RP Sr is a tosser

I haven’t had a tosser for a while, but I think its time for a new one. The evidence is all at Open Mind, that increasingly valuable resource who has done such a good job of shredding so many thoughtless folk. And RP Sr’s 7-fold updated post neatly puts him into that category. But what wins RP the coveted award is outing Tamino (whose name isn’t exactly a secret anyway) under the guise of “professional courtesy”. Well done, Wodger.

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Grauniad hangwringing

Subtitle: Rupert Neate is a tosser, since I don’t seem to have done one of my “is a tosser” series recently.

Having assailed the nutters yesterday, I feel inclined to have a go at the handwringing going on at the Grauniad; I really do despair sometimes. As Timmy puts it “Fund to buy grain buys grain from grain wholesaler” (and lest you think I’m being to nice to Timmy, it looks like he stuffed up over the Greek debt).

There are any number of things wrong with that piece, but the headline “How £50m in UN food aid for starving went to buy wheat from Glencore” pretty well sums it up. Its a lie, of course: what actually happened was that the UN spent £50m buying grain; only a small fraction of that is profit. And why did the UN gratuitously spend this money? Because they were the cheapest supplier, of course.

But the whole tone of the piece is drivel. Take Glencore International, which buys up supplies from farmers and sells them on at a profit. What is this supposed to mean? Are we to take it that buying and selling grain is evil; Is it surprising? The statement is just a matter of the bleedin’ obvious, but is presented as yet another item in the charge sheet against Glencore.

The UN seem to have somewhat left themselves open to this Guardianista nonsense, by having said “Our new motto is to help people feed themselves,” Josette Sheeran, the executive director of the WFP, told China’s state news agency. “When we can, we purchase our food from the very poor farmers who suffer because they are not connected to local markets.” But you can see the problem, of course. Setting up an organisation capable of finding farmers so poor they don’t even have access to local markets, and redistributing that grain, would be a huge task. And one that I’d rather entrust to someone like Glencore than the UN, ter be ‘onest wiv yer guv.

Morgan Griffith is a tosser

Time for some more insult-throwing. And Morgan Griffith is a deserving recipient of just about any insult you might care to throw. As the youtube video is so correctly titled: Climate Zombie Morgan Griffith: Vikings, Mars, And Global Cooling (uploaded by climatebrad, which leads off to the Wonkroom). And indeed, there he is, brain entirely dead, reading out a list of “questions” he has been supplied by some lobbyist, all of which have been answered long ago.

The bit I like is at about 2:00 in, where he says that when he was taught in high school, his text book told him that increasing GHG’s was going to lead to a new ice age. Has he got a ref for this? Is it true? Very dubious. Even if it was true, would it be of the slightest relevance? No.

Just to prove that he is a real idiot, he goes on to talk about global warming on Mars. I only wish our politicians were competent, so I could pour scorn on you colonial types in general for electing such fools.

Refs

* The Climate Zombie Caucus Of The 112th Congress
* tossers on site:http://scienceblogs.com/stoat/

Werner Krauss is a tosser

#4 in the series. Normally reserved for non-scientists, but WK wins a dishonourable mention. He is part of the stable of kooks that von S gathers round him at klimazwiebel, though as far as I can tell von S has carefully avoided becoming kooky himself.

You’d better go and read what Krauss has to say for himself before you come back to my rantings.

The strongest impression I get is that, as an anthropologist, he really has little interest in the science of climate change. Its all meat to the grinder as far as he is concerned, and reality is of no real importance. Hear him slavering:

For me as an anthropologist, it was a great opportunity to get introduced to different tribes and subcultures in climate science and beyond… Who is allowed to speak and to represent climate science? Who is included and excluded? Those were some underlying discussion threads during this really exciting workshop…

Then there was the bizarre:

current hegemonic climate science appears as a system organized along exclusively academic criteria

which appears to be a tacit argument in favour of blog science, in which case I’m sure he’ll be delighted to be, in his turn, the subject of blog science. Organising science along academic lines is a good idea; you have to have got your post-normal head badly twisted to think otherwise.

But I think for sheer lack of thinking, context or reflection it is hard to beat:

it is hard to imagine how there will be ever done justice to those hurt and overrun by those who are in charge of the IPCC process

which quote earns him the Tosser award. I’ll ask Simon Hughes to hand it over.

[Update: but for real utter bilge, WK can’t compete with Mark Imisides … an industrial chemist working in the private sector.]

Simon Hughes is a tosser

#3 in the Is a Tosser series. For his grauniad article Universities must cut private schools intake, says Simon Hughes. Disclaimer: I went to private school, and to Oxford. My son is also at private school [*]. But this article is *not* going to be about my own experience. Meta-disclaimer: in England, it is obligatory for middle-class parents and politicians of all varieties to agonise about education, its funding, and its quality. In the case of politicians, it is strictly required for them to only talk about the quality; they are forbidden from doing anything to improve it [#].

