Eli Rabett Explains Why RealClimate Scientists Can't Update the Proxies

realclimate apologist Eli Rabett explained at Tamino why real climate scientists haven’t updated the bristlecones:

You hike out to the ass end of nowhere, take a core (from the right tree, and bring it back. Now you have to analyze it. . . . . .

Sure sounds like a lot of work for a real climate scientist. Also that analysis thingee – that doesn’t sound like something that’s in the job description of a real climate scientist.

Of course, if you don’t want to hike, you can drive to many of the bristlecone sites (though not the foxtails) – which also happen to be in scenic country: at least the Colorado ones were. Yeah, yeah, you burn some fuel driving to the sites, but not as much fuel as going to an international climate conference. I also understand that some of the IPCC delegates were a bit concerned that the food quality at the Ritz Carlton in Paris this year was not up to their expectations.


  1. John Lish
    Posted Oct 26, 2007 at 9:55 PM | Permalink

    If we extend your Starbucks hypothesis Steve then it could be argued that a plane flight allows the realclimate scientist to access coffee service regularly as you are only moments away from a hostess or steward to serve you. Whereas the thought of being 20 minutes+ away from a coffee-serving facility presents dangers to the intrepid realclimate scientist. These scientists are so focused on their work that ordinary behaviour like making your own flask of coffee to take with you is simply inconceivable. Their brain power is focused primarily on the science for maximum efficiency. Without regular coffee intakes provided for them, the distractions of the real world will interfere with their work.

  2. mccall
    Posted Oct 26, 2007 at 9:57 PM | Permalink

    A cynical view of what Mr. Rabett omitted as part the process might be:
    1) Rigorous pre-screening of collected cores to avoid divergence;
    2) When few/none exist, revisit site to collect additional cores;
    loop to 1, until exhausted …
    3) Fabricate “it’s worse than we thought” extension to existing AGW theory, that explains divergence;
    4) Make press release, and apply for additional grant money to prove extension to AGW theory.

  3. Posted Oct 26, 2007 at 11:07 PM | Permalink

    You wouldn’t burn nearly the amount of CO2 emmiting fuel as they did for “Live Earth“.

  4. bender
    Posted Oct 26, 2007 at 11:23 PM | Permalink

    Rabbett is simply misinformed. Most real dendroclimatologists think that updating proxies is a terrific idea, and they would happily do so. The reason it is not done more frequently is because of (a) insufficient funding, and (b) the premium that the high priests place on “moving on”.

  5. cody
    Posted Oct 27, 2007 at 12:42 AM | Permalink

    Some proxies Eli may be right about – getting out there to drill ice cores or subsea deposits is a bit different than CA’s outing to the forests of Colorado. But logically you cannot use the precautionary principle to justify hugely expensive CO2 reduction, but refuse to invoke it for the much lesser expense of updating the proxies.

    After all one feels tempted to say, tongue firmly in cheek, if there is only the smallest chance that updating the proxies can lead us to a better understanding of the underlying science, surely when the fate of the planet is at stake, we should not take that chance, we should just spend the money, make the effort. After all, our children’s future is what we are talking about here…. Oh dear.

    My difficulty with the data was a logical one. We had a combined series of temperatures. One set was derived from tree rings and other proxies (from Moberg). The other was derived from surface station observations. Tamino then spliced the two, and argued that we could tell from the different shapes of the MWP and 20C that the two were different enough, particularly in rate of change, for the argument that the two are essentially similar and that they may be expected to have similar causes, would not apply. The question was, whether the data could reasonably support such a conclusion.

    I thought, and think, that you have to eliminate possible experimental artifacts in such a comparison. When we start talking comparative rates of change, the grain of the method starts to get very important. Now, you can’t dispute that the grain of the proxies is much coarser than the grain of the surface observations of the last 50 years. It may be that there is a substantial difference. One simple way to prove it would be, use the same series throughout. You could see a hint of the issue in Tamino’s post, when the scales of the two series were very different. It might be that if we had the same scales, and MWP and 20C plotted on them from the same proxies, that we would do the stats and say yes, they are quite different in rate of change. Clearly they cannot be due to the same causes. Or it might not show that at all.

    The difficulty with making such a point in the context of AGW is that people then say that you are being unreasonable in demanding evidence that doesn’t exist. They also abuse you personally for being various other irrelevant things which they have no idea whether they apply, and do not as it happens in my own case. It seems very hard to get the point across that this is not personal. One is not being difficult, the evidence put forward has difficulties. It contains a potential source of experimental error, which should be eliminated, and whose elimination can only be helpful.

    The other logical difficulty I had with the thread, and still have it, is the subsequent cooling after MWP. The current prescription is to reduce the level of CO2. The argument is that this will lower temperatures. What exactly is the evidence that falls in CO2 cause falls in temperature? When has this happened in the past?

    It does seem that the AGW argument has changed significantly over time. As more and more of the historical arguments have turned out to be dubious, it has become more and more focussed on events of the last 30 years. The argument now seems to be that none of the proxy stuff is of any importance. The surface temperature record is also not very material. What counts is observations of nature. The ice melt in the Arctic, the latitude at which plants are found, the timing of spring. Stuff like that.

    But then, and its always the logic that gets you, we come back to the same issue, yes, they are changing in the late 20C. But are they changing any more than we would expect from ordinary climate variability over a longer time period?

    Bottom line of the thread that Eli contributed on: is there a difference in rate of change? I don’t know. Its a theory. The most one can really say is that the evidence put forward shows its worth careful investigation. Which would have to involve, you can’t see any way around it, plotting the data as one continuous series of observations using the same experimental method. Its not like anyone is arguing this is impossible, just irksome or expensive. Lets get on with it.

  6. John A
    Posted Oct 27, 2007 at 1:10 AM | Permalink

    There’s a way to free up money to update the proxies – cut funding to climate modellers who are clearly producing no useful data.

  7. Jonde
    Posted Oct 27, 2007 at 1:18 AM | Permalink

    I bet we all agree with you in that John ;)

  8. MarkR
    Posted Oct 27, 2007 at 1:58 AM | Permalink

    #4 Bender. There seems to be plenty of grant money to endlessly rehash the existing data. I think the climate scientists simply don’t ask for money to update the proxies. There is a big opportunity here for someone. Make a case to the holders of the purse strings, they have loads of money.

  9. Buddenbrook
    Posted Oct 27, 2007 at 3:42 AM | Permalink

    “There’s a way to free up money to update the proxies – cut funding to climate modellers who are clearly producing no useful data.”

    I don’t think anyone will disagree. But does anyone know what’s the story with the “Earth Simulators” the next generation circulation models that should include land use change, cloud formation and other variables? Pielke Sr wrote something about them, I think they were building one in Japan.

  10. welikerocks
    Posted Oct 27, 2007 at 4:53 AM | Permalink

    As I recall, Dr.Mann was late to the Congressional hearing about these climate reconstructions because he said he didn’t have a babysitter and when he finally got there he had brought a lawyer with him.

    An excuse is often a lie carefully planned; carefully guarded. And if you really don’t want to do something, one excuse is as good as another isn’t it?

