## John Hunter on Sea Levels

This is not a topic that interests me. John A is interested in it; I’m inclined to think that Hunter’s interpretation of 19th century documents is plausible. What I am tired of is threads being hijacked for discussion of Hunter’s interpretation of sea level. So I’m providing a thread for such discussions. Here is a picture of the 19th century mark in question, with the protagonist in the foreground.

Relevant data sets are here, many of which are password protected data sets: Amery data (needs username and password). Miscellaneous files (needs username and password). TASMARC files (needs username and password).

I request that people interested in this issue place their remarks here so people who are uninterested in the topic can avoid them.

John adds: I’ve moved comments over to this new thread, so the referring numbers in the comments themselves may be a little screwy.

1. John A
Posted May 11, 2006 at 6:38 AM | Permalink

“If you have something original to say, then I might reconsider.”

in other words

“If you want to discuss anything other than hard statistical facts that I can’t answer, then no”

By the way John Hunter, do you know what the wet and dry bulb temperatures and barometric pressure were for 8.00am local time, 2nd February 1840, in Port Arthur, Tasmania?

2. John Hunter
Posted May 11, 2006 at 6:51 AM | Permalink

John A (#61): You ask “do you know what the wet and dry bulb temperatures and barometric pressure were for 8.00am local time, 2nd February 1840, in Port Arthur, Tasmania”.

No, but I could probably find out with reference to Lempriere’s meteorological records. I wouldn’t trust the barometric pressure though. Is your question relevant?

3. John A
Posted May 11, 2006 at 7:04 AM | Permalink

John A (#61): You ask “do you know what the wet and dry bulb temperatures and barometric pressure were for 8.00am local time, 2nd February 1840, in Port Arthur, Tasmania’€?.

No, but I could probably find out with reference to Lempriere’s meteorological records. I wouldn’t trust the barometric pressure though. Is your question relevant?

Presumeably you have Lempriere’s meteorological records, otherwise how would you work out what adjustment to make to the tide register readings for pressure?Furthermore, what was the adjustment to Lempriere’s barometer after it was compared to Captain Ross’ and Crozier’s? When did this adjustment occur?

4. Dave Dardinger
Posted May 11, 2006 at 11:53 AM | Permalink

re #55

“would you like to discuss with me my views which are simply a regurgitation of those of Mr ClimateAudit”

then the answer is “no”.

If you have something original to say, then I might reconsider.

This is an interesting stance to take. It basically says you want to discuss new positions only. Except that:

1. You’ve never discussed old or new positions – data with Steve M.

2. You’re always bringing up old points of your own, e.g. what John A’s real name is. (BTW, actually a goodly majority of posters here are posting under their real names and that fact is easy to verify by google searches combined with phone conversations if necessary. [you might need to find a trusted source in the US or elsewhere to save money])

3. I personally think you’re lying and have no intention to discuss anything substantive with per or anyone else here. Of course you’ve included the weasel word “might” which provides CYA no matter what someone posts.

4. I believe you’re misinterpreted per’s original statement, whether purposely or not I can’t say, in that his statement,

I would have said that the thermometer is broken. If you feel like engaging on any of the issues of substance, please feel free

does not demand that your engagement be with per or any particular person.

5. What difference does it make if a position is the revealed wisdom of this site or not? Science deals with objective reality and whether the person or group having the correct understanding is otherwise reliable or not shouldn’t matter. For that matter:

6. Where exactly have you published your own proof of AGW or the like? The fact is that you’ve accepted the position of others as your own too. If your attitude is valid then you shouldn’t be here anyway.

5. Armand MacMurray
Posted May 11, 2006 at 12:56 PM | Permalink

Re:#67
Nice detective work, Doug, but “John H” has set up a straw man here. The relevant question is not “who is the ‘John Hunter’ who posts on this blog?”, but rather “how would one email the ‘real’ John Hunter at UTas?” There are plenty of authentic sources that provide the ‘real’ John Hunter’s email address at UTas, so speculating on who ‘our’ John Hunter is not necessary, and beside the point.

6. JerryB
Posted May 11, 2006 at 2:47 PM | Permalink

Whose turn is it to remind folks not to feed the trolls?

7. John Hunter
Posted May 11, 2006 at 5:26 PM | Permalink

John A (#65): You ask:

“Presumeably you have Lempriere’s meteorological records, otherwise how would you work out what adjustment to make to the tide register readings for pressure?

Furthermore, what was the adjustment to Lempriere’s barometer after it was compared to Captain Ross’ and Crozier’s? When did this adjustment occur?”

Oh dear. Oh dear. This proves once again that you STILL haven’t even bothered to read our papers on sea level at Port Arthur. See the “Discussion” section of Pugh et al., 2002. International Hydrographic Review, Vol. 3, No. 3 (New Series) for a detailed account, or read Hunter et al., 2003. Geophysical Research Letters, Vol. 30, No. 7, 54-1 to 54-4, doi:10.1029/2002GL016813, where we said:

“Sea level measurements are often adjusted to some standard atmospheric pressure. We have not done this because of a number of uncertainties concerning barometric observations made in 1841–1842 at both Port Arthur and Hobart. These included the questions of whether temperature and height correction had been applied to the reported observations, and whether the barometers were adequately calibrated or checked for leakage.”

To answer your second question, we said in Pugh et al., 2002. International Hydrographic Review, Vol. 3, No. 3 (New Series):

“…. when Ross and Crozier checked Lempriere’s barometer on 25 October 1840 it was reading 0.642 inches of mercury (22hPa) low.”

This episode demonstrates once again the intellectual bankruptcy of the cheerleaders on ClimateAudit. John A (a) is so naive as to think that we wouldn’t have bothered to investigate atmospheric pressure in our study, and (b) after many pleas from myself, he STILL hasn’t gone back and read the basic literature. What a buffoon!

Had enough of a pounding John A?

8. John Hunter
Posted May 11, 2006 at 5:50 PM | Permalink

And to all those who continually seek to pressure me into commenting on matters outside my field, you should have gathered by now that (unlike the majority of posters to this site), I do not offer technical comment in areas in which I am not totally confident. In such matters, I tend to put more faith in the published literature (flawed though it may be in some aspects) than in the posturings of Steve’s sycophants.

9. Armand MacMurray
Posted May 11, 2006 at 8:30 PM | Permalink

“John Hunter,” here are some tips that will help you be taken more seriously in scientific circles:
1) Improve your English language vocabulary. You’ll avoid inconsistencies such as understanding a term in one post (#41), then later claiming not to understand it. You’ll also come to understand the difference between “bullying” (#79) and asking a question (#77).
2) If you just don’t want to answer a question, admit it. Have some respect for yourself. Don’t hide behind obvious falsehoods such as “It hasn’t happened to me,…” (#79 and others) when previous posts (e.g. #70, #53) show everyone that you are wrong in your assertion. If you are “…not totally confident” in the area (#75), just say so.
3) Try not to be hypocritical. When once you claim to be upset at a perceived violation of IPCC rules (#49), don’t later claim “I don’t set IPCC policy…” and “I don’t want to even waste my time thinking about it…” regarding another perceived violation of IPCC rules (#77,79). Also, once you claim a couple of times (#51,79) that “I don’t want to even waste my time thinking about it, …” don’t suddenly change your mind within the *same* post and provide a “clue” about exactly that subject! (I understand that your “clue” was just another straw man, but it still *looks* bad)

As Dano would say, hope that helps.

10. John Hunter
Posted May 12, 2006 at 5:47 AM | Permalink

Hissink (#89): which comment in particular and which intemperate reaction??

11. Louis Hissink
Posted May 12, 2006 at 5:56 AM | Permalink

# 90

John,

Adressing me as Hissink when I addressed you as John? Some would construe that as intemperate. The rest of your comment has to be interpreted as rhetorical bluster as a replacement for hard science.

12. Louis Hissink
Posted May 12, 2006 at 6:01 AM | Permalink

Correction ” “for a replacement of hard science”.

13. John Hunter
Posted May 12, 2006 at 6:01 AM | Permalink

Hissink (#89): Look, I think on this thread, only John A has had a go at “profaning my cherished beliefs” (see #65 and #73). Do you think he made a good job of it? I personally think he made a pig’s ear of it and was probably a profound embarrassment to Steve – which is, I guess, the reason he seems unable to reply other than to pour future abuse my way.

Is not John A the one who comes “across as a mullah who has his cherished beliefs profaned by the unclean”?

14. Louis Hissink
Posted May 12, 2006 at 6:18 AM | Permalink

Re# 93

John Hunter,

I have read both posts to which you refer.

In post #73 you categorically state “Sea level measurements are often adjusted to some standard atmospheric pressure. We have not done this because of a number of uncertainties concerning barometric observations made in 1841–1842 at both Port Arthur and Hobart. These included the questions of whether temperature and height correction had been applied to the reported observations, and whether the barometers were adequately calibrated or checked for leakage.”

Having stated that you ignored atmospheric pressure purposefully, you have no explained why, nor how you proposed to compensate your argument for this ignorance.

15. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 12, 2006 at 6:45 AM | Permalink

#95. John A. would you please transfer your last comment over to the new thread.

16. Jeremy
Posted May 12, 2006 at 8:46 AM | Permalink

John Hunter wrote: I tend to put more faith in the published literature (flawed though it may be in some aspects) than in the posturings of Steve’s sycophants.

That’s a strange position for a scientist to take. Forgive me, I’m just an undergraduate, but after watching professors doing and defending their materials-science research for 3 years, I have yet to see one take such a position. Usually when someone has something to say about their work, they listen first. Usually they’re not trying to listen to determine who knows and who does not know what they’re talking about. In the case of people who just don’t know the science, they step back and explain the work as thoroughly as they can. I myself have had discussions with math people where I had to concentrate very hard to understand what it is they’re saying, yet they never treated me as though I couldn’t understand what they’re saying, even when it was clear that in the time alloted, I couldn’t fully understand what they’re saying.

Now, Steve has a blog. Steve asks basic science questions like, “where is your data,” “what method did you use,” and, “how do you justify using this method?” Sometimes these questions are addressed. Sometimes they are not. Other people come to this blog, read, and post. Steve does not lead these people. Steve is not a leader, he’s a man doing some very basic yeoman scientific work, the same work that my graduate thesis committee will likely be doing very soon. In fact, I got to witness a great professor in my own department do this to another graduate student. He literally red-marked his entire thesis draft and sat down with this student for literally days on end asking this student to explain everything to him. He did this because his ethics required him to understand the thing in entirety before signing off on it.

Some people look at that professor and call him a jerk.

Most people who really understand science look at what he did and say he saved that graduate student’s reputation.

Science is questioning. To give derogatory labels to those who question is to completely misunderstand that.

damn I’m f***ing preachy, I should shut up now.

17. Posted May 12, 2006 at 9:34 AM | Permalink

Indeed, 5 minutes was not enough for me to understand what is going on here. Is John Hunter the same as John A? And what is the theory here? To summarize, I think that it is a good idea of Steve to separate these debates to a special thread, whenever possible, and I will personally count this thread as trash. ;-)

18. Pat Frank
Posted May 12, 2006 at 4:21 PM | Permalink

#16 “Now, Steve has a blog. Steve asks basic science questions like, “where is your data,” “what method did you use,” and, “how do you justify using this method?”

You’ve got an exact grasp of what’s going on here, Jeremy. Steve M. has asked just those questions. As you clearly understand, they are about as fundamental as it gets and basic to good science. The answers he’s gotten from senior researchers in the field have been, approximately, ‘My dog ate them.‘, ‘I don’t got to show you no stinkin’ method!‘, and, ‘It’s justified because doing anything else would be illogical and silly.

Being suspicious of work defended by stonewalling and hostile dismissals is completely reasonable, and is a professional duty for any good scientist. John H., as evidenced by his resort to the all-inclusive ad-homs levelled against skeptical people here, doesn’t seem to get that.

You do. It’s a excellent start, and best wishes for a great career in science.

19. Dave Dardinger
Posted May 12, 2006 at 5:02 PM | Permalink

I don’t know that anyone but me is interested, but there was a exchange here between John Hunter and me about the prevalence of aliases vs names on the blog. I said most didn’t have aliases and I believe John said the majority were. I did a test by going back through the messages until I got to 50 people (allowing a tiny bit of cherry picking when I decided some people were one-time wonders or just trying to get back-links.) Of these 27 appear to have real names while 23 either have out and out aliases or names sufficiently shortened that people wouldn’t be able to figure out who they were. I don’t know how this go with a larger sample. Call it about half and half and I won’t try calculating a trend or confidence interval.

20. Dave Dardinger
Posted May 12, 2006 at 6:09 PM | Permalink

Since Steve provided the link above, I decided to look a bit again at John Hunter’s site. One of the first sections you come to is titled Two Documents. At the end of it he poses the question,

Which would you rather believe?

If you’ll read what he’s written you’ll see this is a rather pure case of the logical fallacy, Argument from Authority. I suspect the theory John would put forward, at heart, is that statistically speaking, if there’s (at least) a 50/50 chance that any particular person is more correct than John Daly was then the chances that the ‘concensus’ is better must be astronomically high.

BTW, note that this site is basically the operation of one man too.

Anyone want to point out the obvious flaws of this line of argument? Its contradiction of scientific principles? Its ease of being subject to abuse?

21. John Hunter
Posted May 12, 2006 at 7:26 PM | Permalink

Louis Hissink (#14): You say: “Having stated that you ignored atmospheric pressure purposefully, you have no explained why, nor how you proposed to compensate your argument for this ignorance.”

Louis – in #73 (now #7) I gave a perfectly good reference. Specifically, I said:

“See the “Discussion” section of Pugh et al., 2002. International Hydrographic Review, Vol. 3, No. 3 (New Series) for a detailed account …..”

Now what is your problem with that? Just because the information isn’t on this site or on “Still Waiting for Greenhouse” (John Daly’s site) surely doesn’t preclude you using a library?

Incidentally, you and John A appear to think that adjusting for atmospheric pressure somehow “corrects” the sea-level measurement. On the contrary, there are two distinct observations: observed sea level and atmospherically-adjusted sea-level. They have different uses and different meanings. The reason why we did not estimate atmospherically-adjusted sea-level for 1841/1842 was because we didn’t trust some of the atmospheric pressure observations during that period.

22. John Hunter
Posted May 12, 2006 at 7:33 PM | Permalink

Steve: Excellent idea as I never had any real desire to bring up the subject of Port Arthur in the middle of other discussions. However, if I had been you, I think I would simply have banned the subject altogether — it’s old work and something I now tend to find rather boring. However, the level of discussions do serve as a useful record and gauge of the knowledge and abilities of many who use (and operate) this site.

But for all who are itching to “have another go” at the subject, I’m afraid for a while you’ll be pissing into a vacuum (so to speak) — I’m about to be off air for a while.

23. Dave Dardinger
Posted May 12, 2006 at 8:53 PM | Permalink

Well, the advantage of having a dedicated thread is that it will still be here when you get back up and running.

Just how many libraries outside Universities will have subscriptions to “International Hydrographic Review”? We’re not, for the most part, college professors. And having to go to a university, get the right journal and then have a copy made is so 20th century! Why not get a .pdf of the appropriate article and send it to people who have a specific interest for this discussion? You’ve tweaked my interest as I don’t see how you allow for the sometimes major affects that air pressure has on sea levels. If I recall that’s a major part of the el nino, la nina effects as winds shift resulting in persistant high and low pressure patterns and both direct and indirect sea-level shifts. (I guess most of the sea level rises can be put down to wind action on waves, but it also is directly affected by pressure.)

24. John Hunter
Posted May 12, 2006 at 11:23 PM | Permalink

Dave Dardinger (#23): Well, have I got a deal for you. John A is the one most interested in this subject, he is the one who keeps bringing the subject up on climateaudit and he also clearly hasn’t read our papers. So I’ll happily send it to him and he can pass it on to you. Can you ask John A to give me his REAL name and REAL address and I’ll gladly send him a PDF or a hardcopy (I’m not interested in sending things to ghosts).

Incidentally, why do you think I would be putting myself out to provide papers to people whose only aim is to knock down my work — and who are also too lazy to get up from their computer and go to their local professional library?

25. ET SidViscous
Posted May 13, 2006 at 12:40 AM | Permalink

Post 22 “I’m about to be off air for a while.”

John, how can we miss you when you won’t go away.

26. paul
Posted May 13, 2006 at 12:52 AM | Permalink

“Incidentally, why do you think I would be putting myself out to provide papers to people whose only aim is to knock down my work”

Haven’t I heard that somewhere before?

27. John Lish
Posted May 13, 2006 at 1:28 AM | Permalink

#26 – Yes, its the Phil Jones defence.

28. John A
Posted May 13, 2006 at 2:04 AM | Permalink

Well, have I got a deal for you. John A is the one most interested in this subject, he is the one who keeps bringing the subject up on climateaudit and he also clearly hasn’t read our papers. So I’ll happily send it to him and he can pass it on to you. Can you ask John A to give me his REAL name and REAL address and I’ll gladly send him a PDF or a hardcopy (I’m not interested in sending things to ghosts).

I don’t do deals with people to get them to do what they’re supposed to do as a matter of course. I have no interest in putting my personal details in the possession of someone who clearly displays paranoid hatred of anyone who dares question his beliefs, especially as he has established links with global organizations which display the same signs of paranoia.

Incidentally, why do you think I would be putting myself out to provide papers to people whose only aim is to knock down my work……?

Phil Jones already has copyright on this pathetic excuse for non-compliance in a simple request. I’m sure the invoice is on its way.

In any case, I have nowhere stated that my aim is to “knock down” your work, but it is to test and reproduce that work in conjunction with the much larger question of global sea level rise.

I have no reason at all to expect compliance to answer straightforward questions on methodology or data provenance from John Hunter. Everything points to another well-worn path.

29. Louis Hissink
Posted May 13, 2006 at 3:25 AM | Permalink

# 21

John Hunter (to avoid identity issues)

Referring me to publications, while proper, does not excuse you from summarising their conclusions in debate. To assert that 1 + 2 = 5 and then not support that with reason but by reference to some extraneous academic paper, is specious reasoning.

As for your explanation of observed sea-level, all such observations involve marking the level at which the sea reached during a measuring period. Such measurements are independent of the external factors affecting the level of the sea at the point of measurement.

Any sea level measurement includes the effect of atmospheric pressure.

Ignoring this effect basically renders any study on sea level changes irrelevant. This conclusion has profound implications for palaeeo-sea-level changes, since geologically there are no proxies for palaeo-atmospheric pressures at present.

30. Posted May 13, 2006 at 7:00 AM | Permalink

It’s been ten months, John A. How come you offer “too busy” as an excuse but won’t accept it from anybody else?

31. Dave Dardinger
Posted May 13, 2006 at 7:22 AM | Permalink

re #24

As Steve M would say (who I’m sure is pleased not to have to read this thread any more), What do you think an audit committee in business would say if they came in to go through your books and asked for last years check book register and you said, “Sorry, they’re in our Austrian office. You’ll have to go there to look at them”? And when they complained, you gave the Jones excuse, do you think they’d buy it? I don’t.

In any case, I’m not demanding anything. I was just providing a way for you to cut back on a bit of the flack coming your way. And, as someone already mentioned, merely because an argument is published somewhere doesn’t relieve you of the duty of providing the argument, or a summary of it, if asked.

This gives me an idea. Since all us skeptics are in the pocket of Exxon-Mobil anyway, why don’t they provide us a free article snipping service that will send us whatever we need? They know who we are anyway, so they can just e-mail us what we need when we ask for it here or on any of their other paid-for sites.

32. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 13, 2006 at 7:32 AM | Permalink

Tim, it is tiresome that you persist in flashing onto other threads in order to promote your own blog. Just because I’ve reluctantly provided a thread for sea level discussion, that does not mean that I’m going to provide threads for every topic that some posters may be interested. We will not be having a thread on Intelligent Design and any comments about it are deleted. Similarly, I’m not interested in hosting a discussion of entropy. If people want to discuss entropy on your blog, they are more than welcome to do so.

33. Posted May 13, 2006 at 11:59 AM | Permalink

Err, Steve, my blog gets more traffic than yours and ranks about 7000 places higher on the Truth Laid Bear by links. It is silly to suppose that it would be worth my while to promote it here.

Last year John A agreed to have a discussion on this matter. Since then he has been making the excuse that he is “too busy”, an excuse that neither you nor he will accept from others.

He’s too much of a coward to even respond to my previous comments.

34. Dave Dardinger
Posted May 13, 2006 at 12:03 PM | Permalink

It’s too bad you don’t what an entropy thread, Steve. I suspect it would actually go nowhere fast, but it’d keep Tim out of your hair. And some like me, who could do a better job of arguing thermo than John A (sorry John, but it’s the truth) would be willing to take on Tim and get the thing settled. Of course it would mean I’d have to go find the Essex & McKitrick book somewhere and read it to see if whose side I’m on. I truly don’t know.

35. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 13, 2006 at 12:29 PM | Permalink

Tim, last year as I recall, you mentioned that you had reached 1 million hits after 4 years of operation. Well done. We reached that last year after less than 1 year of operation.

This is my site, not John A’s. Not having some slanging match between you and John A here is my decision not his and it has nothing to do with him being too busy. I have zero interest in whether you or John A know more about entropy. If I want to learn about entropy, I would not wish to rely on either of you.

If you wish to have people talk about entropy on your blog, then great. But I get tired of you flashing onto threads, opening your trenchcoat and trying to pick fights about some point that was made in as comment #9 in a thread that’s over a year old. Get a life.

36. TCO
Posted May 13, 2006 at 12:53 PM | Permalink

I like JohnA (in particular for defending me). That said, it is a bogus response of his that he doesn’t have the time to run to ground the thermo argument. And damning that he would indict others for such running. I think it would be good for John and Tim to be set in the ring on each other. Since the bystanders could likely sort out the truth better then either of them.

START THE THERMO THREAD!

37. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 13, 2006 at 1:14 PM | Permalink

On this site at least, I don’t see any claim about John A being too busy or not too busy.

There actually are some articles on entropy that interest me and at some point, I am interested in discussing them. But I want to do so on my own terms, not merely because Tim wants to pick a fight with a computer consultant.

BTW Tim, I haven’t heard back from you on the Hegerl bet.

38. TCO
Posted May 13, 2006 at 1:17 PM | Permalink

Set up the cage match. We will prevent blood from spilling onto the rest of the pristine blog.

39. John Lish
Posted May 13, 2006 at 1:35 PM | Permalink

#38 LOL… Why is it that I’m getting a mental picture of Mel Gibson & Tina Turner here? Thermodome – two men enter, one man leaves…

40. Paul
Posted May 13, 2006 at 3:21 PM | Permalink

More like (non) Celebrity Death Match. Two IT geeks in a ring only one etc.

41. Pat Frank
Posted May 13, 2006 at 4:49 PM | Permalink

#24 “Can you ask John A to give me his REAL name and REAL address and I’ll gladly send him a PDF or a hardcopy (I’m not interested in sending things to ghosts).

I post under my real name, and you can send your pdf to my real email address here. I’d be happy to distribute it to anyone interested, corporeal or not.

42. Posted May 14, 2006 at 1:50 AM | Permalink

Steve, the number of hits counts each image dispayed as well as each page. It includes requests from spambots, spiders and rss readers. It is many times greater than the number of unique visits which is the usual way traffic is measured. You had a visitor counter up for a while — it showed you were getting about 1000 visits per day.

Here is, on this site, John A saying he was too busy:

Not at the moment, Tim, for the straightforward reason that I have little time to devote to debate, or much else, because of my current work situation.

That was six months ago…

You are confused. I have not made any bet with you about Hegerl.

43. Ed Snack
Posted May 14, 2006 at 2:04 AM | Permalink

Ho ho ho, Tim Lambert arguing about traffic and hits. Try another Tim, Tim Blair on this

* Hit-obsessed Australian blogger Tim “Lancet” Lambert”¢’¬?he actually sends emails to his targets in the hope of attracting links; odd behaviour for someone who accuses others of attention seeking”¢’¬?adds this note to his Sitemeter stats:

Plus 9,935 visitors before joining Site Meter on January 15, 2003
They all count, I guess.

44. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 14, 2006 at 5:46 AM | Permalink

#42. Tim Lambert says above:

You are confused. I have not made any bet with you about Hegerl.

In reply to my speculations on which proxies were likely to be in the Hegerl reconstruction, Tim Lambert made the following challenge to me:

If Steve gets more than half right, I will buy him an expensive steak dinner (wine included). If the opposite, he has to do me. Ok…he doesn’t have to do me–I’ll get a gf for that. He has to pay for what I can drink and eat. And there will be some gin in the mix. If it’s at 50%, we go dutch. Let’s see what happens, competetive squash guy.

I promptly replied as follows here:

#41, 49. Here are my final picks. There are a couple of changes after looking at Darrigo et al 2006 as well as Osborn and Briffa, since a couple of the choices were not maximal overlap:

Yang composite
Taymir
Polar Urals – on balance, I expect the Briffa MXD version, but it could be the Yamal version. Either qualifies.
Mongolia
van Engeln
Greenland dO18
Jasper – on balance I expect the Luckman version, rather than the Luckman-Wilson version which is too recent, but either qualifies.
MBH PC1

There are 3 series in my previous guess, which were simply taken over from Osborn and Briffa without fully weighing maximum overlap. I am making three substitutions to be more consistent with usual Hockey Team choices.

Yakutia instead of Mangazeja. Mangazeja is a bit unusual; Yakutia is more consistent with maximal overlap and is used in DWJ06.

Quebec – I’m going to go with the Jacoby version rather than
Schweingruber version (which isn’t used outside of Esper/OB). either. One point for the Jacoby version; half point for SChweingruber version.

Tirol isn’t used outside of Esper/OB and isn’t maximum overlap. So something from the Jacoby treeline series, it could be the composite or it could be something like TTHH. One point for TTHH, half-point for the composite or half-point for another Jacoby treeline site. I’ll be mad if it’s Tirol.

As amended, I’ll go with a saw-off at 6 points, more than 6 points I win, less than 6 points I lose. Are you on, Tim??

I agee that the bet has not been finalized. I am prepared to send the funds in escrow to an agreed party.

Tim was the one that issued the challenge and then shrunk from it.

45. Posted May 14, 2006 at 6:16 AM | Permalink

Well Steve, somebody made a bet with you about Hegerl, but it wasn’t me. I suggest you try reading the attribution on that comment and see if you can figure it out.

Posted May 14, 2006 at 6:29 AM | Permalink

Tim Lambert: this thread isn’t about your entropy issues. As a matter of etiquette, you should discuss these in an appropriate forum.

John A: While I agree with much of what you say, you are leaving John Hunter in a hole, because you are criticising him and his research (enough for Steve to have put a specific thread on the blog about it), however you are not addressing his papers in a scientific way (as Steve and Ross are), but in an editorial way.

Whilst I, personally, have many doubts about JH’s conclusions from the available evidence, I cannot refute him, because I do not know enough – I haven’t done the investigation. You, however, have threatened to investigate it a number of times.

In fact, you have been so persistent that Steve has set aside a thread for discussion of this issue. Steve has set the example for skeptics, in the high standards he and Ross set in their research and the congency of their counter-points.

You have never said that you consider them role models, but I would think that you do. If so, it’s time you followed their lead on this topic. Otherwise, you might nned to be more circumspect in your comments about JH’s time-consuming research.

John Hunter: having thought for a long time about the matter, you should make your data {in the format you used for your calculations} available to the research community. Doing anything else makes you look secretive and unscientific.

Your argument that you did the work to extract the data from the hard copy records and that you have no obligation to provide that to anyone, may well be right legalistically, but the last time I looked, scientists were supposedly after the truth, not victories based on technical, procedural issues (what if Einstein had just turned up to a press conference and said, “E=mc². Figure it out for yourselves.”, then left?)

Correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t science about finding the truth of the matter? I thought that “secret squirrel” scientific activity was the covert realm of chemists working for drug companies and others involved in patentable research.

Anyway, you and John A have both reached an unsatisfactory, unscientific impasse in which neither of you are shown in the best light.

47. John Lish
Posted May 14, 2006 at 7:15 AM | Permalink

#44 – Steve M, it was TCO that challenged you to a bet on Hegerl.

48. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 14, 2006 at 7:56 AM | Permalink

#47. You’re right. It was TCO. My bad, although neither Tim nor TCO pointed this out before. So TCO, if you’re online, do we agree on the terms set out above?

As for you, Tim, you seem pretty sure of yourself. Why don’t you take the bet? Or would you rather just have little catfights with John A?

49. John A
Posted May 14, 2006 at 8:11 AM | Permalink

Re #46

The impasse is that Hunter refuses to give access to the data he used, making exact replication impossible. One can only go through the available sources and the public statements to see whether or not they stand the weight of the conclusions placed upon them. I strongly suspect that he will not give out that data to anyone, regardless of their qualifications, lest that data fall into the hands of “contrarians” ie anyone who doesn’t believe the same catastrophic things about the climate that Hunter does.

There are a number of different avenues I’m currently travelling on to get some background on the whole question of sea-level rise past, present and future. I’m also learning up R so that I can publish scripts and datasets for public examination. It’s quite like tree-rings for Steve McIntyre, a long arduous process without knowing exactly where to go next.

I already have Thomas Lempriere’s original tide register and meteorological records, and when I’m ready, I’d like to show some samples in R.

50. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 14, 2006 at 8:26 AM | Permalink

John A, why don’t you start by collating the barometric pressure data and posting it up? Hunter says that the information can’t be relied on. So a useful start would be to see what it is and check Hunter’s claims that it can’t be relied on. In the end, it might be interesting to look at the pressure data in its own right without worrying too much about the ultimate impact on Hunter’s results.

51. Posted May 14, 2006 at 9:12 AM | Permalink

Steve, you write: “neither Tim nor TCO pointed this out before”. Untrue. See #42.

Also: “As for you, Tim, you seem pretty sure of yourself. Why don’t you take the bet?”

I’m sure that I’m right and John A is wrong and that entropy is not a form of energy, but I fail to see any connection between that and your bet with TCO. I’d be happy to make a bet with you on the vexing entropy-energy question. How about $100? 52. Steve McIntyre Posted May 14, 2006 at 9:40 AM | Permalink #51. I was replying to #42 of this line; "before" in the context meant prior to you saying so. Jeez. I am unaware of any vexing entropy-energy question. Entropy and energy are different concepts. Is that what you want bet against? I suspect that your dispute is something different, but I’m not interested and I’m tired of you continuing to hiijack threads. Even if there were any vexing concepts, I doubt that an exchange between you and John A would shed any light on it. So once again, Tim, please don’t keep hijacking threads. 53. TCO Posted May 14, 2006 at 5:14 PM | Permalink You’re on. 54. Michael Jankowski Posted May 15, 2006 at 7:10 AM | Permalink Incidentally, why do you think I would be putting myself out to provide papers to people whose only aim is to knock down my work (1) you know your work is so solid that it cannot be knocked down or (2) if there is something wrong with your work that needs to be corrected, someone can find the flaws and get you started on the corrections 55. Dave Dardinger Posted May 15, 2006 at 7:21 AM | Permalink re:#54 You might add, 3. It will allay the fears of intelligent skeptics who will otherwise become paranoid bloggers who give you a bad name. Note if John H or other warmers fear that skeptics will distort their clear work and then go around claiming that “Hunter has been debunked”, perhaps they may want to rethink the attitude they’ve taken toward people like M&M. What goes around comes around. 56. John A Posted May 15, 2006 at 8:24 AM | Permalink John A, why don’t you start by collating the barometric pressure data and posting it up? Hunter says that the information can’t be relied on. So a useful start would be to see what it is and check Hunter’s claims that it can’t be relied on. In the end, it might be interesting to look at the pressure data in its own right without worrying too much about the ultimate impact on Hunter’s results. I will do that. There’s a couple of other points regarding the tide register data that bear examination as well so I’ll be posting those as well. I’m still working my way through worked examples in R so I don’t make a complete hash of it. 57. Paul Gosling Posted May 15, 2006 at 8:32 AM | Permalink Re #54 Does a paper exist anywhere in any field which can be said to have no flaws in it, have no alternative interpretations of the results? I cannot recall ever coming across one in the fields I have worked in. There is always another way of doing things. If we all agreed science would be much easier, but rather dull. So I am sure John Hunters papers have flaws, have alternative interpretations to parts, so what? 58. Steve McIntyre Posted May 15, 2006 at 8:43 AM | Permalink #57. On that basis, what does anything matter? If flaws in the paper don’t matter, then the paper doesn’t matter. If there are flaws in the paper and the paper matters, then the exercise of identifying and remedying the flaws should matter. The existence of flaws doesn’t necessarily mean that the author of the original paper was at fault in any sense unless he’d intentionally withheld adverse results or something like that. Or maybe there’s something that Hunter didn’t think of. In this case, as I’ve said before, I suspect that Hunter’s interpretation of the older records is plausible. From the point of view of an originating author, isn’t it more satisfying that people are interested enough in what you’re doing to try to prove it right or wrong, than merely ignoring it. 59. Michael Jankowski Posted May 15, 2006 at 10:00 AM | Permalink Does a paper exist anywhere in any field which can be said to have no flaws in it Isn’t that were corrigenda come into play (other than minor, ticky-tack errors)? have no alternative interpretations of the results? I’m pretty sure you’ll find that, for example, publications linking mesothelioma to asebestos exposure generally lack realistic alternative interpretations. But “alternative interpretations” are important in science. That’s often where you get the true hypothesis test of a publication. If we all agreed science would be much easier, but rather dull. So finding truth is the boring road? A little concealment and grey-area to keep things interesting is better? 60. jae Posted May 15, 2006 at 11:18 AM | Permalink Gawd, what IS it with these climatology scare-mongers–Jones, Hunter, Mann, et. al. They evidently believe in a new type of science, where you don’t have to prove your work by revealing data and methods. I would like to see them try to get away with this nonsense in the world of chemistry! 61. John A Posted May 15, 2006 at 11:23 AM | Permalink I would have to add that I’m not concerned at this stage with whether Hunter et al is “right”. I am concerned with understanding the methods deployed and the provenance of the data. If I agree with Hunter’s statements then I’ll say so. If I question Hunter’s statements then it means I don’t understand the logic, which could be good or bad. If Hunter et al is robust or mostly robust then my inquiry will add to its reputation. I don’t understand at all the reluctance to make all of this available for public inspection. It cannot breed confidence in the robustness of the conclusions to behave in such a manner. This is taxpayer paid for science on a matter of public interest. 62. John Hunter Posted May 16, 2006 at 3:06 AM | Permalink Louis Hissink (#29): I’m answereing this in haste on my travels just to clear the backlog. You say: “Any sea level measurement includes the effect of atmospheric pressure. Ignoring this effect basically renders any study on sea level changes irrelevant.” This is garbage.à£€€If you want to show your continuing ignorance of this subject on climateaudit, then go ahead — but don’t expect me to waste my time explaining why you are wrong. Just go away and read the literature — and by that I mean something other than climateaudit and the rubbish that John Daly wrote. 63. John Hunter Posted May 16, 2006 at 3:28 AM | Permalink John A (#49): You say “The impasse is that Hunter refuses to give access to the data he used …..” Perhaps you should re-read the thread “But They Are Very Very Wrong” (#280) where I said: “I plan to select what I believe to be the important data sets and to archive those. …… Intermendiate data that may assist researchers in the future will be archived in due course.” Perhaps you should also contact appropriate data archives and ask (nicely) if they hold what you are seeking. 64. Steve McIntyre Posted May 16, 2006 at 5:22 AM | Permalink John H, could you send me a pdf of the Pugh et al, International Hydrographic Review. The journal wasn’t at the main library of the University of Toronto. 65. Posted May 16, 2006 at 6:16 AM | Permalink Seems Adventerous! Wish i would have been with John their. Though still cant get John A is the sane John Hunter or what? 66. Tom Brogle Posted May 16, 2006 at 6:50 AM | Permalink John Hunter claims that the well respected Captain Ross when setting up a sea level mark was stupid enough to set it up at high water mark when the Naval standard was Mean Sea Level. He bases his conclusions on hearsay . The “et al” in his reference includes Hunter himself 67. Louis Hissink Posted May 16, 2006 at 7:06 AM | Permalink One of the disasters a mining audit team might inflict on an errant author of specious reporting is to see the data, all of the data, on which the report was based. Not just those deemed signficant or important by the author. Initially they ask nicely and when met with polite refusal then serve a summons from a court for all the data to be produced. Moral of the story is to cut to chase and give the data. 68. Paul Gosling Posted May 16, 2006 at 9:20 AM | Permalink Re #58 The existence of flaws doesn’t necessarily mean that the author of the original paper was at fault in any sense unless he’d intentionally withheld adverse results or something like that You wouldn’t get that impression from reading the threads on this blog Re #59 I’m pretty sure you’ll find that, for example, publications linking mesothelioma to asebestos exposure generally lack realistic alternative interpretations. But “alternative interpretations” are important in science. That’s often where you get the true hypothesis test of a publication. If we all agreed science would be much easier, but rather dull. So finding truth is the boring road? A little concealment and grey-area to keep things interesting is better? I am no expert on mesothelioma, but I suspect there is plenty of disagrement about the relationship between risk and exposure? And who’s truth would you have us all agree with, yours presumably? Never have I said that we should not ask questions, or that they should not be answered, quite the opposite. I think John H has answered all of John A’s questions to a reasonable degree. Is John H expected to spoon feed answers to everyone who sends him an email? 69. Posted May 16, 2006 at 11:07 AM | Permalink “I think John H has answered all of John A’s questions to a reasonable degree” More important than answering questions is providing data. Given enough information about how a study was done (asking questions) and given the data that was used, I should be able to reproduce it. If you don’t know how it was done because they won’t answer your questions and they did not adequately describe the method (Steve runs into this problem a lot), you can’t reproduce their work. If they won’t give you their data, you can’t reproduce their work. If you can’t reproduce their work, it ain’t science. It may look like science, and smell like it, but reproducability is one of the cornerstones of the scientific method. I’d go so far as to say that no theory should be considered as an accepted theory in a field until it has been independently reproduced by several parties, or at least until enough parties have the ability to reproduce it (= full understanding of it) so that they can thoroughly search it for flaws. But what do I know, I’m not a scientist, one of those shining paragons of virtue, who are so confident about their theories they open up their data and methods, just to show everyone that they are confident they are correct in every possible way… 70. Posted May 16, 2006 at 11:11 AM | Permalink Yes, yes, I know — I don’t want to start another flamewar — the data is out there, somewhere. As has been pointed out here ad infinitum and ad nauseum it’s possible (albeit difficult) to get this data without John Hunter’s help. But, why does he want to make others jump through hoops in order to have a look at his data if he’s so sure it’s correct? It certainly goes against everything I would expect from a scientist, and it goes against what Steve and others are pushing for, which already exists in many fields. Oh well, I hope that particular can of worms stays sealed, lest we get into a 300-comment flame war over such a petty issue. 71. john lichtenstein Posted May 16, 2006 at 11:48 AM | Permalink #66 It is pretty hard to believe that anyone would place a mean tide marker at the mean tide level. It would be like constructing a sundial in a partially shady spot. Maybe someone would do it once but he would never make that mistake again. J Hunter’s argument on that point is more than “hearsay”. And John Hunter I agree with everyone else that the faster data is archived the better. Going through published papers and trying to get the same answers is a great exercise for undergrads and newbies. 72. ET SidViscous Posted May 16, 2006 at 12:25 PM | Permalink “Maybe someone would do it once but he would never make that mistake again.” What would be an even bigger mistake would be to mark it at an offset and then not record the offset anywhere. That’s where this discuson revolves around. Mainly the lost brass marker, which could/should contain this offset. That offset should also be recorded somewhere (particuarly in the field notes) as your daily measurement would go something like this. MSL=((LT1-HT1)/2)-offset If you are using the mark* to tke the actual measurements it is totally useless, particuarly for a long term record, to not record the offset. The arguement is not just if there is an offset, but what that offset is. With the loss of the brass marker, and it not being replaced immediately by someone who knew what the offset is/was the value of the data drops dramatically. Hence the reason why we have a standards office in most countries. If the standards are de-established it is difficult to get back to 0. In hindsight there should be a number engraved just below the mark. *(which they shouldn’t, they should and did use a tide gauge, the mark is more of a “It is here!” mark, if so then it absolutely fine to place it at the mean level, since no one has to trudge to it and get wet making high tide readings. Alternatively you can also take readings without getting wet. Mark high tide, wait 6 hours and measure to MSL, remove high tide mark) http://www.pol.ac.uk/psmsl/manuals/glossary.html 73. John A Posted May 16, 2006 at 3:06 PM | Permalink Re #72 The problem is, ET, is that nowhere at all, not even by two witnesses who saw the original stone marker, is there any mention of an offset from the engraved line to the true “Mean Level of the Ocean”. That offset is a supposition by Hunter et al to justify their reconstruction. The question is, whether that offset ever existed. 74. ET SidViscous Posted May 16, 2006 at 3:17 PM | Permalink I agree with you 100% I thought that was one of the points I was making. Without a historically verified listing of what the offset is the historical data has little value. Not no value, just little. Certainly not anything to say “See look sea level is drastically rising”. It’s a data point, but it needs backing by other, better verified, sources. It’s of the level of heresay. Enough to gain interest and give a direction to look, but not proof. Here’s another way to look at it. It’s as if Ross didn’t reveal his methods (or the methods were lost) as a result his work cannot be replicated. Makes the data interesitng but of much less value. Of course Ross didn’t hold it back, it’s just been lost to the winds of time. Anyone have access to “A Voyage of Discovery and Research in the Southern and Antarctic Regions, During the Years 1839-43″, it would be interesting to see a scan of pages 22-32. 75. John A Posted May 16, 2006 at 4:11 PM | Permalink Actually I do have digital images from that book. The pages are 22,23 and 24 where Ross explains the purpose of his visit to Port Arthur. 76. ET SidViscous Posted May 16, 2006 at 6:26 PM | Permalink And does he not mention making the mark, and not discusing an offset. Any chance you sending me a copy? 77. John Hunter Posted May 16, 2006 at 8:03 PM | Permalink Steve (#64): Paul Gosling asks a pertinent question (#68) about spoonfeeding. Can’t anyone here actually get hold of a paper reference any more? Doesn’t the University of Toronto Library have “interlibrary loan”? International Hydrographic Review does not provide a PDF version — only hardcopy reprints. I do have a preprint in PDF format but, because the layout (e.g. page numbering) is different from in the final version, I’d rather people had the actual journal version. I could scan the hardcopy but why should I have to waste my time doing this for people who are (in the main) antagonistic to my work from the start? You, Steve, are one of the few people on here who at least accept that our claims are “plausible”, but I hardly think is is beyond your abilities to get hold of a hardcopy of an international journal. I am also rather baffled by the fact that the first sentence of this thread (written by you) is “this is not a topic that interests me”. Should I therefore understand that your request for a copy of our paper is mischevous rather than scientific? Have you joined the “knock Hunter et.” club as well? 78. ET SidViscous Posted May 16, 2006 at 8:11 PM | Permalink Yes John, because it is the page numbering we are interested in. You should also understand that this blog is not limited to people with access to the University of Toronto library, or even solely with Academics that are graced with access to the holy tablets. 79. Willis Eschenbach Posted May 16, 2006 at 8:27 PM | Permalink Re access, some of us fools even live in Fiji … interlibrary loans? Not. w. 80. John A Posted May 16, 2006 at 8:35 PM | Permalink When I get hold of the hard copy version, I’ll pdf it and put it on the Internet. That way, we get past the lead author’s clinical paranoia about motives, and get on to substantive questions of fact. 81. ET SidViscous Posted May 16, 2006 at 8:41 PM | Permalink Yes John, but which version of page numbering will it have? We need article version 1.8.2 with page numbering version 2.5.3 Is it going to be the proper page numbnering in order like 1,2,3,… or is it going to be some random number generated crap. Hell I’ll bet you’ll even scan the pages out of order. Damn Contrairians. 82. ET SidViscous Posted May 16, 2006 at 8:43 PM | Permalink Willis Yeah complain about interlibrary loan. Damn it must suck to live in Fiji. I bet you got inter beachside bar fruity drink loan though. 83. Steve McIntyre Posted May 16, 2006 at 9:26 PM | Permalink #77. No, I don’t have any intention of spending any time on the matter; I’m more than over-committed on other topics. I was merely going to provide it to others. 84. John Hunter Posted May 16, 2006 at 9:45 PM | Permalink John A (#89): You say: > When I get hold of the hard copy version, I’ll pdf it and put it on the Internet. Before you do (and also before Steve starts posting our paper around everywhere), you might just take a thought for copyright implications. If you have such a casual attitude to such matters, this is another good reason not to send you clowns anything! 85. John Hunter Posted May 16, 2006 at 9:50 PM | Permalink ET SidViscous (#81): Grow up. A pre-print is not formatted the same as the final version — it is, in this case, the version typed by the authors. So Page 1 of the preprint may well be page 1 of the final version,à£€€but page 10 certainly won’t be the same. I know it is a difficult concept but hopefully it is not one that is totally beyond you. 86. Steve McIntyre Posted May 16, 2006 at 9:52 PM | Permalink John H, you said: “I plan to select what I believe to be the important data sets and to archive those. …… Intermendiate data that may assist researchers in the future will be archived in due course.” You mentioned this some time ago. Have you done anything about this? When do you plan to do this? 87. ET SidViscous Posted May 16, 2006 at 9:52 PM | Permalink Not beyond me at all. But page numbering is completely irrelvant to the content. I hope that concept is not beyond you. 88. John Hunter Posted May 16, 2006 at 9:54 PM | Permalink Willis (#79): ….. and the University of Fiji doesn’t have a library? Fiji doesn’t have fax or internet facilities? Do you need your bottom wiped too? 89. ET SidViscous Posted May 16, 2006 at 9:59 PM | Permalink Doesn’t making a copy with a fax violate copyright? 90. Steve McIntyre Posted May 16, 2006 at 11:17 PM | Permalink John H, please try to avoid schoolyard toilet talk. 91. John Hunter Posted May 16, 2006 at 11:57 PM | Permalink ETSVï⽃†ï⽃’87 and #89): Again, grow up. In #77, I said “because the layout (e.g. page numbering) is different from in the final version, I’d rather people had the actual journal version”. Page numbering is not “completely irrelvant(sic)” — it affects subsequent referencing during discussions like this. There is enough misinformation on here without adding to it because people have different versions of documents. Incidentally, this may seem a bit radical, but anyone with a real name and postal address need only ask me for a hardcopy and I’ll happily snail mail a reprint — on the understanding that the recipient isn’t going toà£€€immediately infringe copyright by putting a copy up on the Internet — so if I get any requests, they will only be met if the request is accompanied by an assurance that it will not be copied to others or put on the Internet. As for “Doesn’t making a copy with a fax violate copyright?”:à£€€Surely you know a little about copyright — it depends on what you copy, what you copy it for and where you do the copying (i.e. under which country’s laws do you do it). A good working rule is that you don’t take something out of a commercial publication and post it in the Internet without permission of the publisher. 92. John Hunter Posted May 17, 2006 at 12:06 AM | Permalink Steve (#86): Doesn’t the rest of my posting (#63) (“Perhaps you should also contact appropriate data archives and ask (nicely) if they hold what you are seeking.”) give you just a little clue? Also, as regards your request that I “try to avoid schoolyard toilet talk” — it was a comment I would never has used in a schoolyard. It is a metaphor used by adults in the face of someone acting with virtually zero initiative. 93. ET SidViscous Posted May 17, 2006 at 12:18 AM | Permalink Erik Trent 1 Oliver Drive Hudson NH 03051 What confirmation do you need that I will not re-post on the web, a signed affidavit, or will my word do? I promise you that I shall not scan, copy nor publish on the internet said work. Feel free to mark the copy in such a way so as to identify any future copies, there are also papers that do not allow copying (Optically disrupt the image). When can I expect a copy? You may want to look up copyright law. You made a broad asertation, and apparently know not from where you speak. First off the work we were discussing is over 150 years old, and as such does not fall under copyright. So there is a complete misnomer. As to the others, of course your correct that the law varies. But the definition of copying is fairly firm, Faxing, copying, and publishing on the interweb all fall under the same category, it’s all reproduction of the work. If you can fax it, you can publish it on the web, so long as you do not ask for compensation beyond what is required to reproduce. In terms of the interweb the cost to reproduce is minimal, to the point of not being worth the while. As to page numbering it is often dealt with (say being published in more than one journal), and usually done by partial quotation, or sections. Hence why many written documents (particularly legal documents, rules, regulations and laws that are edited heavily over time) are labeled by sections. For the papers we are discussing it’s not a major issue, and one that is dealt with on a daily basis the world over. 94. Willis Eschenbach Posted May 17, 2006 at 12:34 AM | Permalink Re 88 .. er, John … there is no “University of Fiji” … w. 95. ET SidViscous Posted May 17, 2006 at 12:37 AM | Permalink Yes Willis, but does it have a library ;) 96. ET SidViscous Posted May 17, 2006 at 12:40 AM | Permalink Oops Willis. There actually is. It’s new, but there you go. 97. John A Posted May 17, 2006 at 1:15 AM | Permalink Willis, there is the University of the South Pacific in Vanuatu 98. John Hunter Posted May 17, 2006 at 1:45 AM | Permalink Willis, John A andà£€€all the other cheerleaders(#94 etc.): yes, the university in Fiji is called the University of the South Pacific (I’ve been there — remember the “Greenpeace perk”?). They do have a library. I’m sure if Willis joins the library and ask them nicely for our paper they’ll get him a copy. Otherwise, as I said, I’ll snail mail a copy. 99. John Hunter Posted May 17, 2006 at 2:05 AM | Permalink Erik Trent (#93): Gawd — a real name! > When can I expect a copy? Patience is a virtue …… when I get back to the office next week I’ll airmail it. > First off the work we were discussing is over 150 years old, and as such > does not fall under copyright. Are you being deliberately obtuse or just plain stupid? We are talking about a paper which was published by a commercial publisher in 2002. I’m afraid you will find it is definitely covered by copyright. Why don’t you write to the publisher and ask them? Then tell us what they say. > Faxing, copying, and publishing on the interweb all fall under the same > category, it’s all reproduction of the work. If you can fax it, you can > publish it on the web. Well, I can assure you that, in Australia at least, doing one copy for the purpose of personal study is very different from putting a copy on the web. > …… it’s not a major issue …… It may not be a major issue to you — but you are the one asking me to do something for you and I’ll do it the way I want. Now shut up about it or I’ll change my mind. 100. James Lane Posted May 17, 2006 at 3:01 AM | Permalink As I said in the original thread (“very very wrong”), I side with John Hunter on the Isle of the Dead marker: It makes no sense to strike the marker at the MSL. It would be underwater half the time, and if sea level rose, it might be underwater all the time. Ross himself made this point, and his subsequent practice in the Falklands was to establish the marker above high tide with an accompanying plaque noting the offset. I suspect this was his intention at Port Arthur. Ross may or may not have been present when the marker was struck, but it is unlikely that he was there when the stone with the inscription was placed. The stone is long gone, but versions of the inscription are recorded. From Daly’s site, it’s something like: “”On the rock fronting this stone a line, denoting the height of the tide, was struck on the 1st July, 1841. Mean time, 2.44 p.m. Moon’s age, 12 days. Height of water in the tide gauge, 6 ft 1 in.”” This inscription on the marker stone makes no sense unless Lempriere intended it to be used to recover the actual MSL from his records at a later time. Otherwise there would be no need to refer to the tide gauge. It would just say “Below is marked the MSL on [date]”. I suspect that the inscription was simply a “reminder note” for Lempriere, who at the time had not yet calculated the MSL. Otherwise, why mention the tide gauge at all? My guess is that, with Ross gone, Lempriere put it on the “backburner”. In fact, it’s known that Lempriere soon after lost interest in tidal measurements altogether. In any case, does anyone really believe that the the MSL in Tasmania fell 30cm in 150 years? John Hunter’s supposition that the marker was made at the high tide mark is, I think, reasonable. That would have made it easier for Lempriere to calculate the offset if he ever got around to it. All that said, I don’t understand John Hunter’s reluctance to share data and references. John seems like a smart guy and he’s a sea-level expert. In a non-partisan context, I’m sure that he has a lot to contribute to the debate at CA. 101. Tom Brogle Posted May 17, 2006 at 3:32 AM | Permalink Who owns the copyright of the article in question? the authors: unless they rescind all rights when they are published. John Hunter. Ive found an article on the web http://www.rpdc.tas.gov.au/soer/casestudy/4/index.php whicch summarises your thesis and demonstrates that you co-authored the paper you cite Have you rescinded your authorship rights? Lempriere’s meteorological records cannot be subject to copyright.So you could post them if you wish. 102. Michael Jankowski Posted May 17, 2006 at 7:05 AM | Permalink #91 Incidentally, this may seem a bit radical, but anyone with a real name and postal address need only ask me for a hardcopy and I’ll happily snail mail a reprint It only seems “a bit radical” because you seemed so completely opposed to the idea with the following quotes: #24 Incidentally, why do you think I would be putting myself out to provide papers to people whose only aim is to knock down my work “¢’¬? and who are also too lazy to get up from their computer and go to their local professional library? #77 I could scan the hardcopy but why should I have to waste my time doing this for people who are (in the main) antagonistic to my work from the start? 103. John A Posted May 17, 2006 at 7:12 AM | Permalink For all those who send Hunter their real name and address: Hunter isn’t going to send anything. I just thought you’d like to know this rather than hold your breath. 104. Steve McIntyre Posted May 17, 2006 at 9:56 AM | Permalink #103. John A, you have no reason to assume that and I expect that he will send snail versions. 105. Michael Jankowski Posted May 17, 2006 at 11:36 AM | Permalink Re #104, I am fairly certain he’ll send out copies, too…if only to spite John A and prove him wrong! 106. John Hunter Posted May 17, 2006 at 7:54 PM | Permalink Tom Brogle (#101): > Have you rescinded your authorship rights? I don’t know because I wasn’t the corresponding author (David Pugh was).à£€€I also don’t care very much because such issues do not normally affect the way scientists work. I also am not going to waste my time finding out. > Lempriere’s meteorological records cannot be subject to copyright.So you could > post them if you wish. I could post them but I don’t wish to. You spend your time – not mine. 107. John Hunter Posted May 17, 2006 at 8:04 PM | Permalink MJ (#102): You guys are excellent at quoting out of context. Your quote from #24 was immediately preceded by “Can you ask John A to give me his REAL name and REAL address and I’ll gladly send him a PDF or a hardcopy (I’m not interested in sending things to ghosts).” I am perfectly happy to provide hardcopy reprints to people who request such reprints in the normal way (i.e. by identifying themselves properly). I’ll admit that, in order to get a bit of peace and quiet, I have relaxed my position slightly. But as I said to Erik trent in #99 — shut up about it or I’ll changed my mind. 108. John Hunter Posted May 17, 2006 at 8:39 PM | Permalink Steve (#104): Re. John A’s gratuitously inflammatory (and incorrect) comment(#103) "For all those who send Hunter their real name and address: Hunter isn’t going to send anything". Can you please control John A? You do have some responsibility as he runs your site. How can I be expected to comply with requests from people like him who, from behind a cloak of anonymity, continually heap abuse and distortions on me? 109. Steve McIntyre Posted May 17, 2006 at 9:25 PM | Permalink John H, comment #103 hardly amounts to heaping "abuse and distortions on you". As to "inflammatory", in this thread, you’ve described people here as "intellectually bankrupt", "naive", "sycophants", "lazy", "posturing", "mischievous", "garbage", "clowns", "obtuse", "stupid" and in need of having their "bottoms wiped". For you to complain of #103 as "gratuitously inflammatory" is a bit much. Look in the mirror. 110. John Hunter Posted May 17, 2006 at 9:33 PM | Permalink Steve (#109): I could justify each and every of the adjectives I used. I did not lie about what someone was about to do. I assume from your response that you stand by climateaudit’s claim that I will not send hardcopy reprints to those who ask for them, and who provide a real name and address. Why don’t you simply retract the lie and leave it at that? 111. John A Posted May 18, 2006 at 12:16 AM | Permalink It would appear that John Hunter does have a problem with my freedom of speech. It’s a shame. 112. John Hunter Posted May 18, 2006 at 1:38 AM | Permalink John A (#110): You too — shut up or I’ll change my mind. 113. tom brogle Posted May 18, 2006 at 3:36 AM | Permalink J Hunter “I could post them but I don’t wish to. You spend your time – not mine.” I believe my time is more valuable than yours.After all I’m trying to save the world from the unmitigated disaster of trying to avert a temperature rise that is largely caused by Urban Heat, by reducing CO2. 114. Paul Gosling Posted May 18, 2006 at 3:44 AM | Permalink Re #97 Most (all?) journals require you to transfer copyright of a paper to them as part of the publication process. 115. John A Posted May 18, 2006 at 4:53 AM | Permalink John Hunter: How can I be expected to comply with requests from people like him who, from behind a cloak of anonymity, continually heap abuse and distortions on me? But you haven’t complied with any requests. You’ve made perfectly clear that you’re going to be as obstructive and uncooperative as possible. 116. Peter Hearnden Posted May 18, 2006 at 5:16 AM | Permalink Re #108 What you, John ‘A’, have to do to aid the process is to meet John Hunter half way – to (I know this is unlikely…) make a gesture of conciliation. You show no sign of that, you’ve not met a single one of his requests (that, for a start, he’d like to know who he’s talking to – how many of his students have been anonymous do you think?). You’ve made it quite clear (by posts #99 and #103) you intend to continue to attack from the cover of anonymity. Your criticising of JH look pretty hypochritical to me. 117. Bruce Posted May 18, 2006 at 5:46 AM | Permalink Hey Peter! Love your work. Why don’t you pop over to the “new online resources” thread (latest) and offer your response to the scurrilous things that people are saying about the hockey team. Clearly, they need a defensive quarterback in the line! 118. Louis Hissink Posted May 18, 2006 at 6:08 AM | Permalink #62 Cutting comment John Hunter, but considering comments after yours (# 62), your dismissal of me might be a tad premature. As the BreX mining scam might indicate, it takes a bit of time but the truth eventually outs. As for the recently decendent John Daly I never mentioned his ideas here, you did, but from your intemperate reaction in #62 is plain to see by readers here, that a nerve has been pricked by me and by implication, Daly. Having been publicly mauled by the fictious Phil Done on the Marohasy blog, (Done was a public servant commenting under a noms de plume), I have become somewhat sanguine that I can deflect your commentary barbs. I suspect I might have detected a hole in your defense? As did John A? Is that why you seem so apopleptic here? This intrigues me because if Daly read your papers and spotted a puzzle, then I wonder what he spotted. Indeed I will study your publications, keenly. Your problem John Hunter is that you protesteth too much and that sparks a reaction of the auditing kind. Sort of a self inflicted pain, isn’t it. 119. Michael Jankowski Posted May 18, 2006 at 6:29 AM | Permalink How can I be expected to comply with requests from people like him who, from behind a cloak of anonymity, continually heap abuse and distortions on me? This, coming from a person who scorned people on this board for not doubting whether or not he is the “real” John Hunter? 120. John A Posted May 18, 2006 at 6:40 AM | Permalink John A (#110): You too “¢’¬? shut up or I’ll change my mind. How will we tell? 121. John A Posted May 18, 2006 at 6:58 AM | Permalink Apparently Spam Karma got depressed at Hunter’s invective and started blocking him. I’ve recovered about six or seven comments made by Hunter, so the comment references will again be a little screwy. 122. Steve McIntyre Posted May 18, 2006 at 7:02 AM | Permalink In #108, John Hunter said: I assume from your response that you stand by climateaudit’s claim that I will not send hardcopy reprints to those who ask for them, and who provide a real name and address. Why don’t you simply retract the lie and leave it at that? In # 104 I said: #103. John A, you have no reason to assume that and I expect that he will send snail versions. John A, in his capacity as a poster on this thread, made the above claim. I did not. I said that I expected the opposite. Your justification of using abusive terms lsuch as people having their “bottoms wiped” is that: “It is a metaphor used by adults in the face of someone acting with virtually zero initiative. I disagree. It is not used by adults of my acquaintance. It is abusive and disrespectful. Again I request that you discontinue the use of such language here. You have not responded to my question about a date by which we can expect you to archive the critical data. 123. tom brogle Posted May 18, 2006 at 7:13 AM | Permalink John Hunter “I don’t know because I wasn’t the corresponding author (David Pugh was)”.à£€€ So am I mistaken, you are not the J Hunter of, Pugh, D., Coleman, R. and Hunter, J. 2002 otherwise known as, Pugh et al 2002,not the J Hunter mentioned in. “This Case Study was compiled from a number of studies and articles: Pugh, Coleman & Hunter 2002; Bowden, Hunter & Pugh 1997; and Houghton & Ding 2001. John Hunter (University of Tasmania) in particular provided valuable advice.” Honestly? 124. Louis Hissink Posted May 18, 2006 at 7:27 AM | Permalink #122 John Hunter Unlike John A or Steve McIntyre, I am a taxpayer here in OZ, and I reckon that Steve’s reasonable request ought to be met. Archive the data please. You do not own it, the taxpayer does. 125. BradH Posted May 18, 2006 at 8:27 AM | Permalink John H, comment #103 hardly amounts to heaping “abuse and distortions on you”. As to “inflammatory”, in this thread, you’ve described people here as “intellectually bankrupt”, “naive”, “sycophants”, “lazy”, “posturing”, “mischievous”, “garbage”, “clowns”, “obtuse”, “stupid” and in need of having their “bottoms wiped”. Wow, John, did you really say that? Release your data, in a useable form, in the same format you used for your paper and all will be forgiven. You only have to review how this forum treated Rob Wilson when he posted here in traditional, open and honest scientific discussion, to know that the majority of posters to Climate Audit are genuine. [Seriously, if you don’t recall, have a quick skim – there are more comments congratulating him for being so open and “scientific” in his approach, than there are about his study! Perhaps an indication of how unusual it is in this sphere.] Legally, you have an argument that the log-book records are the “source” of the data and any interested parties can access them, because they are a matter of public record. But, legalities are not what science is supposed to be about, is it John? Last time I looked, pure science was about determining the truth about some thing of substance – how it worked; what it did; why it did it; etc. Pure science (as opposed to “corporate”, secretive science), as far as I’m aware, is supposed to be about collaborative efforts to improve human knowledge. One would think that a form of science such as climate change which, if its proponents’ are correct could be devestating for all life on this planet, would undoubtedly fall into the “pure”, as opposed to “corporate” arena. Therefore, one would think that those who are most concerned about the dire consequences of climate change would be precisely the first ones to release their data and do so in any way requested (Betamax excepted). After all, we’re not talking about the odd sheep station here, we’re talking about environmental devastation! John, you should review the experience of Rob Wilson on this site, when he was as open and helpful as possible regarding his research. His experience on this site is very different from yours, even though as many posters would disagree with his paper’s conclusions, as disagree with yours. The difference is that Rob could not have been more helpful in assisting the Climate Audit participants to understand what had been done and how. Can you not understand that, by playing games with full and convenient access to your data, you’re acting like a corporate manager who has a “secret formula which will make me a fortune!” Arn’t true, non-corporate scientists more interested in the truth? Release your data in a convenient format, John. Even if we don’t agree with you, Rob’s experience should show you that your work might be criticised, but it most certainly won’t be ridiculed. In fact, I’d venture that some might even post a “Bravo”. 126. Steve McIntyre Posted May 18, 2006 at 9:49 AM | Permalink Brad H, I would submit that "legally" the compilation of the data is a distinct data set (although related to the first one.) In a discovery, the compilation would be producible. In an audit, an auditor would undoubtedly cross-check some of the data in the compilation to original records. 127. John Hunter Posted May 18, 2006 at 7:30 PM | Permalink A general comment to all those who are still demanding me to release data: PLEASE see #63, which I thought was a reasonably clear clue for anyone with at least one neurone. I also tried to reinforce the clue in #92 to Steve but even he still seems to be missing it (#122). So, for the slow-witted: ***************** I HAVE ARCHIVED OUR DIGITISED DATA ****************** It is in a number of the standard archives for sea level data. If you do not know where these archives are, then you are not competent to even consider looking at the data. Many feel I am being obstructive. I am. I believe that these enquiries for data (so that people may “audit” our work) are quite clearly politically-based (i.e. they are designed to discredit the dominant presently-held ideas about global warming) — they are not scientifically-based (i.e. there is no genuine spirit of enquiry here). If you want one simple bit of evidence to support this statement, then ask one question: “why is anybody interested in auditing these rather obscure and unimportant papers?” — even if they were proved completely wrong, this would have scarcely any ramifications as regards the virtual certainty that global sea level rose at a rate of around 1.7 mm/year during the 20th century — there is an abundance of other data to support this assertion, which incidentally does NOT rely on any of our data from Port Arthur. John Daly made Port Arthur a political football, thinking, or at least hoping to make others think, that the Port Arthur results had some universal significance — THEY DON’T — they are one tiny piece of a large jigsaw. 128. John Hunter Posted May 18, 2006 at 7:41 PM | Permalink Steve (#122): I’m very tired of your persistent claim that John A has two personas — the one who runs your site and “John A, in his capacity as a poster on this thread”. This is rubbish — they are one and the same person and Climateaudit has to bear some responsibility for what he says. You may think I have been obstructive over Port Arthur — as I noted above, for good reason — but I have provided enough for any competent scientist to track down our papers and Lempriere’s original data, and to do a pretty thorough check of our work. In my earlier posting of today, I even spelled out (for the slow of wit) how to find our digitised data. If Climateaudit, in the form of “John A” continues to be abusive and untruthful, then I will cease even this cooperation. It’s up to you. 129. John Hunter Posted May 18, 2006 at 7:46 PM | Permalink Tom Brogle (#123): I fail to understand your point when you say: > “I don’t know because I wasn’t the corresponding author (David Pugh was)”.à⤃¢’⭃¢’⪍ > “So am I mistaken, you are not the J Hunter of, Pugh, D., Coleman, R. and Hunter, J. 2002 ……… The “corresponding author” is the name given to the particular author of a paper who CORRESPONDS with the publisher. Get it? Oh dear …… 130. John Hunter Posted May 18, 2006 at 7:55 PM | Permalink Louis Hissink (#124): Oh dear, you are one of those people who think that they PERSONALLY have right of access to EVERY bit of data that has been paid for by the Australian taxpayer. Hello? You live in the real world? The demand: “Archive the data please. You do not own it, the taxpayer does.” is so simplistic it scarcely deserves comment. 131. Steve McIntyre Posted May 18, 2006 at 8:40 PM | Permalink John H, I’m not interested in the topic and I have no plans to contact the agency in question. AGU has a policy on data archiving for publications in their journals including GRL. It says that: The format for the reference will be specified in AGU’s guide for contributors. The following elements must be included in the reference: author(s), title of data set, access number or code, data center, location including city, state, and country, and date. I take it that your article was not in compliance with GRL policies on data archiving and the referees did not notice this. If you have subsequently archived data with an institution, then you should provide the above information as required under GRL policies. Indeed, I would encourage you to provide a Supplementary Information even at this late date. In the mean time, since the topic has come up here, could you please provide identification codes and locations in accordance with AGU policy for any now archived data sets used in your GRL article? 132. Willis Eschenbach Posted May 18, 2006 at 9:03 PM | Permalink Re 127, John, now you have me confused. You refer to # 63, where you say: I plan to select what I believe to be the important data sets and to archive those. …… Intermendiate data that may assist researchers in the future will be archived in due course. In 127, there is clear progress. You say you have already archived the data, which I assume means you archived it between writing #63 and #127. This is good, thank you for archiving it … so only one question remains. Where did you archive it? Many thanks, w. 133. Tom Brogle Posted May 19, 2006 at 4:20 AM | Permalink But surely the co-author should know what is going on. He cant’t be entirely ingnorant of the scource of the data in the paper. I think that anyone who conceals their data cannot be confident that the data supports their thesis . The data that is in the public domain leads me to the conclusion that the all the panic abbout CO2 and all the fortune telling models are akin to a worlwide delusion similar to the Eugenics panic in the early 20th century. There are scientists who make all there research fit in to the Idea of AGW and as a result maintain and advance there positions Any evidence that contradicts is either concealed, supressed, or trivialised Students who support AGW get on, those who oppose it stay quiet. In the early 80,s when Prime Minister Thatcher first stated that CO2 was a problem,I believed her. Two years ago I began to study it. I may not be highly qualified but I know enough to recognise bad science when I see it. There is far to much BS in climatology. 134. Louis Hissink Posted May 19, 2006 at 5:16 AM | Permalink #129 John Hunter, Actually I do live in the real world but how you interpreted my previous post #124 as a PERSONAL right to taxpayer funded data needs further study. As far as I am PERSONALLY concerned, any reluctance to show raw data forming the basis of a scientific opinion, is not different to a mining speculator refusing to show the assays and data used to compute an ore reserve when asked by an Audit team. In mining we condemn those who cause investers to pour their money into mining scams. In your case we wonder whether we should pour our money into Kyoto Protocols or their analogs on the basis of academic scams. You assert A based on xyz using C model to conclude M. All we ask is to look at xyz and then to replicate what you concluded as M. If it is a privately exercise then I have no quibble but as it is taxpayer funded, I have more than a quibble. The only conclusion a reasonable person would form would be that your data are not able to stand the analyis under the light of independent scrutiny. 135. jae Posted May 19, 2006 at 5:16 AM | Permalink 134 Amen, brother! 136. Louis Hissink Posted May 19, 2006 at 5:20 AM | Permalink #135 Horsehocks, I lost a few key words. “If it is a privately exercise” should be “If it is a privately funded exercise”. Apologies – brain faster than fingers. 137. John A Posted May 19, 2006 at 5:23 AM | Permalink I’m sorry, but Spam Karma dinged another John Hunter post, which I’ve recovered. It’s #128 138. Louis Hissink Posted May 19, 2006 at 5:34 AM | Permalink Re #127 Quite a valid point but the assumption is that the earth had, is, and will always have a constant volume. The extrusion of voluminous continental lava flows, over geological time, must mean the earth has increased in volume. (think on it). But faced with localised subsidences where previous human occupied areas are now under sea, one wonders. Ancient Alexandria at the mouth of the River Nile is under some ? 10 metres of sea. What changed? The sea or the land? If we do not understand why land rises or falls below sea level, then any scientific studies on sea levels become meaningless. It’s a question of an absolute benchmark which measurements could be referred to for comparison. In this sense I suspect John Hunter’s understanding of geology somewhat Protean. 139. Peter Hearnden Posted May 19, 2006 at 5:45 AM | Permalink Re ‘139 Quite a valid point but the assumption is that the earth had, is, and will always have a constant volume. The extrusion of voluminous continental lava flows, over geological time, must mean the earth has increased in volume. (think on it). I have, but you’ll have to run it by me again, because, for the life of me, I can’t see how you’re making sense. 140. John Af Posted May 19, 2006 at 5:47 AM | Permalink Louis, Can you please keep your theories on tectonics of this thread and preferably off the blog? Thanks John 141. Louis Hissink Posted May 19, 2006 at 6:07 AM | Permalink Re # 141 John Af, No theories have been put, just simple facts. You have a problem with these? Apart from your spelling and non sequitors, 142. Louis Hissink Posted May 19, 2006 at 6:18 AM | Permalink Re #140 Peter, Assume a sphere of volume A. Then for whatever reasons, voluminous amounts of basalts erupt on the earth’s surface – Deccan Traps for example. These new lava flows on top of the existing land surface have added to the volume of the pre-lava flow earth, unless at the time of that eruption, somewhere else on the earth subsided in compensation. It’s like a billiard ball that, magically, extruded its inners onto its surface making it seriously less than round. Its volume, must, therefore have increased. Now have you got it? 143. John A Posted May 19, 2006 at 6:18 AM | Permalink Yes, I have a problem. This thread is about John Hunter and sea-levels. Not tectonics. PS. It’s “Non sequiturs” 144. Louis Hissink Posted May 19, 2006 at 6:26 AM | Permalink #Re 144 John A, I assumed your previous comment signed John Af was a rogue comment. That said – Sea levels and tectonics are inseparable – tectonics is about land rising or falling, sea levels are about seas rising or falling with the common factor the land-sea interface. Your ball. 145. Louis Hissink Posted May 19, 2006 at 6:34 AM | Permalink Re 144 Sea levels and tectonics are inseparable. 146. Michael Jankowski Posted May 19, 2006 at 6:45 AM | Permalink Just for the record, I also would assume a mark would be placed at high tide and not MSL (but it would also make sense if smaller marks were put at low and high tides with the primary marker at MSL). That being said… Many feel I am being obstructive. I am. Thanks for clearing that one up for the intellectually bankrupt. “why is anybody interested in auditing these rather obscure and unimportant papers?” My answer is that it seemed to be an evolution on this website due in large part to your antagonizing posting presence on a number of other threads. But I’m glad to see you are humble enough to put your work in such perspective. Of course, you dedicated an entire website to deconstructing John Daly, a “rather obscure and unimportant” critic of global warming claims. So maybe you should be asking yourself some questions, eh? 147. Willis Eschenbach Posted May 19, 2006 at 2:51 PM | Permalink Re 143, Louis, you say: Assume a sphere of volume A. Then for whatever reasons, voluminous amounts of basalts erupt on the earth’s surface – Deccan Traps for example. These new lava flows on top of the existing land surface have added to the volume of the pre-lava flow earth, unless at the time of that eruption, somewhere else on the earth subsided in compensation. It’s like a billiard ball that, magically, extruded its inners onto its surface making it seriously less than round. Its volume, must, therefore have increased. Now have you got it? Ummm … no, I haven’t got it. Something moving from the inside of a planet to the surface can’t increase the volume unless it leaves a void behind. Since this is extremely doubtful, I’d say that moving magma from just below the surface up to the surface causes the land over the magma chamber to subside in exactly the amount of the ejected magma …. See, for example, the USGS site regarding Kilauea Volcano , which says in part: When magma leaves the reservoir to feed an eruption or dike intrusion, the ground above it moves downward and inward. Thus, there is no increase in volume. The magma moves up … the ground moves down … the volume stays constant. w. 148. IL Posted May 20, 2006 at 1:19 AM | Permalink Sea level and tectonics are inextricably linked in that tectonic movements cause land rises in some places and sinking in others. Its actually extraordinarily difficult to accurately measure sea level by reference to land (since we’re talking of looking for mm to cm change here) because its hard to know that your assumed reference point, the land, is in fact static relative to the centre of the Earth (for want of an absolute reference point). Most of high latitude land is still rising from isostatic rebound following the removal of the great ice sheets of the last glaciation. To some extent this can be achieved by changes in density within the materials within the Earth but may also to some extent have caused other areas to rise just like putting a weight on one side of a dinner plate, it sinks but the other side rises. In other places such as parts of the Mediterranean it is sinking through tectonic effects. The Earth is a very complex and dynamic place – nothing is fixed!! and you have to look very very carefully at your presumed mechanisms to try and untangle them and even then be sure you’ve overlooked something. I think the average volume is the same however give or take minor changes in average density caused by subduction of plates, so I think the comment about flood basalts making the earth larger is nonsense. As Willis says, that would have to leave a void, other areas sink to compensate. 149. John Hunter Posted May 20, 2006 at 2:35 AM | Permalink Louis Hissink (#139 etc) and comments of others: if Louis could bring himself to talk in quantitative terms (i.e. how much appparent sea level rise would we expect to see from the process he is trying to describe?), then I think he might be taken a bit more seriously. 150. John Hunter Posted May 20, 2006 at 2:42 AM | Permalink Louis Hissink (#135): > You assert A based on xyz using C model to conclude M. All we ask > is to look at xyz and then to replicate what you concluded as M. For the zillionth time, “xyz” is the hardcopy data of Thomas Lempriere to which we have given a perfectly good reference. I have now made it even easier for you and told you that digitised versions of the data are in the standard sea-level databases. Now when are you people going to stop pontificating and start “replicating” — or is it all too hard? 151. Posted May 20, 2006 at 3:37 AM | Permalink Playing hide and seek John Hunter? “the standard sea-level databases” is that psmsl? 152. John A Posted May 20, 2006 at 3:44 AM | Permalink I have now made it even easier for you and told you that digitised versions of the data are in the standard sea-level databases. Which standard sea-level databases and what are the references? 153. Dave Dardinger Posted May 20, 2006 at 8:17 AM | Permalink Since TCO thinks I would do well on a dendro site, I figured I should do a little research before weighing in on this latest dust-up. So I did a Google search on: Lempriere +”sea level” +database There were some interesting findings that way but so sign of where you could go for Lempriere’s data. Indeed the indication was that the data had only recently been found and that John Hunter, as principle researcher, was publishing the results of the data the following month, which would have been last month. Now since this may be old news to everyone else (I’ve mostly been skimming the thread here), a couple points. 1. No use complaining about John Hunter not having put the data in a depository yet when he’s just published. I was apparently under a miscomprehension that this discussion here was a rehash of the old Hunter-Daly feud. If it’s newly available data and has now been archieved then no harm / no foul. 2. Assuming #1 is correct, then John H is being a [fill in your favorite deprecatory phrase] as is his wont and he should act like a scientist and not a [ditto] and give us a link to the data. 154. John Hunter Posted May 21, 2006 at 12:16 AM | Permalink Dave Dardinger (#154): I’m afraid I can’t understand what you are talking about, or what web site you are referring to. (a) We haven’t published anything new on Port Arthur since the GRL article in 2003. I did write a short “popularised” account in the Bulletin of the Australian Meteorological and Oceanographic Society, also in 2003, but it contained nothing new. (b) It is always worth looking at the “publishing” date of a given web site — many are quite old. 155. John Hunter Posted May 21, 2006 at 12:29 AM | Permalink Hans Erren and John A (#152 and #153): As I’ve said before, if you don’t even know the locations of the standard sea-level archives (or can’t even find them on the web) then you are not competent to analyse the data — so why should I waste my time discussing it with you? 156. John A Posted May 21, 2006 at 12:41 AM | Permalink John Hunter: [snip] 157. Peter Hearnden Posted May 21, 2006 at 1:42 AM | Permalink Re #157, to which posts or post do you refer? #156? Surely not, it’s advice. #155? It’s another reply. Further back? What part where was infantile? Or, is it you? 158. John Hunter Posted May 21, 2006 at 1:49 AM | Permalink Steve (#132): When I require interpretation or clarification of the requirements of AGU as regards our publication, I will consult with AGU and not with you. However, given your penchant for pedantry, you should note that your quotation (“The format for the reference will be specified in …..”) was immediately prefixed by: “Data sets that meet the requirements stated in paragraph 1 above CAN be included in the reference list of an article in an AGU publication.” (my capitals). It says “CAN”, not “MUST”. This whole thread is a good demonstration of what’s wrong with Climateaudit. When we published our first paper on Port Arthur in International Hydrographic Review in 2002, we gave a clear reference to the locations of Lempriere’s data in archives in the UK and Australia. They were clear enough for John Daly to obtain the data, digitise it and report on it by 2 February 2003 (http://www.john-daly.com/deadisle/index.htm). The discussions of Port Arthur started on Climateaudit several months ago and, so far, there has been NO substantive or quantitative comments related to “replication” of our work. All we get is pontification and quibbling over minor issues of process — NO science at all. Anyone with any common sense and energy would have been able to access Lempriere’s data months ago and done some serious comparisons. Even you, Steve, seem unable to make a simple request for a journal article from a technical library, when they don’t have it in stock. I was reading an article at the weekend in the “Age” newspaper (one of Australia’s better papers, if not the best) about a policeman who was jailed for corruption. He has recently been released and a film has been made about his life. He is telling the author of the article how he doesn’t line the portrayal of himself. Here is a quote from the article: “Item by item, he picks holes in ‘his’ screen character — the lawyer’s tactic of finding flaws in a case to persuade a jury to reject it all.” Now, does that sound familiar? 159. Willis Eschenbach Posted May 21, 2006 at 2:27 AM | Permalink Re 156, John, you’re still refusing to say where the data is archived. I looked at the JASL and the PSMSL archives, and I didn’t find anything about the Isle of the Dead, or about Lempriere’s records. Or about you, for that matter. Maybe I missed it. But whether I missed it or not, this is childish. The idea that if someone can’t complete your treasure hunt they are therefore unqualified to analyse the data is ridiculous. One has nothing to do with the other. Speaking from my own experience, in 1990 I was living on a very remote island in the Solomon Islands, and I ran a shipyard there. Obviously, with a slipway, I needed tide tables. The SI Government published tide tables each year … but usually not until about September of the year the tables referred to, which made them useless for most of the year. So I took two years of their tide tables, analysed them to determine the magnitude and phase of the underlying tidal constituents, and created my own tide tables. These were quite accurate, as shown by comparison with the Government tables (when they were finally published). For the next two years, I did a brisk business publishing and selling my own Solomon Islands tide tables in January of each year. So obviously, I can do tidal analysis, I’ve even made money doing it … but I can’t find your freaking data. While I imagine that you think that you are scoring points here, the essence of science is transparency. You refuse to tell us where your data is, saying Incidentally, why do you think I would be putting myself out to provide papers to people whose only aim is to knock down my work Why? Umm … well, because that’s what real scientists do. Here’s the deal. Someone makes a scientific claim, and they reveal how they did it and what data they used. Other scientists try to “knock it down”, they try to find flaws or errors in the analysis and in the data. If they can’t find them, the work stands. It’s called “science”. Your reason for refusing to reveal your data leads to the inescapable conclusion that you are afraid that your work will be knocked down. While I suspect that may not be the case … you’re sure acting like it is. Are you going to continue to play these schoolyard games that are damaging to your scientific reputation, or are you going to let us know where you’ve hidden your data? w. 160. Willis Eschenbach Posted May 21, 2006 at 2:34 AM | Permalink Re 159, now I’m even more confused. John, you say: When we published our first paper on Port Arthur in International Hydrographic Review in 2002, we gave a clear reference to the locations of Lempriere’s data in archives in the UK and Australia. But above, you say: I plan to select what I believe to be the important data sets and to archive those. …… Intermendiate data that may assist researchers in the future will be archived in due course. This is not at all clear. What is archived, and what are you planning to archive? w. 161. Posted May 21, 2006 at 3:47 AM | Permalink re 156: John H. Seems that you have different standards than I. http://www.pol.ac.uk/psmsl/datainfo/ PSMSL Monthly and Annual Mean Sea Level Station Files http://www.pol.ac.uk/psmsl/psmsl_individual_stations.html Where is your data archived, pleaease? 162. Louis Hissink Posted May 21, 2006 at 4:24 AM | Permalink Re # 148 Willis Basalts are partial melts from more dense precursors – though the idea of eruptions emptying underlying magma chambers seems appealing, I suspect it as an explanation. For example the eruption of the continental flood basalts, if this model is right, would mean (for India) that it subsided as a whole to compensate for the outpouring. Did it? I don’t know. But the USGS position you relate seems to be ignorant of the Bowen reaction series. Partial melting produces less dense daughter products which, if constancy of mass is required, requires an increase in volume. Simple physics really. L 163. Louis Hissink Posted May 21, 2006 at 4:33 AM | Permalink Willis It’s just the Bowen Reaction series – assuming constancy of mass, any partial melting which produces lower density products must increase the volume. Hence an evolving earth, assuming a constant water volume, must inevitably result in lower sea levels over time. 164. Steve McIntyre Posted May 21, 2006 at 5:15 AM | Permalink #158. John H, as I’ve repeatedly said, I’m not interested in the topic. If I wanted to, I could track down the article and I’m sure that you would send it to me. This isn’t an issue for me. As to whether you are or are not in compliance with AGU policies, I agree that this is a matter for AGU to decide. I’ve seen little evidence that GRL enforces AGU policies so, even if you flouted their policies, they might not require you to do anything. Having said that, I would urge people who are interested in your data to contact James Famiglietti, editor-in-chief of GRL, and, if they think that you are non-compliant with AGU policies, point that out to Famiglietti and ask him to redress the situation. I mentioned previously that I’m someone who’s actually filed a formal complaint against a crooked cop. As someone who’s done that, my experience was that the police protect their own. I filed a complaint that the policeman had destroyed evidence. My complaint was well-documented, but got nowhere. The investigation of the crooked policeman by the police complaints review process was abysmal. The policeman in question was arrested several years later to considerable publicity on a different matter, when he got picked up by an RCMP wiretap on organized crime. If you’re comparing my experience with filing complaints against crooked police to my experience with filing complaints against climate scientists, then that’s a more extreme position than I’ve taken and I’ll have to think about it. 165. John Hunter Posted May 21, 2006 at 5:41 AM | Permalink Steve (#163): You seem to completely miss my final point and it is perhaps very revealing that you do not understand it. It has absolutely nothing to do with your own experiences of “filing complaints against crooked police” or “filing complaints against climate scientists”. It is to do with the tactic used by you and the cheerleaders of “finding flaws in a case to persuade a jury to reject it all”. 166. John Hunter Posted May 21, 2006 at 5:54 AM | Permalink Willis Eschenbach (#159) and Hans Erren (#161): People on here seem to think that everything should be directly available on the web. Well, sorry — many organisations (for example our own National Tidal Centre) (a) don’t provide any data without users registering first and/or (b) don’t even indicate on the web that some data exists. In other words, you write to them telling them who you are and asking whether they have the data you want. If they do have it then you ask for it and tell them what you want it for. Is that so difficult? 167. John Hunter Posted May 21, 2006 at 5:59 AM | Permalink Willis (#160): I didn’t think this was very hard to understand – it might help if you read our papers — you have had ample chance to get hold of copies since this long discussion started. In our 2002 paper we indicated where Lempriere’s hardcopy data was archived (it wasn’t us who archived it). Recently I lodged digitised versions of both Lempriere’s data and our own tide gauge data at standard sea-level archives. 168. John A Posted May 21, 2006 at 6:04 AM | Permalink We know where Lempriere’s hard copy data is, because I’ve seen it and photographed it myself in the Royal Soicety in London. Are you going to stop playing games and tell us where the electronic version that was created by David Pugh is stored? 169. Peter Hearnden Posted May 21, 2006 at 6:08 AM | Permalink Re #167, jese, you really DO want to be spoon fed don’t you. 170. John Hunter Posted May 21, 2006 at 6:13 AM | Permalink Willis (#159): > Are you going to continue to play these schoolyard games that are > damaging to your scientific reputation, or are you going to let us > know where you’ve hidden your data? The answer is “yes”, because: (a) I don’t have any sense that my “scientific reputation” is being “damaged”, and (b) I have already explained (#127) why I am not going to spoonfeed you people. 171. Steve McIntyre Posted May 21, 2006 at 6:14 AM | Permalink #164. John H, I’m not trying to “persuade a jury to reject it all”. As I’ve stated on a number of occasions, if I were a politician charged with making a decision on the present evidence, I would be guided by the consensus as expressed by institutions like IPCC. My interests in this are scientific and statistical – what was the actual relation of the MWP to modern temperatures and how can one make conclusions from proxy evidence with statistical confidence? This has no relation to other lines of evidence, which have to be weighed on their own merit. My experience in this one area leads me to believe that processes of disclosure and due diligence in this area are not nearly as good as they could be, but that does not mean that the studies themselves are flawed. The only policy that I’ve consistently advocated is “full, true and plain disclosure”. In this field, I’ve come to the conclusion that full, true and plain disclosure includes the archiving of data in a coherent and replicable manner. That’s by no means the only aspect. Unfortunately for some studies, it requires an inordinate amount of energy and quasi-litigation to even begin to assess a study. 172. John Hunter Posted May 21, 2006 at 6:16 AM | Permalink John A (#167): What part of “no” don’t you (and all the others) understand? 173. John Hunter Posted May 21, 2006 at 6:18 AM | Permalink Steve (#169): > Unfortunately for some studies, it requires an inordinate amount of > energy and quasi-litigation to even begin to assess a study. You might find that the word “please” helps. 174. John Hunter Posted May 21, 2006 at 6:21 AM | Permalink John A (#167): Oh, and for good measure, “are you going to stop playing games and tell us” who you are? 175. Steve McIntyre Posted May 21, 2006 at 6:28 AM | Permalink #171. As I’ve told you before, I’ve always asked people nicely for data in the first place and only complained if a pleasant request was unsuccessful. I’ve suggested to several authors that they archive data and, other than the Hockey Team, the reaction has generally been positive. Hughen and Kameda both archived data at my suggestion. The Hockey Team are a different story, but it wasn’t because I failed to ask politely. I’ve said this to you before so please stop repeating the same canard. 176. John A Posted May 21, 2006 at 6:34 AM | Permalink Re #172 No. I’m not going to tell you who I am unless you can tell me what you would do with that information. 177. Posted May 21, 2006 at 6:43 AM | Permalink jeez, so once again you clowns are bashing a respected researcher. Gee, maybe you can get the Republicans to “investigate him” as you encouraged before, eh? 178. kim Posted May 21, 2006 at 6:52 AM | Permalink Speaking as an outsider, CC, I can’t see that you’ve demonstrated the objectivity necessary to seek truth. In fact, you sound deranged. Are you in trouble? Need some help? Go reread what you’ve written. This is the pursuit of truth? ============================ 179. Posted May 21, 2006 at 6:55 AM | Permalink Ummm, as I’ve said time and again, blogs like this just provide entertainment, a catharsis at best. These anti-scientific clowns like McIntyre et al, acting at the behest of their corporate whoremasters, aren’t worthy of anything other than laughter. They can publish their “results” in reputed, peer-reviewed journals, if they really are interested in the science. “Debating” a bunch of right-wing blowhards on a silly blog site is a joke — it’s sort of like in the US the Creationist religious-zealots screech to have an “equal debate” with actual scientists. 180. kim Posted May 21, 2006 at 6:59 AM | Permalink Ah, yes, behesting. Well, I’m behesting you to respond to Steve’s request to critique some of his work. ‘Anti-scientific clown’ and ‘corporate whoremasters’ don’t count as critique, here. ========================================= 181. Posted May 21, 2006 at 7:02 AM | Permalink Jeezus, there’s enough critique of Steve’s “research” out there. Again — if any of his real junk science has merit, he can publish it out there besides “The Greening Earth Society” and that ilk. I find blog sites like this a humorous diversion. 182. kim Posted May 21, 2006 at 7:03 AM | Permalink Out where? Can you cite it? ================ 183. Posted May 21, 2006 at 7:06 AM | Permalink Hell, just do a Google search, the special interests affiliated with Mc et co are laughable, see the responses from realclimate as a good start. I feel sorry for climate scientists, I can’t think of any other field where blowhards from totally unrelated areas (half-assed Libertarian “economists”, mining engineers, lawyers, politicians, etc) feel as if they are “expert priors” to slam the work of the real scientists! ;-) 184. kim Posted May 21, 2006 at 7:09 AM | Permalink I want to know if you can cite his work, or critique it. Saying ‘Go google’ has become the trademark of a losing argument. It’s calling on a supernatural explanation. ================================ 185. Posted May 21, 2006 at 7:19 AM | Permalink how about wikipedia? ;-) http://pubs.acs.org/subscribe/journals/esthag-w/2005/aug/business/pt_wsj.html HAHAHA, Steven is in the line of other “climate experts” — basically if the right-wing corporate-whorebags think you’re a useful idiot, they’ll pluck you out of obscurity. I look forward to future McIntyre writings on the pages of the “Competitive Enterprise Institute” and the “Cato Institute.” Steve puts the “think” in “think tank!” 186. kim Posted May 21, 2006 at 7:23 AM | Permalink Stick around, CC, and you’ll find that it is people like you and I who are the ‘humourous diversion’ on sites like this. And, further, you’ll find that they don’t find us very funny. Curiosity laughs at jokes, but wonders what’s the point. What is yours, by the way? ===================================== 187. Posted May 21, 2006 at 7:25 AM | Permalink The “science” behind this site is the joke. You dopes start with your right-wing pseudo-Libertarian delusions; and then dick around with statistics until you think you’ve “disproven” a plethora of scientific papers out there. Then you get them published in non-peer-reviewed organs (or at best, you get one paper through once in awhile), and claim “victory.” It’s laughable, but the real science will march on, and you guys will be relegated to the dungheap with the Creationists, Flat-Earth Society, Intelligent Design aficianados, etc. 188. kim Posted May 21, 2006 at 7:26 AM | Permalink Wikipedia-Trek Central Station. Did you catch the discussion here of the Wikipedia-Brittanica dust-up, here? Now, I’ll go check out your link. Remember, I’m not a scientist, nor are you. ===================================== 189. Posted May 21, 2006 at 7:29 AM | Permalink I’m not a climate scientist, I just read their peer-reviewed papers! ;-) 190. kim Posted May 21, 2006 at 7:29 AM | Permalink Your link is funny. So do you still believe in Mann’s hockey stick? ====================================== 191. kim Posted May 21, 2006 at 7:30 AM | Permalink I insist you are not a scientist of any sort. Your comments here and on the 2013 crash thread betray you. =================================== 192. Posted May 21, 2006 at 7:34 AM | Permalink HAHA, yeah, I’m just a dummy here at Oxford. And you clowns with your circle-jerk over the “hockey stick”, as if your feeble “disproof” is a “smoking gun” and there’s nothing else out there to support AGW. Oh yeah, you & the other blogger twats out there are the “real scientists!” Let’s just shut down ‘Nature’ & ‘Science’ & GRL now, it should all be handed over to Republican bloggers! 193. kim Posted May 21, 2006 at 7:36 AM | Permalink I was hoping you’d invoke Oxford. Now you’ve done it. ================================== 194. Posted May 21, 2006 at 7:38 AM | Permalink well I am here, would you rather I say I’m back in Philadelphia? 195. kim Posted May 21, 2006 at 7:41 AM | Permalink The cabbie told the man asking to go to Betsy Ross’s house that the new mayor had shut all those places down. Pimping for Mann, now? ========================================== 196. Jean S Posted May 21, 2006 at 7:43 AM | Permalink re #175, 177, 179, 181, 183, 185 et al: I thought my countrymen had the best joke of the weekend, and then I see this! I guy with enourmous scientific creditability is judging Steve’s research “junk science”, does not consider GRL as a real scientific journal etc..!!! CC, I think it is time to reduce whatever you’re taking, it’s obviously not good for your health. 197. Posted May 21, 2006 at 7:44 AM | Permalink I don’t know Mann at all, but I haven’t seen any “smoking gun” that you dopes see. You goofs reminds me of the biblical quote about seeing motes in the eyes of others whilst ignoring beams in your own eyes. I mean, if Steve & the more erudite “skeptics” spent 5% of their efforts looking at the bulk of the inane “skeptic” arguments, they’d probably fall over laughing. But remember those holy words from Saint Myron Ebell: “Carbon Dioxide — some call it pollution — we call it life!” 198. Posted May 21, 2006 at 7:46 AM | Permalink well the Eurovision Song Contest has more scientific basis than you Ayn Randroids and your inane “science.” 199. kim Posted May 21, 2006 at 7:47 AM | Permalink Someday, somewhere, CC, you may appreciate the irony that Mann’s hockey stick hangs on the Bristlecone series, which is a proxy for carbon dioxide, not temperature. Ah, science like yours was practiced for eons. Don’t sacrifice my virgins for your superstitions. =================================== 200. Posted May 21, 2006 at 7:48 AM | Permalink HAHAHAHA, yeah, more retroworked pseudo-science. You assholes are the ones who are on the side of the born-again RepugliKKKans! 201. Posted May 21, 2006 at 7:48 AM | Permalink HAHAHAHA, yeah, more retroworked pseudo-science. You “schmucks” are the ones who are on the side of the born-again RepugliKKKans! 202. Jean S Posted May 21, 2006 at 7:57 AM | Permalink # 196: Try to get the hint: you do not have any credentials to judge what is science what is not. So you are taken here purely by the merit of your sayings. Based on that, I would suggest you go to take some rest before posting, you are not only making youself ridiculous, you are also affecting the reputation of the project you are supposingly affiliated. 203. Dave Dardinger Posted May 21, 2006 at 8:04 AM | Permalink CC, Well, my bet is still that you’re on a bender and are just letting your subconscious have a free rein, but if you’re actually sober, can’t you be objective enough to actually analyze this site? dick around with statistics until you think you’ve “disproven” a plethora of scientific papers out there. This seems to be the heart of your “disproof” of this site. But it’s not an argument at all. Steve has been quite clear about what he’s done which shows that the Hockey Stick in general and MBH98 in particular are flawed in their statistical analysis. Nobody either here, at Real Climate or in the peer-reviewed literature has ever provided a real flaw in Steve’s analysis. That is, whenever someone has claimed to have found a flaw it’s been clearly and unambiguously disproven here. You’re welcome to claim this isn’t true on any specific point you wish and I’m certain Steve will be quite gracious and generous with his time in discussing it with you. Or, if you prefer to wallow in the mud pit, us plebes will be happy to insult you until you really do run away; or if you show total mindlessness, we’ll be happy to ignore you. 204. kim Posted May 21, 2006 at 8:12 AM | Permalink You ‘don’t know Mann at all’? And you do climate projections? ================================ 205. Dave Dardinger Posted May 21, 2006 at 8:17 AM | Permalink CC, It’s interesting that you’re call people here both Ayn Randoids and creationists. Are you that ignorant that you don’t understand the contradiction here? Or do you not actually mean what you’re saying but merely want to throw out what are to you the worst insults you can imagine? Rather like if I were to call you a “vegan commie pinko fag.” Such a statement would [hypothetically] actually reflect my own political viewpoints by inversion instead of yours. I’d go further, but Steve doesn’t let us discuss politics here. 206. Steve McIntyre Posted May 21, 2006 at 8:23 AM | Permalink Dave, Kim and others, please don’t waste your time responding to this sort of rant. 207. Bob K Posted May 21, 2006 at 8:33 AM | Permalink I hope CC’s ability to engage in a rational discourse isn’t typical of the majority at Oxford. I don’t remember the last time I saw so many ad hominem remarks in so few posts. 208. Posted May 21, 2006 at 8:36 AM | Permalink I’m a Philly boy, the Oxford guys have more important things than you blogger dopes! ;-) Damn, I sure wish we got the sort of money you sellouts get though! Stephen McIntyre Contributing Writer The George C. Marshall Institute The George C. Marshall Institute received$185,000 from ExxonMobil for “Climate Change Public Information and Policy Research” in 2002-2003.

