Sean King

My photo
Knoxville, Tennessee, United States

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Chris Mooney...

writes propaganda defending global warming orthodoxy.

It's all very disappointing--short on facts and long on misleading assertions. Whether his statements are the result of startling naiveté or an intent to decieve, they are unacceptable regardless.

Take, for instance, this quote from the above link:

But the skeptics were lying in wait. They didn’t need good science to make another sally: Their strength has always been in communication tactics anyway, and not scientific exactitude or rigor.

I suppose Chris means the type of rigor that led to the CRU to loose raw temperature data while preserving only the "value added" data? While it seems that some of this lost data may serendipitously be preserved in other data-sets custodied at other institutions, is it really the CRU's "scientific rigor and exactitude" that we have to thank for that, Chris? I don't think so.

So, perhaps you mean instead the type of scientific rigor that caused CRU head Phil Jones to admit intentionally destroying data in defiance of Freedom of Information Act Requests while pleading with his colleagues to do the same?

Or maybe you mean the rigor that lead Michael Mann to create the famously discredited Hockey Stick Chart that Al Gore used so successfully in his movie on climate change? Yes, perhaps. But, you couldn't possibly mean the type of scientific rigor employed by climate skeptic Steve McIntyre, who demonstrated statistically that the computer code used to create the chart would generate a hockey stick shaped graph ninety-nine out of one hundred times, even when fed random data.

So, perhaps instead you mean the type of scientific exactitude that caused paleoclimatologist Ed Cook to conclude:

[W]e can probably say a fair bit about <100 year extra-tropical NH temperature variability (at least as far as we believe the proxy estimates), but honestly know fuck-all about what the >100 year variability was like with any certainty (i.e. we know with certainty that we know fuck-all).

Or maybe it's the exactitude that Phil Jones secretly employed when he used "Mike's nature trick" to "hide the decline" in temperatures suggested by tree ring data since 1960?

Or, maybe you mean the rigor that led to almost 90% of surveyed surface temperature stations being sited on or next to parking lots, roof-tops, exhaust vents, airport runways, sewage treatment plants or other areas likely to overstate temperatures due to the urban heat island effect?

Or perhaps you mean the scientific exactitude that prompted the CRU to hire a self-admittedly incompetent programmer to write code for its climate models?

I could continue ad nauseum, but more of your gems await:

The new skeptic strategy began with a ploy that initially seemed so foolish, so petty, that it was unworthy of dignifying with a response. The contrarians seized upon the hottest year in some temperature records, 1998—which happens to have been an El Nino year, hence its striking warmth—and began to hammer the message that there had been “no warming in a decade” since then.

It was, in truth, little more than a damn lie with statistics.

And yet, this "foolish" and "petty" lie, the one that was "unworthy of dignifying with a response" was apparently told so compellingly by those tricky, statistic-loving skeptics that, at least in their private correspondence, many of the world's most prominent global warming alarmist fell under its spell:

From: Kevin Trenberth
To: Michael Mann
Subject: Re: BBC U-turn on climate
Date: Mon, 12 Oct 2009 08:57:37 -0600
Cc: Stephen H Schneider , Myles Allen , peter stott , “Philip D. Jones” , Benjamin Santer , Tom Wigley , Thomas R Karl , Gavin Schmidt , James Hansen , Michael Oppenheimer

Hi all

Well I have my own article on where the heck is global warming? We are asking that here in Boulder where we have broken records the past two days for the coldest days on record. We had 4 inches of snow. The high the last 2 days was below 30F and the normal is 69F, and it smashed the previous records for these days by 10F. The low was about 18F and also a record low, well below the previous record low.

This is January weather (see the Rockies baseball playoff game was canceled on saturday and then played last night in below freezing weather)

Trenberth, K. E., 2009: An imperative for climate change planning: tracking Earth’s global energy. Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability, 1, 19-27, doi:10.1016/j.cosust.2009.06.001. [1][PDF] (A PDF of the published version can be obtained from the author.)

The fact is that we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can’t. The CERES data published in the August BAMS 09 supplement on 2008 shows there should be even more warming: but the data are surely wrong. Our observing system is inadequate.***

In light of Trenberth's email, it's clear that you "doth protest too much" on this point, Chris. Well...either that or else Trenberth is simply "foolish" and "petty" and his contention that recent cooling isn't wholey explained by 1998's El Nino is a simple "statistical lie" intended to deceive rubes.

But Trenberth isn't the only one. There's also Tom Wigley, who rebuked Michael Mann for creating yet another deceptive graph, this one designed to back up Wigley's own hypothesis that recent cooling was still consistent with the theme of overall continued warming:

On Oct 14, 2009, at 5:57 PM, Tom Wigley wrote:


The Figure you sent is very deceptive. As an example, historical runs with PCM look as though they match observations—but the match is a fluke. PCM has no indirect aerosol forcing and a low climate sensitivity—compensating errors. In my (perhaps too harsh) view, there have been a number of dishonest presentations of model results by individual authors and by IPCC. This is why I still use results from MAGICC to compare with observed temperatures. At least here I can assess how sensitive matches are to sensitivity and forcing assumptions/uncertainties.


Well, Chris...if the last decade of cooling is so easily explained by 1998's El Nino event, then why were these esteemed scientists, as recently as the last few months, mystified by it, and why were they offering competing explanations for it? Heck man, all they needed to do was to call you! You had it figured out all along: "It's the El Nino, stupids." You'd think they would have listened.

Again, I could continue on this point, but the hits just keep on coming. You proceed to say:

Whether we will recover some necessary momentum in Copenhagen—a formal United Nations venue for deliberation where scientific expertise is respected, and where misinformation will likely have less power—is up in the air.

Of course, Chris, how could we have been so foolish?! The United Nations, a fundamentally political organization, is the perfect place for honest scientific debate! The UN has a long history of being an honest broker on sensitive issues like this. It's ability to set aside political agendas in favor of an honest pursuit of truth is...well...legendary. Plus, it's never been susceptible to corruption or anything.

Silly us. The UN said it: Ipse dixit. It's determinations should be sufficient for any true scientist--well, at least those that aren't foolish and petty liars, right Chris?

No comments: