WUWT attacks WtD: I learn the only thing to fear from the sceptics is your own fear

Holding the line against the sceptic army

An interesting day in this small, and for some obscure front of the climate change war.

As some readers may have noticed, Mr. Watts of the sceptical blog Watts up with that? and I have been engaged in some friendly debate over the nature of sea-ice graphs.

I believe the matter to be resolved on my part, having replied to Mr. Watts requests.

However I do earnestly hope Mr. Watts responds to my suggestion and ensure his blog presents data in a manner not to confuse the public. A reasonable request one would think.

The experience of being in the sceptic cross-hairs

It was fascinating being the recipient of the full weight of the denial machine for an afternoon. 

How was it  you may ask? Stressful? Hardly.

It was is interesting to see the empty bluster, cheap bravado and vile insults pour into the comments section of WtD (still are by the way).

In fairness, I will note most comments were polite and simply stated their views. I have no issue with that, so my thanks to those who acted with respect. We disagree about the science, but at least you have been respectful. Many of those I’m allowing.

But I was left with a strong impression, and not the one Mr. Watts or others may have intended.

The only thing to fear from the sceptics is our own fear. 

“These are the dreaded climate sceptics, who like He-Who-Cannot-Named we’ve ascribed almost mythical powers and influence?” I thought to myself.

These are the people who so terrified and cowed some in the science community?

How disappointing; how underwhelming.

That the worst I did was make a throw away line in jest, and then saw thousands descend upon my blog with vile and enmity…

And what was their intent?

To force me to stop writing? To shed a tear? Did they force such things?

Hardly.

Longtime readers know I’ve always drawn from the lessons of history, and rightly or wrongly draw analogies with past and present events.

As the day passed an image formed in my mind – that of the 93rd Highland Regiment at the Battle of Balaclava (1854). Between their own rearguard and camp they stood in a ragged line, forcing back thousands of Russian cavalry.

From a distance they looked like a thin red line, standing against enormous odds. 

For me, today was about being that thin red line. 

Not that hard really.

What I learned today, and what you should learn from this

Lesson the first – the only thing to fear from the sceptics, is your own fear.

Lesson the second – don’t stop.

That is all, now carry on.

[Note: thanks John B for helping me hold the line as well]

A note on who tipped off Mr. Watts

Finally, some house keeping.

The WUWT post has been useful in showing me Mr. Watts source:

Erric Worrall writes:

An Australian alarmist blog, Watching The Deniers, has just accused Anthony Watts of photoshopping one of the Sea Ice Graphs.

Eric, I was about to email you this week and release you from the temporary ban.

It was never intended to be permanent, and I believe I treated you with respect. I also gave you enormous latitude when you posted here – to the extent other readers expressed frustration with me.

You were given three chances to modify your behavior, which you ignored. The rules of engagement were clear, and plenty of warning was given.

In light of today (and the great latitude I once gave you) your ban will be extended another three months. Such are the consequences of your actions. We all make choices Eric. And we must live with them.

Actually, that is light punishment considering your actions. But fortunately for you I’m made of stern stuff and remain unfazed by today’s events.

I’m also grateful for the small bump in traffic Mr.Watts links afforded me.

That is all, now carry on.

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121 thoughts on “WUWT attacks WtD: I learn the only thing to fear from the sceptics is your own fear

  1. FrankD says:

    Mike, far more important than Willard Anthony’s choice of the information-poor version of the Sea Ice graph, I’m shocked at you’re choice of Gibb’s rather inaccurate depiction of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders at Balaklava. The problems start with the “thin red line” being too thick – they should be in two ranks, not three. What with your avatar being a Highlander (Black Watch?), I thought you’d be all over this. So I’m shocked, and appalled, and … and … any other word that describes the fauxtrage mustered by Willard’s little detachment of Ingremannland Hussars (btw Gibb got their uniforms totally wrong as well) that you would not slather the OP with corrections.

    Just FWIW though, there weren’t “thousands” of Russian cavalry, only about 400 were detached to attack the A&SH. The main body were being driven off by the successful Charge of the Heavy Brigade (as opposed to the unsuccessful Light Brigade).

    But one thing to remember about all this – Russell’s original description of the scene was of “that thin red streak topped with a line of steel”. The line of steel is what counts – to quote another famous military type: “They don’t like it up ‘em”. ;-)

    • FrankD says:

      Oh, bollocks – that should be just Sutherland Highlanders. They didn’t amalgamate with the Argyll’s until later on. My bad….

  2. Bill Jamison says:

    Let’s take another swing at what’s wrong with your post Mike:

    You say “If you remove that pesky piece of information that indicates that sea-ice decline is below average you remove the problem!”. Including the grey area indicating 2 standard deviations doesn’t change the fact that the chart shows the current data compared to the 1981-2010 average. That average is the heavy darker grey line on the chart! Your statement is FALSE. It’s that simple.

    Not showing the 2 standard deviation range prevents the viewer from knowing how much of a variance there is from the mean. Nothing more. Now if you want to claim that it’s important to show the 2 standard deviation range in order to more clearly illustrate that last year was extremely low then go ahead and make that claim. It’s true. Using the chart with the 2 standard deviation range displayed makes it clear that last year was below that range. It also shows that this year is still within 2 standard deviations of the mean.

    Both charts clearly show that this year and last year were below average.

