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« Nobel laureate on temperatures | Main | Tamsin 2 »
Thursday
Feb022012

Barry, Tamsin and Peter G

Barry Woods has published an interesting email exchange between himself, Tamsin Edwards and Peter Gleick. This revolved around Gleick having publicly accused him of being offensive. Barry - possibly the politest tweeter there is - was understandably miffed and asked Gleick to substantiate his remarks. There's a happy ending, of sorts.

 

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Reader Comments (60)

Perhaps you need to correct the above...

He said 'incredibly offensive' and when asked to substantiate it he repeated it..


My concern was Katie Hayhoe had just started following me on Twitter, and she has had 'incredibly offensive' emails, tweets etc.

Feb 2, 2012 at 4:24 PM | Unregistered CommenterBarry Woods

did anyone ever discover whether Gleick even downloaded/purchased, let alone read, the book in question?

Feb 2, 2012 at 4:38 PM | Unregistered Commenterdiogenes

Perhaps Dr Gleick would have been better off if he had simply ignored Barry. That's what Andrew Montford and Donna Laframboise do with me when I ask them questions they don't care to answer.

Feb 2, 2012 at 4:39 PM | Unregistered CommenterHengist McStone

Reading some of Dr. Gleick's comments in this email trace such as "liar", "crap", "BS", "denier", it would appear that it was he, rather than Barry, who was being "incredibly offensive".

Unfortunately this kind of language appears to be standard fare for many, but not all, "climate Scientists".

Feb 2, 2012 at 4:44 PM | Unregistered CommenterDon Keiller

Hengist, it is all a question of "relevance".

Feb 2, 2012 at 4:46 PM | Unregistered CommenterDon Keiller

Peter Gleick says, in an email dated January 26th:

The systematic and coordinated and dishonest attack on me after my
negative review of LaFramboise’s book was only one example that made it clear that rational debate was not possible and dissenting views not tolerated.

This is fascinating. When third parties challenged inaccurate statements he made about my book he interpreted their actions as a "systematic and coordinated and dishonest attack" on him - as proof that "dissenting views" won't be tolerated.

It seems to me that it's people such as Barry and myself who are expressing the dissenting views. Everyone from Prime Ministers on down think it's OK to call us ugly names because we've come to conclusions other than those ordained by The Official Scientific Consensus. (My own opinions are not so much about the science as about the IPCC - that tawdry institutution that interprets the science on behalf of governments.)

When Gleick gave my book a 1-star review on Amazon.com and declared (not once, but twice), that no one needed to read it, it sure seemed to me that he was the one signaling that dissenting views aren't welcome.

Feb 2, 2012 at 5:01 PM | Unregistered CommenterDonna Laframboise

I have yet to twit or tweet, and this report makes me think I'll leave it for another few years, perhaps hoping it will go away. Does it intrude into your computer every time someone you are following makes a comment? I imagine it might be like some kind of ticker-tape along the top or bottom of the screen. I don't mind the chirping of the birds outside my window, but having people chirping away on my computer would drive me bonkers. And if a piece of work like Gleick showed up, my whole day would lie in ruins. Anyway, my sympathies to Barry Woods, and admiration for his determination to get his name cleared. I'd say it looks like game, set, and match to him. But oh what a waste of his time to have to do it!

Feb 2, 2012 at 5:07 PM | Unregistered CommenterJohn Shade

It is worth noting that those people challenging Peters refusal to substantiate his statement of 'lies'
Were PROFESSORS Curry, J Jones and Tol.

Feb 2, 2012 at 5:09 PM | Unregistered CommenterBarry Woods

Barry, you have handled this with dignity. As somone else has said it's Dr. Gleick who has managed to embarass himself. He's seems a totally unpleasant individual from what i can tell.

Feb 2, 2012 at 5:12 PM | Unregistered CommenterJack Cowper

Donna, it's amazing the level of persecution complex types like Gleick exhibit, when the reality is, as you say, that we are the outcasts with nothing but the truth with which to hurt the politico-scientific elite. Yet the truth sure does hurt, as we see again and again. The poor things.

