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Climate of Doubt Strategy #1: Deny the Consensus

Posted on 30 October 2012 by dana1981

The PBS Frontline program Climate of Doubt did a masterful job in exposing the tactics climate denialists have used to delay meaningful action in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and addressing climate change in the USA.  Perhaps the #1 strategy they have pursued involves denying the scientific consensus on human-caused global warming.  As Myron Ebell of the right-wing think tank Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) put it,

"We felt that if you concede the science is settled and that there’s a consensus…the moral high ground has been ceded to the alarmists."

Republican Congressman from Wisconsin and climate denialist James Sensenbrenner explained the importance of the public awareness of the scientific consensus:

JOHN HOCKENBERRY: Do you think this will ever be settled scientifically, if 97 percent consensus doesn’t settle it for you?

Rep. JAMES SENSENBRENNER: Well, I — you know, I think that it’s up to the scientists and their supporters to convince the public that this is the right thing to do. And the supporters of that side of the argument in the Congress have been a huge flop.

The Consensus is Real

As Frontline correspondent John Hockenberry noted, there is a consensus amongst 97% of climate scientists that humans are driving global warming.  In several of their many post-Frontline damage control efforts (more on these below), climate denialists invoked the most common response to the debunking of the 'no consensus' myth - that the 97% consensus figure comes from a small sample size of only 79 climate science experts in Doran and Zimmerman (2009).  However, this is just one among many examples of the scientific consensus. 

For example, in the same study, Doran and Zimmerman received responses from 3,146 Earth Scientists; 82% agreed that human activity is a significant contributing factor to global warming.  Note that the Earth Scientists contacted in their survey include petroleum geologists, who have a higher rate of consensus rejection due to the conflict of interest associated with their fossil fuel-dependent profession.

Additionally, Oreskes (2004) surveyed 928 peer-reviewed climate science abstracts, finding that 75% either explicitly or implicitly endorsed the consensus view, while finding zero papers rejecting it in her sample.  Benny Peiser set out to disprove Oreskes' result and instead ended up confirming it.

Using a dataset of 1,372 climate researchers and their publication and citation data, Anderegg et al. (2010) found a similar result to Doran and Zimmerman, that between 97% to 98% of climate experts support the consensus, and that the average number of publications by the 'skeptics' is around half the number by scientists convinced by the evidence of human-caused global warming.

The Vision Prize also conducted an online survey of scientists in 2012, finding in a sample of 171 participants that approximately 90% believe human activity has had a primary influence on global warming over the past 250 years, with the other 10% describing the human influence as a secondary influence.  The consensus was also significantly stronger than the participants expected.

vision Q1

There is also a very long list of scientific organizations endorsing the consensus position, with none opposing it.  The Academies of Science from 19 different countries all endorse the consensus. 13 countries have signed a joint statement endorsing the consensus position.  A letter from 18 scientific organizations to US Congress endorses the consensus.  And the consensus is also endorsed by a Joint statement by the Network of African Science Academies (NASAC).

In short, the scientific consensus on human-caused global warming is an indisputable reality, supported by many different lines of evidence, despite the strategic efforts to deny it.

The Consensus Denying Strategy

However, the formula for climate action delayers is a simple one.  As Rep. Sensenbrenner explained in the quote above, policymakers are only forced to take action to address climate change if the public demands it.  Ding et al. (2011) found that when people understand that there is consensus among climate scientists, they are more likely to support climate policy.  Lewandowsy et al. (2012) similarly conducted a study which revealed "that acceptance of AGW increases when consensus is highlighted."  The study also found that awareness of the scientific consensus can even offset ideological biases - "Consensus information also neutralizes the effect of worldview" (see Shaping Tomorrow's World for more details on this paper).

Climate scientists are the most trusted source of global warming information among the American public, with 76% of Americans trusting climate scientists on the subject.  The formula is therefore a simple one - convince the public there is no scientific consensus, they won’t demand climate policy, and policymakers can continue to delay serious climate action without political repercussions.  The formula was articulated by Republican strategist Frank Luntz in an infamous 2002 memo.