    A wise doctor I admire very much once said in a speech that science may tell us “how” things work in the world around us over and over again, but more often then not science fails to tell us completly “why” things happen in the world around us. I think I’ve come to the conclusion that the realclimate scientists want the “why” to be their view of it, and their view only, way more then truly finding out the “how” that just is what it turns out to be. Why is that? A control thing? Is it too much for them to handle or to exist on an ever changing planet? Is it a power trip? Who the heck knows – but I find the psychology we observe together here as these people go about their business fascinating-and disturbing-and just plain ridiculous all at the same time!

  11. bender
    Posted Oct 27, 2007 at 6:40 AM | Permalink

    Re-read #4. As I said, the problem is not merely (a) lack of funding, but (b) the way in which limited funding is allocated preferentially to “moving on” projects.

  12. MattN
    Posted Oct 27, 2007 at 7:06 AM | Permalink

    Wow Eli, that whole work thing is just so much….work, huh?

    Rabett is an embarassment to climate science…

  13. Fred
    Posted Oct 27, 2007 at 7:27 AM | Permalink

    There is also the problem when real climate scientists are “out there” of being hit on the noggin by all those pieces of falling sky they have been on about.

  14. Emil Perhinschi
    Posted Oct 27, 2007 at 7:29 AM | Permalink

    #11: preferential treatment goes not only for research, but also for applying the AGW countermeasures: EU just cut our carbon dioxide allocation by more than 20%, while increasing that of Germany by 12%. It looks like we had too much growth lately … We’ll survive, but Bulgaria had a cut of almost 40%, while right now their emissions are already at 52% of their Kyoto quota: they are pushing them towards a “The Mouse That Roared” scenario.

    Mr. McIntyre, I can’t tell you “keep up with the good work”, because I have no idea if your work is good, only that it’s more persuasive than the warmist version, but keep it up anyway, since debate is sorely needed.

  15. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Oct 27, 2007 at 7:32 AM | Permalink

    #11. aside from “moving on”, there’s also the issue of shall-we-day opportunistic reporting and non-reporting. Same with Lonnie Thompson’s Bona Churchill. The Polar Urals record was “updated” in 1998 (in this case the update included a large addition to the sparse medieval information in Briffa et al 1995), but the result was never published – instead Briffa switched to Yamal. Oh yes, the update had a very elevated MWP. Gaspe was updated in 1992, but never published or archived – the “signal” was said to be more evident in the 1983 version. Connie Woodhouse studied a number of treeline Engelmann spruce etc coming up to date, but didn’t get “interesting” results; her negative results were not published (but were archived).

    As to the bristlecones, Sheep Mountain results have been updated, but haven’t been published or archived – and other than a thesis being involved, one would never have known the results.

  16. Richard deSousa
    Posted Oct 27, 2007 at 9:53 AM | Permalink

    Rabett’s a whiner… and a lousy one at that.

  17. Hoi Polloi
    Posted Oct 27, 2007 at 10:09 AM | Permalink

    Rabett coyuld always use this camper?

  18. Curt
    Posted Oct 27, 2007 at 11:45 AM | Permalink

    Hmmm… The earth scientists I know (including my brother) got into the discipline largely because they liked getting out to “the ass end of nowhere”.

    And God forbid a scientist should have to analyze data! These people sound like spoiled trust-fund babies (which in a sense they are).

  19. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Oct 27, 2007 at 12:03 PM | Permalink

    Here from an earlier post is a picture of what Rabett describes as the “ass end of nowhere”. I by contrast thought that it was very attractive. And it didn’t take that long to get there – a little over an hour from the Starbucks in Colorado Springs. Yeah, you needed a 4-wheel truck to make it up the Forest Service road; a stretch limo appropriate for a real climate scientist stretch limo would have had problems.

  20. Steve Moore
    Posted Oct 27, 2007 at 12:17 PM | Permalink

    You hike out to the ass end of nowhere, take a core (from the right tree, and bring it back. Now you have to analyze it. . . . . .

    If real scientists had this attitude we’d still all be living in caves.
    Can you imagine a geologist, archeologist, or paleontologist thinking this way?
    There certainly would have been no Apollo Program (the Moon is pretty much “the ass end of nowhere”).

    These guys are Aristotelian in the worst possible sense.

  21. RomanM
    Posted Oct 27, 2007 at 12:40 PM | Permalink

    This thread seems to call for an “Eli’s Top Ten Reasons Why Realclimate Scientists Can’t Update the Proxies” list.

    For this list, I would suggest adding:

    “We are all out of fresh excuses to explain why the updated proxies don’t show a temperature signal”.

  22. Roger Dueck
    Posted Oct 27, 2007 at 1:17 PM | Permalink

    Working from your #10,
    #9 – I’m tired of Starbucks and the Mojo Monk (Calgary) doesn’t have a franchise in Colorado Springs

  23. trevor
    Posted Oct 27, 2007 at 1:37 PM | Permalink

    Actually, Eli had quite a bit more to say on Tamino as to why it is not possible to update the proxies: The discussion starts with a good question from Gaudenz. Eli’s responses say quite a bit about Eli!

    Gaudenz Mischol // Oct 22nd 2007 at 6:38 am

    One question comes to my mind: the reconstructions of past temperatures by tree rings or other proxies seem to be accurate to a tenth of a degree. Is it wise to compare these reconstructions to measured temperatures by thermometers (as tamino an others do it)? Why don’t we just continue the proxy reconstructions up to 2007 and see if they show the recent warming? If they track it I would have a lot of confidence in the proxy reconstructions, if they don’t I think we would have a problem in stating how much warmer or colder the MWP/LIA was. This would be the test for the proxies. As long as this is not done, it’s conjecture or belief, that proxies (like tree ring) are accurate “thermometers” to a tenth of a degree a thousand years an more back.

    Eli Rabett // Oct 22nd 2007 at 4:23 pm

    Gaudenz, there are two basic reasons your suggestion does not work. The first is that many of the proxy samples were taken years ago and only extend to the date they were taken (for example, tree rings and ice cores) so they cannot be “extended” to 2007 without taking new cores. given the large amount of effort and expenses to “bring the data base up to date” that is not practical. The Mann, Bradley and Hughes papers published in the late 90s, for example, cut off the calibration period in 1980, because many of the proxy samples extended only to that point. It is statistically challenging to consistently calibrate a number of proxys where the calibration period is different for different proxys. I don’t even know if it can be done.

    The second is that the proxys are determined by comparing some characteristic (say 18O) against the temperatures measured instrumentally so there is nothing a priori wrong with using instrumental temperature anomalies.

    A really significant problem for the future will be how to improve the calibration of old samples using a longer instrumental record.

    Eli Rabett // Oct 22nd 2007 at 4:25 pm

    Oh yes, another drive by, tree rings are NOT annual average affairs. If nothing else you can look at seasonal differences.

    Eli Rabett// Oct 23rd 2007 at 1:27 pm

    Time and trained people. Getting the samples, btw, is not trivial, you have to have the right equipment, know where to look (most of the stuff was sampled way before GPS), and not harm the tree, if it is still there, trees do fall in the forest. Ice cores are major expeditions because you need drilling equipment, a way of preserving the core, people who know how to take the samples, etc. boreholes, also are a specialists game, then you need the equipment and expertise to analyze what you have sampled. In short major projects not a wave of the hands nor a pocketbook issue alone.

