Two Completely Different Sets of Rules

In the American Thinker, Davide Douglass and John Christy follow the saga of the publication of one of their papers (referred to in the article as DCPS for its four author’s initials) and a response by Santer, et. al.  To be clear, the DCPS paper was a critique in certain flaws in then-current climate models and how they do or don’t accurately match actual observations, while Santer et. al is a sort of who’s-who of climate alarmist scientists in the inner core who were rallying the troops to defend the mother ship.

The article needs to be read in total to get the gist of the whole sorry story, but it is very clearly a tale of two entirely different publication and review rules — one set for skeptics, and another far more congenial set for alarmists.  I think the article pretty clearly tells the tale of a process tilted strongly against one side in a scientific debate.

I hope you will check it out.  One of my favorite parts is about 2/3 through the story.  Santer et al’s main criticism is that DCPS cherry-picked data sets (basically left one particular set out).  Unlike alarmist cherry-picking, though, DCPS had actually clearly stated why the data set had been left out and referred to other peer-reviewed literature that backed their point.  The Santer team never addressed these reasons, but simply repeated the original charge.  But the rich part is where Santer et al. are uncomfortable using certain parts of the data set themselves that don’t tell their story for them, so they explicitly edit this data out, in a manner very reminiscent of Keith Briffa and his proxy series.  Emails from the CRU demonstrate that this removal was for no good reason other than the data did not make the point they wanted it to make.

The whole thing is really frustrating.  One side is denied information, while the others are spoon fed their opposition’s work in progress nearly every week.  One side’s publication is rushed, while the other’s is delayed.  One side gets to essentially pick its own reviewers, and in an incredible breach, have a prickly reviewer simply removed from the process (again for no good reason than he wasn’t giving the answer they want).  This is like watching the inside mechanics of an election in North Korea.

  • Just a small bone to pick. The election process, seen from the inside in North Korea is probably better than that seen in Ohio, Missouri, certain parts of Florida, California, Massachusetts, Louisiana….

  • Bryan

    @Derek
    Dude, differences in views between different people when talking about an issue isn’t inconsistency, it’s life. You talk about climate sceptics like we should be a single focused group (yes I went and read your article) but nothing could be further from the truth. We disagree with a scientific hypothesis and the consequences thereof for a multitude of reasons, and not everybody shares the same ones. It’s among the people banging the drum about global warming that you find the pressure to toe the party line and march in lockstep.

  • ADiff

    They “never addressed these reasons, but simply repeated the original charge”. That seems the main focus of alarmist response to scientific criticism. Perhaps they believe if they manage to ignore something long enough….

  • hunter

    Derek,
    RE: AnotherGreenWorld blog post
    Nothing like beating up a strawman to feel like winning, instead of losing, an argument?

  • Tell me why you are right and I am wrong, rhetoric doesn’t cut it.

    Sceptics who are sceptical in so many contradictory ways are rather unconvincing, the link between CO2 and increasing temperatures is rather straightforward.

  • ADiff

    Derek,

    “[T]he link between CO2 and increasing temperatures is rather straightforward.”

    And if you’ve read this blog you’d know that isn’t disputed at all here.

    But the role of CO2 in ‘temperature’ that’s clear and “straightforward” cannot account for the vast majority of the predictions of global warming by all of the AGW models (leaving aside whether or not those models are based on accurate data).

    Catastrophic global warming isn’t about CO2, it’s about Positive Feedback. And if you read the posts and citations on this blog, you’ll see that Feedback is not at all “straightforward” (unless in the opposite of what the Alarmists suggest).

    Watch at least the beginning of Warren Meyer’s presentation (http://www.climate-skeptic.com/phoenix).

    The “straightforward” CO2 effect doesn’t support AGW. For that one needs some additional suppositions that are rather far-fetched, to say the least, and increasingly don’t seem consistent with the actual data.

    I’m sure you’ve noticed this blog isn’t about a critique of ‘Global Warming’, but of ‘Catastrophic Global Warming’…a different matter in significant degree.

    If you haven’t watched the presentation, please do so. Even if you don’t agree, at least you’ll have a better idea what it is you’re arguing about.

  • Otter

    If he knew what he was arguing about, he wouldn’t be putting up a straw man to knock down. As Brian said, it is Life. Every single person on the face of the Earth has their own set of reasons / ways of seeing things. Each has their own worries and fears

    And the number of skeptics is growing daily, by the tens of thousands.

  • hunter

    Yes, it’s much more difficult to get bullshit published than it is to get real science published. There is a massive conspiracy among all the quality journals in which they do everything they can to stop bullshit getting published. Many people, including you, have no idea how to distinguish bullshit from real science. Luckily, retards don’t decide what gets published – journal editors do. And they have rather more of a clue than you about what is science and what is bullshit.

