The biased leading the blind

by Gareth on September 25, 2009

homer.jpgTwo of New Zealand’s most prominent climate cranks, “inexpert witness” Chris de Freitas and Bob “great communicator” Carter are no strangers to the art of misrepresenting facts in support of their peculiar political visions, but recent articles by the pair set new standards for economy with the truth. Here’s De Freitas, writing in Energy NZ:

…no one has yet found even a shred of objective scientific evidence that humans are causing damaging global climate change.

No to be outdone, in Aussie “journal of ideas” Quadrant Carter revives the oldest zombie fact of them all:

As the temperature trend for ten years now has been one of cooling, since the unusually warm El Nino year of 1998, this requires a precautionary response to cooling rather than warming.

De Freitas’ piece is — even to my jaundiced eyes — remarkable for how liberally he misleads his readers…

Fit the first:

In preparation, the Government has committed New Zealand to cut up to a third of current emissions by 2020.

The economic, social and moral implications are immense, since carbon taxes and tradable emissions alone cannot make such a massive reduction. Sweeping legislation restricting the use of oil, coal and natural gas would be required, along with far-reaching reforms in pastoral farming to cut methane release.

De Freitas is ignoring the fact that any 2020 target will be for net emissions, that is, emissions after taking into account the carbon stored away in New Zealand’s growing forests. The government is aiming to weaken the emissions trading scheme, but still apparently expects forestry to play a major role in helping NZ to meet the target. But de Freitas prefers to spin a scary fairy tale…

Second fit:

…no one has yet found even a shred of objective scientific evidence that humans are causing damaging global climate change.

Breathtaking in its ignorance. But he continues:

There are no published scientific papers that show irrefutable proof of human-caused global warming.

Oh really? Depends what you mean by irrefutable, I suppose. There’s a very large attribution literature, handily summarised in Chapter 9 (PDF) of the WG1 report in IPPC’s Fourth Report (AR4). It starts: Human-induced warming of the climate system is widespread, and references approximately 550 papers. Either de Freitas has read them all and prepared detailed rebuttals, or his refutation technique is to deny the evidence exists, or if it can’t be denied, to stick his fingers in his ears and say “la la la, can’t hear you”. Effective at playgroup level perhaps, but odd behaviour by an associate professor at the University of Auckland.

After a ritual swipe at the IPCC, he then makes the following astonishing assertion (fit the third):

It is a conveniently forgotten fact that most of the industrialised world went into hysterics during the 40 years of global cooling beginning in the late 1930s.

This is — not to put too fine a point on it — complete invention. There were a few magazine and newspaper articles about possible cooling, and at least one book, but no-one was having hysterics. Undaunted, de Freitas continues with his fictionalisation of climate history:

Fifty years ago it became clear that global carbon dioxide concentrations in the atmosphere were increasing at a rate of about 1.8 ppmv per year. It was assumed that this was the prime contributor to an observed increase in global temperatures. On this basis, the carbon dioxide data were used in climate model projections for future global warming.

Assumed? What about the fact — understood for 150 years — that CO2 has an impact on radiation passing through the atmosphere? No assumptions required. There was sound theory supported by measurement, and to have left that out of the models would have been academic suicide.

de Freitas then trots through a few crank tropes, including the mandatory assertion of global cooling:

By 2006, despite the ongoing rise in global carbon dioxide emissions, data showed that mean global temperature rise had slowed, and currently shows signs of falling.

Now that’s he’s working up a bit of steam, he delivers this final fit:

Government decision-makers should have heard by now that the basis for the longstanding claim that carbon dioxide is a major driver of global climate is being questioned; along with it the hitherto assumed need for costly measures to restrict carbon dioxide emissions. If they have not heard, it is because of the din of global warming hysteria that relies on the logical fallacy of ‘argument from ignorance’ and predictions of computer models.

Risible. The only person arguing from ignorance is de Freitas. The “din of global warming hysteria” comes not from the real science that underpins our understanding of the problem, but from sceptics like de Freitas who have to make ever more shrill and ridiculous pronouncements to be heard.

On the other side of the Tasman, Bob Carter is the better writer, but equally ridiculous in his arguments:

…the real climatic risks faced by our societies, not least because it assumes that global warming is more dangerous, or more to be feared, than is global cooling. In reality, the converse is true.

