An Inconvenient Provocateur

By Keith Kloor | April 23, 2010 7:05 am

UPDATE: After finishing the Q & A, do check out the comment thread where Judith Curry is actively engaged with readers.

Last week, a single blog comment by Judith Curry, a climate scientist at the Georgia Institute of Technology, outraged the proprietors and readers of Real Climate. Curry had mentioned the IPCC and the term “corruption” in the same sentence. I then discussed the brewing firestorm here, and that triggered a spirited exchange in the comment thread, of which Curry was an active participant.

As this exchange was playing out, I sensed that Curry was expanding on her recent controversial critique of climate scientists, while also putting forth a contrary view of the two recent probes that have exonerated scientists of wrongdoing in the affair known as Climategate.  So I asked her if I could follow up with a few questions to clarify some of her recent statements. She immediately accepted and what follows is a short Q & A, conducted via email, and reproduced in its entirety.

Q: In the media and within the climate science community, the Oxburgh report was perceived as a complete vindication of scientists associated with Climategate. Yet you wrote in a comment at Roger Pielke Jr.’s blog that, “the Oxburgh investigation has little credibility in my opinion.” Could you elaborate?

JC: There is a substantial level of public interest in investigating the issues raised by Climategate.  These issues include: wanting an assessment of the reliability and accuracy of the historical and paleo temperature records/reconstructions; wanting an assessment of whether the IPCC was corrupted and whether their conclusions are reliable and can be trusted as the basis for international carbon and energy policy; and whether there are some “bad apples” in the climate research community that need to be weeded out in the sense of not being in positions of responsibility as journal editor, IPCC lead author, administrator.

The Oxburgh investigation initiated by the UEA took on a very narrow slice of these overall concerns: whether or not the CRU records of temperature change had been deliberately biased or manipulated by UEA scientists. While the Oxburgh report is hardly a ringing endorsement of the CRU science, their main conclusion is that they do not find any evidence of scientific misconduct such as falsification of data.  The basis for this conclusion is examination of a selection of 11 research papers published by CRU (based upon a recommendation from the Royal Society, the exact provenance of this recommendation is unknown) and interviews with CRU scientists.

Criticisms of the Oxburgh report that have been made include:  bias of some of the members including the Chair, not examining the papers that are at the heart of the controversies, lack of consideration of the actual criticisms made by Steve McIntyre and others, and a short report with few specifics that implies a superficial investigation.  When I first read the report, I thought I was reading the executive summary and proceeded to look for the details;  well, there weren’t any. And I was concerned that the report explicitly did not address the key issues that had been raised by the skeptics. Upon reading Andrew Montford’s analysis, I learned:  “So we have an extraordinary coincidence – that both the UEA submission to the [UK Parliament's Science and Technology]  Select Committee and Lord Oxburgh’s panel independently came up with almost identical lists of papers to look at, and that they independently neglected key papers like Jones 1998 and Osborn and Briffa 2006.” I recall reading this statement from one of the blogs, which seems especially apt:  the fire department receives report of a fire in the kitchen; upon investigating the living room, they declare that there is no fire in the house.

So in summary, Jones, Briffa et al. can be relieved that they have been vindicated of charges of scientific misconduct.  Even with the deficiencies of the Oxburgh report, I don’t disagree with their conclusion about finding no evidence of scientific misconduct:  I haven’t seen any evidence of plagiarism or fabrication/falsification of data by the CRU scientists.  Sloppy record keeping, cherry picking of data, and inadequate statistical methods do not constitute scientific misconduct, but neither do they inspire confidence in the research product.  Further, the “bad apple” issue is still out there, but this is something that is impossible to assess objectively.  And the behavior of these scientists (sloppy record keeping, dismissal of skeptical critiques, and lack of transparency) has slowed down scientific progress in assessing and improving these very important data sets.  Therefore I have been proposing that we move away from the focus on individual behavior, and shifting focus to issues related to the IPCC assessment process, addressing issues related the availability of data and transparency of the methods, and to improving the temperature data and proxies.  Once these issues are addressed, the “bad apple” issue becomes mostly moot.

Q: In that same comment at Roger’s site, you also suggested that there was too much focus on Climategate, as opposed to “the principal issue that people care about: the IPCC and its implications for policy.” Then you seemed to go much further in criticism of the IPCC than you have previously, when you said:

The corruptions of the IPCC process, and the question of corruption (or at least inappropriate torquing) of the actual science by the IPCC process, is the key issue. The assessment process should filter out erroneous papers and provide a broader assessment of uncertainty; instead, we have seen evidence of IPCC lead authors pushing their own research results and writing papers to support an established narrative.

Over at RealClimate, Gavin Schmidt shot back:

Anyone making accusations of corruption – especially in the light of the tsunami of baseless accusations against scientists that have been hitting the internet in the last few months – needs to be sure that they adequately document the evidence for their allegations.

Can you respond in full?

JC: As to whether the accusations against scientists are baseless or not, well I refer the reader back to the reply to my previous question; the jury is still out on many of the accusations.  Below is a slight elaboration on the statement I made at RealClimate; I make no attempt here at a thorough evaluation of the IPCC process and its apparent corruptions.  But I have seen and read enough on this topic to feel comfortable in making that statement at RealClimate.  And if such critiques aren’t made, then there will be no motivation to investigate these issues and improve the IPCC process.  These issues really need to be investigated and the IPCC process needs to be improved, and the investigation of the IPCC needs to be much more thorough than the UEA investigations.

Corruptions to the IPCC process that I have seen discussed include:
“¢    lead/contributing authors assessing their own work ““ (e.g. von Storch criticism in 2005), in some cases resulting in an overemphasis on their own papers written by themselves and their collaborators;
“¢    tailoring graphics and not adequately describing uncertainties ostensibly to simplify and not to “dilute the message” that IPCC wanted to send;
“¢    violations of publication (in press) deadlines for inclusions of papers in the IPCC report;
“¢    inadequacies in the review process whereby lead/contributing authors don’t respond fairly to adverse criticism; this inadequacy arises in part to the authors themselves having ultimate authority and in part to cursory performance by the Review Editors;
“¢    evasiveness and unresponsiveness by the IPCC regarding efforts to investigate alleged violations occurring in the review process;
“¢    IPCC Review Editors and authors using the IPCC to avoid accountability under national FOI legislation.

Regarding my accusations of process violations, Gavin Schmidt states:

Issues of process are of interest only insofar as they affect the science assessment. “Does it matter?” is the key question – and as far as I have seen, the answer is no for any purported issue that I have investigated.

The skeptics have argued (and I agree with them on this) that Chapter 2.3 in the IPCC WG1 Third Assessment Report and Chapter 6 in the IPCC WG1 Fourth Assessment Report, both of which address the paleoclimate proxy record, were not accurate assessments of the science and its uncertainties.  The “elephant in the room” is the 1000-year reconstructions involving Briffa, Mann and Jones, regarding which the CRU emails certainly provide much evidence relating to the authors’ conduct as IPCC authors that violate the IPCC process protocols. Process matters.  If the results of the assessment weren’t being questioned, process violations would be a non-issue. The failure of the various inquiries to seriously engage on this conduct results in a situation where the public is left with the impression that such behavior and conduct is condoned by IPCC and its scientists.

With respect to the torquing of the science by the IPCC, there are many small examples, but I describe here three broad issues:
1)  a senior leader at one of the big climate modeling institutions told me that climate modelers seem to be spending 80% of their time on the IPCC production runs, and 20% of their time developing better climate models.

2)  there is a huge rush of journal article submissions just before the IPCC deadlines; clearly many scientists are trying to get their latest research included in the IPCC.  There is the perception out there that best way to have a paper included in the IPCC is to support the established IPCC narrative.

3)  scientists involved in the IPCC are attempting to influence the research process (e.g. peer review in journals, not making key data and metadata available) to support the IPCC narrative  and using the IPCC platform to editorialize against and discredit critics (examples of these abound in the CRU emails).

Q: Speaking of RealClimate, I think it’s fair to say that they represent the views of a sizable and influential bloc of climate scientists. In a comment several days ago at this site, you said: “Over at RC, they are commenting that we shouldn’t open our minds to garbage, but I am afraid the jury is still out on many of the issues that warmists have such high confidence in.” What are some of those issues?

JC: To keep this short, I will only itemize some topics where I think the confidence levels in the IPCC are too high and uncertainties have been inadequately characterized: much of what is in the IPCC WG2 report (impacts), the 20th century external climate forcings, the historical surface temperature record prior to 1960, attribution of the 20th century climate variations (including the role of the multidecadal ocean oscillations), the impacts of land use change, sea level rise, paleoclimate reconstructions, uncertainties of climate models and lack of metrics for evaluating climate model performance.

Q: With respect to all the controversy kicked up by Climategate, you’ve also written this past week: “At the beginning, I tried to limit my personal exposure on this and was very leery of getting misquoted by the media.  When others failed to speak up, I felt that I needed to step up to the plate.” A number of scientists have stepped forward, as you have, such as Mike Hulme and Hans von Storch, and called for a rethinking about how climate science engages the public and especially its
critics.  Why so few?

JC: There is likely to be a range of reasons for this, but for an individual scientist it is probably some combination of the following:
“¢ they feel threatened by what they saw happen to Phil Jones and Michael Mann, and want to “fly below the radar screen” so that nothing like that happens to them;
“¢  they don’t want to risk censure by their peers in straying from the established narrative; this is a very valid concern for young untenured scientists;
“¢  the norms of professional scientific behavior are to attack the scientific argument, not the behavior of an individual scientist
“¢ they aren’t paying much attention to all of this, rarely check out the blogs, and don’t want to be distracted from their own research.
“¢ some scientists that I have talked with do have strong feelings on this issue, but realize that a lot of homework would be needed on this and broader science policy issues to be an effective “pundit” on the subject.
“¢ climategate has motivated numerous scientists to question more actively some of the high confidence (e.g. “very likely”)  conclusions of the IPCC;  these scientists will speak out in the context of their published papers.
“¢  the issues here cross over into the social sciences and politics, well outside the comfort zone of most physical scientists.

Hanging out in the blogosphere would provide some of the requisite skills and perspectives in engaging with the public and critics of climate research; very few climate researchers have been doing that.  There seems to be some sort of unwritten rule by the IPCC scientists and their defenders not to engage with critics/skeptics, since they think that such engagement legitimizes the skeptics.  Personally, I think that the almost total lack of “mainstream” climate scientists engaging with skeptics has resulted in a loss of the moral high ground in the public’s view, and has acted to increase the public credibility of the skeptics.  Further, this lack of meaningful engagement has inflamed the skeptics (particularly in the blogosphere) and they just keep pushing harder and digging deeper.

Some scientists are speaking out:  Gavin Schmidt and Richard Lindzen are saying, well, what you would expect them to say.  I and a few others (e.g. Von Storch, Hulme) are trying to provoke reflection by the climate community towards improving the situation and the credibility of climate research.  More voices and additional ideas on these issues would certainly be welcome.  I remind my fellow scientists that scientific integrity is about more than just following the rules and staying out of trouble; it also demands that we consider carefully when to speak up versus when to stay silent when concerns about scientific integrity are raised.

***Postscript*** In recent months, Judith Curry has engaged her peers, critics, and the public at well known web outlets, such as Climateprogress, Climateaudit, and Dot Earth, among others. Additionally, she has been a participant in lively comment threads over at Roger Pielke Jr.’s site, Bishop Hill, and most recently, here. I thank her for taking the time to answer my questions at this blog.

CATEGORIZED UNDER: climategate, Judith Curry
  • hunter

    Excellent interview. It sure beats most of what passes for journalism in the larger media.

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  • Baa Humbug

    I am gaining more respect for Judith Curry by the day.

    Kudos to you Ms Curry

    And a wonderful informative post. Thankyou for that.

  • http://www.google.com Climate Fraud

    I can just imagine Judith Curry as Princess Leia, desperately trying to get out a message to the rebel alliance before Darth Pachuri and the Eco Empire chase her down.

  • Arnost

    Thanks Judy…

  • http://initforthegold.blogspot.com Michael Tobis

    It’s an excellent interview. I congratulate Keith in eliciting Dr. Curry’s opinions in this way. I have several serious disagreements with her, not least the cavalier parallelism between Schmidt and Lindzen as an example.

    I have my disagreements with Keith as well, but in this case he has acted as a journalist and interviewer, and (mirabile dictu!) a good one. I hope the inevitable disagreements that are queueing up don’t extend to blaming the messenger.

  • Tom S

    Wow, very nice.  She answered the tough questions, no hint of bias or politicization.   I can’t help but feeling she is going to have to eat lunch alone at the next climate conference though.

    I think Climate Science would gain instant credibility if they just gave up on the Hockey Stick defense.  As an engineer, this is the first thing I looked at in detail as an outsider, and McIntyre gives a compelling case. That issue is not effectively refuted by the other side yelling louder and longer.

    The current inquiry results only serve to lengthen this tortuous scandal.  Admit fault, move on.  There is not much to lose anymore, 59% of the public believe scientists manipulated the data.

    I know some deeply believe they are right, others are protecting their reputations.  But this would be like apologizing to your wife when you know you are right, for the good of the relationship. 

  • Sean

    More interviews like this please!

  • http://retreadresources.com/blog Dennis Nikols

    “”¢  the issues here cross over into the social sciences and politics, well outside the comfort zone of most physical scientists.”
    I think that sums the situation up.  We are all trained to speak about what we know.  In science we must learn to speak more about what we do not know.  It is only from that aspect that we figure out the best questions to ask and new and better ways to answer them.

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    Thank you, Michael (8). I appreciate this very much.

  • Fred Harwood

    Thank you, Dr. Curry.

  • Mike Davis

    I appreciate the apparent change in posture from the past that Ms Curry is demonstrating now. I agree with a lot of the voiced concerns. The comparison with Hulme and Von Storch left an unease but I understand the comparison of Schmidt and Lindzen but think that gives to much credit to Gavin.

  • http://www.examiner.com/x-9111-SF-Environmental-Policy-Examiner Tom Fuller

    Well done to both you and Dr. Curry.

  • Dave Loughlin

    An excellent article. Thank you very much.

  • Bernie

    Good dialogue.  Prof. Curry behaves the way all scientists should behave:  candid, measured and open.

  • Steve Koch

    Judith Curry is that American classic, the lone, reluctant hero.

  • Steve Bloom

    Why does Judy take Montford’s word for what the Oxburgh committee did or didn’t review?  It was clearly stated that they reviewed materials beyond the eleven papers.  What were those?  Why couldn’t Judy ask before making a public charge to the contrary?

    I could ask why Keith failed to pick up on this obvious discrepancy, but I wouldn’t want to ruin the congratulatory mood.

     

  • http://bishophill.squarespace.com Bishop Hill

    I think it is not unreasonable of Steve Bloom to raise the question of what exactly the panel considered. The relevant section of the report reads:

    “The eleven representative publications that the Panel considered in detail are listed in Appendix B…The Panel was also free to ask for any other material that it wished and did so. Individuals on the panel asked for and reviewed other CRU research materials.”

    I would read this as meaning that they looked at eleven papers in detail and looked at some other research materials in less detail. I don’t think that Judith C’s characterisation of the work performed is misleading therefore. The panel certainly don’t seem to have looked at the other materials to the extent that they wanted to report on what they found.

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    Steve (19):

    An email Q & A does not lend itself to the kind of back-and-forth exchange that is customary with telephone and face-to-face interviews. At any rate, my intent with this post was to advance the conversational dialogue that took place on this blog earlier in the the week.

    On that note, as much as I’m glad that people seem to enjoy this Q & A, I would welcome more debate on the substance of Judy’s comments, and less congratulations.

  • Steve Bloom

    Montford (or “the Bishop” to use Judy’s familiar term) misses the point entirely.  All Judy had to do was ask for these details before opening her mouth.  Specifically, she could have asked to what extent they looked at those other two papers and their reason for not doing so if indeed they did not.  But engaging in conspiracy theorizing with the likes of Montford is is ever so much more fun. 

    Judy, you say you want other scientists to take you seriously on this stuff.  If so, I would suggest that you need to proceed with far greater care for the facts. 

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  • woodNfish

    Congratulations to Dr. Curry for stepping out of the veil of stupidity that seems to cloak so-called “climate science” (i.e. fraud by any other name). Maybe there is some hope for it yet, but I won’t hold my breath as long as RC and its ilk persist.

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    WoodNFish (24):

    That’s not exactly the dialogue I had in mind. (‘stupidty‘ & ‘fraud by any other name‘)

    By my read, Judy wasn’t accusing anyone of fraud. And many of the commenters on this thread (and elsewhere) seem to be applauding her respectful tone and civility, as much as anything else. How about taking note of that?

  • Carbonicus

    Judith – I engaged you in a spirited but respectful discussion at the GA Env. Conference last August in Savannah immediately following the “Climate Change” panel on which you participated with Craig Idso, the GA Climatologist, and others.  We respectfully disagreed on the science and various and sundry elements of the scientific debate.  I am not a scientist but a professional in the environmental industry who has taken years to study and understand climate physics, science, etc. before forming my opinions.

    This comment is not about the science.

    This comment is to say “thanks” for having the courage to speak out on this subject. I know that you believe in the AGW hypothesis, but with the events that have occurred between the conference last August and today, you are among the very few AGW hypothesis supporters who have had the courage to call a spade a spade.  And for doing so, I know you’ve taken some flack from the AGW community.

    As a scientist, you understand that the scientific method isn’t about “consensus”. Science doesn’t do “consensus”, politics does.  Science is about a quest for knowledge, and proper, rigorous application of the scientific method does not discourage or run from skepticism, IT REQUIRES IT, and science advances BECAUSE OF IT.  (For you readers who doubt this, go back 500 years and research the Copernican dustup with the Catholic church.)  

    You are among the very few qualified scientists indeed who have had the courage to point out where the IPCC, the CRU scientists and others who support AGW theory have crossed the line of scientific integrity. And for that, I salute you – even as I continue to disagree with your interpretation of climate science – empirical and modeled.

    If you happen to be in Savannah again in August, I am going to seek you out and shake your hand.  And if that doesn’t work, since my office is within 15 minutes of yours, I’m going to buy you lunch.

    Note to all other scientists who support the AGW hypothesis: answer the hard questions, give us facts and empirical evidence (not ad hominem attacks and over-reliance on computer models that continue to diverge from empirical reality) and be scientists, not political activists.  Judith Curry has set the bar for you. Instead of giving her flack, I suggest you follow her lead. And if you don’t, do not be surprised when the objective science, cost/benefit justified bus leaves tread marks on your back.

  • Niels A Nielsen

    Well Steve, maybe someone should take his own medicine and proceed with far greater care for the facts:

    Steve Bloom Jul 7 2008, 08:16 PM Post #24:
    “So you believe Lucia Liljegren, hmm, monsoon? FYI she’s a mechanical engineer with zero education relevant to climate science, and as she says on her blog just started learning statistics a few months ago. Unsurprisingly she completely screwed up this analysis but, since the point of blogs like hers is to provide talking points for people like you, won’t ever admit the mistake.”

  • Steve Bloom

    On the subject of IPCC reform, as Judy is well aware there’s an active InterAcademy Council process to consider that.  Does she have some reason to think her views won’t be taken into account?  This is speculation based on the timing of her “going public” on this stuff, but is it possible that Judy asked to be put on the IAC review panel and was turned down?  Inquiring minds want to know.

  • Brooks Hurd

    Thank you Judy, for an excellent discussion of the issues. 

    Steve Bloom, Please consider the fact that your phrase below applies to all of us – to you as well.

    “I would suggest that you need to proceed with far greater care for the facts.”

  • http://www.climatedata.info Ron

    I just hope that other climate scientists follow Judy Curry’s example and have the courage to speak honestly about their reservations about the IPCC process.

  • Craig Goodrich

    Sorry, Keith, this is mostly another congratulation for an excellent interview, and an appreciation of Dr Curry for her willingness to face and speak out on a number of unpleasant facts — insofar as evidence that the world is not about to end is “unpleasant”.

    But the most unpleasant fact, from the point of view of warmists, is that the general public is coming to understand that by and large, the journalists — and even the bloggers, for whom standards of accuracy are much higher — are pointing towards the UN panel’s AR4 report as proof positive, without ever actually having read it.  It cheerfully attributes unprecedented (?) global warming to carbon dioxide, while admitting that understanding of such phenomena as solar activity and the hydrological cycle is low to very low.

    Now, it’s easy to say “weather is not climate” (except, of course, in the case of disasters conveniently attributed to AGW), but in fact it IS; “climate” is usually defined as a 30- or 60-year average of weather.  And when you (or Dr Curry) peek out the window in the morning, do you say “Whoops!  T-Shirt! Carbon dioxide is up”  or do you say “Ugh!  Another rainy weekend!”

  • Willis Eschenbach

    Steve Bloom Says:
    April 23rd, 2010 at 2:39 pm
    <blockquote><em>Montford (or “the Bishop” to use Judy’s familiar term) misses the point entirely.  All Judy had to do was ask for these details before opening her mouth.  Specifically, she could have asked to what extent they looked at those other two papers and their reason for not doing so if indeed they did not.  But engaging in conspiracy theorizing with the likes of Montford is is ever so much more fun.
    Judy, you say you want other scientists to take you seriously on this stuff.  If so, I would suggest that you need to proceed with far greater care for the facts. </em></blockquote>
    Steve, since you are commenting on this, perhaps you could tell us the names of the other “two papers” that they considered. I mean, since you know that there are only two other papers that they considered, surely you must know the names …

  • RayG

    I took the liberty of posting on the NYTimes DotEarth blog  your terrific interview of Prof. Curry on the theory that it is sometimes better to ask forgiveness than permission.  I hope that this will help to  open a few more believers’ minds.  It is at community.nytimes.com/comments/dotearth.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/04/21/geological-society-presses-on-climate-threat/?sort=oldest&offset=2

  • http://scienceblogs.com/stoat/ William Connolley
  • Judith Curry

    Steve Bloom, for the record i did not ask to be on the IAC examining the IPCC, and to my knowledge I was not nominated or otherwise considered.  In any event, i much prefer to provide an “outsiders” perspective; at this point i don’t have much faith in the “process.”

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    Judith Curry,

    Is it true that you sent Michael Mann e-mails that you would not want to be made public?

  • Tim

    Willis, I had the same thought when I read Steve’s two comments which are a bit odd when taken together.
    So yes, Steve Bloom, let’s have it. Don’t be coy. You asked the question “What were those?”
    Later you then say:
    “Specifically, she could have asked to what extent they looked at those other two papers and their reason for not doing so if indeed they did not.  But engaging in conspiracy theorizing with the likes of Montford is is ever so much more fun. ”
    Oh, so “those” are “two.” Cool. Let’s have it. Actually, Judith should be able to tell us as well because you state that she could have asked about those two papers too!  Maybe this is common knowledge, please enlighten us.

  • http://myprofile.cos.com/manuelo09 Oliver K. Manuel

    I lost faith in the process too, Judith, about 34 years ago in April of 1976.

    The late Dr. Dwarka Daw Sabu and I went to Washington, DC to present a paper at the AGU meeting, showing that our Sun is the remnant of a supernova that gave birth to the solar system.

    Although the data and our conclusions were published [e.g., Science 195, 208-209 (1977); Nature 277, 615-620 (1979);  Meteoritics 15, 117-138 (1980);  Geokhimiya (12) 1776-1801 (1981)] and confirmed by later measurements [Meteoritics 18, 209-222 (1983); Meteoritics & Planetary Science 33, A97 (1998)], proponents of global warming still assumed that Earth’s heat source is a giant H-fusion reactor instead of the violently unstable remains of a supernova. 

  • Brendan H

    Good interview. The best thing about it is the list of specific issues, rather than the generalised claims that often pass for criticism. Having said that, I offer two caveats:

    1. The issues listed present some concerns about the IPCC as well as some scientific matters. The validity of these concerns is not confirmed by merely stating them, but by further investigation.

    2. Climate sceptics will spin these concerns into conclusions that suit them. Nothing wrong with that, but the concerns raised by Judith, and sceptics’ use of those concerns, are separate issues.

    I understand that the IPCC is currently looking at its processes, but I don’t know whether this will address the points raised by Judith.

  • Carddan

    Dr. Curry,  thank you for your honesty and effort to “bridge the gap”.   I had to chuckle when I read a blog post of yours saying you were a “moderate warmer”.  I guess that would make me a “moderate skeptic”.  Both “camps” have become sensitive to having their integrity impugned.  The pursuit of “science” above “agenda” is what is necessary.  I disagree with you on many things, but I trust you.  I also believe that learning “truth” is more important than being “right”.

  • LC


    Willard (36)

    What is that? Some kind of threat? Oh very good. Thank you so much for your devastatingly insightful and intellectual response to the matter being discussed.

  • Steve Bloom

    Re #37:  Pay attention, Tim.  Two papers have been named elsewhere.  Ask Willis if you need help finding the reference.

    Re #38:  Perfect in every way!  You will stand forever with the true giants of science, Judy.

    Re #41:  Pay attention, LC.  This refers to a prior comment of Judy’s(elsewhere).
     

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    Willard (36):

    I, too, thought your comment was inappropriate. It also has nothing to do with the content discussed in the Q & A. That said, I am aware that Michael Mann said this is a reference to a statement made by Michael Mann in the recent Discover interview:

    “Did you ask Judith to turn over her e-mails from the past three years? Once she does that, then she’s in a position to judge other scientists. Until she does that, she is not in a position to be talking about other scientists. Glass houses. Look, I’ll just say this. I’ve received e-mails from Judith that she would not want to be made public.”

    If that was a threat, LC, (41)–and I’m not saying it was– it would appear that Judy does not scare easily.

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    Keith, did you ask about the word ‘corruption’?

    “Corruption” can refer (often does in the sciences) to problems with the process, to imperfect data or data handling, to a need for improvement in clean and usable results).

    Or

    http://www.google.com/search?q=define%3Acorruption

    My guess is this word is being read the first way by the scientists, but the dictionary way by the nonscientists.

    Clarification would be most helpful.

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    Steve (42):

    Pay attention: Take the snide attitude somewhere else, where it’s better appreciated. It’s wearing thin on me and I have a high tolerance level, being from New York. Can you just engage instead of hectoring, for a change. Please?

  • jerry

    I want to thank Dr. Curry.  If it existed, if I were so empowered, I would award Dr. Curry the Feynman Prize for Scientific Integrity.

  • jerry

    I find the business of the embarrassing emails odd and weirdly out of time.

    Since Lewinsky?  Since Bork?  Many of us have been talking about how easily it is for emails to be revealed, to be subpoenaed, to be sought for in testimony.

    Many of us have worked in government positions, in academic positions, for corporate masters in which we are explicitly told that emails will be retained, can be reviewed, and are grounds for termination.  Many of us work under formal email policies governing email and reminding us that emails created on company time are the companies, or on taxpayer funded projects are the taxpayers.  And that’s where “many of us” included Ph.Ds, engineers, techs, managers, and other professionals, not just the hoi polloi.

    So I truly do not understand Mann’s and Jones’ or anyone else’s shock that their emails were released.  Nor do I understand their indignation that other people are making hay of the unwise statements that Mann and Jones’ et. al., regularly populated their emails with.

    I find that as whiny and immature as is their defense that all their bestest friends also write school girl toned emails so we should just deal with it.

  • Steve Bloom

    Let me see if I have this straight:  Keith “Church of Al Gore” Kloor thinks *I’m* being too snide?  History aside, if you want to state a standard and adhere to it yourself, I’ll be fine with it. 

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    Keith,

    I was wondering why you did not ask, and so I asked.  That was a question, not a comment.  An honest question, asked in good faith.  A good question, I might add, as it is related the “ousider” perspective we’re being sold. 

    I tell you “rotten apple”: any name coming to mind?    Michael Mann is closely related to the topic at hand.  If Judith Curry had a story with Michael Mann, it might be interesting for everyone to be disclosed.

    I am in no way defending Mann by asking this question.  Why would I defend Mann exactly?   More to the point, I wonder why this should be construed as a threat, or why I should think that scaring Judith Curry should be appropriate to open up discussion.  Had she given any evidence that this kind of question should scare her?

    Besides, she can dismiss it, as everything else I said so far.

    ***

    If that explanation does not suffice for you to consider my question as appropriate, I can contribute two short comments:

    One might find strange that the public interest regarding the issues raised by the climategate the same that Judith Curry have been talking about all along.  This “public interest” artifice is an interesting beast, even more than the “corruption” one.  It sounds like “the majority of the climate science “community”". 

    Here’s another comment:

    Corruption of a file renders that file useless.  Is that this metaphor we wish to convey, that the IPCC process is corrupt like a program file?  Corruption of officials means that some people are exploiting a system to their own end.  Is that this metaphor we wish to convey, that the IPCC process is corrupt like a corporate system? 

    I can’t think of other metaphors, and both are unsatisfactory.  IPCC is not a program; if it is a corporate system, corruption means fraud; but there are no frauds. 

    That corruption ringtone sure deserves some thinking.

  • Judith Curry

    Dictionary definition of corruption: impairment of integrity, virtue, moral principle;  departure from the original or from what is pure and correct.

  • Judith Curry


    Willard, I will answer your question since it does illustrate something. I’ve met Mike Mann once, and we have exchanged a few emails. The emails that Mann mentioned in the Discover Magazine interview were from Jan 2006, in the midst of the “hurricane wars.” The reason I know this is what Mann is referring to is that he sent me an email last December, in response to my first essay on climategate that was posted at climateaudit, reminding me that he had helped me out previously, and forwarded a copy of the old email. Now I do not keep my emails longer than a few months, so I no longer have a copy. The gist of the original email was that I was suggesting that RC post a critique of a paper by Bill Gray on the thermohaline circulation and global warming. They suggested that I do a guest post, and I said nobody wants to hear another round of curry vs gray, and that the meteorologists need to be educated by the oceanographers regarding the thermohaline circulation and the multidecadal ocean oscillations. Ray Pierrehumbert did do a post at RC. So I guess Mann thought he could intimidate me with this old email; it didn’t work.

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    Willard (49):

    Your question (36) had no context. LC (41) wondered if it was meant as a threat, not me, which is why I didn’t respond sooner. But I knew the context your question sprung from, so I thought I should provide it. Then I addressed LC and said hypothetically, that if Mann was intending to send Curry a message, it probably wouldn’t work. My main problem with your comment is that it was cryptic without context and unrelated to the issues Judy raised.

    That said, I was wondering when someone would pluck out that “rotten apple” reference that Judy made.

    I’m intrigued by your other two short comments related to how “public interest” and “corruption” are defined. They seem worth taking up to me.

  • Judith Curry

    Regarding my take on what the public is interested in re climategate, this comes from widely reading a range of blogs, talking with a fairly large number of journalists, and reading what must be thousands of emails that i have received from strangers on this topic.  My take on what the public is interested in seems to be not too far from the target, since my posts have gotten some decent attention in blogosphere (and some attention in the MSM).

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    Oh, I see that Judith responded while I was writing my last comment.

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    Judith Curry,

    Thank you for answering that question.

    It’s tough to understand how Mann could hope to intimidate you with the exchange you describe.

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    Steve (48):

    Church of Al Gore was the headline and metaphor of this post from a year ago. But in rereading that, I can see my tone was definitely snide and in any event you’re right in the main: I am not consistent. I’m working on it. Some people definitely bring out my snarkier side. :)

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    When I type “define: corruption” in my G-box it returns this:

    corruptness: lack of integrity or honesty (especially susceptibility to bribery); use of a position of trust for dishonest gain
    putrescence: in a state of progressive putrefaction
    decay of matter (as by rot or oxidation)
    moral perversion; impairment of virtue and moral principles; “the luxury and corruption among the upper classes”; “moral degeneracy followed intellectual degeneration”; “its brothels, its opium parlors, its depravity”; “Rome had fallen into moral putrefaction”
    destroying someone’s (or some group’s) honesty or loyalty; undermining moral integrity; “corruption of a minor”; “the big city’s subversion of rural innocence”
    inducement (as of a public official) by improper means (as bribery) to violate duty (as by commiting a felony); “he was held on charges of corruption and racketeering”
    wordnetweb.princeton.edu/perl/webwn
    Corruption is a 1968 British film directed by Robert Hartford-Davis, from a screenplay by Derek Ford and Donald Ford, and featuring Peter Cushing …
    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corruption_(film)
    Corruption or bastardisation is a way of referring to certain changes in a language. The most common way that a word can be said to be corrupted …
    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corruption_(linguistics)
    Corruption is a text adventure game by Magnetic Scrolls released in .
    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corruption_(video_game)
    In philosophical, theological, or moral discussions, corruption often refers to spiritual or moral impurity, or deviation from an ideal. Frequently, this takes the form of contrasting a pure spiritual form with a corrupted manifestation in the physical world. …
    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corruption_(philosophical_concept)
    Political corruption is the use of legislated powers by government officials for illegitimate private gain. Misuse of government power for other purposes, such as repression of political opponents and general police brutality, is not considered political corruption. …
    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corruption_(political)
    Corruption is a 1933 American film directed by Charles E. Roberts.
    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corruption_(1933_film)
    The act of corrupting or of impairing integrity, virtue, or moral principle; the state of being corrupted or debased; loss of purity or integrity …
    en.wiktionary.org/wiki/corruption
    corrupt morally or by intemperance or sensuality; “debauch the young people with wine and women”; “Socrates was accused of corrupting young men”; “Do school counselors subvert young children?”; “corrupt the morals”
    corrupt – lacking in integrity; “humanity they knew to be corrupt…from the day of Adam’s creation”; “a corrupt and incompetent city government”
    wordnetweb.princeton.edu/perl/webwn

    The keyword seems to be integrity.  Integrity has many facets, that goes from material to spiritual, and almost everything else in-between.

    If I understand Judith Curry correctly, she’s proposing that (depending on where you sit on the fence: important, some) aspects the actual IPCC process could taint the integrity of the climate science.  So considered, this proposition has its merits.  The first that comes to mind is that it might be independent of any consideration about the inquiries.

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    I missed some comments and above chose to interpret Curry’s integrity as correctness, not integrity as morality.  I was wrong.  So Curry’s point is deontological, not epistemic.

  • http://bundanga.blogspot.com/ Sou

    This was mildly interesting although Curry is getting much more attention than she deserves.  She is not contributing anything of substance from what I’ve read of her to date.  I cannot see how anything she has said has advanced our understanding of the climate.  Maybe she reserves that for her scientific papers.  Nor have I read any substantial suggestion from her, for how to improve the process of informing policy makers and the public.
    Her statement in #35 helps me to understand her a bit more:
     “for the record i did not ask to be on the IAC examining the IPCC, and to my knowledge I was not nominated or otherwise considered.  In any event, i much prefer to provide an “outsiders” perspective; at this point i don’t have much faith in the “process.”
    In the field in which I work I have come across many people who much prefer to be on the outside throwing stones than on the inside doing the hard slog.  Their attitude changes markedly if they decide to contribute instead of criticise.
    I’m curious as to why she is implying to the general public that her colleagues in the field are rogues (except perhaps for John Christy who she thinks is a good guy).  And if she is a ‘respected person’ in climate science, why is she backing all those who want to speed up climate change?
    All the rest such as politeness and civility are red herrings.  There are much bigger issues on the table.
    I don’t mind fence sitters who haven’t formed an opinion.  People who work in the field should know better.

  • freespeech

    Judith,

    Could you point me to a peer reviewed biological reference that allows Michael Mann to use tree core proxies that exhibit an inverted relationship with respect to arctic warming? My understanding is that the reason paleoclimatologists use arctic trees is because of the growth response that warming would bring. I’m sure an eminent climate scientist like Micahel Mann would not use trees with the direct opposite response to warming in his studies without substantial biological evidence of its validity. I’ve tried to find a reference, however, and couldn’t. It must be pretty well known within the climate science community since I have asked the question several times at RealClimate and they keep deleting my post. I can only presume that the eminent scientists behind that web site think my question too trivial to answer or expose to their readers.

  • Judith Curry

    Re “bad apples”, one of Pachauri’s earlier comments about climategate was “every group has its bad apples”, a statement made to defend IPCC and not the bad apples.  Google climategate bad apples and I see 22,000 hits.

    So are there fundamentally bad apples in this group, or did aspects of the IPCC process (including the attendant politicization, ever accelerating war with skeptics) lead to this behavior?  This is a question that that I don’t think there is an objective answer to, and again I am suggesting to change the focus from named individuals to tightening up the assessment process and making research results and data more transparent.

    With regards to my use of the  word corruption, there are elements of both correctness and integrity.    The individual violations that you might list are issues of correctness; the integral of the violations associated with the paleoclimate chapters add up to an integrity violation associated with a group of scientists  using the IPCC as a platform to push their own agenda and papers and squash other views.

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    I’m glad to see Judy is engaging with readers in this thread. Part of the problem I feel with the larger debate within the climate science community is that people are talking past one another–be it in a blog or a magazine interview.

    So in that spirit of full engagement, I encourage Gavin Schmidt, Michael Mann et al to come on over and have a chat with Judy on the issues she has elaborated on in this Q & A. It was Gavin’s comment, after all, that partly inspired me to ask Judy for an elaboration.

    This post is bouncing all around in the blogosphere, so I am fairly certain they are aware of it. How about it guys?

  • Judith Curry

    Sou, if you check my c.v.#mce_temp_url# (the online version is about 2 years out of date, but you will get the idea), you will see what my published contributions to climate research have been, you can judge for yourself as to whether or not you think they are significant.   I am not one of the big shots in climate research, but neither am i a small fry (I’m sort of a “medium fry”)

    You will also see that over the past two decades I have been actively engaged in national and international boards and committees in terms of program review and development (including the World Climate Research Programs, the National Research Council, NOAA, NASA), so I have had “a seat at the table”.    In recent years I have tried to stay away from being part of groups that are producing some sort of consensus report, since my opinions tend not to fit very well in the mainstream consensus, and i don’t see any value to me personally (and often singlehandedly) in trying to influence a consensus from within. If I were asked to chair the IAC, well that is something that i would consider. But I am very far away from anyone that they would ask to participate, and most particularly I am not a member of the U.S. National Academy of Science, which is presumably the club from which such participants from the U.S.  would be drawn.

    So I am provoking the consensus from the blogosphere instead. While i get some attention from the blogosphere (which isn’t terribly relevant in itself, and I am not personally an attention junkie), I don’t know to what extent I am actually influencing my colleagues (surprisingly few of them have emailed me about my essays).  My “building trust” essay that was published at aip.org has probably been the piece that has received the greatest attention from my colleagues, it remains to be seen as to whether this has any influence.

    Maybe my greatest influence on my peers has been on scientists that are outside the climate research community, who thought that climate research was all postnormal and highly politicized; I think that I have made some headway in restoring some sense of credibility of climate science in their eyes.

    So I have no idea what if any impact I might have, but I am worried about the credibility of climate science as a field, and for better or worse I am speaking out. This past year was a bad year in terms of applications of good students to pursue graduate study in climate research; I’ve heard this from a number of different universities.   There are always year to year fluctuations and I have no idea how to explain them, but i do note that the application pool a year ago was outstanding, best we’ve seen in over a decade, but this year the pool was very weak.  Whether or not this is a climategate impact i don’t know.  But this is the sort of thing I worry about and what motivates me.

  • Judith Curry

    freespeech, i share your frustration on this

  • RichieRich

    In Gavin’s original comment, he writes

    “Anyone making accusations of corruption…needs to be sure that they adequately document the evidence for their allegations”.

    Don’t know whether folks here agree, but it seems to me that, in her replies to Keith, Judith has gone at least some way to doing so.

    In his second comment, Gavin writes that

    “the only issue of major importance is whether the IPCC reports give a reasonable summary of the state of the science …Issues of process are of interest only insofar as they affect the science assessment”.

    This slightly concerns me.  Is it really OK to knowingly violate IPCC process  by, say, including a paper only “in press” by the deadline, if it adds to the summary of the state of the science?  Surely, for all sorts of reasons, its the right thing to do to respect agreed processes.  Otherwise aren’t we inching towards means justifying ends?

  • Judith Curry

    Richie Rich, i agree with you that it is not OK to knowingly violate IPCC processes.   Gavin’s statement seems to be a clear “ends justifying means”.   While each of the individual violations are arguably minor, it is their integral that has compromised that section of the IPCC WG1 report.  Many of these issues came up in the review process, but the authors were allowed to reject the comments they didn’t like, using statements of “reject” with little explanation.  And the review editors let this pass.

    Overall for the WG1 report (outside of the paleoclimate chapter), i don’t think there were a lot of process violations that skewed the report in a major way (at least I haven’t seen these reported).  With regards to the WG2 and WG3 reports, these have received less attention than the WG1 report, but I am seeing increasing evidence that suggest that there may be substantial flaws in these reports.

    The credibility of the IPCC reports in many ways was based on the process: thousands of scientists, peer reviewed literature, extensive review process.    Whether or not the IPCC FAR conclusions are robust, well time will tell.  But in the short term, the public credibility of the IPCC reports depends on a robust and enforced process.  The IPCC needs to tighten up its processes and enforce them.

  • James Evans

    Dear Judith Curry,
    Many thanks for your thoughts on these important issues. It’s so immensely refreshing to find a scientist who will engage with these concerns, instead of simply dismissing them.
    And this for me is the most serious issue at the heart of all the concerns surrounding the CRU and the IPCC – why aren’t other scientists outraged by what is being revealed? Why is there such an incredible silence from the scientists? Those of us who work in non-scientific spheres are aghast at the appalling sloppiness and the childish political manoeuvering. Why aren’t other scientists upset about this?
    There is one possible reason for this which is disturbing to contemplate – the only reason that climatology has come under such detailed public scrutiny is because climate science is being used as a reason to completely re-engineer the world economy.
    If a similar amount of scrutiny were cast on other areas of science, would we find similar problems? Is that why no scientist will speak out against what, to the rest of the world, seems like appalling behaviour?
    Thanks,
             James Evans

  • Lewis

    Keith, I admire, and have always admired, your openness to contrary views and this is exactly what Professor Curry is about and, indeed, what science is about . You and I would probably disagree on most things but you allow that. Even though this is not a dispassionate subject ( for some, even, ‘existential’ ), just because of that, the importance of being dispassionate is essential. Clarity should come from the depth of the issue!

  • Lewis

    I would like to say, also, Judith Curry’s’ decency and courage in this affair will, I believe, produce great fruit ( or if that’s to ‘fruity’ ), rewards, as all respectable leadership does. I commend her for it!

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    > Judith Curry …
    > the integral of the violations associated with
    > the paleoclimate chapters add up to an integrity
    > violation associated with a group of scientists
    > using the IPCC as a platform to push their own
    > agenda and papers and squash other views.

    This is terribly vague and tars everyone with the same brush, letting people imagine who is meant.

    This could refer to the authors of “the paleoclimate chapters” — which chapters? who?

    This could refer to “a group of scientists” (who?), not authors, whose work was cited by “the paleoclimate chapters” authors?

    Keith, may I suggest you let Dr. Curry answer that question? Since Dr. Curry has specified that by corruption she means actual malfeasance, using the dictionary definition, this goes to the core of a scientist’s integrity — once we know who she’s talking about.

    These accusations resemble the ones already made against several people in public, that have already been investigated and cleared.

    It seems that new people are being accused here?

    Those not accused deserve the courtesy of being ruled out.

    Academia does have procedures for dealing with such accusations if they are made specifically.

  • Lewis

    Some of the commentary ( Willard, Steve Bloom etc) but, also, those using silly words like ‘fraud’ etc,  has an unpleasantness which credits nobody and does a disservice to all. Maybe, Keith, a certain amount of moderation would be helpful. Just uncalled for.

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    Lewis (71):

    I have already served notice several times in the thread. I’m trying to stay on it. Thanks.

  • Lewis

    Thanks for the quick response – I just hate ‘rabbling’ ( an old Scottish term for ‘burning’ out the Church of England! )

  • Steve Bloom

    I believe the substantive reasons Judy hasn’t gotten much of a response from colleagues are:

    1)  She’s mainly complaining about stuff (the modern temp record and recent paleoclimate) that’s a) not faintly related to her field and b) not plausibly sufficiently erroneous to change the big picture.

    2)  The idea that oceanic circulation changes might have made recent warming appear sharper than is actually the case is certainly plausible although yet to be demonstrated, but turning that into an argument for reduced sensitivity is much less so.  

    Taken together, her complaints about the science seem to amount to no more than an argument from personal incredulity a la Lindzen.  Tellingly Judy seems to grant Lindzen far more credibility than is warranted by his truly execrable 20+ year record of increasingly strained (and thoroughly rejected) arguments for reduced sensitivity.

       

  • Lewis

    I’m sorry to say but i don’t think people understand what ‘corruption’ might mean in this context, probably because they’re wrongly thinking of political corruption. To put it quite simply, in climate science, the checks and balances that we should normally expect, may not be quite right: This is not to imply any particular ‘malfeasance’ on behalf of any particular person but a general ‘process’ problem. Perhaps, even a ‘cultural’ problem. No one, seriously, has implied lying or direct dishonesty on the part of any ‘climate scientist’ – despite what you might believe:  you can serach both Steve Macntyres and Andy Watts site and, despite the comments  ( which all bloggers must suffer! ), there is no article or statement that even implies as much. Corruption, in this case, is a matter of ‘mind’ and, as such, in the opinion of many, well attributed!

  • Lewis

    Steve Bloom, if you read the Q&A accurately, you might see that her critique is really about issues of  ‘process’ or ‘checks and balances’,  as I put. If you want to talk about the science, then it would be best to find a thread that discusses that. May I recommend Climate Realist or even, Audit ( I noticed you there once or twice, I think )

  • Waldo

    What I always have to wonder when I come to blogs like this is why do the denialists automatically fall in line behind anyone, even people with tangential credentials, whenever they criticize organizations like the IPCC et al?  There are any number of scientists who work with governmental organizations with impeccable credentials and the science to back them up, but these collide-a-scape ignores or derides.  But the minute a scientist, no matter if she works in the climate science field or not, criticizes AGW, the deniosphere leaps all over her. 

    Are you cherry-picking who you chose to believe, collide-a-scape?  Or do you only believe people when they meet your a priori beliefs?

  • Judith Curry

    Hank Roberts, see Lewis #75, he stated it very well.

    Steve Bloom, you point out the problem very vividly. Climate researchers (particularly IPCC authors) think that only a select group of scientists (all of whom are insiders and collaborate with each other) have sufficient knowledge to do assessments and criticize the research.  Now Steve Bloom further parses this so that  a climate researcher with my record is not a credible critic of something outside my own specialty, in this case  the surface temperature record and paleo reconstructions.    It is exactly this kind of argument that got us into to trouble, with groups of insiders assessing their own work and squashing anyone or any research that attempts to challenge it.

    Putting together a global surface temperature record and paleo reconstruction aint rocket science:  alot of painstaking work, but no leaps of genius required.  Anyone with a B.S. degree in a technical field can read the original scientific papers describing how this was done.  And anyone with a technical background that has done their homework by reading journal articles and doing some work in terms of analyzing the data has qualified themselves to comment and critique the science.   Its about the argument, not about the person making the argument.    We need broader challenges to climate research (e.g. skepticism) to ensure its robustness.  For these data sets, challenges from statisticians are especially welcome.

    Now this thread is obviously not the place to debate the scientific issues.  The issue at hand is the public credibility of the surface temperature records and paleo reconstructions.  If climate scientists aren’t questioning these datasets, then i have to wonder what the heck is going on.  Particularly since the CRU emails were exposed, I am certainly not accepting these data sets as flawless, and since i use these data in my research, i want a better understanding of the uncertainties and a better dataset. Towards this end, I am involved with a group that is taking a very hard look at the historical temperature records.

  • Judith Curry

    Waldo, check out collide-a-scape’s blogroll:  this is a list of warmist sites, with skeptical sites like climateaudit and wuwt nowhere to be found.  I am a climate researcher that during the period from Feb 2007 through Nov 19 had been making public statement endorsing the findings of the IPCC and trying to convince people to accept their findings as the best available owing to the rigors of the IPCC process.

    To the extent that this exchange is interesting, it is because Curry and Kloor (to the extent that it is appropriate for me to characterize what Keith is up to) are challenging and questioning some key tenets of the climate establishment that they had previously endorsed.

  • Judith Curry

    Steve Bloom, re Lindzen you may have missed my critique of Lindzen and Choi over at climateaudit.

    Yes I am critical of Lindzen’s research related to water vapor and cloud feedback and climate sensitivity.  Yes I am appalled at some of the public statements he has made, especially his presentation at last year’s Heartland Conference.  And yes, in my continuing efforts to force my mind to stay open and be fair, I have to admit that as of late (since last November) Lindzen has made some good points.  He has toned down his rhetoric and has become much more effective.  We should think about what he has to say, then respond to his critiques.   His credibility with the public is increasing, while the credibility of the climate establishment is decreasing.  Like it or not.

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    Well, I should say I have never endorsed anyone’s views, though as Judy implies, it’s not hard to guess what they might be based on my background (nearly ten years as an editor at Audubon magazine), and yes, the blogroll.

    But I am a journalist first, not an advocate. And as some advocates such as Steve Bloom and Tim Lambert have learned, I take serious issue with orthodoxies of the environmental movement and the take-no-prisoner style of some AGW climate bloggers, such as Joe Romm.

    Thus the three aforementioned inviduals have stated their disregard (which is putting it kindly) for the content that appears on this blog. At the end of the day, what concerns me most as a professional journalist is how the publications I work for (such as Science and Nature) regard me, and I am happy to say, they are not in the least influenced by what Joe Romm or Tim Lambert think of me.

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    OK, so is it fair to say this would sum up?

    “… This is not to imply any particular ‘malfeasance’ on behalf of any particular person but a general “˜process’ problem. Perhaps, even a “˜cultural’ problem. No one, seriously, has implied lying or direct dishonesty on the part of any “˜climate scientist’ ….”

    If so — well, I pointed to links for the AR5 process over at Stoat’s thread. Why not go there and make the AR5 process the focus?

    That’s something we should all be able to do together, eh?

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    Hank, my take is that Judy’s criticism is broader than that. For example, as far as Stoat is concerned, he’s been promising for some time he would address Judy’s tribalism critique, but he keeps avoiding it.

  • Judith Curry

    Well i would disagree somewhat about the lying or dishonesty part, there have been some accusations of that (credible or not).  But lying is not a crime, and there is no apparent scientific misconduct.

  • Judith Curry

    Hank, I dropped by at Stoat.   I am happy to wade into hostile waters and engage in a dialogue.   But the level of discourse at Stoat on this  was what I would expect from WUWT (at least at WUWT, there is some signal amidst the noise in terms of interesting critiques or questions).  If you you would like to have a blogospheric discussion on how to improve the AR5, I would suggest a different blog.

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    What Lewis stated in #75 is not the same thing as what Judith Curry stated in #50, since the integrity that Lewis describes has no moral basis, but an epistemic one.  It relates to something like best practices and governance.  This relates to the IPCC, not its researchers, at least not as directly as the two past inquiries. 

    And so we should preserve the integrity of the scientific process.  Of course, of course.  How can we be against that?  Pretty legitimate, but a bit bland.  Maybe that explains why questions about the integrity of the scientific process are framed as questions of corruption.  As Grumbine asks: is this science?  Perhaps, if we consider the science of public relations.

    Take for example the “about the argument, not about the person making the argument” stance.  We must observe that, reading the interesting interview casually, Judith Curry does not seem to maintain anything that has not been said by Steve McIntyre.  In fact, I surmise that it would take an effort to distinguish the two positions, at least regarding best practices and governance questions. 

    So the main merit of Judith Curry’s position is that maybe for the first time we see a researcher in the “climate science “”community”" endorsing Climate Audit’s stance in such a broad way.  And this is good, as Steve McIntyre sure makes something interesting points, at least regarding best practices and governance questions.  It would be improbable otherwise anyway.

    This endorsement does have an impact.  There are good appeals to authority, and there are bad ones.  Steve Bloom says it’s a bad one.  I think it’s a good one, and don’t think his reason is a valid one.  In any case, the fact that we can question someone’s authority is not always wrong.

    And with authority comes questions of credibility, a concept Judith Curry just introduced in the discussion.   Another interesting concept that would deserve discussion, which could arguably be both civilized and unpleasant.

  • Steve Bloom

    Responses to Judy:

    You’re more than entitled to raise questions about issues outside your field, but when you argue against the consensus within another field you’ve got a much higher bar to leap than someone in that field would, especially when you haven’t provided peer-reviewable evidence for your views.

    If you , Peter and whoever else you’re working with come up with improvements to interpretation of the surface record, that’s great.  Given the nature of the record there are guaranteed to be differences of interpretation, but I’m sure we’ll both be surprised if you find anything fundamentally wrong with prior work.  Of course the Met Center proposal is a good idea, although I do wonder if the extra precision resulting from it will be worth the delay in results from whatever doesn’t get funded as a consequence.

    Re Lindzen, it sounds as if you may not have read his WSJ Earth Day diatribe.  I see no evidence of an improvement.  

  • Judith Curry

    Willard, I just posted this over at Stoat, who thinks I am at war with Mann and in McIntyre’s camp.  Both are just ludicrous.   I am staking out territory on this issue that is very different from both Mann and McIntyre.  But I have to say that both Lindzen and McIntyre have made some valid points in the last few months.  In terms of aligning myself with anyone, I can’t think of anyone making public statements on this issue that I am in 100% agreement with on this.  Although I have found statements by von Storch, Hulme, Ravetz, Schneider, Pielke (Jr and Sr) that are provocative and provided food for my thoughts.

    posted over at Stoat:

    Hank Roberts directed me over here. I do want to clarify one thing. I have met Mike Mann exactly once, we both served on a little hurricane committee for an insurance company. My emails to and from Mann (with one exception, if my memory serves me correctly) have been few in number and have involved group discussions with a number of individuals being cc’ed. As far as I can tell, the only time that I have mentioned Mike Mann by name in the blogosphere or in an interview was a brief mention in the DIscover Magazine (if i have mentioned him in the blogosphere it was certainly pre climategate). WIth regards to McIntyre, I have met him twice i think (once when he visited georgia tech at my invitation), had one or two phone conversations, and we have exchanged several emails. Posing this whole issue in terms of Mann vs McIntyre and people siding with one or the other is just ludicrous, and it is particularly ludicrous with regards to myself. If I appear to be siding with McIntyre, please ask yourselves why this might be, and what I might possibly have to gain by doing this. Please try to break out of this mann vs mcintyre rut and think about the broader issues.

  • http://nigguraths.wordpress.com Shub Niggurath

    Dr Curry
    There are a good number of people who feel that if they can shake the words “malfeasance”, “corruption” from your present vocabulary – they would consider it as a ‘victory’.

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    Judith Curry,

    Agreeing with the criticisms made McIntyre regarding governance and best practices does not entail that you “side against Mann”.  I just acknowledged that you are not interested by Mann, so why talk about him now?  I fail to see how the testimony about the contacts you have with Mann or McIntyre can be relevant here.  In any case, “siding with McIntyre” does not imply you “side against Mann”, and the converse is also not untrue.

    As to the question why you might appear as “siding with McIntyre”, well I guess you’d have to read the interview.  Please consider your list of issues.  When you speak about the “public interest”, I really think we can replace by “Climate Audit”.  This does not preclude that the public could not be also interested, of course.  Maybe it’s just my own nominalistic stringencies.

    Please don’t make me “side” with William Connolley.

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    For the record: I’ve emailed RealClimate and invited the contributors to engage in a dialogue with Judy over here.

    Or perhaps one of them would prefer to take up her critique in a post at their site, which I would understand. In that case, I’m sure Judy would be open to moving this discussion over there and I would  be happy to see that.

  • http://scienceblogs.com/stoat/ William Connolley

    @KK: well, while I’d like to write up the Tribalism stuff, I have nothing terribly exciting to say, so am not in a hurry.

    @JC: I mailed you this, but you’ve proposed “Jones 1998 and Osborn and Briffa 2006″ as interesting. Could you clarify exact refs for these, and perhaps why? Other stuff: as I said at Stoat, I think you’re quite vague and broad-brush about a lot of your accusations. They would be better if carefully written down clearly. Also, I don’t recall saying you were in McI’s camp. Which text are you referring to?

  • L

    If saying ‘no one’ has accused this or that ‘climate scientist’ of ‘malfeasance’ or ‘lying’ is objected to, all I can say is that, those whom I respect and read, McIntyre and Anthony Watts, have, as far as I remember, not done so (to repeat, I do not hold them responsible for commentary, any more than I hold Keith responsible, here). If anyone can give a contrary example, as regards those two sites ( which were the only ones I  specifically mentioned ) I will stand corrected!
    But, please, everyone remember, what Judith is talking about is a) ‘process’, and, b) how that affects the confidence of the public in the advice offered. Science, for whatever reason, whether by calumny, as some would have it, or, by ‘malpractice’, as others would, also, have it, has suffered a ‘knock’ – let us envision, let us work out how to correct this!

  • Lewis

    Sorry, Keith, that was meant to be ‘Lewis’!

  • Judith Curry

    William, my source for the specific papers and why i think they are relevant to the UEA investigation is the documents submitted to the Parliamentary Select Committee.  The issues and papers mentioned in these documents are the ones that are of the greatest relevance to the skeptics’ concerns.

    With regards to the “drive by”, i have replied to many many critiques and questions over the past few days.  I do not intend to get into any deep discussions of the science on these threads.

  • Pingback: Judith Curry sticks her neck out [The Island of Doubt] | Death By Cucumber | Great News In No Time

  • Lewis

    Mr Connolley, Being ‘general and broad brushed’ is par for the course. The Q&A has some interestingly, constructive things to say about this. Perhaps reading it ( and Andrew Montford’s book re Wiki ) sharpens ones comment! It does mine!

  • Nathan

    “William, my source for the specific papers and why i think they are relevant to the UEA investigation is the documents submitted to the Parliamentary Select Committee.  The issues and papers mentioned in these documents are the ones that are of the greatest relevance to the skeptics’ concerns.”

    Is this supposed to mean anything? Can you actually state the problem? Or is it secret? Which skeptics? What concerns are of the “greatest relevance”

    This looks suspiciously like some Lyotard would write…

  • http://bundanga.blogspot.com/ Sou

    @ Nathan, I have been through Judith Curry’s statements going back over time.  She prefers to avoid specificity except for suggesting sites like CA and WUWT and similar, pose legitimate (unanswered) questions that climate scientists should answer – implying that legitimate questions haven’t been answered (which in general is not true) and that many questions are legitimate (which to a large degree is also not true). 

