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Quote of the Day

The Met Office had this bare faced and shameless porky to say in response to Boris Johnson’s article in the Torygraph:

The Met Office has not issued a seasonal forecast to the public and categorically denies forecasting a ‘mild winter’ as suggested by Boris Johnson in his column in the Daily Telegraph.

Following public research, the Met Office no longer issues long-range forecasts for the general public; instead we provide a monthly outlook on our website, which have consistent and clearly sign-posted the very cold conditions.

Our day-to-day forecasts have been widely recognised as providing excellent advice to government, businesses and the public with the Daily Telegraph commenting only today that ‘the weekends heavy snow was forecast with something approaching pin-point accuracy by the Met Office’

To which the inimitable Piers Corbyn replied:

If the Met Office no longer issues long term forecasts, is it going to stop telling us what the temperature will be in a 100 years time?

And in the ensuing silence you can hear the distant squawk of a Moonbat’s Great Tit crying coldizwaaarm, coldizwaaarm, coldizwaaarm…

H/T Climate Realists

34 Comments

  1. CountingCats says:

    I have never before regarded Piers Corbyn as inimitable, but that response is priceless.

  2. Peter MacFarlane says:

    Uh-huh. Whatever.

    Here’s what the Met Office was actually saying in October:

    “The eastern half of England, Cornwall, Scotland and Northern Ireland is in for temperatures above the 3.7C (38.6F) average, more than 2C warmer than last winter.

    The map also shows a 40 per cent to 60 per cent probability that western England and Wales will be warmer than 3.7C (38.6F), with a much smaller chance of average or below-average temperatures.”

    (H/T Autonomous Mind)

    Do they think we’re (a) gullible and (b) stupid and (c) unable to use Google, all together?

    The wheels are coming off…and about time too.

  3. NickM says:

    Well… I watched Granada news for the weather forecast for the NW last night. Basically “Fred” might as well have slit a goat’s belly and examined the entrails. He then did a “Where am?” skit for a phone-in competition. Anyone who saw that and didn’t guess within 5 seconds the answer was Wilmslow ought to be shot. Seriously though. They have like satellites and super computers and weather stations and we get a forecast less sophisticated than me looking out the fucking window.

    Peter, no! Seriously they will use the absence of evidence to “prove” Cancun/Copenhagen/Kyoto worked.

  4. JuliaM says:

    I’ve found the little weather app on my iPhone is far, far more use than the Met Office….

  5. Stonyground says:

    To be fair, I have always found that short range weather forecasts, say two or three days ahead, to be pretty much spot on. Even about a week ahead the type of weather is usually correct although the time that it occurs goes slightly off.

    As for those long range forecasts that the Met office are claiming they don’t do, they do have a kind of reliability as they seem to be so consistently wrong that you can get a reading by expecting the opposite of whatever they predict.

  6. RAB says:

    It’s our bleedin Jet Stream innit!

    It’s gawn Sarf on us!

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1340436/Why-cold-warm-Greenland-Diverted-jet-stream-letting-icy-blast-Arctic.html

    Any ideas as to why this should be, oh Wise Ones, sucking on a briar pipe and polishing your elbowpads?

    Experts are still unsure why this is but suspect it may be related to the EL Nino weather system as well as changes in sea temperatures and solar activity.

    That’ll be a NO then?

  7. Stonyground says:

    On an earlier post I drew attention to an AGW for dummies cartoon strip which was picked up and used for a subsequent post. One of the things mentioned in the cartoon was that the Greenhouse effect of CO2 had been proven by lab experiments. My curiosity about this statement lead me to this:

    http://dcdc.asu.edu/K-12Education/greenhouselab.pdf

    I found it interesting that the description of the experiment is hedged in on all sides with AGW propaganda and the need to promote it to students. This is in contrast to what I would have thought the scientific approach would be, present the facts, do the experiment, record the data, then discuss the implications as objectively as possible and cautiously draw conclusions.

    I would expect that an experiment conducted by research scientists would be rather more sophisticated than this one but would rely upon broadly similar principles, I would be happy to be corrected on this if I am wrong. My problem is, can an experiment carried out using fish tanks and heat lamps really add anything useful to our understanding of the workings of the biosphere of an entire planet? The word that comes to mind when considering the notion that it can is simplistic.

  8. No, no, no.

    It’s their weather forecasts that can’t be trusted (which is only reasonable as weather is a short term thing). However, their climate forecasts have an unimpeachable record of accuracy.

    Here’s what they actually said in October:

    “The eastern half of England, Cornwall, Scotland and Northern Ireland is in for temperatures above the 3.7C (38.6F) average, more than 2C warmer than last winter.