That’s the version of reality that Bob and his crank mates occupy. It’s a strange planet, but not ours. They have odd models too…

Some computer models (General Circulation Models; deterministic) project that the global temperature in ten years time will be warmer than today’s. Other computer models (statistical; based upon projection of past climate patterns) project that global temperature will be cooler ten years hence. The reality is, therefore, that no scientist can tell you with confidence whether the temperature in 2020, let alone 2100, will be warmer or cooler than today’s.

Told you Bob’s planet was a strange place. On the one I inhabit there are plenty of people, scientists even, who would happily accept a wager that the next ten years will be warmer on average than the last ten. And I know of no credible “statistical models” that project cooling — but I do know of at least one that projects continued warming.

Bob then delivers a broadside against Australia’s planned emissions legislation, and finishes with this dramatic flourish:

If such a monstrously socially damaging and environmentally ineffectual measure as the government’s carbon dioxide taxation bill becomes law, it will stand for decades as an indictment of all the parliamentarians who voted for it.

In which event, be sure to remember their names, for nothing is more certain than that you are going to want to exercise retribution thereafter.

The names that will be remembered as the world burns will be those of the vocal minority who were willing to prostitute their academic reputations in service of delaying action. One wonders what “retribution” Carter and de Freitas will face. Opprobrium and ridicule will be the least of their worries when harsh reality intrudes on their ideology.

{ 60 comments… read them below or add one }

RW September 25, 2009 at 7:47 pm

Of course many of the older naysayers will have conveniently died before things get really bad, and meanwhile they can delude themselves about their importance.

Dappledwater September 25, 2009 at 11:42 pm

Yes, most likely. But I’m hoping that the denial trolls that haunt this blog will be around to experience at least some of it.

Doug Mackie September 28, 2009 at 9:49 am

How proud the RSNZ must be of Bob Carter.

rtreadgold September 28, 2009 at 6:59 pm

Breathtaking in its ignorance.

Really? So what is the evidence? Will you tell us? Don’t be shy.

In your own words, too, not the easy way out, quoting “550″ of someone else’s papers. Summarise! Just your own words. You don’t have to make them too simple. Most of us know how to Google.

As I said before, you should have an unassailable case by now, Gareth. At least, you’ve claimed often enough to know the evidence. Otherwise, without evidence, the sceptics [that's a name for real scientists] have nothing to refute, or I’m a sausage. I’d be left here examining my fingernails.

And stop banging on about Weart! I moved on from him a long time ago. You merely sound patronising.

Oh: you have a nice new comment process; it now offers “Request deletion” or similar. Very considerate.

Richard.

Gareth September 28, 2009 at 8:28 pm

Richard has posted the de Freitas article in toto at his web site, with this introduction:

Chris de Freitas takes aim at decision-makers who should know, but apparently don’t know, what they’re doing. If they don’t squirm on reading this stinging criticism, then surely they possess no conscience. Let us hope they’re strong enough to honestly re-evaluate their position. I’m posting his article in toto; crafted with the best possible reasoning, it deserves the widest possible circulation.

“The best possible reasoning”, Richard? Support his case. Don’t turn up here to attempt to pick holes in other people’s evidence, supply your own. As I have said before, the onus of proof is on you.

And you’ve moved on from Weart, have you? Did you read it? All? Do you disagree with it in toto, or in part. If the latter, which parts? Give your reasoning, in your own words.

You the owe the world some reasoning to support your position, not the occasional pompous post on someone else’s blog.

How’s that “conversation” going? Anyone turned up to talk to you recently? ;-)

Roger Dewhurst September 30, 2009 at 10:58 am

Kingdom of the Cults

Here, therefore, in far more detail than any routine allegation of “cultism” conveys, are no fewer than ten of this AGW ideology’s very specific characteristics, many of whose roots and lock-step influences can be found in Walter Martin’s and Ravi Zacharias’ definitive, award-winning 2003 book, “Kingdom of the Cults:”

1. Leadership by a self-glorifying, manipulative New Age Prophet — in this case, former Vice-President Al Gore, though he is rapidly being supplanted by President Barack Obama.