Barry is doing a great job making some of these folks aware just how warped it is to consider "denier" perfectly acceptable as an epithet for anyone who dares to disagree with them about anything. It's always been hard to know what's worse about the D-word: the blatant association with holocaust deniers or the way the insult and the demonisation that goes with it prevents any further critical thought on the part of those who use it.

Feb 2, 2012 at 5:13 PM | Unregistered CommenterRichard Drake

There's a real problem developing as the self-appointed high priests of the CO2 religion realise mainstream science is starting to work out how this new Lysenkoism developed [forget about the likes of Nurse who doesn't have the advanced physics] and the politicians realise they have been sold a pup.

Reason is prevailing over dogma but another viciously cold European winter is also concentrating minds, in particular in German science where the opposing sides have declared outright war with academic freedom of speech disappearing from some universities. Hopefully we won't go down that route..

Feb 2, 2012 at 5:16 PM | Unregistered Commentermydogsgotnonose

Peter Glick, self foot shooter par excellance.

Feb 2, 2012 at 5:18 PM | Unregistered CommenterBreath of Fresh Air

If you read the email chain, Tamsin HAD sent him a one liner thanking him for his time..

BUT, following his reply to me she stated this, which I think demonstrates the problem with politicised USA climate science:

Tamsin Edwards to Peter Gleick:

“I would personally be infuriated if I was dismissed on account of the behaviour of a group of people I talk with. Every single person I talk with has a different viewpoint, and I learn a lot about how better to communicate climate science by listening to them. If we dismiss swathes of people by association then our attempts at communication become futile: we end up only ‘preaching to the converted from an ‘ivory tower’, as it were”.

Of course, if communication of climate science is not your aim, then it is your choice if you prefer to communicate with nobody! – Tamsin Edwards

------------------
I cannot imagine any 'junior' climate scienctist in the USA respoending to such an important senior (he made that quite clear) climate scientist in that manner. can you..

Feb 2, 2012 at 5:26 PM | Unregistered CommenterBarry Woods

Richard,

Whilst words like 'denier' are offensive, what I find more offensive is listening to Michael Mann describing himself as a 'scientist'. This may seem like a cheap dig but I genuinely wince when he says it. And I have no doubt that he is an intelligent man who doesn't believe a word he spouts about paleo- proxies. He's a true cynic. In my opinion.

Feb 2, 2012 at 5:27 PM | Unregistered Commenterandy mc

But Hengist,

your questions are always so bizarre and off the point that no one knows how to answer them. For examplke, the Bishop makes a post that quotes directly from Sagan about questioning conventional views. Somehow, in your peculiar mind, you contort this into an implication that the Bishop says that Sagan would have opposed the climate science consensus. This is a reading you imposed all by yourself on the material. AQnd then you ask the Bishop a question about this and get all tearful when he does not respond.

Where lies the problem, Hengist? Could it be your lack of reading comprehension skills? Does it lie in your obsession with proving that the Bishop is a totalitarian monster?

Feb 2, 2012 at 5:30 PM | Unregistered Commenterdiogenes

andy, my feelings entirely. My solution is that I very seldom listen to Michael Mann. And I think everyone needs to give freedom to everyone else in this so-called 'debate' not to listen and certainly not to be under any obligation to answer. So Hengist was in fact right first time:

Perhaps Dr Gleick would have been better off if he had simply ignored Barry.

Why didn't he? My hunch is that he and others know that they are gradually losing their grip on the political class. They are caught between a rock and hard place, so sometimes they lash out. In this case Tamsin has provided a welcome contrast. Move over, old generation.

Feb 2, 2012 at 5:39 PM | Unregistered CommenterRichard Drake

Hengist, am I supposedto sit back meekly and let Peter have a little story, that I (a Watts UP Guest Author remmeber) had twweted 'incredibly offensive' thing to him..

Actually his ATTITUDE to Tamsin is most revealing, along with his attitude to her blog name....

Feb 2, 2012 at 5:42 PM | Unregistered CommenterBarry Woods

@ Barry I haven't criticized you on this

Feb 2, 2012 at 5:51 PM | Unregistered CommenterHengist McStone

@diogenes
When you learn to hold back on the ad homs I might respond to you.