    That’s as far as the weather is concerned.

    However, the climate for the same region during the same period will be below freezing, and there will be record snowfalls.

    Viewers are therefore advised to stock up on weather, and if they have any climate left over from last winter, to get rid of it as quickly as possible.”

    Context is everything.

  9. Lynne says:

    You know, when I studied physics and chemistry at school I don’t recall shooting video interviews and reading media articles as being part of the preparation for any experiment. We were there to conduct experiments demonstrating the physical attributes, effects and reactions of materials and nothing else. Let’s go back to basics for the sake of simplicity. For example CaCO3 will still react with H2SO4 to produce calcium sulphate, water and carbon dioxide.

    I did not need to read about global warming to prepare for such an experiment. In fact global warming never entered the arena. Nor global cooling for that matter. What I read in the link provided by stonyground is a fraudulent warping of basic science in order to propagate ecolunacy. Sadly, many people will be taken in the the AGW “comic” promoting this CO2 lie.

    Fortunately we have real scientists on hand doing real science and reaching honest conclusions which the warmists have so far failed to falsify.

    Here are some extracts from the summary of Falsification of the Atmospheric CO2 Greenhouse Effects Within the Frame of Physics by Gerhard Gerlich and Ralph D. Tscheuschner

    a) “There are no common physical laws between the warming phenomenon in glass houses and the fictitious atmospheric greenhouse e ffect, which explains the relevant physical phenomena. The terms “greenhouse eff ect” and “greenhouse gases” are deliberate misnomers.”

    b) “After Schack 1972 water vapor is responsible for most of the absorption of the infrared radiation in the Earth’s atmosphere. The wavelength of the part of radiation, which is absorbed by carbon dioxide is only a small part of the full infrared spectrum and does not change considerably by raising its partial pressure.”

    The real killer lines come from the conclusions reached. In the [extracted] words of Gerlich and Tscheuschner:

    “Already the natural greenhouse efect is a myth beyond physical reality. The CO2-greenhouse effect, however is a “mirage”. The horror visions of a risen sea level, melting pole caps and developing deserts in North America and in Europe are ficticious consequences of fictitious physical mechanisms as they cannot be seen even in the climate model computations.” [Their emphasis]

    So dihydrogen monoxide vapour is the real villain of the “greenhouse” gases piece. Just as well some of the Cancun delegates signed a petition to ban it then…

    You can read the entire paper in PDF form here.

  10. DeNihilist says:

    But Lynne, Gavin said that T&G were wrong!

  11. Lynne says:

    Yeah, but can he prove it? ;-)

  12. Jamie says:

    You seem so convinced about global warming – I acknowledge that you could be right, but what if there’s a 2% chance you’re wrong? How can you be so certain that the 99% of the 12m scientists in the US who believe AGW is real are all wrong? If you were told by 99% of doctors that you might have a disease, wouldn’t it be worth doing something about it, even if you felt quite certain, for whatever reason, that they’re probably wrong? Isn’t it worth modifying our behaviour a little bit – at the worst it would mean our oil reserves last a bit longer and we’re all a bit poorer because we’ve wasted money on something that wasn’t real, while at best it prevents the death of billions of people.

  13. DeNihilist says:

    Proof? It’s GAVIN! :)~

    Anywho, a very Merry celebration of Christ’s birth to all!

  14. Bod says:

    Jamie,

    Please. List those 12m scientists, and establish their superior standing in the discussion. Hint: Science isn’t democracy. One man may be right when 12m-1 are wrong. There aren’t 12m scientists in the climatology field for a start, so what even the world’s most eminent virologist might have to say about climate change is moot. If he has a role in the process, it might be as someone who overlooks the process by which the climatologists have come to the conclusions they have.

    Let the proponents of global warming demonstrate that they are correct by submitting findings which can withstand critical evaluation by unbiased peers. Further hint: Your heroes have screwed the pooch by fucking over their own credibility. When you falsify your own data, and pollute down-stream researcher’s projects with falsified data, intelligent (and not even scientific minds) start wondering about your motives. So cry me a fucking river that every climatologist in the world is being trated like a pedophile in a Scout Troop if they’re lucky.

    There are so few ‘unbiased’ climate scientists left that they’ve turned what might be a legitimate science into the league of dowsing and phrenology. They have little reason to come whining to us for that lack of credibility.

    If 99 african shamen told me I had been cursed with the evil eye, and one, in a Johannesburg hospital told me that he thought I had menangitis, and he invited me to get a second opinion, I’d DEFINITELY take the word of the minority.

    What the fuck don’t you people understand? Concensus doesn’t mean shit in science if you haven’t got some solid evidence to back up your claim, AND, to put out spurious evidence compromises the validity of whatever argument you were trying to make?

