Intelligence and the hockey stick

Guest essay by Christopher Monckton of Brenchley

In 1990, the IPCC’s First Assessment Report showed a schematic demonstrating the then understanding that the medieval warm period had been appreciably warmer than the present and that the Little Ice Age had been colder. However, in 1995 Dr. Jonathan Overpeck, an IPCC scientist, wrote an email to Dr. David Deming to say, “We have to abolish the medieval warm period.”

By 2001, the IPCC’s Third Assessment Report had obliged; and, notwithstanding my Expert Review of the draft Fifth Report, in which I had listed some 400 papers from the medieval warm period database at establishing by measurement that the medieval warm period was real, was global and was almost everywhere warmer than the present, the IPCC defied the evidence and preferred the models that had been shown to be defective (McIntyre & McKitrick, 2005).


Figure 1. A frost fair on the River Thames in 1694, near the end of the Little Ice Age that – according to IPCC (2001) – never happened.

In the autumn of 2013, the Government of Colombia invited me to Bogota, where, after several university lectures and two addresses to Simón Bolívar’s anti-corruption department, the Procuraduria, I was also asked to give a lecture to 200 trainees at the Army School of Intelligence and Counter-Intelligence.

I began with a quotation from Sun Tzu, the earliest strategist to write about how to win a warm. Sun Tzu wrote: “All warfare is based on deception.” I explained to the trainees that I was going to demonstrate to them by various examples a method by which a lay intelligence officer could identify deception even in a field of study that was not his specialism.

My first illustration was the absurd “hockey-stick” graph that had falsely abolished the medieval warm period by a series of flagrant statistical dodges. I said that before the modelers had worked their gloomy magic to abolish the medieval warm period attempts to reconstruct global temperatures had concentrated on studying the measurable effects of temperature change. And the most obvious effect of temperature change on the environment was sea level.

Water expands a little as it warms. This thermosteric expansion makes sea level rise in warmer weather and fall in cooler weather. I looked for a reconstruction of sea level rise over the past millennium and, thanks to Dr. Willie Soon of the Harvard-Smithsonian, who reads everything, I came across a graph from Grinsted et al. (2009).

The Grinsted graph is a poor match for the hockey-stick graph. However, it matches the IPCC’s earlier schematic to a very high correlation. I told the trainee intelligence agents that this simple but robust method, which demanded of the intelligence agent nothing more than what our British James Bonds call “the Mark I Eyeball”, indicated that the Middle Ages had indeed been warmer than the present, and the Little Ice Age cooler.


Figure 2. The formidable homeostasis of global temperatures in the past 420,000 years, reconstructed from the ratios of two isotopes of oxygen in the Vostok ice cores, Antarctica. Absolute temperature varied by only ± 3 Cº, or 1%, over the entire period. Image source: Willis Eschenbach.

I also pointed out that, notwithstanding the pronounced fluctuations in temperature over the past millennium, including the cold weather that had frozen the Thames in London and the Hudson in New York during several winters at the end of the 17th century (Fig. 1), global sea level had varied by as little as ± 20 cm throughout the millennium. With a graph (Fig. 2) from the inimitable Willis Eschenbach, I showed that in the past 420,000 years absolute global temperature had fluctuated by as little as 3 Cº, or 1%, either side of the long-run median. It is difficult to get global temperature to change much.


Figure 3. The changes in sea level reconstructed by Grinsted et al. (2009) do not fit the absence of global temperature change fabricated in the discredited hockey-stick graph from IPCC (2001).

With this small fluctuation in temperatures, how had sea level risen by 400 feet (130 m) in the 11,400 years since the end of the last Ice Age? The mean rate of rise was almost 4 feet/century. The answer is ice-melt. Once temperatures become warm enough to cause the ice on great northern-hemisphere land masses such as North America to melt, sea level will rise sharply, as it did after the end of the Younger Dryas cooling event that brought the last Ice Age to an end. In fact, global temperature rose by 5 Cº in just three years, according to the ice cores.

However, I said, in the past millennium the changes in the cryosphere had been comparatively small. The main reason for sea-level changes was thermosteric expansion, so the changes over the past 1000 years were in centimeters, not meters.

