Disinformation from Kerry Emanuel

In his written and oral evidence at today’s hearing before the House Science Committee, Kerry Emanuel made untrue statements about deletion of data to hide the decline. From Emanuel’s written evidence (oral was similar):

Consider as an example the issues surrounding the email messages stolen from some climate scientists. I know something about this as I served on a panel appointed by the Royal Society of Great Britain, under the direction of Lord Oxburgh, to investigate allegations of scientific misconduct by the scientists working at the Climate Research Unit of the University of East Anglia. Neither we nor several other investigative panels found any evidence of misconduct. To be sure, we confirmed what was by then well known, that a handful of scientists had exercised poor judgment in constructing a figure for a non peer-reviewed publication. Rather than omitting the entire record of a particularly dubious tree-ring-based proxy, the authors of the figure only omitted that part of it that was provably false. If this was a conspiracy to deceive, though, it was exceedingly poorly conceived as anyone with the slightest interest in the subject could (and did) immediately find the whole proxy record in the peer-reviewed literature.

The true scandal here is the enormously successful attempt to elevate this single lapse of judgment on the part of a small number of scientists into a sweeping condemnation of a whole scholarly endeavor

The proxy in question is, of course, the Briffa reconstruction. Emanuel says that the authors “only” deleted the part of the reconstruction that was “provably false”, with the problem limited to a “non peer-reviewed publication”.

The Briffa network was developed from 387 sites anticipated to be temperature proxies because of their latitude or altitude. Emanuel has no basis for describing the Briffa network as “a particularly dubious tree-ring-based proxy”. It is an important large population and there is no evidence that the measurements were taken inaccurately. The NAS panel in 2006 did say that strip bark proxies should be “avoided” in temperature reconstructions. If Emanuel were seriously concerned about the use of “particularly dubious” tree-ring proxies, shouldn’t these be the ones that he should be worried about?

Emanuel’s evidence to the House Committee that the deletion of the decline was limited to a “non peer reviewed article” was also untrue. I presume that he is referring here to Phil Jones “combo trick” in the WMO 1999 report. As CA readers know, Keith’s Science Trick – the omission of part of the data – was systemic in the peer reviewed literature after 1999. Examples include the spaghetti graphs in Briffa and Osborn (Science 1999), Jones et al (Rev Geophys 1999), Briffa et al (JGR 2001) Plate 3, Jones et al 2001 Plate 2A, Briffa et al 2004 Figure 8, Hegerl et al Figure 5b. (CRU conceded most of this in their March 1, 2010 submission to Muir Russell, see page 38). Plus of course the spaghetti graphs in IPCC TAR and IPCC AR4.

Emanuel says that hide-the-decline was a “single lapse of judgement”. More disinformation on his part. The decision to “omit” part of the record was made over and over. It began in 1999, but continued unabated through IPCC AR4.

Worse, the practice was directly challenged by an AR4 reviewer (me). I requested IPCC to show the decline and explain it as best they could. I said that the deletion of the decline in TAR was misleading and asked that they not do so anymore. Briffa refused, merely saying that it would be “inappropriate” to show the decline. This was not a “single lapse of judgement”. It was something that’s gone on for over a decade.

Emanuel says that the “true scandal” is the elevation of hide-the-decline into a “sweeping condemnation of a whole scholarly endeavour”.

In my opinion, Emanuel and other senior members of the climate community bear much of the responsibility for the escalation of the incident beyond the borders of East Anglia and Penn State. If Emanuel and others wanted to stop criticism and suspicion, they should have carried out their inquiries in a systematic way, as inquiries are carried out in other fields.

The Oxburgh inquiry, of which he was a member, should have had written terms of reference, should have interviewed critics as well as CRU, should have had (at least) transcripts of the interviews – among other things.

The Oxburgh “report” was an insult to the public. Emanuel shares the blame for that.

That Emanuel, a member of one of the inquiries, should be unaware that hide-the-decline occurred in peer reviewed literature and IPCC merely proves, if anyone were in doubt, that the inquiries were cavalier and negligent rather than thorough and diligent.


176 Comments

  1. Steve McIntyre
    Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 2:16 PM | Permalink

    For the record, a few days after the announcement of the panel and a few days before he went to England, Emanuel did contact me to direct him to key publications that were critical of CRU. When I reverted two weeks later, to my astonishment, Emanuel said that it was too late, the report had already been written – less than 3 weeks from its announcement.

    • Pat Frank
      Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 5:54 PM | Permalink

      Steve, as you did, however, send him the papers in ample time prior to his March 2011 Congressional testimony, then Kerry Emanuel should have known, certainly by late March 2011, that the decline-hiding was not merely in, “constructing a figure for a non peer-reviewed publication,” and should have known, certainly by late March 2011, that the removed data showing decline was not “provably false.”

      So, Oxburgh investigation notwithstanding, what is the explanation for K.E.’s provable lack of accuracy in his recent Congressional submissions?

      Some may see that as a rhetorical question, but it may be so only because of the general atmosphere of studious ignorance and tendentious exculpation that has been constructed (one might say, “Nursed”) by all the defenders of the CRU/Penn methodological hijacking.

      • gdn
        Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 2:14 PM | Permalink

        that the removed data showing decline was not “provably false.”

        Wasn’t the deleted Briffa data provably false, at least in what the data sequence was purported to show? The problem, to me, is that by deleting it, they created the impression that the undeleted portion was true.

      • gdn
        Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 3:00 PM | Permalink

        Steve Garcia
        Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 12:48 PM
        [...]Because without tree rings, what do we have as proxies? Ice cores, sea bottom cores, corals, stalagmites and varves?

        That is a whole additional set of worms. Some of the proxies used as temperature proxies are clearly local rainfall proxies, distal basin rainfall proxies, melt proxies (of various types), wind-direction proxies, wind strength proxies, CO2 proxies, mineral availability proxies, ship registry proxies, navigation technology proxies (including use of GPS proxies), and temperature difference proxies (not local anomolies, but rather the difference in temperature between two regions at a given time).

        Clearly one needs to establish the validity of the proxy for the use intended BEFORE including it as a dataset.

        • Ivan
          Posted Apr 4, 2011 at 9:59 AM | Permalink

          that is the main issue here – so called “divergence problem”. Briffa, and for that matter none else has provided any reasonable explanation as to why only the portion of the graph after 1960 should be false, and not the previous record. we now see that they also cut off the portion of the record between 1402-1550, without any explanation whatsoever.

          So, yes, the post 1960 could easily be false, but it is not clear then of what value is the entire reconstruction.

    • oneuniverse
      Posted Apr 6, 2011 at 12:46 PM | Permalink

      Steve Mc, may I ask if the documents you sent to Prof. Emanuel (at his request) cover the multiple instances of deleting the decline?

      If they did, for Emanuel not to have intentionally deceived Congress, he must have either not read the documentation (the parts pertaining to the deletions), or he read them and didn’t agree, or he read them and didn’t understand.

      Prof. Emanuel has written: “Last I checked, lying to Congress was a federal crime.” (“Climategate: A Different Perspective”, National Academy of Scholars)

      Perhaps he can clear up this matter himself – is it worth bringing up the matter of your email with him ?

  2. Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 2:59 PM | Permalink

    That Emanuel, a member of one of the inquiries, should be unaware that hide-the-decline occurred in peer reviewed literature and IPCC merely proves, if anyone were in doubt, that the inquiries were cavalier and negligent rather than thorough and diligent.

    Do you really think Emanuel was unaware? snip

  3. Publius
    Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 3:28 PM | Permalink

    “I requested IPCC to show the decline and explain it as best they could. I said that the deletion of the decline in TAR was misleading and asked that they not do so anymore. Briffa refused, merely saying that it would be “inappropriate” to show the decline.”

    Here is one of the key problems with the IPCC: effectively delegating to the authors the power to accept or reject reviewer criticisms and suggestions. This feature prompted someone to quip that the IPCC report chapters are more like blogs than peer reviewed publications. Too bad the hearing did not touch on this and other IPCC shenanigans.

  4. Peter Whale
    Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 3:29 PM | Permalink

    I know that you do not like it but until this enters a court of law where all evidence is disclosed and presented the vested interests will always surface to the expedience of truth.

    • Big Dave
      Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 4:07 PM | Permalink

      Would Mass-v-EPA qualify? The “certainty” found within IPCC reports led to the 5/4 decision by the Supreme Court.

    • Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 4:37 PM | Permalink

      There is a common false perception that the United States House of Representatives, the United States Senate, and each of their full Committees, are not a “court of law”. However, each full body and each of the full Committees, are in fact a “court of law”.

      In each, one’s presence, documents, and testimony can be compelled. Findings can be accessed. Corrective action can be initiated via legislation. And punishment, primarily in the form of contempt charges can be doled out. Although rare, potentially, each act of contempt can be followed by the initiation of a criminal Grand Jury. Which may empaneled so that additional and still undiscovered illegal activity can be more thoroughly ferreted out.

  5. Bob
    Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 3:31 PM | Permalink

    Emanuel is obligated to addend his remarks to Congress if he subsequently becomes aware of information that is at odds with his sworn testimony. I wonder if he is aware of this?

  6. Gerald Machnee
    Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 3:49 PM | Permalink

    ***Rather than omitting the entire record of a particularly dubious tree-ring-based proxy,***
    Is Emanuel suggesting that the “hockey stick” is of dubious origin?

  7. Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 3:57 PM | Permalink

    Emanuel said that the authors “only omitted that part of it that was provably false.” Emanuel’s statement is provably false.

    He is presumably referring to Phil Jones’ 1999 WMO graph, where he removed the post-1960 portion of Briffa’s data to hide the decline. Jones does not claim in his email (0942777075.txt) that he is deleting it because it is false, he says he is deleting it to Hide the Decline; he offers no proof that up to 1960 the measurements were accurate but after 1960 they became inaccurate. He only refers to the fact that after 1960 they decline, and he deleted them to hide the fact.

    The next Hide the Decline episode was in the 2001 IPCC Report, followed by the 2007 IPCC Report. In the email chain leading up to the 2001 IPCC report (see Steve’s summary here and links to emails therein) no one claimed to have proof of the explanation for the divergence. In fact Mann admitted they didn’t have an explanation about why the different series diverged:

    So if Chris[Folland] and Tom [Karl] are ok with this, I would be happy to add Keith’s series. That having been said, it does raise a conundrum: We demonstrate [through comparining an exatropical averaging of our nothern hemisphere patterns with Phil's more extratropical series) that the major discrepancies between Phil's and our series can be explained in terms of spatial sampling/latitudinal emphasis (seasonality seems to be secondary here, but probably explains much of the residual differences). But that explanation certainly can't rectify why Keith's series, which has similar seasonality *and* latitudinal emphasis to Phil's series, differs in large part in exactly the opposite direction that Phil's does from ours.]

    When the NAS panel looked at the divergence issue in 2006 they spent 4 pages (pp 48-52)discussing various possible explanations but didn’t endorse any of them, much less indicate one as “proof”.