Feb 2, 2012 at 5:54 PM | Unregistered CommenterHengist McStone

As we say in NZ, shot Barry. You da man :)

Feb 2, 2012 at 5:57 PM | Unregistered CommenterMailman

Barry Woods

Actually his ATTITUDE to Tamsin is most revealing, along with his attitude to her blog name....

I, too, was struck by that same thought. He clearly sees himself a "superior personage" of some sort. For example:

I am not going to deal with this anymore. It has taken far too much of my constrained time and bandwidth already.
Very immature.

Feb 2, 2012 at 6:10 PM | Unregistered CommenterDon Pablo de la Sierra

Well now we know where the school bullies end up, in Climate "Science"

Feb 2, 2012 at 6:32 PM | Unregistered CommenterSandyS

Sorry but I found the most of this rather dull since I'm not a party involved in the tweeting saga. One thing that I did find interesting was Dr. Gleick's refenence to the "catastrophic climate change strawman".

I had no idea that this is seen as such by an AGW advocate. It's certainly the message than many media stories seek to promote and s such it is a real communication issue not a straw man.

I'd be happier with AGW proponents if, when the media did make absurd stories out of AGW nonsense, that they made every effort to refute the media rubbish. The fact that they don't makes people suspicious that they don't mind a bit of worry in the public an policy makers because it ensures continued funding.

Anthony Watts mostly seems to be posting to illustrate why the catastrophic AGW meme is nonsense and in this regard maybe he wouldn't have to if "reputable" scientists spoke up themselves.

Feb 2, 2012 at 7:17 PM | Unregistered Commentertimheyes

Much as I admire the laudable human desire for peace and goodwill behind the new “kumbaya” approach to climate dialogue, as practiced by Barry, Richard Betts, Tamsin etc – I'm afraid it strikes an entirely false note with me and sticks in my throat.

The approach seems to be based on the premise that there are a few people in the climate science field who have finally understood that trying to slander, smear and silence anyone who expresses an opinion counter to the prevailing orthodoxy has been counter productive - and that engaging sceptics in a civil conversation might be a better way forward.

I accept that Barry is entirely honest in his belief that good natured, open dialogue between this new faction in climate science and the sceptical community might lead to better understanding on both sides and, eventually, to some acceptance of the sceptic position and even a review of some of the more contentious aspects of the science – I just think that it is never going to happen.

Whenever I've engaged with Richard on here, or on twitter, I've found him entirely reasonable, good natured and tolerant of dissenting views and admired the way he has stuck his neck out to defend sceptics from his less tolerant colleagues. I have also noticed though that whenever anyone tries to tie him down on a key issue of principle in the debate – he skilfully manages to deflect the question or give an elliptical response.

Like others here, I have also welcomed Tamsin's decision to follow Richard and engage with climate scepticism, but I couldn't help notice this sentence in the email she sent to Gleick in defence of Barry:- Fortunately for me and my colleagues, in theUK the debate is much less heated than in the US, and some of us have made great progress in holding civil and productive conversations with a range of sceptics, bringing them round to our point of view.

I think this sentence brings out the nub of the matter. I think a friendly and open dialogue with climate scientists is much preferable to a bitter and recriminatory one – but if the object of it is “to bring them round to our point of view”, I'm not interested because I know it isn't going to happen.

Conflict resolution by dialogue and understanding only works between parties of somewhat equivalent power. Since climate politics has, at the moment, pretty well gained control of the entire political, scientific, educational and sociological establishment – trying to change it by dialogue is analogous to a mouse trying to negotiate with the cat that's toying with prior to having it for breakfast.

If you believe, as I do, the premise of Donna Lamframboise's book that “climate change” is an activist inspired, political movement which has infiltrated and suborned real science to bend it to political ends – how does a friendly dialogue with a few bit players at the coal face stand a chance of changing anything.

The only thing that will change the status quo is mother nature helping, by making politicians look stupid – which hopefully is already beginning to happen.

I'm sorry if all this makes me fit Kate Hayhoe's “oo, zing! Loving this”, bitter, drooling, geriatric denier stereotype – but there you are.

