Arguing With Stupid People


Research shows that stupid people — people who truly are ignorant — tend to think they know far more than they do. They are also more likely to think informed people know less than they do. It’s the D-K effect and it’s rampant at both CA and WUWT and Climate Etc. If you’ve ever haunted those sites, you know what I’m talking about.

I’m always tempted to go to there and look for ‘teh stupid’ so I can mock it, but as the Twain quote says, they just bring you down to their level. Admittedly, there is a certain pleasure in mocking teh stupid, but life is short and its unnaturally warm outside. Time’s a wasting.

Instead of arguing with stupid people, I’ll instead try to point out really smart people and focus on what they say and do, in order to try to figure out what we should do.

So that’s the new me — not so much mock and snark (although I can’t promise that some won’t slip in now and then — it is my basic nature, after all) and more analysis.

I have several climate-related books on my bookshelf, including Michael Mann’s The Hockey Stick and the Climate Wars, The Honest Broker, by Pielke Jr., Storms of My Grandchildren by James Hansen, Challenged by Carbon by Bryan Lovell and Climate Wars by Gwynne Dyer.

I hope to read and provide a review for each of them in the coming weeks.

About Policy Lass

Exploring skeptic tales.

167 Responses to “Arguing With Stupid People”

  1. Argueing with people in order to change their mind is the road to an early heart attack, argue to reveal the flaws in their argument and assume a reasonably intelligent interested reader.

    We could easily come up with a list of people that will never change their minds and will shamelessly promote “Cooling since 2013”, “Arctic Ice highest since 2012” claims when the time comes.

    What’s important is not letting such things sit out in the open unchallenged where the unwary might trip and get covered in stupid.

    • I think that people who happen by those websites will only stay if they are inclined to reject the science. Those who see the sites for what they are leave pretty quickly. The ones who stay are the ones who get their pre-existing biases confirmed by what McIntyre, Watts and Curry write.

      It’s true that you can put a reasoned argument out there for those who might be open to it, but as Peter Watts wrote in the excerpt I quoted in my previous post, people are adept at denying the facts when they contradict their current opinions. I doubt there are many in those audiences who are truly open to facts and evidence that may contradict their views. I just don’t see much movement taking place among the denizens of those chum-pits.

      Those who try are certainly appreciated by the rest of us, but other than being valiant, they are probably wasting their pixels and neurons.

      I just don’t feel so certain that arguing with deniers or even trying to push the facts on websites like CA, WUWT or Climate etc. amounts to more than tilting at windmills…

      • “I think that people who happen by those websites will only stay if they are inclined to reject the science.”

        People who’ve been reading regularly for more than six months are either buying into what’s there or know better and are reading for popcorn munching entertainment value.

        People that are new to the issue don’t know any better. Maybe they googled something or read a news article that made them angry or want to find out more. What you don’t want to is to lose reasonable open minded people because they read a site like WUWT for two weeks and never saw the stuff there challenged in any way. You’d hope they’d find somewhere like skepticalscience but there’s no guarantee plus by the time knowledgeable people get to debunk things they’ve moved onto the next faux outrage.

        Odds are if someone is a hardcore Republican or Libertarian (or local equivalent) they won’t be reached. Not much that can be done about that, they’re too well primed to accept and regurgitate bullshit

        Luckily most people are not like this.

        I suspect the climate issue will remain in stalemate until the next global temperature record and the next summer heatwave affecting Western countries. Human psychology is what it is.

      • I tend to agree with sharperoo; it’s not just WUWT and the usual abode of the stupid, it’s also the endless stream of articles and blog threads on local newspapers and such. Like sharperoo, I can’t let total stupid just lie there unchallenged. It’s like a dog turd–the neighborly thing to do is to pick it up (carefully) and dispose of it. Then put up a sign “please don’t leave turds here”.

        E.g., check out (start from either oldest or newest, makes little difference–and there’s a special surprise: His Royal Arse Monckton put up a comment, a sharp spike in the row of turds…)

    • arguing*

  2. Agreed. I think part of the denier strategy is to change the focus of discussion–if it’s on arguing with them, then it’s not on the likely consequences of climate change and the positive steps we need to take to deal with it. Fortunately, Skeptical Science has taken on the role of collecting refutations, so we don’t need to spend as much time refuting and mocking (I too am guilty of this) as would otherwise be the case. Re Mark Twain, btw, there is another old saw, hmmm, I see it is from George Bernard Shaw: “I learned, long ago, never to wrestle with a pig. You get dirty, and besides, the pig likes it.”

  3. An interesting anecdote here about arguing with an intelligent man who could not face what it means for his grandchildren:

  4. You should read Pielke’s The Climate Fix instead

  5. neverendingaudit Reply April 16, 2012 at 7:42 pm

    The same goes to arguing with people in general, I suppose. But if you do enjoy dancing, it never gets that boring:

    I applaud the resolution anyway.

    Oh, and you should read whatever you have not read from Junior, because that’s what you would have needed to read to be able to criticize his position, and which you will therefore most certainly misrepresent.


    • WP’s new connecting hook is not to my liking.

    • Gavin's Pussycat Reply April 17, 2012 at 4:52 am

      > Oh, and you should read whatever you have not read from Junior,
      > because that’s what you would have needed to read to be able to
      > criticize his position, and which you will therefore most certainly
      > misrepresent.

      Been there done that, right?

      The secret for cutting Roger down to size is to play scientists with him, not lawyers. He is lousy at science and boy, does he hate to be reminded

    • One more thing coming to mind: Junior features on the Heartland Institute’s list of resident climate experts. Not anything folks I socialize with would want on their CV, and, knowing the Heartlanders, plausibly beyond Junior’s control. But. It suggests that *clarity* may be an even more urgently desirable character trait for him than *honesty*.

      Like Mahatma Gandhi said about Western civilization, “it would be a good idea” 🙂

  6. “Instead of arguing with stupid people, I’ll instead try to point out really smart people and focus on what they say and do, in order to try to figure out what we should do”

    .. which means you’ve contracted out your thinking and conclusions to others, which climatehawk1 admits to also:

    “Fortunately, Skeptical Science has taken on the role of collecting refutations, so we don’t need to spend as much time refuting and mocking (I too am guilty of this) as would otherwise be the case.”

    Mark Twain also said “Life does not consist mainly, or even largely, of facts and happenings. It consists mainly of the storm of thought that is forever flowing through one’s head.”. I’d say that “consensus” is effectively suppressing that “storm of thought” and replacing it with “defending your position”.

    • “Contracted out.” Huh. I think of it as being able to learn from the experiences and knowledge of others, without having to reinvent the wheel myself.

  7. Your premise alone — about arguing with “stupid” people — shows conclusively that you are not up to the task of arguing “on the merits”. You have conveniently pre-judged your case thusly: “I am right, and if you disagree, you are stupid”.

    Imagine a prosecutor or defense lawyer going before a court and saying that. DO YOU REALIZE WHAT HAPPENS TO ATTORNEYS WHO TRY THAT????????????????

    Back when high schools taught critical reasoning, this sort of nonsense would not have passed muster with the Debating Team.

    Today we have millions of dumb-asses who cannot make and defend a proposition without having to revert to the ad hominem.

    • Oh, wah wah — did I include you in the ‘stupid people’ category because you are a regular at WTFIUWT and now you’re all insulted?

      Stupid people can’t recognize merits of arguments, so there’s no use presenting them. It’s an exercise in futility. Read the research on D-K.

      There’s no merit at WUWT other than as part of an archaeology of knowledge. It’s just a lot of chum designed to draw sharks and pad the hit counter. Anyone who reads there to find their climate science news is stupid at worst, ignorant at best.

      If the shoe fits, you’re Cinderella.

      (Sorry Willard, I keep trying love and light but the stupid keeps snuffing out all the oxygen in the place and the flame of reason dies… and we’re left with bile)

    • Anna Keppa,

      Policy Lass thinks that argumentum ad hominen is a valid, indeed devastating, logical argument.

      If that’s all she’s got, you and I have nothing to worry about. As well as stupid, she can also call me a heretic and an infidel and an unbeliever. I love it.

      As to her scientific argument, she appears to have none – much like the Catholic Church vs Galileo, Copernicus etc.

      Now let’s consider the Laws of Thermodynamics vs Greenhouse Theory . One is correct, the other not. It is impossible for both to be. Pick your corner.

      • It appears to actual physicists that the Laws of Thermodynamics and Greenhouse Theory are firmly on the same side. Those placing it on opposite sides are even scolded by Fred Singer and Roy Spencer. Which should tell you something, if you were not such a prime example of the Dunning-Kruger effect.

      • Calling someone stupid is not argumentum ad hominem, especially if they really are dumber than a sack of spanners. For instance…

        “Now let’s consider the Laws of Thermodynamics vs Greenhouse Theory . One is correct, the other not. It is impossible for both to be.”

        Even Roy Spencer would call that dumber than a sack of spanners (but not in those actual words, I’m sure).

      • As in:

        The statement after this is a lie.
        The statement before this is true.

        In a word, nonsense. Go back and check with a real scientist. You just grabbed something that sounded clever and stated it as fact, but actually it’s quite stupid. Thermodynamics and global climate change due to heat trapping greenhouse gases are correct, but Crisp is hardly so.

    • Attention, Anna. you just used an ad hominem attack while simultaneously insulting the idea of an ad hominem attack. Reductio Absurdum.

  8. Is it your view that those who agree that carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas which probably leads to atmospheric warming on the order of 1 C per doubling of its atmospheric concentration but find that there is no convincing evidence for large positive feedbacks are either stupid or ignorant? If so, then you should be aware that your broad stroke includes Richard Lindzen, Roy Spencer, Freeman Dyson, William Happer,… .

    • oh, oh — WUWT has linked to TPL post on stupid people. Look out. Here they come…

      Lindzen, Spencer, Dyson, etc. are far from stupid. It’s the people who swallow their bilge that are stupid.

      • So these “far from stupid” people are spewing “bilge”? Could you be more explicit? Exactly what particular scientific points do you characterize as “bilge”?

        • Care to define ‘scientific points’? Cos I think we have a different set of definitions of ‘scientific’ and ‘points’ in play here…

          No, on second thought, don’t bother.

          This is a pig-wrestle-free zone.

          • I see now that you “can beat [me] by experience”. When you demonstrate the ability to employ a principled argument, I’ll rejoin the fray.

            • In case you have poor reading comprehension, my post was basically saying that I’ve given up trying to reason with or argue with so-called ‘skeptics’ because I’ve realized they aren’t honest skeptics, but stupid people. At this point in time, people who still claim the mantle of ‘climate skeptic’ are not real skeptics and probably don’t even understand what the word means.

              Those who still hold themselves out as climate skeptics at this point in time and considering the overwhelming evidence of anthropogenic climate change are one of three types — venal deniers out for personal gain, ideologues keeping their cherished ideology intact (read – libertarian extremists), and teh stupid.

              There is no chance in hell of a “principled argument’ with any of them, so don’t hold your breath on me trying.

              When I do speak about the issue, I know I’m only speaking to those who already understand.

    • yes, quite a gallery of wannabe climate scientist misfits with mud in their eyes. bullseye!

  9. “Stupid people can’t recognize merits of arguments, so there’s no use presenting them. It’s an exercise in futility. ”

    As I said, you would not survive a day in a courtroom. Make that a second, an instant.. I suspect you’ve nver had a math, science or logic course in your life.

    Am I right??

    My take is, you tried making a case at WUNT or other sites, and got your ancephalous “head” handed to you.

    There’s a huge amount of irony in calling those who offer solid evidence against AGW “denialists”:

    As the world moves away, day by day, from your Faux Apocalypic vision, and REJECTS your anthill fascist view of government needed to effectuate Climate Change Heaven, the quicker you all have progressed along Kubler-Ross’s sequence:

    It is YOU who, faced with the impending DEATH of your raison d’tre, have moved to DENIAL, and from there to ANGER.

    • If I USE enough CAPS in my POST will I look STUPID or RILLY SMART AND FORCEFUL???????????????????