Ross McKitrick

Senior Fellow

Writer
techcentralstation.com

Contributing Writer
The George C. Marshall Institute

The Fraser Institute received $60,000 from ExxonMobil in 2003. The Tech Central Station Science Foundation received$95,000 from ExxonMobil for “Climate Change Support” in 2003.

The George C. Marshall Institute received $185,000 from ExxonMobil for “Climate Change Public Information and Policy Research” in 2002-2003. Patrick Michaels Senior Fellow The Cato Institute Visiting Scientist The George C. Marshall Institute Science Roundtable Member techcentralstation.com The Cato Institute received$55,000 from ExxonMobil in 2002-2003.

The George C. Marshall Institute received $185,000 from ExxonMobil for “Climate Change Public Information and Policy Research” in 2002-2003. The Tech Central Station Science Foundation received$95,000 from ExxonMobil for “Climate Change Support” in 2003.

209. Michael Jankowski
Posted May 21, 2006 at 8:52 AM | Permalink

I don’t know Mann at all, but I haven’t seen any “smoking gun” that you dopes see.

If you’ve come to Climate Audit looking for a “smoking gun” regarding climate change, then you’ve simply been wasting your time. If you had taken the time to peruse the website, you’d see there are no such claims here. I invite you to read Steve’s threads so that you can convince yourself.

Many of the published “hockey sticks” have been shown to be farcical here, and there are some posters who do extend their views to discussing the idea of catastrophic anthropogenic global warming. But that is surely not the point of deconstructing the hockey stick publications (although those publications themselves are often conversely considered “smoking gun” prooof of AGW). However, I’m sure there are plenty of differing views among students at Georgia Tech and Temple, yet any single view does not represent or reflect on the entire university, does it?

I think it’s remarkable that it took so long for this website to have a political loser troll. Most blogs seem to gather them rather quickly. I’m not sure who should be thanked for that one.

I apologize if I was not supposed to reply to this anatagonistic dolt. But I just got through responding to Dano on another thread, so I guess I was sort of “in the neighborhood.” I’ve locked the doors and will find the first expressway ramp away from town.

210. TCO
Posted May 21, 2006 at 9:06 AM | Permalink

I went to a Gordon Conference at Oxford once. It was summer, but they opened the dorm pub (each dorm is called a “college” and is about 800 years old and has it’s own bar–cool, no?) Then again, I had 10ish peer-reviewed papers to my name.

Steve, let me at the damn Varsity-burger-eating ‘jacket. Bet he doesn’t even know the Xenon decay equations…

211. Posted May 21, 2006 at 9:11 AM | Permalink

Re: TCO, HAHA yet another pseudo-intellectual blowhard heard from! I think Isaac Held said it best on RealClimate re: the skeptics, so I’ll “sign off” with that, and apologies in advance to Isaac for dragging him “by proxy” into this thread and website of the “blind leading the stupid!” ;-)

————————

http://www.realclimate.org/index.php?p=291#comment-11806

Perhaps analysis of the HIV-AIDS controversy, and the history of the skeptical stance regarding the central role of the viral infection would be useful to this discussion. I am far from being fully informed about the science of HIV-AIDS. Were the skeptics ever convinced that they were, in fact, mistaken, or did the media eventually just conclude that this viewpoint was no longer worthy of coverage? Did anyone ever apologize for sowing confusion that slowed prevention efforts, as in South Africa? Inspection of a few web sites, such as http://www.virusmyth.net/aids/controversy.htm, suggests that the mix of credentials of those involved was comparable to those playing a similar role in the global warming arena. There are other interesting analogies. For example, on that web page we see that a mathematics professor at Yale University (from whose excellent textbook I learned abstract algebra) was critical of some statistical analyses of the link between the virus and the disease and, as a result, was publicly critical of the scientific establishment and the media for spreading misinformation about the nature of AIDS. In retrospect, it seems amazing that a mathematician, however prominent, would consider himself qualified to judge the consensus of the biomedical community on such an important issue with such assurance. He may have had a useful point to make about a particular statistical analysis, but what damage did he do with his misinformed critique of the big picture? What amazing arrogance! And yet how familiar.

I don’t think that there is anything distinctive about the issues we face with regard to fringe opinions concerning global warming. You can’t prove that you are smarter than everyone else by being part of a consensus, but you can hope for this outcome by being a contrarian.

Comment by Isaac Held “¢’¬? 15 Apr 2006 @ 2:11 pm

———————————

212. Posted May 21, 2006 at 9:14 AM | Permalink

Re: 205. Its tempting, if only because of the others who think like him but don’t dare say it. For a so-called programmer he should learn html. His resume is a shocker.

213. Posted May 21, 2006 at 9:20 AM | Permalink

See comment 195 for another Link to CC’s resume.

214. Posted May 21, 2006 at 9:20 AM | Permalink

HAHAHA, wow, you found a 4-year old copy of my CV, shocking! Jeez, I wish I could do “PHP/HTML climate modelling” like you geniuses! ;-)

215. John Hunter
Posted May 21, 2006 at 5:05 PM | Permalink

Steve and Carl Christensen: Well, this is a hijack if there ever was one. Although it is interesting to see a rant coming from the “anti-Climateaudit” side instead of from one of the cheerleaders, I don’t think it is very helpful. Carl — I tend to be a bit careful of going over the “guilt by association” stuff (except some while ago when Steve was being a bit coy about his background and I manage to prise a few gems from him) — it’s all well-tread ground anyway. I reckon you should all cool it and get back to the point of the thread.

216. John Hunter
Posted May 21, 2006 at 5:21 PM | Permalink

To all seekers of the Port Arthur data: I’ll give you a little help.

There are only four sea-level archives which could reasonably be expected to hold our Port Arthur data. So how long does it take to write four emails asking “Please, can you tell me if you hold the following data ….”? — a lot less time than it takes to continually pontificate and grumble on Climateidiot — sorry Climateaudit.

I’ll give you a clue — the data isn’t at the University of Hawaii sea Level Center — that’s only three sites left …..

217. Willis Eschenbach
Posted May 21, 2006 at 5:23 PM | Permalink

Carl Christensen said:

HAHA, yeah, I’m just a dummy here at Oxford.

Out of the mouths of babes … but in any case, we already know that, bro’, so could you spare us your proving it over and over with your uninteresting posts? As John Hunter pointed out, you’re trying to hijack the thread.

I gotta confess, I’ve never wanted to ban anyone from posting here … TCO and I go at it hammer and tongs, and John Hunter and I, but it’s about real stuff, scientific ideas. You posts are both content-free and stupidly insulting, you’re testing the limits.

Personally, I don’t want to hear from you unless and until you are posting to back up at least one of the outrageous claims you made.

w.

218. tom brogle
Posted May 22, 2006 at 2:38 AM | Permalink

Why the hell won’t John Hunter tell us where the data is? Instead of wasting his valuable time writing email after email after email.
Are all global warmers so bloody minded?
Isaac Held imputes that Climmate skeptics are skerptical about all science. Wa are skeptical about bad science. I suppose people like him would have been supporting Eugenics in the 1920’s (after all amajority of scientists agreed with the theory and it worried politicuans).
It took a world war to prove the theory wrong.In theory the eugenicists were on the wrong side thankfully most weren’t

219. John Hunter
Posted May 22, 2006 at 4:27 AM | Permalink

Brogle the Impatient (#218):

> Why the hell won’t John Hunter tell us where the data is?

Read #127, #128 and #155. I told you why; which bit didn’t you understand?

Now, you tell me which are the four obvious centres to look for Australian sea-lavel data. If you do know, then please tell me why you are unable to email these centres to see if they have the data. If you don’t know then “why the hell” should I believe that you are competent to do any useful work with the data if you got hold of it?

220. tom brogle
Posted May 22, 2006 at 4:41 AM | Permalink

Because whenever I have emailed any centre they usually to busy to reply If I get no replies how will I know where it is?
Stop being bloodyminded and tell us.

221. Peter Hearnden
Posted May 22, 2006 at 4:46 AM | Permalink

Re #218/220, Tom, I can hear you stamping your feet from here.

222. John Hunter
Posted May 22, 2006 at 5:11 AM | Permalink

Brogle the Impatient (#220): Well how do you think I get my data — telepathy?

223. kim
Posted May 22, 2006 at 5:23 AM | Permalink

I don’t understand why when I go to the beach sometimes it is wide and sometimes narrow, and it doesn’t seem to have anything to do with dinnertime; but teases like John can only be sure of their data. And the water is always wet.
==============================================

224. MrPete
Posted May 22, 2006 at 5:36 AM | Permalink

#158 (John H)… appears that you and Steve M are talking past one another, to the confusion of us mere mortal observers.

""Data sets that meet the requirements stated in paragraph 1 above CAN be included in the reference list of an article in an AGU publication." (my capitals).

It says "CAN", not "MUST"."

OK, so the policy allows you to properly cite/reference data that you’ve properly archived. It’s ok to archive data and NOT cite it. So what???

In the software business, we have the humility to know that humans make mistakes and so we crave the attention of those who are willing to find our errors. We invest heavily in testing unexpected angles (software developers are rarely if ever able to fully test their own work very well!) We know it is far cheaper to find errors early in the process, yet far better to find them anytime in this product cycle than the next one. And we know that ad hominem attacks detract from our ability to produce a quality result. And so, kudos and a great career path go to those who cheerfully participate in improving the quality of process and product.

Bottom line: are you interested in being a part of and promoting good science? Then please distance yourself from any form of obfuscation. Do your work. Archive your data. Enable others to replicate (or poke holes!) as easily as possible. Be grateful for any attention your work attracts, including nit-picky errors found.

Don Knuth famously (search for “Errata”) offers US$2.56 for each error found in one of his publications, and US$327.68 for each bug found in one of his programs. Would that other sciences were so willing to celebrate the “skeptics”!

It wouldn’t surprise me if Knuth’s ethos was part of what led other departments at Stanford to publish electronic packages enabling the easy replication of research analyses.

225. MrPete
Posted May 22, 2006 at 5:44 AM | Permalink

BTW, Knuth (here) details his typical offer more clearly:

I hope the 1998 version is otherwise error-free. But (sigh) it probably isn't. Therefore I will gratefully pay \$2.56 to the first person who finds and reports anything that remains technically, historically, typographically, or politically incorrect.

I wish my own writing could withstand such a level of scrutiny!

226. John Hunter
Posted May 22, 2006 at 5:53 AM | Permalink

MrPete (#223, #224):

As I said to Steve in #158: When I require interpretation or clarification of the requirements of AGU as regards our publication, I will consult with AGU and not with you.

Sorry.

227. Larry Huldén
Posted May 22, 2006 at 6:11 AM | Permalink

It’s interesting to see that many scientists publish results and conclusions but hiding there data. Phil Jones is consistent in this respect: he admits frankly that he will not disclose his data so nobody could prove he was wrong. Mann and some others say that they have archived their data but still nobody can replicate their results. Now we have an intermediate case on sea levels. We don’t know if the data exists or not.

Larry Huldén
Finnish Museum of Natural History

228. John Hunter
Posted May 22, 2006 at 6:26 AM | Permalink

Larry Hulden (#226):

> We don’t know if the data exists or not.

If people on here had one iota of competence, they would have tracked down the digitised data days ago. But alas, they prefer to waffle on …..

In the interests of accuracy, can you please point me to your evidence that “Phil Jones ….. admits frankly that he will not disclose his data so nobody could prove he was wrong”.

229. The Pundit
Posted May 22, 2006 at 6:37 AM | Permalink

I suppose Warwick Hughes then was dreaming it all along.

230. The Pundit
Posted May 22, 2006 at 6:49 AM | Permalink

re #171

“As I’ve stated on a number of occasions, if I were a politician charged with making a decision on the present evidence, I would be guided by the consensus as expressed by institutions like IPCC. My interests in this are scientific and statistical – what was the actual relation of the MWP to modern temperatures and how can one make conclusions from proxy evidence with statistical confidence”

This worries me John, it means that policies of the IPCC overturn those of a sovereign state whose citizens elected you.

Usually this would be described as treason.

Care to comment?

231. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 22, 2006 at 6:57 AM | Permalink

On the Phil Jones statement, I’ve seen a copy of the email in question sent to me by Warwick Hughes. I posted up the exact words, together with some other excuses, which others may find interesting to re-read in the present context here.

Von Storch read this claim and couldn’t believe that any repsonsible scientist would say such a thing. He went to the trouble of specifically confirming with Phil Jones that he had said those words. Jones confirmed this. Von Storch reported this in his NAS Panel presentation, condemning Jones’ position in the strongest possible terms. See here and link to von Storch’s PPT.

"We have 25 or so years invested in the work. Why should I make the data available to you, when your aim is to try and find something wrong with it." (Jones’ reply to Warwick Hughes, 21. Februar 2005; confirmed by P. Jones)

So I feel confident that von Storch would sure our attitudes towards Hunter’s virtually identical statement.

It’s one thing for Jones to be obstinate. Most of the data was funded by DOE, who have said that, under the terms of their contract withJones, they cannot require him to archive the data. If I were in their shoes, even if I’d goofed on an earlier contract, I’d tell Jones and his lot that they wouldn’t get another nickel until they agreed to archive their data and stop trying to capitalize on poor language in the earlier contract.

232. kim
Posted May 22, 2006 at 7:17 AM | Permalink

Probably not treasonous to seek expertise. Expertise has its own authority.
===========================================

233. The Pundit
Posted May 22, 2006 at 7:32 AM | Permalink

[snip] Steve:  I was busy yesterday. Let’s try to be a little more orderly today.

234. kim
Posted May 22, 2006 at 7:49 AM | Permalink

You misunderstand me. I was speaking generally about expertise. It has the authority of truth, to which political leaders must bow, or suffer the consequences. I was certainly not arguing the specific, certainly not that the IPCC’s advice to policymakers was expert.  [snip].
=====================================

235. The Pundit
Posted May 22, 2006 at 8:36 AM | Permalink

Oh, cogent opinion,to be sure

236. Louis Hissink
Posted May 22, 2006 at 8:42 AM | Permalink

Ok, More orderly,

Suh!

237. kim
Posted May 22, 2006 at 9:14 AM | Permalink

Thanks, Pundit, The; all copacetic, now. I’ll keep kit and self in better order from now on, Suh. Unless, I’m provoked, Suh.
============================================

238. jae
Posted May 22, 2006 at 10:19 AM | Permalink

Truly amazing, this climate “science.” I know of no other area in science where there are so many scientists will not reveal data. And for a scientist to play little games, like John Hunter is doing—WOW!

239. Posted May 22, 2006 at 3:13 PM | Permalink

Yes John Hunter, I do think that data acquired with public funds should be free for the public. You may take an example from the dutch weather service who makes their historical data free of charge available to the anonymous user.

http://www.knmi.nl/klimatologie/daggegevens/antieke_wrn/index.html

You gnostic ivory tower hide-and-seek approach is unusual. Another example is Labrijn 1945, half of the publication on dutch climate since 1706 consist of data tables, now that’s what I call a scientific publication.

ref:
A. Labrijn, 1945, Het klimaat van Nederland gedurende de laatste twee en een halve eeuw, Mededelingen en Verhandelingen nr. 49, KNMI publ. 102.

240. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 22, 2006 at 3:26 PM | Permalink

I really didn’t want to get involved in this, but I’m tired of this thread. I’ve sent the following email to the National Tidal Center in Australia:

Do you have any data sets archived by John Hunter from Prt Arthur, Tasmania described in the following press release

If so, could you please provide any meta-information on the data sets and information on how to access these data sets.
Thanks, Steve McIntyre

241. Mike Carney
Posted May 22, 2006 at 4:02 PM | Permalink

re #228
John Hunter, you have the link to the NAS presentation given by von Storch documenting the Phil Jones quote (4th slide) on his data releasing policy. Do you believe its true? Regardless, is it a good policy for science?

242. John Hunter
Posted May 22, 2006 at 5:04 PM | Permalink

Steve (#231 and #240): Perhaps, because you failed to see my point when I provided the quote (#158):

“Item by item, he picks holes in “his’ screen character “¢’¬? the lawyer’s tactic of finding flaws in a case to persuade a jury to reject it all.”

you can’t see the difference between:

“We have 25 or so years invested in the work. Why should I make the data available to you, when your aim is to try and find something wrong with it.”

(which I’ll assume is a correct quote) and:

“Phil Jones ….. admits frankly that he will not disclose his data so nobody could prove he was wrong.”

which do NOT mean the same.

The difference lies in the matter of INTENTION and ABILITY. Having people, who are intent on finding fault yet lacking even the basic scientific skills, demanding to “audit” data sets is nothing more than a waste of time for them and a waste of time for the scientists involved. The “prove of the pudding” of my claim of “lack of basic scientific skills” is the fact that, after much bumbling by the cheerleaders, a clear inability by all to even access a journal from a scientific library, and an apparent total ignorance of the locations of the main sea level data centres, you, Steve had to finally come to the rescue and send an email (#240) to the most obvious repository of our data.

There is a lot of talk on other posts (to which I can’t be bothered to respond) about my witholding data. This is quite wrong — we gave the original sources for our work in our first paper back in 2002 (which should really be enough). I subsequently archived a digitised version of the data in very obvious places — for the cheerleaders to have taken so long to find it, and then only with your help, Steve, is once again a reflection on your audience.

243. Dano
Posted May 22, 2006 at 5:24 PM | Permalink

242:

My point(s) exactly. A-men brother.

Best,

D

244. John Hunter
Posted May 22, 2006 at 5:29 PM | Permalink

Steve and everyone (#240): Well, Steve’s request has been handballed back to me (a not unsurprising result). The response from the Australian National Tidal Centre was:

*******************************************************************************

Hi Steve,

> Do you have any data sets archived by John Hunter from Prt Arthur,
> Tasmania described in the following press release
> http://www.marine.csiro.au/media/03releases/21jan03.htm?
>
> If so, could you please provide any meta-information on the data sets and
> information on how to access these data sets.

Please source this information from John Hunter (john.hunter@utas.edu.au).
He will want to know why you are interested in this data-set.

Regards, Paul
——————————————————————–
Paul Davill
Data Manager/Analyst
National Tidal Centre
Bureau of Meteorology

*******************************************************************************

I am therefore sending Steve the data from Port Arthur. It is provided on the understanding that it is for his use only and that he does not provide it to anyone else. Others are now welcome to request the data from me, providing they provide their real identity and their reason for requiring the data. They, too, are not permitted to pass the data to other people. These are perfectly normal requirements for the provision of data.

245. Armand MacMurray
Posted May 22, 2006 at 5:32 PM | Permalink

Re:#242
John, I salute your latest example of “creativity”! Most would look at your quotes, note that they neither mention nor imply anything about *ability*, and move on. However, you’ve managed to conjure up a great harvest of straw (at least a man’s worth), just to try to justify withholding data. For someone who professes to be extremely concerned about preventing others from wasting their time, you sure waste a lot of your own time on this silliness.
At least the time spent isn’t a total loss: people running Google searches will come away with a much better appreciation of your character and “scientific” philosophy than they might have otherwise.

246. MrPete
Posted May 22, 2006 at 5:47 PM | Permalink

#242, There’s a difference of worldview/perspective evident in this ongoing “vigorous discussion”…

Putting it most positively, here are two reasonably helpful perspectives:

One says “if you are serious about working with my data and results, I’m willing for you to come and get ‘em. But you will need to go to some (small or large) effort to do so. And you’d better be prepared to run a gauntlet if you think you can actually trip me up.”

Another says “if you are willing to look for flaws in my data and results, I’m most grateful for your willingness to do so. Here’s a copy. And here’s a list of the flaws others have already found. Good luck and I hope you find some more!”

John H, there are some reasonably intelligent folks here, not at all opposed to good science, with some significant experience in usefully related fields. And, on our own dime we’re willing to contribute what little we can, to help improve the overall state of affairs. Multidisciplinary input can be of tremendous value; it works best when everyone is reasonably cooperative. More transparency helps tremendously.

Unfortunately, there ARE a lot of troll-posts, which muddy the water. But they aren’t too hard to spot after a few minutes of reading.

[My own more-than-expected posting is indication of my passion to see this work out well. I really can’t afford the time…]

247. Armand MacMurray
Posted May 22, 2006 at 6:03 PM | Permalink

Re:#245
John, you have violated The Law! You forgot to *make* Steve give you a reason for requiring the data, so that you could stand in judgement over his lowly request!
Now that the riff-raff have seen that the great Lord, the Keeper Of The Data, is fallible, what will become of the Kingdom? What havoc will follow this breach of the mighty Normal Requirements? Precious data, so incendiary that it must not be allowed to pass from person to person without the Lord’s express permission, thrown out into the open, where (gasp!) *anyone* might analyze it? Will uppity peasants better their betters? Will Knights Errant be exposed as errant data analysts? Woe unto us and our wretched future!

248. Willis Eschenbach
Posted May 22, 2006 at 6:47 PM | Permalink

John, this is too good. Turns out you were lying to us all along, the data is not actually publically archived and accessible, you still have it under your own personal control.

The Lawrence Radiation Centre defines an archive as “On the Internet, a repository of stored files which is accessible by Anonymous FTP.” This is the common meaning, and is used for such archives as the WCDP tree ring archive. In other words, an archive is a public repository of data which provides the data to all interested researchers. This is the purpose of an archive, public access.

But you haven’t made your data publicly accessible in an archive, as you’ve been claiming. You’ve been hiding the data under your own bed, subject to your own, rather eccentric criteria for release … real professional.

So you lied about it being archived … why am I not surprised?

w.

249. Willis Eschenbach
Posted May 22, 2006 at 6:49 PM | Permalink

Oh, yeah, I forgot. The other reason to publicly archive data is so that you don’t have to bleat about how much time and trouble it takes you to send your data to everyone that’s interested. You put it in a public archive, and forget about it.

w.

250. John Hunter
Posted May 22, 2006 at 7:46 PM | Permalink

Willis (#248, #249): I’d be glad if you stopped accusing me of “lying” (Steve: can you control him please). I can assure you that the Australian National Tidal Facility DOES hold our Port Arthur data (if you have evidence to the contrary, please provide it or else withdraw your claim). In this instance, the NTC preferred to refer the request to me, which is fine — I emailed the data to Steve at 10:44 Australian EST today, so his request has been satisfied.

What is revealing is that I have so far had NO OTHER requests for the data — you presumably prefer to continue your grandstanding on Climateaudit rather than actually get hold of the data and start doing something useful with it. It all fits the normal pattern which you have all demonstrated so well on this thread — pontification rather than actual science.

I frankly don’t care how the Lawrence Radiation Centre apparently “defines an archive”. There are many ways of organising an archive and many archives are not completely open — in other words, you have to request the data (often justifying why you want it) and wait for it to arrive. It may not be the way you like it, but it is the way it is.

251. Terry
Posted May 22, 2006 at 8:43 PM | Permalink

Good lord, what a tantrum of a thread.

Hey everyone! Off to be without any supper! This instant!

John … debating the hoi poloi is a waste of time.

252. John Hunter
Posted May 22, 2006 at 9:21 PM | Permalink

Terry (#251):

> debating the hoi poloi is a waste of time

You may be right, but it does serve as a useful record of where they come from.

No requests yet for the data ……

253. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 22, 2006 at 9:26 PM | Permalink

The data manager did not actually answer my question as to whether they had the data sets in question, but I presume that they are there. Here is the information sent to me by John Hunter and reservation:

lempriere_data.zip ….. a ZIP files containing Thomas Lempriere’s data and associated metadata

ntc_data.zip ……….. a ZIP file containing data from our modern tide gauge observations and associated metadata

This data is provided on the understanding that it will not be divulged to other parties, and that its sources will be acknowledged in any publications that use it.

As I made clear at the outset, I have no intentions of reviewing this data and no interest in the topic.

Posted May 22, 2006 at 9:32 PM | Permalink

Re: #244

I am therefore sending Steve the data from Port Arthur. It is provided on the understanding that it is for his use only and that he does not provide it to anyone else.

It will be interesting to see whether or not Steve feels compelled to comply with John H’s conditions.

Others are now welcome to request the data from me, providing they provide their real identity and their reason for requiring the data. They, too, are not permitted to pass the data to other people. These are perfectly normal requirements for the provision of data.

I would be interested to hear from others with more experience than me, as to how “normal” these requirements are.

255. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 22, 2006 at 9:52 PM | Permalink

I have written back to the Data Manager as follows:

Thank you for your reply. Hunter has sent me the data. Could you please send me a copy of the data as archived with you as I wish to ensure that I would be using the data as archived, in case there is more than one version. Secondly, it is my understanding that you operate as a public archive. Why would you refer me back to Hunter rather than simply providing the data yourself? Thanks, Steve McIntyre

I have run into more than one version of data on previous occasions so there is always a need to check versions.

256. MrPete
Posted May 22, 2006 at 10:00 PM | Permalink

#250 "What is revealing is that I have so far had NO OTHER requests for the data...pontification rather than actual science."

John, are you saying Steve’s is the very first request, period? Or only the first request from this community?

257. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 22, 2006 at 10:03 PM | Permalink

#256. Before I asked for Mann’s data, nobody seemed to have ever asked for it, since he had “forgotten” where it was. And that was an important paper, rather than an “obscure” one. So I imagine that the situation is more common than you might expect.

258. Armand MacMurray
Posted May 22, 2006 at 10:04 PM | Permalink

how “normal” these requirements are.

Anyone trying that with DNA sequence info/gene expression info, etc, would likely be laughed out of the field. The relatively recent development of DNA “chips” for gene expression studies has led to a number of reproducibility/data interpretation issues. To their credit, the major practitioners began to collaborate early on to help develop and set standards (see http://www.mged.org/Mission/index.html). Paleoclimate proxy studies could sure use a document analogous to this one:

MIAME – Minimum Information About a Microarray Experiment (www.mged.org/miame) – a document which outlines the minimum information that should be reported about a microarray experiment to enable its unambiguous interpretation and reproduction (Nature Genetics (2001), 29, 365-371).

259. John Hunter
Posted May 22, 2006 at 10:18 PM | Permalink

MrPete (#254):

> John, are you saying Steve’s is the very first request, period?
> Or only the first request from this community?

The data is lodged elsewhere, so I have no record of who has requested the data from other archives. Prior to this whole thread starting, I had personally supplied the data to various scientists who requested it. However, since Steve sent his request to NTC, NTC responded and I send Steve the data, I have had NO FURTHER REQUESTS FOR THE DATA — doesn’t that strike you as odd, considering that there are now FOURTEEN posts in this thread since I said “others are now welcome to request the data from me” (#244), and given the previous clamour by the cheerleaders for the data?

260. John Hunter
Posted May 22, 2006 at 10:25 PM | Permalink

Steve (#255): You keep saying things like “this is not a topic that interests me” and “I have no intentions of reviewing this data and no interest in the topic”, and yet you are still in the thick of this debate and you STILL believe “there is always a need to check versions” and that you are the one to do it. Isn’t this just another example of what Phil Jones was talking about when he (apparently) said “why should I make the data available to you, when your aim is to try and find something wrong with it”?

261. John Hunter
Posted May 22, 2006 at 10:35 PM | Permalink

Steve (#255): This will probably go completely over your head, and over the head of the cheerleaders. However, you reproduce an email which you sent to the National Tidal Centre; this is only your second email to someone who provided you with all the information you required — indeed you received the data which you sought within less than a day. And yet I think most people would regard your second email as abrupt to the point of rudeness, and certainly confrontational. It is no wonder that you piss people off so quickly.

Perhaps you ought to read: Carnegie, D., 1936. “How to Win Friends and Influence People”.

262. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 22, 2006 at 10:36 PM | Permalink

If you ask for information from an archive, you expect to get information from the archive, not be referred back to the author.

You probably remember the ridiculous Mann situation. They referred me to one URL at their ftp site. When I noticed problems with the data, I asked him to confirm that this was actually the data that he used. He said that he was too busy to answer this or any other question. Then it turned out that they had duplicate versions and a new directory suddenly materialized. I certainly wouldn’t want something like that to happen in your case and, so as a matter of prudence, I wish to have available data from the archive. I’m sure that you’ll agree that this is the appropriate method.

263. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 22, 2006 at 10:40 PM | Permalink

#261. He didn’t answer any of my questions. My email said:

Do you have any data sets archived by John Hunter from Prt Arthur, Tasmania described in the following press release

If so, could you please provide any meta-information on the data sets and information on how to access these data sets.
Thanks, Steve McIntyre

He did not confirm or deny whether they had any data sets archived by you or identify them. Instead he sent me back to you and you sent two data sets. I have no confirmation that these particular data sets are archived there or whether you’ve sent me all the data sets involved. This is a completely different question.

He also did not provide any objective information on how to access the data sets, which I was going to post up. Instead he referred me back to you, which, in my opinion, is inconsistent with operating as a public archive. My primary interest was in the archiving and providing a record of it.

264. John Hunter
Posted May 22, 2006 at 10:46 PM | Permalink

Steve (#262):

> He said that he was too busy to answer this or any
> other question.

Well I wasn’t “too busy” — I sent the data to you immediately I arrived at work in the morning.

> ….. I wish to have available data from the archive.
> I’m sure that you’ll agree that this is the
> appropriate method.

No I don’t agree — I think this is the “lawyer’s” mentality — “it doesn’t matter if I’m right, I just have to win my case”. Don’t you think the most correct and current data would be the one provided by the author? No, I know you don’t really care about what is actually IN the data — only that you may be able to find two different data sets and hence “find something wrong with it”.

265. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 22, 2006 at 10:50 PM | Permalink

No, that wasn’t what I had in mind at all. I simply asked for the archive to provide the data. They didn’t provide it. Had that been provided, I wouldn’t have thought twice about version issues. It’s not a matter of being "right"; it’s just a matter about doing things in an orderly way.

Now that you raise the issue, does the version that you sent me differ from the version that’s been archived?

266. John Hunter
Posted May 22, 2006 at 10:59 PM | Permalink

Steve (#263): This whole episode is a wonderful illustration of how blind you are to other people’s positions and other people’s feelings. You ask:

“Why would he refer the request to you rather than just responding to the request?”

He TOLD YOU — he said:

“He will want to know why you are interested in this data-set.” (referring to me)

I assume that he doesn’t know about this thread or that I already know “why you are interested in this data-set.”

However, you don’t trust either my word or his and are prepared to waste his time in the hope of scoring a point.

267. John Hunter
Posted May 22, 2006 at 11:05 PM | Permalink

HALLELUJAH!

I have received a data request (22 postings after my initial offer to provide the data) from David R.B. Stockwell, PhD, Jointly, National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis, UCSB and San Diego Supercomputer Center, UCSD.

Congratulations David!

268. John Hunter
Posted May 22, 2006 at 11:16 PM | Permalink

Steve (#265):

> Now that you raise the issue, does the version that
> you sent me differ from the version that’s been archived?

Trick question, Steve. I have no absolute control (believe it or not) on what NTC does to data once they receive it — they may put their own timestamps or marks on it — I don’t know.

However, I can guarantee that the files I sent you were the ones I sent NTC.

269. John Hunter
Posted May 22, 2006 at 11:26 PM | Permalink

Steve (#263): Now you are just being a pedant. You got the data, and anyone who asks will get the data. What’s your problem?

270. Willis Eschenbach
Posted May 23, 2006 at 1:02 AM | Permalink

John, if you personally have to answer every request to the NTC, and then you decide whether or not to send the data to the requester, and then you have to go throught the hassle of sending the data to the requester … where’s the “archive”?

Archiving data is done specifically to avoid these problems. What you have done is lodge the data with someone who does not supply the data to the requester, but instead asks you to do so.

That’s not an archive. You could do the same thing by lodging your data with your brother-in-law, and then when he got a request, he could ask you to contact the requester, and then you could dig out the data once again, and hopefully it would be the same data, and you wouldn’t have lost it, or altered it …

John … that’s not an archive. That’s a service for forwarding requests to you. Calling your claim that you had archived your data a lie was un-necessarily harsh, and I apologize to you for it. But I was astounded and amazed that you could mistake a request forwarding service for an archive.

I don’t care what the Lawrence folks say either, I’m just describing common knowledge. An archive is a repository where you don’t provide copies of the data, they do. If you’re still having to answer every data request, and the data is not coming from them but from you … where’s the archive?

w.

271. John Hunter
Posted May 23, 2006 at 1:34 AM | Permalink

Willis (#270): Spare me the lecture on archiving. NTC has the data and I guess they were playing safe by passing the request on to me so I would know who was getting the data and why. I have so far provided it twice with no problem to either recipient. If you don’t want to receive it from me, or if I drop dead tomorrow, you can presumably insist that NTC (or another archive) provide it to you.

In posting #159 you said “so obviously, I can do tidal analysis, I’ve even made money doing it … but I can’t find your freaking data”, presumably meaning you want the data.

So, now you’ve found it, why haven’t you asked me for it yet (you’ve done over 6 hours of pontification)? You guys just seem to be REALLY peverse …..

272. Larry Huldén
Posted May 23, 2006 at 3:25 AM | Permalink

John Hunter: “demanding to “audit” data sets is nothing more than a waste of time for them and a waste of time for the scientists involved.”
We have heard many arguments during the past week why it is wasting of time to hit control-M.
The conclusion is: Hairsplitting is the solution to delay being checked for possible unintentional errors.

Larry Huldén
Finnish Museum of Natural History

273. kim
Posted May 23, 2006 at 5:19 AM | Permalink

Can you not request that the NTC release the data to whomever? The way you’ve teased, I strongly suspect that you have confidence in your work with the data. And if your confidence is misplaced, it’s high time you and everyone else found out.
=============================================

274. Bob K
Posted May 23, 2006 at 5:22 AM | Permalink

This seems to be an odd thing to say.

NTC has the data and I guess they were playing safe by passing the request on to me so I would know who was getting the data and why.

I wonder why would an archive would find it necessary to play safe?

275. MrPete
Posted May 23, 2006 at 5:53 AM | Permalink

#259 “…since Steve sent his request to NTC, NTC responded and I send Steve the data, I have had NO FURTHER REQUESTS FOR THE DATA “¢’¬? doesn’t that strike you as odd…”

No. And your responses here seem to indicate that you are missing a key point about the value of archiving. (OTOH, perhaps its just frustration with the presumed attitude of everyone involved. This does NOT need to be so combative!)

An analogy, again from my field: when I obtain perpetual access to a software product, it is of great concern to me when that product cannot be installed and used without contacting the vendor each time. Why? Because I’ve been in business longer than most vendors survive. Same with escrowed source code. (And that’s a good analogy for another aspect of this: I don’t normally need an actual copy of 1.5 million lines of source code, as long as I am completely confident it is easily available.)

Personal contact with you in conjunction with a data request is a valuable and appreciated service. At the same time, I agree completely with Steve M’s perspective: he’s simply attempting to verify that the appropriate data (i.e. what was used/cited in a published paper) is accessibly stored in an available archive.

I believe ‘twould have been more appropriate for the archivist or archive system to do BOTH: answer his query directly and immediately, AND inform you the author of the interest in your work. That way, he can immediately accomplish whatever it is he wants with the data, and you can respond according to your own timetable.

This really doesn’t need to be so complicated and contentious.

“Don’t you think the most correct and current data would be the one provided by the author?”

I think there are two important data sets:

a) The data archived at publication time. Presumably, this is the actual data used to produce the reported outcomes. Presumably, this data set allows others to exactly replicate the reported outcomes. In my experience, it’s far more likely that an independent archivist would retain this version. Researchers tend not to keep great backups of old/outdated data sets.

b) The most correct and current data. This is of more interest for those who are moving ahead with the research. However, it is often of much less value for verifying the validity of the originally published science.