    I don’t know what her underlying motives are, except to raise the ire of her colleagues and add to public doubt in the process – all with non-specific innuendo.  Eg her unwillingness to even answer a question about which papers, let alone what might be incorrect in those specific papers.  Her tactics are similar to that of the tabloid media in that she poses rhetorical questions of the nature “have you stopped beating your wife”?

    When and if she raises any legitimate specific concern with evidence to support it I will be happy to consider it.  For the moment all she is saying is that there are questions – but she refuses to elaborate.

    I am looking into her comments in more detail searching for a clue as to what she is on about.  If she gains more traction I’ll post something.  Otherwise there is no reason to give her any more space, time or attention. 

    If she wants to up the enrollments in her undergrad programs she would do well to consider other means.

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    Sou (99) ,

    Why speculate about Judith’s motives? What purpose does that serve?  You also write: “For the moment all she is saying is that there are questions ““ but she refuses to elaborate.”

    I’m assuming you’re referring to her answer in the Q & A on how the IPCC process may have been corrupted? Did you read the six examples in her answer? That seems like a good starter for a wider discussion, no?

  • http://bundanga.blogspot.com/ Sou

    Keith, you want a wider discussion for your blog.  Fair enough – and kudos for trying to pin Prof Curry down on specifics.  But until she cites specifics then wider discussion isn’t possible. 

    For example:
    Which lead authors/contributors have assessed their own work.  Were they the only people who assessed that work?  Which qualified people were excluded from the assessment, if any? If all this took place, what work was under-represented as a result?  If any work was under-represented, does it follow that the report does not fairly represent the state of knowledge in 2006-07?  In what way?

    In what way and to what extent were graphics tailored and uncertainties not expressed.  If it did occur, how many times?  Was it widespread through the report?  Did it make a material difference to the overall report? (Many  laypersons are confused by the over-use of uncertainty by scientists and the IPCC reports rather than the reverse.  They think that scientific uncertainty means ‘we’re not sure’ rather than recognising the use of statistical probability.)

    Violation of deadlines – is this a serious accusation about scientific integrity or is Curry just a stickler for deadlines?  If I’m preparing a publication such as an annual report and something important comes in after the deadline but before the publisher’s close-off date, I’d get into deep strife if I decided against including it. 

    Responding fairly to adverse criticisism – specifics please.  Adverse criticism of whom or what and by whom or what.  Who judges the ‘fairness’ of the response (or the criticism)?

    Evasiveness by the IPCC – specifics please.  In response to what and who?

    Avoidance of FoI accountability – specifics please.

    I hope to see detailed specific answers to the above.  It’s difficult to have wider discussion without the details.

    Motives are useful to give context to her assertions and to try to understand what she is getting at.  Curry has indicated one of her motives is to increase the number of quality applicants who enroll in her class.  Another seems to be because she thinks CA and other blogs haven’t been treated seriously enough.   She thinks they are credible, many others don’t and have rebutted their assertions endlessly.  Curry seems to be saying she wants her fellow scientists to engage more with skeptics than they are already doing.  Perhaps she could lead by example and list the sceptics arguments she thinks have merit and then describe what her response is as a climate scientist.

    She is free to ‘reach out’ all she wants.  But to do so by impugning the integrity of her fellow scientists is not going to win her fans except by the likes of those who want to see that happen.

    If she has anything constructive to offer then let’s see it.  Right now she’s on a destructive path from all I can see.

  • Raven

    I have question for all of those criticizing Dr Curry:

    Why should the consensus scientists be trusted?
    What did they do to earn the trust that they seem to expect?

    I realize that some will try to reverse the onus and claim it is up to me to show why they cannot be trusted.  However, life does not work that way because it is the consensus scientists are the people trying to sell their authority and the public is the buyer. The means they have sell themselves and demonstrate that they are trustworthy. 

    So tell me why should the public buy what the consensus scientists are selling? 

    Keep in mind that the public is not able to analyze the physical evidence themselves so acceptable requires trust.

    Also, not trusting consensus scientists does not mean the skeptical ones are any more trustworthy. A rational person would likely choose the status quo if they think everyone is lying to them for different reasons. So choosing the status quo does not require that skeptics be trusted.

  • Nathan

    Keith

    “Why speculate about Judith’s motives?”

    she asked us to.
    On the blog ‘Stoat’ and above she says

    “If I appear to be siding with McIntyre, please ask yourselves why this might be, and what I might possibly have to gain by doing this.”

    Clearly asking us all to speculate. All of us have asked her why, she doesn’t answer. If she refuses to be specific, that’s all that is left for us confused people, because the substance to the claim is lacking.

  • Nathan

    Sou

    This is an excellent point
    “If I’m preparing a publication such as an annual report and something important comes in after the deadline but before the publisher’s close-off date, I’d get into deep strife if I decided against including it. ”

    Being involved in the publication of geological studies (not journals though) we always change and add material after ‘deadlines’. There’s nothing wrong with it other than it annoys people.

  • freespeech

    Judith wrote:
    “freespeech, i share your frustration on this”

    Isn’t that exactly the point? Your writings indicate that you believe climate scientists need to reestablish trust, and yet here we have a totally egregious example of the behavior of climate scientists. I (and I’m sure others) have pointed out this error at RC on a number of occasions and their reaction has been to delete the comment. I believe a scientist has a proactive responsibility to inform authors and publications of error, in respect of the inverse proxies used by Mann, there was only one action available, calling out the error and requiring either amendment or (if significant) withdrawal of the paper.

    Instead the “eminent scientists” at RC not only prefer to evade, they were happy to host Mann’s cynical “correlations are insensitive of the sign” defense. If they really believe this then they deal a death-blow to pre-temperature record  dendro-climatology, since they now are happy to accept that trees grow faster when they are exposed to a colder climate too.
    My guess is that their actual plan is to delay until Mann [cherry]picks another set of trees and publishes again so they can “move on”.

    Now I am at a loss to explain their actions in any manner other than corruption. They are unable to deal as scientists with their colleagues, even in public. Since that is the case, how can we believe that they behave as scientists behind the curtain of peer review?

    Perhaps Hank Roberts who has come here from his normal RC haunt seeking to tease out a dilution of Judith’s use of the word “corruption” might want to explain this behavior in terms of a scientifically justifiable action?

    From my point of view, these actions alone are sufficient to remove any faith in the actions of these supposed scientists, for the institutions that employ them to question whether they properly represent the level of scientific integrity that they want associated with their “brand” and those publications that have had the misfortune to use them as referees to review the fairness of their judgment.

  • Raven

    Nathan,

    Let’s say a paper which contradicted the lead author’s opinion was a month late. Do you really think that lead author would bend the rules in that case? I would bet that the lead author would be absolutely adamant that rules be followed.

    Rules exist to ensure a level playing field. If they are broken they it shows the process is biased towards the people who are allowed to break the rules. If you are dealing in a less controvesial field then it is probably not a big issue. But in climate science demonstrating that the process is fair should be paramount. That means no rules should be broken.

  • http://bundanga.blogspot.com/ Sou

    Freespeech wasn’t very specific, but perhaps this is what he’s referring to?
    http://scienceblogs.com/stoat/2009/10/tiljander.php

    Might help stop this thread going OT, ie if I’ve correctly identified the allusion.

  • Nathan

    Raven

    Making up stories about what might have happened isn’t the same as documenting things that actually happened.

    Did your example situation actually occur?

    As to this

    “Why should the consensus scientists be trusted?
    What did they do to earn the trust that they seem to expect?”

    That’s an eternal conundrum… Different people require different things to trust other people.

    But science typically works without having to accept things on ‘trust’ – it doesn’t matter if you trust them, the science will either be right or wrong. Trust doesn’t really come into it. Trust only affects the politics.

    Rather than asking if you ‘trust’ the scientists, just look at the science. If you don’t understand the science, then you either need to accept the scientists findings, go and learn the science, speak to someone you do trust about the science, or declare that you don’t know and leave it. If you know the science is wrong, then it is upon you to demonstrate that. That’s how science progresses, that is the process that has served science.

  • Raven

    Nathan,

    You did not answer the question: why should the consensus scientists be trusted? All you did is try to turn it around and say the onus is on me to demonstrate that their claims are wrong.

    It does not work that way. Scientists have something to sell (their beliefs on AGW). The public has to decide whether they wish to buy what they are selling. 

    Selling what they believe would not be so hard of scientists had concrete evidence of their claims. Unfortunately, all they have is a lot of ambiguous and incomplete data which they say confirms their beliefs but  that is not enough.

    The public needs to have confidence that the consensus scientists have done their job diligently and have not let their prejudices colour their interpretation of the data. This means the onus is on scientists to demonstrate their honesty. They have no business demanding that be trusted.

    There will be no resolution of the current impass until scientists accept their obligation and start working to earn the trust of the public instead of whining about the fact that they lost it.

  • http://bundanga.blogspot.com/ Sou

    Raven, as Nathan said, you must decide what information and data to trust.  From what you write, it appears you probably trust opinion pieces from media outlets like Fox News or bloggers on the Sunday Telegraph or the Herald Sun.  If that is the case, why do you trust these sources more than you trust scientific journals?  

    My understanding of science comes from reading scientific papers and scientific articles for the layperson.  I accept that science is shown to be sound through theory and experimentation and observation.  It’s not a matter for the popular press or opinion polls. 

    The only obligation of scientists is to do their research and publish their results.  That is what they do.  Good scientists don’t rely on ‘belief’.  They rely on testing and matching theory and observation to explain phenomena such as the current rise in global temperature, increasing ocean acidification, loss of ice etc. 

    Scientists are not in the business of pandering to your personal opinion of their work.  From what you’ve written the hard evidence does not persuade you in any case.  You may rely on ‘belief’.  Sceptical people question what they read and investigate further to find out what is really happening.  That’s how science works.

  • Judith Curry

    William, the main issue with Oxburgh selection of papers to review is their having ignored the main papers associated with the actual reconstructions (what is perceived by the public to be the “hockey stick”)

    William, the main issue re the selection of papers is that they didn’t examine the main paleo reconstruction papers, which many identify with the “hockey stick”, which is the main issue for the skeptics and that has the highest profile with the public: Science 10 February 2006:”¨Vol. 311. no. 5762, pp. 841 – 844″¨DOI: 10.1126/science.1120514 Prev | Table of Contents | Next The Spatial Extent of 20th-Century Warmth in the Context of the Past 1200 Years Timothy J. Osborn* and Keith R. Briffa GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH LETTERS, VOL. 30, NO. 15, 1820, doi:10.1029/2003GL017814, 2003 Global surface temperatures over the past two millennia Michael E. Mann and Philip D. Jones Jones, P. D., K. R. Briffa, T. P. Barnett, and S. F. B. Tett, High-resolution palaeclimatic records for the last millennium: Interpretation, integration and camparison with General Circulation Model control-run tempera- tures, The Holocene, 8, 455″“471, 1998.

  • http://nigguraths.wordpress.com Shub Niggurath

    “If I’m preparing a publication such as an annual report and something important comes in after the deadline but before the publisher’s close-off date, I’d get into deep strife if I decided against including it. “

    Sou: I completely agree with you. The underlying thought-process is that the ‘something important’ that you refer to, changes or significantly affects many of the conclusions in your annual report, and therefore you dont want to be on the wrong side.

    But what if this important thing, is a paper written by folks you are in touch with? What if, the very importance of the paper is due to the fact it helps you to refute or dismiss certain other conclusions, and you had a hand in or was atleast aware of the special case exceptions being made so that the paper could be cited?

    Since climate science goes every so many years into a paroxysm of certainty-mongering in the form of the IPCC reports and what is in the reports becomes the byword for policy formulation worldwide, it is abundantly clear that certain chapter/s would have read and looked completely different without the special exceptions being made. The IPCC could not have derived its ‘extreme confidence’ in its conclusions.

    Which is why these deadlines are important. As Dr Curry points out, scientists write papers specifically to emerging IPCC report scenarios - this is not science, this is something else.

    As scientists we may be aware that such things happen in many fields around us, but there is nothing encumbant upon us to fold over and accept that as the norm.

  • http://bundanga.blogspot.com/ Sou

    I think you are misunderstanding the purpose of the IPCC report.  It is to report to policy makers on the current state of knowledge.  The reason 190 or so governments chose to collaborate in this unprecedented fashion to establish the IPCC was so that they could make more informed decisions.  The reports come out infrequently, only once every several years (too infrequently in my view).  This means that if new information misses the IPCC report it will be several more years before it gets included in the next one.  Of course policy makers have their own scientific advisers who keep up with the latest scientific papers so it’s not the be all and end all. 

    When I edited publications (once a year publications and once every three year publications) with a deadline there was always a scramble by authors at the last minute, particularly for the three yearly publication.  And for this infrequent publication it was all the more important to make sure that all relevant information was included even if authors submitted past the deadline.  I have no idea if some scientists look to get their papers referenced in the IPCC report or not, I suspect it’s not foremost in their thinking.  However I hope they do keep the IPCC in mind when publishing close to an IPCC deadline.

    I don’t understand the fuss about this.  Was the science distorted because one or more papers missed the deadline but still made the publication?  What is the evidence for this?  Was the report strengthened by allowing one or more papers to be included that would otherwise have missed out?  Were there any other (late) papers that should have been included and would have changed the overall findings as described in the report?

    I get the feeling that some people view this as a footy match with scientists being awarded goals, but only if they kick before the siren goes.  It’s not a game, climate change has much bigger implications.

  • Judith Curry


    Sou, if you are serious about investigating this, you will need to spend some time at the sceptic blogs (esp climateaudit), read their submissions to the Select Committee, contact Steve McIntyre personally. And also contact David Holland d.holland at theiet.org, he has written an essay that documents much of this. And read the CRU emails.
    In the Third Assessment Report, Michael Mann was a lead author on Chapter 2. One of the highest profile things from this chapter was the hockeystick, from Michael Mann’s own publication MBH 98. This reconstruction was a marked departure from what appeared in the 2nd IPCC Assessment Report. I have spoken with John Christy (another lead author for this chapter) about how this happened, and he definitely wasn’t happy about it.
    In the 4th Assessment Report Keith Briffa is a lead author on Chapter 6 Paleoclimate. Briffa has been at the center of one of the biggest controversies in paleoclimate, related to the use and selection of data from tree rings in the reconstructions. The section written by Briffa received a large number of criticisms during the review process, which were not adeuqtely addressed in the review process (again, see McIntyre and Holland). A particular paper at issue that was included in IPCC report in violation of the guidelines was Ammann and Wahl (2007). The fact that the IPCC WGI included Wahl and Ammann, 2007 and not Wegman et al. 2006 or the critical conclusions of NRC 2006 (led by North), shows that the assessment process failed to be “comprehensive and objective” as was required by the IPCC. Specifically with regards to the Wegman Report, this was a paper that had been commissioned by a Committee of the US House of Representatives, peer-reviewed in exactly the same way as NRC 2006, and was read into the House record on 17 July 2006. Wegman was unambiguous in his criticism of the 1998/9 Mann et al. studies. Reviewers requests that the Wegman report be included were denied. A request for an explanation sent sent to Solomon, Overpeck, Pachauriand the IPCC Secretariat has not been answered.
    With regards to graphics being tailored and uncertainties not being expressed,Steve McIntyre has written about this with regards to the paloclimate figures. Even the Oxburgh report mentions this as being a concern.
    Regarding avoidance of FOI accountability, this is very explicit in the CRU emails. Steve McIntyre has written extensively about this. See also David Holland’s document
    Regarding the skeptical blogs, read their arguments and the documentation they provide. Don’t dismiss them because they are in the other “tribe”. And also read the other things that I’ve written to avoid trivializing what I am trying to do. There are some significant and important issues here that deserve further investigation.

  • Judith Curry

    Sou,  there is a “competing” assessment of our current state of the climate knowledge, called the Non-Governmental International Panel on Climate Change.  Which report should the public believe?  The reason that the IPCC has had so much credibility is their PROCESS:  a large group of international scientists, rules and guidelines to insure a fair assessment, use of peer reviewed literature, a rigorous peer review process, and openness and transparency at all steps of the process.  So when these processes are violated, the IPCC risks becoming just another report with no greater legitimacy than the NIPCC in the public’s eyes.  I for one don’t want to see that happen, and I think the self proclaimed masters of the climate science universe that think they are above following these guidelines not only damage their personal credibility but also the credibility of the IPCC.

  • Judith Curry

    While the issue with deadlines might seem to be trivial on the surface, for the IPCC it is important because of the complexity of assessment process that includes consideration of the papers and the text by a group of people with internal reviews, etc.

  • http://bundanga.blogspot.com/ Sou

    Judith, I find it hard to believe you are serious. 

    If you are merely basing your comments on the purported late inclusion of a paper then you would have lost any remaining credibility with me FWIW (which is probably zilch).  (I initially thought you were merely naive, which a lot of scientists are.  But that would make you eminently petty as well, which given your position is harder to believe.)  

    OTOH, are you saying that one or many meaningful critical processes have been ‘violated’ and therefore no aspect of the report is reliable?  

    If you believe some critical processes have been violated please state which ones, just how critically important were these processes, how often were they violated, what impact did this have on the content of the report, what evidence do you have, and why has this not been picked up by anyone else given that the IPCC report seems consistent with the scientific literature, except the more recent literature indicates new information that some projections may be underestimated?

    And finally, given you said you weren’t involved with the 2007 IPCC, how reliable is the information that you do have?

    (I don’t believe you think that too many people either know about or take seriously the ‘NGIPCC’.)

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    Sou,

    All your comments on this thread, starting with the first one (59) have been disparaging and your tone has been dismissive. It seems to me that Judith is making a good faith effort to engage with you–repeatedly–and she’s doing it respectfully. Can you do the same, please.

  • http://bundanga.blogspot.com/ Sou

    Our posts crossed, Prof Curry, and I see you were serious.

    BTW, is this the same Wegman who you think should be given credence?
    http://deepclimate.org/

    Thank you, Mr Kloor.  This exchange has been more illuminating than promised at first. 

  • http://bundanga.blogspot.com/ Sou

    My apologies, Keith.  I’m finding it too difficult to avoid the tone I’ve taken.  I’ll not comment further. 

    Thank you again for your post.  As I said it has been most instructive.

  • Judith Curry

    Sou, I thought your first round of questions reflected a desire for information.  Your later comments don’t reflect this.

    I have seen substantial documentation of the things that I mention (there is plenty provided by the CRU emails, for example), and all of this documentation is publicly available.  I think that these issues should be investigated. If there were no issues here, why would the IAC have been established to investigate the IPCC?

    What i am saying is that in the IPCC assessment report that process is very important (no one at the highest leadership levels in IPCC would disagree with this statement). Mechanisms should be put into place  to minimize process violations.  Where process violations are found, then they should acknowledged and investigated.  

    Unfortunately  in my opinion, there is a very large number of people that prefer the NIPCC to the IPCC.

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    Sou,

    That is not my intent, to dissuade you from commenting. I would welcome you staying active in the thread. But since Judith is really being so responsive, I think the least we owe her is a respectful tone.

    I’m glad to hear you have found the post and ensuing exchange instructive.

  • http://nigguraths.wordpress.com Shub Niggurath

    Mr Sou:
    While I applaud DeepClimate’e open-mindedness, his fishing expeditions to find something wrong about the Wegman Report landed him in some uncomfortable positions which are (to DeepClimate’s credit) visible for everyone to assess.

    It is a shame that Mr Holland might come in for libel if his submission to the Climate Emails Review ( aka Muir panel) be published openly as the other submissions have been.

    In any case, the story is well documented – at CA, in the climategate emails, in Bishop’s book , in Mr Holland’s submission among others.

    Be lead by your nose. :)

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    I just want to say again that RealClimate has a great opportunity to engage with Judy over here. She’s obviously remaining very responsive to the thread.

    At the least, I do hope that they take up the sum of her critique over at their site.

  • Judith Curry

    Sou, its interesting to understand what you find to be credible.  Re the deepclimate post, yes this is the same Edward Wegman.  Here is his biosketch from the wikipedia:

    Edward Wegman is a statistician, a statistics professor at George Mason University, and past chair of the National Research Council‘s Committee on Applied and Theoretical Statistics. He holds a Ph.D. in mathematical statistics and is a Fellow of the American Statistical Association and a Senior Member of the IEEE. In addition to his work in the field of statistical computing, Wegman is noted for contributing to theCommittee on Energy and Commerce Report investigation which inquired into the Hockey stick controversy.

    Deepclimate accuses Wegman of plaigarism.  A very serious charge, that would constitute scientific misconduct.  So what is the actual accusation?  They accuse him of plaigarizing the definition of “social network” from the Wikipedia, and then complain that the word changes that Wegman made pervert the original meaning of the wikipedia definition.  Huh?

    To set the record straight:  a google search of social network definition yields over 18 million hits.  I clicked on a few, and they all seem to agree generally with the wikipedia definition.

    As per the wikipedia article on plaigarism:
    “Plagiarism is presumably not an issue when organizations issue collective unsigned works since they do not assign credit for originality to particular people. For example, the American Historical Association‘s “Statement on Standards of Professional Conduct” (2005) regarding textbooks and reference books states that, since textbooks and encyclopedias are summaries of other scholars’ work, they are not bound by the same exacting standards of attribution as original research and may be allowed a greater “extent of dependence” on other works. However, even such a book does not make use of words, phrases, or paragraphs from another text or follow too closely the other text’s arrangement and organization, and the authors of such texts are also expected to “acknowledge the sources of recent or distinctive findings and interpretations, those not yet a part of the common understanding of the profession.”

    So even if Wegman did copy his definition from the wikipedia (which is extremely unlikely, since the meaning of his definition is slightly different), this is not regarded as plaigarism and as per the wikipedia’s own entry on plaigarism, such commonly held knowledge (i think 18M definitions qualifies as common knowledge) is not something that can be plaigarized.

    Let me say that this is one of the most reprehensible attacks on a reputable scientist that I have seen, and the so-called tsunami of accusations made in regards to climategate are nothing in compared to the attack on Wegman.

    Wegman is very unpopular with the warmists because his 2006 NRC report was very critical of the statistics used by mann et al. in the creation of the hockey stick.  Prior to summer 2006, Wegman had no apparent interest or involvement in climate science or politics.  He was asked to chair this effort by the NRC since he was Chair of NRCs Committee on Applied Statistics.  When asked to explain the greenhouse effect, he really didn’t know anything about the physics of how it worked.  So I don’t think you could have gotten a more unbiased person to do this review.

    To see such a respected academic accused in this way (with the accusations so obviously baseless) is absolutely reprehensible.  And if you read the CRU emails, you will see some very interesting reactions to the Wegman Report.  Too bad they didn’t learn anything from this report.

  • Judith Curry

    Steve McIntyre
    Posted Apr 25, 2010 at 10:13 AM
    Re IPCC and the Wegman Report: after the Lead Authors’ meeting in Bergen in June 2006, they sent out a notice inviting reviewers to submit additional relevant articles, I submitted the Wegman Report (and the North Report). The Wegman Report was not cited, whereas Wahl and Ammann 2007 was (even though it had been severely criticized by Wegman, who stated that it had “no statistical integrity”). A few weeks ago, David Holland learned that the Wegman Report had been excluded by IPCC from their list of articles forwarded to chapter 6 authors. In recent followup with IPCC, they say that they destroyed their correspondence and have no records of what they sent.
    In breach of IPCC procedures (as shown by Climategate emails), Briffa engaged in extensive surreptitious correspondence with Wahl on details of how this section should be written and how he should respond to critics. Based on this correspondence that violated IPCC procedures, Wahl and Briffa inserted a finding in the final draft that was very adverse to our work ““ one that had not been presented in the prior drafts, one that we disagree with strongly and one that we would have objected to strenously. This “finding” has been relied upon the community as somehow discrediting our work, but in reality was inserted by Wahl and Briffa without any external review.
    This email correspondence between Wahl/Ammann and Briffa was precisely what led to Jones’ request to Wahl, Ammann, Mann and Briffa to delete email correspondence pertaining to IPCC and JOnes’ instruction to Briffa to (untruthfully) tell the UEA FOI officer that he did not have any relevant correspondence with Wahl and Ammann.

    posted over at climateaudit on the current thread, of direct relevance to the discussions here.   I’ve read the CRU emails and they are consistent with what  McIntyre is saying.

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    Cites and links:

    http://republicans.energycommerce.house.gov/108/home/07142006_Wegman_Report.pdf
    http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?dbname=109_house_hearings&docid=f:31362.wais

    Suggestion: search for “irrelevant” in the hearing transcript.

    North’s comments on his report, to Dessler’s class, are revealing: http://geotest.tamu.edu/userfiles/216/NorthH264.mp4

    I don’t see how either document produced for the House Committee can be called a peer-reviewed science paper — yes, they were both peer-reviewed in the same way; they weren’t.

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    > severely criticized

    E’n'E? If not, citation please? One of these?

    http://scholar.google.com/scholar?q=wahl+amman+2007+wegman

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts
  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    And in the same transcript:

    “We certainly agree that modern global warming is
    real. We have never disputed this point. We think it is time to put the ‘hockey stick’ controversy behind us and move on.” — Wegman

    And also the hearing transcript:

    RESPONSE FOR THE RECORD OF DR. GERALD R. NORTH [to numbered questions] …
    [Question] 7. Dr. Von Storch testified that the effect of the “decentering” error in the Mann study, which was the basis of the McIntyre and Wegman criticisms, was “very minor.” The NAS study did not refer to “decentering.” How significant was the analysis of “decentering” to the NAS conclusions?

    [North]: I believe Dr. von Storch was referring to the same phenomenon that I described in my response to your question #5. Our committee did consider the effects of decentering, along with other criticisms of the Mann et al methodology, and found that it “does not appear to unduly influence reconstructions of hemispheric mean temperature.”

    ——-
    Look at the actual primary documents!
    The IPCC didn’t incorporate them. There’s
    nothing new, nothing that affects the FAR. There’s nothing to effect the Fifth Report.
    Want to bet they’ll still be submitted again?

    ——-
    Can we all get on with something more interesting now?” http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2006/07/the-missing-piece-at-the-wegman-hearing/

    The IPCC knew this stuff didn’t affect the AR4.

  • Judith Curry


    Hank, both NRC reports were reviewed, for a good summary of the processes and reviewers for both NRC reports, see the laymans guide. I’ve checked the list of reviewers at this site, it is accurate. Note the IPCC selectively referenced aspects of the North Report but not the Wegman Report

  • JamesG

    Nathan
    “If you know the science is wrong, then it is upon you to demonstrate that.”

    This is indeed the crux and is how it all started. A few people had good reason to believe the science was fundamentally wrong, they therefore attempted to get the data the science was based on and were refused, with one feeble excuse after another. We all now know the real reason for this obstruction, which was contrary to journal rules, was admitted by Jones as being because “you only want to find something wrong with it”. A scientist who had confidence in his work would not write that. Hence we really shouldn’t trust him. I don’t want to be grubby but there is actually a lot of money and prestige involved here so we have means, motive and opportunity.

    The trust argument just doesn’t work. It has been made very clear that too many people had just trusted Jones, Mann and all the rest in the clique and that nobody other than complete outsiders had even bothered to do any proper review, or even ask for the data. Now that may or may not be normal for general science but this is science that important policy will be based on so it needs to be held up to a rather higher standard.

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    OK, ‘reviewed’ yes, but–again, always, please–cite and link to original sources.
    People need to be able to look this stuff up.

    You say you checked the list–how? Did you check the cited source? It’s footnoted–pointing to a copy at McKitrick’s site:

    http://www.uoguelph.ca/~rmckitri/research/StupakResponse.pdf

    “[Question] 7. Prior to sending your report to the Committee on Energy and Commerce, was your report peer reviewed, i.e. did someone other than the authors select the reviewers, were reviewers allowed to submit comments anonymously, was someone other the authors involved in deciding whether the authors’ responses were adequate?

    [Wegman] Ans: Our report was not peer reviewed in the sense you ask…..”
    ———————

    Always, it’s best to give primary sources.
    I’m still looking for the original of that pdf; do you have the link for it?

    (It also contains this, which I hadn’t seen:

    [Wegman] “I have known about mixing of gases in the atmosphere since my high school days[fn1]….

    [n1] … an offhand remark I made about carbon dioxide being heavier than air…. was not intended as a serious piece of testimony nor intended to represent my state of knowledge of atmospheric mixing.”
    ——-

  • RichieRich

    Hank Robertss @ 127

    I wonder if it makes sense to suggest that the Wegman Report should have been peer reviewed.  Wegman is, by all accounts, a leading statistician and, as I see it, his role was to act as a sort of belated peer reviewer of Mann’s work.  That is to say, Wegman can be thought of as the sort of reviewer that the journal editor should ideally have chosen to review Mann’s paper in the first place i.e. someone with the competence to comment knowledgeably on Mann’s choice of statistical methods.

    I’m not even clear by whom Wegman could have been peer-reviewed.   An even more leading statistician?  If so should that even more leading statistician have had their review peer reviewed by a more leading statistician still…

  • JamesG

    Hank
    If peer review in this field means the same as the CRU emails revealed it to be then you really are flogging a dead horse.  Part of the reason Judith, Lovelock, Monbiot and many others expressed disgust with CRUgate is that the peer-review process was hijacked by group-think. You are assuming a gold standard, but only because you want to believe it. The truth in that regard (if not in others) is now well known by everyone. Whether they choose to believe it is a reflection of their innate honesty.

  • Judith Curry

    Hank, for the original sources see

    NAP North

    Wegman

    I agree that the review of the Wegman report did not have the same rigors as the usual peer review by the NRC.    The rigors of the peer review by the NRC substantially exceed the standards for the IPCC review process, and the IPCC would be well advised to adopt something closer to the  NRC standard for peer review

  • paulina

    Judy,

    You write:

    “I think that the almost total lack of “mainstream” climate scientists engaging with skeptics has resulted in a loss of the moral high ground in the public’s view and has acted to increase the public credibility of the skeptics.”

    To help me understand your point of view, I was hoping you could go through the list below and wherever possible, give a simple “yes” or “no.” 

    (The list below is not an attempt to capture your entire argument or anything like that. It’s simply a list of claims regarding which–in my effort to understand your overall arguments–it would help me to know your position. Further, although I don’t want to distract from the specific questions in this comment, it feels awkward not to acknowledge the frustration we have both expressed (via email) re how we seem to be miscommunicating. So, I’m hereby acknowledging this but setting aside these other conversations for the time being. )

    Do you agree with the following claims (again, what would help is simply to know whether you agree; this, here, is not an attempt to reconstruct your argument):

    Claim A:  There are certain modes of criticism of climate science such that the norm in the climate science community is not to engage (or alt. not to engage at length, or not to engage sufficiently) with these.

    Claim B: Some members of the public perceive this situation (this norm) as a loss of moral high ground for the climate science community (as a whole).

    Claim C: For some of those who perceive the situation this way, this perception reduces their trust in the climate science community and/or central findings of this community and enhances, on their view, the credibility of the critics in question.

    Claim D: Climate scientists bear a collective responsibility for engaging comprehensively with these critics.

    Claim E: How the climate science community (including scientists who conceive of themselves as “outsiders”) can/should allocate the burden of this engagement (burden = extra labor, going outside comfort zone, suffering personal attacks, threats of violence, etc.) needs to be discussed constructively and provisional answers need to be found. If there’s a collective responsibility, how should the individual’s responsibility be determined?

    Claim F:  The concept of “sufficient engagement,” or whatever term works better, needs to be examined.  For example, at what point should an issue be considered to have been dealt with sufficiently? How determine what issues deserve engagement whatsoever, for issues brought up outside the current norm of engagement with critics?  How determine the process for this kind of engagement?

    [For clarity, agreeing with Claims E & F would mean agreeing that these are examples of questions that need to be explored regarding the kind of engagement you seek.]

    Thanks.

  • Steve Bloom

    Judy:  ‘[Wegman] was asked to chair this effort by the NRC since he was Chair of NRCs Committee on Applied Statistics.’

    Well, that certainly sounds legitimate.

    The Layman’s Guide:  ‘Rep. Sherwood Boehlert (R-New York), then chairman of the House Science Committee, condemned Barton and Whitfield’s inquiry as “misguided and illegitimate” and the precedent it set as “truly chilling”.  As an alternative, Boehlert requested that the National Research Council of the National Academies formally review the hockey stick. Barton set up his own panel.‘  (emphasis added)

    The first page of the Wegman report confirms that it was ad hoc in nature.  My advice, given the ever-smaller corner you’re painting yourself into with colleagues, would be to not get stuff like this wrong.

    Questions:  Why, given that a formal NRC review including statisticians was going forward, did Wegman agree to lead an all-statistician side effort?  Why was there not one paleoclimatologist among the reviewers?

  • Marco

    @Judith Curry:
    Deepclimate does a little bit more than accuse Wegman of plagiarism by just copying Wikipedia. There are MORE examples where there is an almost literal copying of other work, especially in the paper that Said et al submitted on social networks:
    http://deepclimate.files.wordpress.com/2010/04/said-et-al-social-networks1.pdf
    I’d be interested to hear if you also consider this a reprehensible attack? Personally, I am having a hard time not to consider this one of the most blatant examples of plagiarism ever. Note that the De Nooy-book chapter is not even in the references.

  • Tom Gray

    Steve Bloom writes:

    <blockquote>
    Judy:  “˜[Wegman] was asked to chair this effort by the NRC since he was Chair of NRCs Committee on Applied Statistics.’
    Well, that certainly sounds legitimate.
    =and the rest=
    </blockquote>

    What is the point of this question? I an finding it very difficult to see how this is pertinent to any issue in Climate Science.

    It does seem to illustrate the point that this controversy concerns  issues in the current culture wars.

  • http://rabett.blogspot.com Eli Rabett

    In case this has not been said, Prof. Curry’s response in 95 is useless, requiring anyone who wanted to follow up to read through all the submissions.  Sorry.

  • Keith Kloor

    Eli,

    Rabett-like pronouncements aren’t conducive to debate. Of course, you have your own site, so why not write up a post there and come back with the link, so we can see the full context of your take on this discussion.

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    > my source for the specific papers …
    > relevant to the UEA investigation
    > is the documents submitted to the Parliamentary
    > Select Committee. The issues and papers
    > mentioned in these documents ….

    Does anyone have a list of these issues and papers? Presumably the Committee made a list?

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    (And, Keith — if a journalist has gone through the documents submitted, and pulled out a list of the specific issues and papers named there — would you know about that? Is that the sort of thing journalists would share?)

    If there’s a list, we can start plugging them into Google Scholar, looking at the subsequent cites, and … well, that’d presumably be what the Committee did already? Weighing each issue and paper suggested, and deciding whether there was anything pertinent to their charge to investigate?

    Remember there’s also a 3rd Report coming from a different group — the 2nd Report was rather specifically limited in its charge.

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    Ok, here’s a question for Dr. Curry — is it correct that what you’re talking about is the papers and issues actually listed in the submissions to the Committee, once we can find or create such a list?

    Because that would be a reasonable limit.
    But that would rule out whatever is NOT listed in the submissions to the Committee, right?

    Here’s why I wonder where you want to draw the line within which we can list the items:

    “… it is impossible for me to even begin to provide a comprehensive list of issues in the limited time window that the Team has seen fit to offer (a window in which I have had unrelated personal commitments). Many issues not mentioned in this submission have been discussed in posts at http://www.climateaudit.org, which represents a fuller view of my perspective on the relevant issues. This submission should not be construed in any way as representing a comprehensive list of questions and issues or as representing a complete itemization of issues and disputes….”

    http://www.cce-review.org/evidence/StephenMcIntyre.pdf

    (It’s not clear if he means just _his_ posts at CA, which would be at least theoretically possible to read to accumulate a list of items — or everyone’s posts, which would be, erm, more.)
    ————-

    “The further in you go, the bigger it gets.”
    “” John Crowley (Little, Big)

  • Judith Curry

    We are getting lost in the trees and losing sight of the forest.  Process is important, details are important, but lets get back to the big picture question of “does it matter?”   Specifically with regards to paleo temperature reconstructions as reported in the IPCC 4th Assessment Report,  Briffa/Jones/Wahl thought that it made a significant difference to the report to include the Ammann and Wahl paper and not include the Wegman Report (see the CRU emails), whereas McIntyre agrees (but for opposite reasons).  Clearly the field of global paleotemperature reconstructions has not stabilized and can be viewed as rather immature, if the inclusion or not of 1-2 papers makes a material difference.  MBH 98 made the first hemispheric paleo temperature reconstruction, and there have been numerous others since, although most use the same proxy records and aren’t particular ly independent.

    In view of this relative immaturity of the field,  the  IPCC 3rd assessment report (published in 2001) states:
    “New analyses of proxy data for the Northern Hemisphere indicate that the increase in temperature in the 20th century is likely7 to have been the largest of any century during the past 1,000 years. It is also likely7 that, in the Northern Hemisphere, the 1990s was the warmest decade and 1998 the warmest year”

    The are using the phrase “likely”, which implies >66% certainty.  An astonishing level of certainty for such a young field that represents a marked departure from what was stated in the 2nd assessment report.  It seems that Mike Mann (lead author) has a lot of confidence in his own paper,

    In the 4th Assessment Report, we see this statement in the summary for policy makers:
    “Average Northern Hemisphere temperatures during the second half of the 20th century were very likely higher than during any other 50-year period in the last 500 years and likely the highest in at least the past 1,300 years. Some recent studies indicate greater variability in Northern Hemisphere temperatures than suggested in the TAR, particularly finding that cooler periods existed in the 12th to 14th, 17th and 19th centuries. Warmer periods prior to the 20th century are within the uncertainty range given in the TAR.

    The now have increased the confidence level to “very likely”, which implies >90% confidence regarding the temperatures in the latter half of the 20th century being the warmest in the past millenium.  They have backed off from some of the claims made in the 3rd assessment report.

    In the overall scheme of the confidence levels reported in the IPCC,  “very likely”  is very high confidence indeed.  This is the same confidence level used for the historical temperature record:
    “Globally, it is very likely7 that the 1990s was the warmest decade and 1998 the warmest year in the instrumental record, since 1861″

    Few other statements in the IPCC get the “very likely” imprimatur.  For example, statements about hurricanes in the last half of the 20th century have the “likely” tag.  Now we know a heck of alot more about hurricanes in 1950 than we do about surface temperatures in 1000 A.D.  What possible rationale is there for such a high confidence level in the paleo temperature reconstructions, when this field is little more than a decade old and fraught with controversy?

    Last month I had the privilege of participating in the Royal Society Meeting on Handling Uncertainty in Science.  Much good food for thought.  But of particular relevance here, I provide some notes from the presentation made by Lord May entitled “Science as Organized Skepticism.”  He describes science as a landscape of opinion in the early stages of research. With time, some of the bumps shrink, some of the hills grow and coalesce). As things progress two or three main ideas emerge, then one mountain becomes dominant. He says that it is important that the consensus isn’t reached too early, so that lines of investigation aren’t discouraged.   He reminds of us of the hazards of the consensus becoming too implacable owing to ideology.
    So what has happened in the field of paleoclimatology to so quickly develop a consensus?  Some people have argued that a combination of groupthink amongst a very small community, plus gatekeeping (and even apparent bullying) have brought this subject to a premature consensus.  Part of the problem is that there is very little funding for this field, so there are few practitioners most of whom are connected through collaborations.  The lack of funding exacerbates the problem, since there is minimal funds in the U.S. to collect new proxy data and little research funds to build large research groups.
    So the “very likely” consensus developed by this group based on about 15 years of research in developing hemispheric/global analyses is astonishing and indefensible to me.    This is a field that needs to encourage new lines of research and bring in some new blood (including statisticians).

  • Judith Curry

    Paulina, i don’t understand most of your statements, and to the extend that i understand them at all, they defy a simple yes or no answer

  • Judith Curry

    oops just spotted an error in my recent post, statement should be (see *** for the changed text)

    The now have increased the confidence level to “very likely”, which implies >90% confidence regarding the temperatures in the latter half of the 20th century being the warmest in the past ***500 years****.

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    #93: “If anyone can give a contrary example, as regards those two sites [CA and WUWT, regarding climate scientists being accused of lying and malfeasance]  I will stand corrected!

    In this very thread, previously posted, we can read:

    #126:  “This email correspondence between Wahl/Ammann and Briffa was precisely what led to Jones’ request to Wahl, Ammann, Mann and Briffa to delete email correspondence pertaining to IPCC and JOnes’ instruction to Briffa to (untruthfully) tell the UEA FOI officer that he did not have any relevant correspondence with Wahl and Ammann.”

    Reserving judgement upon the above testimony, and unless we can argue that being untruthful is not lying and that this observation does not amounts to an accusation, we can see that #93 has been proven wrong,

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    > does it matter?

    The Economist, March 20th-26th cover story:

    “Spin, science and climate change”
    http://www.economist.com/opinion/displaystory.cfm?story_id=15719298
    http://www.economist.com/opinion/displaystory.cfm?story_id=15720419
    —-
    Hat tip to:
    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2010/04/the-economist-does-not-disappoint/

    Has anyone tabulated responses by scientists or journalists on ‘does it matter’?

    (The AAAS studies on opinion and belief would suggest that none of it matters, as science facts and don’t change opinion. Fermi Paradox stuff.)

  • jerry

    Keith, what frustrates me about blog comments, is that they should not be presented in a linear timeline as this one is, nor should they be threaded, but they should be presented in many different ways, one of which is Talmudic, with commentary written in the columns along side the original timeline of comments.

    Shub Niggurath Says:
    April 24th, 2010 at 5:50 pm
    Dr Curry
    There are a good number of people who feel that if they can shake the words “malfeasance”, “corruption” from your present vocabulary ““ they would consider it as a “˜victory’”
    Yes indeed, Tim Geithner, Lloyd Blankfein, Jamie Dimon all agree and endorse!

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    Jerry:

    As a frequent reader of blog threads, I can appreciate your frustration. This format can be a bit unwieldy. However, for those with particular interest in the subject of this thread, I believe it’s been worth it.

  • Raven

    I find it bizarre that this issue of Wegman’s alleged plagiarism is even an issue. His report was not an academic paper or a book being sold for profit. It was a report produced for government officials. Its only purpose was to collect the facts and analyze them so government officials could understand was the spat was all about. Any lack of proper citations does not change the conclusions of the report. 

    Ironically this attempt to smear Wegman is nothing but a tactic to allow alarmists to claim that his opinions should be ignored because he is (allegedly) not trustworthy.

    Which makes me wonder why alarmists are complaining so much about people who claim that climate science should be ignored because of the evidence of unprofessional conduct that is revealed in the CRU emails. After all, by their own example it is a perfectly reasonable thing to do.

  • Pingback: Climategate.nl » Blog Archive » Klimaatwetenschapper Judith Curry met wijze woorden over IPCC clinch met RealClimate

  • Judith Curry

    Hank, my point about the selection of papers is that it seems that Royal Society simply selected the same papers that UEA submitted in their evidence to the Select Committee, which are presumably the papers that show CRU in the best light.   This list  reflects that that whoever at the Royal Society that made the selection didn’t look beyond the UEA’s list, which is bizarre since their charge is to look at whether the CRU papers were deliberately biased  or manipulated by UEA scientists.  So why just look at the papers cherry picked by UEA?  Even a random selection would have been better (and why couldn’t the committee read more than this small number of papers), and even better, why not look at some of the papers that skeptics had been criticizing?  McIntyre’s submission to the Select Committee would have been a good starting point.

  • http://rabett.blogspot.com Eli Rabett

    Congressional testimony is taken under oath.  Representing testimony as your own when it has been copied is not only plagiarism, but is it perjury. 

    And oh yes Keith, asking for a specific reference is not obscure.

  • http://rabett.blogspot.com Eli Rabett

    Prof. Curry, I find it hard to believe that Kevin Trenberth and Lisa Graumlich were not thoroughly familiar with many other papers from Briffa and Jones and that if they had questions about any of them, that they would not have brought this to the attention of others on the Oxburgh Inquiry.

  • freespeech

    Hank,

    Can you provide details of who conducted the peer-review of the 5 page Oxburgh report? This report seems to have excited the community at RC as it seems to “hit the nail on the head” as to the quality of investigation, background, reporting and openness that the RC crowd aspire to. The responses at RC about this report display the complete lack of credibility of that site. Any sensible alarmist (an unlikely juxtaposition it seems) would have commented “It’s nice they came down on our side, but honestly that report has to be one of the least useful official documents I’ve ever read”.

  • freespeech

    Eli:

    Was Wegman testifying? I thought he was chairing?
    I doubt that those that testify provide citations and a bibliography. Why is it that the best that the RC crowd can do is this bizarre claim of plagiarism, an attempt to discredit people by associating them with “bogey men” (Mr X had 2 opportunities to talk to Inhofe), etc. But is unable to actually address the substantive statistical and process problems outlined in the report? Perhaps their attention span is exhausted past 5 pages?
    By the way Eli, when using a specific biological process as a proxy for temperature, when selecting samples do you believe that “the sign of the correlation is irrelevant”?

  • Steve Bloom

    Eli, IIRC that would be Kerry Emanuel, not Kevin Trenberth.

    What remains peculiar is that Judy doesn’t seem to have taken the time to email either of them and ask them what they actually did review in addition to the eleven papers and what their reasoning was (Graumlich’s in particular since she was the subject matter expert) for not looking at the indicated other papers.

    I suppose it’s possible she’s pissed them off to the point that any such inquiry would be ignored.  I know that if I were in their position I’d be pretty enraged about assumptions being blatted around the blogosphere questioning my judgement and good faith, especially given the source of the assumptions.

  • Judith Curry

    Here is the link to McIntyre’s submission to the Select Committee

  • Steve Bloom

    gags, the significance of the sign depends on the physical understanding of what’s being studied.  

    Wegman testified, BTW.

  • freespeech

    So Steve, you are saying that varve thicknesses increase and decrease proportionately to increasing temperature? Mann used both positive and negative correlations for the same physical process and attributed rising temperature to both.
    What pray-tell do varves do in response to decreasing temperatures given Mann’s use above?

    Best gag again, it beats answering the real question.

  • Judith Curry

    Hank, in addition to McIntyre’s submission, here are the other relevant submissions that mention specific papers

    McKittrick’s submission to the select committee
    Warwick Hughes submission
    Douglas Keenan submission
    David Holland submission
    DR Keiller submission

    Eli, Kevin Trenberth was not involved in the Oxburgh Committee.  Re Lisa Graumlich, i don’t know her personally, but I would expect her to have an understanding of which of the paleo papers were most controversial

  • Judith Curry

    Re Kerry Emanuel, he is a pretty straight shooter.  But i don’t see evidence from his papers (very cursory examination) that he has referenced many papers by the CRU scientists.  The next time I see Kerry, I will certainly ask him about this.  But based on the MIT climategate debate that was podcasted last November, at that time Kerry was publicly supportive of the CRU group.  But he is a straight shooter, will change his mind based on evidence.  So overall a good choice for the committee, but I maybe wouldn’t expect him to identify the most controversial papers based on his knowledge of these papers.

  • Judith Curry

    Jerry, I am open to such suggestions.

    Anthony Watts  (WUWT) has requested that I stop using the word “denier”, and I have been doing that unless I include the word “affirmist” in the same sentence.

    Regarding the word “malfeasance”, I agree that this word isn’t needed, the main issue is scientific misconduct, that is the word I have been using.

    Re “corruption” I think this word is needed and can’t think of an obvious replacement.  “Violations” only tells part of the story.  I am open to suggestions.

    If certain words act as a red flag and otherwise detract from my message, then I will try to work around that

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    Dr. Curry, do you know if the paper I found
    http://www.cce-review.org/evidence/StephenMcIntyre.pdf (dated March)
    and the one you linked (dated February) are to different committees, or what? They’re very similar.

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    If the main issue is about scientific misconduct, then the correct expression to talk about that is “scientific misconduct”. 

    In #115, everything that needed to be said, and a bit more, was said without using “corruption”: 

    http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/2010/04/23/an-inconvenient-provocateur/#comment-3188

  • Steve Bloom

    “The next time I see Kerry, I will certainly ask him about this.”  And until then you’ll keep spreading this stuff around?  That’s pathetic, Judy.

  • http://rabett.blogspot.com Eli Rabett

    Apologies on my mistake in confusing Emanuel with Trenberth.  However, if anyone is going to claim that Emanuel would not have read much Jones, then you certainly could not make the same claim with respect to Lisa Graumlich and Briffa

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    Steve (167):

    It’s nice that you rise to defend the honor of climate scientists you perceive as being besmirched by Judy. How about we let them respond to Judy, themselves?

    So let me put this out there: if any climate scientists discussed in this thread feel Judy is misrepresenting their research or role in any aspect of Climategate, please come on by and tell Judy yourself. I’d rather hear from you than proxies who presume to speak on your behalf.

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    > Freespeech [writes]
    > Hank, Can you provide details of who conducted
    > the peer-review of the 5 page Oxburgh report?

    Too many assumptions in that to even parse.
    Citation please for your claim?

  • Steve Bloom

    That’s a misrepresentation, Keith.  I am not claiming to speak for them.   

    Since Judy apparently refuses to ask them, why don’t you?  I think it would make for an interesting follow-up.

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    Steve (171):

    Given the high traffic of this post and the multiple web linkages, I’m assuming by now that many of the scientists mentioned in this discourse are aware of what Judy is saying.

    I’ve also emailed the RealClimate website directly, inviting the contributors there to respond or participate in this dialogue. As I consider the exchange on Kerry Emanuel to be a digression from the main topics at hand, I have no intention–yet–of asking him to respond.

    I would rather not follow every tangent of this discussion into the high weeds. I’d rather stick to the larger issues highlighted by Judy in the Q & A.

  • Nathan

    so in essence the beef Judith Curry has is with Mann, every example she gives is about Mann’s proxy reconstructions.

    Why doesn’t Judith Curry just go and publish some papers detailing the problems. Answer Mann in the literature.

    Makes you wonder why everyone was speculating that this was just you siding with McIntyre.

  • Pingback: Oxburgh and Organ Grinders « The Policy Lass

  • Nathan

    Judith Curry, in regards to your comments @145, if we assume for a minute you are correct and the confidence is lower, what material difference does it make to how we react to AGW?

    I was under the impression the important ‘factor’ here is climate sensitivity.

  • paulina

    Judy–

    Hm. That’s frustrating. Could we possibly engage with each of these claims one at a time and see if this works better?

    A.
    You write that there is an almost total lack of “mainstream” climate scientists engaging with what you call “skeptics.”

    From this I infer that you believe that the norm (the accepted custom, the standard practice, that which is currently typical) in the climate science community is to not engage with these skeptics, these kinds of critics.

    Is this a fair and valid inference?

    Thanks.

  • Raven

    #173 – Nathan

    The problem is not Mann or the HS. The problem is the process and the inability of the scientific establishment to acknowledge errors when they occur. The endless attempts to prop up the hockey stick meme lead many to ask the question: if scientists are willing to play fast and loose with the facts on an issue which ‘does not make a difference’ then how can we trust that they have not done the same when it comes to issues that really make a difference (like CO2 sensitivity)?

  • Steve Bloom

    So, Keith, whether the Oxburgh committee did a sufficiently thorough job of reviewing the CRU science wasn’t one of Judy’s central points?  I seem to recall it being the focus of your very first question up above.  Why would you want Judy’s answer but not be interested in contacting the principals to establish whether there’s a basis for her claims?

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    Steve (178):

    Because I’m not writing a story. I did a basic Q & A. Now I’m moderating a dialogue resulting from that. And I have a life.

    As you are no doubt aware, this post has been widely noticed, if not acknowledged–yet–by the very folks that Judy is addressing.  Also, everybody following the thread knows that Judy is being quite responsive.  I don’t have to chase after every single scientist that is mentioned and ask for a response to every single claim or statement that arises related to said person. They can come right here and engage directly with Judy.

    I’m quite content to let this thread play out, and Judy seems more than willing to stick around until it plays out, perhaps in hope that some of those people she’s talking about do wander by to have a chat. That would be great, but I’m not going to hold my breath.

    But I am going to hold out hope that RC is up for taking her on at their site. It would be quite conspicuous if they don’t, since they’ve shown a great desire in recent months to take on the press for its reporting of Climategate and the recent IPCC controversies.  And for the record, I think they’re entitled to do that.

    But here they have one of their own–not a skeptic, not a journalist–making a very public and sustained critique of climate science. Kinda hard to ignore, don’t you think?

  • http://rabett.blogspot.com Eli Rabett

    Raven, perhaps you missed <a href=”http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/Features/OceanCooling/”> this</a>, where Josh Willis corrected a mistake in the Argo float data

    Or <a href=”http://blogs.nature.com/climatefeedback/2010/02/sea_level_paper_withdrawn_on_a.html”>this</a>,  where Mark Siddall withdrew a Nature paper on sea level rise

    Or perhaps <a href=”http://www.junkscience.com/MSU_Temps/Warming_Look.html#RSS”>this</a>, where RSS corrected an error in their algorithm

    Or even <a href=”http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/”>this</a>, where GISS corrected an error in its GISSTEMP data base.

    and many more examples.  All done quickly.

  • freespeech

    Hank Roberts wrote:
    “Too many assumptions in that to even parse.
    Citation please for your claim?”

    Apologies, I had no idea you would find my simple sentences so difficult to understand. I’ll try to keep it simple for you in future.

    You attempted to caste aspersions as to the quality of the Wegman report in comment 132 because it hadn’t been rigorously peer-reviewed. At RC, the 5 page Oxburgh report was greeted with raptures from the adoring readers, and I didn’t notice you posting a “Can’t be trusted–no peer review” comment on that thread. Now of course I immediately assumed that there would be no way that you would hypocritically hold Wegman to a higher standard than you would the Oxburgh findings, I immediately assumed that you must have had access to the thorough peer-review of the Oxburgh review. Would you be able to pass a link of this peer-review on to me?
    Simple enough for you this time?

  • andrewt

    If a student at my university submitted work containing a sentence such as

    ” A cross section of a temperate forest tree shows variation of lighter and darker bands that are usually continuous around the circumference of the tree.”  

    and the marker knew that a  textbook contained this sentence:

    “A cross section of most temperate forest trees will show an alternation of lighter
    and darker bands, each of which is usually continuous around the tree circumference”

    This student would likely receive  at  a warning to be more careful about attribution in future and there would be a minor marking penalty.  If other parts of the student’s work also had clear similarities to the text book, the student would probably face stronger penalties.   I believe my university’s attitude is typical, so I’m puzzled that Judith Curry considers such behaviour acceptable

  • freespeech

    Andrew,

    If my lecturer couldn’t tell the difference between an academic paper and a report to a parliamentary committee, I’d go to another university.

  • Steve Bloom

    OK, Keith, so you’re hoping they show up, which I agree would be quite the feather in your cap blog-wise.  I doubt they will.  They might well answer direct questions from a journalist, though, which is why I made the suggestion.

    Regarding RC, I don’t think they’ll be very interested in providing a venue to Judy so long as she persists in behaving uncollegially.      

  • Raven

    #180 – Eli

    Sorry I should have been more clear. Errors that undermine the catastrophic AGW narrative are quickly corrected. In fact, climate scientists are extremely diligent when to comes to seeking out any possible bias or error that might allow them to strengthen the narrative. What they refuse to do is acknowledge any errors which potentially undermine the narrative.

    The SLR paper is a good example. The authors withdrew it because its conclusions could not be supported by the analysis the paper which makes it no different from the MBH papers which were not withdrawn. It is no coincidence that the paper which was withdrawn is also the paper that provided the least convenient results for the people defending the narrative (i.e. relatively low SLR estimates).

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    Steve (184):

    Interesting. Did I say it would be a feather in my cap, blog-wise? In case you haven’t figured it out, I don’t make a living as a blogger. I only started this blog a little over a year ago.

    At any rate, what you’re participating in here is a form of journalism. It’s not the content of the traditional kind, and while you, as an advocate, may feel it’s not serving your purpose, I’m quite confident that the Q & A and ensuing thread (as well as last week’s thread with Judy) has been informative, entertaining, and at times, illuminating–all criteria of journalism.

    Now I can appreciate that you would like me to go further. That’s all well and good, but I have to do other things as a journalist to make a living. I will tell you that it is my hope that some of my colleagues take you up on this. But we are a notoriously competitive and jealous bunch, so we shall see.

    I will also tell say that you can look forward to these types of Q & A’s every week on this blog. I can only dream that they will inspire similar comment threads, but I recognize the unique circumstances of this one.

    As for your last remark, I’d be curious to hear why you think Judy is “behaving uncollegially.” I do understand that some advocates think she is being “unhelpful” by speaking out as she has, and others assert that the timing isn’t right for this kind of debate. (Actually, Michael Tobis argues both points, I believe.)

    Is it “uncollegial” to be constructively critical of one’s peers? Or is it the public nature of her criticism that you believe is “uncollegial”? Whatever your answer may be (and I do look forward to it), once again, Steve, you have a way of inadvertently making someone else’s case (tribalism) for them.

  • Steve Bloom

    It’s exceedingly obvious you’re not making on money on this blog, but with the amount of effort you’re putting into it it’s equally obvious you’d like to achieve some degree of notoriety with it.  As you say, you can only dream.

    As for what’s uncollegial, have you been paying attention to the comments?  But what the heck, I’ll repeat myself:  Attacking colleagues in a public venue for transgressions that may have no basis is uncollegial.  As for you, I suspect you prefer the conflict to getting to the bottom of things.  As does Judy, actually, although for different reasons.

    Re tribalism, yeah, yeah, everybody’s tribal except journalists and the Breakthrough boys.  How tedious. 

  • Marco

    @Raven:
    You may want to read the link I provided in 138. Wegman plagiarising in an academic paper (although he can, with some difficulty, put the blame on Yasmin Said).

    The issue at hand is relevant also to the Wegman report, as it also reported a social network of paleoclimatologists and made conclusions based on that analysis, while not being experts at all in the social network field. It would be relevant to know where they get their information. Oddly, not a single of the reviewers asked anything about that. Nor did they ask where Wegman et al got their knowledge about paleoclimatology and dendrochronology in particular (again, not being experts in the field at all).

  • http://www.skepticalscience.com Steven Sullivan

    I would love to see a debate — about both the science, and the ‘process’ — between the RC folk and Dr. Curry.  And I’ve written that on RC too.

    My field is biology, so I’m even more an ‘outsider’ than Dr. Curry.  Yet I’ve followed the climate blogs for some months now, and delved into their archives.  From that,  I’m not nearly as convinced of McIntyre’s and Watts’ integrity as JC seems to be, and I wonder if the lack of response from colleagues that she finds curious, is merely embarrassment for her on their part.