      *le sigh*

      The fact you characterize the tripe posted at WUWT as “solid evidence against AGW” rather proves my point.

      The rest of your post is just so much pure WUWT that I …

      No! NO!


      • Global warming? Don’t wait up.

        Perhaps it’s comforting to believe that science is an absolute discipline: immune from fads, fanatics and frauds, untroubled by extremists, evangelists, glory-seekers and bigots. But it is not. It is as vulnerable to the vested interests and biases of its practitioners as any corporate entity or political party. Uncomfortable truths are suppressed and dubious evidence given undue prominence.

        Nowhere is this more worryingly obvious than in the science of climate change. As a field of research it has become so heavily politicised that opposing views are spoken of in terms of religion: believers and non-believers, with the accent being on the righteousness of the former and the benighted state of the latter. Those who believed scientists to be relentless seekers of the truth will have been shocked by the row sparked by a hacker (or was it a leaker) who got hold of emails sent by staff at the University of East Anglia.

        It has been claimed that the emails exchanged by members of the university’s Climate Research Unit showed statistics had been finessed using ‘tricks’ and material that didn’t fit the computer model of Climate Change presented to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) was allegedly suppressed.

        Those that hinted at the existence of this sort of activity and were pilloried by people who have everything to gain from keeping the climate-change gravy train rolling. Because that is what it has become.

        Sensationalist theories are generated by scientists who have evolved into professional alarmists who can influence the IPCC and reap rewards in research grants and fame. The trouble is that the only way to protect this position – and transmit their message of doom and gloom – is for the little coterie of climate comrades in the UK and United States to ignore geology, archaeology, history, astronomy and solar science. You see, these are all the things that don’t fit.

        The reality is that the Earth has been here before, it has been here through worse and it is still, resolutely, here today. Climate-change theory and the dire prognosis given by its proponents is just wrong.

        Look at the facts. Earth is a warm, wet, greenhouse planet. There has been ice on its surface for less than 20% of its history, and in the geological past there have been six great ice ages. Two ice ages were characterised by ice at the Equator, with sea levels rising by up to 5,000ft. That’s sea-level change!

        Five of the ice ages saw a far higher atmospheric carbon-dioxide content than at present. So carbon dioxide could not have caused past climate changes. Indeed, early Earth had 1,000 times more carbon dioxide in the atmosphere than now – yet there was no runaway “greenhouse” effect, “tipping points” or “acid oceans”.

        The initial source of the two main greenhouse gases, water vapour and carbon dioxide, was volcanoes. Water vapour is still the main greenhouse gas. Once oceans formed and life appeared, carbon was then recycled between the oceans, atmosphere, soils, life and rocks. Carbon dioxide is a plant food, not a pollutant.

        Human activity produces only 3% of the world’s carbon-dioxide emissions each year. One volcanic belch can emit as much as that in a day. Carbon dioxide has a short life in the atmosphere and is absorbed by natural processes that have been taking place for billions of years.

        At the normal past rates of absorption, even if we burned all fossil fuels on Earth, the atmospheric carbon-dioxide content would not double. In past ages it has been naturally absorbed into everything from limestone reefs to soil, rocks and living things. For example, limestone is a very common rock and contains 44% carbon dioxide.

        Dissolving carbon dioxide in ocean water has not created ocean acidity. The constant chemical reactions between ocean water and sediments and rocks on the sea floor have kept the oceans alkaline. When we run out of rocks on the sea floor, then the oceans might become acid. Don’t wait up!

        We are still in an ice age that started 34 million years ago, with the climate driven, among other things, by the Earth’s orbit, the Sun, oceans and volcanoes. It is vital to remember that time, in a geological sense, is a far broader canvas than any of the detailed vignettes upon which the prophets of doom would have us focus.

        There have been long periods of warm times during this current ice age, yet the ice sheets did not melt. They waxed and they waned, as ice sheets still do today.

        Ancient climates can be revealed by drilling deep into the Antarctic ice for samples of what was snow thousands of years ago. These show climate cycles have a temperature peak at least 800 years before the peak in carbon dioxide. Climate change evangelists who insist that carbon dioxide drives climate change have turned the truth on its head – the rise in atmospheric carbon-dioxide content followed rather than heralded temperature increases.

        Climate is cyclical. The current cycles follow a pattern of about 90,000 years of highly variable glacial conditions followed by around 10,000 years of benign interglacial conditions. The current interglacial period started more than 12,000 years ago. We are due another glaciation. At the end of the last glaciation, temperature fluctuated wildly. At one time there was a 15°C natural temperature rise in 20 years. Now THAT is global warming. Yet still, humans thrived.

        The peak of the current interglacial was 6,000 years ago when the sea level was almost an inch higher than now and temperatures were 5°C higher than at present. The rate and amount of temperature change at present is no different to past times. Sea levels rose by 2cm per year between 12,000 and 6,000 years ago – still part of the present interglacial – a degree of change far greater than anything observed today.

        During the last glaciation, land loaded with ice sank. That land is now rising. For example, Scotland and Wales are rising and eastern England is sinking. During the last glaciation, people walked from Europe to England, from Russia to Alaska and from Papua New Guinea to Tasmania. The English Channel was a river.

        During previous interglacials, coral reefs and other life thrived. Each time sea level rose, coral atolls expanded. This may be startling to those fed a diet of climate change by scaremongers, but it is not new: Charles Darwin was writing about it in 1842.

        There have been smaller-scale climate changes in the present interglacial. Some are cyclical and driven by solar, ocean, tidal and orbital cycles. Others, such as volcanically driven changes, are random.

        Life thrived during warm times and life suffered in cool times. Great civilisations collapsed when it was cool.
        It was so hot during the 600-year-long ‘Roman warming’ that grapes were grown as far north as Hadrian’s Wall. Sea levels did not rise and polar ice did not vanish. Some Alpine glaciers disappeared, only to appear later. The cold Dark Ages followed: starvation, rampant disease and massive depopulation occurred.

        A 400-year warm period followed. The Vikings grew barley and wheat, and raised cattle and sheep in parts of Greenland that are now uninhabitable. During this ‘medieval warming’, there was so much excess wealth generated from generations of reliable harvests that the great monasteries, cathedrals and universities were built. Yet sea levels did not rise and the ice sheets were not lost. And, significantly, humans could not have driven the Roman and medieval warmings by carbon-dioxide emissions, as there was no industry.

        The Little Ice Age followed. There was famine, disease and depopulation. Ice fairs were held on the Thames up until the 1820s. The Little Ice Age ended in 1850. It is no wonder that temperature has increased in the past 150 years – this is what happens after a cold period.

        The temperature increase was not even. There was warming from 1860 to 1880, cooling from 1880 to 1910, warming from 1910 to 1940, cooling from 1940 to 1976, warming from 1976 to 1998 and now cooling from 1998.
        Each warming period was at the same rate. It was only during the warming from 1976 to 1998 that carbon dioxide increased in parallel with temperature – all other modern warmings and coolings show no relationship to carbon dioxide.

        This is the reality, these are the vacillations of the evocative story of our ever-changing planet derived from observation, measurement and experiment.

        Why is this story contrary to what we hear? Because sensationalism is so much more lucrative. A climate catastrophe was provided for an anxious public by scientists who had everything to gain by frightening us. They put forward an ideology that is blind fundamentalism, unrelated to scientific facts. Politicians build new bureaucracies and pose as environmental saviours without ever having to face the consequences of their actions. Heads must roll. Meanwhile, the planet will do what it has always done: change.

        • Excellent history of climate. And consistant with my readings on the subject.


        • Ah, the Gish Gallop (eerily reminding me of Ian Plimer). Aggregating so much disinformation in one post, you spend hours and hours dissembling each point, which is then ignored and another point is added.

          But I’ll take one anyway: Mt Pinatubo’s eruption in 1991, one of those volcano eruptions which supposedly can emit as much CO2 in one day as humans in a whole year, had NO effect on any of the atmospheric CO2 emissions performed in several places in the world. Wait, let me correct that: it had the *opposite* effect: CO2 was slighly lower than would be expected from the trend. Now, surely, if such an eruption can emit so much CO2 on a daily basis, we’d be able to see it in our measurements. But no such luck. Estimates of total emissions for Mt Pinatubo were about 0.05 Gt CO2. That’s what humans emit in half a day. That’s right, one HUGE volcano eruption, over several days, and half a day of human emissions already emit more CO2.

          Your misinformation has been corrected so many times already, the fact that you still throw it around shows you a prime example of “teh stupid”. Although one also should seriously consider whether it is not “teh malicious”. Deliberately repeating memes you KNOW are wrong, but which can easily fool those who have not had the pleasure of being exposed to the devastating rebuttal.

        • This is when I wish we had the “marquee” tag still available in the formatting function, because this comment deserves to be surrounded in marquee lights, blinking with arrows pointing and and maybe even horns and bells and whistles announcing its existence.

        • Wow, Sasha you did good. Brill. A remarkably complete refutation in a few words of the world’s latest and possibly unbelievably, silliest religion ever invented, and that’s saying something. Unfortunately as we know, once true believers have been struck by a heavenly vision, reason, rationality, perception and common sense fly out the window and blind faith takes over … augmented by substantial research grants on occasion.

      • I am one of those stupid people who is a skeptic.

        In my case I have looked for actual evidence and have been unable to find “solid evidence” that CO2 is causing dangerous climate change.

        Can you show us some solid evidence that CO2 is causing dangerous climate change. (We both know that correlation is not evidence of causation and we both know that weather is highly variable as evidenced by extremes like the mediaeval warm period and little ice age, and we both know that the weather must have been warmer when the Vikings farmed Greenland than it is now, and we both know that, contrary to what he said, Al Gore’s ice cores show temperature rise occurring BEFORE CO2 rise.) So what is the evidence that convinced you that man’s CO2 is causing dangerous warming?


        • Jim Karlock, correlation with a causative explanation (as in: we know the radiative properties of CO2, we can even measure it from space) is what we have. You may also want to read up on Milankovitch cycles and how those can explain the initial warming (for a few decades/centuries, depending on the cycle), but not the continuing warming for the remaining millenia. There, CO2 and the various feedbacks provide the explanation.

  10. But wait! But waIt! Anyone who offers a contrary point of view , especially one supported by data, is “stupid”!!! Don’t you see?

    Such an easy, lazy shortcut to avoid having to argue on the merits!

    Computer models, OTOH, are Gospel — even though their controlled parameters are not “experiments”, and their results are not “data”.

    (but I think all this flies over the head of our “policy lass:”, who could not argue herself out of a Chinese Finger Puzzle.)

    • “But wait! But waIt! Anyone who offers a contrary point of view , especially one supported by data, is “stupid”!!! Don’t you see?”

      Ignoring the exclamation marks: show us your data.

  11. Stoat,

    You are both pompous and arrogant. On the positive side you are also young and immature so there is a chance that you will stumble upon wisdom later in life.

  12. toni arco,

    Good arguments but don’t hold your breath while awaiting a reasoned response.

  13. Policy Lass, you say

    “Please use evidence to back up your assertions — credible evidence in peer reviewed science is preferable.”

    I contend that the greenhouse gas theory is an unproven worthless hypothesis.

    Peer reviewed evidence to back my assertion.

    Falsification Of the atmospheric CO2 greenhouse effects within the frame Of Physics” by Gerhard Gerlich and Ralf D. Tscheuschner; International Journal of Modern Physics B, Vol. 23, No. 3 (2009) pages 275-364.

    Click to access 0707.1161v4.pdf

    Scrutinizing the atmospheric greenhouse effect and its climatic impact
    Full Text(PDF, 8186KB) PP.971-998 DOI: 10.4236/ns.2011.312124
    Gerhard Kramm, Ralph Dlugi

    • “Now let me turn to the deniers. One of their favorite arguments is that the greenhouse effect does not exist at all because it violates the Second Law of Thermodynamics — i.e., one cannot transfer energy from a cold atmosphere to a warmer surface. It is surprising that this simplistic argument is used by physicists, and even by professors who teach thermodynamics. One can show them data of downwelling infrared radiation from CO2, water vapor, and clouds, which clearly impinge on the surface. But their minds are closed to any such evidence.”