[Roger: I've asked you many times: please do not cut & paste long articles into the comments. Provide a link and an excerpt. Thanks. GR]

rtreadgold September 28, 2009 at 10:58 pm

Gareth, Gareth.

btw, I appreciate the visit, thanks.

But what blather! What obfuscation! What misdirection!

The best possible reasoning”, Richard? Support his case. Don’t turn up here to attempt to pick holes in other people’s evidence, supply your own. As I have said before, the onus of proof is on you.

I supported his case by posting his article. You might be too shy to comment at Climate Conversation, but making your point when I turn up here is called misdirection.

The attempt to “pick holes” in other people’s evidence is the very heart of good, sceptical science. I commented here in response to your outrageous allegation against Chris de Freitas. I observe, simply, that, though you object to his assertion there is no evidence, you yet provide none, so what is it? Or is that too pompous for you?

You’re quite wrong when you say I’ve turned up to pick holes in other people’s evidence, for the simple reason that without evidence there’s nothing to pick. When there is, then I shall.

How science works:

1. Observations are made.
2. An hypothesis is carefully and precisely formed to account for them.
3. Deductions from the hypothesis provide consequences which are tested by further observations.
4. Through repetition, especially by others, the hypothesis might stand or be altered.
5. Policy recommendations might be made.

In the dangerous AGW situation, we have seen 1, 2, 3 and 5. The hypothesis has failed but it has not been altered. Nevertheless, we have been positively inundated with policy and mitigation recommendations — even actual decisions — for “fixing” the climate.

Whatever you say, the onus of proof is on those doing the proving. What was the hypothesis, exactly?

Would you kindly state the dangerous AGW hypothesis then briefly enumerate the observed facts which support it?

It’s surely not too much to ask for, in exchange for a minimum of $30 per week per earner for the foreseeable future to fix the climate. And that’s after Nick downgraded the scheme!

Unassailable. Indisputably.

Gareth September 28, 2009 at 11:17 pm

Evidence: Chapter nine of the WG1 report, linked in the post. Read it, and then tell me there’s “no shred” of evidence.

Whatever you say, the onus of proof is on those doing the proving.

Nope: here’s reality. The overwhelming balance of evidence indicates that unrestrained carbon emissions are going to cause huge problems. You know, like IPCC reports, the peer-reviewed literature, the experts working in the field. Their advice is clear, and fortunately the rest of the world is paying attention.

You want to show that there is no serious problem. You need to overturn that balance of evidence. The onus is on you and those you support to demonstrate conclusively that we do not have a problem.

But instead, all you have is bupkis.

I’ll argue with you when you have more than goat droppings. At the moment, you’re just a waste of my time.

CTG September 29, 2009 at 8:09 am

“Would you kindly state the dangerous AGW hypothesis”

There are many hypotheses that relate to AGW – it is not a single hypothesis. The fact that you think it is a hypothesis suggests that you do not understand how science works.

A hypothesis is a single, testable proposition. For example, CO2 is considered a greenhouse gas because it absorbs IR radiation. This is a testable hypothesis, and has been proved many times since Tyndall first demonstrated it in the 1850s.

Another hypothesis is that the observed increase in atmospheric CO2 is anthropogenic in origin, from fossil fuel burning and land use changes. This is confirmed by the changes in carbon isotope ratios observed during the same period, which indicate that the additional CO2 must have come from plants originally.

And so on. From the many hypotheses that describe how the atmosphere works, it is possible to predict that if we continue to increase the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere, then the world will continue to warm. If the world continues to warm, there are many consequences we can say will happen – some of which are benign, most of which are not. That part is not a hypothesis, it is a conclusion drawn from our overall understanding of how the atmosphere works.

So rather than just saying “The hypothesis has failed”, can you tell us which specific hypothesis you believe has failed, and give us some scientific papers that show this?

rtreadgold September 29, 2009 at 11:32 am

Thanks, CTG, you make some good points although I wonder if you pay much attention to my description of the scientific method.

There are many hypotheses that relate to AGW – it is not a single hypothesis. The fact that you think it is a hypothesis suggests that you do not understand how science works.

I did not say I thought so. Of course there are multiple theories. The point is that Gareth fails, for though he castigates de Freitas for it he refuses to present evidence of “ignorance” in spite of numerous requests.

The prediction that our emissions will warm the earth failed after about 2001 and continues to fail, for while the mercury falls or remains level there is no warming. Don’t try the canard about “ten of the last twelve years were the warmest” (that’s logical after a high point, even as the temperature falls); the fact is, what’s rising is the trend line and not the temperature. Some natural factor is counteracting any anthropogenic warming influence and out-muscles it. Ipso facto, carbon dioxide does not dominate the climate (which falsifies a multitude of claims from the alarmists, though perhaps not any formal hypothesis). The logarithmic temperature response from increased carbon dioxide does not support predictions of alarming warming; the predictions are wrong.

The suggestions of strong positive feedback are unreasonable because it has not happened in millions of years. The climate system is stable and must therefore be influenced by strong negative feedbacks. The fact the negative feedbacks haven’t been identified does not implicate carbon dioxide, much less the tiny amount that we’re responsible for.

Remember: CO2 comprises 0.00387 of the atmosphere, arising overwhelmingly from natural sources; man is responsible for about 5.3% of that, which is a vanishingly small 0.00002. If those 387 ppmv are providing about 3°C (roughly) we have caused only 0.00006°C. That amount will grow by only minute amounts as our emissions continue, because of the logarithmic response.

Claims of strong positive feedback from water vapour sound feasible. However Roy Spencer’s observations suggest significant negative feedback from increasing tropical water vapour. In any case, no out-of-control positive feedback from water vapour (or any source!) is known, it is merely speculated.

With the emphasis on carbon dioxide, it’s overlooked that water vapour is by far the dominant greenhouse gas. Also, the climate system is extremely complex; little public attention is paid to the influence of ocean currents which redistribute cooling and warming pulses to the atmosphere months or years after they have occurred in the water, independently of atmospheric gases and difficult to predict.

To view the climate through the single lens of a minor greenhouse gas is to deliberately adopt a limited perspective, which is unwise, not to mention unscientific.

samv September 29, 2009 at 2:36 pm

The prediction that our emissions will warm the earth failed after about 2001 and continues to fail, [...] the fact is, what’s rising is the trend line and not the temperature.

Cherry picking. Model Runs include the natural variability to which you should be referring.

The suggestions of strong positive feedback are unreasonable because it has not happened in millions of years.

How many millions? Because if you look back 65 million years to the Eemian you will see that something like that happened – despite only a 100% increase in COâ‚‚ the models show that a huge increase of about 7°C happened – positive feedbacks such as methane calthrates being a “smoking gun”.

Remember: CO2 comprises 0.00387 of the atmosphere, arising overwhelmingly from natural sources; man is responsible for about 5.3% of that, which is a vanishingly small 0.00002. If those 387 ppmv are providing about 3°C (roughly) we have caused only 0.00006°C. That amount will grow by only minute amounts as our emissions continue, because of the logarithmic response.

Where did you get 5.3% from? (rhetorical question)

It’s quite simple: the increased output is well in excess of the biosphere’s ability to take it up. And so, the balance accrues. Here’s a nice diagram from the IPCC TAR. Note the imbalance. This is how we can be responsible for the real COâ‚‚ increase of approximately 30% since pre-industrial levels.

With the emphasis on carbon dioxide, it’s overlooked that water vapour is by far the dominant greenhouse gas.

Incorrect. You can see a long discussion on it here including output from model runs.

little public attention is paid to the influence of ocean currents which redistribute cooling and warming pulses to the atmosphere…

Also incorrect. May I again refer you to the relevant section of IPCC which describes how ocean currents are incorporated into the models.

To view the climate through the single lens of a minor greenhouse gas is to deliberately adopt a limited perspective, which is unwise, not to mention unscientific.

It would be, but that’s your misunderstanding of the science, not what the science says.

pwned again

Roger Dewhurst September 30, 2009 at 11:07 am

“It’s quite simple: the increased output is well in excess of the biosphere’s ability to take it up. ”

Rot.

samv September 30, 2009 at 1:09 pm
CTG September 29, 2009 at 2:54 pm

It us simply not valid to talk about 10 year trends in the temperature record. You need to look at longer periods than that to eliminate noise. For example, look
here. Two trend lines through the same data that differ only in their start and end dates, but one is negative (cooling) and the other is positive (warming). So which one is right?

Neither.

There is no a priori justification for using either set of dates or a 10 year window. Science has some rules for how you can use data, and ignoring those rules is not just unscientific, it is downright deceitful.

rtreadgold September 29, 2009 at 3:51 pm

I said the temperature’s going down. That’s true: it is going down. If it’s going to catch up to the predictions, it had better start accelerating with a pretty steep slope. What’s going to make it do that?

Ten years is a substantial amount of time. Natural variation is the cause of the downslope, obviously, and it’s stronger than the CO2 forcing. So CO2 doesn’t dominate. What’s wrong with that? You know it doesn’t dominate the climate.

CTG September 29, 2009 at 5:31 pm

You obviously live on a different planet, Richard, because on thus planet it is getting warmer. Repeating something that is not true doesn’t make it true.

rtreadgold September 29, 2009 at 6:12 pm

Ha, ha. Of course I don’t live on a different planet, don’t be silly.

It’s getting warmer? Why is the temperature now less than it was at the end of 2001?

When the temperature is going down, it does not support your assertion that it is going up.

Dappledwater September 29, 2009 at 8:04 pm

“When the temperature is going down, it does not support your assertion that it is going up.” – Dick Treadgold

It does when the climatic trend is one of warming.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/f/f4/Instrumental_Temperature_Record.png

Climate = Climate in a narrow sense is usually defined as the “average weather,” or more rigorously, as the statistical description in terms of the mean and variability of relevant quantities over a period of time ranging from months to thousands or millions of years. The classical period is 30 years, as defined by the World Meteorological Organization

Yep, always flummoxes deniers, the difference between weather and climate.

rtreadgold September 29, 2009 at 8:28 pm

Why is the temperature now less than it was at the end of 2001?

Because it has gone down.

CTG September 29, 2009 at 10:07 pm

Okay, so let’s pretend for a moment that statistics don’t matter, and just look at the data. I’ve taken the average annual global mean temps for the last few years, using Sep to Aug because Aug 09 is the last month we have data for (so 01 is for Sep 00 to Aug 01):

01: 14.45
02: 14.69
03: 14.60
04: 14.59
05: 14.71
06: 14.66
07: 14.74
08: 14.56
09: 14.68

So the last year is only 0.01C cooler than 2001/02, and 0.23C warmer than 2000/01. There have been two years warmer than 2001. Strange kind of cooling this, where the temperatures keep going up.

samv September 29, 2009 at 6:18 pm

I said the temperature’s going down. That’s true: it is going down.

You’re oversimplifying the picture. Your statement is only true if you cherry-pick the start and end points (eg “since 2001), usually with reference to a particular data set. And that’s just bad statistics. This Peter Sinclair Crock of the Week episode deals with this. It’s been dealt with before on this blog.

If it’s going to catch up to the predictions, it had better start accelerating with a pretty steep slope. What’s going to make it do that?

El Niño, perhaps? Watch the video for more – perhaps you’ll learn something from someone who has managed to wrap their head around the science.

Ten years is a substantial amount of time. Natural variation is the cause of the downslope, obviously, and it’s stronger than the CO2 forcing. So CO2 doesn’t dominate. What’s wrong with that? You know it doesn’t dominate the climate.

Leaping between logical fallacies with ease, it’s the dinosaur Richard Treadgold!

Factor X is more significant over cherry-picked timescale Y than Factor Z. Therefore, Factor Z does not dominate!

Does not follow

Ten years may be a long time, but 12 years is also about the same length of time. That the trend line you’d draw over a 12 year period would be markedly different to that drawn over a 10 year period from 1999 shows how useless such cherry picking is.

rtreadgold September 29, 2009 at 8:33 pm

samv:

Look, you’re doing well. But I’m not trying to be a statistician. I’m just pointing out that the temperature’s going down at the moment. It’s hard for ordinary people to have any faith in the dangerous global warming scenario right now. There’s no sign of danger.

Dappledwater September 29, 2009 at 11:46 pm

“I’m just pointing out that the temperature’s going down at the moment. There’s no sign of danger.’ – Dick T

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/7/7e/Satellite_Temperatures.png

http://www.noaanews.noaa.gov/stories2009/20090916_globalstats.html

samv September 30, 2009 at 1:19 pm

Yes but the temperature’s going down where? As measured by whom? You meant you opened the door and a draft blew in?

Depending on the nature of that answer, it’s either the “It’s Freakin’ Cold!” argument, or cherry picking a short timescale. Both of these positions deny or ignore the extensive body of knowledge about the world’s weather systems.

It’s hard for ordinary people to have any faith in the dangerous global warming scenario right now. There’s no sign of danger.

Glaciers going from magnificent to piddly within a person’s lifetime. Droughts and severe record-breaking heat spells. Melting permafrost with methane bubbling out from underneath. Long-lived sea ice in the Arctic disappearing. These are all signs, and most people (who are happy to trust the judgment of scientists working in the respective fields) see them as such.

Dappledwater September 29, 2009 at 11:57 pm

“I said the temperature’s going down. That’s true: it is going down.”- Dick T

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/f/f4/Instrumental_Temperature_Record.png

Yep, went down in the early 1900′s, 1940′s, 1960′s too, but now look at it!. Up, up and away…………

Outside of the denialosphere it’s known as natural variability. But it justs keep getting warmer and warmer over longer time frames.

No doubt Dick gets all a quiver with excitement when winter rolls around – “it’s cooling, it’s cooling!” he’ll shout.

CTG September 29, 2009 at 3:34 pm

As I have said before (do you actually listen to anyone in these conversations of yours), the proportion of CO2 in the atmosphere is irrelevant. It is the contribution of CO2 compared to other forcing agents that matters. This is somewhere between 9 and 26% of the whole greenhouse effect, which keeps the earth about 33K warmer than if there was no greenhouse effect. The contribution of CO2 to this is about 3K or so – and that is at the pre-industrial level of 280ppmv. CO2 is now at 385ppmv, which is 1.375 times the pre-industrial level. This means that if CO2 was the only thing to have changed, we might expect it to now contribute 4.125K, an increase of 1.125K. In fact, temperatures have risen about 0.7K. We know that in the middle part of the 20th century, there was a considerable contribution from negative forcings such as sulphate aerosols, which explains why the temperature increase is less than would be expected from CO2 alone.

rtreadgold September 29, 2009 at 3:53 pm

the proportion of CO2 in the atmosphere is irrelevant

Amazing. Do you mean that?

Why then should we restrict our emissions?

CTG September 29, 2009 at 5:04 pm

Are you being deliberately obtuse? Oxygen and nitrogen, which make up 99% of the atmosphere, play no part in the greenhouse effect. Therefore, quoting the proportion of CO2 to O2/N2 has no bearing on how big a role CO2 plays in the greenhouse effect. Your arithmetic is therefore wrong by several orders of magnitude.

rtreadgold September 29, 2009 at 8:38 pm

Greenpeace are telling us, right now, that we ought to reduce the proportion of CO2 in the atmosphere. So you should talk to them, you really should. See, they’re influencing the government, and they’re saying we should reduce our usage of energy, and stuff like that.

It’s called the ETS. Do you want to know more about that? See the govinmint.

RW September 29, 2009 at 2:56 pm

The trolls are very active at present. Do they think that repeating nonsense endlessly changes anything? I can recall de Freitas’ work in science being severely criticised long before warming issues were “hot”.

rtreadgold September 29, 2009 at 4:17 pm

This refutes nothing I’ve said.

It tells me that you, for some reason, don’t like me. It doesn’t tell me where I’m wrong. It doesn’t make me want to stop talking, because I’m telling the truth. The only way to make me stop is to refute what I’ve said. Simple.

Ah, I forgot. It makes you feel better, doesn’t it?

Cheers.

samv September 29, 2009 at 6:29 pm

The only way to make me stop is to refute what I’ve said.

Yeah, right.

Gareth September 29, 2009 at 6:18 pm

Gentlemen, there is little point in attempting to provide Richard with the information he requests so earnestly, because he has demonstrated again and again that he does not take the time and trouble to understand the answers and references he is given. I’ve tried. I’ve now given up. He is a waste of your time and effort…

rtreadgold September 29, 2009 at 6:26 pm

Gentlemen, he’s tried to change my mind? By insulting me? Without providing the evidence I specifically asked for multiple times? I told him not to refer me somewhere else.

He just won’t listen.

In the meantime, the world fails to warm and there’s no proof of future dangerous warming.

Gareth September 29, 2009 at 6:38 pm

Small point, Richard. On my blog, you don’t tell me to do anything. You ask nicely. And when you first showed up here, I took you at face value and tried (politely) to answer your questions. But you have proven yourself to be immune to education or reason. Hence you condemn yourself to irrelevance.

Your loss, not mine.

rtreadgold September 29, 2009 at 8:24 pm

What did I tell you to do?

I asked nicely for evidence in your own words, which you refused to provide.

Thank you for taking me at face value. I have a nice face. There’s no proof of future dangerous warming.

Gareth September 29, 2009 at 8:30 pm

RT: What did I tell you to do?

RT comment above: I told him not to refer me somewhere else. He just won’t listen.

The only person “not listening” is you. Go read the references. If you can’t be bothered to do a minimum of work yourself, I am certainly not going to waste my time spoon-feeding you, especially given your well established track record of ignoring what you’re told.

rtreadgold September 29, 2009 at 8:42 pm

OK, you got me. I was hoping you’d understand the references enough to render them in Kiwi English. But you don’t, so I’ll go read chapter 9, dammit.

You’d better be here when I get back!

Dappledwater September 29, 2009 at 7:54 pm

“In the meantime, the world fails to warm and there’s no proof of future dangerous warming.” – Dick Treadgold

So much for cooling:

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/7/7e/Satellite_Temperatures.png

rtreadgold September 29, 2009 at 8:59 pm

Yes. Nice graph. Thanks for the explanation, I appreciate it.

Shame about the hockey stick, isn’t it?

There’s been no unprecedented warming after all.

Dappledwater September 29, 2009 at 11:25 pm

The hockey stick is just fine.

http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/paleo/globalwarming/paleolast.html

“There’s been no unprecedented warming after all.” – Dick T.

Well, except for the unprecedented warming of the last 1300 years that is.

RW September 29, 2009 at 8:57 pm

I suggest Treadgold and the other denialists go away and join in the fun at the Australian Weatherzone site, where the anti-warming forums will make them feel well at home. Uniform hostility to mainstream science; as fine a collection of cranks as one would ever encounter. There you can join in the orgies of mutual self-congratulation that occupy most of their time. Stop trying to impress here with your puerile arguments. It’s tragically ironic of course, given that it’s an Australian forum – parts of the southeast are in their 13th or 14th consecutive years of inadequate rainfall.

rtreadgold September 29, 2009 at 9:01 pm

Yeah, yeah. It’s called a drought, don’t you know? Nothing unprecedented about a multi-year drought, is there? In Australia? You’re joking.

I hadn’t heard of it, but I’ll check it out. Thanks.

RW September 29, 2009 at 9:16 pm

Yes, and it happens to be easily the longest, hottest and most devastating drought they’ve had, fully in accordance with warming scenarios. The dim-bulbs on Weatherzone have been trying to talk it out of existence for a long time now.
Since you clearly fancy yourself as a denialist debater, try taking on David Jones of BOM (eg at the austpacwx forum). He’s chewed up and spat out the likes of you many times already. I’ve invited a number of trolls on English forums to do so, and they’ve all chickened out. Oh what a surprise.

rtreadgold September 29, 2009 at 9:23 pm

Oh, droll, RW.

I know nothing about meteorology. Why did you suggest I visit? Spit me out yourself. English fora? Strange.

RW September 30, 2009 at 8:03 am

Nor do the crazies on that site, but that doesn’t stop them ranting on!

rtreadgold September 29, 2009 at 11:12 pm

Are you seriously suggesting that the present Australian drought has been caused by human emissions of carbon dioxide and not by natural weather variation?

Would you mind proving that, then, please?

Dappledwater September 29, 2009 at 11:40 pm

“Are you seriously suggesting that the present Australian drought has been caused by human emissions of carbon dioxide and not by natural weather variation?” – Dick T

Answer = Both.