As for your surprise about data requests or lack thereof: I’m not at all surprised. Firstly, there are (at least) two aspects to this discussion: the content of the science, and the process of the science. As in my analogy above, those with a process interest have no need for the actual data as long as they know it is properly available.

I think most of us (particularly observers of this particular thread) have less desire to audit the data itself than to ensure we’re paying for properly-done science.

As for those who may be interested in the content: I recommend giving grace for a bit more than five hours (the time from when you responded to the request relayed from Steve, and when you complained that no others had asked for data.) Some of us (almost) have a life ;)

276. Louis Hissink
Posted May 23, 2006 at 6:24 AM | Permalink

Short circuiting this thread, in Western Australia mineral exploration companies HAVE to submit the data to the WA Geol. Survey. That data gets quarantined for 5 years and after that released on open file. (Quarantine is for commercial sensitivity).

Publicly funded research data should be routinely archived as a matter of course, and accessible to all and sundry, since it is taxpayers funds that paid for the research.

If the research was privately funded, then sure, preconditions apply. If not, no preconditions.

So Hunter’s data fall into the category of publicly funded research data and there should not be any issue unless the data are incomplete.

277. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 23, 2006 at 6:59 AM | Permalink

Notwithstanding Hunter’s fulminations about the “abruptness” of my inquiry, the Australian archive answered my email in a professional and courteous manner as follows:

The only data we have for Port Authur is that supplied by John Hunter. We have not even looked at the data yet.

The NTC does not operate as a public archive. We do operate a national archive, acting as custodians of sea level data, which is owned by various agencies. These agencies require that we seek their permission before releasing the data.

Regards, Paul

I wrote back and thanked him for his courteous reply.

So Hunter has not archived the data in a public archive, but has archived the data in a permanent archive. Maybe I’d prefer things in a truly public archive like WDCP, but, in the scale of things, this is not the end of the world. It’s not going to get “misplaced” like Crowley’s data. Additionally, Hunter has complied with two requests to him for data promptly.

Hunter complains about wasting time, but he’s wasted more time by not simply saying that he archived XYZ and ABC data sets at the Australian National Center tide center on such-and-such a date in the first place.

So it’s not the same as Esper or Briffa, where I’ve been working on data for a couple of years. I got nowhere with these guys (or with Science) until I took the matter public. Even then Science only responded after the Hwang affair embarrassed them. But even now I don’t have complete data sets. I disagree with Science’s position that because Osborn and Briffa 2006 used results from Briffa 2000, that measurement data should not be available.

278. tom brogle
Posted May 23, 2006 at 8:47 AM | Permalink

My wfe who by no means accepts my view of AGW thinks that John Hunter is rude, insulting and that when he tries to be clever he succeeds only in displaying his ignorance (of good manners).All in all a typical diagreeable Aussie.There are thankfully many much more agreeable Australians

279. John Hunter
Posted May 23, 2006 at 8:59 AM | Permalink

Bob K (#274): You ask: “I wonder why would an archive would find it necessary to play safe?”

Well you can work out the reason for yourself. Just have a search around the archives on the web and you’ll find an awful lot which demand to at least know WHO wants to access data.

For example, try our National Tidal Centre and go to:

http://www.bom.gov.au/oceanography/projects/ntc/ntc.shtml

Then look down the page for “Australian Baseline Sea Level Monitoring Project (ABSLMP)” and assume that you want to get the data from this project. So click on this item. You get to:

http://www.bom.gov.au/oceanography/projects/abslmp/abslmp.shtml

Now look for “Hourly Sea Level and Meteorological Data – Registered Users Only”, presuming you want this data. The next phrase says “(Register with NTC)”.

Now to register with NTC you have to click on “Registered Users” on the bottom line of the page. This page then tells you that you have to email: webreg@bom.gov.au to become registered and “responses may take up to several working days”. This type of service is not unusual and applies to most of the Australian Bureau of Meteorology’s data.

Now look somewhere else. Let’s try the British Oceanographic data Centre at:

http://www.bodc.ac.uk/data/where_to_find_data/

Read what it says about “Our data policy” and “Our data delivery” (which notes that “….. not all of our holdings are accessible at present (on the web). If you cannot find the data you require below please contact the BODC Enquiries Officer”). Then try and get the data under “CTD and underway data (Atlantic Meridional Transect)”. This takes you to:

http://www.bodc.ac.uk/data/online_delivery/amt/

which requires you to log in with an email address and password. I you don’t have that, you have to (you guessed it) register, which again requires that you fill in information about yourself and your organisation.

So, the Australian Bureau of Meteorology and the Bristish Oceanographic Data Centre both require that they know who has their data. So why shouldn’t I?

280. John Hunter
Posted May 23, 2006 at 9:10 AM | Permalink

MrPete (#275): You say:

> As for those who may be interested in the content: I recommend giving
> grace for a bit more than five hours (the time from when you responded
> to the request relayed from Steve, and when you complained that no
> others had asked for data.) Some of us (almost) have a life.

Well, how about the fact that Willis Eschenbach, who had previously been clamouring for the data, pontificated about archiving for over 6 hours without actually asking me to send it?

281. John Hunter
Posted May 23, 2006 at 9:17 AM | Permalink

Louis (#276): Oh dear, you are back on your old hobby horse:

> Publicly funded research data should be routinely archived as a matter of
> course, and accessible to all and sundry, since it is taxpayers funds that
> paid for the research.

You are from Australia — right? Well try that line on the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO). Much of the data they collect with public money is regarded as the intellectual property of CSIRO (and hence the Australian Government) — and NOT YOUR PROPERTY (in the sense that you don’t have ready access to it). It is often regarded as confidential because it may be used by CSIRO to earn funds to support more research.

The world, I’m afraid, isn’t as simple and one-dimensional as you would wish.

282. John Hunter
Posted May 23, 2006 at 9:35 AM | Permalink

Steve (#277):

> Hunter complains about wasting time, but he’s wasted more time by not simply
> saying that he archived XYZ and ABC data sets at the Australian National
> Center tide center on such-and-such a date in the first place.

Notwithstanding your apparent rudeness in omitting my first name (even after I provided you with data so promptly), I have already giveng one reason (#127) why I “wasted my time” not immediately pointing you and the cheerleaders to our data:

“I believe that these enquiries for data (so that people may ‘audit’ our work)
are quite clearly politically-based (i.e. they are designed to discredit the
dominant presently-held ideas about global warming) “¢’¬? they are not
scientifically-based (i.e. there is no genuine spirit of enquiry here). etc. etc.”.

This thread also serves as a useful example of the incompetence of most of your cheerleaders in doing even simple tasks such as getting journals out of libraries and accessing well-known data archives. It indicates strongly to me that it is a waste of any scientist’s time providing these people with data — they are basically not competent to deal with it. I do not include you in this — you did at least find the National Tidal Centre and had the gumption to request the data by email, even though “this is not a topic that interests” you.

283. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 23, 2006 at 11:09 AM | Permalink

John H, I don’t think that you’ve proven anything other than you’re prepared to waste people’s time just to be ornery. If you get jollies out of that,…

284. Michael Jankowski
Posted May 23, 2006 at 11:20 AM | Permalink

Notwithstanding your apparent rudeness

Of all people to be complaining!

285. jae
Posted May 23, 2006 at 12:16 PM | Permalink

This thread also serves as a useful example of the incompetence of most of your cheerleaders in doing even simple tasks such as getting journals out of libraries and accessing well-known data archives. It indicates strongly to me that it is a waste of any scientist’s time providing these people with data “¢’¬? they are basically not competent to deal with it.

What a rediculous “cop out.” The whole idea of the Internet is to make it easier to get information, Hunter. One of the ways this is done is by cooperating with each other. You apparently have some real problems with cooperation. Most of us don’t want your stinking data; we are just interested in your rediculous reluctance to share it. Believe me, you only make people suspicious of your motives….

286. Bruce
Posted May 23, 2006 at 2:15 PM | Permalink

Well. Now that we have cleared that up, perhaps we can move to what the data shows.

I recall that there was a controversy some two or three years ago when CSIRO published a news release saying that sea levels around Australia have risen at a rapid rate over the past 25 years. I have been unable to locate the news release (someone may have a link?) but I was able to locate http://www.ozestuaries.org/indicators/sea_level_rise.jsp which provides a table showing annual average sea level changes and states:

“The estimated relative sea level trends for tide gauge locations around Australia which have at least 25 years of hourly data on the National Tidal Facility archive are shown in Table 2. The overall Australian average sea level rise of 0.30 mm per year is substantially lower that the global estimates of IPCC (2001) of 1-2 mm per year over the last 100 years. Table 2 also shows a considerable variation between sites, driven by combinations of the factors outlined above. A good example of this regional variation is the sea level fall of 0.19 mm per year at Port Pirie compared to the >2 mm per year sea level rise at nearby Adelaide.”

However, note that having pointed out that there are regional effects, the article does NOT point out that the average would be substantially less than 0.30mm per year if one removed the data points that are known to be dodgy such as Adelaide, as the article itself points out.

As I recall it, the controversy arose when someone (John Daly?) pointed out that the CSIRO article released to the press used the 0.30 mm per year rise as the average sea level rise around Australia for the past 25 years, whereas the information that they provided showed that at least the two readings for Adelaide should be excluded from the data set since they reflect well known subsidence at Adelaide, apparently caused by withdrawing water from the underlying aquifers. If the two Adelaide data points are reduced to 0.0 (remembering that the value at nearby Port Pirie was -.19mm pa), the average sea level rise for Australia drops to 0.15mm per year.

If the record for Fremantle (also affected by local subsidence issues) is reduced to 0.0, then the average sea level for Australia drops to 0.097mm per year.

Removing the next two highest datapoints (Newcastle and Geelong, both of which may be affected by local subsidence issues?) reduced the average sea level rise for Australia to just 0.018 mm per year.

It struck me at the time that the way that the CSIRO reported this data was a good example of selective reporting designed to support a political viewpoint, and that may be why the CSIRO release is now not (apparently) available on the internet.

It was this example that caused me to become cautious about accepting news releases from the Phil Jones’s of the world who say “trust us, we have corrected the data properly”. As this example shows, there is merit in showing the summarised data so that “us out there” can form our own views.

287. Doug L
Posted May 23, 2006 at 2:42 PM | Permalink

[frivolity mode on, sincere apologies to constructive poster of #286, Bruce]

Pro Dr Hunter arguments

1. He never explicitly claimed the data were accessible to one and all without conditions.
2. This practice is not unusual

Anti Dr. Hunter arguments

1. Less than satisfactory and/or weakly defined reasons for not making data available to one and all… .
2. Too eager to indulge in games from position of authority
3. Only divulged data after being given his own thread on ClimateAudit
(2+3 = big fish in small pond syndrome)

Scoring:

Dr. Hunter:

John A appears speechless at the moment => one point
Entertainment points ==> one point
Big fish in small pond syndrome==> minus one point

ClimateAudit and so called “cheerleaders”:

Magnanimous granting of playpen (thread) to Dr Hunter==> one point
Relative sportsmanship of posters===> too close to call given that Dr. Hunter was given a penalty point.

Score after first inning:

Dr. Hunter one,
ClimateAudit one.

[end frivolity mode]

Posted May 23, 2006 at 2:51 PM | Permalink

re 273:

The funny thing is that John Hunter has no control over who is asking for the data, if I invent a name today and fake an address he has no way of checking it. So any anonymous person, say, “John Adams” can apply for the data and obtain it. Moreover if John Hunter “drops dead today”, no permission is necessary anymore so what is the difference, why would he want to know who is working with his data, how can he check competence of the person requesting it.

John H, Just put the data in in an anonymous accessible ftp site, saves you a lot of headaches.

289. John Hunter
Posted May 23, 2006 at 3:47 PM | Permalink

tom brogle (#278):

Your wife is quite right. I have become very rude in this thread (although someone more even-handed would probably just call this a “robust debate” with ample rudeness on all sides). I would also prefer to “try to be clever” rather than be unintentionally stupid. I have become very annoyed with people who apparently have little ability in climate science and no experience of archiving continuining to pontificate on both issues, rather than actually indulge in either.

290. John Hunter
Posted May 23, 2006 at 4:12 PM | Permalink

Bruce (#286):

> Now that we have cleared that up, perhaps we can move to what the data shows

No, you don’t do that — you just go over old data and an old debate, drawing heavily on the rubbish John Daly wrote some fair while ago (why do some of you keep coming back to him and still expect to be taken seriously? Why don’t you read the scientific journals?).

Firstly, the table you quote comes from Mitchell et al. (2000), which has already been discussed extensively and which biases the sea-level trends low because of the presence of an El Nino near the end of the records. Your discussion is also based on preposterous and unsupported assumptions (presumably coming directly from Daly) such as “If the record for Fremantle (also affected by local subsidence issues) is reduced to 0.0 …..”.

Secondly, if you want to read a more thorough discussion of sea-level rise in Australia, see:

http://www.cdesign.com.au/proceedings_c2c2004/pages/coastfinal00123.pdf

which shows a mean Australian sea-level rise over the last 80 years of 1.2 mm/year.

Thirdly, your posting is a masterpiece in cherry-picking, with statements like “removing the next two highest datapoints …..” in order that you arrive at a low value of sea level rise.

Bruce (and others): if you want to retain some credibility please stop trying to pretend that sea-level rise isn’t happening — contrarians with any semblance of brains stopped doing that with global temperature some time ago.

291. John Hunter
Posted May 23, 2006 at 4:18 PM | Permalink

> The funny thing is that John Hunter has no control over who is asking
> for the data, if I invent a name today and fake an address he has no
> way of checking it. So any anonymous person, say, “John Adams” can apply
> for the data and obtain it.

It is unfortunate that many on her fail to appreciate that much science and collaboration in science relies on TRUST. Sure, you can provide a fake address
(but remember that the web now carries lots of personal information, such as phone directories).

Also, are you suggesting that I shouldn’t trust people on here?

292. jae
Posted May 23, 2006 at 4:41 PM | Permalink

Yep, sea levels are probably rising, since temperatures appear to be going up (though that’s not real clear). The questions are (1) how much; (2) whether this is because of natural forces or because of AGW, or both…

293. Bruce
Posted May 23, 2006 at 4:47 PM | Permalink

re #290: John, thank you for your thoughtful response. I am a lay person, forming views on these matters from what I read in the newspapers, and on sites such as Climate Audit and Real Climate, as many other lay people do.

I am obliged to point out that you are putting words in my mouth when you say that I am “trying to pretend that sea-level rise isn’t happening”. Not so. My concern is that credible government organisations such as CSIRO must be very careful about the information they put into the public arena.

I googled “subsidence Adelaide” and found at http://www.environment.sa.gov.au/reporting/coast/health/mangroves.html this: “In some areas along the coast, mangroves are retreating into the traditional range of saltmarsh communities. On the coastline of the Northern Adelaide Plains, this rate of recession has been between 10 and 17 metres per year over the last 30 years (Saintilan & Williams, 2000; ASOEC, 2001). The subsidence of the Northern Adelaide Plains, due in part to excessive extraction of groundwater, is a key cause of this.” It seems that this is understood to apply to the Adelaide area, and would therefore suggest that the relevant data points be excluded from the averages rather than doubled up, as Oz Estuaries may do.

Perhaps you can explain why my interpretation is flawed.

In fact, I am interested in learning the facts. To be direct, I think that it is vitally important that scientific organisations tell the truth about the facts, and resile from “spin”. Where do I see spin? Three locations of interest to this lay-person. 1. The Hockey Stick, as exhaustively proven on this site, 2. Sea levels around Australia as illustrated by the example above, and 3. The “Global Mean” temperature averages presented by Phil Jones et al.

Maybe I am mistaken. If so, it would be a simple matter for each of these organisations to seek independent review of the data, and demonstrate that their critics are mistaken. The fact that they each appear to vigourously resist releasing data and methods for independent scrutiny suggests that something is amiss somewhere.

294. Willis Eschenbach
Posted May 23, 2006 at 6:27 PM | Permalink

John, you query why I haven’t written to you to request the data. It’s because I don’t want the data from your computer, I want the archived dataset. As should anyone. (If you don’t know why, see that famous horror movie called “M. Mann And The 159 Proxies” for the reason).

But … I can’t get the data from the archive.

I wrote to the Australian National Tidal Center archives asking for the archived version of the Lempriere and the modern data sets, and the Data Manager/Analyst replied:

The only data we have for Port Authur is that supplied by John Hunter
(ntc_data.zip).

John Hunter [is] the expert on Port Authur, please source this information
directly from him (john.hunter@utas.edu.au). He can also direct you to
the archives containing the historical data.

So:

a) the Lempriere data is still either not archived, or we haven’t cracked the mystery code to find out where it is archived, and

b) the archivist clearly expects real scientists to simply “direct [people] to the archives containing the historical data”, and not screw around with childish hide-and-seek games, and

c) at the end of the day, the only place to get this data is from you.

John … why the runaround? Why not just say “You can only get the data from me, and then only if I like you and don’t think you’ll try to find any mistakes in my work.”?

Instead, you’ve sent everyone on a world-wide wild goose chase looking for a source for archived data, while all along, it’s not available from the archive… it’s only available from you.

w.

295. John Hunter
Posted May 23, 2006 at 7:02 PM | Permalink

Bruce (#293):

> Perhaps you can explain why my interpretation is flawed.

I’m not going to try and defend the “Oz Estuaries” article. It was firstly based on Mitchell et al. (2000), which has unfortunately had far more prominence that I’m sure the original authors intended. As I noted before, it gave estimates of long-term sea-level which were biased low due to an El Nino near the end of the records. It was also based on many short data set which are inevitably influenced by decadal variability. And, as you point out, there are the questions of how to weight closely neighbouring sites with similar rates of rise, and how you deal with stations that are strongly influenced by subsidence. John Church and his co-workers (including myself) have, in the past few years, attempted to provide much better estimates of global-average sea level, and also its temporal and spatial variability, through the careful use of “reconstructions” that use both satellite altimetery data and tide gauge observations. If you send me an email address, I can send you a few recent papers. In the Australian context, you should certainly look at:

http://www.cdesign.com.au/proceedings_c2c2004/pages/coastfinal00123.pdf

which goes a long way to showing why the Mitchell et al. (2000) estimates are so low.

I hope this helps a little.

296. John Hunter
Posted May 23, 2006 at 7:27 PM | Permalink

Willis (#294): Oh dear, after having the pleasure of communicating some science with Bruce (#295), I am now back to the anal-rententiveness of the cheerleaders over the issue of archiving.

I can’t be expected to be responsible for how our national sea-level archive handles enquiries. If they respond to Steve with “we have not even looked at the data yet”, then I am not surprised that they also respond to you that “the only data we have for Port Authur is that supplied by John Hunter (ntc_data.zip)” — they simply have not got around to looking at everything I have sent them. However, I can assure you that I have sent them the historic Lempriere data. The email is dated “20 Apr 2006 15:11:05 +1000″ and consists of the following:

——————————————————

I attach digitised versions of the sea level data collected at Port Arthur, Tasmania, Australia, by Thomas Lempriere in 1840, 1841 and 1842, in the hope that you will be able to provide a suitable archive.

The attachment, lempriere_data.zip, contains the following files:

metadata ….. a description of the data

porta40.txt .. sea level data for 1840

porta41.txt .. sea level data for 1841

porta42.txt .. sea level data for 1842

Hopefully, the file “metadata” has sufficient description for your needs. The files are all in ASCII text, with DOS record terminators (i.e. carriage return followed by newline).

——————————————————

> why the runaround?

Willis, I’m bored with answering this question — just read the thread.

> it’s only available from you.

Wrong — if you want to carry on your silly quest in which you “don’t want the data from (my) computer” but “want the archived dataset”, you could always try other data archives — there are only two left — just two emails and you are there!

Go on shock me and use some initiative ….

297. John Hunter
Posted May 23, 2006 at 7:32 PM | Permalink

1. I’ve still only one request for the Port Arthur data (other than from Steve). I wonder what all the fuss was about, unless it was possibly just grandstanding.

2. Where is “John A”? This is, after all, really his thread (see top line of thread: “John A is interested in it”). He has made no request for the data (from me at least). Again, I wonder what all the fuss was about ….. unless it was possibly just grandstanding.

298. Terry
Posted May 23, 2006 at 8:30 PM | Permalink

I love this thread. It is kind of a scientific soap opera.

John, you have to understand that Steve is not an academic and does not understand the looseness with which data is treated in academia and the amount of leeway academics are given by other academics. He comes from business and is familiar with securities filings where the standards are very much different.

299. John Hunter
Posted May 23, 2006 at 8:43 PM | Permalink

Terry (#298): Yes, it makes him very boring too. Most scientists, when presented with someone else’s data ask “What new thing can I do with this data? How can I get more information out of this than the last person?”. However, Steve, like an auditor or an accountant, says “All I want to do is check I can reproduce all that the last person did”.

How about lightening up this thread a bit by posting a few “accountants jokes” in honour of Steve and Climateaudit?

300. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 23, 2006 at 8:58 PM | Permalink

#298. John H, you’re missing many points but one of them is the fact that IPCC is issuing what are the equivalent of “scientific prospectuses” (using “prospectus” in the securities sense as a distribution to the public, not in the sense of an outline of a work program.) It’s one thing for articles to be loosey-goosey, but, if that’s the standard, then there should be some due diligence at the IPCC stage.

But the problem isn’t just the replication, although that’s a problem. The replication problems are simply bizarre obstacles that exist before you even get to see what the people are doing.

The worse problem is the withholding of adverse results and the misrepresentation of results. And then the inane defences of the indefensible.

301. Gerald Machnee
Posted May 23, 2006 at 9:24 PM | Permalink

In #299, John Hunter says ***However, Steve, like an auditor or an accountant, says “All I want to do is check I can reproduce all that the last person did”.***
The replication that Steve is trying to do is very important.
In a Winnipeg, Canada, newspaper on May 18, 2006 three Ph.D.’s from Manitoba universities had an article which stated the following:
“Importantly, the studies on which they base their conclusions are rigorously checked and rechecked by the peer-review process before they are published in scientific journals or included in the IPCC reports. Any claim that the IPCC reports have not been peer-reviewed, or that they are the product of conspiracy and secrecy, verges on the delusional and belongs alongside such works as The Da Vinci Code, under ‘fiction’.”
So we are left wondering who has “checked and RECHECKED”?? these conclusions when some of these authors will not release their methods or archive their data properly.
So who peer-reviewed Hwang before he published?

302. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 23, 2006 at 9:59 PM | Permalink

It’s worse. IPCC specifically said that reviewers were not allowed to carry out independent review of the articles and refused to require authors to provide supporting data for unpublished articles. After I asked an author of an unpublished article for supporting data, the author complained to IPCC, who told me that I would be expelled as a reviewer if I asked authors of unpublished papers for data. It’s all bizarre beyond words.

303. kim
Posted May 23, 2006 at 10:02 PM | Permalink

Here’s words: Terminally corrupt.
====================

304. John Hunter
Posted May 23, 2006 at 10:35 PM | Permalink

Steve and Gerald (#300-#302):

It all depends what Steve means by “loosey-goosey”. There is an uncertainty in everything — the important thing is to quantify it. There does not seem to be any reason to suppose that the “uncertainty” in the validity of climate science papers is any worse that in other branches of science (or in any other endeavours) — human beings drive all these things and are, of course, fallible. It also appears to me that, in general, science has served us pretty well. On the other hand I have generally found that, if you give me a scientific paper in a field in which I am reasonably conversant, then I can find at least one mistake in it. The paradox is — how can an endeavour with so many mistakes actually serve us well? To any scientist, the answer is clear — it is the “self-correcting” nature of science — science cannot go too far wrong without being dragged back into line. So we already seem to have a system that works reasonably well. And I don’t think that trying to shoe-horn a science product into the constraints of a “prospectus” is very helpful. Sure, we can always apply a bit more care, and could do our archiving better, but Steve pissing off the majority of scientists he deals with doesn’t really seem to be very productive.

So, Steve, let’s get quantitative. (1) Given a climate science paper taken at random, what do you think is the probability that it is so wrong that any policy decision based on it, or any IPCC review based on it, would be significantly inappropriate? (by “significantly”, I don’t mean “just detectable” — I mean that there would be a real difference in policy etc.). (2) How likely is it that this error would be detected by subsequent scientific work WITHOUT any “auditing”? (3) Following from (1) and (2), is it more valuable to “audit” this paper, or spend the time progressing the science further (taking due account of the uncertainty in so doing, given the answer to (1), above)?

Let’s apply these questions to the Port Arthur study. The answer to my question (1) is very close to zero — not necessarily because the work was of high quality, but rather because it will only have a tiny influence on policy and any IPCC review — even it is totally wrong, you’d scarely notice the difference. This doesn’t mean we shouldn’t have done the work — a huge building may, after all, be made of little bricks; and, without one brick, a building doesn’t normally fall down.

The answer to my question (2) is “probably — in the long term”, as more and more sea-level reconstructions will be done, and these reconstructions are rather good at detecting outliers (e.g. we can detect the sinkage of one of the tide gauges at Tuvalu without doing any surveying at all — by just comparing the tide gauge observations with the reconstruction).

The answer to (3) is therefore a resounding NO. It would be far better to do some other science than audit our work at Port Arthur

— UNLESS, OF COURSE, YOUR AIM IS TO “PICK HOLES” “¢’¬? “the lawyer’s tactic of finding flaws in a case to persuade a jury to reject it all.”

305. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 23, 2006 at 10:53 PM | Permalink

John H, let’s say that you were a CIA analyst and you thought that the aluminum tubes were just aluminum tubes and not a proxy for WMD. Should you say that even if you favored war on Saddam? I think that you should. I think that the Hockey Team view of millennial climate history is mostly propaganda. Does that mean that people should not be concerned by climate issues? I’ve never said that in the slightest.

I aslo think that when you move from science to policy, you need to the equivalent of engineering. Engineers check things. They don’t just believe little papers in journals. Is that an image that’s more helpful to you than “auditing”? People in the real world check things all the time.

Do I think that the climate models should be systematically checked by someone that is not part of the system? You bet I do. In fact, climate scientists themselves should be asking for this.

306. John Hunter
Posted May 23, 2006 at 11:01 PM | Permalink

Steve (#305): I asked you to answer three questions — you dodged them. Here is another: how do you judge how carefully climate scientists check things and how do you judge how carefully engineers check things?

My own experience of “people in the real world” (e.g. the lawyer who arranged my divorce settlement many years ago) check things far less than a scientist would.

307. Gerald Machnee
Posted May 23, 2006 at 11:08 PM | Permalink

RE # 304 John Hunter: That was a little long winded statement to say you do not want to be double-checked. When billions of dollars depend on something, it better be checked. The Canadian government has the hockey stick on their web site. I had friends to research in microbiology and come up with different results than previous work. Bottom line – What are they hiding?

308. John Hunter
Posted May 23, 2006 at 11:09 PM | Permalink

And Steve — where IS “John A”? Has he morphed into “John Adams” (I don’t think so, John Adams is much too polite) — or have you sacked him at last?

309. John Hunter
Posted May 23, 2006 at 11:12 PM | Permalink

Gerald (#307): I’m afraid you seem to have missed the point completely. Why don’t you have a go at answering my three questions — instead of repeating the same old mantra?

310. Armand MacMurray
Posted May 23, 2006 at 11:19 PM | Permalink

John, people typically get interested in checking things according to how much they matter in the real world. Climate research didn’t matter very much to society until people decided that society needed to change to accomodate its predictions. Compare the (until recently) indifference to climate research with e.g. clinical trials of medical devices/drugs/procedures. Not only is a lot of money at stake in the latter, but so are people’s lives and health. Naturally, there is a tremendous amount of “auditing” of clinical trials.
As an extreme example, look at Vioxx. A slight negative side effect on this drug has brought incredible scrutiny and lawsuits, all for an effect that won’t ever amount to much in the global scheme of things. The proposed reductions in human-caused emissions of GHG will have vastly more impact on world economies and people’s lives, so don’t we deserve vastly more scrutiny of the proposals and the science behind them than in the Vioxx case?

311. John Hunter
Posted May 24, 2006 at 12:06 AM | Permalink

Armand MacMurray (#310): I thought in #304, I’d emphasised the importance of being quantitative about this. I asked three questions, which no one seems to be willing to have a stab at answering. If a policy question is very important, then it is clearly necessary that we base that policy on good advice. That advise MAY be improved by better auditing, but it may also be impaired if the extra work involved in the auditing hampers the progress of the science (and in unscrupulous hands auditing could be a very good way of making the science grind to a halt). It is not just a simple “either/or” choice — if you did this quantitatively, you would balance the importance of the policy, the value of the science to that policy and the value of the auditing, with due regard to where you should best put your resources. Auditing doesn’t come free.

312. James Lane
Posted May 24, 2006 at 12:49 AM | Permalink

John H,

Steve has already indicated that he is not interested in your sea-level study. It might be illuminating to answer your questions in terms of MBH and subsequent Hockey Team paleo-reconstructions (the main subject of this website).

Q1 Given a climate science paper taken at random, what do you think is the probability that it is so wrong that any policy decision based on it, or any IPCC review based on it, would be significantly inappropriate? (by “significantly”, I don’t mean “just detectable” “¢’¬? I mean that there would be a real difference in policy etc.).

Answer: Very high. The MBH reconstruction was featured prominently in the promotion of the IPCC report.

Q2 How likely is it that this error would be detected by subsequent scientific work WITHOUT any “auditing”?

Answer: Very low. And despite the pioneering work of M&M, followed up by von Storch et al and B&C, it is likely that the Hockey Team reconstructions will persist as “evidence” in 4AR.

Q3 Following from (1) and (2), is it more valuable to “audit” this paper, or spend the time progressing the science further (taking due account of the uncertainty in so doing, given the answer to (1), above)?

Answer: Not quite sure what this means. I would say that the “audit” does progress the science further, by calling the earlier work into account. Actually, I’d say that the “audit” was incredibly important given the global policy implications involved.

In the context of your sea-level paper, as I’ve previously stated, I’m inclined to accept your findings. I do believe that your data should be archived for scrutiny, though I have no idea why anyone would bother.

313. Armand MacMurray
Posted May 24, 2006 at 1:04 AM | Permalink

Re:#311
Since climate science has NO organized auditing going on now, it’s hard to argue with a straight face that more is not needed. Perhaps I misunderstood you, and you weren’t implying that we don’t need more auditing of climate research. Certainly one can have a reasonable discussion about the amount of organized auditing that is appropriate. For example, do you find the level currently applied to medical/pharmaceutical trials to be appropriate?

Posted May 24, 2006 at 1:20 AM | Permalink

re 291:

It is unfortunate that many on her fail to appreciate that much science and collaboration in science relies on TRUST. Sure, you can provide a fake address
(but remember that the web now carries lots of personal information, such as phone directories).

Also, are you suggesting that I shouldn’t trust people on here?

No, I am DEMONSTRATING that you don’t trust people at all. You are suspicious that somebody may misuse your data. Unfortunately in publishing you have handed your baby over to the wolves, and only they will decide if it’s strong enough to survive.

I couldn’t case less about an erratic dataset and a publication about a mark of which nobody knows what it means.

“science and collaboration in science relies on TRUST”
indeed, and on showing your work

“Trust me, I am a doctor”
“Can I have a second opinion, please?

315. John Hunter
Posted May 24, 2006 at 1:36 AM | Permalink

James Lane (#312): I disagree with your answers. Applying my questions to MBH:

Question (1): A few percent. I have already shown (http://staff.acecrc.org.au/~johunter/ipcc_stats_3.pdf) that only two “caveated” statements out of 52 in the IPCC TAR Summary for Policymakers related to MBH. You can argue about the details of the analysis as much as you like, but the “policy influence” of MBH was relatively small — a few percent.

Question (2): High probability, if you define the particular (pioneering?) technique of MBH (which tended to underestimate the variance of the reconstruction) as an “error”. Look at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hockey_Stick_graph — the tendency of MBH to underestimate the cold of the “Little Ice Age” is clear from later reconstructions.

Question (3): In the light of (1) and (2), “auditing” of MBH seems to have been a bit of a waste of time — certainly a diversion from other more important facets of the science. As many people have said “we have moved on” …..

316. John Hunter
Posted May 24, 2006 at 1:40 AM | Permalink

Armand (#313):

> Since climate science has NO organized auditing going
> on now, it’s hard to argue with a straight face that
> more is not needed.

Rubbish. You guys may want to snigger (you’re good at that), but peer-review is a form of “organised auditing”. It may not be 100% perfect, but neither is Steve’s form of auditing. As I’ve said before, it is a matter of balance — of cost/benefit if you like.

317. John Hunter
Posted May 24, 2006 at 1:45 AM | Permalink

> No, I am DEMONSTRATING that you don’t trust people at all.

No — “at all” is incorrect — I don’t trust SOME people not to waste my time over trivial gripes if they ever got up the energy to actually do the replication that they have been promising for months.

> You are suspicious that somebody may misuse your data.

Absolutely — the web is full of contrarians misusing data — John Daly was a good example, Willis Eschenbach is another.

Posted May 24, 2006 at 2:16 AM | Permalink

I don’t trust SOME people not to waste my time over trivial gripes

ROFL! How how much time have you been wasting on this blog? I the same time you could have done research. If you don’t want people wasting your time, put your data on an anonymous ftp site.

319. James Lane
Posted May 24, 2006 at 5:15 AM | Permalink

Re 315. Louis Nettles just posted this on another thread:

“Now this from Sir Richard Attenborough

http://news.independent.co.uk/environment/article570935.ece

But I’m no longer sceptical. Now I do not have any doubt at all. I think climate change is the major challenge facing the world. I have waited until the proof was conclusive that it was humanity changing the climate. The thing that really convinced me was the graphs connecting the increase of carbon dioxide in the environment and the rise in temperature, with the growth of human population and industrialisation. The coincidence of the curves made it perfectly clear we have left the period of natural climatic oscillation behind and have begun on a steep curve, in terms of temperature rise, beyond anything in terms of increases that we have seen over many thousands of years.”

What graphs could he be thinking of? In fact, I only became interested in the climate change issue when the hockey stick was published on the front page of the Sydney Morning Herald six or seven years ago. But of course, it “doesn’t matter”.

320. kim
Posted May 24, 2006 at 5:41 AM | Permalink

New Orleans? Out to lunch. Period.
=====================

321. John Hunter
Posted May 24, 2006 at 7:02 AM | Permalink

John Adams (#318): The point of archiving is to make the data secure. This means putting data in a long-lasting database — this would not be the case of “an anonymous ftp site” (presumably meaning at the University of Tasmania). The obvious long-lasting databases for our data are the standard national and international sea-level ones — which is where I put the data.

I don’t think I have been wasting time on this blog — if I didn’t respond to people’s comments, it would be assumed that they were right in whatever spurious claims they happened to be making. If I had made my data more readily available and allowed it to be “audited” by some of the more contrarian of the posters on here, I am sure I would have had to spend just as much time fending off their criticisms.

Perhaps the best solution is for me to take the advice of many of my colleagues: “just ignore them — they’re idiots”.

322. Posted May 24, 2006 at 7:17 AM | Permalink

>Perhaps the best solution is for me to take the advice of many
>of my colleagues: “just ignore them “¢’¬? they’re idiots”.

Now you’re learnin’! ;-)

323. agn
Posted May 24, 2006 at 7:35 AM | Permalink

just ignore them “¢’¬? they’re idiots

Well I’m not a scientist, but I think I can more or less understand the arguments for and against AGW. On a pure scientific basis, it is rather hard to make up one’s mind as to which way to lean (although on balance, I think the evidence, as opposed to theories, points against AGW). However, what really clinches it for me is that even the most respectable of “warmers” find it perfectly normal to call their opponents “idiots” – whereas you never find the heavyweight “sceptics” doing that.
To me, there is only one conclusion: the “warmers” are desperately trying to hide the dubiousness of their science, while the “sceptics” are not. Anybody calling Steve McI (or many of the other excellent contributors on this site) “an idiot” clearly has seriously flawed judgment – never mind upbringing.

324. Posted May 24, 2006 at 7:36 AM | Permalink

The “faux outrage” of the “septics” continues to be laughable. “On a pure scientific basis” scientists have no problem “to make up one’s mind” on AGW (or evolutionary biology, or whatever the right-wingers or outraged about this decade).

325. fFreddy
Posted May 24, 2006 at 7:40 AM | Permalink

Re #296, John Hunter

However, I can assure you that I have sent them the historic Lempriere data. The email is dated “20 Apr 2006 15:11:05 +1000″Ⱡand consists of the following:

Is this the first time you archived this data ?

326. Dave Dardinger
Posted May 24, 2006 at 7:49 AM | Permalink

re: #321

The point of archiving is to make the data secure.

No, ONE point of archiving is to make data secure. Two others are to make it accessable and to assure accuracy. Merely publishing data on the web (given all the mirror sites, etc.) would/could make it secure, insofar as that means it will not be lost to future researchers. If you meant “secure” in the sense of only being accessable to those with a “need to know” then, of course, your statment would be wrong to begin with.

But I agree that publishing on the web could in theory degrade accuracy. For instance, someone with malicious purposes might start spreading bogus versions of a database with the desire to damage someone’s reputation. Thus an archive which is designed to assure tracability would be useful. But why in the world that isn’t compatable with public availability I don’t see.

327. Francois Ouellette
Posted May 24, 2006 at 8:07 AM | Permalink

#321

Well, John, tell us, how do WE know you’re not misusing the data to prove your point? I think Steve M. here has a pretty good case that Mann and the hockey team did just that, so why would you be any different. Examples of scientific fraud abound, and most of them are by brilliant scientists who publish in Nature and Science, not from Joe who’s reading a blog.

You see, the moment scientists decide to leave their comfortable little academic research world, where they can publish anything they want and all pat themselves in the back, and confront the real world with their scary claims, they’re bound to be criticized, doubted, audited, called before Congress and what else. That’s the name of the game, and you can’t just call everyone idiots because they don’t have PhD’s in climatology.

Sure a lot of the audience here are lay people who couldn’t go very far with the data. Others are more educated and maybe willing to put time and effort and try to understand what you did and how you did it. As a scientist, your task is to convince. Are you so afraid that you could be proven wrong? But maybe you’re just trying to prove a political point, and that’s different. How are we to know? You certainly talk like someone who has chosen one side and will use just any argument to support it.

As for Dr. Carl, well I had a good laugh reading his resume. You’re in the big leagues now Carl, with papers in Nature and all. Show us all dimwits what a top notch climate scientist you are!

328. Posted May 24, 2006 at 8:17 AM | Permalink

Errr, rather, you dimwits should do some original research. Trumping up strawman arguments to support your political agenda doesn’t count.

329. Mark
Posted May 24, 2006 at 8:39 AM | Permalink

You’ve posted in two threads and lobbed insults in both, Carl. Good tactic to garner respect as an authority that knows what he’s talking about. Oddly, you mention the fallacy “strawman” while committing an even more egregious fallacy yourself (twice in one post I might add): ad-hominem.

The primary point of this blog is to analyze existing studies, if you haven’t noticed. This is known as falsification, which is required by the scientific method. Or are you suggesting that independent analysis of others’ work is not acceptable? Certainly you wouldn’t suggest that, would you?

Mark

330. Posted May 24, 2006 at 8:43 AM | Permalink

umm, again, I’ve never intimated that this site is for anything other than entertainment. I suggest you clowns do some original research, instead of concocting strawman arguments & whingeing that scientists aren’t playing by your rules. The scientific method would require that (as well as publication & peer-review — of which, sorry, an insipid blog-site doesn’t count! :-)

Posted May 24, 2006 at 8:59 AM | Permalink

Re: #321

The point of archiving is to make the data secure.

John, you must be getting tired. This is only the point of archiving, if your data is: commercial in confidence (in which case, your primary incentive is monetary; taxation-related (monetary as well, but based upon proving what you have earned/spent); or a “matter of national security” (when we’re supposedly preventing people from dying).

I know exactly what your argument is. You believe that, having spent literally decades developing your expertise in this field, you shouldn’t be attacked by amateurs and “trolls” on this site. You have far more expertise than they do, and you shouldn’t be derided, nor defamed in a forum without review by your peers.

Fair enough.

You have a right to that point of view. You also have a right to assume far greater expertise in the field of sea levels than anyone I have seen post on the threads in which sea levels have been raised.

However, you seem to be ignoring (or have forgotten) the primary reason why this site was established – because “scientists” would not release their peer-reviewed, published (and highly publicised) studies in a reproducible form.

THAT is the reason why this site was established. If Mann, et al. had fully disclosed their data and methodology, this debate would have been settled years ago. Indeed, their failure to submit their “scientific” methods and results to scrutiny can only diminish them, not the so-called “cheer-leaders” who simply request that they do so, in the traditional scientific spirit.

John, you are a well credentialed, studied and experienced scientist in the field of sea levels. Please, let me emphasise this, as it is critical.

As a leader in your field, as a “guru” of sea levels, what you say carries weight, in a way in which the average “cheer-leader’s” comments cannot.

Therefore, there is a much higher standard expected of you, than is expected of the likes of us – if you say something about sea levels, which can be potentially catastrophic for us all, we need to know we can believe you and that your are being as honest with all of us who live below x metres sea level, as possible.

In other words, a merchant banker who is only interested in making money from his latest infrastructure project has a particular priority.

A scientist (a leader in the field) who is predicting disasterous sea level rises has an entirely different ethical framework.

Such a person, when they promote a theory, have immediate “gravitas” and credibility with a wide audience. Everyone presumes that what they have to say is correct, considered and accurate (insofar as their data can truly establish and support their position).

Such a person should be capable of defending their theories from their data. True science is not “public opinion”, it is fact! It is defensible! It is supported by data! But, most of all, true science is falsifiable!

Now, you are an admitted expert in your field. You are also not a young man (subject to the failing and ego-rides of young men everywhere), therefore I would expect far more from you than, say, a PhD student, who is expert in nothing and has much to lose.

After much consideration, I believe that you are doing yourself an incredible personal and professional disservice by being so fearful of others criticising your work – so much so, that you are less than open about your data.

John, you seem to think that certain elements of this blog are out to get you. I would simply refer you back to this post, Rob Wilson on Bristlecones, to see how people on this blog treat those who are open to their studies (and open to criticism of them) being debated. You will note the politeness and gratitude that Rob was shown in that post, even though bristlecones are one of the primary contentions of this site.

John, I sincerely believe that you would have been shown a greater level of respect, had you adopted Rob’s attitude from the outset, rather than adopting that of the many other climate scientists who are criticised on this site for their obfuscation.

The irony is that, had you been open from the outset, you would not have been challenged on this blog to the extent which has occurred, because no-one else here is a sea level expert.

By fencing, hiding behind technicalities and directing the debate on this post towards motives, rather than your actual studies, you are diminishing your stature, rather than enhancing it.

There is only one thing which you can do to end this thread and the theoretical threat to your studies – put your data in a publicly accessible site and tell us all where it is.

Should you do this, you will have no more trouble from most people here (per: Rob Wilson) and you will be placed back into the position which you clearly believe you deserve – respected scientist (although, you data will need to stand up to the scrutiny of the “cheer-leaders”, of course – not an issue for any senior practitioner in their field).

332. Mark
Posted May 24, 2006 at 10:04 AM | Permalink

More ad-homs and yet we’re the clowns. Good show.

Mark

333. Posted May 24, 2006 at 10:23 AM | Permalink

publish or shut up! ;-)

334. jae
Posted May 24, 2006 at 10:58 AM | Permalink

Too bad, Carl, but in this day and age, this blog counts as “publishing.” It is being read by numerous people, including decision makers and Congressional staffers. That makes it a publication. It is helping to sort things out, whether you like it or not. It is also peer reviewed more thoroughly than most scientific journal articles, IMHO. Of course, the snobs who think only the scientific journals have any worthwhile information in them will not agree. Join the 21st century, CC!

335. Posted May 24, 2006 at 11:08 AM | Permalink

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

You assholes take yourselves WAAAAAYYY too seriously!

336. jae
Posted May 24, 2006 at 11:13 AM | Permalink

Too seriously? I think not. There have already been a couple of Congressional inquiries, which were likely influenced by this blog. Join the real world, Carl the Bitter!

337. Posted May 24, 2006 at 11:14 AM | Permalink

HAHA, yeah, that’s about all you needle-dicks have — influence with similarly deluded corporate whore-bags to “investigate” Mann. Wow, what “influence” — it’s like having influence with Goebbels!

338. jae
Posted May 24, 2006 at 11:23 AM | Permalink

#337 Boy, you pack a lot of worthwhile information in your posts. Why don’t you just quit drinking and take your Ridilin?