Nevertheless, it was clear that the weather had been warm enough in the Middle Ages to push sea level up by 20 cm, and cool enough in the Little Ice age to push it down by 20 cm. This profile did not fit the hockey stick (Fig. 3), but it did fit the IPCC’s 1990 schematic showing both the MWP and the LIA (Fig. 4).


Figure 4. The curves of sea-level changes from Grinsted et al. (2009) and of temperature from IPCC (1990) are closely and perhaps causatively correlated.

The Director of the Intelligence School, who had been nodding enthusiastically throughout this part of my talk, quietly slipped out of the room and came back some minutes later clutching something.

At the end of my lecture, after several more than usually perceptive questions had come from the audience, the Director came on to the stage and presented me with a magnificent gong, the Medal of the Army School of Intelligence and Counter-Intelligence, that now has pride of place on my neo-Classical mantelpiece beneath the handsome portraits of my ancestors.

On returning to Scotland I told a friend of the award. He replied, “Intelligence medal? You?” That is what friends are for.

67 thoughts on “Intelligence and the hockey stick

  1. the earliest strategist to write about how to win a warm.
    I see that the topic of Global Warming has been around for a long time.

  2. The Director of the Intelligence School, who had been nodding enthusiastically throughout this part of my talk, quietly slipped out of the room and came back some minutes later clutching something.
    Being an intelligent fellow, the Director waited until positive that you were going to appear intelligent. After confirmation he brought the award to the proceedings. That shows his intelligence.
    Spelling of ‘warm’ for ‘war’ (6 lines below woodcut),

  3. I had the pleasure of talking to a ‘capstone’ class at our liberal arts college about climate skepticism. I pointed out that I myself had experienced winters of week long below zero weather, week long blizzards and snow drifts that covered telephone poles, but for 40+ years they have been gone. I explained that indeed they could return, based solely on natural climate variability, that could easily out muster any of their perceived human induced warming. I then referenced the ‘Thames ice festivals’ and noted they came and left, long before any possible human C02. The reaction was surprising: anecdotal ‘proof’ of climate variability is powerful! They relate, internalize it and it is real.
    I have a feelling, Lord M, that you in your presentation created that ‘real link’ for them and the clarity of truth shone through.

  4. Do we know for sure that it was Jonathan Overpeck who wrote “We have to get rid of the Medieval Warm Period”? I ask because my emailed question to him on the matter was never answered but turned up in the first Climategate batch of emails. I it were me, and I had not written it, I would say so. Why would anyone not deny it, if it was not them? I think his caviller approach the the AR4 WGI SOD publication deadline matter makes him a good candidate but without being sure I would not attribute it to him.

  5. The ‘need ‘ to make the MWP vanish was one of the early signs of how religions like dogma had taken over from science in this area, it would be perfectly possible to have an MWP and AGW.
    And its always struck me as funny that the proof of MWP although not world covering nor data heavy was still far better in both these areas than the infamous ‘hockey stick , indeed the poor nature of the actual data , especially given the great claims built on it , as always seemed an oddity of ‘the cause ‘ ‘ with its one tree magic .
    And yet the [latter] was good enough to undermine the former. Because without the ‘unprecedented’ they knew that they had not a snow ball in hells chance of pulling this scam off. Once Mann [gave] them want they ‘needed’ they simply ran with it and stopped asking questions.

  6. Good science, nice graph from Grinsted et al. I have proved, by the way, that AGW does not exist. See my comment on Hansen et al. in PLoS-One this month.

  7. The quote is a fabrication. Jonathan Overpeck’s exact words are:
    “I get the sense that I’m not the only one who would like to deal a mortal blow to the misuse of supposed warm period terms and myths in the literature.”
    Christopher Monckton, like Andrew Montford before him, alters the text to instead read:
    “We have to abolish the medieval warm period.”

