Response to Briffa #2

As noted at CA last week, Briffa published a partial response to Yamal issues at the CRU website, one post discussing the impact of the Yamal chronology in various studies and another post discussing the Yamal chronology itself. For a response to Briffa’s online article on the impact of Yamal, I refer readers to last week’s analysis on this topic and my original post on this topic here. Briffa’s online articles on the Yamal chronology (and by “Briffa”, I include Melvin and Briffa’s associates) include a covering discussion here, a “sensitivity” analysis here and a data page here, which includes new measurement data and chronologies. (I’ll provide some tools and collations in due course.)

I am finalizing a lengthy post on population inhomogeneity which I’ll finish in a day or two. This extends previous discussion of population inhomogeneity in the “small” Yamal data set to the extended data set presented last week.

Today’s post is intended to clear away some side issues, showing in particular that Briffa did not endorse any of the arguments presented by realclimate or their followers. Not only did Briffa not endorse realclimate arguments, vituperative or otherwise, he specifically endorsed the legitimacy of CA-style sensitivity analyses. This may surprise both supporters and critics, but I submit that it is a fair reading of Briffa’s response as detailed below.

Indeed, it seems to me that Briffa did not actually contradict or rebut any specific empirical or statistical observation in any of my Yamal posts nor did he try to defend the aspects of Yamal methodology that were specifically criticised. Briffa’s defence was in effect the classic Team defence – “moving on”. Briffa argued that they can “get” a Stick from an expanded data set that was neither used in AR4 nor ever previously presented. Obviously, criticisms of the Yamal data set used in AR4 do not necessarily extend to the new data set; it has to be evaluated on its own merit. Equally however, the belated presentation of the “new” data set, whatever its merits may ultimately be, cannot “refute” or “rebut” criticisms of the existing data set. They may ultimately render discussion of the Yamal data set used in AR4 as moot, but they cannot “refute” any valid criticism.

Briffa’s online article, together with its accompanying data, although done quickly and presumably while Briffa is still recovering from a serious illness (I presume that Melvin was the main author), is a much more comprehensive presentation than anything in the “peer reviewed literature” about the Yamal chronology, which, despite the absence of even elementary information like core counts, was used by IPCC and multiproxy authors. While I think that there are important defects in the online article (especially the failure to demonstrate population homogeneity in the extended data set, a defect in the original chronology as well), nonetheless the online article is a big improvement over the previous literature and thus full credit to Briffa and associates for using online publication to improve the standard of presentation of the Yamal chronology from their previous defective presentations in academic journals.

With this lengthy preamble, I’d like now to examine the Briffa response in context of recent debate over CA posts that put the Yamal issue into play.

Khadyta River
Gavin Schmidt (and others) vituperatively criticized my use of Schweingruber’s Khadyta River data set to analyze Yamal RCS chronology sensitivity. Schmidt characterized me as merely using data “that [I] found lying around on the web.” However, Briffa stated that it was entirely appropriate to include Khadyta River in a Yamal chronology:

it is entirely appropriate to include the data from the KHAD site (used in McIntyre’s sensitivity test) when constructing a regional chronology for the area.

Briffa said that the only reason why they had not included this data themselves was that they simply didn’t think of it.

However, we simply did not consider these data at the time, focussing only on the data used in the companion study by Hantemirov and Shiyatov and supplied to us by them.

Gavin Schmidt was not the only critic to argue that using Khadyta River in a sensitivity test was some sort of violation of scientific principle. I haven’t noticed any withdrawal of such claims in the wake of Briffa’s response by Gavin Schmidt or others.

Sensitivity Testing of RCS Chronologies

Not only did Schmidt and others criticize the use of Schweingruber’s Khadyta River in sensitivity tests, they vituperatively criticized the very idea of a sensitivity analysis along the lines carried out here. However, Briffa’s response explicitly recognized and endorsed the sort of sensitivity study carried out at Climate Audit:

When using the RCS technique, it is important to examine the robustness of RCS chronologies, involving the type of sensitivity testing that McIntyre has undertaken and that we have shown in this example. Indeed, we have said so before and stressed in our published work that possible chronology biases can come about when the data used to build a regional chronology originate from inhomogeneous sources (i.e. sources that would indicate different growth levels under the same climate forcing).

Obviously, Briffa believes that he can work around the CA findings with the larger data set presented in his online article, but he recognized both the validity and importance of testing homogeneity and inhomogeneity. IMO, the new and larger data set is not out of the woods on inhomogeneity by any means; this is an issue that I will pursue in a technical post.

Abandoned Camp Sites
I had criticized the abysmally low 1990 core count in an RCS population, quoting Briffa’s own methodological observations in this context. I had also criticized the use of the corridor standardization subset (with its exclusive use of long cores) in an RCS program, again using Briffa’s own standards to criticize Yamal methodology. Some critics of CA counter-argued that 10 cores in 1990 was just fine and that the use of the corridor subset was just fine.

While Briffa did not explicitly concede either point, neither did he make any attempt to rebut my criticisms of the use of 10 cores in 1990 for RCS chronology or the use of a corridor subset of old trees for RCS chronology. He was completely silent on these issues.

Instead, his entire defence was one of “moving on”. Not that the prior methods were defensible, but that they could still “get” a similar result using a data set and methodology that were compliant with RCS standards.

In terms of camp site management, when campers move on, it would be nice if they tidied up the abandoned camp site i.e. denoting their agreement on issues that they were no longer defending – a practice which would avoid continued argument by third parties. However, the usual Team practice is to “move on” like nomads and leave abandoned camp sites in a total mess and unfortunately this happened once again here. This point about camp site etiquette reminds me of another frustrating aspect of Team debating style. Let’s suppose that the Team moves on to a new camp site and that they have proper hygiene and methodology at the new camp site. That doesn’t “refute” or “rebut” criticisms of their hygiene at the old camp site.

It will take more than a day or two to see if the hygiene and facilities at the new camp site are much of an improvement over the old camp site. We only learned of the new camp site last week. I think that Team supporters need to wait until the new camp site has been inspected before making a large down payment on the property.

False Accusations by Gavin Schmidt
Briffa took some care not to associate himself with untrue allegations made by Gavin Schmidt and others. Briffa observed that “subsequent reports” had misrepresented not merely his work, but also my original posts:

Subsequent reports of McIntyre’s blog (e.g. in The Telegraph, The Register and The Spectator) amount to hysterical, even defamatory misrepresentations, not only of our work but also of the content of the original McIntyre blog, by using words such as ‘scam’, ‘scandal’, ‘lie’, and ‘fraudulent’ with respect to our work.