    The thing about the borehole records is pretty well nailed by Stoat. The short of it is, that there are different sets taken by the same group and even the people who have a hard time defending the one that
    shows a very warm MWP

    BTW the post I linked to and the comments are a very good indication of how science really works.

    Eli Rabett// Oct 25th 2007 at 11:45 pm

    You hike out to the ass end of nowhere, take a core (from the right tree, and bring it back. Now you have to analyze it. . . . . . .

  24. RomanM
    Posted Oct 27, 2007 at 2:25 PM | Permalink

    The Number 1 reason probably has to be: “We KNOW we’re right and we don’t need no stinkin’ updates!”

  25. Steve Moore
    Posted Oct 27, 2007 at 2:43 PM | Permalink

    Re Eli quote in #23:

    BTW the post I linked to and the comments are a very good indication of how science really works.

    I think a better illustration of “how science really works” would be Copernicus-Brahe-Kepler.

    Copernicus developed a model of the Solar System. It had problems — mechanical and philosophical.
    Brahe developed systems of observation and measurement beyond that which had previously existed, and ended up with data that was superior. He also firmly disliked the Copernican model and sought to disprove it through his new data.
    Kepler used Brahe’s data to show that Copernicus had been on the right track.

  26. Andy
    Posted Oct 27, 2007 at 4:18 PM | Permalink

    Another one of the top

  27. Posted Oct 27, 2007 at 5:54 PM | Permalink

    Steve Moore:

    “These guys are Aristotelian in the worst possible sense.”
    “I think a better illustration of ‘how science really works’ would be Copernicus-Brahe-Kepler… Kepler used Brahe’s data to show that Copernicus had been on the right track.”

    About a quarter of Aristotle’s surviving corpus of writing consists of his biological research. From Colin Ronan’s “The History of Science in the World’s Cultures”:

    “There is evidence that [Aristotle's] observations included dissections, and full descriptions are given of the chameleon and of crabs, lobsters, cephalopods (squids, octopuses, etc.), as well as several fishes and birds. His observations were always meticulous: he investigated the pairing of insects, the courtship
    behavior, next building and brood care of birds, but above all he studied marine life. He noted how a cuttlefish anchored itself to a rock in stormy weather, while his description of the mouth-parts of a sea urchin was so detailed that they are still known as ‘Aristotle’s lanter': his assertion that the sea urchin’s eggs are larger at full moon has only recently been confirmed for the species he observed.
    Again Aristotle noticed that the female catfish left her eggs once she had laid them and that it was the male who looked after them, though this was later disbelieved and even ridiculed. Not until 1856 was it discovered that this indeed is an exact description of the behavior of the particular species he was
    observing. Moreover, Aristotle was not content only with passive observation and dissection, for he made tests of sense perception in scallops, razorfish and sponges.”

    Kepler wrote “The Cosmographic Mystery” in which he argued that the planetary distances were determined by the five regular solids just supposing that a planet’s orbit is circumscribed about one solid and inscribed in another. He also wrote “De Vero Anno quo Aeternus Dei Filius Humanam Naturam in Utero Benedictae Virginis Mariae Assumpsit” (Concerning the True Year in which the Son of God assumed a Human Nature in the Uterus of the Blessed Virgin Mary). Kepler demonstrated that the Christian calendar was in error by five years, and that Jesus had been born in 4 BC.

    Tell me again who the armchair theorist was…

    The Pompous Git

  28. tristram shandy
    Posted Oct 27, 2007 at 8:21 PM | Permalink

    some jester is giving eli whatfor over on tamino

  29. Posted Oct 27, 2007 at 10:14 PM | Permalink

    Let me see if I understand the argument for not updating the tree-ring proxies: It’s to much trouble and too expensive. In comparison with what? The billions it would cost to cut emissions? The millions it is costing to run climate models?

    A legitimate justification for not updating the tree-ring proxies might be that existing existing climate data and theories are sufficient to justify the massive world-wide economic dislocations needed to stabilize CO2 emissions. But this is not the scientific method. This is a travesty of the scientific method.

    When I was an undergraduate 50 years ago, scientists were certain that climate has not varied significantly for 10,000 years, continents were not moving about on the Earth’s surface…. The list could go on, but to what purpose? Once a scientist achieves certainty, he ceases to be a scientist.

  30. Roger Dueck
    Posted Oct 27, 2007 at 10:35 PM | Permalink

    Time and trained people. Getting the samples, btw, is not trivial, you have to have the right equipment, know where to look (most of the stuff was sampled way before GPS), and not harm the tree, if it is still there, trees do fall in the forest

    I think Eli illustrates the attitude most exquisitely! “My back hurts! I don`t have money! My brain hurts! Tress fall in the forest! (Steve has shown how difficult that part is!) Don`t expect me to actually substantiate my work because I was PEER REVIEWED and, therefore, I am GOD!“
    Stev, snip as required.


  31. Anthony Watts
    Posted Oct 28, 2007 at 10:33 AM | Permalink

    Oh just wait, I’ll do better than Steve’s Colorado picture. I’m on a trip to the “ass end of nowhere” this week myself.

    Rabett may not want to go to this one either, as it’s inconveniently and hellaciously hot. BTW there’s a Starbucks en route.

  32. Steve Moore
    Posted Oct 28, 2007 at 1:28 PM | Permalink

    RE #27:


    You noticed I said “…the worst possible sense.” and your reference to armchair philosophy shows you know what I meant.
    Aristotle is rightfully recognized as the first major “Natural Philosopher”, and where he was right, he was spot on. Where he was wrong, however, he was very, very wrong. The “Aristotelian” sense I intended was not simply that fact, but also in reference to the slavish following of his works by Europeans who evidently felt “if Aristotle said it, it must be true.”

    Kepler’s contribution to astronomy was profound (regardless of his other quaint notions), and it was “forced” upon him by data that did not fit his pet model.
    That’s the “science” part.

    Do we dismiss Newton’s Principia because he was an Alchemist?

    PS: I like your handle.

  33. Roger Dueck
    Posted Oct 28, 2007 at 1:41 PM | Permalink

    BTW, Eli’s comment regarding

    trees do fall in the forest

    is amusing, as dondrochronologists/climatologists DO use dead trees!

    Chronology Building

    The climatic changes or patterns in specific geographic areas can be traced by the study of old living trees. Samples taken from trees of unknown age can then be studied for matches with samples from trees with known sequences of growth. Using this process, when the rings “match” or are found to be overlapping in age, we are able to “see” even further back in time.
    An example of this occurred in the 1920’s when expeditions led by Douglass dated Pueblo Bonito, a prehistoric native American settlement in New Mexico. By analyzing the timbers used in its construction, they determined its existence 800 years before Columbus.
    A chronology (arrangement of events in time) can be made by comparing different samples. Using a boring tool, a long slender core sample about .423 centimeters in diameter is extracted.