    As I said, your statement is FALSE. You should correct it.

    If you want to complain about a chart that doesn’t show the “pesky” average then maybe you should complain about this one instead since it “only” shows data for the years 2002 to 2013:

    Of course that chart isn’t produced by Anthony Watts either so you’d have to complain to JAXA.

    • john byatt says:

      that is a new mean bill

      here bill use this interactive put in the old average plus std dev and add all years from 2000,

      nearly all below the std dev line and you think it is immaterial?

      http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/charctic-interactive-sea-ice-graph/

      nothing like reality to wake one up

      • john byatt says:

        use 1979 2000 average,

        they have to update it or some years the curve would go of the chart,

        as uki said, another ten years and zero will still be within the std dev range, so to you lot it will all be normal because of the new average,

      • Bill Jamison says:

        I didn’t say it was immaterial. The issue at hand is whether the plot on wattsupwiththat failed to show that current sea ice extent is below average. It clearly does show that. You don’t need to know the standard deviation to know whether a value is below average or not you simply need to know the current value and the average value.

        If the temperature in Melbourne yesterday was 15c and the average temperature for the date is 14c then I know that yesterday was above average. I don’t need to know or see the standard deviation to know it was above average. Now if you want to say that it was unusually warm then you can use the standard deviation to determine that. But that’s a different issue.

        As I said if you want to make the claim that it’s BETTER to show the standard deviation to better illustrate how unusually low current sea ice extent is that that is a valid argument. But that’s not the argument that was being made. Mike says in his first sentence “If you remove that pesky piece of information that indicates that sea-ice decline is below average you remove the problem!” and that is simply untrue. The purpose of the chart is to show the current data, last season’s data, and the 1981-2010 average. It conveys that information (and clearly indicates that the current sea ice extent is below average) without the need for standard deviation. Adding standard deviation to that plot helps convey the magnitude of the variance.

        As far as the use of a new mean well you need to take that up with NSIDC since it’s their plot and their data. In general the more data used to generate a standard deviation the better. Using 1979-2000 doesn’t provide many data points.

        “another ten years and zero will still be within the std dev range, so to you lot it will all be normal because of the new average”

        You seem to be confusing average and standard deviation. If sea ice extent went to zero this year that wouldn’t suddenly make it “normal”. It would clearly be several (many?) standard deviations from the mean indicating it was a highly unusual event compared to the last 30+ years.

        • john byatt says:

          it is not about being below average, you cannot be this effin thick, it is about hiding the fact that the ice is drpping below the std dev which are outliers confirming the bloody arctic death spiral, now get it through your thick head or go and make stupid comments at watts, we have not he time to put up with your effin BS

        • Bill Jamison says:

          Wow john byatt now you’re trying to change what this is about? You call my post “BS” yet it’s all facts. Mike claimed that the chart doesn’t show that the current data is below average. That is UNTRUE. It is FALSE. It is WRONG. You don’t need to know the standard deviation to know whether the current data is below average or not. I don’t understand why you can’t admit that.

          In addition, other charts on the WUWT sea ice page DO show the standard deviation. The data isn’t being hidden. To claim it ” it is about hiding the fact that the ice is drpping below the std dev which are outliers confirming the bloody arctic death spiral” is ridiculous. Not only does the WUWT sea ice page contain MANY graphs of the data it also contains links to all of the sources.

          Anyone reading your posts, particularly this last one, can see that you’re simply trying to bully me into being quiet. Sorry bud it won’t work.

          The WUWT sea ice page features 40 charts and graphics/images. Are you really claiming that failing to show the standard deviation on ONE chart is “hiding” anything????

        • john byatt says:

          bloody wow all right

          you missed half of the bloody post

          Notice anything?

          The graph includes the SDs. If you go to their Sea Ice page you’ll see graphs that us the SDs.

          So why does this matter?

          Because the context in which information is presented matters a great deal in this debate.

          And when you exclude something, it is because you may not want it to be seen.

          Now it could very well be that Mr. Watts simply needs to bring his images inline with the practices of the NSIDC – if that is the case the opportunity now exits.

          We can take data and images from anywhere – from NSIDC, from a government website or the Bureau of Meteorology and present it however we wish.

          But what matters more: the thin slice of data you wish to highlight, of the full data set and the contextual information?

          Excluding standard deviations in sea-ice graphs @ WUWT: why it matters

          You can create the graphs yourself here: http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/charctic-interactive-sea-ice-graph/

          now either accept you made a mistake by only looking at one sentence or get lost

        • Bill Jamison says:

          I’m still amazed that you haven’t admitted your mistakes john. Well I supposed I shouldn’t be surprised in the least. I have the distinct impression that you’re not one to admit a mistake you simply deny, evade, deflect, and insult.

          You still claim that Anthony was trying to hide something when you said “exclude something, it is because you may not want it to be seen”. Except that the sea ice page featured several charts that include STD. In addition Anthony featured the NSIDC chart that includes STD in his Sea Ice News blog posts including his latest one from last month:

          http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/06/06/sea-ice-news-volume-4-2-the-2013-sea-ice-forecast-contest/

          So first you claimed that Watts was using the interactive charting facility to create a custom chart that didn’t include STD. That claim was proven wrong. Then you claim that Watts doesn’t want the STD to be seen. That claim has been proven wrong in more than one aspect – his inclusion of charts with STD on the Sea Ice Reference Page and also using the NSIDC chart that includes STD in several Sea Ice News blog entries.

          When will you ever admit that you are wrong and falsely accusing Watts on this issue? I know I won’t be holding my breathe. Admitting you’re wrong would require you to have integrity.

  3. Steve says:

    I would like to dissociate myself from the comments made by any other Steve on this post.

  4. Gregory T says:

    An interesting aside ; I was doing a google search of the person who caused the Tempest and hit images, I was amazed at the variations of his photos. His web site photo has a great deal of what appears to be Gaussian blur, making it difficult to get a clear image. Upon looking at the other photos, it became evident, that the man is older looking with a receding hairline with gray at the temples and carrying a bit more weight. Now I realise that everyone is entitled to present the face they feel best represents them, but it makes me wonder what else might be behind that facade ? I don’t bring this up to belittle the man, but like any public figure who presents himself to be the apex of his game, much like our own infamous politicos, who go for the extreme makeovers, it is fair to ask, “What is truth and what is deceit”?

  5. Steve B says:

    I read it all yesterday including JB’s inane comments. As for humans destroying this world you are sadly delusional. If you think humans are destroying this planet then leave since you are part of the problem. Do you think you are the Messiah come to save the planet from the sins of technology? LOL

    • Oh dear. All you have done here is call people names and haven’t offered anything of any value to the conversation. So Steve B, with all your wisdom and intelligence, how would you suggest I leave?

      • Steve B says:

        Since so called Anthropogenic Global Warming is total nonsense then there is nothing to do at all. All this typing and wailing and gnashing of teeth is for nothing at all. Zip Zero Nada – It doesn’t exist and I would be my life on it. Would you bet your life on CAGW being real?

        • Why can’t you people ever answer a question properly. There is no need for me to make that bet. I accept the overwhelming evidence.To do otherwise is to engage in conspiracy ideation. After all, how do YOU explain the scientific consensus? I also want to know how would you suggest I leave this world assuming I need to run away given my acceptance of the science?

        • BBD says:

          Of course I would bet my life on the laws of physics being real. The physical properties of CO2 are well understood. You are being spectacularly silly.

        • john byatt says:

          he is a fundie BBD, they don’t do reality, just happy clapping an exorcism of demons

        • Steve B says:

          BBD says:
          July 9, 2013 at 9:03 am

          Of course I would bet my life on the laws of physics being real. The physical properties of CO2 are well understood. You are being spectacularly silly.
          *******************************************************************************************
          Which goes to show that you don’t understand the properties of CO2. The heat trapping element of CO2 is logarithmic – not linear. So you cannot double CO2 and double temperature. By the time CO2 gets to about 800ppm no more heat energy is trapped and re-emitted. That is peer reviewed science and properties of CO2.

          JB – You having fun mate? Quiz for you. If Australia drops it CO2 emissions by say 50%, how much will the global temperature drop by? You need to include the extra CO2 emissions from China and India.

        • BBD says:

          Which goes to show that you don’t understand the properties of CO2. The heat trapping element of CO2 is logarithmic – not linear. So you cannot double CO2 and double temperature. By the time CO2 gets to about 800ppm no more heat energy is trapped and re-emitted. That is peer reviewed science and properties of CO2.

          Rubbish.

          If ECS/2xCO2 = 2.8C and CO2 =800ppm:

          dT = 2.8ln(800/280)/ln(2) = 4.2C

          Now increase to 1000ppm CO2:

          dT = 2.8ln(1000/280)/ln(2) = 5.1C

          You don’t have the first idea what you are talking about.

        • john byatt says:

          we have no hope of dropping temperatures we are trying to prevent temperature increase, what ever the temperature increase is we are stuck with for a thousand years
          Australian per person have four times the carbon footprint of the chinese.

          and doubling CO2 raises temp by about 1.2Degc , wonder what temperature rise does to water vapor content?

          you are not even at preschool level are you?

          temperature rise will not be logarithmic it will be linear all the way to catastrophe ,

        • Steve B says:

          Again both of you don’t do your research and JB you have no solutions just totalitarian measures to satisfy your Messianic tendancies.

          End of Convo – I ban myself

        • Good. I’m tired of facepalming and really disappointedin your rude behaviour. Good riddance.

        • BBD says:

          Again both of you don’t do your research

          I thought Christians were enjoined to tell the truth. This is a lie.

    • john byatt says:

      so you deny the millions of science studies that project the future without action, yet believe the nonsense mythical prophecies from some drug induced alternate reality, that global warming is all about the OWG of your own nightmares?

      no wonder you find comfort in the distorted minds of watts and his followers

      • Steve B says:

        Yeah cite even one of these millions of so called studies with incontrovertible proof?

        • john byatt says:

          a fundie seeking proof, priceless

        • BBD says:

          Proofs are for mathematicians. Science deals with probabilities. Demanding impossible standards of evidence is a form of logical fallacy.

        • Steve B says:

          BBD says:
          July 9, 2013 at 9:02 am

          Proofs are for mathematicians. Science deals with probabilities. Demanding impossible standards of evidence is a form of logical fallacy.
          *****************************************************************************************
          LOL – post normal science. Science deals with facts – probabilities deals with pseudo-science. Your so called science is just another religion.

        • tadaa Marriott’s Law.

        • BBD says:

          More rubbish.

