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« Climate cuttings 49 | Main | Virginia assembly refuses to block Cuccinelli »
Thursday
Feb242011

Josh 80

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Reader Comments (31)

A picture is worth a thousand words. Although there was this documentary I saw...

Feb 24, 2011 at 9:22 PM | Unregistered CommenterBBD

haha! I love it! Nursie in a nurse's uniform! hehehe!!

Feb 24, 2011 at 9:40 PM | Unregistered CommenterSimon Hopkinson

Excellent.

Feb 24, 2011 at 9:52 PM | Unregistered CommenterDave L

Very funny Josh - but unfortunately not a strictly accurate representation of events; he hasn't actually apologised or even acknowledged his error! I still can't believe that no-one in the BBC's "flagship science programme" production team noticed the glaring error. I rarely missed Horizon in its heyday in the 70's and 80s (e.g. Nigel Calder's Einstein's Universe) but it got so dumbed down in the 90's that I still can't bring myself to watch it, no matter what the subject is.

Feb 24, 2011 at 9:59 PM | Unregistered Commenterlapogus

Great stuff Josh

Looks like Sir Pauly's Christmas card decisions are over for this year.

Or is the Royal Society proposing that we all use a non-linear (i.e. more realistic, in Gavin speak) system of percentages to make the esteemed Nobel Laureate's babblings correct?

Feb 24, 2011 at 10:03 PM | Unregistered CommenterZT

Josh has it, spot on..

Get rid of the plants, volcanoes and stuff...voila, no AGW.

Kill Nature..kill Nature..kill Nature

Feb 24, 2011 at 10:03 PM | Unregistered CommenterRETEPHSLAW

OOPS maybe i shu have left the "A" out of AGW above..Freudian Slip

Feb 24, 2011 at 10:04 PM | Unregistered CommenterRETEPHSLAW

Nitpicking but isn't methane also produced by human beings, by the form of cows? I'd guess so.

Feb 24, 2011 at 10:06 PM | Unregistered CommenterLuis Dias

Do you really think this is a healthy portrayal of the science? You conflate yearly rates and total amounts, amount of gas vs effectiveness as a greenhouse gas and you end up with an absurd number - one that you no doubt find quite comforting, but an absurdity nonetheless. Try instead with CO2 contributing 20% of the *total* greenhouse effect (Lacis et al, 2010), and the human-added portion of that being 110/380 = 28%. But carry on with the pseudo-science - it's very colorful at least.

Feb 24, 2011 at 10:22 PM | Unregistered CommenterFred

Fred, yes, it was rather tricky trying to do this one so any help you can offer would be great. I did get it checked tho'.

Which is the absurd bit? Happy to change it if it is wrong.

Feb 24, 2011 at 10:25 PM | Unregistered CommenterJosh

Nursing is the correct analogy for pulling numbers out your proctology dept.

Feb 24, 2011 at 10:36 PM | Unregistered CommenterFrosty

Luis, nitpick away to your heart's content. As I said to Fred I am happy to amend it.

The basic idea was to contrast with the BBC Horizon claim that manmade CO2 is seven times greater than natural CO2. I am sure I have only succeed in part (maybe only 0.1%) but I thought it was worth a try.

Feb 24, 2011 at 10:50 PM | Unregistered CommenterJosh

Fred says

Do you really think this is a healthy portrayal of the science? You conflate yearly rates and total amounts, amount of gas vs effectiveness as a greenhouse gas and you end up with an absurd number - one that you no doubt find quite comforting, but an absurdity nonetheless.

Bindschadler says (emphasis added)

Bob Bindschadler: We know how much fossil fuel we take out of the ground. We know how much we sell. We know how much we burn. And that is a huge amount of carbon dioxide. It's about seven gigatons per year right now.


Paul Nurse: And is that enough to explain...?

Bob Bindschadler: Natural causes only can produce - yes, there are volcanoes popping off and things like that, and coming out of the ocean, only about one gigaton per year. So there's just no question that human activity is producing a massively large proportion of the carbon dioxide.

Paul Nurse: So seven times more.

Bob Bindschadler: That's right.

Feb 24, 2011 at 10:53 PM | Unregistered CommenterBBD

I have no reason to doubt that Sir Paul Nurse deserved his Nobel Prize.

Unfortunately, for a Nobel Prize winner, it has never occurred to him to doubt Climate Scientists. That the programme went out with this rather significant error, indicates to me that no one was checking anything

Am I wrong, to have no reason, to doubt that Sir Paul Nurse deserved his Nobel Prize?

Nice cartoon Josh, by the way!

Feb 24, 2011 at 11:06 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charley

Where's the bear?

Feb 24, 2011 at 11:34 PM | Unregistered CommenterDon Pablo de la Sierra

still wrong though,

if 97% leaves the building directly throug the revolving door what is those three percent doing that stay in?

exactly, they account for 98% of the increase....

Feb 24, 2011 at 11:35 PM | Unregistered CommenterHans Erren

Fred "...and you end up with an absurd number - one that you no doubt find quite comforting, but an absurdity nonetheless."

The whole CAGW scam is an absurdity, whether the numbers get a bit distorted or not. I have heard some pretty absurd numbers coming from the CAGW proponents for years. OK, Josh's cartoon is a bit of a reductio ad absurdam, but the point of that is to show how daft the AGW position is.

Lacis' et al suggestion that CO2 contributes 20% of the greenhouse effect is conjecture, based on a very fallible and uncertain understanding and reasoning, and highly incomplete knowledge. Please don't confuse conjecture with reality. Climate science is in its infancy, and its ideas about the working of the earth are probably no more advanced than were medieval physicians about the working of the human body. In a hundred years time the world will laugh at CAGW proponents the way we are amazed at 20th century medics thinking they could cure TB by lots of cold, fresh air, or their forebears by bleeding, or administering poison, all of which hastened their patients' demise.

Your "110/380 = 28%" and attribution to man is also absurd and utterly naive. You can't simply say there is a difference of 110 ppm over the last few hundred years (when we cannot anyway be quite sure what the level was centuries ago) so that must all be due to man. The whole point is that there are huge natural fluxes in CO2, of which man's flux is tiny. A very small imbalance and inequilibrium in the natural CO2 fluxes can swamp anything that man has been up to. If your presupposition (and that's all it is) is that the world is always in equilibrium, so any change must be due to man, then I'm afraid your attribution is based on a false premise: just have a look at the geological record some time and see how equilibrium is the exception rather than the rule.

There is another more important cycle that has huge fluxes, the water cycle. Do you think all the rise in sea level over the past 2000 years is anthropogenic? Of course not. That's another inequilibrium. Likewise with CO2.

The CO2/CAGW hypothesis really is a scam because it is founded on false premises, like the miasma theory of disease, the caloric theory of heat, and the phlogiston theory of combustion - all once held and vehemently defended by the most eminent scientists of the day. That's why Trenberth will always have his 'missing heat', and Mann and Briffa will always have their 'divergence problem'. And why James Hansen's and John Holdren's (and, and, and...) predictions/projections look increasingly ridiculous. False premises. Closed minds.

Feb 25, 2011 at 12:09 AM | Unregistered CommenterScientistForTruth

@ScientistForTruth
"OK, Josh's cartoon is a bit of a reductio ad absurdam.."

/smoking pipe on

Sir, it is illogical to expect the caricature of an object, idea or person to be logical. Reductio ad absurdum is the heart and soul of cartoon art as well as all forms of satire.

See for example this from a recent play:

KEVIN: Do these tree ring guys make a habit of pasting in the instrument record on the end of a proxy series?

DIANE: You're not seriously telling me that you did not know that Professor?

