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Author Topic: Skeptic's Guide to Debunking Global Warming Alarmism
Spam & Cookies-mmm
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Hot & Cold Media Spin Cycle: A Challenge to Journalists who Cover Global Warming

Press Release here

quote:
The book, which features web links to all supporting documentation, also serves as a handbook to identify the major players in media bias when it comes to poor climate science reporting. The guide presents a reporter’s virtual who’s-who’s of embarrassing and one-sided media coverage, with a focus on such reporters as CBS News “60 Minutes” Scott Pelley, ABC News reporter Bill Blakemore, CNN’s Miles O’Brien, and former NBC Newsman Tom Brokaw.




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Menolly
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Wow, Spam, thanks. I look forward to reading all of this--only had time to read the table of contents & first 5 pages right now. The table of contents hooked me, I gotta admit!

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YudanTaiteki
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Surprise, surprise, written by a Republican. This should stand right alongside a "Skeptic's Guide to Debunking Evolution" and a "Skeptic's Guide to Debunking Heliocentrism".
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Mr. Fed
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quote:
Originally posted by YudanTaiteki:
Surprise, surprise, written by a Republican. This should stand right alongside a "Skeptic's Guide to Debunking Evolution" and a "Skeptic's Guide to Debunking Heliocentrism".

See, Alanis, thisis irony.

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With occasional, half-hearted, semi-literate blogging comes great responsibility.

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Buckleupp
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My absolute favorite quote from this report:

"Now that was just a brief sampling of some of the errors in 'An Inconvenient Truth.' Imagine how long the list would have been if I had actually seen the movie."

Sigh.

[Roll Eyes]

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Joe Bentley
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You know global warming is a lot more complicated then most people realize at first glance. It's not simple question, but a multi-part one.

First: Is the average temperature of the planet on the rise? This is not an easy question to answer because accurate, long range, global information about temperature trends has only been available fairly recently. When we're talking about something like climate change, only 3 or 4 decades worth of trends is not exactly a good sample.

Second: Is human behavior causing any temperature change? Again just because temperatures are rising doesn't necessarily mean we did it. Again, only a few decades worth of solid data really isn't going to tell us much.

Historically speaking we're still coming out of the last ice age. Earth is remarkably cold right now if you extend the timeline beyond mere human history. Geologically speaking extremes in temperature are the norm, not a freak occurrence.

And this isn't only ancient events. During Medieval Times a period from the 10th to 14th century was marked by a trend in global temperature rise similar to today. Don't think you can blame that on greenhouse gases.

We're a chunk of rock orbiting in a vacuum around a giant ball of fire. That's not an exact thermostat. I think expecting constant temperature is asking a bit much of the universe. Like Dennis Miller said I'm shocked that I don't wake up one morning and it's 10 thousand degrees.

I just think that automatically blaming global warming on humanity on a planet that was routinely going back and forth between ice ages and world wide tropical weather for eons before we ever good old Homo Sapiens ever decided to come out of the trees and walk upright is jumping the gun a bit.

Also I need to point out that back in the 60s and 70s the big scare by environmentalists was global cooling, with many people convinced we were heading back into another ice age.

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"Existence has no pattern save what we imagine after staring at it for too long." - Rorschach, The Watchmen

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Steve
Happy Holly Days


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quote:
Originally posted by Joe Bentley:
You know global warming is a lot more complicated then most people realize at first glance. It's not simple question, but a multi-part one.

I have to wonder who these people are. I've never heard a discussion of global warming in which this wasn't taken into account. Seriously, has anyone argued that's a simple question?
quote:


First: Is the average temperature of the planet on the rise? This is not an easy question to answer because accurate, long range, global information about temperature trends has only been available fairly recently. When we're talking about something like climate change, only 3 or 4 decades worth of trends is not exactly a good sample.

Second: Is human behavior causing any temperature change? Again just because temperatures are rising doesn't necessarily mean we did it. Again, only a few decades worth of solid data really isn't going to tell us much.

Historically speaking we're still coming out of the last ice age. Earth is remarkably cold right now if you extend the timeline beyond mere human history. Geologically speaking extremes in temperature are the norm, not a freak occurrence.

