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« Dark Matter: What's science got to hide? | Main | Icy news »
Monday
Dec122011

Hollywood scientists

Gosselin has translated an interview with Hans von Storch in Der Spiegel. I was sent this yesterday but couldn't make head nor tail of the machine translation.

Citing James Hansen, von Storch and Steyr are calling for a new direction in climate communication policy, pleading that policymakers move away from “Hollywood scientists”, who are naively portrayed as playing the lead roles as ”world rescuers”.

What’s needed, the two authors say, is a more open discussion and not “autocratic government forms as solutions to the climate problem” or “great transformations of society” backed by the authority of scientists.

Von Storch and Steyr write that all the scare-mongering has had a devastating impact. Claims that climate change will lead to climate wars, death, disease, refugees, etc. are “not only perceived as attempts by single groups of scientists to gain recognition and financing, but also lead to perceptions that everything is connected to climate change.”

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Reader Comments (48)

The Boy Who Cried 'Wolf' is frightened by the echo.
===============

Dec 12, 2011 at 9:35 PM | Unregistered Commenterkim

Bish: It's Der Spiegel.

We have a fine definition of the cause: "missionary zeal for reducing CO2 emissions".

Dec 12, 2011 at 9:44 PM | Unregistered CommenterPhillip Bratby

"...attempts by.... scientists.... to gain.... financing..." he says. But the end is nigh...

The following forecast (peer reviewed) (that is, I have peered at it) shows that climatology budgets will dry up in 2016:

http://www.zombietime.com/zomblog/wp-content/images2010/AGW_hockey_stick_graph_big.gif

Dec 12, 2011 at 9:47 PM | Unregistered CommenterBrent Hargreaves

If Steyr and von Storch are serious about improving the credibility of climate science, they can start by not citing James Hansen - one of the loudest voices demanding “autocratic government forms as solutions to the climate problem.”

Dec 12, 2011 at 10:01 PM | Unregistered CommenterJack Maloney

Breaking news: Canada pulls out of Kyoto treaty. I'll drink to that!

Dec 12, 2011 at 10:18 PM | Unregistered CommenterPaul

Please everyone welcome this from Hans von Storch. I think that he realizes the "scientists" have strayed too far outside their field (in both policy and philosophy of science) and need to slip quietly from the public arena. Anyone guess who might be the "Hollywood" scientists?

The problem for von Storch is the real scientists are in a minority. The "consensus" is buttressed by the bureaucrats, and kept in line by the dogmatists, such as "Tamino", Bob Ward and others. The only way for the real scientists to slip away is either to retire or to defect. Problem is, that unlike the defectors of a previous generation, they will have no Iron Curtain to cross, where they might have gainful employment, nor be shielded from the spite directed at those who have betrayed their true class.

Dec 12, 2011 at 10:43 PM | Unregistered CommenterManicBeancounter

When doctors published studies that warmng will lead to increase crime rates, saying "you know how short tempered people get when it is hot", the Von Storches of the world could have stopped the circus with one word: "nonsense". They did not. Now they are deluged with garbage and a sizable train of "experts" who are ready to make the most far fetched attributions to global warming.

Dec 12, 2011 at 10:48 PM | Unregistered CommenterNik

"If Steyr and von Storch are serious about improving the credibility of climate science, they can start by not citing James Hansen - one of the loudest voices demanding “autocratic government forms as solutions to the climate problem.”" ---Jack Maloney

Surely they were citing Hansen as egregious example.

Dec 12, 2011 at 11:46 PM | Unregistered Commenterjorgekafkazar

Jorge, Amen.

Dec 13, 2011 at 12:02 AM | Unregistered CommenterFred Harwood

"Celebrity Scientist" might roll off the tongue more easily. Publicity and rent seeking, prepared to give the media the stories it wants to hear. Sometimes second rate, often times lacking in plausible technical qualifications. However, often in positions of high bureaucratic or administrative importance.

Dec 13, 2011 at 12:05 AM | Unregistered CommenterWill Nitschke

weird spelling for spiegel

Dec 13, 2011 at 12:12 AM | Unregistered CommenterHans Erren

The mass of scientists, and a large majority of climate scientists, even, have been the victims of this coterie of celebrity scientists. We sneer rightly at them because they blatantly placed a political cause above integrity in science. But their cause was not just the celebration of their science, but rather was one with the political, financial, moral cause. I demean the whole 'sustainability' argument because it is so static, because there is more energy available than we'll be able to use for a long time, and because it is a fundamentally anti-human philosophy. This is their error, oh, yeah, and being seduced by CO2.

These scientists, even the most celebrated of the climate species, need forgiveness for their errors, as do we all.
===================

Dec 13, 2011 at 3:46 AM | Unregistered Commenterkim

"We sneer rightly at them because they blatantly placed a political cause above integrity in science. But their cause was not just the celebration of their science, but rather was one with the political, financial, moral cause........These scientists, even the most celebrated of the climate species, need forgiveness for their errors, as do we all. "
Dec 13, 2011 at 3:46 AM | kim

Kim, totally true but no forgiveness from me until they ALL stop the arrogant claim that they can "fix" the climate.

Dec 13, 2011 at 6:01 AM | Unregistered CommenterPete H

"Von Storch and Steyr write that all the scare-mongering has had a devastating impact. "

It's a pity they weren't able to predict that before they started it.

Dec 13, 2011 at 6:05 AM | Unregistered CommenterSleepalot

Oh, yes, Pete, confession. And atonement.
==========

Dec 13, 2011 at 6:08 AM | Unregistered Commenterkim

Just realized Kim! Mann has been "Fixing" it for some time now ;-)

Dec 13, 2011 at 6:28 AM | Unregistered CommenterPete H

The next to last sentence in the Spiegel article (Es wird Zeit, dass Wissenschaftler sich wieder der Wissenschaft widmen), “it’s time scientists got back to science” sums it up rather nicely, however they will only do so when they are no longer being showered with research grants and with accolades as saviours of the planet. Public opinion is slowly drifting away from them, but we are not yet at the point where the flow of cash has been staunched.

Dec 13, 2011 at 7:13 AM | Unregistered CommenterFZM

O/T but I heard a lovely one this morning - "The only thing the (Durban) delegates managed to save was their jobs."

Dec 13, 2011 at 7:32 AM | Unregistered CommenterHuhneMustGo

Bish: A typo: It's Stehr, not Steyr

Dec 13, 2011 at 8:06 AM | Unregistered Commenterfederico

...and the poor innocent hippie politicians, and the poor innocent hippie environmentalists were all, like deceived, man...

Those damned money hunting scientists... how dare they pull the wool over well-intentioned, principled, honorable, loving & caring people like the dearly sainted hippies...

Once again, those who are truly guilty hide behind their tools.

I would also like to point out that the people who read this blog have ZERO right to 'forgive' these people: their lies (told knowingly) have had, and will have, terrible consequences on the lives of very many of the poorest people - their crimes are not against you, therefore YOU may not forgive them. Oh the arrogance of 'good' people...

Dec 13, 2011 at 8:27 AM | Unregistered Commentercb

@Brent Hargreaves

"....peer reviewed (that is, I have peered at it)...."

Love it!

Dec 13, 2011 at 8:28 AM | Unregistered CommenterMessenger

I think identifying "Hollywood Scientists" is a useful step forward in the taxonomy of climate science.

From now on each time I am presented with a new climate scientist I am definitely going to take each example and put it into the relevant phylum along that line ;)

It should also be a useful reminder to anyone going into the field to ask themselves whether they are really doing it to increase knowledge or just to get their own slice of the Hollywood Science glitz.

Dec 13, 2011 at 8:30 AM | Unregistered CommenterThe Leopard In The Basement

We have now reached an astonishing juncture, a 'pretty pass'.

If one looks back and muses, nigh on 20 years of talk and threats, browbeating, doom mongering and outright and scurrilous deceits. The expenditure of billions, yes BILLIONS of dollars, on research, useless research and then there's computer models too.
Think on the wasted money.............who was thinking really, really thinking of the poorest people, not the UN, not the IPCC and certainly not all the green loons 'filling their boots' at the merry-go-round climate conference circus.
Starving Africans, dried river beds and lakes, storms, pestilence and climate Armageddon - images of poor people struggling in their daily effort to feed themselves and families are a UN politcal bargaining chip and used as a lever to prise open the 'consciences' of political do-gooders who don't care a toss about poor people, in foreign or in their own nations but love the PR and make others do the paying.