Feb 2, 2012 at 10:33 PM | Unregistered CommenterFoxgoose

@timheyes
Not to put too fine a point on it you're wrong when you say that AGW proponents don't refute media rubbish. A few months ago when the Times atlas was printed with large errors about the rate of Greenland ice melting (I think they said 15% had melted) it was mainstream consensus scientists who questioned these claims, and corrected the atlas publisher with the facts. That didn't stop Delingpole and others making up a story about AGW figures being incorrect based on the errors of the atlas compilers.

Feb 2, 2012 at 10:37 PM | Unregistered CommenterHengist McStone

Foxgoose

I think this sentence brings out the nub of the matter. I think a friendly and open dialogue with climate scientists is much preferable to a bitter and recriminatory one – but if the object of it is “to bring them round to our point of view”, I'm not interested because I know it isn't going to happen.

I couldn't agree more.

Feb 2, 2012 at 10:57 PM | Unregistered CommenterBBD

Foxgoose - "bringing them round to our point of view."

The complementary part to that (and one that wasn't the focus of my conversation with Peter) is:

"them bringing me round to their point of view".

There are lots of examples I could name of the latter, some of which I listed on my recent post. One of the most important is recognising our personal responsibilities in drawing attention to misleading representations of the scientific evidence (e.g. see Atlasgate). For example, about an hour ago I emailed a fellow climate scientist urging the inclusion of lower end predictions of impacts as well as worst case scenarios. I'll let you know if I was successful.


Tamsin

Feb 2, 2012 at 11:10 PM | Unregistered CommenterTamsin Edwards

Foxgoose - I think you are right that this sticks in the craw, and you have hit the nail on the head with your comment, and the cat and mouse analogy. I think I made a similar point earlier today on Tasmin's new thread, with regard to her comments policy, where she had said she would take exception to the words, 'denier', 'liar' and 'fraud'. If there is good evidence of dishonest science then we should not feel inhibited not to call a spade a spade, just because it could put a strain on civil discourse. To my knowledge it has not been the sceptics who have been adjusting the data, using dodgy statistical methods, fudge-factoring models and selecting environmental activists to write IPCC reports.

Feb 2, 2012 at 11:25 PM | Unregistered Commenterlapogus

Tamsin, that's good to hear, and sorry, I have just noticed that I have been mispelling your name (hides behind sofa)! I recall and appreciate the role you played in Atlasgate. My question is would you have done it a year or two years ago before the sceptic blogs had so much traction? Either way it is progress and that is a good thing.

Feb 2, 2012 at 11:35 PM | Unregistered Commenterlapogus

Hengist

Your blog is one long stream of ad hom criticism of Bishop Hill....so why not extract the plank from your own eye first.

Feb 2, 2012 at 11:47 PM | Unregistered Commenterdiogenes

Tamsin

Thanks for the prompt reply.

I think the fuller version of your quote better encapsulates what I was trying to get at some of us have made great progress in holding civil and productive conversations with a range of sceptics, bringing them round to our point of view.

Now if you can point me to an instance where you've expressed the complementary statement some of us have made great progress in holding civil and productive conversations with a range of sceptics, coming around to changing our previously held view on xyz to theirs" - I would be impressed.

I've had a quick look at your posts on your new blog and your comments here, but I can't find the list of instances you mentioned - can you identify the comment for me?

Perhaps a quicker way to get to the point would be for you to tell us (i) what you think about Mann's original "hockey stick" paper - and (ii) whether you agree that global temperature has been essentially static for the last 15 years.

Feb 2, 2012 at 11:48 PM | Unregistered CommenterFoxgoose

Sorry - screwed up italic formatting

Tamsin

Thanks for the prompt reply.

I think the fuller version of your quote better encapsulates what I was trying to get at some of us have made great progress in holding civil and productive conversations with a range of sceptics, bringing them round to our point of view.

Now if you can point me to an instance where you've expressed the complementary statement some of us have made great progress in holding civil and productive conversations with a range of sceptics, coming around to changing our previously held view on xyz to theirs - I would be impressed.

I've had a quick look at your posts on your new blog and your comments here, but I can't find the list of instances you mentioned - can you identify the comment for me?

Perhaps a quicker way to get to the point would be for you to tell us (i) what you think about Mann's original "hockey stick" paper - and (ii) whether you agree that global temperature has been essentially static for the last 15 years.