And this isn't only ancient events. During Medieval Times a period from the 10th to 14th century was marked by a trend in global temperature rise similar to today. Don't think you can blame that on greenhouse gases.

We're a chunk of rock orbiting in a vacuum around a giant ball of fire. That's not an exact thermostat. I think expecting constant temperature is asking a bit much of the universe. Like Dennis Miller said I'm shocked that I don't wake up one morning and it's 10 thousand degrees.

I just think that automatically blaming global warming on humanity on a planet that was routinely going back and forth between ice ages and world wide tropical weather for eons before we ever good old Homo Sapiens ever decided to come out of the trees and walk upright is jumping the gun a bit.

If anyone is treating this as a simple issue, in all honesty, it's you. Do you really think that people who argue for, say, the Kyoto Protocol don't take these things into account? Any decent article on the subject or any Al Gore movie, discusses all the points you've raised.
quote:

[QB
Also I need to point out that back in the 60s and 70s the big scare by environmentalists was global cooling, with many people convinced we were heading back into another ice age. [/QB]

In discussions of evolution, do you need to mention Piltdown man? I'm not sure why past errors have any bearing on current science. Can you explain this need?
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Joe Bentley
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No but at the end of the argument they still are ready to jump to the conclusion that it just has to be mankind doing it, when given the huge gaps that you seem to agree with have in our knowledge concerning long time climatology we can only make a barely educated guess.

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"Existence has no pattern save what we imagine after staring at it for too long." - Rorschach, The Watchmen

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Steve
Happy Holly Days


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quote:
Originally posted by Joe Bentley:
No but at the end of the argument they still are ready to jump to the conclusion that it just has to be mankind doing it, when given the huge gaps that you seem to agree with have in our knowledge concerning long time climatology we can only make a barely educated guess.

I argued that climatology is complicated, and that anyone serious about global warming knows that. To go from that to saying that I seem to admit to huge gaps in our knowledge is a remarkable stretch. But, I'll grant you, there are gaps in our knowledge. I can't imagine that anyway thinks our knowledge of the climate to be perfect. So any predictions about the future of the climate are imperfect, certainly, but to call them "barely educated guess[es]" seems to be a great exageration.
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Ganzfeld
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quote:
Originally posted by Joe Bentley:
No but at the end of the argument they still are ready to jump to the conclusion that it just has to be mankind doing it, when given the huge gaps that you seem to agree with have in our knowledge concerning long time climatology we can only make a barely educated guess.

Who is "they"? Please quote one reputable scientist who has jumped to the conclusion that "mankind is doing it".

Almost every report I've heard or read about the human influence on climate as been reasoned and thoughtful, considering a huge range of possibilities, with a bleak picture of the future, but one based on the best science. I can sum up the opposition's schoolyard argument in four words: "But you don't know that." One side provides mountains of evidence and the other side usually nibbles at the very edges of the evidence, never really taking any big bites out of it. Then they act as if it is wrong to present any evidence at all about this problem.

Let's be honest, anyway. Many of the Americans who oppose the hypothesis do so because they think the Earth is only a few thousand years old or they think that some messiah is going to rescue them before anything bad happens to the Earth.

If one scientist could give good evidence that the current warming is not induced by humans he would at least get published, and would certainly be lauded by the naysayers. Where are all those papers? Are all the climate scientists in the world in on the conspiracy to get money for climate science (a real fortune, I'm sure [Roll Eyes] )? Bull.

Ten years ago, I was on the fence too. Some scientists were saying "We have to wait a few more years to see if the models are correct." During the ten years since, the climate change observed has followed the predictions of the average models very closely. Over time, this is looking more and more like the evolution debate: Some people will never accept the idea that human activity can influence global climate and no evidence wil ever convince them. A hundred years from now, when our descendants are living with the worst consequences, they'll be saying it was divine punishment for allowing gay people to marry or some such ****.

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Rhiandmoi
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Ganzfield, was that a board censor?

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I think that hyperbole is the single greatest factor contributing to the decline of society. - My friend Pat.

What is .02 worth?

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Ganzfeld
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quote:
Originally posted by Rhiandmoi:
Ganzfield, was that a board censor?