This tragic farce [UNCCC] is set to go on and on, nobody can kill it off, so they make promises to promise, eventually to promise and so it goes. Ever since, Rio 92 - agenda 21 and onto Kyoto, now past Durban and ad infinitum - but what happened? What actually accrued..................

Nothing.

Science, is the least of our worries.

Dec 13, 2011 at 8:40 AM | Unregistered CommenterAthelstan.

Seduced by money, seduced by the kudos, seduced by celebrity status...

but who's doing the seducing? Follow the money...beyond the "think tanks" beyond "charities" beyond "government"....

Dec 13, 2011 at 9:47 AM | Unregistered CommenterFrosty

An open discussion with the likes of Mann, Jones, Pachurai, Huhne, Oxburgh, Nurse, Harrabin etc.????

I mean, that is not possible with people who care more about their position of supposed authority and who defend the indefensible.

The great tragedy for science is that the public are losing faith in all scientists because of a few who behaved badly and that no one who really cared about science did anything about it.

Dec 13, 2011 at 10:03 AM | Unregistered CommenterMac

Climatolitics is Hollywood for ugly people.

With apologies to Mark Latham.

Dec 13, 2011 at 10:08 AM | Unregistered Commentersimpleseekeraftertruth

Athelstan

It is sad and sickening - "a pretty pass" - because the nonsense that is being passed around the world in nauseating wank-fests like Durban is costing lives. I wish someone would do the body count caused by global warming alarmists and 'renewable energy' fantastists. I think I would devote myself to it but I'm too young to retire from earning money and keeping the bloody economy afloat.

Starvation by growing bio-fuels rather than food; land use changes from bio-fuel cultivation that result in land-slides, crop-failures and massive CO2 emissions; direct hypothermic mortality and exacerbated mortality from other causes due to fuel poverty (this is a massive issue here in NZ where poor families- predominantly Pacific and Maori - end up with terminal health issues because of cold homes in winter); the sheer handbrake on development - the kind of development that has seem our (fossil-fueled) modern civilization slash mortality rates; economic growth - the irrefutable determinant of improved health - put on hold. (And where? Where are you going to start killing people?)

Sorry, this stuff makes me angry because it has real and immediate consequences: people die.

Dec 13, 2011 at 10:09 AM | Unregistered CommenterGixxerboy

Let us hope this presages some public in-fighting amiongst the worst of the 'scientist' alarmists. If they tear each other to pieces, that will help a tiny bit in the long long task of clearing up after the mess they have made in science, in politics, and in education. Theirs is not just 'a stain on the body politic', but a drenching of it in a foul brew of blatant scaremongering and pseudo-science. We know from the climategates that these people are not admirable, and are perfectly capable of dirty-deeds for their cause. They tried to 'get' von Storch (http://di2.nu/foia/1051190249.txt). Perhaps this latest poke from him will get them turning on each other with more vigour, only this time in public.

Dec 13, 2011 at 10:09 AM | Unregistered CommenterJohn Shade

" If we were to stop all anthropogenic CO2 emissions, it would eventually return to pre-industrial levels. Why do you claim it can't be fixed?"

You do realise, don't you? that the climate is a coupled non-linear chaotic system and the future behaviour of such systems is not predictable. For all we know theforcings other than CO2 that drive the climate may have changed since pre-industrial times and the extra CO2 we're pumping into the atmosphere is stabilising the climate.

I agree that if you believe the rise in CO2 has been solely caused by human emissions, it's a persuasive argument to say that if humans stopped emitting then the CO2 would fall back, but if it did the consequences cannot be predicted. It may be just as disastrous or worse than the fairy tales being pumped by the activist scientists. No one knows, and I've got a scientist who backs me up:

Ed Cook, climate scientist at the UEA: "We're certain we know f**k all".