        • john byatt says:

          “Your so called science is just another religion.”

          a creationist as well ?

        • For a moment I was thinking Eric had reincarnated himself but this guy is a complete fruit (as opposed to Eric’shalf fruitiness) He thinks he’s being clever by throwing up the tiredold run of denier cliches. He probablty thinks he’s got us cornered and cowering with his brilliant wit and intellect. Moronic beyond belief and not worthy of being fed.

        • john byatt says:

          hey steveb tell us about the shekal in the fshes mouth and i will tell you an old jewish pun about how it was a term for coitus ,

          so the shekal in the fishes mouth was in effect ‘tell the taxmen to get F****d”

        • john byatt says:

          did not want to learn about jewish myths i see oh well, had a good one about a son chopping of his dads balls to tell him as well

  6. Steve B says:

    What a bunch of lightweights here. The thin red line you refer to is the kindy kids in the sandpit. (facepalm). Makes me dirty to call myself Australian reading this childish rhetoric.

    • john byatt says:

      rather unchristian comment steve, how is the OWG of revelations and the anti christ going?

      http://tinyurl.com/n7ndhhc

      • Steve B says:

        Is that the best you can do? Nothing unchristian at all to point out where you are in the food chain.
        First the author of the original post attacking Watts used misinformation as did you. then he now denies the contents of the original post showing us all that he is a liar and you also for agreeing with him.

        • Having read the entire post and every comment, I can see where Mike has clarified his position and openly at that. Referring to him as a liar suggests that perhaps you haven’t read everything yourself. If you have and you still hold that position, then I would suggest seeing an eye specialist about your myopia.

        • john byatt says:

          the fundamentalist lobby group do not and could never except that humans are destroying their own world.

          you believe that some god in the sky controls the climate, I do not and neither do most other christians,

          Australian churches announced a call to action to prevent harm to the poor of the world from climate change,

          the only lies spring from the likes of willard and are legion, you come here all concerned over one small prank by mike,

          get a life fella, not the pretend god will fix it one though, try reality

        • john byatt says:

          please go away you are giving christians a bad name with the self proclaimed prophecies of you own ignorance

  7. Ray R. says:

    Fear is a great teacher, humbling. When you deny fear or wrongdoing in the face of an outcry over an obvious blunder on your part you are not doing yourself or this blog any favors.

    You just made a fool of yourself in front of Mr. Watt’s 153,692,869 viewers.

    • Watching the Deniers says:

      I suspect Mr. Watts readers would not be a fan of me in the first place :)

      • Ray R. says:

        Agreed and there are 153,692,869 of them. Another point, it’s not about you. It’s about science and the honest evolution of knowledge…..honest brokers of information win as demonstrated by the view count disparity of Mr. watts site vs the disingenuous hysteria posted here.

        • john byatt says:

          “honest evaluation of science” while he denies the millions of studies from all science disciplines over the last century

          honest brokers do win which is why countries like china a now taking action with ETS , why obama has spoken out about the flay earthers of denial

          and you even dispute the Arctic is in a death spiral,

          your frustration with the collapse of the arctic is now becoming the albatross around your necks .

        • john byatt says:

          science by view count, another flying monkey classic

        • Lots of people tune in to watch professional wrestling on television too. It doesn’t mean it is intellectual viewing. That aside, your assertion that Watts has 153 million followers is wrong. Either you are confusing views with subscribers or you are being deliberately misleading. Which is it?

        • Yes, errors are humbling and often lead to apologies; such as claiming a website has 153,692,869 readers. That is to confuse a “view” with a “reader”. Cutting and pasting still requires understanding. Your apology, Ray R, is pre-accepted.

    • john byatt says:

      classic, Mr Watts 153,692,869 viewers, even the blog only claims about 6000 followers.

      so each fool probably reads the nonsense put up a few times each day

  8. BBD says:

    I’m slightly embarrassed. I stop paying attention for a couple of days and this happens. Sorry I wasn’t in there shifting units ;-)

    As for Eric, well there you go. Handsome is as handsome does.

  9. Scientific American treats Watts as spam. “teaching my spam filter to automatically send to spam any and every comment that contains the words “warmist”, “alarmist”, “Al Gore” or a link to Watts. A comment that contains any of those is, by definition, not posted in good faith. By definition, it does not provide additional information relevant to the post. By definition, it is off-topic. By definition, it contains erroneous information. By definition, it is ideologically motivated, thus not scientific. By definition, it is polarizing to the silent audience. It will go to spam as fast I can make it happen.”

    http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/a-blog-around-the-clock/2013/01/28/commenting-threads-good-bad-or-not-at-all/

  10. If you don’t want to be in the cross-hairs; don’t write cr@p.

    This very blog post of you lay down 3 steaming heaps in the opening paragraphs.

    1. This isn’t a war between them and us. This is all about you exercising your wilful ignorance on matters of climate science; seeking refuge in fallacies to reinforce your prejudices. You screwed up big time in your previous blog post on sea ice. You’re trying to white-wash that.

    2. The “friendly debate” was no such thing. You posted a blog article that was defamatory; accusing Athony Watts of dishonesty and manipulation of data to suit his personal objectives.

    3. To state you “replied” to Watts “requests” is an understatement of titanic proportions. You had to accede to his demands or risk legal consequences for defamation.

    I haven’t read the rest of your article because it reminded me too much of marching behind horses on ANZAC Day.