    New Year’s Resolution for me: Stop tolerating fools.

  15. Bod says:

    Oh, and you know what else could easily prevent the deaths of billions of people? Technological advancements that result from the advaneced economies developing thereapies and technologies that poor and underdeveloped economies can’t afford to.

    Take a look at what pharma companies do when the economy looks bleak. The first victim is non-core research and development. When times are good, they’ll not only look for a cure for obesity, they’ll also bankroll research into dengue (to cite a current example). There’s a lot more profit for them in helping Americans beat the flab than helping the people you claim to care for to survive the rigors of a world that might (or might not) be 0.1F hotter (or colder, actually) in 10 years’ time.

    Dengue doesn’t affect rich nations much, so the primary beneficiaries of a dengue cure will be the third world – populated by many of those billions of people you want to save.

    I’ve had it up to here with fucking neo-Luddites who want to move the world back to a bucolic, ‘authentic’ place where there’s NOBODY with enough brass in their pockets (which is roughly equivalent to being energy-rich) to help the less fortunate out of their bleak existances.

    You wanna know who’s making a huge difference to people who would otherwise be dead? Bill Gates. Malaria. And he’d achieve even more if ‘science’ would admit that DDT is capable of controlling mosquitoes without making the shells of peregrin falcons thin (oh, another bit of scientific ‘concensus’ pioneered by some arrogant bint).

    Bill’s actually so goddamn rich, he can afford to preach to me that I ought to pay more to the government as a sort of sumptuary tax. Which I loathe. He should be making more trips out to Malawi with Melinda to help the people whose lives he can save, rather than going Methodist on me. But you know what?

    You want to defeat carbon? Go talk to the Chinese or the Indians. Or any of those countries dragging themselves thru’ their own industrial revolutions and into the post-industrial uplands where you can sustain an economy on lower fuel use. Go tell them to moderate their consumption, go tell them that they should deliberately place a drag on their development, and slow down their advancement thru’ that stage of their development, because overall, it will save lives of not just their countrymen, but many others in less fortunate countries.

    And they will tell you, as I will, that a rising tide (advancing technology) lifts all ships. And they’d be right.

    If you want to stop global warming, the best cure is to get the bulk of the world’s population out of the heavy industrial stage, and into service/light industry.

    Oh, and while you’re at it, please remember that all we have to do is develop a means to control the eruption of volcanoes, or genetically engineer oceanic algae, and we can wipe out by far the greatest generators of CO2 on the planet.

  16. Lynne says:

    Jamie, I’m convinced that global warming is real. Only a complete moron would say it doesn’t exist because it obviously does. However, even Phil Jones, one of CAGW’s stars has uttered the immortal words – …”for the past 15 years there has been no statistically significant warming.” The warming phase has ground to a halt despite the growing hysterical claims of “warmest year ever”. And this from a bloke who is balls deep in cooking the temperature data.

    The so called “proof” that warmists are right are the Global Climate Models which are the technological equivalent of astrology. No medical doctor I know uses a poorly programmed computer model or any kind of computer model to diagnose an illness. I wouldn’t accept such a diagnosis no matter how many “experts” gave it to me because a computer can diagnose bugger all. Just ask the poor bastards who suffered or even died after phoning the NHS help-line and and been diagnosed by a trained chimp with a keyboard. Why should we accept the same bullshit from so called CAGW scientists and propaganda merchants?

    As for the so called climate consensus idiots let’s see what they have to say about weather/climate shall we?

    It’s raining – blame global warming.
    It’s not raining – blame global warming.
    It’s snowing – blame global warming.
    It’s not snowing – blame global warming.
    It’s sunny – blame global warming.
    It’s cloudy – blame global warming.
    It’s a drought – blame global warming.
    It’s flooding – blame global warming.
    It’s blowing a gale/hurricane/cyclone – blame global warming.
    It’s not blowing a gale/hurricane/cyclone – blame global warming.
    It’s foggy – blame global warming.
    It’s frosty – you’ve guessed it, blame global warming.

    Have I missed anything out?

    Someone over at Komment macht frei asked of the Moonbat last week, “So tell me George, if there was no global warming what would weather look like?”

    Care to answer that question?

    Oh and BTW, what Bod said, with knobs on.

  17. Lynne says:

    DeNihilist, back atcha!

    Someone really ought to take Gavin’s Spectrum away from him. It gets him into so much trouble.

  18. Bod says:

    C’mon Lynne, don’t be such a wuss.

    You don’t have any better justification for believing that global warming is real than I do for believing that it isn’t. You’re just caving in and ceding the ground to ‘reasonable people’.