While one understands that Briffa is more concerned about false allegations made against himself than false allegations made about me, it would have been constructive if Briffa had more explicitly disassociated himself from misrepresentations by Gavin Schmidt such as the following:

So along comes Steve McIntyre, self-styled slayer of hockey sticks, who declares without any evidence whatsoever that Briffa didn’t just reprocess the data from the Russians, but instead supposedly picked through it to give him the signal he wanted. These allegations have been made without any evidence whatsoever.

But at least Briffa did not perpetuate or endorse Schmidt’s false accusations and took pains to distinguish my remarks from remarks made by others. Even small steps are sometimes constructive.

Polar Urals and the Divergence Problem in West Siberia

On the minus side, Briffa totally avoided two critical reconciliations.

The online article made no mention whatever of Polar Urals and did not present any rationale for why the Polar Urals update has never been reported in “the peer reviewed literature” despite a shortage of millennial proxies. Nor did it present a rationale for using Yamal rather than Polar Urals (or a combination.) These questions remain even if they “move on” to a new Yamal data set.

In addition, the online article failed to reconcile the Yamal Stick (either old or new) with regional West Siberian results from the Schweingruber network (or Esper et al Glob Chg Biol 2009 discussed recently here [link]) showing a second-half 20th century decline in ring widths across a large population of sites. On numerous occasions, I’ve pointed to regional reconciliations as (IMO) critical in trying to advance paleoclimate beyond cherrypicking and data snooping and argued that a serious effort to investigate, analyze and reconcile this sort of regional reconciliation is what’s really required here.

Confirmation Bias
Briffa’s explanation of why the Khadyta River data wasn’t used is (IMO) an interesting example of confirmation bias.

Briffa agreed that there was nothing wrong with including the Khadyta River data in a regional chronology, but explained that this idea simply didn’t occur to them. Let me state clearly that I take them at their word and that I don’t have any reason to believe (nor do I think) that somewhere at CRU there is a “censored” directory with unreported adverse results with KHAD data together with verification r2 results.

On the other hand – and this is the precise point that instigated my Khadyta River analysis – over at Taimyr, where there was a particularly problematic divergence problem, the divergence problem led them to look for nearby data sets even though there was a lot more data at Taimyr than Yamal. At Taimyr, they ended up adding data from up to 400 km away, including from Schweingruber data sets contemporary with Khadyta River. Arguably, Yamal has a “divergence” in the opposite direction: its blade is unreasonably big. But this was the sort of result that they “expected” and they did not “think” about doing the same sort of procedure that they had carried out at Taimyr – look for nearby qualified sites. Had they done so, Khadyta River would have turned up right away for them, as it did for me (once I was aware that they had done this sort of thing at Taimyr.)

This seems like precisely the sort of confirmation bias that we’ve seen over and over again in this field. There seems to be more alertness to problems going the “wrong” way than there is to problems going the “right way”. The “residence time” of problems going the “right way” seems to be a lot longer than the “residence time” of problems going the wrong way, imparting a bias in reconstructions at any given time.

Data Availability
In a highly constructive departure from “peer reviewed” articles on Yamal, the article published on their webpage includes measurement data. Although the metadata is negligible (other than the location of the sample sites), the availability of measurement data accompanying the article in real time is a big improvement over prior defective presentations in the “peer reviewed literature” where there is no insistence on data archiving.

The big issue for this version (as it should have been for the last version) is population homogeneity – an issue that is not analysed or discussed in Briffa’s online article. I will post on that in the near future. For now, I’ll re-iterate the points at the start of this post: that the Briffa response accepts the legitimacy of the issues raised about Yamal at CA and that it does not endorse any of the attacks (or defences) advocated by Gavin Schmidt and realclimate supporters. Both constructive in different ways.

81 Comments

  1. Fred
    Posted Nov 4, 2009 at 3:55 PM | Permalink

    About “Moving On”.

    I see the difference in views arising from the points of view of a climate person as differing from an audit person.

    For a climate specialist, all that really matters is the result. It’s the result that he hangs his career on. If, in further research, a better data set using better methods confirms the result, any weakness in the statistical validity of earlier papers is of little consequence.

    Likewise, if further research demonstrates the results wrong, then even if the earlier work is splendidly valid, the validity matters little, and the results, everything.

    That said, the validity of methods and analysis is obviously crucial, and Steve deserves much praise for his work.

  2. Gerald Machnee
    Posted Nov 4, 2009 at 4:52 PM | Permalink

    Looks like a sliver of hope, a start, but room for continuing improvement.
    Great work and analysis, Steve.

  3. jeff id
    Posted Nov 4, 2009 at 4:56 PM | Permalink

    Another aspect of Briffa’s reply was that in his sensitivity test, he did the same thing as Steve did (chopped the same 12 trees )and stopped the chronologies at the end of the new added in dataset. This is in contrast to the version TomP was promoting for so long where he stated that the extension was proof there was no problem.

    It was almost the exact same type of sensitivity analysis with the conclusion that Yamal in several cases didn’t change substantially from the original. While his conclusion wasn’t incorrect, there was plenty of room for fair interpretation of the results and one of the sensitivity analyses resulted in a downslope at the end point. Anyway, it wasn’t just an endorsement but a replication and extension of the method presented here.

    Being new to the whole dendro thing I was surprised.

  4. GP
    Posted Nov 4, 2009 at 5:00 PM | Permalink

    Steve,

    You have a [link] reference in the text that goes nowhere – the Esper 2009 paper discussion.

    I’m slightly cautious about the wording interpretation as well. “we simply did not consider these data at the time” is not quite the same, as written, as “they simply didn’t think of it.”

    Whilst your interpretation may be correct I have to say that my reading of the original ‘consider’, in context, could be that they just did not look at it, presumably feeling that to do so was not necessary given the source of the Yamal data and its (assumed) reliable provenance. That is a bit different from “didn’t think of it”.

    I could be wrong but for me your section on Confirmation Bias (in general a common human trait in my opinion) stands well as it is – perhaps even stronger in some ways – if the potential need to do some comparison with other reasonably relevant data as a cross check ‘was not considered’ despite such an activity having been thought appropriate for an earlier paper.

    The case could be made that such a corresponding test should always be made and reported before the paper could be considered to be authoritative. If no suitable cross comparison data are available at the time that should be factored in to the interpretation of the paper and, if possible, steps taken to obtain a useful set for future comparison. Indeed one might suggest that such parallel comparative sampling should really be part of any planned dendro field science these days since the results of dendro analysis carry such a weight with the social decision making processes of the world’s politicians.

    They are out of the rehearsal room and on the main concert stage. They need not only to get the notes right but also ensure the sound system is well balanced and correctly controlled for the larger auditorium, as Clapton, et al., would readily confirm.