"Voters believe that there is no consensus about global warming within the scientific community. Should the public come to believe that the scientific issues are settled, their views about global warming will change accordingly."

"Therefore, you need to continue to make the lack of scientific certainty a primary issue in the debate."

Thus far the formula has been successfully implemented.  While the number of Americans aware of the scientific consensus grew in the latest Yale/George Mason survey, only 44% of Americans are aware that most scientists agree that global warming is happening.  The number was as low as 34%, in 2010.

yale/george mason

The numbers are slightly better in the Gallup poll on the subject, with the latest iteration in March 2012 finding that 58% of the American public are aware of the scientific consensus, up from a low of 52% in 2010, but down from a peak of 65% in 2006-2008.

gallop

Note that both of these polls are about the indisputable existence of global warming, regardless of its cause.

Fooling the Public with Fake Experts

The strategy to convince the public that the scientific consensus does not exist is comprised of two primary steps:

1) Indirectly inflate public perception of climate 'skepticism' through media infiltration of fake experts (one of the 5 characteristics of scientific denialism).  Get as many “skeptic” scientists into the mainstream media and thus public consciousness as possible.  For example, Boykoff (2008) found that

"70% of U.S. television news segments have provided ‘balanced’ coverage regarding anthropogenic contributions to climate change vis-à-vis natural radiative forcing, and there has been a significant difference between this television coverage and scientific consensus regarding anthropogenic climate change from 1996 through 2004."

More recently, Painter and Ashe (2012) found that between 2007 and 2010, 34% of American newspaper articles reflected "skeptic" views despite the fact that they only account for 3% of expert opinion.  Overall coverage of climate in the media has declined in recent years as well, as documented in a Media Matters analysis

"Since 2009, climate coverage on the Sunday shows has dropped every year across all networks. The Sunday shows spent over an hour on climate change in 2009, compared to 21 minutes in 2010 and only 9 minutes in 2011."

2) Directly inflate public perception of climate 'skepticism' by creating lists of fake experts.  We have seen many examples of these lists, for example in The Wall Street Journal and Fox News, but the most frequently-cited list of 'skeptics' which was also referenced by Fred Singer in Climate of Doubt (we'll have much more on Fred Singer in an upcoming blog post) is the Oregon Petition.

The trick behind the Oregon Petition is that anyone with a Bachelor of Science degree or higher can sign it, which allows climate denialists to both tout it as "a list of scientists" and also obtain a seemingly large number of signatories (over 31,000).  However, this large-sounding number is easily put in perspective when we meet The Denominator.  The 31,000 Oregon Petition signatories represent just a fraction of one percent of the total number of qualified Americans with university science degrees.  But as long as this information remains unsaid, 31,000 sounds like a large number of scientists, seemingly disproving the consensus.  There is of course also the fact that a person with a Bachelor's degree in botany has no expertise in climate science, and thus giving the Oregon Petition credibility is like asking a dentist to perform heart surgery.

Note also that in their post-Frontline damage control efforts, the climate denialists continued to repeat the 'no consensus' myth ad nauseam, including in three seperate blog posts on WattsUpWithThat alone - by the Heartland Institute, its director Joe Bast, and International Climate Science Coalition director Tom Harris.  The consensus was even disputed by 'skeptics' in a live chat about the Frontline program, and in yet another weak Heartland effort from Jim Lakely.  Clearly the climate denial movement views denying the consensus as a top priority.  They may not understand climate science, but they certainly understand how to manipulate public opinion.

We Need to Communicate the Consensus to the Public

Climate of Doubt showed that the climate denial movement knows they don't need to win the scientific argument as long as they can convince the public that there is an ongoing scientific debate regarding climate change.  They have been engaging in a strategic campaign over a long period of time to convince the American public that climate scientists are still debating the existence and cause of global warming.