  • Well Otter perhaps I used bow to the strength of your argument!

    In the 1950s, 60s and 70s, sceptics sometimes the same people as the climate sceptics today, were sceptical about the link between smoking and cancer.

    Arguing that the science was complex and uncertain and that models were unsophisticated, many many thousands of people died because of such scepticism.

    If climate change is not occuring I would be very happy indeed, unfortunately it is, it potentially will kill people and scepticism by discouraging effective action will mean that more people will be affected more seriously.

    But generally sceptics don’t care about the potential human cost and are more interested in driving around in their SUVs

  • hunter (the real one)

    So our name thieving troll got internet privelege at the clinic again.
    For how long will you get them this time?
    Please post frequently with the time you have. You help inspire skeptics, and convince more people that skeptics are right to question AGW, everytime you post.

  • hunter

    Derek,
    The climate has not changed much, and certainly not ddangerously, in the past 150+ years. There is no evidence offered, beyond models, that indicates this will change.
    The real question is why so many people, your stated hope excepted, rooting for a climate apocalypse?

  • Otter

    ‘In the 1950s, 60s and 70s, sceptics sometimes the same people as the climate sceptics today, were sceptical about the link between smoking and cancer.’

    Climate scientists, geologists and members of other fields related to today’s topic, were skeptical about smoking / cancer?

    Wow! Another strawman.

  • kdk33

    Derek

    You say: “If climate change is not occuring I would be very happy indeed, unfortunately it is, it potentially will kill people and scepticism by discouraging effective action will mean that more people will be affected more seriously.”

    Wealthy people live longer/better/healthier (look it up). All of the various carbon reduction strategies will destroy trillions in wealth and will kill millions in the developing world. You don’t hear this discussed much.

    Cutting the world off from low cost energy has severe consequences – particularly for the poor. These consequences must be weighed against the likelihood of the various scary scenarios actually coming to pass.

  • ADiff

    As if simply wasting wealth and opportunity in the developing world weren’t enough….

  • ADiff
  • gallopingcamel

    The IPCC’s Climate Alarmism is a religious/political force. If unchecked it will provide a mechanism to enrich Enron style brokers like Al Gore and kleptocrats like Hugo Chavez.

  • malcolm

    Have you read this article on Copenhagen by the Guardian? very interesting

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2009/dec/22/copenhagen-climate-change-mark-lynas

  • Ross

    Re the Guardian article blaming China. It seems those supporting AGW need to blame someone ( China , Obama , Russia etc ) for the failure of Copenhagen. But Miliband and Brown ( who are probably just fighting for media space leading up to a desperate election ) should remember that the “officials” have been working for 2 years prior to Copenhagen to get a deal together. They arrived at the conference with nothing concrete and then the early part of the confrerence continued the shambles leaving the leaders to somehow miraculously “pull the rabbit out of the hat” in the last 24 hrs.
    If the AGW believers were any good they would have understood the politics involved and worked out a credible deal to put on the table — anyone could see none of the officials or previous talk fests had come up with anything.
    So blaming China is stupid.
    The best comment I’ve seen on the Guardian site is that people forget that China took the very harsh step years ago that would impact positively on emmisions when it enacted the one child policy — no one talks about that.

  • Rich S.

    dfbaskwill, here in the U.S., when an election is disputed, we have due process through the courts (with, admitedly, the courts’ inherent flaws).

    Due process in North Korea is best described as being at the wrong end of a firing squad.

    Not exactly the same thing.

  • Tom R

    I know people like Derek … ultimately, they can’t support their dire theories and so they resort to something like “well, even if it’s not true/can’t be proved, we still need to blah blah blah …” Not unlike the partisan politicians who have said in other contexts that the seriousness of the charge warrants punishment, regardless of the truth of the charge.

  • Well that’s told me Tom, I think we need to carefully look at what the IPCC are saying and the sceptics case.

    I am sure you can agree with me on that, shouting at those with opposing views does not work.

    Scientific research is of course seen as ‘blah’ by some and if you want a more market based source than me take a look at New Scientist on the Economist both have good climate change reporting.

    hope you will read my addict article.

  • ADiff

    “New Scientist”? Ha! What a hoot! Leader in the field of Ideological ‘Science’!

  • Jay

    “There is a massive conspiracy among all the quality journals in which they do everything they can to stop bullshit getting published.” The conspiracy isn’t among the journals, but the IPCC crowd, Mann, Jones, et al. Bother yourself to read the lengths they went to in their coordinated effort to prevent publication of articles which exposed their data manipulation. While Jones stepped down pending an investigation, no one has forced Hansen or Mann to do likewise, and that is a stinging indictment of the climate science community in the US.