    Lets say the sample was taken from a standing 4,000 year-old (but long dead) bristlecone. Its outer growth rings were compared with the inner rings of a living tree. If a pattern of individual ring widths in the two samples prove to be identical at some point, we can carry dating further into the past. With this method of matching overlapping patterns found in different wood samples, bristlecone chronologies have been established almost 9,000 years into the past

  34. MarkR
    Posted Oct 28, 2007 at 2:55 PM | Permalink

    #31 Anthony. Have you ever thought about inviting Rabbit or one of the others along to one of your field visits? Or even some of the other Warmer bloggers? Have a Seminar for “Scientists” who have forgotten how to do field work (or Science). Perhaps they could even get their Universities to stump up part of the costs. You know, the heavy equipment, and the mobile Starbucks. Sorry about the last sentence, couldn’t resist, but how about a general “bring your own corer” party? $500 per head. See if the Union of Concerned Scientists would do a free advert! A Summer Camp for PhD Climatologists, “Do a field trip and never get your results published”?

    Pardonnez-moi, I think I’m having a TCO interval.

  35. Michael Jankowski
    Posted Oct 28, 2007 at 4:30 PM | Permalink

    I see Hank Roberts at Tamino is now linking CA to environmental destruction and vandalism. And Tamino is claiming “denialists are making a concerted effort to hijack my blog.” Maybe it only seems like it is being hijacked because the Tamino cheerleaders are left speechless to defend the silliniess of Rabett.

    Also interesting is that Tamino whips-out Moberg et al (2005) to suggest current temps are warmer than those of the MWP. Comparing the posted reconstruction graph to Gerry North’s statement about cooling to 1850 followed by unusual warming, there’s a tremendous disconnect. The chart suggests a consistent warming trend from about 1600 through 1979 (until you graft GISS temps onto it, that is). If North’s claim that the warming since 1850 is unusual, what does this say about warming since the 1600s? How anthropogenic in nature could all of that warming have been?

    Rabett is an embarassment to climate science…

    …but from what I’ve read of reviews from his students, he may be better as a climate scientist impersonator than as a professor in his trained field.

    Some proxies Eli may be right about – getting out there to drill ice cores or subsea deposits is a bit different than CA’s outing to the forests of Colorado.

    So that excuses updating ANY of them, even the easy ones?

  36. steven mosher
    Posted Oct 28, 2007 at 4:40 PM | Permalink

    RE 31. Death valley I bet.

  37. steven mosher
    Posted Oct 28, 2007 at 4:49 PM | Permalink

    RE 35. Some jester is giving them both a spanking along with Yank roberts, whose chain is shorter than
    well, never mind. I guess Tamino’s mind is not so Open. He’s idea of Open mind is like Kuato in Total Recall

    Kuato: “Now, open your mind to me”

    Here’s Tamino: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y_6r3mWIfJw

  38. Posted Oct 28, 2007 at 6:20 PM | Permalink

    Re: 32 Sorry Steve. I overreacted a bit. I get a little PO’d when Aristotle’s remarkable contributions to science are dismissed by people who never read him. Kepler was remains an armchair theorist who never got his hands dirty. There’s nothing particularly wrong with this, just an observation. Newton and Aristotle were both different in that regard. And without Alchemists there would have been no Chemists :-)

    The Pompousest Git (according to Google)

  39. Yorick
    Posted Oct 29, 2007 at 4:43 AM | Permalink

    “This is the simple Rovian attack against strength to establish a new meme, the guilty consensus.” -Eli Rabett.

    My favorite comment from the Rabett. He made it over at deltoid in a response to the idea that perhaps, just possibly, alarmism has been oversold

    Rabett is a polemicist, not a climate scientist.

  40. windansea
    Posted Oct 29, 2007 at 9:08 AM | Permalink

    The Wabbit on Tamino thread:

    Tell you what guys, if I remember MBH 98 listed something like 90 dendrology series, most of which consisted of multiple trees, some many multiple trees. You wanna go core all of them to bring everything up to date, go ahead. Eli senses another surface stations debacle in the making. As to replying or not, weekends occur.


  41. SteveSadlov
    Posted Oct 29, 2007 at 9:45 AM | Permalink

    RE: #39 – Another bitter old hippie.

  42. bender
    Posted Oct 29, 2007 at 9:49 AM | Permalink

    You wanna go core all of them to bring everything up to date, go ahead.

    Hmmm, why not just re-core the very few on which the reconstruction was known to be critically sensitive?

  43. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Oct 29, 2007 at 11:37 AM | Permalink

    #42. Don’t forget Linah Ababneh’s update of Sheep Mountain. It’s funny to see the continual and obtuse misunderstanding at Tamino. In my business career, I’ve dealt with a lot of geologists who have gone all over the world on mining and exploration projects. I’ve gone out to visit some drilling projects, but it’s not like I manned an exploration drill personally. Or that I’m going to do assaying myself. Jeez.

    But I’ve had quite a bit of experience with what projects cost and how long they take. It was precisely because of my experience with mineral exploration projects that my surmise was that a bristlecone sampling expedition would not be particularly arduous or expensive. I don’t have any intention of spending any more time updating bristlecone chronologies. I thought that it would be an interesting thing to do while I was on vacation in Colorado and it was. I think that I’ve conclusively established that the Mann-Rabett excuse – that it’s too hard to update the bristlecone chronologies – was invented out of whole cloth, is wrong, and, shall we say, amateur.

  44. Michael Jankowski
    Posted Oct 29, 2007 at 11:42 AM | Permalink

    Re#39, “Alas, poor Yorick! I knew him, Horatio: a fellow of infinite jest.” How appropriately named…a figurative jester for Rabett to joust with!

    It’s interesting how Rabett chose to invoke Repub Rove on that thread. Tamino often blasts Repubs (or assumes anyone who is a skeptic/”denialist” is one). Even when they put on their climate science hats, their political fervor still has a hold of them.

  45. steven mosher
    Posted Oct 29, 2007 at 4:42 PM | Permalink

    Well, Tristram Shandy got Tamino to change his posting rules and eliminate the mildest
    snarkiness. Eli promptly violated this rule on the post explaining that
    snarkiness would not be tolerated. Tamino gave him a hall pass because
    Eli had been attacked on CA.

    That little drama tells you all you need to know.

  46. Sam Urbinto
    Posted Oct 29, 2007 at 5:31 PM | Permalink

    Dude, I don’t think anyone who’s spent any time “talking” with either of them or their ilk is going to be under any kind of false impression of exactly what to think of them or what to expect.

    But that’s just me.

  47. steven mosher
    Posted Oct 29, 2007 at 6:18 PM | Permalink

    RE 46.

    Tis true. Funny how Tamino stomped out bags of burning poo on his site. Tristram Shandy
    must have had a good laugh. I shall buy him him a pint next time we meet. And Uncle
    Toby as well.

  48. steven mosher
    Posted Oct 29, 2007 at 6:27 PM | Permalink

    RE 44.

    Tristram, who knew Yorick quite well, must have had a good guffaw at tamino’s
    outlawing of snark. Snark, it would appear, is only allowed in the open mind
    of tamino. Out snarking the snarkster is now condemned as an incivility. I say unmask
    the fopish tamino. Remove his Foster Grants. I must add, in closing, that I quite
    admire the devilish Tristram. Someday, we shall have to hear the story of his
    life and times. I am sure it is a sentimental journey.