339. Posted May 24, 2006 at 11:26 AM | Permalink

awww, don’t worry, I get bored with small minds like I find around here, and I’ll go away soon! ;-)

340. Posted May 24, 2006 at 11:34 AM | Permalink

Re 339: Carl

Sooner rather than later please. You are just a distraction from the real science that is being discussed here. You are stealing bandwidth you have not earned. Goodby!

341. jae
Posted May 24, 2006 at 11:39 AM | Permalink

Carl, like it or not, this blog clearly demonstrates, to anyone with a halfway open mind, that something is truly rotten in much of climate “science.” The blog speeds up the scientific process, which would have ultimately shown the flaws in the Hockey Stick reconstructions.

342. Posted May 24, 2006 at 12:06 PM | Permalink

so you think all the scientists are in just some sort of “conspiracy?” Because that’s about the only conclusion one can make in the way you dopes so facilely “defeat” everything from tree rings to climate models. And you think WE are the conspiracy nuts & alarmists, HAHA!

343. jae
Posted May 24, 2006 at 12:11 PM | Permalink

No, not a conspiracy. Just some very poor science and headline grabbing. It’s all about money and status, just like everywhere else.

344. Posted May 24, 2006 at 12:13 PM | Permalink

If scientists wanted money & status, they could just do like Steve’s sort and sellout to the corporate interests. If you saw the cars these guys drive, you’d realize how ridiculous your statement is! ;-)

345. Ken Robinson
Posted May 24, 2006 at 12:15 PM | Permalink

Dear Mr. Christensen:

I wish to thank you for the immensely constructive contributions you’ve made to these issues. Your finely honed critical thinking skills are clearly in evidence; indeed sir, you a veritable paragon of rationality and reasoned debate, destined to have history record you as one of, nay, THE, greatest thinker of our era. Add to this your unceasing civility, and one can do nothing but stand in awe of you.

I beseech you, m’ lord, in the name of humanity and for the betterment of society generally, do not throw your brilliant insights in front of troglodytes such as us, lacking as we do the wit to follow your footsteps in the higher planes of reasoning which you traverse. It is all too obvious that we are not worthy to stand in your presence, o exalted one. We mere mortals do not deserve the benefit of your pronouncements and indeed cannot withstand the glory of your being, and beg therefore that you converse only with your fellow gods, from whose mighty company we must remain forever estranged.

To momentarily slip into the vile and crude vernacular of which we lower life forms are so fond, please go suck someplace else.

With supreme and heart-felt gratitude for the blessings of your beneficence, I remain, m’ lord, your most humble and unworthy servant,

346. Posted May 24, 2006 at 12:16 PM | Permalink

I’d rather be an honest, if vulgar bloke, then a sellout cretin.

347. Ken Robinson
Posted May 24, 2006 at 12:50 PM | Permalink

Re: 346

Brilliantly reasoned, sir, whilst beautifully succinct. Indeed I am a worm.

Though I have developed renewable energy and efficiency projects which have combined to eliminate many thousands of tonnes of CO2 annually, and had the audacity to believe that this would be meritorious in your eyes, I bow to the gravitas of your superior judgment and will forevermore consider myself a cretinous sellout. Once again, please accept my humble gratitude for the highly informed and wonderfully insightful nature of your comments.

With fondest wishes;

348. Mark
Posted May 24, 2006 at 1:14 PM | Permalink

Why hasn’t this guy been spam-karma’d?
Oh wait, he’s honest, and we’re all liars.
I’m still curious to which corporate interests we’ve sold out to.
Mark

349. ET SidViscous
Posted May 24, 2006 at 1:33 PM | Permalink

What you didn’t recieve your check this month? Someone has reall got to get onto Accounting.

Last month mine was a week late and I almost missed my Ferrari payment, and if I loose my week at the resort in Sweeden this year I’ll be pissed.

[/sarcasam off]

Posted May 24, 2006 at 2:06 PM | Permalink

So, this Carl person, he’s actually an adult with a real job (possibly a science job)? If so, then all I can think is …. wow….

The world has truly gone over the cliff.

351. John Hunter
Posted May 24, 2006 at 4:12 PM | Permalink

an (#323):

> However, what really clinches it for me is that even the most respectable
> of “warmers” find it perfectly normal to call their opponents “idiots”
> – whereas you never find the heavyweight “sceptics” doing that.

(a) I know of very few “heavyweight” ‘sceptics’ (unless you just mean sceptics who are fat) — I would class Steve as one (not fat — heavyweight in an intellectual sense), but you’d have to give me a clue if I’m to think of any others.

(b) If you “never find the heavyweight ‘sceptics’ doing that” you haven’t read much of Climateaudit.

> Anybody calling Steve McI (or many of the other excellent contributors on this
> site) “an idiot” clearly has seriously flawed judgment – never mind upbringing.

(a) I don’t think I’ve ever called Steve an idiot (Steve — correct me on this if I’m wrong).

(b) I would have huge difficulty finding “other excellent contributors on this site”. I think this a real difference bewteen Climateaudit and Realclimate — while Realclimate has a host of professional qualified contributors, the only real technical contributions that I can find on this site are by Steve (O.K., perhaps I’ve missed a few). As far as I’m concerned, Steve IS Climateaudit — as I’ve pointed out before, most of the rest are just cheerleaders.

352. John Hunter
Posted May 24, 2006 at 4:14 PM | Permalink

fFreddy (#325) Yes — I never pretended to have archived it prior to that date.

353. John Hunter
Posted May 24, 2006 at 4:24 PM | Permalink

Francois Ouellette (#327):

> Well, John, tell us, how do WE know you’re not misusing the data to prove your point?

That’s easy to answer — in our 2002 paper, we provided clear references to Lempriere’s original data. Anyone who wanted to could have accessed that data and checked our numbers. The trouble is the cheerleaders on Climateaudit who complain the loudest are too lazy to actually check the data — pontification is so much easier.

Do you know I’ve STILL only had one request for our data (other than the one from Steve) — I find that quite amazing and highly revealing.

> Others are more educated and maybe willing to put time and effort and try to
> understand what you did and how you did it.

But a major point which I have been making on here is that they are clearly NOT “willing to put time and effort” into auditing or replication. Again –pontification is so much easier.

354. John Hunter
Posted May 24, 2006 at 4:45 PM | Permalink

Well, I may not particularly like Carl’s robust way of critiquing this site, but at least it takes the pressure off me! I just wish the cheerleaders would stop arguing and pontificating and get on with the auditing of our data which they seem to have been clamouring for for weeks …

355. Francois Ouellette
Posted May 24, 2006 at 4:58 PM | Permalink

#328

Carl, sorry for the late reply, I don’t spend my day here. Not like you: you posted at 7:17, 7:36, 8:17, 8:43, 10:23, 11:08, 11:14, 11:26, 12:06, 12:13, and 12:16, and I think that’s Canadian central time. Do you work or is THIS your job? Are you what they call a “paid basher”? Maybe this IS part of your job, in between fixing bugs in the program? A sell-out to environmentalist interests, maybe?…

So tell me Carl, how many peer reviewed papers do you have your name on? One? Wow, quite an achievement! In Nature, of all journals! Hey, that’s where Jan Hendrick Shon and Hwang Woo Suk and Michael Mann published their famous papers! That entitles you to make any comment you want on climate science. It’s not like you’re Tim Ball or Vincent Gray, or David Legates, or Richard Lindzen, or Roger Pielke Sr., and all those idiots out there who know nothing about climate, and have no… well almost no… peer-reviewed papers…well it doesn’t count because they don’t have the same opinion, so they’re not good scientists after all, and the peer review system has its flaws as we all know (he! he! he!). No, you are part of the “consensus”, and consensus means everybody, except those who disagree, and they don’t count.

Keep up the good work! Who knows, maybe you’ll get a raise soon!

356. Willis Eschenbach
Posted May 24, 2006 at 5:08 PM | Permalink

John, I just got this email from the NTC:

Hi Willis,

> Paul, thanks again. John Hunter is rather insistent that he did send
> you the Lempriere data. He says his email of 20 Apr 2006 15:11:05 +1000
> said the following:
>
> I attach digitised versions of the sea level data collected at Port Arthur,
> Tasmania, Australia, by Thomas Lempriere in 1840, 1841 and 1842, in the hope
> that you will be able to provide a suitable archive.
>
> The attachment, lempriere_data.zip, contains the following files:
>
> metadata .. a description of the data
>
> porta40.txt .. sea level data for 1840
>
> porta41.txt .. sea level data for 1841
>
> porta42.txt .. sea level data for 1842
>
> Hopefully, the file “metadata” has sufficient description for your needs.
> The files are all in ASCII text, with DOS record terminators (i.e. carriage
> return followed by newline).
>
> Could you doublecheck your records for this file?
>
> Many thanks for all of your assistance in this,

Sorry, we did not receive the above e-mail from John Hunter. I am
sending a copy of this reply to John, who may be able to re-send it.

Regards, Paul

Finally, you say

The data IS publically available.

Generally, “publically available” would mean anyone could download it. However, you have already refused to download it “to people whose only aim is to knock down my work” … which means you are not using any meaning of “public” that I am aware of. It is available to anyone who meets your rather eccentric criteria, which does not include anyone who in your judgement might find errors in your work.

w.

357. John Hunter
Posted May 24, 2006 at 6:00 PM | Permalink

Willis (#357): I’m getting really fed up with this. You refuse to receive the data directly from me (you say “It’s because I don’t want the data from your computer, I want the archived dataset.”) and you were incapable of finding the standard sea-level data centres (Steve had to do help out — however, how about trying the obvious one — PSMSL?). Well today I’ve emailed you the full dataset so stop grumbling and get auditing.

358. John Hunter
Posted May 24, 2006 at 6:12 PM | Permalink

For all who are counting the items of deceit on this thread, take a look at what Willis said in #357:

> However, you have already refused to download it “to people
> whose only aim is to knock down my work”

and then read what I actually said.

To paraphrase what had happened:

1. I had submitted the Port Arthur data to standard sea-level data centres.

2. I did not reveal which sites they were because anyone competent to assess the data would know them.

3. When Steve found one of the sites (NTC) he was referred back to me, and I immediately responded by sending the data the all who requested it (only 2 people!). I even sent the data to Steve before he asked me for it.

In Willis’s distorted mind, this is me “refusing to download data”.

359. John Hunter
Posted May 24, 2006 at 6:24 PM | Permalink

“However, what really clinches it for me is that even the most respectable of ‘warmers’ find it perfectly normal to call their opponents ‘idiots’ – whereas you never find the heavyweight ‘sceptics’ doing that.”

Notwithstanding the fact that you inserted “sceptics” in quotes, presumably meaning that they are not really sceptics at all (I agree), you are on pretty thin ice with your statement. Take Steve’s latest post (“Red Noise at realclimate”) — and I do count Steve as a “heavyweight” — which contains the following gems: “They are nuts” and “Their whole post looks completely goofy to me”. Pretty much calling the authors “idiots”, don’t you think?

How about withdrawing your dumb statement all together?

360. John Hunter
Posted May 24, 2006 at 8:12 PM | Permalink

> The data is available now, albeit in a way which
> has you as its gatekeeper, but you resisted
> providing it for a long time.

Your first error — the data is also available through PSMSL. (I “resisted providing it” only while the cheerleaders huffed and puffed, in total ignorance of the standard sea-level archives, and until Steve finally solved the little problem for you.)

> And your capacity to forget what your attitude was a
> mere month ago is a truly breath-taking example of
> narcissistic arrogance.

Your second error — my attitude has been completely consistent.

In the ealy days I did not have the digitised data in a form suitable for archiving. At that time I directed people to Lempriere’s hardcopy data.

After I had provided the digitised data to more than one archive, I informed Climateaudit. I also did set a very easy “test” — that anyone who wanted to have the data should at least be sufficiently knowledgeable in these matters to know the locations of the standard databases. The cheerleaders failed this test absolutely, only to be saved by Steve who indicated ONE source of the data (NTC) and duly asked for it.

When this request was passed to me by NTC I provided the data immediately to whoever asked for it (still only two people including Steve).

Please show me how my “attitude” has changed over a “mere month”.

361. Glenn Tomlinson
Posted May 24, 2006 at 9:24 PM | Permalink

What is it about the internet that seems to cause all “discussions” to descend to the level of squabbling 14 yr olds?

Please, enough of this!

Please take a moment and look objectively at what you all have written here. Don’t you see that in many ways you are talking past each other? How much of this is a real effort at communication and understanding as opposed to just scoring rhetorical points? Dr. Hunter, says he followed the standard procedures of his profession and I have no reason to doubt it.He appears to have made his data availabe even if you don’t like the way he has done it. On the other hand, Dr. Hunter, Steve McIntrye has documented what I believe any objective observer would conclude is a deliberate effort by some to conceal data and methods.

Dr. Hunter, please forgive my impertinence but this is the impression I have gained of you from this thread. After my intial ( bad ) reaction I began to think again. It was your responses (#289 to Tom Brogle and #291 about TRUST) that made me reconsider my initial impression. I tried to imagine how frustrating it would feel if my work had been continually, and publicaly, challenged over the years by those who I honestly thought (perhaps rightly ) were either ignorant or crackpots. (I am in no position to make any judgements on the matter. ) I can imagine becoming a little testy if the same situation came up over and over again. So, can you appreciate how others may experience a similar frustration when they perceive a wrong that appears to be happening again?

Your comments indicate that you feel that many here are only interested in sniping at you. If so, I believe you would be mistaken. I do not approve of the tone of many here, but just as I have tried (perhaps failed) to see things from your point of view, please try to see from theirs. Take a good look at the vitriol displayed by the likes of Carl Christensen on this site. This is but a small fraction of the abuse routinely heaped upon those who question. So they at times are also a little testy. Please take the time to see what Steve McIntyre has gone through. He has spent YEARS trying to obtain data that most here believe should be available to all.

At the risk of sounding pompous ( assuming I haven’t already ) I was brought up to regard science as a noble profession.

People will always be people but things like honesty and integrity were supposed to mean something. DR. Hunter, you said “It is unfortunate that many on her fail to appreciate that much science and collaboration in science relies on TRUST.” I, and I think those here as well, do appreciate that. What you are seeing from those here, and me, is the honest belief that this trust has been betrayed.

By the way, it really IS possible for honest people to HONESTLY disagree.

All done preaching.

Posted May 24, 2006 at 9:26 PM | Permalink

In the ealy days I did not have the digitised data in a form suitable for archiving. At that time I directed people to Lempriere’s hardcopy data.

Fair enough. It caused me to go back and read some of the earliest posts in the “But They Are Very Very Wrong” thread, in which you explained just that.

If I had read this previously, I had forgotten it. I withdraw my statements, with apologies to you and will withdraw from the thread, because I am not competent to do the next job: reviewing your study and data.

363. MrPete
Posted May 24, 2006 at 10:10 PM | Permalink

#306 (John H): As an experienced engineer, I can answer your new (fourth) question and perhaps shed light on your earlier three Q’s.

"how do you judge how carefully climate scientists check things and how do you judge how carefully engineers check things?"

In my first week on the job, fresh out of college, I was presented with a difficult problem to solve. I worked diligently for a couple of days and presented my analysis to management with the statement “I’m reasonably certain this is the issue and the solution.”

That wasn’t _nearly_ good enough for them. While the issue was actually small, the impact of rightly/wrongly solving the problem carried a lot of social weight: my little solution would likely ultimately result in retaining or losing a major account.

So, they asked “just how sure ARE you, MrPete? Would you bet your job on the answer? Would you bet the Silicon Valley house that you don’t yet own on the answer?” I went back to work, diligently tested using my own and other resources, until I was as certain as could be that I had a rock-solid answer to present.

Bottom line: more or less, engineers check things commensurate with the business cost/benefit of the issue.

More or less, climate scientists appear to check things commensurate with the academic cost/benefit of the issue.

Unfortunately, as a semi-informed observer, I’ve got to say the cost of academic failure is incredibly low in many sciences. And so, the standards have also dropped.

Now let’s apply this to your first three questions:

(1) ...paper taken at random,...what...is the probability that...any policy decision based on it, or any IPCC review based on it, would be significantly inappropriate? (by "significantly", I don't mean "just detectable" "¢'¬? I mean that there would be a real difference in policy etc.). 

The question defines the problem space as papers upon which policy decisions are based. Right now, I’m strongly suspecting that the average paper’s realistic confidence intervals are vanishingly close to “floor to ceiling” as described elsewhere. This leads to a strong suspicion that humanity is, in general, mostly clueless about the actual future consequences of any significant climate policy decisions. Therefore, my answer to your question is: a very high probability that decisions based on any random paper will be significantly wrong, simply because we’re dealing with a mostly-random space in the first place!

With respect to MBH98 and the infamous Hockey Stick in particular, your back of the envelope calculation at ipcc_stats_3.pdf is, sadly, laughable. You did not consider anything of communication science or user interaction. Just from the old saw “a picture is worth a thousand words” you should know their front-and-center diagram carries far more weight than any set of words in the summary. Current research in human interaction shows that most people look at a vanishingly tiny portion of a presentation: first few words of the title, first word or two of section headings, first visuals, and maybe the text near the first visual if it’s visually interesting. So their prominent diagram is hugely influential in the report. But that’s just in the report.

The influence of the Hockey Stick as a cultural phenomenon, as a communication device, is immeasurable. It’s memorable0 and easily spreads in a viral manner. I’ve seen such conceptual ideas spread worldwide and impact literally hundreds of millions, in an unbelievably short time.

 (2) How likely is it that this error would be detected by subsequent scientific work WITHOUT any "auditing"?

Until this field (climate science) cleans up its act, I believe the probability is quite low. The “self correcting” nature of science is broken right now, due to an overabundance of wagon-circling defensiveness.

(3) Following from (1) and (2), is it more valuable to "audit" this paper, or spend the time progressing the science further (taking due account of the uncertainty in so doing, given the answer to (1), above)?

Clearly, if we’re dealing with a scientific arena that is largely broken, it is better to correct the process before moving ahead.

Steve is performing a service that would be valuable in _any_ field. The fact that his work is so bitterly opposed indicates how much more it is needed in climate science.

In some parts of the world, a clean, truly independent financial audit is considered a valuable badge of honor.

In other areas, an independent financial audit is a frightening concept avoided at all costs.

Guess which parts of the world produce more reliable, trustworthy results.

The concept applies very nicely here as well.

364. John Hunter
Posted May 24, 2006 at 11:46 PM | Permalink

BradH (#364): Thanks :-)

365. John Hunter
Posted May 24, 2006 at 11:48 PM | Permalink

MrPete (#365): I read what you say, but I think it is bollocks. I’ve already said why.

366. John Hunter
Posted May 24, 2006 at 11:50 PM | Permalink

Willis etc.: I have just received an apologetic email from NTC, confirming that I did indeed send them Lempriere’s data when I said I did. There was a problem with communication within NTC. I am not prepared to post NTC’s email as it is not mine to post. However, anyone who doesn’t trust me may request a copy.

367. Tom Brogle
Posted May 25, 2006 at 12:27 AM | Permalink

I think what J Hunter has been saying is bollocks.
Did Ross set up a sea level marker in the Falkland Isles?
If so, has that been investigated?

368. John Hunter
Posted May 25, 2006 at 1:28 AM | Permalink

Tom Brogle (#369):

> I think what J Hunter has been saying is bollocks.

I believe this is what you think, but perhaps you should tell someone who cares.

> Did Ross set up a sea level marker in the Falkland Isles?

I assume you already know that he did — and WOW the marks are “above the mean level of the ocean”

> If so, has that been investigated?

It may well be being investigated as we speak.

So, Tom, another chance to “prove” that “the IPCC sea level claims are false” (Daly, 1999)? You guys never learn do you?

369. John Hunter
Posted May 25, 2006 at 4:38 AM | Permalink

Steve: On 23 May in posting #308 I asked you rather facetiously what had happened to John A. This is now a more serious version of the question. Given that this whole thread was really caused by John A’s almost rapacious desire to get hold of our Port Arthur data and audit it, don’t you think it looks rather strange that he should completely disappear off the scene the day before you finally unearthed the data? If he is on holiday (I hope he has a good rest), or is off sick (I hope he gets better soon), then that is just fine, but it would be nice (even polite on Climateaudit’s part) to know what is happening.

370. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 25, 2006 at 6:22 AM | Permalink

I don’t know what John A’s doing. He works as a computer consultant and, in that type of job, you probably get buusy in spurts, so I wouldn’t put any interpretation at him not being involved in a thread for a few days.

For his own reasons, he has made it quite clear that he does not wish to identify himself to you, since he is worried about retaliation.

You have not archived the data at a public archive and it is not available to John A under present terms without identifying himself to you, which he is unwilling to do.

I would like to forward the data to John A, which the terms of your sending me the data seems to preclude, under the condition that he agrees to observe the terms under which you sent the data to me. Think of him doing some research for me, rather like a grad student might. I’m sure that you wouldn’t require a professor to name his grad assisstants to you.

Would you please permit to do so and that might assuage some of your worries about John A?

371. John Hunter
Posted May 25, 2006 at 6:40 AM | Permalink

Steve (#372):

> Think of him doing some research for me, rather like a grad student might.
> I’m sure that you wouldn’t require a professor to name his grad
> assisstants to you.

Steve, I frankly think that you must be a little mad if you think I would happily work with a professor who kept his graduate students anonymous from me. You really do live in another world don’t you?

> Would you please permit to do so and that might assuage some of

No — he is a big boy and I think he should be able to do things like this on his own. He could, if he had the gumption, ask one of the other centres and see if they have the data. I have left it to them to put their own rules on provision of data (as you know, I don’t deal with anonymous ghosts).

I have to admit that I find John A’s claim that “he is worried about retaliation” both extremely offensive and also, given his often offensive behaviour on this site, frankly laughable.

372. Peter Hearnden
Posted May 25, 2006 at 6:45 AM | Permalink

Steve, I think you need to be very careful about using words like ‘retaliation’. In what way do you think John Hunter might ‘retaliate’ if John A is identified?

373. Posted May 25, 2006 at 6:52 AM | Permalink

Pretty funny & hypocritical to “worry about retaliation” considering Steve whines to my bosses, and whines to redneck Repuglicans to subpoena Mann’s records etc!

374. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 25, 2006 at 7:23 AM | Permalink

#374. I have never suggested that John Hunter would retaliate. I said that John A was worried that he would. Jeez, can’t you read.

Carl, I have never “whined” to Republicans or otherwise suggested to anyone that they subpoena Mann’s records. I have publicly requested that Mann disclose source code and data.

Carl, you identified yourself in the url attached to your signature as being from climateprediction.net and did not attend here anonymously.

375. Posted May 25, 2006 at 7:24 AM | Permalink

Yeah, because I have nothing to hide, unlike “John A” apparently! ;-)

376. Dave Dardinger
Posted May 25, 2006 at 7:41 AM | Permalink

Personally I’m glad for this last exchange between Dr. Hunter and Steve M. It pretty well shows the lack seriousness on the former’s part. Actually, Steve let me suggest another possibility which might just allow John A and you to collaborate without your technically breaking the terms of your agreement with Dr. Hunter.

Have John A provide you with a set of his data for Lempriere’s records in a format agreed-to beforehand. You then prepare a simple way to subtract one from the other and send the residuals back to John. Since I haven’t requested the data from Dr. Hunter (see next message), I can’t say exactly how onerous his conditions are, but I can’t exactly see how he can expect someone to do research on a data-set without comparing it to other datasets. Perhaps you could, instead of returning the data directly to John A, simply post it here, publishing it as it were. Since only John and John, so to speak, would be able to have the original data, you wouldn’t exactly be breaking any confidentialities.

377. Posted May 25, 2006 at 7:59 AM | Permalink

What it shows is the lack of seriousness from anonymous right-wing twits who think they’ve “won” because they safely & anonymously attack scientists who don’t jump to their every command. Which is why sites like this provide a little entertainment, if nothing else.

378. Dave Dardinger
Posted May 25, 2006 at 8:14 AM | Permalink

One question arises in my mind with regard to the insistance of Dr. Hunter that his data not go to John A unless he identifies himself, while anyone else who requests the data in his actual name can have the data. The question is the obvious one of, “So what if someone sends John A the data despite agreeing not to?”

There are three posibilities as I see it.
1. Nothing happens.
2. Dr. Hunter henceforth uses it as a cudgel against ClimateAudit claiming that it shows we’re all worthless cads here.
3. Dr. Hunter tries to obtain legal relief.

Both 2 and 3, however require him to be able to prove that some particular person active here at ClimateAudit supplied the data used by John A in presenting some finding as to how his reading of
Lempriere’s records differs from Dr. Hunter’s. Otherwise he’s open to the claim that it was some other fellow, possibly a warmer with a mean streak who pretended to be someone else and supplied John A with the data.

If I were a clever owner of some large data-set I wished not to become public, I’d find a way to be certain how to identify my work. Map makers used to, and probably still do, mark their maps by including purposeful errors in them to prove that some other mapmaker stole their work rather than did the work themselves. I think software companies do the same. So being clever (I assume Dr. Hunter is or he wouldn’t have the Dr. in front of his name), what would he do? He’d: 1. require all data to come direct from himself rather than from the archive. 2. mark each data-packet sent out individually so that it could later be identified either as a whole or via residuals. IOW, he’d change some of the data slightly. 3. He’d have some way of proving that this data was indeed uniquely sent to the person claimed. This might include a lawyer or notary who would be requested to maintain a file of who each sending was to and somehow stamp the final sending similarly to prove there wasn’t a back-door sending to some co-conspiriter.

Now, has Dr. Hunter done such a thing or is he relying on either my “#1 Nothing Happens” or figuring to simply muddy the waters and doesn’t care if people deny they sent the material to John A anyway. There’s a simple test which can be done. Let those couple of people who’ve received the data compare their own sets of data to each other to see if there’s any differences in them. My guess is that there will be no difference on the basis that I’ve never seen any warmers who have a legal mind-set, but it’d be quite enlightening if there were such a difference.

379. Posted May 25, 2006 at 8:15 AM | Permalink

What about we anonymous left-wing twits who think Steve has won?

Posted May 25, 2006 at 8:33 PM | Permalink

Re: # 380

Dave, there’s no legal aspect to it. There’s not even a question of ethics, IMHO, but simply one of politeness. When Steve made his request for data and John H forwarded it to him, Steve was not aware that John was going to impose the conditions which he did (viz. not to forward it on). As the data was attached to the email, Steve was in no position to reject the data, due to imposition of those conditions. Therefore, ethically, I don’t believe that Steve is bound by those conditions. If he doesn’t forward them, it is out of politeness to John.

However, now that John has made it clear that these are the conditions upon which the data is provided, others on this blog who might request the data are on notice and, should they request the data from John directly (or from a source that they know will refer them to John), I would argue that they are ethically bound to comply with those conditions.

If someone doesn’t like such constraints, I believe that John has more than hinted (more than once) that the CSIRO is not the only repository.

381. John Hunter
Posted May 25, 2006 at 8:56 PM | Permalink

Steve et al. (#376 etc.):

Thank you, Steve, for clarifying a point about John A’s fear of “retaliation”. You say: “I have never suggested that John Hunter would retaliate. I said that John A was worried that he would.” So John A is genuinely fearful that this “retaliation” would come from me. This is even more offensive than I suggested in #373. So, try this for another conspiracy theory:

Last week my car was written off by someone jumping onto the roof while it was parked (this is a fact). This was clearly some right-wing fascist pig from the fossil fuel industry, obviously abetted by Steve McIntyre, who flew all the way from North America or Europe to dance on the roof of my car. Actually, I suspect it was some snotty-nosed kid with too much beer inside him who thought he’d show off to his mates on the way home from the pub on a Friday night. But presumably conspiracy theorists like John A find the first story far more believable. Does John A really think I would (a) want to harm him and (b) want to spend my time travelling to the UK to do it, when he does such a superlative job of self-harm by the ridiculous and obnoxious thinks he says on Climateaudit? I frankly think John A is a pathetic person who, in dealing with people who know him and for whom he apparently works as a consultant, prefers to appear to be something that he is not — a great model for “disclosure” and “due diligence”! I cannot for the life of me understand why Steve continues to use this person to run Climateaudit — a person who by his own admission works, in his professional life, within a climate of his own deceit.

There have been questions like “so what if someone sends John A the data despite agreeing not to?” and suggestions like “have John A provide you with a set of his data for Lempriere’s records in a format agreed-to beforehand ….” (both from Dave Dardinger). Personally, I can’t really be bothered to think about it. I simply will not indulge John A’s insistence on anonymity (which is a unique experience in my professional life) while he at the same time demands openness from me. I trust Steve not to pass the data on to John A, but there are numerous other ways for him to get the data. An email from John A to PSMSL may well do the trick, although they too might make this strange demand that he tell them who he is. Someone from Climateaudit could easily get the data and leak it to John A — I don’t particularly care — but as I say, I’m not going to indulge John A in his demands, which are unusual in the extreme.

382. John Hunter
Posted May 25, 2006 at 8:59 PM | Permalink

Brad H (#382): You seem to have drifted onto another planet now when you say “I believe that John has more than hinted (more than once) that the CSIRO is not the only repository”. What on earth has CSIRO got to do with this discussion?

383. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 25, 2006 at 9:05 PM | Permalink

I’m shutting this thread down for a week. If anyone has anything more to say on this topic, please save it.

384. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 27, 2006 at 5:57 AM | Permalink

I’ve transferred the following from another thread after John Hunter refused my request to save his comments for a week and hijacked another thread.

#

Steve:

You say at the start of this thread:

> I often talk here about the need for full, true and plain disclosure.

You do indeed.

> Withholding the truth ….. is a form of criminal dishonesty just as
> much as overt lying …..

I agree entirely, but the disconnect between what you say and what you do is truly bizarre.

On 12 May you started the thread “John Hunter on Sea Levels” specifically to cater for John A’s witch hunt into our Port Arthur study. This thread has enjoyed a lot of interest with 385 comments so far, with 22 initially contributed by John A. Then, just as you were about to get copies of our data, John A seems to have disappeared off the face of the Earth “¢’¬? I can find no posting from him after 21 May). I asked you twice the reason for this and received no satisfactory answer. On 25 May you terminated the thread, giving no reason.

John A manages Climateaudit; he generally has a high profile on this site; you must know what is going on. Please tell us “¢’¬? we are all stakeholders in Climateaudit.

Comment by John Hunter “¢’¬? 26 May 2006 @ 11:27 pm | Edit This
#

That has to be the most bizarre thing I’ve seen anybody write, ever.

I mean seriously… what the hell?

This is getting surreal.

Comment by Nicholas “¢’¬? 27 May 2006 @ 1:19 am | Edit This
#

Nicholas (#31): Your response is like many on Climateaudit, with a signal-to noise ratio approaching zero. I realise that your own blog carries the warning “Beware: Waffling and long-windedness abounds”, so I’d have thought you could at least have had a go at explaining why my request was “surreal”.

Here is my answer to “what the hell?”:

1. John A engaged in a clear witch-hunt over the Port Arthur data. As I’ve said before, our study was a tiny piece in a huge jigsaw “¢’¬? proof that it was completely flawed would make only a miniscule difference to greenhouse science, but (as John Daly and other contrarian commentators found) it could be used widely by contrarians for the political purpose of “proving” that “the IPCC was wrong”.

2. I spent a considerable amount of time answering John A and other cheerleaders on the thread “John Hunter on Sea Levels”. Even when they finally (with Steve’s help) found where to get the data (at posting #240) a further 145 posting followed, with only two people (counting Steve) actually asking for the data.

3. Just before Steve requested the data, John A disappeared from sight, and on 25 May Steve closed the thread, for no apparent reason.

4. I have asked Steve twice about John A’s “disapearance” “¢’¬? to no avail.

Doesn’t this whole course if events strike you as strange? Don’t you think it would be common courtesy for Steve to tell us what is going on?

Now, I don’t want to hijack this thread with “Port Arthur” stuff any more than Steve does, so I’m not going to reply to further “what the hell”-type of questions. All I want is an explanation from Steve.

Comment by John Hunter “¢’¬? 27 May 2006 @ 1:50 am | Edit This
#

Re #30, 32
FWIW, this is a long weekend in the UK. John’s probably away on holiday.

Comment by fFreddy “¢’¬? 27 May 2006 @ 1:57 am | Edit This
#

There you are John. Iv’e found you, how come you are discussing sea levels on the Enron post ?
Shouldn’t you be defending AGW in “Lamb on Northeast Atlantic” or do you admit defeat.

Comment by tom brogle “¢’¬? 27 May 2006 @ 2:45 am | Edit This
#

John H.

Leave it alone. You pretty well killed John A. in the earlier (“very very wrong”) thread on sea levels, no need to do it again.

Now that you’ve released your data, surely this issue is over, unless anyone is going to review it and pick a bone. I agree that Steve should have closed the thread.

That said, I hope you’ll stick around. You’re an expert in your field, and can make a good contribution. I’m sure you’ve recognised by now that the CA regulars are a motely crew, but there are a number of very clever people here who are genuinely interested in the science and don’t push partisan ideological views.

It would, however, make it easier to love you if you toned down the rhetoric and were somewhat less aggressive.

Comment by James Lane “¢’¬? 27 May 2006 @ 3:15 am | Edit This
#

Scientific dishonesty can occassionally serve a useful purpose. Recall physicist Alan Sokal’s 1996 paper on Quantum Gravity intended to fool postmodern academics. It was a spectacularly successful hoax that showed postmodern thinkers are intellectual frauds.

Comment by Reid “¢’¬? 27 May 2006 @ 3:22 am | Edit This
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Dr. Hunter,

Your “request” was “surreal” (I put request in quotation marks because it was more of an attack than a request) because you seem to be under the impression that you can somehow equate the weight of a series of requests for data backing up the conclusions of a published scientific study over a period of months, and questions in a blog comment about the whereabouts of somebody loosely associated with the proprietor of this blog which have been pending only for a couple of days.

I would hope that when you publish your findings like you have, you feel some sense of responsibility to be willing to discuss your findings and share the data in order to further understanding, especially when you are making such well-publicised claims. On the other hand, your constant demands to know where JohnA is and what he is up to seem creepy to me.

I am especially surprised that you characterise a series of requests to see your data as a “witchhunt”. You seem to be projecting attitudes towards the people making the requests which are not justified. I see no evidence that, assuming all your data is above-board (and for the same of politeness I will assume that), there will be anything other than confirmation from those who look at your data that it is sound. In fact, you should be confident enough with your analysis that you would be happy to give the data to anyone. After all, any valid analysis of the same data ought to come to the same conclusions. If there is ambiguity that is another matter, but what matters is that you can scientifically defend your results. And it seems to me you should be able to do that without any problems. So, there is no “witchhunt”, merely an attempt to VERIFY that everything is hunky-dory with your study.

That’s something you should welcome. I go to a lot of trouble to find mistakes in my work, because when I send the chip I am working on to the fabrication guys, several million dollars and a few thousand chips later, mistakes I have made will be not only a big embarassment for me but set my project back a long way. I think you should feel the same way about your work “¢’¬? you should welcome anybody to poke holes in your studies in order to make them more sound and validate that they are indeed as correct as your confidence would indicate. I find plenty of problems with my work and I don’t see how anybody can assume they are perfect.

Frankly I don’t understand why you spend so much time writing your angry-seeming comments here when you have so much disdain for basically everybody here. I’m glad that these data requests are finally being sorted out. But from my point of view, reading your comment #26, it seems to be disconnected from reality, hence “surreal”. Thanks for the gratuitous insults by the way, I’m honoured. But really I expected someone in your position to be more dignified, more co-operative and much more open. As I said, invite criticism, it’s a way to get ahead “¢’¬? to do otherwise makes people wonder why you’re so afraid to open yourself up to it. And, if it turns out that certain people look at your data, mis-analyze it, and make a fuss, they’re idiots and you should expect that’s going to happen every now and then. But being the smarter guy and being able to defend your correct conclusions against their incorrect ones, why should that worry you? Mr. McIntyre has to put up with others bashing his work constantly, and he defends it in the only sense that’s possible “¢’¬? scientifically. Why should you be so special that you’re immune to such treatment, especially given that you work in a fairly controversial area?

(Well, you did ask about the long-windedness.)

Comment by Nicholas “¢’¬? 27 May 2006 @ 4:11 am | Edit This
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My,

what a wonderful source of copy for a future AIG News issue.
:-)

Comment by Louis Hissink “¢’¬? 27 May 2006 @ 4:30 am | Edit This
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Steve,

peripheral to that, we in AIG have noticed that the “critters” are out, (code for shonky speculators), so expect another BrEx or its modern variant in the near future.

I’ll punt it’s in energy stocks.

Comment by Louis Hissink “¢’¬? 27 May 2006 @ 4:35 am | Edit This
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What’s surreal is:

1) you dopes equivocating your myths of “evil scientists making false papers” with the Enron scandal (all George Bush buddies I may add)

2) you hound respected scientists such as Mann, Hunter etc, screech when they don’t hand over data that you don’t even know what to do with, and post perhaps one relevant thing amidst 20 ad-homs on him (and then whine when “evil scientists” justly ridicule you assholes).

3) Sir John A bravely ran away after falsely screeching lies about Hunter et al, Steve covering up for his free web-slave, and then shutting that thread down.

Comment by Carl Christensen “¢’¬? 27 May 2006 @ 4:37 am | Edit This
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damn, I forget surreal climateidiot.org point 4:

4) John A & Steve’s excuse that to reveal who “brave Sir John A” really is because of “fear of reprisal” (presumably from Dr. Hunter). Pretty hilarious considering the modus operandi of MM & their right-wing vermn has been to hound Mann, and even whine to my bosses to fire me etc.

Comment by Carl Christensen “¢’¬? 27 May 2006 @ 4:38 am | Edit This
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Oops, sorry, “for the same of politeness” should read “for the sake of politeness”.

And, please let me add, Dr. Hunter your personal position and your work are very serious but please try not to take everything as seriously as you do. Relax a bit, ignore some of the throw-away insults and don’t be so defensive. You’ll get along better with the commenters here (crazy a crowd as we may be) and I think you will in turn be taken more seriously by everyone else. Nobody is out to get you, just because they have reasons to disagree with some of your conclusions, and I really do think many of us are open-minded, although I get the impression you feel otherwise. If it makes you feel better, I last voted for the Greens and I try to behave in an environmentally responsible manner. So, I’m not disagreeing with you for political reasons.

And, please don’t take anything I’ve said here as being an insult, I’m certainly not intending to antagonize you (although I was genuinely puzzled by some of the things you said). I’m more interested in learning than I am in one-upmanship, and if I can learn something from you and your work all the better, but I’m afraid I have to speak up about what I believe in (including openness in scientific discourse), since I genuinely think it’s the right thing for us all to engage in.

Comment by Nicholas “¢’¬? 27 May 2006 @ 4:47 am | Edit This
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“Nobody is out to get you” ha, ha, ha, ho, ho, ho, oh dear, rofl nice one Nicholas! Don’t you read the comments here? Switch your brain on man!

That said, you’re clearly familar with “good cop, bad cop’ routines.

Comment by Peter Hearnden “¢’¬? 27 May 2006 @ 4:58 am | Edit This
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The hypocrisy is hilarious here, which is why I reiterate “¢’¬? this site is only good for entertainment. They get themselves on a limb with bashing scientists, then the Brave Sir John A types run away, then they spin & equivocate as if crooked Enron Republicans are just like the “evil scientists” they’re bashing around!

Comment by Carl Christensen “¢’¬? 27 May 2006 @ 5:01 am | Edit This
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I for one am out to prove the likes of PH CC & SB wrong.The trouble is they nitpick or ignore my telling points.
I am quite sure the future will prove them wrong to most people, although it appears that the are preparing to blame whatever happens on CO2.

Comment by tom brogle “¢’¬? 27 May 2006 @ 5:26 am | Edit This
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So your sole contribution to “proving the likes of PH CC & SB wrong” is the “telling point”:

“There you are John. Iv’e found you, how come you are discussing sea levels on the Enron post? Shouldn’t you be defending AGW in “Lamb on Northeast Atlantic” or do you admit defeat.”

Oooh, how eloquent! No wonder you dopes never get published. Are any of you even out of high school?

Comment by Carl Christensen “¢’¬? 27 May 2006 @ 5:33 am | Edit This

385. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 27, 2006 at 10:01 PM | Permalink

Moved from another thread as Hunter would not honor request.

#

Steve (#32): Firstly, let’s dispose of one outright lie on your part. You say:

> If you want me to create a special trolling thread for you to vent, along the
> lines of the one for Hunter, I’ll do so.

The thread “John Hunter on Sea Levels”‘? was initiated SPECIFICALLY to satisfy John A’s desire to continue the witch hunt, WHICH HE STARTED, into our Port Arthur study (anyone who doesn’t believe me, just look back through the threads). It is John A’s thread, pure and simple.

Secondly, I’m not hijacking this thread “€? my comments address directly the subject of this thread, which is “dishonesty and withholding the truth”‘?. So please don’t shunt this off to another thread.

Steve, I sometimes think you are quite smart “€? you have a certain facility with statistics (even though you often seem to lack the physical intuition to see the wood surrounding the trees). However, in matters of projecting an honest image (which is what I presume you want), you often seem very dumb indeed. A while ago, you were certainly less than open about your direct involvement with the fossil fuel industry, and the fact that the address on one of your papers is even the same as the address of an oil exploration company. You certainly didn’t do yourself any good by being coy at that time. And now, when I ask you a simple question about the absence of your site manager, you again refuse to answer.

John A remains a mystery. If it ever turns out that he has direct connections with those for whom the results of AGW denial would turn them an obvious profit, then I think you would agree that you will be in deep ***. The theme of this thread and something which you should clearly heed is “€? it is better to be open and honest early on than for someone else to find out the truth later.

So PLEASE let’s have some honest disclosure now and I’ll shut up about it.

Comment by John Hunter “€? 27 May 2006 @ 7:34 pm | Edit This
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And who provides your source of income John?

Comment by Bruce “€? 27 May 2006 @ 7:51 pm | Edit This
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So PLEASE let’s have some honest disclosure now and I’ll shut up about it.

No you won’t. You’re a trouble maker here and have been from the get-go. What the F difference would it make if John A were the Chairman of the Board of Exxon Mobil? The things being discussed here are totally concerned with the facts/data and the getting and analysis thereof. Moreover, John A does essentially 0 of the technical discussion. I have no idea who he is or what he does, but there’s no rational reason you should care either.

Any your continued slander of Steve’s connection with a former mining outfit which is now into oil exploration is still the same crock of excrement it always was.

Comment by Dave Dardinger “€? 27 May 2006 @ 8:00 pm | Edit This
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Bruce (#60):

> And who provides your source of income John?

The Australian Government “€? yes, the same government which has refused to sign to up to Kyoto.

Comment by John Hunter “€? 27 May 2006 @ 8:13 pm | Edit This
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Re: #59: The fact that John Hunter is now ranting about the “fossil fuel industry”‘? means he has abandoned arguing the science.

Note to John Hunter. As Homer Simpson would say, “Boring”⤢’?

Talk of the “fossil fuel industry”‘? nefarious influence may carry weight in academia and in the hallowed halls of the EU and UN. But for people actually discussing the science it’s a boring waste of time.

Comment by Reid “€? 27 May 2006 @ 8:14 pm | Edit This
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Dave (#61):

> What the F difference would it make if John A were the Chairman
> of the Board of Exxon Mobil?

Well, if you don’t see the relevance, I’m not sure it would be worth trying to explain.

> Any (sic “€? I presume you mean “And”‘?) your continued slander of
> Steve’s connection with a former mining outfit which is now into
> oil exploration is still the same crock of excrement it always was.

You should read what I said, which was:

> A while ago, you were certainly less than open about your direct
> involvement with the fossil fuel industry, and the fact that the
> address on one of your papers is even the same as the address of
> an oil exploration company. You certainly didn’t do yourself any
> good by being coy at that time.

I can see no “slander”‘? in this “€? nothing that is untrue “€? perhaps you can.

As regards my statement “if it ever turns out that he has direct connections with those for whom the results of AGW denial would turn them an obvious profit, then I think you would agree that you will be in deep ***”‘? “€? surely you must agree with this. You may not think it is logical or fair, but, I think it is true nevertheless.

Comment by John Hunter “€? 27 May 2006 @ 8:23 pm | Edit This
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Reid (#63):

> The fact that John Hunter is now ranting about the “fossil fuel
> industry”‘? means he has abandoned arguing the science.

and

> But for people actually discussing the science it’s a boring
> waste of time.

Perhaps you hadn’t noticed, but this thread is not about science “€? it is about “dishonesty and withholding the truth”‘? (see top paragraph of Steve’s posting).

And I don’t think it is very helpful if you bury your head in the sand every time someone mentions the “fossil fuel industry”‘?.