Nah, I try not to swear in public. It's just this topic is a pain in my asterisks.
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LeaflessMapleTree
The twelve shopping days 'til Christmas


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quote:
One side provides mountains of evidence and the other side usually nibbles at the very edges of the evidence, never really taking any big bites out of it. Then they act as if it is wrong to present any evidence at all about this problem.
First of all, on a completely unrelated note, I smiled when I noticed you are from Kyoto.

But back to the topic at hand. I think Joe is doing much more than just nibbling at the edges of the evidence. I think he is saying that all the evidence presented is accurate. It's just the explanations for the evidence that may be suspect. They may not be, of course. But we don't know yet.

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Ganzfeld
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quote:
Originally posted by LeaflessMapleTree:
But back to the topic at hand. I think Joe is doing much more than just nibbling at the edges of the evidence. I think he is saying that all the evidence presented is accurate. It's just the explanations for the evidence that may be suspect. They may not be, of course. But we don't know yet.

Well, it's a good thing we have Joe to tell us when the experts are wrong. Whatever would we do without people who are willing to stand up and make the argument from ignorance, with pride?
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YudanTaiteki
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My comparisons with the Evolution debate were not haphazard because it's the same type of thing happening. Honestly, Joe Bentley's response reads like hundreds of similar posts I've seen against Evolution on Christian message boards.

I think at a basic level, people are offended by the conclusions on global warming because they ask us to change our lifestyle.

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Doug4.7
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quote:
Originally posted by Ganzfeld:
Who is "they"? Please quote one reputable scientist who has jumped to the conclusion that "mankind is doing it".

So you are saying mankind is NOT doing it?

quote:
Almost every report I've heard or read about the human influence on climate as been reasoned and thoughtful, considering a huge range of possibilities, with a bleak picture of the future, but one based on the best science.
Funny, I can produce a boatload of science that shows it is NOT a "bleak" picture. And before you do, show me some CITES of your proof.
quote:
I can sum up the opposition's schoolyard argument in four words: "But you don't know that." One side provides mountains of evidence and the other side usually nibbles at the very edges of the evidence, never really taking any big bites out of it. Then they act as if it is wrong to present any evidence at all about this problem.
No, no no.

quote:
Let's be honest, anyway. Many of the Americans who oppose the hypothesis do so because they think the Earth is only a few thousand years old or they think that some messiah is going to rescue them before anything bad happens to the Earth.
No, no, no. I work with a bunch of people who are looking at the climate, and they do NOT fit your description.

quote:
If one scientist could give good evidence that the current warming is not induced by humans he would at least get published, and would certainly be lauded by the naysayers. Where are all those papers?
Where are all the papers that SHOW man is causing the warming (if it is real).
quote:
Are all the climate scientists in the world in on the conspiracy to get money for climate science (a real fortune, I'm sure [Roll Eyes] )? Bull.

I don't even know where to start on that little statement.

quote:
Ten years ago, I was on the fence too. Some scientists were saying "We have to wait a few more years to see if the models are correct." During the ten years since, the climate change observed has followed the predictions of the average models very closely.

Actually, they have not. I will get back to that on Monday, when I can talk DIRRECTLY to those who run some of those models.
quote:
Over time, this is looking more and more like the evolution debate: Some people will never accept the idea that human activity can influence global climate and no evidence wil ever convince them. A hundred years from now, when our descendants are living with the worst consequences, they'll be saying it was divine punishment for allowing gay people to marry or some such ****.
OMG. Again, I am not sure where to start.

"The climate is changing." That is a true statement.

"Man is changing the climate." That is also a true statement.

"The Earth is rapidly warming." That is NOT a true statement.

"Man is causing global warming." That is NOT a true statement.

Sad thing is I am not going to cite all of the avaiable literature on this subject. There is a whole lot. A good chunk shows that the Earth is warming. Other studies don't show that. Now man is causing changes. The "real" area is polution, but that is not as exciting as "global warming", so it doesn't get much press.

This is NOT a simple topic with a simple solution.

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And now for something completely different...

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BeachLife
The Bills of St. Mary's


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quote:
Originally posted by YudanTaiteki:
Surprise, surprise, written by a Republican. This should stand right alongside a "Skeptic's Guide to Debunking Evolution" and a "Skeptic's Guide to Debunking Heliocentrism".