    If there is proof that the data was accurate up to 1960 and then wrong after 1960 for reasons that can be fully accounted for, none of the authors who deleted the data claimed to possess it at the time they did the deletion, or since, nor have any of the reports on the subject offered such proof.

    Emanuel’s claim is completely contradicted by the factual record. And to think he boasts about being an expert on Climategate because he was one of Oxburgh’s paint crew.

    • Craig Loehle
      Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 4:10 PM | Permalink

      You don’t get it. If it gets the wrong answer, that is “proof” that the data is bad. And the new standard allows for handwaving as an explanation if you are in the inner circle. /sarc [just in case]

      • DEEBEE
        Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 4:55 AM | Permalink

        It is part of a “step model” that is build in the long path to the truth. As I understand a sage vistings these pages.

    • mpaul
      Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 6:09 PM | Permalink

      I think committee staff should follow-up with Emanuel and ask him to supply materials in support of his statement that only data that was “provably false” was removed. This is a material fact that needs to be established and Emanuel, through his testimony, has indicated that he is in possession of information that would establish this fact. If he does not possess such information, then he has made an error in testimony and will need to correct the record promptly.

    • Steve Garcia
      Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 12:29 PM | Permalink

      The more this goes on, the more one begins to wonder if they are even capable of not misrepresenting the facts.

      In this context “they” means The Team and the members of any of the panels that investigated The Team.

      And in this context “investigated” is itself a misrepresentation.

      Emmanual should be embarrassed, at the least. But given that he has sufficient real facts (Steve M gave much of the facts to him, after all), the only conclusion we can arrive at is that he has – sniip

    • Neil Fisher
      Posted Apr 2, 2011 at 4:56 PM | Permalink

      Re: Ross McKitrick (Mar 31 15:57),
      I must disagree – Emanual can show that the the temperature reconstruction is provably false using the station records. And that is what the graph is showing – a temperature reconstruction. Therefore, the graph is provably wrong. This is likely their defense – and we should embrace it! We should acknowledge it and shout it out loud – this reconstruction was “provably wrong” and unless and until someone can show how this reconstruction is materially different and a priori differentiated from other reconstructions using similar proxy methods and data, all such reconstructions fall under the shadow created by this “defense”. They are unreliable as acknowledged by their own creators.

      • Posted Apr 2, 2011 at 6:48 PM | Permalink

        But isn’t Emanuel saying that only part of the recon is wrong? The decline? This is where his disinformation comes in. If one part of the recon is “provably wrong”, without any real proof, then the rest is wrong as well.

  8. Graeme
    Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 4:10 PM | Permalink

    step back guys…get your chronologies straight. As an interested layman, I find it difficult to track back and forth between papers and IPCC submissions. If I were on a review panel, my eyes would glaze over. You are into the fine detail. You know it. nOutisders do not and you need to convert outsiders. You need a clear, demonstrable narrative which then shows how the offricial accounts vary from what was actually said at the time.

    • Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 4:22 PM | Permalink

      1999 – Jones prepared cover of WMO report deleting post-1960 portion of Keith Briffa’s data to hide the decline, and replacing the data with temperature records, then smoothing over the splice so it is concealed.

      1999 – IPCC authors are bothered that Briffa’s graph after 1960 diverges from apparent temperature record, and if they include it in the TAR it will detract from the message. So they include it but they delete the post-1960 portion

      2001 – IPCC TAR published with Keith’s post-1960 data deleted, no notice to reader

      2006 – NAS Report offers no explanation for the divergence problem

      2006 – IPCC draft for AR4 includes cluster of reconstructions, including Briffa’s, with post-1960 portion deleted. Reviewer Steve McIntyre demands they show all the data

      2007 – published IPCC report omits post-1960 data; mentions data deletion in chapter text but does not establish rationale

      2011 – Emanuel claims in House testimony that data was only deleted once and the segment removed was “provably false”

      Steve:
      1999 – data deleted in Jones et al 1999 (Rev Geophys); Briffa and Osborn 1999; IPCC TAR First Draft (Sep 1999); Briffa et al 2001; Briffa et al 2004; Hegerl et al 2007…

      • MichaelM
        Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 7:29 PM | Permalink

        There’s a lot that could be added here, of course, but I think referencing the whitewashed inquiries with their repeated references to divergent data as “incorrect” (as though the data could decide whether to be true of false..it is what it is!) or “flawed” (on what basis?) would be powerful. (To me, statements declaring this ‘inconvenient’ data ‘incorrect’ are QUITE telling about the biases involved.)

        Also, you refer to NAS and emphasize their advice to NOT use bristlecone series and how this has been largely ignored.

        Then ice the cake with a couple good ol’ climategate quotes, eg: redefining peer review, etc..

        _Michael

        • MichaelM
          Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 7:32 PM | Permalink

          Prof. McKitrick:”Jones does not claim in his email (0942777075.txt) that he is deleting it because it is false, he says he is deleting it to Hide the Decline; he offers no proof that up to 1960 the measurements were accurate but after 1960 they became inaccurate”
          >>>>>
          I should have read more…I see you mention some of this in your more detailed comment, but i still say it’s important to the ‘narrative’ of what has transpired.

      • Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 2:27 AM | Permalink

        Re: Ross McKitrick (Mar 31 16:22) with ‘Voice of God’ addendum by Steve: great stuff, chaps.

    • Publius
      Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 4:37 PM | Permalink

      Yes. No one (with integrity) can look at the 2000 WMO report and avoid the conclusion that this was out and out deception. We are shown what looks like continuous proxy curves throughout. No one can tell that the last forty years are really instrumental data spliced on because the proxies don’t work. Instead we are given the impression that the proxies do a great job of matching the instrumental record. As a touch of irony, the Forward to that report reads in part, “The WMO stands ready to maintain its role as the authoritative international scientific voice on weather and climate.”

      • Steve Garcia
        Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 12:48 PM | Permalink

        Perhaps a bit O.T., but…

        Relative to proxies not working, see this paper, Stahle et al (2005) entitled “Ancient Baldcypress Forests Buried in South Carolina”: http://www.scribd.com/doc/51676257/Buried-Cypress-Forest-in-South-Carolina

        In it the authors (tree ring experts) describe that the tree rings are proxies for precipitation, making no mention of temperature. Tree rings cannot be both proxies for temperature AND precipitation. They might be one, but if so, cannot be proxies for the other, because neither one is an effective proxy for the other. Sometimes precipitation follows temps and sometimes it doesn’t.

        This is one of those cases of dendros or climatologists trying to have their cake and eat it, too. But they can’t have both.

        Added to Briffa’s pre-1550 and post-1960 “hide the decline” data, added to this study, makes me more and more convinced that tree rings are not adequate proxies for temperature at all. Mann and The Team are completely bollixed up about this all (per the emails), not understanding at all the reason behind the post-1960 decline of Briffa’s.

        The obvious explanation is that tree rings are not adequate temperature proxies.

        I say that even if that is not what anyone wants to hear, myself included.

        Why do I not want to hear it? Because without tree rings, what do we have as proxies? Ice cores, sea bottom cores, corals, stalagmites and varves? Losing tree rings would shake the entire paleoclimatology world to its core. (no pun intended…)

        But if tree rings don’t make it as temp proxies, they don’t. If they are precipitation proxies instead, that is another cup of tea altogether…

  9. Ed_B
    Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 4:19 PM | Permalink

    “If I were on a review panel, my eyes would glaze over. You are into the fine detail”

    No one presents the back story as well as McIntyre and McKitrick. It has both the statistical work, for the experts, and the Coles notes for you and me. IMO, this site is the gold standard for science, ethics and decorum.

  10. Graeme
    Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 4:21 PM | Permalink

    I agree totally Ed_B…but they need a clear narrative otherwise a clever lawyer will finesse in all the detail….

    • Steve Garcia
      Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 12:50 PM | Permalink

      From what I have seen of Steve M.’s work, he would hold up well to exactly the kind of “detail finessing” lawyers do. Steve goes into exactly the same kind of detail lawyers do. That is what law is made of, and that is what auditing is made of.

  11. Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 4:55 PM | Permalink

    So why aren’t Ross and/or Steve involved in the hearings?

    • Publius
      Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 5:25 PM | Permalink

      Canadians

      • Gary
        Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 5:38 PM | Permalink

        Who know what they’re talking about.

        • Benzopf
          Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 7:56 PM | Permalink

          Which only means they can’t be compelled. For what other reason(s) were they not asked?

        • Ed_B
          Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 9:25 AM | Permalink

          Reasons? I imagine the biggest one is PRIDE.
          Can you imagine the sheer humiliation of Congress when they have to accept that NASAs, NOAAs, NASs best scientists were shown to be ‘gilding the lily’ by a couple of Canadians?

  12. PhilH
    Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 4:59 PM | Permalink

    Under the nicest construction possible, it seems to me that a lot of this disinformation from people like Emanuel is perhaps because they are simply incapable of understanding exactly what Briffa, etc. have done. It is beyond their level of competence. It’s like trying to explain calculus to third graders. And sadly, the third graders are running the show.

    • Craig Loehle
      Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 5:26 PM | Permalink

      Technically, the issues are not hard. I have explained this to many educated people who are not statisticians. BUT: you have to be willing to study it a little. Willing they are not.

    • Eric
      Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 9:25 AM | Permalink

      To echo what Craig said. These issues are not at all technically difficult. It is not an issue of people being incapable of understanding. IMO it is an issue of laziness and not wanting to rock the boat.

      This naturally leads one to the suspicion that the inquiries were setup with the implicit mission of whitewashing the issues at hand. The organizers of the inquiries didn’t want the inquiry to look too deeply into anything.

      • Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 4:15 PM | Permalink

        Re: Eric (Apr 1 09:25),

        Upton Sinclair offers another explanation for such behavior:

        “It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his job depends on not understanding it.”

  13. Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 5:07 PM | Permalink

    It seems Dr. Emanuel has supporters in the Climate Establishment.

    http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/intersection/2011/03/31/kerry-emanuels-powerful-testimony-on-climate/

    Glad to see all of that political nonsense in the LA Times in January about Kerry being a “Republican” who voted for Obama — would come back to benefit him in the credibility department. A statement like this is weird:

    “The thing that did not come up at the hearing, at least as far as I know: Emanuel is a Republican. If that doesn’t enhance his credibility in this area, it is hard to imagine what would.”

    • Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 3:15 AM | Permalink

      “The thing that did not come up at the hearing, at least as far as I know: Emanuel is a Republican. If that doesn’t enhance his credibility in this area, it is hard to imagine what would.”

      How about Emanuel being a good scientist in all he says and does? I can imagine a world where that would enhance his credibility in this area more than the political party he votes for. But they always said I’m a dreamer.

  14. AnyColourYouLike
    Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 6:10 PM | Permalink

    The sheer drip, drip, drip of cant, dissembling, weasel wording, appeals to redundant “authority”…over and over the morally repugnant stench of those with fingers crossed behind their backs, p*ssing down your back while telling you it’s raining. What has science and scientific enquiry become, and how can these folk sleep at night? It boggles the mind.

  15. David Jay
    Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 8:49 PM | Permalink

    Emanuel said that the authors “only omitted that part of it that was provably false.”