    Science ain’t about being reasonable. It’s about discovering the truth, as best we can. Is it likely that human activity is affecting CO2 levels? Sure. But it’s not even been established that the effects have global scope (although they probably do). What we don’t know, despite all the bullshit we’ve had for my entire adult life is a bunch of soothsayers diverting attention from finding what those effects are, to what effects they’d like to happen. These people have squandered a generation’s worth of research which yeah, MAY be a generation during which we could have got to grips with a real problem.

    But therein lies the problem – and one that Glenn Reynolds succinctly summarizes with his “I’ll believe it when the proponents start acting as though they believe it”. Even if every warmist started behaving as though they were confronting this problem they’ve identified, I’d treat their claims with a little more credibility. I still wouldn’t let them off the hook to prove their claims without lying, before letting them drive policy.

  19. RAB says:

    As to concensus in Science, was it not Einstein, who when being interviewed about one of his Relativity theories that most other Scientists thought to be erroneous, was asked…

    How many scientists would it take to convince you that you are wrong Professor?

    And he answered…

    Just the one, if he happens to be right!

  20. Lynne says:

    Bod, I think you might want to read my last comment again. I’m not caving in. Global warming is a real phenomenon otherwise there’d be no interglacials or interstadials. On the other hand, I have yet to see any warmist scientist produce falsifiable empirical evidence that CO2 drives CAGW. All they’ve produced so far are cooked and retrofitted data, defectively programmed computer models, consensus, alarmism and ad hominem, none of which have any place in science.

    Yes, all the billions that have been fraudulently wasted, and are still being wasted, could have been spent on real science. But it wasn’t and it isn’t. Science has been corrupted and hijacked to support a pernicious political agenda and the CAGW gravy train needs to be derailed before the lights start going out. I hope I have made my position clearer.

    BTW – I’m not aware of your nationality so it is possible my use of Brit vernacular might need some qualification. The term “with knobs on” means I agree with what you said 110%.

  21. Bod says:

    Ah, well, yeah – I’m right with you there. Global Warming is real. As is Global Cooling, and presumably, some of the time, we suffer from Global Stasis. One of these latter episodes being the ‘standard’ to which mankind must seek to emulate and maintain, because it’s the correct temperature everywhere.

    My reaction to your post was partially a tongue-in-cheek chiding (chidrette?). The problem is that ‘global warming’ is now freighted with meaning. Of course, one component of the meaning now is ‘a publically exposed hoax which sceptics can grin and deride the true believers with’. Which is why *they* have cut back on its use.

    So in part, I too am a victim of the left’s (and to a degree, statists in general’s) deliberate redefinition of the meaning of words.

    Oh, and I’m an expat Londoner-and-part-time-Mancunian in the US. So ‘with bells on’ makes perfect sense to me.

    :)

  22. Jamie says:

    Bod,

    First of all you assume I am a proponent of AGW. From my original post a reasonable person might assume that I am just pointing out that this is a debate where to have absolute certainty on one side or the other might be a foolish standpoint. After all its not important if your wrong, is it Bod? Just a few million people will starve. Yes AGW is just a theory. Its also a theory based on findings submitted by experts and reviewed by unbiased experts. So it could be right – but it could be wrong because its damn complicated and probably impossible to predict with real accuracy. Experts get it wrong all the time so yes they could be wrong this time.

    In response to your points (27th December), most of which have absolutely no relevance to my original point by the way:

    “List those 12m scientists” – thats not a very realistic request, is it?

    “Science isn’t democracy” – correct, science is science. Normally scientists publish peer reviewed research, which makes it more reliable than blogs. I would prefer to take the side of an eminent virologist on a scientific issue rather than an anonymous blog commenter. Thats not to say I take it unquestioningly – as I said this issue is probably impossible to predict or model accurately, hence I have doubt on the issue.

    “Let the proponents of global warming demonstrate that they are correct by submitting findings which can withstand critical evaluation by unbiased peers” – as above, scientists publish peer reviewed research – why do you believe that virtually all scientists want to conspire to make us believe global warming is happening? Anyway my point is how can you be so sure you’re right even if they can’t PROOVE it. In my experience only nutters are unable to see any room for doubt in their own beliefs.

    “Further hint: Your heroes have screwed the pooch by fucking over their own credibility” – these people are not my heroes as I have tried to make clear. A small number of the thousands involved in this research amended 1 or 2 pages of a 1,000 page report as far as I understand. I can’t be bothered to read the full details as I have not got time and don’t believe a handful of people doing this has any impact one way or the other over the possibility of AGW being real.