    My direct questions to her would be: do you have any questions about either the claims or ‘process’ of McIntyre and Watts?  Have you followed rebuttals to their narratives  as closely as you seem to have followed (and accepted) the narratives themselves?

    Noting that in the end she does not seem to have a big problem with WG1 — the ‘science part’, which she does not consider to have been fatally skewed  — so much as with WG2/3, I’m all the more mystified that she would choose to a role that, whether she acknowledges it or not, makes her a ‘useful idiot’ for well-funded ideologues who seek to undermine the science. If she thinks *process* matters so much, has she ignored what *framing* has accomplished as practiced by interests with decidedly nonscientific agendas?  *THAT* is where much of the damage of ‘climategate’ came from — the rush to frame phrases like ‘using a trick’ and ‘hide the decline’  and gripe-y comments in pre-production computer code, lifted from a selection of hijacked emails, in the worst possible light.  (And btw, I suspect Mann’s reference to Dr. Curry’s  email meant merely this:  there may be something in there that is actually innocent but could *look bad* if framed the ‘right’ way by those seeking to do mischief.  I can well imagine her recommendation that RC publish a critique of a colleague’s paper, being taken as evidence of ‘clique’ or ‘tribal’ behavior at the very least, if not something more sinister, in the over-excitable blogospheric realms Dr. Curry seems to favor.)

    And lastly, as far as IPCC report usage of ‘likely’ and ‘very likely’ with respect to warming in the last 50 years vs the last 5o0,  the AR4′s  language was supported by  the NRC report of 2006, which said:

    “It can be said with a high level of confidence that global mean surface temperature was higher during the last few decades of the 20th century than during any comparable period during the preceding four centuries. This statement is justified by the consistency of the evidence from a wide variety of geographically diverse proxies.”

    Average Northern Hemisphere temperatures during the second half of the 20th century were very likely higher than during any other 50-year period in the last 500 years and likely the highest in at least the past 1,300 years.

  • andrewt

    freespeech, the  basic concern at  my university is that  the work of Bradley may have been published  as the work of Wegman et al.   I can’t see that the unusual venue, a congressional report, ameliorates this concern in anyway.    If anything   more care in attribution would be appropriate in such an important venue.   I’m surprised that  Judith Curry would so strongly defend so clearly unacceptable behaviour by a fellow academic.

  • http://ourchangingclimate.wordpress.com Bart Verheggen

    Judith Curry brought up the NIPCC report (saying that she is not happy with fact that this report is gaining more traction with the public).

    The NIPCC report fails miserably both with regards to contents  and with regards to to process .

  • RichieRich

    Re the Wegman report, DeepClimate says

    “we’ll take a closer look at Wegman et al’s key passage on tree-ring proxies and do a detailed side-by-side comparison with its apparent main antecedent, chapter section 10.2 in Raymond Bradley’s classic Paleoclimatology: Reconstructing Climates of the Quaternary.
    That comparison leaves no doubt that Wegman et al’s explication was substantially derived from that of Bradley, although the relevant attribution appears to be missing.”

    The relevant side-by-side can be found here.   It does seem to me that DC makes a reasonable case in this instance, and I agree with Marco that the issues of attribution in the later Said et al paper bears further scrutiny.

    Let’s for the sake of argument say that attribution in the Wegman report could and should have been better with regard to Bradley and in the section on social networks.

    If this is the case, it is important not to overclaim.  On the one hand, “sceptics” should not claim that the Wegman report was faultless in all regards but, on the other, “warmers” should not claim that legitimate worries about attribution negate the report’s findings on the appropriateness of the statistical methods used by Mann et al.

  • JamesG

    It seems the idea of pretending to be a planet-savers in the fight against the evil “anti-humanists” (a phrase used by ‘sou’ elsewhere) is sufficient excuse to avoid looking for the real scientific truth. Don’t imagine you can fool the journalists forever though. At some point it won’t be potential planetary catastrophe that is the front-page story, but investigations of scientific impropriety due to the grant-chasing culture. The more you say, the more you condemn yourselves.

    Since Oxburgh reported on 11 irrelevant papers and interviewed only CRU staff, whereas Wegman looked at the actual contentions and interviewed both sides, it is abundantly clear which one is a more worthy effort. We all know it. But nevertheless if you want to accept the Oxburgh report findings purely on the basis that it is an official enquiry, then consistency requires that you also accept the Wegman reports findings and so you have to deal with it’s conclusions. If you reject Wegman as biased then you must also reject Oxburgh on the same basis.

    This selection of findings we like and rejection of those we don’t is a microcosm of the entire IPCC effort, as revealed very well by the CRU emails and subsequent (overly late) investigations. The scientific process was deliberately shorted in an effort to produce a sales brochure that would influence policy. Yet despite these efforts which did indeed convince the politicians, policy then failed because they finally had to face the question “how do we achieve this CO2 reduction without doing more harm than good?” and answers came there none.

    I’d wondered if the double realization that the scientists are far from being angels, combined with the fact that policy is going nowhere regardless of how much the science is spun, would make anyone in the wider scientific community more open-minded. Far too few it seems!

  • http://ourchangingclimate.wordpress.com Bart Verheggen

    Judith Curry writes:  “To see such a respected academic accused in this way (with the accusations so obviously baseless) is absolutely reprehensible.”

    With “respected academic” she means Wegman. I have no opinion about him, but I do note that many respected academics, pretty much a whole profession even, have been accused in often baseless, and if not entirely baseless, surely exaggerated ways.

    I appreciate Prof Curry’s constructive criticisms and calls for introspection. But I find it disconcerting that she doesn’t call out the many baseless and exaggerated attacks on climate science for what they are: Reprehensible.

  • freespeech

    Andrew, plagiarism plays an important role in academic conduct because it a publication is supposed to extend knowledge in a novel way. Hence the prior work that you use to establish the background to your work needs to be laid out to separate it from the new and novel work you are adding. With regard to students, plagiarism plays two roles, the first being that universities teach students “the academic way”, hence each piece of assessment attempts to get the students to behave as academics do, with clear attribution. The second reason for a strict enforcement of attribution comes from the sheer volume of work being presented and the need to highlight what is the students actual contribution.

    An enquiry is likely to be completely unconcerned with attribution for the sake of identifying new contributions. The only point of attribution would be an establishment of a cahin of evidence, or when a source is seen to be, or stipulated as authoritative on a matter. An enquiry’s goals are totally different to those of academic publications, attributions of background definitions are the least concerns for those that seek to defend Mann’s statistical methods, no wonder they spend so much time on them.

    Having read the Oxburgh report, I’d say it could have been seriously improved by some plagiarism, even extracts of Dr Seuss …

    I note the front of the Wegman report states that they did the work pro-bono and that none of them stand to gain any financial benefit from the outcome.
    Can Oxburgh make the same claim?
    Why no wailing from you on this?
    Perhaps you can encourage Dr Mashey to once again reprise his McCarthyist investigations and find that Dr Wegman’s Aunt Louise once had the opportunity to talk to a member of the republican party who apparently drives an SUV.

    Attack the statistics, attack the work on social networks, attack the evidence and certainly the conclusions, but for the sake of your credibility, get off the plagiarism track, it really isn’t relevant to seeking the truth, is it. If we found out that Newton copied Calculus from Leibnitz, it wouldn’t debunk calculus, get a clue.

  • freespeech

    Steve Bloom. I doubt the RC contributors would come here, they prefer their protective “censors” who heroicly delete or modify anything that questions the little world they have built for their fans. They don’t do very well when they get hard questions, at RC they evade them through simple deletion.

  • RichieRich

    freespeech @ #194

    I agree with you entirely (#194) that issues of plagarism are not relevant to Wegman’s conclusions re Mann et al’s use of statistical methods – the important part of the report.  That said,  if Wegman was, say, drawing substantially on Bradley’s text when writing his own, it does seem to me that it might have been preferable - good practice even - to cite Bradley. 

  • Judith Curry

    Bart, you raise a good point about really bad things being done to climate scientists.  Back in the 1990′s we could all stay protected in the ivory tower.  A few stepped out to engage the public, like Jim Hansen and Steve Schneider.  Now because the stakes are so high with looming energy/carbon policy, the scientists are under a microscope and caught in a political battle.  Its not fun, and its certainly not what we signed up for.  Each of us individually has our own convictions about what is “right” in this instance.   The people that are caught in the cross fire are those that participate in the IPCC, issue press releases on  papers that they think is important, make public statements in the blogosphere, provide interviews to journalists, etc.   Individual motives for this broader participation probably range from noble cause, professional advancement, personal notoriety, a sense of what is right, an obligation from their employer to reach out and engage the public.   So if a scientist has chosen to engage publicly in this way, after getting over the initial surprise when something bad happens, they can either withdraw or step up to the plate.  Whining doesn’t go over very well.  A number of climate scientists have publicly discussed the email death threats they are receiving.  Well I’m not getting any (although I am certainly not earning the appreciation of some of my colleagues).    What I am doing reflects my sense of what is right in this instance.  We all have choices to make, and from climategate I think everyone has learned that scientists need to keep it squeaky clean since everything is under a microscope, and that integrity/trust is more important at this point than certainty in terms of influencing the public credibility of our research and assessments.

  • Judith Curry

    Steven Sullivan, re Watts and McIntyre.  First, I do not know Watts at all, and  do not follow his blog all that closely, so I have no comments about him.  With McIntyre, all his stuff is totally transparent on his blog.  He is not making unsupported criticisms; you can agree or not with his criticisms, but you can’t deny that they are supported by evidence, analysis, arguments.

  • Judith Curry

    Steven Sullivan, a further point about WG1.  While I think that for the most part the basic text in the WG1 report is sound, the way that the executive summaries and summary for policy makers are worded are open to criticism.  This kind of summarizing is very difficult to do, it requires that a narrative be developed that integrates the findings, and this inevitably ends up with some spin.  It is these summaries that have the greatest public influence.  And I repeat my criticism that I think some of the certainty levels are too high.  My reasons for saying this is that many of the analyses were lacking rigorous scientific uncertainty analysis of the known unknowns, and the unknown unknowns (apologies for sounding rumsfeldian) were mostly ignored and too much weight was given to expert opinion instead.

  • RichieRich

    Bart @ 194

    In the often bitter dispute between “warmers” and “sceptics”, the warmers’ narrative has, from my vantage point, often come across as: “the conduct of warmers is at all times exemplary whilst the conduct of sceptics is very often reprehensible”.

    The first part of the this narrative was, for me, exemplified by the statement organized by the Met Office and put out at the time of Copenhagen, the first part of which read

    “We, members of the UK science community, have the utmost confidence in the observational evidence for global warming and the scientific basis for concluding that it is due primarily to human activities. The evidence and the science are deep and extensive. They come from decades of painstaking and meticulous research, by many thousands of scientists across the world who adhere to the highest levels of professional integrity” (my emphasis).

    Now it seems to me that much of the sceptical activity in the blogosphere is seeking to challenge the first part of the warmer narrative.  And that’s perhaps why impropriety on the part of warmers counts more heavily than impropriety on the part of sceptics.  That is to say, sceptics can say to warmers: “well you already regard much of our behaviour as reprehensible so let’s not make that the focus.  The focus is now on your view of your own behaviour as. at all times, exemplary”.

    Personally, I’m a “warmer” and take the view that there is a very great deal of exemplary behaviour within the climate science community.  But I think that instances where behaviour is not exemplary should be acknowledged, even where there may be a defence of provocation.
     

  • http://ourchangingclimate.wordpress.com Bart Verheggen

    Judith Curry,

    Thanks for your reply, though I’m not sure how to interpret it. Calling out reprehensible behavior for what it is, is not what I’d call “whining”. Numerous accusations have been leveled at climate science in general (and some individual scientists in particular), mostly unsubstantiated.

    For example:
    CRU’s data handling has not inflated the warming trend, see e.g. here and here. The HadCRU temperature reconstruction agrees with those of other institutes, and also with those currently undertaken by bloggers (some ‘skeptical’; some ‘warmist’), and also with satellite reconstructions.

    As if scientists have all conspired to skew the evidence (no, they haven’t (RC). Still not (mt)). As if climate science doesn’t follow the scientific methods (yes, it does. Slides here (from slide nr 30 onwards)).

    The kinds of spin that’s been put on the email affair and the IPCC errors in the mainstream media and the blogopshere is ridiculous.

    Imho, your words of wisdom and self-reflection would carry more weight within the scientific community if you were to equally strongly condemn these sorts of smear actions. That would also diminish the chances of your words being (ab)used by the same people who engage in these smear ‘campaigns’ (though I realize that you don’t care much for how your words are spun). E.g. a commenter at CA: “It only takes one honest (wo)man to bring the whole rotten edifice crashing down.”. I’d wager that people referring to climate science as a “˜rotten edifice’ are not interested in constructive dialogue or in serious scientific inquiry.
    I view McIntyre differently than you do. While indeed he’s done quite a lof of analysis of climate related data himself, he also often engage in ‘dog whistle’ politics; making subtle insinuations of data manipulation, bias and misconduct. Sometimes it’s less subtle (e.g. a headline under an image of Mike Mann saying “try not to puke”). That behavior doesn’t invalidate the occasional good point he may or may not have (I’m not opining on that), but it does cause a near-continuous stream of messages that lower the credibility of climate science.

    McIntyre’s influence on the latter (lowering science’s credibility) is much larger than his constructive influence on knowledge building.

    Even if McI may have a point on details, most of his audience and the mainstream press gets away with a totally exaggerated and erronreous impression that the science is abysmal.

  • Nathan

    Judith

    have you had a good look at this thread:

    http://tamino.wordpress.com/2008/03/19/pca-part-5-non-centered-pca-and-multiple-regressions/

    Here Tamino defends Mann et al.’s use of PCA. Perhaps you should have a look and then see if McIntyre’s complaints are real.

  • RichieRich

    Nathan

    In the interests of balance, a link to McIntyre’s response to Tamino is perhaps in order.

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    Bart (202):

    I think you offer some very legitimate counterpoints to the thrust of  Judy’s criticisms. Personally, I’ve wondered how much the circle-the trains-mentality within the climate community post-Climategate owes to the “reprehensible behavior” of a subset of the skeptic camp.  If the shrillest voices are yelling fraud and much worse at every turn, then I can imagine the tempation would be great for those being yelled at to respond with equal antagonism, which is what I think has happened.

    The trouble with this Hatfield-McCoy standoff is that someone has to be willing to rise above it all and say, okay, yeah, maybe we need to take a closer look at the way we run our house. Seems like Judy is trying to do that, but because of the hostility still heaped on RC et al, what she’s often told is akin to this: don’t aid the enemy, it’ll only make things worse.

    And this partly explains (I speculate) RC’s reluctance to fully engage  some of Judy’s criticisms. It would be perceived (by the other side) as legitimizing them.

    Now I’ll tell you what would be nice: if there was someone equal to Judy’s standing in the skeptic community who was calling out the nasties in their own midst, saying, essentially, you’re not helping matters at all either, by hurling personal insults and screaming foulplay at every turn.

    Because I’m starting to wonder if this debate only moves forward when there’s acknowledgment of bad behavior on both sides.

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    Nah. Policy perceives squabbling as a sinkhole, steps over it and goes forward:
    http://www.ecpamericas.org/

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    I’d suggest that climate scientists take on the Marshmallow Challenge, for the sake of seeing how to make it a more successful tribe:

    http://www.marshmallowchallenge.com

    See also the TED presentation:

    http://video.ted.com/talks/podcast/TomWujec_2010U.mp4

  • Heraclitus

    Freespeach @ 181

    In post 114 part of Judith Curry’s argument is questioning why the Wegman report was not included in the IPCC review. It therefore seems relevant to question its peer-review status.

  • http://www.skepticalscience.com Steven Sullivan

    Dr. Curry, for an example of the pathological ‘framing’ that goes on by the ‘denialists’, especially when a bona fide scientist look no further than this thread, where your concerns and questions about the *completeness* of the Oxburgh’s panel’s choice of papers has now morphed into JamesG’s omniscient claim that  “Oxburgh reported on 11 *irrelevant* papers ….”  (emphasis mine).   

    Finally, the NRC 2006 chapter on statistics was fairly critical    — citing McIntyre and McKitrick multiple times, for example –  and unlike Wegman’s report was at least prepared with substantial input from a statistician familiar with climate science (Peter Bloomfield); John Christy, no friend of radical ‘warmists’, was also on the committee.   A ‘skeptic’ would have to bend reality pretty far to paint it as a whitewash.  Yet as regards the state of global climate, the report summary basically reiterated the sorts of things ‘mainstream’ climate scientists had been saying, e.g.:

    “Despite these limitations, the large, diverse, and coherent collection of evidence represented by the samples shown in Figure O-5 indicates that global surface temperatures were relatively cool between 1500 and 1850 (the Little Ice Age) and have risen substantially from about 1900 to present. The tree-ring-based and multiproxy-based surface temperature reconstructions shown in panel C also suggest that the Northern Hemisphere was relatively warm around A.D. 1000, with at least one reconstruction showing surface temperatures comparable in warmth to the first half of the 20th century. The timing, duration, and amplitude of warm and cold episodes vary from curve to curve, and none of the large-scale surface temperature reconstructions show medieval temperatures as warm as the last few decades of the 20th century.”

    (This claim in the report is based in reconstructions prepared by the committee itself; and all by itself it contradicts a couple of common ‘skeptic’ memes (e.g. about the MWP) retailed often (and without much correction) in the comments on McIntyre’s and Watts’ sites. )

    And this:

    The basic conclusion of Mann et al. (1998, 1999) was that the late 20th century warmth in the Northern Hemisphere was unprecedented during at least the last 1,000 years. This conclusion has subsequently been supported by an array of evidence that includes both additional large-scale surface temperature reconstructions and pronounced changes in a variety of local proxy indicators, such as melting on ice caps and the retreat of glaciers around the world. Not all individual proxy records indicate that the recent warmth is unprecedented, although a larger fraction of geographically diverse sites experienced exceptional warmth during the late 20th century than during any other extended period from A.D. 900 onward.
    Based on the analyses presented in the original papers by Mann et al. and this newer supporting evidence, the committee finds it plausible that the Northern Hemisphere was warmer during the last few decades of the 20th century than during any comparable period over the preceding millennium. The substantial uncertainties currently present in the quantitative assessment of large-scale surface temperature changes prior to about A.D. 1600 lower our confidence in this conclusion compared to the high”

    Which again, flies in the face of much common ‘skeptic’ ‘wisdom’ (e.g.’Mann;s work is fraudulent; the ‘hockey stick ‘ has been discredited’).

    So I ask, Dr. Curry, is this obsession with  ‘auditing’ the science, while failing to ‘audit’ the claims repeatedly allowed on skeptic sites, acceptable to you?  (Hell, RealClimate at least corrected Al  Gore on some of his claims).  And in the face of a decades-long public-relations onslaught from such ‘skeptical” forces, and the possible consequences of inaction resulting from it, isn’t it *at least as, if not more* important to emphasize , over and over if needed,  the reality of AGW, the soundness of the science that established it as real?

  • http://www.skepticalscience.com Steven Sullivan

    oops , part of that disappeared, it should read “especially when a bona fide scientist seems to support their suspicions”

  • http://www.skepticalscience.com Steven Sullivan

    That science should be ‘squeaky clean’ is a lovely idea, but not particularly realistic, at least in my couple of decades of experience.  To demand that, and to claim ‘squeaky cleanness’,  is to inevitably set science up for failure — because committed ‘skeptics’ will always find some ‘dirt’, be it in human error, or some subjective decision that *could* be perceived in a bad light.  Or they’ll just fall back in the lack of 100% certainty inherent in science.  Human activities, including rigirous science, are still too inherently ‘messy’ to ever be ‘squeaky clean’ to all eyes.

    The best scientists can do is reiterate how, thanks to the robustness of ‘the process’ (scientific method) — even if it means only 95% squeaky cleanliness –  reality will out:  new evidence will either support the models, or require their revision/discarding.  Even scientists whose data were less than squeaky clean — Mendel comes to mind — can have their data validated by history.

  • Richard S Courtney

    Keith Kloor:

    Before making my comment – and for sake of openness – I state that
    (a) I admire Judith Curry for her willingness to engage with those whose views she disagrees,
    (b) I agree with her view that the reputation of climate science has been damaged by Climategate,
    (c) I agree with her view that the damage to the reputation of climate science cannot be repaired without an engagement of mutual respect between those who proclaim the AGW hypothesis and those who dispute it,
    and
    (d) I disagree with her support for the AGW hyopothesis because I have yet to see any evidence of any kind that supports the AGW hypothesis (which is why I am a listed contributor to the NIPCC report).

    Having stated ‘where I am coming from’, I provide my comment.

    At #205 you suggest:
    “I’ve wondered how much the circle-the trains-mentality within the climate community post-Climategate owes to the “reprehensible behavior” of a subset of the skeptic camp.  If the shrillest voices are yelling fraud and much worse at every turn, then I can imagine the tempation would be great for those being yelled at to respond with equal antagonism, which is what I think has happened.”

    Sorry, but that does not fit the facts.  Entire web sites have been set up to demean, slander and discredit those who dispute the AGW  hypothesis.  DeSmogBlog only exists for such purposes.  The person who hides behind the alias of ‘Eli Rabbett’ has contributed to this thread and his blog contains several threads that only exist to do the same, and blogs of others (e.g. Tamino, Deltoid, etc.) are similar.  RC sensors all comments that question the AGW hyp0thesis but publishes smears and slanders of those who question the hypothesis.

    All these blogs and their behaviours predate Climategate by several years.

    The Climategate emails prove the self-titled ‘Team’ were supportive of proactive actions against those who questioned the AGW hypothesis.

    So, it should surprise nobody that some who have been on the receiving end of this for years jumped on Climategate as a chance to ‘get their own back’.  That is reprehensible, but it is understandable.

    The Team – also understandably- responded by ‘circling the wagons’.  They knew what they had been doing so had every reason to expect those who had been attacked for years to ‘get their own back’.

    Judith Curry is attempting to get some dialogue between the two ‘sides’.  Blaming those who have questioned the AGW hypothesis for the ‘war’ will hinder any such dialogue:  they have built up years of resentment at their treatment.

    We need the dialogue if science is to prevail over the affects of hurt egos.

    Richard

  • Steve Bloom

    Keith:  “The trouble with this Hatfield-McCoy standoff is that someone has to be willing to rise above it all and say, okay, yeah, maybe we need to take a closer look at the way we run our house. Seems like Judy is trying to do that[.]”

    Using words like “corruption”?  Don’t be absurd.

  • TAG

    After Climategate, I had hoped that the culture wars that pass for science in climate science would end. Advocacy would return to its proper place in politics and science and engineering would get on with their dispassionate, disinterested work on AGW. Now I see that that hope was naive and futile. With the comments I read on this blog and elsewhere, I can well understand how post-modern philosophers say that science and politics are inseparable.
    Climate science is not going to change. It will go on as before as a mask to disguise political advocacy. We are faced with a potential crisis and climate science has provided us with no reliable results that can be used in the shaping of policy. I work in high tech. I survived the last bubble. People within the bubble know it was unsustainable. Yet there was nothing that they or anyone else could do to stop its inflation. I see the same things happening ion the AGW controversy. people know what is going on but like the dot com and fibber optic bubbles, no one can do anything that will make any difference. There is going to be a crash. I, for one, care very little about the sides in this culture war; I just hope that the result of this war is not like the result of all other wars in mass suffering among the noncombatants.

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    Richard (212):

    It sounds like we are in agreement on what needs to ultimately happen. As to who bears more blame for what led to the current hostile environment: perhaps that debate is is something we should put to bed, don’t you think?

  • Judith Curry


    Nathan #175,

    Not clear by what you mean “how we react to AGW?” we’ve steered clear of policy on this thread (we should keep it that way). An important factor is climate sensitivity. Here is what the IPCC 4th Assessment WG I Report has to say about climate sensitivity as determined from climate models:

    “An expert assessment based on the combination of available constraints from observations and the strength of known feedbacks simulated in the models used to produce the climate change projections in this chapter indicates that the equilibrium global mean SAT warming for a doubling of atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2), or “˜equilibrium climate sensitivity’, is likely to lie in the range 2°C to 4.5°C, with a most likely value of about 3°C. Equilibrium climate sensitivity is very likely larger than 1.5°C. For fundamental physical reasons, as well as data limitations, values substantially higher than 4.5°C still cannot be excluded, but agreement with observations and proxy data is generally worse for those high values than for values in the 2°C to 4.5°C range.”

    I think that “very likely larger than 1.5C” is an overstatement of confidence in the model derived sensitivities. In terms of climate sensitivity, we would like to have as assessment based on observations as well as assessments made from 20th century observations. The challenges to doing this include difficulties in identifying the attribution for all of the decadal scale bumps in the historical temperature record, plus challenges to identifying a suitable methodology (see my discussion in context of the Lindzen and Choi article).

  • Judith Curry

    Paulina #176.  the answer to this one is “yes”

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    > The best scientists can do is reiterate how …
    > reality will out ….

    Yup. Remember, AR5 is underway.

    Keith, the scientists who are involved in this are busy with, for example, meetings like this:
    http://www.ipcc.ch/pdf/ar5/ar5-exp-mtgs-workshops.pdf

    No offense, but it seems unlikely they’ll want to bother revisiting these old issues from the past.

    As Steven Sullivan said — those who are challenged on the science have a proper response: do more science, get it published.

    It’s rare you’ll find someone who has time for both kerfuffle and publishing. People who are competent to actually publish science have to choose where to put their time and energy.

    The rest of us not blessed with the ability to publish can go on talking. But as I noted earlier, public policy has also moved on beyond this stuff that’s so preoccupying the bloggers.

  • Richard S Courtney

    Keith Kloor:

    At #215 you suggest to me:
    “As to who bears more blame for what led to the current hostile environment: perhaps that debate is is something we should put to bed, don’t you think?”

    I answer, Yes!  Indeed, that is why I posted my comment at #212.

    Richard

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    Hank (218):

    Yes, I understand this is a busy time. I also know that three of the last four posts on RC were media-related. So they’re making time for some stuff.

  • http://nigguraths.wordpress.com Shub Niggurath

    Mr Roberts:
    “…public policy has also moved on beyond this stuff that’s so preoccupying the bloggers.”

    Yeah! The policy wonks keep bouncing along as if they lived in another world and then whine about the locomotive of public opinion that came rushing along and caught them sideways.

    Climate scientists should atleast pretend to sample the blogs or engage in the science-literate public some way if they want to play the IPCC policy game. That is the lesson of Climategate.

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    Are you this guy?

    http://www.google.com/search?q=“Dr.+Richard+Courtney”+climate+warming

  • Judith Curry

    Regarding the “smears” of the scientists as a result of climategate.  Sure, there have been all sorts of crazy allegations and attacks.  But I haven’t defended those scientists for the simple reason that their own behavior motivated this.  Here is my interpretation of what motivated climate gate.

    Warwick Hughes made repeated requests of Phil Jones for the data, which were denied.  Warwick Hughes is a scientist (skeptical of AGW) that has published on surface temperatures.  Phil Jones refusal to give him the data and his reason for refusing this request were well inappropriate (to use a mild word).  Then Willis Eschenbach requested data from Phil Jones.  Now Willis characterizes himself as an “amateur scientist” or a “citizen scientist”.  While a case “might” be made for not going to any effort for Willis, it was a bad move since Willis is a rising star in the skeptical blogosphere with the 2M strong WUWT army behind him.

    Things get more interesting when Steve McIntyre gets involved  here , although i can’t find the original post of interest.  When i first spotted this, I mentioned to my colleague Peter Webster that people were having difficulty getting the data from Phil Jones.  This motivated Peter to post at climateaudit to say that he had no problem getting the data from Jones, and that maybe they weren’t asking nicely (we both fully expected Phil Jones should give him the data).  This motivated further FOIA requests with increaingly bizarre replies.  It seems that the FOIA requests and discussion of same in the sceptical blogosphere motivated the hack/leak/whatever, since the information was sent to blogs where this was being discussed (including a few relatively obscure blogs).

    Phil Jones et al. were wrong not to send the data when it was requested and to deny FOIA requests (yes we can get into an argument about what was publicly available and what wasn’t but there has been a snow job on that one too, lets don’t get distracted).   Does the “transgression” warrant the punishment that they received in terms of worldwide censure, government investigations etc.?  Taken out of context, no the punishment was far worse than the “transgression” warranted (do you prefer this to malfeasance?).  But  any foul in a very high stakes game is very much magnified in importance.

    In a high stakes game (such as the IPCC assessment process), both the individuals and the institutions need to understand that actions will be looked at under a microscope and the significance of transgressions will be magnified.

  • Judith Curry

    Hank Roberts #218

    Your statement

    “Keith, the scientists who are involved in this are busy with, for example, meetings like this:
    http://www.ipcc.ch/pdf/ar5/ar5-exp-mtgs-workshops.pdf
    No offense, but it seems unlikely they’ll want to bother revisiting these old issues from the past.”

    This statement may be an accurate perception of the attitude of the IPCC AR5.  If it is, I am VERY CONCERNED for climate science.  The group of skeptics that I am most concerned by is the large number of Ph.D. government and academic scientists in fields outside climate research.  I used to dismiss their skepticism since they weren’t “climate researchers.”  Now, after engaging in e-discussions with several hundreds of these scientists i now understand their concerns:  inadequate treatment of uncertainty and too quick to jump to a consensus when the science is nowhere near sufficiently well estalished and tested to warrant a consensus.  They think climate research is postnormal science and highly politicized.  I would hate to grant them this point.

    Warmists often make statements something like this:  “AGW is a scientific fact like gravity and quantum mechanics.”  Yes quantum mechanics is well established indeed, but it is receiving some serious challenges from serious scientists here and here.  One of these scientists, Roger Penrose of Oxford, shows up in discussions of who might deserve the Nobel Prize in physics.  So science is NEVER settled.  Even without being “settled”, science can still be useful and provide the basis for decision making.

    So, quantum mechanics isn’t settled, but the paleo temperature record for the past 1000 years IS settled?  this science is still so immature that we are still waiting for an adequate examination of the pros and cons of each proxy as a temperature recorder and calibration of each proxy to local temperature. The paleo community is now arguing as to whether or not tree rings should be completely eliminated from the analysis.  Once we have some confidence in the individual proxies, then the paleoclimatologists can grapple with developing a global average temperature reconstruction, with 3-4 orders of magnitude fewer data points than in the historical temperature record (which provides substantial challenges to homogenization even in the historical record).  And people think this science is settled and we should move on???

    Re the NRC Report led by North.  That group of experts gave a more credible assessment of the uncertainty than was done in the third assessment report.  But still far from adequate in my opinion.  It relied solely on “expert judgement”, the committee did no independent analyses as per North’s public statements (wegman actually did some analyses in his assessment, but focused only on the statistics and not problems with the proxies).

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    “Sure, there have been all sorts of crazy allegations and attacks. But I haven’t defended those [people attacked] for the simple reason that their own behavior motivated this.”

    …. !

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    I like “transgression”.  The notion of transgression goes well with that of tribe.  All we need is the concept of taboo and we might reinvent Levi-Strauss.

    Compare and contrast:

    http://freethesaurus.net/s.php?q=malfeasance
    http://freethesaurus.net/s.php?q=transgression
    http://freethesaurus.net/s.php?q=corruption
    http://freethesaurus.net/s.php?q=infraction
    http://freethesaurus.net/s.php?q=indirection

    Note that by looking at “indirection”, we get an interesting semantic field, sophisticated while being not too imprecise.

    We could use a judgement already made by the proper authority, or convene of a proper description.  That’s not enough, but that’s a start, for the “interested public” to make explicit reasonings.

    Passing a judgement as a description is improper, as long as the nature of the judgement does not incumb to the one making it.  Take “misrepresentation”, which is a very precise legal term: does that mean that blogs are trials, nowadays?

  • SkipSmith

    Would it be possible at this point to identify the hopeless tribalists on each side and bar them from further comments?  I’m trying to follow the debate between Curry and others, but to do that I need to wade through dozens of cookie-cutter posts from people that aren’t interested in honest discussion.

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    Skip,

    I can appreciate your frustration. But the journalist in me has a very hard time barring people from participating. The best I can do is try to keep it civil. I only bar people who get personal and nasty.

    Perhaps you should just wait for Judith’s comments and then click on to who she’s responding to.

  • Judith Curry

    On comment regarding my comments on Wegman (not the Wegman report per se).  The whole host of issues surrounding whether or not he is biased, the plaigarism accusation, and whatever else, are issues that I have not investigated in any detail (and don’t intend to).  So my comments on this should not receive any undue consideration; they were made when i thought my mention of the Wegman Report was going to be hijacked by the plaigarism issue being raised at deepclimate.    This is last word on that subject, and request that Keith not allow any more comments on this topic of plaigarism.

  • Steve Bloom

    “[...]request that Keith not allow any more comments on this topic of plaigarism[,]” or on “corruption,” or on “cargo-cult science,” right, Judy? 

  • paulina

    Thanks so much Judy for response in #217 to Q in #176.

    B.
    So, you believe that the norm (the accepted custom, the standard practice, that which is currently typical) in the climate science community is to not engage with this particular kind of critic.

    And, you believe some members of the public perceive this lack of engagement as a loss of the moral high ground for the climate science community, relative to these critics.

    Right?

  • Judith Curry

    Paulina, yes to B, but strike the phrase “relative to these critics”  (this behavior doesn’t necessarily elevate the morality of the critics, but does give them increased credibility)

  • Judith Curry

    Steve Bloom, i am open to further discussion on the relevance of “corruption” or “cargo cult science” to this discussion.

  • JP

    Central to academic honesty and integrity is to refrain from passing another persons work off as your own. It appears Prof Wegman may well have done just that. This may be an inconvenient fact to the sceptic narrative but to pretend that it does not exist makes no sense.

  • http://ourchangingclimate.wordpress.com/ Bart Verheggen

    Keith (at 10:34),

    You wrote:
    “I’ve wondered how much the circle-the trains-mentality within the climate community post-Climategate owes to the “reprehensible behavior” of a subset of the skeptic camp.”

    I think most is. And Judith Curry has a point that “˜circling the wagons’ is not fruitful in the long run. But it indeed a very understandable, and perhaps inevitable reaction to the current “˜situation’. I have a different view than prof Curry though on what the current situation entails and what role different people play in it.

    I wouldn’t know of a serious climate scientist on the “˜skeptic’ side of the fence who would criticize the mistakes made over on their side.

  • JP

    The moderator has elected to remove my very mild comment on academic integrity that followed from the refusal to entertain discussion on the now forbidden topic.  It appears that only comments questioning the integrity of the warmists will be permitted.

  • JP

    Strike my last comment, the previous one has reappeared?

  • http://ourchangingclimate.wordpress.com/ Bart Verheggen

    Judith Curry,

    Isn’t climate sensitivity also constrained by measurements? E.g. the climate response after large volcanic eruptions (Pinatubo), the warming after the last ice age, etc?

    ‘The science is settled’ is not a clima that climate scientists make btw. Nothing is ever certain.

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    http://arthur.shumwaysmith.com/life/content/is_richard_s_lindzen_deliberately_lying_or_just_deluded

    “… there was … no evidence of any other offense in any degree other than a certain disorder in record-keeping and hostility to outsiders normal in a rather small research group, as the actual investigation found. That … seems to have completely passed Lindzen by – so that in his latest piece he’s calling the investigations a “whitewash”, and greatly magnified his claims about what was to be found in the emails ….”

  • Judith Curry

    Richard Somerville (IPCC veteran and lead author) on the
    science being settled

  • http://www.skepticalscience.com Steven Sullivan

    “While a case “might” be made for not going to any effort for Willis, it was a bad move since Willis is a rising star in the skeptical blogosphere with the 2M strong WUWT army behind him.”

    Hmm.  Andy Schlafly is a ‘star’ in the anti-evolution firmament — and polls suggest there are at least as many million evolution ‘skeptics’ as there are AGW ‘skeptics’, even if they don’t all post to Conservapaedia.  Should Dr. Richard Lenski hand over all the data and bacterial cultures that Schlafly and his horde demand, in their attempt to ‘audit’ evolutionary biology?

  • http://www.skepticalscience.com Steven Sullivan

    Btw, I notice you now use the term denialist term-of-choice  ‘warmist’, Dr. Curry.  Do you consider yourself one, since you (at least as of last notice I’m aware of) accept the reality of AGW?   Or does ‘warmist’ mean something else?

    As for these hundreds of non-climate scientists whose concerns you cite,  how did they find their way to you and you to them?  I ask because of course, there is self-selection going on on both ‘warmist’ and ‘denialist’ sites, which makes them non necessarily representative of the global scientific communities (which dwarfs a ‘few hundred’).   I’ve certainly seen my share of grumpy scientists — typically retired , I’ve noticed  –  harrumphing in comments how shocked they are over Climategate ‘fraud and how in their day/field such knavery would never stand.   They don’t tend top show evidence that’s they’ve read anything but the most hysterical denialist narratives  (or almost as bad, the mainstream press).  
    Meanwhile, polls and position statements from the mainstream scientific organizations I’m aware of, from the NAS on down –  some of which have expressed (typically milder) concerns about ‘process’ along the lines you cite  — all show that  scientists tend to accept the ‘consensus’ that AGW is real, and a problem, and that we need to move on towards thinking of what to do about it.   IOW, they’ve affirmed the ‘warmist’ position.    Can you show us evidence of a significant groundswell of *well-informed* non-climate scientists who believe otherwise?  Gathering such data would not be easy, it seems to me.

    And while we’re at it how about we  stop beating the ‘settled’ horse.  SOME science *IS* settled.   This doesn’t make it sacrosanct — merely unlikely to be overturned without extraordinary evidence.   Rabbit fossils may yet turn up in Precambrian strata, thus overturning evolutionary science as per Haldane,  but I wouldn’t bet on it.

  • Judith Curry

    Steven,  if all of the data and methods were transparent and available, FOIA requests would not be needed.  And anyone (from scientist to crackpot) could take a look.  For a data set that is as widely used at the CRUTEMP data set, and given its prominent role in the IPCC, the raw data and detailed text describing methods used to create the data (beyond what is in the published paper) should have been made publicly available.   The NASA GISS group has managed to do this.

  • Judith Curry

    Bart, the scientific skeptics (academic ones) are pretty independent, e.g. I have seen Lindzen publicly criticize Gray, and Spencer publicly criticize Lindzen.  I haven’t seen much evidence of organization on their part.

  • Larch

    Warwick Hughes made repeated requests of Phil Jones for the data, which were denied.  Warwick Hughes is a scientist (skeptical of AGW) that has published on surface temperatures.

    What sort of scientist is Warwick?  Because I can’t find any kind of bio for him.

  • http://www.skepticalscience.com Steven Sullivan

    “”Sure, there have been all sorts of crazy allegations and attacks. But I haven’t defended those [people attacked] for the simple reason that their own behavior motivated this.” 

    …!  — Hank Roberts.

    Indeed.  It all started with Warwick Hughes, don’t you know?  The history of  ideologically- and industry-funded disinformation about climate science apparently is of no consequence to Jones et al’s mindset.

    Perhaps someone needs to take a few more steps back in time.

  • Judith Curry

    Steven,  I would appreciate any advice that you have re use of “warmist”.  I characterize myself as a moderate warmist.  If i say members of the climate consensus or establishment, that would almost leave out Romm and Hansen, since both go beyond the IPCC consensus in some ways and Hansen disagrees with the establishment policy proposals.  So a one (or at most) two word descriptor would be appreciated.  Seems like “warmist” got Joe Romm riled up also.  I have been using the word “affirmist” as the counterpoint to “denier”;  both words describe someone that isn’t open to changing their mind based on evidence.

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    All,

    I’ve never removed anyone’s comment. Nor do I edit any comments. The only way you cannot appear in the comments is if you’re nasty or personal. And I will always ask you first to tone it done. Only repeat offenders have been banned.

    Sometimes I will chide people for being sarcastic, but I’ve been guilty of that too, so I try to be understanding. Here’s how it works: all first time commenters have to be approved the first time around. Then after that, your comments should automatically appear. However, if you have multiple links, it may end up in the spam folder, in which case you should alert me via email, as some of you have, and I will fish it out and approve.

    Anyone whose comment doesn’t appear should always email me.

  • Raven

    Bart,

    Do you have evidence that climate sensitivity is a constant for all forcings and all timescales?

    If have not seen any and that would imply that the short term response after a volcanic eruption tells us little about CO2 sensitivity.

  • Steve Bloom

    Larch, Judy’s description of Hughes works nicely if you put a “pseudo” in front of it.  

  • Pingback: Curry, part 2: the papers [Stoat] | Death By Cucumber News

  • Steve Bloom

    Raven, it begins to look as if you’re as unfamiliir with deep-time paleoclimate and its implications as Judy seems to be. 

    To answer your question, briefly, since actually you’ve been told this before and ignored it: 

    Pinatubo, the Pleistocene glaciations, the Pliocene and the Miocene all give reasonably consistent results for sensitivity.  Going back farther than that things begin to change (e.g. the arrangement of the oceans and continents) that tend to affect it.  Even so it doesn’t seem to have ever gotten low enough during the Phanerozoic for CO2 to have lost its role as the “big control knob” (see Richard Alley on this).

  • http://scienceblogs.com/stoat/ William Connolley

    @Judith: first of all, my thanks for your persisting in answering questions here. While I disagree with a large part of what you are saying, you definitely deserve credit for coming out here.

    However, there is still a rather strong feeling of vagueness about much of what you’ve said up to now. Really, it needs writing down carefully (you’ve added some more detail in comments here, I now see, but some of it is wrong adn (obviously, being a succession of comments, it is fragmented), so it needs checking and writing down coherently).

    One of the few things you have been specific about is the “key papers” neglected by Oxburgh. I’ve even just blogged it: http://scienceblogs.com/stoat/2010/04/curry_part_2_the_papers.php . But I think you have questions to answer: your first 2 key papers were lifted from Bishop Hill; and your second 3 from McI. So, as I said over there, ” Which rather suggests that she isn’t doing a great deal of independent thought around this issue, but is merely picking up the septic blogosphere”. So (this is a real question, not rhetorical): are you indeed thinking for yourself over the paper selection issue, or are you just repeating what BH/McI say?

    Oh, and you ought to know by now:  people with monikers like “Freespeech” on blogs are not the people you want to be agreeing with :-) .

    @JC, 114: “And also contact David Holland d.holland at theiet.org, he has written an essay that documents much of this” – why contact him? Why hasn’t he published the thing? Free web space is not hard to come by. I’m sure Keith would be happy to host it if he can’t find any other space :-)

    @JC, 114: “This reconstruction was a marked departure from what appeared in the 2nd IPCC Assessment Report”. I think you’re betraying you ignorance, and your sources, here. Read http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MWP_and_LIA_in_IPCC_reports – or perhaps go the whole hog and actually read the SAR. It doesn’t say what the septic blogs are telling you it says. Wegman: was commissioned by Inhofe. You know that; can’t you speak his name? And since when was “was read into the House record” of the slightest relevance to scientific worth?

    @JC, 125: “Wegman is very unpopular with the warmists because his 2006 NRC report” – err, you’ve got confused here. Wegman was the Wegman report. The NRC report was by North. also… aren’t you being just a little easy on Wegman, and dismissing DC’s criticism? Are you applying the same standards to Wegman that you seem to be applying to the IPCC? Is Wegman’s process important? Does it matter that the has plagiarised material? “Let me say that this is one of the most reprehensible attacks on a reputable scientist that I have seen, and the so-called tsunami of accusations made in regards to climategate are nothing in compared to the attack on Wegman.” – no; this isn’t plausible at all. You’ve lost your perspective on that one.

    You say: <i>Wegman… was asked to chair this effort by the NRC since he was Chair of NRCs Committee on Applied Statistics.</I> – well, someone is very badly wrong here and I think it is you. Wegman was appointed by Inhofe, not NRC. NRC was North. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hockey_stick_graph : “In 2006 a team of statisticians led by Edward Wegman, chair of the National Academy of Sciences’ (NAS) Committee on Applied and Theoretical Statistics, was assembled at the request of U.S. Rep. Joe Barton and U.S. Rep. Ed Whitfield“.

    Or read the report: http://republicans.energycommerce.house.gov/108/home/07142006_Wegman_Report.pdf (Hank thoughtfully provided a link, but should really have picked up on your NRC error. But I see SB has done the honours).

  • Judith Curry

    I certainly agree that Jones et al.’s mindset was influenced by the politically motivated disinformation machine, I stated this in my first essay “on the credibility . . .” posted at climateaudit.   But as scientists, we have to get past that, that kind of mindset, while understandable, leads to all kinds of problems as we have seen in the aftermath of climategate.  And that kind of mindset is alleged to be most acute in scientists that have a policy agenda.  If a scientist doesn’t have a policy agenda, I hypothesize that they will care a lot  less about politically motivated disinformation in the conduct of their science.   The politics surrounding this issue have certainly been polarizing, and a difficult environment for scientists that get involved in the public debate.  A challenge, yes.  But that still doesn’t mean that that kind of mindset was conducive to scientific progress and building public trust in climate science.  This is discussed in my “building trust” essay.   And it doesn’t justify “transgressions,” even it if explains them.

  • Nathan

    Judith Curry

    Perhaps if you looked into how climate sensitivity is determined you would be confident in the IPCC’s range. For example have you spoken to James Annan? Calculations of climate sensitivity aren’t dependent on models, they are formed by observation of events (like Pinotubo, the LGM, the glacial maximum before the last etc).

    My take on all this is that you have read a few skeptic blogs and then decided they have some points, then you have failed to follow through and speak to authors.

    Climate sensitivity is King.

    BTW why is it important that you believe the certainty is too high. Why should anyone care?

    Stoat gives a good analysis on the extent of your concerns at his blog

    http://scienceblogs.com/stoat/2010/04/curry_part_2_the_papers.php

    It doesn’t really look like you done anything more than echo other people’s concerns.

  • Judith Curry

    Nathan,  climate sensitivity is determined in a number of different ways, and climate models are a key method for determining climate sensitivity.  My knowledge on the subject of climate sensitivity is pretty deep.  For some basic background knowledge on climate sensitivity, i refer you to a chapter from my textbook Thermodynamics of Atmospheres and Oceans  entitled Thermodynamic Feedbacks in the Climate System.

    I also refer you to a blog post on this topic that i did over at climateaudit critiquing Lindzen and Choi’s analysis of climate sensitivity.

    I don’t parrot things from skeptical blogs, other than to cite what the skeptics are concerned about, which I thought the Oxburgh report should have considered in their investigation.

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    Judy,

    As you know, Joe Romm has a short post on this Q & A and thread. But the few things he says are pretty striking, such as this opener:

    “I used to know Dr. Judith Curry pretty well “” heck, she even gave me a jacket quote for Hell and High Water! Now I obviously don’t.”

    The implication is that your post-Climategate critique of climate science has changed you so radically that he doesn’t recognize the Judy Curry from 2007. He seems honestly shocked.

    How would you characterize your transformation since then? Is it as radical as Romm implies?

  • NewYorkJ

    KK says:

    “Why speculate about Judith’s motives? What purpose does that serve?  ”

    The same purpose as Judith speculating about scientists’ motives perhaps?   Being sufficiently vague about which scientists are (partial list here)

    - “cherry-picking data”

    - “bad apples”

    -  “pushing their own research results and writing papers to support an established narrative.”

    - “dismissing skeptical critiques” (as opposed to analyzing and logically criticizing bad arguments…but Judith chooses a different narrative here)

    - engaging in “behavior” that has “slowed down scientific progress”

    - “tailoring graphics and not adequately describing uncertainties ostensibly to simplify and not to “dilute the message” that IPCC wanted to send”

    - engaging in “ evasiveness and unresponsiveness by the IPCC regarding efforts to investigate alleged violations occurring in the review process”

    - engaging the host of assertions by others that Judith implicitly supports and/or gives credence to

    does not help her case.  In fact, Judith’s vagueness, constant insinuation, and almost total lack of substance (right out of the McIntyre playbook) to support any of these assertions gives objective observers less confidence in her answers.

    I won’t personally speculate as to JC’s motivations, but I’ll note her view of the facts, for whatever reason, is rather distorted.  One of many examples:

    “Specifically with regards to the Wegman Report, this was a paper that had been commissioned by a Committee of the US House of Representatives, peer-reviewed in exactly the same way as NRC 2006, and was read into the House record on 17 July 2006. ”

    Reality:  Wegman Report was commissioned by Reps Barton and Whitfield, two climate skeptic politicians.  Wegman’s report was hand-picked by them.  JC makes it sounds like it was some objective bi-partisan undertaking.  It wasn’t.  To make matters worse, it was only “peer-reviewed” by individuals selected by Wegman, which is not an independent peer review by any stretch. 

    Even the NRC report was requested by a Republican politician, Sherwood Boehlert, and the panel included skeptical scientists (ex: John Christy).  That said, it certainly was much more rigorous, even if it might have had a modest skeptical bent from the start.

    http://books.nap.edu/openbook.php?record_id=11676&page=R7

    DC has a series of posts on the shoddy scholarship of Wegman’s report, most of which Judith dismisses while calling such critiques “reprehensible” (which I find to be extremely hypocritical given her interview statements noted above).

    http://deepclimate.org/2010/04/22/wegman-and-saids-social-network-sources-more-dubious-scholarship/

  • andrewt

    Judith Curry  sets up a strawman – Wegman copied a Wikipedia definition – and demolishes it  with over-blown rhetoric like  “the accusations so obviously baseless”, “most reprehensible attacks on a reputable scientist that I have see” and “climategate are nothing in compared to the attack on Wegman”. When it becomes apparent that her strawman is  a strawman – she doesn’t admit any error but instead says she hasn’t and won’t  investigate the topic in detail and doesn’t want further comments. 

    Remind anyone else of Climate Audit?

  • http://whiskeyfire.typepad.com Thers

    I’m sorry, but Dr Curry lost me completely over the Wegman plagiarism charges.

    Initially she produced a long post about it, containing links, and came to quite a strong conclusion about how “reprehensible” these charges are. Then, when she’s shown that she doesn’t understand what the charges are — long lifted passages without attribution — she admits she “hasn’t studied the issue” and demands that further references to it be banned…

    And this is in the context of demanding that scientists she disagrees with be completely “squeaky clean” in terms of academic integrity. And in the context of demanding that these scientists give more respect to a report that looks pretty darn plagiarized.

    I see here a pretty blatant double standard in how Curry regards the “skeptics” and the “warmists.”

  • Nathan

    Judith

    ” My knowledge on the subject of climate sensitivity is pretty deep”

    Mine is shallow.

    So you disagree with James Annan’s take then?

    If your knowledge is deep, why not write it up in a paper? Why do you arm wave on a blog. Write up why you think climate sensitivity is about 1.5C.

    The problem I think most people have with the vague assertions you keep making here is that you aren’t engaging with the people doing the work, and you’re not contributing to the science. Can you do no more than these critiques on blogs?

  • spartacus

    I see that Joe Romm relies on Connolley to dispute Curry’s scientific claims.  Of course, Connolley also disputes Romm’s scientific claims.  Selection bias I guess.

  • http://nigguraths.wordpress.com Shub Niggurath

    “And also contact David Holland d.holland at theiet.org, he has written an essay that documents much of this” ““ why contact him? Why hasn’t he published the thing? Free web space is not hard to come by. I’m sure Keith would be happy to host it if he can’t find any other space”

    Dr Curry
    I think by now, you are familiar with the contours of how the WA paper and its significance to the issue of IPCC process corruption are going to be explained (away).

    Mr Holland cannot publish his submission for fear of archaic libel laws. His account did not overlap with any other submission. The Russel panel won’t publish because of the same libel laws. Bishop Hill is just an author of popular skeptic stories. McIntyre is well, McIntyre. The emails themselves, have ‘been taken out of context’.

    No CRU scientist will step forward and recount their version of the events.

    We cannot discuss the issue at hand, something which anyone with a computer and an Internet connection, has knowledge of.

    Pathetic.

    William:
    Is it just befitting that you should complain so bitterly about Montford’s book on Wikipedia, and also have problems with anyone and anything that has something to do with ‘freespeech’?

  • Nathan

    Judith I am confused why you asked me to look at your discussion of Lindzen and Choi? Yes, you dismiss their work… As did pretty much everyone else.

    Doesn’t support your argument for a sensitivity of 1.5C

    Try this:

    http://julesandjames.blogspot.com/2006/03/climate-sensitivity-is-3c.html

  • NewYorkJ

    Unlike sea level rise, which on balance is lowballed, the IPCC tends to represent the balance of evidence on climate sensitivity accurately with the appropriate level of uncertainty.  See the following useful review article (h/t skepticalscience.com):

    http://www.iac.ethz.ch/people/knuttir/papers/knutti08natgeo.pdf 

  • http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid Tim Lambert

    I think it is just as well the IPCC didn’t cite Wegman’s report since otherwise we would now be seeing newspaper headlines attacking the IPCC for relying on a non-peer-reviewed, plagiarised report. Wegman is a AGW denier, signing this letter asserting that human action is not affecting the climate. Wegman’s report does not directly address the temperature reconstruction in Mann, Bradley, and Hughes (1998), you know, the “hockey stick” graph.

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  • Dave

    Re:  Wegman:  Regardless of the plagiarism claims, there is some pretty bad stuff in that report.

    eg: compare Wegman’s statement:

    “Both Esper et al. (2002) and Moberg et al. (2005) indicate that current global temperatures are not warmer that the medieval warm period.”

    With Esper (2002):
    “annual temperatures up to AD 2000 over extra-tropical NH land areas have probably exceeded by about 0.3 C the warmest previous interval over the past 1162 years. ”

    and Moberg (2005):
    “We find no evidence for any earlier periods in the last two millennia with warmer conditions than the post-1990 period””in agreement with previous similar studies”

    Is it any wonder that the paleoclimate community considered Wegman’s report to be pretty worthless when he fails at basic reading comprehension?

    I certainly don’t consider Mann (1998) to be the last word on paleoclimate reconstructions – unsurprising, given that it is a dozen years old.  I think the NRC (2006) report and the IPCC AR4 did a fairly good job of putting all the paleoclimate reconstructions in context.  I think that the job of doing good work and having a healthy debate about the merits of different approaches is made more difficult by the community of “skeptics” who throw around FOIAs, lawsuits (eg, Keenan), baseless accusations (eg, Watts), and bad science (Singer, D’Aleo, etc) without restraint – some of who have been doing so for decades.

  • Judith Curry

    William, you must have missed my post about the papers.  My whole point is that I thought the Oxburgh committee should have done better than to select essentially the same papers that were listed in the UEA submission to the select committee, which are presumably the ones that shed CRU in the most favorable light.  I thought they should have paid some attention to the main papers that the skeptics have issue with, which is why i parroted the papers listed by Montford, McIntyre, Hughes, etc.  Or even a random selection of papers would have been better.  My personal choice for the most interesting 11 papers isn’t all that relevant.

  • Judith Curry

    Nathan, you missed the point of my link to the Lindzen and Choi paper.  My discussion points out a whole host of issues surrounding the determination of climate sensitivity.  I thought this was relevant since you thought it seemed like i didn’t know anything about climate sensitivity and was parroting what I read on skeptical blogs.  This is not correct.

    I don’t have a lot of confidence in the estimates of climate sensitivity for doubling CO2 and they are widely varying.  I do not see any justification for such a strong statement as it is very likely not to be less than 1.5C, the uncertainties in the estimations cannot support such a statement in my opinion.

  • http://rabett.blogspot.com Eli Rabett

    Lindzen is a “warmist”.  Those who believe that pumping greenhouse gases into the atmosphere as we are doing will lead to serious problems, such as Prof. Curry and Eli, are “hot”.   Also right.

  • Judith Curry

    The issue of the Wegman Report was initially raised by me in the context of complaints about violations of the IPCC process.  Reviewers had suggested that this report be included, there were concerns raised that this request was not adequately responded to.  It was arguably justifiable to leave the Wegman Report out (although he did make some valid points), but it was not justifiable not to respond adequately to the request.  This is the issue that I originally raised, and it has evolved into all sorts of discussions that are extraneous to this point.  Yes the content of the Wegman report has been widely criticized, I am not unaware of this.   I don’t see the point of rehashing this here.  The fact that certain people really objected to including the Wegman report did not justify violations of the procedures set up for the IPCC review process.  I don’t have anything further to say about Wegman.

  • Judith Curry

    A quick comment.  What i am doing here is not very easy, but I am doing this because I think the issues I raise should be discussed, and it is rare to get people on both “sides” having a relatively civilized and productive dialogue.  My thanks to all of you who are participating here.  It is very very difficult in this type of environment to keep your bearings in terms of not rising to bait, not take things personally, not stray outside of your knowledge zone, all while trying to squeeze in a few posts between my other responsibilities while trying to stay responsive here.  So I have made a few mistakes here which I have acknowledged.  I hope that we can get the discussion back on track to the broader issues.

  • Steve Bloom

    “I do not see any justification for such a strong statement as it is very likely not to be less than 1.5C[.]”

    Judy, anything like a 1.5C sensitivity is unsupportable unless you want to throw out some very strong paleo evidence, e.g. the PRISM results for the mid-Pliocene (~325 ppm CO2, +2-3C, +~25 meters SLR, major changes in ocean-atmosphere circulation perhaps including a huge increase in TCs) .  A relatively fast transition to such a climate would be bad enough, but those consequences are compounded by the risk of fast carbon feedbacks (e.g. permafrost melt).

    I am really quite mystified as to how you can discount all of this.   

  • freespeech

    William Connolley wrote:
    “Oh, and you ought to know by now:  people with monikers like “Freespeech” on blogs are not the people you want to be agreeing with .”

    How nice that you’ve taken some time out from your “book burning” over at wikipedia to participate. I see you managed to drag your disagreeable nature along with you. Please keep it up, I’m sure it will enhance your arguments.

    By the way, I note you’ve been very unspecific in your criticisms of Montford’s book. Is it your normal practice to attempt to censor publications you have admitted to never having read? Is this your version of peer-review?

  • http://whiskeyfire.typepad.com Thers

    <i>I don’t have anything further to say about Wegman.</i>

    So plagiarism is a “serious charge,” your defense against this charge is shown to be wrong, and hence your publicly calling the people making the charge “despicable” is shown to be wildly unfair, and now you’re taking your marbles and going home?

    I’m trying to be patient here, but at the very least you owe DeepClimate an apology.  Otherwise it seems pretty clear which “side” you’re willing to tee off on, and which “side” you’ll indulge.

