Is climate change alarmism encouraging scepticism?

Climate change ‘alarmists’ have been utterly relentless in their campaigning. It’s quite possibly the biggest global political campaign in history. My media survey last year found an average of 1.6 different predictions of climate doom a day. Even on a boat tour of Stockholm today I could not escape it, with warnings that human-caused global warming could cause parts of Stockholm to flood (on the other hand, not having their waterways ice up in winter might be one of the pluses of global warming).

But a recent Morgan poll suggests that maybe the constant predictions of doom is having an unintended effect. The number of people who think concerns are exaggerated has doubled since 2006, from 13% to 27%.

There is still an overwhelming majority of people who believe that climate change is happening and strong majorities in favour of policy action. But perhaps the claims of impendending disaster are sounding a little too hyberbolic, and people are beginning to mentally discount the scale of the problems we face.

(It could be that the denialists are gaining some traction; though they get only a small fraction of the media coverage given to the alarmists.)

HT: Pollytics blog.

77 thoughts on “Is climate change alarmism encouraging scepticism?

  1. Don’t think it’s the denialists getting traction – Even when they do get media attention, arguments from the likes of Ian Plimer and Vaclav Havel are so complicated and simply tenuous that I think most people either A. Wouldn’t take them seriously B. Wouldn’t be in a position to judge them relative to the more simple logic that underlies the argument that climate change is caused by human activity.

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  2. They will get some traction when people discover how much the Govt plans are going to take out of their pockets. Can anyone remember Rudd in debate with Howard claiming his scheme would cost only about a dollar a week per head? Or was that just one small part of the plan?

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  3. People always want to do the right thing until it costs them. The public support for anti-CO2 measures is based entirely on the presumption that people could enjoy the same lifestyle while switching to “cleaner” sources.

    The trouble is people are now realizing that the CO2 free technology does not exist and any attempt to limit CO2 emissions will be fantastically expensive and will likely fail. On top of that anti-CO2 measures will likely increase the loss of jobs to places like China that refuse to control emissions.

    This means that the skeptics will ultimately win the political debate unless someone can come up with a CO2 free source of energy that is cheaper and as reliable as coal and can be used wherever coal is used today. Lecturing people about how the have to act because the end of the world is coming will fall on deaf ears because someone is always predicting the end of the world and people have learned that such people are best ignored because they are mostly likely wrong.

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  4. Climate alarmism has been in full swing for 10 years. This years repeated claims of “it’s worse than we thought” are clearly political. The temperature has been flat for 10 years. Claiming that this is ‘worse than we thought’ is disingenuous. While there are model runs that had these conditions it makes it clear that the models have pretty much everything in there. They are not falsifiable, especially with the 6 yearly updates where the models are made to fit the last 6 years of data.

    It has been admitted that politically motivated exageration is going on.

    From Roger Pielke Jnr’s blog quoting an interview in the Atlantic
    with Thomas Shelling:

    It’s a tough sell. And probably you have to find ways to exaggerate the threat. And you can in fact find ways to make the threat serious.

    http://rogerpielkejr.blogspot.com/2009/08/are-some-thoughts-best-left-unsaid.html

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  5. “Impending disaster” corresponds more or less to the view of the Greens, who command the support of about 8 per cent of the voters. So if 73% of those surveyed by Morgan don’t think the claims are exaggerated, then the impending disaster view is holding up very well indeed.

    The main stream view is that serious action needs to begin now to avert likely (though not certain) effects in 2050-2080, though the beginnings of climate change effects are impending, if not already begun (more and worse storm surges, more and worse bushfires, irrevocably melting Arctic ice etc).

    Of course exaggerated claims are often used as a device to stir people into action. In recent years, we’ve seen claims that Muslim extremists are imminently about to take over Western society and it’s because of our complacency and wilful refusal to see the nascent problem. And going back some years, we were told that a communist takeover of Australia was a real possibility via the Kremlin’s agent’s of influence in the trade unions. The immediate claims were nonsensical, but the underlying problems (Muslim extremists, communist trade unionists with links to the USSR, climate change) were real.

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  6. I think it’s a case of what you experienced with getting published Andrew. Only the dramatic or controversial gets traction.

    Thought experiment. Three new studies come out. One says its much worse than we thought, ice-shelves and glaciers are disappearing at an increasing rate. One says there is gradual change, mixed in with large seasonal variations. One says the earth is cooler than in 1998.

