Meanwhile, over on the Dark Side

A brief break from bashing my own side, to point up the stupidies of the Evil Ones, to prove that I haven’t Gone Over myself. Its not terribly entertaining, as we replace issues of judgement and representation with lying, but needs to be done on occaision.

So, from my own comments (heavens! is there no censorship in this world?) we have: Steven Milloy at Fox News points out that if you take GORE’s movie, and remove the 9 proved false statements, and also correct Gore’s false statement that 2005 was the hottest year on record (1934 was)…. Well, no. 1934 wasn’t, as a fairly cursory look at the t rec will confirm. But in fact Milloy isn’t quite guilty of this – he is only guilty of writing the grossly misleading “Gore also says in the film that 2005 is the hottest year on record. But NASA data actually show that 1934 was the hottest year on record in the U.S. — 2005 is not even in the top 10.” and leaving his accolytes to their inevitable misreading. And of course, as everyone by now has said ad nauseam, the judge didn’t find 9 things proved false.

But mostly I was going to write about David Bellamy, who has popped up to spout tosh again (in a little reminder to me of where the important things in this life lie, when I searched the Times site for this article, it insisted on telling me lots of things about some footballer, when I just searched on “Bellamy”). I’m not quite sure why the Times printed it, because its a mish-mash of the usual nonsense: global cooling; that the hockey stick disappeared from IPCC ar4; the astonishing discovery that “year-to-year oscillations [in temperature] are totally unrelated to CO2 change”; space to mention Shultes odd offering but no space to mention it got rejected, even by E&E; and so on and so forth. Errm, like I said, bashing the Dark Side isn’t very interesting.

12 thoughts on “Meanwhile, over on the Dark Side”

  1. Do you smell Monckton? There’s definitely an aroma coming from somewhere…

    Whta is depressing is reading the comments, describing the article as ‘reasonable’ and ‘balanced’, for example. Evidence of what you have previously said, that the way to be popular is to tell people what they want to hear.


  2. IS IT POSSIBLE for the denial deniers to deny da Niles’ undeniable nihilism?

    YES, it’s true, I was the author of the comment, “Steven Milloy at Fox News points out that if you take GORE’s movie, and remove the 9 proved false statements, and also correct Gore’s false statement that 2005 was the hottest year on record (1934 was)”. I cannot deny it, I made a mistake [about the hottest year]. As for the attempt to deny Gore’s ‘9 proved false statements’, I am the source of the statement, but not it’s denial…

    Ahem… To return to a simpler line of reasoning, this discussion began about the claimed sea level changes in some South Pacific islands. I think rather than dwell upon who is in denial, it is better to simply focus on the evidence.

    In medical research, we have three types of research, (1) Efficacy studies, which determine if a treatment is workable in controlled clinical conditions, (2) Effectiveness studies, which determine if the treatment works in the real world, and (3) Dissemination studies, which determine the best methods to disseminate a validated finding into a clinical population. It makes good sense that step (3) requires clear and unambiguous findings from steps (1) and (2).

    My position is that Gore’s 9 assertions, and in this case the sea level issue, were not ready for dissemination when he made his movie. They are certainly not ready for dissemination now. The sea level data is still in the throes of massive new data collection and data interpretation.

    For example, in Canada, sea levels are dropping substantially over very wide areas. The continent is ‘bobbing up’, after having been burdened under massive ice sheets during the last ice age. This is taking millennia to complete and in the meantime coastlines change, new islands appear, and sea water is displaced. This may raise sea levels elsewhere.

    Is it time for Gore to claim that man-made global warming is causing sea levels to increase, and they may increase by as much as 20 feet in the near future? The logic and bioethics of Dissemination Theory suggest that the scientific picture is not clear enough to disseminate this assertion responsibly at this time.

    [OK, well, some progress then. As for isostatic rebound, well: yes. Of course that makes other bits fall into the sea faster. For the pacific islands… don’t get carried away. They are *not* seeing sea level fall; just not rising terribly fast. See, eg, -W]


  3. Strangely enough they havn’t put my 3 well argued science based posts up on the website, preffering instead ad hominem attacks on Realclimate (They get money from George Soros so they must be evil) and on anyone associated with AGW.