    I checked for a citation, and the quote you state is correct:

    From: Jonathan Overpeck
    To: Keith Briffa ,
    Subject: the new “warm period myths” box
    Date: Thu, 13 Jan 2005 21:45:38 -0700
    Cc: Eystein Jansen , Valerie Masson-Delmotte
    Hi Keith and Tim – since you’re off the 6.2.2 hook until Eystein hangs you back up on it, you have more time to focus on that new Box. In reading Valerie’s Holocene section, I get the sense that I’m not the only one who would like to deal a mortal blow to the misuse of supposed warm period terms and myths in the literature. The sceptics and uninformed love to cite these periods as natural analogs for current warming too – pure rubbish.
    So, pls DO try hard to follow up on my advice provided in previous email. No need to go into details on any but the MWP, but good to mention the others in the same dismissive effort. “Holocene Thermal Maximum” is another one that should only be used with care, and with the explicit knowledge that it was a time-transgressive event totally
    unlike the recent global warming.
    Thanks for doing this on – if you have a cool figure idea, include it.
    Best, peck

    Jonathan T. Overpeck
    Director, Institute for the Study of Planet Earth
    Professor, Department of Geosciences
    Professor, Department of Atmospheric Sciences
    Mail and Fedex Address:
    Institute for the Study of Planet Earth
    715 N. Park Ave. 2nd Floor
    University of Arizona
    Tucson, AZ 85721

    As to this being a fabrication, no, it’s a summation or a paraphrase of a long quote, something that happens a lot in history. Monckton and Montford aren’t specifically at fault in this, as the summed up quote has been around for a long, long time and it appears to have originated with Dr. David Deming’s statement to the Senate.
    The conversion to a paraphrase maintains the meaning. “Mortal blow” certainly equates to “get rid of” (as it is often said) or “abolish” as you state it, and “we” equates to “I’m not the only one”.
    The most important point is that Overpeck thinks it should be gotten rid of so that people that don’t agree with his view can’t use it.
    And that, is the real travesty. – Anthony

  8. Jon Lord Monckton has as much right to claim to be in HOL as any other peer who no longer has a ‘right to vote ‘ on legislation but still remain members of the HOL . And these days that is the majority of peers.
    Its always was a poor smear and time as not made it any better .

    In the next week, the green band going through Michigan will be filled in. Then we’ll have 2/3’s Continental USA covered. Counting Alaska, 75% of the USA Land mass will be covered.
    Meteorological Low: Jan. 21st (month after shortest day!)
    So, we could have 85 to 90% of USA snow covered this year.
    100% of Russia. Over 50% of Northern Hemisphere…just saying, Al Gore must be giving a LOT of Gorebull Warming lectures. Can we send him to South Africa?

  10. There’s no evidence that Overpeck ever used that phrase, Deming claimed he received a mail using those words without at the time giving the source, but no longer has the alleged email, (and we know memory can play tricks), in the Climategate mails when Deming made the claim, Overpeck says he has no recollection of using the phrase, and certainly would not use words like that ….

  11. This is an off topic question , but I would like some help.
    This morning on National Radio (in NZ) we heard the shocking news, from two American oyster farmers , that climate change , and consequent ocean acidification, are wiping out billions of oyster larvae on the Pacific North-West coast.
    Has this been dealt with on WUWT?
    Elsewhere I have found references to upwelling of mineral-depleted water (that may have a different pH) in the affected area.
    Any leads? I’d like to be able to counter this “news” item.

  12. Here is the exact source and language of the Deming quote. He attributed it to an anonymous source in his Congressional Committee testimony, I’ve never seen a solid attribution of from whom it came:
    U.S. Senate Committee on Environment & Public Works
    Hearing Statements
    Date: 12/06/2006
    Statement of Dr. David Deming
    University of Oklahoma
    College of Earth and Energy
    Climate Change and the Media
    Mr. Chairman, members of the Committee, and distinguished guests, thank you for inviting me to testify today. I am a geologist and geophysicist. I have a bachelor’s degree in geology from Indiana University, and a Ph.D in geophysics from the University of Utah. My field of specialization in geophysics is temperature and heat flow. In recent years, I have turned my studies to the history and philosophy of science. In 1995, I published a short paper in the academic journal Science. In that study, I reviewed how borehole temperature data recorded a warming of about one degree Celsius in North America over the last 100 to 150 years. The week the article appeared, I was contacted by a reporter for National Public Radio. He offered to interview me, but only if I would state that the warming was due to human activity. When I refused to do so, he hung up on me.
    I had another interesting experience around the time my paper in Science was published. I received an astonishing email from a major researcher in the area of climate change. He said, “We have to get rid of the Medieval Warm Period.”
    The Medieval Warm Period (MWP) was a time of unusually warm weather that began around 1000 AD and persisted until a cold period known as the “Little Ice Age” took hold in the 14th century. Warmer climate brought a remarkable flowering of prosperity, knowledge, and art to Europe during the High Middle Ages.
    The existence of the MWP had been recognized in the scientific literature for decades. But now it was a major embarrassment to those maintaining that the 20th century warming was truly anomalous. It had to be “gotten rid of.”

