Dressing Properly for Ben Santer's Invitation

Guest humor by Sam Kazman, CEI

The Wall St. Journal’s Sept. 20 essay, “Climate Science Is Not Settled”, caused quite a stir, in part because it was authored by physicist Steven Koonin, Dept. of Energy Undersecretary of Science during the first Obama administration. Yesterday’s edition (Oct. 2) carries a letter criticizing Dr. Koonin’s essay on several grounds, and ends on a patronizing note:

“We welcome the constructive collaboration of the physics community in improving our understanding of … climate. Many climate scientists are trained physicists…. We invite Dr. Koonin to join their ranks.”

The letter is co-signed by Dr. Ben Santer, widely known for his work on the climate impact of human activity.

But Santer is also known, to some of us, for a 2009 letter to a colleague complaining about CEI’s petition to EPA to reconsider its Endangerment Finding. The letter was part of the Climategate document leak, and says this about dissenting climate scientist Patrick Michaels, who was then at U. Va. and who now heads Cato’s Center for the Study of Science:

“Next time I see Pat Michaels at a scientific meeting, I’ll be tempted to beat the crap out of him. Very tempted.”

So if Dr. Koonin is planning to accept Santer’s invitation to join in some scientific collaboration, maybe he ought to show up wearing hockey gear.


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October 4, 2014 6:18 am

Penalty Boxes. Absent from the debate, but necessary.

Reply to  Mike Bromley the Kurd
October 4, 2014 7:51 am

Chessmatch-style “Kill Switches” on each microphone.
If the debate is 1 hour, each microphone gets 30.00 minutes.
When one microphone is “on” the other is “off”, but each speaker can “kill” the other microphone and interrupt at any time.
Until his 30 minutes are up. Then, after those 30 minutes are used up with interruptions, insults, pontificating and politics and exaggerations or propaganda, nothing but silence will be heard.

Reply to  RACookPE1978
October 4, 2014 1:57 pm

What an awesome idea – I love it. If you can’t give the other guy fair time, you get to listen to them make the closing statement.

Reply to  RACookPE1978
October 4, 2014 4:19 pm

Great idea but I’d alter it just a bit. Each speaker gets a set number of “interrupt” points to use and once he or she is out they must wait until the other speaker “finishes his/her chess move,” slaps the “clock” and passes microphone control back. That way they’d have to decide what to let go and what is “worthy” of using an interrupt for. My guess is that the Climateer would be out of points before the Skeptic finished pointing out all the flaws in the “greenhouse gas” theory their Progressive control fantasy is based on.

Reply to  RACookPE1978
October 4, 2014 6:55 pm


Reply to  Mike Bromley the Kurd
October 4, 2014 8:01 am

So are game misconducts…

Harry Passfield
Reply to  Mike Bromley the Kurd
October 4, 2014 8:57 am

“Penalty Boxes” Is that like a Cricket Box, Mike? 😉

October 4, 2014 6:28 am

We also have the Great Santer doing his global warming clown video

Watch out for Kilimanjaro bit, it is a hoot!

Reply to  ConfusedPhoton
October 4, 2014 9:22 am

That cartoon is the production of demented people!

Brent Hargreaves
Reply to  C.K.Moore
October 4, 2014 10:07 am

I beg to differ. That cartoon is skilful propaganda aimed at conditioning our children. Here in the UK schoolbooks and kids’ comics have been got at in the same way.

Mary Brown
Reply to  C.K.Moore
October 4, 2014 10:50 am

Ooooh Noooo, look at the snow. It’s come back! OMG!
Shameful propaganda. This is not funny now but it will be in 20 years. It will look like one of the 1950s anti-marijuana or anti-communist propaganda spots.

Alan Bates
Reply to  ConfusedPhoton
October 4, 2014 11:25 am

How about the solar panels on the opposite side of the roof to the sun!

Reply to  Alan Bates
October 5, 2014 1:44 pm

What you need to do is put PV cells on the sunward side of the roof and diode lasers on the shadow side that way you can shoot the energy back into space and fight global warming and repel spy drones at the same time!

Mike McMillan
Reply to  ConfusedPhoton
October 4, 2014 11:35 am

Snows of Kilimanjaro, huh? Ben’s cartoon is a little out of date. Here’s a 2011 photo –

Reply to  ConfusedPhoton
October 4, 2014 7:01 pm

Santer must think kids are total morons. This was intended for kids, right?

Berényi Péter
Reply to  ConfusedPhoton
October 5, 2014 9:56 am
DC Cowboy
October 4, 2014 6:29 am

“We have spent our careers developing computer models of the climate system, comparing models with observations and studying the causes of climate change.”
I love this sentence (from Dr Santer’s letter)
It needs to be modified however
We have spent our careers developing computer models of the climate system (that don’t, as far as we can tell, actually model the climate system), comparing models with observations (and adjusting the observations where necessary to bring them in line with the models – or at least closer) and studying the causes of climate change (which, is solely caused by evil human industrial CO2).

Harry Passfield
Reply to  DC Cowboy
October 4, 2014 9:02 am

Missed a bit, DC: “We have spent our publicly well-funded careers…

J Cuttance
Reply to  Harry Passfield
October 5, 2014 11:18 am

“…we have spent our well-funded-by-the-public careers, funding not generally made public…wait a minute, I’ll come in again…nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition…”

Reply to  DC Cowboy
October 4, 2014 11:40 am

Here is Santer on climate models. He realises his 17 year itch is over.

Abstract – June 22, 2012
“The multimodel average tropospheric temperature trends are outside the 5–95 percentile range of RSS results at most latitudes. The likely causes of these biases include forcing errors in the historical simulations (40–42), model response errors (43), remaining errors in satellite temperature estimates (26, 44), and an unusual manifestation of internal variability in the observations (35, 45). These explanations are not mutually exclusive. Our results suggest that forcing errors are a serious concern.”

Niche Modeling- 1 December 2012
“Ben Santer’s latest model/observation comparison paper in PNAS finally admits what climate realists have been been saying for years — climate models are exaggerating warming.”

