Andrew Bolt’s “The Death of Global Warmism”: Plimer’s book sold 40k copies, ergo climate change not true (part 4 of 11)


More convincing then Plimer’s Heaven+Earth (if you go by sales)

[Part 4 of 11]

Summary of Bolt’s argument: Climate sceptic Ian Plimer sold lots of copies of his book Heaven+Earth. Ergo climate change is not real.

Summary response: Andrew Bolt commits a classic logical fallacy – the argument from popularity. If truth was based solely on the sales of a book, then the Da Vinci code must be extra true for selling 80 million copies.

Logical fallacies present: Argumentum ad populum (x1)

I’m going to jump ahead to Andrew’s 10th sign as it is the easiest to dispel – and perhaps the most farcical.

Bolt’s claim: “That wall is now breaking. Dissent is being heard, with Professor Ian Plimer’s sceptical Heaven and Earth alone selling more than 40,000 copies here. Yes, the world may start warming again. Yes, our emissions may be partly to blame. But, no, this great scare is unforgivable. It’s robbed us of cash and, worse, our reason. Thank God for the 10 signs that this madness is over.”

Response: We can easily dispatch Bolt’s last claim as an example of a logical fallacy: argumentum ad populum. To translate form the Latin, “appeal to the people”.

By claiming the popularity of a belief Andrew argues it must be true.

Dan Brown’s conspiracy tome the Da Vinci Code sold 80 million copies and was made into a film. Compared to Plimer’s paltry sales of 40,000 the Da Vinci Code must be extra, extra-true. After all, how could 80 million Dan Brown fans be wrong?

Putting aside Andrew’s argument it is worth noting that Plimer’s book is riddled with errors. Scientists who have reviewed it have dismissed it as case study in “how not to be objective”.

Ian Enting, a mathematical physicist from the University of Melbourne reviewed Plimer’s book and found over 100 errors.

In a review published in The Australian, astrophysicist Michael Ashely stated Heaven+Earth contained “no science” and noted Plimer drew upon some ludicrous examples of pseudo-science:

Plimer probably didn’t expect an astronomer to review his book. I couldn’t help noticing on page 120 an almost word-for-word reproduction of the abstract from a well-known loony paper entitled “The Sun is a plasma diffuser that sorts atoms by mass”. This paper argues that the sun isn’t composed of 98 per cent hydrogen and helium, as astronomers have confirmed through a century of observation and theory, but is instead similar in composition to a meteorite.

It is hard to understate the depth of scientific ignorance that the inclusion of this information demonstrates. It is comparable to a biologist claiming that plants obtain energy from magnetism rather than photosynthesis.

Selling 40,000 copies of Heaven+Earth must make Plimer’s claim about the sun true.

One million people visit Andrew Bolt’s blog: that makes everything Bolt says true. 

Justin Bieber has sold over 15 million albums: this makes him the greatest artist in the history of the world.

I mean, who can argue with 15 million Bieber fans?

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81 thoughts on “Andrew Bolt’s “The Death of Global Warmism”: Plimer’s book sold 40k copies, ergo climate change not true (part 4 of 11)

  1. “Thank God for the 10 signs that this madness is over.”

    Just like the creationists — an insistence, year after year, that the theory they so strongly oppose is on its last legs. It’s funny, because Bolt’s saying here that “this madness is over”, yet tomorrow he’ll cite more examples of climate change action and scream “When will this madness end!?”.

    • Gandalf says:

      Unfortunately, now that the Mad Monk Abbott is in charge, this link is not there.
      Typical of this ignorant government!

  2. john byatt says:

    One of our local TCS party deniers John leal repeated this piece in the local paper about no deaths this year from tornadoes

    news today 6 killed

  3. Nick says:

    “Heaven and Err-th” was released when? Four years ago to the month…. 40,000 copies? Wow..,.. it’s a hot item.

    And he still has not published a corrigendum…

  4. Well if the Andrew Bolt argument from popularity (and authority) is taken to its logical conclusion, I’m surprised I haven’t encountered talking donkeys and snakes, after all, they appear in the Bible which is reportedly more widely published than Ian Plimer’s dismal effort.

    On a serious note, there was a time when Ian Plimer had some well earned respect for holding creationists to account for promoting nonscientific, young earth propaganda. It’s ironic that his main criticisms focused on their disregard for science, honesty and objectivity. How the mighty have fallen – it seems that for some men, they can be had for a price.

    • On a serious note, there was a time when Ian Plimer had some well earned respect for holding creationists to account for promoting nonscientific, young earth propaganda.

      Actually, Ian Plimer’s behavior inspired “How Not To Argue With Creationists”.