    Sorry Hu, but I have to stand up for Emanuel’s statement as being true but horribly misleading. The reconstruction post 1960 diverged from the instrumental temperatures, so the post-1960 reconstruction is in fact “provably false”. The pre-1960 reconstruction is not “provably false” in comparison to instrumental temperatures.

    HOWEVER, if trees aren’t thermometers post 1960, there can be no reasonable expectation that they are thermometers at all. So the entire reconstruction must be discarded. Even if the reconstruction happens to sorta-kinda-look-like the instrumental record from 1600 to 1960.

    • Pat Frank
      Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 10:03 PM | Permalink

      “True” or “false” in a scientific context, does not mean ‘happens to correlate with other data,’ or not.

      True or false with respect to data means objectively replicable. True with respect to data and theory means that a falsifiable theory has correctly predicted (and explained) the data. A false theory, of course, fails that test.

      Data that conflict with theory are false only if the observation or experiment is repeated and the prior data are shown to be, typically, the result of a methodological mistake.

      So in his scientific context, with respect to the tree ring proxy data, Kerry Emanuel’s claim of “provably false” is itself a false statement, because there is no falsifiable theory of tree-ring observables.

      The post 1960 data were merely ‘provably uncorrelated’ with the instrumental record.

      • Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 3:34 AM | Permalink

        Making it crystal clear how badly Emanuel stepped across the line yesterday:

        “Rather than omitting the entire record of a particularly dubious tree-ring-based proxy, the authors of the figure only omitted that part of it that was provably false.”

        And that was in testimony to Congress.

        Chickens, meet roost. And please make it fast.

    • DEEBEE
      Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 5:06 AM | Permalink

      Guess you are praying at the temple of instrumental data and perhaps have not kept up with McI’s recent posts regarding deletion of data before 1550. There is a fine line between openness and vacancy.

    • William Newman
      Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 9:39 AM | Permalink

      David Jay, arbitrarily omitting data that don’t support the correlation you’re trying to claim is indeed a problem.

      See, e.g., http://www.freakonomics.com/2011/03/30/how-to-spot-advocacy-science-john-taylor-edition/

      You write “The reconstruction post 1960 diverged from the instrumental temperatures, so the post-1960 reconstruction is in fact ‘provably false’.” But the failure of the correlation to hold isn’t a proof that the data are false. Instead it is evidence that the claimed correlation is not as strong and reliable as the advocates would like.

      In my linked article, Justin Wolfers wrote “Actually, we should use all the available data. The chart below goes back to 1948 [...]” The same standard of honesty is applicable in the climate proxy case.

      (Obviously there are exceptions if there is an externally imposed discontinuity known from other sources. E.g., if you are analyzing ecological time series for the area around Krakatoa or Tunguska running up to the time of the famous explosive events, it’s fine with me if you analyze trends up to the discontinuity different from afterwards. But cutting the data off because of a known radical change in circumstances is not the same thing as cutting the data off because they stop supporting your political agenda.)

    • Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 10:34 AM | Permalink

      David Jay
      Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 8:49 PM
      Emanuel said that the authors “only omitted that part of it that was provably false.”

      Sorry Hu, but I have to stand up for Emanuel’s statement as being true but horribly misleading. The reconstruction post 1960 diverged from the instrumental temperatures, so the post-1960 reconstruction is in fact “provably false”. The pre-1960 reconstruction is not “provably false” in comparison to instrumental temperatures.

      ‘Twern’t me, since I haven’t commented on this thread yet.

      However, FWIW, there are two separate issues here — First, is Emanuel’s claim that there is proof false, and second, is the post-1960 data false as claimed?

      For all I know, he may have proof that the post-1960 data is false, and as has been suggested, the committee should now follow up and ask for that proof.

      Of course, simply not correlating with temperature does not make the data false. However, in the absence of some actual observable non-climate influence, the lack of correlation after 1960 makes the proxy a false indicator of temperature throughout its range, not just after 1960.

      There are legitimately falsified proxy segments — Tiljander’s Lake Korttajaervi in Finland comes to mind. Tiljander believed its sediments to be a good proxy for temperature up to the 18th century, after which construction and agriculture changed the lake’s character and made it behave very differently. But no such specific influence has ever been proposed for Briffa’s MXD, unless Emanuel knows something we don’t. CO2 or airborne fertilizer dust might be a new influence, but they would increase growth, not decrease it.

      HOWEVER, if trees aren’t thermometers post 1960, there can be no reasonable expectation that they are thermometers at all. So the entire reconstruction must be discarded. Even if the reconstruction happens to sorta-kinda-look-like the instrumental record from 1600 to 1960.

      I think we agree here.

      • David Jay
        Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 11:38 AM | Permalink

        Sorry, Hu

        I confused you for Ross, who said: “Emanuel’s statement is provably false”

        That was my launching pad. Assuming instrumental temperatures are accurate (yea, I know, that is subject to discussion), then we know that the reconstruction does not track post-1960, i.e. it is “false”. Not formally falsified (I know that is a statictical term), but wrong.

        • Craig Loehle
          Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 12:06 PM | Permalink

          Feel free to confuse me with Ross any time.

        • David Jay
          Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 3:32 PM | Permalink

          Craig:

          You are in a class all by yourself!

          (and your last name doesn’t start with an “M”, as in MM03 or MM05)

          All the best!

        • MichaelM
          Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 8:24 PM | Permalink

          David:

          1) These post 1960 data were collected accurately and meticulously, using the same methods as all the other data.

          2) These data do not track instrumental temperature records past 1960.

          3) Question: How do you know that tracked temp data accurately in the past?

          4) Frankly, we don’t have a good explanation for that…we could have been off in significant ways.

          What part of this is hard to grasp? The data are not ‘false’ they are obviously affected by something other than temperature and from what seems to be the case, no one has given a decisive reason why older data were not ‘affected by things other than temperature’ and thus an unreliable record.

  16. AusieDan
    Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 8:53 PM | Permalink

    Has all this been communicated directly to the committee members currently investigating ths matter?

    • kramer
      Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 11:11 PM | Permalink

      My exact thoughts… I hope so.

      • Cassio
        Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 9:45 AM | Permalink

        It might be better coming from a US citizen (which I am not). The senior official of the Sub-Committee on Energy & Environment is Dan Byers, on 202 225 8844. He will no doubt be able to advise how one complains to the members about mis-information from witnesses. Will a US citizen please oblige ? (Indeed, the more the merrier).

  17. Tom C
    Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 9:08 PM | Permalink

    Does any one else find it weird that a professor at MIT says the post 1960 proxy data was “provably false”. How can someone in a position like that get away with betraying such a poor grasp of science, data analysis and the like?

    • Pat Frank
      Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 10:04 PM | Permalink

      Right on, Tom C. There are several layers of conundrum in the one statement.

    • Peter Wilson
      Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 12:14 AM | Permalink

      To Emmanueal, like the rest of the team, “provably false” means it doesn’t confirm the story they want the data to tell. To them, data CAN be false, if it contradicts their deeply held belief in CAGW, which they know to be true because – well, because all the Scientists say it is, and they obviously know better than some silly old data.

      The fact that it is a nonsense to refer to accurately recorded data as false escapes them, because they do not view their subject as a matter for scientific inquiry, but as a tool for convincing policymakers to take actions they deem desirable. “Science”, properly understood, simply has nothing to do with it.

      • DEEBEE
        Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 5:11 AM | Permalink

        AMEN

  18. justbeau
    Posted Mar 31, 2011 at 10:38 PM | Permalink

    Kerry Emanuel has been revealed for what he is.

  19. Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 1:24 AM | Permalink

    Those “hide the decline” papers had many names on them. All of those “scientists” know (or should have known) of the deceit and thus are participants in the deception.

    Additionally, since the Emails release, many additional “scientists” knew of the deception. I don’t recall reading of any of them going public to denounce the deception and the hockey stick.

    All of the above “scientists” are guilty of participating in the cover-up of, at the least, bad science. Thus nothing coming our of that whole cabal should ever be trusted.

    Thanks
    JK

  20. Latimer Alder
    Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 1:39 AM | Permalink

    Re: Eyes Glaze Over

    I have to agree with Graeme that the story needs an interpreter to make its power more compelling to the lay reader.

    Steve and Ross do a splendid forensic job of uncoverng the facts. But – outwith a very small coterie of saddos and obsessives (like me)- that is just the beginning of the process. Every Johnson needs his Boswell..or more notably the TV series Law and Order needs both the detectives and the prosecutors to bring the bad guys to justice. Finding the evildoer’s fingerprint is absolutely necessary but not sufficient to guarantee the right result. You have to persuade the jury of its significance as well.

    I wonder if Andrew Montford (Bishop Hill) is busy right now?..he did a brlliant job with HSI and is already very familiar with the case and many of the players?

  21. James Lane
    Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 1:40 AM | Permalink

    David Jay (Mar 31 20:49),

    I think this nails the issue. The post-1960 data are “provably false” in the sense that they decline while temps go up, i.e. the rings are not tracking temps.

    The main reason to “hide the decline” is that if people observed the non-performance of the Briffa reconstruction post-1960 they would ask, “well, how then do we know that they adequately tracked temp before the instrumental record?”, calling into question the whole dendro-climatic project.

    IMO, that’s the heart of the “hide the decline” story, in all its manifestations.

    In the absence of any good explanation of the “divergence problem” the whole dendro enterprise becomes a house of cards. Sure, the divergence problem is mentioned in the literature, a few possibilities are canvassed (tho not usually “tree rings are crap thermometers”) and then “more research is needed”.

    Well, given that this problem has been noted since at least 1999, where is the “more research”? One would imagine an ambitious grad students could really make a name for themselves by solving the “divergence problem”. This is a critical issue for the whole field.

    In the absence of this solution, maybe it really is the case that the dendro reconstructions are worthless.

    • Doug in Seattle
      Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 9:58 AM | Permalink

      I believe a plausible explanation for the divergence has been discussed here at CA in late summer 2009. It concerns the use of larch trees that undergo a change in morphology from stunted, bush like, trees to tall straight trees. This appears to be response by the trees to warming after the end of the little ice age.

      • mpaul
        Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 12:33 PM | Permalink

        The simple existence of a plausible explanation does not give one license to selectively remove data. Under such a doctrine, I would be permitted to remove any adverse data so long as I could dream up a plausible explanation.

        Lets say I establish an ex post correlation between the average daily price of the Dow 50 with the number of hot dogs sold on a particular street corner in Manhattan. I go back several years and show that the correlation holds. But for the years 2003, 2007 and 2010 it diverges. I then search around for an explanation as to why the data does not match what I know to be true. I discover (ex post) that during those particular years, the hot dogs came from a different supplier. Am I now correct in saying that the data is provably false and that I can remove it and replace it with the actual values of the Dow 50??

        • Tom Ganley
          Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 5:44 PM | Permalink

          “Under such a doctrine, I would be permitted to remove any adverse data so long as I could dream up a plausible explanation.”

          But you are permitted to do just that, as long as your explanation includes the phrase, ‘nothing else explains it’. Then, by definition, everything else is provably false.

