What makes the warmist-skeptic fight go on and on?

sisyphus-catElevated from a comment by Doug Proctor November 14, 2013 at 10:00 am

I’ve been thinking about what makes the warmist-skeptic fight go on and on. What I have noted is the constant difference in how each side places its emphasis, and that this shows up in its speech. Specifically, the skeptics use declarative, as in “this will”, “this shall” or “this does”, and, of course, its negative equals. The warmists use conditionals, i.e. words like “could” or “should” or “may” or “might” that indicate undefined probabilities and, in truth, possibilities, things that are determinable only after the fact.

The use of conditionals after 25 years is remarkable (here I make a declarative statement). Despite all the models and claims of correlation/matching of observation, we still have no “does”, “shall” or “will” in the IPCC or other CAGW programme. The dangers and fears are in the distant future, discussed only as emerging from the present, but still only becoming obvious in some, never-close-to-today, tomorrow.

This is not an academic situation. The human world acts on what it thinks, and it thinks through words. If the words are confusing, its thoughts are confused and its actions are not necessarily the best. The Mainstream Media (MSM) is particularly prone to confusion from the way they are instructed, and prone to confusing the readership by the way they combine emotional response with a misunderstanding of what the use of conditionals in a discussion means. The MSM think conditionals represent scientific caution, but what they represent is scientific uncertainty. The extent to which they are used represents the consideration of the likelihood that what they think “will” come, actually comes.

From what I see, there are four different types of (Un)Certainty involved in the CAGW narrative: 1) Computational, 2) Emotional and 3) Representational and 4) Ideological. (There may be more, or more subtle versions of these, but these 4 are probably close to the general breakdown.)

The IPCC 95% type is Computational Certainty, that is the outcome as proposed by models is consistent with input data and mathematical relationships between identified factors. McKibben’s certainty is based in Computational Certainty, as in “Do The Math”. It could also be labelled “Intellectual” Certainty, as it is based on the idea that nature is deterministic enough, and we are smart enough and knowledgeable enough to figure out what is going on in a usefully predictive way. The application of the argument by ignorance is applicable to this form of certainty: if we can’t think there is another way, then it must be the way we say. While naively reasonable, and a reflection of the arguments Sherlock Holmes was claimed to use in solving crimes, how it is used by the IPCC adherents is actually a perverse misuse of what Holmes did: Holmes used the concept to bring to the table non-current, usually non-obvious solutions, which would be then investigated closely. The IPCC cabal use it to dismiss the non-current and non-obvious).

The second type, the Emotional Certainty, is what roots Gore, the IPCC Summary and the 97% Consensus concept. With Emotional Certainty, the statements say that we are personally comfortable with the work done and where it ended – with the understanding that not everything could be done, but we believe to be the most important parts were covered. Outside the workers themselves, this comfort derives from authority, the trust in credibility of certain socially recognized individuals or groups. The MSM in particular seizes on this particular form of Certainty (regardless of how they, themselves, perceive it). Anyone connected with the IPCC is credible, therefore I am comfortable with what they say. Personal investigation in this regard is unnecessary, and indeed is a “skeptical” activity for those still not convinced, as it suggests a “better” understanding can exist outside what one gleans from just the Summary remarks. The notable history of a President misleading America about the reasons for going to war, or a Bernie Madoff misleading investors as to what was happening to their money makes no impact on the credibility of other parties: that was then, this is now (and these ones).

Ideological Certainty is what drives the eco-green. Greenpeace, the Sierra Club, Maurice Strong, David Suzuki, Friends of the Earth, the Waterkeepers, opponents of the XL Keystone pipeline: the arguments for CAGW are mere backups for other, anti-capitalist, anti-consumerist, pro-nature beliefs. This is not to say that those other beliefs are not valid, only that the principle position is not CO2-based warming per se. With Ideological Certainty, the certainty is that continuing the path we are on, the status quo, will cause socio- and environmental damage that is unacceptable (and may be catastrophic). The devil is in the general, not the detail: if we continue to consume and destroy – and fossil fuels are a fundamental part in this activity – the bad things will happen. Arguments about actual temperature sensitivity are not relevant. Whether we will experience 4 degrees or 1 degree warming by 2100, our societies are still on the road to ruin. It is this movement that must be stopped.