KEVIN: No! F[beeep]ing no! They can't do that! That's like a vegetarian getting his blood sugar up with a bacon sandwich. Why don't I know this?

As can be seen above, a scientific proposition has been reduced to absurdity by way of comparison to another absurd and illogical proposition. Vegetarian diet is known to keep the blood sugar levels low and this is one of the reasons why many individuals have chosen the lifestyle. No vegetarian would ever entertain the idea of consuming an innocent piglet for the purposes of raising his or her blood sugar level, unless of course those vegetarians thought like those tree ring guys.

Effective and intelligible demonstration of absurdity is what sells cartoons the most. That upward tick in the left corner of your lips (or the right corner depending on the individual), Sir, is evidence that some absurdity has been identified.

Previously, Josh was not able to capture and express absurdity in the subject matters of his studies. As a result, his earlier work often failed to deliver meaning with a punch. The earlier works fell flat and felt flat and, as though that wasn't enough, they were also as enjoyable as drinking a can of Dr Pepper left open in the sun from dawn till dusk. Recently, however, the quality of Josh's cartoons have been such that this critic had to purchase a smoking pipe to help him better appreciate all the artistic and satirical elements exquisitely woven inside a single frame.

By way of comparison here is another example of reductio ad absurdum in cartoons. This example, by Marc Roberts, is important because Roberts is the darling of the CAGW movement, the only effective climate cartoonist thus far, and the greatest rival of our Josh. You can see that Roberts has expressed the absurdity (of our side's position) only in the text. Little expressive elements can be identified in the actual drawing. The characters are perceived as bitter, not comical. And a cartoonist that relies on words more than the shapes is a cartoonist not doing his or her job properly.

A comparison of Roberts and Josh cartoons offers the following propositions:

1- The cultural shift from CAGW dogmatism to climate skepticism is real and it is happening as we speak. See, also The Heretic vs Greenland,

2- Climate skepticism now has the moral authority behind it. Knowing that other people think you're right does a lot of good to an artists confidence and creativity.

3- Josh is now as good a cartoonist as Marc Roberts, if not better. This is a complete reversal of standing for Josh, who has in the past drawn the ire of this particular cartoon art critic.

Sir, this is not an absurdity. This is the state of affairs as I see it while puffing fine tobacco with my calabash.

/smoking pipe off

Feb 25, 2011 at 3:38 AM | Unregistered CommentersHx

In the matter of cows and methane gas - has anyone calculated the cow's contribution of methane vs a field of hay that continually generates methane gas while dead and alive? If the cow is just passing on the gas, pardon the awkward mental image, produced naturally in the plants it eats, perhaps we should stop blaming the cow.

Feb 25, 2011 at 6:28 AM | Unregistered Commenterdp

Fred, you say:

Do you really think this is a healthy portrayal of the science? You conflate yearly rates and total amounts, amount of gas vs effectiveness as a greenhouse gas and you end up with an absurd number - one that you no doubt find quite comforting, but an absurdity nonetheless. Try instead with CO2 contributing 20% of the *total* greenhouse effect (Lacis et al, 2010), and the human-added portion of that being 110/380 = 28%. But carry on with the pseudo-science - it's very colorful at least.

You are totally wrong. Josh's figures are correct. He never mentions effectiveness as a greenhouse gas - he just gives the raw data (unusual I know to have raw data, not manipulated data or made-up data). The "effectiveness" of said greenhouse gases is pure conjecture, not supported by any evidence and thus not a scientific truism. It would be wrong for Josh to use figures that are not supported by evidence.

Feb 25, 2011 at 6:44 AM | Unregistered CommenterPhillip Bratby

Nitpicking but isn't methane also produced by human beings, by the form of cows? I'd guess so.
Feb 24, 2011 at 10:06 PM | Unregistered Commenter Luis Dias

Yes but we got rid of Mammoths, Irish Elk and North American Bison amongst others to compensate, probably neutral overall my computer model reckons.