    “So cry me a fucking river that every climatologist in the world is being trated like a pedophile in a Scout Troop if they’re lucky” – they’re not. Its just nutcases in blogs that are talking about them like that. Most reasonable people aren’t sure one way or the other I would guess.

    “There are so few ‘unbiased’ climate scientists left that they’ve turned what might be a legitimate science into the league of dowsing and phrenology. They have little reason to come whining to us for that lack of credibility.” – would you care to tell us which ones are biased and why, and which ones aren’t? This would be a genuinely useful guide and help people have a clue about what is going on. But I am guessing you don’t have a clue what you are talking about and are just assuming they’re all biased. By the way, biased does not mean believing that your scientific research is correct.

    “If 99 african shamen told me I had been cursed with the evil eye, and one, in a Johannesburg hospital told me that he thought I had menangitis, and he invited me to get a second opinion, I’d DEFINITELY take the word of the minority.” – so would I. But we’re not talking about shamen are we.

    “What the fuck don’t you people understand?” – you are lumping me in with people who have a different view point to me. Unless by “you people” you mean sane people.

    “Concensus doesn’t mean shit in science”- you are right “conCensus” doesn’t mean shit. ConSensus does though.

    “New Year’s Resolution for me: Stop tolerating fools.” – try to stop acting like a fool first and you may come across fewer fools to tolerate. You might instead resolve to see that there are grey areas in most debates and that the “fools” that have a different point of view to you may not be fools. It is possible for two intelligent people to hold completely rational opposing views on the same matter, especially on a complicated matter. The quicker you realise that the sooner you will come across as less of a fool yourself.

  23. Jamie says:

    Right, I’ve answered Bod (at least his first rant), now I want to answer Lynne (27th December). I am sorry to bore everyone but its quiet at work today.

    “However, even Phil Jones, one of CAGW’s stars has uttered the immortal words – …”for the past 15 years there has been no statistically significant warming.” The warming phase has ground to a halt despite the growing hysterical claims of “warmest year ever”. And this from a bloke who is balls deep in cooking the temperature data.” – his comments hardly seem to be from someone that biased if he’s admitting what you say he is. I don’t really care about him anyway one way or the other as its irrelevant to the point I was making.

    “The so called “proof” that warmists are right are the Global Climate Models which are the technological equivalent of astrology. No medical doctor I know uses a poorly programmed computer model or any kind of computer model to diagnose an illness. I wouldn’t accept such a diagnosis no matter how many “experts” gave it to me because a computer can diagnose bugger all. Just ask the poor bastards who suffered or even died after phoning the NHS help-line and and been diagnosed by a trained chimp with a keyboard. Why should we accept the same bullshit from so called CAGW scientists and propaganda merchants?” – fair point as far as I can tell. But I am not a scientist so could only answer this by studying the subject for a number of years. Presumably you have. I am sure the models used by climate scientists are very similar to the NHS helpline. There are probably lots of other computer programs you could try and compare the climate models to, none of which would be that relevant either.

    “As for the so called climate consensus idiots let’s see what they have to say about weather/climate shall we?

    “It’s raining – blame global warming. etc” – I am sure there are many idiots out there that do say this. But it happens on both sides of the argument. When its cold some people say to AGW proponents (not to me as I am not an AGW proponent) “what about your AGW then?” – yes people can make stupid arguments on both sides of the argument but to tarnish everyone based on some stupid people’s point of view is not a coherent argument.

    “Someone over at Komment macht frei asked of the Moonbat last week, “So tell me George, if there was no global warming what would weather look like?”

    Care to answer that question?” – what a stupid question. Of course he couldn’t answer it. The question has no relevance to a reasoned debate and is of the level of the “its hot today so there must be AGW” people.

  24. Bod says:

    I don’t intend to answer for Lynne here, since she’s eminently capable of doing so herself, but let’s take this one item at a time.

    Forgive me for not grokking the sublety of your original views on the matter, I guess it was the utterly feculent and equally asinine claim that if we don’t do something about climate change, billions of innocents will die.

    You’re the one claiming 12m scientists (in the US alone, on re-reading your comment) ‘agree’ that AGW is ‘real’. So where’s your evidence?

    ‘Normally’ scientists publish peer-reviewed papers. True. But if you followed this topic with any kind of diligence you’d observe two things: Firstly, the numerous claims (substantiated) that scientific journals were slective in the articles they published (again, normally unexceptional) but that the gatekeepers in the reviews were highly disposed to select pro-warmist papers from eminent ‘scientists’ in the field, or consulted the very same ‘scientists’ for peer review. So, peer review itself has been subverted. In most cases by the very people who themselves provided the primary collated data (CRU) or its second-generation source (HAD).