      From the “alarmist” called Fred Singer.

      Well done, Bryan, you put yourself in a place which even Fred Singer shuns like the plague.

      • Marco says

        “greenhouse effect does not exist at all because it violates the Second Law of Thermodynamics — i.e., one cannot transfer energy from a cold atmosphere to a warmer surface.”

        I gave two links to peer reviewed articles which indeed say that greenhouse effect does not exist at all because it violates the Second Law of Thermodynamics — i.e., one cannot spontaneously transfer HEAT from a colder object to a warmer object.

        Both articles reminded us of the second law of thermodynamics formulated by Clausius.

        Marco on the other hand is one of the stupid ignorant people who does not know the difference between heat and energy.

        Although the article would imply that it is pointless communicating with Marco, I am ever hopeful that rational debate is worthwhile.

        So for Marco and others who are a bit weak in their knowledge of thermodynamics.

        Between two objects at different temperatures;

        1. Radiation is transferred in both directions.
        2. Energy is transferred in both directions.
        3. Heat can only be transferred spontaneously from a higher to a lower temperature object.
        That is only in one direction.

        • I agree with you – radiation is not heat, so the Second Law cannot apply. Marco and others like the “Sky Dragons” twist and distort science to fit their “head in the sand” take on the subject. They are an extremist minority, and are largely ignored. They are like the “emperor with no clothes”, but continue to argue how the cloth was woven and how it can possibly keep him warm. I’ve annoyed many by debunking some of their pseudo-science, but truth is more important than keeping such people as “friends”.

          The real argument is on the scale of the hypothesised changes and their effects, and on that subject, the science is not “settled” at all.

          • Mostlyharmless, it appears you lack reading comprehension. The people who claim the Greenhouse effect violates the Second Law of thermodynamics are those cited by Bryan. If you yourself claim the Second Law does not even apply, you might just want to educate Gerlich, Tscheuschner, Kramm and Dlugi on that point, because they wrote papers claiming not only that the Second Law applies, but also that it is violated.

            Since Bryan agrees with Gerlich, Tscheuschner, Kramm and Dlugi, it appears you are a typical Wattsian: you attack someone simply because you believe his point of view does not agree with yours, and hence that the person he responds to is your friend…

            • Marco claims that

              “Gerlich, Tscheuschner, Kramm and Dlugi have said that energy cannot be transferred from a colder to a hotter substance spontaneously.”

              I have provided him with links to both their peer reviewed papers.

              Perhaps he will point out where in the papers this preposterous claim is made?

              Or will he like an ignorant person simply buzz off.

              Wait and see!!!!

            • I’ll ignore your insult about my reading comprehension, and don’t label my views or my reading matter without knowing what they are – who’s “lacking reading comprehension” now?

              The Second Law deals directly with entropy, not heat or energy. It is expressed in many ways, for example the Clausius expression
              “The entropy of an isolated system not in equilibrium will tend to increase over time, approaching a maximum value at equilibrium.”

              First, the Earth/atmosphere system is not an isolated system. Even if it was, or could be considered to be closed (if input & output are equal), any component of heat or energy flow in the system needn’t obey the Second Law. The “Slayers” now admit the effect of the cooler atmosphere is to slow the rate of cooling of the surface, and even that the amount of slowing is calculated by Stefan-Boltzmann, but argue that the mechanism of the slowing is not what it’s claimed to be. If that’s not arguing about irrelevancies, I don’t know what is. I don’t “attack people” I criticise their arguments or their lack of evidence. If that point of view is reasoned, and based on good science, he’s entitled to it, and I’m entitled to disagree, also based on reason and logic and science.

              I’m certainly not a “Wattsian” as you put it (labelling without knowledge or facts again) – there’s an awful lot of rubbish and irrelevancies spouted in the comments on that blog. I used to be a regular reader, and less frequent commenter, but it’s lately become just a kind of “Twitter” blog where commenters “have their say” to get their name or handle on the most popular sceptical site on the ‘net. There’s little in the way of interactive dialogue or argument there now, yet this thread is steaming. I’d suggest we put our feelings on one side and continue the argument in a more civilised fashion. While I may disagree with you in particular, I’ll concede that you’ve at least given the subject some thought, unlike those on both sides who let others do their thinking for them.

              • Hi mostlyharmless

                I agree with your civilised rational approach to the climate discussion.
                Marco does not realise that you ( I guess) are closer to the IPCC position than I am.

                Proceeding from a physics framework its clear that many commentators on both sides of the discussion find themselves outside well established principles and laws.

                I try to keep both sides back on track and I think you do the too.

                All my comments about ignorant and stupid people are’ tongue in cheek ‘ in response to the tread headline.

                I am exactly of the opposite persuasion.

                One truism I subscribe to is , the only stupid question is the one that is not asked!

        • You are arguing a strawman (and so did Gerlich and Tscheuschner, and Kramm and Dlugi). The Greenhouse Effect does not talk about spontaneous transfer of HEAT from a colder body to a hotter body. But I noticed Steve Carson (Scienceofdoom) has tried to educate you on the topic, but found himself faced with someone who simply was incapable of learning. Further discussion is useless with someone who argues a strawman.

          • Marco

            ” The Greenhouse Effect does not talk about spontaneous transfer of HEAT from a colder body to a hotter body.”

            But read your own comment above!!!

            You said ENERGY rather than HEAT!

            Is this the kind of confusion that Policy Lass identified with a stupid person?

            • It’s not my own comment, it is a quote from Fred Singer.

              And if you do not disagree with that statement, which you appear not to do, what’s the problem?

              Well, the problem is that Gerlich and Tscheuschner *directly* claim that radiation cannot affect the temperature of the ground. As Steve Carson also pointed out, Kramm and Dlugi, despite claiming to be in agreement with Gerlich and Tscheuschner, contradict that fundamental claim of G&T.

              Not that I think any of this makes any dent in your beliefs. Steve Carson tried to explain the basics to you many, many times, but you just kept on repeating the same talking points. Since I expect the same to happen here, it’s better to just leave you alone.

              • Marco

                You said above that problem is that Gerlich, Tscheuschner, Kramm and Dlugi said that energy cannot be transferred from a colder to a warmer surface spontaneously.

                Any intelligent person can read your post.

                I have provided links to the papers and asked you to substantiate your statement.

                Any intelligent and polite person would expect you to withdraw this groundless allegation if you cannot substantiate it.

                Any intelligent person will note that you are squirming, changing the subject frequently.

                Only an ignorant stupid person thinks that this will convince a neutral reader.

                • Bryan, I know you got a bit upset at SoD, because you could not prove any of your claims, and had your dear friends G&T and K&D shown for what they are: cranks. Since your behavior there amounted to “lalalalalala, I don’t want to hear it, you are wrong”, there’s really no use to discuss any of this with you. Fact remains that G&T and K&D contradict each other, that G&T claim that radiation from a cold surface cannot warm a warm surface, and that the latter in essence comes down to claiming that energy cannot be transferred from a colder to a warmer surface.

                  The neutral reader who knows thermodynamics will read scienceofdoom and wonder how G&T ever got that crap published (being a publishing scientists, I can tell you how, but you will not like it). Similarly, they’d wonder how K&D’s complaint about one figure in one textbook somehow invalidates a whole field. In fact, the neutral reader would think that K&D apparently lack evidence if they need to resort to such complaints, and that they are attempting to fool naive people.

                  • Marco you said above that the two papers I linked claimed

                    ” one cannot transfer energy from a cold atmosphere to a warmer surface. ”

                    Several times you have been asked where in the papers this absurd claim is made.

                    Instead of substantiating your claim you seek to distract readers by switching to threads on other sites and further groundless accusations.

                    You fool no-one by yourself.

                    This butterfly tendency you display, with an inability to concentrate, is not a hallmark of an intelligent person.
                    If you cannot back up your own chosen accusation how can anyone respect any other point you are trying to make

                    • It’s implicit in the claim that the greenhouse effect violates the second law of thermodynamics, and in their insistance in only looking at unidirectional heat flows. In reality, we all know (yes, probably you too), that the greenhouse effect does not claim there is a *net* heat flow from atmosphere to surface, and that it is the latter that Gerlich & Tscheuschner attack (and Kramm & Dlugi by proxy in attempting to support G&T).

                      It’s the same behavior as creationists attacking evolution, claiming it violates the second law. In doing so, they *directly* claim the sun does not exist.

                    • Marco implies that there are two heat flows in a radiative interaction between two objects at different temperatures.
                      Marco it appears has no idea of the difference between the terms ‘heat’ and ‘radiation’ is the kindest interpretation I can make of his comment.
                      A clear understanding of the terms ‘energy’,’work’,’heat’ and ‘radiation’ is required before you can begin to understand the second law.
                      It would help Marco if he would work through the Carnot Cycle highlighted in any undergraduate physics text
                      Because of this confusion of terms Marco (inadvertently perhaps) is giving the impression of ignoring the second law of thermodynamics.

                    • Some continue to use the term NET HEAT for a two way radiative exchange.
                      This is wrong but understandable as some commenting on climate science are in a muddle about what exactly the difference is between heat, energy, work and radiation.

                      There is no heat flow from colder to hotter object!

                      1. There is a two way radiative exchange
                      2. There is a two way energy exchange
                      3. But there is only a one way heat transfer.

                      Carnot and Clausius were practical men who thought about the most efficient way to extract work from a heat engine.
                      They found that work (such as a moving piston output) can only be obtained with a high temperature source and a low temperature sink.

                      Use this as the test to see if an energy transfer qualifies as being HEAT.

                      1. For a complete cycle extract energy at a higher temperature source do work then dump unused energy to lower temperature sink.
                      This is a HEAT TRANFER and happens all the time!

                      2. From colder to hotter object, spontaneously extract energy do work and dump unused energy to higher temperature sink NEVER HAPPENS.

                      So this energy transfer CANNOT be called HEAT.

                      So if HEAT can only BE transferred spontaneously in one direction why do some still insist in calling it NET?

                      Gerhard Kramm has recommended some thermodynamics textbooks.
                      I would add ‘Heat and Thermodynamics’ by Zemansky; this book has the distinction of being the only textbook recommended by Feynman in his three volume lecture notes.

                    • There we go, Bryan arguing semantics. If you agree that radiation goes both ways, you are starting to grasp the basic concept of the greenhouse effect. Now you only have to accept that this radiation does not care whether it falls on a surface that is warmer or colder than the place it originates from: it can be absorbed and thereby heat the surface. Something that apparently, according to Gerlich & Tscheuschner, contradicts physics. There is no other interpretation of their claim that the greenhouse effect violates the second law of thermodynamics.

                    • Marco says

                      “There we go, Bryan arguing semantics.”

                      The difference between radiation, heat, energy and work is not semantics.

                      Its what the second law is all about.

                      If your too lazy to read a thermodynamics book then all my patient explanations are wasted.

                      Marco says

                      “Now you only have to accept that this radiation does not care whether it falls on a surface that is warmer or colder than the place it originates”

                      Who says something different?
                      Certantly not Gerlich & Tscheuschner Kramm and Dlugi !

                      There is no shortcuts to actually reading their papers for yourself.

                      I have asked you repeatedly to point out in the papers where your odd claims come from.

                      I can link the papers again if you have any problems accessing them.