Well if we are going to throw out the opinion of everyone who is skeptical about global warming and a republican, we also need to throw out the opinion of everyone who believes in global warming and is a democrat.

Which means that only independant or moderate views can be listened to. That works out well for me, since I a skeptic and a moderate.

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BeachLife
The Bills of St. Mary's


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quote:
Originally posted by YudanTaiteki:
Surprise, surprise, written by a Republican. This should stand right alongside a "Skeptic's Guide to Debunking Evolution" and a "Skeptic's Guide to Debunking Heliocentrism".

Well if we are going to throw out the opinion of everyone who is skeptical about global warming and a republican, we also need to throw out the opinion of everyone who believes in global warming and is a democrat.

Which means that only independant or moderate views can be listened to. That works out well for me, since I a skeptic and a moderate.

--------------------
Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.
Jack Dragon, On Being a Dragon
Confessions of a Dragon's scribe
Diary of my Heart Surgery

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Singing in the Drizzle
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When it comes to science and research. The scientist tend to follow the money other wise they would be with out a job. They also have a bias toward that money as well. This does not mean what they are working on is not true, only that we need to be a little sceptical when looking at it.

The climate is changes and has been since the earth was created and will keep changing until its gone. The question is what effect are the humans having on it and wether it is bad or good.

A couple of thing warming the earth that I came across while looking into some astromy research of my own. The earth its slightly eratic orbit a few years ago just passed the it closes avage yearly orbit around the sun. This mean the earth recieves more heat from the sun during the year. The other thing is the sun as it dies grow larger and hotter, providing the earth with more heat (thou by very small amoount) every year.

In no way does this suggest that man is not having some effect on the climate. We need to know how much and what we can do to improve it for us.

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Rob D / Blackwolf, the yule dodo
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The Snopester Theorie of Global Warming:

Everytime someone writes a glurge or believes an Urban Legend a many fox farts. And those accumulated gasses cause the greenhouse effect.

SAVE EARTH, STOP GLURGING AND CHECK ULs!!eins

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~Reality, the refuge of those who fail in RPGs~
aka Darkfist Dragon
-==(UDIC)==-

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Archie2K
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The next step after "Is man causing global warming?" is "So what can we do about it?" I saw a speech by greenie George Monbiot who argued in favour of a 90% reduction in CO2 emissions from the UK over the next 30 years, and how that can be achieved. With great difficulty I might add. He noticed that, climate change skeptics are increasingly moving from denying that we are causing global warming, to saying that it is happening but is unavoidable. In this claim, big polluters find unlikely allies into environmentalists who think the climate is all going to hell in a handbasket.

Planting trees seems like a good way to reduce carbon emissions. After all, they take in CO2 from the atmosphere and emit oxygen. Trouble is, they now may emit methane which is a far more damaging greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide. Bugger.

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Vox populi vox canem

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Ganzfeld
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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quote:
Originally posted by Doug4.7:
quote:
Originally posted by Ganzfeld:
Who is "they"? Please quote one reputable scientist who has jumped to the conclusion that "mankind is doing it".

So you are saying mankind is NOT doing it?
No, I'm saying that scientists aren't jumping to any conclusions. (I think you would probably agree?).
quote:
quote:
Almost every report I've heard or read about the human influence on climate as been reasoned and thoughtful, considering a huge range of possibilities, with a bleak picture of the future, but one based on the best science.
Funny, I can produce a boatload of science that shows it is NOT a "bleak" picture. And before you do, show me some CITES of your proof.
Proof? We're doing math now? Anyway, I guess it depends on your definition of bleak.
quote:
quote:
I can sum up the opposition's schoolyard argument in four words: "But you don't know that." One side provides mountains of evidence and the other side usually nibbles at the very edges of the evidence, never really taking any big bites out of it. Then they act as if it is wrong to present any evidence at all about this problem.
No, no no.

quote:
Let's be honest, anyway. Many of the Americans who oppose the hypothesis do so because they think the Earth is only a few thousand years old or they think that some messiah is going to rescue them before anything bad happens to the Earth.
No, no, no. I work with a bunch of people who are looking at the climate, and they do NOT fit your description.