The fourth type of Certainty is Representational, in which what is projected is compared to what, at an initial state, is observed. This is where the skeptical position focuses. The skeptic wants to know the detail of what IS to happen and so looks to what HAS happened as a true indication (by pattern or observation) of how closely a predicted outcome has been matched by actual outcome. He does this so that he may respond – as he would say – “appropriately”.

The skeptic recognizes that responses are, and should be, proportional to the triggering event: a minor problem should not have elicited a large preventative measure if a small one would have sufficed. Energy – emotional, physical, social – is liimited and should be used wisely and sparingly if possible. To determine the details and hence the level of action that is appropriate, of course, one needs facts. And facts are not determined in policy summaries but in the field and the laboratory. Facts are not nailed down by consensus, i.e. group opinion, but by falsifiable testing. The skeptic, in his hunt for facts, is forced to read and question. Arguably having this desire for Representational Certainty is where the various skeptics or luke-warmers like Pielke, Lindzen, Watts and ourselves come in.

It should be noted that not all anti-CAGW narrative is driven simply by a desire for Representational Certainty before we act. Ideology, emotion and a narrow but intense trust in intellectual work also drive some skeptics. Certainly CFACT, Morano, the GWPF are seen in the eyes of warmists to be not just attacking the facts of the CAGW story, but the spirit: the obstructionism against CO2 reduction is perceived as anti-regulatory, pro-free market, pro-energy industry sentiments. Which, to some extent, is true. But all of us determine the course of our lives and support on the basis of multiple pulls and pushes, motivating factors that shift through time.

What makes the CAGW fight persist, IMHO, is that we argue about “Certainty” as if we are dealing with the same thing and each side is either foolish, perverse, or a paid shill not to recognize what each side holds. What I am saying in the above essay, is that we are not dealing with the same thing. I have listed four different aspects that lead to the decisions we make on supporting or not supporting CO2-related initiatives. The technical, dictionary-defined words are the same, but we argue because we are not using the same mental vocabulary.


UPDATE:  observes:

Calvin and Hobbes explain why Climate Change alarmists are almost invariably rabid about it

Enmity sells


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This will change somes minds, it should anyway.


Money, Religion (Or Ideology if that gives the vapors), and Religiously Instituted ‘Obey, Sinner!’ governance.

Gene Selkov

We are not using the same mental vocabulary talking about lots of things. Many words that once had common and widely accepted meaning have now been redefined within certain political and social groups. Often, the meaning is inverted. For example, the new “liberals” oppose liberty to the extent that a whole group of people who still think liberty is important is now forced to adopt a new name. They call themselves “libertarians”.
Same with “progressives”, who fight tooth and nail against all progress.
“Nutritious” food is anything but.
I often feel I can no longer use many common words, lest I be misunderstood.

Mark Urbo

But the CAGW movement has used this terminology to cause so much destruction over the last two decades…
I’d like to point out one – which is the countless academics, scientists, professionals and other persons whose careers took major hits for not supporting AGW. Trashed, harassed, and even fired in many instances, how do they get whole again ?
Please, I ask for a moment of silence for those who became collateral damage to a movement based on a false concept and marketed via deception. Whatever AGW was when this all started, it became an agenda driven religious-like cult movement that has left a trail of damage worldwide.

A Cat would never be a warmunist!


The latest conditional bombshell (heard on BCC radio last night):
“Up to 30% of species in the world’s oceans could be at risk from extinction by the end of the century from potentially increased acidifiaction.”
Parse out the conditionals at your leisure.