    Which paper publishes an article expounding which study?

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  7. OT, but it’s interesting how the sexes differ. Men are more sceptical, but also more inclined to think it’s already too late to do anything.

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  8. With respect Andrew the Stern Report provided a strong basis for believing that the risk of a climate catastrophe was non-negligible as did the recent work of Weitzman which attached a probability of 5% to the chance that temperature increases would exceed 10oC by 2200 if governments reacted only with catch up policies as temperatures increase.

    My view is that it is the anti-science denialist brigade who have been making most noise. The recent visit of Dr Jay Lehr and our own Professor Plimer and their unconditional views that anthropgenic climate change is not caused by greenhouse gas accumulations (and their implied claims that the IPPC reports are a gigantic hoax supported by grant-hungry liars) have had a huge impact in Australia. Despite their strong claims neither of these authors has ever published a single peer-reviewed article on climate science.

    In contrasts the Australian Bureau of Meterology, the IPPC and the World Meterological Organisation who comprise reputable scientists in this area have acknowledged that current trends are proving to be worst case outcomes in terms of the 4th IPPC report.

    The notion that anti-science ratbags and reputable scientists should be given equal time to present their views in a so-called ‘debate’ has proven extremely costly in terms of trying to get across to ordinary Australians the possible enormous costs of climate change.

    It is rational to be alarmist.

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  9. My point is that only by increasing the hyperbole can any article attract attention. The climate scientists feel like no one is listening and so they keep shouting louder. The only way to get media attention is to put bigger numbers and more diabolical predictions out there than 3 months ago (partly the actual data is changing to). e.g. 25% used to be the “necessary” cut, now 40% is more often quoted.

    Therefore a section of the public starts to think that they are shouting wolf a bit too loud and often.

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  10. Harry – My post wasn’t about whether climate change is happening, just public opinion. Though my media survey in the first link was pre-Pilmer it showed that the ‘denialist’ view had little coverage, and most of what it did receive was in the opinion section of newspapers. Pilmer would be a rare ‘denialist’ spike in media covereage that is otherwise dominated by ‘alarmists’ and ‘NIMYists’.

    I think M’s explanation is a pretty good one, though I would add that the media is likely to be as to blame as scientists. Most major outlets will have already run hundreds if not thousands of climate change disaster stories, and so the news threshold for running another one is increasing. They have to find a new – more disastrous – angle.

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  11. Perhaps one rather important difference between the denialists and alarmists is that the alarmists have some facts on their side. Perhaps that’s all that is needed to explain the coverage; flat earthers, 9/11 truthers and creationists don’t get a lot of media either.

    You’re adopting a false equivalence here, Andrew, of the sort that leads to the “teach the controversy” move on denialists’ part. When denialists can point to levels of CO2 falling, most glaciers advancing, permafrost areas growing rather than shrinking, dykes becoming redundant rather than being overwhelmed, the stratosphere getting warmer, well-developed models of atmospheric systems, etc then and only then can you say they merit equal media time.

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  12. Perhaps, just perhaps, they are pointing out our future; it’s only alarmism if it doesn’t come to pass.

    Is it alarmism to yell fire if the house is burning down?

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  13. DD – Show me where I have ever said that equal time/space should be provivded, which is not a position I hold for any issue.

    My position on this issue is:

    1. I have no scientific comepetence to judge the issue myself.
    2. As the weight of scientific opinion is on the alarmist side, I am willing to take that as most likely to be true.
    3. Governments rarely have certain or perfect information, so even if the alarmists turn out to be wrong it would nevertheless have been prudent to take action to minimise a major risk.
    4. The heretic hunting against the already marginslised sceptic position is excessive and unhealthy (even mentioning scepctics attracts cricitsm, as this post has).
    5. As previous posts have argued, the scepticis are the not the main problem the alarmists have. Rather, the main problems are the NIMBYists and the fact that while the general population overwhelming believes that action is needed on climate change, the costs they are prepared to endure are way below what the alarmists believe to be necessary.
    6. The poll reported in this post and the polls on actions citizens are prepared to take suggests that the scare story a day approach can only go so far – clearly the alarmists need more creative marketing.

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  14. Thought experiment. Three new studies come out. One says its much worse than we thought, ice-shelves and glaciers are disappearing at an increasing rate. One says there is gradual change, mixed in with large seasonal variations. One says the earth is cooler than in 1998.