So far their deceptions have been successful.  Only approximately half of the American public is aware of the scientific consensus on global warming, and addressing climate change is therefore not considered a high priority in the USA.  Although a strong majority of Americans do support addressing the issue, policymakers can delay action without facing political consequences because the denial movement has successfully planted the seed of doubt in the public consciousness.

The lesson climate realists should learn from this is that communicating the climate science consensus needs to be a top priority.  For those climate experts giving media interviews, try and refer to the 97% consensus as frequently as possible.  For the rest of us, communicate the existence of the consensus to your friends, family, on social media, in article and blog comments - everywhere you can.  The lack of public awareness of the consensus is one of the biggest roadblocks to achieving serious climate policy, and as indicated by their post-Climate of Doubt damage control efforts, the denial movement knows it.

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Comments

Comments 1 to 31:

  1. Did you mean denyers - or delayers? :-)
    However, the formula for climate delayers is a simple one
    Great article by the way...
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  2. Another solid effort addressing the communication front in this battle over reality.

    A spin that is often used and one that serves as an anchor for the "deskepticons" to turn the tables on consensus is this "97% consensus" statement. I respectfully disagree with your suggestion that we drive this number home and as an alternitive suggest a more detailed set of numbers while completely avoiding this simple percentage...allow me to explain.

    The issue of consensus is done a disservice by any mention of this oft repeated percentage as its use quickly opens the door to the statistically insignificant sample size that was used to gives us the "97%"; discount the sample size and you discount the percentage in the finding, discount the finding and you discount the consensus. Discount the consensus and you call into to question a variety of empirical metrics with any outlier that offers a contrarian conclusion. The baby steps of denial.

    Rather than make any mention of the 97% I suggest the following mash up of Dana's statement:

    -A 2004 survey of 928 peer-reviewed climate science abstracts, found 75% either explicitly or implicitly endorsed the consensus view, while finding no papers rejecting and later in 2009, a review of 1,372 climate researchers and their publication and citation data showed a 97–98% of the researchers most actively publishing in the field support the tenets of human induced climate change.-

    The "97% consensus" statement is so overloaded with caveat that it really only serves as a softball to be driven deep into the denial-a-sphere by "deskepticons" and his Lordship. Break away from the simple reference and add the structure of significance that the details present.


    "the climate denial movement knows they don't need to win the scientific argument as long as they can convince the public that there is an ongoing scientific debate regarding climate change."

    It's never about the truth, just the perception. I would't doubt it if someone told me there is a plaque hanging in the Heartland conference room that says:
    "It's their perception stupid"
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  3. We Need to Communicate the Consensus to the Public


    I've said it before and I'll say it again: professional scientific organisations need to be deliberately and conspicuously standing squarely in the limelight to strenuously inform the public that the issue of human-caused planetary warming is Real, that it is Serious, and that it is Now.

    If politics won't stay out of science, then science needs to wedge a foot in the door of the political strategy rooms and straighten the record.

    And kudos for the Skeptical Science team, for their invaluable and world-leading efforts in this regard.
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  4. Thanks for another great post. I sometimes wonder how these people can sleep with a clear conscience. Then again, the laws of physics even apply to the universe these thinktankers inhabit. I suppose Sandy is a just an appetiser of what is in store for the biosphere.
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  5. Sensenbrenner's remarks about "scientists and their supporters" make me wonder if he'd need to be persuaded to use a ladder to climb down from a roof rather than simply jump.

    On the one hand "physicists and their supporters" say Sensenbrenner would risk being hurt by jumping 20' to the ground but on the other hand who can really say? It's controversial; after all, gravitation is only a theory and doubtless some crazy people can be found who think our confinement to Earth is just mass hysteria. Why not leap off the roof and let events prove the truth?

    Not likely Sensenbrenner would jump from a roof but he's prepared to impose bigger risks on himself and many others. Odd.
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  6. Thanks for mentioning the International Climate Science Coalition in your article. Yes, the consensus argument is nonsense.

    Also, the Yale/George Mason poll you cite was so biased as to not be a meaningful indicator of American public opinion on global warming, etc. See my article on this here:

    http://www.canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/u.s.-main-stream-media-duped-on-global-warming-polls

    I'll have a review of the Anderegg et al. (2010) 97% paper shortly. It is a pretty ridiculous survey.