“A cat would never be a warmist!”
We should be careful to get out of an experience only the wisdom that is in it and stop there lest we be like the cat that sits down on a hot stove lid. She will never sit down on a hot stove lid again and that is well but also she will never sit down on a cold one anymore.
Mark Twain

Sweet Old Bob

Some people seem to be “wired” to look at almost everything from the perspective of “feeling”and reason is not considered.
These people will NEVER be convinced by logic.Their language is emotion and the only way to “reason” with them is to speak in emotional terms.
“Logical” people have to learn this “new “language to win ANY arguement with them.

R. de Haan

What makes the warmist-skeptic fight go on and on?
1. It’s a political doctrine and an integrated past of UN Agenda 21 now executed by the the EU and the USA aimed to enforce measures and regulations that will strangle our economies, our prosperity, our jobs, of freedom and our futures, a policy that already kills people by the thousands if we are honest and look at the effects of the bio ethanol scam hiking food prices triggering the food riots in NA and the Middle East which is now burning. The Palm oil scam diving our last remaining primates into the zoo. etc. etc.
2. There is no Open Process, IPCC works in a vacuum and can’t be influenced
3. There is NO Open Debate
4. The MSM is biased in it’s reporting, in many cases no contrary opinion are tolerated
5. All debunked arguments continue to be recycled
6. The climate models stink and the various data sets, surface stations etc are tampered with, read Lies & FRAUD.
7. The introduction of climate change policy in the USA (and before that the EU) has been taken out of the democratic process and now is introduced and enforced by Presidential Decree
8. All that the warmists have left is to take perfectly normal weather events and blow them out of propostion like they recently did with the Typhoon that hit the Philippines.
8. The authorian trend will now continue in Warsaw.
Forget all about the story above because it is utter BS.


And then there is the passive co-conspiracy of those that are neither warmist nor skeptics (the large majority).


As with all doomer porn, always in the future tense, never the present.

Wait until the earth gets cold!!!


The main reason the fight is still on is because many of those with political power are shoving rules and regulations down our throats when we know they aren’t necessary. This makes everything cost more and costs jobs. Rather than just the believers going primative they want us all to suffer. But make no mistake, rich people and the political leaders will not suffer from higher costs, though they are apparently suffering now in Australia because the voters saiud enough is enough.
Get completely rid of the green rules and regulations and subsidies and defund all climate studies and the problem will miraculously disappear. This seems to be where Abbott is going and all the power in the world to him.

The attack on the English language is intentional. It is a much larger issue than CAGW, but, then, any skeptic worth their salt already knew this. For the ideologues posing as scientists, this is as useful as the conditional words. They refuse to make their meanings clear because if they spoke plainly they know they’d be rejected as people trying to resurrect Stalinist Marxism.
The conditionals also serve another purpose, when one uses words such as “would”, “could”, “should”…etc, the implicit statement is that you’re open to other possibilities. It gives an air of moderation. Of course, we all know that an alarmist is anything but open to other possibilities, they are 100% certain of their unstated positions and goals. And, of course, they’re anything but moderate. They are extremists of the worst kind always parading panic and hyperbole to advance their misanthropic causes.
Consider their insistence of a consensus. The damned thing has never been defined! (again with the ambiguity) but, they insist 97-98% all agree …… on something which has never been clearly stated. How stupid is that? How much more stupid is it that people accept that babbling nonsense? Well, they accept it because they want it to be real, and in a leftist mind, desire is equal to reality. It’s why they can get away with constantly altering empirical data. And, get away with it, they did.


