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Desperate Dana - Josh 345

The Emma Thompson Newsnight interview made it to the Guardian. The writer Dana Nuccitelli (ironically an employee of Tetra Tech who have interests in the Oil and Gas industry) explains that Emma Thompson was wrong but in the right sort of way, unlike other people who are wrong in the wrong sort of way.

Unhinged. Why would we ever trust them to tell the truth about anything?

Cartoons by Josh

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Reader Comments (28)

You're being too kind. Dana works (worked?) for TetraTech Construction, Inc, that flaunted its "expertise in the alternative energy field".

Big in wind energy too, maybe not just the one coming out of their most public employee.

In fact I have never read anything written by the wordy Dana that could remotely affect TT or TTC in any negative way.

Sep 8, 2015 at 10:30 AM | Registered Commenteromnologos

Heh, in comments Richard Betts worries that the scaremongering might induce premature and dangerous geo-engineering.

Told ya'.

Sep 8, 2015 at 10:31 AM | Unregistered Commenterkim

Richard laughed at a Dana Guardian headline a while back..

"What a daft headline! Classic example of the cheesier end of climate change media coverage."

Dana's response..

"I think we'd be better off if scientists learned a bit more about effective communication."

both comment in full:

Sep 8, 2015 at 10:39 AM | Unregistered CommenterBarry Woods

Barry Woods, I expect Dana is also reprimanding Emma Thompson about effective communication. I think Dana was impressed with her grasp of the science though. All those funny numbers and squiggly lines, tell their own fairy story.

Sep 8, 2015 at 10:47 AM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

Heh, Richard's got the memo that hasn't even been written yet. I commend his foresight.

Sep 8, 2015 at 10:59 AM | Unregistered Commenterkim

O/T From the previous thread has there ever been a Hurricane name Emma yet.

They name them after the greatest ever Snooker legend so why not.

Sep 8, 2015 at 11:02 AM | Unregistered Commenterjamspid

Dana (and his BTL acolytes at the Guardian) is typical of the new breed of 'climate communicators', in that he's simply impossible to discuss with in a rational manner. He NEVER acknowledges a single flaw in the cAGW theory. In his world it's all settled and in only one direction. You want proof? Go to skeptical science (if you can stomach it) and see their 'Most used climate myths' - it's on the home page. There's now a mighty 176 of them and guess what, EVERY one is 'refuted'! Is there any controversial subject on the planet that could be argued and debated to a score of 176-0? See what I mean?

PS. Still waiting for the BBC apology over their editorial decision to allow a blatantly untrue assertion to go unchallenged, uncontested and so far, uncorrected.

Sep 8, 2015 at 11:04 AM | Unregistered Commentercheshirered

It is not enough to 'have faith' what is need is for that faith to be 'unquestioning in nature and total in commitment and pure in form ' is the normal stance for religions extremists . So it is no surprise to find Thompson being attacked for failing to follow this path by a person whose really is a nobody and nothing in reality, made 'big' by the 'faith '

People labelled heretics are traditional given a harder time than non-believers by religions authorities, Thompson has merely been added to the long list of those that have found out this is true for the 'the cause ' has it is for other religions.

Sep 8, 2015 at 11:21 AM | Unregistered Commenterknr

"The writer Dana Nuccitelli .."


Why do bad writers win the fight?
Why do good writers die in need?
Because the writers who can't write
Are read by readers who can't read.

Piet Hein

Sep 8, 2015 at 11:46 AM | Registered Commenterjamesp

Barry Wood at Sep 8, 2015 at 10:39 AM

I could not find those comments, could it be that they were under the comment by Richard S Tol that was "removed by a moderator because it didn't abide by [Guardian] community rules". That would be far too convenient for Dana...

Sep 8, 2015 at 11:54 AM | Unregistered CommenterPethefin

As Desperate Dana is American it is linguistically correct to say he so full of "cow-pies".

Sep 8, 2015 at 11:57 AM | Unregistered CommenterPMT

Simple answer to your question - we don't.