    Sincerely,

    Tom Harris
    ICSC - Ottawa
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  7. TomHarris@6

    "consensus argument is nonsense"
    Vague and unsupported, but congrats for putting it out there. Maybe next time you can substantiate such a bold and meaningless claim.

    "poll you cite was so biased as to not be a meaningful indicator of American public opinion on global warming"
    What makes the poll biased, and not to put to fine a point on things, who gives a "rats ass" what the public OPINION is on a matter of science? When it comes to opinion I thought it was the job of manipulative "deskepticons", like those who run sham think tanks, to create the public opinion.

    "I'll have a review...It is a pretty ridiculous survey."
    Maybe it would be best to wait for some objective analysis before posting your conclusion on the surveys merit.
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  8. And Tom Harris gives us a perfect example of another topic, namely the coping strategy number one of those who can't face reality: deny it. And be sincere about it.
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  9. Dr Harris: Welcome back. I note that you still haven't provided a response to the scientific questions concerning your previous lecture course, as identified in this article, instead choosing to try and deflect the discussion to other topics. I'm still interested in your answers to those questions.

    My particular area of interest is the relationship between forcing and temperature, and so your statement that "there isn’t a good correlation between temperatures and CO2 over the record." is particularly peculiar: Firstly it ignores the fact that CO2 is not and has never been claimed to be the only forcing, and secondly the relationship between forcing and temperature once taking into account lags is very strong indeed. I will be happy to take you through my analysis if you are interested. I suggest however that the other thread would be a more appropriate venue.

    No doubt other contributors will want to understand your curious statements on other issues.
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  10. I'm for a campaign publicly endorsed by the most respected scientific institutions in the field, in each country. It should convey simple and direct messages - as simple as tobacco hazard warnings we have in some countries. Billboards or full-page ads saying thins like

    “We thought Arctic sea ice would be as low only in fifty years. It’s going now.”

    “Remember last summer’s heatwave? That will be our mild summer in 2060. Protect our children’s future. Stop global warming.”

    “40% of our freshwater comes from that glacier. Protect our water. Stop warming.”

    All this, I repeat, endorsed by institutions like NOAA, NASA, and the like. The general public is NOT currently aware of the position of these institutions, and that helps only the denier campaign. Elaborate public statements buried in the middle of a very technical website (such as NOAA’s) have a very limited effect when it comes to informing the general public.
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  11. Alexandre@10

    First let me state that my comments are not personal or intended to insult your position.

    I disagree with your suggest and mostly because your billboard idea has an emotional tone that plays into the hands of groups like Heartland and people like Mr Harris. They want to make this an emotional issue because they can not argue the facts or the empirical metrics that have been developed. The want to suggest that life styles will be compromised, wallets lightened and that your children will end up walking in the bitter cold searching for a job.

    We need to concentrate on the facts, the details, the studies, the peer reviewed publications first and foremost. Once the issue is established as a reality that threatens our way of life and life itself, then and only then, will we have any traction with the lay-public; and once they see the reality, the future will be abundantly clear. We won't have to put up billboards as everyone will already know what is in store for us.

    Skeptics are the ones who came up with the acronym CAGW because they wanted to paint the picture that the issue is one of scare mongering. We don't need to help them out.

    I feel your passion and I am equally frustrated over the resistance toward the obvious but the public needs to be handled carefully or we will lose them to their own fears; fears which are being actively manipulated by an army of "deskepticons" hell bent on obfuscation and re-working the issue away from science and moving it to an issue of politically motivated social engineering.
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  12. Yes, Tom. The longer it takes you to answer questions about the science, the more I'm inclined to think you're simply a tool in others' hands. You were once a teacher, weren't you? You now appear as a professional rhetorician, which is as kind as I can put it without violating the comments policy (which I've probably already done).
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  13. There is must to-do about the 97-98% but who are the 2%’ers really.
    If they are publishing in field, what are they saying (links to their abstracts). I realize the surveys will not list the participants, but I really cannot come up with 2%

    If we exclude the non-scientists nuts who is left?