          It’s easy. You guys are working way to hard on this.

        • Craig Loehle
          Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 7:18 PM | Permalink

          “everything else is provably false”– sorry, I know of no journal that allows you to adjust your results like that. Try it with drug trial results or an engineering paper and see what happens. Just because your other explanations don’t explain an anomaly doesn’t mean the argument from ignorance is valid.

        • Jim T
          Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 10:35 PM | Permalink

          I think you missed the sarcasm.

        • Craig Loehle
          Posted Apr 2, 2011 at 10:05 AM | Permalink

          Oops. There are trolls who sound exactly like sarcasm…hard to tell.

      • David Jay
        Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 3:41 PM | Permalink

        Doug:

        Sure, this is plausible. But what about before the instrumental period? We have no knowledge of siting issues in 1700 or 1500. How do we know the morphology of THOSE rings?

        If morphology affects the reconstruction in modern times (because we can see that the reconstruction does not match instrumental temperatures), then we have every reason to believe that morphology affects the reconstruction in the past. Since we don’t have the instrumental record for comparison, how can we detect this?

        And if we can’t detect this, then tree rings aren’t very good thermometers, are they?

      • Doug in Seattle
        Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 7:35 PM | Permalink

        A plausible explanation for the divergence does NOT excuse what was done to the post-1960 and pre-1550 data. Briffa and Jones, as well other team members, did so for purely political reasons and contrary to the basic rules of science.

        Those basic rules require providing other scientists all the data and methods which are used in a paper and upon which the authors base their conclusions.

        I hope that clears up any misconceptions I may have caused regarding the plausibility of a particular mechanism of tree ring/temperature divergence.

    • Richard
      Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 10:11 AM | Permalink

      That is exactly the point that the CAGW enthusiasts all seem to ignore.

      I can’t see how then could miss the point, it is blindingly obvious. Howevcer it not only discredits this series as a temperature reconstruction, it utterly discredits the researchers who used it. They were either too incompetent to notice the problm or too dishonest to accept it and deal with reality. Either way none of them have any credibility.

  22. slowjoe
    Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 4:33 AM | Permalink

    Did he get anything right?

    It’s also “not strictly true” to say that the Oxburgh Inquiry was “a panel appointed by the Royal Society of Great Britain”.

  23. Geoff Sherrington
    Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 4:35 AM | Permalink

    Pat Frank – you said it better than I could and before me.

    I’m reminded of that electical wire skill thing, where you move a loop along a wavy wire. If you touch the wire, you get an electrical shock. These climate guys have no concept of getting a shock when they move outside acceptable limits of established scientific method and documentation.

    This last fortnight of info from Steve has been both credible and shocking.

    • Pat Frank
      Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 12:44 PM | Permalink

      Thanks, Geoff. We do seem to think similarly about these things. Agreed that Steve’s most recent forensics have been shocking, but really Steve’s amazing forensic record plus the evidence from Climategate emails have put straws in the wind for awhile about behavior of the ‘science out the window’ sort.

  24. Brandon Shollenberger
    Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 5:00 AM | Permalink

    Does anyone know how part of a series can be “provably false” anyway? Exactly what is supposed to be “true” or “false” in a reconstruction? The numbers are what they are. They could fail to correlate with something, be biased, be inaccurate or any number of other things, but they can’t be “true.”

    • DEEBEE
      Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 5:28 AM | Permalink

      That is only becuse you do not consider yourself to be a holder of truth. /sarc

    • Dean
      Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 9:03 AM | Permalink

      Tiljander is a case where something can potentially be omitted because it’s “provably false”. If there is a known reason why data should be excluded, and in the case of Tiljander the sediments are known to be contaminated after a certain date due to land use changes, then that data can be removed.

      But as others have said, there’s no theory as to why the divergence since 1960 nor prior to 1550 exist. Until there’s a solid reason as to why the data should be removed, then it has to be included (or at least clearly identified as not aligning with the hypothesis and doubts raised as to the validity of the hypothesis).

      • Brandon Shollenberger
        Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 1:50 PM | Permalink

        My problem is “provably false” has no meaning in this context. One could say the correlation represented in the series is “provably false,” and that could make sense. That’s true for the Tiljander issue. However, Emanuel only referred to the record itself, so that isn’t what he said.

        A record can’t be “true” or “false” so his claim would be nothing was omitted. Obviously that wasn’t his intended meaning, but it is what he said.

        I’m guessing it was just poor wording,

      • Posted Apr 2, 2011 at 9:42 PM | Permalink

        Re: Dean (Apr 1 09:03),

        For the record, none of the three Lake Korttajarvi data series appear to me to be particularly compelling temperature proxies, even before local human activities began irretrievably contaminating them in the early eighteenth century. Mia Tiljander and her co-authors are the sole published authorities on the subject, and they claimed the series are temperature proxies, but that doesn’t necessarily make it so.

        It’s jarring when pro-AGW-Consensus advocates and scientist/advocates defend Mann ’08’s authors flipping two of the series upside-down with respect to Tiljander’s interpretation, without acknowledging this action (apparently without knowing that that was what they were doing). “If it gives the answer we seek, it must be a proper procedure” seems to be the motto, here and elsewhere.

        To my knowledge, no pro-Consensus advocate or scientist/advocate has yet acknowledged that Mann ’08’s authors essentially double-counted one of the Lake Korttajarvi data series, arriving at four proxies although Tiljander only analyzed three.

        [sarc] It gave them the answer they sought, so it must have been a proper procedure. [/sarc]

        Right, Dr. Emanuel?

      • SteveGinIL
        Posted Apr 7, 2011 at 11:40 PM | Permalink

        Dean: “But as others have said, there’s no theory as to why the divergence since 1960 nor prior to 1550 exist.”

        Isn’t that exactly what the Team emails show? That they were stumped by the divergence? That they – the “experts” – didn’t have a clue why the divergence was there? If they HAD an idea, those emails would read completely differently. They couldn’t prove them false, and that was their conundrum. And if they – the experts – couldn’t prove them false, then the assertion here about “provably false” is somebody pulling that assertion out of thin air.

  25. Richard Roscoe
    Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 5:54 AM | Permalink

    That Emanuel, a member of one of the inquiries, should be unaware that hide-the-decline occurred in peer reviewed literature and IPCC merely proves, if anyone were in doubt, that the inquiries were cavalier and negligent rather than thorough and diligent.

    I disagree, the inquiries were thorough and diligent: thorough in avoiding the truth and diligent in protecting the perpetrators of the scam.

  26. Ron Cram
    Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 7:10 AM | Permalink

    Emanuel has shown himself to be a defender of the indefensible. As Christy noted, we need another assessment of climate science to compete with the IPCC. I wrote about my idea on Watts Up With That a while back. One of the critical components is that the competing assessment must be carried out by people who have not attempted to defend the indefensible as Emanuel did in his testimony. The assessment must be carried out by people of all viewpoints regarding the science, but we cannot have multiple viewpoints of adequate honesty. The fact scientists can hold to CAGW and still be honest is clear in that Eduardo Zorita and Hans von Storch were honest in their assessment of MBH98. And Judith Curry has shown herself to be honest as well. But we need more of these type of researchers. Where are they?

    • Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 7:26 AM | Permalink

      One of the crucial characteristics of the honest holder to CAGW is that when questions arise about the hockey stick and hide the decline they are perfectly happy to call in the experts: McIntyre and McKitrick. For others, even the step of naming these men is too much. I agree with the idea of a competitor to the IPCC and this has to be one of the entry criteria: the ability to talk about M&M and even, on occasions, to them.

  27. Publius
    Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 10:02 AM | Permalink

    While the “Team B” proposal makes a lot of sense, there are significant implementation problems. For example, who decides who would serve on it? If it is the NAS, it would be immediately tainted. If not, how would it achieve scientific street cred?

  28. Richard
    Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 10:07 AM | Permalink

    Is there not another lie, that the Oxburgh committee was constituted by the Royal Society? I thought Oxburgh at least was appointed by the UEA; certainly the UEA had undue influence on the committee.

    Not that the Royal Society are neutral. To my horror, as a British science graduate, having studied where some of the greatest members of the Society worked, I see them give up a reputation built up over nearly 350 years for scientific excellence, to reverse the renaissance and replace scientific debate, falsifiable hypothesis and emiracal data with advocacy and appeal to authority that was common among academics of the Dark Ages. It sickens me to my heart.

  29. Kenneth Fritsch
    Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 10:25 AM | Permalink

    Obviously, Kerry Emanuel gains credentials as a politician in these matters by spinning the facts and we gain more insight into how certain prominent climate scientists think. I do not judge that those advocates/scientists will veer much from the path of the mission they are on, but it is good at least to know from where they are coming.

  30. Jason Lewis
    Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 10:43 AM | Permalink

    Emanuel also refers to the emails as “stolen,” which is another dubious conclusion stated as fact.

  31. Taphonomic
    Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 11:15 AM | Permalink

    As an additional point, does Emmanuel really have proof/evidence for his statement that emails were “stolen from some climate scientists”?

    • Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 1:12 PM | Permalink

      Jason and Tacophonic —
      Yes, if Emanuel knows for a fact that the e-mails were stolen from without UEA and not leaked from within, that would be important, as it would clear up speculation about an outraged insider. Although this is secondary to the alleged falsity of post-1960 MXD, it would be another good followup question for the committee to ask.

      • MAHOF
        Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 3:30 PM | Permalink

        “Tacophonic”? Hungry Hu?

    • HaroldW
      Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 5:27 PM | Permalink

      I really don’t think that examining such language finesses [as "stolen" vs. "hacked" vs. "leaked" vs. some more neutral term] is productive. The emails were not released voluntarily (by the authors or by the institution), or by legal procedure, so I think “stolen” is adequate even though it has connotations which are not agreed. Everyone’s view of what occurred is speculative — well, except for the individual(s) involved in releasing the information. Let it go and concentrate on more important things than word choice on a tangential subject.

      “Provably false” vs. “provably inconsistent with the temperature record” is a significant difference, in the context of omitting data segments.

      • stan
        Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 5:47 PM | Permalink

        One doesn’t normally think of e-mails as stolen. Hacked or leaked, but not stolen. “Stolen” is a deliberate choice of wording that is intended to produce an ugly association in the mind of the listener.

        The e-mails have been acknowledged to be accurate. How they came to the public is now completely irrelevant. They are real. There is no legitimate purpose in describing them as stolen.

        When he uses loaded language he reveals himself to be an advocate. He’s a propagandist. Now he may well wish to be a propagandist, but those who look to him as a scientist are put on notice by his use of words. He’s not interested in the science. He’s pushing a particular message.

      • SteveGinIL
        Posted Apr 7, 2011 at 11:54 PM | Permalink

        Hahaha – Harold, SOMEWHERE out there is the person who “did the dastardly deed,” the Climategate Deep Thoat. That person had a reason. That person filtered the emails to digest them – evidently into the most damaging collection – into what we have seen, so that person didn’t just grab and transfer like a pickpocket.

        That person should be at some point be a candidate for a Nobel Peace Prize. If Al Gore got one, so should Deep Throat II.