  13. “We have to get rid of the Medieval Warm Period.”
    My recollection is that I saw this quote independently of the Climategate emails. And sure enough, it turns up in testimony of David Deming before a committee of the US Senate, which Ferd Berple cites above. So Monckton’s quote is accurate save for placing the synonym “abolish” for “get rid of”. But Deming does not explicitly ascribe the quote to Overpeck.

  14. “Global Warmfare.” I like it. Great post, Lord Monckton.
    “Can the opinion of a judge set aside the title and privilege granted by a King or Queen? Why then have Kings and Queens when Judges rule?” –ferd berple
    Damn right. Raises the question, why have any form of government when you’re being ruled by unelected oligarchs in Bressels?

  15. Christopher, as ever, an excellent article. I am sure that if the climatologists did their work properly we should be addressing the problem not of warming, but cooling. They got rid of the Medieval Warm Period, they got rid of the Little Ice Age and they take temperature readings from locations such as airports and cities, where the “Heat Island” effect is strongest. After all of that, they admit that there has been no warming for over 17 years and tell us, rather implausibly, that the heat has somehow bypassed the atmosphere, where AGW is supposedly occurring and magically gone into the oceans.
    It is frightening that we are applying solutions to the very opposite of what may be happening.

  16. David Holland says:
    December 8, 2013 at 9:00 am
    Do we know for sure that it was Jonathan Overpeck who wrote “We have to get rid of the Medieval Warm Period”? I ask because my emailed question to him on the matter was never answered but turned up in the first Climategate batch of emails. I it were me, and I had not written it, I would say so. Why would anyone not deny it, if it was not them? I think his caviller approach the the AR4 WGI SOD publication deadline matter makes him a good candidate but without being sure I would not attribute it to him.

    What he’s said subsequently is that he MAY have made some such statement, but in a context that would make it non-incriminating. Heartland should give Deming $2000 or so to pay his ISP to search its backup tapes to find the e-mail in all its contextual glory.

  17. The bottom line is natural climate cycles are the great heresy of the alarmist cult.
    After all, what would happen if everyone one day woke up to the fact that almost everything we have experienced in climate over the past forty years was almost solely the result of natural climate cycles?
    Answer: The glorious sight and sound of the Global Warming Gravy Train screeching off the rails.

  18. Regarding long term (eustatic) SLR/T correlation, the claim of a 5 degree rise within a century throws a bug in the works, since T inversely approximates albedo, which is in turn a function of ice sheet coverage. And in the short run, if there is any truth to the claim of recent (and unprecedented?) deep ocean warming, we would infer that (flat) surface T and SLR (steric) are reciprocally correlated. Moreover, since the energy required to raise SL through thermal expansion is two orders of magnitude greater than that required by melting ground ice, it becomes difficult to blame expansion while claiming accelerated melting in Greenland and Antarctica.
    In other words, if the slight warming captured by ARGO sufficiently explains current SLR, then the total ice mass balance must be zero. Even a little melting ice (not replaced by snow) would overwhelm steric SLR. –AGF

  19. Robert and Anthony,
    We are talking about two different times. 1105670738.txt was sent in 2005. “We have to get rid of the Medieval Warm Period” comes from David Deming’s evidence to the Senate on 12 June 2006 at the link given by ferd berple above. The paper by Deming that he referred to in his evidence was published in 1995. The circumstantial evidence that points to Deming’s recollection being right is what Guardian reporter Fred Pearce wrote:

    Tim Barnett, then of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, part of the University of California, San Diego, joined Jones to form a small group within the IPCC to mine this data for signs of global warming, ready to report in the next assessment due in 2001. “What we hope is that the current patterns of temperature change prove distinctive, quite different from the patterns of natural variability in the past,” Barnett told me in 1996. Even then they were looking for a hockey stick.