Sep 8, 2015 at 12:13 PM | Unregistered CommenterDaveS

"Why would we ever trust them to tell the truth about anything?"

Because they might do it by accident?

Sep 8, 2015 at 12:20 PM | Unregistered Commentermichael hart

So is anyone prepared to tell us the inflexion point at which the rate of change of temperature will switch from reducing with increasing CO2 to increasing with increasing CO2? As I recall the previous Met-Office-sponsored Smith et al paper gave us 2009. Are they just not prepared to have another blind guess?

And will Betts et al. ever bother to tell us how they reconcile their generic model input assumption of declining natural influence with their favoured excuse that the pause is due to an entirely expected (and undefined) natural variation? You'd think a logical, scientific mind couldn't support such an obvious contradiction. Or did they actually realise their flawed and circular reasoning and just publish a bunch of lies about the pause anyway?

Sep 8, 2015 at 12:33 PM | Unregistered CommenterJamesG

Re: the question of effectively communicating the science, surely the more important question is how did Emma Thompson come to believe such a grossly exaggerated picture of the climate change threat? Could it be that all the talk of 'the most significant threat to mankind' etc has been *too* effective?

Emma Thompson may still have wanted to appear for Greenpeace even if she did understand the threat more clearly, but I wonder how many other of their supporters are operating under similar delusions as a result of current climate science communication strategies... perhaps Dana will now understand that he's overdoing it a bit and will dial the rhetoric down a notch </sarc>.

Sep 8, 2015 at 12:36 PM | Unregistered CommenterChris Long

People like Dana treat climate communication like politics.

Firstly, it never seems to occur to them that unlike an election. They need to get more than 30% of the voting population to agree with them. They even have to get a lot more than 50% to start making unpopular laws. That high percentage also need to have a good knowledge and acceptance of what CO2 reduction really involves (eg a politician who promises low energy bills doesn’t get it). If you need some countries to take the lead in shouldering the burden then the public of those countries also need to be ok with sliding down the global ladder. Yeah right.

The next thing they do is that modern technique of pouring scorn on the opposition rather than highlight the positive points of your own side. In other words they kick dirt in the faces of the very people they have to persuade. Barmy. In modern elections we now get the party we least object to, rather than the one we really support. You can’t use that strategy for CAGW because until warming is bleeding obvious and catastrophic, people will vote for cheap energy every time.

Also like politics, they maintain the ‘admit nothing’ mantra. No matter how outrageous the incident, most of them (give or take a Richard Betts) pretend that there’s nothing wrong. The public are very unforgiving of those who deny wrong doing and mistakes, often more so than their anger at the original flaw. In anything that has an opposition, will run for a long time and is very uncertain, lying about mistakes is credibility suicide. You WILL be caught out. Don’t do it.

My final point is that they are playing politics and expect us to do the same. To which I say ‘nah, this is war’. This isn’t a polite little exchange in the House of Commons where we precede every comment with ‘my right honourable colleague’. I’m as passionate about my vision of what’s good in this world as any Greenpeace member. Some of them are the same but many of them are 100% in the opposite direction. I refuse to play nice and let idiots and crooks dismantle my world without a bloody good reason. If scientists and their buddies refuse or are unable to supply that reason I’ll use any technique I want to, to impede their goal. So far, all that has entailed has been to grumble on the internet. Can you imagine if all the world’s battles could be won that way?

Much though I admire climate sceptics we cannot take the credit for the failures of the other side. It's not that we're good communicators, but that they're very, very bad. You've got to wonder if they'll ever ask themselves why.

Sep 8, 2015 at 1:10 PM | Unregistered CommenterTinyCO2

TinyCO2 - excellent post.