  49. jae
    Posted Oct 29, 2007 at 6:47 PM | Permalink

    It’s interesting how Rabett chose to invoke Repub Rove on that thread. Tamino often blasts Repubs (or assumes anyone who is a skeptic/”denialist” is one). Even when they put on their climate science hats, their political fervor still has a hold of them.

    THAT shows the depth of science on that blog, LOL.

  50. steven mosher
    Posted Oct 29, 2007 at 7:13 PM | Permalink


    Tristram shandy has a wonderful tale about being snipped, by a window shade no less.
    a rather unceremonious mohel.

  51. Gerald Machnee
    Posted Oct 29, 2007 at 10:00 PM | Permalink

    And Dano also has an excuse: **Folks don’t seem to understand the issue for work isn’t money limitations. It’s time limitations.**
    Well, the Starbucks hypothesis has taken care of that. You just have to miss one football game on a weekend.

  52. Gaudenz Mischol
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 2:50 AM | Permalink

    Tamio and OPEN MIND (as his blog is called)

    Geoff Sherington was attacked because he said he was a scientist but did not want to reveal his complete identity. He was bashed for this. This is very funny on a blog where the creator claims to be a credible scientist and we should believe him and trust in what he tells us there but does not want to reveal his identity. I don’t have anything against being anonymous but then you should not have two standards, one for the warmers and one for the sceptics (“deniers”)

  53. Gaudenz Mischol
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 3:19 AM | Permalink

    Addendum: my remark about this on Tamin’s blog was of course censored

  54. Geoff Sherrington
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 4:10 AM | Permalink

    This is what I posted on “Open Mind”

    For some time now, several scientists including me have been trying to answer a simple question.

    Question: Where is the quantitative derivation of the assertion that a doubling of atmospheric CO2 will raise the global atmospheric temperature, by X or Y degrees – or even cool it.

    Mostly we find residuals from GCMs that have unexplained heating blithely attributed to greenhouse gases by default. We find qualitative papers on light spectroscopy that say that certain light frequencies are absorbed by certain gases, but we find no quantitative papers of relevance. We find model after model claiming that greenhouse gases (what a childish misnomer!) are the smoking gun, but we cannot find a single, peer-reviewed paper that quantitatively models CO2 concentration with atmospheric temperature, whether at surface or in a pattern in the stratosphere, in a manner seriously relevant to global warming.

    Why not join in the hunt?

    After all, this is about the bottom line for AGM.

    If you can’t find a paper, please don’t clutter the airwaves with quotes from IPCC and their references. Been there, done that. I claim that the IPCC has adduced no such paper.

    Delighted if you can show me wrong.

    There was a string of replies, some quite abusive. Here is one of my responses with a moderator’s comment:

    Geoff Sherrington // Oct 28th 2007 at 12:10 am

    I am a scientist, I have published in peer-reviewed international scientific publications and spoken at several international conferences. That’s incidental information for those challenged by Internet searches.

    What type of scientist? An honest one, modestly successful.

    When you bunnies have finished your [edit] comments, please attempt to answer the serious question. I note than none of you has.

    It’s harder than one might think, especially if one was not a successful scientist.

    [Response: The same comment which asked what kind of scientist you are, also pointed you to the *original* reference (Arrhenius 1896) giving a “quantitative derivation of the assertion that a doubling of atmospheric CO2 will raise the global atmospheric temperature.”

    I believe the question about what kind of scientist you are, was meant to discover what your *field* is. A google scholar search on your name returns two books, one on English Education, another on the selection of the capitol site in politics. Plain old google located an article in the journal of the Australian Rhododendron Society.]

    I then noted that people unable to find my publications or background by research might also be challenged to find good climate science; and that good climate science came from more than searching and repeating the work of others. And that Arrhenius was referenced in IPCC.

    Then the moderator noted a change of policy, of which this a part, then snipped me, permanently it appears:

    Therefore I have a new policy which will be strictly enforced: keep a civil tongue in your head, and be relevant. That applies to the people I agree with as well as those I don’t. Comments which mix substantive content with mild snarkiness will be edited, or may be just plain deleted, at my discretion. Comments with extreme uncivility, and those with zero substantive comment, will be just plain deleted. I decide what’s appropriate and what’s not. It’s my house.

    The very next post was from Luminous Bueaty:

    luminous beauty // Oct 29th 2007 at 5:50 am

    Really, Eli,

    Where will it all end?

    I have this tragic image of McIntyre and his band of merry unpaid amateurs traversing the Greenland icecap in their cheaply repaired jeep, hauling a surplus drilling rig, intent on replicating Robert Scott’s experience in the Antarctic.

    I can scarce wait to read his final diary entry. “Global warming can’t be happening. It’s friggin’ cold up here.”

    I rest my case.

  55. Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 4:32 AM | Permalink

    re: # 52

    Geoff Sherington was attacked because he said he was a scientist but did not want to reveal his complete identity. He was bashed for this. This is very funny on a blog where the creator claims to be a credible scientist and we should believe him and trust in what he tells us there but does not want to reveal his identity.

    Yep, a Physical Realization of Oxymorons.

  56. chrisl
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 5:14 AM | Permalink

    You seem to have hit a very raw nerve there Geoff
    Might be getting to the crux of something.

  57. henry
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 6:02 AM | Permalink

    The main thing I’m seeing at BOTH Open Mind and on Rabbet Run is their refusal to shred the AGW reports with the same zeal they use on any “denialist” paper.

    Tamino had a post about FEMA’s “fake” news conference.

    henry // Oct 29th 2007 at 2:33 am

    “The report goes on to report that White House press secretary Dana Perino said it was not appropriate that the questions were posed by agency staffers instead of reporters. FEMA was responsible for the “error in judgment,” she said, adding that the White House did not know about it beforehand and did not condone it.”

    I’m sorry, but I get the same feeling when I read about how the same reports and studies get uses, over and over, even after they’ve been discredited or questioned:

    From CA:

    “It seemed bizarre to me at the time that the panel could recommend that strip bark trees be “avoided” in reconstructions and then use as evidence “supporting” the Mann result reconstructions that used strip bark trees. Worse, two of the 4 studies illustrated here (Mann and Jones 2003; Hegerl et al 2006) actually use the Mann PC1 that had been specifically rejected as incorrect methodology.”

    Other scientists using questionable practices and “incorrect methodology”, and you question what FEMA did?

    [Response: Which scientists are using which practices, and how appropriate they are, are topics for fair — and civil — debate. But whatever may have happened or not happened in climate reconstructions, does not excuse deliberate deception by FEMA.

    This comment is irrelevant to this thread. In the future, please post such opinions on a thread to which they’re relevant.]

    So I asked another question:

    Please point me in the direction of the thread where this discussion is taking place, and I’ll gladly post there…

    No reply (and a search showed nothing, either).

  58. Michael Jankowski
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 6:14 AM | Permalink

    Re#54, his unwritten policy is that anyone who disagrees with him is a right-wing Republican denialist and should be met with extreme prejudice.

    Re#56, it takes very little to “hit a very raw nerve” when it comes to Tamino.