Dec 13, 2011 at 10:39 AM | Unregistered Commentergeronimo

Sorry, this stuff makes me angry because it has real and immediate consequences: people die.A point I have made frequently, gixxerboy.
Governments load taxes onto the poor in the form of increased energy costs to subsidise the totally pointless and inefficient wind-driven power stations with the result that they drive more and more people into fuel poverty. And, yes, vulnerable elderly are going to die this winter because they are bring forced to make decision about proper heating or proper food.
Meanwhile the fantasists are more concerned with something that may happen in 50 years, if the computer models are right. And if the next generation are so intellectually challenged that they are unable to do what we and our parents succeeded in doing — meeting problems as they arise and finding the ways to solve or adapt to them.
Our grandchildren will not thank us for trying to use our solutions to solve their problems.

Dec 13, 2011 at 10:45 AM | Unregistered CommenterMike Jackson

Sorry, guys: pressed the wrong button! Try this.

Sorry, this stuff makes me angry because it has real and immediate consequences: people die.
A point I have made frequently, gixxerboy.
Governments load taxes onto the poor in the form of increased energy costs to subsidise the totally pointless and inefficient wind-driven power stations with the result that they drive more and more people into fuel poverty. And, yes, vulnerable elderly are going to die this winter because they are being forced to make a decision about proper heating or proper food.
Meanwhile the fantasists are more concerned with something that may happen in 50 years, if the computer models are right. And if the next generation are so intellectually challenged that they are unable to do what we and our parents succeeded in doing — meeting problems as they arise and finding the ways to solve or adapt to them.
Our grandchildren will not thank us for trying to use our solutions to solve their problems.

Dec 13, 2011 at 10:49 AM | Unregistered CommenterMike Jackson

It's Der Spiegel, your grace. You keep doing that. Note also Klimazwiebel. You get that wrong too, from time to time. [genuflects]

Dec 13, 2011 at 11:01 AM | Unregistered CommenterThon Brocket

If we were to stop all anthropogenic CO2 emissions, it would eventually return to pre-industrial levels. Why do you claim it can't be fixed?
Dec 13, 2011 at 10:09 AM | ZedsDeadBed

Ah Dear Zed! So you want to stop all anthropogenic CO2! There goes mankind! Extinct overnight due to lack of Oxygen because we cannot breathe out! One of you more thoughtless statements! Also, there you go again wanting us to all go back to living in mud huts, thats the ones that do not starve to death due to low food production! Ever tried ploughing a field with a horse? Opps! Horses have to go as well huh! That dam methane they fart!

You assume I am selfish, you accuse Gixxerboy of "only worried about the short-term things?". To be honest with you, with just a few more months left on this earth, I am the one that you should have had that pop at on short term interests, but my concern is for my children and grandchild!

You know that CO2 follows temperature by around 800 years and that the amount of anthropogenic CO2 is small in the scheme of thing and it follows its effect is also small so do not attempt to put your words in my mouth! Show me the empirical proof on CO2 and I will start to listen. Show me the "Hotspot" and I will certainly be convinced.

Durban failure rattled your cage this morning? Good people those Canadians and the Indians and Chinese played a blinder!

Dec 13, 2011 at 11:02 AM | Unregistered CommenterPete H

[snip]
No, I'm not very familiar with climate science, but I have a passing knowledge of coupled non-linear chaotic systems and if you're arguing the climate isn't one then you have no knowledge of climate science. If it is one it is quite simply impossible to forecast the future behaviour of a coupled non-linear system. Go look it up on Wiki, you're wasting your time making things up on the hoof. In 2007 this is what Dr. Schmidtt had to say of the models you're talking about:

"...there is so much unforced variability in the system which we can't predict — the chaotic component of the climate system — which is not predictable beyond two weeks, even theoretically."

"http://www.edge.org/3rd_culture/schmidt09/schmidt09_index.html"

You will note he tells us that the average of the 20 "much improved" climate models gives a better result than each individual model when modelling the climate. He will tell you that this is quite impossible, so what does that tell you about the 20 models?

Dec 13, 2011 at 11:20 AM | Unregistered Commentergeronimo

2007 should have read 2009.

Dec 13, 2011 at 11:21 AM | Unregistered Commentergeronimo

Once again, show me the empirical evidence that anthropogenic CO2 emissions are going to cause runaway climate heating. Show me the "Hotspot".