Jeff Alberts
Reply to  Jimbo
October 4, 2014 2:08 pm

“an unusual manifestation of internal variability in the observations ”
What an incredibly telling sentence!

Reply to  Jimbo
October 4, 2014 7:07 pm

The primary component of climate models that causes them to fail so miserably is the people creating them.

Louis Hooffstetter
Reply to  Jimbo
October 5, 2014 6:15 pm

Santer reveals his character in his remarks. Even though his own paper concurs with Steven Koonin’s Op-Ed, he can’t help expressing his perceived superiority. He demponstrates yet again that he is an assinine, patronizing, bully.
Academic degrees and chutzpah doesen’t make one a scientist; following the scientific method does. In that regard, Ben Santer is no scientist.
Koonin should respond: “Many scientists are trained the scientific method…. We invite Dr. Santer to join their ranks.”

Reply to  DC Cowboy
October 4, 2014 3:38 pm

Nailed it!

Alan Robertson
October 4, 2014 6:35 am

Ben Santer’s 2009 quote is typical fare from the climate fearosphere. Many of us were initially motivated to learn about the climate debate because of the many examples of remarks like Santer’s.
“Next time I see Pat Michaels at a scientific meeting, I’ll be tempted to beat the crap out of him. Very tempted.”

Reply to  Alan Robertson
October 4, 2014 6:45 am

If he can’t win the argument through logical persuasion, there’s always physical force. It’s typical of any movement that’s run aground.

Stephen Richards
Reply to  RockyRoad
October 4, 2014 8:12 am

Yes but this sort of language come from bullies and bullies are always cowards under the skin. A good beating would do Santer the world of good but like all bullies he would run off to mummy and cry.

Reply to  RockyRoad
October 4, 2014 2:17 pm

At the end of the day, physical force is what the coercive power of government is all about. They are not allowing us to choose for ourselves, they are TELLING us the severely limited choices that will be permitted. Ben Santer is entirely at home with that allocation of power.

October 4, 2014 6:42 am

We have spent our careers developing computer models of the climate system
why? If the science is settled there is no need to make models. models serve no purpose if you already know the answer.
so what is it? is the science settled or not? If it is, then why spend a penny more on theory?
once the science is settled it then becomes strictly an engineering problem. we don’t use scientists to tell us how best to build skyscrapers, road, bridges, airplanes and dams. why would we use them to tell us how best to control climate?
Time to move over climate science and let the engineers solve the problem.

Harry Passfield
Reply to  ferdberple
October 4, 2014 9:19 am

Quite right, Ferdberple. That asteroid that the scientists said was heading for earth, and which they are all (97%) settled on, doesn’t need any more scientific divination to say what’s already said: The engineers need to get to work. BUT….of course, now that they’ve seen the utter cost and futility of their ‘fix’ the scientivists are beginning to resile from their dreams of Armageddon. (Like it hasn’t cost us enough already – like it hasn’t enriched a whole load of Ecoligarchs already!)

Kevin R.
Reply to  ferdberple
October 4, 2014 12:45 pm

Good point!

Reply to  ferdberple
October 4, 2014 7:12 pm

Very good point. Just one question;
Why do all my kids look so much like you?

Tom in Florida
October 4, 2014 6:54 am

“We have spent our careers developing computer models of the climate system…”
Well there it is folks. I guess when you spend your career on something you don’t want to hear that you wasted your time. Computer models are their babies and they have developed a maternal instinct to defend them.

Reply to  Tom in Florida
October 4, 2014 8:47 am

My old modeling Prof took his doctorate under George Box. So one might expect some Box witticisms such as the famous quote Tamsin has adopted.
However the line I remember most was (paraphrased):
” Once you have formulated a model, the last thing you should do is believe it!!” :: ))
I think it may have come from “How to Lie with Statistics”.

Reply to  Tom in Florida
October 4, 2014 10:47 am

“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

A Lovell
Reply to  Tom in Florida
October 5, 2014 1:12 am

Some people have an absolute faith in the abilities of computers. We have all heard of those who have ended up on railway lines or in rivers after blindly following the satellite navigation systems in their cars.

Reply to  A Lovell
October 5, 2014 2:20 pm

I have to say first I’ve worked with computers far too long to have blind faith in model output, second a lot of than navigation data comes from the census dept, and it’s gathered by census workers, people who were probably unemployed, often because they were unemployable just a few months ago.

Walt Allensworth
October 4, 2014 6:57 am

He should ask Dr. Dangers what the ideal temperature of the lower troposphere should be. Everytime I ask a climastrologist this question they come unglued.

Walt Allensworth
Reply to  Walt Allensworth
October 4, 2014 7:00 am

Santer. Sigh. Autocorrect is more dangerous than CO2!

Reply to  Walt Allensworth
October 4, 2014 7:40 am

Dr. Dangers. It appears that autocorrect is capable of a Freudian Slip. One could argue that autocorrect has made your post more representative of the facts.

October 4, 2014 6:59 am

the ” We have spent our career” statement is the worst thing to begin with. I mean, they would have been better of by chosing a real profession … Lol

Reply to  jaypan
October 4, 2014 3:47 pm

“We have spent your money…” is what they really mean. Or maybe
“We have spinned the facts…”

Mike Maguire
October 4, 2014 7:18 am
Chris Riley
October 4, 2014 7:22 am

“Every great cause begins as a movement, becomes a business, and eventually degenerates into a racket.” Eric Hoffer

Reply to  Chris Riley
October 4, 2014 10:46 am

Excepting CAGW which began and will expire as a racket – from end to end.

October 4, 2014 7:39 am

Yes, models can help grow understanding how the climate works, but to make the leap to claiming to have mastered how climate works and then even worse to claim to have predictive capability is delusionary to the point of being clinically a mental health problem.
Forecasting is a science, which climate science doesn’t even claim to follow. They build a trend in a model and then assume the model is 100% accurate, the future is 100% predictable, past behavior is 100% guarantee of future behavior, and predicted future behavior is always bad.
I have heard of terms like hypothesis, experimentation, theory and so on in science, but I have never heard of the term “assume”. As in assume a bunch of stuff and then make wild claims.