Comment by John Hunter “€? 27 May 2006 @ 8:35 pm | Edit This

re: #64

Well, if you don’t see the relevance, I’m not sure it would be worth trying to explain.

Cop out!

I can see no “slander”‘? in this

The slander is in your continued claim that Steve wasn’t open about what his relationship was to that company.

Posted May 27, 10:19 PM | Edit Comment | Delete Comment “€? Edit Post “Enron Verdict”‘? | View Post

386. ET SidViscous
Posted May 27, 2006 at 10:35 PM | Permalink

John Can I expect that my package has been shipped. You said that you wouldn ship it this week.

387. John Hunter
Posted May 27, 2006 at 11:12 PM | Permalink

ET SidViscous (#388): I air-mailed the package last Monday.

388. ET SidViscous
Posted May 27, 2006 at 11:17 PM | Permalink

Thank you

389. Tom Brogle
Posted May 28, 2006 at 2:09 AM | Permalink

1)The Antarctic is cooling
2)Antarctic winter sea ice is expanding
3)The extent of the Antarctic ice is the same now as it was in 1913.
4)Nansen sailed further North in 1896 than he would have been able to in 2005
5)The temperature of the northern latitudes is similar now to that of the 1930s
6)Global temperatures are contaminated with
Urban Heat
7)Ice cores DO NOT show that CO2 causes GW
but that GW increases CO2
There’s more but that should do.
Finally No One can Foretell the Future.

390. John Hunter
Posted May 28, 2006 at 2:29 AM | Permalink

Tom Bogle (#391): I’m not going to waste my time dealing with every one, but let me ask you one question: How on Earth did we know the “extent of the Antarctic ice” in 1913?

All the Antarctic science stations which covered the Antarctic in 1913? The environmental satellites of 1913? The extensive seismic data from the Antarctic ice sheet in 1913?

You wish ….

391. JEM
Posted May 28, 2006 at 2:44 AM | Permalink

How on Earth did we know the “extent of the Antarctic ice” in 1913?

This sounds like a two-way street, does it not?

If we don’t know this answer, how can we tell if the Antarctic is warming, cooling or not changing?

The ball’s back in your court.

392. Peter Hearnden
Posted May 28, 2006 at 3:16 AM | Permalink

Re #393 Oi, remember Tom Brogle is claiming it’s cooling… I’d say we don’t know for sure either way – not enough stations.

Of course there a probably ways of discovering Antarctic sea ice extent (yup, proxies) but I guess you don’t approve of that sort of thing?

But, this means that Tom’s list is thus:

1 is debatable
2 compared to when?
3 possibly
4 Is a dubious claim imo – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fridtjof_Nansen
5 Again, a dubious claim
6 See the satellite data which also shows warming
7 But they unequivocally show a link – think about it, and that CO2 is higher now that for at least 600 000 years and that we are beyond question the source of the extra CO2.

So, not very convincing.

393. John Hunter
Posted May 28, 2006 at 4:18 AM | Permalink

JEM (#393): Sorry, JEM, I was just responding to Tom Brogle — if he wants to make a fool of himself, that’s fine, but I’m not going to indulge him.

394. Tom Brogle
Posted May 28, 2006 at 5:42 AM | Permalink

Real Climate says the Antartic is cooling.Giss data says the Antarctic is cooling apart from the peninsula which has been affected by volcanic action.
HOW MANY TIMES DO YOU NEED TO TOLD?
2) at 3% a year
3)Many explorers sailed south in the early years of the 20th century all kept records of the ice conditions.A description of the extent of sea ice in the Weddell sea can be found in the book “South” by Shackleton
a search on web revealed many other records of sea ice about this time.
4)In September 1893 sailing in the ship Fram Nansen encountered the pack at 78.50′ N, 133 37′ E on September 22, 1893 it froze in, , from which it emerged thirty-five months later on August 13, 1896, into open water near Spitzbergen.”
He could not have sailed his ship so far north at that longitude in 2005 the ice would have prevented him from doing so.
5)The Jones et al data for latitude range 70 to 90 N longitude range -180 to 180
6)The satellite and radiosonde data show less warming than the GISS average Global temperature.The method used by GISS to correct for Urban Heat will not do so, this can be demonstrated logically viz.
GISS admits that there are stations classified as rural when they are affected by urban heat and others as urban
when they are not affected by urban heat
and believes that these cancel each other out(email)
However the method they use is to correct the slope of the Urban stations to the slope of nearby rural stations.If any of those rural stations are affected by urban heat then this will increase the slope of the resultant temperature graph.
The biggest guarantee that urban heat affects the temperature record is GISS’s definition of a rural station as one with a population of less than 10,000 since single building or stretch of concrete can increase the temperature, the only way to measure the temperature rise over years is to keep conditions constant and very, very,few stations have been kept so.
The stations above 70N are mostly rural and the show little or no overall temperature increase between the 30s and the present.
7)The link is simply caused by the fact that CO2 is loses solubility in sea water as the temperature rises

395. John Hunter
Posted May 28, 2006 at 6:40 AM | Permalink

Tom Brogle (#396): I said in #392 that “I’m not going to waste my time dealing with every one” — and I’m still not. There are many places where you can information on these topics and I’m not wasting my time on them. As regards your point (3), I see by “Antarctic ice” you mean sea ice (I presume you know the difference?). So, could you say the same about Arctic sea ice? If not, why are you cherrypicking?

If you want to talk about sea level (the subject of this thread), I might discuss it with you.

396. tom brogle
Posted May 28, 2006 at 8:31 AM | Permalink

If the Artic warms and the Antartic cools it would be evidence not of AGW but of the Malankovitch theory.
All my points deal with the AGW theory so you will have to respond to them all in order to refute my stand .It won’t be a waste of time, you may become more scientifically enlightened.
You might even get some inkling of how the scientific method works
and perhaps as the weather cools in the next few years you could reconsider your view of AGW.
As to sea levels I’ve said before that I rather believe what a qualified sea captain said in 1840 than someone whose sole aim is to confirm AGW and who attempted to conceal the data which he says proves it.
Iv’e seen too many papers confirming AGW that are basically illogical.

397. John Hunter
Posted May 28, 2006 at 5:41 PM | Permalink

Brogle the Bore (#398):

> All my points deal with the AGW theory so you will have
> to respond to them all in order to refute my stand.

I don’t have to respond to anything from you, thank you very much.

> As to sea levels I’ve said before that I rather believe
> what a qualified sea captain said in 1840 than someone
> whose sole aim is to confirm AGW and who attempted to
> conceal the data which he says proves it.

The last refuge of a fool is to continually parrot what John Daly said about Port Arthur ……

398. John Hunter
Posted May 28, 2006 at 5:51 PM | Permalink

And finally, for Brogle the Bore (#398): If you want to try and impress us all with your deep knowledge of climate, you should at least spell “Milankovitch” correctly …..

399. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 28, 2006 at 5:53 PM | Permalink

John H, please be more polite in Troll’s Corner.

400. TCO
Posted May 28, 2006 at 6:22 PM | Permalink

1. Let them fight.

2. Don’t read this thread. Do err…um…err…other things! ;)

P.S.

http://redwing.hutman.net/~mreed/warriorshtm/nanny.htm

401. Terry
Posted May 28, 2006 at 8:25 PM | Permalink

400 comments and counting.

Come on guys, lets get it to 1,000. I know I am doing my part here.

402. kim
Posted May 28, 2006 at 8:31 PM | Permalink

The trick to reach a thousand is for Steve to quit posting. Without further distractions, the regulars will keep up on one thread or another. It wouldn’t take much more than a week.
=========================================

403. Posted May 28, 2006 at 9:06 PM | Permalink

If a scientist ignores the attacks on them here, they are derided as a wimp. If they defend themselves they get called a troll.

404. John Hunter
Posted May 28, 2006 at 9:07 PM | Permalink

Steve (#401): On the day when you called MBH98 a “Little Shop of Horrors”, which bit of my posts to Brogle the Bore did you find impolite?

405. TCO
Posted May 28, 2006 at 9:15 PM | Permalink

Tim, better to be carried by six, then tried by twelve. Fight!

406. TCO
Posted May 28, 2006 at 9:20 PM | Permalink

John, you’re just jealous that Steve is smarter than you.

407. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 28, 2006 at 9:50 PM | Permalink

John Hunter, the most recent technical thing that John A did on the site was to install the tex-editor for math and before that to update the Spam Karma. The server for this site is in Vancouver. To the extent that the server is operated, they operate it and I sometimes deal with them. There is no “site manager” required for blogs. someone with a little extra experience can save some time and I’m happy to have the help from time to time.

So why would I keep track of John A. Having said that, the last time he was away for a while his mother was very ill. For all you know, your screaming for attention could be in very poor taste. I’m sure that he’ll be in touch at some point. For you to think that his life revolves around responding to your petty demands is self-centeredness of a repulsive kind.

I don’t think that he’s got your data, so other than arguing some more about terms of data access, I’m not sure what the two of you have to talk about.

Even if he were able to get the data, in my opinion, it would take to assimilate it and have anything worthwhile to say, if indeed there ever was anything worthwhile to say.

As I understand it, you archived the data only a few weeks ago, so I presume that the thread has had some positive effect.

408. TCO
Posted May 28, 2006 at 9:55 PM | Permalink

You’re ignoring the benefits of the cage match both in generating combat for those who want to watch it and for excluding the silliness to it’s own corner.

P.s. [more gruel please] May we have a thermo thread? :)[/more gruel please]

409. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 28, 2006 at 10:03 PM | Permalink

#411. Agreed on the first part. I was thinking of adopting a similar policy for Carl Christensen.

410. TCO
Posted May 28, 2006 at 10:34 PM | Permalink

He’s not that bad really Steve. I think jae blathers on just as bad for “our” side. yeah he’s a numkull and mildly aggressive. But he’s not out of control and much of the upset with him is from people who don’t like his views. Leave him be. I am the ubertroll.

411. Dave Dardinger
Posted May 28, 2006 at 10:37 PM | Permalink

John H & Tim L

What would you consider the points on which you disagree with Steve M, for which he trollifies you? I submit that they are not questions concerning science, and they’re the only ones which would exempt a scientist from the same sort of evaluation as any other human. IOW, and while I do have science degrees I’m not a working scientist so I’m just an “any other human” here. Discuss actual science and Steve, and other regulars here including myself, will treat you with respect bordering on reverence, while bring up John A’s identity or Michaels & McKitrick for the hundredth time and you’re just a troll like Peter Hearnden or Carl Christensen.

412. Terry
Posted May 28, 2006 at 10:38 PM | Permalink

TCO:

Tim, better to be carried by six, then tried by twelve. Fight!

Comment by TCO “¢’¬? 28 May 2006 @ 9:15 pm

You got this backwards. Did you know that and this was some sort of subtle joke?

413. TCO
Posted May 28, 2006 at 10:40 PM | Permalink

No. I was a bottle of wine in.

414. Terry
Posted May 28, 2006 at 10:41 PM | Permalink

#408:

Hijack: asking uncomfortable questions, like “why don’t you know what has happened to your site manager when he diasppears for a week?”

Are we REALLY debating whether Steve is derelict because he doesn’t know where John A is? Or is this some bizarre meta-parody of blog inanity?

415. kim
Posted May 28, 2006 at 10:42 PM | Permalink

I think it fits. He’d rather die over a point his politics has dragged him to, than let it be tried and decided by peers.
======================================

416. Terry
Posted May 28, 2006 at 10:44 PM | Permalink

#411:

You’re ignoring the benefits of the cage match both in generating combat for those who want to watch it and for excluding the silliness to it’s own corner.

#412:

#411. Agreed on the first part. I was thinking of adopting a similar policy for Carl Christensen.

Carl’s Corner! Non-stop ranting and nyah-nyahs. The place where serious scientists go to unwind after a hard day at the computer keyboard! Sounds great.

417. TCO
Posted May 28, 2006 at 10:45 PM | Permalink

Now that you are all here. Run over to one of the science related threads and start commenting there.

418. tom brogle
Posted May 28, 2006 at 11:00 PM | Permalink

I said earlier
“I for one am out to prove the likes of PH CC & SB wrong.The trouble is they nitpick or ignore my telling points.
I should have added or try to belittle me with insutts .
The points imake are serious criticisms of AGW.
You appear to be ignoring them, apparently believlng the the AGW theory is beyond reproach .You zannot prove that CO2 causes GW, it is up to you to disprove my premises or you lose the argument.

419. John Hunter
Posted May 29, 2006 at 12:15 AM | Permalink

Brogle the Bore (#421):

> You cannot prove that CO2 causes GW, it is up to you
> to disprove my premises or you lose the argument.

I wasn’t having an argument with you about AGW. If you want an argument about it, write some papers on it and participate in the IPCC process.

420. John Hunter
Posted May 29, 2006 at 12:31 AM | Permalink

Steve (#410):

> As I understand it, you archived the data only a few weeks ago, so
> I presume that the thread has had some positive effect.

No — I said in an earlier posting that I would do in my own time — and I did.

421. TCO
Posted May 29, 2006 at 12:59 AM | Permalink

Ok, time to leave the pigpen.

422. Tom Brogle
Posted May 29, 2006 at 2:31 AM | Permalink

S.B There are two others apart from you trying to make my ideas look foolish.
Are CC and PH prepared to continue this post?

423. tom brogle
Posted May 29, 2006 at 3:58 AM | Permalink

I wonder how many other readers of this post agree with Steve Broom’s opinion of me.I might be boring to him but to me he a bombast.

424. MrPete
Posted May 29, 2006 at 6:53 AM | Permalink

Steve H (#367) “I read what you say, but I think it is bollocks. I’ve already said why.”

Actually, you haven’t.

I provided a serious response to your questions, crossing the multi-disciplinary bridge by making use of analogy from my own field. As have some others in this (ridiculously low S/N) thread.

I’ve again scanned the thread. I’m certainly quite capable of missing things at my (advanced?? ;)) age, but I can’t find where you’ve addressed my main points. In fact, I’m the only one who bothered responding to your fourth question in any way. I certainly wasn’t repeating what others have said.

– I articulated a way of comparing the care with which engineering vs (climate or other) sciences check things.

– To your Q#1, I provided a different take both on the probability of wrong policy decisions, and also showed something of how implausible is the analysis in the “influence” estimate published at ipcc_stats_3.pdf. (Not that it matters a whit with respect to the truth of my claims, as nobody likes appeal to authority-of-self better than any other appeal to authority, yet…) I have some personal and professional experience with such things.

– Your Q#2/#3 relate to the value of audit. I responded based on my experience in observing the consequences of little/no auditing in the developing world.

Clearly, the ranting that’s going on over this is further evidence that climate science is a “developing world” area of science. As with business in the developing world, climate science apparently is largely missing, and also lacks appreciation for the value of, solid process and methodology controls, verifications, quality tests and so forth.

John H, I don’t come to that conclusion with any pleasure. I’m not here to tear you or anyone else down. I would dearly LOVE to see you and your whole community take this to another level.

Steve M is contributing an incredibly valuable service to that end. And he’s doing it on his own dime. Unfortunately, it’s apparent that many in climate science are not yet ready to appreciate that fact. Various sociocultural factors — including the wierd mix of public/private/formal/informal relationships and communications involved (including this blog) make it hard imagine a good way through to the goal.

I’m not particularly fazed by any of this. In the NGO world, it took three years of quiet one-on-one mentoring for an experienced western leader to convince a (wonderful! mature!) developing world leader of the honest value of independent auditing.

Hopefully, someone in the future will benefit from this thread, even if few of those reading today have any intent of thoughtfully considering what anyone has said.

425. Posted May 29, 2006 at 8:42 AM | Permalink

Dave D, this blog is full of abuse from the cheer squad because they follow Steve’s lead. It’s telling that you accuse me of trolling by bringing up Michaels and McKitrick a hundred times when in fact I’ve never brought them up here. It is untrue to claim that Steve would be polite if I discussed the hockey stick with him. In fact, when I have, he has become even more abusive than he usually is.

426. cytochrome_sea
Posted May 29, 2006 at 9:25 AM | Permalink

Did Dave Dard. actually bring up Michaels and McKitrick 100 times? That’s at least a claim that can be checked.
If that’s inaccurate, well… honestly, with all of the other # claims, what difference would it make?

427. Jean S
Posted May 29, 2006 at 9:35 AM | Permalink

re #429 (Tim Lambert): When I have talked with Steve privately, he has been even nicer than here. With some private communications I’ve had with him, he has very promptly answered all the questions I have raised, and even shared some of his thoughts about general matters relating to the hockey stick. Strange that he is not doing the same with you, you have any idea why is that?

BTW, since I have not discussed with you before, but I’ve been following your commentary for a longer time, I have to admit that I have barely seen a comment from you actually containing some relavant substance. Actually, to be honest, following your commentary on other sites and reading RC was the thing that got me interested in Steve’s work in the first place. I never seen so politically loaded pseudo-science discussion anywhere else before. So if any of my comments have helped Steve in any way, you can take a partial credit for that. It seems to me that you and your cheer squad do not seem to comprihend a simple fact: when one is actually doing science and is rather immune to the US/UK/Australia-centered political propaganda, one let the facts speak for themselves. In the case of you, a certain William C., and actually the most of RC, the SNR is rather low after the political BS is filtered out.

428. Posted May 29, 2006 at 9:55 AM | Permalink

What’s funny is that the cheer squad will agree with Jean S that there is no science at RealClimate.

429. cytochrome_sea
Posted May 29, 2006 at 10:15 AM | Permalink

Jean S. Since RC has so many authors, it is difficult to fault them all. Some might not even receive the messages that do not make it through the “filter”…
However, some of the (current) authors (as far as I’ve found) will accept observational results. Will Connelly is the example I’m thinking of. Now, I did see his comments on wikipedia, I remember something about “misleading, but I don’t care?” type attitude. However, despite the skeptical concerns we might have (me included?) he seems to me to be a rather decent guy… if u drag it out of him he’ll be honest ;)
(he’s always been very courteous to me, :)

I’m sure there are a few others, but I’m time limited here… no need to discuss Mann? ;)

430. Dave Dardinger
Posted May 29, 2006 at 11:22 AM | Permalink

What’s funny is that the cheer squad will agree with Jean S that there is no science at RealClimate.

Jean didn’t say there was NO science at RC. He said the Signal to Noise ratio is low [even] after subtracting political BS. Is it that difficult for you to understand the difference between little and none?

For that matter, was it that difficult for you to understand in the last sentence of my message earlier that I was a) discussing a hypothetical and therefore that the “you”s in that sentence were meant to be collective type you, not a personal you?… Well maybe it was. I apologize and will try to take your limitations into consideration in the future.

BTW, just when was it you were discussing the Hockey Stick technically and Steve M dissed you? I sure don’t remember it.

431. Posted May 29, 2006 at 11:53 AM | Permalink

Ah, so you knew what you wrote was wrong and you your excuse was that it was a “hypothetical”? You’re even worse than Steve.

432. Terry
Posted May 29, 2006 at 1:35 PM | Permalink

Tim, Tim, Tim.

The first time I saw your website, I was quite impressed by it. You seemed to have some genuine scientific ammunition with which to attack people like Milloy. It made quite an impression, and made me much more wary of Milloy.

But, the more I see of your posts, the more my respect dwindles. There is almost nothing left but snark in your posts.

To maintain credibility, you have to at least occastionally acknowledge some obvious truths. Why not start with an easy one? Can you agree that RC appears to have seriously screwed up (at least some aspects) of the recent Ritson post? C’mon, give it a try.

433. John Hunter
Posted May 29, 2006 at 6:41 PM | Permalink

To all who would like to believe that I and my co-workers are “in the pocket of the Australian government”:

See:

http://www.thewest.com.au/20060530/news/general/tw-news-general-home-sto134290.html

434. Michael Jankowski
Posted May 29, 2006 at 7:15 PM | Permalink

you dopes equivocating your myths of “evil scientists making false papers” with the Enron scandal (all George Bush buddies I may add)

Really? All the Enron folks were Bush buddies? The same goes for the Arthur Anderson accountants? And the brokers from Merrill Lynch? Everyone involved in those scandals was a “Bush buddy?”

Ken Lay gave a world of dough to both Repubs and Dems. Even a cursory internet search will find ties between Lay and Clinton. And you want to know why Enron was more in favor of the Repubs (while playing both sides, of course)? Because they stood to make more money under the typical Repub climate treaty than a Dem one.

You are one trasparent troll. I assume it escapes you that the post here tend to be *gasp* slanted toward neither party.

435. Dave Dardinger
Posted May 29, 2006 at 10:50 PM | Permalink

Ah, so you knew what you wrote was wrong and you your excuse was that it was a “hypothetical”? You’re even worse than Steve.

And this is why you get no respect here.

436. James Lane
Posted May 29, 2006 at 11:46 PM | Permalink

Lambert is perhaps the most mean-spirited and humourless individual ï⽢©have encountered in the blogosphere.

It is impossible to engage him in scientific debate, because as soon as asked an inconvenient question he either disappears or refuses to answer. In the instance above the excuse was that he wouldn’t answer because of some perceived slight or “misrepresentation”.

A few days ago, on another thread it was because he “wasn’t interested” in r2.

He’s a waste of time.

437. Graham Jackson
Posted May 30, 2006 at 1:39 AM | Permalink

I have read Brogle’s comments on the relationship between CO2 and temperature in ice cores and I came across:

http://www.uni-leipzig.de/~meteo/MUDELSEE/publ/pdf/lag.pdf

which confirms that CO2 lags behind the temperature rise and thus is unlikely to be driving the temp but rather the reverse.

438. Larry Huldén
Posted May 30, 2006 at 3:54 AM | Permalink

I feel that both Carl Christensen and John Hunter have been quite informative in this scientific discussion. By the way, what is a cheerleader ? Is Tim Lambert such a person ?

439. Jean S
Posted May 30, 2006 at 4:37 AM | Permalink

re #442: Yes, I agree. Especially, Carl’s posts have tought me a bunch of new English words and phrases like (just from this post): “corporate whoremasters”, “right-wing blowhards”, “dick around with statistics”, “relegated to the dungheap”, “born-again RepugliKKKans”, “you Ayn Randroids”, “you dimwits”, “you needle-dicks”, “similarly deluded corporate whore-bags”, “sellout to the corporate interests”, “asshole”, oh sorry, “asshole” was already in my vocabulary :)

440. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 30, 2006 at 6:57 AM | Permalink

#443. Jean S, these are technical terms used in climate science.

441. Posted May 30, 2006 at 6:59 AM | Permalink

I suggest you clowns turn off the computer and read a book and/or papers, and learn something. It’s obvious that circle-jerking & back-slapping on a blog is not the means to enlightenment!

442. John Hunter
Posted May 30, 2006 at 7:17 AM | Permalink

Graham Jackson (#441): It isn’t nearly as simple as you or Tom Brogle are suggesting. For example, see:

http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2006/05/positive-feedbacks-from-the-carbon-cycle/

(remove any carriage returns/spaces from this URL)

443. John Hunter
Posted May 30, 2006 at 8:08 AM | Permalink

Hissink (#448): You don’t have to read the realclimate commentary, you just have to read the papers it cites — plus the other modern papers on the subject.

444. John Hunter
Posted May 30, 2006 at 8:16 AM | Permalink

Steve (#410): I keep coming back to this posting and it just doesn’t ring true. Many times on this blog, I have referred to John A as your site manager and you have not complained. He also had the email address climateaudit AT gmail.com (see http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=255 for confirmation). As far as I recall, when I used to click on John A’s name, an email to climateaudit AT gmail.com was opened. John A sounded pretty much like a “site manager” to me.

However, now you say “There is no ‘site manager’ required for blogs” and you imply John A just helps “from time to time”. You ask “So why would I keep track of John A?” — one good answer, my dear Steve, is because he uses (or at least, used to use) “climateaudit” as his email address. Now, if I click on his name, nothing happens — if I look at the HTML source (say, for http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=669#comment-28113) the “John A” reference is to ‘http://’ rel=’external nofollow’ — sorry, my HTML isn’t good enough for me to understand this, but it sure as hell isn’t climateaudit AT gmail.com.

Come on Steve, let’s be open and honest:

WHAT HAVE YOU DONE WITH JOHN A?

and have you been tampering with the links to John A’s name (i.e. removing the reference to climateaudit AT gmail.com)?

445. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 30, 2006 at 12:03 PM | Permalink

#451. I haven’t done anything with John A. He’s welcome here and, if he’s not here, there’s probably a reason. He has no obligation to me and certainly none to you to account for what he’s doing. I haven’t done anything with the links to John A’s name. As I mentioned at the top, I try to stay away from this thread so presume nothing from whether I reply or don’t reply to anything on it. I don’t read all your comments as I can’t recall the last time that you said anything interesting. If I don’t pick every spitball off the wall or don’t pick at every scab, assume nothing from it.

446. John Hunter
Posted May 30, 2006 at 3:37 PM | Permalink

Hissink (#452, #453): Thanks for admitting you don’t read the scientific literature — it explains a lot and means people will now be even less likely to waste time having discussions with you. If #449 made any sense, I guess someone might answer it (the isolated quotation mark doesn’t help).

Posted May 30, 2006 at 4:05 PM | Permalink

Enjoying yourself in your own thread, John Hunter?

448. Tom Brogle
Posted May 31, 2006 at 12:31 AM | Permalink

John Hunter
In the Vostock Ice core data
If CO2 was driving the temperature what process stopped the temperature from rising when the CO2 level was at its highest?
If the CO2 is driving the temperature with ampliflcation (a la Real Climate) the rising slope of the temperature graph would be concave, it isn’t.
In fact every analysis of the data indicates that the temperature is driving the CO2 up.
I tried calculating the factor for CO2 vs temp allowing for some “other unknown effect”( Real Climate) to cause the initial CO2 rise.The result is very variable. I tried including albedo effects, that didn’t work either.
It was this exercise that convinced me that AGW was just BS.
I tried to get my data published as a letter but my attempt must have been too amatuerish,it couldn’t have that the magazine was biassed.Funny though I have been published before.

449. John Hunter
Posted May 31, 2006 at 1:19 AM | Permalink

Tom Brogle (#458): The point that you seem to miss is that the dominant physics going on during the recent glacial cycles was different from the dominant physics of AGW (although you can estimate the climate sensitivity for AGW from what happened during the glacial cycles if you take due account of the feedbacks — see http://www.columbia.edu/~jeh1/newschool_text_and_slides.pdf for an excellent discussion).

If you need to be convinced that the dominant physics is different, just look at the ratio of variations of CO2 concentration to variations of global-average temperature (assuming that the variations of global-average temperature are roughly 0.5 x the variations of Vostok temperature — a not unrealistic assumption):

Over the last glacial cycles (from Vostok data): 18 ppmv/deg C

From 1881-1978 (from GISS data and data from Law Dome): 90 ppmv/deg C

A factor of FIVE difference — so the dominant physics is DIFFERENT (the glacial cycles were not driven by smoking chimneys).

So, why does CO2 leading or lagging temperature during the last glacial cycles “prove” or “disprove” AGW?

It’s all much more complicated than your simple model of A forcing B, even with your “other unknown effect”. The failure of your model certainly doesn’t say anything about AGW.

450. Jean S
Posted May 31, 2006 at 5:40 AM | Permalink

John H: Let’s start my Karma teaching by saying: John A is back (great! I also missed him), are you happy now?

451. Andre
Posted May 31, 2006 at 6:22 AM | Permalink

Re #457 Tom Brogle, nails on the head. The specific shapes of both the CO2 spikes and the isotope spikes as seen here during the last transition are way too identical to make sense, especially the level off half way.

If one was causing the other then a physical lagging system would have distorted the output signal compared to the input signal, acting as a band filter. None of the signals shows those delay characterics. This would mean that both the isotopes and the CO2 spike would need to be near simultaneous. Yet they aren’t. Unless Jouzel et al managed to change physical laws then the most logical explanation is that the chronologies are based on erratic assumptions. And this is very well possible since these timescales have only very few hard data points and are loaded with assumptions.

452. Steve McIntyre
Posted May 31, 2006 at 6:44 AM | Permalink

John H, I’m getting tired of baseless insinuations and spitballs being thrown by you. I’m getting tired of stupid crap from Carl Christensen. If you want to talk topics, fine. Otherwise I’m going to start hitting the spam button. I’m not going to snip anymore because that doesn’t go into the spam formula.

If you think that I’m making money out of this or that doing this is in my financial self-interest, you are completely wrong. Nothing could be further from the truth. Financially, this is an absurd thing for me to be doing. You’re not getting "close" to anything. I’m not interested in arguing this with you.

453. Louis Hissink
Posted May 31, 2006 at 8:02 AM | Permalink

# 455

John Hunter,

I do read the literature, so how on earth you conclude I don’t makes one wonder.

You argue like a Jesuit, absolutely certain, a certainty which might be plausible in a remote monastic environment but certainly not in the world Steve and I live in.

Ice core measurements use uncracked ice because such ice has not suffered volatile loss. Cracked ice has and is not measured.

Hence measurement volatiles of uncracked ice merely documents the ability of ice at STP to contain volatiles. Hence the historic value of 280 ppm CO2 in ice is an indication of the saturation level that ice has wrt CO2 at surface P and T.

Enough, I side with Steve concerning your typical lefty ad homs.

454. Louis Hissink
Posted May 31, 2006 at 8:05 AM | Permalink

# 463

Whoops – left out an “of”.

Kowtows appropriately.

455. kim
Posted May 31, 2006 at 8:23 AM | Permalink

Might not there be a way to estimate the amount of CO2 that man’s effort has released into the atmosphere, historically, and then, accounting for buffering and other factors, see how much of the measured CO2 rise is from human endeavour. That might help settle the chicken/egg thing about temperature and CO2. Too complicated to estimate? How would I know?
==================

456. Louis Hissink
Posted May 31, 2006 at 8:43 AM | Permalink

# 457

Kim,

which implies someone is measuring it.

No none is.

No measurement, no data, no theory.

457. Tom Brogle
Posted May 31, 2006 at 1:12 PM | Permalink

If CO2 didn’t cause any warming at all you wouldn’t have to say that the “dominant physics”have changed. The very fact that CO2 has two radically different rates of warming would not give any scientist worth his salt confidence in AGW theory.
Consider if the ice ages were caused in the way the Milankovith theory states, modified by albedo effects,and the length of sunspot cycle has influenced the temperatures over the last 200 years as Butler at Armagh Observatory demonstrated
There certainly wouldn’t be as many unanswered questions in that climate model as there is the AGW Hypothesis
I refer you to my # 396 for a few of those (there are many more)
Niether would so much money be wasted by scientists trying to prove an untenable theory but then you would not have a job.

458. jae
Posted May 31, 2006 at 7:52 PM | Permalink

re 413: TCO, You have a much higher opinion of yourself than I do. You come across as a “genius” who has done absolutely nothing but comment and bitch. Show me something substantial, you carper f***.

459. TCO
Posted May 31, 2006 at 8:15 PM | Permalink

Fair observation. Maybe you can just take me for what I am and get the value out of that.

460. John Hunter
Posted May 31, 2006 at 9:51 PM | Permalink

Tom Brogle (#462):

> If CO2 didn’t cause any warming at all you wouldn’t
> have to say that the “dominant physics” have
> changed. The very fact that CO2 has two radically
> different rates of warming would not give any
> scientist worth his salt confidence in AGW theory.

I don’t know what this is supposed to mean, expect that it shows your total lack of understanding of the problem. If you radically change the type of forcing on a system (e.g. from orbital forcing to adding greenhouse gases) you are going to finish up with a very different balance of terms in the defining equations. That is what I mean by the dominant physics being different. As I advised, go and read:

http://www.columbia.edu/~jeh1/newschool_text_and_slides.pdf

461. jae
Posted May 31, 2006 at 9:57 PM | Permalink

Uhhh, Hunter, that link has no substance, whatsoever. Looks like the “Gospel” to me. Post something substative next time.

462. John Hunter
Posted May 31, 2006 at 9:59 PM | Permalink

Louis (#457):

> Hence measurement volatiles of uncracked
> ice merely documents the ability of ice
> at STP to contain volatiles. Hence the
> historic value of 280 ppm CO2 in ice is
> an indication of the saturation level
> that ice has wrt CO2 at surface P and T.

As I’ve said before if you continually chant this stuff like a mantra you presumably get to believe it yourself. So if there is something magic about “the historic value of 280 ppm CO2″ and that it is just related to “the saturation level that ice has wrt CO2 at surface P and T” please answer the following:

1. Why was the CO2 level less than 200 ppm during the last few glacial maxima?

2. Where are the papers which show that 280 is value for “the saturation level that ice has wrt CO2 at surface P and T”?

463. John Hunter
Posted May 31, 2006 at 10:01 PM | Permalink

jae (#469):

> Uhhh, Hunter, that link has no substance,
> whatsoever. Looks like the “Gospel” to
> me. Post something substative next time.

O.K., so you’d rather I referenced something written by idiots rather than experts?

464. tom brogle
Posted Jun 1, 2006 at 3:51 AM | Permalink

John Hunter
“If you radically change the type of forcing on a system (e.g. from orbital forcing to adding greenhouse gases) you are going to finish up with a very different balance of terms in the defining equations.”
But we haven’t changed the forcing, CO2 is supposed to
be the dominant forcing with a small contribution from orbital forcing in all the models of the climate ancient and modern.
You cannot say because humanity has increased CO2 by 33% that physics has changed.
I worked in industry using relatively simple models to find correlations between the quality of products and the producttion method any so called correlation with an effect 5 times greater under one set of conditions than under another set of conditions could be safely ruled out.
It is getting more and more like that fairy tale where the small boy says “He’s got no clothes on”.
There is hope that as more scientists and politicians are appraised of the minutae of climatologists case for AGW they will kick it into touch

465. John Hunter
Posted Jun 1, 2006 at 4:41 AM | Permalink

Brogle the Bore (#472):

Instead of saying more and more silly things, why don’t you tell me where you read your information about orbital forcing, CO2 forcing and the glacial cycles? Do the people who write this stuff have any qualifications in atmospheric physics or climate science?

466. Tom Brogle
Posted Jun 1, 2006 at 5:04 AM | Permalink

Re 473 John
I suppose you can get plenty of information about that on the Real Climate web site.I am sure Gavin and Michael on that site are eminently qualified to pontificate on AGW.
Instead of trying to tell me that my scources are not impeccable, adress my point that CO2 should be ruled out as a major climate forcer because it’s radiative etc. properties should be constant and your evidence shows they are not.

467. John Hunter
Posted Jun 1, 2006 at 5:14 AM | Permalink

Brogle the Bore (#474): We believe that the glacial cycles were forced by orbital variations and amplified by positive feedbacks. AGW is forced by increasing greenhouse gases (are you trying to have us believe that we have not increased atmospheric greenhouse gases?) which is again modified by feedbacks. This is explained in numerous papers. You’re wasting my time.

468. Tom Brogle
Posted Jun 1, 2006 at 5:27 AM | Permalink

But the properties of CO2 should not have not changed radically in the process but you are telling me that they have.
You are wasting your own time. Isn’t it time for you to go bed?

469. John Hunter
Posted Jun 1, 2006 at 5:30 AM | Permalink

Brogle the Bore (#476): I get it — you think that the Earth system behaves like a simple linear system where there should be a constant ratio between CO2 and temperature.

Well, have I got news for you … it doesn’t!

470. Tom Brogle
Posted Jun 1, 2006 at 5:35 AM | Permalink

I agree its not linear but a fivefold increase (apparnently istantaneouly) is stretching it too much

471. Posted Jun 1, 2006 at 8:26 AM | Permalink

There is a post containing analysis of John Hunter’s dataset here http://landshape.org/enm/?p=75.

It uses an R package I have started developing called Audit 0.1 (at http://landshape.org/surf/?p=17).

Here is the first version of an R module for checking geophysical data for “results management’. As the expected distribution of digit frequencies is some cases is described by Benford’s Law, the observed frequency can be compared for deviations from the ideal expected distribution.

472. Kenneth Blumenfeld
Posted Jun 1, 2006 at 11:54 AM | Permalink

No comparison, period.

Please people, I much prefer lurking. Just stop using piss-poor historical metaphors and you won’t have to hear from me.

473. John Hunter
Posted Jun 1, 2006 at 4:51 PM | Permalink

Tom Brogle (#474):

> I agree its not linear but a fivefold increase (apparnently istantaneouly)
> is stretching it too much

(a) Why do you say it is “apparnently istantaneouly” (sic)? Perhaps you are just saying that the rate of change which we have seen in the last century or so is unprecedented in recent geological time?

(b) Why do you say it “is stretching it too much”? You are an expert on nonlinear systems? Or do you mean that it is a bit inconvenient for your crackpot ideas?

474. John Hunter
Posted Jun 1, 2006 at 4:57 PM | Permalink

Sadlov (#476): “Different dominant physics” doesn’t mean “one set of physics laws applying to the so called “pre industrial era” and a different one applying to the present”. It means different terms in the equations being dominant. Why don’t you go and read up on a bit of applied maths or physics, and keep the homespun history to yourself?

475. John Hunter
Posted Jun 1, 2006 at 8:45 PM | Permalink

David (#475): Thanks for that, but I fear the children have become bored with this game and gone to play elsewhere. From what I can see, the last thing on Port Arthur from anyone (other than you or I) was around 80 posts ago …..

476. tom brogle
Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 12:10 AM | Permalink

It is not me that says
“that the rate of change which we have seen in the last century or so is unprecedented in recent geological time”
it is AGW protagonists such as yourself.
My belief agrees with recorded history which people such as yourself have to modify in order to maintain your theory.Two years ago it was said that the Medieval Warm Period and the Little Ice Age didn’t happen.Nowadays it seems that the AGWers are tending to accept that the LIA occurred but they still maintain the fiction that the historically recorded warmer climate in most places on earth happened at different times, this is a nonsense.
It is you who supports “crackpot” ideas, at least there is solid research behind mine which you have to belittle because you can’t accept them and keep your faith in AGW.
This web site has shown over and over again that the Hockey Stick is a artifact of statistics by a self proclaimed non statistician.
You obviously still accept it, how crackpot is that?

477. John Hunter
Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 1:59 AM | Permalink

Brogle the Bore (#481): I was wondering how long it would take you to get back to the “hockeystick is broken” mantra. Firstly, I disagree that “two years ago it was said that the Medieval Warm Period and the Little Ice Age didn’t happen” (MBH99 indicated both in their reconstruction (have you ever actually read them?)).

But, much more importantly, even if you believe that EVERY “hockeystick” or “bent-hockeystick” is the fabrication of a conspiracy of untruthful scientists, it is irrelevant to what we have been discussing: which was the CO2/temperature ratio during the last few glacial cycles and during the 20th century. Proxy reconstructions over the last millennium have no bearing on this whatsoever.

If you could only escape from having to say “this web site has shown …..” (i.e. you should get out more, and read what other people have done), you might understand a bit more about basic physics and climate science.

478. tom brogle
Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 2:39 AM | Permalink

1)It must have been considerably warmer in the MWP than it is now and a good deal cooler during the LIA which could account for shrinking glaciers.
2)My whole point is that CO2 is not raising the temperature(which is within natural bounds).
3)I don’t think it’s logical to claim CO2 is raising the temperature when its present activity works out to be 5 times greater than in times past.What mechanism do AGWers propose to account for that? amplification by water vapour?
3)”(is the fabrication of a conspiracy of untruthful scientists,)” I wonder if Steve will read your calumny.
Perhaps he is so fed up with your puerile arguments that he has stopped reading this thread.

479. John A
Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 2:55 AM | Permalink

John Hunter:

Firstly, I disagree that “two years ago it was said that the Medieval Warm Period and the Little Ice Age didn’t happen”

Well Michael Mann clearly stated as recently as last year in his embarrassingly over-the-top hagiography in “Scientific American” (which I wrote about here that

For instance, skeptics often cite the Little Ice Age and Medieval Warming Period as pieces of evidence not reflected in the hockey stick, yet these extremes are examples of regional, not global, phenomena.

Mann certainly denied that the MWP and LIA were global events, which is why his NH and global reconstructions didn’t have them.

Hunter should really try to keep up with the science.

480. John Hunter
Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 2:57 AM | Permalink

Burble the Brainless (#483):

> I don’t think it’s logical to claim CO2 is raising the temperature when
> its present activity works out to be 5 times greater than in times past.
> What mechanism do AGWers propose to account for that? amplification
> by water vapour?

If you’d just read the literature (e.g. the Hansen URL I gave you above), you might just learn something and stop asking dumb questions.

Have you noticed how everyone else has lost interest in this discussion? You don’t seem to be getting a lot of support!

Steve: Please stop these juvenile epithets. I will mark as spam any future posts in which you do this.

481. tom brogle
Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 3:07 AM | Permalink

I’ve read the said piece, I wouldn’t be asking questions if it aswered them. Instead of calling them dumb try answering.

482. John Hunter
Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 5:12 AM | Permalink

John A (#484): So, you disagree that “MBH99 indicated both in their reconstruction” (i.e. the MWP and the “LIA”)? I guess this shows that you too can’t have read the paper.

It IS true that MBH99 noted both weak signs of the MWP and the LIA in their reconstruction. It is ALSO true that, at the time of the IPCC TAR in 2001, the MWP and the LIA were generally thought to be primarily regional and not global phenomena (which doesn’t mean they couldn’t show a weak global signal — we’re just getting into semantics here). I do not know what the forthcoming AR4 will have to say about this, I would hope that the science has moved on a bit, but I strongly suspect it will still say that the MWP was not as warm or extensive as the 20th century warming.

Which again is a neat diversion from the discussion of CO2/temperature ratios that Brogle was originally trying to push.

483. John Hunter
Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 5:50 AM | Permalink

Tom Brogle (#486): Well if you’ve read it, then you presumably understand how the energy budget can be understood both during the recent glacial cycles and now, in terms of an effect due to CO2 and a cooling due to reflection of sunlight due to ice (see Chart 6). And where, do you ask does the extra CO2 come from during the interglacials? — from a feedback due to things like outgassing of the warmer oceans. If you work out the climate sensivity from the glacial cycles, then that climate sensitivity gives a pretty good prediction of the temperature rise during the 20th century (see Chart 13).

I guess, if you’ve never tried playing with a system with positive feedback, you’ve never realised how unstable and counter-intuitive it can be. Hansen notes this in the text for Chart 11 (“Therefore climate change on these time scales is very sensitive to even small forcings”). Perhaps you should play with an electronic circuit with positive feedback …..

484. John A
Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 6:12 AM | Permalink

Hunter:

I guess, if you’ve never tried playing with a system with positive feedback, you’ve never realised how unstable and counter-intuitive it can be. Hansen notes this in the text for Chart 11 (“Therefore climate change on these time scales is very sensitive to even small forcings”). Perhaps you should play with an electronic circuit with positive feedback …..

It should be obvious even to you, that if any positive feedback predominated in the climate system then none of us would be here. The positive feedbacks exist entirely in the minds of climate modellers and nowhere in the real world.

If you’ve actually experimented with any electronic circuit with positive feedback, you’ll find that its so incredibly sensitive to any perturbation that it rapidly goes haywire. The climate system is dominated by negative feedbacks, which is why we’re here. Without those negative feedbacks, you get something like the planet Venus, regardless of the initial state.

The notion that the Earth’s climate system is in some sort of unstable equilibrium is simply risible. You and Hansen should know better, but thanks to the mysteries of academic preferment and peer review, it’s not actually a requirement of employment to be that sensible.

485. John Hunter
Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 6:39 AM | Permalink

John A (#489): I guess you don’t understand the subtleties of positive and negative feedback — it very much depends on the shape of the response curve and not just on the sign. The gates in the chips in your beloved computer use positive feedback — do they “go haywire”?

I guess I keep coming back to the same question — how do you people who clearly have no training or qualifications in physics or applied maths (let alone climate science) presume to know more than those who do? Yes, you’ve graduated in the University of McIntyre, but do you really think that is enough? If it wasn’t climate science, would you be standing beside a brain surgeon, or a nuclear physicist, or an aerodynamicist, telling him his job?

486. John A
Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 6:50 AM | Permalink

Hunter:

John A (#484): So, you disagree that “MBH99 indicated both in their reconstruction” (i.e. the MWP and the “LIA”)? I guess this shows that you too can’t have read the paper.

Au contraire. Not only have a I read the paper, but I’ve commented on it, when Climate Audit was yet young in March 2005. You’ll find that paper stored at CA here, comments here

The only reference that Mann and Jones make to the MWP is this [my emphasis]

To the extent that a “Medieval’
interval of moderately warmer conditions can be defined
from about AD 800–1400, any hemispheric warmth during
that interval is dwarfed in magnitude by late 20th century
warmth.

Yes, of course it was. None of Mann and Jones’s reconstruction even poked a whisker outside of the confidence limits, meaning none of the variation was statistically significant. But then, that’s what happens when you work with noise.