      I knew Plimer’s book was bad, but had no idea he cited Oliver K. Manuel’s ludicrous “Iron Sun” nonsense. Manuel was banned from WUWT because his Iron Sun Gish Gallops were too nutty for Watts.

      Furthermore, the original author list of “Slaying the Sky Dragon – Death of the Greenhouse Gas Theory” included Manuel. Not anymore, though. Manuel is apparently too nutty for the Slayers, who are too nutty for Watts, Monckton, Curry, Spencer, Singer, Liljegren, Condon, or anyone who’s ever slept under a blanket.

      Citing Manuel is credibility seppuku.

  5. zoot says:

    40,000 copies? The Australian Women’s Weekly has a circulation of nearly 500,000 each month, which would make it at least 120 times more authoritative than Plimer’s sad effort.

  6. john byatt says:

    A lot of Plimer’s book heaven and earth were purchased by the IPA and mailed out free

    they also purchased, how to get expelled and mailed those out to schools

  7. Mark says:

    I hesitate to mention this since its clear that subtle differences in thought don’t really gain traction here.But Bolt, in his article, isn’t pronouncing the death of global warming. Indeed within it he does opine that warming may even return, which, without setting a time-frame seems only logical.

    What he is pronouncing is the death of the thoughtless hysteria over the mild warming to date which reached its zenith here in 2007-9. You’ll recall the hysteria over the once in a think-of-a-big-number-and-double-it-year drought, together with cyclones and fires and floods etc etc. We were being assailed with inconvenient truths (which turned out to be rather convenient lies) and the electorate was in a general panic, to the point that even hard-nosed politicians like Howard were forced to bend their knee to the new god, Gaia.

    But then the draught broke, the dams filled, the snows fell and the courts got stuck into Gore’s shockumentary and the hysteria waned to the point now that we are about to overwhelmingly elect a party whose main platform is against the symbol of last decade’s hysteria, the CO2 tax.

    It is this that Bolt is declaring the death of. The first sentence reads “AND so the great global warming scare dies. “. the scare dies, not the warming.

    So when he refers to Plimer, he’s not using it’s sales as evidence that the science is wrong. He’s using its sales as evidence that people are seeking to hear the other side to the story (yes yes I know that most of you don’t recognise that there is another side). Plimer’s book wouldn’t have got an airing, or even publication, at the height of the hysteria. The fact that it and things like the Great Global Warming Scandal are now spoken of in polite company, is indicative that people no longer buy the scare.

    So assertions like “By claiming the popularity of a belief Andrew argues it must be true.” completely and utterly miss the point of the article. This isn’t an article about the science, its about the scare and the hysteria that the worst purveyors of the science generated.

    • BBD says:

      Yes, let’s ignore the laws of physics and all of paleoclimate behaviour in favour of a politically-motivated assertion that increasing GHG forcing over the C21st *won’t* result in significant warming as the century progresses.

      Can’t you see how ridiculous you are being?

      • Mark says:

        As I said..”its clear that subtle differences in thought don’t really gain traction here.” My whole post went over your head didn’t it. Bolt isn’t talking about the science, he’s talking about the hysteria. FFS what a dill.

      • Nick says:

        Bolt certainly will not talk about the science,he will only talk about hysteria….the hysteria that he has helped manufacture. The hysteria has been Bolt’s,you numpty! The frenzied repetition of a handful of mined quotes,and the frenzied lying about them. The cowardly and dishonest attacks on Flannery and Williams, and the constant insistence that moving away from fossil fuels will destroy economies,impoverish the aspirational poor,send us back to caves and drive our electricity prices through the roof [in reality electricity prices have risen faster than inflation ever since privatisation in the early 1990s,and a carbon price as had miniscule influence]…

        And you still regurgitate it, falling for every strawman fed you,coughing up simply untrue statements with a blush. You’re so confused you think people are playing word games with you when they try to help you clarify where you got suckered.

        So Bolt ‘allows’ GW may return? Covering his arse with the ‘smarter’ subset of his readers. The real world knows it never went away.

      • BBD says:

        No, Mark.

        The problem is real. The need for policy response is real. “Hysteria” is a strawman.

        I am not a “dill”. I can see exactly what you are trying to slip beneath the radar here. You are a politically-motivated science-denier.

    • Michael says:

      “I hesitate to mention this since its clear that subtle differences in thought don’t really gain traction here.But Bolt, in his article, isn’t pronouncing the death of global warming” – Mark


      “The world isn’t warming’ – Bolt.

      Maybe that is too subtle for Mark.