    Another thing that points to (but does not prove) it was Overpeck is his goofy email 1206628118.txt .
    Why did it need a Committee meeting to decide whether to deny the allegation? You will note that I am a lousy speller, but I consider it a sort of honour to be thought of a being worse (for warmistas) than David Deming.

  20. This whole “we need to abolish the Medieval Warm Period” exercise is nit picking and trivial. Overpeck communicated with Mann who did abolish the MWP with the hockey stick, he has no issues with what Mann did only with those who do have issues with what Mann did (abolish the MWP). This is a none issue.

  21. Bob, Missoula says:
    December 8, 2013 at 11:20 am
    “This whole “we need to abolish the Medieval Warm Period” exercise is nit picking and trivial. ”
    Yep. Perfectly normal everyday routine of a government scientist. Nothing to see here, move along, pay your taxes at the checkout, thank you, peons.

  22. Jon says:
    December 8, 2013 at 9:16 am
    Your snipe has been dealt with a very long time ago. I suggest you go back to your chanting for AGW.

  23. I remember the “rid of the MWP” quoted statement from the global warming edition of National Geographic magazine back in the 90s. However, NG archives searches do not go back far enough. Someone else might find it. I believe it included the famous photo of Mann and the infamous tree ring slice. GK

  24. Bob and Dirk,
    I don’t think it is trivial, if you look at all the evidence. Overpeck more than anyone organised the survival of of the Wahl and Ammann 2007 paper and made the decision, or more exactly approved Solomon and Manning’s decision not to formally record and forward Steve McIntyre’s entirely valid detailed response requesting the citation of the Wegman and the NRC Reports in the critical section of AR4 WGI Chapter 6 that cast doubt upon McIntyre and McKitrick’s papers.
    Chris Horner has obtained emails that show that Overpeck told Eugene Wahl to contact Stephen Schneider long after WA 2007 had missed the 16 December 2005 cut off date. Overpeck told Wahl that Schneider “knew the drill. On 28 February 2006 – the cut off date for final pre-prints – Wahl emailed Overpeck suggesting he contact Schneider to get his paper declared ‘in press’ in time to distribute pre-prints to the expert reviewers. The only problem was they forgot to post up the ‘in press’ version on the WGI website.
    The Deming matter is part of the tome of evidence of the team’s chicanery and the IPCC’s total lack of any fitness for purpose.

  25. Mr. Penman rightly points out a defect in my posting. I had neglected to explain that Wills Eschenbach’s graph had been adjusted by the usual factor of two to remove polar amplification so as to represent global temperature change over the past 420,000 years. Apologise for this oversight.
    The question whether Dr. Deming cited word for word the quotation from Dr. Overpeck that I gave in the head posting is comprehensively dealt with in a subsequent thread.
    I see that yet another troll has surfaced with a link to the silly and long-discredited letter from the Clerk of the Parliaments telling me not to call myself a member of the House of Lords. I am a menber of the House until Her Majesty takes away my Letters Patent, which subsist in perpetuity. Read the legal opinion from Hugh O’Donoghue.
    And what on earth has any of that got to do with the climate? It is yet another wearisome instance of the argumentum ad hominem, a disfiguring subspecies of the fundamental logical fallacy of the argumentum ad ignorationem elienchi, or ignorance of how to conduct an honest and legitimate argument. If the hard Left can’t do better than that, they’re doomed.

  26. Cross-checking claimed temperature history with another metric: Beautiful.
    Vulnerability to cross-checking is generally the weakness of CAGW-movement revisionism: Data can be rewritten but not all at once. Modern publications rewriting mid-20th century temperature and arctic ice extent doesn’t delete the old paper versions in libraries published prior to the movement; sunspot trends can be rewritten but not solar cycle lengths; the NOAA’s dataset for humidity at altitude tracking GCRs wasn’t rewritten until years after Hansen’s GISS fudged their cloud trends; etc. (with the preceding examples among those in … and many more existing).

  27. Stephen Richards says:
    December 8, 2013 at 11:35 am
    Jon says:
    December 8, 2013 at 9:16 am
    Your snipe has been dealt with a very long time ago. I suggest you go back to your chanting for AGW.
    The truth hurts doesn’t it lol By the way, I don’t believe in AGW!