It IS true that MBH99 noted both weak signs of the MWP and the LIA in their reconstruction.

That is entirely untrue. Mann told Scientific American LAST YEAR that the MWP and LIA were not global phenomena which is why his global reconstruction (MBH99) did not feature them. The MWP and LIA no more exist in MBH99 than they do in Dave Stockwell’s reconstruction using random proxy series with long term persistence. In point of fact if you compare them, Dave Stockwell’s reconstruction and Mann/Jones’s are startlingly similar.

Rather like Steve Bloom, you have a fondness for swimming in major Egyptian rivers when faced with direct evidence that contradicts your beliefs.

It is ALSO true that, at the time of the IPCC TAR in 2001, the MWP and the LIA were generally thought to be primarily regional and not global phenomena (which doesn’t mean they couldn’t show a weak global signal “¢’¬? we’re just getting into semantics here)

The semantics are that you are making a false statement that has been shown to be false. You should have been a tap dancer, because the fancy footwork is very impressive.

Where do you think the IPCC got this idea about the MWP and LIA from? Not a million miles from the University of Massachusetts is my guess…

I do not know what the forthcoming AR4 will have to say about this, I would hope that the science has moved on a bit, but I strongly suspect it will still say that the MWP was not as warm or extensive as the 20th century warming.

I strongly suspect that you are right. But that doesn’t mean that you or the IPCC are correct. I’m willing to bet good money that we’ll have more bad statistical treatments, more mysterious tree-ring datasets which somehow fail to be archived, more “hockey stick” shaped proxy series, and another attempt to corral a scientific consensus from all of the above.

If the TAR was anything to go by, it’ll be a racing certainty. It’s also a racing certainty that you’ll embrace it as the new consensus, whatever shonky work is within.

487. Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 7:01 AM | Permalink

Well, digital electronic circuits are significantly different to analog ones. Sure, transistors (I don’t think you meant gates) have positive feedbacks. For performance, you want the feedbacks to be high, so the transistors switch fast. But, their states are constrained to 0 or 1 by the way they’re designed. They don’t ever end up at -1 or 2 (well, they might, but those values would be interpreted as 0 or 1). You could look at the way they are designed to never go below 0 or above 1, despite the positive feedbacks, as an even larger negative feedback. In reality it’s a lot more complex than that, but obviously a chip with a state which flies wildly off the handle is useless. We design the chips, and their components (which is where gates come in) to stay within an acceptable range of states. Anything outside of those states form a bug. So in reality we’re constraining the system artificially with lots of large negative feedbacks in order to get it to do what we want.

So, yes, you can toggle a single input pin and have practically the whole state of the chip invert through a series of positive feedback events. But after it inverts, it stops and enters a new stable state, thanks to the “negative feedbacks” which keep it within the bounds we specify. They must be larger than the positive feedbacks, otherwise the state of the chip would never stabilize after that input pin was toggled.

Try buildling logic out of *analogue* circuitry and you’re in a whole new world. It’s a black art, precisely because you have to be so careful to have your feedbacks set up to keep parameters within the ranges you want them.

It’s not really a question of whether positive and negative feedbacks exist, the real question is at what magnitudes they tend to dominate. It is possible for negative feedbacks to dominate in one regime, but as soon as you leave that regime, positive feedbacks grow faster in magnitude and your system either flies off the handle complete or is metastable and finds a new regime in which there are sufficient negative feedbacks to regain stability. The climate is clearly metastable, given the way that it switches in and out of ice ages (given whatever nudge is necessary to do so, be it continental drift or whatever). But, that forcing seems to be pretty large. I know the ice age cycles have changed frequency, but I’m not aware of a known point in time where something forced the climate into or out of an ice age “out of schedule”. If such an event was pinpointed, it could give a good idea of how much range there is in the current stable regime.

Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 7:11 AM | Permalink

Re#490

I guess I keep coming back to the same question “¢’¬? how do you people who clearly have no training or qualifications in physics or applied maths (let alone climate science) presume to know more than those who do?

John H, I’m no scientist (as you well know), but even I see fault in this one. Physics and applied maths, both, are predictive sciences. I am not aware of any climate models which are predictive to the standards of either physics or math.

To my mind, that is a significant difference.

489. John A
Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 7:16 AM | Permalink

I guess you don’t understand the subtleties of positive and negative feedback “¢’¬? it very much depends on the shape of the response curve and not just on the sign. The gates in the chips in your beloved computer use positive feedback “¢’¬? do they “go haywire”?

It would help occasionally, if you’d actually read what was written, rather than reply to what you think was written. The subtleties of postive and negative feedback are well known, which is why computers are chock full of resistors, gates, return paths and rectifiers to control the postive feedbacks. You make a claim about positive feedbacks in the atmosphere without a scintilla of evidence and expect the rest of us to be in awe?

The Earth’s climate has been much warmer, much colder, much wetter, much drier, had enormous rocks thrown at it, had concentrations of greenhouse gases many times the modern value for long periods of time, and yet somehow, a change in a trace gas like carbon dioxide will inevitably lead to the End of Life As We Know It.

I guess I keep coming back to the same question “¢’¬? how do you people who clearly have no training or qualifications in physics or applied maths (let alone climate science) presume to know more than those who do? Yes, you’ve graduated in the University of McIntyre, but do you really think that is enough? If it wasn’t climate science, would you be standing beside a brain surgeon, or a nuclear physicist, or an aerodynamicist, telling him his job?

What it comes down to is why you persistently insult people who are much better qualified than you in other scientific and mathematical subjects rather than just provide a demonstration of the veracity of your claims? Is it too hard? Do they not expect demonstrations of actual ability at the University of Tasmania?

Oh and stop using the Royal “we” to preface your own opinions. The voices in your head don’t count.

490. Michael Jankowski
Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 7:28 AM | Permalink

I guess I keep coming back to the same question “¢’¬? how do you people who clearly have no training or qualifications in physics or applied maths

How do you know? I, for one, have a degree in applied math. And when you’re talking about statistical goofs like in MBH98, you don’t need to have an advanced physics or math background.

If it wasn’t climate science, would you be standing beside a brain surgeon, or a nuclear physicist, or an aerodynamicist, telling him his job?

So climate science is the equivalent of brain surgery, nuclear physics, and aeronautics? A lifelong politician could jump on a pedestal and speak about brain surgery, nuclear physics, or aeronautics like Gore does about climate science?

I shudder to think what the end results would be of a brain surgery, a nuclear reactor design, or an aircraft design with flaws along the lines of those in MBH98.

491. tom brogle
Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 7:38 AM | Permalink

I have worked with systems with positive feedback, they rocket out of control. If the earth was being warmed by CO2 forcing as you blieve why didn’t the clmate become like that of Venus when the CO2 level was 3000 ppm with no possibility of return to normality?
As I’ve asked before why doesn’t rate of temperature rise increase as the CO2 increases in the Vostok data? There is no sign of positive feedback in that data.
Positive feedback was introduced by the AGWers to scare the public into providing the wherewithal to keep their “research” going.

Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 8:06 AM | Permalink

John A,

BTW, you don’t owe anyone an explanation for your absence, however during that time, John Hunter has made known that his data is available in more than one location.

One of those [not the CSIRO, as you made clear to me John H, in an especially pompous manner] seems to require his personal approval. However, he has indicated that there are other locations where the archive exists.

Considering the extreme and sustained criticism which you subjected him to over his failure to archive, you are going to have a bit of a credibility issue if you don’t follow up this subject.

I know that your primary point was the fact that he had not archived his data (not a proclamation that you were a sea level expert), however I seem to recall that you threatened to do something with the data, if it was made available.

John H is still insisting that he know who is criticising him, by requiring names and undertakings inreturn for access to his data. You have asserted that there are reasons why you would prefere to remain anonymous.

Alright, but in that case, your arguments need to be bloody strong, because…well, your not a recognised expert.

I’ve followed this discussion for a long time now, and I know that it initially started with your challenge to John Hunter to present his own data, if he was going to defend Mann, et al. However, you progressed well beyond that and you even threatened to recreate Lempriere’s records yourself, at one point [or at least lamented the fact that John H wanted you to do it].

You have now re-entered the discussion [you absence is your own business and I have no interest in why], however you seem to be simply carrying on as if nothing has happened since your last post.

Indeed, plenty has happened and I now believe, Dr Frankenstein, that you must address the crux of the monster post which you have created.

John Hunter is an obnoxious individual in type; prone to derogatory and inflammatory language. Nevertheless, he is a professional under attack, and you pursued him.

You should now re-address the sea level issue, specifically.

493. tom brogle
Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 8:37 AM | Permalink

Re 497
“John Hunter is an obnoxious individual”
I’ve never met him. He might be a pleasant sort but his posts indicate otherwise.

494. John A
Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 8:42 AM | Permalink

Tell me where these precious numbers exist, and I’ll go get them.

495. Steve McIntyre
Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 9:23 AM | Permalink

Brad H, the stalemate is this: John A does not want to identify himself to John Hunter and John Hunter won’t give him the data unless he identifies himself. I don’t think that either party is 100% in the right on this. While I think that Hunter should provide the data on an anonymous location, out of all the issues in the paleoclimate world, that’s not one that I feel strongly about or will go to bat for. I’ve told John A that, if he wants to look at data anonymously, that he’s pretty much at a stalemate.

On the other hand, no one should feel that Hunter has supplied the data to John A and should therefore be expecting a response. Right now, John A doesn’t have the data to my knowledge, so there’s nothing much that he cou;ld add.

Another point, if it were receiving the data cold and I’m pretty good at this stuff, I might not have anything to say about it for 6 months. So nattering for an instant response is just irritating.

If John A is going to study Hunter’s data, he’s going to have to learn more about tidal analysis than he presently knows. There’s along lead time in this. I don’t expect him to come up with anything, but in the most optimistic sense, I wouldn’t expect anything within 6 months to a years.

I think it could make perfect sense for this thread to go stale after the data issue was resolved. I’ve tried for two years to get Esper’s data. As far as I’m concerned, I only made headway by going public and putting Science in the spotlight, which embarrassed them, and they extracted most, but not all, of the data from Esper. I’ve probably got enough to be usable although it irritates me that I’m still missing some.

Once I’ve got the data, I’m not going to keep posting up data problems with Esper. The thread and the publicity was not pointless, but now it’s another stage. I got some site chronologies in February. I’ve found some interesting results, but I couldn’t necessarily have come on line the next day and say, aha, I’m ready to debate this, although I’ve used the results.

So no taunting or gotcha’s. If John A gets the data, then ask again in 6 months whether he’s got any results. Hopefully he confirms Hunter’s results – that’s what audits and verifications are supposed to do. Company auditors don’t expect to find big problems with company accounts and usually don’t. That doesn’t mean that the process was wasted. If a company’s books were OK, the company treaurer wouldn’t go “nyah, nyah, nyah” to the auditor. You expect the books to be OK, it’s no cause for celebration.

496. jae
Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 9:26 AM | Permalink

I get tired of the AGWphiles hiding behind this “positive feedback” mantra. There may well be positive (and negative) feedbacks, but they are not well enough understood and quantified to support the (unfalsifiable) AGW hypothesis. Good science does not rely on IF, THEN statements.

Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 12:25 PM | Permalink

RE: #492. Now THAT is an inconvenient truth! :)

498. Tom Brogle
Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 1:39 PM | Permalink

John Hunter
An eminent russian scientist’s view

http://www.abc.net.au/lateline/content/2005/s1307945.htm

Perhaps you think he’s had no training or qualifications in physics or applied maths.
Incidentally I certainly have such qualifications.

499. John Sully
Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 3:17 PM | Permalink

Applied math in econ, yes. But physics? Give me a break. The interview is actually a rather classic propoganda bit. He’s got his talking points and he’s going to say them.

500. John Hunter
Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 9:45 PM | Permalink

John A (#491): This is crazy. I was quiet clearly talking about MBH99 and you start talking about Mann and Jones (2003), which is the paper which is “here” when you say “you’ll find that paper stored at CA here”. There is no point in discussing this with you if you don’t even know what is meant by “MBH99″ (I’ll give you a clue — it’s a paper in GRL by Mann, Bradley and Hughes).

501. John Hunter
Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 10:25 PM | Permalink

> Physics and applied maths, both, are predictive sciences. I am not aware
> of any climate models which are predictive to the standards of either physics
> or math.

This again is crazy. You can’t built any kind of model describing physics (e.g. a climate model) without a sound knowledge of physics and applied maths (and numerical methods) — which for most people means going to university, learning for a few years and getting qualifications. A very few, very bright, people may be able to do this on their own through self-study — so hands up anyone on here who thinks they fall into this category.

502. John Hunter
Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 10:31 PM | Permalink

John A (#494):

> You make a claim about positive feedbacks in the atmosphere without a scintilla
> of evidence and expect the rest of us to be in awe?

O.K. I assume that you believe that the proxy records for temperature for the last few glacial cycle are at least approximations to the truth. These cycles, although showing strong coherence with the Milankovitch cycles, could not possibly have been driven by the weak variations in solar input caused by orbital variations if the system acted without strong positive feedbacks. You claim that there is no positive feedback — so what is your model for the glacial cycles driven by such weak variations in energy input from the sun?

503. John Hunter
Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 11:50 PM | Permalink

Tom Brogle (#496)

> I have worked with systems with positive feedback, they rocket out of control.

That is because their response does not limit or saturate — which is why I said (#490) that “it very much depends on the shape of the response curve and not just on the sign”. Numbers are stored in computers using amplifiers with positive feedbacks — but limits to the response curve of each system give “0” and “1” states rather than “-infinity” and “+infinity” states.

If you don’t believe in positive feedbacks in the climate system, how do you explain away:

1. When the Earth gets colder, more ice forms on the surface, which causes further cooling due to the reflection of more solar radiation into space.

2. When the Earth gets colder, the oceans can absorb more CO2, which decreases CO2 in the atmosphere, which reduces the greenhouse effect, which causes further cooling.

Why aren’t these positive feedbacks? You think they are NEGATIVE ones?

504. John Hunter
Posted Jun 2, 2006 at 11:58 PM | Permalink

John A (#499):

> Tell me where these precious numbers exist, and I’ll go get them.

You only have to read this thread: NTC and PSMSL.

505. John Sully
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 12:08 AM | Permalink

And don’t forget: when the earth starts to get warmer, CO2 increases, although it lags the initial warming (greater emissions from stored CO2 in soil) and the earth gets warmer still until a new equilibrium is reached.

Seems like this is a positive feedback too.

506. John Hunter
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 12:13 AM | Permalink

John A (#499) and Steve (#500):

I don’t know why you guys don’t read this thread OR our papers properly.

Firstly, if you read this thread properly, you would see that our data is also at PSMSL.

Secondly, if you read our papers properly, you would realise that it is completely misleading to say "if John A is going to study Hunter’s data, he’s going to have to learn more about tidal analysis than he presently knows" or that it should take "6 months" to get any results. You don’t need to do any tidal analysis to check whether our results are substantially correct. We give all the vertical datum information with our data. For the 1841/1842 data we calculated the MEAN TIDAL LEVEL (which only requires taking an average of the results). For the modern data, we obtained MEAN SEA LEVEL using tidal analysis — however this is scarcely necessary as a straight average of all the observations (taking a little care about where you start and stop) would be almost the same.

All John A has to be able to do is average some numbers (applying a bit of commonsense and basic understanding of data analysis) and apply the vertical datum information.

If I’d have had to help a student this much with doing a simple task, he would have been failed long ago …..

Steve: As I’ve said, I’m not interested in this topic. I’d assumed that tidal analysis was relevant to the study of tides, but, if you say otherwise, I’m surprised, but have no intention of debating the point.

507. John Hunter
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 12:27 AM | Permalink

jae (#501):

Tell me if you have read the Hansen piece:

http://www.columbia.edu/~jeh1/newschool_text_and_slides.pdf

If not, please do. If you have, then you will see an argument which shows that, from an understanding of the forcings and feedbacks during the recent glaciations, you can derive a climate sensisitivity which provides a good predictor of 20th century warming. Now, you are the one arguing against such ideas — it is up to you to tell us where Hansen is wrong.

And it has got nothing to do with a hockeystick — broken or otherwise.

508. tom brogle
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 1:55 AM | Permalink

CO2 does not cause excessive Global Warming.
All the science that purports to show that it does, is flawed.
The chief global warming gas is water vapour.
To show how stupid the science is that supports AGW read Feedback not Forcing in Real Climate.
This states that H2O does not cause any temperature increase now (not forcing)it will do so in future as the global temperature rises.(feedback).
Thus on one hand it doesn’t but on the other it does.
The water vapour concentration in the air (allowing that it is in the lower part of the atmosphere at at average 50% RH) is 30 times the concentration of CO2 Its infrared properties are similar to CO2 but AGWphiles (Thanks jae) say that it doesn’t have a major influence on climate now but but that it will have in future.

509. John Sully
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 2:17 AM | Permalink

Tom, you really are on my idiot list.

The point RC was trying to make is that at this point H2O does not constitute a forcing. In the future as the global climate warms the partial pressure of H2O will increase (a warmer atmosphere will allow more water vapor to be held in it). At this point H2O will be a feedback (atmosphere gets warmer, allowing more water vapor, which in turn causes more warming).

The problem with CO2 is that the amount we are dumping into the atmosphere is beyond the ability of the various systems which absorb CO2 to handle. Thus a small increase in what we emit causes a fairly large shift in the atmospheric concentration. Increases in water vapor will follow. Do you understand? Probably not.

510. tom brogle
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 2:29 AM | Permalink

http://townsvillebulletin.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,7034,19345747%255E24192,00.html#

Another press comment .It mentions a meteorologist, is he qualified to speak on AGW ?
Which brings me to another point, much of the support fot AGW comes from an unqualified bandwagon of evironmentalists who think the world is going down the drain, even though throughout my life, I’ve seen a constant improvement in th environment.

511. tom brogle
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 2:31 AM | Permalink

Either H2O forces or it doesn’t force YOU CANNOT HAVE IT BOTH WAYS

512. John Sully
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 2:40 AM | Permalink

Ohh, Tom you got me there. The "Townsville Bulletin"; boy that is a drop dead argument. And I guess my comment about you not understanding how water vapor (which is already close to saturation in the atmosphere) is not a forcing. Remember, increases in CO2 increase the global temperature which increases the ability of the atmosphere to retain water vapor. Thus the increase in temp allows the atmosphere to hold more water vapor which in turn increases the temp. This is the definition of a feedback.

[snip]

513. John Sully
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 2:44 AM | Permalink

I tried to respond to Tom’s comment but the “spam filter” has decided that I am spam. And they say the don’t censor here.

514. John Sully
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 2:54 AM | Permalink

Tom, I agree with you. You can’t have it both ways. It is a feedback and not a forcing.

515. tom brogle
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 3:48 AM | Permalink

Re 510 Peter
I replied to your # 394 with # 396 You haven’t dealt with my comments.

516. John A
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 3:58 AM | Permalink

John Sully:

And don’t forget: when the earth starts to get warmer, CO2 increases, although it lags the initial warming (greater emissions from stored CO2 in soil) and the earth gets warmer still until a new equilibrium is reached.

Seems like this is a positive feedback too.

It’s funny that not a single high resolution ice core shows this “positive feedback”. Temperatures begin rising and then EIGHT CENTURIES LATER carbon dioxide and methane start rising. They continue rising EIGHT CENTURIES after temperatures have levelled off and begun to fall. Every time. In every ice core.

That’s quite a positive feedback that has absolutely no effect on temperature.

Or maybe the positive feedback doesn’t exist.

517. John A
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 5:12 AM | Permalink

John Hunter:

2. When the Earth gets colder, the oceans can absorb more CO2, which decreases CO2 in the atmosphere, which reduces the greenhouse effect, which causes further cooling.

Except that that has never happened. Ever. It might be a positive feedback, but the Earth’s climate system is dominated by negative feedbacks.

Falling carbon dioxide has never been shown to cause temperature fall. It’s a big assumption by climate modellers without a single empirical justification in the real world.

518. John A
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 5:30 AM | Permalink

John Hunter:

O.K. I assume that you believe that the proxy records for temperature for the last few glacial cycle are at least approximations to the truth. These cycles, although showing strong coherence with the Milankovitch cycles, could not possibly have been driven by the weak variations in solar input caused by orbital variations if the system acted without strong positive feedbacks. You claim that there is no positive feedback “¢’¬? so what is your model for the glacial cycles driven by such weak variations in energy input from the sun?

No, let me make it clear – there are positive feedbacks but they are miniscule compared to the negative feedbacks. Furthermore, positive feedbacks saturate very fast – for example, snow doesn’t get whiter.

The simplest possible model would be the Stefan-Boltzmann relation $E = \sigma T^4$. That would mean that small changes in energy from the sun would produce (relatively) large changes in temperature. Even that doesn’t happen so simply since the water cycle on Earth acts to dampen the effect through clouds and rainfall, which increases the energy moved back into space. The biosphere also reacts by plants growing nearer to the poles, causing increasing microclimates based on water vapour and plant growth to bleed energy out of the climate system.

519. tom brogle
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 5:43 AM | Permalink

John Sully
Tom, I agree with you. You can’t have it both ways. It is a feedback and not a forcing.

Is H20 a GHG or not?
“feedback and not a forcing” is a stupid contradiction in terms

520. John Hunter
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 6:49 AM | Permalink

John A (#521):

> The simplest possible model would be the Stefan-Boltzmann relation etc. etc.

So if you actually put the numbers into your model, you will find that the small change in effective energy received from the sun is not NEARLY enough to cause the global-average temperature range which was covered during the recent glaciations (this has been know for years) — YOU NEED POSITIVE FEEDBACK. Go on — do it and see (but I warn you it isn’t simple — it involves consideration of the different seasons and the different hemispheres) — otherwise shut up about it.

521. Steve McIntyre
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 7:00 AM | Permalink

John A,

the issue of a positive and negative feedbacks is a complicated and interesting one. I tend to agree that the negative feedbacks seem to be under-represented in how the generic models deal with the world, but I think that you’re going a bridge too far in how you’re phrasing things.

But folks, if you really want to have fun with forcing versus feedback, you need to look at the terminology used to describe the role of hemispheric glaciation in an ice age. Is this a forcing or a feedback? It’s called a forcing in some articles, but surely it’s a feedback of some kind.

522. John Hunter
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 7:01 AM | Permalink

Tom Brogle (#522): You can call H2O a “greenhouse gas” if you like — you can call it “the stuff that Brogle has his morning shower in” for all I care — it doesn’t affect the physics one iota.

However, the difference between H2O and CO2 is that, if you inject extra H2O into the atmosphere, the increased concentration is gone after a few days, while if you inject extra CO2 into the atmosphere, the increased concentration lasts for centuries. This is really the reason why most people consider CO2 a greenhouse gas, but don’t do the same for H2O — but, as I said, what you call it is semantics and doesn’t change the physics.

523. John Hunter
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 7:06 AM | Permalink

Steve (#524): PLEASE don’t you get into this daft “forcing” vs “feedback” argument — I thought you were smarter than that. This contrarian-inspired inquisition into terminology is anal-retentiveness at its worst.

524. tom brogle
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 7:40 AM | Permalink

inject extra H2O into the atmosphere, the increased concentration is gone after a few days
But we dont need to do that.Apart from dry deserts very cold ice caps, Water Vapour is always present in equilibruim with water in the soil and the oceans and can always exert whatever GHG effects it has.It it is not trasient because it is always present.
If water vapour is not a GHG how can it act a feedback? Your wonderful feedback mechanism is supposed to increase warming isn’t it? How could it increase warming if water vapour were not a GHG? Will you go on quoting your mantra in the hope that the rest of will be convinced of such nonsense?
526 Do you mean, avoid this argument it can’t be won ?

525. Dave Dardinger
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 8:23 AM | Permalink

PLEASE don’t you get into this daft “forcing” vs “feedback” argument

Now wait a minute! It’s not us ‘contrarians’ who insist on some petty distinction between feedbacks and forcings. And I never have been able to figure out which is which except by asking. Basically it’s the modellers, I think, who insist on the distinction. BTW, just so I can’t be accused of pure partisanship, I agree more with you than John & Tom, though what’s missing on both sides is actual numerical identification of the affects. Plus, of course, a discussion of cloud cover and types, land use changes, etc.

526. tom brogle
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 8:43 AM | Permalink

Thinking about it, CO2 is washed out of the air by rain and turned into O2 by plants but is constantly being replaced just like water vapour.It’s just that CO2 is growing but it still only about 1/20 of the water vapour.

527. John A
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 10:08 AM | Permalink

John Hunter:

So if you actually put the numbers into your model…blah blah blah waffle

Reading isn’t your forte, is it? I put the previous statement in twice in two successive posts:

Let me make it clear – there are positive feedbacks but they are miniscule compared to the negative feedbacks. Furthermore, positive feedbacks saturate very fast – for example, snow doesn’t get whiter.

That means exactly what it says. There are positive feedbacks but they’re very short lived.

But getting back to the root cause of your intellectual malaise, no ice core sample ever shows a carbon dioxide rise or fall preceding a temperature rise or fall, which makes it bloody difficult for carbon dioxide to be anything other than a response to climate change and not a driver. At least it would be difficult without a time machine.

Your fixation with the so-called forcing of climate by trace greenhouse gases is a political statement, not an empirical one. The most interesting forcing is one I’ve never seen done in a climate model: rapidly changing sea-levels can destabilize the flanks of oceanic volcanoes, leading to cooling events.

528. fFreddy
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 10:55 AM | Permalink

PLEASE don’t you get into this daft “forcing” vs “feedback” argument

Would anyone care to give a precise definition of what these terms mean ? I’ve always wondered.

This contrarian-inspired inquisition into terminology is anal-retentiveness at its worst.

Utterly wrong. If you can’t define your terms precisely enough for a common understanding, you aren’t doing science.
Again.

529. mark
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 11:03 AM | Permalink

I’ve always read that H2O is 4% and we know that CO2 is 0.038% (worst case), so really 1/100, not 1/20.

forcing: the presence of the gas by itself causes changes.

feedback: the presence of the gas causes a sort of domino effect which triggers other mechanisms to change resulting in a hyper-exaggerated effect.

Mark

530. Steve McIntyre
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 11:18 AM | Permalink

#526. My question has nothing to do with “contrarian” positions. I try to stake out my own positions and think for myself. I find it odd that hemispheric glaciation is called “forcing”. I can see why for certain types of models, you assume that you’ve got hemispheric glaciation and see what happens, but the more interesting question is obviously why the hemispheric glaciation comes and goes – for htis question, hemispheric glaciation is not a “forcing”. In definitional terms, I think of forcing as an exogenous variable and feedback as an endogenous variable to use terms from economics.

I’ve been puzzled about ice age models and asked Peter Huybers about it. As I recall and I don’t guarantee that I’ve got his view 100%, he said that the GCM-type models which got into an ice age, had trouble getting out and vice versa. I have no personal knowledge of whether this is the case.

531. tom brogle
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 11:50 AM | Permalink

The reason AGWphiles say that water vapour is not forcing seems to me to be that if they accept this (self evident) fact. it would put the skids under their theory.
There are several of my premises on this thread that remain unaswered (see my post 396) all of which refute the lies which that we are being told by the press,the BBC, Greenpeace,the Sierra Club…etc. and some of your contributors.

532. Dave Dardinger
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 11:50 AM | Permalink

Alright a short primer before everyone goes off the deep end. The mere concentration of a molecule in the atmosphere doesn’t have any necessary correlation with how much affect an increase in it will affect the temperature. Different molecules absorb at different wavelengths, they do so with different extinction coefficients (i.e. how well they absorb per molecule), and the degree to which a given wavelength is already saturated by the current concentration also varies. There’s no way of discussing if further without actual reference to numbers, you know, the thing science is all about.

Well, maybe that last is not quite accurate. There is the fact that when we’re talking H2O and CO2 there’s some overlap of the wavelengths they absorb at so that we need to figure out which gets credited with what. This is especially true since the H2O concentration varies so greatly while the CO2 is constant after a year or two except for the yearly vegitation cycle which is small compared to the total concentration.

And of course, there’s the empirical fact that because of saturation the amount of absorption increase varies with the log of the concentration increase, not the absolute amount.

533. Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 2:08 PM | Permalink

Water vapour is not a climate forcing?
What a bizarre statement!
This is the first time I red it.
Who can seriously take a position like that?

534. John Hunter
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 7:02 PM | Permalink

Feedback and forcing: feedback is internal to a system, forcing is what something outside the system does to the system. So it just depends on how you define the boundaries of your system — which different people do at different times in different models. So it’s a very boring discussion.

535. John Hunter
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 7:14 PM | Permalink

John A (#530):

> So if you actually put the numbers into your model…blah blah blah waffle

> Reading isn’t your forte, is it? I put the previous statement in twice in two successive posts:

> Let me make it clear – there are positive feedbacks but they are miniscule
> compared to the negative feedbacks. Furthermore, positive feedbacks saturate
> very fast – for example, snow doesn’t get whiter.

Funny, but I don’t see any NUMBERS — mind you I’m not sure I’ve ever seen any numbers from you. This is what you have to do:

Estimate the proportional change in effective solar energy input due to orbital forcing at Milankovitch time cycles. The answer is a NUMBER — you know, like 0.001. Then show that ONE QUARTER of this proportion (this comes from differentiating the Stefan-Boltzmann relation — I assume you can do calculus?) exceeds the proportional change in energy required to switch from glacial to interglacial states (which is again a NUMBER). This may all be a bit hard for you, so you may need Uncle Steve to help. If you can do the calculation and don’t get the required answer, then this shows that you need POSITIVE FEEDBACK.

Again I say — if you can’t do this, shut up about it.

536. Michael Jankowski
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 7:44 PM | Permalink

Thank you for meeting my humor quota for the weekend!

John A says”

there are positive feedbacks but they are miniscule compared to the negative feedbacks

John H directly quotes this and replys with:

This may all be a bit hard for you, so you may need Uncle Steve to help. If you can do the calculation and don’t get the required answer, then this shows that you need POSITIVE FEEDBACK.

Maybe “Uncle Steve” or someone else can help you with reading comprehension?

537. Steve McIntyre
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 7:54 PM | Permalink

John H, if you want to post here, please stop the taunting. It’s juvenile. It makes you look like a boor and a fool. You’re not the latter. I’m going to try to restore a little civility to your exchanges. I’m leaving the last post up, but from now on, taunting by you is going to be marked as spam without snipping.

538. Dave Dardinger
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 8:30 PM | Permalink

Feedback and forcing: feedback is internal to a system, forcing is what something outside the system does to the system.

So how can CO2 be a forcing and H2O be a feedback? What kind of wierd ‘system’ can have one component of the atmosphere be part of the system and another part not? Again I point out that it’s not skeptics who insist on the ‘proper’ use of the terms. I’d be happy to use the terms interchangably to indicate something that affects something else. In this case a changed concentration resulting in a changed temperature of atmosphere or surface or whatever.

539. Steve McIntyre
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 9:28 PM | Permalink

Dave, for the periods of time that we’re talking about , I don’t see any problem with treating CO2 as an exogenous variable. Certainly anthropogenic CO2 emissions are exogenous – what’s wrong with using that in models? I think that there are any number of issues in models, but I don’t see that as one of them.

540. tom brogle
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 10:08 PM | Permalink

Re 537
John
“forcing is what something outside the system does to the system. So it just depends on how you define the boundaries of your system ”
Seems like waffle to me.
Are you saying CO2 is outside the system?
Is your system the climate system?
Plese don’t use swearwords or insults in your reply I’d like to see it.

541. John Sully
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 10:58 PM | Permalink

Tom, as Steve pointed out: anthropogenic CO2 emissions are exogenous. In fact any change in CO2, whether by volcanic ativity or anthorpogenic, may be treated as exogenous because it is releasing somthing into the system which has not previously played a role in the system and so constitutes a forcing. Although H2O is a GHG, the H2O whether in the atomosphere, the ocean, rivers, lakes, or that annoying puddle behind your house that breeds mosquitos in the spring is an intrinsic part of the climate system. Water is present, but water vapor will in atmosphere will not increase unless there is a change in the ability of the atmosphere to carry water vapor. This can only, AFAIK, happen when atmospheric temperature increases.

Thus in presence of forcings which tend to raise the temperature of the atmosphere water vapor will increase. This is what makes it a feedback. Increases in CO2 release a compound which is isolated from the system in normal times (not an active part of the system like water is) and so constitutes a forcing. Same with methane. Insolation is also outside of the climate system (this is if you draw the boundry at the outer edges of the atmosphere) and so constitutes a forcing.

I don’t see why you have such a problem with this rather simple concept.

542. Dave Dardinger
Posted Jun 3, 2006 at 11:34 PM | Permalink

Steve, I agree that we should be able to separate out the affects of various factors, including CO2, but just what is the sense of talking about a heterogeneous analysis such as that as a “System”? What exactly is the “boundry” of the system as the term is used in physical chemistry, for instance? It isn’t even as though all CO2 produced were anthropic. The vast majority of CO2 floating around, even after all this time of accumulation in the atmosphere is not of human origin.

This way of defining things as being inside and outside of a system looks to me like begging the question. It lets those who want things like climate change to be “blamed” on humans can point to the ‘forcing’ caused by CO2 vs the ‘feedback’ from H2O as though they were physical facts rather than humanly constructed concepts. But this allows people to gloss over the complications caused by taking into consideration other aspects of the very same substances, like CO2 fertilization and changes in cloud coverage and type.

And even the terms are a bit loaded if you think about it. “Forcing” has a negative connotation while “feedback” has a positive one. I.e. you’d like feedback from readers, but you wouldn’t like an editor forcing you to change your article. Yet both result in your writing changing. It’s interesting that in this case it’s the feedback which is external to the publishing “system” while the forcing is internal to it.

543. John Hunter
Posted Jun 4, 2006 at 12:41 AM | Permalink

Tom Brogle (#543):

You have evidently never constructed a physical model of anything — otherwise you would not ask the question. There is no problem in defining a system (e.g. the solid Earth and/or the oceans) in which atmospheric CO2 is “outside”. There is also no reason why I should not have a coupled system (e.g. the earth’s climate) made up of a number of smaller systems (e.g. the atmosphere, the oceans, the land). For one of the smaller systems, CO2 could easily be regarded as “forcing”. Now let’s get off semantics — it is just a distraction — I’m really waiting for John A to “prove” that you can have glacial cycles without positive feedback, and for John A to “audit” our Port Arthur data (the theme of this thread, remember?).

544. tom brogle
Posted Jun 4, 2006 at 3:32 AM | Permalink

But that doesn’t change the fact that BOTH CO2 and H20(v) are both GHGs. You can define any sysem you lke but H2O must be the overwhelmingly the chief cause of GW.
The phrase “feedback not forcing” just does not make sense.
After all by selecting a system you could say that CO2 is a feedback from a warming ocean. The whole point of my posts which might have read more than superficially although you don’t appear to have done so is that a feedback must be a forcer otherwise it could not feedback positively.
Of course those eminent climatologists at Real Climate will repeat
the phrase ad nauseam but that doesn’t make it any more scientifically or semantically correct. Unless of course they have instituted new definitions for the terms.

545. TCO
Posted Jun 4, 2006 at 5:48 AM | Permalink

Dave,

Come on. Stop and think about this. You are being dense. The difference is that some things are easy to model as part of the system and some aren’t. Vulcanism is part of the earth sure. So if you have a combined weather and vulcanism model, you can churn it all. But in the real world, it is more efficient to have a model of weather and then just try to get data for the vulcanism.

546. Dave Dardinger
Posted Jun 4, 2006 at 8:02 AM | Permalink

TCO,

And just what does volcanism have to do with my talk about CO2 vs H2O? Just how could a sensible "system" not have CO2 already in it? It has to have ocean CO2 in it and the existing CO2 in the atmosphere or it couldn’t make the beginning greenhouse effect come out right. And you have to be able to model other things which involve CO2 directly or indirectly too.

In any case my complaint wasn’t about what has to be in a model and what not, but in the definition which John H presented that forcings were external to the "system" while feedbacks were internal to it. We can’t have a physical system which matches the definition and we can’t have a system where all the CO2 is exogenous so it makes no sense to call it a "system" at all. As I said, it’s just a way of sneaking in certain concepts without discussing them in detail.

[snip – politics] Steve: I can’t babysit political snips. Please…

547. TCO
Posted Jun 4, 2006 at 8:17 AM | Permalink

Dardie:

I was reacting to your general comments on the arbitrariness of forcings and system boundaries and how it doesn’t match the definition of a system from thermo. Not your specific CO2/H2O kvetch. For all I know you might be right on that one.

To me, the key issues in making this kind of decision (forcing versus part of the model) are:

1. Amount of interaction with other components vis-a-vis the forcing. For instance, vulcanism not really driven by weather.
2. Difficulty in doing the modeling with non-forcing components (this is somewhat similar to one, but emphasis here is on computational issues).
3. Ability to get data to predict (or reconstruct) forcings.

***

I think it’s a judgement call what is a forcing and what is kept as part of the guts of the model. I can see a lot better reasons for making CO2 a forcing than water given that H2O concentration is not changing much despite fossil fuel burning while CO2 is. Sure there is a carbon cycle, but is it nescessary to have the guts of that coupled into the climate model or are you just throwing monkey wrenches?

548. Steve McIntyre
Posted Jun 4, 2006 at 9:07 AM | Permalink

I think that we should move this forcing-feedback to discussion to a new thread. I don’t see the slightest problem in regarding water vapor as a feedback for modeling the impact of increased CO2. What intrigues me is this: yes, water vapor is a GHG which is a positive feedback, but it’s not JUST a greenhouse gas. It has important negative feedbacks as well in at least two important forms. Low-lying clouds are an important negative feedback and one of the most problematic areas of climate models. Now clouds are not exactly “water vapor” but they are obviously part of the water vapor cycle. Another important negative feedback is NIR absorption of solar radiation by water vapor. If the enhanced greenhouse effect results from atmospheric gases making it harder for heat to escape, then atmospheric gases making it harder for heat to enter (through atmospheric absorption) would presumably have the opposite effect. I distinguish absorption from scattering since the change of wave length is what makes a diffference. Ramanathan, one of the fathers of AGW models, in 1997 claimed that atmospheric absorption in the canonical TRenberth diagram was off by about 25 wm-2 and this was mostly due to water vapor. I don’t know the ins and outs of what happened to this debate subsequently. I’ve seen a few extremely acid articles by near-infra red scientists ripping the NIR parameterizations in an earlier generation of models.

If I were doing a “tiger team” or “red team” test of climate models, this whole area of NIR absorption is something that I’d try to test from ground floor.

Water vapor has both positive and negative feedbacks. So the question is: what’s the balance? In a terrific article that I’ll try to post notes about, Ou considered the question about why the world climate has remained “relatively” stable for hundreds of millions of years i.e. in the sense that the fluctuations have not careened out of control. He thought that this pointed to an important negative feedback which he attributed to low lying clouds.

549. Steve McIntyre
Posted Jun 4, 2006 at 11:30 AM | Permalink

John H., I’ve decided that I’ve been unfair to John A about your archiving situation in the context of this site.

Obviously, I believe that your data should be publicly archived in the sense that it is available through anonymous ftp on the internet. I also believe that url’s for such files should be provided without guessing games. I agree that you promptly sent the data to me; however that does not fully comply with public archiving. For example, John A does not have access to the data on an anonymous basis.

Your archiving situation is not at all bad on a scale of 1 to Hockey Team and it’s not a situation that I would spend 10 seconds on normally. Your wanting to know who’s looking at your data is not the worst sin in the world. If you want to do that, fine. But I’m not going to sit here any longer and pick your spitballs off the wall until your data is available at a public url – all the data that’s necessary to carry out a detailed analysis of your study (which I personally don’t have the faintest interest in doing and which I fully expect to have been competently done.)

If you’ve already done that, great. But I also don’t have the faintest interest in foraging around tidal archives to see if your stuff is there or not there or playing any more guessing games.

So here’s the deal: the next post from you that appears on this blog will give the url to the requested data. Any other posts regardless of topic or merit will be marked as spam. If that’s not agreeable to you, then best of luck with your studies.

550. Posted Jun 4, 2006 at 11:46 AM | Permalink

Better go and alter your censorship policy on the Road Map, Steve.

551. Jean S
Posted Jun 4, 2006 at 11:56 AM | Permalink

re #554: Hi Tim, nice that you are back! Now, since you are here, you could finally comment the MBH98 Figure 7-issue. I’ve been waiting.

552. Lee
Posted Jun 4, 2006 at 11:58 AM | Permalink

Oh, man.

I come back after a couple weeks away, and get led to this thread by a recent post link. And here is what I see.

John Hunter says early on, here is the cite to the paper, the data are being archived.

He later says, the data are archived in the standard Sea Level archives.

And what follows are a couple hundred posts from people demanding that he personally email a pdf (which that journal apparently doesnt create), and berating him for somehow avoiding and hiding for not doing so. BTW, has no one here heard of “copyright?” Or “libraries?” Or even “please?”

And berating him for not personally hand-holding people through the process of finding those standard archives and requesting the data. Yeah, he had some fun and games – it was telling, amusing really, with John Hunter saying “the data are in the standard archives” and people arguing back “why wont you tell us where the data are.

When someone (Steve) finally requested those data, he had them, near as I can tell the timing, within a day or two of making the request – at which point people were STILL berating John for hiding his data. Apparently because the standard archive that it was requested from, following THEIR polciy, not John Hunter’s, referred the request to John for the original data. Which he immediately sent. After which, people continued for at least dozens of posts to berate John Hunter for not making his data available.

Now, I don’t want to use profanity and violate Steve’s blog, but there isnt much I can say other than, g*** f****** g**, people!!

And then further down, people seemingly insisting that the phrase “water is a feedback, not a forcing” somehow is claiming that water is not a greenhouse gas? Uhhh… what?

And people seriously arguing that there can’t be positive feedbacks, because if there were we would have run to extremes long ago. Seemingly educated people making what appear to be intended as serious arguments, that ignore limiting or saturating responses to positive feedbacks? IOW, that are missing basic understanding of some of the most basic physical components of the systems under discussion, but insist that they understand enough to have a firm opinion? And just to make it clear, note that I am not insisting for this point that those feedbacks are dominating clmate change right now; I’m saying that people are denying their existence without understanding even what they are.

Now, this may be partially linguistic – these are really *amplifying* feedbacks, meaning positive feedback with saturating responses, or with accompanying lagging negative feedback that eventually catches up and limits the rise. But ignorance of these basics is pretty telling.

Adn finally, as long as I’m complaining, I have to say that the thread articles are in general, to someone looking in occasionally, essentially incomprehehsible. The individual threads are all well and good, each picking at individual details, but to understand the basic context, to understand WHY Steve thinks this is important and matters to the conclusions, requires following thread after thread after thread, back into the archives, and even then often doesn’t supply good context. Its a ‘splatter discussion’ of disconnected details. Adn without that context, ther is no basis to evaluate whether this matters to the important issues.

I understand that threads pick up individual details, but some overall articles, saying ‘here is the issue, here is what we see, and here is why it matters to the issues under discussion and to the conclusions of the papers,’ would be good. It would allow people to follow the discussion without having to devote many hours to figuring out what the issus are and what this particular post has to do with them, and whether it is overall relevant to the conclusions being made in the field.

And yes, little or none of what I just said is substantive (although the comprehensibility point is important, I think) but that’s in keeping with almost the entirety of this thread, really.

553. Steve McIntyre
Posted Jun 4, 2006 at 12:22 PM | Permalink

Lee, all Hunter has to do is post up a url to the data. I haven’t seen it. I don’t personally give a damn about Hunter’s data, but I’m tired of the bickering. If he’s posted it up somewhere and I’ve missed it, I apologize. It’s simple – post the URL. How hard is that?

554. Lee
Posted Jun 4, 2006 at 12:27 PM | Permalink

Steve, he told you where the data is, and he SENT you the data, and he has sent the data to at least one other person who requested it.
From where I sit, this demand looks like an irrelevant device to shut him up.

555. fFreddy
Posted Jun 4, 2006 at 1:36 PM | Permalink

Re #558

From where I sit, this demand looks like an irrelevant device to shut him up.

Wrong. Hunter has the key to free posting again : he just has to stop being a prima donna and provide a URL. This is a minimum requirement for a supposedly important bit of science.

556. Lee
Posted Jun 4, 2006 at 3:23 PM | Permalink

fFreddy, the data is available. You can get the data.
He gave you all the cite. He told you where the data is: it is in more than one of the standard archives for this field. He has told you how to go about getting the data. At least two people, including Steve, have gotten the data by doing so. Now you’re whining and Steve is censoring him from this site because the data isn’t where you want it to be, and it might take a couple days and a request to get it?

Get real.