    The problem with this thought experience is that no scientific study with a shred of credibility would come to the third conclusion. So if the papers ignored it, that would be a nice surprise from them.

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  15. I am shouting myself hoarse about this Global Warming hoax. The press (especially US and UK) are mostly in the tank for GW, and are not smart enough to know the difference. Funny–all media (broadcast, internet, print) depend heavily on energy use. If Cap and Trade passes energy costs will skyrocket. They are literally talking themsevles out of their jobs. But I digress. How will we get the message out to the populace about how they are being hoodwinked?

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  16. Yes, I agree with the idea that an extreme position on anything causes a measured, sceptical or contrary point of view.

    I’ve dubbed it the “Coldplay Paradox” here: http://thefrant.com/2009/08/twitter-is-for-old-people-part-ii-coldplay-paradox/

    In essence:
    Coldplay are quite a decent band with pleasant songs. However, due to the overwhelming praise heaped on them by all and sundry, the incredible frenzy of excitement and calls of “greatest band of all time” or “the next U2?, despite inherently enjoying the band, you’re forced take a step back and remark – “no they’re not that good”. Not only are they not the greatest band of all time, they’re simply good to very good at best.

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  17. I wonder if any of the alarmist have ever read “the boy who cried wolf.”

    I read on their websites many laments on why the publics belief in AGW is declining. So far they blame scientific illiteracy, evil oil companies, the press (as if it isn’t in the tank for them enough), the fact there aren’t enough scientist willing to abandon scientific caution, etc.

    I don’t believe in what they are selling, but they are selling it poorly. High pressure tactics plus insulting the people they want to influence, is not a good strategy.

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  18. On the topic of climate change skeptics, I’m not sure how people like Ian Plimer can be taken seriously if this is how they engage in debate – Like honestly what is he going on about with these questions he is asking George Monbiot. NB I am not a particularly big fan of George Monbiot and his “don’t build a supermarket near my Welsh village so it can stay nice and quaint for me” world view, but this response by Ian Plimer is very odd indeed: http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/georgemonbiot/2009/aug/12/climate-change-climate-change-scepticism

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  19. But perhaps the claims of impendending disaster are sounding a little too hyberbolic, and people are beginning to mentally discount the scale of the problems we face.

    How true. I’d be interested in the views of some of the alarmists here regarding the opinions of this climate scientist I had an exchange with recently. His background is post grad (doctorate) Climatic science at both Harvard and MIT and now trades weather related stocks , consults with hedge funds and traders on weather/stock relationships. He seems pretty good.

    First point was about current Hurricane activity debate which alarmists have said has increased. Yet “Doc” here presents a reasonable argument that’s far from the truth in a practical sense despite the theoretical argument suggesting there should be more and they ought to be worse.

    This is actually a very tough question that deserves more than a comment, and I plan to do it justice later. In a very basic theoretical sense, one would think hurricanes might become both stronger and more frequent since warming temperatures mean warmer sea surface temperatures which means more fuel for storms. However, there is no substantiated evidence that hurricanes have become more frequent. Our data set for this measurement is frustratingly very small…dating only back to the mid 1800s. Additionally, we didn’t have satellites covering the entire oceans until the mid-1960s meaning that many over open waters were invariably missed skewing the data set towards the present. Thus our only really solid data goes back to about 1960. It actually appears that hurricane frequency functions in more of an oscillatory cycle: The 50s-60s were active, the 70s,80s, and early 90s were quiet, and 1995-present represents another active cycle.
    In terms of intensity, there is some evidence that hurricanes in some ocean basins have grown stronger.

    The second was to sound him out about his thoughts AGW and here he suggests that the debate in academia is long gone in terms of whether AGW is happening or not, however there is “raging” debate on more substantive issues.

    2) AGW (Anthropogenic Global Warming) is the real mcCoy. Sorry. Moving beyond this question, what is important is determining its precise severity and what we can do about it. There is not that much debate in the academic world going on about whether AGW is real or not. Rather, the debates focus on practical matters like how much temperatures will warm and whether that really will be enough to melt the icecaps, overturn dissolved CO2, increase hurricane strength, etc. And believe me, it is one heck of a debate…

    If any of the alarmists here would like to pose a question to him or suggest reasons why this wouldn’t be a perfectly reasonable position go right ahead as I would only be too happy to convey it to him and post it here.