Feb 25, 2011 at 8:20 AM | Unregistered CommenterSandyS

@ dp

"In the matter of cows and methane gas"

I have always wondered how much methane is produced by those vast herds of ruminants roaming the plains of Africa ......

Feb 25, 2011 at 8:21 AM | Unregistered CommenterPFM

PFM,
The wild ruminants are not a source of anthropogenic GHGs - even if they are hunted for food. But if you herd them, they become an anthropogenic source. It's that simple (and strange)!

Fred: 'You conflate yearly rates and total amounts...' Where does Josh do this? It seems to me all the figures relate to the annual fluxes, not accumulated amounts. Evidence please!

But then you commit the same error of which you accuse Josh: 'Try instead with CO2 contributing 20% of the *total* greenhouse effect (Lacis et al, 2010), and the human-added portion of that being 110/380 = 28%.' You clearly do not understand that the forcing is subject to saturation and the effect is NOT in linear relation to concentrations, but logarithmic. The effect of each subsequent tonne is less and less, so it is your figures that overstate the case.

Feb 25, 2011 at 8:36 AM | Unregistered CommenterAynsley Kellow

I seem to recall that termites are actually the worst passer-oners of methane ...

So if you ask me (not that anybody ever does, sigh) - I prefer cows doing their methane production, because they do taste so much nicer, suitably prepared, after they've passed on, than termites.

Mind - I do regret the demise of the Giant Irish Elk ...

Feb 25, 2011 at 10:08 AM | Unregistered CommenterViv Evans

James Delingpole likes the cartoon. More Josh please.

Feb 25, 2011 at 10:17 AM | Unregistered CommenterPhillip Bratby

@ PFN

"I have always wondered how much methane is produced by those vast herds of ruminants roaming the plains of Africa ......"

It's bad enough having our beauty spots ruined by windmills. If the joyless green meanies get the idea that a wildebeest cull would "save the planet" we can look forward to Tesco being crammed to the gunnels with gnusteaks.

Government health advice today is to go easy on the red meat which in excess raises cancer risk. "A-ha!", thinks the eco-zealot, "when we launch the Gorge-on-Gazelles initiative we'll kill two birds with one stone."

Feb 25, 2011 at 10:56 AM | Unregistered CommenterBrent Hargreaves

Less joshish, but authentic just the same...

CO2 Contributed by Human Activity: 12 to 15ppmv / version 1

Maybe we should start a "grassroots" (ahem) movement and call it 10:10000. Create a video, blow people... sorry just been told its been done before... sort of...

Feb 25, 2011 at 2:48 PM | Unregistered CommenterJiminy Cricket

@ Brent Hargreaves

I'm sorry - I just cannot imagine a greenie, let alone a joyless one, culling anything - even to "Save the Plaanet"

Feb 25, 2011 at 2:59 PM | Unregistered CommenterPFM

Isn't this cartoon mixing absolute GHG contents in the atmosphere with natural CO2 emissions while ignoring natural CO2 absorptions. I don't think this is quite right.

Feb 25, 2011 at 5:36 PM | Unregistered Commenterpax

Bindschadler and Nurse missed an opportunity to express things even more alarmingly!

There's definitely confusion about gross vs net, sources vs sinks, natural vs human, annual rate vs integrated accumulation, etc.

But if the consensus position is that atmospheric CO2 would still be 280ppm if not for human emissions, that means that the 2ppm or so per year increase is 100% human and 0% natural.

So the ratio is... hold on a sec, let me grab a calculator... um, 100 divided by 0 equals... Holy Crap! "OVERFLOW"! They really should have said OVERFLOW. It's much scarier than seven.

Feb 25, 2011 at 5:59 PM | Unregistered CommenterDave Bob

Jiminy, I love the video!

Pax, I dont think Nurse and Bindschadler covered the natural absorptions either. But worth thinking about for sure.

Feb 25, 2011 at 6:46 PM | Unregistered CommenterJosh

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