557. Steve McIntyre
Posted Jun 4, 2006 at 3:36 PM | Permalink

Lee,

No, I wasn’t able to get it from the site mentioned. The site manager referred me to Hunter who examined who the request came from and sent the data under condition that I not forward it to anyone else. I asked if I could send it to John A who does want it and Hunter refused. For his own reasons, John A wants anonymous access to the data. I support the principle of public access to data without having to say pretty please. Look, the Hockey Team will send data to their pals; they just won’t send it to me. I get mad about that. Why shouldn’t I stand up for John A in this instance? I’m not sure that what John A’s trying to do makes a whole lot of sense, it’s not a project that I’d start. But it’s a free world.

I wouldn’t have bothered with it other than Hunter has kept posting up taunts to John A for not working on the data. And it’s taunt after taunt. I’ve started deleting taunts, but I’m tired of picking spitballs off the wall. Right now John A doesnt have the goddamn data. And I’m tired of this stalemate and tired of the taunting. So I’m trying to get this off the dime. If Hunter wants to post here, he can provide a URL. Sometimes he implies that he might have already archived the data publicly if people just look hard enough. If so, then providing a URL will be very easy.

558. Dave Dardinger
Posted Jun 4, 2006 at 4:06 PM | Permalink

Scheesh Steve! (re: snip in #550) Did you have a bad night or something? I wasn’t talking politics, I was using a political topic as an illustration of the usage of the terms we were discussing, and I wasn’t taking sides even. I puroposely crafted my words to avoid doing so.

And I reiterate, and say to you, John H and TCO that it’s only the modelers who are worried about forcings vs feedbacks and that’s only because they can only handle so much at a time. But it’s not a real-world distinction of merit.

And while it’s certainly true that H2O has both positive and negative feedbacks, so does CO2 though the positive ones are easier to find.

559. TCO
Posted Jun 4, 2006 at 5:49 PM | Permalink

Dave, I agree. And I think that from a modeler standpoint it is more appropriate to have some things as forcings (e.g. volcanos) than others. And that it is a modeling issue. We agree! and in that context it makes more sense to have the CO2 a forcing (thinking about it using my 3 criteria) than the H2O. And no duh that both have negative and positive feedback effects.

Steve: I think Hunter is being ridiculous with his data guessing game and a bit nasty with the desire to expose JohnA to public criticism that could hurt his business (it’s a form of ad hominem…like the oil company crap). ALL THAT SAID: He should be allowed to post here without being required to disclose data. And he’s even kept it all to the ghetto. So just stay out of the thread, if it torques you up to much.

560. Lee
Posted Jun 4, 2006 at 6:47 PM | Permalink

Steve,

First, what the so-called “hockey team” does or doesn’t do is completely and utterly irrelevant to **this** discussion, because John Hunter is not doing what you accuse them of doing. His data is apparently archived in the standard archives for his field, and he has sent the data to those who have presonally requested it. He sent it to you and at least one other person.

Second, to put it bluntly, JohnA is being insultingly paranoid. He refuses to make a reqest for data under his own name, because he is afraid that John Hunter will retaliate or harm him in some way? In other words, JohnA is implicitly saying “Hey, I think you’re a dangerous nutcake who is a threat to me and might do me harm; now cooperate with me.” And this after an extended period of time in which the article under discussion was apparently not even acquired and read? As I said before; get real. Bluntly, if it was me at this point and he had made those kind of comments regarding me, I’d refuse to have anything to do with JohnA whether or not he identified himself.

Third, has JohnA even made an attempt to get the data himself, from one of the apparently several repositories into which John Hunter has stated he has placed the data? You made one such request to one such archive; that says nothing about the policies of other archives. Or is the point that JohnA can’t be bothered to learn anough about the field in which he proposes to do a data review to learn where the standard archives are?

Fourth, why can’t JohnA speak for himself? You have made the point several times that JohnA is his own actor when he is posting here. If that is true, why are you acting in his stead? More seriously, why are you censoring the person whom YOU CALLED OUT BY NAME IN THE THREAD ARTICLE, and whom JohnA has apparently challenged several times, on his behalf. BTW, if JohnA is not speaking on behalf of this site when posting here, then you should simply not allow him power to moderate posts to this site, which I have seen him do. If he is moderating posts, then he is de facto acting as your representative in those threads. You really can’t have it both ways.

Fifth, if the repositories John Hunter used are in fact the standard data archives in this field, and you don’t like the access rules of those archives, then perhaps you need to take it up with the archives?

Steve, apply your own ‘rules of auditing’ here. In an audit, would you expect the entity being audited to willingly cooperate with an anonymous person who may or may not be part of the audit team, who has expressed that he is unwilling to identify himself because he perceives a threat (which no one else seems to see) from the entity being audited, who shows no apparent willingness to learn the basics of field under audit, and who wont communicate for himself? Even more, would you silence the entity being audited if they didnt cooperate with that figure?

The simple facts are: You adn JohnA have called John Hunter out, you and other have the data, John Hunter is willingly and readily sharing that data (even after repeated insults and inuenndo by several people in this thread,a nd with people who couldnt be bothered to read the paper and learn enough about the field to learn where data in tis field is archived), and you are censoring him on behalf of someone else who has already insulted him. You claim to be holding yourself to high standards of open communication, and yet you resort to censorship of this kind for this purpose. Bad form, IMO, at best.

561. TCO
Posted Jun 4, 2006 at 7:13 PM | Permalink

Lee. I completely disagree with you.* You f***ing moron. But Steve, should still let Hunter have his say.

*When people ask for the data from him, he directs them to the archive. Then it turns out that the archive won’t give out the data. One still has to get it from John. What a nice circle turn or jerk.

562. Lee
Posted Jun 4, 2006 at 7:33 PM | Permalink

Lose the invective; it doesn’t become you.

I never said that John Hunter isn’t being a bit of an a****le. I don’t particularly blame him, given the insulting comments that have been thrown his way in this thread. But as I read it, he said, “contact the archive.” When Steve did that, they referred him to John. John then sent it to Steve, and said to thers, ok, request it from me and I’ll send it to you. I don’t see one bit of evidence one way or the other as to whether John knew this is what would happen ahead of time. When it was referred to him, the data was immediately forthcoming, and a direct route to the data was lined out for others.

What he essentialy said was, show me you care enough about the field to know where data in this field is archived (or before he archived the data, at least read the paper which he claims says what the data source was), and you will be able to get the data.

I stand by my comments in that post.

563. TCO
Posted Jun 4, 2006 at 7:44 PM | Permalink

I like me invective. You lose your ponderous paras with minimal point. ;-)

Posted Jun 5, 2006 at 9:01 AM | Permalink

In the absence of any detailed analysis of John H’s data (Dave Dardinger excepted), this thread seems to have become more of a discussion of feedbacks vs. forcings, than anything else.

Whilst I would prefer that it deal with its initial subject matter, I recognise both the road-blocks (which now seem to have become “traffic-calming”, rather than outright dead ends) and the fact that any analysis of the data would take some time, almost requires some “ad break” content to help pass the time. That’s how I see the F v. F debate on this thread.

Reading some of the posts, including Tom Brogle’s and John H’s exchanges on this side issue, it makes me wonder – why is this such a physics and maths closed shop? If we’re talking about forcings and feedbacks and how various components of the system interact with each other and whether or not they reach an equilibrium or become explosive, where are the chemists in this entire debate (not here, but generally in relation to the AGW issue)?

Surely, chemists should have some significant things to say about how closed systems reach equilibriums or otherwise and what the effects of external “forcings” would be on such systems. I’m surprised, quite frankly, that they haven’t had more influence in the debate.

I’m not arguing that they would displace the physicists, mathematicians and techies, but they do not seem to be anywhere near as prominent as you would expect.

565. jae
Posted Jun 5, 2006 at 11:22 AM | Permalink

I don’t know whether chemists can help much here. Water vapor in the atmosphere doesn’t seem to conform to any clear describable dynamics–it seems to me to act chaotically. It doesn’t just form a stable equilibrium and stay there; the concentrations and even physical states (ice, droplets, vapor) are always changing. Like Steve mentioned earlier, it produces both positive and negative feedbacks, and I don’t think the dynamics are understood very well. I feel quite confident that water is what “cushions” us from any type of run-away changes in climate; and I believe it also cushions us from any warming effects of CO2 changes. That is, if heat is added, more water vapor will form, causing more clouds, which cause a cooling effect. In fact, I think it will ultimately be shown that all climate changes result from interactions between the sun and water in the atmosphere. The ice core data clearly shows (to me, anyway) that CO2 levels have no effect on climate. The water molecule is truly an unique and amazing.

566. Peter Hearnden
Posted Jun 5, 2006 at 12:14 PM | Permalink

Re #569, Jae that’s a classically contradictory post. You say “Water vapor in the atmosphere doesn’t seem to conform to any clear describable dynamics–it seems to me to act chaotically” and “it [water vapour] produces both positive and negative feedbacks, and I don’t think the dynamics are understood very well” and then proceed merrily on as if you know everything there is to know about it! Thus your very next sentence says “I feel quite confident that water is what “cushions” us from any type of run-away changes in climate; and I believe it also cushions us from any warming effects of CO2 changes.” what and it’s chaotic? And that immediately after you’d said the dynamics aren’t very well understood? Your next three sentences are similarily contraditory.

Make your mind up.

567. jae
Posted Jun 5, 2006 at 12:44 PM | Permalink

Chaotic probably wasn’t the proper word. All I’m trying to say is simply that water has the ability to moderate the effects of heating or cooling, and that the Sun is mainly responsible for global climate changes.

568. ET SidViscous
Posted Jun 5, 2006 at 1:16 PM | Permalink

Peter

You assume that because one does not understand one part of the system to an extremely high degree, that it cannot be seen as a primary mover, with both positive and negative effects. In fact there is plenty of empirical evidence that Water vapor is in fact a moderator as well as a GH agent.

For example, North Africa and Central America are at roughly the same latitude, yet their climate is vastly different. And while mean temps might be approx equivalent, the range of temps is vastly different. We do know that the primary reason for this, all other things being approx equal, is the water vapor in the area. As such. We do know, even with what little we understand of the system, that Water vapor is a contributing GHG, we also know that in GH Limiting gas at the extreme temp ranges, and that areas with little water vapor in the air will warm considerable more than equal areas with high amounts of water vapor.

Thus we do know that it has both negative and positive effects. We know that both effects are strong, as such we do know that it acts as a cushion to any large swings in one direction or the other. We know this at the macro level, though it is difficult to show at the micro level.

569. jae
Posted Jun 5, 2006 at 2:50 PM | Permalink

Another good example of moderation: the oceans get rid of excess heat via the evaporation of water, which forms clouds. When the water then condenses in the form of rain, all that energy is dissipated into the high atmosphere, where much of it is released to space. Another very interesting thing about water is the large amount of energy it takes to evaporate it, due to its polar nature.

570. jae
Posted Jun 5, 2006 at 4:09 PM | Permalink

Thinking again about water vapor, if mankind is warming the planet, it is likely due to irrigation, which adds tremendous quantities of the best greenhouse gas to the atmosphere. Maybe it’s time to stop irrigation. Of course, we would all starve. But that makes more sense than mitigating CO2!

571. ET SidViscous
Posted Jun 5, 2006 at 4:44 PM | Permalink

And certainly a hydrogen economy wouldn’t help. At least with irrigation you aren’t putting water vapor directly into the atmosphere.

And that’s not even taking into account the greater carbon based fuel that would be required for a hydrogen economy (assuming nuclear power is unacceptable)

572. Lee
Posted Jun 5, 2006 at 5:02 PM | Permalink

Uhhhh, jae, ET. Do you happen to know the residence time of water vapor in the lower atmopsphere? More on point, do you happen to know the half-time of the return to equilibration after a perturbation fo the water vapor equilibrium? You should before makkng this kind of dogmatic claim on water vapor effects on climate change.

Hint; it aint long enough to have the kinds of lasting effects you guys are atributing to water vapor perturbations. These are the kinds of posts that make me throw up my hands in dismay at the self described “high qualtiy” of postings at this site.

573. ET SidViscous
Posted Jun 5, 2006 at 5:24 PM | Permalink

Yes lee. Are you aware of the greater magnitude of warming of water vapor compared to CO2, I assume you are also aware of the primary feedback mechanism required for the CO2AGW thesis?

CO2 alone cannot be responsible for the predicted warming, it is predicated on the primary feedback of warmer air holding more water vapor, which increases warming, so that the air can hold more water vapor, and so forth.

Therefore the water vapor comments that Jae and I have postulated end run around CO2 warming, and goes straight to a larger version of the positive feedback that your CO2 thesis requires. The feedback doesn’t mater where the initial warming comes from, the feedback mechanism is still present and working. The difference is water vapor will have a greater initial input than the CO2. Yes, you are correct that the water vapor molecules cycle through the atmosphere more quickly, but they also induce much greater warming. In other words the CO2 is a small diesel engine, getting up to speed slowly. While water vapor is a top fuel dragster. Now normally it would run out of fuel quickly, but there is no lack of water for the water vapor cycle.

The difference between the two is that the water vapor cycle could come down quickly, the CO2 cycle as you point out is harder to reverse. But the water vapor cycle has greater acceleration, the top end should be the same (Since water vapor is the limiting factor in both circumstances).

574. ET SidViscous
Posted Jun 5, 2006 at 5:29 PM | Permalink

To describe differently.

Looking at the Water vapor feedback cycle as an amplifier.

CO2 has a slow steady Input that comes down much much slower than water vapor.

Water vapor has a fast intial input, however, unless the source is cut off it will sustain the warming so long as their is input.

So long as the surface of the Earth is 3/4 water (Which it will be so long as your postualted cycle of water continues) then the warming will be sustained.

575. welikerocks
Posted Jun 5, 2006 at 5:59 PM | Permalink

Try asking a long time resident of Palm Springs, CA how the climate has changed in the last 30 yrs or so with all the new homes, sprinklers, pools, parks and vegetation.
____________________
I’ve been a lurking reading interested person in this site for a long
time. I admire what ClimateAudit does and is doing. Thank you Steve, Ross and John A.

My husband is a sr. scientist.  He has a Masters in Environmental Geology. He actually works cleaning up the world every single day.

The AGW debate interests us because we have children and they are being taught in school that these climate models are real world fact.  We stay up-to-date on what’s going on for our children.

Like all of the people here that have been called “children” in this topic my husband, the environmental scientist, also believes that climate science is heavily flawed and the data is fudged.

He also believes that the people on the warmers-side of the debate have no concept of geologic age or time. He also believes they ignore geologic evidence of events like the MWP and LIA, (the Malinkavitch cycles as well) that is found the in layers of rock and soil, and found in the DNA of tiny microscopic animals ALL OVER THE WORLD in perfect SYNC.

We read this blog together.
He can comment here too if you’d like.

No scientist I know behaves in the manner I see here when discussing
science. Nor do they withhold data, ridicule and type cast, or make people beg and or jump through hoops for data or have to prove they are “somebody” before they get to read or see it.

The scientists I know don’t care about any of this ego stuff. And Ego stuff is what it is. Including the name calling and throwing up the hands”I go away a week and look what’s happened” huffing and puffing, and Peter H and Co. jumping in for nic pics.

Here’s some math/knowledge I am an expert in:
EGO = FEAR

All the real scientists I know care about finding truth; scientists like the true mechanisms that make our world go round. There’s none of this ego nonsense in their work or training.

Sheesh.

With all do respect please answer me this:
What the hell are you so afraid of that you have to come across in a
manner like this?   And if your data/knowledge is so good and
true why would you bother commenting at all if you find everyone here too stupid, wrong and beneath you to even understand it?  Why would you even care?

576. welikerocks
Posted Jun 5, 2006 at 6:18 PM | Permalink

Oh sorry there!! One mistake in my post I did not mean the DNA of microscopic animals, I meant the cycles of miscroscopic animals mimic global climate cycles all over the planet. (My husband actually thinks it -could be- found in the DNA if the fossil record was complete enough…another subject another time. :) )

577. Lee
Posted Jun 5, 2006 at 9:27 PM | Permalink

Exactly. Water is an amplifier for other primary inputs. And yes, of course I’m aware of that; the degree of amplification from the initial primary (forcing) input is precisely what the AGW debate is about, and water vapor amplification is a major part of the potential amplifying mechanisms.

But jae made the astonishing claim that “if mankind is warming the planet, it is likely due to irrigation.” Irrigation-mediated anthropogenic humidity effects can not be more than local, seasonal, and limited to the surface… like in Palm Springs, for example, or Vegas for that matter. To make the bald claim that jae made seems to me to simply be throwing way any pretense of reliance on scientific argument.

578. Lee
Posted Jun 5, 2006 at 9:54 PM | Permalink

re 579:
Welikerocks, if you have never seen scientists act like this, then you probably havent been involved in any highly competitive fields of science. Much of science runs on Ego; i is a high octane fuel for getting things done.

I was actually pissed when my nice sedate thesis project on behavioral genetics turned out to actually be a project on the relationship between voltage-gated channel genes, the multiple isoforms of their protein products, and the resulting phenotypes, and nearly guaranteed me a couple of highly visible grad-student papers, because it dumped me into what was then one of the hottest fields going and I had to deal with this kind of stuff every day. But a truly stupefying amount of very good science got done through all the ego and BS in the field.

I personally find it astounding that peopel were hammering him because they were apparently too lazy to bother to get a copy of his paper on their own.

He said this:
“In our 2002 paper we indicated where Lempriere’s hardcopy data was archived (it wasn’t us who archived it). Recently I lodged digitised versions of both Lempriere’s data and our own tide gauge data at standard sea-level archives.”

IOW, if people had actually bothered to get the damn paper and read it, they would have known where the Lempriere data is all along, becaue he PUBLISHED ITS LOCATION. And if they havent bothered to read the paper, what on earth are they planning to do with data? The new data was archived, and as soon as he found that one of the archives referred requests to him, he sent the data. As far as Ive seen no one has bothere dto see if the other archives might send the data without asking him first.

I also personally find the isnistence on anonymity when requesting assistance nd data from a scientist to be astonishing. I probably sent over 100 requestes for data, reagents or biological cultures to scientists when I was doing science, many of them to fierce competitors whom I knew I would therefore be alerting to my research plans, and with the knowledge taht some of those srequests would be delayed or an attemtp made to ignore them becasue of the cometition. But I would not have DREAMED of doing so without identifying myself and my purpose, even though the identification was obviously hurtful to my cause. If I had imagined to do so and tried, I suspect my grad advisor would have crucified me for it. John Hunter has made it clear he will send data even to the people who are lambasting him, the people who were slamming him for not sending a non-existent PDF or posting a copyright-violating public copy of a paper THEY COULD NOT BE BOTHERED TO GET ON THEIR OWN, if they just bother to ask him properly for the data. Maybe its the field of science I was in, but I see nothing wrong with that.

579. ET SidViscous
Posted Jun 5, 2006 at 9:56 PM | Permalink

Let’s step aside from Jae for a moment.

Your post 576 was adressed to me as well, and you said I was wrong and dogmatic because I postuluted that increased water vapor would have the same or greater impact than CO2. Your reasoning was because it could return more quickly than the same effect as CO2. I pointed out that this was the case only if the input was removed, and that barring major decline in civilization’s energy usage the input would not be removed, therefor it’s rebound time was irrelevant.

So can you please tell me what is wrong in my statement.

580. Lee
Posted Jun 5, 2006 at 10:39 PM | Permalink

anthropogenic humidity effects are largely limited in area and season, and to near-surface effects.

I live in California; I routinely drive through the rice farming areas when for tens of miles in every direction there is standing water with growing rice in what would otherwise be baked hot dry grassland. The humidity is higher, some, but not anywhere near what is even a normal summer day in the eastern US. And when I look across the valley, I can see humidity haze. But when I look up, I see california clear blue sky, not the kind of humidity haze one sees in humid climates. And the humidity effect ends, and any temperature effects disappear in short order (hours?), the first day of the rainy season. I certainly dont see any evidence that the increase in low-level humidity in the Sacramento valley has any effect at all a hundrend miles downwind in the great basin desert, or even 40 miles downwind in the western foothills of the Sierra, which still get dry as all getout for the entire summer.

It’d be good to see the quantification of this, and I wouldnt doubt some limited-region, short-term local effects, but I dont see any way off the top of my head, given what I’ve observed, that this would translate to top-of-atmosphere climate-altering changes in the energy budget. Direct anthropogenic water vapor dynamics simply appear too limited not just in time, but in space (by geology) and altitude, and I havent seen any coherent scientific argument demonstrating otherwise.

581. Dave Dardinger
Posted Jun 5, 2006 at 11:20 PM | Permalink

Lee, why are you hanging out on this thread if you’re a working scientist? I’m not going to defend ET or jae because I also don’t think irrigation has much effect globably, though I want to see the figures before signing off to that effect. But they are clearly not the big-guns on this site. Steve will gladly discuss the hockey-stick and related statistic, dendroclimatology in general and a number of other relevant subjects. There’s a fairly large and growing number of other highgrade researchers who post here regularly too. It makes no sense to limit yourself to what is purposely set up to be a ghetto, unless you like ghetto blasters.

582. ET SidViscous
Posted Jun 5, 2006 at 11:40 PM | Permalink

Lee

All your points are valid, now. If we now replace the amount of vapor put into the atmosphere in the equivalent volume that we do C02 currently (from engines, power plants, and the like), do you possibly see that dynamic changing? You are essentially making the argument that someone could have made in 1850 “we already put X amount of CO2 into the atmosphere from breathing, we see very little effect. Anything we do is localized, etc. etc. etc.”

Remember I’m not discussing irrigation.

Dave. First off, could you please point out where I am making the irrigation argument? I don’t recall doing so. If your going to attribute comments to me, could you please show the link. And I don’t require your backing, certainly not needed, but is there any chance you could lay of the derision. Its fairly annoying when I want to agree with your point, but its difficult when you mock me in the same breath.

583. tom brogle
Posted Jun 5, 2006 at 11:55 PM | Permalink

My researches have shown that irrigation gives a false lowering of the temperature in same way as UHI raises the temperature.
I am coming to the conclusion that most of the UHI effect is caused by the lack of vegetation in the area.Of course actual storage of heat in brick and concrete and heating of buildings must also have some effect.

584. welikerocks
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 7:33 AM | Permalink

Lee, John Hunter came to CA not the other way around. And because he was disrupting other topics they made him a whole area to spout his stuff. He never did, he just taunted everyone. Up there in the beginning he also says: “This episode demonstrates once again the intellectual bankruptcy of the cheerleaders on ClimateAudit” Maybe you think that’s a normal MO, I do not.

maybe (I don’t know) this guy would be more helpful on current sea level stuff:

Aung said data had been collected for 136 months in a project managed by Australian Marine Science and Technology Ltd, which showed sea levels had both risen and fallen across the Pacific in that time.

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/category/story.cfm?c_id=26&objectid=3586762

Cheers everyone! (Keep up the good work cheerleaders!)

585. Dave Dardinger
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 8:24 AM | Permalink

ET,

Back in comment 577 you said:

Therefore the water vapor comments that Jae and I have postulated end run around CO2 warming

Since he was talking about irrigation, I assumed you were agreeing with him. Sorry if that wasn’t the case. Of course what it appears you were actually saying also doesn’t hold water , but that’s another story.

586. ET SidViscous
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 9:07 AM | Permalink

Dave I said water vapor Irrigation is just a mechanisim. I neither Agree or disagree with Jae’s comments.

But the snarky comments come out again, showing you could care less about Derision. Rather than trying to be funny and saying it doesn’t hold water, why don’t you point out why it doesn’t.

Hey BTW you got that conversion of calories to Joules down yet.

587. jae
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 10:05 AM | Permalink

Lee, et. al.: I am aware that water vapor has a very short half-life in the atmosphere. But we are CONSTANTLY adding TREMENDOUS amounts of water vapor to the atmosphere. Not just irrigation, but BURNING FOSSIL FUELS (remember, when you combust organics, you always get copious amounts of water, as well as CO2). This surely has some effect on “average global temperature,” whatever that is and however it is measured.

588. jae
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 10:26 AM | Permalink

For the record (again): I do not claim to have much expertise on AGW. I am just musing here. However, I do claim to be an expert on tree rings, and they suck as a temperature proxy.

589. Lee
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 10:28 AM | Permalink

jae,
What is the ratio of anthropogenic water input to natural evaporative input? What are the equilibrium processes that determine water vapor concentrations in the atmosphere? How sensitive is the equilibrium arising from those processes to additional input of the amounts specified in the first question? Does any of this give more than localized short-term changes. And are any changes of large enough magnitude to have an effect on even local temperatures(I’d guess likely in some cases) or top-of-atmosphere global heat balance?
Without at least ball park estimates of this, and in the absense of observed global effects, you are arguing from a position with no foundation.

Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 10:47 AM | Permalink

RE: #569 – water is like an huge tri state gate array. Talk about chaos.

591. Lee
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 10:54 AM | Permalink

Dave,

I’m not currently doing science, although I did do what I like to think was some pretty good work when I was. I make my living doing information management consulting, training and implementation for scientists in a couple fields that tend to generate massive quantities of data. I thought I’d clarified that with the phrase “when I was doing science”, but I guess I wasn’t clear enough. I’m not saying this with the intent to slam you for missing it (no problem there), I just like to be sure I’m not misleading on that point.

On your other point. I do not consider myself qualified to do or to critize the statistics of time series analyses. I’m interested in the AGW issue. I came to this site because this particular subset of the AGW field is the subject of a lot of controversy, and my goal is to get a feel for whether the controversy is justified, whether the conclusions from this particular subfield are valid, whether that matters in the larger guestion of AGW, and once I get a feel for all that (epecially the last point), whether I’m interested enough to invest time in rigorously learning the statistics and the background science to critically evaluate it for myself. And as I follow links and limes of argument, I occasionally see things like this thread that I just cant help but respond to. Maybe that makes it look like my interest is in slumming and bomb throwing.

I must say that Steve’s style, which assumes in every post a substantial amount of knowledge of all the background and with essentially no overarching explanatory articles, makes it harder to find the overall structure of his points. Even diving back through old threads I find the same cryptic references made over and over, and have to work very hard to extract the principles he is referring to. But it is his blog, if he wants to focus on talking to those who already know what he’s talking aobut, so be it.

Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 10:57 AM | Permalink

RE: #584. Let me give you a scenario or three. Scenario number 1 – major inversion during the summer. Zero wind except maybe near the Delta. No where for the humidity to go. Scenario number 2 – major windstorm in early fall. Scenario number 3 – late spring unseasonal rains followed by a major unseasonably cold near-surface inversion but with clear skies.

593. jae
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 11:16 AM | Permalink

Without at least ball park estimates of this, and in the absense of observed global effects, you are arguing from a position with no foundation.

Lee, I am not arguing. I am just throwing out an idea, for the hell of it. It just seems plausible that there might be some net warming effect of all the water we continually pump into the air, given that water is such an important greenhouse gas. I can’t prove it. But the AGW folks have not proven that CO2 has any effect, either (although some seem to think there is some type of proof).

594. Steve McIntyre
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 11:41 AM | Permalink

#595. Lee, I apologize for the opaqueness of many posts and I agree that the significance of many of them presupposes that you’ve been in this dialogue for a while. My objectives are different than realclimate: their objective seem to be to package little soundbites for the press, they aren’t interested in actual debate and they expect people to kneel before them and kiss their rings.

Initially I was defending myself against disinformation, but mostly this is a diary of things that I’m reading and working on. I could make individual posts more self-explanatory, but it would take a lot longer and I don’t have the time. It’s just me here not a whole Hockey Team. (I think that the odds are fair.) I’ve obviously found some kind of audience because the site gets a lot of hits. There are probably some little things that I should do to clean up individual posts – better hyperlinking would help a lot.

As to an overview, my view on things is evolving. I push and prod at the data to see where it goes and write notes on what I see. I do want to pull some of the themes together and intend to do so at some point.

595. Dave Dardinger
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 12:25 PM | Permalink

General comments. I wish I had time to answer things individually but I’m rushed today.

ET, I’ll leave you with your attempt at ubersnarkery, but I’m afraid it went over my head. That’s the trouble with references that are too old. BTW, I think Lee’s question in 593 pretty much says what I’d say as to your problem. Do the numbers and see what you get.

Lee, you need to ask yourself the simple question, “what are they hiding?” Maybe the team doesn’t think they’re hiding things but it’s clear they are if you follow the threads here, and that doesn’t require much of any statistical knowledge at all. That should make you say to the team, “Come clean now or I’ll assume Steve’s right and you’re wrong.” If you can’t do that then you need to look at your own motives.

BTW, that should be what Dr. Hunter does too. Write Steve a personal note and say, “Send John A a copy of the data, I know why he wants it anyway. I wouldn’t do anything if I did know who he was, but since if he did anything illegal you could be deposed anyway whether you sent it to him or I or someone else did, you might as well do it.”

Steve, I think the really smart thing you’ve done here is to use the discussions as a way stimulating your creativity. At the same time you don’t really care whether people know what you’re working on, so you can respond quickly to new ideas. If this becomes a general practice in science the advances which are possible quickly are staggering. The trick is how do the top tier scientists keep from being buried in low-level dreck without being so selective that they can’t hear most of the good ideas being tossed about. I think the solution is going to be developing some mid-level gurus. This would mean having a tier where the gurus could talk to the master scientists and also to a selected group of lower-level thinkers / gabbers but where the top tier only sees what’s filtered through the middle. The lower tier, would be able to see the high-level discussions, however since otherwise they wouldn’t know what to discuss.

596. Michael Jankowski
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 12:35 PM | Permalink

My objectives are different than realclimate: their objective seem to be to package little soundbites for the press, they aren’t interested in actual debate and they expect people to kneel before them and kiss their rings.

RC used to always insist they wouldn’t discuss policies on their site and would delete comments that dealt with policy issues. But they’ve got a whole thread discussing Kyoto-esque carbon credits, and of course there’s the Al Gore movie thread. Most of the posts seem to not be about the facts or science of the movie but about how to get the scaremongering message to common people.

597. Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 12:37 PM | Permalink

I agree. A blog gives a scientist a way to write a lot, get ideas out there and see what people are interested in immediately, and filter out the most productive topics according to your goals. Its hard to get out of editorial mode like RC and adopt a more conversational tone. Something Steve has achieved. Lubos is extrordinary too, the way he gets so much traffic about mostly incomprehensible string theory. Still if I had a really great idea, I probably wouldn’t put it on a blog until it was published. But I don’t get really great ideas. Most of the literature is banal.

598. John A
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 3:17 PM | Permalink

I get really great ideas, and you’ll hear it here last.

599. Dave Dardinger
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 3:40 PM | Permalink

re: 602

That’s because you’re not a scientist at heart, John.

600. Kenneth Blumenfeld
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 5:09 PM | Permalink

I don’t mean this to be snarky at all. Many posters on here have shown exceptional aptitude, especially for the sciences. But I have been surprised how few people understand meteorology (i.e., the weather). It is amazing to me, since it really is the weather that we feel, and proposed/denied changes in the weather are at the heart of climate change debate.

So, here are some great books:
“Meteorology for Scientists and Engineers,” by Roland B. Stull is fantastic. It is a “mathed-up” companion to the typical introductory text, “Meteorology Today,” by Donald Ahrens. The latter has lots of photos and color figures, whereas the former has many many equations, all in finite-difference form so you can work through them very quickly. If you get the Ahrens book online, there is not much of a difference between the earlier editions and the later ones, so if you get one from the 1990s, you probably will pay a lot less, and you won’t be missing much. In any case, the books can be used independently, or as companions. It really depends on your own learning style.

Also, “Atmospheric Science: an Introductory Survey,” by John M. Wallace and Peter Hobbs is a classic that everyone uses. It has a little less weather in it than the other books and generally assumes competence in differential equations.

Okay, back to the research.

601. jae
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 5:26 PM | Permalink

Thanks for the info., Kenneth. Maybe I can find time to look at the texts. It seems to me that the atmospheric scientists/meterologists would naturally have the most to offer in the study of climatology. It is interesting that many of them (like some leading state climatologists) are not part of the so-called “consensus.”

602. ET SidViscous
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 8:47 PM | Permalink

Dave.

All that is absolutely true for now. But does not hold for when we replace the 7 Gigatons of C02 with the equivalent in H20. Just as CO2 wouldn’t be an issue (not that I think its a large one now) if we lost the 7 Gigatons of CO2 now.

It’s all really simple.

Not that it will every really happen the energy economics don’t work for Hydrogen. But the point is to point out the issues with substitutes.

603. lee
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 9:30 PM | Permalink

re: 606

Hydrocarbon economy — CH + O2 = CO2 + ***H2O***

Hydrogen economy — H + O2 = ***H2O***

So I’m not sure what your point is, ET.

604. ET SidViscous
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 9:43 PM | Permalink

Cuz your slightly off. Yes both create H20, that is obvious.

WHat part of increasing the amount of H2O

Currently we create 7 gigatons of CO2 per year, + an amount of H2O, the amount of which I have not been able to find.

In a hydrogen economy. You replace the 7 Gigatons of CO2 with the energy equivalent of H2O in ADDITION to the current amount of H20 we currently create.

I’m not sure why you can’t see that.

605. ET SidViscous
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 9:44 PM | Permalink

The AGW business we’re in now isn’t THAT we release CO2, it’s HOW MUCH CO2 we release.

If you remove CO2 emisions, you need to replace it with something else. In a hydrogen community that is H2O, a stronger GHG.

606. JMS
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 9:44 PM | Permalink

There are a lot of problems with the “hydrogen economy”. The main one is what is the power source we use to produce all of that H? Most of the processes we use right now involve the burning of fossil fuels. Carbon sequestration is hopeful, but is probably not the answer. The real answer is probably the least bad alternative, but the Greenies will scream: nuclear. It is very difficult to ship H around in pipelines, so local (at your home) production of H from electricity supplied by nukes is going to be the best option.

Really, the solution is going to be a melange of all of the alternatives currently being discussed, some sequestration, some wind, some solar, some geothermal, some tide and wave. There are lots of ways to make electricity and in the end electricity is what we are going to depend on; it doesn’t matter how it is produced as long as the method reduces the amount of C02 we send into the atmosphere substantially.

607. JMS
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 9:46 PM | Permalink

Oh yeah, for those of you who are puzzled by where the data is: google “PSMSL”. The links are on the front page.

608. Dave Dardinger
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 10:03 PM | Permalink

Come on, ET! Show some knowledge of the science. It really doesn’t matter how much H20 we produce, it will be rained out of the atmosphere in (on the average) a week or less. And once it’s rained out it joins a vast quantity of other water. CO2 takes a much longer time to cycle and has some effects if it dissolves in the ocean. Sure the warmers tend to hype things to push their agenda, but if you deny facts you just discredit reasonable skeptics.

And it’s not hard to figure out how much H2O vapor is produced under various circumstances. You just need to lay out your scenario appropriately and apply ordinary algebra to data you can find in the CRC tables or on-line. I’ve done this several time and am quite sure the amount of human produced H2O in the atmosphere at any given time compared to that produced by evaporation from the oceans by natural processes is miniscule.

609. Lee
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 10:17 PM | Permalink

uhhh….

If hydrogen is derived by stripping fromn from hydrocarbon fuels(currently the most common process), all that is happening is that the hydrogen is sequestered for a bit before it combines with oxygen to make water. Same water output.

If it is derived by hydrolysis (etc) using nuclear popwer (perhaps the only way a hydrogen economy makes, although advantages from distributed productin might give us some gains as well), then it is replacing hydrocarbon sources, and thus simply replacing the hyydrocarbon-combustion water output.

Not that it matters, as Ive said before, and Dave just stated more succinctly.

610. ET SidViscous
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 10:19 PM | Permalink

And Dave, when exaclty did I deny that, in fact I agreed to that exact point at least once if not twice.

To your first paragraph. The same “tipping point” arguements can be applied to Water vapor as CO2, yes it does precipitate out, but if we continue to shove water vapor into the atmosphere, it crteates warming, which leads to more evaporation etc etc etc.

As to your second point. Again, can we move away from how much Water vapor we are currently inputing; again, that’s not what I’m talking about, I’m talking about replacing Hydrocarbons for energy generation with hydrogen, dramatically increasing water vapor input.

Now we aren’t to far out of agreement on what the effects would be, but that is not my point in bringing it up the first time. Nor will a Hydrogen energy economy ever come about, which JMS pointed out, and I may have in the past here. It’s a now win situation from an energy genration point. And the entire point was in addition to Jae’s comment, wasn’t meant for a deep discusion, just pointing out other Anthropogenic effects on the enviornment, you can’t get away from having an impact, just the way it is. All living creatures have an impact. Certainly humans have more of an impact than the vast majority of creatures, but I think we’re still in second place to the species that has the greatest impact on the enviornment, Trees.

611. ET SidViscous
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 10:26 PM | Permalink

Lee

Using Hydrogen from hydrocarbons doesn’t change anything, CO2 is still released, and due to the inneficency of the entire system, more so. While you apply the fact that Hydrogen is combined whether we burn it in gasoline, or stip it out and burn it later, you forget that whether we burn the carbon in the gasoline, or combine it with oxygen in the hydrogen extraction process, or release it to combine with oxygen later, CO2 is still produced. That’s kind of been one of my underlying points all along.

And any gains from distributed production will be lossed in transportation.

612. Lee
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 10:50 PM | Permalink

ET, where did I say otherwise. Hydrogen, unless we use new non-fossil sourcces to make it, is a storage fule, not a source fuel. OF course that is true. My point was aobut your water argument.
BTW, how oes shoving water into the atmophere make any difference if it doesn’t stay there?

613. ET SidViscous
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 11:10 PM | Permalink

Then were arguing around each other.

So it comes out instantly, doesn’t stay there at all? Humidity seems to argue against that. I know that’s not what you said, to your point. While it IS IN the atmosphere it does make a difference. and H2O is a stronger GHG (The strongest and most predominant) so during it’s brief time in the atmosphere it will warm it more, and as we’ve already stipulated, a warmer atmosphere will hold more water, more warming etc etc.

What’s that like 6 times I’ve said that so far.

614. Pat Frank
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 11:21 PM | Permalink

Sid, the only way a hydrogen economy will increase atmospheric water is if energy production used some sort of fossil hydrogen. If the hydrogen was obtained from natual gas, say, (unlikely) the net H2O in Earth climate would increase because the hydrogen would be “new”. If hydrogen is produced by electrolyzing water, there is no net increase in H2O content because the hydrogen is merely recycled.

The only relatively efficient way I know of to get hydrogen from oil or coal is by way of the water-gas reaction. But even with the most hydrogen-efficient process using methane, every 4 molecules of H2 will be accompanied by a molecule of CO2. I.e., there is no net improvement in CO2 production, and by having to produce the H2 we’ve merely used up some of the energy we’d get from direct burning. The water-gas reaction is endothermic, and requires energy input to proceed. One could also produce hydrogen by coking oil (coal hasn’t much hydrogen), but that also requires considerable heat input.

In any case, producing hydrogen from fossil oil would introduce new water from burning H2. But I don’t see that the new water would contribute much to world climate. After all, the CO2 we now produce is only about 5% of the total yearly CO2 flux. I’d imagine the H2O we’d produce to make the same amount of energy would be far less than 5% of the yearly H2O flux.

The way out is clearly nuclear — the way out of our dependence on foreign oil, that is. I’m not particularly worried about any AGW. All the rational calculations imply the effect will be small.

615. ET SidViscous
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 11:22 PM | Permalink

PS Lee the farst precipitation of H20 also effects the CO2 warming cycle as well.

Since the dangerous warming is predicated on the feedback of holding more water vapor, why would CO2AGW make any difference if it (the water vapor a required feedback) doesn’t stay there?

616. Kenneth Blumenfeld
Posted Jun 6, 2006 at 11:58 PM | Permalink

ET,
When you say, regarding water vapor, “…so during it’s brief time in the atmosphere it will warm it more,” what do you mean? Could you be more specific? Water vapor is not what most people would call a “well-mixed” GHG. It stays relatively close to its source when released, whereas CO2 is much more evenly dispersed. This is why point-to-point CO2 variations are much smaller than point-to-point water vapor (pick your metric: mixing ratio, specific humidity, relative humidity, dew point) variations.

That said, when water vapor is released into the atmosphere, the effects are not necessarily to warm the local environment, especially if you are using temperature as the metric for heat (which most people do, though in terms of energy it is not as elegant as, say, moist enthalpy). Added water vapor may increase the heat content of a given parcel of air, but it may actually lower the temperature. If the water vapor feeds into a precipitation process, then you would have the latent heat of the water vapor released as sensible heat during condensation (after a good deal of adiabatic cooling), but you would also have the reverse effect when precipitation falls and evaporates. In a column of air, the temperature would not change as a result of these processes, but the vertical temperature laspe (the instability) would be diminished.

Anyway, the effects of water vapor are not always straightforward. That is all I meant to say.

617. ET SidViscous
Posted Jun 7, 2006 at 12:04 AM | Permalink

Pat

My point isn’t that we would be adding to the total water content, just that more would be in teh atmosphere at any given time. Liquid water on the surface does not contribute to atmospheric warming. Yes as Lee points out it precipitates out quickly, the problem is that only matters if we stop driving, generating electrcity, heating/cooling our homes etc, it will revert quickly, if we continue to input, it will stabilize at a greater temprature.

As to production. You say “The only relatively efficient way I know of to get hydrogen from oil or coal is ” I don’t know that is the way to go, Methane, natural gas etc is currently the most efficient way to produce Hydrogen.

“there is no net improvement in CO2 production, and by having to produce the H2 we’ve merely used up some of the energy we’d get from direct burning.”

As I’ve already mentioned, and I agree.

“water-gas reaction is endothermic, and requires energy input to proceed.”

Agreed as I mentioned in my first post on the subject, towards ignoring that for the moment “And that’s not even taking into account the greater carbon based fuel that would be required for a hydrogen economy”

“I’m not particularly worried about any AGW. All the rational calculations imply the effect will be small.”

I agree 100%, and that also applies to my above hydrogen scenario equally. My point isn’t that it’s a doomsday scenario, it was just to point out the same arguements against COT can be applied to H2O.

618. ET SidViscous
Posted Jun 7, 2006 at 12:22 AM | Permalink

“It stays relatively close to its source when released,”

But heat also radiates and spreads. Yes it will be more limited. But we are of course talking average tempratures, if your going to put an X degree on the planet Earth, spot tempratures increasing will also increasing the average. Not htat I’m arguing that is the best way to deal with it.

One minor point. “It stays relatively close to its source when released” True, that point would be where it is released, which in a hydrogen energy economy would be in the population centers. So populated areas will see a greater increase than unpopulated areas.

“Anyway, the effects of water vapor are not always straightforward. That is all I meant to say. ”

Agreed 100% I would also add the CO2 is not straightforward either. Or warming for that matter, it will have detrimental effects, but also positive ones.

619. tom brogle
Posted Jun 7, 2006 at 12:34 AM | Permalink

The way I see it.
The oceans absorb the heat of the sun yielding water vapour.
The water vapour is blown over the land and the water vapour condenses yielding its latent heat.
If 1% (by vol) of water vapour in air condenses then it will raise the temperature of the air by approx. 1 degree centigrade.
If there is a large turnover of water vapour then the air temperature would be increased.
Is this too simplistic ?

620. Dave Dardinger
Posted Jun 7, 2006 at 6:14 AM | Permalink

re: #617

I’m getting tired of arguing with you. But one more thing. You keep saying things like:

H2O is a stronger GHG (The strongest and most predominant)

H20 is not a stronger GHG than CO2 on a molecule by molecule basis. It’s just so vastly more predominant that it looks like it is. I suspect that CO2 is quite a bit stronger than H2O on a molar basis, but I’d need to check the actual data to verify it. And I think the Freon type molecules are quite a bit stronger on a molecular basis. The question is do you really want to look at the subject numerically or just continue to bloviate?

621. ET SidViscous
Posted Jun 7, 2006 at 7:53 AM | Permalink

The question is, do I care at all, more importantly do you.

But if it makes your day to prove me wrong and score minor points, by all means feel free, put on your holier than thou hat and go right ahead.

622. John Hunter
Posted Jun 7, 2006 at 9:24 AM | Permalink

Steve: I have already told you two of the archives holding our data: NTC and PSMSL. For those who can’t be bothered to use Google, here are the URLs:

Now, if you just expect to be able to download the data directly from these sites, you may be disappointed (many sites, such as NTC, require that you actually ask for the data and I am not in charge of these sites). If John A expects to be able to obtain data AND remain anonymous to the data provider (a most unusual demand), then he also may be disappointed. If this results in you censoring me from Climateaudit, then, as Tim Lambert has already said, you should revise your censorship policy and be open about it.