Paul Coppin
Reply to  Alx
October 4, 2014 10:14 am

“Assume” is valid in science when one is in the process of formulating a hypothesis. Where variables are unknown, but suspected, unquantified, but estimated, assumptions inform the starting point of the investigation (what elementary physics student doesn’t remember “assume STP”, or am I dating myself?). Validation/falsification is the ensuing process giving weight to the hypothesis. By the time a model or theory is created, assumptions should be few and far between in the dialogue. Climatologists and too many meteorologists however, assume that a model is the expression of a theory – it’s not – its an expression of a hypothesis most times. Until a model can be shown to have the durability of a theory, it remains a fancy WAG.

Reply to  Paul Coppin
October 4, 2014 11:37 am

So do 20 model runs with different inputs, then pick the one that most closely matches observations. Ta-dah! Model successful!

October 4, 2014 7:43 am

“Next time I see Pat Michaels at a scientific meeting, I’ll be tempted to beat the crap out of him. Very tempted.”
Here is the measure of the scientist, Ben Santer.
Hello, Ben Santer, and I know you are reading this, what have you to say about the significance of 18 years without warming? Does it make you want to beat the crap out of the data?

Jeff Alberts
Reply to  mpainter
October 4, 2014 2:17 pm

They already have beaten the crap out of the data, attempting to make it confess. The models are the modern virtual equivalent of The Rack, and climate data are the innocent victims.

David L. Hagen
October 4, 2014 7:45 am

Re “Trained Physicists”
Dr. Ben Santer appears to be unaware of contemporary physics or those trained in it. e.g.,
Steven E. Koonin, Array of Contemporary American Physicists

1972: BS, California Institute of Technology (Physics)</b
1975: PhD, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
(Theoretical Physics)
Major Positions
1975–1978: California Institute of Technology, Assistant Professor of Theoretical Physics
1978–1981: California Institute of Technology, Associate Professor of Theoretical Physics
1981–2004: California Institute of Technology, Professor of Theoretical Physics
1995–2004: California Institute of Technology, <Provost
2004–2009: BP, Chief Scientist
2009–2011: United States Department of Energy, Under Secretary for Science
2011–2012: Institute for Defense Analyses, Member, Science and Technology Policy Institute
2012–present: New York University, Director, Center for Urban Science and Progress
Other Positions
1989–1991: California Institute of Technology, Chair of the Faculty
2012–present: New York University, Professor of Information, Management, and Operations Science
Selected Part-Time Positions
1986–1990: Member, Advisory Board, Institute for Theoretical Physics, University of California, Santa Barbara
1988–1989: Member, Advisory Board, Institute for Theoretical Physics, University of California, Santa Barbara
Selected Awards and Honors
2010: National Academy of Sciences, Member

Steven E. Koonin, former Undersecretary for Science, Energy.gov
Steven E. Koonin wikipedia
Could Santer be trained to understand the full range of climate uncertainties, including Type B uncertainties (including institutional bias and systematic errors) that are so important and obvious to those trained in Physics?
Or perhaps he could call on NASA’s Independent Verification and Validation (IV&V) Facility>NASA’s Independent Verification and Validation Facility to examine, and test Santer’s models.
Who knows, NASA’s IV&V facility might just find a few of the Bias errors in Santer’s models that overestimate global warming by 200% during the satellite era since 1979> They might discover Santer’s underestimation of natural causes and correct his models to where, they begin to emulate the “pause” considering global temperatures have not warmed for 18 years and 1 month.
Then Santer’s models might begin to rise from being simply “wrong”, to the standard of science where they might be useful.
Could Santer even rise to the high standard of scientific integrity so clearly laid out by Nobel Laureate Physicist Richard Feynman in 1974 to Caltech in Cargo Cult Science?

Reply to  David L. Hagen
October 4, 2014 7:54 am

Today, independent verification and validation is an Agency-level function, delegated from OSMA to Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC)
Yikes! The same folks that produce the temperature records are responsible for verrification and validation! What could possibly go wrong!

David L. Hagen
Reply to  ferdberple
October 4, 2014 7:56 am

Apollo 13? They got the rest right!

David L. Hagen
Reply to  David L. Hagen
October 4, 2014 8:01 am

No one has yet dared let NASA’s IV&V Facility loose to examine global climate models or temperature records.

Reply to  David L. Hagen
October 4, 2014 10:55 am

Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) is NOT the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS). The former is the NASA center which develops and oversees most NASA near-Earth satellite projects, and is based in Greenbelt, Md. The latter is a paper mill located in the building of the Seinfeld cafe in NYC.

Reply to  David L. Hagen
October 4, 2014 8:48 am

Santer received a B.SC. in Environmental Sciences and a 1987 Ph.D. in Climatology from the Climatic Research Unit of the University of East Anglia.[1]
In 1998 Santer was awarded a MacArthur Fellowship for research supporting the finding that human activity contributes to global warming.
Hmm. “for research supporting the finding”. This suggest one-side research. To look for positive examples.
The problem in science is that there are a near infinite number of positive examples of anything, without any cause and effect relationship. Depth of snow versus stock market prices. etc. It matters not how many positive examples you find if you never look for the negative examples.

Reply to  ferdberple
October 4, 2014 9:25 am

Santer has a PhD in climatology from the CRU at the U of East Anglia?
I wonder who else is associated with that discredited institution, besides Phil Jones and Keith Briffa.

Reply to  ferdberple
October 4, 2014 11:53 am

So Santer received his PHD via CRU that has in the past received funding from BP and Shell?