Climate change and Australian rainfall discussed here:

http://www.mdbc.gov.au/subs/seaci/docs/media/MR080501_SEACI.pdf

“During the 20th century, changes in the intensity of the subtropical ridge have largely corresponded with changes in global temperature. This correspondence means that there is a high likelihood that the current rainfall deficit is linked to current global warming, through the intensification of the subtropical ridge.”

But Dick, will no doubt, pretend this was never pointed out, and repeat his crap over and over………..

RW September 30, 2009 at 8:02 am

I will simply add to the above link by pointing out to the one who knows nothing of meteorology that the polar jet and its associated westerlies has been migrating southwards since about 1979, and it has not exactly been difficult to associate this with warming scenarios.

Roger Dewhurst September 30, 2009 at 12:18 pm

http://www.dailyexpress.co.uk/vote/results/42/No

I suppose that the harder it is to get the suckers to swallow your message the more strident will your screeching become.

Gareth September 30, 2009 at 12:23 pm

How true. Perhaps that’s why you and Richard turn up here, to raise the noise level, hoping that if you shout loudly enough the world might pay attention…

Roger Dewhurst September 30, 2009 at 12:51 pm

Back to front Gareth. Increasingly you are losing the argument in the public arena. It is the general public that votes politicians in or out . Screeching in the blogosphere is not winning you any more support. You will have to deal with the arguments put up by de Freitas and Carter, point by point. It is no use just pointing to IPCC reports written by bureaucrats under political directives even if these reports refer to refereed academic papers.

The fact, difficult for you to accept, is that the general public are not aware of any warming but it is very much aware of proposed increases in taxation in response to this alleged warming.

Gareth September 30, 2009 at 1:02 pm

I know that’s the impression you’d like to create Roger, but it simply doesn’t bear scrutiny. The world has moved on, and you’ve been left behind.

Carter and de Freitas don’t make “arguments”, they misrepresent the facts to attempt to make arguments. Once that’s pointed out, they’re shown up for what they are — crude propagandists becoming ever more shrill in their support of the untenable.

samv September 30, 2009 at 1:25 pm

It is no use just pointing to IPCC reports written by bureaucrats…

Come, now. With language like this:

COâ‚‚ and Oâ‚‚ compete for the reaction sites on the photosynthetic carbon-fixing enzyme, … The strength of the response of photosynthesis to an increase in COâ‚‚ concentration depends on the photosynthetic pathway used by the plant….Plants with the Câ‚„ photosynthetic pathway (tropical and many temperate grasses, some desert shrubs, and some crops including maize and sugar cane) already have a mechanism to concentrate COâ‚‚ and therefore show either no direct photo-synthetic response, or less response than C₃ plants (Wand et al., 1999).

Find me a beurocrat who can understand that, let alone claim to have authored it!

Roger Dewhurst September 30, 2009 at 1:26 pm

20.% for your viewpoint.
71.9% for mine.

The British public have not swallowed your story. I suspect the percentages here would run against you even more.

samv September 30, 2009 at 3:55 pm

In matters of conscience, the law of majority has no place.
— Mahatma Gandhi

(I put forward: “and science” belongs after “conscience”)

Roger Dewhurst September 30, 2009 at 4:22 pm

CONSENSUS………… Do you remember the word? Who claims consensus on this issue?

Hung by your own petard I believe.

samv September 30, 2009 at 4:32 pm

You’re beginning to blather incomprehensibly, but bear in mind it’s not consensus of the general population, that’s pretty darned near impossible for contentious issues. It’s consensus of those educated in the topic. Those who have taken their viewpoint, subjected it with an open but skeptical mind to the rigour of analysis by their peers, investigated things which are out of line and discovered what they can agree upon, with what certainty.

And note consensus is not the same as the law of the majority.

Roger Dewhurst September 30, 2009 at 1:27 pm

Sorry 20.5%. That 0.5% is pretty significant given your level of support.

Rob Taylor October 6, 2009 at 8:08 pm

Roger, if you think the climate is cooling, I suggest you holiday in the Victorian bush this summer and invite your denialist colleagues over for a barbie.

Meanwhile, scores of millions of people are afflicted by climate instability from global heating today, with much worse to come.

Frankly, your irresponsibility and lack of compassion is sickening.

Do you not have children? or a conscience? or a clue?

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