  14. I just thought I drop by (From WUWT) and just to show there are no hard feelings I brought you some fudge.

    Solution 1: FUDGE the issue. Just accept that we are Fast-trackers and can therefore get away with anything.
    In the TAR, the latter never comes into it in their analysis (i.e., the ‘derivation’ of the GSIC formula) — but my point is that it *does* come in by accident due to the quadratic FUDGE factor. The total volume range is 5-32cm, which is, at the very least, inconsistent with other material in the chapter (see below). 5cm is clearly utterly ridiculous.
    Email 5054, Colin Harpham, UEA, 2007
    I will press on with trying to work out why the temperature needs a ‘FUDGE FACTOR’ along with the poorer modelling for winter.
    Email 1461, Milind Kandlikar, 2004
    With GCMs the issue is different. Tuning may be a way to FUDGE the physics. For example, understanding of clouds or aerosols is far from complete – so (ideally) researchers build the “best” model they can within the constraints of physical understanding and computational capacity. Then they tweak parameters to provide a good approximation to observations. It is this context that all the talk about “detuning” is confusing. How does one speak of “detuning” using the same physical models as before? A “detuned” model merely uses a different set of parameters that match observations – it not hard to find multiple combinations of parameters that give the similar model outputs (in complex models with many parameters/degrees of freedom) So how useful is a detuned model that uses old physics? Why is this being seen as some sort of a breakthrough?
    Email 1047, Briffa, 2005
    We had to remove the reference to “700 years in France” as I am not sure what this is , and it is not in the text anyway. The use of “likely” , “very likely” and my additional FUDGE word “unusual” are all carefully chosen where used.
    Email 723, Elaine Barrow, UEA, 1997
    Either the scale needs adjusting, or we need to FUDGE the figures…
    Briffa_sep98 code
2.6,2.6,2.6]*0.75 ; fudge factor
if n_elements(yrloc) ne n_elements(valadj) then message,’Oooops!’

    you enjoy teh fudge now!

  15. You should not be proud that the Green Economy has buried countries like my Portugal…

  16. For the proposed vast expenditures on climate change mitigation to be justified, five propositions need to be true:

    1. The amount of CO2 in the atmosphere is rising
    2. This will cause changes in climate patterns
    3. The changes will be more deleterious than advantageous
    4. It is practically and politically possible to stop or mitigate the changes.
    5. The cost of mitigating or stopping the changes will be less than the cost of adapting to them.

    Now, being very generous indeed, we can assign probabilities to these claims as follows:

    1 — 95% 2 — 90% 3 — 85% 4 — 80% 5 — 75%

    The probability of a conjunction of statements is the product of their individual probabilities. When we multiply these probabilities out we get about 43% — in other words less than a 50% chance that spending all that money will be justified.

    If that’s what we get from an incredibly generous estimate of the probability of these claims being true, what do you think we would get from a realistic one?

    • 1 is 100% certain
      2 is 100% certain
      3 is unknown
      4 is political- it can’t be set in stone because it depends on what people are willing to agree to (which changes)
      5 is a red herring- the question is finding a point where marginal benefit equals marginal cost

      As you can see, the big problem is number 3. We don’t know what number 3, and while there are a wide variety of estimates there is a large amount of deviation amoung them. We could do the average, but it is very vulnerable to outliers and using the median ignores the possibility of major changes. The best solution is to wait until resolution amoung the estimates becomes more accurate, but that makes the effects worse if the high estimates are correct.

      I’m not sure if the waiting period expired a decade ago or if it is still ongoing, so I’ll let someone else state the current spread of science estimates on global warming impacts. I personally think the William Nordhaus or the IPCC has a good current estimate, although I think aside from taxes, you need to change current blockages- if you think food will be a problem, make it easier for GM crops to be developed and sold and if energy is a bottleneck, reduce restrictions on nuclear. Yes, people will die if you remove safety restrictions, but they’ll also die if they get hit by storms.

  17. Policy lass says

    1. “Research shows that stupid people — people who truly are ignorant — tend to think they know far more than they do. ”

    I agree.

    2. “They are also more likely to think informed people know less than they do.”

    I agree.

    3. “It’s the D-K effect and it’s rampant at both CA and WUWT and Climate Etc. If you’ve ever haunted those sites, you know what I’m talking about.”

    This is logically inconsistent with your statement in your comment Policy Lass Reply April 20, 2012 at 11:14 pm.

    “Lindzen, Spencer, Dyson, etc. are far from stupid. It’s the people who swallow their bilge that are stupid.”

    Surely if I was stupid I would follow point 2. and would think that Lindzen, Spencer, Dyson, etc know less than they do.

    I don’t think that is a very logical or consistent position that you have taken.

    Now what sort of person is illogical and inconsistent

  18. Fascinating, and I learned something here… Learned about the DK efffect. I believe this blog and its owner(author?) is probably a case study for it….

  19. Ah, it must be good to get the old tar brush out every now and then!

  20. Policy Lass has bailed on her own website. All these stupid facts have gotten in the way.

  21. Gavin's Pussycat Reply April 21, 2012 at 8:03 am

    Policy Lass, you shouldn’t have bothered. I would have accepted the point you make without a graphic demonstration 🙂

  22. Discussion becomes quite proftable by turns. Loved ‘they’re intelligent but talk bilge’, about Lindzen et al. How do these people ever get their stuff past peer review, eh?

    But, um, mightn’t this admission of intelligence lead to unaccceptable consequences? Because they’re smart, don’t we have to debate these deniers precisely because we exclude the halfwits? It follows from ‘ignore the stupid’, no?

    So if I’m right – whooah! More telly (etc) exposure for evil people. More moronic apostles. Not what you had in mind? Debates, after all must always come to the correct conclusions, or what is the point of them? Surely the smarties need putting in their place just as much as the dunces? Pass some new laws, say I. Make lieing a crime, even to your chidlren

  23. Pitifully ironic, classic case of projection. No reason, no logic, only a pretentious rant unsubstantiated by fact. Humorous.

  24. I’m sitting at my laptop with my copy of Carl Sagan’s “The Demon-Haunted World: Science As A Candle In the Darkness,” one of my favorites by the late Mr. Sagan. The book is largely devoted to what he refers to as “baloney,” and in chapter 12, “The Fine Art of Baloney Detection,” he lists the precepts of what he calls his “baloney detection kit”:

    Wherever possible, there must be independent confirmation of the facts.

    Encourage substantive debate on the evidence by knowledgeable proponents of all points of view.

    Arguments from authority carry little weight — “authorities” have made mistakes in the past. They will do so again in the future.

    Spin more than one hypothesis. If there’s something to be explained, think of all the ways it could be explained.

    Try not to get overly attached to a hypothesis just because it’s yours.

    Quantify. What is vague and qualitative is open to many explanations.

    If there’s a chain of argument, every link in the chain must work (including the premise) — not just most of them.

    Occam’s Razor.

    Ask whether the hypothesis can be, at least in principle, falsified. Propositions that are untestable, unfalsifiable are not worth much.

    Most readers will agree that this approach is very Popperian, and strictly in opposition to the post-normal science preferred by those who believe that the threat of climate change outweighs the normal give-and-take of the scientific method. It required decades for plate tectonics and the glacial lake origin of the channeled scablands of Washington state to become accepted theories. However, many believe that the risks of waiting are far too high to allow that long a debate to go on regarding anthropological climate change.

    Yet, right or wrong, the AGW proponents violate nearly every one of Sagan’s precepts. Phil Jones refused to release his data because “you’ll just try to find something wrong with it.”

    “Substantive debate”? When did that happen? “The science is settled!,” we’re told.

    More than one hypothesis? Except for the “deniers,” has any climate scientist proposed any other hypothesis for the observed warming since the 1850s other than CO2 increase?

    Arguments from authority? “There’s a consensus.”

    Overly attached to a hypothesis? I think so.

    Quantify? Maybe. The original data in many cases is lost, however, and much of what we have to look at has been statistically altered in unknown, and therefore possibly incorrect, ways.

    Does every chain in the argument work? Really?

    Occam’s Razor. We observe changes in the earths’ climate. We know these changes have occurred previously throughout geological history. Do we really know enough regarding their causes then to be able to say unequivocally that human activity is causing them now?

    I came into the ‘”climate war” fully prepared to be convinced of the validity of the AGW argument. It certainly seemed to possible that the vast activities of humanity might affect the chemical behavior of the atmosphere. However, watching the behavior of the two sides regarding evidence, debate, and transparency has convinced me that this is more a political argument than a scientific one, due to the influence of post-normal scientific precepts. The problem with post-normal science is that the threat must be clearly defined in order that the “normal science” be disposed with: in the case of AGW, that threat is what we’re trying to quantify, and therefore not allowed to be the driver as well.

    • “More than one hypothesis? Except for the “deniers,” has any climate scientist proposed any other hypothesis for the observed warming since the 1850s other than CO2 increase?”

      Yes. The fears of global warming relies on feedback effects from other greenhouse gases 🙂

      More seriously, scientists have to include all the relevant inputs in their models if they are trying to explain what is happening. I know that El Nino and La Nina are currently included, as well as areosols to explain the historic record.

    • I think James may want to check what Carl Sagan had to say about climate change. I recommend the fourth part of the Cosmos series. Sagan also may well have been the very first scientist who was so vocal about global warming.

  25. “More than one hypothesis? Except for the “deniers,” has any climate scientist proposed any other hypothesis for the observed warming since the 1850s other than CO2 increase?”

    Except for “deniers”, does anyone here believe the world existed before 1850?

    As all real climate scientists know, it is reasonable to assume the earth was created in 1850 since this makes the hockey stick easier to validate. No more irritating problems such as ice ages while CO2 was at many thousands ppm, etc.

    Policy lass, the advert about signs of Alzheimer’s disease just below your article could not be more appropriate. I think all the beefburgers you ever ate are coming back to haunt you.

  26. > Research shows that stupid people — people who truly are ignorant — tend
    > to think they know far more than they do. They are also more likely to think
    > informed people know less than they do.

    Pot, meet kettle. 🙂

    It is very convenient to dismiss opponents as stupid and/or ignorant. It save one the time of digesting and refuting their arguments.
    (By the way, stupid and ignorant are not synonyms, as your quote appears to suggest).

    There *is* a great deal of ignorant barracking in the so-called “global warming debate”, but the sceptical side has no monopoly on it.

    While some of the articles at WUWT and CA do amount to barracking, many of them contain considerable scientific content. You are welcome to refute the science, but to brush it off without consideration suggests that you are not immune to the problem of ignorance.

    The articles at Climate Etc. appear to always be scientifically based and Dr Curry bends over backwards to be inclusive of all points of view, including the “consensus” view.

    The comments on those sites, like all sites, vary greatly in content and are often ignorant. That is, however, no reason to judge the articles.

    When making accusations about the stupidity and ignorance of others, may I encourage you to some biblical advice:

    — Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not
    — notice the log that is in your own eye? 4 Or how can you say to your
    — brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the
    — log in your own eye? 5 You hypocrite, first take the log out of your
    — own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your
    — brother’s eye.

    Matthew 7:3-5 (ESV)

    • Michael J

      Well said, sir. The best post on this thread by far.

      It is all too easy and self-satisfying to mock and to hurl insults, far harder to understand arguments and reason about them.

      • “far harder to understand arguments and reason about them.”

        The problem is that the sceptical arguments are so self-conflicting and contradictory it’s amazing that you can agree on simple spelling, let alone the science. It’s pretty certain that, collectively, ye sceptics by and large don’t even understand each others’ arguments, and would never be able to find the time to do what you expect of others.

        • Well, one might say Q.E.D. A perfect example of my point.

          > The problem is that the sceptical arguments are so
          > self-conflicting and contradictory it’s amazing that you
          > can agree on simple spelling, let alone the science.

          Sceptics are not some uniform block. There are a multitude of people who are unconvinced by the CAGW arguments. Some are ignorant, some are probably a little crazy. Many others are competent scientists who have raised legitimate problems with the science. e.g. Roy Spencer, Steve McIntyre, Judy Curry, etc.

          > It’s pretty certain that, collectively, ye sceptics by
          > and large don’t even understand each others’
          > arguments,

          Is it? Certainly some amongst the wide variety of sceptics lack understanding, but to tar everybody with the same brush seems a rather ignorant act. Is there any evidence behind your claim, or is it the usual ad hominem garbage?

          > and would never be able to find the time to do what
          > you expect of others.

          What we expect? Such as to provide supporting evidence for their alarming claims?