    My final comment is that this series of exchanges seems to be a more genuine form of discussion than I can recall from previous times (though I may very well have missed more than a few) and it would be good to think that the more positive aspects could be built upon in the future for the benefit of all of us who are subject to the policies of decision makers around the globe. Hopefully your tenacity will now help to guide the discussions towards properly and fully considered conclusions with more complete confidence in what they perceive to be reality.

  5. bender
    Posted Nov 4, 2009 at 5:05 PM | Permalink

    What is notable IMO is the number of factual pages that can be published while still managing to dodge the substantive issues. While the tone of the Melvin & Osborn reply (Briffa #2) is moderate and even conciliatory, it is as artful a dodge as Mann’s 27-page SI in support of his 2008 paper.
    .
    “Movin’ on” is not going to be so easy this time.

  6. jeff id
    Posted Nov 4, 2009 at 5:05 PM | Permalink

    I can’t understand my own post. Try again.

    Another aspect of Briffa’s reply was that in his sensitivity test, he did the same thing as Steve did (chopped the same 12 trees )and stopped the chronologies at the end of the new added in dataset. This is in contrast to the version TomP was promoting for so long where he stated that extending the 12 yamal trees past the sensitivity data was proof there was no problem.

    Briffa’s reply was almost the exact same type of sensitivity analysis as presented here with the conclusion that Yamal in several cases didn’t change substantially from the original. While his conclusion wasn’t incorrect, there was plenty of room for fair interpretation of the results. One of the sensitivity tests resulted in a downslope at the end point. Anyway, it wasn’t just an endorsement if the CA post but a replication and extension of the method presented here.

    Being new to the whole dendro thing I was surprised.

    • Tom P
      Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 9:58 AM | Permalink

      Re: jeff id (#6),

      Another aspect of Briffa’s reply was that in his sensitivity test, he did the same thing as Steve did (chopped the same 12 trees )and stopped the chronologies at the end of the new added in dataset.

      Briffa showed both all the data and truncated data: look at his figure F in the sensitivity analysis where he shows “the whole of each chronology in the left panel and truncated at 1990 in the right.”

      This is in contrast to the version TomP was promoting for so long where he stated that extending the 12 yamal trees past the sensitivity data was proof there was no problem.

      No contrast at all. Briffa writes “Figure G presents a comparison of the published versions of the Yamal chronology with the newly created chronology (Yamal_All), incorporating all data from all 4 living-tree sites. Remembering the caveat regarding the possible positive post-1990 bias, the picture of unusually high 20th century tree growth at the Yamal larch tree-line is essentially the same in the reworked chronology as was shown in our previously published versions.

      • Dave Dardinger
        Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 10:16 AM | Permalink

        Re: Tom P (#37),

        Yamal chronology with the newly created chronology (Yamal_All), incorporating all data from all 4 living-tree sites.

        Just how were the weighings of the proxies done? Normally they are based on correlation with the instrumental record. If the Yamal gang of 12 correlate with instrumental records better than the other living-tree proxies, they will be more highly weighed and of course the result will be:

        essentially the same in the reworked chronology as was shown in our previously published versions.

        The question is what happens if the other living tree sites are used but not the Yamal 12.

      • bender
        Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 10:19 AM | Permalink

        Re: Tom P (#23),

        the picture of unusually high 20th century tree growth at the Yamal larch tree-line is essentially the same in the reworked chronology as was shown in our previously published versions

        This will become an interesting topic in the next two weeks. Please stick around. You might learn something that you can communicate to DO and Deep Climate. To regain your guru status at RC.

      • jeff id
        Posted Nov 6, 2009 at 5:23 AM | Permalink

        Re: Tom P (#23),

        I’m not going to keep arguing a useless point with you Tom so I’m not piling on but your reply to my comment has overwhelmed my better judgement. Now you point to graphics in figure F and G wih this comment.

        Briffa showed both all the data and truncated data: look at his figure F in the sensitivity analysis where he shows “the whole of each chronology in the left panel and truncated at 1990 in the right.”

        Dr. Briffa has a unique writing style where he will make a paper killing comment right flat in the middle of the text and follow it with a result. There are several examples of this including some of his descriptions of RCS, tree ring divergence and even this. I would recommend you read the wording more carefully except that I’m pretty sure you already did.

        In Figure F, the Yamal_All chronology is compared with the Yamal_AD chronology (data as Briffa 2000), the Yamal_KHAD chronology, and the Yamal_AD_KHAD chronology (the last two based on the same data as in McIntyre’s alternative versions, but for consistency processed using the same implementation of RCS used throughout this exercise). Note that the KHAD data do not extend beyond 1990 so a direct comparison is only valid up until this date.

        I bolded the important part for you. This line is directly above Figure F and is in direct contradiction to your claims and conclusions.

        You can have the last word.

  7. Stephen
    Posted Nov 4, 2009 at 5:05 PM | Permalink

    I think most fair-minded people would recognise that your work is cogent and persuasive, whereas the contribution from the other side of the debate is, too often, childish, abusive and unconstructive. Further, when what appears to be a considered response is given, it seems always to simply side-step the points that have been raised. Such “sophisticated” (in the strict sense of deploying sophistry) responses may produce cheering in the RealClimate echo chamber, but they are hopelessly ineffective in winning over any true OpenMinds.

    Oh, and I lay claim to first deployment of “vituperative” in my comment #6 on the Hey Ya Mal thread……

  8. Geo
    Posted Nov 4, 2009 at 5:17 PM | Permalink

    I am pleased to see that after a great deal of flash and thunder that this topic is showing signs of moving into a constructive dialogue stage where if perhaps elbow-etiquette might still stand some improvement, at least active eye-gouging and gonad crunching may be avoided.

    I hope that continues, and even expands. It is obviously a conversation worth having.

  9. Spence_UK
    Posted Nov 4, 2009 at 5:21 PM | Permalink

    It is worth noting that Rob Wilson, on the “Re-visiting the Yamal Substitution” post, criticises “blog devotees” for complaining about cherry-picking, suggesting (my emphasis)

    In fact, the fatal flaw in this blog and what keeps it from being a useful tool for the palaeoclimatic and other communities is its persistent and totally unnecessary negative tone and attitude, and the assumption that our intention is faulty and biased, which keeps real discourse from taking place.

    As Steve notes, no intention is necessary to skew the results. This is why (for example) medical trials require double-blind experiments; it is not because the Doctors intentionally wish to skew the trial, it happens entirely unintentionally. Blondlot did not intentionally skew the results of his experiments, nor did those who “independently” confirmed his results; he wasn’t even (personally) the one making the erroneous measurements, but the bias still crept in and the results were worthless.

    It seems that – rather than learning from the volumes of science history – the dendroclimatologists are determined to circle the wagons and defend bad practices, without truly understanding the criticisms being made.

  10. Bill Hunter
    Posted Nov 4, 2009 at 7:09 PM | Permalink

    Steve you have a real admirer in the professional and restrained way you approach this topic. Your gift for well-organized and complete explanations is truly astounding.

    I agree this does not wrap it up for AGW. But what it is wrapping it up for is inadequate workproducts in support of the notion that the science is anywhere near settled.

    Keep up the good work!

  11. John M
    Posted Nov 4, 2009 at 9:52 PM | Permalink

    Comments weren’t “snipped”. They were moved to Unthreaded.

  12. jeff id
    Posted Nov 4, 2009 at 9:56 PM | Permalink

    Thanks, we can read the thread again.

  13. Chris
    Posted Nov 4, 2009 at 10:14 PM | Permalink

    This is my first post regarding global /climate (what do I put now??? a while ago I would have said warming, but that term has now lost some credence)
    As a old (ex) agricultural simulation modeller I can not believe what is happening in this whole arena. I have always been cynical about the global warming theory – for many reasons – and I have been waiting for the tide to turn.
    Steve, I thank you and your associates for your good work, integrity and honesty.
    For many years I have argued with workmates et al who have (like most people) taken the ‘consensus’ argument hook, line and sinker. Now I have the ammo I need.
    I do not have anything to add to support your work other than a deep gut ‘knowledge’ gained from many years of modelling agricultural systems, that something is very, very wrong with the Mann et al work.
    Sincerely
    Chris McLeod

  14. Geoff Sherrington
    Posted Nov 4, 2009 at 11:59 PM | Permalink

    As well as cleaning up old campsites, an excellent reminder that applies to temperature instrumental reconstructions also, would it be appropriate to mention that in the development of a lot of science & technology, there are objectives set to determine if a method has the ability to succeed or fail.

    Dendroclimatology seems to move from crisis to crisis, without much reference to the most fundamental question in the present context, being, “do tree ring properties have a useful ability to allow reconstruction of past temperatures surrounding them?”

    This has been taken as a given, for some years. Maybe now is the time to set some tests to show if the method has pass or fail writ large upon it.

    The “divergence problem” would seem to place severe stress on assumptions of stationarity.

    Any suggestions for a critical “Wright Bros” type of test?

  15. Roger
    Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 12:43 AM | Permalink

    Here! Here! to the previous comments, esp 7,10 & 16. As I said a while back, Briffa deserves credit for coherent and on going discussion, rather than the vitriol (shorter than vipur…???)from the True Believers. As someone who spent a fair bit of time bobbing about in boats trying to measure currents and waves and winds and stuff I have long been concerned that “green” enthusiasts with huge computers in airconditioned offices are doing gargantuan sums and coming to ironclad conclusions way beyond capacity of the founding data to support. Historic SST is a prime example

  16. Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 1:01 AM | Permalink

    To an extent, I regret the reactions to Briffa’s coming clean after he was forced to reveal the actual data and core numbers in the Yamal proxy.

    But only so far. Briffa brought the ordure down upon his head by refusing point blank to reveal the nature of the Yamal proxy, ignoring critical questions as to its use in multiproxy presentations used by the IPCC when he was lead author.

    That sort of conflict of interest and stonewalling made him look rather worse than if he’d simply done what was politely requested years ago.

  17. Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 2:51 AM | Permalink

    You really should try to understand things before you criticize McIntyre. The posts are generally read by people who have read his previous posts on the subject. In fact the data released is from Briffa 2000. He previously had not released the data despite repeated requests. He reused the data in 2006 in a paper in Science, and Science did not make him release that data, because it was from an older paper. He then used it again in Phil Trans B, and that journal made him release the data for his older paper as well, so people could evaluate his findings.

  18. EW
    Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 6:27 AM | Permalink

    Briffa stated that it was entirely appropriate to include Khadyta River in a Yamal chronology…

    Of course Briffa said so. He knows the place. Everybody who did a basic reading about Yamal data collections must notice, that Khadyta IS Yamal, together with two other river valleys.
    Apparently Gavin didn’t do his homework.

  19. Craig Loehle
    Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 7:58 AM | Permalink

    It seems evident to me that scientists either no longer get or have forgotten training in both logic and debating skills (our host excepted here, of course). In logic courses, you learn what deduction is and isn’t. There are so many non-sequiteurs in climate “debates” where the conclusion does not follow from the premises. Many climate scientists do not even recognize the idea of a “premise” or “assumption” from which you build your proof (as in math) and that assumptions can be examined per se. The absence of consideration of examining assumptions can lead to circular reasoning, which climate scientists have never seemingly heard of (e.g., we assume that CO2 amplified temperature swings at glacial transitions and therefore this proves the role of CO2). In debate, it is incumbent on one to respond to the points raised. In a debate class, if you go off on a tangent you get points taken off. The common practice of using strawmen, ad homs, and red herrings is sloppy debating style. These practices make one look unprofessional. Part of what makes this site great is that not only SM but many of the regulars are quite clear on these things. I am glad to see that Briffa is clear on at least some of them. What Briffa does not perhaps appreciate, is that if one just “moves on” then others will continue to use Yamal forever in their recons unless it is clarified that it is or is not a good dataset. Briffa is aware of the issues and owes it to the world of science to clarify the situation with Yamal.

    • Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 9:45 AM | Permalink

      Re: Craig Loehle (#26), on logic: while I understand the importance of checking and rechecking findings and analyses, what I find surprising about this episode is that – as far as I know, and please do correct me – nobody here has done anything to correct stories like Delingpole’s –

      http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/jamesdelingpole/100011716/how-the-global-warming-industry-is-based-on-one-massive-lie/

      – who seems to think the entire edifice of AGW theory has been destroyed by work like this. Logically, that’s just not the case. There are other proxies, and AGW does not rely on historical data. 20th century forcing alone is enough. Is it unreasonable of me to expect McIntyre to pick up on people who take his work too far, and to correct them? Again – perhaps that has happened, and I’ve just missed it.

      Steve: While it is impossible for me to correct every misinterpretation about my work, I did email Delingpole and notify him of his misinterpretation of these particular findings, a point that I mentioned on a thread that you seemed to have missed. I sent out a couple of other similar emails. In practical terms, it is unreasonable to expect me to be aware of all such misinterpretations and to deal with them. If there are situations that people bring to my attention and ask me to deal with, I will frequently do so. Given your concern, it would be appropriate if you inquired as to whether Briffa was equally evenhanded in notifying realclimate of their misinterpretations.

      • Craig Loehle
        Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 9:59 AM | Permalink

        Re: Dan Olner (#34), Demolishing the hockey stick only proves that you can’t assert that recent instrumental warming has been “unprecedented” and Steve has been very clear on that. Other reconstructions that don’t use tree rings (and especially the suspect Yamal and bristlecone pines) are limited (see e.g. Moberg et al Nature 2005 and Loehle E&E 2007 & 2008) but generally show a warmer MWP.
        Steve is not responsible for, and can’t control, what journalists say, nor is anyone.

      • ianl8888
        Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 3:33 PM | Permalink

        Re: Dan Olner (#22),

        “20th century forcing alone is enough”

        So, what caused the Minoan, Roman and Medieval Warm Periods then ? And the Little Ice Age was caused by a lack of atmospheric CO2 ?

  20. Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 10:05 AM | Permalink

    Tom P,
    Dude, you really need to give it up. Briffa is being quite reasonable, unlike yourself and the rest of the Team. For all his past mistakes, it seems like Briffa is making a strong effort to be objective about his own work here. It’s too bad you (Tom P) and the other Team members can’t do likewise.

    • Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 10:16 AM | Permalink

      Re: Mike Lorrey (#39), “Steve is not responsible for, and can’t control, what journalists say, nor is anyone.” It’s true you can’t control it, but generally if a researcher is misrepresented in the media, there’s at least a little effort to correct it – especially when it spreads as far and wide as this one has. With Steve being so collosally misrepresented in this case (“AGW is all a lie: McIntyre proves it”) I would have thought a short blog entry saying “no, I didn’t do that” would be the least he could do – especially given the implication of Delingpole et al is that Briffa and others deliberately lied.

  21. Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 10:18 AM | Permalink

    Sorry! That should have been – Re: Craig Loehle (#24), “Steve is not responsible for, and can’t control, what journalists say, nor is anyone.” It’s true you can’t control it, but generally if a researcher is misrepresented in the media, there’s at least a little effort to correct it – especially when it spreads as far and wide as this one has. With Steve being so collosally misrepresented in this case (“AGW is all a lie: McIntyre proves it”) I would have thought a short blog entry saying “no, I didn’t do that” would be the least he could do – especially given the implication of Delingpole et al is that Briffa and others deliberately lied.

  22. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 2:08 PM | Permalink

    Treeline discussion moved to http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=4783; Tom P’s attempt to re-litigate Gavin Schmidt accusations not endorsed by Briffa moved to http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=7168

    • Tom P
      Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 2:33 PM | Permalink

      Re: Steve McIntyre (#31),

      You were the one that brought it up in the first place with:

      False Accusations by Gavin Schmidt

      If you didn’t want it discussed here, why mention it in the head post?

      Steve: We’re talking about Briffa’s handling of these issues. If you want to discuss Briffa’s comments on them, fine. If you want to show that Briffa endorsed any RC claim, fine. If you want to re-litigate issues that have been discussed already, please do so on the relevant thread. Please show me any RC claim that Briffa supported. And again, please link to Briffa’s response.

      • Tom P
        Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 3:41 PM | Permalink

        Re: Steve (#33),

        In his latest statement Briffa neither endorsed nor rejected the comments in the RC post. There is no “handling of these issues” by him to discuss. Given your self-admitted lapse in your use of the phrase “CRU cherry picking” to me, I’m still surprised you want to bring up this topic again, but the attraction of an attack, however misguided, on Gavin Schmidt obviously proved too much for you to resist.

        Returning to the issues that Briffa did address, he says:

        We have shown here that the “KHAD only” example constructed by McIntyre itself represents a biased chronology, contradicted by the evidence of other chronologies constructed using additional and more representative site data.

        How might the other data be judged as “more representative”? As I have asked before, what values do you get for the KHAD chronology correlation and t statistic to the Yamal temperature during the growth period?

        • bender
          Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 5:37 PM | Permalink

          Re: Tom P (#35),

          We have shown here that the “KHAD only” example constructed by McIntyre itself represents a biased chronology

          It was precisely McI’s point that KHAD did not match Briffa’s Yamal. Note: Briffa didn’t admit this until McI showed the world. Now, if you have proof that Yamal without KHAD is more representative of the region (or the hemisphere) and more reliable for reconstructing past temperatures, we’d all love to hear that argument. Please proceed.

  23. MikeN
    Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 2:19 PM | Permalink

    Why in the world should Gavin apologize or withdraw his statement in light of Briffa’s acceptance of Khadtya?
    Gavin made no attempt to say what was wrong with your data, like it doesn’t correlate to temperature. Instead He said you found the data on the internet. Nothing Briffa said challenges that. Gavin was wrong regardless of Briffa’s response.

  24. MikeN
    Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 4:20 PM | Permalink

    TomP, with your mastery of R, can’t you spit out that stat for us?
    If you’ll post the Schweingruber year by year data for the chronology, I’ll calculate the correlation for you.

  25. steven mosher
    Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 4:43 PM | Permalink

    Tom P (#35), which Yamal temperature? which station? which months? the raw observation data? or the data after it has been “corrected” by unpublished algorithms. These are detail questions tom.
    Attend to them.

    which station?
    which weeks/months?
    raw data?
    “corrected data”?
    with or without a code review of those corrections?

    No polemics, no quote mining, no moving on, put on your big boy pants and answer these questions?

    • Tom P
      Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 6:31 PM | Permalink

      Re: steven mosher (#37),

      which Yamal temperature?

      The temperature series for June/July from the appropriate HadCRU/CRUTEM gridcell for Yamal that Steve used to calculate the correlations here:

      http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=7374

      I asked him for the code and data at the time. But as Steve already has this data and separately the Khadyta chronology I would be very surprised if he doesn’t have the correlation and t statistic if not calculated at least very close to hand.

      It would be good to see how these values compare with the other nearby series.

      • steven mosher
        Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 9:03 PM | Permalink

        Re: Tom P (#39), read the questions again. and answer them all.

        which station? ( not which grid)
        which weeks/months?
        raw data?
        “corrected data”?
        with or without a code review of those TEMPERATURE corrections?

  26. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 7:30 PM | Permalink

    Tom P, before you “move on”, let’s take a look at the issues that you had raised in your capacity as Gavin’s Guru previously discussed here:

    You had argued:

    Rejecting the Schweingruber series as a good proxy seems reasonable

    I predicted that this would not be Briffa’s response and it wasn’t. You should have acknowledged this already on your own without my having to remind you.

    Based on your guruosity, Gavin reported:

    Tom P. above showed that the Yamal curve was robust to homogenising the age structure”

    Again, I expressed doubt that Briffa would adopt this line of argument and he hasn’t.

    I said that I would discuss population homogeneity in a forthcoming post as population homogeneity is the key issue in respect to Briffa’s “moving on” argument. I will deal with this in good time.

    For the present, perhaps you can concede that Briffa did not agree with the following assertion: “Rejecting the Schweingruber series as a good proxy seems reasonable”.

    • Tom P
      Posted Nov 6, 2009 at 2:04 AM | Permalink

      Re: Steve McIntyre (#41),

      Briffa states:

      We have shown here that the “KHAD only” example constructed by McIntyre itself represents a biased chronology, contradicted by the evidence of other chronologies constructed using additional and more representative site data.

      which is entirely consistent with my statement:

      Rejecting the Schweingruber series as a good proxy seems reasonable

      The issue in both these statements is the correlation with temperature. Could you please respond to my earlier request for the code/data, or preferably values?

      Steve: Tom, are you sane? Briffa said: ” it is entirely appropriate to include the data from the KHAD site (used in McIntyre’s sensitivity test) when constructing a regional chronology for the area.” If you think that this is “entirely consistent with your statement: “Rejecting the Schweingruber series as a good proxy seems reasonable”, you are in Bizzarro world with the Team. As to your various requests, room service is otherwise occupied right now. Why don’t you ask Briffa or realclimate for room service and see how you do there?

      • Posted Nov 6, 2009 at 7:16 AM | Permalink

        Re: Tom P (#50),

        which is entirely consistent with my statement:

        Only in TomP I Have No Reading Comprehension Skills land.

      • Tom P
        Posted Nov 6, 2009 at 4:58 PM | Permalink

        Re: Steve(#50),

        Tom, are you sane?

        Good to see some finely honed scientific criticism.

        Steve: given the total lack of logic in your response, I’m asking a scientific question. Yes or no?

        Why don’t you address the substantial point? Both Briffa and I considered the Khadyta series in a combined chronology. But it is obvious to all of us that there is a disagreement between this series and the Yamal data. A correlation with temperature might shed some light on this, and all I’d be happy to see here are the temperature series and code you’re using, if not the correlation values themselves. Your response is just to splutter:

        Why don’t you ask Briffa or realclimate for room service and see how you do there?

        Oh dear! I was told at least one of your strengths was to make your data and methods readily available. I must have been misinformed.

        Room Service: Puh-leeze. Scripts and data are made plentifully available. Even Room Service is not available 24-7 to serve Tom P and Room Service occasionally has other things to do. If you aren’t prepared to look in the scripts and data directories or to wait for until I get to your order, you can always ask for service at Hotel CRU.

        • bender
          Posted Nov 6, 2009 at 5:23 PM | Permalink

          Re: Tom P (#57),

          But it is obvious to all of us that there is a disagreement between this series and the Yamal data

          If it’s been so @#$%@#$ “obvious” then why did Briffa “not consider” using those data? Because they’re “anomalous? Answer the @#$!@#$ question: what is the reason for the divergence? What are the criteria for deciding when to use this series or that one? STOP DODGING the @#$%@#$% question! Stop flinging @#$%@#$%@# on the wall just to see what sticks!

        • ianl8888
          Posted Nov 6, 2009 at 9:00 PM | Permalink

          Re: bender (#58),

          Same old question, never acknowledged let alone answered:

          If samples from the current time period are excluded on the basis that, for whatever unknown and unexamined reason, they do not correlate with temperature data from modern instrumentation

          THEN

          how can the same exclusion process be robustly applied to dead (& fossilised) samples from earlier time periods when no instrumented temperature data are available to base such exclusions on ?

          The TomP’s have evaded this issue as if it has MWP leprosy

        • bender
          Posted Nov 6, 2009 at 5:40 PM | Permalink

          Re: Tom P (#57),
          If you are a man get yourself over to this thread and answer this question:

          http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=7168#comment-364795

        • Tom P
          Posted Nov 7, 2009 at 3:08 AM | Permalink

          Re: Steve (#57),

          Why are you so riled by a request to post the code you used in the previous article? When did asking for such code to be posted become a call for “room service”?

          Re: MikeN (#64),

          The R code for these chronologies is posted here http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=7168. I assume you’re willing to run R and display the files you want – I don’t think this is the appropriate forum for a long post full of numbers.

        • steven mosher
          Posted Nov 7, 2009 at 6:02 AM | Permalink

          Re: Tom P (#65), Tom, you will have to WAIT your turn. While you are waiting please answer the simple questions I asked you. oh and finish your assignment from dr bender. Very simply, Steve will make his code and data available in due course. But lets see, you want to find a correlation versus temperture right?

          SO, answer my questions. You demand steve’s code and data. That fair. You agree that one cannot judge a claim without seeing data and code. Now above you said to use Hadcru. But you can’t see hadcru raw data ( they lost it) and you can’t see hadcru code. So I repeat my question:

          Do you want to correlate against RAW temp data?
          Do you want to correlate against ADJUSTED temp data when you cannot see the adjustment code.

          NOTE. please read this carefully. I’m not asking what briffa did. I’m not asking what YOU want steve to do.
          I AM asking what your best judgement is. You want to match temps. do you use RAW data or data that is adjusted by code you cant see? Which? give reasons. Also, read esper’s paper.

        • Tom P
          Posted Nov 7, 2009 at 7:53 AM | Permalink

          Re: steven mosher (#66),

          Did you read the article I referred you to above (#39)? It answers all of your questions.

          All Steve has to do is post the code he used to get the correlation and t statistic values he presented in that article. He doesn’t even have to fire up R. I’m not asking for “room service”, just a look at the menu.

          Room Service:
          I was busy with my wife on Friday evening. Today I’m traveling to Peterboro to see a play that my nephew wrote. Room Service is deadfully short of staff – just one waiter. And the waiter decided to update some scripts on Upside Down Mann. Room Service will get to your request fairly quickly, but we’re shortstaffed. However, Hotel CRU has a very large staff and, if you’re unwilling to wait a day or two here, you can try over there. But in the meantime, please stop complaining.

        • jeff id
          Posted Nov 7, 2009 at 9:30 AM | Permalink

          Re: Tom P (#69),

          You should get your money back.

        • Tom P
          Posted Nov 7, 2009 at 10:20 AM | Permalink

          Re: Steve (#69),

          …will get to your request fairly quickly…

          Thanks in anticipation.