    I know of:
    John Christy
    Roy Spencer

    I would exclude “Patrick Michaels” he only has one published work in Nature or am I wrong not to include him. Anyway it would be nice to have a post of these 2%’ers and their works.
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  14. danielbacon@13, Anthony watts has kindly compiled a list, which should go a ways towards adressing your requests.

    Andrew Montford (Author of The Hockey Stick Illusion)
    Richard Lindzen (Alfred P. Sloan professor of Meteorology, MIT)
    Marc Morano (Climate Depot)
    John Coleman (Founder of the Weather Channel, now at KUSI-TV)
    Chris Horner (Senior Fellow, Center for Energy and Environment, CEI)
    Steve McIntyre (editor of ClimateAudit.org)
    Dr. Ross McKitrick (University of Guelph)
    John Christy (Alabama State climatologist, co author of UAH dataset)
    Joe D’Aleo (WeatherBell)
    Joe Bastardi (Weatherbell)
    Senator Jim Inhofe
    Bob Tisdale (author of Who Turned on The Heat?)
    Dr. Ryan Maue (Weatherbell)
    Dr. Sebastian Lüning (co-author of Die Kalt Sonne)
    Harold Ambler (Author of Don’t Sell Your Coat)
    Donna LaFramboise (Author of The Delinquent Teenager)
    Pat Michaels (former State climatologist of Virgina, fellow of the Cato institute)
    Pete Garcia (Producer of the movie The Boy Who Cried Warming)
    Christopher Monckton (SPPI)

    *All* have been debunked/addressed here on SkS in the helpful links on the home page.
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  15. YubeDude at 22:35 PM on 30 October, 2012

    No offense taken, but thanks for being polite anyway.

    I understand this is no longer a scientific issue: it's a PR one, and only one side is really skillful at that.

    The public is not aware of the present scientific consensus. To many people, it's still largely a "debate".

    My aim with my suggestion above is just to make the consensus known to the general public. For that purpose, those "public" statements from National Academies of Science, for, example, are simply not effective enough. They will hardly reach a handful of people.

    I'm not a PR person, so I will not particularly defend the billboard idea too fiercely. Whatever means used, it must be one that reaches the general public, not just the very interested people. And whatever content the message has, it must be direct and simple. One cannot treat a public communication effort as a classroom lecture, expecting from people the attention span a student would (ideally) have.

    It's always good to promote scientific litteracy but to count on a broad understanding of the underlying physics by the gerneral public to enable change is unrealistic. The general public does not understand in depth how a human heart works, or a lung, or blood vessels. They just trust their doctors when they say cigarettes or too much sugar is bad for you. When it comes to climate science, they were caught in a lying campaign that told them the doctors are still arguing about it. And that's what I think needs proper addressing.
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  16. vrooomie-

    We have to exclude non-scientists, so Watts' list drops down to Lindzen, McKitrick (I'm generous), Christy (who used Watts' non-paper in Congressional testimony), Maue (WeatherBell ACE-pusher), Luning (albeit working in the private sector for a petro company), and Michaels. Others may have been published, but the publications were probably pay-for-play or Energy & Environment.
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  17. Agreed, DSL. The list is then--what's the word?--unimpressive.

    Now, perhaps, to further answer the question, a list of the remaining scientists' paper on teh subject: I'm sure it's in all the debunking buttons, though.

    It might make a good blog post....woops, I think I just stepped in it...;)
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  18. Alexandre -- I'm with you all the way.

    While it's important to anchor all statements in scientific fact, and to be wary of exaggeration, the public expects to be persuaded by advertising and PR. If there's a consensus of scientific bodies -- and there surely is -- then one would expect them to make their views on important issues heard in the popular media. To some degree the well-known NGOs such as Greenpeace and WWF are already using these methods, however I'd like to see such organisations teaming-up with -- and closely supervised by, in order to rein in any tendency towards alarmism -- scientific bodies, so as to publicise exactly what climate change could so easily mean.