          Yes, let’s take society back to the stone age because otherwise the world will end. Oh don’t worry about evidence. You can trust the scientists.
          (For the comprehension-impaired, that was facetiousness).

          To be clear, I am a sceptic. Not just a CAGW sceptic, but I am sceptical of everything. You want me to believe your theory, I want to see the evidence. “Trust me” is just not good enough. I’ve been looking hard, but the evidence for CAGW that I’ve seen so far is simply not convincing. I’m still looking and one day I might be convinced, but so far it is simply not good enough.

          Some things are well established.
          — CO₂ is a greenhouse gas.
          — Atmospheric levels of CO₂ have increased and are increasing.
          — Humans probably play some role in that, but it is unclear how much.
          — Increasing CO₂ applies an upward forcing on the temperature, but it is not clear how much.
          — Multiple feedbacks occur when forcing is applied to the temperature, their magnitude and signs are not well understood.
          — The concept of a global temperature is without any practical scientific meaning. There is no agreed formula to compute such a value and available data is too sparse to produce any meaningful number.
          — Many regional temperatures have risen in the last 100 years.
          — The published temperature records have been modified and “corrected” a number of times in the last 30 years. These modifications may be justified, or may be gratuitous fudging. There is not sufficient evidence to be sure.
          — Regional temperature rises may be influenced by rising CO₂ levels. It is not clear how much influence there is.
          — There has been little or no net rise in regional temperatures since the late 1990s.
          — The likelihood of future, runaway temperature rise is fairly low.
          — The sea level has risen slowly for several hundred years.
          — The likelihood of future, runaway sea level rise is fairly low.
          — No convincing evidence has been demonstrated of a link between atmospheric CO₂ levels and natural disasters such as storms, tornadoes and earthquakes.

          Which of the above points is hard to understand? I am sure you do not agree, but surely even such a narrow mind can understand it.

          • You have to have a good chuckle when one of the ‘skeptics’ whines about ‘alarmists’ and then says reducing carbon emissions will “take society back to the stone age”.

            Then, says there is no such thing practically as a gobal temp (oh dear, where’s the scepticism on that old claim!) and then talks about “regional temperatures”.

            Temp record corrections may be “gratuitious frudging” – where’s the evidence for that claim? What, there is none? – so where’s the scepticism?

            And he thinks the rise in CO2 might have nothing to do with the massive amounts of stored carbon we’ve been burning off. We have evidence, besdies the obvious correlation, via radio-isotpes, and ZERO evidence that it’s some natural phenomena.



            • Oh dear, somebody has a bit of a problem with reading comprehension. I’ll take it a bit slower.

              > You have to have a good chuckle when one of the ‘skeptics’
              > whines about ‘alarmists’ and then says reducing carbon
              > emissions will “take society back to the stone age”.

              The term “the stone age” was hyperbole. (Look it up at However the desired 80% reduction in energy use will leave us with a society that is not entirely dissimilar to the stone age. We can use solar power, unless we need it at night, or on cloudy days. We can use wind energy, unless we want birds, or power on non-windy days. However both of those options will cost two to five times as much, so in the rare times when power is available we won’t be able to afford it.

              > Then, says there is no such thing practically as a gobal
              > temp (oh dear, where’s the scepticism on that old claim!)

              No, I said that it is scientifically meaningless. Also I said “global”, not “gobal”, but I won’t split hairs. Please *try* to read what I said, not what you *think* I said. If you believe that there is an accurate, reliable formula to compute global temperature then please share it with us. Unless there is, then it doesn’t mean much.

              > and then talks about “regional temperatures”.

              Seriously? You don’t know what a “regional temperature” is? It is the temperature for a specific region. This is something that we *can* compute, where we have a sufficient density of thermometer readings. Google is your friend if you don’t understand basic terms.

              > Temp record corrections may be “gratuitious frudging” –
              > where’s the evidence for that claim? What, there is none?
              > – so where’s the scepticism?

              There are hundreds of articles about this. A couple of examples:

              > And he thinks the rise in CO2 might have nothing to
              > do with the massive amounts of stored carbon we’ve
              > been burning off.

              Next to the amount of CO₂ stored in the oceans, human emissions are relatively small. Not to mention the CO₂ from other sources such as decomposition of vegetation. I don’t know how much of the increased CO₂ in the atmosphere is from burning hydrocarbons. Maybe most of it, maybe less than that. I have not seen convincing proof, yet.

              > We have evidence, besdies the obvious correlation,
              > via radio-isotpes, and ZERO evidence that it’s some
              > natural phenomena.

              Because we haven’t proven that it is a natural phenomenon does not prove it is from humans. It may be from humans, or we may just have not yet found the proof. As I said, I don’t know. (and neither do you).

              The isotope correlation is broadly consistent with human-caused CO₂. But correlation is not proof. The jury is still out.

              Well, that must be embarrassing. I guess it is an indictment on modern education. They no longer teach logic or scientific principles. They don’t even teach reading comprehension. Maybe you can sue your teachers.

              • The amount of CO2 contributed by humans isn’t of a high magnitude- the problem is that natural CO2 emission and absorbtion are roughly the same so human additions increase the stock of CO2 in the atmosphere.

                And no, I wouldn’t recommend trying to destroy natural sources of CO2 emissions. Although stopping global warming by sealing off volcanos and carbonate rocks and killing fluffy bunnies has a certain demented mad scientist charm.

              • It just gets worse!

                Whines about “reading comprehension”, then says; ‘I didn’t mean “the stone age”, yes I actually wrote “the stone age”, but please don’t read what I wrote, can’t you read my mind instead?’

                The alleged ‘critique’ of the concept of global temperatures stands for regional temperatures; how do you define a region,is it just one data point for a much larger area, or mutliple across a defined area, then averaged? Define ‘region’ – are they always the same size, blah blah, blah, blah. Pure nonsense.

                ACO2 – As I said (which you apparenly couldn’t understand, even though i used the word correlation – should I have explained ‘correlation’ for you so you weren’t confused?)), strong correlation, plus the evidence thru radio-isotpes = very strong case.
                That it might be something else – no evidence. When we have good evidence that it’s X, saying that it might be not-X, with no evidence of any not-X – wishful thinking, not science.

                “fudging” temp records. Watts! OMG!!
                This is the guy who was crying “fraud” on the temp records years ago, without any evidence, just his belief. Finally, his wild claims had the blow-torch of scientiffic inquiry turned on them and…..nothing. Watts primary claim was absolutely wrong. But fanbois will be fanbois, and damn the science (scepticism? – Ha!!!!!).

                But yeah, you got me on those typos…….

                • Er, when people talk about “stone age” they mean massive reduction in living standards. It has been used that way since at least the 1965, when Curtis LeMay used the term “bomb back to the stone age”.

                  • Err.. the point was the irony of MichaelJ bewailing “alarmism” and then in the very next breath proclaiming the end of civilisation.

                    Apparently, this is too hard to grasp.

                    • He didn’t say civilization would end. He said alarmists wanted to take the world back to the stone age. I’m not certain how this is hypocritical as it depends entirely on if alarmists are nuts.

                      For an example I give you James Lovelock of the gaia hypothesis:


                      “First, we have to keep in mind the awesome pace of change and realise how little time is left to act; and then each community and nation must find the best use of the resources they have to sustain civilisation for as long as they can. Civilisation is energy-intensive and we cannot turn it off without crashing, so we need the security of a powered descent. ”

                      So yes, there are people who are climate alarmists who are entirely nuts and who advocate extreme policies that will revert humanity to the stone age.

                    • Sam,

                      If you think ‘the stone age’ overlaps with any part of civilisation, I’d like to know which bit…….

                      And equating altenative energy sources to hydrocarbons ot the return to “the stone age” is nuts on steriods.

                      It’s a high tech future, not a friggin’ stone age one, you numbskulls.

                      ‘Skeptics’? Nah, just the new luddites.

                    • “If you think ‘the stone age’ overlaps with any part of civilisation, I’d like to know which bit…….”

                      That is sort of what powered descent from civilization is implying.

                      “And equating altenative energy sources to hydrocarbons ot the return to “the stone age” is nuts on steriods.

                      It’s a high tech future, not a friggin’ stone age one, you numbskulls.”

                      Since you don’t seem to get it, I’ll explain. Solar panels only work when the sun is out and wind only works with wind. Skeptics think that environmentalists are out to reduce the energy supply and given environmentalists attacks on hydro and nuclear power (which provide constant energy) I can’t call them paranoid.

                      The exact situation skeptics fear is rolling blackouts, the loss of appliences that require constant power (like refridgerators) and the switch from electricity to muscle power to insure constant output, all of which would result in a massive drop of the standard of living….

                      …and your rebuttal is that the future will be “high tech. High tech means complicated, it has no relevance to wheter or not something is actually any good.

                • I said I wouldn’t reply again, but I changed my mind. I’ll have one more go at getting you to understand. Not because I think I will succeed, but because I’m borderline OCD. 🙂

                  > Whines about “reading comprehension”,
                  > then says; ‘I didn’t mean “the stone age”,

                  Case in point. That isn’t what I said. I explained that I was using hyperbole. I even gave a link to a definition of hyperbole. A person with adult-level reading would not need to be told that, but you haven’t yet got it even after additional explanation.

                  If I say “the red team killed the blue team”, nobody really thinks there was any death involved. It is hyperbole. Now re-read what I wrote and you might understand that paragraph.

                  > The alleged ‘critique’ of the concept of
                  > global temperatures stands for regional
                  > temperatures; how do you define a
                  > region, …

                  Sigh. A region is whatever you define it to be. Let’s say we choose the city of Las Vegas. Look at a map and define some physical coordinates to describe the city. You can now find all temperature measurements within that region and compute a mean temperature and say that the temperature in your region is say 25°C +/- 2°C (for example). You can look at the way this changes over time and determine whether your region is getting hotter.

                  To contrast that, on a given day it might be -80°C in the Arctic circle and +50°C in Death Valley. How do you compute a mean temperature? Some areas have many thermometers, some have none. Even if you compute a mean, it does not really tell you much. If the mean rises by 1°C, what has that told you? Maybe some regions went up and others went down.

                  A regional temperature can at least tell you what changed in that region. If many regions are rising in temperature, then we may have some climate change.

                  > ACO2 – As I said (which you apparenly
                  > couldn’t understand, even though i used
                  > the word correlation – should I have
                  > explained ‘correlation’ for you so you
                  > weren’t confused?)), …

                  I understood what you meant. You were just wrong.
                  I said “the jury is still out”. Correlation cannot prove anything, but lack of correlation can disprove something.
                  I saw an article once that showed that the CO₂ correlates with the number of Starbucks stores. So do we conclude that CO₂ causes Starbucks stores? Of course not, that would be silly.
                  The fact that “Carbon isotopes measured” correlates with the hypothesis that humans caused most of the CO₂ increase, means that the hypothesis is reasonable. We don’t yet know if it is true. There are some other hypotheses. Your hypothesis may be correct, one of the others may be correct or it may be something that nobody has thought of yet. We just don’t know.

                  > “fudging” temp records. Watts! OMG!!

                  Yes, it was a mistake to mention Anthony Watts as you obviously would not read things on his site. There are hundreds of articles on the subject, all over the web, but I won’t waste my time digging up others as you won’t read them.

                  If you really are interested, go to the Uni of East Anglia site and download a copy of their HADCRUT data. Then go to’s “Wayback Machine” and download a version that is two or three years old, and see the difference. Try to find detailed information on what was changed and why. Good luck with that.

                  I stand by my position that we don’t know whether the temperature records have been fudged.

                  • MichaelJ digs his hole deeper and deeper.

                    ‘the stone age”
                    I just explained it to Sam, so I’ll re-do it for you.
                    You complained about “alarmism” and then immediately started on about “the stone age” which you now defend as just “hyperbole”. Well, that’s the critique implicit in the term “alarmism” – it’s exaggeration or using another synonym…..hyperbole!!