I am NOT talking about scientists. There are very few scientists who have actually published papers against the hypothesis of anthropogenic global warming in reputable journals. (Maybe you're misinterpreting my rather unclear post.)
quote:
quote:
If one scientist could give good evidence that the current warming is not induced by humans he would at least get published, and would certainly be lauded by the naysayers. Where are all those papers?
Where are all the papers that SHOW man is causing the warming (if it is real).
quote:
Are all the climate scientists in the world in on the conspiracy to get money for climate science (a real fortune, I'm sure [Roll Eyes] )? Bull.

I don't even know where to start on that little statement.

Well, again, it's not I who made the accusation, it is people like Crichton who have implied that climate scientists are involved in a conspiracy to make the problem look bad so they can get more funds.
quote:

quote:
Ten years ago, I was on the fence too. Some scientists were saying "We have to wait a few more years to see if the models are correct." During the ten years since, the climate change observed has followed the predictions of the average models very closely.

Actually, they have not. I will get back to that on Monday, when I can talk DIRRECTLY to those who run some of those models.
quote:
Over time, this is looking more and more like the evolution debate: Some people will never accept the idea that human activity can influence global climate and no evidence wil ever convince them. A hundred years from now, when our descendants are living with the worst consequences, they'll be saying it was divine punishment for allowing gay people to marry or some such ****.
OMG. Again, I am not sure where to start.

"The climate is changing." That is a true statement.

"Man is changing the climate." That is also a true statement.

"The Earth is rapidly warming." That is NOT a true statement.

"Man is causing global warming." That is NOT a true statement.

I guess you mean that these two statements are not known conclusively to be true, which is something very very different.
quote:
Sad thing is I am not going to cite all of the avaiable literature on this subject. There is a whole lot. A good chunk shows that the Earth is warming. Other studies don't show that. Now man is causing changes. The "real" area is polution, but that is not as exciting as "global warming", so it doesn't get much press.

This is NOT a simple topic with a simple solution.

I agree that it's not a simple topic with a simple solution.

But please show me three papers published in the last five years that support the conclusion that the Earth is not warming. I do look forward to hearing your climate friends' answers. And I'll show more literature to prove my points ASAP.

In the meantime, I hope your friends who are publishing climate scientists will please tell me: If the anthropogenic global warming hypothesis is so wrong then why have the NAS and NOAA, among other respected groups of scientists all reported that it is a real problem? (Many of these were published before this administration began to cover up the evidence.) Many papers also support the conclusion.
http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/abstract/292/5515/270
This NOAA scientist states in his abstract: "Removal of all forcing except greenhouse gases from the ~1000 year time series results in a residual with a very large late 20th century warming that closely agrees with the response predicted from greenhouse gas forcing."
http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/paleo/pubs/crowley.html
That was 2000. What papers have contradicted Crowley since then?

Again, I agree that it's a complex problem and that there are no definitive answers. However, if you think that it the hypothesis of anthropogenic global warming has been refuted then I think you simply haven't been reading the literature. Likewise, if you think the hypothesis has not been widely supported and gained support over the past ten years, then, again, I think you simply need to sit down at the library with a stack of science journals and read what has been published -- unless, of course, you are one of those people outside the field, such as Crichton, who believes that this lopsided publication record is simply a way to get more funds. Here are analyses of the papers that have been published on the topic:
http://norvig.com/oreskes.html
Norvig and others concluded after studying the published literature that the number of papers that have been published that repfute the hypothesis are somewhere in the 0 - 3 % range, with about 40 to 70% explicitly endorsing the concensus of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change:
quote:
Human activities ... are modifying the concentration of atmospheric constituents ... that absorb or scatter radiant energy. Most of the observed warming over the last 50 years is likely to have been due to the increase in greenhouse gas concentrations.
It's one thing to claim the media hypes the issue but another thing entirely to claim that scientists are hyping it (or, as Joe said, "jumping to conclusions"). Sure, the scientific literature tends to be a little more muted than the newspapers but their conclusions look pretty bleak to me.
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Ganzfeld
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This part of my post is not correct: "with about 40 to 70% explicitly endorsing the concensus of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change". It should say "explicitly or implicitly".
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PeterK
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I don't think you can dismiss so easily the claim that climatologists fudge their conclusions a little for venal reasons. Science is noble, but scientists are human too. (I'm one.) When governments and universities are slashing their "unproductive" costs, are they likely to continue to fund a climatology bureacracy that's telling them, "The average temperature seems to be getting warmer, but it's been going up and down just like that for eons and we have no evidence that man is causing it, so anything you do or don't do won't make any difference"? or one that's telling them, "it's definitely a man-made problem, so you can take steps to correct it today"? Alas, not many funders are interested in funding "pure" science which has no obvious direct benefit.
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Ganzfeld
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quote:
Originally posted by PeterK:
I don't think you can dismiss so easily the claim that climatologists fudge their conclusions a little for venal reasons. Science is noble, but scientists are human too. (I'm one.) When governments and universities are slashing their "unproductive" costs, are they likely to continue to fund a climatology bureacracy that's telling them, "The average temperature seems to be getting warmer, but it's been going up and down just like that for eons and we have no evidence that man is causing it, so anything you do or don't do won't make any difference"? or one that's telling them, "it's definitely a man-made problem, so you can take steps to correct it today"? Alas, not many funders are interested in funding "pure" science which has no obvious direct benefit.

