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Climate science from climate scientists...

Last Build Date: Sat, 21 Apr 2018 22:42:55 +0000


Comment on Stronger evidence for a weaker Atlantic overturning circulation by Hank Roberts

Sat, 21 Apr 2018 22:42:55 +0000

Carrie greatly misunderstands how the scientific method works. In particular, an individual scientist's views are not the point
Carrie's fallen prey to the "mighty oak" fallacy, the notion that all of a field of science depends on some one fundamental early piece of work and if problems are found with it, the entire structure fails. You see attacks on Darwin by people who think his occasional errors somehow undermine evolution. Nope. Science is more like kudzu, it grows in every possible direction from wherever it first takes root, and flourishes wherever there's more useful material to develop.
The beauty of the scientific method is that it _harnesses_ the various personal foibles Carrie correctly sees
Peter Watts put that quite well a while ago, during the email tskandal:
... I keep running into recurring commentary on the snarkiness of the scientists behind these e-mails. They're really entrenched, people seem surprised to note. Got a real siege mentality going on, speak unkindly of the skeptics, take all kinds of cheap shots unbecoming of the lab coat. These people can be downright assholes. No shit, Sherlock. I was a scientist myself for the longest time ... ... I rarely mention climate-change issues in the 'crawl because I like to reserve these pixels for cool stuff, cutting edges that may or may not pan out, findings of interest (and frequently, of contention). Anthropogenic Climate Change hasn't qualified for years; the science is settled, the effect is real, and the only uncertainty among the folks who actually know their shit is whether we're in for a bad ride or a downright catastrophic one. The "debate", such as it is, is political and entirely dishonest at its heart. Climate-change skeptics like to portray themselves as a feisty rebel alliance speaking truth to power, up against a colossal green propaganda machine .... ... ... how science works. It's not a hippie love-in; it's rugby. Every time you put out a paper, the guy you pissed off at last year's Houston conference is gonna be laying in wait. Every time you think you've made a breakthrough, that asshole supervisor who told you you needed more data will be standing ready to shoot it down. You want to know how the Human Genome Project finished so far ahead of schedule? Because it was the Human Genome projects, two competing teams locked in bitter rivalry, one led by J. Craig Venter, one by Francis Collins — and from what I hear, those guys did not like each other at all. This is how it works: you put your model out there in the coliseum, and a bunch of guys in white coats kick the shit out of it. If it's still alive when the dust clears, your brainchild receives conditional acceptance. It does not get rejected. This time.... ... ... Science is so powerful that it drags us kicking and screaming towards the truth despite our best efforts to avoid it. And it does that at least partly fueled by our pettiness and our rivalries. Science is alchemy: it turns shit into gold. Keep that in mind the next time some blogger decries the ill manners of a bunch of climate scientists under continual siege by forces with vastly deeper pockets and much louder megaphones. As for me, I'll follow the blogs with interest and see how this all shakes out. But even if someone, somewhere, proves that a handful of climatologists deliberately fudged their findings — well, I'll be there with everyone else calling to have the bastards run out of town, but it won't matter much in terms of the overall weight of the data.

Comment on The Silurian Hypothesis by nigelj

Sat, 21 Apr 2018 20:36:25 +0000

Carrie, lighten up a bit. The silurian short story and related research paper was obviously intended to 1) be thought provoking 2) draw the general public into scientific issues and 3) provide some light relief from the serious and sometimes depressing issue of climate change. Everyone needs some light relief to keep functioning. I agree scientists could sometimes communicate things better, we can all do so many things better. Just remember scientists are up against a media that only wants to publish the latest celebrity scandal, and denialists determined not to learn anything no matter how brilliantly it is described.

Comment on Unforced Variations: Apr 2018 by Hank Roberts

Sat, 21 Apr 2018 19:53:43 +0000

Victor quotes a bit from Spencer Weart, carefully excised from context, to make his ideas sound like they're supported. He needs to read the rest of the page from which he quoted.
Meanwhile global temperatures resumed their rise. The cooling from smoke particles had a limit, for the particles dropped from the atmosphere in weeks whereas the accumulating CO2 would linger for centuries. It was getting increasingly difficult for scientists to claim that the greenhouse effect was no cause for worry. By 1979 the ever more powerful computers had confirmed that it was impossible to construct a model that could mimick the current climate and that did not warm up a few degrees ....