  • Nathan

    Judith Curry


    Nathan, you missed the point of my link to the Lindzen and Choi paper.  My discussion points out a whole host of issues surrounding the determination of climate sensitivity.  I thought this was relevant since you thought it seemed like i didn’t know anything about climate sensitivity and was parroting what I read on skeptical blogs.  This is not correct.
    I don’t have a lot of confidence in the estimates of climate sensitivity for doubling CO2 and they are widely varying.  I do not see any justification for such a strong statement as it is very likely not to be less than 1.5C, the uncertainties in the estimations cannot support such a statement in my opinion.”

    Ok, thanks. I think I’m with you now.

    It doesn’t really adress the big question though, does it. Are there no scientists working on climate sensitivity that you agree with? Are all their calculations wrong? Are you suggesting there is no lower bound for climate sensitivity from paleoclimate evidence?

  • andrewt

    Judith you told us that Wegman was the most unbiased person you could get to perform a review because “Prior to summer 2006, Wegman had no apparent interest in climate science or politics”.

    But you neglected to tell us that Wegman signed an anti-AGW letter with Singer et al. in 2007  (linked by Tim above).  If you  were “not unaware of this” you’ve  omitted crucial information and mislead us and should apologize.  If you were unaware that Wegman signed this letter,  retract you previous statement.  You’ve been urging your colleagues (I’m not one) to behave better – maybe you could lead by example.

  • Judith Curry

    Steve,  climate sensitivity depends on the type of forcing agents applied to the climate system, and also on the mean climate state.  There are no exact analogues for the current situation.  There are also fast response and slow feedbacks, which influence the determination of sensitivity.   See section 8.6 of the IPCC WG 1 Report for a description of the model determinations of sensitivity, which figure heavily into the IPCC assessment of sensitivity.

    Given the imperfections of the models and the inadequacy of the model ensemble used in the FAR, the uncertainty of the model estimates is arguably under characterized. Different assessments of sensitivity from a variety of observational perspectives give very different results; on the low end, we have Lindzen and Choi and Schwartz.

    Given these uncertainties and broad range of sensitivity values that have been determined, I do not agree with a cutoff that it is very likely below 1.5C, we just don’t have that much confidence in my opinion.  You are placing too much confidence in an individual estimate of the sensitivity.

    The bottom line is that where there is still a lot of disagreement, you shouldn’t be using “very likely” as a measure of the confidence level.

  • Judith Curry

    AndrewT,  I just don’t know that much about the Wegman situation.  I think that he probably started off as unbiased and not knowing much about the issue; then after the way he was treated and criticized, he joined the ranks of the skeptics (this whole situation polarizes people who start out neutral or ignorant).  Bottom line is that I just don’t know that much about the Wegman situation, I have acknowledged this several places in the thread.  Given this, I hope we can move off the Wegman topic.

  • Judith Curry

    Nathan, regarding a lower bound to sensitivity that (essentially) everyone would agree with, it is 1C.  This is the sensitivity to direct radiative forcing, with no feedbacks.

  • Judith Curry

    See post #273.   All of my statements regarding Wegman (other than the issue regarding the IPCC review process) should be taken with a grain of salt.  I will do my best not stray in this manner in future, and give you pepper (and not salt).

  • Judith Curry

    Steve Bloom, see this article re sensitivity.  gives a good broad perspective and summary on the different ways of estimating it, putting into perspective the paleo estimate that you cite

  • Nathan

    Judith

    Sorry, I am lost again.

    “I do not see any justification for such a strong statement as it is very likely not to be less than 1.5C, the uncertainties in the estimations cannot support such a statement in my opinion.””

    “Given these uncertainties and broad range of sensitivity values that have been determined, I do not agree with a cutoff that it is very likely below 1.5C, we just don’t have that much confidence in my opinion.”

    and

    “Nathan, regarding a lower bound to sensitivity that (essentially) everyone would agree with, it is 1C.  This is the sensitivity to direct radiative forcing, with no feedbacks.”

    While not contradicting each other seem to imply that you think the lower bound is between 1 and 1.5C

    But then the paper you link to in 283 leads us to the understanding that the climate sensitivity is most likely about 3, with a lower bound ‘most likely’ of 2… The biggest take home message from that paper seems to be that it is the upper limit that is the most difficult to quantify:
    “The well-constrained lower limit of climate sensitivity and the transient rate of warming already provide useful information for policy makers. But the upper limit of climate sensitivity will be more difficult to quantify.”

  • http://whiskeyfire.typepad.com Thers

    All of my statements regarding Wegman (other than the issue regarding the IPCC review process) should be taken with a grain of salt.

    Well OK. I can appreciate your desire to keep your po9int narrowly focused, though I’m not entirely sure the Internet works that way…

    Honestly, plagiarism in a scientific report delivered to Congress with major policy implications seems to me a major scandal, one that far eclipses the possibility that this same report was not given by-the-numbers consideration by a scientific body. Not to say that the latter didn’t happen. I don’t know.

    It seems that the major beef the “warmists” (your term) have is that their claims are subject to all sorts of parsing but the people giving them a hard time always seem to get a pass. For the sake of your argument you’d IMHO be better served by taking some time getting up to speed on the criticisms of Wegman. Not that I’m important or anything, but on this particular point you really seem to have jumped off the moral high ground, whatever the hell that is.

  • Larch

    Judith Curry Says:
    April 26th, 2010 at 6:58 pm
    <i>I certainly agree that Jones et al.’s mindset was influenced by the politically motivated disinformation machine, I stated this in my first essay “on the credibility . . .” posted at climateaudit.   But as scientists, we have to get past that, that kind of mindset, while understandable, leads to all kinds of problems as we have seen in the aftermath of climategate.  And that kind of mindset is alleged to be most acute in scientists that have a policy agenda.</i>

    It doesn’t seem curious to you that the scientists directly targetted for harassment, lies and humiliation are the ones that kicked back?

  • http://whiskeyfire.typepad.com Thers

    Larch:

    I just don’t know that much about the Wegman situation.  I think that he probably started off as unbiased and not knowing much about the issue; then after the way he was treated and criticized, he joined the ranks of the skeptics (this whole situation polarizes people who start out neutral or ignorant).

    And:

    I certainly agree that Jones et al.’s mindset was influenced by the politically motivated disinformation machine, I stated this in my first essay “on the credibility . . .” posted at climateaudit.   But as scientists, we have to get past that, that kind of mindset, while understandable, leads to all kinds of problems as we have seen in the aftermath of climategate.  And that kind of mindset is alleged to be most acute in scientists that have a policy agenda.

    OK then.

  • Larch

    Judith Curry Says:
    April 26th, 2010 at 10:28 pm

    AndrewT,  I just don’t know that much about the Wegman situation.  I think that he probably started off as unbiased and not knowing much about the issue; then after the way he was treated and criticized, he joined the ranks of the skeptics (this whole situation polarizes people who start out neutral or ignorant).  Bottom line is that I just don’t know that much about the Wegman situation, I have acknowledged this several places in the thread.  Given this, I hope we can move off the Wegman topic.

    Given that you defended him for being attacked, you now have a level of ownership of him.  You have not responded to any of Connolley’s points.  And this is important, because it epitomises much of the problem.  You have accepted an important part of the ‘denialist’ mantra, without questioning it.  When you look at Wegman, the inquiry was not an objective one, but one set up by a politician to reach a pre-ordained conclusion.  Yet you have accepted it as being part of the mainstream scientific process, and given it greater creedence than it deserves.

  • freespeech

    andrewt wrote:
    “udith you told us that Wegman was the most unbiased person you could get to perform a review because “Prior to summer 2006, Wegman had no apparent interest in climate science or politics”. But you neglected to tell us that Wegman signed an anti-AGW letter with Singer et al. in 2007  (linked by Tim above).  If you  were “not unaware of this” you’ve  omitted crucial information and mislead us and should apologize.”

    Huh? Wegman’s report was written in 2006. Judith used that as the date for her statement. You attempt to paint him as biased in 2006 because he signed a letter critical of alarmist theories in 2007? Perhaps he saw the misuse of statistics in Mann publications, the absence of confidence levels in these same publications, the use of “friend” review instead of independent peer-review,  the general blinkered defense of Mann by the climate pseudo-scientists, and the viciousness of their denunciations of him, personally as somehow indicating that perhaps the “science” might just be a little suspect. After all, he did just publish a critical 90+ page to congress on exactly these matters.
    Who’d have thought!

    Andrew, do you have any comment on the quality of the Oxburgh committee report? The RC crowd love it.
    Can’t bring yourself to comment?

  • andrewt

    Judith you made a strong attack on the  blogger DeepClimate referring to him as “absolutely reprehensible” .   Now you are saying that you actually know very little about the topic and we should forget  your (quite lengthy) remarks.   Fine but what about about an apology to DeepClimate?

    And why shouldn’t we assume your other  blog comments are also casual throwaways  not to be taken seriously?

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    > And why shouldn’t we assume your other  blog comments are also casual throwaways  not to be taken seriously?

    This kind of induction is what makes skepticism possible, a skepticism spanning from the philosophical to denialism, whatever that means.

    And the answer is quite short: there are no sufficient reasons that can prevent you to doubt.  Nothing that can circumvent the need to make inductions, unless we are in very narrow domains of knowledge.  As one already said: the humean predicament is the human predicament.

    Piling on a weakness is so ungentlemanly that even when one (well more than one, if there is real piling on) is right, it never sounds like it .

  • jerry

    Dr. Curry,

    Re: 164/149

    Actually that was Shug suggesting you stop using words like corruption and malfeasance.  My response was that Lloyd Blankfein, Jamie Dimon, and Tim Geithner also hate those words when used in conjunction with investigations of the financial meltdown.  They prefer words like “had a bad day”, and “oopsy, spilt beer on the server”, “no one could have predicted”, and “we need to look forward, not backward.”

    The problem I have with denier is that it is vague, inaccurate, and seems to intentionally conflate AGW skepticism with Intelligent Design and Creationism.

    I have no problem with one climate scientist examining the workings of others and saying that it smells like corruption or malfeasance.  As an engineer, I feel competent to say that about other engineering programs.

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    > Lloyd Blankfein, Jamie Dimon, and Tim Geithner also hate those words when used in conjunction with investigations of the financial meltdown.

    Used where, in blogs? 

    Are we conducting an investigation, right now?

  • http://nigguraths.wordpress.com Shub Niggurath

    Andrewt:
    “Judith Curry should apologize to DeepClimate” – repeated twice.

    Fishing for brownie points, Andrew? DeepClimate’s initial embarrassment with Rapp lead to his clinging to the plagiarism theme at all costs. Give it up – the damage is done. Mann could have been exonerated if his stats was strong enough.

    Get more people into paleoclimate science instead – atleast it’ll prevent the muckety-like analysis that Wegman performed yielding fishy results.

    Willard:
    We are trying to ‘investigate’ why the IPCC process with relation to the CRU succumbed to corruption. Dont let that word raise your hackles.

    Dont let the word ‘corruption’ bother you too much – unlike the affwarmists, no one here is stuck up on specific words. Corruption is simply used in the sense of “something ain’t conducted in the way it has been claimed”.

    Remember the word ‘robust’? You know the number of times it was thrown at everyone’s face just 3 months back.

  • Raven

    #288 - Larch

    Wegman is only relevant for those who refuse to read and understand what SteveMc says. He said nothing other than agree that SteveMc and RossMc were correct.

    You can trash Wegman as much as you want but that does not change the validity of the arguments presented by SteveMc which are the crux of the credibility problem that climate scientists have created.

    Incidently, Jerry North while testifying under oath said the NAS panel agree with the findings of Wegman. So if you are disputing Wegman you are also disputing the NAS report.

  • http://moderateclimate.blogspot.com/ Steve Reynolds

    Nathan (264), I think you should look at this more recent JA paper:
    http://www.jamstec.go.jp/frsgc/research/d5/jdannan/probrevised.pdf

    It seems to show close to 2C peak pdf sensitivity in figure 2 and reasonable probability of 1.5C sensitivity.

  • Rattus Norvegicus

    Judith:

    I don’t know why you seem to think that Warwick Hughes can be considered a credible scientist.  He calls himself  someone who does “freelance research”.  Yes he does have two published papers, the most recent one of which is almost 20 years old.  If you take a look at his page you’ll see that he is skeptical of a good many things, including traffic safety and AIDS.  Quite frankly the guy strikes me as a crank.

    Is the Willis Eschenbach you point to the same one who came up with the remarkable new math equation 288 – 255 = 8?  I find his recent attempts to redefine the earth’s energy budget over at WTFUWT rather less than convincing, but then perhaps you have some reason to think that his “steel earth” hypothesis deserves more investigation.  In Willis’ case, it appears from his own account of his adventures in FOI land that CRU worked with him to trim his original request down to something that they could provide w/o violating their agreements with the national met services.  This turned out to be the station list.  Did he end up doing anything with this?  Not that I have seen. 

    As far as including the Wegman report in the IPCC…  I can see at least two very good reasons for not doing it.

    It was a blatantly political report, ordered by Barton in lieu of a proper NRC report.  Note that contrary to your claims, the Wegman report had nothing to do with the NRC.
    The Wegman committee had support from the majority staff of the house committee.
    The Wegman report was most certainly *not* peer reviewed in any normal sense of the term.  In particular nobody with *any* expertise in any area of climatology, and especially paleoclimate looked at it.
    The report really added nothing to the debate beyond what was discussed by McKitrick and McIntyre.
    Dismissing the Wegman report seems an entirely reasonable thing to do.

  • Willis Eschenbach

    With all of the attacks on Wegman’s alleged plagiarism here, I didn’t notice anyone who has found something wrong with his math. Perhaps I missed it. Tamino’s post cited above basically says “it was wrong but it didn’t make much difference”, which misses the point. If Wegman made an error … what was it?

    I must admit, however, I find this kind of thing both funny and frustrating. People say “You can’t believe his math because he XX”, with the XX something like “is in the pay of big oil” or “is a plagiarist” or “doesn’t change his underwear often enough” or “is a known opponent of the AGW hypothesis”.

    So what? Why should I care? I want to know if his math is correct, not if his personal habits are beyond reproach. 

    Regarding whether folks are “circling the wagons” in response to attacks from disbelievers, this charge has been made about Jones et al. and their response to the FOI requests.

    However, the CRU emails clearly show that they were “circling the wagons” a couple years before the first FOI request. So the “But Mom, he hit me first” defense doesn’t hold water.

    Regarding whether the Wegman Report should have been discussed in the IPCC report, someone said no, because it was not peer-reviewed. Funny how that didn’t stop the IPCC from citing the un-peer-reviewed Stern Report 26 times

    Regarding whether Warwick Hughes or I are sufficiently credentialed enough for Phil Jones to give the data to us, that misses the point entirely. Jones’s comment to Warwick was:

    <blockquote><em>Why should I make the data available to you, when your aim is to try and find something wrong with it</em></blockquote>

    Ummm … because that’s how science works? Publish the work, publish the data, and see if other people can find fault with it. It has nothing to do with who asks to see the data. Why is that so hard for many climate scientists to understand?

    Finally, I would like to commend Judith Curry for taking the position she has taken. Right or wrong, her honesty and willingness to engage in discussion is an excellent example that other climate scientists should emulate. The vitriol of the attacks on her should be a warning flag. Do you guys really think that you gain credibility by attacking someone for having the temerity to point out that trust in climate-science is at an all-time low, and who wants to discuss how to improve that? Talk about shooting the messenger …

    These days, rightly or wrongly, there are a host of people who don’t trust climate scientists. In part, this is because many of them have not been willing to engage in Judith’s kind of frank, open discussion of the issues, in particular of the uncertainties in what is an infant science. To take just one example, Tamino and RealClimate ruthlessly censor many opposing scientific views, and despite several invitations they haven’t showed up here to defend their positions and their comments … and then they are surprised when no one believes them?

    I view this as a tragedy, both for climate science and for science in general. I applaud Dr. Curry’s attempt to pull climate science out of the mud.

  • SkipSmith

    While it’s cute to see people cutting and pasting links to articles they don’t understand, it’s really getting away from the main point.

    What I’d really like to see is a function that describes the normal/nutcase ratio in a thread like this as the days go past.  I think it’s a hockey stick shaped function that approaches 1 by the end of day 2.   What do you guys think?

  • Ben

    That’s not how science works. Science works by retesting the hypothesis on one’s own and comparing the results. You’re confusing doing science with running an audit.

  • John Mashey

    1) DC was looking at the Wegman Report and actually found the WR:Rapp connection first, and only later discovered the “striking similarity of the WR to Bradley’s text.

    2) While I cringe at the comparison, I’d say this is the best resemblance to Watergate, i.e., the breakin was an obvious act, but far less important than further things discovered.

    Seeming plagiarism is just the tip of the iceberg, but a sharp tip,  especially the part where Bradley’s text was diddled to weaken it or even reverse a major conclusion, i.e., saying tree-rings are unusable, and adding “confounding factors” often.  Bradley’s book (I own one) is 600 pages of explanations of those factors and how they are dealt with.   If people want to argue, they  quote somebody and then cite countervailing evidence.  Non-experts don’t normally use an expert’s words without attribution and just invert conclusions they don’t like.  Of course, we don’t know who actually did this, because the Panel might have gotten it from someone else and just used it.  (But if so, that’s a different problem).

    3) <a href=”http://www.desmogblog.com/crescendo-climategate-cacophony”> (CCC 1.V1.0) </a> documents all this in detail, except for the new material on the social networks and other recently-unearthed info.
    See Fig 2.1 for context, Section 5.1 for the 1998-2004 sequence starting with the GCSCT meeting at the American Petroleum Institute, and Section 5.3 for the 2005-2006 behind-the-scenes.  See A.10 notes on the WR, and A.11 Yasmin Said’s 2007 presentation.

    Most of the rest is context and backup, so about 30 pages is directly relevant to the WR. 

    4) After Barton/Whitfield issued their letters (and read about Myron Ebell’s role in that), the NAS offered to do a study.
    CCC V1.0, p.142:
    “”•Larry Neal, deputy staff director for Mr. Barton’s committee, said in a statement that because “combating climate change is a breathtakingly expensive prospect,” it deserved closer study, and that the academy was “unlikely” to
    address all of Mr. Barton’s concerns.”

    NAS wasn’t good enough for Barton, but  it does have pretty clear <a href=”http://sites.nationalacademies.org/NRC/PoliciesandProcedures/index.htm”>procedures</a> for creating well-balanced panels with good reviewers.

    Who was good enough?   Normally, one would expct Congress to ask somebody directly, or got through ASA or NAS. One way or another, an old friend, Jerry Coffey, either suggested Wegman or was asked to approach him, Sept 1, 2005.  See CCC  p. 115, including tea party patriots, Sarah Palin, and his views on climate.  His favorite books on global warming were Solomon’s “The Deniers”, Pat Michaels’ books, and Singer&Avery.  He was chosen to approach Wegman.

    5) Wegman formed a panel of:
    -himself
    -David Scott, who was a long-time colleague (book chapters or invited talks at sessions) ,and had been a long-time “CorrespondingResearch Faculty member” for the Cneter Wegman had created at GMU.
    - Yasmin Said, who did her PhD with Wegman in 2005, and a frequent coauthor.
    They acknowledged 2 more:
    -John T. Rigsby, labeled NWSC, but a Wegman MS student (and lately, a PhD student), and coauthor
    -Denise Reeves, labeled MITRE, but also a Wegman student, finished her PhD in 2009.
    and they got some help from
    -Walid Sharabati, Wegman PhD in 2008.

    There was nobody with relevant climate science, and they didn’t talk to any.  There was nobody with strong sociology of science background.

    With all due respect, this is pretty far from an NRC process.

    6) According to Yasmin Said (CCC V1.0,  p.173) ,
    or see p.5 of her <a href=”http://www.galaxy.gmu.edu/stats/colloquia/AbstractsFall2007/TalkSept7.pdf”>2007 presentation</a>.

    “We we re warned that we should be prepared for critic ism and that we should have thick skins.
    “¢ Peter Spencer began sending us a daunting amount of material for us to review over the next 9 months.”

    Who was Peter Spencer?  See CCC p.156.  He was the Barton staffer who seemed to manage this process.  Hmm, this “expert, independent” committee got much of its literature through a Barton staffer.  I guess he was a climate expert, , and I’m sure, working for Barton, he was careful to select a balanced set of material…. or maybe not.  CCC, Appendix A.10.3 discusses the various “grey literature” or irrelevant references in the WR.

    7) They talked to McIntyre, never contacted Mann.

    8) A serious review would ask:
    a) Was MBH98/MBH99 optimal statistics?
    (A:NO, they slightly exaggerated whatever was there)
    b) And if not, would better statistics give a very different result (A:NO).
    c) And more important, did later studies agree
    (A: yes, within the usual confidence intervals.  When I saw the sphaghetti diagrams in TAR, I said “they’re trying to extract signal from noisy, minimal data, and the answer is in that zone somewhere to the best of our knowledge, and likely, over time, they’ll reduce the uncertainty bars.  Of coruse, that sort of thinking is from a John Tukey influence.
    d) And most important, policy decision relate to our future climate.  Does our future climate depend in any way on our knowledge of 1000AD?
    (A: NO, it depends on physics, chemistry, biology, and policy).

    Wegman actually alluded to the latter by saying it was time to move on … although he didn’t, giving  a bunch of talks over then next year or so, and writing papers to bash peer review in climate science, and visiting GMI and the Annapolis Center, not exactly science institutions.

    9) So, that’s a little of the history.  The ‘striking similarities” were really just obvious tipoffs that led to much deeper investigations …

  • Pingback: The death of Impartiality - Page 2 - US Message Board - Political Discussion Forum

  • Nathan

    Steve @296

    I think you have misread the paper. The paper is about how they
    “… investigated the assumptions underlying many recent probabilistic analyses of climate sensitivity, and shown how these may influence policy through a simple economic analysis of a climate change scenario.”

    The figure isn’t a summary of Annan’s climate sensitivity calcs.
    They used someone else’s work to try and lower the upper bound on climate sensitivity so:

    “When this prior is updated with the analysis of Forster and Gregory (2006), the long fat tail that is characteristic of all recent estimates of climate sensitivity simply disappears, with an upper 95% probability limit for S easily shown to lie close to 4oC, and certainly well below 6oC.”

    They don’t really address the lower bound. They state in the text that the combined effects of water vapour and CO2 means it should be at least 2C.

    On his blog, ‘James’ empty blog’ he has a posting, linking to some papers of his,saying that his best guess is a cliamte sensitivity of 3C.

  • NewYorkJ

    So in #216, Judith, in an attempt to criticize the IPCC, asserts:

    “I think that “very likely larger than 1.5C” is an overstatement of confidence in the model derived sensitivities.”

    Yet in #283, Judith cites the same Knutti & Hergel article I cited in #265.   As Nathan points out in #284, the article states:

    “”The well-constrained lower limit of climate sensitivity and the transient rate of warming already provide useful information for policy makers. But the upper limit of climate sensitivity will be more difficult to quantify.”

    And indeed, the article shows that the “very likely” range from a few different techniques generally starts at 1.5 C (higher in some cases), and combining lines of evidence gives a “very likely” range of 1.5-5 C.

  • NewYorkJ

    Judith says…

    “…and the so-called tsunami of accusations made in regards to climategate are nothing in compared to the attack on Wegman.
    Wegman is very unpopular with the warmists because his 2006 NRC report was very critical of the statistics used by mann et al. in the creation of the hockey stick.  Prior to summer 2006, Wegman had no apparent interest or involvement in climate science or politics.”

    “To see such a respected academic accused in this way (with the accusations so obviously baseless) is absolutely reprehensible.”

    but later says…

     Bottom line is that I just don’t know that much about the Wegman situation, I have acknowledged this several places in the thread. “

    I must admit, this 180 is welcome and refreshing.  Although I think most of Judith’s interview assertions remain unsupported and responses dodgy and entirely insufficient, contrarians could learn a few things from at least the above admission, and Judith’s apparent willingness to engage some of her “warmist” critics.

  • Brendan H

    Willis: “I view this as a tragedy, both for climate science and for science in general. I applaud Dr. Curry’s attempt to pull climate science out of the mud.”

    If climate science is in the mud, sceptics have done their bit by throwing a heap of dirt. Accusations of lying, cheating and fraud cannot but put climate scientists on the defensive. Yes, they should be “above it”, but I think I would develop a bunker mentality in the same situation.

    There is a deeply ingrained belief among climate sceptics that they are virtuous souls who are only politely “asking questions” about climate. All the while, sceptic blogs are spewing toxic mind-waste.

    Everybody needs to take responsibility for their own behavior. That also includes climate sceptics. To take responsibility includes taking a clear-eyed view of one’s position and motivations. Sometimes that means questioning one’s protestations of virtue.

  • http://scienceblogs.com/stoat/2010/04/curry_part_2_the_papers.php William

    Oops, I confused Barton and Inhofe. Apologies.

  • RichieRich

    Willis @ 297 writes

    “Regarding whether folks are “circling the wagons” in response to attacks from disbelievers, this charge has been made about Jones et al. and their response to the FOI requests.
    However, the CRU emails clearly show that they were “circling the wagons” a couple years before the first FOI request. So the “But Mom, he hit me first” defense doesn’t hold water.”

    I rather think Steven Sullivan’s comment @ 247 might be relevant here.

    “Indeed.  It all started with Warwick Hughes, don’t you know?  The history of  ideologically- and industry-funded disinformation about climate science apparently is of no consequence to Jones et al’s mindset.”

    It’s my understanding that Phil Jones was receiving death threats long before his infamous e-mail to Warwick Hughes.  Not saying that the criticisms of the way UEA dealt with FOI requests aren’t valid but context is always useful.

  • Larch

    Willis: “I view this as a tragedy, both for climate science and for science in general. I applaud Dr. Curry’s attempt to pull climate science out of the mud.”

    The irony is palpable, since Willis is one of the biggest mud flingers out there.  The endless accusations and implications of fraud are usually based on an inabilityscience or to understand or conduct real research.  The Darwin weather station would be the prime example.

  • Larch

    Willis Eschenbach Says:
    April 27th, 2010 at 1:00 am

    With all of the attacks on Wegman’s alleged plagiarism here, I didn’t notice anyone who has found something wrong with his math. Perhaps I missed it. Tamino’s post cited above basically says “it was wrong but it didn’t make much difference”, which misses the point. If Wegman made an error “¦ what was it?
    People often find errors in math.  McIntyre made a presentation to the NSC about an error in math. The NSC made a note of it, and said thank you very much, the science still stands.  That was not good enough for McIntyre.  He needs to be able to make implications of fraud and conspiracy, so back to the blog he went.

  • Willis Eschenbach

    Brendan H Says:
    April 27th, 2010 at 3:32 am
    <blockquote><em>Willis: “I view this as a tragedy, both for climate science and for science in general. I applaud Dr. Curry’s attempt to pull climate science out of the mud.”

    If climate science is in the mud, sceptics have done their bit by throwing a heap of dirt. Accusations of lying, cheating and fraud cannot but put climate scientists on the defensive. Yes, they should be “above it”, but I think I would develop a bunker mentality in the same situation. … </em></blockquote>

    Brendan, the CRU emails clearly show that Jones et al. were in fact lying, cheating, and committing fraud. They were “on the defensive”, not because I filed an FOI request, but because they had something to hide.

    The reason people don’t trust them is not because some anonymous blogger told them not to. It is because Jones and his ilk have proven themselves unworthy of our trust. They have taken Stephen Schneider’s advice, and have been selling us scary scenarios and making little mention of their doubts and uncertainties. They have been crying wolf about thermal armageddon, there’s been no significant warming in 15 years, and they now think that people not trusting them is a PR problem. It is not. They have way, way oversold the certainty of their case and the “robustness” of their claims, and are now hoist by their own proverbial petard.

    Yes, there has been lots of mud thrown by both sides. And like you, I condemn that. I’ve been guilty of it myself at times, and I regret that I’ve done that. I apologize to anyone I may have wrongly insulted or libelled.

    But I don’t glory in my doing that, like Tim Lambert who is happy to call me a liar in a post title simply because we disagree about the science. Nor does Tim’s accusation make me defensive or make me want to “circle the wagons” or give me a “bunker mentality”. I find it encouraging. It’s a sure-fire sign that I’m making him very nervous, otherwise why would he attack me so savagely?

    And as far as I know, only one side of the debate has been destroying emails to conceal their guilty actions … In general, however, I don’t see the problem as the kind of scientific malfeasance and outright illegality which is so ably represented by Jones et al.

    I see the problem as being inter alia a mix of noble cause corruption, politically driven funding, unsupportable claims of high confidence in results, intellectual laziness (especially in peer-review), and an unwillingness (particularly in young scientists) to rock the boat by espousing unpopular positions. It has been abetted by an “us versus them” mentality which has never done science any good. It has been supported by the type of whitewash “investigations” we have seen lately. And it has been sustained by the journals and the funding agencies not enforcing their own policies on data archiving and scientific transparency.

    All of those are curable … but it will require work from both sides (as you rightly point out) to tone down the rhetoric and get back to the science.

  • Willis Eschenbach

    RichieRich Says:
    April 27th, 2010 at 4:05 am
    It’s my understanding that Phil Jones was receiving death threats long before his infamous e-mail to Warwick Hughes.  Not saying that the criticisms of the way UEA dealt with FOI requests aren’t valid but context is always useful.
    Cite? While context is useful, facts are even more useful. Jones told Warwick that in 2005, and I’ve never heard of any threats to Jones before 2005, much less death threats.

  • Willis Eschenbach

    Ben Says:
    April 27th, 2010 at 1:06 am
    That’s not how science works. Science works by retesting the hypothesis on one’s own and comparing the results. You’re confusing doing science with running an audit.


    How can one possibly “retest the hypothesis on one’s own” without access to the data? How can anyone find an error in another scientist’s work without access to the data?
    Why do you think that most of the scientific journals have policies requiring, not requesting but requiring, the archiving of the data for the studies that they publish? (Although sadly, these were often ignored for “friends of Phil”.)
    Science is based on replicability, but without access to the original data, replicating Jones’s work is not possible. Science progresses by people finding errors in scientific work, but without the data, any possible errors will stay as hidden as the data.
    In Jones’s case, however, the reason he refused to share the original data was simple, and had nothing to do with the issues you raise – it was because he had lost a good chunk of the original data. Rather than admit that, he illegally avoided FOI requests from myself and others, and only escaped prosecution because the statute of limitations had run out.
    I must confess, I fail to see why any scientist would conceal their data once their studies have been published … or why you would defend that practice.
    We taxpayers paid Phil Jones to assemble and analyze the data, it is being used as the basis for billion dollar decisions that affect us all, and you truly see nothing wrong with him concealing it … yeah, that will increase the public’s trust in climate science, all right.

  • oneuniverse

    The ‘hockey stick’ is a crock. Only fools and scientific charlatans defend it now.
    Ian Jolliffe, an authority on PCA, said of MBH hockey stick :
    “I am by no means a climate change denier. My strong impressive is that the evidence rests on much much more than the hockey stick. It therefore seems crazy that the MBH hockey stick has been given such prominence and that a group of influential climate scientists have doggedly defended a piece of dubious statistics.”
    The above was left as a comment on Tamino’s blog, who was attempting to defend Mann’s work by a complete misrepresentation of Jolliffe’s ( http://tamino.wordpress.com/2008/08/10/open-thread-5-2/#comment-21873 ).

  • Willis Eschenbach

    I said:
    April 27th, 2010 at 1:00 am


    With all of the attacks on Wegman’s alleged plagiarism here, I didn’t notice anyone who has found something wrong with his math. Perhaps I missed it. Tamino’s post cited above basically says “it was wrong but it didn’t make much difference”, which misses the point. If Wegman made an error “¦ what was it?



    Larch Replied
    April 27th, 2010 at 4:11 am

    People often find errors in math.  McIntyre made a presentation to the NSC about an error in math. The NSC made a note of it, and said thank you very much, the science still stands.  That was not good enough for McIntyre.  He needs to be able to make implications of fraud and conspiracy, so back to the blog he went.


    In other words, you don’t know of any errors in Wegman’s math either …

  • RichieRich

    Ben @ 299
    Willis @ 311

    Given your remarks about reproducibility, I thought I’d copy a post by Ron Broberg at The Blackboard that I found useful.
    ____________
    START OF POST

    Some thought I had on scientific confirmation related somewhat to steven mosher (Comment#35171)

    1) Given the exact data and exact code, an audit can be made on implementation errors.

    2) Given the exact data but using independent methods, results of the first team can be bolstered/undermined by the second team.

    3) Using independent data and independent methods, results of the first team can be bolstered/undermined by the second team.

    Historically, 3) was the method used most often to advance or correct a previously published work. Satellite data -v- surface records is an example of 3).

    McIntyre has gotten very good at 2) ““ that is in taking the original proxy data and using it to reconstruct the proxy results produced by other teams. NASA GISTEMP -v- Hadley CRU is another example of 2) where both take GHCN as input but apply their own methods to produce output. E.M. Smith is struggling with 1). Stokes reimplementation is essentially a version of 1). Whereas the work to reconstruct CRUTEMP from descriptions in published papers is an example of 2).

    In my limited understanding, in some science fields (sociology, I’ve read), providing complete data and exact code is common. In most, it has not. Traditionally, rather than an exact copy of the code, a description of the methods used along with a few key equations have been provided. That way, a second team could re-implement the method independently, if they so chose. Times are changing.

    END OF POST 

    It seems to me that those who question the need for data sharing/release do so as they think Ron’s (3) is sufficient for science to progess.  However, it seems to me that Willis is arguing that (1) and (2) are necessary too and I think I’d agree.

  • Brendan H

    Willis: “”¦the CRU emails clearly show that Jones et al. were in fact lying, cheating, and committing fraud.”

    These claims existed long before the CRU emails came to light. Given that, it would be surprising if climate skeptics had resisted the temptation of re-discovering that climate scientists were “lying, cheating, and committing fraud”.

    “”¦it will require work from both sides (as you rightly point out) to tone down the rhetoric and get back to the science.”

    By all means let’s get back to the science, but there’s the matter of “lying, cheating, and committing fraud”. How do we tone down the rhetoric and get back to the science while those lying and cheating climate scientists persist in perpetrating their fraud?

  • oneuniverse

    Ian Jolliffe, an authority on PCA, said of MBH hockey stick :

    “I am by no means a climate change denier. My strong impressive is that the evidence rests on much much more than the hockey stick. It therefore seems crazy that the MBH hockey stick has been given such prominence and that a group of influential climate scientists have doggedly defended a piece of dubious statistics.“

    Above comment left by Jollife on Tamino’s blog, who was attempting to defend Mann’s work by misrepresenting  Jolliffe’s ( http://tamino.wordpress.com/2008/08/10/open-thread-5-2/#comment-21873 ).

  • Willis Eschenbach

    Brendan H Says:
    April 27th, 2010 at 6:13 am
    Willis: “”¦the CRU emails clearly show that Jones et al. were in fact lying, cheating, and committing fraud.”

    These claims existed long before the CRU emails came to light. Given that, it would be surprising if climate skeptics had resisted the temptation of re-discovering that climate scientists were “lying, cheating, and committing fraud”.

    “”¦it will require work from both sides (as you rightly point out) to tone down the rhetoric and get back to the science.”

    By all means let’s get back to the science, but there’s the matter of “lying, cheating, and committing fraud”. How do we tone down the rhetoric and get back to the science while those lying and cheating climate scientists persist in perpetrating their fraud?


    I’d say insisting on and doing honest, transparent, rigorous science with the data archived and the code open for inspection … unless you have a better idea. And if fraud continues (which it may or may not), call it out and disown it when it is found out.

    That’s my suggestion … what’s yours? Ignore fraud, and don’t name and shame those who practice it?

  • Larch

    In other words, you don’t know of any errors in Wegman’s math either “¦

    I’m saying you keep coming up with accusations of fraud, when it often comes down to your ignorance or people progressing science as they usually do.  Mann has kept going through the iterative process of  improving his own work, as most researchers do.  There has been no fraud found at the CRU.

    Your calls of fraud, such as the Darwin temperature record, just indicate you are an alarmist.

  • Larch

    Willis Eschenbach Says:


    How can one possibly “retest the hypothesis on one’s own” without access to the data? How can anyone find an error in another scientist’s work without access to the data?

    The data is there.  Several bloggers out there are creating their own temperature records based on the publicly available data.  The fraud is all in your mind.

    Here is one collection being evaluated at a ‘lukewarmer’ blog.
    http://rankexploits.com/musings/2010/comparing-global-landocean-reconstructions/

  • Nathan

    Willis

    If you look at Deep Climate’s blog you will see that the errors Wegman made were along the lines of accidentally mis-quoting papers they didn’t reference. That is it looks like they took chunks of text from wikipedia, and other sources (like Mann’s co-author Bradley) and tweaked the text so that it meant the opposite of what the author actualy said.

  • Nathan

    Willis

    “How can anyone find an error in another scientist’s work without access to the data?”
    Remember the authors of these reconstructions don’t normally collect all the data, they are using data sourced from other  people. What you need to do is find out their sources of data and request the data from the original source…

  • Heraclitus

    I would suggest that Judith Curry has an opportunity to demonstrate her credibility here by commenting on Willis Eschenbach’s posts.

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  • Judith Curry

    Larch, I would like to follow up on your statement:

    “Mann has kept going through the iterative process of  improving his own work, as most researchers do.”

    Yes this statement is true.  And this is how science progresses, and it progresses even more rapidly when skepticism is allowed to flourish.

    My real issue is not with the quality of the science, it is what it is.  My real issues is how confidence levels are assigned to the science in assessments like the IPCC.  Words like “very likely” and even “likely” should not be used if there are substantial disagreements, inadequate characterization of the scientific uncertainties, and the likelihood of unknown unknown that haven’t even been considered.  Besides being misleading, artificially high confidence levels arguably discourage wider investigations.

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  • Judith Curry

    Nathan, with regards to Willis Eschenbach’s comments. Willis has made some thoughtful comments.  Willis and I have engaged fairly extensively in the blogosphere, in my early blogging days over at climateaudit and more recently at WUWT.  Willis and I disagree on many things (see especially his post Judith I love ya but you’re way wrong, which has become sort of a WUWT manifesto), but I respect Willis and believe him to be honest and sincere.  I share with him concerns regarding the integrity of climate research and the IPCC assessment process.  If there is anything specifically that you would like me to respond to in Willis’ post, pls specify.

  • oneuniverse

    Professor Curry is not alone in drawing attention to the IPCC’s corrupted science.

    eg. Recent comments of Dr. Richard Tol :

    http://nofrakkingconsensus.blogspot.com/2010/04/seasoned-veterans-view-of-ipcc.html

    “I was a lead author of two chapters in AR2′s Working Group 3 report (1995), convening lead author in the Special Report on Regional Impacts published in 2001 (Working Group 2), contributing author of one chapter in AR3′s Working Group 1 report (2001), lead author of one chapter in AR3′s Working Group 2 report (2001), and contributing author of one chapter in AR4′s Working Group 2 report (2007).

    Over the years, the IPCC has changed from a scientific institution that tries to be policy relevant to a political institution that pretends to be scientific. I regret that. There are already more than enough climate activists, while there are too few solid and neutral bodies that make down-to-earth and well-founded statements about climate change and climate policy.”

    [..]

    Working Groups 2 and 3 of the AR4 violated all IPCC procedures. The conclusions are partly scientifically unfounded, and even partly copied from the environmental movement. The AR4 was substantially changed after the final review, also in parts that had already been accepted by the referees. Valid comments were ignored.”

    “As a result, AR4 contains crude errors, only some of which are public knowledge. These errors can be found in the chapters, the technical summaries, the summaries for policy makers, and the synthesis report. The errors are not random. Working Group 2 systematically portrays climate change as a bigger problem than is scientifically acceptable. Working Group 3 systematically portrays climate policy as easier and cheaper than can be responsibly concluded based on academic research.

    “The reputation of climate research has been severely damaged by the IPCC. The IPCC should therefore be drastically and publicly reformed.”

  • http://uppsalainitiativet.blogspot.com/2010/04/climategate-phil-jones-och-cru-friade.html Magnus W

    Frist, thanks for answering questions Judith,

    However why do you make statementsFw about e.g. Wegman that is unsupported and from my judgement on other “sceptics” as well if this is what you truly are worried about

    “My real issues is how confidence levels are assigned to the science in assessments like the IPCC.”

    This I think goes out from the climate science to social science and policy and also in to politics. Politicians should be aware of what very likely is translated from as should the media, IPCC have documents on how this was done.  What words do you suggest that researchers use to discribe the science? Would it be better to just say that 3 degrees C is the most probable sensitivity and to don’t mention upper and lower bounds or how do you suggest the wording around sensitivity should be?

    To gain some background on why I think it is meaningless to e.g. post on CA or e.g. think tanks se:

    Denialism: what is it ans how should scientists respond?
    european journal of public health vol. 19 no.1, 2-4
    Scientific Certainty Argumentation Methods (SCAMs): Science and the politics of Doubt
    Sociological Inquiry, Vol. 78, No. 1, February 2008, 2-38

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    Willis commenting Wegman:

    >  So what? Why should I care? I want to know if his math is correct, not if his personal habits are beyond reproach.

    Willis commenting the Team:

    > The reason people don’t trust them is not because some anonymous blogger told them not to. It is because Jones and his ilk have proven themselves unworthy of our trust.

    The two attitudes are tough to reconcile.

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    Shub,

    One might disagree with the idea that we are right now conducting an investigation.  It’s arguably not in the same sense as “investigations of the financial meltdown”.

    That example is interesting: media can use expressions like “accusations of fraud” or “convicted of fraud” only because there are accusations of fraud made or conviction proven.  If there are no official investigations, one needs to get more subtle.  If you want to stand above these subtleties, like Willis above, well the reader will decide by himself if that helps you make your point.

    If you don’t believe me, try Steve:

    > There’s no reason to believe that ice core measurements are “probably fraudulent”. This type of over-wrought language is also very counter-productive to whatever point that you’re making. You have to remember that people always see only your worst and weakest point. So by saying something foolish like this, you completely waste your message.

    So be my guest and waste your message, Snub.  Am I supposed to be afraid of that?

  • Heraclitus

    Judith @324

    Possibly that was my post you were responding to? I’ll respond anyway.

    I’d particularly like you to comment on this from Willis in 309:

    “It is because Jones and his ilk have proven themselves unworthy of our trust. They have taken Stephen Schneider’s advice, and have been selling us scary scenarios and making little mention of their doubts and uncertainties. They have been crying wolf about thermal armageddon, there’s been no significant warming in 15 years, and they now think that people not trusting them is a PR problem.”

    However, I feel that the tone of his posts as a whole hardly fit in to your theme of reconciliation and I don’t recognise your characterisation of his comments in 324.

  • Phil Clarke

    <i>the CRU emails clearly show that Jones et al. were in fact lying, cheating, and committing fraud</i>
    Oh Really? Perhaps you could provide one example that demonstrates each of these charges unequivocally? Given that they are serious allegations and the source material is PD. Thanks.
    In fact, given the [now] public nature of the mails, funny how all the enquiries to date that have found no such evidence can hope to retain their credibility in the minds of fair-thinking people…. very odd.

  • sod

    Judith, you said this above:

    Judith Curry Says:
    April 25th, 2010 at 9:06 am

    Sou, there is a “competing” assessment of our current state of the climate knowledge, called the Non-Governmental International Panel on Climate Change. Which report should the public believe? The reason that the IPCC has had so much credibility is their PROCESS: a large group of international scientists, rules and guidelines to insure a fair assessment, use of peer reviewed literature, a rigorous peer review process, and openness and transparency at all steps of the process. So when these processes are violated, the IPCC risks becoming just another report with no greater legitimacy than the NIPCC in the public’s eyes.
    so if the IPCC full report had been published by an unknown source and without any references to the authors, while the NIPPC report (i still can t  believe you mention that one) was as it is now (written by Singer) you would prefer it?
    because it is more transparent?
    and you wouldn t base judgement mainly  at the  CONTENT?

  • Shevva

    A good balnced article about a very difficult subject.

    Can someone now use the same approch on the IPCC.

  • Larch

    Judith Curry Says:
    April 27th, 2010 at 7:57 am
    Nathan, with regards to Willis Eschenbach’s comments. Willis has made some thoughtful comments.  Willis and I have engaged fairly extensively in the blogosphere, in my early blogging days over at climateaudit and more recently at WUWT.  Willis and I disagree on many things (see especially his post Judith I love ya but you’re way wrong, which has become sort of a WUWT manifesto), but I respect Willis and believe him to be honest and sincere.  I share with him concerns regarding the integrity of climate research and the IPCC assessment process.  If there is anything specifically that you would like me to respond to in Willis’ post, pls specify.

    If Willis was honest and sincere, he would admit he knows very little about climate and the temperature records, and was completely wrong about the Darwin temperature record, which he was convinced was another example of massive fraud.

  • JamesG

    For the uninitiated or confused who are reading this, contrary to what some here might be pretending you don’t have to read a long book or know anything about climate or statistics to understand this issue – it can be simply  summarised as follows:

    If you have ring-data from a stand of 20 trees of which only one has a hockey stick shape then you can a) average them to identify that one outlier and remove it (sensitivity test), b) compare them to the local temperature to remove outliers and verify that it is a temperature proxy in the first place (calibration), or c) use a statistical filter to reject any that do not have a hockey-stick shape (data-mining). The first two are normal practice and give you a roughly correct answer but the latter will give you only what you force it to give, ie a hockey-stick shape.

    You’d think everone would see option c) as an obvious error, wouldn’t you? – most especially to professional academics. Alas when you have a phD you can say any old tosh and folk who are too lazy to even think about it will believe you.

    Unfortunately c) describes Briffas Yamal data almost exactly, a technique pioneered by Mann, and repeated by every other tree-ring reconstruction since, the most recent being Kaufmann.

    But it’s actually worse than that because the trees concerned were not even calibrated to local temperature. Unbelievably, the statistical filter uses global temperature.

    This is the origin of the description that one tree in Siberia (or California) is representing the world: It isn’t being cheeky, it is true! Actually now the favoured recon uses 3 upside-down Finnish lake sediment proxies to represent the world, something the original author of that study is quite upset about.

    So has anyone used option b), the sensible method. AFAIK only Dr. Craig Loehle – and there is no resulting hockey-stick.

  • http://nigguraths.wordpress.com Shub Niggurath

    Willard
    You say: “One might disagree with the idea that we are right now conducting an investigation.  It’s arguably not in the same sense as “investigations of the financial meltdown”.

    “If there are no official investigations, one needs to get more subtle.”

    I did not compare what’s going on in this thread to the long overdue Goldman Sachs’ day of reckoning. Jerry did. He clarified that he made the comparison – as well.

    I think you should ask him to be subtle. :) . Veiled threats on a blog do not do credit to the affirmists.

    Heraclitus:
    “However, I feel that the tone of his [Willis'] posts as a whole hardly fit in to your theme of reconciliation…”

    You misunderstand the reason for the tone of reconciliation. It is so that you can let you guard down and be less defensive so that we can all discuss the points raised in her post/interview above. If someone is being polite, it doesnt mean they are trying to make friends.

  • paulina

    Judy:

    Thanks so much for your reply in #232 to Q in #231.

    I have a lot of questions. So as not to make overly unreasonable demands on your time, I have formulated a main revised “C” question at the end of this comment. Hopefully, this question makes sense, even if you don’t have time to think about the rest of the issues in this comment and just skip right to the end.

    C.
    On your view, for these members of the public, or for most of them anyway, what is it that enhances the credibility of the group of critics?

    Is this enhanced credibility directly due to the lack of engagement (as in, “these critics must be on to something; the scientists aren’t responding”)?

    Or does it depend on the perceived loss of the moral high ground, which, in turn, for some of these members of the public, could diminish trust in, and hence credibility of, the climate science community?

    So that, more or less, any loss of credibility for the climate science community is a gain in credibility for these critics?

    You explain that you don’t see the moral high ground as a zero-sum game. For X to lose some [btw, I'm not clear on whether your use of the "moral high ground" concept connotes something binary or more of a spectrum] does not automatically mean that Y has gained some (you wrote: “doesn’t necessarily elevate”…).

    I hadn’t meant to suggest such an effect, so thanks for calling my attention to this. If you interpreted what I wrote in this way, I’m sure others did, too. By “relative to these critics,” I didn’t have in mind a kind of see-saw picture, with X on one side and Y on the other; a closer approximation would be X walking down toward the river, from up on the bank, with Y sitting anywhere on that path. X is losing ground relative to Y, but Y is not thereby gaining any.

    On the other hand, going back to credibility, as opposed to this “moral high ground” issue, as a practical matter, do you think that in a debate-like atmosphere, the total credibility granted by a debate audience is pretty much constant? So that any loss of credibility for X is automatically a gain in credibility for Y?

    If so, is it the format (debate-like atmosphere) that “generates” this “conservation of total credibility,” and if so, does it serve to set such a constraint on other properties (ie not just credibility), too?

    Going back to the “moral high ground”: in a debate-like atmosphere, would there be any practical difference between the see-saw case and the river bank?

    (As an aside, if your credibility is a function of expertise and trust, and someone’s trust in you depends on what your relation is to the moral high ground, and you don’t believe this relation should be a zero-sum game among you and your critics, then I think it’s helpful to guide conversations away from frameworks that lead to see-saw models of this relation. Maybe the debate format works (ie advances knowledge) best within communities with established norms, where minor or possibly irrelevant factors are less likely to get magnified. Presumably this magnification, exaggeration, helps erode the river bank, leaving a polarized see-saw. For cross-normative progress, conversation might be a much better tool than debate.

    Further, I really wonder about the whole concept of “moral high ground” in this context. How does it relate to the public trust issue? Is the moral high ground concept useful? Do you think of it as binary or more of a spectrum?  How does it relate to your ideas about needing to be “squeaky clean”? How does it relate to burden of proof issues?)

    While I would be very grateful for answers to or comments on all these questions, I realize that’s probably not possible in terms of demands on your time. I’m sure several of my questions are not sufficiently specific and maybe some are inadvertently loaded.

    I very much appreciate your engaging with my original list of questions in the one-by-one format the way you’ve been doing, and would be greatly helped if we could continue with that.

    For this purpose, here’s that one question:

    C.
    Is the enhanced credibility of these critics, in the eyes of a certain group of the public, (a) directly and (b) mainly, due to the climate science community’s practice of not engaging with these critics (as in, “these critics must be on to something; the scientists aren’t responding”)?

    Thanks.

  • NewYorkJ

    Willis says…”Brendan, the CRU emails clearly show that Jones et al. were in fact lying, cheating, and committing fraud”

    No they don’t.  But if you say it enough, perhaps more people will believe you.

    Your blog posts, on the other hand…

    http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2009/12/willis_eschenbach_caught_lying.php

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    Keith, when you get stuff like #333, could you at least insert an editorial “Citation lacking” note?

    Kids will read this stuff years from now, with luck.  But the topic has attracted copypasters and is starting to accumulate large amounts of rebunking, uncited, uncitable stuff claimed to be fact.

    Some editorial help for later readers would be appropriate, even the slightest little flag of warning not to believe uncited old stuff dropped into the new thread.

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    A good thoughtful post on credibility, recommended for readers new to the subject, whether you’re young or old, now or later:
    http://climatesight.org/2010/04/25/a-better-credibility-spectrum/
    (also note the comment policy there–best ever for climate science)

  • oneuniverse

    NewYorkJ,

    Willis Eschenbach’s analysis of Darwin station has been independently reproduced by others:

    http://diggingintheclay.blogspot.com/2009/12/reproducing-willis-eschenbachs-wuwt.html
    http://matthewmarkus.posterous.com/darwin-airport-temperature-data-revisited

    I haven’t heard any good explanations for the steadily-upwards pattern of the adjustments at Darwin post-1941.

    Blair Trewin from Australia’s National Climate Centre commented :
    http://larvatusprodeo.net/2009/12/11/how-low-can-you-go/#comment-843553

    “The post-1941 adjustments (all small) at Darwin Airport relate to a number of site moves within the airport boundary. These days it’s on the opposite side to the terminal, not too far from the Stuart Highway.

    How does this explain the upwards adjustments? Did they move the sensor several times from one anomalously cool spot to the next?

    I think Willis is justified in being very suspicious of these adjustments.  As he noted :

    “”What this does show is that there is at least one temperature station where the trend has been artificially increased to give a false warming where the raw data shows cooling. In addition, the average raw data for Northern Australia is quite different from the adjusted, so there must be a number of “¦ mmm “¦ let me say “˜interesting’ adjustments in Northern Australia other than just Darwin.””

  • oneuniverse

    There should be a closing quotation mark after “Stuart Highway” in the above post (12:28pm) . Apologies for the sprawling un-embedded hyperlinks.

  • oneuniverse

    I’ll try it again, as it seems to be stuck in moderation :

    NewYorkJ,

    Eschenbach’s Darwin analysis has been independently reproduced by others : link 1 and link 2

    I haven’t heard any good explanations for the steadily-upwards pattern of the adjustments at Darwin post-1941.

    Blair Trewin from Australia’s National Climate Centre commented :  “The post-1941 adjustments (all small) at Darwin Airport relate to a number of site moves within the airport boundary. These days it’s on the opposite side to the terminal, not too far from the Stuart Highway.”

    How does this explain the upwards adjustments – did they move the sensor several times from one anomalously cool spot to the next?

  • http://nigguraths.wordpress.com Shub Niggurath

    “Kids will read this stuff years from now, with luck. ”

    Mr Roberts, why dont you consider the possibility of everyone being themselves and letting posterity decide, for itself?

    Paulina:
    Are you a “science communication researcher”, a la Nisbet, trying to find answers to the question “how did the deniers become so popular?”

    Regards

  • Judith Curry

    Shub, than you for your question of Paulina.  I have no idea how to answer your question.  Yours, I can attempt.

  • Jim

    Curry is certainly entitled to her own opinions, but I have to agree with Schmidt that anyone who talks about
    “corruptions of the IPCC process, and the question of corruption (or at least inappropriate torquing) of the actual science by the IPCC process” </blockquote> as Curry has done had damned well better back up those charges <i>every time they are made</i> with <blockquote>1) a clear definition of “corruption”  and 2) specific evidence of such “corruption” </blockquote> The latter would be done by documenting ALL the evidence of said corruption in one place that could be linked to each time she makes the charge.

    No matter what this or that dictionary definition of corruption happens to be*, Curry <i>must</i> understand that any charge of “corruption” is likely to invoke images of “bribery”, “fraud” and other criminal activity in the minds of members of the general public.

    *When challenged, Curry quotes this “Dictionary definition of corruption: impairment of integrity, virtue, moral principle;  departure from the original or from what is pure and correct.”

    But it’s simply NOT OK for Curry to make charges of corruption in one place and then “explain” herself elsewhere (not even if it is in another comment on the very same blog post). Having frequented blogs herself, Curry certainly knows that this kind of thing gets completely “lost in the wash”.

    It is also NOT OK for her to effectively say: “read this or that book or visit this or that blog if you want to know what I am referring to”
    <blockquote>
    “Sou, if you are serious about investigating this, you will need to spend some time at the sceptic blogs (esp climateaudit), read their submissions to the Select Committee, contact Steve McIntyre personally. And also contact David Holland d.holland at theiet.org, he has written an essay that documents much of this. And read the CRU emails.” –  <a href=”http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/2010/04/23/an-inconvenient-provocateur/#comment-3187″>Judith Curry’s response</a> to commenter <a href=”http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/2010/04/23/an-inconvenient-provocateur/#comment-3171″>SOU’s request for  specific evidence to back up what amount to “nebulous” charges.
    </blockquote>

    If Curry is going to claim “corruption” and make other similar (potentially incendiary) remarks, at the very minimum, she <i>simply must document all of the charges and the supporting evidence in one place that should then  be referenced with a link every time she makes the charges.</i>

    Anything less is completely inadequate and highly irresponsible, especially coming from a scientist.

  • Judith Curry

    Regarding my previous point about technically educated skeptics outside the climate field.  Yes there are various lists out there, but I found this post to be very interesting, over at the Air Vent (a technical lukewarmer blog) where technically educated non climate scientists describe what got them interested in climate research and why they are skeptical (their reasons echo the kinds of things i received via email).

  • paulina

    Shub:

    Thank you for your question. I’m no more a science communication researcher than anyone else in this thread. I assume essentially everyone here is interested in science and communication.

    FWIW, generally speaking, I  think we’re all doing communications “research,” all the time, I suppose, trying to figure out how to, and when to, interact with people so as not to be misunderstood, how we should try to lead our lives.

    I don’t understand Judy’s overall argument (her rebuilding public trust essay, for instance), and a volley of personal emails with her left me no clearer.

    With her consent, I asked some friends who do conceptual analysis to take a look and hopefully that will help, but it’s going to take a while before anything comes of that.

    In the meanwhile, since there was more material relevant to all that in this post, I thought I could get clear on some of the basic stuff. That’s what I’m trying to do.

    The basic question of how the collective responsibility of the climate science community to engage with certain kinds of critics in certain kinds of formats should be divided up, if there is such a responsibility, interests me. (There’s related stuff in the final questions in my first comment in this thread.) And how this kind of idea about responsibility ties-in/relates/translates/depends-on even more basic ideas about respect, empathy, etc.  

    Thanks again for asking.

  • paulina

    Judy:

    I’m not sure how to interpret your comment to Shub:

    ” I have no idea how to answer your question.  Yours, I can attempt.”

    But I’m a little worried you might have been referring to my “C” question? If so, please let me know, and I’ll rephrase it again.

    Thanks.

  • Keith Kloor

    Yesterday, When Joe Romm posted on this Q & A and thread, I felt that he was still processing it, even trying to wrap his arms around Judy’s  evolving views. Now it appears he has made up his mind, for in the comment thread at his site, he declares:

    She has joined the WUWT and McIntyre tribe.

    Those of you who have been critical of Judy in this thread: do you agree with Romm? That she has changed teams? Or to keep the current metaphor, joined another tribe? And what about the skeptics participating here: do you feel Judy is part of your tribe now?

  • Larch

    Keith Kloor Says:

    Those of you who have been critical of Judy in this thread: do you agree with Romm? That she has changed teams? Or to keep the current metaphor, joined another tribe? And what about the skeptics participating here: do you feel Judy is part of your tribe now?

    A variation of Stockholm syndrome.  She genuinely wants to reach out to the skeptics, but doesn’t realise she has left the science behind in doing so.  People on the blogs are now taking her attempts at mediation as a sign that ‘the whole edifice’ will now fall, it is the end of AGW.  For  such people, nothing else will satisfy them.  In the meantime, one thing we do know.  If we are to act, it must start now.