Reply to  David L. Hagen
October 4, 2014 10:28 am

I thought that a quick through Santer’s CV at the UC Berkeley web site might be of interest for the sake of comparison.
• Ph.D., 1987, Climatology, Climatic Research Unit, University of East Anglia, Norwich, U.K.
• NATO Research Studentship, 1977, Chemical Oceanography, University of East Anglia, Norwich, U.K.
• B.Sc. (First Class Honors), 1976, Environmental Sciences, University of East Anglia, Norwich, U.K.
Regional Validation of General Circulation Models. Supervisor: Prof. T.M.L. Wigley.
Professional Employment and Research Projects
Physicist, Earth and Environmental Sciences Directorate, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Livermore, CA (statistical methods in climate model validation, climate-change detection and attribution studies).
Postdoc and Research Scientist, Max-Planck-Institut für Meteorologie, Hamburg, Germany (detection of greenhouse-gas-induced climate change, analysis of equilibrium and transient response to CO2 forcing, paleoclimate studies, model validation and intercomparison, supervision of graduate students).
Research Associate, Climatic Research Unit, University of East Anglia, Norwich, U.K. Employed under research contracts with U.S. Department of Energy and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (validation of climate model control run results using Monte Carlo techniques, use of model data in climate impact analysis, quality control of observed surface temperature data, teaching).
Project Engineer in the Department of New Technologies, Air Pollution and Climatology Section, Dornier System GmbH, Friedrichshafen, Germany. Employed under research contracts with the European Community, Federal German Ministry for Research and Technology, Federal German Environmental Agency and NATO (impacts of greenhouse-gas-induced climate change, comparison of ambient air quality legislation in NATO countries, satellite measurement of meteorological parameters, technical translations).
Junior Research Associate, University of East Anglia, School of Environmental Sciences, Norwich, U.K. (investigation of eutrophication in the Norfolk Broads).
BS Cal Tech, PhD MIT vs BSc and PhD Univ. of East Anglia -UAE hovers around 200 in the Shanghai rankings vs Cal Tech typically 6th and MIT averages 3 to 5
Prof of Physics at Cal Tech including 9 years as Provost vs physicist at Lawrence National Labs working on GCMs Pity it doesn’t include any documented effort in verification and validation No further comment necessary
Member of National Academy of Sciences vs ?
QED Score one win for Koonin.

David L. Hagen
Reply to  RayG
October 4, 2014 12:06 pm

Koonin Chairs APS Climate Review
Steven Koonin, Chair
Climate Change Statement Review, Workshop Framing Document Climate Change Statement Review Subcommittee, American Physical Society, December 20, 2013
e.g., Koonin asked (p80):

What is the gateway for getting included in CMIP5 ensemble?

Collins quoted:

“There is no minimum fidelity requirement for inclusion in the ensemble.” . . .”


So, what happens if you take only the models that do better and look at all the kinds of results you have been showing us?


“To date, a set of diagnostics and performance metrics that can strongly reduce uncertainties in global climate sensitivity,” a la projections, “has yet to be identified.”

etc. through 573 pages.
Koonin headed up the APS review, taking recorded evidence from and critiquing experts on BOTH sides of climate change science before writing.
Judith Curry observes:

What Pierrehumbert doesn’t get is that Koonin took a very hard look at the evidence in the IPCC (he largely wrote this document), then listened to present ions by myself, held, collins, santer, linden, christy and questioned us at length (see this transcript). And his conclusions are in the WSJ.
Dismissing Koonin’s remarks as plucked from skeptics blogs misses the whole point – a highly regarded physicist (a democrat to boot) takes a serious look at the evidence in the IPCC and ends up, well pretty much agreeing with moi.

Add another win for Koonin.

David L. Hagen
Reply to  RayG
October 4, 2014 12:31 pm

Particle Physicists require at least 5 sigma and then push to 7 sigma (parts per 10^7 to parts per 10^9) to be confident of a new particle like the Higgs Boson.
Climate models currently predict 200% of actual warming since 1990!
Nir Shaviv obverves:

According to the AR4 report, the “likely equilibrium range of sensitivity” was 2.0 to 4.5°C per CO2 doubling. According to the newer AR5 report, it is 1.5 to 4.5°C, i.e., the likely equilibrium sensitivity is now known less accurately. . . .
The likely range of climate sensitivity did not change since the Charney report in 1979.

Carbon Dioxide and Climate: A Scientific Assessment, NAS 1979
Such is the track record of Santer’s “Climate Science” compared to Koonin’s Physics!

David L. Hagen
Reply to  RayG
October 5, 2014 11:06 am

Thanks for posting Santer’s CV.
I apologize for my strong reaction against Santer and presenting such a one sided perspective.
From his CV, Santer has indeed been working to “validate” models:
Dissertation: “Regional Validation of General Circulation Models”
Research Associate: “validation of climate model control run results using Monte Carlo techniques”
With 11,947 citations, Santer has achieved very remarkable academic achievements.
Santer has to work with the challenge of nature “not behaving” to his models, while working on such a “noble cause” of “saving the planet” to which he has given his life work. So how can we better address objective evaluations rather than ad hominem attacks?
While he publishes articles supporting the IPCC, I find the arguments “Unproven” in the face of models predicting 200% higher than reality since 1979.

Reply to  David L. Hagen
October 5, 2014 1:09 am

You write of Santer’s models as being “simply wrong”. Your caution is admirable, but unhelpful. A better description would be “fraudulent”. It is inconceivable that any real scientist could pump out wrong prediction after wrong prediction for 18 years.
100B$ is pumped into “climate science” every year and nobody was able to predict the “pause”. In fact, the (deeply politically flawed) IPCC only very reluctantly admitted that the planet hasn’t warmed in accordance with their predictions.

David L. Hagen
Reply to  Mark
October 5, 2014 10:45 am

While there is the strong temptation to apply such accusatory terminology, I strongly recommend against it without explicit public evidence thereof (though some may consider climategate as evidence.)
Such attribution poisons the public discussion (such as the ad hominem attack of calling persons climate “deniers” insinuates being an antisemitic Holocaust deniers and anti-scientific). It is much better to stick to logical debate methodology and the objective scientific evidence.
e.g., See Roy Spencer’s sworn testimony to Congress. e.g., that > 95% (>2 sigma) of all global climate model temperature predictions from 1979 are now outside the objective global temperature evidence (>95% probability of being wrong).
Leveraging the legal/regulatory basis will have far more effect. E.g., Spencer testified:

In the parlance of the Daubert standard for rules of scientific evidence, the models have not been successfully field tested for predicting climate change, and so far their error rate should preclude their use for predicting future climate change (Harlow & Spencer, 2011).

