moore says: @ July 19, 2013 at 6:49 pm
“Spencer’s testimony was destroyed by his stance on evolution – it made him seem like a lunatic!” [Alberta Lad at 5:39 PM 7/19/13]
Destroyed in the eyes of whom?…..
My comment to Dr. Spencer at his site.
Next time they bring up Christians ask them how many of those who signed the Declaration of Independence were Christians. Ask if we should toss out the works of the following Christians because of their religious beliefs:
Galileo Galilei, Robert Boyle, Michael Faraday, Gregor Mendel, William Thomson Kelvin, Max Planck, George Gabriel Stokes and James Clerk Maxwell.
I am agnostic but I see red every time someone uses Christianity as a tool for bashing people.

Gene Selkov

Gail says: “I am agnostic but I see red every time someone uses Christianity as a tool for bashing people.”
Nobody is bashing them. They simply embarrass themselves when their presumption that their Christianity is somehow universally important or powerful enough to protect them from criticism proves to be false. We would all face fewer problems if they kept their Christianity to themselves.


pokerguy says:
July 19, 2013 at 6:56 pm
The sad fact is that the MSM so jealously guard against giving skepticism a platform that any wide exposure might be helpful. Since about half of Americans don’t “believe in” evolution, maybe Spencer even helps convince the public, while allowing elite opinion makers to laugh at him.
Curry would have been better, I agree, for both personal & professional reasons. Or Lindzen, who could thus have had a chance to defend himself against charges of being bought off by Big Oil.

Janice Moore

Thank you, Gail Combs. I needed an intelligently supportive comment like yours to help me to resist the STRONG temptation to hijack this thread and start countering Milodon H.’s nonsense, but, I will refrain.


Gail Combs says:
July 19, 2013 at 7:00 pm
Sir Isaac Newton wrote an entire book on dating the time of creation. He was however an heretical Unitarian, secretly.
But still, why give the CACCAlarmists any opening at all on creationism?


Janice Moore says:
July 19, 2013 at 7:06 pm
Please by all means counter if you can.
Leave it to the moderators to decide whether you’ve hijacked or not.
ID is total, complete, utter garbage. But I’d love to hear why you think otherwise.

Janice Moore

@Poker Guy — re: “he’s a liability.”
To whom? Cite EVIDENCE of this being a significant problem. If you have no such evidence, on what do you base your loud jeering of Dr. Spencer?

Janice Moore

And bear in mind, Mr. Harlani and Poker Guy and Alb. Ld, et. al., that sleazeball politicians are very good at character assassination. No matter WHO the truth in science witness is, they will find SOMETHING to use to try to discredit them. Sometimes….. they even make things up…. . Only stealth witnesses like Pielke, who are mostly lukewarm, but who may come out with a zinger or two once in awhile, might pass under that radar. Might. And if all we send in is the third string (to avoid possible character assassination attempts), they have accomplished their goal.
You never answered my questions posed above. To whom did Spencer come off as not credible? Or, as Albertalad put it, ” a lunatic”?


Who prepped Roy for the debate? Anyone who has ever testified on the witness stand would know that the question on creation would be forthcoming. His response should have been, “Senator, this is a scientific hearing. Do you have a scientific question for me. I will be glad to discuss theology with you over dinner. We could also discuss at that time why you were eyeing that woman in the red dress”. Then grinned.

I have windows XP and Firefox. To make the video play at you need to drag the progress bar at the bottom to the right a short distance to get to the video.


Janice Moore says:
You make some good points Janice. I don’t know to whom you’re addressing your question exactly, but I’ll take a crack it:
“To whom did Spencer come off as not credible? Or, as Albertalad put it, ” a lunatic”?”
To me, for one. Who am I? I’m completely and wholly representative of the other side, the only exception being that I saw the AGW light post climate-gate. Think about who we need to convince in this PR war? It’s not the conservative, often religious types, it’s the liberals like me. Until you do, this whole debate remains a stalemate. You understand of course, that they chose Spencer for just this reason. He should have demurred, or at the very least had a better answer prepared. Once he concedes his position on evolution, nothing else he says can possibly matter to the Obama voting, NY Times reading, MSNBC watching publicwho you must slowly begin to win over in some degree, before the tide will truly turn.

Tom Jones

RP Jr’s testimony was simply devastating to the crowd that loves to talk about how much worse the weather is than it used to be. Really? Show me the numbers. In contrast to some of the commenters, I approve highly of his citing the IPCC statements. Anything other than that is immediately discredited, and it’s plenty of rope to do the hanging.
But, really, Roy was the star of the show. He was so logical, and so not intimidated, just the kind of witness that AGWers hate, and Whitehouse really hates. It was hard not to laugh when Whitehouse asked about Creationism. It was such an obvious, and irrelevant, attempt to attack the integrity of the witness. And, so crazy, in a nation as deeply religious as the US.
Whitehouse, in his retreat to ocean issues, is foreshadowing what is going to happen. Heating of the atmosphere is just getting difficult to argue, but ocean heating is so new and exciting. It is also harder to argue against, because the temperature differential is so tiny, and it is hypothesized to happen at a depth that cannot be observed by existing technology. And, the reality is, building the infrastructure to measure it would be horrendously expensive. It just is not going to happen, not with the Argo net freshly done.
Again, kudos to Roy and JP Jr. Well done!

Mark Bofill


July 19, 2013 at 7:41 pm
…Think about who we need to convince in this PR war?

Are we fighting a PR war? I didn’t get the memo. 🙂 If not, should we be? If we are, are we winning? If we’re not but we should, can we possibly win?
I’ve never really looked at the matter in this light. You’ve given me material to think about anyway, thanks.

albertalad said in part July 19, 2013 at 5:39 pm:
“Tell the truth that hearing left me wanting – the IPCC never got anything correct in it’s entire history. No emphasis on how much CO2 nature throws into the atmosphere –”
Nature as a whole is removing CO2 from the atmosphere:
It appears to me that the debate should be on what and how much (or how little) the effects of the man-made CO2 increase are.

Chad Wozniak

No mention of the hearing on either NBC or CBS national news – no surprise there.
I repeat my previous comment that this appears to have been an empty exercise. Right after being shown proof that the last 15 years have been relatively cool, idiot Senator Whitehouse still claims the last 12 years were the hottest ever. I don’t think he even heard Dr. Spencer say that the 1930s were the hottest years of the last 100 – or if he did it went straight in one ear and out the other.
The only way this madness will be stopped is if the Republicans take the Senate next year, although it may help if the House denies funding for der Fuehrer’s climate agenda.
The performance of the alarmist witnesses went from shameful to reprehensible. Heidi Cullen obviously got her numbers out of some sphincter somewhere, and Jennifer Francis was even worse. What a black mark on science and education that slugs like these can gat a Ph.D.
Am I disgusted? You bet.