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    > team … tribe … warmist …

    Labels.  Don’t do it.  “Information is not advocacy.”  Despite what the “political scientists” want to tell you.

    http://symposia.cbc.amnh.org/archives/expandingthearc/speakers/transcripts/jackson-text.html

    “… it’s not just also about communication, it’s also about politics. If you think about the future, you have got to think about that. You know, information is not advocacy. Those of us who are scientists, we pride ourselves on trying to obtain the best kind of information possible. But look at these three stories of three people where I work. I was branded as an environmentalist, and therefore a highly biased advocate and unreliable witness, because I measured — measured — as a scientist, the death of corals due to an oil spill, spending $3 million of your taxpayers’ dollars. Paul Dayton is an environmentalist because he measured the disappearance of fish from California kelp forests. And … Dave Keeling, who discovered how to measure the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere, who measured it and kept measuring it, and therefore discovered that it was increasing, and therefore discovered the mechanism of global climate change — has been labeled as an environmentalist for making the measurements. The [Bush] administration has said, “Well, we have decided we are not going to use the scientific reports in what we do.” Science has been branded as advocacy. Facts have become dirty words….”

  • sod

    Judith has changed teams long ago. she wasn t in the science team any longer, when she published her post on climate progress.
    .
    http://climateprogress.org/2009/11/27/%C2%AD-climategate-judith-curry-open-letter-to-graduate-students-young-scientists-climate-research-hacked-cru-emails/
    .
    her position against the IPCC and pro WuWt is a typical example of splinter -  eye  – beam.

  • Willis Eschenbach

    People have asked for examples of fraud and lying in climate science.

    “Himalayagate” is a perfect example of the kind of problems that are endemic in the IPCC process. But over and over, AGW supporters have missed the point. They keep saying things like “Yes, but it is only a small part of a huge picture, the rest of the science is sound”.  Which is at least partly true … but is not the issue.

    The problem with Himalayagate is not the erroneous science. It is the corruption it exposed. People keep asking for examples of corruption, as though it has not been shown already. This is one. Murari Lal, an IPCC Lead Author, has <a href=”http://www.sciencenews.org/view/generic/id/55556/title/IPCCs_Himalayan_glacier_mistake_not_an_accident”><b><u>admitted</u></b></a> that he knew that the claim was incorrect, but he put it into the IPCC report anyhow. He knowingly put bogus information into a “scientific” report. You want fraud? You got it. That’s fraud.

    And when Railwaymanujan Pachauri, the IPCC boss, was notified that the data was wrong, he called the claim of errors “voodoo science”. He kept claiming that the Himalaya report was solid, right through the Copenhagen conference. When asked if he had known about it before the summit, he said “That’s ridiculous. It never came to my attention before the Copenhagen summit. It wasn’t in the public sphere.”

    Unfortunately, that turns out to be <a href=”http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/environment/article7009081.ece”><b><u>untrue</u></b></a>.  Pachauri had known about it for months. You want a lie? You got it.

    The issue in Himalayagate was never whether the science was mostly solid, that’s a red herring used by AGW supporters. It is that the IPCC secretly put information into their report solely to “impact policy makers and politicians and encourage them to take some concrete action.” That’s fraud and deceit. And Pachauri knew about it early on, and both did nothing, and hid the fact that he knew about it. Rather than come clean, he attacked the people who pointed it out. That’s lying, along with general nastiness.

    So when AGW supporters say things like “Himalayagate is meaningless, the science is sound”, I just shake my head and say you don’t get it … it exposed lying and fraud extending to the top of the IPCC. How is that meaningless?

    And when people ask me for examples of fraud and deceit and lying as though they were hard to find, I just shake my head and say “Haven’t you been following the headlines?”

  • Willis Eschenbach

    Aaaah, I messed up the links to the Murari Lal and the Pachauri articles, my apologies.

  • Brendan H

    Willis: “That’s my suggestion “¦ what’s yours? Ignore fraud, and don’t name and shame those who practice it?”

    The usual response to fraud is prosecution. Why do you believe that scientists who are “lying, cheating, and committing fraud” will somehow start doing “honest, transparent, rigorous science”?

    There’s a glaring contradiction in sceptic thinking here. On the one hand climate sceptics demand debate and “honest, transparent, rigorous science”. On the other, they insist that “lying, cheating, and committing fraud” is widespread among climate scientists.

    Why would you want to debate a bunch of liars and cheaters? They’ll only lie to you. Surely, one’s aim would be to expose them, not debate them?

    Are you suggesting that if climate scientists “˜fess up to “lying, cheating, and committing fraud”, they will be forgiven, and allowed to start doing “honest, transparent, rigorous science”?

  • Willis Eschenbach

    willard Says:
    April 27th, 2010 at 8:24 am
    “Willis commenting Wegman:
    >  So what? Why should I care? I want to know if his math is correct, not if his personal habits are beyond reproach.
    Willis commenting the Team:
    > The reason people don’t trust them is not because some anonymous blogger told them not to. It is because Jones and his ilk have proven themselves unworthy of our trust.
    The two attitudes are tough to reconcile.”


    One was discussing whether the public trusts climate scientists. The other was the question of whether Wegman’s work was mathematically correct. These are totally different questions, requiring different methods of investigation and having different answers. Why should they have to be “reconciled”?

  • Steven Mosher

    Re 350:

    “Those of you who have been critical of Judy in this thread: do you agree with Romm? That she has changed teams? Or to keep the current metaphor, joined another tribe? And what about the skeptics participating here: do you feel Judy is part of your tribe now?”

    While writing the Climategate book and commenting on the phenomena subsequently it became clear to me that one of the fundamental flaws that Jones, Mann, ( almost the whole team in fact ) had was a mis perception of the enemy. As someone who knows McIntyre personally, I can say this with some measure of certainty. Those mis perceptions ( what Jones later admitted was a bunker mentality) drove the affair. They are tribal. In a way I’ve witnessed this personally. For example, I have skeptics who buy the book and then complain that I believe in AGW. Somehow, they think that the mails change the science. On the other side, I have AGW allies ( people who believe in it as I do ) who cannot face the simple facts in the mails. an interesting form of denialism. There is an interesting asymmetry for me. As a proponent of AGW, I am welcomed and treated civilly on skeptic sites. they even promote my book, even though I argue that AGW is for the most part good science.. On AGW sites, I’m less welcome. That’s fine. But something one ought to consider. the bunker mentality.

    WRT Dr. Curry. I’ve followed and conversed with Dr. Curry since 2007. She first came to my attention in 2007 when a reader of CA compared her to the wicked witch of the west. In any case,  skeptics  have a broad range of attitude toward Dr. Curry. Thats because skeptics are not monolithic. If you perceive them as monolithic you will most certainly be wrong. let me put it this way. there is no single tribe of skeptics to join. there is definately a tribe of AGW folks.. to belong to. In that tribe you must never criticize any AGW scientists. even if he makes a silly mistake that doesnt matter. So, while I believe in AGW I cant be part of that tribe. But, I’m not in the skeptic tribe, or rather I’m in the Lukerwarmer tribe which is loosely affliated with skeptics. some skeptics would like me to be in the skeptic tribes.some AGwers would like to banish me to that tribe.

    Anyway, my personal experience with Dr. Curry is this. She’s tried to find some kind of common ground where reasonable people can agree. That common ground is transparency. A while back Dr. Curry circulated a post to a select group of people in both tribes to solicit their input prior to publication: the skeptics on the list pretty much blasted her. the AGW types ( except for me) were completely silent. I asked the skeptics to try to find the common ground with her without being critical. they could not. neither could the AGW types ( Romm in particular)
    That is sad. Where Dr. Curry finds herself is in a nowhere land. rejected by the AGW tribe, but not fully accepted by the skeptic tribe, tolerated.  ( maybe an indian scout would be an interesting metaphor, or white woman captured by an indian tribe.. bad metaphor.. opps)

    Finally I wonder what it takes to belong to the AGW tribe? the skeptic tribe is a big tepee. say something critical about anyone or anything in the AGW canon and they will tend to want to include you ( tend to, at least they dont kick you out.. my experience  and Dr. Curry’s I suspect)
    What does it take to belong to the AGW tribe:

    1. belief in the science ( I got that)
    2. belief that man is the cause ( I got that)
    3. belief that we have to act, even if we are
    uncertain ( I got that)
    4. belief that nothing in the mails changes the science
    ( I got that that)
    5. belief that its ok to:
    A. deny data to someone because of your perception
    of his motives.
    B Deny code when that code clarifies something you
    didnt document your papers.
    C. violate the authoring guidelines of the IPCC by
    contacting people outside the review process
    D. tell others to back date papers.
    E. refuse to give proper attribution for corrections
    to papers.
    F Suggest to others that one should create “files” on
    editors to have them removed…
    G-Z

    I guess I dont have #5. And so I am puzzled. 1-4 is all about the sceince. and the AGW tribe is supposed to be about the science. and the skeptic tribe is supposed to be about the personal interest, corporate interest, anti tax, anti abortion, anti science, idiotarians. But somehow my belief and Dr. Curry’s belief about #5 ( which are concerns about process) beliefs about things not at the heart of the science, preclude us from belong to a tribe that valorizes science.
    Odd.

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    So let’s follow the headlines.  Eschenbach refers to an article by **Science News**.  **Science News**: with a name like that, you can only have news about science.

    But the **Science News** reports an investigation by Daily Mail’s David Rose.  **Daily Mail**, already less convincing, by the title only.

    Now, where did I have heard of David Rose before?  Yes, here:

    http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/01/rosegate.php

    Without judging this gate or any other one, we can see that the story is less straightforward, we we follow every headline available.  And we can assume that stories are even less clear when we read about the counterbalanced backstories. 

    If people ask for an example of obfuscation of source, I think this Eschenbach trick fits the bill.  You want obfuscation of source?  Here you go.

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    Willis Eschenbach,

    In the first case, you chose to judge on the merits of the mathematics only.  In the second case, you chose to judge on personal bahaviour.  Your criteria switched, out of sudden. 

    People ought to ask why.

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    Maybe the “people” tribe ought to be more explicit in its why-question:

    Why should Eschenbach care about Jones’ personal habits, when he does not care about Wegman’s?

  • RB

    willard,
    I think what Willis is saying is that while understands that the public does not trust ‘Jones and his ilk’ because of their behavior, he is above that and will accept the results of Wegman and such-like, whatever their personal behavior might be. Just my guess …

  • Willis Eschenbach

    Brendan H Says:
    April 27th, 2010 at 2:53 pm
    Willis: “That’s my suggestion “¦ what’s yours? Ignore fraud, and don’t name and shame those who practice it?”

    The usual response to fraud is prosecution. Why do you believe that scientists who are “lying, cheating, and committing fraud” will somehow start doing “honest, transparent, rigorous science”?

    There’s a glaring contradiction in sceptic thinking here. On the one hand climate sceptics demand debate and “honest, transparent, rigorous science”. On the other, they insist that “lying, cheating, and committing fraud” is widespread among climate scientists.

    Why would you want to debate a bunch of liars and cheaters? They’ll only lie to you. Surely, one’s aim would be to expose them, not debate them?

    Are you suggesting that if climate scientists “˜fess up to “lying, cheating, and committing fraud”, they will be forgiven, and allowed to start doing “honest, transparent, rigorous science”?

    Yes, the usual response to fraud is prosecution. And as the UK Parliamentary Committee pointed out,There is prima facie evidence that CRU has breached the Freedom of Information Act 2000. “

    Unfortunately, the Statute of Limitations had expired on the claim, so no one was prosecuted.

    However, you seem to misunderstand my position. I am not calling for climate scientists to “˜fess up to “lying, cheating, and committing fraud”. Read what I said above. I didn’t call for any confessions, that’s your straw man. I want honest, transparent science.

    Do I think the fraudsters will stop? Heck, I don’t know. Some will, some won’t … I’m just pointing the direction I think we should go, not giving odds on getting there.

    To take just one example, for twenty years now Lonnie Thompson has refused to reveal his tropical ice core data. But under the “friends of Phil” rule, he gets published in PNAS, despite their policy that:

    Databases: Before publication, authors must deposit large data sets (including microarray data, protein or nucleic acid sequences, and atomic coordinates for macromolecular structures) in an approved database and provide an accession number for inclusion in the published paper. When no public repository exists, authors must provide the data as Supporting Information online or, in special circumstances when this is not possible, on the author’s institutional web site, provided that a copy of the data is provided to PNAS.”


    Meanwhile, Larch says “The data is there.  …  The fraud is all in your mind.” But unfortunately, the problem is that for altogether too much of climate science, the data is not there. Thompson collected his data on the taxpayer’s dime, and it sounds like Larch thinks it is fine for Lonnie to conceal the data and to insist that anyone who wants to investigate his work should simply go to the Quelccaya Glacier in Peru and drill their own ice core … not.

    Will Lonnie finally come clean? Not if folks like Larch have their way, not if the PNAS ignores their own stated policies.

    Which is why I said above that “I’d say [the solution is] insisting on and doing honest, transparent, rigorous science with the data archived and the code open for inspection.”

  • Steven Mosher

    re 347:

    Hi Dr. Curry!

    “Regarding my previous point about technically educated skeptics outside the climate field.”

    The funny thing about the reader thread over on airvent is that while some AGW types obviously read the site, few would do a Bio. Also,  Some poor guy who posted something at WUWT ( a horrible piece of dreck) asked Jeff if jeff would repost it. he was warned that folks at the vent would rip him a new one, but he asked for it. So its interesting to watch an article reviewed on one skeptical site ( WUWT) and then see what happens on another site that people ( the hacker of the mails for one) think is skeptical, but is rather lukewarmerist. Jeff also did a series on radiative physics. The thought basically is that those of us who are
    A. critical of climategate AND
    B. knowledgable about physics

    have a much better chance of explaining the settled science of RTE to the lay public and the skeptics than the people who are in denial about climategate. its a trust thing

  • Steven Mosher

    Hey Willis,

    For the most part I think overcharging the case against CRU ( fraud) doesnt really serve any constructive purpose. Although I was quite funny that I took a pounding on Biggovernment.com for writing a piece where I criticized them for everything but the precise crime of fraud. Also,
    If you are looking for a great lie, have a look at Jones’ testimony. I wrote a piece on it at WUWT.. the final straw

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/03/02/the-final-straw/

  • Judith Curry

    Well I haven’t  had time to check out what is going on at Joe Romm’s site.    Now that I have apparently been unambiguously tossed out the “warmist blogger” tribe by Joe Romm who is the arbiter of political correctness with regards to global warming alarmism, what is a poor tribeless person like me to do?

    Re WUWT I spend about 5 minutes per week glancing at the headlines and have probably posted on about 3 or 4 different threads. Trust me, Anthony Watts doesn’t want me in his tribe, I have used the “denier” word.  McIntyre might take me after extensive negotiations which i wouldn’t agree to, maybe I will try Lucia at the Blackboard :)

    So I guess all my discussion about tribalism and the harm it can do didn’t sink in.  My whole point is that we need to have a respectful and reasoned dialogue with a broad range of people.  And I have to say that it is easier for me, a “moderate warmist,” to have a respectful and reasoned dialogue at climateaudit than it is at climateprogress.  A sad state of affairs, and one that damages the credibility of the warmists.

    The definition of tribalism that i have been using is this:
    Tribalism is defined here as a strong identity that separates one’s group from members of another group, characterized by strong in-group loyalty and regarding other groups differing from the tribe’s defining characteristics as inferior.

    Tribalism is antithetical to science,  it is far worse than groupthink.
    .

    Thanks to those of you that have been crossing “tribal boundaries” in your discussion here.  And even greater thanks to those of you who are displaying no discernible tribalism.

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    RB,

    I agree.  The important point to recognize the importance of the “public” artifice.  Only something like “the public” allows you to play some kind of pea and thimble game:

    - Speak of the “people”‘s beliefs when comes the time to attack persons’ habits ;

    -  Speak in your behalf when comes the time to take the higher moral ground about science.

    That game is perfect for offense: you don’t attack, you simply let the “people” do that. 

    It also provides a very good defensive plan: the dichotomy between science and politics (the old fact/value meme) protects you from any political attack.

  • RichieRich

    Steve Mosher @ #363

    A most excellent post which I think adds much to the debate.

    It does rather seem that to gain (full) membership of the AGW tribe, it’s not enough to hold that there is no problem with matters of science: one also has to to hold that there’s no problem with matters of process.  Questioning matters of process, even if one doesn’t question the science, seems to preclude one from (full) membership.

    Like you, I believe 1-4 but rather struggle to buy into 5!

     

  • sod

    Now that I have apparently been unambiguously tossed out the “warmist blogger” tribe by Joe Romm who is the arbiter of political correctness with regards to global warming alarmism, what is a poor tribeless person like me to do?

    you don t notice your massive bias. you need to stand back and look at what you are writing.

    try to answer this simple question:

    the IPCC AR4 report, without any information about the process and the authors.

    compared  to

    the NIPCC report, with all the informations about processes that we have today.

    your comment above implies, that under these circumstances you would give the IPCC report the lower ratings. that is completely insane!

  • Steven Mosher

    Threshold questions:

    This is something we discussed at length over at Lucia’s
    How can you tell when it makes sense to talk to a skeptic?
    or is it futile and should we just ignore them ( Mann’s tactic ) or accuse them of being part of a conspiracy ( Mann’s tactic) I think that’s a fair question. When does it make sense to engage a skeptic? I put the case that there is a threshhold question ( at least for me) and it has to do with radiative physics. The physics of RTE to be precise, a physics that major skeptics ( spenser, lidzen etc ) all accept.
    The thought being that if a person rejected this science, that there wasnt much hope of having a constructive engagement.
    There is however another threshhold question. When does it make sense to talk to an person who believes in AGW. That question is simpler. It doesnt require physics knowledge. It just requires the ability to read.
    In 2005 Jones wrote to Mann. Prior to any FOIA. he had a pending request from warwick hughes for data. data he had given to Mcintyre in 2002. In that letter Jones tells Mann that he has given the data to Rutherford. data covered by confidentiality agreements. Jones ends the letter by saying that if anyone else asks for this data, he will hide behind FOIA exceptions, and if over ruled he will destroy the data.

    Threshold question: is that wrong.

    no excuses, no rationalizations, just a simple yes or no.

    1. you share data that you know is covered by confidentiality agreements with one researcher.
    2. you’ve shared that same data with a total stranger 3 years before.
    3. You have a pending request ( warrick hughes) for that data.

    is it right to argue that you will hide behind FOIA, hide behind the confidentiality agreements, and destroy the data rather than share it?

    or if thats too tough. Is it right to share confidential data with Rutherford when you know you are going to use that excuse to not share it with others.

    If that doesnt bother you, if you cannot admit that there is something wrong with that, then its hard to have a meaningful conversation.

    In 2008, Jones shared the same data with webster. data he knew he could not share per the agreements that controlled it. he did not consider these agreements when sharing it. When McIntyre and others ( like me) requested this data, the agreements were used to deny the request.
    So: Jones actions. right or wrong.
    Pick which side you like: dont think that FOIA trumps confidentiality agreements? ( its the law that it CAN TRUMP them) if you think that, then is it right for Jones to violate those agreements by sharing with webster.
    Think that in this case FOIA trumps confidentiality, as the law clearly allows, as the CRU guidelines make crystal clear? then how can you deny the data to an IPCC reviewer?

    Hint: avoiding the direct question is good evidence that its not going to be a meaningful conversation:

    So skeptics get a tough question about RTE. AGW folks get an easy question about following the rules.

    I see Willis here. Willis answered this simple question a bit ago. he and I may differ in our views about many things, but we agree on some core physics, agree on transparency, and agree that Jones did some questionable things. That allows us to have meaningful discussions, debates, dinners even!

    The tough question goes to the science. the easy question goes to simple facts.

    My observation is that more skeptics are willing to answer the tough question honestly than AGwers are willing to answer the simple factual question.

  • Pingback: Judith Curry on climate science: Introspection or circling the wagons? « My view on climate change

  • Steven Mosher

    Dr. Curry,

    Lucia and you have been two of my favorites ( and bender’s too) ever since that long debate with Dr. Browning over at CA. It was so refreshing to actually see two scientists and an engineer on different sides of a thorny math problem discuss the issue openly without any of the typical crap thrown in. We always enjoy your appearences over at the Blackboard.  neat chaos thread over there with TomV
    makes my head hurst ( ok bad fractal humor)

  • Judith Curry

    Steve Mosher #363

    Thanks very much for your post.  I would like to expand on something you mentioned, since it is very telling in my opinion.   A draft of my “Towards rebuilding trust” essay was circulated to a list of about 20 bloggers for comments, asking them to participate in the experiment, stating that i would accept and consider comments on the essay for a period of several days and would appreciate any group discussion.

    I didnt hear from about a third of the people on my email list (i wasn’t too surprised by the ones that didn’t reply, but thought it was worth a shot).  Three people replied to the group in the spirit that i intended:  Steve Mosher, Jeff Id (Air Vent), Lucia Liljegren (Blackboard).  Andy Revkin also sent an email to the entire group to try to clarify issues regarding how i was working the press embargo.  Two subgroups immediately formed, with one including Joe Romm and Gavin Schmidt and the other including Anthony Watts, Steve McIntyre, Mosher, Id, Liljegren.  Romm and Schmidt were very aggressively trying to talk me out of posting this, Romm’s reasons seem to be more policy related (as reflected in his eventual blog post) and Gavin Schmidt was mainly objecting to my favorable treatment of McIntyre (RC did not post on this).  Anthony Watts politely asked me to reconsider my use of the word “denier”; i explained to him why i was using it (my use of denier resulted in an explosion over at WUWT, sort of analogous to what Keith tells me is going on right now over at ClimateProgress; clearly i don’t belong in either tribe :) ).

    So what do i conclude?  The warmists were trying to stop me from publishing this, and were slagging off on the enemy (e.g. McIntyre).  The lukewarmers were helpful and participatory.  Steve McIntyre’s response was most interesting.  He sent me an email, and asked me to phone him.  He was concerned that my message was too lengthy and confusing, it wasn’t clear who the target audience for this was, he tried to make general suggestions that would help me get my message across more clearly.  McIntyre didn’t post anything on this, for whatever reason.  But I felt he was trying to help my essay be more effective at saying what i wanted to say (rather than trying to stop me from posting or score points against the other guy.)

  • Judith Curry

    Sod, #374 you need to take a course in logic.  I don’t belong to any tribe.  I have been extremely critical of the NIPCC, it is basically a joke as an assessment of climate change. I can’t imagine that Steve McIntyre or any of the technical lukewarmer bloggists take the NIPCC any more seriously than I do.  I have been a staunch supporter of the IPCC.  In recent months I have been publicly questioning aspects of the IPCC process and the IPCC conclusions, towards the end of improving the IPCC.  I very explicitly don’t belong to any tribes (none would have me in any event.)  If a scientist can’t criticize the IPCC, then we have a very big problem.

  • Judith Curry

    Paulina, i totally don’t understand your statement C.

  • RichieRich

    Steve Mosher @ #375

    Having indicated that, like you, I question issues of process at CRU and within the IPCC, can I ask you about how you explain Phil Jones’ behaviour that you outline in #375.

    Good old Wikipedia tells me that

    “In criminal law, provocation is a possible defense…alleging a sudden or temporary loss of control…as a response to another’s provocative conduct sufficient to justify an acquittal, a mitigated sentence or a conviction for a lesser charge.”

    Do you think Phil Jones has a defence of (or something akin to) provocation in that his behaviour followed from a bunker mentality and this mentality was (entirely) understandable given the abuse (“provocation”) that he (and other AGW scientists) had suffered over the years?

  • Phil Clarke

    Mr Eschenbach, you assert: “People have asked for examples of fraud and lying in climate science.”

    Actually, my request was a little more specific. You explicitly stated that the illictly-published CRU emails demonstrate climate scientists “lying, cheating, and committing fraud”.

    Now these are about the most serious charges one can make against a professional scientist. If it were me I would hesitate to make such allegations in a public place unless I had the facts – in the form of examples and quotes – at my fingertips.

    And yet – bizarrely – when challenged, the response that comes is not about CRU at all. No, we jump sideways over to the IPCC and a Lead Author’s admission of knowingly putting ‘bad science’ into AR4.

    When I say a Lead Author’s such admission, I mean actually not a direct quote, but a paraphrase by David Rose – a journalist with a history of erm, unreliability.

    When I say paraphrased by an unreliable journalist, I mean of course a third party report of the paraphrased admission to an unreliable journalist reproduced on a science blog.

    When I say paraphrased by an unreliable journalist, I mean of course a third party report of the paraphrased admission to an unreliable journalist on a science blog that the scientist in question has since refuted in no uncertain terms: describing them as “the most vilest allegations”.

    Really – as a ‘sceptic’ – would YOU be convinced by ‘evidence’ of this quality?

    And so I repeat my question – may I invite you to share with us the specific CRU emails that led you to the view that they demonstrate that climate scientists have been ‘lying’, ‘cheating’ and ‘committing fraud’? You don’t have to, of course, but an opinion with supporting evidence is always so much more convincing than one without. The internet is full of the latter, nearly always negligible in my view.

    Thanks in advance.

    Phil C.

    Source: http://climateprogress.org/2010/01/25/un-scientist-refutes-daily-mail-claim-himalayan-glacier-2035-ipcc-mistake-not-politically-motivated/

  • Jim

    Steven Mosher says “For the most part I think overcharging the case against CRU ( fraud) doesnt really serve any constructive purpose. ”

    … to say nothing of the fact that it assassinates the character of scientists.

    But hey, what would a little  “character assassination” mean to a fellow who thinks it’s actually funny to use terms like “Piltdown Mann”  and “Pennstate mann” to describe a prominent climate scientist?:

    “Piltdown man was funny. When I changed it to Pennstate mann and found a picture of him carving a hockey stick it was plain hilarious.” ( Steven Mosher )

    Yeh, “plain hilarious”… for anyone with a depraved sense of humor, that is.

  • oneuniverse

    Steve Mosher :

    If the science is good, what would be your guess for the reason(s) behind the behaviour described in your point 5? That kind of thing is usually associated with bad science, not good. It doesn’t prove anything, but it should be a red flag for anyone.

    More specifically, what engenders your belief in point 2 (‘man is causing the warming’) ? Taking the ~4 W/m2 of downward flux from a doubling of CO2 from 280 ppm as a given, what observational data and analyses led you to your viewpoint ? A brief explanation and key references would be appreciated.

  • sod

    <i>Sod, #374 you need to take a course in logic.</i>

    my logic is fine.

    you made a false claim:

    So when these processes are violated, the IPCC risks becoming just another report with no greater legitimacy than the NIPCC in the public’s eyes.

    lack of transparency of  processes do not change the content of the IPCC reports.

  • oneuniverse

    sod: “lack of transparency of  processes do not change the content of the IPCC reports. ”

    And how would you know that, if there’s no transparency?

  • Steven Mosher

    Dr. Curry,

    I found that email exchange very interesting.  I find it interesting how those of us who believe in AGW have been utterly unscientific in our approach to understanding the “enemy.” or more kindly those who disagree with us. Our attitudes are utterly resistant to new information. I also find it interesting the way some of us will toss cherished values overboard: values about transparency, openness, dialogue.
    We forget that there are people who are willing to listen to reason, willing to learn, but when they ask questions, sometimes tough questions, they get put in the skeptic camp.  read the reader biographies over at AirVent. The common theme:  the treatment they got at RC gave them pause about the science. As irrational as that seems, facts are facts. RC created more skeptics, skeptics out of agnostics! This happened largely in part because of the way they treated people who failed to conform to the tribal standard.  Tom Fuller had a similar experience, Lomberg too I suppose. McIntyre as well.

    That’s the real irony. They lazily imagined that McIntyre was an enemy they had faced before ( hey somebody play the tobacco company meme or oil shill meme) convinced that he WAS part of a conspiracy then saw no downside in characterizing him that way ( hehe they confused me with steven W mosher and some dope accused me of being anti abortion) The downside, of course, to mischaracterizing your enemy ( sorry no allusions to Iraq, and no snide comparisions about talking to iran) is that you piss him off and create an enemy that you dont have a ready defense for.
    Your enemy loses respect for you because he KNOWS you’re  wrong about him. As others begin to see that fact credibility is lost with them. The only people who dont care about the way you characterize enemies are members of the tribe, because tribal identity depends upon the definition of  “other.”  (And no comments about district 9 either)  anyways I keep looking at my arm cause it feels weird.

  • Hoi Polloi

    Although I disagree on many thing with Dr.Curry re climate, I do admire her cool composure in the midth of these heated (no pun intended) discussions and immense pressure from the usual suspects. Hopefully she gets proper support from her employer, all too much scientists remain in the shadow under the threat of being out of work.

  • andrewt

    Judith you’ve said your ” source for the specific papers and why i think they are relevant to the UEA investigation is the documents submitted to the Parliamentary Select Committee”.   William has pointed out that McIntyre and Montford didn’t mention these papers in their submissions and quick-googling suggests other submissions didn’t either. 

    http://scienceblogs.com/stoat/2010/04/currygate_part_3_the_key_paper.php

  • Hoi Polloi

    PS; is it accidental that 2 of the most reasonable persons in this cliamte debate are female?

  • http://nigguraths.wordpress.com Shub Niggurath

    I like Paulina’s approach and discussion, although it is difficult to tell where she’s taking her argument.

  • sceptically

    Dear Steven Mosher,

    In comment 375 you set out a scenario where Jones has passed on data to Rutherford despite “confidentiality agreements”, then refuses to pass the data to Hughes and yourselves, “hiding behind” the agreements and the FOIA exceptions. You then say

    “Threshold question: is that wrong.
    no excuses, no rationalizations, just a simple yes or no

    Answer ““ have you stopped beating your wife?

    Firstly, the agreements as I understand it limit or forbid passing on copies of the raw data directly to others ““ they may or may not place this restriction on team members on the same project. If they do, then it was a breach of the agreement to pass the data to Rutherford. Either way, it would be wrong to pass the data to non-team members such as yourselves.

    As for the FOIA exemptions, if they apply then it would be wrong to describe refusal to pass on data as “hiding behind” these exemptions, it would be correct to refuse to pass on the data. Jones may have been using the phrase jokingly in a private email, but the phrase is wrong and he should not have used it as emails are too insecure to be private.

    You assert  “that in this case FOIA trumps confidentiality, as the law clearly allows”
    but an exemption applies to commercial restrictions on information ““ since in this case the restriction does not stop other researchers such as yourselves from getting the raw data directly from the archiving bodies, you seem to be demanding a breach of both the agreements and the FOIA act.

    So, your simple question looks very dishonest. As a climate change sceptic I’m very disappointed by your arguments.

  • freespeech

    Steven Mosher wrote:
    “RC created more skeptics, skeptics out of agnostics”

    It should be noted that I adopted the moniker “freespeech” after numerous deletions and significant modifications of my posts at RC.

    It should further be noted that Stephen’s UEA FOI timeline is willfully misrepresented by the “scientists” at RC, and posts pointing out their neglect of Jone’s prior releases of the “missing or otherwise constained” data are deleted. I have commented  (of course deleted) at RC that perhaps these delections are a “neat trick” to “hide the decline” of their scientific integrity.

  • Jim

    Steven Mosher says “I find it interesting how those of us who believe in AGW have been utterly unscientific in our approach to understanding the “enemy.” or more kindly those who disagree with us.”

    Yes, and alleging “corruption” or outright “fraud” (as Mosher has effectively done with his “Piltdown Mann” phrase) without providing detailed supporting evidence  is all so very “scientific”, isn’t it?

    Steven Mosher continues:
    “Our attitudes are utterly resistant to new information. I also find it interesting the way some of us will toss cherished values overboard: values about transparency, openness, dialogue.”

    … or values of accuracy,  truth, fairness and respect (when it comes to charging or even implying “corruption” or even  “fraud” against an individual or group of individuals)

    Mosher speaks of  “irony”.

    The real irony is that he (of all people) would have written what he did just above.

    Now that is “plain hilarious.”

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    > Mosher

    “Mr. Mosher was instrumental in promulgating the now infamous “hacked” emails from the Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia.  These e-mails have called into question the methods, the calculations, the peer review process, even the overall SCIENCE involved in the Global Warming arguments that drove the Cap and Trade Legislation as well as the UN Climate Conference and Kyoto Protocols.  Mr. Mosher obtained these emails on a CD from an unidentified colleague.  After days of review, Mr. Mosher realized the importance of the information he was sitting on, and he began the process of posting the information on various “Climate Change” websites and blogs.  Because the postings came from Mr. Mosher, the community immediately took them seriously. …”

    http://biggovernment.com/sright/2009/12/29/the-green-religion-and-climategate-interview-with-steven-mosher/

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    From the same interview with Mosher:

    “I think one of the big, missing stories here is how the scientific publishing mechanism is corrupted.  I mean, I think of “Global Warming” as kind of a religion ….”

  • Steven Mosher

    oneuniverse Says:
    April 27th, 2010 at 5:26 pm
    Steve Mosher :
    “If the science is good, what would be your guess for the reason(s) behind the behaviour described in your point 5? That kind of thing is usually associated with bad science, not good. It doesn’t prove anything, but it should be a red flag for anyone.”
    The REASONS behind the behavior? One thing I’ve found is that motive hunting can lead to bad results. Witness Jones. Jones thought Hughes had “bad” motives so he refused to share data. Mann thought McIntyre had “bad” motives and Mann reacted illogically and ineffectively. Noting this as a theme in our book, I cannot very well go about motive hunting myself. Motives are unobservables. The best one can say is that the observed action ( in this case words or official denials) is consistent with a certain set of “motives” where we understand the term motive to mean a verbal report of an unobservable “mental” state. Simply, we can speculate a bit about motives but its just that. The way I handled this in the book was to stick to the actual words they used to define their own own motives, self reports of unobservable mental states. Anyway, what we did was first focus on the actual incidents and the actual words to try to piece together the “motives” of a few individuals. So it really is quite specific and I hesitate to generalize. If you ask me to generalize, that is if you ask me to give you some kind of guide that will help you understand THESE individuals, then I would use the term “noble cause corruption”. This small group of scientists evolved over time ( you can see the change) into a group that believed (rightly or wrongy)they were
    A. committed to a noble cause
    B. under attack from an organized foe
    Consequently, their tolerance for rule breaking and process corruption was raised and they did things that they ordinarily would not have done otherwise. In some cases the actions could be traced to a basic need to preserve one intellectual identity. Mann is the Hockey Stick.
    That is: sticking to the text I can make a case for noble cause corruption and no one has challenged that case in any particular with any success. No one. they can’t because I use the words the men used themselves, reporting on their own motives. Period.
    People can change the topic, they can scream fraud, they can argue it doesnt matter, blah blah blah, but no one has mounted a credible defense. again, they cant.

    “More specifically, what engenders your belief in point 2 (‘man is causing the warming’) ? Taking the ~4 W/m2 of downward flux from a doubling of CO2 from 280 ppm as a given, what observational data and analyses led you to your viewpoint ? A brief explanation and key references would be appreciated.”
    The climategate mails dont change the science. they cant change the science because they are words, not facts. So, nothing Jones could SAY in mail could change the facts of radiative physics.  Ok. Now with regard to my belief that man is the cause.  First, my threshold for you: do radiative transfer equations work? have to start somewhere, and before we have a discussion I like to know that there is some hope of mutual enlightenment. your possible answers are:
    1. yes
    2. no
    3. I dont know.
    As you can see I am open to discussing the flaws in climate scientists behavior and the flaws in science. I’d like to know your position on my question. there are many people and only so much time.
    If that approach doesnt please you, then go read scienceofdoom.com basically, I’ll direct you there until we can agree on some simple matters.

  • Judith Curry

    William, my original concern with the list of papers is that they almost identically match the list selected by UEA in their submission to the Select Committee.  this did not seem to me to reflect any care or thought or effort on the part of the Royal Society or the Oxburgh Committee or whoever selected the papers, and seemed to bias the investigation in favor of finding no problem with the CRU research as represented by their self selected papers.  When you probed for which papers should have been selected instead, i could have answered:
    “¢ a random selection
    “¢ any papers EXCEPT for those suggest by CRU
    “¢  papers that were of concern to skeptics.

    When probed re the latter, i gave you the quickest thing I could conveniently grab which was the list over at Montford’s blog.  Since i was dealing with trying to answer a hundred questions, I didn’t think that particular question merited alot of effort on my part relative to some other questions.

    An apparent error in judgement on my part, since this issue seems to be of exceeding importance to you for some reason and is apparently being discussed over at your blog.  I then followed up by recommending to you further sources of possible papers to select that would have been of interest to the skeptics.

    Now it is somehow a big or important point that the original list i grabbed in haste from montford’s blog doesn’t match papers listed in the skeptics submissions to the select committee.  Not terribly surprising, the skeptics have problems with many of the CRU papers (just not the 11 included in the UEA submission to the select committee).

    If this is interesting or important, I am missing it.

  • andrewt

    Judith you’ve asserted twice Oxburgh would have better off considering a random selection of CRU papers – so I grabbed the CRU publications list and used a program to make a random selction of 11 publications from 1986-2008 (appended).  Obviously this only one sample (and feel free to make you own), but do you really believe Oxburgh would have been better off investigating such a selection of CRU  publications? 

    Della-Marta, P.M., Haylock, M.R., Luterbacher, J., and Wanner, H., 2007 Doubled length of western Europe summer heat waves since 1880. Journal of Geophysical Research, Vol. 112.

    Cook, E.R., Briffa, K.R., Meko, D.M., Graybill, D.A. and Funkhouser, G.,, 1995 The ‘segment length curse’ in long tree-ring chronology development for palaeoclimatic studies. The Holocene 5, 229-237 

    Warrick, R.A., 1991 Sea level change and the climatic connection: past and future. In: Climatic Change and Impacts: A General Introduction

    Warrick, R.A., 1990 Climatic implications of reducing greenhouse gas emissions. In: Proc. 56th Annual Conference of the National Society for Clean Air and Environmental Protection, Scarborough, 23-26 October 1989.  NSCA, Brighton, UK.

    Turnpenny, J.R., Crossley, J.F., Hulme, M. and Osborn, T.J., 2002 Air flow influences on local climate: comparison of simulations from a regional climate model with observations over the United Kingdom. Climate Research 20, 189-202

    Davies, T.D., Barthelmie, R.J., Varley, M., Dorling, S., Farmer, G. and Schaug, J., 1990 European Precipitation Chemistry Atlas, Volume 2. EMEP/CCC-Report 6/90, 167pp Norwegian Institute for Air Research, Lillestr m, Norway. 

    Melvin, T.M and Briffa, K.R., 2008 A “Signal-Free” approach to Dendroclimatic Standardisation Dendrochronologia 26 71-86

    Ekstrom, M., Hingray, B., Mezghani, A. and Jones, P.D., 2007 Regional climate model data used within the SWURVE project 2: addressing uncertainty in regional climate model data for five European case study areas. Hydrology and Earth Systems Science, 11 1085-1096

    Hulme, M. and Carter, T.R., 1999 The changing climate of Europe. Chapter 3 in: An assessment of the potential effects of climate change in Europe

    Hulme, M., Biot, Y., Borton, J., Buchanan-Smith, M., Davis, S., Folland, C., Nicholds, N., Seddon, D. and Ward, N., 1992 Seasonal rainfall forecasting for Africa. Part I: Current status and future developments. International Journal of Environmental Studies A39, 245-256 

    Trigo, I.F. and Davies, T.D., 2000 Decline in Mediterranean rainfall caused by weakening of Mediterranean cyclones. Geophysical Research Letters 27

  • Willis Eschenbach

    Steven Mosher Says:
    April 27th, 2010 at 3:28 pm
    “Hey Willis,
    For the most part I think overcharging the case against CRU ( fraud) doesnt really serve any constructive purpose.”
    Mosh, that’s an interesting question. Let’s start with a definition:
    In the broadest sense, a fraud is an intentional deception made for personal gain or to damage another individual. “
    Now, Jones didn’t want to admit that he had lost the original data. So he gave me a couple of bogus reasons for refusing my FOI request for that data. Is that fraud?
    Jones and others conspired to keep McKitrick’s paper out of the IPCC report, again for their own personal gain. Is that fraud?
    Even before I filed the first FOI with CRU, Jones was already plotting how to evade any FOI requests that might come his way, again for his personal gain. Is that fraud?
    Jones in the Cru emails:
    “If they ever hear there is a Freedom of Information Act now in the UK, I think I’ll delete the file rather than send to anyone.”
    Is that fraud? Heck, I don’t know. I do know that Jones engaged in a number of deceptive practices, including deleting emails to avoid exposure, for his own personal gain.
    Jones again:

    “I’m getting hassled by a couple of people to release the CRU station temperature data. Don’t any of you three tell anybody that the UK has a Freedom of Information Act!”
    The first rule of the Freedom of Information Act “¦ nobody talks about the Freedom of Information Act.
    Jones:
    “Think I’ve managed to persuade UEA to ignore all further FOIA requests if the people have anything to do with Climate Audit”.
    Fraud? Conspiracy? Simple lying? Illegal evasion of FOI requests? All of the above?
    I could go on, but that will do to establish that Jones made a host of deceptive statements and actions for his own personal gain, to avoid losing funding and to maintain his position. He gamed the system to get some papers into the IPCC report, and to keep other papers out of the IPCC report. Is that fraud? Close enough for me, although YMMV … what is your definition of “fraud”?
    Thanks,
    w.

  • Nathan

    Judith you didn’t clarify your points on Climate sensitivity, I understand it’s hard to keep up with all the posts going on here, but your posts on climate sensitivty were very confusing. I’ll repeat the post I made @ 286 here:

    Judith
    Sorry, I am lost again.
    “I do not see any justification for such a strong statement as it is very likely not to be less than 1.5C, the uncertainties in the estimations cannot support such a statement in my opinion.””
    “Given these uncertainties and broad range of sensitivity values that have been determined, I do not agree with a cutoff that it is very likely below 1.5C, we just don’t have that much confidence in my opinion.”
    and
    “Nathan, regarding a lower bound to sensitivity that (essentially) everyone would agree with, it is 1C.  This is the sensitivity to direct radiative forcing, with no feedbacks.”
    While not contradicting each other seem to imply that you think the lower bound is between 1 and 1.5C
    But then the paper you link to in 283 leads us to the understanding that the climate sensitivity is most likely about 3, with a lower bound “˜most likely’ of 2″¦ The biggest take home message from that paper seems to be that it is the upper limit that is the most difficult to quantify:
    “The well-constrained lower limit of climate sensitivity and the transient rate of warming already provide useful information for policy makers. But the upper limit of climate sensitivity will be more difficult to quantify.”

  • Judith Curry

    AndrewT, your exercise turned up two interesting papers (melvin and briffa plus cook et al.), arguably an improvement.  And if somebody really wanted to break their back at picking papers, they could do the random search conditioned by “jones OR briffa” as first or second author.

  • Judith Curry

    Nathan, the paper that i referred to on climate sensitivity did a good job of explaining the different ways that climate sensitivity can be determined, which was a point of confusion for Steve Bloom and one other person.  The paper makes the point that the upper limit of sensitivity is difficult to quantify (I agree with that).  The estimate of lower bound of most likely 2 isn’t justified based on the uncertainties, some of which aren’t even considered in this paper.

  • Willis Eschenbach

    RB Says:
    April 27th, 2010 at 3:13 pm
    “willard,
    I think what Willis is saying is that while [he] understands that the public does not trust “˜Jones and his ilk’ because of their behavior, he is above that and will accept the results of Wegman and such-like, whatever their personal behavior might be. Just my guess “¦”


    Why is this so hard do understand? I do not “accept” the results of Wegman or anyone else. I doubt everyone’s results, particularly my own.

    And whether I trust someone is a very different question from whether their math is solid. You and others seem to be conflating the two.

    Math in general is either right or wrong, whether it is put forth by Einstein or a convicted child molester.

    Trust, on the other hand, is a very different beast, hard to earn and easy to lose. Many people don’t trust the IPCC Report, for example. Why? Not because of their math, but (inter lots of alia) because Pachauri has said over and over that it is based on 100% peer reviewed science, viz:

    “People can have confidence in the IPCC’s conclusions”¦Given that it is all on the basis of peer-reviewed literature.” - Rajendra Pachauri, IPCC chairman, June 2008

    “The IPCC doesn’t do any research itself. We only develop our assessments on the basis of peer-reviewed literature.” – Rajendra Pachauri, IPCC chairman, June 2007

    “This is based on peer-reviewed literature. That’s the manner in which the IPCC functions. We don’t pick up a newspaper article and, based on that, come up with our findings.” – Rajendra Pachauri, IPCC chairman, June 2008

    “As IPCC Chairman Rajendra K. Pachauri recently stated: ‘IPCC relies entirely on peer reviewed literature in carrying out its assessment…’” – US Environmental Protection Agency, December 2009 (bottom of PDF’s page 7)

    “When asked if the discussion paper could be taken into consideration…[Pachauri] said, ‘IPCC studies only peer-review science. Let someone publish the data in a decent credible publication. I am sure IPCC would then accept it, otherwise we can just throw it into the dustbin.’” – Times of India, November 2007

    But in fact some 15% of their references are to press releases, student theses, Greenpeace and WWF propaganda pieces, and (despite Pachauri’s claim) even newspaper articles. A quarter of the Chapters of the Report have more non-peer reviewed citations than they do peer reviewed citations. Three of the Chapters have more than 75% non peer-reviewed citations. It doesn’t exactly inspire trust when they refuse to cite the Wegman Report because it isn’t peer reviewed, but cite the Stern Report 26 different times …

    People don’t trust the Report in part because Pachauri lied through his teeth to sell the Report, and he lied about the Himalayagate incident. Not only that, but many of the Authors and Lead Authors must have known that lots of their citations were not peer-reviewed … and they said not a word about Pacauri’s claims. That’s called “lying by omission”.

    AGW supporters keep trying to frame this as a PR problem, as though the sceptics are simply more successful in getting their point across, or the sceptics are better at playing the media game. But that’s not the problem facing climate science. The problem was best stated by Abraham Lincoln, who famously said:

    “If you once forfeit the confidence of your fellow citizens, you can never regain their respect and esteem. You may fool all of the people some of the time; you can even fool some of the people all the time; but you can’t fool all of the people all of the time.”


    Pachauri and the IPCC folks fooled people for a while about whether their report was based on solid science, but now they are in disrepute for that exact same reason. The way out, and it is a long way to get there, is good science, transparency, and following the rules … we’ll see if that happens in AR5. I certainly hope it does, but I’m not holding my breath.

  • oneuniverse

    Hi Steve, thank you for the reply.

    “Do radiative transfer equations work?”
    The models agree well enough with each other and observations to be useful (with room for improvement).

    “The ISSWG line-by-line inter-comparison experiment”, Tjemkes et al. 2002

    “An inter-comparison of far-infrared line-by-line radiative transfer models”, Kratza et al. 2004

    “Comparison of microwave satellite  humidity data and radiosonde profiles: a survey of European stations”, John and Buehler 2005

    re: motives for malpractice
    I guess ‘noble cause’ is plausible for Mann and Jones – they knew their work was compromised by poor record keeping and poorly-tutored use of statistics, but perhaps believed the GHG theory and didn’t want any bad publicity for AGW science putting the future of humanity at risk, as it were.

    The propagators of the alarming errors in WG2&3 might also have operated by the ‘truth must be sacrificed for a noble cause’ principle, although for them perhaps the noble cause was different – ‘save the ecosystem from man’s industry’, maybe.

    There are more prosaic reasons for wishing to avoid scrutiny of one’s work, of course – potential repercussions on reputation and status, for example. These might be operating at the same time too.

    My question was actually semi-rhetorical – I was trying to draw attention to the fact that numerous sections of the IPCC AR4 have been shown to contain errors, some of significance. There’s sufficient evidence and testimony (eg. Richard Toll’s recent comments) to suspect that the report is biased and compromised – not the objective review of scientific knowledge w.r.t Earth’s climate that it purports to be.

  • oneuniverse

    Correction to above (9:52pm): “believed the GHG theory” should have been “believed the enhanced GHG theory”

  • Nathan

    Judith

    “The estimate of lower bound of most likely 2 isn’t justified based on the uncertainties, some of which aren’t even considered in this paper.”

    Do you have any published material that supports a lower cliamte sensitivity than 2C, that isn’t wrong ?

  • andrewt

    Judith I’ve modified the random selection as indicated, so you are saying Oxburgh would have beeen better off investigating a selection like this:

    Cook, E.R., Briffa, K.R., Meko, D.M., Graybill, D.A. and Funkhouser, G.,, 1995 The ‘segment length curse’ in long tree-ring chronology development for palaeoclimatic studies. The Holocene 5, 229-237  

    Melvin, T.M and Briffa, K.R., 2008 A “Signal-Free” approach to Dendroclimatic Standardisation Dendrochronologia 26, doi:10.1016/j.dendro.2007.12.001 71-86

    Hulme, M. and Jones, P.D., 1989 Climate Change Scenarios for the U.K. Report for the Institute of Hydrology, Contract No.F3CR05-C1-31-01, 87pp Climatic Research Unit, University of East Anglia, Norwich. 

    Jones, P.D. and Wigley, T.M.L., 1990 Satellite data under scrutiny. Nature 344 , p.711  

    Jones, P.D., 1994 Maximum and minimum temperature trends in Ireland, Italy, Thailand, Turkey and Bangladesh. In, Asymmetric change of daily temperature range, Proceedings of the International Minimax-workshop  113-126 U.S. Dept. of Energy Conference Series CONF-9309350

    Jones, P.D. and Lindesay, J.A., 1993 Maximum and minimum temperature trends over South Africa and the Sudan. In, Preprints, 4th International Conference on SOuthern Hemisphere Meteorology and Oceanography 359-360 American Meteorological Society, Boston

    Jones, P.D., Wigley, T.M.L. and Farmer, G., 1991 Marine and land temperature data sets: a comparison and a look at recent trends. In: Greenhouse-Gas-Induced Climatic Change: A Critical Appraisal of Simulations and Observations , pp.153-172 Elsevier Science Publishers, Amsterdam. 

    Briffa, K.R., 1994 Tree-ring evidence of northern Fennoscandian summer temperatures during the Maunder Minimum period. In: Climatic Trends and Anomalies in Europe 1675-1715 , pp.23-32 European Science Foundation, Strasbourg. 

    Dickson, R.R., Briffa, K.R. and Osborn, T.J., 1994 Cod and climate: the spatial and temporal context. ICES marine science symposium 198, 280-286

    Osborn, T.J. and Jones, P.D., 2003 Circulation anomalies and UK climate. Weather 58, 129-130

    Jones, P.D. and Hegerl, G.C., 1998 Comparisons of two methods of removing anthropogenically related variability from the near-surface observational temperature field. Journal of Geophysical Research 103, 13,777-13,786 

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    The argument that Eschenbach tries to escape is quite simple:

    1. In his own name, Eschenbach talks about science being right or wrong.

    This idea that science is either right or wrong would require some thought, but let’s agree for the sake of the argument.  But let’s call that truth, for the sake of simplicity.

    2. Either truth is independent of trust, or not.

    There is no knock-down argument to my knowledge regarding the choice there: there are plausible arguments for both choices.  We don’t need to consider the two possibilities anyway: Eschenbach holds that truth is independent of trust.

    3.  People’s trust in truth can be compromised because of the truth-bearers are “corrupt”, “lying”, “fooling”, “frauding”, “misrepresenting”, “lying by omission”, “circling the wagon”, or all the other expressions denotiong some alleged bad deeds.

    Now, notice Eschenbach holds that truth is independent of trust.  But the public does not seem to hold that truth is independent of trust.  Eschenbach cannot hold that truth is independent of trust in one sentence, and that truth is dependent on trust in the next.

    So the people does.   The people can disagree with Eschenbach, after all.  But why does Eschenbach invokes the people, if he does not, in some way, agree with the way people think?

    Simple.  Eschenbach contests the credibility of the science by questioning the behaviour scientists.  But not on his own behalf.  Because if it was on his own behalf, his opponents could reply tit for tat, as is being threatened to Wegman, actually.

    So Eschenbach plays a pea and thimble game:

    - he proclaims that truth is independent of trust, which prevents attacks of trust that could compromise the truths he holds dear;

    - he lets the people worry about the trust in the truth-bearers.

    The people are very useful.   If it did not exist, we would have to invent it.

  • http://moderateclimate.blogspot.com/ Steve Reynolds

    Nathan: “Do you have any published material that supports a lower cliamte sensitivity than 2C, that isn’t wrong ?”

    The more recent Annan paper I referenced shows reasonable probability below 1.5C. I don’t see how your excuse about that not being the prime purpose of that paper makes it wrong.
    http://www.jamstec.go.jp/frsgc/research/d5/jdannan/probrevised.pdf
     

  • paulina

    Judy–

    OK, here’s another go at it.

    What do we have so far?

    On your view:
    We’ve got a social norm in the climate science community where the general practice is to not engage with a certain kind of critic.
    And this social norm is at odds with the expectations of some members of the public so that this norm (or the scientists’ acting in accordance with this norm) causes these members of the public to see the climate science community as having lost the moral high ground (whatever, as someone said above, that is).

    So, let’s do “moral high ground.” I’m familiar with various definitions of this expression, but I don’t know how you are using it here. I wonder if “lose the moral high ground” can simply be replaced by “do something morally wrong”?

    If yes, then we should be good to go with the questions below. If not, then it would help to know why. 

    C1
    On your view, the relevant members of the public believe that by failing to engage, the climate science community is, collectively, doing something morally wrong.
    Right?
    C2
    Do you agree with these members of the public on this issue?
    C3
    On your view, is this perception of moral wrongdoing the cause of the enhanced credibility of the group of critics in question?

    Hopefully these questions are clear. Please let me know if not. Thanks so much.

  • http://rabett.blogspot.com Eli Rabett

    Does anyone have an idea if Wegman ever replied to David Ritson, who had some questions about the statistical analysis in the Wegman report?

    http://www.meteo.psu.edu/~mann/house06/RitsonWegmanRequests.pdf

  • Phil Clarke

    Jones in the Cru emails:
    “If they ever hear there is a Freedom of Information Act now in the UK, I think I’ll delete the file rather than send to anyone.”
    Ever exaggerated for effect in a mail to a colleague you thought was private? It is utterly implausible that Jones was serious about deleting the file, this data being a slice of his life’s work. You know – when someone writes ‘over my dead body!’ it is not a bona fide threat that they are going to commit suicide. It is known as hyberbole ….
    “I’m getting hassled by a couple of people to release the CRU station temperature data. Don’t any of you three tell anybody that the UK has a Freedom of Information Act!”
    Joke! I think most people who might have wanted to use the FOI were well aware of its existence, don’t you?
    “”Think I’ve managed to persuade UEA to ignore all further FOIA requests if the people have anything to do with Climate Audit”.
    Fraud? Conspiracy? Simple lying? Illegal evasion of FOI requests? All of the above?
    How about ‘None of the above’? How about pursuading the University FOI authorities to assume that requests from that quarter are likely to be frivolous and/or vexatious. Given the 50-plus ‘pro-forma’ FOI requests that arrived in the space of 4 working days (all for the purposes of ‘academic research’, including one where the sender had not even bothered to substitute the pro-forma text) this seems like prescient advice. Maybe Jones just wanted to get on with some work ? Given that he did not have the authority to tell the University FOI people how to do their job, this amounts at worst to over-reaching himself in a private mail. It does not constitute evidence of fraud by any stretch of the imagination.
    I notice that when pressed for examples the bold accusation of fraud becomes a rather more timid rhetorical question. I note that the committees charged with investigating Jones and the CRU, and looking at the same material, have said he has no case to answer and his and the Unit’s scientific reputation remain intact. I find this rather more convincing than handwaving over a handful of misinterpreted sentences plucked from millions in selectively and illicitly-released private communications. Maybe that’s just me.

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    That guy Bishop proves by assertion that Ritson was part of the same conspiracy with all the other scientists and publishers, but that’s as close as Google comes to answering your question.  I’d wondered too, but not wanted to bother the man, figuring some inquiring journalist must have already looked into it.  You know nobody publishes negative results these days.  Well, except blogs
    bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2008/8/11/caspar-and-the-jesus-paper.html

  • Nathan

    Steve you have misread the paper.

    They don’t make the case for 1.5C, some other authors Foster and Gregory (labelled as FG) did some work, and Annan uses their work to come up with the figure you saw (and the range is 1.2 – 3.6C). But then they continue the analysis, using their own calculations and some other work.
    And just before the conclusions they say
    “Both of these analyses exclude the FG work, which was based on independent observations. Therefore, we think it would be hard to argue that all of these results are substantially overconfident. If we were to further update each of these analyses with the FG likelihood, the posterior cost would reduce still further to 1.6% of GDP with a 95% limit for S of 3.5oC based on the Hegerl et al. analysis, and 2% of GDP with a 95% limit for S of 3.7oC for Annan and Hargreaves.”

    The ‘S’ is their estimate of Climate Sensitivity.

    They claim in the work that the climate sensitivity for CO2 and water vapour alone is at least 2 c. To get lower than that all the other feedbacks neeed to sum to something -ve. Something they see as very unlikely.

  • Phil Clarke

    A quarter of the Chapters of the Report have more non-peer reviewed citations than they do peer reviewed citations.
    Oh dear, it looks like you’re relying on the ‘citizen audit’ of AR4 posted up on ‘noconsensus’. Sadly it is balony. Many of the references in the IPCC reports are self-cites, that is, references to the current or previous Assessment Reports. Our brave citizen auditors shoved all these into the ‘unreviewed’ category. Given that the IPCC reports are arguably the most reviewed documents on the planet this is just nuts. In a sample chapter I checked [WG3 Chapter 1] these self-cites accounted for more than 50% of the ‘unreviewed’ total.
    I also picked an ‘unreviewed’ reference from that Chapter at random and followed it up. It turned out to be a book chapter. Fair enough, books are not peer-reviewed papers, but what our brave citizen auditors had missed was that the book chapter was a reprint of a paper published in very much refereed Energy Policy and according to Google Scholar has been cited an impressive 131 times …
    So with the Latin saying “Falsus in unum, falsus in [omnis]“ (false in one, false in all) as our guide I conclude that until double-checked we cannot trust anyone quoting these numbers ….