    • john byatt says:

      Mark says:
      May 17, 2013 at 7:45 am
      I hesitate to mention this since its clear that subtle differences in thought don’t really gain traction here.But Bolt, in his article, isn’t pronouncing the death of global warming. Indeed within it he does opine that warming may even return, which, without setting a time-frame seems only logical.

      the warming never stopped mark, bolt is telling a fib to push his agenda for inaction

      you missed that bit

  8. Nick says:

    ‘without a blush…don’t want to confuse you..

    • john byatt says:

      apparently everyone is a dill except the dill himself

      the “Biased towards stability” was a classic, a keeper

      • BBD says:

        I marvelled. And I’m waiting for our resident dill to produce a properly referenced response supporting this extraordinary assertion.

    • Mark says:

      I got it…I’m becoming quite versed in translating your manic outpourings into English.

  9. indigo says:

    I think your point is very valid, Mark, but I think Bolt really can’t tell the difference between the media and the material world. That is part of his polemical strength and intellectual weakness.

    • Mark says:

      Fine. But treating Bolt as the devil incarnate because he didn’t write the article you’d write is hardly constructive. Either assert that he has missed the point and should write about the science exclusively or try to disprove his assertions based upon his own criteria. But to say he is wrong to mention Plimer because Plimer is in error when his reason for raising Plimer had nothing to do with whether the book is right or wrong but everything to do with its popularity, is just wrong.

      I know that most people here want to assert that the science says we’re headed for a fall and nothing else is of importance. But we don’t all agree with that and we definitely aren’t required to adhere to other’s agenda.

      Its surely fair to say that political actions that led to spectacular waste like the desal plants ought to be vetted and the perpetrators ought to be held to account. To simply argue that we can’t talk about the political failures because they were based on (claimed) valid science is naive, to use the least evocative description.

      • Nick says:

        Pointing out Bolt’s many failings is constructive. And at heart,it’s speaking truth to power. It is also important to detail the frankly mind-boggling numbers of fallacies he can cram into one paragraph. His point missing is deliberate,of course,and wrapping his mendacity in the flag of free expression is particularly scurrilous.

        Bolt raised Plimer’s book as an alleged sign that sceptical voices were at last being heard,having allegedly been suppressed. This Boltian framing is codswallop from start to finish. Plimer has never been muzzled,and enjoys prominence from an often useful engagement with the science/public interface over three decades. The book has been available for four years,so the ‘at last’ framing is just laughable,and the sales figures and thus popularity claims are seen in a more realistic light.

        The egregious errors in Plimers book are important,because Bolt attempts to present the book as a sceptical offering. It is no such thing,it’s a polemical screed that needs to mess with the science in order to support its arguments,a bit like parts of the Bible need to invent magical explanations. And again,Plimer was never muzzled.

        In fact anti-AGW publications are abundant,freely available,and have been ‘at last’ available over the last two decades! Another laughable Bolt Fact bites the dust.

        And,Mark,the only agenda I have is to get the fundamentals sorted out,and give the truth an airing,before we can even realistically disagree about effects and policy. Getting background facts straight is not a matter of politics,it’s just necessary for simple functioning.

        Bolt has no part in any discussion because he fails to get his fundamentals right,and until he does,his failures must be made known.

        So,Mark,can you argue that Plimer is/was a sceptical voice muzzled? The truth could set you free.

      • Mark says:

        “Plimer has never been muzzled”

        Well there you go. Of course, no one, not me,not Bolt’s article, not anyone that I’m aware of claimed that he was muzzled, but don’t let mere facts get in the way of your polemics. Normally I’d expect some acknowledgement of the error but I won’t hold my breathe.

        The point, for the umpteenth time, is that the popularity and public acceptance of Plimer, GGWS, and sites like WUWT shows that people are now more open to the sceptic view as compared to the height of the scare and therefore this is another indicator of the demise of the scare.

        It doesn’t strike me as a difficult concept to understand. But alas…

      • Nick says:

        Don’t be an idiot,Mark. I’m looking at what Bolt wrote right now.

        This is under “10: Sceptical scientists are now getting a hearing”,which Bolt colours with…”that’s how hard it was for sceptical scientists to get a hearing”…and “That wall is now breaking”…and “Dissent is now being heard”….now is telling us what?

        If they are only now ‘getting a hearing’,surely Bolt is implying that they have been generally muzzled until now?
        In the real world,ex-Bolt’s fantasy planet, Plimer has been getting a hearing on climate change for a decade,and published his faux-science book 4 years ago.

        Again, lashings of dissenting literature have been in existence for a good while…and News Ltd have gone out of their way to give ‘sceptical’ voices a hearing that they routinely deny real sceptics and scientists,having sacked their science -degreed science journalists and set off on their campaign against rationality.