  28. farmerbraun says:
    December 8, 2013 at 10:42 am

    OK. I got it.

    That may not be what you’re looking for (an explanation/rebuttal on claims of oyster larvae kill). I haven’t be following the story closely, but I hear the claim a few months ago and the 2011 WUWT article predates that. There my be a lot of good information in it, but it would be work looking to the die-off claim and work done this year to study it. My guess is if the die-off is true (I assume it is), that there may have been something else behind it.

  29. Ric Werme says:
    December 8, 2013 at 12:28 pm
    Thanks Ric , I’m still looking into it , but haven’t found anything recent; specifically i have found nothing about the changed pH of the Pacific in that region.

  30. 1 The MWP was real.
    2 Some people wanted to lower the profile of the MWP.
    3 Mann’s Hockeystick conveniently lowered the profile of the MWP and was welcomed by “mainstream” climatologists.
    Does anyone doubt points 1, 2 or 3?
    For me the quote under discussion is important because it exonerates the “mainstream” climatologists of a worse deception. The quote implies that the MWP was distracting from the current warming.
    I think the MWP provides another source for the current rise in atmospheric CO2. The ice-cores show that CO2 follows temperature with about an 800 year lag.
    And the “mainstream” climatologists knew that too.

  31. What is most ironic – about Mann’s attempts to do away with the Medieval Warming Period and the Little Ice Age – is that, if you look at his construction of the many proxy lines, BOTH are very clearly visible.
    Now, you do have to ignore his subversive and mannually-created “summary” dark-plotted “conclusion” line, but look again with fresh eyes at the “total” of ALL of his proxies on his plot. There is a very clear “little ice age” with a VERY small spread between ALL proxy temperatures as ALL of the spaghetti is concentrated down low in the bottom of the pot in the 1500-1750 time frame, then a gradual raising of the global temperature as the spaghetti lines ALL rise (and spread out!) into a tangled BUT ALL HIGHER “mash” of peaks between 950 and 1350 AD.

  32. The (mythical) hockey stick recurs in posts with noticeable regularity, as evinced by this thread, but always, and only, as a graphic. I’ve asked before, and will repeat here, does anyone have a reference or URL where I can find the actual NUMBERS that Mann et al used to produce their graphic? I have Mann’s original data set of 112 columns of numbers, so can produce my own graphics from them, but very few of these produce convincing HS’s, and some simple analysis shows that it is unlikely that an overall HS exists. So, how, did Mann generate his fabrication, and where are the numbers he plotted?
    Any help in this will be greatly appreciated.

  33. Whether he said it or not does not matter. That is exactly what they have done. Even Michael Mann would agree. 😉

    Medieval Climatic Optimum
    Michael E Mann – University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA, USA
    It is evident that Europe experienced, on the whole, relatively mild climate conditions during the earliest centuries of the second millennium (i.e., the early Medieval period). Agriculture was possible at higher latitudes (and higher elevations in the mountains) than is currently possible in many regions, and there are numerous anecdotal reports of especially bountiful harvests (e.g., documented yields of grain) throughout Europe during this interval of time. Grapes were grown in England several hundred kilometers north of their current limits of growth, and subtropical flora such as fig trees and olive trees grew in regions of Europe (northern Italy and parts of Germany) well north of their current range. Geological evidence indicates that mountain glaciers throughout Europe retreated substantially at this time, relative to the glacial advances of later centuries (Grove and Switsur, 1994). A host of historical documentary proxy information such as records of frost dates, freezing of water bodies, duration of snowcover, and phenological evidence (e.g., the dates of flowering of plants) indicates that severe winters were less frequent and less extreme at times during the period from about 900 – 1300 AD in central Europe……………………
    Some of the most dramatic evidence for Medieval warmth has been argued to come from Iceland and Greenland (see Ogilvie, 1991). In Greenland, the Norse settlers, arriving around AD 1000, maintained a settlement, raising dairy cattle and sheep. Greenland existed, in effect, as a thriving European colony for several centuries. While a deteriorating climate and the onset of the Little Ice Age are broadly blamed for the demise of these settlements around AD 1400,

  34. The Medieval Warm Period was a localized, Northern Hemisphere affair. There is a consensus so please remain silent.

    “This period of widespread warmth is notable in that there is no evidence that it was accompanied by an increase of greenhouse gases” IPCC WG1 Report 1990 (p202)

    But, but, we have changed our minds. Afterall, we must get rid of this warmcold period. You really have to laugh at this comedy. :-O

  35. Here is Lamb from 1965 on the Medieval Cold Period. 😉 Brooks suggest something outrageous. In reality there was always lots of sea ice. Breath easy now.