    Yeah, I’m an anonymous blog commentator. I never quite understood why I have to establish my credentials for a critique of science-obviously-gone-bad. Come to think of it, just how much of a disclosure is calling yourself ‘Jamie’, Jamie? I’ll repeat again, since you obviously got upset at being asked for extraordinary evidence of your extraordinary claims.

    A 1000-page scientific report where 1 or 2 pages are changed isn’t the point, which illustrates my point. I don’t give a shit about the IPCC papers – because they’re irrelevant. What I’m talking about is the systematic compromise of scientific research which would have underpinned even serious research, let alone a report that was quite so baldly partisan. Doesn’t the fact that warmists have to fabricate data, eliminate inconvenient data points, and then try and cover up the fact that their primary data accidentally ‘had an accident’ make you even a bit sceptical? You can doubt the motives of people that oppose your view, but you can’t see why we are?

    I really can’t help it if I – as an anonymous blogger – went thru’ a significant part of the HAD-CRU documentation, including a fair-sized chunk of the source code in that was released, but you don’t have the time to do even the basic research needed to evolve your point beyond a ‘do it for the children’ plea. You can believe what you like. So can I.

    You know what I do believe? I believe that your desire to spend everyone’s money on a chimera (that the policies you wish to adopt could easily have the opposite results to the ones you desire) is is wrong.

    Let’s assume (hard though you might find this to do) – that you’re wrong and that by human agency, or as a result of other causes, we’re heading back into an ice age, and you want to accelerate that. How many millions would that kill? I mean, there’s only a 2% chance of that happening too (though where you pulled that statistic from I have no idea).

    Don’t you get it?

    Appeals ‘for the children’ are the last refuge of imbeciles and politicians (though I repeat myself).

    Real research.

    Proper peer review.

    Get the politicians and the NGOs out of the science.

    Prove this shit is real by letting people who understand statistics and computer modelling who don’t have a vested interest in lying involved.

    Get it out in the open.

    Oh, and please, ask your buddies to stop the whining about the polar bears too. It’s all bullshit, and even Al Gore knows it.

    That’s how you convince people like me to get on board and support policies that will impoverish me, mine, and my nation.

    Take the science seriously.

    Agit for the total rustication of every ‘scientist’ who can be shown to have helped promulgate this ‘concensus’ and demand funding for ethical researchers who follow where the data leads.

    If you really care about Gaia, it’s the least you can do. Over 6 billion humans deserve it.

  25. Bod says:

    So, to hit the paragraph that I was concerned might get cut off, let me ask a question in return.

    Jamie, you claim to not be an AGW proponent. Yet you advocate ‘doing something about it’ on the possibility that it exists.

    Why?

  26. Lynne says:

    Jamie, why is the question stupid? Since Monbiot believes that all the weather we are experiencing is driven by CAGW how will he ever recognise weather that isn’t? Is there something subtley different about CAGW weather that cannot be descerned by the filthy, right-wing, oil shilling, climate denialists? Perhaps there’s a secret watermark etched into snowflakes? Or perhaps the rain falls in a funny CAGW way?

    Or could it be that he’s full of unfalsifiable shit like all the other rabid warmists?

  27. Bod says:

    Y’know, at the risk of killing the thread stone dead, and boring the regulars, I’ll apologize to Jamie.

    Jamie claims to not being the warmist camp an’all, so I’ll cut out the snark, and post a (big) followup that lays out my views on the subject, while eliminating most of the economics side of the argument.

    My only comment *aimed* at Jamie is this.

    If you aren’t prepared to dig a bit, it’s very easy to see how you might have come to the conclusions you have. So I’d encourage you to dig. If only a bit. The reason this seems so ‘obvious’ and we seem so ugly and opinionated is that we have. In some cases, some of us have dug a lot.

  28. Bod says:

    Incoming!

    ————————————————————————————————

    The Case for Skepticism

    The problem with Anthropogenic Global Warming really isn’t Global Warming. Or rather, it’s much more than Global Warming. It’s a misunderstanding, promulgated by society in general, that scientific research is in some way validated by ideas of consensus, reasonableness and freedom. This isn’t a new phenomenon. In various situations, powerful groups have demanded that scientific discoveries conform to their views, time and time again. Galileo vs the Catholic church. Hell, most scientists vs religious hierarchy, from prehistoric times thru’ the Enlightenment are usually tales of a modest discovery, followed by a review of how that discovery might impact the interests of some powerful group or the other. Which leads, James Burke-like, back to Global Warming; or more properly, Anthropogenic Global Warming (or in nu-speak, ‘Man-Made Climate Change’).