        Did I mention the orchestrated muggings of Flannery,Williams,Gore and Hansen? I can do it again if you want…. that sure is some kind of hearing that sceptical voices give themselves in Australia’s dominant media player!

        They also push IPA scribblers and have given arch-‘sceptic’ dissenter Jo Codling a few runs…sceptical voices so very,very unheard…it’s a tragedy how loud silenced ‘sceptics’ are. LOL.

        Sure, Bolt never claimed literally that Plimer was personally muzzled…geez,you’re sharp this morning!

        Bolt point was never that ‘the popularity and public acceptance of people like Plimer’ is showing that ‘people are now more open to sceptic views’….Bolt claimed that AGW scepticism/dissent was unheard,behind a wall. That’s the ‘point’ of point number 10!! Pure rhetoric and pure bullshit. Polemically strong and intellectually weak.

        Read and comprehend,man!

      • john byatt says:

        Mark “Well there you go. Of course, no one, not me,not Bolt’s article, not anyone that I’m aware of claimed that he or any other sceptic scientists were muzzled”

        great Mark,, go out into the world and spread the news

      • Mark says:

        If Bolt wanted to argue that sceptic voices were being muzzled, he would have said so. He’s not exactly a shrinking violet in that regard.

        I’m well aware that there are lots of dissenting voices – I’ve been seeking them out since the early 90s.

        But until recently people generally weren’t open to listening to those dissenting voices. No one was stopping them from speaking, but few were listening. But now people are willing, even anxious, to listen and 100 flowers can bloom (I know you like that Marxist jargon!).

        That’s all that was meant. The walls have come down and the voices, that were always there, are now being heard and listened to.

        But I guess its always possible to impute another meaning if you so desire.

      • Nick says:

        “If Bolt wanted to argue that sceptical voices were being muzzled…” he might have written something like ’10: Sceptical scientists are now getting a hearing’ in a piece called “Signs That Warming Scare Is All Hot Air”….oh wait,HE DID!…Coincidence or what!!

        Your desire to avoid acknowledging the length of Pinnochio Bolt’s nose is indeed strong…overwhelming,even.

        You’re reading to much into Bolt’s ‘meanings’…he is simply running some more chum up the rhetorical flagpole and seeing what he can get away with. In the News Ltd panic-room he gets away with any amount of invention. No one notices it there because they are busy conducting war against the ABC,and beating up their own fantasies on the economy,the divinity of enterpreneurialism and the shining success of neo-liberalism.

  10. rational troll says:

    Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed: the 20th highest grossing documentary in history. OH MY GOD!!!!!!! Evolution hysteria is now a thing of the past, the creationists are finally being heard… Sure, we might all be evolving, but i can’t see it so let’s all just believe in God and Jeebus so we can keep on hating gays and Muslims, Jews, Obama and pretty much anyone else we think God would have hated… Analogies are fun!

    And a hundred flowers can bloom? Really? You really believe there’s some orchestrated campaing to expose those secretly harbouring a disbelief in climate change?

  11. rational troll says:

    Someone once wrote, “It doesn’t strike me as a difficult concept to understand. But alas…” Now, I would be more inclined to puncuate the conjunction with a comma, rather than… Oh wait, that was you.

    The Expelled rubbish was popular, kind of like Heaven and Earth
    Both claim to be “scientific,” but have been widely criticised by the scientific community
    Both have been embraced by conservatives
    Both contain egregious errors and misrepresentations
    Both are used to justify a political ideology
    Both have been used as evidence of some non-existant turning point in science

    The point is, just because something is popular, doesn’t mean it’s conclusions are based in reality. People are unbelievably fucking stupid, we’ll pretty much believe anything that fits our preconceived notions of the world (myself incuded, why else would I be wasting my time commenting on a blog at 2300 when I could be watching porn). 40 000 copies, ha! The Secret sold something like 10 million copies, are you going to go outside and ask the universe to scrub all traces of the Direct Action Plan from the Liberal party policy?

    Anyway… Your hundred flowers reference still doesn’t make sense.

    • Mark says:

      The 100 flower comment was just poking fun at Nick who’d previously used some old Marxist jargon. Mao had once talked of letting 100 flowers bloom.

      As to Expelled, I have no comment…never seen it, not interested.

      But, for the who knows how many times, I’m not, repeat not, saying Plimer’s book’s popularity shows, proves or in any way indicates its accuracy. I’m just saying it shows that the topic of scepticism toward the great myth is now popular.

      When Daly released “The Greenhouse Trap” (an infinitely better book than Plimer’s) back in the early 1990’s, it sold a couple of 1000. The reason, in my view, was that people weren’t interested in scepticism at that time because most had bought the AGW story. Had Plimer come out in say 2005 at the height of the scare, it again wouldn’t have been too popular.