    A little more ‘scepticism’ seems warranted … ;-)

  • Phil Clarke

    PS Sorry – forgot to name the paper in question. It is
    ‘Gritsevsky, A., and N. Nakicenovic, 2002: Modelling uncertainty of induced technological change’

  • http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/ Tim Lambert

    Ah, trust. I don’t trust Willis Eschenbach because he is dishonest. Look at comment 404. Pachauri says that the IPCC reports are based on peer-reviewed science. Eschenbach pretends that Pachauri claims that the only things cited in the IPCC reports are peer-reviewed journals and refers to an analysis of the cites. But look at what the analysis says. The first chapter of Wg1 says:

    “Sir Isaac Newton (1675) wrote that if he
    had “˜seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants’.”

    Newton (1675) does not refer to a peer-reviewed journal, but a letter he wrote. And on this basis, Eschenbach accuses Pachauri of lying.

    Eschenbach has a history of this sort of behaviour.

  • http://ourchangingclimate.wordpress.com Bart Verheggen

    Steven Mosher recites the many commenters who claim that the treatment they got at RC turned them from “˜agnostics’ to “˜skeptics’. I have a feeling that many already had strong suspicions of the science before looking for further information. E.g. Jeff Id said that he thought it was all a scam before he started to dig deeper into it.

    I do agree however that scientists and their supporters have to be careful in how to respond to first timers who may have a question that sounds contrarian. They may have just heard about it and are genuinely curious (rather than parroting it to score a point, which is often assumed, not so much by the moderators but by some regulars).

    Mosher also recites that Jones provided McI with data back in 2002. I think that speaks to his initially open and helpful attitude. Only after it became clear to him what McI was all about did he stop being helpful. Very understandable (though in hindsight clearly counter-productive).

    Judith Curry refers to Jeff Id as a lukewarmer. Yet talk about a “world-wide socialist governance” in relation to climate science is not a sign of what I’d call a lukewarmer.

  • Brendan H

    Willis: “I want honest, transparent science.”

    Don’t we all? But your request is a form of the many questions fallacy, ie:

    ·         The science is dishonest and secretive
    ·         It should be honest and transparent.

    You are assuming a premise that is contested. While you may passionately believe that the science is fraudulent, other people believe just as passionately that it is honest and robust. So you’re going to have a very long and frustrating series of arguments over that one.

    Since you have expressed a desire for honest, transparent science, a more constructive approach would be to sidestep the accusations of dishonesty, fraud etc and focus on providing some specific, realistic and concrete proposals for making the science better.

    The focus can then be on the proposals rather than opinions about the scientists.

  • J Bowers

    #240: Bart Verheggen Says: “ “˜The science is settled’ is not a clima that climate scientists make btw. Nothing is ever certain.”

    I agree. Gavin Schmidt even published a post on the subject last December at RC; Unsettled Science.
    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2009/12/unsettled-science/
    To quote: “…at a recent meeting I was at, someone claimed that this had been said by the participants and he was roundly shouted down by the assembled experts… The reason why no scientist has said this is because they know full well that knowledge about science is not binary ““ science isn’t either settled or not settled. This is a false and misleading dichotomy…”

    Politicians may say it, but they operate within a different framework where lessons learned from history are probably more applicable, and decisions must often be made regardless of the state of knowledge. When scientists mix it with politics, though, it is not automatically a bad thing as often assumed today, which is clearly demonstrated by Hugh Hammond Bennett and his efforts with the Soil Erosion Service.
    http://www.soil.ncsu.edu/about/century/hugh.html

    A read up on Dr Smith Dharmasaroja is also probably in order, as an illustration of how ignoring and shouting down (even physically threatening) the experts in their field can lead to poor decision making and disastrous consequences.http://www.seapabkk.org/newdesign/fellowshipsdetail.php?No=452To quote: “…Dr. Smith explains, “… “It’s very difficult to tell people what’s going to happen because that (natural phenomenon) didn’t happen for a long time. The thing has not happened for a hundred years, and you say this thing can happen in the future. They say you’re crazy, there is no proof. But from now on they are starting to believe because we have proof.”…”

    I suspect Hansen, Jones, Bennett and Smith would have had much to talk about over beers.

  • Brendan H

    Steve: “As a proponent of AGW, I am welcomed and treated civilly on skeptic sites. they even promote my book, even though I argue that AGW is for the most part good science.”

    Perhaps sceptics welcome you not so much as a proponent of AGW as someone they think can help them bring down the science.

    More to the point, the argument that sceptic sites are civil and therefore more “scientific” than AGW sites is both fallacious and false.

    Fallacious because the personal foibles of scientists cannot be used to invalidate the science. And false because sceptic websites can be quite as toxic as AGW sites.

    The civility issue is being used as a rhetorical tactic by climate sceptics in an attempt to gain the moral high ground and use it to undermine the science.

    But of course everyone should strive to be civil.

  • Larch

    Regarding avoidance of FOI accountability, this is very explicit in the CRU emails. Steve McIntyre has written extensively about this. See also David Holland’s document

    McIntyre had ‘declared war’ on the CRU, as anyone who has read his blog would know.   It only took a short tour of his blog to convince the FOI officers of that.

  • freespeech

    Larch wrote:
    “McIntyre had “˜declared war’ on the CRU, as anyone who has read his blog would know.   It only took a short tour of his blog to convince the FOI officers of that.”

    Wow, I didn’t know the FOI legislation is worded in such a way as that. I must say, I’m very surprised that the FOI legislation only requires you to provide access to information if you can be proven to be “on the right side”. Did they copy that legislation from North Korea? Doesn’t seem to be how a good democracy should behave.

    Can you tell us if that was the reason for Jones’ initial FOI denials, many, many years prior to the “show us the agreements you’ve been hiding behind” FOI storm?
    By the way, do you think Jones confided in the FOI team that although he is using the “I have all these (mostly misplaced) confidentiality agreements” defense, he had in the past sent out the same data to “friendly” third parties? I’m guessing “no”, Do you think this might have been relevant information for the UEA FOI officers? I’m guessing “yes”.

    If the worst happens to Dr Jones, he can always fall back on his skills as an archivist, ok. maybe not.

  • sod

    Judith Curry refers to Jeff Id as a lukewarmer. Yet talk about a “world-wide socialist governance” in relation to climate science is not a sign of what I’d call a lukewarmer.

    Judith is wrong in all her grouping of people. she is no where near the middle. the “sceptics” are not sceptic. the NIPCC is not a joke, but anti-science.

    and the warmists are the main stream, not a sect.

  • Judith Curry


    Bart, I read your blog post, very thoughtful and some good points.  And I’ve also been meaning to reply to Susan.  I have fully experienced the “attack” thing in the context of the hurricane wars.  The 6 months following Katrina was a perfect storm of attacks on Emanuel, Webster, Curry, Holland: the oil funded denial machine was arguably at its peak with Karl Rove as commander in chief; the usual climate change skeptical scientists (Pat Michaels and Jim OBrien were especially vocal on this);  the National Hurricane Center plus Bill Gray, plus the skeptical blogosphere.  I recall having to explain to my mother (who was receiving calls from her friends) about the terrible things being said about us by Rush Limbaugh.  It was truly alice down the rabbithole time. I have written about this extensively, see especially my mixing politics and science paper, including a whole host of issues about the impacts on the individual scientists. After the infamous Feb 2 Wall Street Journal, the hurricane scientists involved (well, minus Bill Gray) decided to put “our big boy pants on” (Lucia Liljegren’s phrase). Led by Kerry Emanuel, we wrote a joint op-ed on the U.S. hurricane threat. More recently, a major review article was written on the subject, with Landsea, Holland and Emanuel all appearing as co-authors. This is how scientists are supposed to behave and how the science moves forward in the face of uncertainty. Sure we were all hit by a media hurricane, but we sorted it out and good progress is being made on the science, the uncertainties have been clarified and its just not a big deal anymore. Now it looks like we are facing a bad Atlantic hurricane season this year, the global warming issue will come up again, and I am expecting everyone to say reasonable things.

    So yes, its difficult for a scientist to deal with media and political craziness. But you have to just filter out the noise, and not take any of it personally. Don’t worry about misinformation in the blogosphere and mainstream media, the formal assessment process will sort it all out. The formal assessment process is important in the presence of all this noise, which is why I am particularly concerned about the process corruptions of the IPCC and its lack of policy neutrality.

    With regards to Jones. The behavior of Jones and Mann created the McIntyre “monster.” McIntyre was trying to work with those guys (also Caspar Ammann), but they blew him off. So he (with McKittrick) wrote the 2003 paper. The treatment that McIntyre and McKittrick received esp by Mann after publication of that paper is what created the “monster.” Phil Jones has a very low threshold for deciding who not to give the data to. After Peter Webster mentioned on climateaudit that he had received the data from Phil Jones, Peter received a rude email from Jones (unfortunately we no longer have a copy; its not in the CRU emails apparently Jones didn’t cc himself) saying that he wouldn’t be giving any more data to Peter and that he never would have given him the data if he knew Peter posted over at climateaudit. So when I saw the CRU emails, I didn’t feel any particular obligation to defend Phil Jones. So Phil Jones’ behavior has arguably contributed to creating the Curry “monster” as well.

    As for why I am “wasting time” in the blogosphere. Over the past 4 years I have been experimenting in the blogosphere to understand how the new social media can be used to educate the public about science, deal with skeptical critiques, and reach a much broader audience. Sure there is a lot of noise here. Sure I receive a ton of attacks, from both “tribes.” But my skin is thicker than an alligator’s hide at this point, I don’t take any of it personally. But I am claiming two “victories” from my posts here: scientists are talking about my “uncertainty” essay (see dotearth, plus I am receiving emails), something that I had no luck with in the context of the NRC Climate Research Committee. And I also received an email from Professor Jeff Weiss at the University of Colorado, who said that he would be discussing my essays in his climate class.

  • jim

    Brendan H says “a more constructive approach would be to sidestep the accusations of dishonesty, fraud etc and focus on providing some specific, realistic and concrete proposals for making the science better.”

    Very true, but the accusations of “dishonesty, corruption, fraud” etc, are much more “provocative” and hence much more likely to “move” the public (whichever way you happen to want to move them).  

    And who needs (or even wants) to try to reform the system through constructive, traditional means (serving on committees, etc)  when you can “appeal” directly to the public and be so much more “effective” (at whatever it is you are trying to accomplish)?

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard
  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    freespeech conflates the FOI legislation with a more potent objective:

    > Maybe the most appropriate way to recognize Jones’ contribution to climate studies and to send a firm message to the climate community ““ that the issues are far too important to indulge such conduct ““ would be to disband CRU, acknowledging the loss of the CRUTEM franchise and dispersing whatever staff are left.

    http://climateaudit.org/2010/01/30/the-end-of-crutem/

  • sod

    <i>I have fully experienced the “attack” thing in the context of the hurricane wars.  The 6 months following Katrina was a perfect storm of attacks on Emanuel, Webster, Curry, Holland:</i>

    i call bullshit.

    so when were your e-mails stolen?

    and your post spread all over the internet?

    so you have been accused of fraud?

    false claims about you made headline news in basically every major news outlet?

    you had to step down from your job position?

    multiple inquiries being run against you at the same time?

    ———————

    Judith, learn how to make a valid comparison.

  • oneuniverse

    Phil Clarke  (5:10pm),  your source article from Climate Progress gives the impression that no challenges were made to the Himalayan glacier:

    “Note that Science News repeats the charge “that Lal’s committee didn’t investigate challenges to glacier data” but does not bother to repeat Lal’s assertion in the Daily Mail piece “” which he made again to me “” that he never saw any challenges to the glacier data. ”

    The IPCC Lead Authors’ comments on the chapter are now available for viewing. It turns out that challenges were made about the Himalayan glacier paragraph. Lal, as one of four co-ordinating lead authors of the chapter, should have been involved writing the Lead Authors’ comments for the chapter.

    This doesn’t tally with Climate Progress’ account of Lal’s assertion the he never saw any challenges to the glacier data.

  • Keith Kloor

    Sod (429):

    It’s fine to take issue with this, but can you please keep it clean.

  • J Bowers

    freespeech: “Can you tell us if that was the reason for Jones’ initial FOI denials, many, many years prior to the “show us the agreements you’ve been hiding behind” FOI storm?”

    Who cares anymore? Any answer, any legitimate one, wouldn’t change a damned thing and will never satisfy you. The real and important issues are about CO2 being a causation of temperature rise, CO2 doubling increasing temperature by around 3C, and people doggedly not wanting to change their lifestyles or worldviews and clutching at any straw to not do so. Even Pat Michaels doesn’t believe that any answer would satisfy the sceptics/cynics/contrarians or whatever you like to call them.
    http://motherjones.com/blue-marble/2010/04/lunch-side-climate-denial
    “…Since the panelists spent a lot of time complaining about how the investigations into “Climategate” were just “whitewash,” I asked Michaels what they would accept as an objective examination of the emails. His response? Nothing could ever satisfy the skeptics. “I don’t think the can of worms can be unloaded,” said Michaels. “It’s just not going to happen.”
    He said it would be difficult “to find someone with expertise on this” who is a “purely objective person.” He also took the opportunity to subtly downplay his industry ties, and portray scientists funded by grants and universities as equally biased. “How can you have expertise and not be supported in some way?” he said. “That makes this a difficult situation.”…”
    If, Judith Curry, you are trying to bridge a gap, good luck because you need it. There’s probably good reason why the gap hasn’t been bridged for decades now. Here’s how the dialogue and interaction that you want can go, at least so far…
    Jones says McIntyre should make his own temperature reconstructions; McIntyre responds that it’s not a priority but he might do it if someone paid him.

    One of McIntyre’s submissions to the House of Commons Inquiry seems flawed and that’s posted at Climate Audit; Steve’s busy, and you’re a troll.

    Wigley responds to Keenan, but not with what Keenan wants to hear; “…this has encouraged me to check a few of your publications: some are so incompetent that they seem to be criminally negligent. Sincerely, Doug
    HadCRUT is verified by at least seven independent others, even by Roy Spencer on the Northern Hemisphere, and other sceptics; FOIA!!!! And still not a single retraction is made about Jones and CRU that I’m aware of.
    How many scientists have had their words distorted or fabricated in the mainstream media so far?

    UHI effect doesn’t exist; It’s a conspiracy.
    Statement (paraphrased): “The “climategate” emails reveal much wrongdoing, malfeasance, incompetence… blah blah… I have written a book about it.” Question on that: “Did you contact the email correspondents for their side to the story (like Woodward and Bernstein would have done)? Response: ……………… (cue tumbleweed). Yes, I have asked elsewhere.

    Many scientists publish with conclusions that CO2 doubling causes around 3C temp rise; Criminals and/or incompetents.

    A scientist states that CO2 doubling causes 1C warming; Galileo.
    He/she can’t get published in the mainstream science journals; Victim.
    A rocket carrying a satellite explodes on takeoff; NASA deliberately sabotaged it. (Eh?!)
    Ice mass is reducing. Oh, but sea ice area seems fine and China has lots of sea ice this winter. No problems.
    @ freespeech; We have no Planet B. The Holocene is a lucky break. Wise up.

  • oneuniverse

    The Climategate documents reveal :

    ““ discussion of avoidance of FOI requests, including suggestions to delete emails
    - using subterfuge (“˜Mike’s nature trick’) to avoid crucial questions about the fitness of their proxy data (“˜hide the decline’)
    - the harbouring of important doubts not revealed to a wider audience (‘it’s a travesty’)
    - the presence in the code tree of versions of code which manipulate data by inappropriate adjustments
    - aggressive efforts to influence which climate science papers get published or rejected (outside the normal channel of influence provided to reviewers).

    Item 1 breached the law (FOI Act), according to the Deputy Information Commissioner of the UK. 2 & 3 involve deception of the public.

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    I don’t think we can advance this dialogue by rehashing (for the 1,000 time) what the CRU documents allegedly reveal and what they don’t reveal.

    In earlier comments, Judith suggested that perhaps it was time to shift the focus on to  IPCC processes, where a debate would be more relevant. I’m all for that, if people are still game.

    On a separate note, while I would love for this thread to continue, I do encourage people to wander over to Andy Revkin’s related post at Dot Earth. He addresses one of the main issues (uncertainty) raised by Judith that has only been marginally discussed here–if at all.

    I think that one should have a thorough going over, and already there’s some excellent comments over at Dot Earth on it.

  • RichieRich

    J Bower @ #432

    As I read your post, you hold that the manner in which CRU/UEA dealt with FOI has never been or, at least, is no longer important.  What’s important in the science.   However, I fail see why CRU/UEA’s dealings with FOI request is less important than sceptic snark, of which you give some fine examples.  Does it really get us anyway quoting snark?  There are excremental examples on both sceptic and warmer sites.

    I agree with you that what’s important is the science: in terms of both content and the process.  In that vain, here’s what Steve Mosher posted at #350

    What does it take to belong to the AGW tribe:
    1. belief in the science ( I got that)
    2. belief that man is the cause ( I got that)
    3. belief that we have to act, even if we are
    uncertain ( I got that)
    4. belief that nothing in the mails changes the science
    ( I got that that)
    5. belief that its ok to:
    A. deny data to someone because of your perception
    of his motives.
    B Deny code when that code clarifies something you
    didnt document your papers.
    C. violate the authoring guidelines of the IPCC by
    contacting people outside the review process
    D. tell others to back date papers.
    E. refuse to give proper attribution for corrections
    to papers.
    F Suggest to others that one should create “files” on
    editors to have them removed”¦
    G-Z

    I guess I dont have #5.

    Here are three broad positions on SM’s 5.

    1.  The stuff SM says happened didn’t happen – so no problem
    2. The stuff SM says happened did happen but it’s not a big deal as this is “war”, the sceptics started it and the sceptics are guilty of far bigger “crimes”.
    3. The stuff SM says happened did happen and it’s a big(ger) deal as, for example, it has the potential to erode trust in the science.

    Are you claiming that no impropriety whatsoever has taken place within CRU/UEA/IPCC?   Surely it’s legitimate to raise concerns about alleged improprieties and that doing so is not necessarily a cover for casting doubt on the science?

  • oneuniverse

    No-one’s commented on Dr. Richard Tol’s interview. I guess it speaks for itself.  Dr. Tol has been a lead and contributing author of the IPCC reports since 1995 :

    “Over the years, the IPCC has changed from a scientific institution that tries to be policy relevant to a political institution that pretends to be scientific. I regret that.”

    Working Groups 2 and 3 of the AR4 violated all IPCC procedures. The conclusions are partly scientifically unfounded, and even partly copied from the environmental movement. The AR4 was substantially changed after the final review, also in parts that had already been accepted by the referees. Valid comments were ignored.“

    “As a result, AR4 contains crude errors, only some of which are public knowledge. These errors can be found in the chapters, the technical summaries, the summaries for policy makers, and the synthesis report. The errors are not random.”

  • oneuniverse

    Keith Kloor 9:57am , message received, this’ll be my last post on the topic.  I’m amazed that people believe that the CRU documents didn’t reveal any troubling behaviour.

  • http://moderateclimate.blogspot.com/ Steve Reynolds

    Nathan,

    I don’t see anywhere in the Annan paper your claim about sensitivity of  “at least 2 c. To get lower than that all the other feedbacks neeed to sum to something -ve. Something they see as very unlikely.”

    Annan says very specifically a lower bound of 1.2C:

    “We should therefore update the expert prior with the likelihood function arising from FG’s analysis of the ERBE data, and present the results in Figure 2. The resulting 5″“95% posterior probability interval is 1.2″“3.6oC”

  • c1ue

    Re: Phil Clarke
    April 28th, 2010 at 3:05 am

    So with the Latin saying “Falsus in unum, falsus in [omnis]“ (false in one, false in all) as our guide I conclude that until double-checked we cannot trust anyone quoting these numbers “¦.
    A little more ‘scepticism’ seems warranted “¦

    According to this statement, the entire IPCC report should be invalidated due to HimalayaGate, much less HurricaneGate, &c &c.

    Secondly a book chapter based on a peer reviewed paper is not the same thing as a peer reviewed paper. Meanings can change – emphasis can change – even basic data can change. If indeed an initial scientific reference is sufficient, then similarly blogs which start out with a scientific peer reviewed paper would be sufficent.

    They are not, and should not be.

  • Phil Clarke

    NB I drafted this before KKs wise words. I submit it anyhow, as it corrects one or two errors of fact.
    The Climategate documents reveal :
    Ah the same handful of quotes, culled from >1,000 emails, extracted out of context and spun round 180 degrees. Here we go ….
    ““ discussion of avoidance of FOI requests, including suggestions to delete email
    Avoidance of FOI spam you mean. ‘Discussions’ and ‘suggestions’ between colleagues are not yet crimes.
    - using subterfuge (“˜Mike’s nature trick’) to avoid crucial questions about the fitness of their proxy data (“˜hide the decline’)
    Oh please. This has been done to death. See the explanation from Phil Jones on the CRU website. Far from being hidden the decline in question is the subject of ongoing debate, has its own wikipedia entry and is the subject of at least one published study. Odd way of hiding something.
    http://www.uea.ac.uk/mac/comm/media/press/2009/nov/CRU-update
    http://tinyurl.com/2ben635
    - the harbouring of important doubts not revealed to a wider audience (‘it’s a travesty’)
    A reference to Trenberth’s remark about the limitations of our observational resources. Again you need to read his paper on the topic to get the context.
    http://www.cgd.ucar.edu/cas/Trenberth/trenberth.papers/EnergyDiagnostics09final2.pdf
    - the presence in the code tree of versions of code which manipulate data by inappropriate adjustments
    Was any of this code used to support a published study? Thought not. If you’re referring to Ian ‘Harry’ Harris, he was not actually working on the flagship HADCRUT product, but a completely separate project ….
    - aggressive efforts to influence which climate science papers get published or rejected (outside the normal channel of influence provided to reviewers).
    Or aggressive efforts to prevent substandard papers being accepted into the literature. A completely proper concern for senior scientists. A lot of that was in the wake of the publication by Climate Research of the deeply flawed Soon and Baliunas paper. A lot of valuable time (and editorial careers) could have been saved if that had been rejected beforehand. http://www.int-res.com/articles/misc/CREditorial.pdf
    Item 1 breached the law (FOI Act), according to the Deputy Information Commissioner of the UK. 2 & 3 involve deception of the public.
    Er, actually no. Any assertion that the University has been found in breach of any part the Freedom of Information Act is incorrect. The ICO had not communicated with the University before issuing the statement and has still not completed any investigations into this matter. Media reports have been inaccurate.
    http://www.uea.ac.uk/mac/comm/media/press/CRUstatements/ICOcorrespondence
    cheers, PC

  • jim

    RE: Plagiarism

    At it’s core, plagiarism is fundamental dishonesty. 

    That’s why it will get you an ‘F’ on a paper in pretty much any college course (if discovered, of course) and also get you placed on academic probation at many colleges and universities  — and possibly even booted entirely,  if shown to be habitual.

    Proper attribution is important for many reasons, and (this may come as a shock to some) not primarily for the purpose of giving the true author credit.

    Like citations in a scientific paper, the most important purpose of attribution is to allow the reader/reviewer to assess first hand the accuracy and reliability of the information in a report or paper.

    As a result, plagiarism is highly relevant to questions about “honest representation of fact” — and would be particularly important in reports used as Congressional testimony.

    Some bandy the terms “corruption” and “fraud” about (without even properly defining them) like they would do a tennis ball in a friendly Sunday-afternoon game, but plagiarism really  IS (academic) fraud.

    And anyone who does not take it seriously simply does not deserve to be taken seriously.

  • J Bowers

    RichieRich says: “As I read your post, you hold that the manner in which CRU/UEA dealt with FOI has never been or, at least, is no longer important.  What’s important in the science…  ”

    What’s important is… verification of the science by inedependent methods. At this stage the rest is fluff, irrelevant and abstract (at times even surreal) IMHO. Freedom of Information Acts are not about science, they’re primarily about government. Parliaments do not pass the Laws of Physics.

    RichieRich says: “Are you claiming that no impropriety whatsoever has taken place within CRU/UEA/IPCC? ”

    Yes.  100%. Without a doubt. I have seen no credible evidence to the contrary, specifically malfeasance, and I’ve read the allegations just as I have read a vast majority of the emails, as boring as they are. Last I heard, thought crimes don’t really pass as convictable offences. At worst I have seen some candid and occasionally unwise remarks in private correspondence between colleagues, peers, and friends. Big deal. It is not an issue in my book, and I have seen far worse elsewhere. What I do find truly ridiculous and, quite frankly, incredulous, is a magical collective memory lapse forgetting that trick of the trade” as a term in everday life never existed. Sorry, but I remember it well and trying to pretend otherwise is trying to mislead me.

    Making judgements purely on 0.01% of data is stretching credibility IMHO. That’s what the stolen emails represent to me; 0.01% of a full set of data, deliberately cherry picked to cause as much damage as possible to COP15 and the scientists. But hey, if someone wants to write books based on second guessing, they can be my guest. I won’t regard them very highly, though, and they certainly aren’t any Woodward or Bernstein in my book, especially if they don’t discuss the emails with the original correspondents and get their side of the story. They may even be mistaking mirrors for windows.

    Scientists are being put on a pedestal that they can never manage to stay atop of. Newton was an absolute scoundrel, but he was right. If he were alive today, the “contrarians” would have us throw out Newton’s laws because he didn’t attain some mythical standard. Or, in the case of Hugh Bennett, the American mid-west would be tilled over and reverted back to 19th Century farming methods, regardless of childrens’ lungs filling with dust and the economy collapsing, simply because Hugh Bennett pulled a fast one on the Senate. Hell, he’d have the FBI thrown at him, and countless inquiries and “investigations” going through his laundry. Personally, I applaude him.

    As I said, the Holocene is a lucky break. If the contrarians are wrong, we have willingly screwed up our grandchildrens’ lives. They pay the price, not us, but it’s easy to gamble and be reckless with what’s owned by others, isn’t it. “It won’t be my problem.”

  • jim

    Definition of plagiarism from Dictionary.com

    1.
    “the unauthorized use or close imitation of the language and thoughts of another author and the representation of them as one’s own original work.

    2.
    something used and represented in this manner.”
    //end quote

    Definition of Academic fraud, which includes plagiarism:

    from University of Virginia

    What is Academic Fraud
    Fraud and the Honor System
    All students at the University of Virginia are bound by the Honor Code not to commit Academic Fraud, which is a form of cheating. The following is meant to raise awareness among students as to what academic fraud is and how to avoid it. Academic fraud includes:
    Plagiarism: Plagiarism is using someone else’s ideas or work without proper or complete acknowledgment. Plagiarism encompasses many things, and is by far the most common manifestation of academic fraud.”

    //end quote

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    I commend the excellent post by J Bowers above at
    http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/2010/04/23/an-inconvenient-provocateur/#comment-3585
    and thank you for the two links to examples of how science fact has been labeled as ‘policy’ by those who can’t afford to understand it, so use that label to dismiss the knowledge by calling it advocacy.

  • Phil Clarke

    c1ue,
    The ‘one false – all false’ dictum is a logical fallacy and I was quoting Mr Eschenberg, not entirely seriously….
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/12/08/the-smoking-gun-at-darwin-zero/ (at the end).
    The book chapter was not just based on, it was a verbatim reprint of, the refereed journal article. Fail, I’m afraid.
    http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.17.6059&rep=rep1&type=pdf (Chapter 10)
    On the accuracy of the IPCC I can do no better than quote Johann Hari
    …when it comes to coverage of global warming, we are trapped in the logic of a guerrilla insurgency. The climate scientists have to be right 100 percent of the time, or their 0.01 percent error becomes Glaciergate, and they are frauds. By contrast, the deniers only have to be right 0.01 percent of the time for their narrative–See! The global warming story is falling apart!–to be reinforced by the media. It doesn’t matter that their alternative theories are based on demonstrably false claims, as they are with all the leading “thinkers” in this movement.
    cheers, PC.

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts
  • Steven Mosher

    Willis

    Before I get to my response let me explain to people why we can talk. I can talk to Willis, even have a lovely dinner because he shares his data and his code. why does this matter? this matters for two reasons:
    1. it takes his MOTIVES out of the equation. I don’t care what his politics are, dont know, doesnt matter. I dont inquire about them or question them.
    2. he’s shared his tools which means he has shared his power.

    Both of those things build trust. not trust that he is RIGHT but trust that I can discuss things with him. I dont trust jones. not because I can prove he’s wrong, that not my burden. I dont trust him because he hasnt acted in trustworthy ways. Still hasn’t. probably never will. I dont want him speaking for climate science. same way hertz fired OJ. ( that’ll et folks going)
    Now, onto my response to you. I’ll note with some satisfaction that nobody has effectively defended what jones actually said and did. they have tried to justify it, rationalize it, minimize it, but no one has argued that he acted in a manner that A) built trust B)furthered science C) worked effectively to counter skeptics. no one. They cant. They know that he and Mann did not further the cause and ironically they created more doubt, not less. When I read Mann’s advice to others on PR and strategy I cringe and wish people would just realize that this amateur has no effective role to play.

    Ok:

    Willis Eschenbach Says:
    April 27th, 2010 at 9:04 pm

    In the broadest sense, a fraud is an intentional deception made for personal gain or to damage another individual. “
    Now, Jones didn’t want to admit that he had lost the original data. So he gave me a couple of bogus reasons for refusing my FOI request for that data. Is that fraud?”
    1. I dont know from the mails that the cause of his refusal was as you state. In jan of 2005, wigley brought FOIA to Jones attention. Wigley was concerned about sharing code. They discussed ways of thwarting any demands. On Jan 12 MM05 hit at the GRL. In feb in a mail to Mann Jones shared the data with rutherford and said he would deny future requests. On feb 21, Briffa sent Jones a collection of news clippings showing the conservative press attacking Mann for not sharing data. Mann had been complaining in the mails that HE was fighting alone. embattled. he asked for help. Briffa sends the mail showing Jones that Mike was under fire. That same day Jones wrote warrick Hughes denying him the data, data he had sent to McIntyre in 2002, data he sent to Rutherford in Jan. His motivation in denying Hughes? Possible motives?
    1. He felt compelled to join Mike in the fight
    2. He wanted a piece of the publicity Mike was getting ( cant rule out the cynical piece)
    3. He was concerned that Hughes would find something.
    4. He saw a slipperly slope ahead.
    5. He classed Hughes as a skeptic and denied him on
    “principle”
    6. His collection was a mess, but he just shared it with rutherford.
    I’m not see ANY good motivation. I’m not seeing ANY rational motivation. I’m not seeing any motivation that furthers science. But I’m not seeing ( supported in the TEXT) any motivation for person gain. not explicitly. WRT your request. Your request came in 2007. I have no evidence in the mails WHY he denied that request. In the absence of evidence I would NOT charge that he denied your request for data because he had lost some of it. It could well be that he had some other Bogus reason, like “Willis posts on CA”  So, I’m making a fine distinction between KNOWING his motivation was personal gain and documenting that and speculating it was personal gain. I dont charge fraud, because I dont have the evidence. other motivations ( none of them good) may have governed his decision. I hope this fine point is clear. In the absence of evidence of a personal gain motive, I choose not to speculate. I list the possible motives. None good. you dont want to say that you are certain his motive was personal gain, do you?.. maybe preventing personal loss.
    “Jones and others conspired to keep McKitrick’s paper out of the IPCC report, again for their own personal gain. Is that fraud?”
    Well they Attempted to keep the paper out. And when forced to they did include the paper. But the real “crime” here was the way Jones fabricated rebuttles to McKittricks paper, making up arguments out of whole cloth, arguments not extant in peer reviewed Literature. For those unfamiliar with this episode, McKittrick’s paper was kept out until after the SOD ( SOD is second order draft) Jones and Trenberth  explained away McKitricks point about UHI with one sentence or so:
    here:”However, the locations of greatest socioeconomic development are also those that have been most warmed by atmospheric circulation changes (Sections 3.2.2.7 and 3.6.4), which exhibit large-scale coherence. Hence, the correlation of warming with industrial and socioeconomic development ceases to be statistically significant.”
    The problem is that This sentence is NOT supported by the peer reviewed literature. they made it up. It doesn’t cease to be statistically significant.
    So: Jones and T said they would keep this paper out of the IPCC. They tried. tried mightly. In the end they let the paper in and they mishandled the review of it. As before I am not finding any good reasonable motive here, but I’m not certain the motive was personal gain. At least I find no record of that in the mails. That I think is the difference between you and me Willis. I’m unwilling to charge fraud without that written record. EVEN IF all the circumstantial evidence points that way. 

    I’ve made this point before in our discussions. You like facts, I like facts. You like theories supported by facts, I like them too. In my mind speculating on motives is dangerous business. So I like to stick to exactly what I can prove. I will say we agree on this: no one has suggested a GOOD motive for Jones actions and supported that contention with evidence.

     

  • Steven Mosher

    Let me explain how utterly misguided my AGW tribe is.
    climate science is right and Phil Jones was wrong.
    I find no logical contradiction here.
    he was wrong to deny Willis data or wrong to share that confidential data with Ruhtherford and Webster.take your pick.
    Wrong to lie about his practice about “not sharing data”
    Wrong to ask Mann and others to delete mails.
    Wrong about a lot of things. The man was wrong.

    Its argued that one cannot say “climate science is right and Phil Jones was wrong” and remain in the tribe. I’ve heard it argued that admitting to some wrong will create doubt.
    The opposite is true. For the most part there are three groups of people. Those of us who believe in AGW, those who deny it, and those who sit on the fence. Our most important task is to convince the unconvinced. Not to preach to choir, not to engage those who will never change their minds, but to reason with those who are not sure. You don’t convince them by engaging in a whitewash. that creates more doubt, not less. When you try to marginalize an honest critic like Dr. Curry, you are not building trust. you are not helping the cause. Like it or not people will judge your trustworthiness on the entire balance of the evidence. false in one? ok. do you OWN IT? very good. or do you bluster, and excuse, and blame the other guy? if so, I might consider that you are false in all. At the very least I will be put into doubt about other things you say.

  • Keith Kloor

    Steven (448):

    What you say in the beginning–on the issue of trust–goes to the heart of Judy’s pursuit in all off this: to re-establish trust in climate science.

    What do we mean by that? Well, I’m not so sure it’s the public that needs convincing, based on this recent Stanford survey, but rather the dueling sides, who have dug into their respective positions over Climategate and IPCC mistakes, etc.

    But as Judy said elsehwere in one of her comment/answers (can’t recall which, at the moment), some major climate policy decisions hang in the balance. So to the extent that a trust gap exists, filled in by lots of distracting noise and corrosive rhetoric, that’s not a constructive environment in which to build smart, effective climate policies.  (And climate action is coming, whether people like it or not. It’s just a question of when and what kind.)

    So that’s one reason why Judy’s quixotic quest to bring the warring sides together interests me: broader trust seems like it can only help make for smarter policy. One way to make smarter policy is to have broader trust, since that would seem to lend itself to smarter and less polarizing debate. 

    Is this wishful thinking on my part? I dunno. But as I mention to Judy over at this post, I think her efforts will matter more if someone of her stature in the skeptic community starts doing what she’s doing to help build those bonds of trust. Takes two to tango, as they say.

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    Phil,

    I too need to talk to somebody.  I’ll take you.  I am sure we can have dinner, sometimes.

    I am sure we can talk because you seem to be able to recognize stuff that you can’t say something like

    > it takes his MOTIVES out of the equation.

    and

    > His motivation in denying Hughes? Possible motives?

    and

    > I’m not see ANY good motivation. I’m not seeing ANY rational motivation.

    in the same comment. 

    And I am quite sure we can also talk because we know that if someone says something like:

    > You like facts, I like facts. You like theories supported by facts, I like them too.

    when you just said that

    > [F]acts are facts.

    and previously something like, paraphrasing:

    > [Jones' actions are right or wrong, and that this question is only based on facts]

    No ifs, no buts, no circumstances, no sitations, no quantifiers, no subjects, no scope, nothing.  A simple yes or no.  Yes or no?

    I know we can talk because I believe you can see how well articulated the problem is.

    Ahhh.  I see you don’t respond.  Very well, then.  That’s some evidence there.  The silence of the lamb and blahblahblah.

    I wish I had time to entertain you with my thoughts a bit more.  My SEO advisors tell me my comment is not long enough, yet.  But I have a dinner to prepare.  Coming to dinner?

    Tata.

  • oneuniverse

    Keith, with your leave I hope, I’ll briefly reply to Phil Clarke’s post at 10:37pm:

    Phil Clarke: “Avoidance of FOI spam you mean.”
    Avoidance of legitimate FOI requests – see the IOC’s statement below.

    “Media reports have been inaccurate.”
    Not according to the the Deputy Commissioner’s reply on the 29th (PDF is on the CRU web-page you linked) :

    “I can confirm that the ICO will not be retracting the statement which was put out in my name in response to persistent enquiries from the Sunday Times journalist, Mr. Leake. He was specifically seeking a statement as to why the ICO was not prosecuting under section 77 in this case. The statement was not inaccurate and the ICO is not responsible for the way in which the media and others may interpret or write around an ICO statement.”

    Here’s the relevant portion of the unretracted IOC statement :

    “The emails which are now public reveal that Mr Holland’s requests under the Freedom of Information Act were not dealt with as they should have been under the legislation. Section 77 of the Freedom of Information Act makes it an offence for public authorities to act so as to prevent intentionally the disclosure of requests for information. Mr Holland’s FOI requests were submitted in 2007/8, but it has only recently come to light that they were not dealt with in accordance with the Act. The legislation requires action within six months of the offence taking place, so by the time the action taken came to light the opportunity to consider a prosecution was long gone.”

  • oneuniverse

    Correction to 1:45pm just above : “ICO”, not “IOC”.

  • oneuniverse

    Steve, my reply to your RTE question is above. I’ll have a read of the Science of Doom site – looks like a nice site.

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    > someone of her stature in the skeptic community

    Who are the people of her stature in the skeptic community?
    Can you name a dozen, or a couple, as possibilities, and say how you assess this?

  • http://rabett.blogspot.com Eli Rabett

    Wegman ignores Ritson and is a hero, Phil Jones blows Eschenbach off and he is a villian?  Do we have som IOKIFYACS goin here?

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    Hank (455):

    In this case, I define stature to mean someone whose views and opinions are taken seriously by their peers. I further define it as someone who has a measure of influence.

    I’ll leave it up to others to nominate who they think might be an appropriate choice.

  • John Mashey

    re: 426 Dr Curry
    I *beg* you to get familiar with the roles of the American Petroleum Institute, the Competitive Enterprise Institute, the George C. Marshall Institute, Myron Ebell, Fred Singer, et al in recruiting McKitrick and then McIntyre, bringin them to Washington, “coaching” them,  introducing them to James Inhofe, and publicizing all this.  (I refer back to the report mentioned in #303.

    You really might want to read Essex&McKitrick, “Taken by Storm” (2002) Chapters 4-5, written before McIntyre got involved, or even earlier the de Fretias paper for CSPG, “reviewed” by Soon&Boehmer-Christiansen.  Hockey-stick whacking certainly didn’t start with McIntyre.
    This extra-science stuff is alien to real scientists, especially in disciplines that do not face organized anti-science, but even in ones that do.   Please, please try to learn a bit more about the extra-science background (or read it and explicitly reject it if you like).  I hate to see a fine scientist with perhaps-legitimate complaints going  further and further out on a shakey tree- limb, in unknowing support of CEI/GMI/Inhofe/Barton’s goals.   When that limb comes down, any good will crash with the bad.  A great deal of new information about the organized anti-science campaign has come to light relatively recently, or will soon.   When new data arrives, sensible people have good reason to reassess opinions if warranted.
    Please.

  • RichieRich

    IOKIFYACS

    LOL!  Took a while for a Brit to figure this one out!

  • Steven Mosher

    Phil Clarke Says:
    April 28th, 2010 at 10:47 am
    NB I drafted this before KKs wise words. I submit it anyhow, as it corrects one or two errors of fact.
    The Climategate documents reveal :
    Ah the same handful of quotes, culled from >1,000 emails, extracted out of context and spun round 180 degrees. Here we go “¦.
    ““ discussion of avoidance of FOI requests, including suggestions to delete email
    Avoidance of FOI spam you mean. “˜Discussions’ and ‘suggestions’ between colleagues are not yet crimes.
    Like most us us who believe in AGW you are not in possession of the facts WRT the FOIA requests. You have not reviewed the history which goes back to 2007. You have not reviewed each and every request and the various denials. You have not looked at the mails surrounding the denials and the reasons for the denials. You don’t know know what you are talking about anymore than a skeptic who denies radiative physics. But its worse. I dont expect many people to be able to follow the math. They have to trust people who says the math is right. in YOUR CASE you have the evidence available to you. Its words in english. You either choose to not read them or misinterpret them. Thats denialism.
    I will give you a short course in the FOIA at CRU.
    As you should know the concern about FOIA was raised in 2005 by Wigley a former CRU employee. He raised this concern to Jones. there were no requests pending and no request would be made for over two years. Skeptics had not thought about it. Wigley expressed this fear in jan of 2005. Jones threatened to destroy data rather than share it. This was not precipiated by FIOA “spamming.”
    The very first mention of  using FOIA from skeptics dates to sept of 2006. That suggestion was made by John A. around that time Willis Eschenbach issued an FOIA to CRU. He told no one. Not even Mcintyre. later in 2007 when he was denied, he told the readers at CA. SteveMcIntyre followed suit with a FOIA of his own. That FOIA was granted. The data for Jones 1990 was released.
    Eschenbach has mixed results with his FOIA. he requested The data that makes up CRUTEMP. The obsfucation in CRU’s responses was ridiculous. As of this date they had sent the data Willis requested to Rutherford. It existed. It was at hand. There was no chore required to assemble it. CRUs response was this:
    the data is at GHCN go get it.
    That  response was a non response. GHCN houses records for 7280 stations ( in the collection CRU sampled) for their study they SELECT a subset of these. Willis asked for the SUBSET. which stations of the 7280 did they use. CRU refused to tell him even which stations ( later they would relent and tell him) But even that doesnt tell you what data CRU used. Why? becuase for each station in GHCN there are records that are termed “duplicate records” that is, a given station may have up to 10 records. ( the average station has 1.89 duplicates) In some cases these duplicates overlap in time. same time period, say 1920-1960, same lat and lon. same WMO number. DIFFERENT RECORDS. the first step in any analysis of GHCN data is a reconciliation of the duplicate records. If I want to replicate or check your work, I need to know:
    A. what stations you selected
    B. How you handled the “duplicate” records.
    There are a few accepted methods for doing this. Hansen has one, simple averaging is another, FD is a third, midpoint of the range is a 4th. All different answers. So people like Willis and me actually need to know not only the stations but how you combined them. or if you gave me your combination output, I can figure out if you did a simple average or not.
    In any case, CRU told willis the stations, but refused to share the data AS USED. at this time they also argued that 2% of the stations were covered by confidentiality agreements. These were NOT in ghcn possession. That’s a fine point but worth explaining; on one hand they have a pile of data from GHCN, which is open and on the other hand 2% which they hold. The open data should have been freely shared. Instead, they first argued that all the data was at GHCN ( not true) and then they argued that all but 2% was. remember this 2%. it plays a role in the “spamming” two years later.
    That’s how 2007 ends: Mcintyre got his Jones 1990 data, Willis got a list of stations and a bogus excuse WRT the open portion of CRU data.
    No FOIA spamming there. Jones actions and threats predate the spamming.
    2008: In 2008 there was one individual who did a FOIA of CRU. his rights were violated, thats the opinion of the ICO. lets review the Holland case:
    During the course (2007) of the writing of chapter 6 of AR4, steve Mcintyre noted some irregularities ( plagarism of sorts) in the comments that Lead author Briffa  wrote. he blogged about this. CRU folks were reading his blog.They were aware they were under scrunity. Mcintyre as a IPCC reviewer was focusing on the treatment one paper was receiving. special treatment. The mails confirm this special treatment. there is no denying it. No one has even tried to deny the special treatment this paper got. You cant. its in black and white. it would be like denying climate science to deny a fact so certain. Continuing.
    A scientist named roberts writes to Overpeck, requesting to send information to Briffa ( lead author of Ch060 Directly. Overpeck tells him no. and he reminds everyone  that the process of sending in information must be open and transparent. all information must go through the system and be accountable. Briffa knows this Jones knows this. Jones even writes Christy about rules at one point.
    Briffa, however has a problem. This paper. the so called jesus paper. Wahl ammman and journal editor Schneider have been working furiously to get the paper in past before the deadlines, deadlines that Jones warned Christy about. Deadlines that in the end would have to be moved to get this paper in. Deadlines that schneider would try to game by inventing a new category “provisonally accepted”
    Moving on. Briffa has a problem. The paper is very fresh. Not even published, but “in press” which means he has a copy. fed to him by somebody. McIntyre also has a copy. Briffa, naturally, is having difficulty with the paper. Its not like any other paper where you have the benefit of discussions with collegues, time to go over it, back and forth arguments, etc. Its a paper that Overpeck and others have been holding out as the paper that will shut Mcintyre up. Important stuff. So briffa breaks the rules. Briffa writes to the author Wahl. to ask for explanations. Ordinary course of business? yes. Allowed by the IPCC procedures? nope. Why not. well Wahl is not a reviewer. All reviewer comments must be logged. But it gets worse. Not only does briffa contact Wahl, but he sends wahl the comments that Mcintyre made. he sends Wahl the chapter he is working on. and he solicits help with wording. he marks this mail CONFIDENTIAL. he know, as his boss Overpeck has explained, that what he is doing is wrong. he takes comments back from Wahl. he incorporates those words. he tells Wahl, I hope nobody notices. well he was wrong. In his official comments back to Mcintyre Briffa used wordage that let Mcintyre suspect that Briffa had been in contact with Amman and or Wahl.  Communication outside the review process. communication about a scientific disagreement between Wahl&Ammann and Mcintyre.
    But what was Briffa supposed to do? well if he had questions about the paper, the rules allowed him to hold a panel on the topic. invite wahl, amman, mcintyre, other reviewers. normal stuff. BUT, instead he writes mails to Wahl,  and they discuss how they are going to get this in with nobody noticing. Further, as Mcintyre raises concerns about the deadline date, Phll jones suggests that they backdate the paper.
    Thats the context. So in 2008, Holland, reads about what they did. Mcintyre suspected some communication, so Holland did an FOIA. the only FOIA of 2008. That FOIA was directed at Briffa’s correspondence. the stuff he marked confidential ( eroneously) Upon receipt of Hollands request, FIOA officer Palmer sets the excuse. he tells jones:
    1. We need to do this one “by the book” because I fear an appeal.
    2. we will argue the mails are confidential, please ask Ammann if they are.
    Lovely. This one, as opposed to others, needs to be done by the book because he fears an appeal, fears losing an appeal. and we will argue that they are confidential, check and make sure they are.
    Anyways, Briffa and Osborne check with Ammann. Ammann is not exactly clear and he writes that he doesnt mark mails confidential. Jones and palmer ignore Ammanns response. Jones writes Mann and tells him to delete mails and asks him to tell Wahl to delete mails.
    To cover up what Briffa and Wahl were doing. Now, Jones asks Mann to delete mails EVEN THOUGH at the same time palmer and Jones are denying the request for these mails. well, you have this problem. If you believe your denial of the FOIA is in good faith why delete the mails? So, Palmer says deny the request, but he fears an appeal. he denies the request and the next day or so Jones tells mann to delete mails. simple. when the appeal comes if it succeeds the evidence will be gone. Subsequently Jones asks the FOIA officer what excuse he can use for deleting mails.
    No FOIA spamming there.

    Shall we move to 2009 there is one more incident regarding data before we get to the spamming. ?
     

  • Phil Clarke

    Briefly – as we’re into pins and angels territory here but the fact is that the Commissioner’s opinion is just that. A breach of the Act has not been established, as this can only happen after a proper enquiry to determine all the facts and context. A statement to the press has no standing in law; we have not yet succumbed to trial by press release or by blog, inoocent until proven otherwise, due process and all that …..

  • Steven Mosher

    keith:
    “So that’s one reason why Judy’s quixotic quest to bring the warring sides together interests me: broader trust seems like it can only help make for smarter policy. One way to make smarter policy is to have broader trust, since that would seem to lend itself to smarter and less polarizing debate.

    Is this wishful thinking on my part? I dunno. But as I mention to Judy over at this post, I think her efforts will matter more if someone of her stature in the skeptic community starts doing what she’s doing to help build those bonds of trust. Takes two to tango, as they say.”
    Yes.  When Dr. Curry circulated her piece I did my level best to encourage people on the skeptic side to drop some of the nonsense. And to accept a middle ground of transparency and leave out the ” buts”. as in “Dr Curry called for transparency, BUT… [insert obligatory slam.]”  Funny, we Tom and I wrote the book, the first outline had a chapter on the changes we would suggest. more Judies.
    In any case kudos for hosting this and raising the issues. I have a few more people here I owe responses to, then I’m back to lukewarmer land.



    It saddened me that none of them would do this.

  • Steven Mosher

    oneuniverse

    Thanks I missed that. Had a bunch of stuff to respond to.
    If I dont get back to your question hunt me down at airvent or Lucias..

  • Willis Eschenbach

    willard Says:
    April 27th, 2010 at 10:53 pm
    <blockquote><em>The argument that Eschenbach tries to escape is quite simple:
    1. In his own name, Eschenbach talks about science being right or wrong.
    This idea that science is either right or wrong would require some thought, but let’s agree for the sake of the argument.  But let’s call that truth, for the sake of simplicity.</em></blockquote>
    This is why I repeatedly ask people to QUOTE what they are disagreeing with. I never talked about “science being right or wrong” as willard claims. I said that math is either right or wrong, which is a totally and completely different thing. Here’s what I said:
    <blockquote><em>Math in general is either right or wrong, whether it is put forth by Einstein or a convicted child molester.</em></blockquote>
    Which is why quoting what you disagree with avoids these kinds of foolish mistakes …
    As a result, the rest of willard’s argument (which is based on this fundamental misunderstanding) might be correct, but has nothing at all to do with me. He’s talking about someone else, someone who has made the claim that science is “right or wrong”. I don’t know who that someone is, but as Bob Dylan remarked, “It ain’t me, babe” …
    PS – What does “In his own name” mean in willard’s #1 above? Makes no sense.

  • Steven Mosher

    willard

    briefly,

    WRT to Jones motivation. I’ve listed a list of possible motivations. That list is not exhaustive. Its a list. I’ve asked repeatedly on many blogs for people to expand on this list. Simple question. Give me a motivation based in the ethics of science. give me a reasonable motivation. Give me anything? Show me something IN THE MAILS where jones explains his motivation. Give me something. anything. Failing that I have a list of motives. none of them good. Willis and others want to claim fraud. They want to claim he did it for personal gain. I hold them to the record. I dont see that. I see some evidence of other motives, some evidence. nothing conclusive. In the book I tended to pose them as open questions. I dont see anyone here standing up and arguing that it was the right thing to do. I dont see anyone reading the mails more carefully for the whole context, the right context to give Jones his reputation back.  I see none of that. What to conclude?Well, I know it was wrong. Like the sky is blue I know that. And I believe you know that, otherwise you wouldnt have such a weak defense. otherwise you would not engage in special pleading. I belieive that because you are acting just like skeptics who deny radiative physics. Same kind of arguments. same kind of weaseling, same kind of out of context quote mining. So, I know it was wrong. I believe you think it was wrong as well, but you just cant say it. people ask about his motives. I got a list. Its just that. A list of possible explanations. Willis wants fraud on that list. I’m not buying that. What motivation would you like on the list– he thought he was doing gods will? he was temporalily insane? he was afraid? he was lazy? he was absent minded?  was it a random act? what motive would you like to add to the list? Please, I’m open to any one you want to add. then… then… then we will review the words in the mails, in detail, in sequence, in context, and we will see if your motive makes sense. we will see if its supported by the only evidence we have or not.  See, Willis argued for fraud. Personal interest. How  do we judge that. We look to the evidence.
    We start with the mails. Not snippets. whole mails, other texts to. Now, if you have your own idea of motive cough it up.

    To review the facts. These are the facts that the motive should be consistent with.

    1. In 2002 Jones shared the data with McIntyre. Mcintyre was unpublished and unknown. Jones acknowledged the existence of confidentiality agreements and said he thought the data should be open

    2. Mann was writing Jones, Briffa and others complaining that he was fighting the battle against skeptics by himself and he needed help.

    3. In 2004 Warwick Hughes was corresponding with Jones WRT data for CRUTEMP. Jones promised to send the data. He mentioned that he thought the data should be available and he was arguing that WMO resolution 40 should be followed

    3. In jan of 2005 the FOIA office at CRU sent Wrigly a flyer about FOIA compliance. Wrigly wrote Jones asking what this was about. Wrigly was concerned about sharing code. They discussed methods of avoiding compliance with FOIA requests.

    4. Jones writes to Mann and explains that he has sent Rutherford ( mann associate) the station data. Data that Hughes is requesting. he tells man to be careful and not put the data on an open FTP. he explains to mann that hey are concerned about FOIA. he says if anyone requests this data, that he can hide behind the agreements. And if he is over ruled, he will destroy the data.

    5. On feb 21 2005, briffa sends Jones a series of news clippings where the conservative press is savaging Mike mann. No text, just forwards the clippings. Jones remarks that the skeptics are getting traction with this.

    6. Then Jones writes the letter to Hughes on the same day.
    denying him the data and writing ” why should I share this with you when your sim is to find something wrong.

    So. There are the facts behind the first data denial. I struggled long and hard to come up with a good motive for that. I cant say with certainty what his motive was. I think I can say that fraud is too harsh a claim. Again, if you have any constructive advice on how one can construe this as a laudable act, please do explain. Then, we can look through the mails and see if we have any evidence that Jones had those laudable motives.  Just to be clear. Whatever claim you make about jones motives will have to stand the test of consistency with the other things in the mails.  You think you will be much more effective if you avoid the topic, change the subject, switch to wegman, anything but answer the question. I see this kind of behavior all the time, from the skeptics of course.

    Anyways, when we finish with the first data denial and we finish establishing that Jones had only the best of motives we will move onto the second and the third and so forth. or you can simply say. “Jones was wrong, how do we improve the situation.” kicking Judith Curry out of the tribe is not a good idea.

  • Jim

    Keith Kloor says “one reason why Judy’s quixotic quest to bring the warring sides together interests me: broader trust seems like it can only help make for smarter policy. One way to make smarter policy is to have broader trust, since that would seem to lend itself to smarter and less polarizing debate. “

    Interesting.

    First, the idea of ‘warring sides” (“warring tribes” or whatever) in a “climate war” is something journalists have really been instrumental in “cultivating”.

    In fact, in this very thread, you yourself continue to cultivate this “sides/tribe/team” meme:

    “Those of you who have been critical of Judy in this thread: do you agree with Romm? That she has changed teams? Or to keep the current metaphor, joined another tribe? And what about the skeptics participating here: do you feel Judy is part of your tribe now?”

    Second, I will set aside my skepticism (I know it’s heresy for someone who believes in AGW to use that term to describe his own thinking) for the moment and assume that it is true that when it comes to climate science  “everyone is motivated by a tribal loyalty” (with the notable exceptions of Curry, yourself, Andrew Revkin and other totally “unbiased journalists”, of course).

    Operating on that assumption, however, perhaps you would like to explain to us (or to me, at least) how Curry’s use of a word  like “corruption” (sans a proper definition  or supporting evidence when she used it) to describe an organization that a very large number of scientists have put a great deal of time and effort into (in some cases over many years) is supposed to actually help bring “warring sides/tribes” together?

    In my mind, this kind of thing is not constructive or helpful in the least.

    Judith Curry may be very very sincere in her desire to see a resolution to the current state of affairs with regard to climate science.

    But if that is the case, she may really want to re-consider the “approach” that she is taking here — particularly if she is concerned about falling enrollment in her own graduate program.

    To be very honest, if I were considering pursuing graduate studies in climate science, this thread would probably be enough to make me rule out Georgia Institute of Technology as a possibility.

    I find Curry’s ill-conceived approach to this whole issue almost unbelievable:

    Talk of “corruptions of the IPCC process, and the question of corruption (or at least inappropriate torquing) of the actual science by the IPCC process” without even providing her definition of “corruption” and without any real evidence of said “corruption” (how could one even hope to provide evidence of something that one has not even properly defined? That’s not even possible in principle) .

    Instead, when challenged to provide specific evidence (eg, by SOU above), Curry says what essentially amounts to read blogs, essays and emails (oh, and contact Steve McIntyre personally)

    Sou, if you are serious about investigating this, you will need to spend some time at the sceptic blogs (esp climateaudit), read their submissions to the Select Committee, contact Steve McIntyre personally. And also contact David Holland d.holland at theiet.org, he has written an essay that documents much of this. And read the CRU emails.

    Does Curry realize how ridiculous that sounds coming from a scientist? Apparently not.

    But fear not, Mr. Kloor, your efforts have not been wasted here. You have performed a valuable service, though perhaps not the one you had hoped for.

  • Phil Clarke

    Steve – thanks for taking the time to write such a long response. Despite the moderately patronising tone I am flattered – and you are absolutely correct that there were one or two facts there that were new to me.

    However, you seem to have a few facts not quite right and on your substantive points I thought Gavin Schmidt dealt with them elegantly and economically here: http://www.realclimate.org/?comments_popup=3846#comment-171303.

    cheers,

    PC.

  • Steven Mosher

    here’s a motive I failed to mention:
    Jones refused this data because he feared those requesting it would misuse the data and mislead the public. he feared that rational discourse would not win the debate. That fear proved to be misguided as his refusal to share data actually increased the public doubts. [Evidence that Jones has realized this comes in the form of recent decisions to actually share data and publish code.] Fears of an open debate, still misplaced, persist to this day as evidenced by people’s reaction to Dr. Curry.

    Interestingly Revkin also had his allegiance questioned. Interestingly Mann suggested that they keep a file on editors and have them removed if they published the wrong papers. So, maybe we should add fear of debate to the list. fear of debate with people you perceive as irrational. fear of even talking to them.  there are some interesting analogues here. I’ll not mention them, but you know what they are

  • Willis Eschenbach

    Phil Clarke Says:
    April 28th, 2010 at 1:19 am
    <em>…
    I notice that when pressed for examples the bold accusation of fraud becomes a rather more timid rhetorical question. I note that the committees charged with investigating Jones and the CRU, and looking at the same material, have said he has no case to answer and his and the Unit’s scientific reputation remain intact. I find this rather more convincing than handwaving over a handful of misinterpreted sentences plucked from millions in selectively and illicitly-released private communications. Maybe that’s just me.</em>

    Found he has no case to answer? The UK Parliamentary Committee said There is prima facie evidence that CRU has breached the Freedom of Information Act 2000.”


    So the claim that this is all just “misinterpreted sentences” rings kinda hollow … I was interviewed by the Norfolk Constabulary regarding the case, and the guy interviewing me said that they would have brought charges against Phil, but the Statute of Limitations had run out. The Parliamentary Committee said the same thing.

    I don’t know whether that would have been a charge of fraud or what, but your claim that this was all just a big misunderstanding, that it was just innocent comments made in private, is nonsense.

    Finally, perhaps you find it meaningful that a hand-picked group of Phil’s friends deliberated for fifteen minutes or so and concluded he is pure as the driven snow. I don’t. As Judith Curry said, When I first read the report, I thought I was reading the executive summary and proceeded to look for the details; well, there weren’t any.” The “investigation” was a joke. Oxburgh didn’t consider any of the unfavorable submissions at all, see here for details. They also neatly avoided dealing with the scientific malfeasance involved in the “hide the trick” debacle, see here for details.

    How anyone could consider what Oxburgh did to be a real investigation is a mystery to me … but I guess, like Lincoln said, you can fool some of the people some of the time.

    To avoid being fooled in future, you can start by seeing if the people charged with doing the investigation have a vested interest in the game. Oxburgh, the Chairman of the investigation, is the Chairman of Falck Renewables, whose mission is to “help expand the global use of wind energy” … this is what in technical circles is called a “clue” that the investigation will not be impartial.

    Then there’s Kerry Emanuel on the investigation panel. He was quoted in MIT World back on December 10, 2009, as saying:

    “”What we have here,” says Kerry Emanuel, are “thousands of emails collectively showing scientists hard at work, trying to figure out the meaning of evidence that confronts them. Among a few messages, there are a few lines showing the human failings of a few scientists”¦” Emanuel believes that “scientifically, it means nothing,” because the controversy doesn’t challenge the overwhelming evidence supporting anthropogenic warming. He is far more concerned with the well-funded “public relations campaign” to drown out or distort the message of climate science, which he links to “interests where billions, even trillions are at stake…” This “machine “¦ has been highly successful in branding climate scientists as a bunch of sandal-wearing, fruit-juice drinking leftist radicals engaged in a massive conspiracy to return us to agrarian society”¦”

    Yeah, that’s a good, impartial guy to put on the investigation committee, someone who is neutral and hasn’t yet made up his mind …

    Finally, to avoid being fooled, you should consider what the investigation actually looks at. In this case, they looked at 11 papers only, papers that they claim were selected by the Royal Society … but which weren’t. They did not consider any of the submissions from anyone even remotely opposed to the papers. Again, this is known as a “clue” that the tins contain whitewash …

  • Willis Eschenbach

    Phil Clarke Says:
    April 28th, 2010 at 3:05 am
    <blockquote><em>A quarter of the Chapters of the Report have more non-peer reviewed citations than they do peer reviewed citations.
    Oh dear, it looks like you’re relying on the “˜citizen audit’ of AR4 posted up on “˜noconsensus’. Sadly it is balony. Many of the references in the IPCC reports are self-cites, that is, references to the current or previous Assessment Reports. Our brave citizen auditors shoved all these into the “˜unreviewed’ category. Given that the IPCC reports are arguably the most reviewed documents on the planet this is just nuts. In a sample chapter I checked [WG3 Chapter 1] these self-cites accounted for more than 50% of the “˜unreviewed’ total.
    I also picked an “˜unreviewed’ reference from that Chapter at random and followed it up. It turned out to be a book chapter. Fair enough, books are not peer-reviewed papers, but what our brave citizen auditors had missed was that the book chapter was a reprint of a paper published in very much refereed Energy Policy and according to Google Scholar has been cited an impressive 131 times “¦
    So with the Latin saying “Falsus in unum, falsus in [omnis]“ (false in one, false in all) as our guide I conclude that until double-checked we cannot trust anyone quoting these numbers “¦.
    A little more ‘scepticism’ seems warranted “¦ </em></blockquote>
    Phil, you’ve missed the point. Whether the numbers are accurate or not, Pachauri claimed over and over that the IPCC report was based on 100% peer-reviewed science. Instead, it contained plenty of citations to Greenpeace and WWF propaganda, press releases, student dissertations, and even newspaper articles. Your disputing of the exact numbers may be correct, but the truth is Pachauri lied about it, and as a result people don’t trust him … and all of your detailed claims of errors in the “citizen’s audit”, whether right or wrong, won’t make anyone trust him one bit more.
    As to whether citing previous IPCC reports is a reference to peer-reviewed science or not … well, we don’t know, do we? That’s the point.

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    re: #464

    I am afraid the argument stands, however courageously Eschenbach tries to get out of it.  When one talks about maths, someone talks about science, more so when one’s own tendencies is to use Einstein as an example regarding a case of  applied mathematics, which is not the same beast as other branches of mathematics, say geometry.

    Let’s take the time to quote Eschenbach:

    > Math in general is either right or wrong, whether it is put forth by Einstein or a convicted child molester.

    That could be interpreted as meaning that mathematical judgements are independent from the person who profers it. 

    If we generalize that principle, we get to my second proposition, i.e. that trust is independent from truth.  Either Eschenbach agrees or disagrees, unless he comes up with more nuances, like “well, in maths, it’s independent, but not with another science”.

    We also note that when Willis Eschenbach talks about Einstein, he endorses the statement for his own behalf.  That is, Willis Eschenbach believes that the truth of mathematical statements are independent from the trust one might entertain about the mathematician who hold it.

    Now, Willis Eschenbach also reports some “people”‘s belief:

    > People don’t trust the Report in part because Pachauri lied through his teeth to sell the Report, and he lied about the Himalayagate incident.

    That is, the belief in the truth of the report, a report about the actual knowledge in climate science, has been undermined by the “fact” that the people’s trust in the truth-bearers has been compromised.

    Notwithstanding Eschenbach’s intriguing insight about the “trust” an entity like the “people” can have, this means that, for those people, the trust is not independent from the truth.

    And so we get what we had earlier: Eschenbach holding himself the higher intellectual ground about truth and trust, while shaking up a strawman named “people”, a strawman having none of the higher intellectual ground Eschenbach himself has.

    Either truth is or is not independent of trust or truth.  For Eschenbach, it is; for his strawman, it ain’t.  How convenient.

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    The last paragraph should be read:

    Either truth is or is not independent of trust.  For Eschenbach, it is; for his strawman, it ain’t.  How convenient.

  • Phil Clarke

    <i>To avoid being fooled in future, you can start by seeing if the people charged with doing the investigation have a vested interest in the game. Oxburgh, the Chairman of the investigation, is the Chairman of Falck Renewables, whose mission is to “help expand the global use of wind energy” “¦ this is what in technical circles is called a “clue” that the investigation will not be impartial.</i>

    And that is what in polite company is known as a ‘smear’. Passing over Baron OXburgh’s presidency of Queen’s college, Cambridge, and his headship of the Department of Earth Sciences at the same seat of scholarship, positions which one might expect demanded a modicum of integrity, perhaps we could draw another ‘clue’ from the fact that Oxburgh served as the UK Chairman of Shell Oil? Not going to disappoint his friends in the fossil fuel industries is he? Nudge Nudge.

    Here’s the full panel:

    Prof Huw Davies, Professor of Physics at the Institute for Atmospheric & Climate Science at ETH Zürich; Prof Kerry Emanuel, Professor of Meteorology at Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Prof Lisa Graumlich, Director of the School of Natural Resources and the Environment at The University of Arizona; Prof David Hand, Professor of Statistics in the Department of Mathematics at Imperial College; Prof Herbert Huppert, Professor of Theoretical Geophysics at the University of Cambridge; and Prof Michael Kelly, Prince Philip Professor of Technology at the University of Cambridge.

    This panel states ‘We saw no evidence of any deliberate scientific malpractice in any of the work of the Climatic Research Unit and had it been there we believe that it is likely that we would have detected it.’

    Willis – just to be clear – it is your position that Oxburgh managed to pursuade all these prominent academics to compromise their integrity, impartiality and future credibility just so that he could make a few more quid on his windmills? If not, what on earth ARE you saying? I’ve never been a huge fan of innuendo.

    Just Curious.

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    # 465

    Even more briefly,

    I don’t think there is a need to hypothesize about Jones’ motivation.  Suppose we don’t have a nice and tidy theory about Jones’ mind states: what gives?

    The problem is a bit more complex than to decide if Jones did some things wrong.  It is to decide who to decide, how, and what to do with that.  Comment threads are not trials, whatever the style of the inquiries or the investigations conducted.

    The need to have better scientific processes does not need to go through any scandalized persecution.  Unless we’re really serious about being wrong in a moral sense.  But if the McIntyre “monster” was made possible because of Mann, then Mann’s insolite PR strategy had some merits. 

    So either the issue is moral, or is not; either the issue is personal, or is not;  either the issue is about the scientific public image, or is not; either the issue is about the truth, or about trust.  (That might not be all there is, that’s only what I am thinking now.)

    Playing all kinds of pea and thimble games around these borders are getting a bit tiresome.  They’re not always rewarding the players mixed-up strategies.  They’re quite easy to spot, with some experience.

  • Steven Mosher

    Re 466: The warring tribes is something Journalists cultivated?

    nice metaphor! I love metaphors especially when used by people who have no experience with them. Now, I want you to think about about a plant. the journalist cultivated this plant so you argue. nice metaphor. think. when you use a metaphor, where will mosher take the metaphor. think that before you write. what will that guy do with my figurative language. plant. hmm. what shall I do. well every plant starts from a seed. so who planted the seed. see how easy that is. here is a seed. Now, this is funny, because Jones casts the climate science community in the role of the dark forces: one of my favorite mails. there are more. early seeds.
    you wanna look at some of the first seeds of the idea? or maybe rethink that metaphor.. your choice. more mails or better metaphor. but here is the funny one.
    OH, bonus on this one. This one discusses the unimportant paper. well uh the paper Gavin says is unimportant. gavin was an author on Ch06 right? ah no. anyways.. drum roll.. I love this part… the empire strikes back… waa
    From: Phil Jones <p.jones@xxxxxxxxx.xxx>
    To: “Michael E. Mann” <mann@xxxxxxxxx.xxx>
    Subject: Empire Strikes Back – return of proper science !
    Date: Fri May 20 13:45:26 2005

    Mike,

    Just reviewed Caspar’s paper with Wahl for Climatic Change. Looks pretty good.
    Almost reproduced your series and shows where MM have gone wrong. Should keep
    them quiet for a while. Also they release all the data and the R software. Presume
    you know all about this. Should make Keith’s life in Ch 6 easy !
    Also, confidentially for a few weeks, Christy and Spencer have admitted
    at the Chicago CCSP meeting that their 2LT record is wrong !! They used the wrong
    sign for the diurnal correction ! Series now warms – not quite as much as the surface
    but within error bands. Between you and me, we’ll be going with RSS in Ch 3
    and there will be no discrepancy with the surface and the models. Should make Ch 3
    a doddle now ! Keep quiet about this until Bern at least. Can tell you more then.
    RSS (Carl Mears and Frank Wentz) found the mistake !
    The skeptic pillars are tumbling !
    Cheers
    Phil

  • Steven Mosher

    Re 475:
    “So either the issue is moral, or is not; either the issue is personal, or is not;  either the issue is about the scientific public image, or is not; either the issue is about the truth, or about trust.  (That might not be all there is, that’s only what I am thinking now.)”

    well put. The issue in my mind is not criminal. The worst that would have been is contempt of court ( the only relevant charge I believe for violating FOIA, I spent some time looking into that, as my requests were denied) Moral, in a cursory way. personal, If forced to render a judgement I’d say some personal aspects to it definitately. Public image of science. That’s kinda what I’ve been arguing from day 1. But you guys are keeping Nixon in office not me. definately about trust and not truth. said that from day one. its not about the science its about the trust people put in science. Like it or not they are going to hold you accountable for your personal shortcomings, espcially if you are in the public eye. like it or not. Wanna be a spokesperson for science, better be clean. super clean. Question your opponents motives? call them oil shills, expect to have your own motives questioned. talk about a scientists view on evolution, expect to have your innards exposed.

    Let me put it this way. because it is about trust, because it is about the public image of science, because personalities are now involved, you’d be wise to select the right people. You’d be wise to pick somebody like Judith Curry. It would be unwise to pick lightening rods. it would be MORE unwise to pick lightening rods and then defend them poorly or not at all. It would MOST unwise to to have people who dont know the facts try to defend Jones. That just invites me to repeat the facts. do you not get this.

  • Steven Mosher

    RE 467:

    The response is stuck in moderation. its long so I suspect keith is reviewing it. Anyways, Gavin get most of not everything wrong.

    But look Phil. here is a simple one: gavin argues that what Briffa did was fine. That is what gavin says. here  he is

    [Response: The IPCC report was a two year plus process and there was no injunction about discussing it with other colleagues. This imagining of mysterious inviolable rules in a process which reinvents itself every time is just post-hoc whining. Sorry. - gavin]

    Now. Lets look at what you did. You pulled a comment from RC. You trusted gavin. You think gavin is right.
    You didnt do any checking yourself. You dont know anything about this. but, you figured gavin had the answer. he has to, right.

    So: which form of proof that Gavin is wrong will you like today? which form?

    The IPCC written Policies? Well If I give you that you might argue that Briffa didnt know about the policies. That would be typical. What kind of evidence would work?
    I know, how about a email from Overpeck to Briffa on this EXACT ISSUE. thanks Gavin.. here is Overpeck.. Post hoc whining? I think not gavin. overpeck knew. briffa knew, and roberts? well he is told to follow the rules. Wahl? briffa sends him mails labelled confidential.

    From: Jonathan Overpeck <jto@u.arizona.edu>
    To: “Neil Roberts” <C.N.Roberts@xxxxxxxxx.xxx>
    Subject: Re: ipcc chapter 6 draft
    Date: Thu, 18 May 2006 15:58:25 -0600
    Cc: Keith Briffa <k.briffa@xxxxxxxxx.xxx>, Eystein Jansen <eystein.jansen@xxxxxxxxx.xxx>
    <x-flowed>
    Hi Neil ““ Thanks for your interest in providing feedback on the draft
    chap 6 Second Order Draft. Since the IPCC has very strict rules about
    all this, I’m going to ask them (the IPCC) to send you an official
    invitation to review, along with the process ““ formal, but highly
    efficient ““ to follow. If you could send your comments in that way it
    would be a great help. We’ve been asked to keep everything squeaky
    clean, and not to get comments informally.
    Thanks! Peck

  • Steven Mosher

    So simple question. Science is hard but this is easy.

    gavin says this belief in “mysterious inviolable rules in a process which reinvents itself every time is just post-hoc whining”

    Is that true? Or was Overpeck somehow deluded when he wrote that mail to briffa and roberts. Overpeck deluded or gavin correct? And After Briffa gets this mail, he writes to Wahl. marks it confidential. I guess he was deluded to. Wait. I get it. Gavin knew the truth. that these processes dont matter. and overpeck and Briffa were just deluded. in fact SO DELUDED that Briffa thought he had to hide the fact.. and Jones was deluded too! he thought he should tell people to delete mails so this couldnt be found out.

    DOH! they should have called Gavin who would have told them that these rules didnt matter.  I blame gavin now.

    hey team, can  we please get a better defense than the kind Gavin offers. using a defense that makes other climate scientists look like deluded people is not working.

    Anybody else care to cite a gavin defense? Hint he did get one thing right and I got one thing wrong. so there is hope.  but even that one instance has a delicious irony.

  • J Bowers

    Steven Mosher: “…Jones threatened to destroy data rather than share it…”

    As he would have been required to do under the terms of the license agreements for the proprietary data, or face being cut off himself from future access to data.

    I think the greatest shame of all is that Jones has been scapegoated for conditions put in place by, initially, the UK Government and the Ministry of Defence; something both the House of Commons Inquiry and the Oxburgh Inquiry concluded for themselves.

    Oh, there’s a motive for you, too.

  • jim

    Steven Mosher Says “Re 466: The warring tribes is something Journalists cultivated?”

    You seem to have trouble with basic reading comprehension.

    Here’s what I actually said above (which you managed somehow to misread):

    First, the idea of “˜warring sides” (“warring tribes” or whatever) in a “climate war” is something journalists have really been instrumental in “cultivating”.

    Get it now?

    The ‘idea‘ is what is being cultivated — not the ‘warring tribes” themselves.

    “Cultivating an idea” is a perfectly valid metaphor — similar to “nurturing an idea”.

    Next time I’ll be sure to add bold so to help you keep the various parts of the sentence straight.

    But, talk about metaphors misses the central point of my last post above: that Judith Curry would talk of “corruptions of the IPCC process, and the question of corruption (or at least inappropriate torquing) of the actual science by the IPCC process” without even providing a definition of “corruption”, to say nothing of proper evidence of said “corruption”.

    But it really doesn’t surprise me that you would ignore my central point because, after all, you are guilty of doing something much worse than what Curry did: linking Michael Mann to an infamous scientific fraud with the phrases “Piltdown Mann” and “Pennstate Mann” while providing no evidence whatsoever where you have used the phrase.

    *”Piltdown man was funny. When I changed it to Pennstate mann and found a picture of him carving a hockey stick it was plain hilarious.” ( Steven Mosher )

  • Willis Eschenbach

    Tim Lambert Says:
    April 28th, 2010 at 3:25 am

    Ah, trust. I don’t trust Willis Eschenbach because he is dishonest. Look at comment 404. Pachauri says that the IPCC reports are based on peer-reviewed science. Eschenbach pretends that Pachauri claims that the only things cited in the IPCC reports are peer-reviewed journals and refers to an analysis of the cites. But look at what the analysis says. The first chapter of Wg1 says:

    “Sir Isaac Newton (1675) wrote that if he
    had “˜seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants’.”

    Newton (1675) does not refer to a peer-reviewed journal, but a letter he wrote. And on this basis, Eschenbach accuses Pachauri of lying.
    Eschenbach has a history of this sort of behaviour.
    Gotta love Tim, whenever he disagrees with me he accuses me of lying. Here’s Pachauri’s quotes again:

    “People can have confidence in the IPCC’s conclusions”¦Given that it is all on the basis of peer-reviewed literature.” - Rajendra Pachauri, IPCC chairman, June 2008
    “The IPCC doesn’t do any research itself. We only develop our assessments on the basis of peer-reviewed literature.” ““ Rajendra Pachauri, IPCC chairman, June 2007
    “This is based on peer-reviewed literature. That’s the manner in which the IPCC functions. We don’t pick up a newspaper article and, based on that, come up with our findings.” ““ Rajendra Pachauri, IPCC chairman, June 2008
    “As IPCC Chairman Rajendra K. Pachauri recently stated: “˜IPCC relies entirely on peer reviewed literature in carrying out its assessment”¦’” ““ US Environmental Protection Agency, December 2009 (bottom of PDF’s page 7)
    “When asked if the discussion paper could be taken into consideration”¦[Pachauri] said, “˜IPCC studies only peer-review science. Let someone publish the data in a decent credible publication. I am sure IPCC would then accept it, otherwise we can just throw it into the dustbin.’” ““ Times of India, November 2007
    I leave it to the reader to decide if I was wrong in saying that Pachauri says the IPCC report is based solely on peer-reviewed science.

    And I leave it to the reader to decide whether, whenever Tim disagrees with me, it is appropriate for him to accuse me of lying …

  • Willis Eschenbach

    J Bowers Says:
    April 28th, 2010 at 7:32 pm
    Steven Mosher: “”¦Jones threatened to destroy data rather than share it”¦”
    As he would have been required to do under the terms of the license agreements for the proprietary data, or face being cut off himself from future access to data.
    I think the greatest shame of all is that Jones has been scapegoated for conditions put in place by, initially, the UK Government and the Ministry of Defence; something both the House of Commons Inquiry and the Oxburgh Inquiry concluded for themselves.
    Oh, there’s a motive for you, too.
    When I filed my FOI, Jones refused to release the data, saying that some of it was covered by the license agreements you mention above, viz:
    The remaining 2% of data that is not in the websites consists of data CRU has collected from National Met Services (NMSs) in many countries of the world. In gaining access to these NMS data, we have signed agreements with many NMSs not to pass on the raw station data, but the NMSs concerned are happy for us to use the data in our gridding, and these station data are included in our gridded products, which are available from the CRU web site. These NMS-supplied data may only form a very small percentage of the database, but we have to respect their wishes and therefore this information would be exempt from disclosure under FOIA pursuant to s.41. The World Meteorological Organization has a list of all NMSs.


    I wrote back and said OK, no worries, I’m a reasonable man, please send me the other 98% of the data … and CRU refused to do that.

    So I fear that your claim, that he didn’t send the data because the licence agreements wouldn’t allow it, is untrue. He refused to send the data which was not covered by the license agreements.

    In addition, he shared all of the data with his friends … so we can see that he did not feel that he was bound by license agreements in any case.

  • Willis Eschenbach

    Brendan H Says:
    April 28th, 2010 at 5:09 am
    Willis: “I want honest, transparent science.”

    Don’t we all? But your request is a form of the many questions fallacy, ie:

    ·         The science is dishonest and secretive
    ·         It should be honest and transparent.

    You are assuming a premise that is contested. While you may passionately believe that the science is fraudulent, other people believe just as passionately that it is honest and robust. So you’re going to have a very long and frustrating series of arguments over that one.


    If after reading the CRU emails you have come away with the idea that their actions were not dishonest and secretive, I fear we are poles apart.

    The general conclusion from the emails was that, as the UK Parliamentary Committee concluded, There is prima facie evidence that CRU has breached the Freedom of Information Act 2000.”


    And even strong supporters of the AGW hypothesis like George Monbiot make no attempt to say that the emails show the science is “honest and robust”, viz (emphasis mine):


    “I have seldom felt so alone. Confronted with crisis, most of the environmentalists I know have gone into denial. The emails hacked from the Climatic Research Unit (CRU) at the University of East Anglia, they say, are a storm in a tea cup, no big deal, exaggerated out of all recognition. It is true that climate change deniers have made wild claims which the material can’t possibly support (the end of global warming, the death of climate science). But it is also true that the emails are very damaging.
    The response of the greens and most of the scientists I know is profoundly ironic, as we spend so much of our time confronting other people’s denial. Pretending that this isn’t a real crisis isn’t going to make it go away. Nor is an attempt to justify the emails with technicalities. We’ll be able to get past this only by grasping reality, apologising where appropriate and demonstrating that it cannot happen again.


    As you are clearly one of those who, to use Monbiot’s words, have “gone into denial”, I fear that you are the one facing the “long and frustrating series of arguments …

  • J Bowers

    Willis Eschenbach: “I wrote back and said OK, no worries, I’m a reasonable man, please send me the other 98% of the data “¦ and CRU refused to do that.”

    Was it specifically Jones or more broadly CRU or EAU who declined? Who specifically issued the refusal? it doesn’t tally with Jones initial response, which is borne out by Steven Mosher’s account here of Phil Jones wanting to release data and have it freely available.

    Is it also feasible that Jones did not realise that he shouldn’t make the girdded product freely available to non-academics, again for licensing reasons (things change, especially in government) and was corrected and told to not send the rest of the data?

    W E: “In addition, he shared all of the data with his friends “

    But, IIRC, it says in the license agreements that it is permissable to share data with collaborators for scientific purposes, as long as (and it is quite specific about this at least in the UK agreement) the work will be published in the recognised scientific literature. It’s something they say they check. Bear in mind that Peter Webster pointed out that he was collaborating with Jones when the whole debacle over his being sent the data kicked off. Also, if CRU had discovered that the gridded data was still subject to the license agreements because it uses a derivative of the raw data, or it at least put a serious legal question mark over whether they actually could distribute it, then it could explain a lot. I’m not saying it’s the case, but I have experience of licensing agreements and that would be a typical thing to at least consider, and until there was clarification it would be a big no-no to give it out, regardless of whether I’d done so for someone else already or not.

    These things happen. They really do. I would also suggest that your use of the word “friends” is a bit misplaced. Peter Webster and Phil Jones don’t really seem like friends, do they? Read Der Spiegel lately? There’s a world of difference between friend and colleague.

    W E: “So I fear that your claim, that he didn’t send the data because the licence agreements wouldn’t allow it, is untrue.”

    Personally, I’d use the word “mistaken” instead of “untrue”.

  • Steven Mosher

    Keith was exercising some due diligence on a post I had in moderation and was kind enough to let me know.  So, we emailed a bit and came up with a solution. One commenter here  Phil Clark in #467, thought that linking to a comment on RC was a good way to handle some issues.Here is the deal. That rarely works with this issue. Let me tell you why. I’m one of those people who is routinely blocked at RC, especially when I have some inconvient facts to post. One time, when I wanted to thank NASA for releasing GISTEMP Code.  that thank you was blocked. So, gavin will typically let one comment through. he will post his comment back and then magically counterpoints dont get through. This is a bad policy. People interested can read the column at the Airvent and see how this type of policy has created a good number of dissidents.  

    Lets take some time to review what I said and what gavin said, for now I’ll just start at the begining

    I suggested that Gavin discuss the “jesus paper” this is the paper that drove the IPCC FOIA incident. On my view there is a clear violation of the IPCC rules. This needs to be openly discussed and a solution proposed.  We will go through the points I made, gavins response, and my further response. I would like to quote mails in full, but instead will just excerpt them. If you think they are taken out of context, you are welcomed to go get the whole mail and prove that case.

    My original comment is in italics: then gavins response. Then my comments

    1. The paper in question [ammann& Wahl] was given special treatment by briffa, overpeck, and the journal editor in charge of it

    [Response: Lots of papers get 'special treatment' because issues sometimes arise. Ho hum. - gavin]
    lets look at the facts. Do lots of papers get the special treatment this paper received. First the question of lots:
    Luckily we have a list:
    http://climateaudit.org/2008/05/25/chapter-6-in-press/
    It would appear that lots is not an accurate description of the state of affairs. Also, saying that “lots” of papers get special treatment is just an invitation for people to examine exactly what kind of special treatment this paper got. Lets look at that, did lots of papers get the special treatment this one did?
     

    No paper that I know of  received the treatment this paper did. perhaps gavin does. Perhaps there are more cases we should know about.

    1. It referred to paper [ below AW] not yet published. A paper that was not published until a full year later. here is the author Wahl, explaining in part:
    Hi Phil:

    There were inevitably a few things that needed to be changed in the final version of the WA [jesus paper] paper, such as the reference to the GRL paper that was not published (replaced by the AW paper here), two or three additional pointers to the AW paper, changed references of a Mann/Rutherford/Wahl/Ammann paper from 2005 to 2007, and a some other
    very minor grammatical/structural things. I tried to keep all of this to the barest minimum possible, while still providing a good reference
    structure. I imagine that MM will make the biggest issue about the very
    existence of the AW paper, and then the referencing of it in WA; but that was simply something we could not do without, and indeed AW does a
    good job of contextualizing the whole matter.


    So, unlike gavin the actual author of the paper realizes that there is A) a need for this second paper  B) a problem with referencing an unpublished paper.
    Does gavin want to argue
    1. Lots of papers received this kind of special treatment
    2. Wahl is wrong about the issues with referencing.
    neither seems an effective defense. The first would make the skeptic case better, the second makes it look like Wahl agrees with me.

    2. This paper had the journal editor create a special class of publication for it, called “provisionally accepted” A class never seen before at that publication or after. A trick that didnt work
    Hi Peck, I assume a provisional acceptance is OK by IPCC rules? The timing of these matters are being followed closely by McIntyre (see: http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=503) and we cannot afford to being caught doing anything that is not within the regulations. Thus need to consult with martin and Susan on this (see also last mail from Melinda).



    Hi all – I’m betting that “provisional acceptance” is not good enough for inclusion in the
    Second Order draft, but based on what Gene has said, he should have formal acceptance soon
    - we really need that. Can you give us a read on when you’ll have it Gene? Best make this a
    top priority, or we’ll have to leave your important work out of the chapter. Many thanks!!
    Peck

    What do we see here from the people working on the paper.  we see a journal editor who has created a special class of publication so that this paper can meet the deadline. I know of no other paper that got this kind of treatment. If Gavin would like to cite another instance where a journal editor acted in such a manner, I’m sure the journal editor would NOT appreciate him bringing it to light. or rather is gavin claiming that this is regular and happens lots of times? I dont think gavin thought his defense out very well. What else do we see, we see that the paper was important to those going to the extra effort to get it in the chapter. At one point gavin argues that this paper is not important and changes nothing. I want everyone to pause and consider that defense. Think about it. think about what I am going to do. Do you think that I would try to discuss this paper without having a pile  of mails from Briffa, overpeck and others arguing how important it was. On its face we know that Jones told people to delete mails over this paper. Not important? So I will put gavins claims up against overpecks claims. gavin saying it is not important and Overpeck saying it was. I will pit one climate scientist against another. Any person with an ounce of intelligence would not make the defense that Gavin has. It Invites me to have Overpeck as his critic. Not me telling Gavin how important the paper is, but those words coming from Overpeck.

    3.This paper had an author who had special access to the Lead author to incorporate his words into the final document without review. Again, unless gavin want to argue that what Briffa and Wahl did was standard or happens lots of time, he has the wrong defense. We can review the mails in question. we can bring up the words and the attempts to cover up. And again, by arguing that Lots of papers get this special treatment what is gavin doing? handing ammunition to skeptics. either that or he is wrong and only 1 paper we know of got this treatment.

    4. This paper was the subject of a good number of mails between Overpecck and others about its importance in creating an icon “more compelling than the hockey stick.”
    Why was this paper important to overpeck, why did they want to get it into Briffa’s hands? Overpeck had large expectations for the chapter. he was pushing Briffa to do something “more compelling than the hockey stick”
    To make “briffa’s job easier” they needed to get him the Ammann Wahl paper. What was briffa’s attitude prior to this push to get him this paper? dont ask gavin. ask Briffa
    We
    should be careful not to push the conclusions
    beyond what we can securely justify – ….. We must resist being pushed to present the results such that
    we will be accused of bias – hence no need to
    attack Moberg . …. Strong
    confirmation of TAR is a good result, given
    that we discuss uncertainty and base it on more
    data. Let us not try to over egg the pudding.
    For what it worth , the above comments are my
    (honestly long considered) views – and I would
    not be happy to go further . Of course this
    discussion now needs to go to the wider Chapter
    authorship, but do not let Susan (or Mike) push
    you (us) beyond where we know is right.

    The Ammann Wahl Paper was important because it allowed others (mann) to argue that Briffa should drop his opposition to the push from mann and Solomon. It gave Overpeck what he needed. to push Briffa. And now you can figure out why Briffa felt the need to violate rules which Overpeck had explained to him. Pushed by Overpeck and and Mann and Solomon, Briffa had to consider the “jesus Paper”. Without the benefit of seeing it in press, without the benefit of having the supporting paper fully understood, briffa reached out to Wahl. For what? specifically? well McIntyre who knew the Ammann paper better than Briffa ( guess why?) had written some comments to Briffa though official channels. And Briffa was unsure of his ability to be objective with regard to McIntyre’s comments. So he asked Wahl for help. In violation of the rules. Pressed by deadlines, pressed by collegues who thought he was being too conservative, pressed by overpeck to deliver an image more compelling than the hockey stick, Briffa broke the rules.
    It doesnt make the science wrong. But the paper was special. it was treated special. It led to a good man doing something he thought was not correct. In my mind it does no good for gavin to misrepresent this story. the story can be told openly fairly with an honest appraisal of who did what. yes overpeck pushed on briffa. the mails show that. yes briffa was less certain than Mann and others about the MWP. yes they  saw the need for Ammanns paper. yes they pulled out all the stops for this paper. Rules were broken. They tried to cover it up. bad idea.

  • J Bowers

    Just to clarify on this point I make:
    “Also, if CRU had discovered that the gridded data was still subject to the license agreements because it uses a derivative of the raw data, or it at least put a serious legal question mark over whether they actually could distribute it, then it could explain a lot.”

    Am I incorrect in thinking that at that particular point in time it was highly unusual for raw data to be requested from CRU, via FOIA request, and for the simple purpose of replication. The usual thing would be for the work to be verified by independent means, using independently acquired data, and the results published in the scientific literature?

  • Willis Eschenbach

    Phil Clarke Says:
    April 28th, 2010 at 12:13 pm
    c1ue,
    The “˜one false ““ all false’ dictum is a logical fallacy and I was quoting Mr Eschenberg, not entirely seriously”¦.
    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/12/08/the-smoking-gun-at-darwin-zero/ (at the end).


    If I had been foolish enough to take it literally, it certainly would have been a logical fallacy. However, I did not do so. My point was that since we have found various errors in the dataset, it does not make it all wrong. It just means that until we know how extensive those errors are, we can’t trust the dataset. My exact words were:
    Now, I want to be clear here. The blatantly bogus GHCN adjustment for this one station does NOT mean that the earth is not warming. It also does NOT mean that the three records (CRU, GISS, and GHCN) are generally wrong either. This may be an isolated incident, we don’t know.


    As a result, and following the “one false ““ all false”,I said that until the stations were examined one by one, we could not trust the dataset. I took the “one false ““ all false” figuratively, as meaning that if one were wrong, the others certainly could be wrong as well. I stand by that conclusion. If Phil wants to take it literally, that’s his business.


    I also note again that, as I pointed out before, Phil missed the point. Pachauri repeatedly claimed that the IPCC reports were 100% based on peer reviewed science. No matter how he tries to reframe the discussion, they weren’t … and as a result, trust in the IPCC was seriously damaged.

    The book chapter was not just based on, it was a verbatim reprint of, the refereed journal article. Fail, I’m afraid.
    http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.17.6059&rep=rep1&type=pdf (Chapter 10)

    Phil, which book are you talking about? You say that the article you cite, “Technological Change and the Environment” by Jaffe et al., was listed as a reference in Working Group 3 Chapter 1. However, I find no citation in that chapter to anything by Jaffe.
    Google Scholar says that it is a “working paper” that was “prepared as a chapter draft for the forthcoming Handbook of Environmental Economics.” I find no citation for that book in the IPCC WGIII Ch. 1. I also find no indication that the Jaffe paper was peer-reviewed, or that it was ever published in a scientific journal … which journal published it, and when?

    What am I missing here?

  • Willis Eschenbach

    J Bowers Says:
    April 28th, 2010 at 10:11 pm

    Am I incorrect in thinking that at that particular point in time it was highly unusual for raw data to be requested from CRU, via FOIA request, and for the simple purpose of replication. The usual thing would be for the work to be verified by independent means, using independently acquired data, and the results published in the scientific literature?
    As the person who made the FOI request, I can answer this. Generally there is no “independent data” in climate science. If there is a station record for Okhotsk or wherever, it is the only one.
    So to “verify” Phil’s work as you suggest, all you’d need a list of the stations he used. Simple, huh?
    And I had asked in my FOI request for such a list. Not only did he refuse to give me the data, he also refused to give me a list of the stations he used to produce the CRUTem dataset.
    Why? Amazingly, he said it was because they didn’t have such a list, or in their words:

    We cannot produce a simple list with this format and with the information you described in your note of 14 April. Firstly, we do not have a list consisting solely of the sites we currently use.
    I found this unbelievable at the time, I thought he was just blowing smoke … but after the publication of the CRU emails and particularly the “Harry Read Me” document, I can see that his files were totally FUBAR, and he likely didn’t have a list of the sites he used. So my assessment went from “unbelievable” to “pathetically incompetent”.
    Now, absent the data, and without a list of the stations from which the data was gathered, exactly how do you propose that we “verify” his work? I could pick a random list of stations and generate a global record, but that would not either verify or falsify Phil’s results at all.

  • J. Peden, M.D.

    I would like to applaud Dr. Curry for her statements and responses here and of late elsewhere, which relate exactly to the the question of how well the ipcc Climate Science is following the methods and processes associated with the Scientifc Method. 

    Until recently I’ve been  a dogged critic of Dr. Curry’s performance as an analyst of the issues involved, which seemed to include a significant amount of analysis and arguments quite ungermane to the basic question of whether the ipcc Climate Science is actually real Science. 

    I’m very happy to say now that Dr. Curry is quite on track in respect to  dealing with the basic questions plaguing ipcc Climate Science, that my past criticisims are moot, and that I regard them personally as having no lingering effect whatsoever.

    Thank you very much, Dr. Curry.  I look forward to your future analysis and insights.

  • andrewt

    As Tim says Willis and his fellow citizen auditors set a high standard.

    When the AR4 WG1 intro says  “In fact, one philosopher of science insisted that to be genuinely scientific, a statement must be susceptible to testing that could potentially show it to be false (Popper, 1934)”,  Willis and his fellow citizen auditors count the citation of Popper’s famous book as  the IPCC relying on non-peer-reviewed literature.

  • Rattus Norvegicus

    Judith,

    I just finished watching a good show on PBS, The Vaccine Wars, which lays out another science vs. anti-science dispute.  I think that you might find some of the same themes as are found in the climate wars played out in this very different forum.  Watch it, and think about which side you appear to be taking…

  • Willis Eschenbach

    Keith Kloor Says:
    April 27th, 2010 at 1:50 pm
    Yesterday, When Joe Romm posted on this Q & A and thread, I felt that he was still processing it, even trying to wrap his arms around Judy’s  evolving views. Now it appears he has made up his mind, for in the comment thread at his site, he declares:
    She has joined the WUWT and McIntyre tribe.
    Those of you who have been critical of Judy in this thread: do you agree with Romm? That she has changed teams? Or to keep the current metaphor, joined another tribe? And what about the skeptics participating here: do you feel Judy is part of your tribe now?
    .
    Interesting question, Keith. I find the whole idea of “tribes” quite unsettling. An “us versus them” point of view doesn’t serve anyone. This whole xenophobia that has infested the climate discussion has no place in science.
    .
    In addition, as I attempted to point out in the questions that I posted at “Trust and Mistrust“, this is not an either/or question, it is nuanced in shades of gray. My position on the climate I described as “heretical”, as I do not agree with the basic paradigm of climate which is widely believed (that forcings alone determine global temperature).
    .
    So no, I don’t see Judith as either in or out of any tribe, because I see tribalism as a bane of science. She is, however, a member of a fairly select and far too small group, those climate scientists brave enough to discuss the issues in public and to propound and defend their positions. She gets my admiration for that …
    .
    For example, you have repeatedly invited the folks from RC to discuss these important issues here … cue the sound of crickets.
    .
    In addition, the idea that she has “changed her tribe” simply because she is willing to discuss the ideas openly is nonsense. She has done that for years. I still disagree with her more than I agree with her, but that’s just science.
    .
    PS – The Joe Romm post you link to is mostly a recycled William Connelley post … and of everyone that writes on climate science, I find his position the least credible. After his years of ruthlessly censoring and distorting Wikipedia, I am astounded that anyone pays the slightest attention to his claims … but that’s just me, YMMV.

  • Willis Eschenbach

    andrewt Says:
    April 28th, 2010 at 11:28 pm
    As Tim says Willis and his fellow citizen auditors set a high standard.
    When the AR4 WG1 intro says  “In fact, one philosopher of science insisted that to be genuinely scientific, a statement must be susceptible to testing that could potentially show it to be false (Popper, 1934)”,  Willis and his fellow citizen auditors count the citation of Popper’s famous book as  the IPCC relying on non-peer-reviewed literature.
    I will repeat what I said twice before:
    I also note again that, as I pointed out before, Phil missed the point. Pachauri repeatedly claimed that the IPCC reports were 100% based on peer reviewed science. No matter how he tries to reframe the discussion, they weren’t “¦ and as a result, trust in the IPCC was seriously damaged.
    .
    The issue, as you point out, is not citing Popper. It is citing newspaper reports and Greenpeace propaganda.
     

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    > WE
    Citations needed for this claim–not some blog somewhere, but actual direct quotations.  Happy to wait while you look for them.

    Care to bet on it, by the way, while you’re looking?

    > … repeatedly claimed that the IPCC reports were
    > 100% based on peer reviewed science …

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    Willis (492):

    I believe there is a widespread misunderstanding about Judith’s tribe’s usage. She should correct me if I’m wrong, but I interpret her as being critical of “tribalism,” not the the use of tribes as a means of classification.

    For example, I’m definitely part of a journalistic tribe, so I have certain biases that make me more predisposed to defending my tribe. It’s the same with your religion or ethnicity. So I don’t understand the outcry over this. We all belong to certain tribes, be it political, cultural, religious, professional, etc. That’s humanity.

    What I see Judith warning against with respect to climate science is “tribalist” behavior, in which the tendency is to go into a defensive crouch when under attack or even at the perception of a threat. This is where her circling the wagons critique comes in.

    If I read her correctly, what Judith is saying is that climate scientists should stop being so tribalist. I’m sure the same could be said for the skeptic tribe. They have to guard against their own tribalist tendencies as well.

  • AMac

    Rattus Norvegicus (#491) –

    I just finished watching a good show on PBS, The Vaccine Wars, which lays out another science vs. anti-science dispute.
    .
    Many readers of this thread won’t see any problem with this description.  To them, the AGW Consensus claims the moral high ground because it owns the moral high ground.

    Yet to other readers, this casual summary illustrates a problem that bedevils the climate field.  For serious critics, the most troubling issue is the failure of some prominent AGW Consensus scientists to consistently conform their conduct to appropriate standards.

    While these serious critics may be mistaken, it seems hubristic to dismiss them as unscientific.

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    > Judith is saying is that climate scientists should
    > stop being so tribalist

    “Don’t blog about it, publish science about it” seems like an appropriate response.  Would you agree that’s the right approach, avoiding ‘tribalist’ and acting like a scientist instead?

    Gavin put it this way:

    “… forgive me if I don’t take seriously the endless requests to check out the allegations or accusations that are to be found just around the corner (on that blog/in that book/in that online presentation/in that submission etc.) but that on further inspection evaporate like the Cheshire Cat’s grin. This passing of the buck simply serves to propagate memes that end up being something that ‘everyone knows’ but when pressed, no-one can articulate. For example, Montford …  given copious time to expound on what he thought the most crucial neglected issue was. He chose to discuss McKitrick’s problems in getting his repetitive and singularly unconvincing papers on the (non-)impact of socio-economic variables published. If this is the worst example available, the IPCC process is in fine shape. Looking at the bigger picture, the only issue of major importance is whether the IPCC reports give a reasonable summary of the state of the science – including the level of uncertainty. … I have yet to find any substantial group of scientists who disagree (and this is borne out in the various surveys of the scientists that have been done). Issues of process are of interest only insofar as they affect the science assessment. “Does it matter?” is the key question….”
    (My excerpts-hr) — original is here:
    http://www.realclimate.org/?comments_popup=3846#comment-171284

  • andrewt

    I now its hard to believe but you and your fellow citizen auditors really do count cites of Isaac Newton and Karl Popper as the IPCC relying on non-peer-reviewed science. 

    And now when Fox News next flunks the IPCC they’ll add  that Georgia Tech climate scientist Judith Curry says the IPCC is corrupt.

  • http://bishophill.squarespace.com Bishop Hill

    Hank Roberts #497

    Gavin’s comments are incorrect.

    (a)I was not given “copious time”. The interview lasted about 90 seconds.
    (b)I did not discuss the issue of gatekeeping. I discussed McKitrick’s allegation of fabrication of part of IPCC 4AR and the fact that neither panel had addressed it.

  • Rattus Norvegicus

    AMac, did you actually bother to watch the referenced program?

  • freespeech

    Hank Roberts wrote:
    “For example, Montford “¦  given copious time to expound on what he thought the most crucial neglected issue was. He chose to discuss McKitrick’s problems in getting his repetitive and singularly unconvincing papers on the (non-)impact of socio-economic variables published.”

    Montford followed up on this at his blog, I’m sure that he would have followed up at RC, but Gavin and his minions wouldn’t want to expose the fans to a counter opinion.

    Montford’s claim is this:
    “There is much to take issue with here. Firstly I don’t remember being given “copious” time to expound on the neglected issues. It seemed like about 30 seconds at the time, but a quick review of the interview shows that the whole thing lasted just over a minute and a half. But the main point is that I didn’t discuss Ross’s difficulties in getting past the gatekeepers at all – I said that he had made an accusation of falsification that hadn’t been addressed by either inquiry.”

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p0071pp6#p007ch1g
    17:29-19:16 Are the relevant times for Montford’s segment.

    You can decide if 1 minute 47 seconds interrupted by the interviewer to ask a question, is “copious time”.
    You will also note that not a single word of “McKitrick’s problems in getting his repetitive and singularly unconvincing papers on the (non-)impact of socio-economic variables published” was discussed by Montford.

    Now this to me looks to be favoring Mr Montford’s interpretation over Dr Schmidt’s.

    I’m sure Mr Montford would have preferred to reply to Gavin’s claims at RC, but those nice ethical scientists seem to have an issue with exposing their fanclub to their “foibles”.

    I’m sure Gavin isn’t lying, we all know that Climate Scientists are beyond reproach (just read all the justifications above), perhaps he’s just really, really bad at gathering and interpreting data, after all it’s so hard to listen to a 1m47s  dialog and remember all the important bits. Or perhaps in an environment where you ruthlessly censor anything that is embarrassing you are a little more prone to “make stuff up”.
    I’m sure this doesn’t happen in their back room peer-reviews of research that might “dilute” the message, nope, no way…

  • http://amac1.blogspot.com/ AMac

    At #500, Rattus Norvegicus wrote,
    “AMac, did you actually bother to watch the referenced program?”
    .
    Rattus, I read your clear synopsis  in #491 (“a good show on PBS, The Vaccine Wars, [] lays out another science vs. anti-science dispute.”)  From that, I understood that you view the pro-vaccine side as “science” and the anti-vaccine side as “anti-science.”  At any rate, that is my own view, furthered by the writeup at the link you supplied, and by prior familiarity with the question.

    Need I watch the hourlong show itself to comment? 

    The correspondence you seemed to draw in saying “another science vs. anti-science dispute” is

    Science side — pro-vaccine  — pro-AGW Consensus

    Anti-science side — anti-vaccine — skeptical of AGW Consensus

    If my remarks at #496 show that I’ve misunderstood you, it’s possible that other readers have, as well.  Could you make your point more explictly?

    Thanks.

  • Willis Eschenbach

    J Bowers Says:
    April 28th, 2010 at 9:56 pm

    Willis Eschenbach: “I wrote back and said OK, no worries, I’m a reasonable man, please send me the other 98% of the data “¦ and CRU refused to do that.”
    Was it specifically Jones or more broadly CRU or EAU who declined? Who specifically issued the refusal? it doesn’t tally with Jones initial response, which is borne out by Steven Mosher’s account here of Phil Jones wanting to release data and have it freely available.
    The letter was from David Palmer of CRU, who said:

    I have contacted Dr. Jones and can update you on our efforts to resolve this matter.
    We cannot produce a simple list with this format and with the information you described in your note of 14 April.
    So, it seems that the information came from Phil Jones.
    J. Bowers: But, IIRC, it says in the license agreements that it is permissable to share data with collaborators for scientific purposes, as long as (and it is quite specific about this at least in the UK agreement) the work will be published in the recognised scientific literature.

    First, please remember that we had to file an FOI to even get to see the license agreements. I suppose folks will come up with some excuse for that.
    .
    Next, there turned out to be only four of these, (Bahrain, the UK, Spain, and Norway) which the CRU posted here.
    .
    Next, one of these was unsigned, but that didn’t matter, because it didn’t say that you couldn’t pass on the data. They may not have noticed that because the agreement was in Spanish, I don’t know.
    .
    And finally, I don’t find that clause in any of the agreements … so exactly which agreements are you referring to?
     

  • Willis Eschenbach

    Hank Roberts Says:
    April 29th, 2010 at 12:16 am
    > WE
    > “¦ repeatedly claimed that the IPCC reports were
    > 100% based on peer reviewed science “¦

    Citations needed for this claim”“not some blog somewhere, but actual direct quotations.  Happy to wait while you look for them.
    Care to bet on it, by the way, while you’re looking?
    .
    I posted direct quotations alreadytwice
     

  • Willis Eschenbach

    Keith Kloor Says:
    April 29th, 2010 at 12:30 am
    Willis (492):
    I believe there is a widespread misunderstanding about Judith’s tribe’s usage. She should correct me if I’m wrong, but I interpret her as being critical of “tribalism,” not the the use of tribes as a means of classification.
    For example, I’m definitely part of a journalistic tribe, so I have certain biases that make me more predisposed to defending my tribe. It’s the same with your religion or ethnicity. So I don’t understand the outcry over this. We all belong to certain tribes, be it political, cultural, religious, professional, etc. That’s humanity.
    What I see Judith warning against with respect to climate science is “tribalist” behavior, in which the tendency is to go into a defensive crouch when under attack or even at the perception of a threat. This is where her circling the wagons critique comes in.
    If I read her correctly, what Judith is saying is that climate scientists should stop being so tribalist. I’m sure the same could be said for the skeptic tribe. They have to guard against their own tribalist tendencies as well.
    .
    Now that I agree with completely. One of the things that is supposed to distinguish scientists from other folks is that they pursue the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, regardless of what the “tribe” might think. And both sides in this discussion have been far too “tribalistic” at times.
    .
    For me, the problem is when scientists allow their activism to override the pursuit of truth. At that point, they begin to take the advice of a noted AGW supporter to “offer up some scary scenarios, make simplified dramatic statements and little mention of any doubts one might have.” That is extremely worrisome to me.
    .
    I don’t want scientists to conceal their doubts. I want them to be totally open and frank about all of the questions and uncertainties in their work. I don’t want “scary scenarios”, leave that to the politicians. I don’t want simplified pabulum. I want honest, detailed statements. The idea that people need to be fed some kind of grade school version of the truth is an insult.
    .
    Unfortunately, far too many of the AGW adherents seem to have taken that advice to heart, they are the kings of the “scary scenarios” … and when you do that for twenty years or so, people start to say “Ummm … ah … didn’t you predict twenty years ago that by now we’d be suffering thermal catastrophe?”. And of course, this is perceived as an attack by the purveyors of said scenarios, and the wagons get circled, and we end up where we are today.
    .
    Since the Little Ice Age, the world has warmed about the amount of the lower-range IPCC projections for the coming century. If someone knows of hordes of climate refugees or of cataclysmic consequences from that, I haven’t heard of it. But we have heard one scary scenario after another about what that amount of warming might conceivably have a chance of probably having the potential do.
    .
    Could we get back to the science?

  • Brendan H

    Jim: “”¦the accusations of “dishonesty, corruption, fraud” etc, are much more “provocative” and hence much more likely to “move” the public”¦”

    Agreed. That’s why sceptics are making these sorts of accusations, which have a visceral punch and go right to the emotions. There’s not much we can do about that. People who are ideologically opposed to the science will not stop making accusations just because they are discredited.

    (One consolation, I suppose, is that these accusations are evidence that the science has become generally accepted; people tend to make these sorts of claims in response to the weakness of their own position.)

    Having said that, there is a problem. Sceptics’ claims of dishonesty etc seem to have had a corrosive effect on public confidence. Raking over the coals of past rivalries is wasted effort. The only way is forward. No process is perfect, and if improvements can be made, let’s make them.

    Importantly, the warming side needs to get control of this issue. “Climategate” ran and ran partly because the UAE and the wider scientific community sat on its hands and let the sceptics do the running.

  • Brendan H

    Willis: “If after reading the CRU emails you have come away with the idea that their actions were not dishonest and secretive, I fear we are poles apart.”

    We are some way apart, but that’s irrelevant to my point, which is that claims about what is revealed in the CRU emails are contested. Some people cry fraud and corruption, some see dishonesty and secretiveness, others regrettable lapses of judgement. So there is a range of views.

    “And even strong supporters of the AGW hypothesis like George Monbiot make no attempt to say that the emails show the science is “honest and robust”, viz (emphasis mine):”

    In the quote you provide, Monbiot makes no direct reference to the science. As it happens, I agree with him that this is a real crisis and where wrongdoing or poor processes can be shown, scientists need to put their house in order.

  • Phil Clarke

    OK Steve – you win! You take nearly 1,700 words [I wonder how many readers here made it to the end?] to anatomise in detail why Gavin’s definition of ‘special treatment’ differs marginally from your own.  I simply don’t have that level of commitment or free time to devote to a non-issue such as this. The impact on the science is nix. Rather I tend to agree with Dr Schmidt – “The point of the an assessment is to get the science right and the Amman and Wahl paper was completely apropos in demonstrating that the impact of McIntyre’s points amounted to nothing very much. All this brouhaha about how the specific paper was handled is completely irrelevant to that fact.”

    Re: the book. Apologies – looks like I gave a wrong URL. The reference in WG3 was “Gritsevsky, A., and N. Nakicenovic, 2002: Modelling uncertainty of induced technological change. In: Technological change and the environment, A. Grubler, N. Nakicenovic, W.D. Nordhaus, (eds.). Resources for the Future, pp. 251-279. ” Our esteemed auditors did not class this as peer-reviewed science. The book is here http://tinyurl.com/294agg7

    The chapter in question [Chapter 10] is a straight reprint of the paper – which originally appeared in the refereed journal Energy Policy. So our auditors failed to do the minimum of due diligence – this was not just a peer-reviewed paper, it was a highly influential piece of work – cited 132 times according to Google Scholar. Combined with the risible addition of self-cites to the ‘unreviewed’ total this renders the credibility of the ‘audit’ negligible.

    Willis: The state of science journalism being what it is, accusing someone of being a liar based on press reports  smacks of sophistry. Here is Dr Pachauri in his own words:
    At each successive stage of drafting, the report was carefully reviewed. A total of about 90,000 comments were produced during the review process. The authors considered and reacted to each of those comments. By the time it was completed, AR4 cited approximately 18,000 peer-reviewed publications. It also included a limited amount of gray (or non-peer-reviewed) literature in cases where peer-reviewed literature was unavailable. (For example, there is often no peer-reviewed literature on impacts of climate change, both current and projected, in many developing countries.)”
    I am happy to take this as his definitive statement on the issue.
    Source: http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2010/apr/22/pachauri-critics-climate-science

    cheers, PC.

  • Willis Eschenbach

    Phil Clarke Says:
    April 28th, 2010 at 5:51 pm
    … Here’s the full panel:
    .
    Prof Huw Davies, Professor of Physics at the Institute for Atmospheric & Climate Science at ETH Zürich; Prof Kerry Emanuel, Professor of Meteorology at Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Prof Lisa Graumlich, Director of the School of Natural Resources and the Environment at The University of Arizona; Prof David Hand, Professor of Statistics in the Department of Mathematics at Imperial College; Prof Herbert Huppert, Professor of Theoretical Geophysics at the University of Cambridge; and Prof Michael Kelly, Prince Philip Professor of Technology at the University of Cambridge.
    .
    This panel states “˜We saw no evidence of any deliberate scientific malpractice in any of the work of the Climatic Research Unit and had it been there we believe that it is likely that we would have detected it.’
    .
    Willis ““ just to be clear ““ it is your position that Oxburgh managed to pursuade all these prominent academics to compromise their integrity, impartiality and future credibility just so that he could make a few more quid on his windmills? If not, what on earth ARE you saying? I’ve never been a huge fan of innuendo.
    .
    Just Curious.
    A good question, Phil, I guess I wasn’t as clear as I thought I was … not the first time for that.
    .
    I am saying that if you are investigating a scandal, you should pick folks to do the investigation who a) do not have any money or reputation riding on the outcome, b) do not have any connection to the players, and c) have not already made up their minds and taken a public stand on the questions to be investigated.
    .
    Oxburgh definitely has skin in the game. He stands to win big money if the AGW hypothesis is shown to be valid. He is the Chairman of Falck Renewables. They say about themselves:
    .
    “Falck Renewables is an innovative wind energy company headquartered in London, England. Founded in 2002, its objective is to play a major role in responding to the growing problem of climate change attributed to greenhouse gas emissions. Currently, Falck wind farms in operation and construction represent a reduction in carbon dioxide emissions of approximately 1 million tonnes annually.”
    .
    He is also  President of the Carbon Capture and Storage Association, and a member of the Green Fiscal Commission. Not that those are bad things … but this was supposed to be an independent and unbiased investigation.
    .
    Where I come from, that’s called a “conflict of interest” … don’t know what they call it in your part of the world, but I doubt it is “unbiased investigator.”
    .
    Kerry Emanuel is a co-author with Michael Mann, for goodness sakes. What do you think he would be likely to say? He also already had made up his mind on Climategate, saying that it was the fault of a “public relations campaign” rather than of the scientists involved … I’m sure you can see the problem.
    .
    Lisa Graumlich is a co-author with Malcolm Hughes, who is deeply involved in the emails and who is one of the authors of the “Hockeystick” paper.
    .
    All three of them are strong, devoted believers that, as Emanuel said before being selected for the investigation, “Climate Changes are Proven Fact“. And all three of them have relationships with the people they are investigating.
    .
    With three of the six already convinced, producing a whitewash doesn’t seem all that hard. Do I know how they convinced the others, as you ask? No, I don’t. But if I were in charge, the first thing I’d do is limit the scope of the investigation by carefully selecting what I would look at. I’d limit the investigation to only a few papers, say a dozen or so. Then I’d pick the right papers to investigate, papers where the science was good.
    .
    They claim they outsourced this selection to the Royal Society … but the Royal Society has denied it. It appears that they were selected by people at the University of East Anglia, where we also find … the CRU. Just a coincidence, I suppose.
    .
    And by another coincidence, none of the papers that they investigated were papers where independent investigators had found problems. Funny how that happens.
    .
    Then I would slide past the whole question of the “hide the decline” malfeasance by not addressing it at all. Instead, I’d look at the underlying papers used in the “hide the decline” incident, but not at what was actually done in the IPCC report to “hide the decline” that was shown in those papers.
    .
    Finally, I would release a very, very short report, say five pages or so, without enough room for a detailed investigation of any kind.
    .
    So no, I don’t know how they did it … but that’s how I’d have done it.
    .
    Phil, an inquiry of this importance should have been chaired and staffed by scientists who were not co-authors with the people in the emails, who were not deeply involved in making money out of “carbon capture” and windmills, and who had not previously taken a very public position on the exact question being investigated. With all of the scientists on the planet, that should have been an easy task … but instead, they broke all of the rules for picking people to do an inquiry.
    .
    I suppose that’s just another coincidence.

  • Willis Eschenbach

    Phil Clarke, you say:
    .
    Willis: The state of science journalism being what it is, accusing someone of being a liar based on press reports  smacks of sophistry. Here is Dr Pachauri in his own words:
    .
    “At each successive stage of drafting, the report was carefully reviewed. A total of about 90,000 comments were produced during the review process. The authors considered and reacted to each of those comments. By the time it was completed, AR4 cited approximately 18,000 peer-reviewed publications. It also included a limited amount of gray (or non-peer-reviewed) literature in cases where peer-reviewed literature was unavailable. (For example, there is often no peer-reviewed literature on impacts of climate change, both current and projected, in many developing countries.)”