    The proponents of this view – simplistically set forth – hold that is that it’s impossible to refute that the biological and industrial impact of mankind is having no effect on the environment.

    One of those impacts is the increased levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere due to burning of fossil fuels, but also the exhalations of those six billion-plus humans, and the indirect increase in respiration of all the animals grown to feed a portion of those six billion, elimination of forests to support the homes to protect humanity from the ravages of the weather, etc.

    In some cases, the proponents are taking what superficially seems like a reasonable observation of the trajectory of human population growth and imagining just how bad things could be (note the conditional) should the world’s population grow to twelve billion.

    Some proponents however see the imminent crisis as an opportunity to shape society in ways they prefer, whether it’s to the benefit of their nation, their ‘class’ or their sociopolitical preference. In this situation, the latter’s agenda will be furthered by the former, whose views are not necessarily formed based on rigorous scientific findings, but on the prospect of a dystopian future, where a population much smaller than six billion scrabbles to eke out an existence.

    The presumption being (among others) that climate change would impact ocean levels to such an extent that significant portions of coastal plains would be inundated, causing widespread starvation.

    And then there are skeptics.

    These are currently unifying from a number of distinct camps, but for the most part the conclusion is the same – although there are some outright deniers – again, for various reasons.

    They really fall into three camps, which I would provisionally call ‘True Deniers’, who outright deny there’s any problem or any reason to even research the issue (of which, from personal observation are in the vast minority). The ‘Popperists’ who are frequently agnostic on the issue, since their demand is to see evidence of Global Warming via credible research that is reproduceable and non-falsifiable, and then there’s the ‘Luddites’ who have plenty of objections which typically reveal the both the complexity of climate science and many of the counterarguments.

    I believe that it’s important to differentiate between these groups of ‘deniers’ in order to understand the debate.

  29. Bod says:

    The ‘True Deniers’ often have little rational foundation on which to base their denial. It’s a simplistic approach, and is often driven by the “So, what temperature would it be today if we weren’t the victims of Global Warming?”. It’s a very valid question, but – it’s not very useful. What it does reveal though, is the six-lane highway that the “Popperists” can drive thru’ the AWG movement.

    The problem with the “Popperist” approach, is that the strength of their argument is undermined and diluted by government policy and the deliberate suppression of their case by the media.

    In order to evaluate the strength of their argument, you have to dig for the information and do more work than the average person might want to do. Better, if you are of a statistical bent, or have some knowledge of the underlying topic itself. In my opinion, as both the former, and (though a bit dated) the latter, the objections raised are strong enough to stop policy that is intended to address AGW dead in its tracks, if not eliminate it ever being enacted.

    Indeed, without understanding the nature and complexity of the problem, and being unable to develop models with any predictive capacity, taking NO action is the only responsible thing to do.

    Even if you are not conversant with (quite basic) statistics, a modest perusal of the CRU data (and the knowledge that the data was being used to calibrate almost all other research efforts globally) makes for disturbing reading.

    Sites such as wattsupwiththat.com have done excellent work in picking the HADCRU episode together, but the simple observation is that none of the CRU data can be audited (they ‘lost’ it) and none of the data they published is reproduceable.

    Indeed, much of the data has been discredited because of their selective bias in what experimental results were considered ‘invalid’.

    A further problem the ‘Popperists’ have is the compromised nature of the peer review process, which demonstrated significant bias toward AGW. Peer review is revered primarily by people who don’t know what it consists of. Such peer review bias is a constant, well-recognized concern across all of academia for just about as long as peer review has been used in publications, but many (myself included) were surprised at just how pernicious it is within the scientific community.

    So what the ‘Popperists’ are concerned about is that the scientific method, which is being used to drive policy, was thoroughly subverted, and has been rendered worthless.

    Indeed, possibly more than worthless, because one can presume that many of the researchers in, and entering the field would have been confident that the base data, and the papers on which they were relying to undertake their research, were both valid, well thought out and – well – TRUE. Hence their research, which MAY have been rigorous, is undermined because they based their work on garbage data.

  30. Bod says:

    And then we get to the ‘Fundamentalists’.

    I’d like to be a pure ‘Popperist’, but in fact, my primary concerns over AGW, and particularly AGW caused by CO2 levels, is down to my background. But this isn’t an ‘Appeal to AutoAuthority’, because without churning thru’ the exact numbers, there are many considerations that the AGW proponents don’t address. I won’t cover a lot of the economic arguments *FOR* a modest rise in temperatures, because that’s a Bridge too Far, but consider this:

    The Carbon Dioxide in the atmosphere came from – where?