These extradorinarily high error rates disqualify the IPCC/Santer’s global climate models under the Daubert Standard:

the factors that may be considered in determining whether the methodology is valid are: \(1) whether the theory or technique in question can be and has been tested;
(2) whether it has been subjected to peer review and publication;
(3) its known or potential error rate;
(4) the existence and maintenance of standards controlling its operation; and
(5) whether it has attracted widespread acceptance within a relevant scientific community. 

e.g. Leverage the objective facts of Spencer testifying as an expert witness:

Rule 702. Testimony by Expert Witnesses
A witness who is qualified as an expert by knowledge, skill, experience, training, or education may testify in the form of an opinion or otherwise if:
(a) the expert’s scientific, technical, or other specialized knowledge will help the trier of fact to understand the evidence or to determine a fact in issue;
(b) the testimony is based on sufficient facts or data;
(c) the testimony is the product of reliable principles and methods; and
(d) the expert has reliably applied the principles and methods to the facts of the case.

(Unfortunately the courts have largely abdicated their duty regarding holding government to the scientific method.)
Furthermore, the 18 year global warming “pause” (while CO2 continues to rise) exceeds Santer’s 17 years needed for evidence of major anthroprogenic contribution, negating that confidence.
Addressing such objective evidence of failure of climate models by the scientific method will eventually win over the public and then politicians.

October 4, 2014 7:49 am

Why, if climate models are accurate, why does the IPCC call the forecasts “Projections”? Why are the forecasts not called “Predictions”?
Any fool can draw a line on a graph and project it forward in time. This doesn’t make the line a reliable prediction.
If climate models are accurate, why do they give such a wide range of different answers? If the science is settled, there would only be one correct answer.
“Why 100 authors? If I were wrong, then one would have been enough!” – Albert Einstein

Reply to  ferdberple
October 4, 2014 11:08 am

Projections are estimates of the evolution of the system given a domain of possible inputs and forcings. They have predictive power in that the likely evolution should fall somewhere within the range of the projections.
When one has actual events unfold well beyond the range of essentially all of one’s projections, especially when the projections themselves are drawn from such a wide domain of inputs and forcings as to encompass even the least likely elements, then an honest researcher would conclude that his models were likely a poor match to reality, and conclusions drawn from them should have very low confidence. When the expressions of confidence paradoxically increase with decreasing consistency between the models and reality, you know you are dealing with pathological science.

Otter (ClimateOtter on Twitter)
October 4, 2014 7:56 am

Is it safe to assume that the ‘Santer Clause’ has FAILed?
Next up- connolley’s ‘we’ll know by 2017’
After that
shaun lovejoy’s ‘2019’ claim.

October 4, 2014 7:56 am

From the letter, “Over our lifetimes, a human-caused warming signal has emerged from the background noise of natural climate variability.”
A human signal emerged, well who knew, I always thought humans lived in a bubbles and never interacted with our environment at all. Very profound and enlightening.
And I never thought that all other living matter from plants, to fish, to insects, to bacteria, to all mammals, and non-living things like the Sun, water, gravity, clouds, and land masses, were just background noise, quite insignificant when put in relation to the “human signal”.
My goodness I think we need to re-investigate whether the sun revolves around the earth, no never mind, investigate whether the universe revolves around the earth since our signal seems to overwhelm all other living and non-living matter (background noise) in the universe.
Ok I am being bombastic and sarcastic, but what to do in the face of ” human warming signal ” and additional statements like this from the letter, “This warming signal is discernible not only over the land surface, but also in the Earth’s oceans, lower atmosphere, and snow and ice cover.”, which are an extreme stretching of the truth if not outright fibs.

Reply to  Alx
October 4, 2014 8:30 am

“This warming signal is discernible”
They day we see US politicians and scientists producing no more CO2 than the peasants in Africa and Asia, that will be day we can believe the US is serious about climate change. Until then it is just so much hog wash.
One would expect 7 billion people, creating massive cities, converting millions of square miles of forests and jungles to farms, daming rivers and irrigatiing deserts, would have an effect on climate. However, climate science ignores this change to lay all the blame on CO2. Why? What is the motivation? Follow the money.
Of course the US wants other countries to cut back on producing CO2 (fossil fuel usage). Having been the largest producer of CO2 for many, many years; having used this CO2 production (fossil fuel usage) to make itself the worlds only Superpower; the US wants to hold on to its position at all costs.
What better way to do this than to prevent other countries from taking advantage of their own fossil fuels, by a Treaty to Reduce CO2? This is no hardship to the US, which already has very high per capita CO2 production. They can afford to reduce CO2 by increasing efficiency, because of the high per capita CO2 production.
However, most of the rest of the world has very low per capita CO2 production. There is no room for them to reduce on a country by country basis, without doing real harm to their economies and peoples. It is simple to find efficienies when you are using a lot of anything. Efficiencies are hard to come by when usage is already very small.
Thus it is that the US is concentrating on reductons by country rather than limits of per capita emissions. The US wants peasants in Africa, India, China and Brazil to reduce their CO2 from near zero to less than zero, by increasing the price of energy so that no peasant can afford it. In return the US will reduce its per capita emissions from enormous to huge.
And to accomplish this, the US is willing to pay compliant scientists, NGO’s, corrupt politicians, whatever it takes to get the answer they want.

Richard M
Reply to  ferdberple
October 4, 2014 10:35 am

Not really true. Because of the distributed nature of the US economy it takes more CO2 to drive it. Cutting back will create problems.

Reply to  ferdberple
October 4, 2014 11:13 am

“Having been the largest producer of CO2 for many, many years; having used this CO2 production (fossil fuel usage) to make itself the worlds only Superpower; the US wants to hold on to its position at all costs.”
Whoa, there! The US is probably the least aggressive of the First World powers pushing this malarkey. And, it’s not everyone in the First World, to which this blog comments board attests. I would say rather, it is a First World cabal of powerful interests which desires to maintain its position in what it sees as a zero-sum game.