  59. PaulM
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 7:43 AM | Permalink

    Tamino (more of a Papageno really) seems to have adopted the ‘RealClimate’ policy of not posting anything that points out his errors. I put up two posts, one saying you can’t graft the chalk of tree-rings onto the cheese of temperature data, and another pointing out that his red graph of GISS NH is wrong – It shows a GISS NH temperature variation of 1.5 degrees, but when I look up the graph on GISS website I see a variation of only 1.1 degrees in the 5 year mean, 1.2 in the yearly data. Neither of these were posted. He seems to have stretched out the GISS data by a significant factor. Well, he did have a post on ‘How to fool other people’.

  60. steven mosher
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 9:01 AM | Permalink

    RE 54.

    Geoff I believe there is not such paper and probably cannot be such a paper because
    of the nature of the parameter. It’s a gain. It’s depndent upon the direct effect
    of C02 ( lets say one that you could derive from physics) Plus all the feedback loops.

    I remeber once I was looking through some flight control code and these magic numbers
    kept popping up. Annoyed me. I spoke to the programmer about them. “they are gains”
    “where did they come from” “I found them through experiementation, by running the model”
    ” can I change them?” “sure, if you want the plane to crash?”

    In a similair manner you can see them excercising a GCM in hindcast mode to get the gains

    A rough analog I suppose. The Charney number came from averaging the output of two GCM
    Basically when they tune a GCM to hincast properly there is an implicit assumption that
    they have found the unique set of gains for all the feedbacks, and then they can read
    off the Final gain of doubling for C02.. which is something like 1.2C + feedbacks

  61. Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 9:26 AM | Permalink

    According to someone at
    http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/hydrino/message/12714, “Eli Rabett” is in fact a Prof. Joshua B. Halpern, a specialist in laser spectroscopy at Howard Univ. Is this correct? If so, why not just identify him as such?

  62. EW
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 9:28 AM | Permalink

    Even in that Science paper dealing with possible CO2 doubling impacts that was cited in Unthreaded, there were no mentions of that mystical value of 2.5 C.

  63. bender
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 9:44 AM | Permalink

    Re #54:

    Question: Where is the quantitative derivation of the assertion that a doubling of atmospheric CO2 will raise the global atmospheric temperature, by X or Y degrees – or even cool it.

    Mostly we find residuals from GCMs that have unexplained heating blithely attributed to greenhouse gases by default.

    This is the answer, is it not? The argument is that the GCMs are mostly physical, i.e. experimentally parameterized and not largely tuned, and therefore the back-inference (the analysis of GCM residuals) is a strong inference.

    Not that there’s anything fundamentally wrong with the approach of back inference through the analysis of residuals (=process of elimination). It’s just that the experimental and sampling errors accumulate and are manifest in the inference, and it seems to me that most people assume in the inferential/attribution step that the inference is uncertainty-free. It is not, and that is Pat Frank’s major bugaboo.

  64. MarkW
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 9:52 AM | Permalink


    Another problem with hindcasting, is that the alarmists assume that most, if not all of the temperature rise of the last century was due to CO2.

    If a non-trivial amount of the heating is due to other things, such as the sun/cosmic rays, or UHI, then their forecasts are even further off the mark.

  65. windansea
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 10:43 AM | Permalink

    here is another climate change genius at Tamino explaining why updating the proxies is not necessary:

    It is well known that many proxies have suffered from divergence in the past 25 years for one reason or another. But this has nothing to do with how good a proxy they were in the distant past which can be established by comparing with other proxies. i.e. what happened in the last 25 years means nothing. The Bristlecone pines aren’t needed to make a hockey stick, they’re just needed to make the shaft longer.

  66. bender
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 11:01 AM | Permalink

    [Divergence] has nothing to do with how good a proxy they were in the distant past

    False. The problem is that divergence now implies divergence then. Implying that the MWP might have been warmer than the proxy-based reconstructions suggest. And if that’s the case then the current levels of warming are not yet “unprecedented”. [Though they could soon be.]

    If someone wanted to “erase the MWP” they might consider using a divergent treemometer, as it would do just that.

  67. bender
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 11:03 AM | Permalink

    The commenter clearly does not understand the implications of an upside down U-shaped (quadratic) response function. A search at CA would fix that.

  68. bender
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 11:07 AM | Permalink

    The Bristlecone pines aren’t needed to make a hockey stick, they’re just needed to make the shaft longer.

    False. They are needed to make the shaft flatter, the blade steeper, and the join sharper.

  69. bender
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 11:22 AM | Permalink

    Note that updating the tree-ring proxies alone would not solve the whole problem. It would merely be a critical first step toward recognizing that there is a problem with the way response functions are being specified. When environmental responses are assumed to be linear and univariate, the reconstruction is going to be subject to a whole pile of model mis-specification error. In reality tree responses to temperature are conditioned by responses to moisture, and these responses, at least in the alpine environment, are not at all linear. Updating the proxies would force people to deal with the divergence problem. More specifically, it would force science-policy advisers to recognize the important work that scientists, such as tree physiologists, are doing to address the divergence problem. As it stands, their work is being marginalized in the push toward policy action.

  70. EW
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 11:47 AM | Permalink

    bender, is there any possibility to tell narrow ring because of cold from narrow ring, because of too hot? Or because of drought? Can the isotopic studies be of some use for this purpose?

  71. bender
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 12:00 PM | Permalink

    I can’t answer your question, but encourage you to look into it. What I will ask in reply is this: what would happen if your drought-stricken trees with narrow rings were systematically removed from the population over time? (Think strip-bark trees dying back ever further during excessively megadrought-like conditions …) What would this do to the resulting record of ring widths in the survivors that made it to the modern-day sample? How would this shape your view of the response function?

  72. EW
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 1:18 PM | Permalink


    In that case it’s only a luck that I’m not a dendrologist and I have to wrestle only with phylogenetical trees, not with the real ones…

    What I learned there is that it is very difficult to get any pure temperature signal from the rings. The locations (mountains, desert edges), where the very old trees are can get considerably dry.

    Is there any location, where old trees can occur with more or less continuous water supply?

  73. steven mosher
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 1:22 PM | Permalink

    RE 61.

    If you were named Josh would you out yourself?

    I’m just joshing you

  74. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 1:57 PM | Permalink

    #72. Graumlich and associates took some high chronologies from Washington state, where one presumes that water supply would not be problematic. These were listed in MBH98 as being used, but Mann and Hughes deleted them for a reason undisclosed at the time – this was one of the points of the Corrigendum. In the Corrigendum, they said that they didn’t use chronologies about which they lacked information about how they were done – this was untrue on a number of counts: there was published information on the Graumlich methodology; Graumlich was a well-known American dendrochronologist and Hughes could easily have sorted out any questions; and some exclusions were made for reasons inconsistent with the pretext e.g. some Schweingruber chronologies were excluded although many were used.

    I pointed this out to Nature prior to publication, but they didn’t care that the excuse was untrue – and the Corrigendum was unrefereed.

  75. SteveSadlov
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 2:05 PM | Permalink

    R#: #44 – It’s an old worn out early 1980s meme. Amazing the staying power it has. If those clowns knew my real name and my history, they’d be shocked. I’m more green than 90% of them. Long term, since childhood. I was an early disciple of Fuller, Lovins, Brower, et al. A first generation Green Diaper Baby, raised up from the late 1960s immersed in ecothink. I got so green that I got burned out on it and have since backed off. This is why I love to tweek Bloom. We’ve probably been face to face in the past.