    H.H. Lamb1965
    The early medieval warm epoch and its sequel
    The Arctic pack ice was so much less extensive than in recent times that appearances of drift ice near Iceland and Greenland south of 70[deg] N, were apparently rare in the 10th century and unknown between 1020 and 1194, when a rapid increase of frequency caused a permanent change of shipping routes. Brooks suggested that the Arctic Ocean became ice-free in the summers of this epoch, as in the Climatic Optimum; but it seems more probable that there was some ‘permanent’ ice, limited to areas north of 80[deg] N….”
    Elsevier Publishing Company
    Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 1:1965, p. 15-16

  36. @Max
    “Al Gore must be giving a LOT of Gorebull Warming lectures. Can we send him to South Africa?”
    For heaven’s sake, man, we have enough problems here without freezing in the middle of summer. There was tennis ball sized hail a few days ago, Nelson Mandela has risen into the pantheon of emaqawe and it is the wet end of the 19 year drought cycle. Have you ever heard of fusarium roseum in maize?
    My condolences to the people of Northern Europe and Southern Africa for their losses this week. It has been rough.

  37. farmerbraun: The Seattle Times ran a series about how ocean acidification was destroying WA and OR oyster farmers. Dr Cliff Mass, a meteorology professor at U of WA, took issue with the series and the bad science involved. He was excoriated for his lack of expertise and experience. Dr Mass [replied] with an extensive post upon his blog.
    Needless to say, his response was silenced the alarmists.
    [“was silenced by the alarmists” or “silenced the alarmists” ? Mod]

  38. In the tradition of Sun Tzu, CAGW zealots have implemented an all out war of deception/misdirection regarding the recent Braddock, Rosenthal, Linsley and Oppo peer-reviewed paper, which shows the Medieval Warming Period (WMP) was warmer than today AND a global event.
    Yet another paper that busts Mann’s stupid Hockey Stick to smithereens…..
    Rather than admitting their very serious error that the WMP was NOT cooler than today and was NOT just a localized phenomenon , Warmunists only cite this paper’s observations of rapid and “unprecedented” (there is that word again) OHC warming over the past century….
    Even if 20th century OHC levels did rise at “unprecedented” rates, this still doesn’t prove anything as there were other climate factors taking place during that time such as: LIA recovery, the strongest 63-year (1933~1996) string of solar cycles in 11,400 years (Solanki et al), a Super El Nino event in 1998, a rapid increase in ice-melting carbon soot and other phenomenon and oh yeah, an increase in CO2 levels….
    Given these and other realities, it’s not surprising the 20th century experienced a warming trend (HACRUT4 1900~1999 trend: 0.05C/decade), but even if 50% of that warming were attributed to CO2 forcing, that’s only 0.25C, with roughly 50% of all known fossil fuel reserves consumed to date…
    Moreover, even if one makes the rather generous 50% CO2 forcing assumption (i.e. 0.25C of total 0.5C 20th century warming), CO2’s forcing effect is logarithmic, so CO2’s next 120ppm increase will be even less that 0.25C…
    What’s even more curious is that 1/3rd of all manmade CO2 emissions since 1750 have been made over just the last 17 years, and the lower troposphere RSS trend has been -0.000C/decade… Oh, my….
    Is such a small increase in CO2-induced global warming catastrophic? Not so much… To the contrary, an excellent case could be made that the small rise of global temperatures, combined with the positive effects of CO2 fertilization on crop yields and forest growth have been a net benefit to humanity.
    The CAGW scam is starting to implode with 73 out of 73 CMIP5 model projections now above observed temperatures and we’re now into 17+ years of no global warming trend, despite record CO2 emissions. CAGW’s projections vs. reality only get worse from here.
    The CAGW charlatans will try to ride their newest OHC hobby horse as long as possible, but pretty soon, empirical evidence will overwhelm this last ditch effort of deception and misdirection.
    And so it goes….until freedom and logic are restored.