                    Regional temp.’s
                    God help us!
                    You clearly don’t know the etymology of your own talking points. Global temp had an attempted de-bunk by McKitrick etal – one of the pillars of their argument was how you couldn’t average temp, it was physicaly meaningless.
                    Yet, here you are, pushing their failed critique of global temps, but arguing for ‘regional temps’ based on the idea of averages that they reject.

                    As i was at pains to point, out, I didn’t say the correlation was proof – it is a good indicator,and is backed up by good physical evidence.
                    Ask yourself which proposition a scientific sceptic would find most compelling ;
                    Proposition A: strong correlation, backed by direct physical evidence
                    Proposition B: no known correlation, no evidence.

    • > Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not
      — notice the log that is in your own eye?

      A tu quoque enshrined in an appeal to authority.

  27. I do haunt those sites, and in respect for your idea that stupid people who think they know more than they do are not worth arguing with, I will say no more. O, Matt. 7.3-5 is pretty good tho’.

    • @Michael — I’ll stop here. You don’t understand what I wrote so I won’t keep on arguing. Have a nice life.

      • > You don’t understand what I wrote so I won’t keep on arguing.

        Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not
        — notice the log that is in your own eye?

  28. Sam Reply April 21, 2012 at 3:51 pm

    “As you can see, the big problem is number 3.”
    There is no agreement on whether climate change will be “deleterious or advantageous”.

    Until that question has been settled it is lunancy to commit huge sums of money on the assumption that the answer is “deleterious”.

    • It is impossible to settle. Even if past increases in temperature causes beneficial, negative or null effects, future temperature increases will have different effects.

      Let me a simple example. Increasing temperature makes it say harder for plants to grow. However, this interacts with changes in rainfall which changes the magnitude or future advances (like GM plants that thrive with high temperatures). Hell, if we start growing food in greenhouse skyscrappers because hydroponics becomes more efficient, changes in crop growth stop being an issue. This may sound silly, but the timescale people are talking about is centuries.

      It bears repeating that, even though we can’t create a settled answer we can create a reasonable answer with the best available evidence- I hear a 7 cent tax on gas is the way to go.

  29. Shaman Reply April 21, 2012 at 8:59 am

    “….about Lindzen et al. How do these people ever get their stuff past peer review, eh?”

    Wrong question. You should be asking how the Hockey Team (Hughes, Briffa, Mann, Ammann et al.) ever got any of their junk science through peer review. You should also be asking why the Hockey Team has almost 200 citations in the AR5 WG1 chapter 5 (Paleo Climate) due for publication in September 2013, while Lindzen has zero and Craig Loehle has only one.

    Click to access WG1AR5_ZOD_Ch05_paleoclimate.pdf

    • It could be because Lindzen has never published a paper on paleoclimate and Loehle only has the one reconstruction — the update to his error filled first attempt — which has any credibility. Nah, it’s really a conspiracy, a conspiracy I tells ya!

  30. There seem to be a lot of Wattsians who have descended here. Some may legitimately be described as sceptics rather than denialists. May I ask you all a simple question?

    You usually, with great confidence, pour scorn on any evidence suggesting that fossil fuel derived global warming could be dangerous. In the comments on Wattsupwiththat ideas and assertions are frequently expressed that are demonstrably wrong, irrelevant or silly. Many of these ideas can be definitively shown to be wrong yet they continue to be regurgitated in the blogosphere as if they were like the unkillable Freddy Kruger in the umpteenth Nightmare on Elm Street sequel.

    Why do the small percentage of genuine sceptics only pour scorn on the mainstream science position yet seem not to pour scorn, or even mild disapproval, on the posts of the incorrigible conspiracy types who regularly post junk views?

    A case in point is the long Gish gallop posted by Sasha on April 21, 2012 at 3:17 am

    which starts:
    Global warming? Don’t wait up

    here is just a sample of the breathtakingly bold misrepresentation

    The trouble is that the only way to protect this position – and transmit their (IPCC) message of doom and gloom – is for the little coterie of climate comrades in the UK and United States to ignore geology, archaeology, history, astronomy and solar science. You see, these are all the things that don’t fit

    Blatant crap which could be simply debunked by anyone who read any of the IPCC reports and yet “Sasha” asserts his “belief” with certainty.

    Why did none of you sceptical Wattsians jump on this post or any similar to it? Surely you must see that the presence of so many like Sasha spouting so much colossal nonsense in the media, that you never clamp down on, is the reason why the warmist side considers you a bunch of idiots at best, politically driven liars and deceivers at worst?

    • Probably the same reason people who considered themselves rational tripped over themselves to provide apologetics for Gleicks actions. Or how the big push is against deniers instead of people who block nuclear power and GM crops.

      Namely once you pick a side you avoid attacking people who are also on your side because it weakens your side. Arguments become less about truth than about strategy- sure your allies are nuts, but they support you and that is the important part.

    • So nice of you to take the trouble to insult me. Do you consider James Lovelock, one of the foremost alarmist who started the global warming scam, to be amonst those you describe as a “bunch of idiots at best, politically driven liars and deceivers at worst?”

      If not, you may want to check this out –

      James Lovelock backs down on climate alarm
      Posted on April 23, 2012 by Anthony Watts

      MSNBC reports that the lack of temperature rise in the last 12 years has convinced environmentalist James Lovelock (The Gaia Hypothesis) that the climate alarmism wasn’t warranted.

      From his Wikipedia entry: Writing in the British newspaper The Independent in January 2006, Lovelock argues that, as a result of global warming, “billions of us will die and the few breeding pairs of people that survive will be in the Arctic where the climate remains tolerable” by the end of the 21st century. He has been quoted in The Guardian that 80% of humans will perish by 2100 AD, and this climate change will last 100,000 years. According to James Lovelock, by 2040, the world population of more than six billion will have been culled by floods, drought and famine. Indeed “the people of Southern Europe, as well as South-East Asia, will be fighting their way into countries such as Canada, Australia and Britain”.

      What he has said to MSNBC is a major climb down. MSNBC reports in this story:

      James Lovelock, the maverick scientist who became a guru to the environmental movement with his “Gaia” theory of the Earth as a single organism, has admitted to being “alarmist” about climate change and says other environmental commentators, such as Al Gore, were too.

      Lovelock, 92, is writing a new book in which he will say climate change is still happening, but not as quickly as he once feared.
      He previously painted some of the direst visions of the effects of climate change. In 2006, in an article in the U.K.’s Independent newspaper, he wrote that “before this century is over billions of us will die and the few breeding pairs of people that survive will be in the Arctic where the climate remains tolerable.”

      However, the professor admitted in a telephone interview with that he now thinks he had been “extrapolating too far”…“The problem is we don’t know what the climate is doing. We thought we knew 20 years ago. That led to some alarmist books – mine included – because it looked clear-cut, but it hasn’t happened,” Lovelock said. “The world has not warmed up very much since the millennium. Twelve years is a reasonable time… it (the temperature) has stayed almost constant, whereas it should have been rising — carbon dioxide is rising, no question about that.”

      hat tip to Steve Milloy at

      • Sasha. You prove your incorrigibility and your willingness to accept any old crap (Watt’s cherry picked phrases etc) by clearly being sucked in by Watt’s and Milloy’s misrepresentation of Lovelock’s position.

        James Lovelock has backed off from his former position, which he formulated 20 years ago, which was probably more extreme than Hansen’s and definitely a lot more alarming than the mainstream science view. So what? That is a scientist modifying his views as information comes in. He still accepts the mainstream science, he still expects the averaged temperature to go up and keep going up, just not as break neck fast as in his previous maverick published ideas.

        That Watts and Milloy are touting this as some sort of major climb down and implying, as they always do, that there will be no problem from global warming, is just more of their incorrigible and dangerous BS.

        • Yet more insults, thank you so much. As for “being sucked in by Watt’s and Milloy’s misrepresentation of Lovelock’s position” did you actually bother reading what was written? The implications of Lovelock’s new position are startling. Anyway, I can see that this is not a scientific site but is a religious one. You don’t require facts, only belief.

          If anyone wants the facts about the global warming scam they can check out these papers:

          900+ Peer-Reviewed Papers Supporting Skeptic Arguments Against ACC/AGW Alarm

          Another 450 papers found at

          • Hmmmm…fascinating references.

            That august journal, E&E, is host to quite a few. Other notable journals; The Electricity Journal, Irrigation and Drainage (Vol. 50!), Missouri Medicine……………

            And of course, a whole bunch of this nonsesne is not peer-reviewed at all, it’s just opinion appearing in some low-grade journal.

            If the ‘skeptics’ really had an argument, they wouldn’t keep trying this kind of crap.

            • Yes Michael, I get a laugh every time that list is brought up by the deniers.

              Maybe we should invoke a new law to replace Godwin’s Law and call it “Poptart’s Law” which would say that a discussion is over whenever a participant introduces Poptart’s list of “peer reviewed” papers. Needless to say they would lose the argument.

              • Isn’t it hilarious how someone makes several ludicrous statements and, just when you think it can’t get any worse, we get Poptart’s List. There can be no more obvious evidence of the complete gullibility and absence of genuine scepticism of the pseudosceptic.

                I suggest Forester’s Law as you, not the execrable Poptart, suggested it. 🙂

                • Of course that would be Forrester’s Corollary to Godwin’s Law!

                • *Forrester’s”, of course. Sorry about the misspelling.

                • More Than 1000 International Scientists Dissent Over Man-Made Global Warming Claims – Challenge UN IPCC & Gore


                  The scientists featured in the report express their views in their own words, complete with their intended subtleties and caveats. This report features the names, biographies, academic/institutional affiliation, and quotes of literally hundreds of additional international scientists who publicly dissented from man-made climate fears. This report lists the scientists by name, country of residence, and academic/institutional affiliation. It also features their own words, biographies, and web links to their peer reviewed studies, scientific analyses and original source materials as gathered from directly from the scientists or from public statements, news outlets, and websites in 2007 and 2008.

                  The distinguished scientists featured in this new report are experts in diverse fields, including: climatology; geology; biology; glaciology; biogeography; meteorology; oceanography; economics; chemistry; mathematics; environmental sciences; astrophysics, engineering; physics and paleoclimatology. Some of those profiled have won Nobel Prizes for their outstanding contribution to their field of expertise and many shared a portion of the UN IPCC Nobel Peace Prize with Vice President Gore. Additionally, these scientists hail from prestigious institutions worldwide, including: Harvard University; NASA; National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR); Massachusetts Institute of Technology; the UN IPCC; the Danish National Space Center; U.S. Department of Energy; Princeton University; the Environmental Protection Agency; University of Pennsylvania; Hebrew University of Jerusalem; the International Arctic Research Centre; the Pasteur Institute in Paris; Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute; the University of Helsinki; the National Academy of Sciences of the U.S., France, and Russia; the University of Pretoria; University of Notre Dame; Abo Akademi University in Finland; University of La Plata in Argentina; Stockholm University; Punjab University in India; University of Melbourne; Columbia University; the World Federation of Scientists; and the University of London.

                  • Sasha,

                    Any explanation from you as to why you were so gullible as to believe that your previous link really did have 900 “peer reviewed” articles??

                    Not very sceptical of you.

                    Is this latest just more denialist link spam??

                    • Yes Michael, just more denier link spam from that stupid politician Inohofe and his dishonest side kick Morano.

                      What next Sasha are you going to bring up that other discredited list of “scientists” who oppose the science behind AGW? Please don’t go three for three and give us a link to the Oregon Petition.

                      That would just show you are even more stupid than your regular denier stupidity.

                    • Research by G. V. CHILINGAR, L. F. KHILYUK and O. G. SOROKHTIN, into Cooling of Atmosphere Due to CO2 Emissions based on the adiabatic theory of greenhouse effect show that increasing CO2 concentration in the atmosphere results in cooling rather than warming the Earth’s atmosphere. (so the AGW theory is upside down)

                      Plus for a complete debunk of the “Greenhouse Effect” theory visit where you will find “Falsification of the Atmospheric CO2 Greenhouse Effects within the frame of Physics” by Prof Gerhard Gerlich. This is the most complete demolition of the hypothesis that I have read. [It offers a download of a PDF full of facts and figures] For an easier read try where Dipl-Ing Hienz Thiene does a similar job in “Greenhouse gas hypothesis Violates Fundamentals of Physics”.