  76. Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 2:31 PM | Permalink

    You gonna do one tree or all of those used in all of the series? Besides which then you have the issue of redoing the cores and the corals to get everything on the same basis.

  77. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 2:45 PM | Permalink

    Eli, as I’ve said before, I have no intention of running around the world re-doing field work that paleoclimatologists have been funded to collect.

    In Mann methodology, most of his series serve as white noise and don’t “matter”. The Mann hockey stick is really just a bristlecone pine chronology and so I had an interest in spot checking a bristlecone chronology. I’ve proved to my satisfaction that the excuse for not updating the bristlecones provided by you (and Mann) – that it was too expensive – was just something that you and he made up.

    Actually, there has been an update of the critical Sheep Mountain series – why it isn’t used in the recent Hughes and Salzer is something that deserves an explanation.

  78. bender
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 6:09 PM | Permalink

    Your daughter’s in her first year of college and her car breaks down. She calls you for advice. Do you tell her to (a) take it to a mechanic, find the problem part and replace it, or (b) get a second job and start saving your money in order to replace every part, regardless how much it’s worn?

    The proxy-based recons are broken, Eli. It’s the bristlecones. Replace them. (The bill is in the mail.)

  79. captdallas2
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 6:14 PM | Permalink

    76 Eli Rabbit said You gonna do one tree or all of those used in all of the series? Besides which then you have the issue of redoing the cores and the corals to get everything on the same basis.

    Dude come on, find another battle.

  80. captdallas2
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 6:34 PM | Permalink

    Sorry Eli too short an answer. Bristle cones are not a quality proxy. Strip barked or not, not a quality proxy. Mann’s statistical method, not top of the line. Surfacestations.org/the Y2K thing, reasonable questions. If you feel the science is settled fine, I think the error bars need adjustment.

  81. Geoff Sherrington
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 7:28 PM | Permalink

    Re #54 above

    It does not matter what my identity is, but in case CA readers assume the “Open Mind” accusation that I am a liar and not a scientist, I shall reassure you briefly.

    I write under my true name and have given my email adrress on this board.

    I was selected for the high-prestige Royal Australian Air Force Academy in 1959, age 17. I studied aeronautical engineering for 2 1/2 years, the latter part at University of Sydney, then had a bad car crash which prevented a flying career as a test pilot. On recovery, I completed a B.Sc. University of Queensland (Chemistry major) and an off-campus “honours” which was named “Masters’ Qualifying”, late 1960s. In those days it was rare to continue to Ph.D.

    I worked at Australia’s prestige Government research organisation, CSIRO, at a relatively junior level while completing Uni, studying the chemistry of nutrient uptake for introduced fodder grasses and legumes. Moved to the laboratory of a new, large fertilizer manufacturer, researching fertilizer response and statistical analysis thereof for a couple of years, then set up my own laboratory. This lab included some then-exotic instruments, including a fast neutron generator and nuclear magnetic resonance. Mainly worked on geochemical analysis/interpretation. Bought my first mini-computer, learned machine language then forgot it.

    Then was offered Chief Geochemist with a mining company, Peko-Wallsend Limited, which had recently jointly discovered the huge Ranger Uranium deposits. Aged 31. Was off and on, as structures changed, part of a management core of about 5 people and up to 70 graduate scientists. We discovered a new producing mine about every 2 years. An independent survey by McKinsey and Co rated us as about the best exploration team worldwide, if not #1.

    With corporate takeovers and moves to higher management, I became Manager, Government Relations, North Limited, which continued as majority owner of Ranger and had the major forestry and paper company APPM as a subsidiary. I attended most monthly meetings of subsidiaries of North. My roles included 3 years as visiting President of the NT Chamber of Mines, involving a great deal of interaction with Federal politicians and policy makers. I was the major preparer of a brief that took some Federal Ministers before the Full Bench of the High Court, the highest judicial body. Time was spent with top Barristers on this and other projects, learning the requirements of good evidence.

    Peer-reviewed publications are hard to find on Google because it is an incomplete record in earlier years. They include two papers in the international Journal of Geochemical Exploration (Canada, Elsevier) “Some Aspects of Natural Gamma Radiation in Ore Search” (1977) and “Number three orebody, ranger one, Australia — a case history”, Volume 19, Issues 1-3, December 1983, Pages 7-9 G. H. Sherrington, A. L. L. Browne, R. H. Duffin and M. J. Danielson. The latter was an invited paper at Saskatoon, Canada.

    Informal colleague-reviewed papers include about 8 years of regular near-monthly articles for the corporate newsletter and several “hobby” papers, mainly in the International Camellia Journal. I have delivered over 50 addresses to learned societies and interest groups (some of which have been published) on diverse topics such as mathematics of plant growth, isotope geochemistry, nuclear physics, photography and stamp collecting. I have had published about 500 letters and articles in Australian newspapers, mainly national. I have given evidence to Federal Government committees of inquiry, recorded in Hansard.

    We have visited about 30 countries for recreation or work, including about 6 visits to the USA and 4 to Canada.

    The nature of much of our work was secretive for competition purposes as Steve will recall from those times and it was rare to publish freely.

    At various times, I was an Associate of the Royal Australian Chemical Institute, Fellow of the Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy, founding Member of the Environment Institute of Australia, Member of the Australian Institute of Geoscientists, Member of the Australian Institute of Agricultural Science, Associate of the Australian Photographic Society (by examination) and a Justice of the Peace (by mistake?).

    I see no harm in making this information public. I do not entirely sympathise with those who criticise others from behind a mask.

    This is additional to post #54 above, where the most defamatory statements seemed to come from the anonymous. It is interesting to stress again that people unable to find any of the personal detail I have given do not seem capable of conducting good computer searches. This, of course, has implications about their ability to perform good science by finding critical prior publications in their fields of work. Steve’s audits show this deficiency frequently.

    tamino, or whatever he calls himself, is an offender of the first order, a disgrace to the conduct of good science, with the insult of running a rag named “Open Mind”. Still, the best con-men are the ones that present themselves with the most plausible appearance, however false it is.

  82. steven mosher
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 8:11 PM | Permalink

    RE 76. Eli,

    Do you think mann had everything on the same basis? His reconstruction ends in 1980.

    Do you think 1980 is a common date for all the series? Answer carefully Rabbett because a good number
    of have actually looked at the database.

    You comment implies that if all the series are not on the same basis, then the study is flawed?
    Right? is that your position? Answer carefully rabbett the answer is but a click away.

    I would think you would have checked all of manns series to see if THEY in fact extended to 1980, before
    you trotted out another misdirection.

    So, Eli, simple question. You insist that steveMc bring ALL the series up to the same basis.
    The Same goes for mann.

    Or can he infill data from series that end in 1971? and 74, and 72.

    How many Mann series are there that extend beyond 1980, into the mid 80s into the 90s?
    do you know did you look ( rabbett furiously hunts for manns data)

    On the other hand you are right. If mann didnt have all the series brought up to the same basis, 1980,
    the study is invalid. That’s fair, we agree.