Feb 2, 2012 at 11:51 PM | Unregistered CommenterFoxgoose

I couldn't agree more.
Feb 2, 2012 at 10:57 PM BBD

BBD

Sorry to have to ask - but is that an attempt at sarcasm?

If so - it's a bit lame to quote one paragraph and miss out the subsequent explanatory ones.

I believe it called "cherry picking" and it seldom adds to the debate.

Feb 2, 2012 at 11:57 PM | Unregistered CommenterFoxgoose

+1 for the idea that Tamsin is doing missionary work and is being polite to the natives as a way of converting more.

By all means have a game of football on Christmas day but don't be fooled.

Feb 3, 2012 at 12:22 AM | Unregistered CommenterJack Hughes

lapogus - a lot of people get my name wrong :)

"My question is would you have done it a year or two years ago before the sceptic blogs had so much traction?"

I think it's a question of degree, confidence, and experience. The Atlasgate thing was a clear mistake that would have been corrected, but the response was swifter and firmer than I think it would have been in the past. But more than a year ago I don't think I would have sent unsolicited messages to scientists that I don't work with about the way they choose to communicate science, no. For example, my interactions with Peter started with this.


Foxgoose - "I've had a quick look at your posts on your new blog and your comments here, but I can't find the list of instances you mentioned - can you identify the comment for me?" - I meant

Twitter and Bishop Hill have (a) toughened me up a bit (b) taught me to be very precise and ready to back every statement up (c) taught me not to assume anything about people’s opinions or knowledge, though I admit I forget sometimes (c) given me many friendly allies from across the spectrum of opinions

Comment here.

and also:

a) there is a continuous spectrum of viewpoints;

b) a large number of the unconvinced have numerate backgrounds (off the top of my head, physics, chemistry, computing, engineering, geology and finance seem to come up most frequently);

c) for various reasons, they have lost trust in the way we do, or the way we communicate, our science.

from my recent post. But, now that I quote them, these don't quite address the points we were talking about as well as my examples about misrepresenting science.

Feb 3, 2012 at 12:32 AM | Unregistered CommenterTamsin Edwards

Foxgoose

The best outcome, surely, is that the science itself triumphs. If I reduce my opinion to its bases they are:
1. SOME of the science is extremely dodgy
2. Some of the dodgy stuff is deliberate, almost certainly the result of activism infiltrating the discipline
3. Some is incompetent or lacking (this happens in many areas)
4. The whole issue has been seized upon by a variety of activists, and pushed as a way to achieve their agendas; the picture painted is a deliberately misleading one.

Real, reliable science is being conducted. We should ll support that. If it turns out that the climate is changing as a result of increasing CO2; if that change is significant; if its results are surely going to be harmful, well, that's the end of my scepticism.

If it turns out that the effect of CO2 on the climate is minor, or if the changes to the climate turn out to be a balance of positive and negative with little likelihood of a runaway feedback, well, that's just fine.

At the moment, I am unconvinced on any of these scores. And a large part of that is inevitable scepticism once one finds out what so many devious buggers have been doing to (and with) the 'science'.

If we replace the devious buggers with people we can trust, and their findings are the same as Mann, Hansen, Jones et al, we need to accept it.

Richard Betts and Tamsin seem trustworthy because they are not hiding anything - decline, incline, whatever. Let's embrace that.

If the reaction of people like Gleick is anything to go by, there is genuine fear of the reasonableness shown by Richard and Tamsin. Interesting how that might pan out.

In the meantime, if reasonableness really does infect the debate, we can happily wave goodbye to counter-productive idiocies like wind farms.

BBD

Good to see you back! Play nice with Foxgoose ;-)

Feb 3, 2012 at 12:33 AM | Unregistered CommenterGixxerboy

"Perhaps a quicker way to get to the point would be for you to tell us (i) what you think about Mann's original "hockey stick" paper - and (ii) whether you agree that global temperature has been essentially static for the last 15 years."