I’m a criminal investigator, not a scientist. But my training and nature compel me to question any proffered theory, especially when it effects my pocket book. This is why I’ve never bought into the CAGW. I’ve always wondered,’ where is the evidence’? What is the mechanism? Haven’t we been warming ever since the last ice age, etc. Then when I did a little research and started to read WUWT, I began to see more clearly the absence of proof for CAGW and the ever increasing data showing the opposite: Things like the absence of warming in 17 years, the increasing ice in the Antarctic, the upswing in Arctic ice, and much other informative and even entertaining information from articles written by Anthony and other real scientists on this blog.I admire the rational thinking and argumentation. The marshaling of facts and drawing to solid conclusions. The absence of name calling and histrionics. The empiricism, if you will, the thoughtful contemplation of evidence. ‘ Following where the evidence leads’ is an expression in my line of work. I can’t necessarily assume that ‘ the butler did it’ when the evidence leads elswhere. Lol. lMy doubtin the CAGW theory increased after outed emails being exchanged between some the the leading scientists supporting AGW. These emails showed these AGW scientists’ mendacious and duplicitous nature in hiding information from the public and presenting false information to the world about Global warming or as they currently put it ‘climate change’. The revelation of their efforts to malign and discredit scientists who disagreed with them didn’t enhance their credibility in my eyes. . They commited crimes of omission and commission in my view.
I guess that the above falls within a demand for representeational certainty. But my questioning, and cynicism of the Warmists, I must admit, is also emotional and ideological. I happen to be a conservative minded person. I am reflexively suspicious of policy, theory, etc offered by the left. Now I am open to being dissuaded by being shown proof of CAGW. But all I’ve seen are broken hockey sticks, faulty computer models and ….no warming.

A bit too much linguistic reductionism for me. reminds me of those who think they can solve Palestine coflict lingustically. in this case, with AGW, I’m with Hume: ‘reason is a slave to the passion’

Dave in Canmore

Reminds me of Edward deBono’s lucid primer on the subject:
“Four ways to be right, five ways to be wrong, five ways to understand”
a good short read for anyone who wonders why two sides never agree very well. Illuminating examples of how people think.

Lord Galleywood

R. de Haan should have done this post – It was quick, simple and straight to the point of how this all is about.

David L. Hagen

A major divide is over who/what you worship. e.g.
Those “pro-nature” require subservience of progeny and wealth to keeping nature sacrosanct and thus demand mitigation of anthropogenic climate change.
Those pro stewardship, evaluate actions in terms of a prudent return on effort before their Creator, and thus adapting to climate change while caring for the poor, widow and orphan. e.g. see The Cornwall Alliance
This is reflected in the pragmatic perspective that mitigation costs 100:1 more than adaptation.
As Christopher Lord Monckton observes, “If the If the cost of the premium exceeds the cost of the risk, don’t insure”

This quote explains why the alarmist cult will never be persuaded by scientific facts and evidence:

I know that most men, including those at ease with problems of the greatest complexity, can seldom accept even the simplest and most obvious truth, if it be such as would oblige them to admit the falsity of conclusions which they have delighted in explaining to colleagues, which they have proudly taught to others, and which they have woven, thread by thread, into the fabric of their lives.
~Leo Tolstoy

My research suggests the fight between the warmists and the skeptics rages on because the members of both camps are persistently guilty of the same logical error. The error is to draw a conclusion from an equivocation. By logical rule, one cannot draw a proper conclusion from an equivocation. However, one CAN draw an improper conclusion. By drawing improper conclusions from equivocations, warmists and skeptics draw opposing conclusions from equivocations that are thought by one side or the other to be true but that are logically unproved.
An “equivocation” is an argument in which a term changes meanings in the midst of this argument. That a term changes meaning yields an argument that looks like a syllogism but isn’t. Thus, while the conclusion of a syllogism is true, the conclusion of an equivocation is unproved but seems to people who are deceived by it to be true.
The equivocation fallacy is supported by the existence in the language of global warming climatology of terms that are “polysemic,” that is, that have more than one meaning. Among the polysemic terms are “predict,” “forecast,” “model,” “science,” “scientist” and “scientific.” Through the use of these terms, skeptics join warmists in glossing over errors in the structure of global warming climatology that prevent logically proper conclusions from being drawn from arguments. Thus, the fight between the two sides never ends.