Comment on Stronger evidence for a weaker Atlantic overturning circulation by Barton Paul Levenson

Sat, 21 Apr 2018 19:02:43 +0000

DDS 68: This is just curve fitting BPL: No. Fundamental wrong assumption. Climate models are not curve fits. Go look up how climate models actually work.

Comment on The Silurian Hypothesis by SecularAnimist

Sat, 21 Apr 2018 18:12:19 +0000

An earlier commenter mentioned this 1997 episode of "Star Trek Voyager" in which Voyager encounters a space-faring species called the Voth, who are discovered (via genetic analysis) to be descendants of a technologically advanced dinosaur species that developed warp drive and fled the Earth millions of years ago to escape environmental catastrophe. The Voth have forgotten their origins and refuse to believe that they come from the same planet as mammals (the Voyager crew) who they despise as inferior. There is some brief discussion in the episode along the lines of this paper, regarding the difficulty of finding any evidence of a long-vanished technical civilization buried beneath hundreds of millions of years of geological and biological change.

Comment on The Silurian Hypothesis by Russell

Sat, 21 Apr 2018 14:14:32 +0000

Given The Express April 1 lede shift to : NASA SHOCK: Huge 'alien herd of animals found in space probe images of Mars', I suspect Gavin will survive his Atlantic adventure: Jon Austin of The Express continues: "MARS could be flourishing with Earth-like life according to a shocking conspiracy theory sparked by these NASA images. Pictures taken from above by space probes reveal there is a thriving ecosystem supporting life on the Red Planet — according to wild claims spreading online. A video uploaded to YouTube shows the pictures which show a cluster of objects on the planet’s surface spanning for miles. And another angle appears to reveal other parts of the area rumoured to be feeding zones for the "alien animals". conspiracy theorist Neal Evans claims this is proof of life on the Red Planet — alongside an entire environment capable of supporting them. He said: “I believe this to be a habitable lush thriving ecosystem on Mars. “I studied the section of map for hours and compared it to birds eye views of places on earth, and it seems to be next to the north pole. "The images are all low resolution, but you can see clear water lines, lakes, either vegetation or some type of life forms seeming to be dependant on the water source." He posted the original footage to his YouTube channel — named Disclose Screen — where he has received thousands of views, reports Viewers were gobsmacked by what they saw. One comment read: “We have seen bases on Mars, and a space fleet and now they are growing stuff.” And another added: “Well spotted. A real eye opener. Hard to begin to imagine what is out there, and what discoveries will be made in life times to come.” Mr Evans added: “I have been studying Mars and its story for years — we only know what they allow us to know. RELATED EXPRESS ARTICLES 'Alien face' in NASA image of Mars is 'proof of extraterrestrial life' 'Mushroom cloud' on Mars 'proof alien life wiped out by nuclear war'

Comment on The Silurian Hypothesis by Russell

Sat, 21 Apr 2018 13:20:02 +0000

This changes everything. Will Carrie's thoughts be appearing in The Guardian, The American Thinker , or both ? SNL needs to know.

Comment on The Silurian Hypothesis by Fred Magyar

Sat, 21 Apr 2018 12:56:55 +0000

Asteroid, smashteroid! Gary Larson of Far Side fame, had a great cartoon titled: 'The real reason dinosaurs went extinct'. Showing three dinosaurs lighting up and smoking cigarettes.

Comment on Unforced Variations: Apr 2018 by Ray Ladbury

Sat, 21 Apr 2018 11:38:27 +0000

Mr. KIA, I don't click on random links. Give a synopsis, and I'll think about it. Human sexuality is a complicated, multidimensional problem. To reduce it to a single chromosomal dichotomy is simply stupid.

Comment on Unforced Variations: Apr 2018 by Ray Ladbury

Sat, 21 Apr 2018 11:34:07 +0000

Weaktor: "After I totally demolished your feeble attempt..." Oh the strawmanity! Now the only question is whether Weaktor knows he is dealing in straw men or if he actually thinks his ignorance is universally shared. Weaktor, once again, thanks for being on the other side. Your stupidity is working wonders for us.