                      750 reputable scientists signed the report to the US congress on man-made global warming that basically said it’s all a fraud.

                      A quote from the US senate environment committee: “… over 650 dissenting scientists are more than 12 times the number of UN scientists (52) who authored the media-hyped IPCC 2007 Summary for Policymakers.”

                      Here are some of these scientists, with a summary of their views –

                      Israel: Dr. Nathan Paldor, Professor of Dynamical Meteorology and Physical Oceanography at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem has authored almost 70 peer-reviewed studies and won several awards. “First, temperature changes, as well as rates of temperature changes (both increase and decrease) of magnitudes similar to that reported by IPCC to have occurred since the Industrial revolution (about 0.8ºC in 150 years or even 0.4ºC in the last 35 years) have occurred in Earth’s climatic history. There’s nothing special about the recent rise.”

                      Russia: Russian scientist Dr. Oleg Sorochtin of the Institute of Oceanology at the Russian Academy of Sciences has authored more than 300 studies, nine books, and a 2006 paper titled “The Evolution and the Prediction of Global Climate Changes on Earth.” “Even if the concentration of ‘greenhouse gases’ double man would not perceive the temperature impact,” Sorochtin wrote. (Note: Name also sometimes translated to spell Sorokhtin).

                      Spain: Anton Uriarte, a professor of Physical Geography at the University of the Basque Country in Spain and author of a book on the paleoclimate, rejected man-made climate fears in 2007 wrote “There’s no need to be worried. It’s very interesting to study [climate change], but there’s no need to be worried.”

                      Netherlands: Atmospheric scientist Dr. Hendrik Tennekes, a scientific pioneer in the development of numerical weather prediction and former director of research at The Netherlands’ Royal National Meteorological Institute, and an internationally recognized expert in atmospheric boundary layer processes, “I find the Doomsday picture Al Gore is painting – a six-meter sea level rise, fifteen times the IPCC number – entirely without merit,” Tennekes wrote. “I protest vigorously the idea that the climate reacts like a home heating system to a changed setting of the thermostat: just turn the dial, and the desired temperature will soon be reached.”

                      Brazil: Chief Meteorologist Eugenio Hackbart of the MetSul Meteorologia Weather Center in Sao Leopoldo – Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil declared himself a skeptic. “The media is promoting an unprecedented hyping related to global warming. The media and many scientists are ignoring very important facts that point to a natural variation in the climate system as the cause of the recent global warming.”

                      France: Climatologist Dr. Marcel Leroux, former professor at Université Jean Moulin and director of the Laboratory of Climatology, Risks, and Environment in Lyon, is a climate skeptic. Leroux wrote a 2005 book titled Global Warming – Myth or Reality? – The Erring Ways of Climatology. “Day after day, the same mantra – that ‘the Earth is warming up’ – is churned out in all its forms. As ‘the ice melts’ and ‘sea level rises,’ the Apocalypse looms ever nearer! Without realizing it, or perhaps without wishing to, the average citizen in bamboozled, lobotomized, lulled into mindless ac ceptance. … Non-believers in the greenhouse scenario are in the position of those long ago who doubted the existence of God … fortunately for them, the Inquisition is no longer with us!”

                      Norway: Geologist/Geochemist Dr. Tom V. Segalstad, a professor and head of the Geological Museum at the University of Oslo and formerly an expert reviewer with the UN IPCC: “It is a search for a mythical CO2 sink to explain an immeasurable CO2 lifetime to fit a hypothetical CO2 computer model that purports to show that an impossible amount of fossil fuel burning is heating the atmosphere. It is all a fiction.”

                      Finland: Dr. Boris Winterhalter, retired Senior Marine Researcher of the Geological Survey of Finland and former professor of marine geology at University of Helsinki, criticized the media for what he considered its alarming climate coverage. “The effect of solar winds on cosmic radiation has just recently been established and, furthermore, there seems to be a good correlation between cloudiness and variations in the intensity of cosmic radiation. Here we have a mechanism which is a far better explanation to variations in global climate than the attempts by IPCC to blame it all on anthropogenic input of greenhouse gases.”

                      Germany: Paleoclimate expert Augusto Mangini of the University of Heidelberg in Germany, criticized the UN IPCC summary. “I consider the part of the IPCC report, which I can really judge as an expert, i.e. the reconstruction of the paleoclimate, wrong,” Mangini noted in an April 5, 2007 article. He added: “The earth will not die.”

                      Canada: IPCC 2007 Expert Reviewer Madhav Khandekar, a Ph.D meteorologist, a scientist with the Natural Resources Stewardship Project who has over 45 years experience in climatology, meteorology and oceanography, and who has published nearly 100 papers, reports, book reviews and a book on Ocean Wave Analysis and Modeling: “To my dismay, IPCC authors ignored all my comments and suggestions for major changes in the FOD (First Order Draft) and sent me the SOD (Second Order Draft) with essentially the same text as the FOD. None of the authors of the chapter bothered to directly communicate with me (or with other expert reviewers with whom I communicate on a regular basis) on many issues that were raised in my review. This is not an acceptable scientific review process.”

                      Czech Republic: Czech-born U.S. climatologist Dr. George Kukla, a research scientist with the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory at Columbia University, expressed climate skepticism in 2007. “The only thing to worry about is the damage that can be done by worrying. Why are some scientists worried? Perhaps because they feel that to stop worrying may mean to stop being paid,” Kukla told Gelf Magazine on April 24, 2007.

                      India: One of India’s leading geologists, B.P. Radhakrishna, President of the Geological Society of India, expressed climate skepticism in 2007. “We appear to be overplaying this global warming issue as global warming is nothing new. It has happened in the past, not once but several times, giving rise to glacial-interglacial cycles.”

                      USA: Climatologist Robert Durrenberger, past president of the American Association of State Climatologists, and one of the climatologists who gathered at Woods Hole to review the National Climate Program Plan in July, 1979: “Al Gore brought me back to the battle and prompted me to do renewed research in the field of climatology. And because of all the misinformation that Gore and his army have been spreading about climate change I have decided that ‘real’ climatologists should try to help the public understand the nature of the problem.”

                      Italy: Internationally renowned scientist Dr. Antonio Zichichi, president of the World Federation of Scientists and a retired Professor of Advanced Physics at the University of Bologna in Italy, who has published over 800 scientific papers: “Significant new peer-reviewed research has cast even more doubt on the hypothesis of dangerous human-caused global warming.”

                      New Zealand: IPCC reviewer and climate researcher and scientist Dr. Vincent Gray, an expert reviewer on every single draft of the IPCC reports going back to 1990 and author of The Greenhouse Delusion: A Critique of “Climate Change 2001: “The [IPCC] ‘Summary for Policymakers’ might get a few readers, but the main purpose of the report is to provide a spurious scientific backup for the absurd claims of the worldwide environmentalist lobby that it has been established scientifically that increases in carbon dioxide are harmful to the climate. It just does not matter that this ain’t so.”

                      South Africa: Dr. Kelvin Kemm, formerly a scientist at South Africa’s Atomic Energy Corporation who holds degrees in nuclear physics and mathematics: “The global-warming mania continues with more and more hype and less and less thinking. With religious zeal, people look for issues or events to blame on global warming.”

                      Poland: Dr. Zbigniew Jaworowski, professor emeritus of the Central Laboratory for Radiological Protection in Warsaw and a former chairman of the United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation (UNSCEAR) and currently a representative of the Republic of Poland in UNSCEAR: “We thus find ourselves in the situation that the entire theory of man-made global warming-with its repercussions in science, and its important consequences for politics and the global economy-is based on ice core studies that provided a false picture of the atmospheric CO2 levels.”

                      Australia: Prize-wining Geologist Dr. Ian Plimer, a professor of Earth and Environmental Sciences at the University of Adelaide in Australia: “There is new work emerging even in the last few weeks that shows we can have a very close correlation between the temperatures of the Earth and supernova and solar radiation.”

                      Britain: Dr. Richard Courtney, a UN IPCC expert reviewer and a UK-based climate and atmospheric science consultant: “To date, no convincing evidence for AGW (anthropogenic global warming) has been discovered. And recent global climate behavior is not consistent with AGW model predictions.”

                      China: Chinese Scientists Say CO2 Impact on Warming May Be ‘Excessively Exaggerated’ – Scientists Lin Zhen-Shan’s and Sun Xian’s 2007 study published in the peer-reviewed journal Meteorology and Atmospheric Physics: “Although the CO2 greenhouse effect on global climate change is unsuspicious, it could have been excessively exaggerated.” Their study asserted that “it is high time to reconsider the trend of global climate change.”

                      Denmark: Space physicist Dr. Eigil Friis-Christensen is the director of the Danish National Space Centre, a member of the space research advisory committee of the Swedish National Space Board, a member of a NASA working group, and a member of the European Space Agency who has authored or co-authored around 100 peer-reviewed papers and chairs the Institute of Space Physics: “The sun is the source of the energy that causes the motion of the atmosphere and thereby controls weather and climate. Any change in the energy from the sun received at the Earth’s surface will therefore affect climate.”

                      Sweden: Geologist Dr. Wibjorn Karlen, professor emeritus of the Department of Physical Geography and Quaternary Geology at Stockholm University, critiqued the Associated Press for hyping promoting climate fears in 2007. “Another of these hysterical views of our climate. Newspapers should think about the damage they are doing to many persons, particularly young kids, by spreading the exaggerated views of a human impact on climate.”

                      USA: Dr. David Wojick is a UN IPCC expert reviewer, who earned his PhD in Philosophy of Science and co-founded the Department of Engineering and Public Policy at Carnegie-Mellon University: “In point of fact, the hypothesis that solar variability and not human activity is warming the oceans goes a long way to explain the puzzling idea that the Earth’s surface may be warming while the atmosphere is not. The GHG (greenhouse gas) hypothesis does not do this.” Wojick added: “The public is not well served by this constant drumbeat of false alarms fed by computer models manipulated by advocates.”

                    • Yet another list of tripe from the credulous Sasha, as if anyone here hasn’t seen it a 100 times before.

          • “did you actually bother reading what was written? ”

            Lovelock himself is unhappy about what he said being so misrepresented.

            As far as those 450 and 900 papers go – if you really believe they show what denialists portray them as showing then your comprehension of reality is poor.

            Watts and Milloy are massive spreaders of deceptive BS. If you can’t see that just from the way they write, there is no hope for you. You must learn that just because people say things you want to believe does not necessarily make them true.

            No doubt you will take that all as an insult but it is not – it is a simple description of your perceptual ability. In addition, the fact that your response to being shown up is empty rhetoric without the slightest trace of self doubt shows that you are Dunning- Kruger arrogant too.

      • Do you know *anything* about the history of the science you call a “scam”?

        Do you know how Lovelock’s views have evolved over time? Do you know the reasons for those views?

        Do you realise that Watts and Milloy are not reliable sources for anything, especially Milloy: no one with any sense trusts a single word he writes.

  31. Isn’t hilarious how the Wattards who’ve come over here have demonstrated, over and over, the correctness of our host’s assertion?

    • The IPCC reports are so out of date that they are now virtually useless.

      There has been papers published showing the energy imbalance is .5Wm2 rather than .9. This is just for starters.

  32. Are you sure that you don’t wan’t to change your name to the policy ass

  33. It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.
    Mark Twain

    Seems the policy lass i squite

  34. Nick Palmer,
    I am ticked off by the fact that Anthony Watts blocked William Connolley from commenting on WUWT. Connolley was unimpressive whenever he attempted to debate the issues over there.