    There’s plenty of evidence that the atmosphere of the Devonian and Carboniferous Periods had a much higher concentration of CO2 than we have now. The flora and fauna were roughly modern-day compatible.

    There were terrestrial amphibians of considerable size, (and large insects) both of which would have required a reasonable oxygen level in the atmosphere. The total surface land mass was probably smaller than now, but that’s at least partially due to development of land masses from seafloor spreading.

    There’s good evidence that the tropical belt was broader, and the boreal belts smaller, but temperate and polar climates were present. What you did have, was huge cycads and lepidodendrons assimilating the available CO2 to grow wood, which is what ended up making our coal (and probably oil). You could call this the ‘so what? It used to be much worse than this’ refutation.

    Volcanic activity and outgassing of the Earth releases much greater quantities of ALL greenhouse gases than mankind does.

    This is a refutation of AGW based on scale of the problem. You aim at the low-hanging fruit first. If preventing one outgassing event from a volcano can stop 100 years’ worth of mankind’s pollution, isn’t that a better goal to aim for first? Mount St. Helens was a peewee of an eruption, yet its CO2 output was equal to a few decades of US CO2 production at 1980 figures.

    Outgassing goes on all the time, all around the world – and it includes methane, and water vapor – two other compounds which have a measurable effect as greenhouse gases. To further complicate the matter, the immediate effect of volcanic eruptions tends to be that weather is colder, due to the particulates in the atmosphere. So, volcanoes. Good or bad for Global Warming?

    Plankton and algae

    These create and consume vast amounts of CO2, which acidifies the ocean, which results in lower calcification in plankton, which reduces the creatures’ survivability, which leads to less plankton.

    Nobody’s really got a grip on this cycle (or hadn’t when I was watchinc closely ion the 90’s), but it’s a very complex equilibrium, but it’s one that has clearly functioned since prior to the Devonian – many phytoplankton haven’t evolved at all since before then, and they’re still here.

    But they have a huge impact on CO2 levels. Maybe they function as a buffer to atmospheric CO2. Nobody knows for sure.

  31. Bod says:

    I could go on (but won’t – nearly done).

    Atmospheric and Climate science are hugely complex – no doubt about it – and I’d propose that we’re nowhere near understanding them. The challenge of course, is whether mankind is driving the world off the cliff at all, but we really don’t know.

    Most importantly, even if we were, we have no idea whether our actions will result in accelerating the car, decelerating it, or turn the wheel to take us over a nearer section of cliff.

    We aren’t going to be able to determine what we should do until we understand the problem. And this is where the ‘Popperists’ have it right – do the science properly, or ‘clean up’ the science that’s been done so far (which I personally think is a bad idea, I think it’s far too badly compromised to be of any value).

    It’s one thing having pissed away the money we have so far on worthless research, we’ve also wasted 2 decades. That’s time during which (if we believe the Sky Is Indeed Falling), we could have been addressing the problem. Honest AGW-believers should be as incensed about this as I (we) are.

    Conclusion

    Even from a scientific purist’s (i.e. non-economic) viewpoint, there’s no justification for a ‘just do something, dammit’ policy.

    CO2 mitigation is not, and will not be cheap. Money is not free. And as previously stated, I’m not sure that ‘doing something’ couldn’t make the situation worse.

    The problem with ‘simply’ spending money is that it’s a LOT of money. And it will keep on becoming MORE money. Money that won’t be there when we finally figure out that we do have to spend some money and do what actually needs to be done.

    Money spent now on a spurious ‘fix’ is money that isn’t available for developing technologies that mitigate rises in oceanic levels, or plants that can thrive in what is now marginal soil.

    It’s money that isn’t available for desalination plants (and the power sources that they need to run them) that will address a very real acknowledged problem – that of providing clean, potable water to the hundreds of millions that could benefit from it now, rather than mitigating a problem that might manifest in decades (or not).

    Finally, the problem with the AGW movement is not AGW. It’s been the damage that the AGW movement has done to science in the service of the public in general.

    Never again will people of good faith, who know of the utter scam perpetrated by people like Phil Jones of the CRU and Jim Hansen at NASA, trust science as an impartial purveyor of objective knowledge.

    In the past, people realized that sometimes, science got it wrong.

    Now, anyone who is prepared to be informed, realizes that now, some scientists deliberately lied to us. And that’s a huge problem.

    ————————————————

    *sigh*
    I’m done.

  32. DeNihilist says:

    Bod, nice essay. Anthony @ WUWT is taking a break right now. Maybe you could submit this essay there?

  33. Lynne says:

    Very nicely put, Bod.

  34. wonderful points altogether, you just won a new reader. What might you recommend about your put up that you simply made some days in the past? Any positive?

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