Sep 8, 2015 at 1:24 PM | Unregistered CommenterPhil D

Quote: "Climate scientists want to make sure people are accurately informed, while climate contrarians seem to care more about promoting their worldview than getting the facts right".
So what are the facts.
The BBC use a timeline of 1880 for comparing and measuring the hottest year on record.
On that basis 2014 by 2/100's degree C was the hottest.
Accurate temperature records began long before 1880. The CET graph from 1659 shows a 0.26C rise per century.
Post 1880 the temperature rise has not varied significantly with increasing carbon dioxide emissions, with little or no rise in the last 18 years.
CO2 measurements are taken on the island of Hawaii (Mauna Loa) and are waved around as evidence of AGW by Nuccitelli and his ilk. The ppmv has increased from 315 in 1960 to 400 today without any change in the local observed temperature. Temperature records on Honolulu from 1940 prove this.
In meteorology as in most science and engineering mathematical formulae apply known fixed constants. Temperature models do not have a known fixed conversion factor for carbon dioxide amount to temperature change.
Past historical temperatures using proxies are pure guesswork.

Sep 8, 2015 at 2:21 PM | Unregistered CommenterShieldsman

TinyCO2, I think climate scientists blame the earth for not behaving as their models predict. As they are so confident about their science, they don't have anything else to blame, and no self certifying climate scientists has ever admitted getting anything wrong.

Sep 8, 2015 at 2:49 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

Correct me if I'm wrong but isn't the use of the phrase "pre-industrial" in the DN piece (multiple times) seemingly there to make the temp rate of change seem more alarming (moving the goalposts on the far side of the field, as it were)?

Sep 8, 2015 at 2:52 PM | Unregistered CommenterHarkin

Anyone else enjoy Emma Thompson, when asked what she would say to Richard Betts (head of climate impacts at the Met Office and a professor at Exeter), saying 'I would say to him, I've spoken to the experts?'

Sep 8, 2015 at 3:31 PM | Unregistered CommenterBarbara

I have to say in the past there was a not so nice exchange between me and a prominent astronomy figure (not Plait) who, on Twitter, refused to budge even when Tamsin joined in and asked to tone down the "expert-based" claims of doom and gloom.

There is some psychological need in people to believe the world will end the day after the day after tomorrow. Really. It is even independent from culture or scientific expertise.

Billions of Harold Campings, all around us.

Sep 8, 2015 at 4:06 PM | Registered Commenteromnologos

Barbara, I'll rewrite that for you "Did anyone not enjoy Emma Thompson, when asked what...."

Poor Richard Betts. First Dr Lew and now Nanny McPhee.

Sep 8, 2015 at 4:17 PM | Unregistered CommenterTinyCO2

Stuck up ,Snobby ,Multi Millionaire ,Hollywood "A List ",Metropolitan Elitist Entitlement

every little helps Emma

Sep 8, 2015 at 8:22 PM | Unregistered Commenterjamspid

This is priceless. Dana writes:

...climate contrarians seem to care more about promoting their worldview than getting the facts right.

Which is exactly what Emma Thompson had just been doing in the interview.

Truly, the lack of self-awareness of these people is staggering.

Sep 9, 2015 at 1:06 AM | Unregistered CommenterRick Bradford

Hummm, I guess Dana isn't one of the experts to whom Emma spoke.

Sep 9, 2015 at 1:26 AM | Unregistered Commenterkim

This is climate science logic. It starts with a conclusion that's already certain, so it doesn't matter how you get there (fraud, lies, destroying data, adjusting data, hiding data, breaking FOI laws, making stuff up, destroying careers, death sentences for dissenters - anything goes), if you agree with the pre-defined conclusion you must be right.

Fools and liars, the smart ones are lying to further their careers or their ideology while all the fools simply follow and repeat what sounds good but they don't really understand. I'm not sure which category Dana fits into.

Sep 9, 2015 at 9:50 AM | Unregistered Commenterjaffa


Someone once described climate science as being like one of those videos of someone solving a Rubik's cube in 20 seconds.

Of course, it's a fake; the video is of someone scrambling an already solved Rubik's cube, but run backwards.

The cube is settled.

Working out what's happening is so much easier when you start from the conclusion (ie that evil greedy Western capitalism must be destroyed) and work backwards.

Sep 9, 2015 at 1:00 PM | Unregistered CommenterRick Bradford

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