  39. Jon says:
    December 8, 2013 at 9:16 am
    Jon says:
    December 8, 2013 at 12:24 pm
    Give it a rest will you. Your assertion has nothing to do with the subject of the post and you grow irksome.

  40. @Robin: are you familiar with “Non-Centered Principal Components Analysis”? That is how the hockey stick came about from the proxies that Mann used. This was written up in the Wegman report to Congress, and in a Steve McIntyre paper. McIntyre’s readers could probably get you some code to run your samples.

  41. @Robin: btw, I do not recommend the Wikipedia article on the Wegman report. It is burdened with a number of red herrings and ad hominem attacks against Wegman. I would suggest reading it for yourself. PCA is described in an appendix to the report.

  42. It appears Micheal Mann is in bed with University of Florida and UF is in bed with IPCC. The Lakeland Fl Ledger did an editorial on them.
    There was a time when the Geography dept. that was studying sunspot activity on Hurricanes. That appears to have fallen by the wayside.
    I have written rebuttals to the paper before and never published. I think it is time to quit fixing Stupid.
    I lost out on a Hurricane conference in Greece last year due to plane schedule. Mann was a center point in the conference. I think I would have wasted $5Gs.

  43. In figure 2, the variation of ± 3 Cº is compared to the average Absolute Temperature of the Earth’s surface (i.e. about 15Cº = 288K) to yield a variation of 1%. Whilst Absolute Temperature comparisons are relevant for planetary science, a more meaningful comparison in the context of Earth’s climate would be the temperature range in which food crops grow (e.g. about 5-35Cº) so the ± 3 Cº variation is closer to 10% of the relevant range than 1%.
    Still within the range of adaptability.

  44. Christopher Monckton writes:
    “I had listed some 400 papers from the medieval warm period database at establishing by measurement that the medieval warm period was real, was global and was almost everywhere warmer than the present,”
    There are a number away from the Arctic that say it was warmest around the 7th to 9th centuries, like this one:
    that was during a peak cold period for Greenland:

  45. In the next week, the green band going through Michigan will be filled in. Then we’ll have 2/3′s Continental USA covered. Counting Alaska, 75% of the USA Land mass will be covered.
    We came pretty close yesterday. Tiny bits of solid precip (sleet) halfway to the coast, but too warm for real snow — just freezing rain and a bit of sleet to the west. I’ve already seen snow this winter in Durham. This is early December. For most of the 80s and early 90s, I’d still be picking tomatoes in December. The last time we had substantial snow in early December (that I can remember) was 1973, when I took my multivariate calculus final at Duke with an inch or so of snow falling outside in what would have been the second week of December. So far we’ve been having rain that could be warm or cold (warm three days ago, cold for the last two days) or cold dry weather. Not a lot of sunny warm days. Eventually we’ll get the cold and wet at the same time.
    Or not. NC is famous for promising snow and not delivering (we notice, because snow = holiday in NC and all points south:-). I’ve learned the hard, bitter way that the weather people predict snow three or even four times for every time that it actually snows, and fail to predict snow only once in a decade. We’re downright eager, which leads to optimistic mistakes. Actually a nice example of how hopes and expectations color the predictions even of professionals who should know better.
    On another thread I had occasion to go look at the list of US state record temperatures by year and location over the last 120 or so years, which are conveniently collected in several databases and displayed on several websites. Just about exactly 1/2 of the high temperature records were set in the 1930s. There is no real pattern to the low temperature records or high temperature records OUTSIDE of the 1930s. In particular, there is absolutely nothing unusual about the number of high temperature records or low temperature records set in the last 30 years (the last quarter of the record). If the US had warmed substantially, one would expect there to be SOME sort of surplus of high temperature records and SOME sort of deficit of low temperature records (such as there was in the 1930s).

  46. James Strom says:
    December 8, 2013 at 10:42 am
    “We have to get rid of the Medieval Warm Period.”

    But Deming does not explicitly ascribe the quote to Overpeck.

    Sounds more like Mikey or Philbert.

  47. Robert;
    That record of predicting 4 snow days for every one that occurs reminds me of the crack about economists, who have correctly predicted 9 of the last 5 recessions.

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