Are these metrics by which I would be judged whether I was sufficiently swayed or a confirmed missionary? :)

I've been deeply (1 of ~4 main authors) involved in writing a many-authored paper criticising past (inverse modelling-based) methods of palaeoclimate reconstruction and suggesting better (forward modelling-based) methods - part of the SUPRAnet network. It has taken a long time, but hopefully it will come out eventually. It's on my list of blog topics.

I know less about the differences between temperature records, except for the point about Arctic coverage, plus it's off-topic for my blog, so answering that question is probably further down the list.

Feb 3, 2012 at 12:51 AM | Unregistered CommenterTamsin Edwards

Not sure how to bring Tamsin round to my point of view - but here it is:

Climate Science was and still is a bogus subject like Golf Psychology or Gender Studies. Occupational therapy for mediocre academics with their baggy jumpers and leather patches.

The old-schoolers like Jones and Trenberth actually knew this but it didn't matter in the old days because they could plod along with their amateur computer programs and their cargo-cult papers. Nobody discovered any laws or new principles but they all had a comfortable life.


Sadly what was an academic backwater was turned into a perfect cover for a coalition of enviros, politicians, NGOs, and chancers.

Money and power came flooding in - and any last trace of academic integrity went out of the window.

There is now zero chance of it ever becoming a genuine effort to understand the world. Zero. Too many people have too much riding on it.

Re-building the subject would be like making a car from objects you find in a skip.

Now about that outreach idea ...

Feb 3, 2012 at 1:02 AM | Unregistered CommenterJack Hughes

I left a comment on Barrys site (currently awaiting moderation) and in view of timheyes and others comments above, it might be apt to repost it here:

Well done to Barry for perservering with this and getting a withdrawal (of sorts) of the accusations made. As an aside, I think this little piece of advice Dr Gleick gives Tamsin – “…in the long-run, your reputation as a scientist (and your influence in the associated policy debates) will benefit from it.” (my emphasis) – tells us an awful lot here.

Feb 3, 2012 at 1:03 AM | Unregistered CommenterLC

I read the letter to Katie Hayhoe and the name Stan Lippmann from Seattle struck me as familar having lived there in the past. Just a quick google search confirmed who I thought I remembered. Ms. Hayhoe should do a little back ground on Mr Lippmann before she tries to pin his associations on any one group of individuals.
She could just as well blamed his Actions on any one who has been a Lawyer, pushed for high speed rail, Government run health care, Been to an OWS protest or is a 911 Truther. I would also suggest she forward his letter to the Seattle P.D. to add to his file.
Just a few quick quoates from when he ran for Congress.

What, if anything, should Congress do to expand health-care coverage?

"We should adopt a universal health-care system like the ones in Europe. We already spend more public money than Europe, but on top of that we pay $400 billion privately that goes to insurance companies and bureaucrats for inferior care, as measured by our world life-expectancy ranking of 28."

If you could pass one bill, what would it be and why?

"Congress should follow the intended mandate of the Constitution and increase the size of the House to 10,000, or 30,000 people per representative, instead of the 600,000:1. At the last minute of the Constitutional Convention, an aristocratic cabal mysteriously inserted the words "at least" without debate, slowly poisoning the government with the corrosive effects of power and money."

What should be done to safeguard civil liberties and privacy as federal investigators gain broader powers to pursue suspected terrorists?

"Before Sept. 11, the word "homeland" was not part of our vocabulary. It sounds like "fatherland" and has the same police-state overtones. The stock market was crashing before Sept. 11, and it seems likely to me that rogue elements in our own government set into motion the Saudi terrorist cells to divert attention and stimulate a war economy."

What more should the federal government do to address the region's transportation problems?

"The U.S. should give Washington $10 billion a year for high-speed rail projects. In a few years someone in Seattle could commute to Portland or Vancouver, B.C., in under an hour, to Spokane in under an hour and a half. We should impose a higher gas tax and stop federal highway spending."