  11. ddpalmer says:

    “[Note: thanks John B for helping me hold the line as well]”

    Would that be the same John B who has made so many posts filled with the “empty bluster, cheap bravado and vile insults” that you complain about?

  12. Well done, Mike. You’re obviously doing something right.

    • Watching the Deniers says:

      That gave me a good laugh.

      • meltemian says:

        Gave me a good laugh as well……….probably not for the same reason though.

      • And, congratulations on your new swarm of followers too. I look forward to more blogscience.

        • Jimbo says:

          Since you ask for the science here is some relevant information on the Arctic. Please don’t attack me, attack the authors.
          —-
          Abstract
          The Early Twentieth-Century Warming in the Arctic—A Possible Mechanism

          The huge warming of the Arctic that started in the early 1920s and lasted for almost two decades is one of the most spectacular climate events of the twentieth century. During the peak period 1930–40, the annually averaged temperature anomaly for the area 60°–90°N amounted to some 1.7°C…..
          dx.doi.org/10.1175/1520-0442(2004)017%3C4045:TETWIT%3E2.0.CO;2

          Abstract
          The regime shift of the 1920s and 1930s in the North Atlantic

          During the 1920s and 1930s, there was a dramatic warming of the northern North Atlantic Ocean. Warmer-than-normal sea temperatures, reduced sea ice conditions and enhanced Atlantic inflow in northern regions continued through to the 1950s and 1960s, with the timing of the decline to colder temperatures varying with location. Ecosystem changes associated with the warm period included a general northward movement of fish. Boreal species of fish such as cod, haddock and herring expanded farther north while colder-water species such as capelin and polar cod retreated northward. The maximum recorded movement involved cod, which spread approximately 1200 km northward along West Greenland……
          dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.pocean.2006.02.011

          Monthly Weather Review October 10, 1922.
          The Arctic seems to be warming up. Reports from fishermen, seal hunters, and explores who sail the seas about Spitsbergen and the eastern Arctic, all point to a radical change in climatic conditions, and hitherto unheard-of high temperatures in that part of the earth’s surface….

          In August, 1922, the Norwegian Department of Commerce sent an expedition to Spitsbergen and Bear Island under Dr. Adolf Hoel, lecturer on geology at the University of Christiania. The oceanographic observations (reported that) Ice conditions were exceptional. In fact, so little ice has never before been noted. The expedition all but established a record, sailing as far north as 81o 29′ in ice-free water. This is the farthest north ever reached with modern oceanographic apparatus…..”
          docs.lib.noaa.gov/rescue/mwr/050/mwr-050-11-0589a.pdf

          H.H. Lamb
          The early medieval warm epoch and its sequel

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

          Abstract
          The 15th century Arctic warming in coupled model simulations with data assimilation

          … Available observational data, proxy-based reconstructions and our model results suggest that the Arctic climate is characterized by substantial variations in surface temperature over the past millennium. Though the most recent decades are likely to be the warmest of the past millennium, we find evidence for substantial past warming episodes in the Arctic. In particular, our model reconstructions show a prominent warm event during the period 1470–1520. This warm period is likely related to the internal variability of the climate system, that is the variability present in the absence of any change in external forcing….
          doi:10.5194/cp-5-389-2009

        • Blogscience! All in awe say “Ahh!”

          I wish you every success as you strive for publication in a journal with your analysis.

        • I further suggest you urgently follow up with Dr Richard Alley, the producer of http://www.geo.umass.edu/faculty/jbg/Pubs/Polyak%20etal%20seaice%20QSR10%20inpress.pdf.

          At least superficially, to my eyes, his analysis appears stronger. Don’t blame me, contact Dr Alley.

  13. SwordfishTrombone says:

    It’s disingenuous and patronizing to talk about being ‘respectful’ when your blog title includes the offensive and inaccurate hate-speech term ‘denier’.

    • ‘Climate Change Denial’ is an entirely apt description for what this site seeks to counter. “Denialism” is also used to describe the position of those who reject the conclusive evidence that HIV causes AIDS. Are scientists being too mean to those people when they call them ‘HIV/AIDS deniers’? Denialists insist that they be called “skeptics”, but they are anything but skeptical. Any factoid, presented by any non-expert, that purports to cast doubt on the science underpinning anthropogenic climate change is enthusiastically swallowed whole and regurgitated at any opportunity. The massive body of research literature on which the world’s scientific academies base their statements supporting the findings of the climate science community are simply dismissed or ignored: Textbook denialism. I don’t care if someone finds it offensive. It’s accurate, and I’ll continue to use it. If the shoe fits…

      • Watching the Deniers says:

        Thanks Sammy, answered for me.

        For example, this is what the Australian Sceptics have to say about climate change:

        http://www.skeptics.com.au/latest/announcements/australian-skeptics-position-on-climate-change-sceptics/

        “The term “Skeptics” or “Sceptics” has been in the news a lot more than usual in the past few years. Often, this has been linked to ‘climate change scepticism’ which is a position that claims that some or all details of the theory of human-induced climate change are false. ‘Scepticism’ has also been linked to political opposition to specific measures, regardless of the science.

        Australian Skeptics is an organisation dedicated to the promotion of science and reason. We are not associated with the climate change scepticism movement, and especially not with political groups that use that term to indicate their position.

        It has always been the Australian Skeptics’ position that people should make up their minds based on the evidence. This position becomes even more important when what should be a completely scientific issue is used by politically-motivated groups to further their causes, often in the face of contradictory evidence.

        People who are not experts in fields related to climate science should seek the best available evidence, as judged by those who are experts in relevant fields. While everyone is entitled to their own opinion, not everyone is entitled to be taken seriously. On the very important and very complex questions of climate change and its causes, only the carefully formed opinions of relevantly qualified experts should be taken seriously.

        As in all fields of science, expertise emerges out of experience and through the peer-review process, not through media appearances or political connections.”

        One wonders what climate sceptics make of that….

        • swordfishtrombone says:

          Sorry for this ridiculously late reply.

          I can’t speak for all sceptics, as we’re not all the same (unlike the 97% consensus CAGW side which must, by definition, agree on everything) but I can give you my reaction to this. The Australian Skeptics statement appears to make two basic points:

          1) Criticism of climate science is politically motivated.

          The promoters of CAGW are also very highly politicized. As I write, Dr. M. Mann is publicly backing a Democratic candidate in the US. Governments of all persuasions (and they’re really all virtually identical) love CAGW. They’ve given up offering us the promise of a better future and just try and scare us instead, whilst pretending to be morally superior. If it’s not CAGW, then it’s terrorism.

          2) Climate science is too difficult for non-experts to understand, therefore we should follow the opinion of experts.

          I’ve seen the exact opposite argument made frequently, i.e. that climate science is simple basic science and that anyone who questions it is therefore a moron. Both positions can’t be true. String theory is too difficult for non-experts to understand, climate science isn’t. Quite apart from that, who is to say which ‘experts’ should be listened to? There are experts in every field – following the AS advice would entail never actually being a sceptic at all. You do have to actually question stuff to qualify as sceptical.

        • mgm75 says:

          Swordfishtrombone,

          Mann is one individual. Why do you forgive the oil companies bankrolling the GOP and therefore pressuring that political party to stall action on climate change? Why is it unacceptable for one man to support a Dem candidate but for an entire industry to fuel a political party and to spend so much money on political pressure groups such as Heartland & Galileo Institutes? Why is it acceptable for the oil industry to spend more money on these groups than they do on R&D? On the face of it, Michael Mann’s individual, personal political views is completely irrelevant and until you can demonstrate that he is the “ruler” of climate science you have no point to make.

          Look to the political motivations of your own side first before you start pointing fingers at individual scientists political views.

        • swordfishtrombone says:

          mgm75:

          I don’t care in the slightest what political party Dr. Mann supports. I don’t live in the USA. If you read my comment more closely, you’ll realise that I support neither political ‘side’ in this debate. I live in the UK. Here, in common with most of Europe, support for the ‘fight against climate change’ comes from all sides of the political spectrum. (With the exception of UKIP.) It’s only the public who aren’t convinced. That’s my whole point.

          I was arguing against the silly suggestion by the ‘Australian Skeptics’ that opposition to climate science is political in origin. It is not.

          Incidentally, I made a simple two-point synopsis of the AS statement – you may disagree with my representation of it. It might be simpler to say that the AS position is simply: ‘Trust experts’, which is about as far from scepticism as it’s possible to get.

        • john byatt says:

          2) Climate science is too difficult for non-experts to understand, therefore we should follow the opinion of experts.”

          for much of the science that is correct, not so the Carbon dioxide greenhouse theory, It is simple and can be understood by anyone,

          http://www.aip.org/history/climate/co2.htm

          Richard Lindzen is an expert but does not have the backing of scientific papers, so I do not follow his expert opinion.

        • mgm75 says:

          swordfish, I live in the UK too so I know what the state of affairs is.

          Unfortunately, people as a group are stupid. I don’t give a stuff about what the average person on the street thinks because most people who challenge me on the subject don’t have the slightest idea what they are talking about in the first place. They merely trot out whatever The Daily Telegraph or Daily Mail is ranting about this week and they always referred back to the discredited “documentary” (and I use that term loosely) The Great Global Warming Swindle. I have no interest in armchair experts or their prideful ignorance.

          I trust the evidence – as my education to Master’s Degree level in an environmental science dictates. If 97% of my peers’ evidence across a wide variety of disciplines suggests this is a real problem then I accept it; I have no reason to believe otherwise. Neither will I remain doubtful about evolution because “only” 97% of biologists accept it or about the efficacy of vaccines because “only” 97% support it.

          When I started university 9 years ago, I was a fence sitter willing to be convinced by either side. Going to university permitted me to read many papers on the subject and I was convinced of the reality of this problem. I’m very interested to know what makes you such an expert to dismiss 97% of the conclusions of researchers? It seems to me little more than the now cliched vague mistrust of science from those who do not really understand it.

      • SwordfishTrombone says:

        Prior to it’s adoption by the AGW camp. ‘denier’ was most commonly used in conjunction with the term ‘Holocaust Denier’ – please don’t try and ‘deny’ this. In that regard it is clearly offensive. You argue that it is alright to be offensive as long as what you are saying is true (according to you) but that argument could be used to justify the use of offensive language in almost any context.

        • Prior to its adoption by deniers, the word “camp” was often associated with somebody who is homosexual. While I personally have no beef with being labelled a homosexual, even though I’m actually heterosexual, others may be offended. I would appreciate if you refrain from using offensive language like this in future.

        • john byatt says:

          I am not a homosexual either though I may have shagged a bloke many years in Singapore who was ,

          ex RAN , old saying

        • I am aware of your rationale for being offended, Swordfishtrombone, but I just don’t care. I’ve explained why climate change deniers are in denial (and why “Skeptic” is inappropriate), and I won’t refrain from using a perfectly appropriate word because it is also used to describe the attitude of some to the Holocaust. If I accuse you of being a Holocaust denier when you aren’t one, THEN you can justifiably be offended. When I call you a climate change denier, instead of getting upset, you could try and make an argument for your position. All this “Poor me I’m being called a climate change denialist when people who deny the Holocaust are also called denialists so you must be inferring I’m also a Holocaust denialist” sulking is purely a distraction. People who accept the overwhelming consensus of the climate research community are routinely called “warmists”, “warmanistas”, “green zealots”, “eco-nazis”, “eco-fascists”, “green totalitarians” and so on, but rather than saying “Boo-hoo. I’m offended”, we’ll explain why you’re wrong about the science.

          Stop your whinging.

        • Bill Jamison says:

          Fortunately, based on the definition of consensus by Cook et al, almost everyone is in the 97%. I certainly am!

        • You’re in the 97% because you just echoed the 2001 IPCC report’s attribution statement, “most of the warming is likely due to increased GHGs.”

          However, contrarians like Eric Worrall and Dr. Roy Spencer wrongly claim to be part of the 97% consensus. For instance, Dr. Spencer recently testified before the U.S. Senate. 16 minutes before he says “evolutionary theory is mostly religion” at 03:23:10, Dr. Spencer says this:

          “There’s a recent paper by John Cook and co-authors who looked at thousands of research papers which have been published in the scientific literature to see what fraction support the scientific consensus on global warming. Well, it turns out that the 97% consensus that they found, I am indeed part of and Senator Sessions mentioned he would agree with it too. And my associate John Christy, he agrees with it. In fact, all skeptics that I know of that work in this business. All are part of that 97% because the 97% includes people who think humans have some influence on climate. …”

          Once again, Dr. Spencer is comically misinformed. Table 2 in Cook et al. 2013 rated abstracts and queried authors on a 7 point scale:

          1. Explicitly endorses and quantifies AGW as 50+%
          2. Explicitly endorses but does not quantify or minimise
          3. Implicitly endorses AGW without minimising it
          4a. No Position
          4b. Undecided
          5. Implicitly minimizes/rejects AGW
          6. Explicitly minimizes/rejects AGW but does not quantify
          7. Explicitly minimizes/rejects AGW as less than 50%

          Only the first three categories are counted as part of the consensus, and Dr. Spencer is not in them. His blog shows that he minimizes AGW, and in the past he’s even tried to argue that “The long-term increases in carbon dioxide concentration that have been observed at Mauna Loa since 1958 could be driven more than by the ocean than by mankind’s burning of fossil fuels.”

          This is incredibly, fractally wrong. As recently as 2012 he’s tried to claim that “most of the warming we’ve seen could well be natural”.

          These claims place Dr. Spencer somewhere in categories 5-7. He’s definitely not part of the consensus, and neither is Dr. Christy. They’re part of the very loud 3% of contrarian scientists who have managed to confuse the public into thinking that they’re much more numerous.

          There are many contrarians like Dr. Spencer and Eric Worrall wrongly trying to claim that they’re part of the 97% consensus. But a quick glance at Cook et al. 2013 shows that they’re just contrarians doing what contrarians do best: spreading confusion.

        • Great paper, Cook’s. Have you seen his presentation at the AGU?

        • Bill Jamison says:

          Nuccitelli said “we were careful to point out that the consensus was that ‘humans are causing global warming.’” The synopsis is clear:

          “Among abstracts expressing a position on AGW, 97.1% endorsed the consensus position that humans are causing global warming.”

          http://iopscience.iop.org/1748-9326/8/2/024024/article

          That’s THEIR definition of consensus. Pretty low bar.

          Wonder why they still haven’t released their data yet….

        • Swordfishtrombone says:

          John Havery Samuel:

          “Great paper, Cook’s. Have you seen his presentation at the AGU?”

          I’m afraid I missed it. Seriously, climate science must be the only area of science in which a paper written by an ex-cartoonist consisting of nothing more than a meta-opinion-survey done by a very biased team of non-independent researchers, which has been found to be flawed on multiple levels for clearly explained reasons and which advances basic knowledge 0%, could be described as “Great”.

  14. Sou says:

    I expect Anthony consulted his scientific dog Kenji before reacting. He’s not that hot when it comes to charts and numbers, though he is not bad at fake outrage.

    As for Eric Worrall, his behaviour is pathetic, especially when you have been so good to him despite his constant references to (insert unmentionable word here).

    Keep up the good work, WTD. 😏

  15. Lars Karlsson says:

    For the record, I think that omitting the standard deviation is quite a minor thing compared to much else going on at WUWT. However, I’m sure that Tony was very excited about receiving criticism that for once he was able to respond to.

    • Watching the Deniers says:

      Well it is rich pickings at WUWT. And yes, I agree – a throw away line made in jest by me (which I’ve since retracted) provided an opportunity of sorts. I take my lumps with pride and move on :)

      • john byatt says:

        bet mike @ uki is pissed off he missed the fun , put up his cry baby watts post for willard though.

        many deniers everyone with a different claim all contradicting each other.

        made my day

        • Bloody hell. Now I have to go and check it all out. sigh. That’ll teach me for spending the afternoon relaxing in the afternoon sun.