    Ken or Harry’s input or questions would be most welcome

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  20. DD’s suggestion here is a case in point.
    ……Then denialists can point to levels of CO2 falling, most glaciers advancing,

    There are around 200,000 glaciers in the world. We have nowhere near enough information to reach even a half way informed decision on whether there is material retreat.

    This and examples like cow farts ending the world as we know it are more than a little amusing as it starts to delve into the troofer realm.

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  21. “There are around 200,000 glaciers in the world. We have nowhere near enough information to reach even a half way informed decision on whether there is material retreat”
    .
    It must be a conspiracy — perhaps people have been carrying ice blocks from the first half of the glaciers we know about and dumping them on the other half we don’t.

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  22. No Conrad, it’s not a conspiracy at all. It’s like a lot of things we see where people go spouting their mouth off with what happens to be too little information. Happens all the time.

    Unfortunately your comment doesn’t show you understand wit much less what I am saying.

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  23. Tim:
    jc’s innumeracy about sampling is all too common.

    Yea right, coming from you.. Lol

    Last time you were talking about sampling, you ended up being the only person in the world stooged by the Lancet guy into believing that 7.8 trillion Iraqis died as a result of the war. 🙂 Frankly you should be the last one to talk about numeracy, boyo. Tell us , are you’re still defending that discredited crap of dishonest junk and lurching about in “a field of rakes”, to use one of your own terms? Yes you are. Lol

    You have that representative sample in front of you and I don’t mean of one.

    (Try and be nice on Andrew’s blog, Tim, as he really doesn’t want agro.

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  24. Thanks for binging that up Timbo.

    Here’s what one study says about glaciers.

    The position of moraines or till left behind by receding glaciers can provide information on the advances (and, less accurately, the retreats) of mountain glaciers. Owing to the complex balance between local changes in melting and ice accumulation, and the effects of topography which influence mountain glaciers (see Section 2.2.5.4), it is difficult to reconstruct regional climate changes from the extent of mountain glaciers alone (Oerlemans, 1989). For example, both increased winter precipitation (through greater accumulation) and lower summer temperatures (through decreased melting or “ablation”??) can lead to more positive glacial mass balances. The inertia of large glaciers dictates that they respond to climate change relatively slowly, with delays of decades or occasionally centuries. For smaller, fast moving glaciers in regions where precipitation and accumulation are moderate, temperature changes are usually the dominant factor influencing mountain glacier masses and lengths. Here glacier moraine evidence in combination with other lines of evidence can provide reliable information on past regional temperature changes (Salinger, 1995; Holzhauser and Zumbühl, 1996; Raper et al., 1996; Salinger et al., 1996).

    You think you could sample with those sorts of variables and not end up with another Lancet on your hands?

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  25. jc, The evidence you cite does not refute the claim that one can assess climate change by looking at glacial retreat. All you are saying is that this retreat depends on the size of the glacier and whether it is situated on steep or flat ground. This is well-recognised by the IPPC.

    The IPCC Climate Change 2007, The Physical Science Basis volume summarises the evidence on glaciers. Glaciers prove to be good, visible evidence of climate change. Still the relation is complex with short, steep and shallow glaciers reacting to changed climate in a few years and large, deep glaciers and ice caps on relatively flat surfaces taking centuries to adjust.

    Despite this complexity the evidence is compelling. Oerlemans (2005) looked at glacier lengths for 169 glacier lengths for large regions from 1700-2000. There is evidence of strong average retreat from 1850-1970, a slow down between 1970-1990 and then an acceleration in retreat after 1990.

    After inspecting the mass balance data around 1970 Greene (2005) concludes:

    “This gives confidence that the glacier wastage in the late 20th century is essentially a response to post-1970 global warming”.

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  26. JC, 59 glaciers is similar to 88 glaciers.

    Hey, post 1970, the consensus was that the world was heading for global cooling. But they didn’t understand how cow farts and lamb burps affected glaciers back then.

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  27. jc, sampling works. It is only when it gives results that you don’t like that you decide that the field of statistics is a commie plot.

    cl, there was no scientific consensus in the 1970s that the world was headed for global cooling. The theory that increased CO2 would lead to global warming was first advanced by Svante Arrhenius over a hundred years ago.

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  28. Harry:

    Sampling would do little, which is what Timbo asserts. There are so many variables that it would make such a “study” about as useful as Lancet (but without the dishonest finagling).