Continue reading “Simon Hughes is a tosser”

Boris Johnson is a tosser

#2 in the Is A Tosser series, begun by Andrew Marr. But Boris is a bigger tosser because – hard to believe I know, but there are really no limits to some people’s credulousness – he takes Piers Corbyn’s predictions of a new ice age seriously.

Upiers-forecast-dec Boris hedges his bets, of course: Is he barmy? he asks (errr, try asking anyone who has attended a scientific meeting at which Piers has turned up to ask a “question” which actually turns into a long exposition of his theory). Then Boris gets hideously snarled up trying to have it both ways Nothing he says, to my mind, disproves the view of the overwhelming majority of scientists, that our species is putting so much extra CO2 into the atmosphere that we must expect global warming is correct, but then comes the std.septic schtick: Is it possible that everything we do is dwarfed by the moods of the star that gives life to the world? The Sun is incomparably vaster and more powerful than any work of man. Idiot (Boris, that is, and whatever fool on the Torygraph that commissioned this trash).

It is all a bit mixed up. Boris is really talking about seasonal prediction rather than the ice age nonsense, and lauds Piers’ forecast, presumably based on not having actually bothered to read it. But if you actually look at the “forecast” (I’ve no idea when it was made) it predicts Floods & Thaw floods. Thunder & rain deluges. Mild Wet & windy. Gales / Sev gales esp North. Which is hopeless, exactly as you’d expect. [Note: when I first wrote that, I mistook the year of Piers’ forecast. That is obviously inaccurate for “now”, but actually that forecast I’m quoting is for 2009-12-19. But its also wrong for then, so all is well. here is a met analysis for the 19th (from http://www.wetterzentrale.de/topkarten/tkfaxbraar.htm). Or you could trust the Mirror: “UK weather chaos: Big freeze causes distruption on roads and rail as 1,500 schools are shut”. Or the Torygraph]

Since I’m here, a nice story:

There is an unsubstantiated story that during his meeting with Hitler, Mannerheim lit a cigar. Mannerheim supposed that Hitler would ask Finland for help against the Soviet Union, which Mannerheim was unwilling to give. When Mannerheim lit up, all in attendance gasped, for Hitler’s aversion to smoking was well known. Yet Hitler continued the conversation calmly, with no comment. In this way, Mannerheim could judge if Hitler was speaking from a position of strength or weakness. He was able to refuse Hitler, knowing that Hitler was in a weak position, and could not dictate to him

From Carl Gustaf Emil Mannerheim

This is coming from me reading through Enigma-related stuff, since Bletchley Park isn’t far away (and my great-aunt worked in Hut6, which I’ve only recently discovered).

Occasionally, when there was a particularly urgent need to break the German naval code, such as when an Arctic convoy was about to depart, mines would be laid by the RAF in a defined position, whose grid reference in the German naval system did not contain any of the words (such as sechs or sieben) for which abbreviations or alternatives were sometimes used.[121] The warning message about the mines and then the “all clear” message, would be transmitted both using the dockyard cipher and the U-boat Enigma network. This process of planting a crib was called gardening

[[Cryptanalysis of the Enigma]].

Refs

* For Green Boris read Greed Boris
* JEB on Corbyn
* http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Qi8oZ2vG0c&feature=related – watch Piers in action!
* Looks like the “meto predicts mild winter” thing is a Daily Express fantasy (thanks DM)
* Winter forecast? – no, the UKMO didn’t issue a winter forecast (ht Deltoid)

Latif / Keenlyside / Cooling, revisited

The malign Nature effect, again refers.

In the hotly contested competition to see who are the biggest tossers in the british newspaper industry there has been an early entry this year by the Daily Mail: The mini ice age starts here based mainly on the fact that, oh, it has snowed a bit. And not helped by the UKMO pratting around with seasonal forecasts they know full well are worthless to the general public. Whether or not this makes the Mail more stupid that the Torygraph I leave for you to judge (incidentally, for you Johnny Foreigners lucky enough not to know what the Mail is, its a tabloid rag somewhat above the Sun but well below the Broadsheets, but with pretensions to respectability).

But what makes this little episode especially amusing is that the Grauniad (unlike the Mail) actually bothered to talk to Latif and he pretty well told them the Mail were a bunch of wazzocks. After that, he said something quite thoughtful which is nice: “There are numerous newspapers, radio stations and television channels all trying to get our attention. Some overstate and some want to downplay the problem as a way to get that attention,” he said. “We are trying to discuss in the media a highly complex issue. Nobody would discuss the problem of [Einstein’s theory of] relativity in the media. But because we all experience the weather, we all believe that we can assess the global warming problem”. Ah yes.