I don't see any evidence at all for that accusation. Even if there were more money available for the latter than the former (which is an extremely dubious claim considering the vast sums of money many interested parties have in the status quo), universities and independent laboratories with tenured professors who have nothing to lose and no lack of funding would gain far more from publishing strong rebuttals to the majority view backed by evidence. Yet Surely their anonymous reviewers have no monetary reason at all to refuse to publish that work. So again, I ask, where are all the papers that have refuted what these respected public scientific groups have called the "consensus"? What possible motive could these groups have? It seems so unlikely as to be not even worth considering but if there is any evidence that such a conspiracy exists (even if it is only for "venal reasons") then I would be willing to consider it. The burden of proof is clearly on those who say that all these scientific groups are deluded or mistaken or participating in some unspoken movement to receive funding.

To refute this argument one question at a time:
1) Is there evidence that pro-anthropogenic research is better funded? No. If anything, in my opinion only perhaps, the energy consortiums and political movements are far more willing to give to those who would refute the anthropogenic hypothesis.
2) Is there evidence that any published scientists have intentionally altered their research to make the problem look worse than it is? No. But, in the opinion of several respected scientific groups, there has been an effort an the part of politicians and other interested parties to mute the evidence for anthropogenic change. (I gave the link above, for example to the Union of Concerned Scientists who, unlike you, provide ample evidence.)
3) Is there any evidence that scientists would cooperate with each other to allow only one view to be published in this field of research? None at all. So, human scientists or not, I don't think your insinuations have any merit at all.

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PeterK
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quote:
Originally posted by Ganzfeld:
quote:
Originally posted by PeterK:
I don't think you can dismiss so easily the claim that climatologists fudge their conclusions a little for venal reasons. Science is noble, but scientists are human too. (I'm one.) When governments and universities are slashing their "unproductive" costs, are they likely to continue to fund a climatology bureacracy that's telling them, "The average temperature seems to be getting warmer, but it's been going up and down just like that for eons and we have no evidence that man is causing it, so anything you do or don't do won't make any difference"? or one that's telling them, "it's definitely a man-made problem, so you can take steps to correct it today"? Alas, not many funders are interested in funding "pure" science which has no obvious direct benefit.

I don't see any evidence at all for that accusation.
I don't recall making any "accusation".
quote:
Even if there were more money available for the latter than the former (which is an extremely dubious claim considering the vast sums of money many interested parties have in the status quo),
And such "interested parties" would be....?
quote:
universities and independent laboratories with tenured professors who have nothing to lose and no lack of funding
Tenure? Unlimited funding? I'd like to know where if anywhere these still exist.
quote:
would gain far more from publishing strong rebuttals to the majority view backed by evidence. Yet Surely their anonymous reviewers have no monetary reason at all to refuse to publish that work. So again, I ask, where are all the papers that have refuted what these respected public scientific groups have called the "consensus"? What possible motive could these groups have? It seems so unlikely as to be not even worth considering but if there is any evidence that such a conspiracy exists (even if it is only for "venal reasons") then I would be willing to consider it. The burden of proof is clearly on those who say that all these scientific groups are deluded or mistaken or participating in some unspoken movement to receive funding.