        • steven mosher
          Posted Nov 8, 2009 at 3:39 PM | Permalink

          Re: Tom P (#70), answer the questions for yourself. I don’t believe that the article states things as clearly as I wanted them stated from YOU. Here is the deal tom. You asked steve to fetch some graphs.
          about 30 seconds later you complained. Then I challenged you to WRITE YOUR OWN R. you did. you screwed up.
          Gavin endorsed your screw up. Every since you have gone to quote mining ( others words) and posting random graphs with no code ( maybe help from another) and now you are back to asking for room service. So I put simple question to you. that YOU can answer with your own brain. But again your refuse to put YOUR WORDS your complete thoughts
          on paper and play this game of refering me to something else which CANNOT answer my questions to YOU. So, pull up
          your big boy pants and answer the questions. People like you always complain about steve not publishing more in journals of your choosing. how about you publish your answers right here. Until you can think for yourself or say you don’t know I personally think steve should kick your requests for room service to the back of the line.

          I know, lets take a consensus vote on that procedural matter. All in favor of making Tom wait until he actually.

          1 admits his past errors ( no moving on allowed)
          2. finishes Dr. benders assignment
          3. answers my simple questions in his own words and thoughts.

          I vote Yes

        • bender
          Posted Nov 8, 2009 at 4:48 PM | Permalink

          Re: steven mosher (#78),
          1. couldn’t agree more. Yes vote.
          2. “quote mining” is a Pierrehumbertism.

        • TAG
          Posted Nov 7, 2009 at 7:40 AM | Permalink

          Re: Tom P (#57),

          But it is obvious to all of us that there is a disagreement between this series and the Yamal data

          Isn’t this a rather fundamental question that SMc has noted before. Just what makes a proxy a proxy? As far as I can tell, the answer that one gets from researchers in the area amounts toa human imitation of a helicopter – just a lot of arm waving that amounts to nothing.

          If the proxy doesn’t correlate with local temperature then it teleconnects to El Nino, rainfall in Glasgow, snowfall in Seattle, sales of rain coats etc

  27. Rattus Norvegicus
    Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 8:29 PM | Permalink

    Steve, just for honesty’s sake, I quote the entire abstract here. I provides a very different view than you provide:

    At http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=7168, Steve McIntyre reports an analysis he undertook to test the “sensitivity” of the “Regional Curve Standardised” tree-ring chronology (Briffa, 2000; Briffa at al., 2008) to the selection of measurement data intended to provide evidence of long-term changes of tree growth, and, ultimately inferred temperature variation through two millennia in the Yamal region of northern Russia. It would be a mistake to conclude that McIntyre’s sensitivity analysis provides evidence to refute our current interpretation of relatively high tree growth and summer warmth in the 20th century in this region. A reworked chronology, based on additional data, including those used in McIntyre’s analysis, is similar to our previously published chronologies. Our earlier work thus provides a defensible and reasonable indication of tree growth changes during the 20th century and in the context of long-term changes reconstructed over the last two millennia in the vicinity of the larch tree line in southern Yamal. McIntyre’s use of the data from a single, more spatially restricted site, to represent recent tree growth over the wider region, and his exclusion of the data from the other available sites, likely represents a biased reconstruction of tree growth. McIntyre’s sensitivity analysis has little implication, either for the interpretation of the Yamal chronology or for other proxy studies that make use of it.

    • bender
      Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 8:30 PM | Permalink

      Re: Rattus Norvegicus (#42),
      What are you saying?

    • Steve McIntyre
      Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 8:47 PM | Permalink

      Re: Rattus Norvegicus (#42),

      IN my post, I stated:

      Briffa’s defence was in effect the classic Team defence – “moving on”. Briffa argued that they can “get” a Stick from an expanded data set that was neither used in AR4 nor ever previously presented.

      I believe that this is an accurate characterization of the Briffa article. He did not defend 10 cores or the corridor subset or reject the Khadyta data set. The abstract quoted above focuses on the new data set that Briffa is moving on to. I did not attempt in this thread to deal with the “new dataset”. All in good time.

      In the post, I also said:

      Briffa did not endorse any of the arguments presented by realclimate or their followers. Not only did Briffa not endorse realclimate arguments, vituperative or otherwise, he specifically endorsed the legitimacy of CA-style sensitivity analyses.

      And the abstract quoted above does not refute this point, which I believe this to be true. In particular, Briffa didn’t support the argument of Gavin’s guru that it was wrong to use the Khadyta River site in a sensitivity study.

  28. Rattus Norvegicus
    Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 9:08 PM | Permalink

    Steve, he used the data you suggested!!! The only difference is that he used the version of RCS processing used in Briffa, et al 2008. So the expanded data set was the H&S data plus the KHAD data. You were the one who opened the door to this, probably more methodologically sound, method of looking at the data.

    Steve: Indeed he did use Khadyta River. As I predicted he would. And contrary to the urgings of Gavin’s guru. As I said above, he did not defend 10 cores in 1990. He did not defend the corridor subset. He “moved on” from the 10. I said that I’ll discuss population homogeneity and the data set that they “moved on” to over the next few days. All in good time. We only saw the “new” data set last week and it takes a few days to analyse things.

  29. Rattus Norvegicus
    Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 9:12 PM | Permalink

    Bender, I think it has something to do with “It would be a mistake to conclude that McIntyre’s sensitivity analysis provides evidence to refute our current interpretation of relatively high tree growth and summer warmth in the 20th century in this region.” I just wanted to put the statement in context since Steve seems to have a penchant for selective quoting.

    • bender
      Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 9:35 PM | Permalink

      Re: Rattus Norvegicus (#47),
      That is, of course, a dodge, dear sir. McIntyre’s analysis was not designed to provide an alternative chronology that refuted Yamal. This is only what the RC echo chamber has come to convince themselves of. What McIntyre showed is that there is a serious divergence problem at Yamal which MATTERS. If you are going to choose A over B you should be able to make a case why. If you are going to argue that sub-sample A is representative and sub-sample B is anomalous, then you should be able to explain the divergence betwen A and B. We are waiting for that explanation from Sir Briffa. Perhaps in a third reply?

  30. Tom C
    Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 9:28 PM | Permalink

    The abstract quoted above focuses on the new data set that Briffa is moving on to. I did not attempt in this thread to deal with the “new dataset”.

    Steve – Didn’t some dendro write you a letter some time ago proclaiming that there were new results that would “surpass(eth) all other”. Maybe that was Briffa.

  31. Henrik Oelund
    Posted Nov 6, 2009 at 5:30 AM | Permalink

    Mr. Tom P
    Why don’t you answer the questions from MikeN, Steven Mosher and bender? If it is over your head, then say so and move on…. . And please, do not ask Steve Mc. to answer the questions posed to you, seriously!
    Or maybe Mr. Rattus Norvegicus knows the answers? Or knows somebody who knows?