From when he ran for Seattle City Council

"During the course of this campaign, I intend to develop a sensible transportation plan for the lower Puget Sound Region. I am doing this because with current leadership of the region left in place, we will continue to follow the conventional path of more taxes, more roads, more automobiles, more pollution, more stress, and more health care expenses from the ensuing mental and physical diseases. I am doing this because this is not the future that I want to live in, and because I believe by taking these steps, I will be personally contributing to a better outcome. The cynicism about politics today is understandable, but there is hope that through rational dialogue about our problems, we together can build the future.
The only way to avoid the current path of slowly worsening conditions of life is to face the fact that we have neglected to develop our physical economy in a rational direction. It is understandable that people will prefer to drive their cars as a means of transportation as long as it is the best mode available in terms of a combination of time and comfort. Whereas our current leaders call for us to sacrifice in the face of mounting traffic woes, I believe we can make a mass transportation system so good that most people will prefer it to driving, even without the traffic jams.

I propose building a 200 mile maglev monorail system, stretching from Everett to Olympia, including local loops in the City of Seattle, and a line on the Eastside. A fair estimate of the capital cost of this system is $90 million per mile, for a total cost of $18 billion dollars. This is the roughly equal to the expected costs of the I-405 expansion and the 520 bridge replacement alone, yet it will eliminate the needs for these projects since automobile commuter traffic under this plan can be reduced to less than half its current level. The maglev system will be able to pay for itself through the collection of fares, saving commuters money and time relative to automobile travel, and thus the plan will not be costing the taxpayer money but instead saving the taxpayer much of the projected $50 billion in taxes over the next 30 years that the government is planning to spend not to solve the problems."

Mr. Lippmann s history shows him to be equal opportunity letter writer and offender.

Feb 3, 2012 at 3:03 AM | Unregistered CommenterWildlandjeff

Wildlandjeff

Get a grip.

Feb 3, 2012 at 5:57 AM | Unregistered CommenterGixxerboy

Jack Hughes:

By all means have a game of football on Christmas day but don't be fooled.

Thanks. In the midst of some fairly solemn discussion that made me laugh. I also like the analogy because many participants in that famous WWI incident said that their opponents felt like brothers. That's how I feel here. (I'm using brother in its gender-neutral sense, obviously.)

Don't be fooled? The problem with that is that I have never claimed to myself or anyone else to know the precise effect of any such dialogue. But I will say this. The respect Richard Betts showed to Steve McIntyre publicly on Climate Audit yesterday makes him the most important climate scientist on the planet for me. But then I've never been very good at official hierarchies.

Feb 3, 2012 at 7:21 AM | Unregistered CommenterRichard Drake

Please guys...
Ihave absolutely no issue with 'climate science', still a youngish field

I have huge issues with 'climate change science'

This distinction needs to be made and noted.

I've persuaded a certain us scientist to remove a 300k ccdeaths slide from presentation.
With a little bit if authority, backing me up...
4-5 other slides are highly questionable...
And suggestions have been made.

One slide at a time, until the other comes to their. OWN realisation, that things may not be as bad as seemed.

Climate science needs to disentangle itself from climate science,

Feb 3, 2012 at 7:49 AM | Unregistered CommenterBarry Woods

Hi Jack,

The vast majority of climate modellers are physicists and mathematicians, often from other research areas such as astrophysics.

Personally, I have a 1st in physics and a PhD in particle physics. This is not unusual in my field.

I do have tweed patches on the elbows of one of my jumpers though.

Tamsin

Feb 3, 2012 at 8:15 AM | Unregistered CommenterTamsin Edwards

Hi Tamsin,

Okay, you have an impeccable academic credentials, and I have no problem with the tweed patches. But have you or any of your colleagues spent any time trying to prove / establish the assumption that for example increased water vapour will lead to a positive feedback (which I understand all IPCC models are predicated on) rather than increased cloud cover, which will obviously lead to a negative feedback and cooling?

Feb 3, 2012 at 8:38 AM | Unregistered Commenterlapogus

My colleagues have done lots of thinking about water feedback and clouds :) Supported by empirical evidence too. The net cloud feedback is hard though. Sorry I don't have time to look up refs now.

Feb 3, 2012 at 8:54 AM | Unregistered CommenterTamsin Edwards

Wildlandjeff

Get a grip.
Feb 3, 2012 at 5:57 AM Gixxerboy

I think you may have misunderstood Wildlandjeff's comment Gixxer.

He was pointing out that Lippman is a well known eccentric and "green inker" who has been investigated by the Seattle Police previously for sending obnoxious communications to local politicians and public figures on all sorts of subjects. He's also made bizarre statements when running for for public office there.