      The fact that it was popular in the late 2000s shows only one thing, in my view, being that the people were prepared, even anxious, to hear an alternative to the sort of story being pushed at them by the likes of Gore.

      It doesn’t show that Plimer was right, it doesn’t show that scepticism is right. It just shows that people wanted to hear an alternative. And that’s why Bolt called it one of the indicators of the myth’s decline.

      • Nick says:

        In the 1990s,’scepticism’ as a weekend pastime for amateurs did not exist. Daly,bless his deluded heart, was a forerunner of the citizen ‘sceptic’. It’s probably more that the internet was barely up,rather than folks were not interested…only the most motivated nutters battled the communication problems. Nowadays it’s one more online sport.

        In the 1990s,’scepticism’ was professional and small, just the rump of the tobacco disinformers, actual degreed scientists who saw a buck in it,and whose conservative market fundamentalist philosophies and experience at the science/industry interface made them a good fit for shilling.

        Had Plimer come out in 2005 ‘at the height of the scare’ [groan] he would have struggled more because News Ltd had not completely surrendered its journalistic integrity. Nowadays…. the real scare [we’ll ruin the economy if we decarbonise], well established by News Ltd at the behest of the FF industry and its shareholders in the COALition and Labor, Plimers nonsense is part of the perception management process. Bolt of course has been playing his part inverting the truth.

      • Mark says:

        News Ltd this, News Ltd that. I guess you chaps need to put a face to the supposed enemy.

        Are you aware that Murdoch is actually with you? Since 2006 he’s been on the side of the world signing a newer better Kyoto style agreement and believes that,even if the science isn’t finalised, we need to give “the planet the benefit of the doubt” by reducing CO2 emissions.

        Although I’m sure I’m about to find out from the geniuses here who can read between the lines much better than they can read the actual lines that, when Murdoch called for the planet to be given the benefit of the doubt, this was a nod and a wink to conservatives that we should rape and pillage the environment so as to increase News’ share price, spewing out CO2 like there’s no tomorrow.

      • Nick says:

        Don’t be melodramatic,Mark. News Ltd’s presence as a nonsense peddler is well understood;it’s just a matter of reading their take,going to the sources and comparing. Unsurprisingly they do what amateur and professional shills do: quote-mine to spin.

        Read the lines,there’s nothing in between. If a News journo misrepresents a science paper,it’s not hard to figure out . As to motives,well the more often they do it–and they do it very often– the less likely it’s due to simple incompetence,and more like an operating model.

        Murdoch’s personal greenwash is irrelevant.

    • john byatt says:

      Love how he never commits to anything except that AGW is a myth,

      have not been here often in the last month, has Mark ever committed to any reason for global warming ?

      what is his position, does he even have one ?

    • Nick says:

      Just for Mark,who may not have opened the link,and who has trouble understanding the meaning of ‘now’ in The Thunderings of Father Bolt verse 10: the paper notes,in the course of its exploration of the links between conservative think tanks and CC denial publications that it found 108 climate change denial books published in 2010……

    • john byatt says:

      A perfect example of a layman’s book lacking any understanding

      “On the dominant greenhouse gas
      [Flannery says in The Weather Makers], “Earth’s thermostat is a complex and delicate mechanism, at the heart of which lies carbon dioxide.” If Earth does indeed have a thermostat, the heart of it has to be water – vast quantities of it. It takes more energy to raise the temperature of one gram of water by 1 degree than of any other common substance. The massive oceans, glaciers and lakes, comprising over 70 percent of the Earth’s surface, stabilise Earth’s temperature. Water vapour, the dominant greenhouse gas, forms reflective clouds, precipitates as rain and transfers enormous quantities of heat vertically and horizontally around the planet. Compared to water in all its forms, carbon dioxide is a small peripheral player”

      • Nick says:

        B-b-but,John..that publication cannot exist!!. Andrew Bolt decreed that only ‘now’ was dissent being heard!

    • Denial becomes more shrill as the evidence for AGW accumulates.

  12. roymustard says:

    If Bolt wanted to argue that sceptic voices were being muzzled, he would have said so. He’s not exactly a shrinking violet in that regard.

    Actually he is. A regular Bolt tactic is to make tacit little insinuations and let his fans read between the lines. Technically he never wrote that Plimer had been muzzled, because that would be a lie. But it’s heavily implied that Plimer was somehow muzzled, and that’s extremely misleading.

    Are skeptics being heard? They might be making more noise but in reality I’ve found the public base their climate beliefs more or less on the weather. We’re one medium sized El Nino away from global warming to come roaring back into mainstream public consciousness and I’ve seen how that scares the shit out of most fake sceptics over at Watts. That global temperatures are only slightly cooler than 1998 without any El Nino to speak of should be worrying to everyone.