Larry Kirk

SOB, reason without emotion can be a very dangerous thing, and vice versa. Neither of them have a particularly good track record in isolation.
Personally, I find exactly the same sort of conviction amongst reasonable, emotionally balanced, respectable people on both sides of the fence (and also of course from the occasional irrational bigot on eitherside).
When something is basically uncertain, as in the existence, nature or affiliation of our various Gods, people do tend to take opposing sides and even extreme positions, each in utterly similar ways, and each believing themselves to be rational and correct.
It would make far more sense just to adopt the truly rational: ‘I actually don’t really know just yet..’, but an appetite for vigorous controversy and opposition seems to be inherent in human nature, and often with far more productive, diverse efforts and outcomes, when not actually hideously destructive (for the Lilliputians, in their terrible sectarian controversy over which end of the egg to break when eating one’s breakfast).
But nature will have the last say of course. (And we may die and simply rot. Who knows?)

David L. Hagen

Keith Kloor at least recognizes a dichotomy and Anthony Watts’ high profile: The New Normal: Climate Ambulance Chasing

By now, the pattern is pretty well established. If there is a famine, drought, catastrophic flood, wildfire, a major hurricane or typhoon, then you can be sure that trailing behind these disasters, like ambulance chasers, is a brigade of climate-concerned activists, scientists and their enablers in the media.
And trailing behind them is an Anthony Watts/Marc Morano led brigade of chortling denialists, whose main objective is to exploit, for ideological/political purposes, the exploitation of disasters by the climate ambulance chasers. . . .


James Sexton: “The conditionals also serve another purpose, when one uses words such as “would”, “could”, “should”…etc, the implicit statement is that you’re open to other possibilities.”
If you’re determined to dialogue with such folks, just take the contradictory “would not,” “could not,” “should not” and proceed quite plainly without remark. Same thing as what they’ve said, but they pop a gasket trying to get around it.

Steve Reddish

The second type, the Emotional Certainty, is what roots Gore, the IPCC Summary and the 97% Consensus concept.
Herein lies the root of the continued arguing. When emotion, not reason, is the basis for a position on any subject, no amount of rational counter arguments have any effect. Thus, the emotional effect of typhoon Haiynen’s death toll is used to bolster CAGW claims while rational statements that the data doesn’t support any such claims are ignored.
I suspect the only way to make headway against the warmist argument is by touting the emotional effect of expected human suffering as a consequence of the warmists’ agenda. Point out that people will suffer when they cannot afford to heat their homes in winter. Point out that people will starve when food production becomes limited by use of livestock to work the land once there is no fuel for tractors. Help people see that any suffering that MIGHT result from continued CO2 emission will be far less than the guaranteed much greater suffering that will result from stifling energy production.
Pleas based upon scientific fact or expected depression of the economy make rational sense but have no effect on the outcome of the ongoing argument. Perhaps only expected human suffering will.

The fight must continue. This is not something we can meet in the middle ground about. Our early passiveness about green ideals has allowed the green monster that stalks the Earth now. One side gives an inch, the other takes a mile.
The Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warmers WILL NOT STOP until our nations are destroyed and millions killed to purge the Earth of the cancer they think is Man. That means we can not stop either until the work is done and this sham is shown for what it is.
I think your post is very good and very accurate, except that finding and talking in the same language will not solve the problem. The lying must stop. The emotional blackmail must stop. The destruction of the environment, of industry, of society and of civilization must stop.
Above all, hatred of the human animal must stop. Teaching the next generation – and the next and the next – to fear and despise the very technology that gave us extended life, health, riches, comfort and enjoyment, seriously Must Be Stopped.


I’ll go out on a limb here but I think the majority of the climate scientists are probably on their last nerve with the IPCC, the UN and politicians in general (Ok -maybe not Mann who seems to thrive on being a media whore). If you disconnected the funding from the political agenda the debate would be more civil and productive. In Biology, HIV funding while somewhat controversial at the time let us learn about the immune system in greater detail. That research led to vaccines for cervical cancer, antivirals for Hepatitis C, and new drug therapies for cancer and autoimmune disease, as they say not to shabby. I think if the politicians backed off and let the real scientists do the work the benefits will be similar. I’m pretty sure the “deniers” would be the first ones to back the funding as they have an underlying interest in understanding the climate better as well.