    The aftermath of hurricane Sandy is the perfect timing for some billboards that say to New Yorkers something like: "Scientists tell us that 12 inches of sea-level rise in New York has been caused directly by global warming. Hurricane Sandy has been a foretaste of what is likely to become more frequent in future." Now is the time to act. If it could add in the small print that the message is endorsed by NASA, NOAA or whoever, it wouldn't take long to have the desired effect. A link in the small print to a scientific paper or two would provide the necessary rigour, even though the person in the street wouldn't take it any further.

    This approach would put the denial lobby on the defensive, instead of the situation at the moment where they constantly take the initiative and leave the scientific community almost always fighting a rearguard action.
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  19. TomHarris @6 - aside from the article you link referencing the nonsense myth that global warming stopped 16 years ago, you also seem to somehow miss that Gallup's results find greater public awareness of the consensus than the supposedly biased Yale/George Mason poll. So unless you're arguing that Yale/George Mason is underestimating public awareness, your argument is (as usual) disproven by the data you ignore.

    You also ignore all the other evidence of consensus presented in this post, i.e. Oreskes, Peiser, the many National Academies' and other scientific organizations' endorsements, etc.

    I understand that climate denialists need to deny the consensus for PR reasons, as discussed in this post, but frankly it just makes you look bad to deny such an obvious empirical reality.
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  20. vroomie,
    I'm not familiar with her entire bibliography - it is rather extensive - there is certainly the possibility Judith Curry has contributed to the 2-3% of papers disagreeing with the consensus.
    If memory serves (please correct me if I'm wrong) not even Watts' sole peer-reviewed paper, Fall et al (2011), (published after Anderegg et al and thus not included in the study) actually questioned the concensus, just evaluated whether site location has an impact
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  21. Too funny, as if on cue Tom Harris does a drive by to demonstrate the very point that Dana and others are making. A clumsy own goal by Harris, but that is not at all surprising. In their minds it does not matter how clumsy or wrong or internally inconsistent they are, they are of the firm belief that all they have to do is fabricate doubt by repeating and recycling the same old (and of refuted) myths.

    Note too the hypocrisy of Harris who on the one hand denies the consensus (neigh, the consilience on the theory of AGW) while appealing to fudged lists (that was when he was heading up another misinformation group before it died) and web polls too. Harris is not in any position to lecture on climate science never mind to determine the legitimacy of the consensus on AGW, especially when he is in the business of misrepresenting facts.

    I would suggest that we do not pay too much attention to serial misinformers and radical elements like the ICSC though (see here, here and here for just a few of the many examples).
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  22. " I sometimes wonder how these people can sleep with a clear conscience."

    They have it covered! They will apologize!

    JOHN HOCKENBERRY: What if you’re wrong?

    MYRON EBELL: Then I’ll have to say I’m sorry and I wish we could speed up our efforts to reverse the policies that we have supported here at CEI.
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  23. Son of Krypton@20, I'm not sure (others will have the referencecs at-hand) but it does seem to me it's time for a new button, on SkS: Curry Incorrects.

    >;-P

    Irrepsective of her CV viz. peer-reviewed works showing how the REST of sciencia is wrong, that in no way tilts the balance far at all, towards the vast body of climate change research being incorrect. Judith long ago ceded the higher ground of scientific scruples to what I can only imagine to be the conclusion of her wanting the attention, regardless of what appears to be the serious self-torpedoing her own credible work in the field.