As usual you insult by accusing me of having a "lack of familiarity with climate science". You have no idea what I know or don't but one thing for sure is when you are asked those two questions (time and again) you NEVER provide an answer. but resort to attempting to lead the thread off subject. When this guy ain't having it today because I have the advantage of being 2 hours ahead of you n the time zone and I am already late for the pub. Let me know when you have that evidence and I will along with many others, certainly give it an honest look.

Later guys, play nice with her!

Dec 13, 2011 at 11:21 AM | Unregistered CommenterPete H

Excuse my last post typing errors, the wife has promised me a new wireless keyboard for Xmas!

Dec 13, 2011 at 11:24 AM | Unregistered CommenterPete H

DNFTT

Dec 13, 2011 at 11:27 AM | Unregistered CommenterPhillip Bratby

It seems to me there is a much easier way to rehabilitate climate science; collaborate with Steve McIntyre.

Dec 13, 2011 at 11:39 AM | Unregistered CommenterPatrick M.

Gixxerboy Dec 13, 2011 at 10:09 AM


Sorry, this stuff makes me angry because it has real and immediate consequences: people die.

The climate change religion is a crime against humanity. And it's not going to stop any time soon.

Dec 13, 2011 at 12:22 PM | Unregistered CommenterMartin A

Pete H

"Ever tried ploughing a field with a horse?"

If the Green lunatics get their way and take us back to the Middle Ages, you will be ploughing with oxen. Horses are not very efficient at converting grass to muscle.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Piers_plowman_drolleries.gif

Dec 13, 2011 at 12:47 PM | Unregistered CommenterDreadnought

"perceptions that everything is connected to climate change"

I think that may be the key. I can already sense a lack of seriousness among acquaintances when discussing GW/CC, in the same way that elf'n'safety has become a rich seam for humorous outrage because of its invocation by PC types on too many occasions.

For the record, I'm all in favour of hard hats on building sites, guards on exposed belts and masks in operating theatres, but the bureaucrats never know when to stop, so now we have window cleaners who can't use ladders and qualified electricians required to change light bulbs. Babies and bathwater.

Dec 13, 2011 at 1:19 PM | Unregistered CommenterJames P

PS - and water bottlers unable to recommend their product for rehydration...

Dec 13, 2011 at 1:22 PM | Unregistered CommenterJames P

Pete H

"Ever tried ploughing a field with a horse?"

If the Green lunatics get their way and take us back to the Middle Ages, you will be ploughing with oxen. Horses are not very efficient at converting grass to muscle.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Piers_plowman_drolleries.gif
Dec 13, 2011 at 12:47 PM | Dreadnought

My Uncle still keeps shire horses for fun and swears them by them but I take your point.

It is to be noticed that my questions never got answered AGAIN and she ran away after the usual insults but I feel sure Phillip Bratby will remember how many times she has been asked and run away from those two simple questions in the MSN!

Dec 13, 2011 at 3:58 PM | Unregistered CommenterPete H

and Bish.......I swear on my kids life that is that last time I ever rise to her bait!....Unless she answers the two questions! ........My oncologist told me in the bar this afternoon that I will have the questions on my gravestone before she answers....Now my wife is getting mad with the Truro lass ! I have ordered the stone mason to start!

Dec 13, 2011 at 4:04 PM | Unregistered CommenterPete H

@Thon Brocket
Got the spelling right at last. I shall have to do a penance.

Dec 13, 2011 at 4:32 PM | Registered CommenterBishop Hill

Pete H,

'My Uncle still keeps shire horses for fun and swears them by them but I take your point.'

Horses are definitely easier to work than oxen and there are very few working breeds of cattle left now. The main problem with Shire's is to make sure you wear toe-capped boots, they enjoy standing on your feet!

Dec 13, 2011 at 8:16 PM | Unregistered CommenterSalopian

Check this out. I thought you would enjoy these. Hilarious.

These are funny as hell.
Al Gore in Global Horsesh#t. Part 1
http://goanimate.com/movie/0oM8NpeWAq28/1

Al Gore in Global Horsesh#t. Part 2
http://goanimate.com/movie/0K63D5X0_FEg/1

Between a Barrack and a Hard Place.
http://goanimate.com/movie/07WCzD1eAtH4/1

Enjoy. D

Dec 13, 2011 at 10:44 PM | Unregistered CommenterDonald

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