    • Mark says:

      Ahhh, got it. He doesn’t actually say it because it’d be wrong, but everyone knows that’s what he really meant. Clear as mud.

      Here’s an alternate view. People who dislike Bolt can’t find in the actual words anything to attack, so they impute other completely bizarre meanings and then attack him for saying what he didn’t say.

      “We’re one medium sized El Nino away from global warming”.
      So let’s see if I’ve got this straight. Man-made global warming will be again in the public mind the very next time a natural event causes temperatures to rise.

      • rational troll says:

        No, you haven’t got it straight. I’d hate to see you hang a painting.

      • john byatt says:

        ” the very next time a natural event causes temperatures to rise”

        yet they claim that the natural event la nina which causes more of the heat to go into the ocean is a furphy

        they are morons, no doubt about it

      • Nick says:

        Oh crap, Mark…”can’t find in [Bolt’s] actual words anything to attack…” You are clearly illiterate,really. Imputing a ‘completely bizarre meaning’ from “the wall is finally breaking”???? Are you insane,the clear implication is that they were effectively muzzled/unheard until ‘now’!!

        Bolt insisted that ‘sceptics’ were only ‘now’ being heard! When the simple truth,FFS, is that the ratbags have had a prominent,increasingly disproportionate voice in News Corp op-eds around the world for the best part of a decade. Bolt himself,with his high profile,has been linking to ‘sceptical’ ineptitude for years…it’s all on the f**king record!!

        Whatever that media dynamic,real science disputing AGW as a theory is absent. As ever science itself is refining the understanding through functional scepticism,not dysfunctional gainsaying and data exclusion.

        When do you concede that you are utterly without support in your construct? There is nothing ambiguous about Bolt’s meaning, maybe the audacity of the untruth has thrown you…

        As Roy indicates,’scepticism’ [pseudo-scepticism] is on the wane publicly. That is evidenced by the falling ratings for Watts,Climate Audit and others,as boredom with their limited repetitious snark sets in and the New Ice Age stubbornly fails to materialise..

        Amusingly, this comes at a time when News Corp is quickening the disinformation,but there are other dynamics in that [instructions from lobbyists/advertisers, drastic reshaping of the media with internet penetration, decline of journalistic standards and resources,and the irresistible topical crapping on that comes from one cold month in spring in part of the NH]

        I guarantee you that News Ltd blog audiences,never large,are in decline,too.

      • Michael says:

        Is Mark taking over from Eric as the resident idiot?

      • roymustard says:

        Here’s an alternate view. People who dislike Bolt can’t find in the actual words anything to attack, so they impute other completely bizarre meanings and then attack him for saying what he didn’t say.

        Open your eyes, Mark. Bolt’s modus opendi is to throw out snide insinuations as chum for his feral readership, worded carefully to maintain plausible deniability. The implication made was that Plimer was muzzled and wasn’t being heard. Obviously this is wrong and you have failed to make a convincing case otherwise.

        Pathetically, this was the only example Bolt could find to illustrate his point – a book from four years ago. What an awful argument to defend. How terrible that you feel the need to do it, Mark.

        The whole article is based around a strawman fallacy. Pick out a few cherrypicked “scares” from 2007-2008 and pretend the case for AGW is based around them. Clearly, this is not the case and since then the science has strengthened considerably. Bolt failed to mention the Arctic ice sea as a cause for celebration against the doomsdayers – after all, he did announce in 2008 that it had rebounded and there was nothing to worry about.

        Believe this fool if your ideology dictates you must.

        So let’s see if I’ve got this straight. Man-made global warming will be again in the public mind the very next time a natural event causes temperatures to rise.

        Funny, for months now fake sceptics have been running the line that the last 16 year temperature trend is the climate signal. Now it’s all just a “natural event”. So you agree that using short term trends masked by natural forcings is a pointless indicator of climate. Spread it round to your fake skeptic chums, see how they take it.

        My point is Mark, because you are kind of slow, Mark, and need everything explained to you, Mark, is that these “natural events’ are occurring around a warming signal and it will take only a medium El Nino event to bump well over 1998. Do you deny this?

      • john byatt says:

        A wealth of input from Mark for anyone who may or may not be researching the mind of the denier

      • john byatt says:

        Then there’s The Australian newspaper which earlier this month concocted a story of a fake debate between scientists about a coming ice age.

        The newspaper quoted a Russian physicist who is a member of Principia Scientific International – a group of contrarian scientists led by a man who claims CO2 isn’t a greenhouse gas.