    She allows the most defamatory comments on her website to stand, and simply glosses over or outrightly refuses to answer legitimate ciricisms of her work, whereas anyone--*anyone*--who had their scientific scruples on, would not allow such rank denialism. In the end, denialism is its own worst enemy, given how far afield they go in asserting anything even remotely credible.
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  24. Pete Wirfs @22 - indeed, Ebell's response to that question made my jaw drop. At least he answered it though, it's rare for a 'skeptic' to even consider the possibility that he might be wrong. I'll have a post on this subject/quote in the future.
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  25. OMG..was Ebell expressing---dare I speak it?---*doubt* as to the utter correctness of CEI?

    dana, I do think that was a *very* interesting admission.
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  26. To the minor point of who are these scientists, try Wikpedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_scientists_opposing_the_mainstream_scientific_assessment_of_global_warming.
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  27. I ran across this comment, by Bernard J, from a few months back: it bears repeating in this thread.

    "On the matter of denialism itsef, as embodied by Minchin, Palmer and so many others, it's like this...

    ...There's a corspe, formerly known as Ms Ecosystem, lying on the ground, and the corpse has a CO2 bullet in its head - a bullet fired at point-blank range from a Coalington-Oilchester rifle.

    There's a medico autopsying the corpse, a Dr Climatologist, and she concludes that the cause of death was an AGW brain injury resulting from the impact of the dissected CO2 bullet, now lying in the bloody kidney bowl.

    Watching the autopsy is a member of the NRA, a Mr W.A.S.P. Warming-Denier Snr, who (although he has no experience in medicine) variously asserts that:

    1) there is still a scientific debate about the capacity of CO2 bullets to inflict serious damage to brains

    2) well, OK, bullets might cause small bumps, but something else caused the corpse to actually die even though the autopsy showed no other plausible factors

    3) that the corpse isn't really dead anyway

    4) that CO2 bullets are good for the brain

    5) alright, so maybe the bullet did kill Ms AGW, but if you control firearms, my life will fall apart, it just will.

    Nothing that Mr W.A.S.P. Warming-Denier Snr asserts has any objective relationship to the science that determined the cause of death. Several are ideological knee-jerks in response to the implications of the investigation, but these knee-jerks do not alter the fact of cause and effect.

    The debate isn't about the cause of death, no matter how strenuously Mr W.A.S.P. Warming-Denier Snr attempts to make it so. The debate is simply about Mr W.A.S.P. Warming-Denier Snr's unfettered ability to continue to do what he's always done, no matter that control of this activity would result in less harm in the future.

    If Mr W.A.S.P. Warming-Denier Snr wanted a genuinely honest discussion, he'd openly admit that CO2 bullets will kill most, if not all, of Ms AGW's family if they are all thusly shot, and he would argue that his right to shoot those CO2 bullets at these folk outweighs the rights of Ms AGW's family not to be shot at.

    Of course, that is a much harder argument to win, so Mr W.A.S.P. Warming-Denier Snr is going to avoid it at all costs, even if he can never admit it even to himself..."



    Indeed.
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    Moderator Response: [Sph] Sorry, vrooomie. That was a bit too loud, I think. I toned it down (one strong tag, not two).
  28. W'OK! I was following--I thought!--the instructions at the bottom of the page...they are not clear, to a newbie-to-HTML as I am.

    Please tone it down, and I apologize.
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  29. My attention has been on elections, not climate, for a while. I just want to show you denial. And I do mean show.

    http://johnsvor.blogspot.com/2012/11/heckler-interrupts-romney-with-question.html
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  30. An interesting exercise would be for the producers of "Climate of Doubt" to return to North Carolina after "Sandy" and re-interview Bill Cook (State Rep) to see if his confidence in Fred Singer is unshaken.
    A repeat interview of Stanley Riggs (Univ East Carolina)and NC-20 chairman Tom Thompson at the same locations shown in the original documentary may also be revealing. Did the waterfront infrastructure and beachfront properties in North Carolina survive the storm? I would expect "before" and "after" the storm images would say it all.
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  31. First time reader here. Very informative. Thanks.

    BTW CBS Sunday Morning did a cover story yesterday that showed climate is real, is human caused, and there is scientific consensus regard that.
    http://m.cbsnews.com/storysynopsis.rbml?pageType=sundaymorning&catid=57548138&feed_id=35

    I am encouraged that the media, starting with Frontline is starting to find the courage to address this.

    GWB
    0 0

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