Mr Proctor. Thank you for your erudite and insightful piece. I think many of us could use your framework in understanding those we come across that have these as their prism through which they perceive. It has certainly clarified things for me.
I am dumbfounded on a frequent basis by them. Now I understand a bit more about the orientation that would create their illusion.
A good example is an editorial I read yesterday on the Typhoon, which admitted that there might not be any link to climate change but that “politicians should agree that polluting the air or our waterways and oceans isn’t good for people or for the planet.”
Therefore never let a good crisis go to waste? The end justifies the means, as long as its a Noble Cause (which I define).

Steve Reddish

I see Sweet Old Bob got the same point in while I was typing… there is something to be said for short posts!

Larry Kirk

Mind you, I do think the ‘Noes’ tend to win on points. But then, I am lazily guilty of reading very little on the subject apart from what I come across on this website, so I suppose I would think that.
Which tells me that I find the whole thing more of an entertainment and an education than a concern.
In fact I only found this website several years back because I was doing a bit of recreational research into the childishly thrilling (to a geologist) subject of Ice Ages, and found myself at an excellent WUWT article by Frank Lasner, and have come here ever since for similar good fare.
Apart from which, nothing much has changed round here for the past 40 years. The tide still goes in and out to the same point. The summers are hot and long and the winters are wet. Occasionally there is hail, the threat of a cyclone, or a dead whale washes up on the beach. Politicians, TV and newspapers remain mostly crap. House prices, power bills and the quality of coffee and cars goes up, and the cost of garden furniture, electronics and power tools goes down. Yawn..
Come on, when’s the next ice age? They promised me one at school!

BC Bill

The essay opens with an amazing bit of Orwellian doublespeak. Astonishingly the author claims that skeptics speak in certainties such as “this will”, “this shall”, “this does”. Talk about turning the Buddha on his head! In reality the skeptics look at the data and the empirical evidence and suggest that something else might be going on. The alarmists on the other hand have no empirical cause and effect data but rather look into their crystal models and pronounce the end is nigh. I suppose the concept of four types of uncertainty has some utility in sorting out this mess, but to me the concepts of cognitive dissonance go a lot further in helping to understand what is going on. The genetic predisposition of people to clump together over any common belief, however preposterous, is also clearly at work. Certainly you don’t have to look very far to find ample evidence of groups of people including scientists, believing things that are later shown to be silly. It is disingenuous in the extreme to try to characterize skeptics as the declarative group and it was very hard to read beyond that point.


Their biggest weapon:
Calling those who do not accept the premise of catastrophic man made global warming
“Climate Change Deniers”
Which of course, is their biggest lie.

What makes the CAGW dispute persist, beyond the benefits of the funding involved for being an advocate, is the fact that in the 70s ecological marxism arose as a theory to provide an alternative crises to justify social, political, and economic transformation.
And the theorists knew they needed to use necessity to sell the transformation away from consumerism and individual choices.
I remain stunned by the materials that exist that openly lay out precisely that.


That’s why I was surprised to find Stewart Brand (Mr “Whole Earth Catalog”) is now pushing nuclear power with a will.


