Jon Stewart Rips Right-Wingers A New One

    When Unarmed Blacks Are Killed By Cops

    No Wrongdoing With Benghazi

    Right-Wingers Fuel Racism And Paranoia

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

You're Still The Deniers, Sorry

In the latest bit of nonsense from Thomas Lindaman:

It started with leaked emails from the University of East Anglia's Climate Research Unit suggesting, if not outright stating, that scientists had manipulated data to support the notion of manmade global warming.

Didn't even suggest it, actually.

Recently, the Times Online website posted a story that scientists at the aforementioned Climate Research Unit threw away much of the raw data used in their climate change research.

What did they do that was wrong? The raw data is available from the stations, as it always was. They didn't use data from stations that were deemed unreliable because of urban heat centers. The right-wingers have a conspiracy theory that involves 97% of climatologists in the world. The Republicans are joining with the most idiotic and moronic of anti-science groups while they make a transparent ploy to affect policy through manufactured scandal right before Copenhagen. For someone who prides himself on being savvy, it's kind of funny that right-wingers are trying to flip things around (as they always do) at the level of accusing people who know man made global warming is a fact, of "X-files" thinking for pointing out that some think-tanks are just industry front groups.

The weather stations still have the original data. Feel free to access it in order to show that CRU's models are scandalously wrong. The data that was destroyed (but still available from the original sources) was from the monitoring stations that were corrupted by urban heat growth. In other words, they destroyed data that, were it included in calculations, would have made man made global warming look worse! So I am failing to see the scandal in which a copy of data (available elsewhere) was destroyed.

There's no reason at all to believe that 97% of climatologists are incompetent, fraudulent, or conspiratorial. The critics are not starting from a legitimate position. Hell, all you have to do is check North American weather records, rainfall records, and snowpack moisture content records pre- and post-1983, and it's obvious the climate is making an extremely rapid shift towards drying and warming throughout North America, much less the Alps, Himalaya, Siberia, and sub-Saharan Africa....far faster than any paleontological records on evidence. Fast enough that most ecosystems, like forests, won't have time to adapt while retaining a functioning biological web. And that's not even taking into account rising methane levels released by permafrost melting which is happening outrageously fast in artic latitudes. (Methane has 30 to 50 times the GW potential of CO2, molecule for molecule.) The change in Alaska, within 10 years, has been alarming. About 10,000 years of ice gone in 150. And much of the permafrost has yet to melt out and release its methane load. Duh. But various wingers, the oil/gas/coal industry, and crank contrarians (like people who believe Randy Weaver was a martyr) get real confused about the difference between two scientists biatching about poor science and industry-funded denialism...and climate change fraud. Right-wingers refer to an email where someone got perfectly normal feedback from an editor about a reviewer's comments. Take them into account, write a point-by-point, be tough but fair, etc.

There's nothing remotely damning in the entire emails. And then you stand there loudly yelling "Can't you SEE the problem here?" while pointing at this very mundane, completely uncontroversial email. After it is pointed out that the email is, in fact, very ordinary and uncontroversial, you make reference to some countless number of other emails that you COULD have picked, but won't, and didn't. You'd bring the evidence, but it's easier just to claim it must exist somewhere and that everyone should just believe you.

Now that we've done that, if you can show me how a small correction to the data for these stations covering a tiny fraction of the Earth's surface affects the global climate record, please point that out for me.

http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/graphs/ (But hey, they're part of the conspiracy)

More to the point-- if you interpret the situation described above as damaging evidence against climate change, you're suffering from a vicious case of confirmation bias. You see folks, hundreds of peer reviewed articles published over decades describing and summarizing tens of thousands of hours of research and analysis of millions of points of data, that's not convincing at all. Which conspiracy seems more likely: 1. Corporations lying about global warming to protect their profits. 2. Thousands of scientists lying about global warming... for no good reason. Do you know how much freaking money would be gained by a group of scientists who found solid evidence against manmade climate change? Energy companies are freaking salivating over something like this due to pollution regulations by various governments. But... they can't find evidence against it. "Mike's Nature trick" that doesn't actually alter either the paleo or instrumental temperature record, it's just a means of visually splicing the two in a smooth way, and both data sets are available individually.

Global warming has been known to scientists for ages, long before the public even had an inkling of understanding of it. It only became controversial when Rush Limbaugh made it his personal issue.

But no, according to right-wingers, pollution doesn't hurt the environment at all. Oh, and CO2 isn't a pollutant because plants use it! And corporations would be working hard to produce free-market solutions to the problem if only they weren't burdened by so much regulation. Just look at our thriving health care industry!

And all those climatologists and relevant scientists in the entire world are lying for grant money. Because scientific research at a university pays so much better than lobbying for ExxonMobil.