    Democracyrules- why on earth would procedures relating to medical stuff be used to communicate with the public about non-medical issues? Sure, communication tools can always be borrowed, but what is so wonderful about your dissemination studies?



    A response for W: (1) [“As for isostatic rebound, well: yes. Of course that makes other bits fall into the sea faster.”] Perhaps you are not apprised of the scale of this effect. It is not well publicized. The size of the glacial rebound and the ‘subsidence’ in sea levels appears to be several times larger than increases in sea level that have been attributed to global warming. From ‘Sea Level As an Indicator of Climate and Global Change’ (1992), Bruce B. Parker: “Glacial rebound causes uplift in areas that were covered by ice during the last ice age, subsidence in regions that were close to but not covered by the ice, and generally affects vertical motions over the entire globe. At some locations the large land movement is very obvious, for example, the glacial rebound occurring in Scandinavia and Alaska, and the tectonic activity in Japan; data from these locations have generally not been used to estimate trends in sea level change.” Online:

    Glacial rebound and sea level subsidence is seen in many places throughout the Northern Hemisphere, including the Baltic sea, and the Atlantic, Pacific, and Arctic Oceans.

    (2) [“For the pacific islands… don’t get carried away. They are *not* seeing sea level fall; just not rising terribly fast.”] I’m sorry, I did not say that the sea levels around some Pacific islands are falling. Rather, I am pointing out that Northern coastlines are rising in some places, which is making sea levels ‘subside’ (fall) on some of our coastlines. The idea is that this COULD, OR MIGHT cause sea level RISES elsewhere, including the Pacific, because some sea water is being displaced. Again, glacial rebound MAY or MAY NOT affect sea levels in the Pacific, but the connection is worth studying, because the scale of the subsidence appears to be very large. One key question is given that continents sit atop tectonic plates, if glacial rebound causes the land to rise, does the surrounding seabed also rise?

    [GR can be locally large, and indeed needs to be taken into account by the people computing SLR. Globally integrated I would guess that the effect is small. If you’re interested, the obvious place to start looking would be the SLR chapter of IPCC. The SLR people are of course well aware of GR -W]


  5. re: Guthrie

    I twice posted notes observing that citing Schulte was not good for credibility, with relevant details, and neither is there yet.

    There may be some strong editing, or maybe there’s a long delay.


  6. Maybe some UK folks can help me out?
    Does “expert witness” mean something different in the UK than the US?

    Google: monckton expert witness gore

    Viscount Monckton is widely said to have been an expert witness for the Dimmock case.

    I have read:

    and I am perplexed to find no mention of Monckton, and I don’t recall him being officially involved, but then I’m far away and maybe I missed something.

    [He may have been, who knows. That court judgement doesn’t list the witnesses – Stott was for the govt, but only gets a passing mention -W]


  7. W vs GR — or how about a little TLA? (Three Letter Acronym)

    W – No, you miss my point, Glacial Rebound is very large indeed in North America. It affects coastlines from Labrador to the Aleutian Islands. I cannot see how it could be much smaller in Russia. Therefore, the amount of sea water displaced by rising littoral areas and rising seabeds could be very large indeed. No one, including the IPCC has addressed the tectonic plate rebound issue adequately.

    I stress my point again, Al Gore has not sufficient data in hand to claim certain knowledge about causes of sea level changes in Pacific islands. If in the future these changes are proved to occur, they could well be solely attributable to glacial rebound. Unless Gore is certain of something, he has no justification in disseminating what he so cavalierly calls ‘truth’.

    [Sorry guv, you’ve now slipped over from raising interesting questions to thinking that a whole pile of scientists have failed to notice the obvious. “No one, including the IPCC has addressed the tectonic plate rebound issue adequately” is simply a claim based on personal ingnorance -W]


  8. PGR, whilst technically decreasing, is a constant (for the porpoises of discussing SLR in AGW timespans). SLR is accelerating (satellite measurements suggest that SLR over the last decade is 70% greater than the 20th century average). PGR can’t explain the increase in the rate of rise. [ ]

    Also, eustatic and steric rises might not be necessary causes of SLR (other factors can be causes of the same), but they /are/ sufficient. If ice (glaciers/polar caps/yadayada) melts and the sea warms then the level will rise. The ice is melting, the seas are warming. It would be possible to suggest that the amount of ice-melt and warming isn’t sufficient to cause any noticeable rise of course. The data, however, might beg to differ.