        A 2011 study of opinion columns appearing in The Australian found that climate change contrarians outnumbered four-to-one those authors calling for firm action to reduce fossil fuel emissions.

        I predicted a few years ago that when the Arctic hits zero ice you will read about it in the bottom right hand column on page 20 of the Australian followed a few months later by a headline that the largest ever recovery of Arctic sea ice extent has occurred, well they did the largest recovery one last year .

        Is the Australian the dumbest newspaper on the planet ?

  13. rational troll says:

    You keep saying that Pilmer book’s accuracy isn’t the axis of your argument, but rather that sceptics are being heard, I get that. My reply is, and has been, “so what?” There are plenty of crazy ideas that are being heard, ideas that are probably more popular than climate scepticism. I’ve provided you with two, but there are many, many more. Popularity doesn’t mean they should be given credence.

    You also say that in the 90’s people simply bought into the climate story, though what seems infinitely more likely is that in the 1990’s people were largely ignorant to the social and political implications of climate change. In the 90’s it was tomorrow’s problem. In the 2000’s there were a number of events that enhanced public awareness of climate change and real steps were taken to do something about it, is it any wonder that was when the sceptics began to make a noise? Where does the idea that 2005 was the peak of the scare come from? Did you just make that up?

    Do you think if the theory of evolution was confined to the realms of obscure journals that creationist films like Expelled would be so popular? (No, I don’t believe you are a creationist) When an issue like this becomes popular, the cranks all crawl out of the woodwork and people listen, because people are always prepared, even anxious to hear a story that confirms their ideological beliefs and when an issue threatens those beliefs they become even more prepared and anxious to do so.

    The hundred flowers reference is generally referred to as a ruse to flush out dissidents, if you don’t want to be painted as a conspiracy theorist, you should probably avoid writing things like that.

    • john byatt says:

      I have debated heaps of sceptics, most of them when caught out admit their mistake not this fellow,

    • Mark says:

      ” I get that. My reply is, and has been, “so what?””

      This whole thread is about how Plimer is wrong and therefore its invalid for Bolt to use him as a source to prove that AGW is over. “Selling 40,000 copies of Heaven+Earth must make Plimer’s claim about the sun true.”

      the “so what?” is that that claim is wrong and not what Bolt was arguing at all because….well I’ve explained why so often but it seems to be too hard a concept.

      • john byatt says:

        The post is (PART 4 OF 11)

        it is just one of the ten points from bolt re death of global warmism

        the whole thread is just about using plimer as one of his points to prove that global warmism is dead

        it fails if bolt believes that it is a point

      • Nick says:

        Yes,Mark,it’s true that the post concentrates on the logical fallacy of arguing that Plimer’s books modest popularity signifies something meaningful about the retreat of ‘climate hysteria the death of warmism,even that AGW is false.

        Since then we’ve eviscerated Bolt’s polemic technique, which in essence attempts an audacious inversion of reality, and pointed out, with numerous unrefuted and undisputable examples, that his claim that sceptics are only now being heard is simply dishonest. A lie.

        And we notice you cannot acknowledge any of this.

      • rational troll says:

        I’m not quite sure what you’re saying anymore. Your second paragraph is a bit incoherent and I’m not sure even if it did make sense it would accurately reflect what I’ve been saying.

        The thread is not simply about Pilmer being wrong and therefore Bolt shouldn’t use him as a source (although that would be a pretty good reason not to). It’s more about how it is illogical to use sales figures as some sort of gauge of the truth.

        I understand what you’re saying about sceptics being heard, but I don’t believe that means anything, it’s simply irrelevant. When sceptics start being heard in reputable scientific literature, rather than just in popular media, that would mean something, until then Heaven and Earth is nothing less than an inferior prequel to An Inconvenient Truth (in terms of sales at least)

  14. john byatt says:

    The Climate sceptics party, two recent posts

    1 Besides the obvious bias we have come to expect from most main stream media coverage of climate change,

    2 even the mainstream media networks no longer want to report on a global warming

    they have flip flopped like this since starting the blog

    and yes most of them are fundamentalist christians, telling lies for god

    • Nick says:

      Yes,I’ve noticed that self-contradiction from those idiots. As fake skepticism wanes,only the truly mad.illogical and stupid cling on…

      • john byatt says:

        How is this for self contradiction

        Reality check says:
        May 19, 2013 at 12:54 pm
        No, I do not agree that “humans are causing global warming”. I agree that humans contribute in some portion to global warming.

        (I do not believe humans have sufficient understanding of climate and the mechanisms involved to assign percentages of causes for climate phenomena.)

      • Nick says:

        So in summary…” ‘some portion’ includes 0%,and GW may not exist because we don’t have sufficient understanding”


  15. john byatt says:

    This will convert all the deniers?