To refute this argument one question at a time:
1) Is there evidence that pro-anthropogenic research is better funded? No. If anything, in my opinion only perhaps, the energy consortiums and political movements are far more willing to give to those who would refute the anthropogenic hypothesis.
2) Is there evidence that any published scientists have intentionally altered their research to make the problem look worse than it is? No. But, in the opinion of several respected scientific groups, there has been an effort an the part of politicians and other interested parties to mute the evidence for anthropogenic change. (I gave the link above, for example to the Union of Concerned Scientists who, unlike you, provide ample evidence.)
3) Is there any evidence that scientists would cooperate with each other to allow only one view to be published in this field of research? None at all. So, human scientists or not, I don't think your insinuations have any merit at all.

You seem confused. You think that your saying "I don't see any evidence (that climatologists give the answers their paymasters want to hear" means that you have "refuted" that this is even a possibility.

Yet when others point out that there is no evidence that the apparent global warming is anthropogenic, and in fact a lot of very convincing evidence that such temperature variations are natural, you don't say that this "refutes" the anthropogenic theory. In fact you and many others even go so far as to demand that the anthropogenic hypothesis must be accepted as true and acted upon, until proved to be wrong; and insist that the burden of proof is on those who doubt the hypothesis to prove that it's wrong. You are wielding a double-edged sword Mr G.

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Richard W
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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quote:
Originally posted by LeaflessMapleTree:
But back to the topic at hand. I think Joe is doing much more than just nibbling at the edges of the evidence. I think he is saying that all the evidence presented is accurate. It's just the explanations for the evidence that may be suspect. They may not be, of course. But we don't know yet.

Yes, but this does overlook the fact that there were models predicting climate change that were developed simultaneously or prior to the evidence, and then turned out to match the evidence.

Simplifying completely, the situation wasn't "Hey, it looks like it's getting warmer. Must be something to do with people!". It was "Hmm, we predict that rising carbon dioxide levels from humans releasing carbon from sinks from will cause a warming effect. And having gathered evidence, it matches our predictions."

And, again simplifying, the "skeptics" position has gone from "That's a nice prediction but there's no evidence to support it," to "OK, there's evidence for warming but you don't know that it's caused by human activity!" Er, yes - the prediction was made using a model based on human activity...

It's frustrating because when the theory had no supporting evidence, the "skeptic" side seemed quite happy to accept the theory but deny that it related to reality because evidence hadn't been gathered. As soon as evidence was gathered, they seem to want you to forget that there is actually theory there too.

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Richard W
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Oh, and when people keep saying "Natural temperature variations happen all the time - there's no evidence that this is man-made", it ignores the fact that natural temperature fluctuations look different from the man-made variation predicted by the model, and that the evidence fits the model.

Again, this is ignoring a lot of subtleties, but it does seem that people wilfully ignore the basic idea in favour of "fudging" it.

PeterK, you ask who the "interested parties" that want to keep the status quo would be. Anybody in America who doesn't want to buy a smaller car springs to mind. I would say "oil companies" but that's too impersonal. Just think of the various justifications that people come up with why they really need a huge SUV and it would be much too difficult to adjust their lifestyle to use a smaller or more fuel efficient car. There's some really obvious inertia there.

There's a tendency to present the lack of will for change as a "conspiracy", which I also find unhelpful. A "conspiracy" is easily dismissed as being silly. Talking of vested interests doesn't necessarily imply that there's an enormous business lobby behind something (although that may be true too) - it implies that individuals who think what they might need to change think "Oh, that sounds a bit of a nuisance to me... maybe I'll do it later. I can't make a difference anyway. Just this once - it's a special occasion".

It seems odd in general to imply that there aren't "powerful forces" with a vested interest in the status quo, no matter what the topic. It's not like society constantly makes deep changes on a whim.

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Ganzfeld
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quote:
Originally posted by PeterK:
You seem confused. You think that your saying "I don't see any evidence (that climatologists give the answers their paymasters want to hear" means that you have "refuted" that this is even a possibility.

No I don't. I am perfectly willing to hear any evidence to support that claim.
quote:

Yet when others point out that there is no evidence that the apparent global warming is anthropogenic, and in fact a lot of very convincing evidence that such temperature variations are natural, you don't say that this "refutes" the anthropogenic theory. In fact you and many others even go so far as to demand that the anthropogenic hypothesis must be accepted as true and acted upon, until proved to be wrong; and insist that the burden of proof is on those who doubt the hypothesis to prove that it's wrong. You are wielding a double-edged sword Mr G.

All I'm saying is that those who want to refute the hypothesis must first do what those who support the hypothesis have been doing for quite some time now: publish results in a respectable journal. If you clear that hurdle, I'll consider your evidence along with the other published evidence.
quote:

It's frustrating because when the theory had no supporting evidence, the "skeptic" side seemed quite happy to accept the theory but deny that it related to reality because evidence hadn't been gathered. As soon as evidence was gathered, they seem to want you to forget that there is actually theory there too.

Word up, Richard W, my brother from another mother. (That means I heartily agree.) Not all skeptics, though. I was very skeptical but the evidence for kept mounting and the evidence against never materialized. I'm not skeptical about this point any more.
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Richard W
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quote:
Originally posted by Ganzfeld:
Word up, Richard W, my brother from another mother. (That means I heartily agree.) Not all skeptics, though. I was very skeptical but the evidence for kept mounting and the evidence against never materialized. I'm not skeptical about this point any more.

Thanks! And yes, there's nothing wrong with being skeptical before the evidence is there, and people demand different levels of satisfaction from evidence. It's when people concede the evidence but switch to the argument against human activity that I tend to get annoyed.
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NancyFancyPants
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Okay, so I've been listening with much interest to all the reports, theories, etc. about global warming. Then yesterday I saw a special on the History Channel saying that we should be concerned about the possibility of another "mini-ice age" like the one that wiped out the Vikings. (I particularly enjoyed the part about an exorcism being performed at the edges of a glacier that was advancing on a small village in France.)

And now this. Someone tell me whom to believe because now my head hurts thinking about it all.

--------------------
And on the 7th day, God said, "Let there be lips!"

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Ganzfeld
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quote:
Then yesterday I saw a special on the History Channel saying that we should be concerned about the possibility of another "mini-ice age" like the one that wiped out the Vikings.
Do you also take the history channel's advice on which stocks to buy?
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Richard W
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Was it anything to do with this story, NancyFancyPants? If so, then you can believe both - although there's currently less evidence for the weakening of the Gulf Stream.

The missing context is that North-West Europe and the area up the coast of Norway is currently warmer than you would expect simply from its latitude. This is because of the Gulf Stream current that circulates warm water up in that direction and over the North Pole.

Conversely, if you look at Japan, my atlas suggests that the northern islands have regular sea ice and pack ice during the winter, even though they're at the same latitude as the south of France. On the east side of the Atlantic, I've seen a suggestion that sea ice isn't unusual as far south as Boston (not frozen solid, but floating ice and ice in inlets) - not sure if that's true.

One possible consequence of global warming is that the Gulf Stream is disrupted and stops flowing as it currently does; this would mean that Western Europe might become colder than it is now. However, the evidence that the Gulf Stream is weakening isn't all that strong as far as I know.

In other words, "globally warmer" isn't incompatible with "locally cooler".

I seem to remember another "mini-ice age" theory a couple of decades ago that may have been based on predicted natural cycles over the whole world; if there was one like this then I guess it's been dropped because the evidence is against it.

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NancyFancyPants
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quote:
Originally posted by Ganzfeld:
quote:
Then yesterday I saw a special on the History Channel saying that we should be concerned about the possibility of another "mini-ice age" like the one that wiped out the Vikings.
Do you also take the history channel's advice on which stocks to buy?
No need for snarkiness. I'm just saying there's so much information from many sources that it's difficult to know what to believe. There were interviews with scientists included in the program with data to back up what they were saying. Each side has data to support their conclusions. How does one determine which data is the most accurate?

--------------------
And on the 7th day, God said, "Let there be lips!"

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Ganzfeld
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quote:
Originally posted by NancyFancyPants:
No need for snarkiness. I'm just saying there's so much information from many sources that it's difficult to know what to believe.

Sorry about that! I was only kidding. But I forgot the smilie. [Smile]
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