  32. Don Keiller
    Posted Nov 6, 2009 at 10:43 AM | Permalink

    Steve, I have had some direct correspondance with Professor Briffa on these issues.
    Since he has done me the courtesy of replying to me in a personal capacity, I do not wish to
    post his reply in a public forum.
    However I would be interested in your take on some of his responses to statistical issues.

    What is the process for sending you these comments in confidence?

    Steve: I will be commenting on Briffa’s statistical points. As I’ve observed elsewhere, I think that it is important to carefully examine what dendro specialists do, but they are not themselves statisticians and I think that it is appropriate to term their methods “artesanal”. None of them seem to be aware of random effects methodologies or to have made the slightest attempt to link their recipes to a modern statistical context.

  33. Uriel
    Posted Nov 6, 2009 at 2:04 PM | Permalink

    snip – nothing to do with this issue.

  34. Uriel
    Posted Nov 6, 2009 at 2:25 PM | Permalink

    [Jean S: snip – nothing to with the topic. Try Unthreaded if you want your stuff survive more than five seconds.]

  35. bender
    Posted Nov 6, 2009 at 5:24 PM | Permalink

    I was told at least one of your strengths was to make your data and methods readily available. I must have been misinformed.

    HAHAHA You are SOOOO funny!!

  36. jeff id
    Posted Nov 6, 2009 at 7:09 PM | Permalink

    ROTFL ; hotel CRU !!!

    • Steve McIntyre
      Posted Nov 6, 2009 at 7:18 PM | Permalink

      Re: jeff id (#61),

      It’s like a version of Hotel California with FOI that takes 4 -10 years. Such a lovely place, such a lovely place.

  37. Posted Nov 6, 2009 at 10:10 PM | Permalink

    So I called up to Hadley
    ‘Please show me the FOI’
    He said, ‘We haven’t had that document here since nineteen sixty nine’
    And still those voices are calling from far away,
    Wake you up in the middle of the night
    Just to hear them say…

  38. MikeN
    Posted Nov 6, 2009 at 10:39 PM | Permalink

    >A correlation with temperature might shed some light on this, and all I’d be happy to see here are the temperature series and code you’re using, if not the correlation values themselves.

    Just post up the Yamal,Khad, and combined RCS data. You’ve already charted them why won’t you post them?

  39. Posted Nov 7, 2009 at 6:20 AM | Permalink

    I’ve never seen such a persistent mess-generator as TomP. Perhaps he should do latrine duty at the camp: satisfactorily answer others’ often-repeated but unanswered questions to himself before having a right to expect an answer to anything he now posts.

    The really stupid thing is, it takes Steve’s time and energy to be seen to answer fairly, which means that Steve has less energy to collect together the summaries and references in one place, the very thing that TomP wants (before the Team moves camp yet again). Now I know this blog is about making all the crucial proxy data available for audit, and Steve’s requests take time and energy for Briffa etc. But at least Steve’s data is available somewhere here; the key issue is that Briffa’s isn’t, or hasn’t been at crucial moments in the developments of this science crucial to IPCC conclusions.

  40. bender
    Posted Nov 7, 2009 at 8:08 AM | Permalink

    Tom P has shown himself to be pure weasel.
    He’s here to distract Steve.
    /ignore

  41. John M
    Posted Nov 7, 2009 at 9:35 AM | Permalink

    There goes the tip.

  42. Robert in Calgary
    Posted Nov 7, 2009 at 1:16 PM | Permalink

    Could we please bring the indulging of Tom P. to an end.

    He’s a boor – plain and simple.

  43. jeff id
    Posted Nov 8, 2009 at 2:40 PM | Permalink

    Some of you may already know but recently I was surprised to find Briffa’s sensitivity tests re-used the 12 trees it supposedly eliminated from Yamal. It means that if you use the same data and same math you get the same results.

    This analysis shows that the recent century of Yamal isn’t unique for high growth.

    http://noconsensus.wordpress.com/2009/11/08/the-unstoppable-dirty-dozen/

  44. Anthony Watts
    Posted Nov 8, 2009 at 5:07 PM | Permalink

    Tom P this may help.

  45. steven mosher
    Posted Nov 8, 2009 at 9:10 PM | Permalink

    Finding no objections, I suggest we move on to the issues steve wants to discuss and Tom can get room service when he places his credit card at the front desk or gives us a huge deposit of his own thinking or code. Don’t worry tom, he’ll get back to you. meanwhile could you opine for us on the issues of moisture limitation and while you are at it
    bring me…..

    Yes, talk to be about trees that were once shrubs

  46. Greg F
    Posted Nov 4, 2009 at 7:10 PM | Permalink

    Re: pete (#18),

    pete,
    The word censored is in quotes and refers to a directory Steve discovered on Mann’s ftp site. A reference to that directory appeared in GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH LETTERS, VOL. 32, L20713

    [9] Bristlecone impact can be seen directly by comparing the MBH98 PC1 (Figure 1a), which is weighted almost entirely from bristlecones, with an unreported PC1 from Mann’s FTP site (Figure 1b), which Mann obtained by applying MBH98 PC methodology while excluding 20 bristlecone sites ( ftp://holocene.evsc.virginia.edu/pub/MBH98/TREE/ITRDB/NOAMER/BACKTO_1400-CENSORED/pc01.out).

  47. bender
    Posted Nov 4, 2009 at 9:55 PM | Permalink

    Re: willard (#12),

    why mention Schmidt

    Because Schmidt chimed in on a topic where (1) he should have had no horse in the race, (2) he admitted he lacked expertise, and (3) he was willing to take “guru” Tom P’s analysis over Steve M’s. So now he can reap what he has sown with this poor judgmeent. If you want his name removed from the discussion maybe he never should have got involved in the first place?

  48. bender
    Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 10:16 AM | Permalink

    Re: Craig Loehle (#36),
    I’d be happy to pursue this in an appropriate thread. The rate limiting process of soil conditioning that you refer to would be accounted for in past treelines. What I’m pointing to is a rate limiting process that might not have been limiting under a slow-warming climate, but might be limiting under a fast-warming climate. One-liners will not answer the question. You have two moving processes, one limiting the other, with the second being co-limited by other ancillary processes. The opportunity for migratory lags to play a role in interepreting past treelines vis a vis temperature is not as trivial as one might think. The topic requires a thread if you really want to pursue it. But I can’t wait for EdF’s “accounting”.

  49. bender
    Posted Nov 5, 2009 at 6:48 PM | Permalink

    Re: dougie (#39),
    (& duke)
    Look at the sidebar at right

    http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=4783

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