    You cannot really dismiss it so they will just have to ignore it.

    • Interesting. I posted a comment with 4 links on that article:

      The last two graphs are redundant, and leave you vulnerable to diversions about Antarctic sea ice.

      The first paragraph of my response to Schmitt and Happer’s WSJ opinion piece refers to global land ice and global sea ice for this reason.

      Also, I shared code for these graphs. The second graph shows that even if we strap on the climate contrarians’ self-imposed blinders and stare myopically at only the surface temperatures, there still hasn’t been a statistically significant change in the rate of surface warming.

      • john byatt says:

        re surface warming, neven acknowledges that

        “And since the troposphere can be fickle and far more subject to short-term noise from natural variability, it makes the most sense to look at the parts of the system such as the oceans and cryosphere that have greater thermal inertia and are hardest to change from short-term noise. When doing this, and comparing it to the constant upward trend in CO2 emissions, the following four charts become the most salient in terms of understanding what is really happening”

        agree that more info re global sea ice and glacier ice retreat could have been included,

        would not make much difference to the sceptics no matter what was included

      • Nick says:

        From a northern hemisphere perspective,I would not say the last two graphs are redundant,but I understand what you are saying re rebutting Schmitt and Happer.

        The last two graphs are one key to weather volatility increasing in the voting heartlands of North America and Eurasia.

      • That was actually a guest post by R. Gates. But yeah, he did mention the short-term noise. I’m just trying to spread my code far and wide. 😉

        Arctic sea ice loss is certainly important for people living nearby: that’s why I share those graphs too. But in the context of increasing global heat content, decreasing global sea ice is more relevant and less vulnerable to the incessant diversions that have paralyzed our civilization.

        Here’s a shameless link to my rebuttal of Schmitt and Happer’s WSJ opinion piece.

      • john byatt says:

        Was going to ask you for your rebuttal as there are nearly 1000 replies to the wsj piece,

        reading the opinion piece i found that most laymen would not have had a clue what they were on about and only the claim of no surface warming for the last decade would have made any sense.

        so for what it is worth my reply would have been

        No surface warming?

        The ten years to August 2012 were warmer than the previous 10 years by 0.15ºC, which were warmer than the 10 years before that by 0.17ºC, which were warmer than the 10 years before that by 0.17ºC, and which were warmer than the 10 years before that by 0.17ºC

        The continuation of the linear trend from August 1975 to July 1997 , would have predicted a temperature anomaly in August 2012 of 0.524ºC. The actual temperature anomaly in August 2012 was 0.525ºC.

      • Nick says:

        “..the incessant diversions that have paralysed our civilisation”

        Interesting to contemplate that most of the opposition to accepting reality is from those who unwittingly argue that ‘civilisation’ is defined by its ability to generate ‘incessant diversion’ via unsustainable energy use…

  16. sabretruthtiger says:

    Wow, the logical fallacies mentioned are committed one thousand fold by the science-denying Global warming alarmists. Argumentum ad verecundiam and argumentum ad populum – There’s a consensus. Ummm no there isn’t and even if there was…it’s committing 2 logical fallacies.

    All the science is on the side of the skeptics, there is not one shred of evidence to support the warmists.
    No warming for 17 years despite rising CO2.
    Mediaeval Warm Period hotter than today globally with far less CO2
    No mid tropospheric hotspot proving the positive feedback amplification theory to be wrong, which could explain why observed temperatures are always at least a third of the models’ projections.
    No sea level rise increase.
    No appreciable sea temperature increase.
    Arctic ice is above the 2007 minimum.
    Antarctic ice is at record levels!
    CO2 rise lags 800 years behind temperature rise in the long term record (Vostok ice cores)


    • Bernard J. says:


      Oopsie, you’re shot yourself in the foot.

      Argumentum ad verecundiam (argument from authority) is when you say an argument is correct only on the basis the people promoting it are authorities. However, when the ‘argument’ is one that has been tested by the body of authorities in a discipline who are in competetition with each other, and where the argument has been corroborated by those qualified to do so and it has not been refuted by anyone where such refutation actually withstands expert scrutiny (which is not an argument from authority in itself), then the authority of the proponents is a verification of the argument, and not a logical fallacy.

      Argumentum ad populum is an argument that holds that a proposition is true simply because most people believe it. This is a different proposition to that where the majority of qualified experts have tested an argument in a process of scientific competition and repetition and have reached a consensus on the results.

      You’ve actually committed at least two fallacies (actually more…) yourself in your assertion – your task to see if you actually do understand logical fallacy is to identify at least two of the fallacies that you committed.

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