Thomas Englert
Reply to  ferdberple
October 4, 2014 9:48 pm

The US doesn’t want any countries to cut their emissions, it’s Obama, socialists, communists, and other ignorant anti-US types. They also wish to destroy US superpower status by crippling the US economy with their collectivist policies.
The types pushing the CO2 scam are international, not based in the US, where the working general population just wants to be left alone.
The reason for the US producing the most CO2 is because we also have the greatest industrial output and the highest living standards, at least until Obama succeeds in destroying it.

October 4, 2014 7:57 am

Just get the puck out of there.

October 4, 2014 8:06 am

I’ve spent my career on useless crap
As useless as crap can be
So the only response I can possibly make
If criticism of my crap is what you partake
Is to simply not debate
But beat the crap out of you
If you’re ever in front of me
I know it needs a little work but I’m not a poet. And I’m not aware that Benjamin Santer’s a physicist.

Reply to  Tom J
October 4, 2014 4:32 pm

If it’s any consolation, you’re 10 times the poet that Santer is a physicist. Or scientist, for that matter.

Steve Jones
October 4, 2014 8:17 am

Ben Santer doesn’t look like the sort of person who should go around making threats of physical violence. I suspect his bluff would be called very quickly.

Alan Clark, paid shill for Big Oil
Reply to  Steve Jones
October 4, 2014 12:31 pm

I suspect that Santer meant that he’d “beat the crap out of” Michaels while dressed in his Star Trek Ensign’s uniform and swishing menacingly with his Sky-Walker light saber.

Leon Brozyna
October 4, 2014 8:26 am

Next time I see Pat Michaels at a scientific meeting, I’ll be tempted to beat the crap out of him. Very tempted.

Scientist or enforcer of religious dogma?

Reply to  Leon Brozyna
October 4, 2014 8:38 am

“Next time I see Pat Michaels at a scientific meeting, I’ll be tempted to beat the crap out of him. Very tempted.”
Life’s a bitch when the facts are against you.
The Mafia solved this problem long ago. When someone has evidence against you, threaten to beat them up if they testify.
Looks like Climate Science has adopted the methods of Organized Crime. Only makes sense. They long ago gave up on the Scientific Method.

Nigel S
Reply to  ferdberple
October 4, 2014 8:48 am

Are you suggesting that BS sleeps with the fishes (in the Simpsonian sense)? That might explain a few things.

Reply to  Leon Brozyna
October 4, 2014 11:59 am

Why not beat Pat Michaels with your ‘settled science’ instead of your fists?

October 4, 2014 8:26 am

“Many climate scientists are trained physicists… We invite Dr. Koonin to join them.”
Can’t see the full original, but is he saying “join the ranks (of trained physicists )” or “join the ranks (of climate scientists)”? The first is an insult, per his CV, the second is an invitation to waste his time. This suggestion is a FAIL on either count.

Reply to  Taylor
October 4, 2014 11:08 am

“Many climate scientists are trained physicists… We invite Dr. Koonin to join them.”

He would be following in the footsteps of the Father of Modern Day Global Warming Alarmism, Dr. James Hansen, who is a physicist and astronomer. There are many others like this out there such as the mathematician Gavin Schmidt, the physicists Dana Nuccitelli, John Cook and Joe Romm.

Reply to  Jimbo
October 4, 2014 11:18 am

In case someone brings up the issue of Koonin having once worked for BP………….tell them he worked on their

US Dept. of Energy
“…….long-range technology strategy for alternative and renewable energy sources. He managed the firm’s university–based research programs and played a central role in establishing the Energy Biosciences Institute at the University of California Berkeley, the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory….”

If they persist in wanting to smear then ask them whether Dana Nucitelli still works for the oil company Tetra Tach. 🙂

October 4, 2014 8:59 am

For Tom J,
I’ve spent my career doing useless crap, and everyone knows this is true.
But don’t call my bluff or I’ll act really tough, and say “I’ll beat the crap out of you!”

Reply to  Aphan
October 4, 2014 9:15 am

You’re a better poet than me. I salute you.

October 4, 2014 9:03 am

Don’t forget this other Santer gem from the Climategate e-mails:
“I looked at some of the stuff on the Climate Audit web site. I’d really like to talk to a few of these “Auditors” in a dark alley.”

October 4, 2014 9:19 am

Ben Santer is part of the damaged goods legacy, along with Mann and Hansen, from the myth promoted by the crusading climate change cause.
I can accept there needs to be no debate in the science community focused on climate, IF instead there is a publically raging, uncensored and un-refereed argument that consumes the attention of all in our culture who are even remotely interested in what all the unscientific exaggeration and blatant ideological activist hype is about. That would be a hell of an effective scientific process.

October 4, 2014 9:31 am

“Next time I see Pat Michaels at a scientific meeting, I’ll be tempted to beat the crap out of him. Very tempted.”
So if Dr. Koonin is planning to accept Santer’s invitation to join in some scientific collaboration, maybe he ought to show up wearing hockey gear.

No hockey gear needed. People that say things like that are overcompensating pussies. They very rarely attempt to make good on the threats they make to third parties, safely behind the back of the person they are fantasizing about dominating. And when they do it very rarely ends well for them.
Their problem is, they have built a mental model of their own physicality that does not come close to reality. Deep down, most of them know that. That knowledge keeps them from actually testing that model against observations, or from actually risking their own health or resources on their public claims. In that sense, pussy bravado is very much like “climate science”.

October 4, 2014 9:34 am

Ferdberple: GSFC is not the same entity as GISS(aka “the Hansen boys” now herded by Gavin)

October 4, 2014 9:37 am

He needs to debate Pat. “The Thriller in Manila”. Or, something like that-Lol

Mark from the Midwest
October 4, 2014 9:39 am

Hey: Why don’t we do the debate on a real international style rink, and mic everyone. You get to casually skate by, and trash-talk. We have real time transcription, and just for fun we can throw in a hockey game, and use the NHL rules for checking and hitting. By the way I used to play hockey, (I still skate 3 times a week), and my PhD is in Mathematics. so sign me up

Bengt Abelsson
Reply to  Mark from the Midwest
October 4, 2014 10:13 am

Wont do – the other team will have way more hockey sticks.

Mike H.
Reply to  Bengt Abelsson
October 4, 2014 6:58 pm


October 4, 2014 9:55 am

The first action that exposed the modus operandi of the IPCC occurred with Santer’s actions in the 1995 second Report. He exploited a very limited editorial policy to dramatically alter the findings of Working Group I of the IPCC in the Summary. It is likely he did this with guidance from those controlling the output, because he was a very recent graduate and appointee to the IPCC. An action in itself that was questionable.
Benjamin Santer was a Climatic research Unit CRU graduate. Tom Wigley supervised his PhD titled, “Regional Validation of General Circulation Models” that used three top computer models to recreate North Atlantic conditions, where data was best. They created massive pressure systems that don’t exist in reality and failed to create known semipermanent systems. In other words he knew from the start the models don’t work, but this didn’t prevent him touting their effectiveness, especially after appointment as lead-author of Chapter 8 of the 1995 IPCC Report titled “Detection of Climate Change and Attribution of Causes” Santer determined to prove humans were a factor by altering the meaning of what was agreed by the others at the draft meeting in Madrid. Wigley moved to Colorado where he continued to fund and direct his disciples. Witness Wigley’s brief appearance in the 1990 documentary, The Greenhouse Conspiracy and the need to look after his graduate students.
Here are the comments agreed on by the committee as a whole followed by Santer’s replacements.
1. “None of the studies cited above has shown clear evidence that we can attribute the observed [climate] changes to the specific cause of increases in greenhouse gases.”
2. “While some of the pattern-base discussed here have claimed detection of a significant climate change, no study to date has positively attributed all or part of climate change observed to man-made causes.”
3. “Any claims of positive detection and attribution of significant climate change are likely to remain controversial until uncertainties in the total natural variability of the climate system are reduced.”
4. “While none of these studies has specifically considered the attribution issue, they often draw some attribution conclusions, for which there is little justification.”
Santer’s replacements
1. “There is evidence of an emerging pattern of climate response to forcing by greenhouse gases and sulfate aerosols … from the geographical, seasonal and vertical patterns of temperature change … These results point toward a human influence on global climate.”
2. “The body of statistical evidence in chapter 8, when examined in the context of our physical understanding of the climate system, now points to a discernible human influence on the global climate.”
As Avery and Singer noted in 2006, “Santer single-handedly reversed the ‘climate science’ of the whole IPCC report and with it the global warming political process! The ‘discernible human influence’ supposedly revealed by the IPCC has been cited thousands of times since in media around the world, and has been the ‘stopper’ in millions of debates among nonscientists.”
The model situation has deteriorated since Santer’s first efforts because they reduced the number of weather stations used and adjusted the early temperature record to change the gradient to create the outcome to support their thesis. Santer, like all the others, will never be held accountable and so he continues to believe he did nothing wrong, even though he admitted he made the changes.

F. Ross
October 4, 2014 9:58 am

Louisville Slugger instead of the “hockey stick”.
Haven’t we had quite enough hockey stick symbolism?

Reply to  F. Ross
October 4, 2014 10:17 am

Besmirching the legend of the Louisville Slugger is inappropriate. Given the frequency the hockey stick is used as a bludgeon it stands as a representative symbol of unsanctioned violence against one’s peers.
Keep it on the ice, Benny.

October 4, 2014 10:11 am

Dr. Ball posted this statement above:
1. “None of the studies cited above has shown clear evidence that we can attribute the observed [climate] changes to the specific cause of increases in greenhouse gases.”
That is the crux of the entire debate. Santer’s mendacious attempts to change the facts goes back a long way. He was outed by the late, great John Daly here.
Santer is in the same league as Michael Mann. Both of them could use an injection of honesty.

Reply to  dbstealey
October 4, 2014 11:21 am

An injection of honesty would send them into apoplectic shock.

Reply to  dbstealey
October 4, 2014 12:07 pm

Santer is perhaps worse than Michael Mann considering the number 1 replacement. This changed the course of the ship away from open water towards an ice-berg. We are waiting for the collision.

Reply to  dbstealey
October 4, 2014 4:03 pm

A dishonest scientist is no scientist.

Reply to  dbstealey
October 6, 2014 3:24 am

Here are the graphs from Daly site.
“The observed radio sonde record chosen by Santer et al for comparison with the models”
“But this is what the whole record looks like”

October 4, 2014 10:13 am

It sounds like the world needs an activist group to focus on getting Santer fired from his job and to have his life’s work discredited. From all the effort he has put into achieving these very goals it would be appropriate he be made the honorary President, and Secretary of Social Networking and Recruitment. He’s already begun the letter writing campaign.