    You’re no expert and neither is Timbo or myself, so I asked a climate scientist the question about sampling and his response is that it would be about as useful as a tit on a bull (my characterization). This is what he said.

    Me
    I read there are 200,000 glaciers in the world. People claim they are melting, or rather retreating. Others claim we don’t know enough information on them all. One person claims that we could do representative sampling and figure it out from there. Is that right?

    him
    First, with regards to measuring glacial retreat, we really don’t have much of an historical record. 100 years ago, people didn’t just say, “heck, lets go measure this thing, because in 100 years, it might be smaller.” Additionally, we didn’t develop the proper technology (i.e. GPS systems) until last decade to even do a decent job of measuring these things. Traditionally, old photographs used as a standard of comparison.

    Yes, there may be 200,000 glaciers in the world, but we’re not worried about all of them. In fact, with regards to the planet as a whole, we’re really only worried about two: Greenland and Antarctica. Glaciers come in two primary forms: Ice Sheets and Alpine Glaciers. Alpine glaciers, like those in Glacier National Park in Montana, make up the vast vast majority of glaciers, but contain only a very small fraction of the total water locked up in glaciers. Ice sheets, which include just Greenland and Antarctica, are extremely rare, but contain the vast vast majority of water locked up in glaciers. Individual alpine glaciers may be growing or retreating depending on local microclimates (although evidence points to them retreating), but they are insignificant outside of their aesthetic qualities (I have been on retreating glaciers, and boy, are they ugly). Thus, a “representative” sampling is somewhat unnecessary, except to understand the scope of climate change.
    With regards to sea level change, rather than focusing our efforts on all 200,000 glaciers, we would do best to focus our attention on understanding just the two ice sheets. Were Greenland alone to melt, sea level would rise by 20 feet and if Antarctica melted, sea level would rise by 60 feet. Based on an extensive array of GPS units on Greenland, it is estimated that the glacier is shedding 60 cubic miles per year. At this rate, it would take 14000 years for the glacier to melt completely. However, glacial melting is one giant positive feedback cycle. Melt water significantly lubricates the contacts between the glacier and the ground, accelerating its movement towards the sea. For example, a region of the Greenland sheet show an acceleration from 13 m/day in 1994 to 36 m/day in 2005. Antarctica is a bit of a different story…

    That sounds about right and one doesn’t need to be an almarmist to say that.

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  29. jc, sampling works. It is only when it gives results that you don’t like that you decide that the field of statistics is a commie plot.

    Who are heck are you addressing this to, me? Nice straw-man you’ve introduced. As if I’ve ever doubted statistical sampling.

    Fact is Timbo, you continually supported Lancet when even some of originators of the study walked away in disgust.

    That of course was silly in the beginning, however your continued defense of that piece of dishonesty makes your behavior appalling.

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  30. Joe Cambria, it’s a refreshing change that you would take the word of a climate scientist about a climate science question instead of calling them names, but you don’t seem to have quite understood what your scientist told you. You were told that “evidence points to them retreating”, contradicting your claim that nobody could possibly know this.

    Your scientist is mistaken about this being “insignificant”. It’s not. Here’s what IPCC AR4 WG2 Chapter 3 says this will result in severe adverse effects on hundreds of million people:

    “With more than one-sixth of the Earth’s population relying
    on melt water from glaciers and seasonal snow packs for their
    water supply, the consequences of projected changes for future
    water availability, predicted with high confidence and already
    diagnosed in some regions, will be adverse and severe. Drought
    problems are projected for regions which depend heavily on
    glacial melt water for their main dry-season water supply
    (Barnett et al., 2005). In the Andes, glacial melt water supports
    river flow and water supply for tens of millions of people during
    the long dry season. Many small glaciers, e.g., in Bolivia,
    Ecuador, and Peru (Coudrain et al., 2005), will disappear within
    the next few decades, adversely affecting people and
    ecosystems. Rapid melting of glaciers can lead to flooding of
    rivers and to the formation of glacial melt-water lakes, which
    may pose a serious threat of outburst floods (Coudrain et al.,
    2005). The entire Hindu Kush-Himalaya ice mass has decreased
    in the last two decades. Hence, water supply in areas fed by
    glacial melt water from the Hindu Kush and Himalayas, on
    which hundreds of millions of people in China and India depend,
    will be negatively affected (Barnett et al., 2005).”