    Ian Forrester said in his reply (April 21, 2012 at 11:41 am):
    “You are so stupid you don’t even know who you are arguing with”

    Wrong as usual! While I have never met “Stoat” in person, I took the trouble to spend some time with his colleagues all the way to Tom Peterson in Asheville. Just like the better known Anthony Watts, I was treated with courtesy there, nobody called me “Stupid” and I was provided with some excellent information. William is pretty low on the CAGW totem pole given his youth, modest academic credentials and achievements:

    • So why did you say


      You are both pompous and arrogant. On the positive side you are also young and immature so there is a chance that you will stumble upon wisdom later in life.

      in this very thread?

    • Typical rubbish from Galloping Camel. When shown to be stupid by making an elementary error i.e. not even knowing who started the original thread, he tries to divert his stupidity by going into “non sequitur” mode. WC has not commented on this thread so why address him?

      And honest people wonder why we refer to deniers as being stupid.

  35. When Anthony Watts (wrongly in my opinion) blocked William Connolley’s comments on WUWT he did it openly.

    This site has now deleted my comments twice but covertly. I guess I should feel honored to find that my humble comments are considered too dangerous to be displayed here.

    Let’s see whether this comment gets “Moderated”.

    • Your comment went into the spam folder. Probably because of the link you included. I’ve unspammed it.

      I only ban or block people who insult me directly and only if they do it repeatedly. If they insult me directly once, I tend to just ignore them. I’ve only really deleted a couple of posts out of 5,490 and they were because I’d made a mistake. I think once I was too nice to TCO when he was inebriated and thought better of it. 🙂

  36. Q. : As popular amusements ,what’s the difference between going to see the madmen of Bedlam in 1712, and reading climate blog comments three centuries later ?

    A. : Bedlam used to charge spectators sixpence for the privilege.

    Many thanks to The Policy Lass for providing so affordable a spectacle.

  37. Marco,

    I beg your pardon, but you are completely wrong. My co-author, Dr. Dr. habil. Ralph Dlugi and I reported on the paper of Gerlich & Tscheuschner (2009). We wrote:

    “They disproved these explanations at the hand of fundamental physical principles like the
    second law of thermodynamics.”

    This is a matter of the G&T-Paper. Later, Ralph Dlugi and I criticized the example of 2.1 of Halpern et al. (2010) because their formulation of the entropy flux notably disagrees with that of Planck (1913). We did not discuss the 2nd law of Thermodynamics when we scrutinized the so-called atmospheric greenhouse effect because it was not necessary.

    Gerlich & Tscheuschner (2009) presented the local balance equation for entropy (Eq. (143)). If you believe that this equation is wrong, then you have to show why.

    It is possible to re-arrange Eq. (143) of Gerlich & Tscheuschner (2009) to express the local change of the entropy with respect to time given by

    d(rho s)/dt + div (rho s v + J_s) = sigma_s .

    Here, rho is the density of air, s is the specific entropy, v is the barycentric velocity (vector), and J_s is the entropy flux (vector). The quantity sigma_s is the entropy production. In case of irreversible processes we have

    sigma_s > 0 .

    The entropy flux and the entropy production represent the respective terms that occur in that Eq. (143). It is also convenient to introduce the so-called entropy production function

    T sigma_s

    that is also larger than zero in case of irreversible processes. Note that the term div (rho s v + J_s) describes the exchange of energy and matter by the system under study with its surroundings. This means that this system is an open system in the sense of thermodynamics.

    I recommend to read the textbook of de Groot & Mazur (1969) on non-equilibrium thermodynamics. This classical textbook has been cited in the respective literature more than 5000 times. I also cited it several times.

  38. Policy Lass Reply April 23, 2012 at 11:04 pm,

    Thank you for unspamming that link describing my visit to NOAA at Asheville, North Carolina where I met several of your colleagues including Tom Peterson.

    I over reacted to a comment by Ian Forrester. Please accept my apologies for disrepecting your academic credentials and scientific achievements; I don’t have a Nobel prize either. There was a second part to that link here:

    The issue was covered rather better by Kobashi et al., 2011 published in GRL:

    Whether you trust the professionals or this clueless camel the answer is the same. The Greenland ice cores clearly show the Minoan Warm Period, two Roman Warm Periods, the Dark ages, the Medieval Warm Period and the Little Ice Age.

    Who are you going to believe? Stupid camels, learned scentists and historians or Michael Mann?

  39. Marco,

    I beg your pardon, but it seems to me that you are not able to understand scientific papers. Your arguments that my own article contradicting my conclusion, and most notably, contradicting Gerlich & Tscheuschner is sheer nonsense.

    By the way, I only participated on the discussion on the website Science of Doom for two short period because I am a scientist, but not an active blogger. When I realized that some participants like Joshua Halpern (alias Eli Rabett) started to torpedo any scientific discussion with stupid arguments, I stopped watching the website Science of Doom.

    Halpern stated, for instance:

    “There are, of course, limits to obliviousness, but Gerhard is perhaps not aware of them. NOx is a direct product of engine exhausts, mostly because some N2 reacts in the hot explosion in the internal combustion engine.”

    Should I response to such a statement?

    Other statements of Halpern were:

    “Congratulations Dr. Kramm, you have discovered the stratosphere.

    You WILL produce the mother of all inversions, it is the difference in temperature between the mid stratosphere and the tropopause, about 40 K and it is why the stratosphere is stratified. Of course, since the ozone cannot radiate in the IR anymore, the inversion will be even larger and the tropopause will be pushed down by whatever heat conduction mechanisms are still available.

    OK, convection still works in the new model troposphere, but now since the coldest part is warmer (and lower) it does not work as well, so the loss of energy from the surface by convection is decreased, and the surface warms, until, wait for it, energy balance at the top of the atmosphere is restored. Quite nice the planet G&T.”

    Again, should a response to such statements?

    Sorry, my time is too valuable to response to Halpern’s “bla bla blubber”.

    Some persons sent e-mails to me and ask for additional information. To answer these e-mails was more important to me because these persons are real, but not anonymous bloggers.

    • > Sorry, my time is too valuable to response to Halpern’s “bla bla blubber”.

      I believe Michael J has an answer above to this kind of communication closure. What was it again?

      Oh, yes, this one:

      • willard,

        in response to the user Marco I only gave an explanation why I did not further watch the discussion on the website Science of Doom.

        One of my professors in the Physics of the Middle and Upper Atmosphere at the University of Cologne, Germany, was the late Hans-Karl Paetzold. He is well-known for his research results on stratospheric ozone. He, for instance, already detected a so-called ozone hole over the Alps in the fifties of the past century and related it to dynamic reasons. The results are published in the paper of Paetzold and Regener (1957) published in Fluegge’s Handbuch der Physik. In 2005, Pyle and Susan Solomon mentioned an unusual ozone hole in 2002 due to dynamical changes (see ). They stated that dynamics is important, along with chemistry. It was already pointed out by Paetzold five decades before that dynamics is important.

        If someone like Halpern argued “Congratulations Dr. Kramm, you have discovered the stratosphere” I do not response. Because of my educational background Halpern’s argument can only be assessed as primitive and arrogant.

        • Dr. Kramm,

          Your educational background and your name calling are duly noted.

          The reason you gave to Marco deserves due diligence.

          In your reply to Marco, you failed to mention that you did not answer Science of Doom’s questions.

          In your reply to Marco, you failed to mention that these questions were directly related to your work.

          In your reply to Marco, you failed to mention that these questions were formulated in a neutral manner.

          Refusing to answer objective questions directly related to your work because of Eli’s remarks wonder why you’re here, and now remembeing your noble professors.

          Please bear in mind that invoking the preciousness of your time is defeated by your presence here.

          Because of my background as a ninja your argument can only be assessed as a bait and switch.

    • Gerhard Kramm,

      If your time is so valuable, why are you wasting it here quoting the comments of someone, who hasn’t even commented here, on another blog?

      Just for clarity, could you tell us whether you believe that the atmospheric greenhouse effect violates any law of thermodynamics, and if you believe that G & T have convincingly shown this?

      • TrueSceptic,

        there are many different explanations of the so-called atmospheric greenhouse effect. This clearly means that it is not a well-defined physical effect. Therefore, physical principles cannot be used to verify or to disprove this so-called atmospheric greenhouse effect.

        In the paper of Gerlich & Tscheuschner (2009), many of these arbitrary explanations of the so-called atmospheric greenhouse effect were discussed and disproved. In case of the explanation given by Stichel, the former Deputy Head of the German Physical Society (DPG) Gerlich & Tscheuschner showed that Stichel had described a perpetual motion machine of second kind. Such a motion machine would be possible if only the 1st law of thermodynamics is considered. But it can be disproved with the aid of the 2nd law of thermodynamics.

        In our paper “Scrutinizing the atmospheric greenhouse effect and its climatic impact” Ralph Dlugi and I did not consider the 2nd law of thermodynamics because it was not necessary to underline that both the explanation of by the American Meteorological Society (and the WMO) on the one hand and that by Ramanathan et al. (1987) on the other hand have to be discarded. From a physical point of view these two explanations are so different that we restricted ourselves to these two examples.

        We showed on the global energy budget for the entire earth-atmosphere system that the solar energy input into this system is balanced by the infrared radiation emitted to space. This means that no gain of energy in the entire earth-atmosphere system can be claimed by considering an obscure atmospheric greenhouse effect.

        • In commenting on a particularly bad paper by George Chilingar, S. Fred Singer remarked

          You may recall that i resigned from the Editorial Board after Env Geol published the paper

          All i can say is: Kramm-Gerlich-Tscheutschner is worse

          • Eli Halpern

            Your quote from Fred Singer implies that he said;

            “All i can say is: Kramm-Gerlich-Tscheutschner is worse”

            Are you so stupid that you cannot use quotatrion marks?

            Or does your version of defence of the greenhouse theory reqiure outright fraud.

            You would be well advised to consult your co – author Joel Shore who admits that your confusion over the term ‘heat’ was a big mistake.

            The mistake that Joel highlights is only one of several in your now notorious ‘Gerlich-Tscheutschner comment paper’.

            • The quotation marks are implied by the bar, but I do like
              “Are you so stupid that you cannot use quotatrion marks?”
              Could you give us an example of this form of punctuation?

              (Do you deny that the atmospheric greenhouse effect exists?)

              • Quotation marks such as “……” are used to indicate a direct quote.

                When Eli Halpern failed to use them he gave the impression that Fred Singer said something that he did not.

                For instance;

                True Sceptic asks

                “(Do you deny that the atmospheric greenhouse effect exists?)”

                My reply is;

                TS it all depends on which version of greenhouse effect you believe in.

                The one that Eli Halpern promotes involves spontaneous heat transfer from a colder atmosphere to a warmer Earth surface.

                This version of the greenhouse gas theory is ignorant rubbish.

                • Are these refugee sky dragons fro Curry’s?

                • This is just pedantry. It’s obvious what Eli Rabett meant, and no one here needs examples of how to use quotation marks.

                  Of course, he might have tried to use blockquote formatting, which doesn’t work here, but there’s no preview so you don’t find out until after you’ve left your reply, as I did earlier in this thread.

                  • Eli Rabett (Halpern)
                    Thank you for the link.

                    If anyone is in any doubt about how confused Eli (and his disciples) are, they should follow the link.

                    I sympathise with Andrew Judd patiently explaining the difference between radiation,energy,heat and work.

                    Andrew is in fact stating the “bleedin obvious” as any graduate from a Physics thermodynamics 101 course will affirm.

                    However Eli and co are just as confused at the end as at the beginning.

                    So what to do?

                    If Eli would ask Physicist Joel Shore (who Eli trusts) to read over his link I’m sure Joel would have to agree with Andrew.
                    Would that cause Eli to admit he was wrong about heat spontaneously transferring from colder to higher temperature surfaces?

                    It should, but then Eli is dedicated to some ’cause’ which certainly has nothing to do with science.

                    • Ah, you mean Eli’s co-author. If you can assign a positive temperature to the energy flow it is heat. True that is a bit more than you get in General Chemistry or Physics, but what the hell.

                  • Eli,

                    Do you have a link to Singer saying that?

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