October 4, 2014 10:39 am

I wrote this a very long time ago, but given the invitation of a climatologist to a physicist to join their ranks, I thought it worth repeating now:
Climatologist; I have a system of undetermined complexity and undetermined composition, floating and spinning in space. It has a few internal but steady state and minor energy sources. An external energy source radiates 1365 watts per meter squared at it on a constant basis. What will happen?
Physicist; The system will arrive at a steady state temperature which radiates heat to space that equals the total of the energy inputs. Complexity of the system being unknown, and the body spinning in space versus the radiated energy source, there will be cyclic variations in temperature, but the long term average will not change.
Climatologist; Well what if I change the composition of the system?
Physicist; see above.
Climatologist; Perhaps you don’t understand my question. The system has an unknown quantity of CO2 in the atmosphere that absorbs energy in the same spectrum as the system is radiating. There are also quantities of carbon and oxygen that are combining to create more CO2 which absorbs more energy. Would this not raise the temperature of the system?
Physicist; There would be a temporary fluctuation in temperature caused by changes in how energy flows through the system, and perhaps a change in temperature distribution from surface to top of atmosphere, but for the long term average of the system as a whole… see above.
Climatologist; But the CO2 would cause a small rise in temperature, which even if it was temporary would cause a huge rise in water vapour which would absorb even more of the energy being radiated by the system. This would have to raise the temperature of the system.
Physicist; There would be a temporary fluctuation in the temperature caused by changes in how energy flows through the system, but for the long term average of the system as a whole… see above.
Climatologist; That can’t be true. I’ve been measuring temperature at thousands of points in the system and the average is rising.
Physicist; The system being chaotic, it may be due to one or more cyclic variations that have not completed, or are coincidental, and a few thousand measuring points across an entire planet are insufficient in any event, even if you have thousands of years of data, which you don’t. Unless the energy inputs have changed, the long term temperature average would be… see above.
Climatologist; AHA! All that burning of fossil fuel is releasing energy that was stored millions of years ago, you cannot deny that this would increase temperature.
Physicist; Is it more than 0.01% of what the energy source shining on the planet is?
Climatologist; Uhm… no.
Physicist; rounding error. For the long term temperature of the planet… see above.
Climatologist; Methane! Methane absorbs even more than CO2.
Physicist; see above.
Climatologist; Clouds! Clouds would retain more energy!
Physicist; see above.
Climatologist; Ice! If a fluctuation in temperature melted all the ice less energy would be reflected into space and would instead be absorbed into the system, raising the temperature. Ha!
Physicist; The ice you are pointing at is mostly at the poles where the inclination of the radiant energy source is so sharp that there isn’t much energy to absorb anyway. Anyway, removing the ice would expose water that is warmer than the ice which would then radiate more heat to space, cooling the planet and…. see above.
Climatologist; Blasphemer! Unbeliever! The temperature HAS to rise! I have reports! I have measurements! I have computer simulations! I have committees! United Nations committees! Grant money! Billions and billions and billions! I CAN’T be wrong, I will never explain it! Billions! And the carbon trading! Trillions in carbon trading!
Physicist; (gasp!) how much grant money?
Climatologist; Billions…. Want some?
Physicist; Uhm…
Climatologist; Hi. I used to be a physicist. When I started to understand the danger the world was in though, I decided to do the right thing and become a climatologist. Let me explain the greenhouse effect to you…

F. Ross
Reply to  davidmhoffer
October 4, 2014 1:28 pm

Good one!

Jeff Mitchell
Reply to  davidmhoffer
October 4, 2014 9:08 pm

Outstanding! 🙂

Nigel S
Reply to  davidmhoffer
October 5, 2014 3:56 am

Hi, I’m Troy McClure, you may remember me from such films as ‘The Physicist sees The Light!’ (aka ‘The Contrabulous Fabtraption of Professor Horatio Hufnagel’.

David Ball
Reply to  Nigel S
October 5, 2014 7:34 am

Other Troy McClure classics; “Smoke Yourself Thin.” and “Get Some Self-confidence, Stupid!!!”

October 4, 2014 10:41 am

Protective equipment, that’s fine. But the hockey stick is offensive,

Reply to  ConTrari
October 4, 2014 10:56 am

It is used to make a point.

Reply to  dp
October 4, 2014 11:18 am

It certainly is!

Reply to  ConTrari
October 4, 2014 11:38 am

Wrong nest. It certainly is!

Stephen Brown
October 4, 2014 4:15 pm

Kilimanjaro has three peaks, Kibo, Mawenzi and Shira. Kibo is the highest at 19,341′ ASL.
In 1963, as a young member of the Luanshya High School Kilimanjaro Expedition from Northern Rhodesia (now Zambia) I stood on that peak and signed the book buried in a cairn on the summit. Ball-point and fountain pens didn’t function as the ink was frozen, only pencils worked. We could also see the fragments of a DC3 aeroplane crash on distant Mawenzi which happened on 18 May 1955.
On the way down our guides took a detour to show us the carcass of a leopard, long frozen in a then-retreating tongue of ice and which had only recently (in 1962) become visible. Our African guides told us, even then, that the ice was disappearing as fast as the forest on the lower slopes was being cleared for cultivation. They knew that snow never fell on Kilimanjaro. They knew that the ice simply formed from water vapour. They knew that when the amount of water vapour fell that the amount of ice declined.
Why did it take so long for ‘science’ to ‘discover’ this fact?

Reply to  Stephen Brown
October 4, 2014 6:17 pm

Your guides used their powers of observation, a practice that is strange and unfathomable to many climatologists, whose brains are over warmed by a ferment of theory and more theory.

charles nelson
October 4, 2014 4:23 pm

Like his colleague Michael Mann, Ben must surely now be aware that every time he stands in front of an audience in a lecture theatre there must be a proportion of those people who believe him to be a failed scientist. If he is at all human, his own self doubt has already started to gnaw at his ego. Love it.

David Ball
Reply to  charles nelson
October 4, 2014 6:30 pm

Being wrong never stopped Paul Ehrlich.

Charles Nelson
Reply to  David Ball
October 4, 2014 7:16 pm

Yes, but ridicule hurts the narcissist in a particularly intense way!

David Ball
Reply to  David Ball
October 5, 2014 7:31 am

Attention is what the narcissist seeks. Positive or negative.

October 4, 2014 9:08 pm

Seems to me that if Dr. Koonin is going up against Ben Santer he needs to “put on the foil”.

October 4, 2014 9:34 pm

How will Ben Santer’s meal be dressed/marinated? The warmists should all be eating crow soon…

October 4, 2014 9:58 pm

How easy would it be to track Santer’s past students still working in “climate science” to see how far his influence might have spread?

George Tetley
October 5, 2014 3:12 am

Obliviously when idiots go to school they do not attend history classes !

Richard M
October 5, 2014 7:18 am

I think is quite interesting (karma?) that Santer et al (2011) can be used to falsify climate models. The 17 year period they produce as the required length of no warming to achieve a 95% confidence level that climate models have failed is very useful when used in conjunction with the current 18+ years of no warming.
“Our results show that temperature records of at least 17 years in length are required for identifying human effects on global‐mean tropospheric temperature.”
Given we are now over 18 years that should mean human effects are inconsequential. At least that would be the case in any real scientific field.

Sam Kazman
Reply to  Richard M
October 5, 2014 8:10 am

Perhaps Santer himself should be invited to (in his words) “constructively collaborate” in disproving the models.

October 7, 2014 10:34 am

Jeff Alberts:
“an unusual manifestation of internal variability in the observations ”
What an incredibly telling sentence!
It’s good isn’t it? You only resort to that sort of total BS statement when there is no scientific straw left to grasp.
And we pay these people?

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