        • Watching the Deniers says:

          Are you sure you want to do that? I had to sacrifice a few hours of my life, you may not want to.

          Short story: I made a throw away line in (poor I admit) jest: happily apologized and remedied. Some outrage continues to be expressed, but seems to have blown over.

          Mr. Watts followers have failed to noticed I responded promptly to his communications, made those amendments as requested and where appropriate and/or removed them. Mr. Watts was notified about this in public and with complete transparency.

          It seems some of them would be happier if I’d not responded or made those amendments, so as to remain a convenient fixture for their frustrations to be vented.

          However, Mr. Watts followers have moved on to attacking the science and accusing me a number of other charges. It does make an interesting record of comments and worthy for understanding current sceptic memes dismissing climate change.

      • D. J. Hawkins says:

        Sorry Mike, I’m calling BS on your claim of a “throw away line”. The screen cap of your original post is preserved in a link on WUWT. You can’t sweep it under the rug. There was no “JK” or “winking” emoticon to indicate any humor on your part. You start up at the top by saying WUWT is “claiming” the graph is from NISDC and “no such image exists”. Then you say “Clearly, somone has doctored the image. A Photoshop trick.” The graph is from the NISDC, it’s a current product, and it’s not doctored. Sorry, I’m completely missing the humor here.

        And amid all this, you fail completely to explain how the “pesky” 2SD boundaries weaken Watts’ case (not that he actually makes one, which is more confusing) and thus provide a “motive” for their “removal”.

        • Watching the Deniers says:

          Actually D.J.Hawkins check again – the post was tagged with “FUNNY”. See the left hand screen.

          This is standard practice on WtD to alert readers to satirical content.

      • Bill Jamison says:

        I find it interesting that you explain away your statements as “a throw away line made in jest” and yet the first line of that blog post is still “This is how you do denial and flagrantly cherry pick data.”.

        Well if you really feel that not showing the standard deviation on the chart is “denial” and/or “cherry picking data” then you really need to call the NSIDC out on it since it’s their chart. Indicating where the current data falls +/- 2 standard deviations is simply an attempt to put the current data in context.

        From wikipedia: “In statistics and probability theory, standard deviation shows how much variation or dispersion exists from the average (mean), or expected value.

        I have to laugh at the idea that you think comments from people like myself that read WUWT are attempting to silence you. I doubt many of us had ever heard of your blog before today.

        The correct response would have been to admit your mistake and apologize. You were wrong. The chart isn’t dishonest or misleading or cherry picking data and it certainly isn’t modified by Anthony Watts. None of your claims have turned out to be true and yet you try to defend them and claim some were just a bad joke when clearly you were serious.

        • john byatt says:

          and again hiding the std dev hides the fact that recent years are now beyond the 2 std dev which indicates strong downward trend since 2000,

          get used to the fact that watts has hidden vital data which confirms that and has now been caught out.

          more revelations ? stick around sunshine

        • Bill Jamison says:

          “hiding the std dev hides the fact that recent years are now beyond the 2 std dev which indicates strong downward trend since 2000″

          no john the current data being more than 2 standard deviations low (current year isn’t actually 2 STDs low yet) does not “indicate a strong downward trend since 2000″. You can’t look at one year’s data and infer a trend. If you want to know what the trend is you need to look at more data such as this chart:

          That chart is on the WUWT sea ice page BTW. It shows that the sea ice minimum extent has decreased at the rate of over 9% per decade since 1980 and the chart CLEARLY shows that the recent trend is an even more dramatic decrease.

          It appears you have very little understanding of averages, standard deviations, and data representation.

        • john byatt says:

          go to the interactive and use the earlier mean average, add all the years from 2000 and you will see that once again you are talking crap, as uki said when the newer graph for the next period is put up with the new mean you once again will say it means nothing even though the outliers will hit zero extent

          what do you lot say ” keep digging your hole’

        • john byatt says:

          here

          http://nsidc.org/arcticseaicenews/charctic-interactive-sea-ice-graph/

          now using the prior mean, how many years of the current decade are below the std dev for that graph?

          because they use a new mean does not mean that the trend suddenly disappears,

          the loss of Arctic ice has shocked the science community and you can only see one year below the std dev because you are looking at the new baseline to form your idiotic cognitive bias… please

        • john byatt says:

          using the NSIDC data here is the trend including from 2000

          http://tamino.files.wordpress.com/2013/03/extent_anom.jpg?w=500&h=322

  16. Lars Karlsson says:

    “In fairness, I will note most comments were polite and simply stated their views.”

    You certainly cannot say that about the comments on WUWT.

  17. Congratulations on being ‘the thin red line’! I really respect and admire what you’re doing here. Keep up the great work. People like me really benefit from your efforts. Cheers!

  18. mgm75 says:

    I think you have made the right decision with Eric. He added nothing to this blog beyond detracting from the discussion of the science – but I guess this was his intention. In that regard, he won… for a while at least.

    The only drawback is that he will now go on the denialists blogs he is on to complain about how he was victimised and that how you are anti free speech on your blog. Now, in his eyes, you are a fully paid up member of the “great liberal conspiracy”.

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