  32. Kate
    Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 11:44 AM | Permalink

    How to reach me:
    Kerry A. Emanuel
    Room 54-1620, MIT
    77 Massachusetts Avenue
    Cambridge, MA 02139

    Phone: (617) 253-2462
    Fax: (617) 253-6208
    Email: my last name at mit.edu

  33. windansea
    Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 11:45 AM | Permalink

    Muller testimony also includes several errors addressed by Pielke Sr and Willis at wattsupwiththat

    Muller:

    Prior groups at NOAA, NASA, and in the UK (HadCRU) estimate about a 1.2 degree C land temperature rise from the early 1900s to the present. This 1.2 degree rise is what we call global warming. Their work is excellent, and the Berkeley Earth project strives to build on it.

    Human caused global warming is somewhat smaller. According to the most recent IPCC report (2007), the human component became apparent only after 1957, and it

    amounts to “most” of the 0.7 degree rise since then. Let’s assume the human-caused warming is 0.6 degrees.

    Willis:

    Here’s the problem. The actual land surface air temperature warming since 1900 according to the existing datasets is:

    NASA GISTEMP: 0.72°C

    NOAA NCDC: 0.86°C

    CRUTEM: 0.92°C

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/03/31/expect-the-best-plan-for-the-worst/#more-37009

    Also, Pielke Sr and Watts dispute Muller testimony re: surface station record and reliability

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/04/01/pielke-sr-on-the-muller-testimony/#more-37033

  34. Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 12:43 PM | Permalink

    It probably would be possible to prove that a stable MXD-temperature relationship is false by running something like a “Chow Test” (aka switching regression test) for a break at 1960. Perhaps Emanuel knows someone who has run such a test.

    However, this specification test wouldn’t prove that the correlation is valid before 1960 or that the data is false after 1960, but rather simply that any correlation found with the full series shouldn’t be relied upon. If there were such a correlation, of course, which itself was never established.

    The Chow switching regression test is similar in spirit to what Fritts admirably tried to achieve with his ad hoc “validation CE and RE” statistics, but with an actual statistical foundation.

    Of course if the Chow test “breakpoint” is determined empirically by examining the data rather than known a priori, the F critical values must be appropriately adjusted upwards, but these adjusted critical values are known.

  35. JohnH
    Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 12:48 PM | Permalink

    I think Hu McCulloch or Craig Loehle should contact the committee and ask that there be a follow up to request corrections from Emmanuel regarding the “demonstrably false” statement as well as the “only in a non-peer reviewed publication” statement. Hu and Craig are U.S. citizens and have published in the climate change field.

    • Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 1:53 PM | Permalink

      My day job calls, so I’ll pass. However, anyone could suggest to the committee that it ask for Emanuel’s proof of falsity after 1960 (which would be different than Briffa’s mere assertion that its validity ended in 1960).

      Cassio
      Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 9:45 AM
      It might be better coming from a US citizen (which I am not). The senior official of the Sub-Committee on Energy & Environment is Dan Byers, on 202 225 8844. He will no doubt be able to advise how one complains to the members about mis-information from witnesses. Will a US citizen please oblige ? (Indeed, the more the merrier).

  36. W F Lenihan
    Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 1:31 PM | Permalink

    Provably false testimony under oath before Congress is perjury. I suggest that all of you that are offended contact Darrel Issa’s committee staff with proof needed to show that a crime has been committed by Emmanuel

  37. Bob Moss
    Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 1:44 PM | Permalink

    My congressman is a majority member of the committee. I have emailed him a link to this discussion of Dr. Emanuel’s testimony and recommended that he have someone on his staff review it in detail.

    • stan
      Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 5:48 PM | Permalink

      Better to have him contact Steve Mc.

  38. bjedwards
    Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 6:04 PM | Permalink

    The orgy of confirmation bias in these comments says more about the arrogance of ignorance of people attracted to this blog than anything about Emanuel.

    You have all had ample time to contact Emanuel rather than sit here assuming you know what you’re babbling on about. You can check out his published papers on his website. You can find out why Roger Pielke, Jr. called Emanuel a “true scientist” and why he is highly respected.

    Of course, Steve McIntyre knows all that.

    One day, I hope, you’ll realize how gullible you’ve all been and will offer Emanuel and all the thousands of other decent scientists you’ve disparaged, insulted, and hurt – an apology.

    Steve: if I make an error, I am always anxious to correct it. To my knowledge, everything in my post is correct.
    I have detailed personal knowledge of the hide-the-decline papers.

    • Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 6:24 PM | Permalink

      Right, and wasn’t it Hansen that said people should be put on trial for spreading disinformation about climate change?

    • Craig Loehle
      Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 7:01 PM | Permalink

      Interesting that all businesses must be audited, but when a mistake is found in a scientific paper, that scientist is “insulted and hurt”. Never mind making false statements to Congress. And I am also a “real scientist” who has actually been audited here (no it wasn’t fun, but I survived).

    • Kate
      Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 8:43 PM | Permalink

      Your choice of words: orgy of confirmation bias, arrogance of ignorance, babbling…….is all just name-calling. It merely marks you as a person who has not been here in the past to read or learn but who is only showing up now to marginalize. I hope you will understand soon that marginalizing the opposition has not worked for you thus far.

      • bjedwards
        Posted Apr 3, 2011 at 10:38 PM | Permalink

        Kate,

        I rarely see such hypocritical remarks as yours.

        Name calling? I can’t imagine how you would defend the name calling against Emanuel that preceded my comment.

        Are you blind, Madame?

        Unfortunately, McIntyre’s reputation precedes him and he has hurt only himself. We can only wonder why you have not noticed.

    • David S
      Posted Apr 2, 2011 at 9:27 AM | Permalink

      I would guess that the number of scientists (using the term loosely in some cases) who have been disparaged here is somewhere in the range of 20-30, not “thousands”, and in every case their failings have been meticulously documented. If you feel that Steve has libelled anyone, rather than simply holding them to account, it would be helpful if you could produce a coherent argument about which scientist has been wrongly accused in which post, rather than merely as Kate says name-calling.

      • bjedwards
        Posted Apr 3, 2011 at 10:44 PM | Permalink

        McIntyre has already been held to account on the subject matter. His repetition of debunked claims as if they have never been addressed and properly refuted is not the sign of a serious scientist.

        This perhaps says it best:

        The Truth, Still Inconvenient

        By PAUL KRUGMAN
        Published: April 3, 2011

        “Of course, it’s actually the climate deniers who have the agenda, and nobody who’s been following this discussion believed for a moment that they would accept a result confirming global warming. But it’s worth stepping back for a moment and thinking not just about the science here, but about the morality.

        “For years now, large numbers of prominent scientists have been warning, with increasing urgency, that if we continue with business as usual, the results will be very bad, perhaps catastrophic. They could be wrong. But if you’re going to assert that they are in fact wrong, you have a moral responsibility to approach the topic with high seriousness and an open mind. After all, if the scientists are right, you’ll be doing a great deal of damage.

        “But what we had, instead of high seriousness, was a farce: a supposedly crucial hearing stacked with people who had no business being there and instant ostracism for a climate skeptic who was actually willing to change his mind in the face of evidence. As I said, no surprise: as Upton Sinclair pointed out long ago, it’s difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends on his not understanding it.”

        continued at:

        http://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/04/opinion/04krugman.html?_r=2&smid=tw-NytimesKrugman&seid=auto

        • kim
          Posted Apr 3, 2011 at 11:12 PM | Permalink

          I’m not sure Paul Krugman could understand this even if his salary didn’t depend on him not understanding it.

          And thank you for the irony. I’ll polish and display it prominently.
          =============

        • Craig Loehle
          Posted Apr 4, 2011 at 7:38 AM | Permalink

          Krugman is using argument from authority–ie he accepts the IPCC and “important scientists” as correct (though remember the Club of Rome and the end of the world scheduled for the year 2000 which did not materialize–those were big names too, like Paul Ehrlich). He is an economist who’s opinion on climate change per se has no more value than any blogger here. This blog is about auditing data and statistics. Global warming might be happening but the hockey stick could still be meaningless.

        • Steve McIntyre
          Posted Apr 4, 2011 at 8:29 AM | Permalink

          You make the following allegation against me:

          McIntyre has already been held to account on the subject matter. His repetition of debunked claims as if they have never been addressed and properly refuted

          Please be assured that I have no interest in repeating any claims that have been “debunked”. I resolved long ago that I would promptly acknowledge any valid criticism rather than disputing it. However, to my knowledge, no inquiry has refuted any claim that we actually made. On the contrary, wherever the NAS panel, for example, considered specific claims, they acknowledged their validity.

          Nor am I aware of any debunking of specific claims by NASA blogger Gavin Schmidt or anyone else. If there is a successful debunking somewhere, I would like to be aware of it so that I can respond appropriately, including the withdrawal of any “debunked” claims. Can you direct me to the supposed “debunking”?

          I am familiar with posts criticizing me by NASA blogger Gavin Schmidt and his associates at realclimate and, in my opinion, none of them come close to “debunking” claims that we’ve made.

        • Tom Gray
          Posted Apr 4, 2011 at 11:21 AM | Permalink

          Does anyone want to start a pool on which RealClimate “McIntyre debunking” that bjedwards will come back with?

        • bjedwards
          Posted Apr 5, 2011 at 2:02 PM | Permalink

          I’m afraid others beg to differ, to wit:

          http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/global_warming/mcintyre/, for example.

          Your readers are capable of doing their own research – if they so choose.

          Steve: I am aware of Lambert’s fulminations and none “debunk” claims that we’ve made.

        • Gerald Machnee
          Posted Apr 5, 2011 at 5:29 PM | Permalink

          bjedwards
          **I’m afraid others beg to differ, to wit:**
          If that is a source of your (mis)information, I suggest you can do better.

        • bjedwards
          Posted Apr 6, 2011 at 3:28 AM | Permalink

          Sorry, Gerald and Steve, I specialize in the methodology, tactics, and political motivations of denialism.

          You do not impress.

        • RomanM
          Posted Apr 6, 2011 at 8:55 AM | Permalink

          Re: bjedwards (Apr 6 03:28),

          Ooh, I’m impressed!

          What does it take to become a “specialist” like yourself? A BS degree in Climatology?

        • Tom Gray
          Posted Apr 6, 2011 at 10:36 AM | Permalink

          As a matter of face, for my job, I had to study the research literature on innovation. There is much there on that can be called the issue of “denialism”. Incumbents when faced with a disruptive change will almost invariably tend to reject it. The disruptive change must be protected. In industry this can be done by different means with some examples being placing the change within a new organization distant from the existing one, having the change managed by an executive with a good deal of organizational authority and so on.

          The nub of this is that the incumbents will not change their minds. As the disruptive change progresses these incumbents will be replaced. In the specific case of personnel, as the disruptive change is brought into the main organization, the incumbents will be replaced. They will be replaced still sincerely believing that the new idea has no merit.

          So the AGW idea contains many disruptive elements and many cases in which incumbent can be challenged by them, these incumbents are reacting in the ways that the innovation literature describes. This is true for all sides of the issue.

          For the particular case of Steve McIntyre, he is presenting a disruptive idea to the climate science establishment. This establishment is reacting in a way which is entirely predictable from the findings in the research on innovation. Their claims of particular expertise and competence that are not found in outsiders are quite standard. The term “denier” and how they try to isolate him and say that his contributions have no merit is a classical example of this.

          Now there is certainly evidence of the classical reaction to disruptive ideas throughout the AGW issue on all sides. Indeed it is found quite plainly within the AGW climate science establishments. This is not a “GOOD THING”. In fact it is a “VERY BAD THING” despite it being a natural human reaction. If we want to progress on this issue we will have to acknowledge and overcome this standard reaction. This is, of course, most imperative for the climate science establishment to accomplish

        • Pat Frank
          Posted Apr 6, 2011 at 6:17 PM | Permalink

          What you describe is the social politics of generational replacement, Tom. Business, for example, works on models. Business models are empirical and are somewhat equivalent to engineering models, in that they have boundary conditions within which they are accurate. However, unlike engineering models they have little or no base in falsifiable physical theory.

          That means whether any given business model is applicable to the market is judged by experience and opinion buttressed more or less by statistical correlations. In the absence of a falsifiable theory, the views of the business incumbents are about as likely to be correct as the views of the innovatents.

          Therefore, replacement of the incumbents over their objections is not necessarily the better outcome and is not necessarily the triumph of the innovative over the moribund. It’s merely the triumph of the younger outlasting the elder and defaulting into their own preferences.

          However in science correct and incorrect are based in falsifiable theory, and are not typically matters of experience, preference, and opinion. Error is possible to demonstrate objectively. So is correctness. In the case of Steve’s and Ross’s work, they demonstrated unambiguously that the MBH methodology was objectively wrong.

          Despite Kerry Emanuel’s testimony, it is possible to demonstrate objectively that the ‘hide-the-decline’ segment of the tree ring proxies was removed for reasons malapropos of science. There is no objectively rational doubt about this.

          The fact that the social politics of generational replacement is evident in the actions of the AGW proponents, in that they’re behaving as incumbents, does not make that model appropriate to the dispute. The reason is that social politics is antithetical to the methodology of science, which is rooted entirely in the supremacy of objective knowledge. To be scientists, we all must surrender ourselves to it.

          The entire issue of contention is that the AGW proponents have been representing themselves as scientists all the while obstinately and consciously refusing to surrender themselves to objective knowledge.

          Steve’s and Ross’s continued participation in the debate is not about the social politics of incumbency. Instead it is about maintenance of the integrity of science as objective knowledge against a persistent and noxious subversion. The fact that some of the attackers are trained as scientists has made the attack on the integrity of science especially virulent.

          The parallel with your theory of innovation-incumbency merely indicates that the AGW scientists are behaving in an unscientific (i.e., political) way, not that the innovation-incumbency theory is itself factually appropriate to the debate.

        • Tom Gray
          Posted Apr 7, 2011 at 2:32 AM | Permalink

          However in science correct and incorrect are based in falsifiable theory, and are not typically matters of experience, preference, and opinion. Error is possible to demonstrate objectively. So is correctness. In the case of Steve’s and Ross’s work, they demonstrated unambiguously that the MBH methodology was objectively wrong.

          There is an assumption here that “science” is somehow distinct from all other forms of human endeavor. The assumption that “science : is characterized by falsifiable theories and that other human forms are not. This is not the case. The “scientific method” of theory of model with hypothesis and experiment is found across human interaction. The implication of the assumption that academic science is somehow different from other human forms carries with it the further assumption that academic science have access to world that is not available to other roles. That is that they have a vision of the world that untainted by politics and self-0interest that is not available to other roles.

          This is clearly not the case in two ways. Firstly the scientific method is used everywhere across most if not all roles. It is just one from of reasoning among many (deductive, inductive, abductive, case or memory-based). As an example, businesses do market research, create models or theories develop products to fit these theories and experiment by test marketing them. This research takes place across both the social and technological domains and will include fields such as materials science that are usually considered to be physical science. . Secondly. politics permeates academic science just as it permeates all other forms of human interaction. The reason that M&M’s results have been rejected by te AGW establishment is a demonstration of this. it not the case of a theory being falsified since they have falsified the previous results. it is simply politics and politics is rampant in academic science.

        • Tom Gray
          Posted Apr 7, 2011 at 2:37 AM | Permalink

          Just consider the example of particle physics. These colliders cost billions of dollars and take years to build. The author list on the papers runs to hundreds of names. It is inconceivable that this form of endeavour is not run by politics

        • Pat Frank
          Posted Apr 8, 2011 at 11:48 AM | Permalink

          Tom, nothing of the social politics within groups of physicists determines the outcome of experiments or the content of physical theory. Your point is therefore irrelevant.

          You’re making a classic social constructivist argument against science. It was wrong when first proposed, and it’s still wrong. I’ll reply to your longer post another time.

        • Tom Gray
          Posted Apr 8, 2011 at 1:54 PM | Permalink

          The current experiment now going with climate science in which the findings are found to be highly politicized would seem to go against your point.

          There is nothing exceptional about science either in its methods or its social structures. It is just another human endeavor and its interactions are political. I work in engineering. A common refrain that I hear from professors is how unfair the grant system is. They actually have to justify their research by the worth of its potential outcomes. Doesn’t everyone know that curiosity driven and so non-justifiable research is the best?. This just gores to show that in engineering the old maxim of “No bucks then no Buck Rogers” holds true and I would be very surprised if academic science were any different.

        • Pat Frank
          Posted Apr 8, 2011 at 6:14 PM | Permalink

          Tom, your entire argument confuses what scientists do socio-politically with what science is.

          You’re an engineer. You know that the standards of good engineering practice do not depend on the political activities of engineers. Engineering as a discipline is not the social politics of engineers.

          Our issue is with science as methodology and objective knowledge. It’s not with what scientists do with money and power.

        • kim
          Posted Apr 7, 2011 at 8:40 AM | Permalink

          I’m on your committee. You need more reading in the foundational classics.
          ========

        • kim
          Posted Apr 7, 2011 at 8:42 AM | Permalink

          er, that’s bjedward’s committee. Pat Frank’s on mine.
          =====

        • MrPete
          Posted Apr 5, 2011 at 9:33 PM | Permalink

          Re: bjedwards (Apr 5 14:02),
          Are you capable of doing your own research? Just look inside Deltoid’s threads and you will discover Steve McIntyre is often proven correct, even over there, but Deltoid rarely if ever corrects his top posts. For example, take a look right here. Where is the top line correction or apology?

          These issues require a stats expert to untangle. Our host here is such. Are you? Be careful who you trust to evaluate Steve’s work.

        • bjedwards
          Posted Apr 6, 2011 at 3:24 AM | Permalink

          Trust is one of the issues and Deltoid is not the only one to demonstrate that Steve has created the problem of his own credibility.

          Perhaps you learn to do your own research.

        • Posted Apr 6, 2011 at 1:10 PM | Permalink

          Re: bjedwards (Apr 6 03:24), BJ: Again — you are not offering proof — just just reasserting that there is proof– somewhere — really — honest! The only proof you offered had nothing to do with the subject at hand and the article was more akin to a smear — it was proof of nothing but the authors ignorance of the subject matter.

          When you can show what you claim — then you will receive some respect. If you continue to smear with no proof I doubt that many people will take you in any serious way. So if you have no proof — then perhaps your time is better spent elsewhere — preparing lessons or whatever you do.

          Cheers!

        • Posted Apr 7, 2011 at 2:03 PM | Permalink

          Re: bjedwards (Apr 6 03:24),

          “I specialize in the methodology, tactics, and political motivations of denialism.”

          Good thing my coffee cup was well clear of the kb when I read this!

          Thanks, BJ, for a fine horselaugh to start the afternoon….

          That’s a remarkable specialty. Credentials, please?

          TIA & Best regards, Pete Tillman

          “When men are most sure and arrogant they are commonly most mistaken, giving views to passion without that proper deliberation which alone can secure them from the grossest absurdities.”
          — David Hume.

        • Posted Apr 6, 2011 at 5:11 PM | Permalink

          Steve: I am aware of Lambert’s fulminations and none “debunk” claims that we’ve made.

          In defense of Tim Lambert, long-time readers of CA will remember that it was he who tipped off Steve that Al Gore’s AIT graph of “Dr Thompson’s Thermometer” was really just the MBH99 Hockey Stick, with instrumental temperatures grafted on as if they were the same series. It had nothing to do with Thompson’s ice cores despite Gore’s claim. See

          http://climateaudit.org/2007/11/10/al-gore-and-dr-thompsons-thermometer-2/

          Steve: ah yes, Dr Thompson’s Thermometer.

          This was an amusing incident: Gore showed Dr Thompson’s Thermometer as independent evidence of Mann’s hockey stick. As Lambert pointed out, it wasn’t independent evidence at all. It was Mann’s hockey stick in an alter ego – slightly disguised by a physical splice with Jones temperature data.

          Wearing whiskers, so to speak, as HU aptly observed at the time.

        • kim
          Posted Apr 7, 2011 at 8:30 AM | Permalink

          What? Weren’t technical experts on Gore’s film responsible for spotting and correcting that error. What kind of state is the ship he’s captaining in?
          ==============

        • oneuniverse
          Posted Apr 7, 2011 at 10:06 AM | Permalink

          Dr. Thompson himself was a scientific advisor for the film, but I guess he was too busy not archiving data to spot the circular bodge. (Using “bodge” broadly here, in the spirit of Michael “I’m happy to do it and let the reviewers tell us if they see any problem” Mann).

        • kim
          Posted Apr 7, 2011 at 11:02 AM | Permalink

          ::grin::

          Is the video still in existence?
          ==========

        • kim
          Posted Apr 7, 2011 at 3:16 PM | Permalink

          sg60.oar.net/OSC/

          H/t to H.
          =====

        • kim
          Posted Apr 7, 2011 at 3:22 PM | Permalink

          Capture me in camera, Elleni; we got some filmin’ ta do.
          ========

        • Posted Apr 7, 2011 at 1:17 PM | Permalink

          Wearing whiskers, so to speak,

          You have an incredible memory for snark, Steve!

          Yes, the “chinwhiskers” on Gore’s AIT graph of “Dr. Thompson’s Thermometer” (generated by the annual instrumental component that Gore’s team spliced onto the smoothed HS component) helped disguise the true source of the graph, even from the blogosphere’s greatest climate sleuth, until the Lambert Revelation came along!

          Re oneuniverse, I have no reason to think that Thompson has ever bodged any data the way Briffa and Jones have. However, there are two important Thompson Dodges, if not Bodges: The Thompson Data Dodge (of not archiving most of his NSF-funded data), and the Thompson AIT Dodge (of not publicly correcting this major error in AIT, for which he and Ellen Thompson served as Science Advisors, especially as it pertains to his own data). See http://climateaudit.org/2008/01/13/sticking-thermometers-in-places-they-dont-belong/ .

          Note that Steve decorously changed the title of this post between his first draft, which generated the URL, and the published version! :-)

        • oneuniverse
          Posted Apr 4, 2011 at 2:55 PM | Permalink

          bjedwards,

          This CA post details specific instances of misinformation disseminated by Prof. Emanuel at the Congressional hearing. The Krugman article you’ve linked to is concerned with the GOP’s choice of candidates for the hearing, the testimony of Prof. Muller at the hearing, and the responses to it – there’s no mention of Emanuel’s testimony, or Steve McIntyre’s comments on that testimony.

          Why not point out the errors you allege are present in Steve McIntyre’s account, instead of wasting peoples’ time linking to irrelevant articles?

        • SteveGinIL
          Posted Apr 8, 2011 at 12:10 AM | Permalink

          Wow, Krugman (who I highly respect in his chosen area of Economics) in his opening line is amazingly astute about what the “hide the decline” was all about.

          Of course, it’s actually the climate deniers who have the agenda, and nobody who’s been following this discussion believed for a moment that they would accept a result confirming global warming.

          Hide the decline is EXACTLY about scientists who would not “accept a result confirming [the absence of] global warming” in the data. And if you would read a few recent CA blog posts you will see that they didn’t just do this to the post-1960 data from Briffa, but to the pre-1550 tree ring data, too.

          In the non-climatology world, when such divergence (“the divergence problem” Mann and the Team emailed about) occurs, the normal reaction is to stop the presses and check out one’s premises. “The Team did the exact opposite: They looked to see how they could “invisibilize” the data.

          And to the extent of Emanuel’s self-blindering re this fact (by pretending that he doesn’t know facts he actually DOES know about), Emanuel seems to only be making himself look less scientific and more politic.

    • DEEBEE
      Posted Apr 2, 2011 at 12:37 PM | Permalink

      Say something substantive, so we can follow the trail to your flowery conclusion, otherwise stop that BJ.

    • sleeper
      Posted Apr 4, 2011 at 5:15 AM | Permalink

      Re: bjedwards (Apr 1 18:04),

      The orgy of confirmation bias in these comments says more about the arrogance of ignorance of people attracted to this blog than anything about Emanuel.

      You’ve displayed more arrogance and ignorance in just a few short comments in this thread than I’ve witnessed in a long time here.

    • StuartR
      Posted Apr 8, 2011 at 12:30 PM | Permalink

      Re: bjedwards (Apr 1 18:04),

      Roger Pielke, Jr. called Emanuel a “true scientist”

      I read Roger Pielke Jr and agree he has stated his respect for Emanuel, however in a recent blog Roger Pielke detailed an occasion where Emanuel spoke on a subject without due care for attention when debating an atagonistic politician. Pielke recommends:

      “Recognize that when incorrect statements are made in a public setting, the consequences for you as an expert will be much higher than for politicians. That is just the way that it is.”

      However, in this “decline” case, I think this could be a worse situation because volunteering that the data in the “hide the decline” controversy “was provably false” seems a bit over zealous. Especially since Emanuel was on one of the touchstone exhonerations. Surely Emanuel should be able to easily provide the extra information to back up the “provably” bit?

      No offence intended to you bjedwards, I think you have asked some provocative defensive questions, but the fact that this has been the headline post on CA for a while without a better defender than you speaks a lot.

  39. R. Hughes
    Posted Apr 2, 2011 at 12:00 AM | Permalink

    This thread is one of the most thoughtful and interesting I’ve read. Now, I’m just a mechanic but it seems that there are two issues here. The first is the gutteral, investigative Steve and Ross stuff, which appeals to the readers more base instincts,,,,,,,, because it’s get the bad guy stuff.

    Separately there’s the issue of the implications of apparent lack of reliability of tree rings as proxies for temperature. What is the state of climate science without tree rings and going one step further, has the veracity of other proxies, ice cores etc. been tested?

  40. geronimo
    Posted Apr 2, 2011 at 2:46 AM | Permalink

    “One day, I hope, you’ll realize how gullible you’ve all been and will offer Emanuel and all the thousands of other decent scientists you’ve disparaged, insulted, and hurt – an apology.”

    Thousands of scientists disparaged, insulted an hurt? Do you have any empirical evidence that that thousands of scientists are involved in these posts. This blog is primarily focussed on the statistics of a handful of scientists, who, surprise, surprise, turned up almost to a man in the leaked Climategate emails. I doubt there are fifty of them and most people who visit this site could give their names off the top of their heads. Hyperbole doesn’t make your argument, correcting the disparagement and insults would be a start, so please oblige. As for “hurt” no one whose work has been audited on this site has been hurt, or if they have they have a very different way of showing it than other human beings. Remember “fraudit” in the Climategate emails,it was probably taken out of context and meant that they were pleased someone was adding to the knowledge of the topic by encouraging the use of proper statistics and openness with the data and methods. Yes that would be it.

  41. william gray
    Posted Apr 2, 2011 at 3:48 AM | Permalink

    Steve over at climate etc theres a link on a post that apparently shows raw and processed tempature data used by GISS. http://clearclimatecode.org Im not up to commenting on its quality, however the author of the post claims that you are lying
    GISS algorithms have been available in the literature for years. When GISS finally release their code McIntyre et. al. were not able to get it running because it was finely tuned to the environment that the code had been written for (which was exactly why GISS claimed they didn’t want to release it). Luckily someone went and actually read the code and rewrote it in Python (the good folks at Clear Climate Code) and they were able to exactly reproduce the record which GISS showed. The data was always available at GHCN, so they weren ‘t covering anything up there. No real “culture of secrecy” and their results were fully reproducible. Get with it and stop spouting lies from other people.
    I ASSUME you steve are OTHER PEOPLE.
    I,m not wanting to be superficial its just that well perhaps this is important.

    Steve: I originally asked to see the code to clarify a problem that I’d encountered with an apparent error at Y2K in their calculation. My surmise proved correct. They refused to let me look at the code. After their Y2K error was identified, they made code available, but only after putting me to considerable extra work in the meantime.

    I never made an issue of the operating system. Nor was my interest in whether they made elementary errors in doing something as simple as an average. My interest was in how they did their adjustments. I replicated several of their steps in R. I satisfied myself that their methodology for UHI adjustment in the ROW was worthless and then started looking at other issues.

    • Posted Apr 2, 2011 at 9:31 AM | Permalink

      Re: william gray (Apr 2 03:48), Can you point to the post showing the claim: Im not up to commenting on its quality, however the author of the post claims that you are lying GISS algorithms have been available in the literature for years.

      I could not find the reference. I searched the site, I used google etc. It should speed the discussion along. I was not even aware that this was a point of contention.

    • Kate
      Posted Apr 2, 2011 at 10:12 AM | Permalink

      Rattus – You are late to the game and looking silly. Since you bring up Climate Etc. I’m going to ask you to go back there and read all of http://judithcurry.com/2011/03/06/climate-story-telling-angst/

      Then come back here.

      I am also including the most succinct comment from that thread, for everyone’s benefit:

      Kip Hansen wrote | 5:40 pm | .

      I must be shown the following:

      1) The hypothesis, which must be falsifiable.
      2) What experiment has been done and that it has been carefully laid out well enough to falsify your null hypothesis (and thus support your original hypothesis).
      3) What you did exactly, all the nasty details, how you controlled for every possible confounding factor (or didn’t control for this one and that…and why not, and how that might affect your findings).
      4) Your conclusion and how it follows from your data (and not your beliefs, feelings, hunches, or desire to please your funding agency or university tenure board).

      Then, and only then, will I listen to your opinion about what it might mean.

  42. KnR
    Posted Apr 2, 2011 at 4:11 AM | Permalink

    Lets been honset the Oxburgh was rubbish in ever way , so is it a real surprise to find those that worked on it spouting the same ?

    • Dave Andrews
      Posted Apr 3, 2011 at 2:36 PM | Permalink

      How much ‘work’ did Emanuel do when the report was apparently written within 3 weeks of it being announced?

  43. Another Ian
    Posted Apr 2, 2011 at 4:20 PM | Permalink

    Re William Gray (April 2 03:48)

    Have a look at http://chiefio.wordpress.com/gistemp/

    for more on getting GISSTEMP to run and what is in it

  44. barn E. rubble
    Posted Apr 2, 2011 at 5:28 PM | Permalink

    RE: bjedwards
    “One day, I hope, you’ll realize how gullible you’ve all been.”

    There’s something bj should print out and tape to his monitor (altho I’m sure there’s room on his forehead) because it will come back to him . . . and, not in a good way.

    -barn

  45. theduke
    Posted Apr 3, 2011 at 11:05 AM | Permalink

    to bjedwards
    Posted Apr 1, 2011 at 6:04 PM

    This is a classic tactic of proponents of AGW: accuse the other side of that which you or those you defend are guilty of in spades. I believe Steve has shown that it is Emanuel who is guilty of confirmation bias in this particular instance. If Emanuel has a response, he’s free to come here any time and rebut. It’s not as if Steve is unknown to him.

  46. william Gray
    Posted Apr 3, 2011 at 11:35 AM | Permalink

    Sorry for putting others to search my BAD. I realised this later but have not had time to -um repent my sin. Its here and starts with Ron Cram. The exchange follows. WillR, Thankyou another Ian.
    Thankyou Mr Mcintyre for clarifing. I now think its a petty issue.

    http://judithcurry.com/2011/03/31/congressional-hearing-on-climate-change-part-ii/

    Ron Cram | April 1, 2011 at 9:47 pm | Reply I expected Muller to say “We took on this project because CRU and GISS have had an unscientific culture of secrecy for decades. The Climategate emails have shown real problems with their processes and the need for a trustworthy temp record is strongly felt by many people. At this point, we do not have any results which are reportable. Check back with me later.”

  47. Tom Ganley
    Posted Apr 4, 2011 at 3:18 PM | Permalink

    “But what we had, instead of high seriousness, was a farce….”.

    Of course it was, because that’s the nature of all congressional hearings. Mr.Krugman makes a handsome living pandering to people that think it’s only one side that does it. BJ, it was hilarious to cite Mr. Krugman pontificating on anything AGW. Google his carbon footprint and ask yourself who is the real denier.

    Congressional hearings are about achieving a political end, and never about truth or science. Politics are what corrupted Climate Science in the first place. It’s naive to think the solution is more of the same.

  48. Posted Apr 4, 2011 at 6:51 PM | Permalink

    Is there anyway someone can publish a simple paper explaining “Hide the Decline” in detail? This would force them to address it and stop this misinformation from spreading even more,

    “Emanuel’s evidence to the House Committee that the deletion of the decline was limited to a “non peer reviewed article” was also untrue. I presume that he is referring here to Phil Jones “combo trick” in the WMO 1999 report. As CA readers know, Keith’s Science Trick – the omission of part of the data – was systemic in the peer reviewed literature after 1999. Examples include the spaghetti graphs in Briffa and Osborn (Science 1999), Jones et al (Rev Geophys 1999), Briffa et al (JGR 2001) Plate 3, Jones et al 2001 Plate 2A, Briffa et al 2004 Figure 8, Hegerl et al Figure 5b. (CRU conceded most of this in their March 1, 2010 submission to Muir Russell, see page 38). Plus of course the spaghetti graphs in IPCC TAR and IPCC AR4.

    Emanuel says that hide-the-decline was a “single lapse of judgement”. More disinformation on his part. The decision to “omit” part of the record was made over and over. It began in 1999, but continued unabated through IPCC AR4.”

    The misinformation online about this is getting worse, especially after it appeared in a BBC documentary,

    “Meet the Climate Skeptics”

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00y5j3v

    • Posted Apr 4, 2011 at 7:00 PM | Permalink

      Sorry, wrong BBC documentary, it was

      “Science Under Attack”

      http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00y4yql

      Here is the relevant clip where Dr. Jones makes the same WMO report claim (first 2 min),

      • Posted Apr 4, 2011 at 7:21 PM | Permalink

        Thank you. It will be interesting to see Professor Phil’s furtively nervous fingers explaining the missing early portion of the curve to a conveniently credulous Professor Nurse in BBC’s next edition, ‘Science Under Attack 2 (We’re going to need another inquiry)’

      • geronimo
        Posted Apr 6, 2011 at 1:18 AM | Permalink

        Is Harry Enfield the new President of the Royal Society?

        • Posted Apr 7, 2011 at 1:22 PM | Permalink

          Good point, I believe that Nurse’s father made this piece for the BBC:

          (similarly aimed at dealing with a complex issue in terms that the general population could comprehend).

  49. antonius
    Posted Apr 5, 2011 at 2:13 PM | Permalink

    “Rather than omitting the entire record of a particularly dubious tree-ring-based proxy, the authors of the figure only omitted that part of it that was provably false”

    If this tree-ring proxy were in fact, “particularly dubious”, why would the authors only omit that part which was “provably false. It would seem to me that you would throw out everything that could not be “provably true”.I am still trying to wrap my brain around how any piece of data can be false without invoking the actions of some higher power.

    I also did not understand the point that he was said to have made about how it is common practice for scientists to underestimate risk but I have not seen it in its entire context. I wish someone could have asked him to explain how exactly scientists are consistently understating risk. This information would seem to be useful to the public.

  50. Chris Bowman
    Posted Apr 5, 2011 at 2:31 PM | Permalink

    I think you’re missing Emanuel’s point. Namely that certain people like you and Muller have taken one admittedly poor decision about data presentation and blown it into a whole condemnation of climate change. The fact is that this is a very small piece of a very minor metric (tree ring data). Was it a bad move to remove the data without making it more transparent? Yes. Does this mean that climate change is not happening or the scientists who work on climate change are wrong? No.

    Steve: much of the present problem in the field arises from the failure of the climate community to disassociate themselves from this conduct.

    IN my opinion, it would have gone better for them if they’d conceded this right away and apologized as George Monbiot suggested.

    • antonius
      Posted Apr 5, 2011 at 3:00 PM | Permalink

      I think you are missing the point. If the entire proxy is dubious (I dont know who has ever made this claim), why would you only delete the portion that is “provably false”. Is the rest of the proxy data “provably true”, “probably true”, “who the hell knows”? Others can better address how “minor” Briffa’s proxy is in the overall picture, but are you saying that all of the studies involving any use of the Briffa proxy should be removed from the scientific literature and debate. In fact, it seems to me that Emanuel has no problem including the “particularly dubious” data so long as the portion that is “provably false” is removed.

      The hearings were entitled “Climate Change: Examining the Processes Used to Create Science and Policies” so the subject at hand was specifically about examining processes not a forum for offering scientific opinions about whether or not climate change is occurring.

    • Craig Loehle
      Posted Apr 5, 2011 at 4:18 PM | Permalink

      If the proxies for past climate are not reliable, this impacts our ability to tell how warm it was in the past, which is important to telling how sensitive agriculture and ecosystems might be to warming. Past climate reconstructions also affect estimates of climate sensitivity and are used to test climate models. It is not a peripheral question.

    • sleeper
      Posted Apr 5, 2011 at 4:23 PM | Permalink

      Re: Chris Bowman (Apr 5 14:31),

      The fact is that this is a very small piece of a very minor metric (tree ring data).

      I remember when the IPCC, in an attempt to influence governments to take action to fight climate change (it was actually called global warming back then), trotted out and prominently displayed in the release of its TAR the famous Hockey Stick graph. They seemed to take this “very minor metric (tree ring data)” very seriously back then. Actually, I think they probably knew it was dubious but they were well on their way to being advocate scientists. And now their little cargo cult includes Emanuel.

    • David S
      Posted Apr 5, 2011 at 4:56 PM | Permalink

      There is very seldom just one fact in any debate, scientific or otherwise. So anyone who uses the expression “the fact is” cannot expect to be taken seriously.

    • TerryMN
      Posted Apr 5, 2011 at 9:38 PM | Permalink

      *One* decision? If you truly think that is the case, you’re not keeping up.

    • bjedwards
      Posted Apr 6, 2011 at 3:38 AM | Permalink

      Dear me, Steve is now admitting in his note to Chris Bowman that his claim about Emanuel in this thread is really
      making a mountain out of a molehill.

      Now, perhaps Steve will focus on the actual content of Emanuel’s testimony which is pretty devastating to the climate science denial crowd. In fact, all of the denial sites seem pretty desperate to avoid dealing with it.

      • Eric (skeptic)
        Posted Apr 6, 2011 at 9:49 AM | Permalink

        A robust consequence of the progressive catastrophism like that of Emmanuel’s testimony is that is ever more pointless to discuss it even if it were on topic in this thread.

      • Gerald Machnee
        Posted Apr 6, 2011 at 3:23 PM | Permalink

        bjedwards
        **Now, perhaps Steve will focus on the actual content of Emanuel’s testimony which is pretty devastating to the climate science denial crowd. **
        More hot air from you. You have not established any “devastating” points.

      • geronimo
        Posted Apr 8, 2011 at 4:38 AM | Permalink

        BJEdwards:

        “Dear me, Steve is now admitting in his note to Chris Bowman that his claim about Emanuel in this thread is really making a mountain out of a molehill.”

        It depends what you mean. If you mean that the exposing of the shoddy science demonstrated in the preparation of hockeysticks for public consumption doesn’t doesn’t tell us one way or the other whether the world is warming because of humans you’re correct.

        If you mean that it doesn’t matter that an eminent scientist sits before congress and tells them that the shoddy science wasn’t in published papers, then I have to disagree. Prof Emmanuel was, has been demonstrated here, either being economical with the truth, in which case he was deliberately mis-leading Congress, which I would assume is a big deal in the US. Or, he hadn’t read, the papers, or he’d read them and didn’t understand them, which makes puts his role as an expert witness into doubt.

  51. Posted Apr 5, 2011 at 6:00 PM | Permalink

    Emanuel —

    Rather than omitting the entire record of a particularly dubious tree-ring-based proxy, the authors of the figure only omitted that part of it that was provably false.

    Another proxy with a “provably false” portion that comes to mind (besides the Tiljander lake sediments) is the stripbark bristlecone pines relied on by MBH 98/99.

    These trees were evidently damaged at some time in the past — whether by lightning, storm damage, or gnawing by elk or sheep is not clear — causing the bark to be lost on one side of the tree and a growth spurt in the surviving bark. Whatever value they may have had as a climate indicator before the injury was clearly lost after the tree was injured. The proof of such a disqualifying injury is their “stripbark” status.

    If there were some evidence that the trees in Briffa’s MXD series had a similar problem that began in 1960, that would would make the proxy false (or at least doubtful) after 1960. But neither Briffa nor Emanuel has provided such evidence, so that Emanuel’s claim that it has been proven false is itself untrue.

  52. Ozark
    Posted Apr 7, 2011 at 10:04 PM | Permalink

    Back in the immediate aftermath of Climategate, MIT held a panel discussion on the controversy.

    Kerry was the guy repetitively appealing to conspiracy throughout the discussion.

    Did you expect better?

    In no way do I get the sense that Kerry is a bad character, he’s just too cognitively entrenched to the point that he does things that he knows better than to do.

  53. Posted Apr 13, 2011 at 10:22 PM | Permalink

    For what it’s worth, this link indicates maybe that even mainstream media (NPR in this case)are not happy with Dr. Emmanuel’s rationalizations.

  54. Posted Apr 13, 2011 at 10:25 PM | Permalink

    The link was stripped. It reported an angry (heated?) exchange between an NPR reporter and Dr. Kerry Emmanuel at a recent conference. No doubt others here know of it also.

    • Patg
      Posted Apr 13, 2011 at 11:01 PM | Permalink

      Can you provide more direction to find this exchange?

  55. Posted Apr 14, 2011 at 9:45 AM | Permalink

    Yes, the title of the article is “AAAS Panel Reflects Tensions Between Climate Scientists and Journalists”

    It’s at bigthink, reported by Matthew C. Nisbet march 21, 2011
    I’ll try site url again: http://bigthink.com/ideas/31671

10 Trackbacks

  1. [...] Disinformation from Kerry Emanuel Mar 31, 2011 – 2:16 PM [...]

  2. [...] 1, 11:50 a.m. | Updated Stephen McIntyre has challenged the veracity of Kerry Emanuel’s testimony on the nature of the “hide the decline” discussion in the e-mails taken from the [...]

  3. [...] much rich food for thought and discussion (for starters see Andy Revkin, or Chris Mooney, or Steve McIntyre for a skeptic’s view). The witnesses included two climate scientists (Kerry Emmanuel and John [...]

  4. [...] much rich food for thought and discussion (for starters see Andy Revkin, or Chris Mooney, or Steve McIntyre for a skeptic's view). The witnesses included two climate scientists (Kerry Emmanuel and John [...]

  5. [...] much rich food for thought and discussion (for starters see Andy Revkin, or Chris Mooney, or Steve McIntyre for a skeptic’s view). The witnesses included two climate scientists (Kerry Emmanuel and John [...]

  6. By Top Posts — WordPress.com on Apr 1, 2011 at 7:09 PM

    [...] Disinformation from Kerry Emanuel In his written and oral evidence at today’s hearing before the House Science Committee, Kerry Emanuel made untrue [...] [...]

  7. By Top Posts — WordPress.com on Apr 1, 2011 at 7:09 PM

    [...] Disinformation from Kerry Emanuel In his written and oral evidence at today’s hearing before the House Science Committee, Kerry Emanuel made untrue [...] [...]

  8. [...] much rich food for thought and discussion (for starters see Andy Revkin, or Chris Mooney, or Steve McIntyre for a skeptic’s view). The witnesses included two climate scientists (Kerry Emmanuel and John [...]

  9. [...] much rich food for thought and discussion (for starters see Andy Revkin, or Chris Mooney, or Steve McIntyre for a skeptic’s view). The witnesses included two climate scientists (Kerry Emmanuel and John [...]

  10. [...] Emanuel has said lots of lies about the ClimateGate. Otherwise, the contributions by Scott Armstrong, John Christy, and Richard [...]

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