    You were banned from commenting at Deltoid because of your vicious and dishonest attacks on the authors of the Lancet study, so it no surprise to see you continue here with more fabrications. Feel free to tell us who these originators of the study are who “walked away in disgust”. I expect we’ll see more abuse from you, but no names.

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  31. vicious and dishonest attacks on the authors of the Lancet study

    Would that be the Lancet study where it was subsequently discovered that Research Ethics protocols were breached? It wouldn’t be the first time Lancet has published ethically deficient research.

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  32. I think jc and CL are so used to the confused madness and abuse at their home blog that they see illogic as par for the course.

    The initial claim by jc was that the denialists had a point. The evidence that glaciers were retreating was ambiguous. Its a standard ploy of the denialists – don’t reject AGW claims – try to raise doubts about them.

    But the study jc quotes in 26. states that fast-moving, small glaciers can be used to assess the effects of climate change. This is what the IPCC have done and agreed with so what is the difficulty?

    Then CL ridicules the idea that methane is a greenhouse gas that can influence warming. Authors such as Ramanathan (1975) recognised that CH4 was a greenhouse gas 35 years ago and I know of no serious study that seeks to refute this.

    But truth is unimportant to CL. He seeks to trivialise discussion but only ends up trivialising himself. His stupid remarks add nothing to improving understanding.

    In 30 jc repeats his claim that sampling is impossible because of the heterogeneity of glacier types even though the point has been addressed. Of course he doesn’t have to agree with the rebuttal but writes as if the counterargument has not even been put.

    He then cites an unidentified authority on glaciers who, it is claimed, makes the obviously wrong remark that (climate science is) only worried about Greenland and Antarctica’. That is literally untrue and the IPCC report cited by Tim Lambert shows this is so.

    I agree with Tim Lambert that we can expect more abuse from jc but no identification of the claimed authority. I assume Tim’s factual rebuttal will again be ignored.

    In 31 jc diverts his losing argument into a discussion of war casualty statistics in Iraq. This is backed up by Sinclair Davidson who criticises Lancet for breach of ethics!

    Writing things out in this way it becomes, at first sight, a complicated story. But it isn’t – jc made a wrong claim about glacier retreat and has ignored counterarguments.

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  33. HC – I didn’t accuse Lancet of a breach of ethics, I accused Lancet of publishing a paper that had ethical problems. And not just once.

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  34. Tim:

    You flatter me. Yea I take the words of nearly all climate scientists to be reasonable.

    I wouldn’t take yours though as you’re so dishonest and spew irrational hate towards people that disagree with you (but you know that)

    As for being banned at your site… yes it’s true that I referred to the Iraqi national leading the Lancet survey as the equivalent to hiring Goebels. Funny how it turns out he seem to be the weak link when the “study” was discredited by John Hopkins honchos 🙂

    You seem to have no problem when your tribe of deadenders referring to right wingers as Goebels and fascists and everything else further proving your hypocrisy knows no bounds.

    Your cite doesn’t demonstrate exactly how a “Lancet like sampling” would help us. But notwithstanding that what exactly is the point anyway: that there are glacial retreats? Thanks but we already knew that Mr. Strawman.

    Harry:
    From what I can see you’re really starting to babble incoherently now. Truly, I’ve even tried to read that rant backwards in case you had said something meaningful in reverse speech code but that didn’t work either. What are you trying to say?

    As for accusation of being wrong…..

    Can I remind you of the time you were caught out in your very own innumeracy at the ALS blog when I nicely showed you why I thought your numerical argument on traffic congestion was wrong. But did I see you admit or even thank me for helping you find the error. No of course not. Your error wasn’t about the efficacy of silly glacier samples, Harry. It was a little more serious than that as you seemed to have incorporated error in a study.

    (But again don’t thank me).

    One other thing… I really don’t think I abuse you. I mock and make fun of you, which isn’t really that hard to do most of the time because you seem to me to come across as a sermonizing, sanctimonious ninny.

    For what I can see, CL didn’t mention methane being a GHG. He made fun of you because you have cited cows as being dangerous to the earth’s viability and since then you have been referred to as the cow fart whisperer which even you must admit is very amusing.

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  35. Sinclair:

    Don’t hold your breath expecting an apology from Harry for incorrectly characterizing your comment. From my experience Harry doesn’t do apologies for errors 🙂

    ———

    In any event, Andrew (I think) is away and I don’t really think he wants his site to be misused and abused in the way Tim Lambert (UNSW) and Harry are abusing their welcome with agro and bringing up all wounds so I’ll be signing off in deference to what i expect his wishes would be.