  83. steven mosher
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 8:14 PM | Permalink

    Re 81.

    Dang mate. I just thought you were a smart guy.

  84. Geoff Sherrington
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 9:27 PM | Permalink

    Re #83 Steve Mosher

    If I was, I could give you a smart answer.

    BTW, Steve once worked for Noranda. It was a radiometric survey aircraft hired by Noranda, turning around at the end of a line, that found the first sign of the important Ranger ore deposits in 1969. Unfortunately for Noranda, our team (before my time) had pegged the ground already and had hired the plane to do its next job on our land. It’s a small world (but a warming story). Our sales of uranium displaced over 500 m tonnes of CO2 that would otherwise have been produced from fossil fuel, when I last counted 15 years ago.

  85. bender
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 10:27 PM | Permalink

    If #76 is Eli’s last word, I guess the thread should be closed. But can I first conclude how preposterous it is to claim that updating proxies is too expensive? Were the paleoclimatologists intending to never return to these sites to resample? Unlikely. Because if that were the case I don’t see how you would ever get an honest independent sample to validate the blessed reconstructions. Paleoclimatologists are pretty active people, knowledgeable scientists. I can only assume that they would love to have a few million dollars to go back to those sites to validate their models. If I’m right then Eli Rabett simply doesn’t know what he’s talking about; he strayed too far afield and was simply parroting teamtalk. Which is unfortunate. He’s probably quite good at something.

  86. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 10:37 PM | Permalink

    #85. Wasn’t it surprising/revealing how Eli and his friends just made things up about the costs with no personal knowledge? It’s one thing to be wrong. But Eli presumably no had no personal knowledge of what it would cost to mount a dendro expedition or else he wouldn’t have made the statements that he did. Nothing wrong with that. You can’t know everything. What was wrong was him making assertions about the costs without having any knowledge of the costs. Not the only person over Tamino’s to just make things up when they lacked personal information.

  87. bender
    Posted Oct 30, 2007 at 10:45 PM | Permalink

    rhetoriticians. all talk.

  88. Dave B
    Posted Oct 31, 2007 at 6:08 AM | Permalink


    “You gonna do one tree or all of those used in all of the series?”

    Are you “gonna” do any at all? Or just criticize when others do some?

  89. Hans Erren
    Posted Oct 31, 2007 at 6:37 AM | Permalink

    Eli and Dano are shifting the goalposts.

  90. MarkW
    Posted Oct 31, 2007 at 8:09 AM | Permalink

    Shifting the goal posts, they’ve got that puppy mounted on a flatbed going down the interstate.

  91. EW
    Posted Oct 31, 2007 at 9:34 AM | Permalink

    Thanks, SteveM. I suppose that Graumlich’s dendrochronologies aren’t archived?

  92. EW
    Posted Oct 31, 2007 at 10:02 AM | Permalink

    From another Mann (D.) – about Douglas firs in Oregon, apparently not drought-limited. And no unprecedennnnted trends.

  93. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Oct 31, 2007 at 10:13 AM | Permalink

    #91. All of the Washington chronologies were archived at ITRDB and as far as I can tell there was nothing odd about the standardization method. No plausible explanation has ever been provided for Mann’s deletion of these chronologies. Although there is evidence of considerable attention to detail in the deletion of chronologies as witness the notorious Hughes email.

    Graumlich did not archive her foxtail chronologies in the same time timely fashion. A number of her ffoxtail chronologies, including the ones in Graumlich 1991 cited in IPCC Review Comments, remain unarchived as are her Cirque Peak measurements which may not have been “temperature sensitive”. She archived some sites inMay 2007 this year, only after a long campaign by ne.

  94. windansea
    Posted Oct 31, 2007 at 11:00 AM | Permalink

    Eli’s newest post

    Where is the European Warm Period in the Bristlecone Record?


  95. SteveSadlov
    Posted Oct 31, 2007 at 11:57 AM | Permalink

    RE: #92 – Definitely not moisture limited in that location. Incidentially, I took down one at my place, eye balled the rings, no trend of any kind.

  96. Larry
    Posted Oct 31, 2007 at 12:10 PM | Permalink

    92, 95, Before we start saying that Washington trees aren’t moisture limited, do we know exactly where these trees are? Probably 1/3 of the state is desert. The east slopes of the Cascades and even the Olympics have dry spots.

  97. SteveSadlov
    Posted Oct 31, 2007 at 12:48 PM | Permalink

    RE: #96 – the study area is on the west facing, coastal slope, of the Oregon Coast Ranges. I’d imagine that annual rainfall is 60 – 80 inches, with only a minimal “dry” season in summer. During summer, being close to the coast, fog and drizzle give some moisture even when it’s not properly raining. Now here is a case where one might successfully argue that a tree could be a reasonable temperature proxy. Doug Firs here on the Pacific Coast actually grow in the late winter through mid fall. In fact, it’s easier to talk about when they are not growing, since they grow like weeds here. As good of a treemometer as you are likely to find, certainly massively better than BCPs. Still not perfect though, for all the usual reasons.

  98. D. Patterson
    Posted Oct 31, 2007 at 1:22 PM | Permalink

    Re: #96, #97

    Readers should note it is important to recognize there are areas of substantial precipitation along the West slopes of the Cascade Mountain Range which are subject to reduced rainfall because they fall within the rain shadow of the Olympic Mountains on the Olympic Peninsula. At present, the rain shadow mostly affects Island County and western portion of Skagit County. However, historical changes in the prevailing winds may have shifted the direction of the rain shadow to other adjacent areas in the past. At present, the rain shadow tends to reduce the precipitation at a rate of about ten inches for each ten miles as you go westward. Around the seacoast the average annual precipitation can be about 25 inches per year. Moving eastwards towards the Cascade Mountains, the rainfaill around Burlington – Mt. Vernon can be ten to twenty inches greater at around 35 to 45 inches per year. This increases further as you move into the Skagit River Valley until you reach nearly 100 inches of rain per year near the crest of the mountain range. Adiabatic heating of the winds on the eastern slopes of the mountains then dessicates the environments on that side of the mountains.

  99. SteveSadlov
    Posted Oct 31, 2007 at 1:55 PM | Permalink

    The study area is not in the Cascades. It is in the Coast Range, only a few miles inland from the Pacific.

  100. D. Patterson
    Posted Oct 31, 2007 at 2:36 PM | Permalink

    Re: #99

    Yes, Steve, I understood it was a different area. I just wanted to highlight two notable exceptions to any assumptions that precipitation patterns on the western slopes of the mountain ranges of the Pacific region are going to be uniformly wet. Rain shadows can affect a number of measurements ranging from precipitation quantities to radioisotopic identification of the sources of the precipitation. Investigators who may assume the historical precipitation patterns were dominated by current prevailing wind patterns may inadvertently produce false conclusions whenever and wherever past changes in prevailing winds and precipitaton sources also changed rain shadow footprints. I believe it is incumbent upon the invesitgators to first establish evidence of the rainfall patterns, rain shadows, and so forth before they can attempt to postulate any reasonable conclusions regarding precipation characteristics and sources.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 3,206 other followers

%d bloggers like this: