BPSDBAs promised yesterday James Inhofe released his list of ‘650 climate skeptics‘ this morning, and it caused far less of a furor than the promise of it did. Small wonder, even for Inhofe it is pretty pathetic. In fairness this is done in Inhofe’s name, but undoubtely most of the work is actually that of Marc “Wormtongue” Morano.
Thankfully others have done the lion’s share of the work debunking it (OK, I spent half the day doing things others have done faster and better …. sigh), so I will confine myself to noting the different types of frauds Inhofe uses to try and give a dead pig a complete make over.
Joseph Romm has done a very nice shredding of Inhofe with “Inhofe recycles long-debunked denier talking points — will the media be fooled (again)?” and I will be referring to it as we go, but go and read his too.
Before presenting his list Inhofe does a summary of the state of climate science in 2008, which according to him is in disarray.
Look at this sentence:
“On a range of issues, 2008 proved to be challenging for the promoters of man-made climate fears. Promoters of anthropogenic warming fears endured the following: Global temperatures failing to warm; Peer-reviwed (sic) studies predicting a continued lack of warming; a failed attempt to revive the discredited “Hockey Stick”; inconvenient developments and studies regarding CO2; the Sun; Clouds; Antarctica; the Arctic; Greenland; Mount Kilimanjaro; Hurricanes; Extreme Storms; Floods; Ocean Acidification; Polar Bears; lack of atmosphieric dust; the failure of oceans to warm and rise as predicted. “
Only the first link (in italics) is actually to a peer reviewed study, but I bet most readers leave with impression that all of the links are to peer reviewed science; particularly given the use of the plural “studies.” (an innocent typo no doubt … right).
All of the other links are to Denier blogs, predominantly Anthony Watt’s, and some misleading press stories.
Further, the one real science link is to refers Richard Wood’s paper in Nature which says “The effects of global warming over the coming decades will be modified by shorter-term climate variability.”ie it is not a skeptic study at all.
Needless to say the reason the links are to blogs and not science is that all of the fables cited are debunked porcine fecal matter (but then what does one expect coming out of a dead pig?). Including (big surprise) the “it’s been cooling since 1998” fable. Romm looks at some of the specific examples and shows what blithering idiocy they are.
Take the quote from Joanne Simpson:
“Since I am no longer affiliated with any organization nor receiving any funding, I can speak quite frankly….As a scientist I remain skeptical.”
Note the ellipsis and what they leave out:
What should we as a nation do? Decisions have to be made on incomplete information. In this case, we must act on the recommendations of Gore and the IPCC because if we do not reduce emissions of greenhouse gases and the climate models are right, the planet as we know it will in this century become unsustainable. But as a scientist I remain skeptical.
It has a bit of a bit different meaning in context, doesn’t it? Like the exact opposite of what Inhofe is trying to suggest.
The list of 650 – “this is Washington!”
As promised there are 250 names on the new list. A lot of work went into getting choice quotes, giving little biographies, linking to various news articles and websites (very few links to peer reviewed studies though, odd that)(OK, I didn’t find a single one, but I didn’t check all of them). Yes indeed, a lot of work.
One simple bit of work that was not done was to contact all of them saying “we have this statement saying blah blah climate change blah blah will you sign it?” Or “we are doing this list which says …. and we want to put you on it, do you agree?”
That’s right, all of this material is trolled from the media and the internet. As with the Inhofe 400 Club there is nothing to suggest that these people even know they are on the list.
Could it be that some of these people aren’t actually skeptics? Let’s see, the list is preceded by “[Disclaimer: The following scientists named in this report have expressed a range of views from skepticism to outright rejection of predictions of catastrophic man-made global warming. As in all science, there is no lock step single view.]”
That’s right, as documented by Romm (and below) a bunch of these names are people who’s work has been taken out of context and, as above, they are neither Deniers nor skeptics at all. All of the evidence suggests that as with the last time, many of them are going to be outraged when they discover that they are on the list (in some cases, again).
Romm also notes the double (actually triple in some cases) counting. To get his 650 Inhofe adds these 250 to his previous 400 (already shown to be fradulant).
However, many of the names on the 250 list are also on the 400 list. Also, because of the inclusion of lists on the list (ie names taken from signed statements) there is further overlap.
So just who is on the list and what do they have to say? I will now turn it over to frequent commenter Brian D.
Choice selections from Inhofe’s recent recycling include Louis “Global Warming is Caused By Geothermal Energy And God Flipping The Earth Upside Down”
Hissink and John “Five Inconsistent Denier Memes in Three Sentences” Lott (yes, the same cherrypicking John Lott who has no background whatsoever on climate (he’s an unemployed economist) but argues loudly for less gun control through fudged data).
You’ll also find E.G. “Instrument Error Means Real Fluctuations” Beck, Tim “As An Economist, I Say Einstein Proves We Need To Burn Fossil Fuels” Curtain, Chris “Do you honestly believe God would allow humans to destroy the earth He created?”
Allen (verbatim quote, not a paraphrase summary), and a few more common names like Christopher Monckton (“fractally wrong” may describe him well),
Lubos “I came from the planet called Zetor” Motl, Ross “There Is No Such Thing As Global Average Temperature” McKitrick (along with Essex), Henrik “I Disproved My Own Hypothesis And Don’t Notice It”
Svensmark (note that Inhofe links to the very paper where he does this as support for the theory it destroys!), and David “That Signature Doesn’t Count And Thus Is Missing” Evans.
These people are either grossly unqualified on climate issues (or indeed any scientific issue, in some cases; no fewer than three of the people I listed here have made statements that amount to “I have overturned thermodynamics,” a claim about as silly as saying you’ve found fossil bunnies in the Cambrian), or espousing long-debunked talking points.
You’ll also note that Ray “I think global warming is real” Kurzweil is on the list, as is George “Take me off your list” Waldenberger. Neither have any background in climate science (though Waldenberger is a meteorologist).
You’ll also find Gwyn Prins and Steve Rayner, who say “We face a problem of anthropogenic climate change, but the Kyoto Protocol of 1997 has failed to tackle it.”
They accompany Christopher Castro, who says “The conclusion of the 2007 IPCC is reasonable given the paleoclimate record, the available empirical evidence from the observed climate record, and agreement with global model results simulating the climate of the past 100 years.”
None of these folk are actual “skeptics” (as Inhofe paints them; they may remain skeptical as all scientists are, but they certainly don’t doubt the core AGW points).
As for the papers cited, one that they point to three times is Scafetta and West 2006 (they like this SO much that Bruce West is on the list himself!). They characterize this report as saying that the sun has an impact on climate. Note that this *is* consistent with AGW, which does NOT say the sun isn’t important, although that’s a common Denier strawman.
Interestingly enough, read the conclusion of that paper — it says, and I quote, “since 1975 global warming has occurred much faster than could be reasonably expected from the sun alone.” Please explain to me how this supports the Inhofe position, or justifies West being on the list.
(Query: Would the misrepresentation of Bruce West and George Waldenberger amount to libel? That seemed the case with the related Heartland 500 list, which also misrepresented scientific views and refused to remove the offended names from the list. The scientists involved didn’t press charges, contrary to the Great Warmist Conspiracy Suppressing Dissent tin-foil-hatters. However, here, it’s an elected official.)1
Critically *missing* from the list are endorsements from scientific bodies, and a uniform story (even among those who the list represents accurately, several say it isn’t happening, others say it is happening but it isn’t us, and still others say it is happening and it is us but we shouldn’t do anything about it — I listed folk of each type in just this short summary!).
More on this piece of regurgitated garbage can be found at Climate Progress, which attacks the list from a different perspective (including the critical distinction between “science” and “scientist”).
So riddle me this: Despite having several months to deal with these shortcomings, why is this list definitive? Why are these failures still here?
Why does Inhofe have to resort to the same deceitful measures that the creationist Discovery Institute uses (see at bottom)? (Note that the Discovery Institute was supremely confident that they would win the Dover School District trial going into it, yet none of its expert witnesses actually testified, refusing to defend intelligent design under oath despite all of their posturing.
In fact, John Coleman’s vaporware lawsuit was the take-home message of the Heartland Institute‘s (yes, the same one with the libelous list mentioned above) last conference on climate change, almost a year ago; they’re organizing the next one and no hint of an actual lawsuit has materialized outside the denialist blogocave.)
A key point is that in almost all cases what one is dealing with is an opinion expressed in some public forum without any reference to science, facts or evidence, or even anything that pretends to be science. They have a right to their opinion, but uninformed opinion is uninformed opinion – may as well have asked the bike courier.
So, if we remove the ones who are not Deniers or skeptics, the padding, the vacuous opinions, etc we are left with … pretty much the same handful of Deniers that were on the 400 list, plus a few new names … the same few dozens discussed yesterday.
Two things to note about the remaining names:
2) Even if none of them had been falsified, a number of them are mutually contradictory as per Eli Rabett’s discussion of Morahasey’s “Top Ten.”
That is to say that if researcher A’s work is true and falsifies climate science, it also falsifies the work of B and C (and vice versa). Thus by accepting any one of these as true they are saying the work of the others is false … in which case why are they on this list?
The answer is that they are all false.
Indeed the entire thing is just a sad, cheap and tawdry hoax by a petty scam artist. Even more sad is that a lot people will actually be taken in by this despite it being such an obvious fraud.
UPDATE: Dec 12 13:00 Tim Lambert also has a go at Inhofe 650 international scientists? Err, not exactly.
Dec 12, 17:00 Ever alert Brian D. brings this to our attention Scientist: “Our conclusions were misinterpreted” by Inhofe, CO2 — but not the sun — “is significantly correlated” with temperature since 1850.
I know I have already seen that meme in the Denialosphere.
Deconstruction of the Discovery Institutes ‘Evolution Denier Petition’. Different issue, but identical tactic.
We give our consent every moment that we do not resist.
Denier “Challenge” aka Deathwatch Update: Day 60 … still no evidence.