I would agree with much of what Doug has written, but only in so far as it relates to the past. It does miss out a small group, those supposedly motivated by “Computational Certainty” who chose to fudge the figures (post 1990) to promote what they knew was a failed hypothesis because they were driven by “Emotional Certainty” to believe the ends justified the means. Some of the scientists supporting the IPCC clearly knew prior to 1995 that adding radiative gases to the atmosphere would not reduce the atmospheres radiative cooling ability.
However the situation of the past has changed. Those continuing to push AGW propaganda now have an air of utter desperation. Most of those once motivated by computational certainty know the hypothesis has failed. A great number of those with little scientific understanding once motivated by emotional certainty are realising something is very wrong. More and more fellow travellers are coming to the realisation that this is going to end very, very badly for them.
It is only now the fellow travellers are contemplating the inevitable collapse of the AGW inanity and the consequences of their actions. They have realised far too late the danger posed by the Internet. It is not just that the Internet allows a democracy of ideas and communication to bypass the control the fellow travellers have over institutions and the lame stream media. The Internet remembers. Forever. The motivation of many of the fellow travellers could now be simply described as blind panic.
The reason the debate keeps on is because the fellow travellers have no exit strategy. In the age of the Internet there is no way out. In the past a compliant lame stream media could be used to engineer an exit strategy, but those days are gone. The lame stream media are no longer the gatekeepers of opinion or records. The forth estate has become the fifth wheel. All the old tricks such as “walkback”, “issue fade and replace” and “snowstorm” are pre Internet, they don’t work any more.
The past motivations of the AGW fellow travellers are not their current motivations. They are no longer fighting to “save the planet”, they are now fighting to save their own hides. From one side of the planet to the other, the Professional Left have gambled everything and lost. The shrieking panic as they try to flog the putrefying remains of their dead stalking horse back to life is now just adding to the crushing weight of their shame. It may be grotesque, but in the face of the permanent record of the internet the fellow travellers have no better plan than delaying the inevitable.

Larry Kirk said @ November 14, 2013 at 4:18 pm

Come on, when’s the next ice age? They promised me one at school!

Me too! Then I studied geology and discovered we have been in an ice age for many millennia 🙂

What makes the warmist-sceptic fight go on and on?
To my mind, the primary reason is simple: It is because AGW and CAGW are used interchangeably by those promoting CAGW. The science of AGW is reasonably well established, and sceptics on the whole accept the basic principle of the science, but observe that it does not support CAGW. Those promoting CAGW draw no distinction between AGW and CAGW. For example they use surveys of opinion on AGW, such as Doran and Zimmerman (2009) to claim consensus on CAGW.
Doran and Zimmerman (2009) (http://tigger.uic.edu/~pdoran/012009_Doran_final.pdf) asked 10,257 Earth scientists the question “2. Do you think human activity is a significant contributing factor in changing mean global temperatures?”. 82% of the 3,146 respondents answered “Yes” to this question. Obviously, the result hinges on people’s understanding of “human activity” and “significant”. Many people do believe that human activities other than the use of fossil fuels, such as land clearing, do contribute to global temperature. Many people would consider any contributing factor above say 10% to be significant. Many or even most CAGW sceptics would answer “Yes”: to this question if they were confident that their answer would not be misused. Yet somehow the paper has been used to “show” that 97% of scientists support CAGW.
This misuse of AGW is at the core of the argument. CAGW sceptics are labelled “anti-science”, “d*ni*rs”, etc, because CAGW scepticism is seen as disputing AGW. Any AGW consensus that can be found or concocted is portrayed as CAGW consensus. Greenies and left-wing politicians find CAGW very helpful. The MSM will not or cannot distinguish between AGW and CAGW. And so the issue is kept confused and the fight continues.


Fight? If one means the angry blabber between the right wing loons and the left wing nuts, both share a unitary interest in not really wanting to follow the money. They’re emotionally wedded.

I think you missed the biggest certainty of all, and that is the self interest certainty.
Al Gore believes his drivel? Nonsense. He invests heavily in oil and fracking companies, and has bought a monster house beside the sea he insists is going to rise up and drown it. What Al Gore believes is that there is a buck to be made and he is going to make as many as he can. Let’s take a walk through all the industries and all the people who supply goods and services to those industries that benefit from their self interest certainty:
Wind mill manufacturers
Solar panel manufacturers
Electric car makers
Biofuel companies
Power utilities. Yes! They are forced to purchase high cost green power which they can then sell at high cost to consumers and make more money in the end.
News media. You betcha. There’s money to be made telling everyone the world is going to end. Nobody wins a Pulitzer prize for reporting that it is a nice day and nothing remarkable happened.
Oil and Gas companies. Yes! Coal is near 100% carbon so gets hit the hardest by emission controls. That capacity has to be replaced, and “green” can’t even come close, so the power generation companies turn to gas. That raises the price of gas, which makes oil more competitive in certain verticals.
Financial industry. Big winners, the more carbon trading there is, the more they get to skim off the top trading it.
Government. Huge winner. Now they have a tax they are being “forced into”. Perhaps the first ever example of a broadly popular tax.
That’s just off the top of my head, my point being that there is a very long list of people who benefit from playing the tune, even if inside their own heads they think it is way off key.


I ended up at this site, of my own free will.
May God help me, cus I’m now well informed 🙂


R. de Haan, well said.

There also is a perversion of word meanings. The prime example is “unprecedented”, the use of which by alarmists eliminates from consideration contrary facts that occurred prior to some usually vague, unspecified point in time. “Today’s warming is unprecedented”, but not stipulated, “since the end of the Little Ice Age” or, more accurately, “since the end of the 1930’s heat waves.” Or “sea level rise is unprecedented” (since the end of the Little Ice Age). “Ocean acidification is unprecedented” (since the Eemian interglacial 125,000 years ago). We learned what to expect in “1984”, and now we’re post-1984, and we’re getting it. “The past has no precedents, so the present is unprecedented.”

From the beginning the ipcc lied, if they told the truth none of this @#%&& foolishness would
Have seen the light of day. Money and power brought on by fear is the real story.
O,t. My town library is having a “climate reality global warming” talk hosted by ,drum roll please..
….”climate reality leadership corps”personally trained by Al bleebing gore. ….stay tuned. I will be there . Suggestions welcome

The only reason the “warmist/skeptic fight goes on and on” is because we have a free internet. The chances that this will continue if the internet is handed over to the UN (or any of its agencies) are slim to none.
The presence of a few good blogs has had an enhanced effect not explicable in terms of the billions which are spent on the propagation of AGW. I don’t understand it, when I consider the funding, status, and institutional weight behind the manipulation of science. The conversation will continue as long as there is freedom of speech, of expression, and the right to peaceably assemble. Other than that, what else do skeptics have but all that personal magnetism.

Steve Reddish

Slightly off topic to this thread, though on topic to several posts to this thread and others:
The claim that there is no rational, scientific basis for a belief in God is in itself an emotional claim, and it reveals that the claimer has not made a rational inquiry into the possibility of God.
But if a belief in God actually was irrational, believers would not be deterred by that claim.
So, save such claims for some other blog, please. I prefer not to read posts by those who don’t know what they are talking about.

the past motivations as I describe them are the current motivations or I could not track this stuff going footnote to footnote having started in education. Tracking why the discrepancy between the declared goals and what was really going on.


Nice job Doug!
I see things a bit differently with respect to uncertainty that drives the debate. I think 4 is not enough.
On one side>
I can see the unimaginable thought clouds popping up in their heads over the last few years. Hint Josh?
On the other side >
Verificational ( is that a word?)
Documentational (¿)
Quit simple really 🙂


Steve Reddish: “The claim that there is no rational, scientific basis for a belief in God is in itself an emotional claim, and it reveals that the claimer has not made a rational inquiry into the possibility of God.”
Here’s some short-bus episemology for you. Let’s say my ex-wife exists and that she called me yesterday. Now take the list of commitments you need to make to accept that as true. Now ask me to demonstrate them for you.
I cannot, whether it is true or false. And that’s what prevents both extelology and godology from being disciplines in science. Though, if you’ll let me fake some things, we can get both in their on the same level of credibility of climatology.
The difference between bullshit and knowledge isn’t what’s true. It’s what you can lay down and demonstrate after having claimed that it’s true.

john robertson

So after Chicken Little shouting “The sky is falling” for 3 decades, we should accept its delusions because it “could fall”.
The arguing goes on because an orchestrated litany of lies, has been propagated by a group of secular anti humanists, for purposes other than those they pretend to espouse.
I resent being imposed upon by weak mined do-gooders.


I argue regularly with an alarmist on a football site. His frothing denunciations are amusing. There’s no changing his mind though…