    The 20 foot rise mentioned in AIT was in the form:

    “IF the Greenland ice sheet, or the West Antarctic ice sheet, disintegrates, THEN we’ll have 20 feet of sea level rise.” [ c.f. ]

    This wouldn’t seem a particularly controversial thing to say to me, unless one were wanting to make it so by taking it out of context in order to build a straw man.

    Just sayin’


  9. …is simply a claim based on personal ignorance

    These kinds of things come up way too often. “Scientists forgot about Very Important Thing and so this is a death blow to their theory!” is code for “nobody came knocking on MY door to personally tell me about the less interesting, but intensely researched, details of their paper so it’s safe for me to assume they ignored the obvious in spite of what they actually do for a living.”


  10. Sorry [W], In my apparently new incarnation as ‘Guv’, I may represent the ungovernable.

    I suppose one may argue that personal ignorance is an ubiquitous phenomenon. One thing I should admit to you now, is that I do not regard either Al Gore nor IPCC, nor any scientific or public body as the emitters of final truth. Science does not have gospel. It only has theory, and data, and the interplay between them. I would certainly not rely upon the IPCC as a source of gospel. Nothing personal about them, but they do not emit scientific gospel.

    Some further points about Sea Level:

    (1) Not everyone agrees about rates of increase of Sea Level. The overall trend discerned from the tide gauge data, according to Wolfgang Scherer, Director of Australia’s National Tidal Facility, remains flat. “One definitive statement we can make,” states Scherer, “is that there is no indication based on observations that sea level rise is accelerating.”

    I see no reason to reject his statement without due consideration.

    (2) I remain very firm on my position about the potential of glacial rebound to affect global sea level. The opinions of IPCC may or may not be correct, and as you know thousands of scientists have been wrong about thousands of things. At any time, I am ready to be proven false, and that’s what makes science exciting.

    Here is my thinking about glacial rebound (or more properly, Post-glacial Rebound). The ice in some places was about 3,000 metres thick. The size of the Post-glacial Rebound in places exceeds 1 metre per century, and now averages about 100 cm per century. The size of the rebound is very large indeed, given that it is spread over the entire Northern Hemisphere.

    But these rebounding continents sit atop tectonic plates, which are themselves mired in magma (well, mantle). When trillions of tons of ice were piled upon the continents, they were ‘smushed down’ (technical term), but did just the continents sink, or did the whole tectonic plate sink? The plate did only one of two things, it deformed downwards under the weight, or it fractured near the continental boundaries. No obvious and pervasive fracture boundaries circumscribe the northern continents. There are no dotted cut-out lines.

    So do you see why I take this seriously? We know the continents are rebounding because the sea level surrounding them is dropping, as the continents ‘bob up’ more and more. But what about the sea beds around the continents? These are also mounted on tectonic plates, but it is not easy to measure small but ubiquitous marine water depth changes over large areas. This is much harder than measuring sea level changes (which is pretty hard in itself). If entire tectonic plates rise, then they will ‘shed’ sea water as they rise up. Or to be Archimedean about it, they will displace sea water. Eureka!

    If I were the IPCC (whew) then I would worry about rebounding sea beds later. It’s too hard to measure, and it would be far down on my ‘to do’ list.

    BUT, if these sea beds rise higher and higher, the sea water has to go somewhere, and the sea water does what all the rest of us want to do – it goes South. Since Pacific islands qualify as being in the South, then the sea level around those islands will rise if Northern seabeds are ‘bobbing up’ from the magma they are mired in. The question is not really ‘if’, the question is ‘how much’? [W], I think you are being too credulous about this. Until the effect of Post-glacial Rebound on global sea level is accurately measured, then no one knows what it is. It’s not about gospel, it’s about data. Capeche?


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