He's what we would call "a nutter" and has been well known to people involved in climate science since at least June 2011.

Most people ignore "green ink" letters from people known to be mentally unstable - however unpleasant they are.

Two climate scientists, however, chose to exhibit his letters as examples of "an organised sceptic hate campaign" and gullible/sympathetic journalists in Australia, US and the UK went along with the story.

This was a dishonest attempt at media manipulation to discredit people on the sceptical side of the argument and needed to be exposed.

Feb 3, 2012 at 9:17 AM | Unregistered CommenterFoxgoose

Tamsin

But, now that I quote them, these don't quite address the points we were talking about as well as my examples about misrepresenting science.

I think we can probably agree on that.


"Perhaps a quicker way to get to the point would be for you to tell us (i) what you think about Mann's original "hockey stick" paper - and (ii) whether you agree that global temperature has been essentially static for the last 15 years."

Are these metrics by which I would be judged whether I was sufficiently swayed or a confirmed missionary? :)

I've been deeply (1 of ~4 main authors) involved in writing a many-authored paper criticising past (inverse modelling-based) methods of palaeoclimate reconstruction and suggesting better (forward modelling-based) methods - part of the SUPRAnet network. It has taken a long time, but hopefully it will come out eventually. It's on my list of blog topics.

I know less about the differences between temperature records, except for the point about Arctic coverage, plus it's off-topic for my blog, so answering that question is probably further down the list.
Feb 3, 2012 at 12:51 AM Tamsin Edwards

In my previous quote, I praised Richard for his open and friendly approach - but complained that he deflected questions and gave elliptical responses when anyone tried to pin him down on specific points.

I'm trying hard not to sound too much like a drooling, old sceptic curmudgeon here Tamsin - but your answers seem like a perfect example of the same technique.

I'm afraid having friendly, constructive attempts at dialogue with you and Richard gives me exactly the same feeling I've had, from time to time. when I've let the Jehova's Witnesses in and explained why I was an atheist.

They knew why they where there, I knew why they were there - and we all knew there was an enormous unspoken gulf which was never going to be crossed.

They were always very friendly and polite though ;-).

Feb 3, 2012 at 9:39 AM | Unregistered CommenterFoxgoose

Sorry - formatting glitch (I daren't use "preview" in case it takes me to Captcha Hell again)


Tamsin

But, now that I quote them, these don't quite address the points we were talking about as well as my examples about misrepresenting science.

I think we can probably agree on that.


"Perhaps a quicker way to get to the point would be for you to tell us (i) what you think about Mann's original "hockey stick" paper - and (ii) whether you agree that global temperature has been essentially static for the last 15 years."

Are these metrics by which I would be judged whether I was sufficiently swayed or a confirmed missionary? :)

I've been deeply (1 of ~4 main authors) involved in writing a many-authored paper criticising past (inverse modelling-based) methods of palaeoclimate reconstruction and suggesting better (forward modelling-based) methods - part of the SUPRAnet network. It has taken a long time, but hopefully it will come out eventually. It's on my list of blog topics.

I know less about the differences between temperature records, except for the point about Arctic coverage, plus it's off-topic for my blog, so answering that question is probably further down the list.
Feb 3, 2012 at 12:51 AM Tamsin Edwards

In my previous quote, I praised Richard for his open and friendly approach - but complained that he deflected questions and gave elliptical responses when anyone tried to pin him down on specific points.

I'm trying hard not to sound too much like a drooling, old sceptic curmudgeon here Tamsin - but your answers seem like a perfect example of the same technique.

I'm afraid having friendly, constructive attempts at dialogue with you and Richard gives me exactly the same feeling I've had, from time to time. when I've let the Jehova's Witnesses in and explained why I was an atheist.

They knew why they where there, I knew why they were there - and we all knew there was an enormous unspoken gulf which was never going to be crossed.

They were always very friendly and polite though ;-).

Feb 3, 2012 at 9:43 AM | Unregistered CommenterFoxgoose

Maybe ask again in a week or 2, the HSI is quite a thick book...

Feb 3, 2012 at 9:46 AM | Unregistered CommenterBArry Woods

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