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  36. No jc I am not ‘babbling’. I am pointing out the errors in your logic and in claims by CL that methane does not contribute to warming – it does because it is a greenhouse gas.

    Your response is to lay on the insults as Tim suggested you would.

    Tim also correct in suggesting you would not identify the researcher you cite – just one more of your fabrications?

    The claimed numerical error that you mention (there was none) is an attempt again to divert discussion from the fact that your fabrications have been shown to be false. The problem is that you use these tactics so often that they are well understood.

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  37. Harry:

    Sorry , but it seems to me you are babbling incoherently.

    Here is the link to what I consider to be your surprisingly sophomoric error on road congestion. It wasn’t just me that picked you up it, as others did too, yet you still deny it, (you denilaist you) ?

    Here, let’s take a look.

    http://blog.libertarian.org.au/2009/06/02/queensland-fuel-rebate/

    See comments 30 , 32 36 especially 45 from me. Basically it seems to me that you’ve totally abused the term “externality” to mean anything you like if suits your personal preferences. And I repeat, your math assumption of the second /1000 seconds is simply incorrect. It’s wrong , so just admit it and move on.

    CL’s comment was to make fun of your recent taking fright over cow farts. Adding the very real issue over methane as a GHG seems an amateurish diversion to your past claims about cows and their farting which is why people make fun of you.

    Your response is to lay on the insults as Tim suggested you would.

    Not really. You’re just siding with Timbo because it’s your personal preferences and intense personal dislike of me. What you deliberately ignore is his aggressive snarky comment directed at me and the other offensive comments. Frankly I expect nothing less from you, Harold as you never disappoint to the lower side of my estimates.

    Tim also correct in suggesting you would not identify the researcher you cite – just one more of your fabrications?

    I’m not fabricating anything at all. The person’s comments are reasonable except for you and they lay claim to Timbo’s silly suggestion that we could use sampling is downright silly.

    I introduced the discredited Lancet survey is evidence that Timbo continues to dig himself into a deeper hole of dishonesty and innumeracy by his on going support for that preposterous “study”. You obviously agree with him on Lancet, which is no surprise to me or anyone else. But don’t let me stop, as it will provide non-ending entertainment.

    The problem is that you use these tactics so often that they are well understood.

    Lol. Harry you’re flattering me as well?

    Here’s the thing,. Lambert’s silly little claim about sampling glaciers is wrong, as my reference shows. Now that’s four apologies you owe and counting.

    Trying to discredit a perfectly reasonable reference is exactly what this thread is all about Harry: demonizing and putting down people that may have a contrary opinion to you.

    Like

  38. Conrad:

    You’re perhaps aware of it, however Time mag was actually a very respected source of informative news back in the 70’s. You may not know but there was no internet in those days.

    In terms of general informative news it carried similar weight to the Economist. It’s only been in the last decade and a bit that it has devolved into the equivalent of people magazine.

    In short it would have carried a little more influence than say Deltoid or Harry’s blog in terms of information and news. Certainly it was more reliable even if it was wrong at times.

    Like

  39. Now there’s a reputable source of evidence.

    Just like The Lancet, Deltoid and Al Gore’s film – the latter fraudulent according to a British court.

    Like

  40. Sinkers is an expert in the filed of deficient research so he should be paid attention.

    He even invents new forms of racism

    Like

  41. Actually i missed this.

    Further up thread Harry is citing a study that he seems to believe which is saying global temps could rise 10 degrees by 2200.

    And he wants to be taken seriously while he’s abusing sceptics at any given opportunity. Amazing. He’s scaring himself half to death was fantastic stories the belong in Hollywood.

    Like

  42. The NFL is threatened? Damn. Like you mean like the superbowl could be in doubt in January? Lol. Outside of the Grand final that’s the only football I watch.

    How about the world series or the test cricket? Has that been put in doubt?

    I can understand most of the others. Like I can understand the methane burps and the farting, as Harry was nice enough to discuss it, however i really don’t get the problems with circumcision.

    Like

  43. Prof. Clarke is proposing we plan now for 2200 and has the nerve to attack Ian Plimer? What an incredible belief system these people have. Not only do they demand to be taken seriously but also demonstrate frightening intolerance to opposing viewponts.

    Like

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