    .
    I am happy to take this as his definitive statement on the issue.
    .
    Since he made this statement only a week ago, long after the storm of non-peer-reviewed statements had broken over his head, I am happy to take this as his CYA statement on the issues. Gosh, Phil, are you serious? What would you expect him to say today? You need to turn your irony meter up a bit. See if you can find him saying anything like that prior to the Himalayagate scandal and we’ll talk about it. If not …
    .
    Some of us, however, expect honesty before the storm breaks … we also expected that the IPCC would not get its information from newspapers and student theses and magazine articles and Greenpeace reports.
    .
    Next, all of the items I cited were direct quotes, straight out of Pachauri’s mouth. I surely didn’t see him saying he was misrepresented or misquoted. Perhaps all of those different reporters were lying and putting words in his mouth … or not.
    .
    For example, his statement has been used by the US EPA to justify its actions in regulating CO2:
    .
    “As IPCC Chairman Rajendra K. Pachauri recently stated: ‘IPCC relies entirely on peer reviewed literature in carrying out its assessment…’” - US Environmental Protection Agency, December 2009
    .
    So while you might think that it is some conspiracy of dozens of reporters to put words in Pachauri’s mouth, the EPA thought that he was telling the truth. (And curiously, this very quote is likely to come up again in one or another of the upcoming court cases against the EPA.)
    .
    Finally, I disagree completely that the IPCC should use what Pachauri calls “gray literature” (which in the event obviously means things like newspapers and WWF puff pieces) if there is no “peer-reviewed literature on impacts of climate change”. If it doesn’t exist, don’t make it up or take it from some magazine. If it doesn’t exist, say so. That’s how scientists do it. If that’s Pachauri’s level of scientific integrity, to use newspaper articles if there is no peer-reviewed science, color me unimpressed.

  • Willis Eschenbach

    Phil Clarke Says:
    April 29th, 2010 at 4:02 am
    .
    OK Steve ““ you win! You take nearly 1,700 words [I wonder how many readers here made it to the end?] to anatomise in detail why Gavin’s definition of ‘special treatment’ differs marginally from your own. I simply don’t have that level of commitment or free time to devote to a non-issue such as this. The impact on the science is nix.
    .
    Steven Mosher has taken the time to explain in detail why Gavin’s claim was not “marginally” different, but completely bogus. You blow this off by claiming this means nothing, that it is a “non-issue”.
    .
    The IPCC lead author and his cohorts secretly and flagrantly broke the IPCC’s own rules to sneak in one particular paper, and this is a “non-issue”? Phil Jones thought it was important enough that he secretly asked his co-conspirators to illegally get rid of the evidence that they had done so … and this is a “non-issue”?
    .
    Heck, if we’re not going to insist that the IPCC follow its own rules, why waste time with having rules? Let’s get rid of the source of the problem, and have an IPCC with no rules at all. Just let the lead authors accept any paper they want, and ignore the rest.
    .
    And since the IPCC routinely broke the rules about how to treat reviewers comments, let’s eliminate that problem as well. We’ll just get rid of the reviewers.
    .
    You guys keep missing the point. The point is not the “effect on the science”, which may or may not be “nix”. The point is that some of the leading scientific lights of the AGW movement were cheating and breaking both IPCC rules and the law to make sure that their version of the “truth” was the only version that made it into the IPCC report … and you and Gavin think this is a “non-issue”???
    .
    If the science is as “solid” as Kerry Emanuel would have us believe, why the cheating and lawbreaking? Out here in the everyday world, people hiding something usually means that they have something to hide. And people cheating to stuff a scientific report means that they are not sure of their conclusions.
    .
    And at the end of the day, you folks seem surprised when people don’t take the IPCC reports as gospel, when public belief in the dangers of AGW is at an all-time low … I guess that’s because, unlike you and Gavin, we know a real issue when we see one.

  • Phil Clarke

    So Pachauri said the assessments of the IPCC are based on peer-reviewed literature. And so they are. He was mistaken in the  isolated case of the Himalyan glaciers – an error for which IPCC has apologised and that had no impact whatsoever on the executive or policymaker summaries and which went undetected for two years. Elsewhere, in the Physical Science section are perfectly sensible and accurate discussions of the effect of climate change on the glaciers. A difference that makes no difference is no difference, in other words. 

    Elsewhere the documents reference papers written before peer-review even existed, or literature reviews by respected bodies etc, or as Tim Lambert points out Isaac Newton’s diary -  To go nuclear and claim that this means that Pachauri was ‘lying’ – and to cite the balony ‘citizen audit’ as evidence – does indeed come across as sophistry.
    PS Can one be flagrant and secretive at the same time?

  • oneuniverse

    Pachauri has past form in being dishonest (lying) and ignoring rules:  “Old World Hospitality Pvt Ltd (Plaintiff) vs India Habitat Centre 1996″
    via Richard North

    The High Court Judge ruled that 3 officers of the Governing Council, one of whom was Pauchari, had  “suppressed material facts and they have sworn to false affidavits.”

    In the conclusion, the judge said “And I am afraid, that the affairs and the efficient management of the Centre are not safe in the hands of officers like … Dr R K Pachauri … and they had ignored that the officers have to function as a public functionaries within the parameters of the Constitution.”

    So his behaviour in the past has lacked integrity.

    With respect to Pachauri’s lie about the Himalayan glaciers passage, the Times of London has noted : “Rajendra Pachauri was told that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change assessment that the glaciers would disappear by 2035 was wrong, but he waited two months to correct it. He failed to act despite learning that the claim had been refuted by several leading glaciologists.”

    Pachauri told The Times (UK) on January 22 : “I became aware of this when it was reported in the media about ten days ago. Before that, it was really not made known. Nobody brought it to my attention. There were statements, but we never looked at this 2035 number.”

    The Times article continues : “However, a prominent science journalist said that he had asked Dr Pachauri about the 2035 error last November. Pallava Bagla, who writes for Science journal, said he had asked Dr Pachauri about the error. He said that Dr Pachauri had replied: “I don’t have anything to add on glaciers.” [..]

    “Mr Bagla said he had informed Dr Pachauri that Graham Cogley, a professor at Ontario Trent University and a leading glaciologist, had dismissed the 2035 date as being wrong by at least 300 years. Professor Cogley believed the IPCC had misread the date in a 1996 report which said the glaciers could melt significantly by 2350.”

  • RichieRich

    Phil Clarke @ #512

    I think the point about Pachauri is that, seemingly, on more than one occasion, he has claimed that the IPCC relies ONLY  on peer-reviewed literature.

  • J Bowers

    Willis Eschenbach: “The letter was from David Palmer of CRU, who said:

    I have contacted Dr. Jones and can update you on our efforts to resolve this matter.
    We cannot produce a simple list with this format and with the information you described in your note of 14 April.
    So, it seems that the information came from Phil Jones.”

    But that’s not a refusal without valid reason. They’re telling you that they simply can’t provide you with what you want. I think you may want to post your request just to make sure things are a bit clearer.

    W E: “First, please remember that we had to file an FOI to even get to see the license agreements. I suppose folks will come up with some excuse for that.”

    I hate to say it, but grant funding is strictly budgeted and I’m certain it’s strictly audited as well. It’s not a free for all. I’m not being an apologist, I’m just pointing out that people and organisations don’t like to see their money being spent on what it’s not intended for. They tend to not react too kindly to such things, and if your ongoing funding needs to keep that running smooth then priorities need to be focused.

    W E: “Next, there turned out to be only four of these, (Bahrain, the UK, Spain, and Norway) which the CRU posted here.”

    What happened to Sweden? You know, the one that Swedish thinktank, the Stockholm Initiative, caused a kerfuffle about and Anthony Watts was only too happy to post up on both WUWT and CA? A reminder:

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/03/05/swedes-call-out-jones-on-data-availability/
    http://climateaudit.org/2010/03/05/phil-jones-called-out-by-swedes-on-data-availability/

    The one that turned out to be completely bogus, the original terms saying…
    _________________________________________

    Dataserier 1961-2008

    3.2 The Licensee owns no right to use the data or products provided under this agreement for commercial purposes and not for development or production of meteorological,

    hydrological and oceanographic value added-value services. The licensee does not own nor authorized to redistribute, sell, assign or otherwise transfer data products or documentation without further processing to third parties unless the parties have received written permission from SMHI.
    http://data.smhi.se/met/climate/time_series/html/essential20.html

    W E: “Next, one of these was unsigned, but that didn’t matter, because it didn’t say that you couldn’t pass on the data. They may not have noticed that because the agreement was in Spanish, I don’t know.
    [...]
    And finally, I don’t find that clause in any of the agreements “¦ so exactly which agreements are you referring to?”

    Firstly, my IIRC wasn’t quite correct (it was late and I’d just finished a 21 hour working day). The third party scientist must approach NERC for permission. But, the UK agreement is quite clear and quite draconian (in the spirit of our Civil Service having to generate revenue… thanks Gov), and as I find it’s a frequent necessity to clarify what was in the agreement (if I had a quid for every time…) here are the relevant parts. The bolding is not mine but the UKMO’s:
    http://www.cru.uea.ac.uk/cru/data/availability/agreements.pdf
    ____________________________________________

    UK Met. Office
    Meteorological Office (UKMO) data supplied through NERC Data Centres to bona fide research programmes.

    Conditions of Use

    Arrangements have been set in place whereby bona fide academic researchers working on agreed NERC-endorsed scientific programmes may obtain access on favourable terms to UKMO data (and associated software).
    [...]
    UKMO data / software so obtained may be used solely for the purpose for which they were supplied. They may not be used for any other projects unless specific prior permission has been obtained in writing from the UKMO by a NERC Data Centre. Note that this applies even for other bona fide academic work.
    [...]
    Data sets must not be passed on to third parties under any circumstances. Any scientist requiring data which happens to have been supplied already to someone else, even within the same institute or programme of research, must first approach one of the NERC Data Centres, who have agreed to maintain records of data users for UKMO.

    Once the project work using the data has been completed, copies of the datasets and software held by the end user should be deleted, unless permission has been obtained for them to be retained for some alternative use.

    It is to be expected that ‘bona fide academic research’ using the data will eventually result in scientific publications in the open literature. ‘The Data Centres will request details of such publications in due course, and if they do not arise UKMO may seek further evidence that this was at least the intention at the outset of the research.

    Scientific papers must give due credit to UKMO, either through acknowledgement or, if the data provide a significant basis of the work, co-authorship. Any processed / derived datasets resulting from the project should be made available to the appropriate NERC Data Centre for licensing I transfer to other researchers and the UKMO.

    The copyright / intellectual property rights of any data, software, information or documentation so supplied by UKMO in support of such a programme are retained by the original owner (generally the UKMO or its subcontractors). UKMO will protect its IPR by legal action if there is misuse of these rights such as the passing on of data to other third parties. NERC recognises that some data holdings supplied by UKMO under the arrangements are commercially valuable : the recipients of data are under an obligation to respect the terms and conditions of data supply, and to have regard to the security of datasets entrusted to them. Any infringement, whether by deliberate abuse or negligence, will be regarded extremely seriously by NERC, as endangering Council’s own reputation and the integrity of the NERC supported scientific community. The introduction of sanctions against individuals or Departments may be considered if breaches occur.
    [...]
    The User undertakes to keep NERC fully and effectively indemnified against all losses, damages, claims, demands, costs and expenses which NERC or its subcontractors may incur as a result of any breach by the User of any term contained within the Agreement between UKMO and NERC.
    _______________________________________

    So, that’s the UK, and there’s no lack of clarity there. Here’s what Norway had to say (my bolding from now on)…
    _______________________________________

    The disk and the following precipitation data are sent to you without charge. The condition is that you do not use them commercially or give them to a third party.
    _______________________________________

    So, Norway put restrictions on the data, as well. What about Spain? I had to use Babelfish, but the gist of it seems to be…
    _______________________________________

    The signatory below is committed to always use information required for its aims specified in this request and cite the origin of the data in any publication or work in which it is used.
    ________________________________________

    As far as I’m concerned, that’s a restriction on the data. It must be used for published scientific work and the Spanish INSTITUTO NACIONAL DE METEOROLOGIA cited.
    ____________________________________

    Bahrain….
    ____________________________________

    I am glad to be of assistance to you and data requested is enclosed.

    Please do not supply this data to third parties, unless authorized by us.
    _____________________________________

    And am I correct in saying that any Canadian citizen was welcome to the data, which Phil Jones is not?

    Okay, that’s enough. How anyone could conclude that only one of those agreements placed restrictions on the data is quite beyond me. As for, “There were only four restrictive agreements”, well, I think we’re getting into quantum territory. I feel I’m being entirely reasonable when suggesting that the four were sent as examples, and because you haven’t seen them doesn’t mean that they don’t exist.

  • freespeech

    Willis wrote:
    “The IPCC lead author and his cohorts secretly and flagrantly broke the IPCC’s own rules to sneak in one particular paper, and this is a “non-issue”? Phil Jones thought it was important enough that he secretly asked his co-conspirators to illegally get rid of the evidence that they had done so “¦ and this is a “non-issue”?”

    The whole point of a deadline isn’t just administrative, it is so the papers that will be referenced have been exposed to wider scrutiny before being used as part of “accepted science”. This process is supposed to stop unscrupulous scientists from ganging together to sneak a paper into the report that contradicts a released paper, so that they can ignore the findings of the released paper or to “paper over” a gaping hole in their “story” with a publication no-one outside of their cabal of associates has seen.

    So what do we find has occurred? Exactly what was supposed to be avoided by this strict process. They had a hole in their “story” and needed a paper to prop it up. So they did everything they could to get it in, after the deadline and before it had been published publicly.

  • J Bowers

    freespeech: “The whole point of a deadline isn’t just administrative, it is so the papers that will be referenced have been exposed to wider scrutiny before being used as part of “accepted science”.”

    Could you cite your source for that information, please? It sounds like a bit of an assumption.

  • Phil Clarke

    I think the point about Pachauri is that, seemingly, on more than one occasion, he has claimed that the IPCC relies ONLY  on peer-reviewed literature.
    Huh? I see only quotes where Pachauri claimed that the assessments and conclusions are based on peer-reviewed science. Does this mean that the IPCC reports can include references only to refereed journals, (the basis of the ‘audit’)? Of course not, Pachauri makes no such claim and the IPCC’s own rules quite sensibly permit other references. http://www.ipcc.ch/pdf/ipcc-principles/ipcc-principles-appendix-a.pdf (For example in WG1 CH1 in addition to Newton’s letter, the auditors dismissed as ‘not reviewed’, papers from 1872, 1800, 1884, 1890 etc. These are useful background in an Assessment report, but are not germane to its conclusions. Their inclusion does not make Pachauri a liar.)
    If you can point me to those elements of the conclusions in any of the IPCC reports that is not derived from the peer-reviewed literature – and the policies derived from them – I am all ears!
     

  • freespeech

    So J Bowers, are you now asserting that Jones broke these agreements when he sent them to third parties without as in Bahrain’s restriction, getting a written authorisation first?

  • RichieRich

    Phil Clarke @ #518

    One of Pachauri’s statements reads

    IPCC relies entirely on peer reviewed literature in carrying out its assessment…

    “carrying out its assessment” could reasonably be read here as “producing its assessment report” which would seem to preclude other literatures.  But your reading is also reasonable.  (And btw I wouldn’t want to accuse Pauchauri of lying here.)

    But even on the basis of your reading, some conclusions appear to have been drawn from non-peer-reviewed literature – see, for example, this piece by Richard Tol on WGIII.  The general view seems to be that reliance on non-peer-reviewed literature is much less of an issue re WGI.

  • J Bowers

    freespeech: “So J Bowers, are you now asserting that Jones broke these agreements when he sent them to third parties without as in Bahrain’s restriction, getting a written authorisation first?”

    No, I’m not even remotely asserting anything, nor am I suggesting anything on the lines of what you suggest. It’s uncanny how you seem to read a lot into where there’s absolutely nothing.

    Riddle me this: How can any of us possibly know such a thing? What could I possibly base such a claim on, without having the entire correspondence and emails between the relevant parties going back to the appropriate year? Why would I base any such claim on probably less than 0.01% of the emails, knowing full well that appropriate discussions may be in the non-redacted full set?

    Can I astrally project? No.
    Do I have amazing magical powers of telepathy? No.
    Can I time travel? No.

    Can you?

  • oneuniverse

    Phil Clarke 5:44am:
    He was mistaken in the  isolated case of the Himalyan glaciers ““ an error for which IPCC has apologised and that had no impact whatsoever on the executive or policymaker summaries and which went undetected for two years.

    Not so, you’re thoroughly wrong. Firstly, it’s not an isolated error. Please see Richard Tol’s comments, linked and quoted in two separate posts above – do you have anything to say about his substantial criticism, by the way?

    The Himalayan glacier claim was challenged before publication – please refer to the reviewer & lead authors’ comments .

    As noted above (6:29am) , Pachauri had been earlier informed of the problematic claim by Palava Bagla.  Pachauri was interviewed later by Bagla, and he didn’t deny it when Bagla pointed it out. Yet Pachauri had told the Times that “”I became aware of this when it was reported in the media about ten days ago.”

    The potential fate of the Himalayan glaciers is one of the most emotive issues in the climate change debate – there were reports that half of the world’s population (ie. India and parts of China) relied on the meltwater from these glaciers, and if not half, a very large number.

    For you to say that the 2035 claim would have had no effect on policy is ridiculous – for India and China, this was one of the most potent reasons for initiating ‘climate change’ action and legislation.

    India and China have serious problems to deal with, involving hundreds of millions of people living lives emmiserated and shortened by lack – of course it’ll make a difference to policy decisions to know whether danger of melting glaciers is imminent or centuries or millenia away.

  • J Bowers

    Perhaps Judith Curry would like to note that prior exchange  between freespeech and myself for an example of why open dialogue between the two “tribes” is near damned well impossible.

  • freespeech

    J Bowers wrote:
    “Perhaps Judith Curry would like to note that prior exchange  between freespeech and myself for an example of why open dialogue between the two “tribes” is near damned well impossible.”

    You’re being open?
    On a number of occassions, Jones freaks out about requests for his data, talks to his friends about preferring to destroy it rather than give it out, has a number of sessions with his university’s FOI officers to convince them of the impossibility of the requests due to a range of factors including “oral” and missing confidentiality agreements, lost data, and “they’re all bad deniers, just look at their websites”. Whereas others have received the data without a hitch.
    And somehow you can’t quite come to the conclusion that he didn’t have a problem supplying the exact same data he is denying others in breach of his claimed obligations that would cause international tensions.

    Bizarre. Are you really that naive? Do you want to buy some swampland, sorry I mean prime river frontage?

    Lucky all those enquiries asked him about this contradiction. Oh, sorry they forgot. They were too busy deleting any useful detail from their voluminous 5-page report.

    Having read and understood what Judith has said, I believe she already knows why dialog can be difficult. I doubt that your efforts of “openness” inspire much confidence that anything has changed from your side of the divide.

  • J Bowers

    freespeech: “You’re being open?”

    I posted the UKMO T&C’s, including the part that you happily jumped on while completely and conveniently ignoring the rest of them. Or didn’t I? I don’t believe in astral projection, so i thought it fair to put it up there. Lesson learned, I guess.

    fs: “Whereas others have received the data without a hitch.”

    Ah, I see we’ve gone from “friends” to “others”. I thought I addressed that. Weren’t they scientists publishing in the literature? Do we know for a fact that they didn’t get permission one way or another? How would we know? Was there an informal permission given? Who knows? Who really cares anymore? Not I. Even if there was good reason, you’d find something else to take a pop at. Ever heard of the boy who cried wolf?

    How’s it going with that source for your specific claim about the reasons for IPCC deadlines, by the way? I seem to be doing a lot of giving, but it’s all a bit one-sided and asymmetrical.

    Is everyone enjoying the bickering? Don’t fret, it’s how things usually go. No doubt I’ll soon be called a member of the Church of Al Gore, or of the Cult of Global Warming. Isn’t that right, freespeech? I’d include “warmist” in that, but you don’t really have to go any further than the article at the top of the page. Cheers.

  • Phil Clarke

    The potential fate of the Himalayan glaciers is one of the most emotive issues in the climate change debate ““ there were reports that half of the world’s population (ie. India and parts of China) relied on the meltwater from these glaciers, and if not half, a very large number.
    For you to say that the 2035 claim would have had no effect on policy is ridiculous ““ for India and China, this was one of the most potent reasons for initiating “˜climate change’ action and legislation.
    Its about a sixth of the world’s population.
    Look, I am not defending the error – it was sloppy work and seems to have comne about because the IPCC failed to follow its own procedures. But the claim was in a regional section, and did not appear in either the chapter summary or the summary for policymakers. Correcting it involved the removal of a single sentence. The correct rate of decline is discussed in WG1, the Physical Science basis, so the idea that this was used as the basis of major policy decisions is implausible.

    To be convinced, I would require evidence of policy based on the claim and evidence of that policy being reversed when the error was corrected. Where is this evidence?

  • Phil Clarke

    Richie – The general view seems to be that reliance on non-peer-reviewed literature is much less of an issue re WGI.

    I think it’s more that WG3 strays from the Physical Science into the socio-economic sphere, and you know what they say …. if you laid all the economists in the world end-to-end, they still wouldn’t reach a conclusion ;-)

  • http://peopleandplace.net/ Howard Silverman

    I listened to Lord May’s talk from the “Handling uncertainty in science” conference and transcribed <a href=”http://peopleandplace.net/on_the_wire/2010/4/27/lord_may_science_as_organised_scepticism”>excerpts</a>.

    For what it’s worth, Dr. Curry, I don’t believe you’ve evenly characterized his words (#146). In complement to: “It is most important that the consensus is not reached to early, too glibly, because it can inhibit fruitful lines of investigation,” he adds, “Yet, despite its importance in the early geo-morphology of the scientific landscape, such questioning becomes unhelpful if it stubbornly persists in the teeth of clear and contrary evidence.”

  • oneuniverse

    Phil Clarke: “[..] the idea that this was used as the basis of major policy decisions is implausible.”

    Please see the presentation given at Barcelona Climate Change Talks 2009, by Jean-Pascal van Ypersele, IPCC Vice-chair : “Policy-relevance of the Working Group II Contribution to the IPCC AR4 (Fourth Assessment Report)”

    Page 5 of the 25 page presentation states:

    – the total glacial area will likely shrink from the present 500,000 to 100,000 km2(or disappear entirely) by the year 2035

    – the 15,000 Himalayan glaciers form a unique reservoir of water which in turn, is the lifeline of millions of people in South Asian countries

    – it is likely that glacial melt will turn the big Asian river systems into seasonal riversand affect economies in the region

    So the IPCC themselves present the 2035 figure as a prominent policy-relevant issue.

    To be convinced, I would require evidence of policy based on the claim and evidence of that policy being reversed when the error was corrected.

    In democratic countries, climate change legislation requires public support. The public have been mainly been informed of climate science by the IPCC. As I said before, in India particularly, the melting Himalayan glacier issue is a huge topic – have the IPCC misinformed the public, and therefore created a public mandate for change based on misinformation? That’s the issue.

  • oneuniverse

    Another senior figure, Professor Watson, past chairman of the IPPC, raising the alarm about the IPCC’s bias:
    UN must investigate warming “˜bias’, says former climate chief

    “Watson, who served as chairman of the IPCC from 1997-2002, said: “The mistakes all appear to have gone in the direction of making it seem like climate change is more serious by overstating the impact. That is worrying. The IPCC needs to look at this trend in the errors and ask why it happened.” “

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    Keith,

    > What I see Judith warning against with respect to climate science is “tribalist” behavior, in which the tendency is to go into a defensive crouch when under attack or even at the perception of a threat. This is where her circling the wagons critique comes in.

    Exactly.  “Tribalism” replaces what we use to call “bunker mentality”.  Sometimes it’s “omerta”, or “the silence of the lambs”.   We could get sophisticated and call it the Asch phenomenon.  I think everybody recognizes that this is exactly that kind of expression.  In our context, it begs to be explained, while being used as some kind of explanation.

    Remember that this expression is supposed to fit into a dialogue. Let’s see how the tribes deal with that.

  • RichieRich

    And, ironically,  Bob Watson now works one day a week at UEA.

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    “… It’s worth remembering that [Pachauri] was appointed to run the IPCC after the Bush administration had his predecessor, Bob Watson, booted out at the behest of ExxonMobil. On 6 February 2001, 17 days after George W Bush was sworn in, AG (Randy) Randol, ExxonMobil’s senior environmental adviser, sent a fax to John Howard, an environmental official at the White House. He asked,
    ‘Can Watson be replaced now at the request of the US?’
    The US government immediately complied. Once it had extracted Watson, it accepted Pachauri as his replacement. The very qualities which made him acceptable to the climate change deniers in the White House ““ he wasn’t a climate scientist, he had friendly relations with business ““ are now being used by climate change deniers as a stick with which to beat him….”
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/georgemonbiot/2010/feb/02/climate-change-hacked-emails

  • oneuniverse

    “The very qualities which made him acceptable to the climate change deniers in the White House ““ he wasn’t a climate scientist, he had friendly relations with business ““ are now being used by climate change deniers as a stick with which to beat him”¦.”

    No, Pauchari is being criticised for his dishonesty.

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    Bzzzt!  ‘oneuniverse’ cherrypicks from a Times article that includes a quote of Watson, who’s discussing:

    “an apparent bias in its report that resulted in several exaggerations of the impact …”

    If you have trouble with “several” you can find clarification.
    http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=123973664
    “Only four or five sentences in 3,000 pages is a very small number of mistakes,” says Watson. “However, I think given the importance of IPCC, given the importance of the climate change issue, one must almost find a way now not to allow any mistakes to be propagated.”
     

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    So “oneuniverse” look at your own tactic and ask yourself:  ‘why would climate scientists not want to talk to me?’

    A competent climate scientist is pushed out by the oil industry and Bush administration and replaced by a man who’s not a climate scientist.  Patchouri uses language a climate scientist would not have used about precision.  You cherrypick words and claim he’s been lying.  Watson says there were four or five errors in 3,000 pages.  You cherrypick that to make it sound like a major problem.

    And then you say it’s _their_ problem?

    Clearly you don’t think either you, or the world, has a problem.
    It’s all a conspiracy aimed at your wallet, right?

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    And Watson’s doing the right thing, as is the IPCC itself, pushing for more transparency and better handling of material in AR5, already underway.

    Watson again from the NPR interview linked above:

    “…  The IPCC does not have a forum for public corrections. Its reports come out every six years or so “” too slow for corrections, as well as new research. Watson and Hamburg say the organization could fix that by publishing corrections and updates on its Web site.
    But then there’s the politicking. The United Nations established the IPCC, and member nations must sign off on every word in the reports.
    Watson recalls one nightmarish attempt to get bureaucrats to agree on a shorter, more public-friendly version of one report.
    “After a day of argument, they gave up on the idea, because some countries took out 10 sentences or 20 sentences, and someone said, ‘Ah, no I wouldn’t have any of those sentences, I’d pick the following 20 sentences,’ ” he recalls.
    ————-
    You can look at the work in progress toward AR5:
    http://www.google.com/search?q=site%3Aipcc.ch+attribution+AR5+detection+trend

  • oneuniverse

    Hank Roberts,

    Isn’t it strange how the mistakes are so epic in their consequences (if they were true) eg. African crop yields dropping by 50% (millions in jeopardy), the Himalayan glaciers melting by 2035 (millions in jeopardy) ?

    One would expect great scrutiny of such claims, precisely because they’re so important. Yet, as we now know, official criticism of the claims were effectively dismissed (see the reviewer and lead author comments linked earlier). And it turns out that the criticisms were fully justified. As Dr. Richard Tol has said, valid criticism has been ignored.

    The errors are not just a handful of sentences. Again, Dr. Tol’s recent comments (my italics):

    “.. AR4 contains crude errors, only some of which are public knowledge. These errors can be found in the chapters, the technical summaries, the summaries for policy makers, and the synthesis report. The errors are not random. Working Group 2 systematically portrays climate change as a bigger problem than is scientifically acceptable. Working Group 3 systematically portrays climate policy as easier and cheaper than can be responsiblly concluded based on academic research.”

  • oneuniverse

    “Watson’s doing the right thing, as is the IPCC itself, pushing for more transparency and better handling of material in AR5″

    Why does the IPCC need to push itself?  After all, it’s the IPCC that’s lacking transparency, so it’s just silly to say the the IPCC is pushing for transparency.

    Remember, it needed recourse FOI action to force the IPCC to release the reviewers’ comments.

  • http://collide-a-scape.com Keith Kloor

    In the better late than never category: I put up an RSS feed for comments. It only shows up on the left side top, when you are looking at a single post.

  • J. Peden



    to “oneuniverse”:
    <i>Clearly you don’t think either you, or the world, has a problem.
    It’s all a conspiracy aimed at your wallet, right?</i>
    Well, when the ipcc itself excludes countries containing about 5 billion of the Earth’s ~6.7 billion people from having to follow its own alleged cure [fossil fuel restricting Kyoto Protocols] to its own alleged CO2CAGW net disease, it might appear that the ipcc itself doesn’t really think “the world has a problem”.
    And when countries such as India and China instead embark upon large fossil fuel electrification programs which the ipcc otherwise sometimes seems to say will cause a CO2CAGW net disease, it appears India and China don’t think “the world has a problem”, either.
    At the very least, both the ipcc and India and China seem to be indicating that they think the alleged cure to the alleged CO2CAGW disease is worse than the alleged disease.
    Hank Roberts Says:
    April 29th, 2010 at 11:40 am

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    > only some of which are public knowledge
    Ah, yes, the black helicopters index pages are secret, aren’t they.

    > why does the IPCC need to push
    To improve.

    Try it. It can’t hurt.

  • J. Peden

    oops, my apologies, I don’t know how that happened above @ 1:23pm, but obvously “Hank Roberts Says” should fill the empty space above “to oneuniverse”.

  • Kuan

    [...] Judy Curry has not compromised her standards. [...]

  • Willis Eschenbach

    J Bowers Says:
    April 29th, 2010 at 6:44 am
    .
    Willis Eschenbach: “The letter was from David Palmer of CRU, who said:
    .
    I have contacted Dr. Jones and can update you on our efforts to resolve this matter.
    .
    We cannot produce a simple list with this format and with the information you described in your note of 14 April.
    .
    So, it seems that the information came from Phil Jones.”
    .
    But that’s not a refusal without valid reason. They’re telling you that they simply can’t provide you with what you want. I think you may want to post your request just to make sure things are a bit clearer.
    .
    I had asked for a list of the sites that they were using. They said that they didn’t have a list of the sites that they were using. All of this is covered in detail in my <a href=”http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/11/24/the-people-vs-the-cru-freedom-of-information-my-okole”¦/”><b><u>post</u></b></a> cited above.
    .
    W E: “First, please remember that we had to file an FOI to even get to see the license agreements. I suppose folks will come up with some excuse for that.”
    .
    I hate to say it, but grant funding is strictly budgeted and I’m certain it’s strictly audited as well. It’s not a free for all. I’m not being an apologist, I’m just pointing out that people and organisations don’t like to see their money being spent on what it’s not intended for. They tend to not react too kindly to such things, and if your ongoing funding needs to keep that running smooth then priorities need to be focused.
    .
    Cry me a river. FOI is not just a good idea, it’s the law. And in any case, was it was a huge imposition on them to ask them to produce the four pieces of paper? Man, if you think that finding four pieces of paper is some gargantuan task I’m glad you don’t work for me …
    .
    W E: “Next, there turned out to be only four of these, (Bahrain, the UK, Spain, and Norway) which the CRU posted here.”
    .
    What happened to Sweden? You know, the one that Swedish thinktank, the Stockholm Initiative, caused a kerfuffle about and Anthony Watts was only too happy to post up on both WUWT and CA?
    .
    Good question, but why are you asking me? I have pointed you to exactly what was posted, which they said was all of the agreements that they had. Since Sweden obviously is not there, perhaps you could ask Phil Jones why it wasn’t listed. Because I certainly don’t know. All I know is they said they couldn’t release the data because of confidentiality agreements. When we said “What confidentiality agreements?”, THAT’S WHAT THEY SHOWED US.
    .
    Next, here was your original claim:
    .
    J. Bowers: But, IIRC, it says in the license agreements that it is permissable to share data with collaborators for scientific purposes, as long as (and it is quite specific about this at least in the UK agreement) the work will be published in the recognised scientific literature.
    .
    In response to your claim that the data could be shared with scientific collaborators, I showed the agreements and asked if that clause was in there anywhere, viz:
    .
    W E: “Next, one of these was unsigned, but that didn’t matter, because it didn’t say that you couldn’t pass on the data. They may not have noticed that because the agreement was in Spanish, I don’t know.

    [...]
    And finally, I don’t find that clause in any of the agreements “¦ so exactly which agreements are you referring to?”

    .
    OK, so we’re looking for a clause that says it’s OK to share the data if it is for a valid scientific purpose. You seem to have forgotten that, and you set off to prove that there are restrictions in the use of the datasets:.
    .
    Firstly, my IIRC wasn’t quite correct (it was late and I’d just finished a 21 hour working day). The third party scientist must approach NERC for permission. But, the UK agreement is quite clear and quite draconian (in the spirit of our Civil Service having to generate revenue”¦ thanks Gov), and as I find it’s a frequent necessity to clarify what was in the agreement (if I had a quid for every time”¦) here are the relevant parts. The bolding is not mine but the UKMO’s: …
    .
    You follow this with a long citation from the UK agreement, which says inter alia
    .
    Data sets must not be passed on to third parties under any circumstances.
    .
    Seems to prove my point so far, no exclusions for “scientific purposes”. You follow by saying:
    _______________________________________
    So, that’s the UK, and there’s no lack of clarity there. Here’s what Norway had to say (my bolding from now on)”¦
    _______________________________________

    The disk and the following precipitation data are sent to you without charge. The condition is that you do not use them commercially or give them to a third party.
    _______________________________________

    So, Norway put restrictions on the data, as well. What about Spain? I had to use Babelfish, but the gist of it seems to be”¦
    _______________________________________

    The signatory below is committed to always use informationrequired for its aims specified in this request and cite the origin of the data in any publication or work in which it is used.
    ________________________________________

    As far as I’m concerned, that’s a restriction on the data. It must be used for published scientific work and the Spanish INSTITUTO NACIONAL DE METEOROLOGIA cited.
    ____________________________________

    Bahrain”¦.
    ____________________________________

    I am glad to be of assistance to you and data requested is enclosed.
    Please do not supply this data to third parties, unless authorized by us.
    _____________________________________

    And am I correct in saying that any Canadian citizen was welcome to the data, which Phil Jones is not?
    .
    Okay, that’s enough. How anyone could conclude that only one of those agreements placed restrictions on the data is quite beyond me.
    .
    J. Peden, this is nonsense of the first water. We were looking into your claim that ” it says in the license agreements that it is permissable to share data with collaborators for scientific purposes”. Do you truly think people have forgotten that? Because I haven’t. Yes, there are restrictions on the data, but there is nothing in the agreements remotely resembling your claim. You have engaged in an impressive straw man exercise, fascinating, but meaningless.
    .
    As for, “There were only four restrictive agreements”, well, I think we’re getting into quantum territory. I feel I’m being entirely reasonable when suggesting that the four were sent as examples, and because you haven’t seen them doesn’t mean that they don’t exist.
    Why are you persisting with this foolishness when you appear to be totally clueless about what happened? They said at the time that this was all of the agreements that they could find. Not only that, it wasn’t them being nice to us and showing us examples. It was the end result of an FOI request for all of the confidentiality agreements that they had. At the end of the day, after trying mightily to avoid the FOI request, they were forced to comply with the request for all of their agreements. And what did they come up with?
    Four agreements. Not far from Jone’s original estimate that some 2% of the data was covered by the agreements.
    So you may think you are being “entirely reasonable” to make the foolish claim that these were only “examples”, but you are not reasonable at all. You are simply demonstrating that you are venturing into matters where you have not done your homework.
    Finally, as I said above, I also requested the original data that was not covered by the agreements, and Jones refused to release that as well. So the whole “confidentiality” argument is a red herring. Of course, we now know why he refused to release it … he had lost it …

  • J Bowers

    Hank Roberts: “Ah, yes, the black helicopters index pages are secret, aren’t they.”

    Ooh, cue the Truman National Security Project and 33 retired generals and admirals  ;)
    http://www.trumanproject.org/files/misc/Truman_Project_-_Clean_Energy_Ad.pdf

  • Willis Eschenbach

    Man, this blog site is frustrating, it totally messes up the formatting compared to what it looks like in the entry box … grrr …

  • J Bowers

    Willis Eschenbach: Seems to prove my point so far, no exclusions for “scientific purposes”.”

    How so? …

    “It is to be expected that “˜bona fide academic research’ using the data will eventually result in scientific publications in the open literature. “˜The Data Centres will request details of such publications in due course, and if they do not arise UKMO may seek further evidence that this was at least the intention at the outset of the research. “

    W E: J. Peden, this is nonsense of the first water. We were looking into your claim that “ it says in the license agreements that it is permissable to share data with collaborators for scientific purposes”. Do you truly think people have forgotten that? Because I haven’t. Yes, there are restrictions on the data, but there is nothing in the agreements remotely resembling your claim. You have engaged in an impressive straw man exercise, fascinating, but meaningless.

    Firstly, it’s Bowers. Secondly, I addressed that in a later post. To correct you, I have not engaged in straw man argument.

    Keep up, Willis. Is skimming how you usually  conduct your research before throwing out accusations?

  • Willis Eschenbach

    J Bowers Says:
    April 29th, 2010 at 4:11 pm
    .
    Willis Eschenbach: “Seems to prove my point so far, no exclusions for “scientific purposes”.”

    .
    How so? “¦
    .
    “It is to be expected that “˜bona fide academic research’ using the data will eventually result in scientific publications in the open literature. “˜The Data Centres will request details of such publications in due course, and if they do not arise UKMO may seek further evidence that this was at least the intention at the outset of the research. “
    .
    All that says is that if CRU publishes, the Data Centres will request details. It does not say what you claim, that the data can be shared for scientific purposes. In fact, the same document says:
    .
    Data sets must not be passed on to third parties under any circumstances.
    .
    “… under any circumstances” … seems quite clear. You do remember your claim, which was that:
    .
    But, IIRC, it says in the license agreements that it is permissable to share data with collaborators for scientific purposes, as long as (and it is quite specific about this at least in the UK agreement) the work will be published in the recognised scientific literature.
    .
    So who is skimming here? Not one of the four confidentiality agreements supports your claim that it is permissible to share data for scientific purposes. Not one.
    .
    W E: J. Peden, this is nonsense of the first water. We were looking into your claim that “ it says in the license agreements that it is permissable to share data with collaborators for scientific purposes”. Do you truly think people have forgotten that? Because I haven’t. Yes, there are restrictions on the data, but there is nothing in the agreements remotely resembling your claim. You have engaged in an impressive straw man exercise, fascinating, but meaningless.
    Firstly, it’s Bowers.
    .
    My bad, sorry.
    .
    Secondly, I addressed that in a later post. To correct you, I have not engaged in straw man argument.
    .
    Keep up, Willis. Is skimming how you usually  conduct your research before throwing out accusations?
    .
    Clearly, I must have missed that. Where did you address the fact that you were wrong about the confidentiality agreements allowing sharing for scientific purposes? I still can’t find it, despite looking.

  • freespeech

    J Bowers wrote:
    “Ah, I see we’ve gone from “friends” to “others”. I thought I addressed that. Weren’t they scientists publishing in the literature? Do we know for a fact that they didn’t get permission one way or another? How would we know? Was there an informal permission given? Who knows? Who really cares anymore? Not I. Even if there was good reason, you’d find something else to take a pop at. Ever heard of the boy who cried wolf?”

    You seem to be ignore a number of details established by the FOI process and your own quotes of the agreements:
    1) A number of agreements require ALL third parties, to get written permission, there were no exclusions for publishing scientists. Some seemed to impose no limits at all, except a requirement for attribution. A quick review of the UEA pdf of the agreements.
    Spain:
    My Spanish is a little rusty, but I read it well enough. The Spanish document stipulates at the bottom: “Signing below “commits” you to
    using the data as indicated in this form and to cite the original source in any subsequent publications.”
    No other restraints appear.
    UK:
    David Hulme asks for data stating “These data are to be used by the Climatic Research Unit for a specific research project
    sponsored by the NERC, namely the construction of a gridded baseline climatology for global
    land areas. The project falls in the area of Global Environmental Change which makes this
    data request subject to the IACGEC Framework for Data Exchange to which the Met. Office is
    a signatory. The data will not be used unauthorised for any other project and will not be
    passed onto any third party.”

    Hmm, sounds like he is committing to not passing it on to other “researchers”, friendly or not.

    Norway:  ” The condition is that you do not use them commercially or give them to a third party.”
    Once again, no exclusion for friend or foe.

    UKMet:
    “They may not be used for any other projects unless specific prior permission has
    been obtained in writing from the UKMO by a NERC Data Centre”
    Prior to that they say to get data go to NERC not UK Met, and they follwo up with:
    “Data sets must not be passed on to third parties under any circumstances. Any scientist
    requiring data which happens to have been supplied already to someone else, even within
    the same institute or programme of research, must first approach one of the NERC Data
    Centres, who have agreed to maintain records of data users for UKMO.”

    Doesn’t look very hopeful for friend or foe ….

    But Jones supplied it to his friends.
    And we know it was his friends because as Judith pointed out earlier, one of her colleagues was supplied the data, but when Jones found out he told people he got it quite easily, Jones emailed him to say he’d never get it again–nice!

    So, sorry, I don’t see how Jones sent it with authorisation based on the documents UEA holds.

    Now, you seem unwilling to believe that this happened. Preferring to believe that Jones instead, sought those agreements on the behalf of “friends” (even the UKmet, that says go straight to NERC, do not supply to third-parties) as “we have no evidence he didn’t”.

    The problem with this line of reasoning is that Dr Jones couldn’t find all the agreements until he was force to, and he still claimed some were “lost” or “verbal”. I find it difficult to imagine Dr Jones following the letter of agreements he couldn’t even locate. But it seems you don’t. Perhaps that’s why you frequent RC, stoat etc. Where comments that point out flaws in reasoning, timelines and detail are quietly dropped on the floor.

  • Willis Eschenbach

    Another example surfaced today of IPCC flim-flammery … the hits just keep on happening. Note that  not only is it not (as far as I can tell) peer-reviewed , it doesn’t even say what the IPCC claims it says.

    As Keith Kloor says above,

    “In earlier comments, Judith suggested that perhaps it was time to shift the focus on to  IPCC processes, where a debate would be more relevant. I’m all for that, if people are still game.”


    This is just another of the many, many documented failures of the IPCC process. I don’t know what the solution is, but one thing is certain — the current process isn’t working.

  • freespeech

    So Hank, given that Gavin’s comment regarding Andrew Montford has been revealed to be totally untrue,  and you can verify by hearing it directly from the BBC. Can you surmise why the posters at RC didn’t spend the 1 minute or so to check for themselves? Why they took Gavin’s word for it? Why not a single post pointing out Gavin’s folly appeared at RC? And why Gavin was happy to allow dhogaza to repeatedly call Mr Montford a liar when the only evidence of blatant untruth was Gavin’s own comments?

    Those RC guys don’t seem to be a very inquisitive bunch, and yet they conduct an inquisition style sttack on Mr Montford, despite having never read his book. Curious isn’t it.

  • J Bowers

    Willis Eschenbach; “Clearly, I must have missed that. Where did you address the fact that you were wrong about the confidentiality agreements allowing sharing for scientific purposes? I still can’t find it, despite looking.”

    #515:
    “Firstly, my IIRC wasn’t quite correct (it was late and I’d just finished a 21 hour working day). The third party scientist must approach NERC for permission. But, the UK agreement is quite clear and quite draconian (in the spirit of our Civil Service having to generate revenue”¦ thanks Gov), and as I find it’s a frequent necessity to clarify what was in the agreement (if I had a quid for every time”¦) here are the relevant parts. The bolding is not mine but the UKMO’s:”

    Freespeech had some fun with it, to which I respond that there’s no way of knowing if permission was sought or not sought. The Climategate emails are a redacted miniscule set of all of those scientists’ emails over a number of years, therefore  unreliable for passing comment one way or the other. I do recall that the reason for Peter Webster getting the data over more than two years is explained in the UEA 28 page response to Charles Arthur’s FOIA requests.
    http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/25032/response/66822/attach/2/Response%20letter%20199%20100121.pdf

    FOI_09-125
    I understand that the CRUTEM station data set that has been sent from CRU to Peter Webster and/or any other person at Georgia Tech between January 1, 2007 and Jun 25, 2009 is covered by confidentiality agreements and requests for this data have been denied as regulation 12(5)(f) applies because the information requested was received by the University on terms that prevent further transmission to non-academics.

  • Steven Mosher

    Continuing for the benefit of Phil and others.
    To recap. Phil suggested that gavin had answered all my claims. He linked to RC. he didnt study the matter. he is too busy. he linked to gavin. Perhaps he trusts that gavin will give him the straight scoop. What we saw in gavin’s first point was an unwise attempt to say
    “lots of papers get special treatment” This was a stupid defense as we can all see. Just logically, If I am complaining about “special treatment” one can’t ARGUE that special happens a lot of time. That would make it ordinary not special. Further as we saw, it BACKFIRES because if this special treatment is bad and it happens LOTS of times, then we have MORE problems.
    Any way on from simple logic to Gavins next point:

    2. The Amman Wahl paper relied on another paper that was not published until after the IPCC report.

    [Response: No. It cited another paper that, for various reasons, was held up. If you think that the IPCC report would have been substantially different if there hadn't been this cite, you are very much mistaken. - gavin]

    I say the paper(WA) in question cited a paper NOT PUBLISHED until after the IPPC report. Gavin says NO, it cited a paper that was held up for publication. He disagrees and then agrees. Lets review the facts to get this clear.

    First: Lets listen to an EXPERT on the importance of this issue. Phil Jones. In a mail sent to Roger Peilke Sr.
    published at WUWT.

    Your [Roger] mistakes are more than typographical errors! If I had reviewed the paper I would have told you to go back and read Brohan et al (2006). I have just had a meeting with one of my PhD students. He is writing a paper and I suggested he refer to a certain paper. He said he’s been unable to locate a copy of the paper, which I have to admit is a bit obscure. He then recalled that when he started 2 years ago I told him it was essential to read through all the papers he was ever intending to refer to.  I don’t recall giving him this sound advice, but I guess I must have. I do recall getting the same advice in the 1970s. I still try to follow the advice I got.
    Over the years I’ve reviewed countless papers. I have no evidence except my history of reviewing, but I’ve noticed that authors who make mistakes referring to the literature or to datasets or not apparently knowing which datasets they have used, have invariably made mistakes elsewhere.


    Lets agree to use Jones as our rule. Authors who make these kinds of mistakes are not to be trusted.
    The paper in question is the discussed in Bishop Hill’s fine post http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2008/8/11/caspar-and-the-jesus-paper.html
    I’ll give the short version here. No one has challenged this account. Wahl even refers to it in the mails. As I noted in other posts, the Wahl and Ammann paper (WA) that was shoehorned into the IPCC CH06, by the extraordinary efforts of Schneider and Overpeck, was critical to blunting the criticism of Mcintyre. In the SOD ( second order draft) the conclusions that Briffa wrote were uncertain. Mann, Overpeck, Solomon all wanted less more certainty in the conclusions. This was to be provided by Wahl and Ammanns paper. WA was finally accepted in march 06,
    Date: Tue, 28 Feb 2006 21:42:42 -0500
    Cc: “Keith Briffa” <k.briffa@xxxxxxxxx.xxx>, “Eystein Jansen” <eystein.jansen@xxxxxxxxx.xxx>, “Caspar Ammann” <ammann@xxxxxxxxx.xxx>

    Hello all:

    Good news this day. The Wahl-Ammann paper also has been given fully accepted status today by Stephen Schneider. I copy his affirmation of this below, and after that his remark from earlier this month regarding this status being equivalent to “in press”. I hope this meets the deadline of before March 1 for citation.

    Peace, Gene
    But the paper had a problem. It referred to a another paper lets call that AW, like Wahl does. Wahl, sept 12, 2007
    Sent: Wednesday, September 12, 2007 6:44 PM
    To: ‘Phil Jones’; Caspar Ammann
    Subject: RE: Wahl/Ammann

    Hi Phil:

    There were inevitably a few things that needed to be changed in the final version of the WA paper, such as the reference to the GRL paper that was not published (replaced by the AW paper here), two or three
    additional pointers to the AW paper, changed references of a Mann/Rutherford/Wahl/Ammann paper from 2005 to 2007, and a some other
    very minor grammatical/structural things. I tried to keep all of this to the barest minimum possible, while still providing a good reference structure. I imagine that MM will make the biggest issue about the very
    existence of the AW paper, and then the referencing of it in WA; but that was simply something we could not do without, and indeed AW does a good job of contextualizing the whole matter.

    So first things first. Lets get our time frames set. In march of 2006. WA ( the special paper) is finally accepted.

    Robustness of the Mann, Bradley, Hughes reconstruction
    of Northern Hemisphere surface temperatures:
    Examination of criticisms based on the nature and
    processing of proxy climate evidence
    Eugene R. Wahl
    · Caspar M. Ammann
    Received: 11 May 2005 / Accepted: 1 March 2006 / Published online: 31 August 2007
    C
    ⃝ Springer Science + Business Media B.V. 2007

    It just makes the deadline for Ch06 of the AR4. The mails from overpeck, mann, briffa, all show that they considered this paper to be important. The CHANGES from the SOD ( second order draft) demonstrate that this paper had an influence. Briffa broke the rules to talk to Wahl about this paper. I claim this paper contained a reference to a paper that would not be published until AFTER the IPCC report was finalized. That report was completed in March 2007, last updates, sept 07
    So here is the Timeline:
    in March of 2006 WA is accepted. Briffa can use it. BUT, WA refers to an rejected GRL paper, so Wahl and Ammann have to find a way to fix this. So they get Schneider to accept 2nd paper at Climate change. Schneider had helped them get WA through the system ( even tried to label the paper provisionally accepted) So now Schneider helps them patch up this reference problem, by accepting the AW paper. As Wahl notes the AW paper is critical.

    As Wahl notes in his mail WA had a reference to an unpublished GRL paper. WA relied on an unpublished GRL paper, a paper that was rejected. What the authors did was rather clever, they summitted another paper, to Climate change, keeping the authorship the same. As Wahl notes in his mail THIS PAPER replaces the GRL paper that was rejected. This paper {AW} as I noted is referenced in WA
    References
    Ammann CM, Wahl ER (2007) The importance of the geophysical context in statistical evaluations of climate
    reconstruction procedures. Clim Change (this volume)

    My claim was that AW was published After the paper that referred to it. WA: march 2006. how about AW?

    The importance of the geophysical context in statistical
    evaluations of climate reconstruction procedures
    Caspar M. Ammann & Eugene R. Wahl
    Received: 22 August 2000 / Accepted: 13 June 2007 / Published online: 24 August 2007
    # Springer Science + Business Media B.V. 2007

    AW? accepted june 2007.

    ACCEPTED JUNE 2007. So, WA was accepted in march 2006. It was critical to CH06. Overpeck says so. WA cited AW. Wahl says so, and I posted the cite from their bibliography. the paper accepted in MARCH 2006 references a paper accepted in June 2007, published in August 2007. The IPCC WG1 full report was completed in march of 2007 and finally updated on sept 5 2007.

    So WA (march 2006) is used by Briffa to counter Mcintyre and write Ch06. but WA refers to an unpublished GRL paper so this must be fixed, so AW is substituted after the fact. AW is critical as Wahl notes. AW is not accepted until JUNE of 2007 and not published until aug 2007. AFTER the IPCC WG 1 is finished, and a few days before the final update.

    So gavin is wrong. Jones is right. Now comes the question, how important was AW? Well to understand that you only need to read wahl’s mail. But there is more. When Briffa ( in may of 2006) is trying to respond to McIntyre, Briffa needs help. Mcintyre is a reviewer. He knows the WA paper. He knows it refers to an unpublished GRL paper. So he presses briffa. Just as JONES WOULD. how could Briffa use a paper without checking the references! well in this case the reference didnt exist. Briffa contacts Wahl. Outside the process. In violation of Overpecks orders. Wahl provides Briffa help, what kind of help? He uses material from another unpublished paper .
    So simply. Overpeck works to get the WA paper into Ch06. That paper refers to an unpublished paper. Briffa has difficulties with WA and violates the rules to enlist Wahl’s help. Wahl helps by providing briffa with information from another unpublished paper, a paper that wont be published until aug 2007.
    When Holland issued his FOIA to CRU for Briffa’s correspondence, he was threatening to uncover this. That is why, Jones told people to delete the mails.

    gavin also thinks that nothing in Ch06 changes because of this. Gavin claims a counterfactual. he claims that the report would be the same without the paper. Overpeck, briffa, mann, all disagree. in the lead up to the writing of that chapter, they promised Briffa the paper. they argued it was needed. they pushed to get it in press before the deadlines. they changed the deadlines. All for a paper that gavin says doesnt matter. AND THEN when caught out, Jones  suggest deleting mails. right

  • J Bowers

    freespeech: “My Spanish is a little rusty, but I read it well enough. The Spanish document stipulates at the bottom: “Signing below “commits” you to using the data as indicated in this form and to cite the original source in any subsequent publications.”
    No other restraints appear.”

    So I take it you actually know what it was to be used for? Did Phil Jones publish using this data? I also take it that you are privvy to all of CRU and Professor Jones’ correspondence between all relevant parties over the years, or are you just second guessing and making assumptions? That last question covers the rest of your post.

  • Phil Clarke

    Steve,

    I see you have reduced the word count from 1700 to 1600. Do you think it conceivable that nobody is actually reading this stuff?

    I think we should at least consider the possibility.

    Signing off now …..

  • Steven Mosher

    Oh,

    Just for Bowers and other people’s information.  On the issue of confidentiality, FOIA, and CRU’s obligations.

    Jones understood and referred to confidentiality agreements in 2002, 2004, 2005.
    In 2002 he sent data to Mcintyre acknowledging in the correspondence the existence of these agreements. McIntyre was unknown at the time. Unpublished.
    In 2005 he sent this confidential data to Rutherford and ask Mann to have Rutherford take care in NOT posting it to an open FTP site. Sometime after this Jones himself would post this data to an open FTP. In 2008 he shared the data with Webster, again in apparent violation of these agreements. Throughout the course of his mails, Jones take two positions: He argues that this data should be open under WMO rule 40, and he says he will use the confidentiality agreements  to hide behind and refuse release. When he wants to Jones violates these agreements. When he didnt want to, he misrepresented their terms.

    The FOIA regulations require CRU to balance the publics right to know against the rights of third parties that they have confidentiality agreements with. They are REQUIRED to inform third parties that they may have to release confidential data. CRU have not done this. I did an FOIA on them back in Nov 2009. Further, CRU is required to determine that the data is NECESSARY to their mission. That is, they cannot accept confidential data without showing that it is necessary to their mission. Again, I FOIAd them in Nov 2009 requestion information on this determination. They have not performed any analysis to show that confidential data ( lets say 2% of the data) is required. In fact, confidential data is not required.

  • freespeech

    J Bowers wrote:
    “are you just second guessing and making assumptions? That last question covers the rest of your post.”
    Yes I am assuming that there is a problem with Jones simultaneously claiming:
    1) That he can’t find all the agreements
    2) He can’t pass on data because of agreements
    3) He can’t answer FOIs because he has lots of important work to do
    4) He can’t get agreement from Met offices on behalf of people he doesn’t like
    5) He can send data to Peter Webster, with Webster (as paraphrased above by Judith) claiming you just had to ask nicely–no mention of independently getting permission–so YOU would have to presume Jones did it. Note that claiming Hughes is a Jones collaborator is insufficient, as he is not mentioned in the agreements and those agreements were for a SPECIFIC purpose, as outline by Hulme’s letter.
    6) Sent data to McIntyre in 2002 with no agreements, publication history or academic credentials required.
    7) Denies access to Hughes, an academic who has published on surface temperature.
    8) Always sticks to the letter of his mostly missing agreements
    9) Tells Webster he’ll never get data again.

    Yup a hell of a scientist. No wonder the RC crowd love him.

    And well done Mr Bowers, you’ve displayed the investigative powers that should stand you in good stead in Climate Science.
    Time to go back to singing their them song:
    “You’ve got to accentuate the positive
    Eliminate the negative
    Latch on to the affirmative
    Don’t mess with Mister In-Between”

  • J Bowers

    Steven Mosher: “In 2005 he sent this confidential data to Rutherford and ask Mann to have Rutherford take care in NOT posting it to an open FTP site.”

    Protecting the data as required, perhaps?

    S M: “Sometime after this Jones himself would post this data to an open FTP.”

    We all make mistakes. Don’t you?

    S M: “In 2008 he shared the data with Webster, again in apparent violation of these agreements.”

    Haven’t I commented on that at least twice now? Are too many reading far too much into 0.01% of what would be a complete set of data (i.e., emails). A bit of a Schrodinger’s Cat situation IMHO.

    S M: “Throughout the course of his mails, Jones take two positions: He argues that this data should be open under WMO rule 40, and he says he will use the confidentiality agreements  to hide behind and refuse release. “

    Haven’t you written a book on this? Are you saying you didn’t bother to ask him? People do change their minds, as well. I used to love a pint of bitter, but I can’t stand the stuff now.

    S M: “When he wants to Jones violates these agreements. “

    See my comment above.

    S M: “When he didnt want to, he misrepresented their terms.”

    That’s a big accusation to make Mr Mosher.

    S M: “The FOIA regulations require CRU to balance the publics right to know against the rights of third parties that they have confidentiality agreements with. “

    Please link to the relevant regulations at the Ministry of Justice website, or at the ICO.

    S M: “They are REQUIRED to inform third parties that they may have to release confidential data. CRU have not done this. “

    Which assumes that you are correct in your previous sentence. They also didn’t seem to think that they might need to release the data, so why would they inform any third parties?

    S M: “Further, CRU is required to determine that the data is NECESSARY to their mission. That is, they cannot accept confidential data without showing that it is necessary to their mission. Again, I FOIAd them in Nov 2009 requestion information on this determination. They have not performed any analysis to show that confidential data ( lets say 2% of the data) is required. In fact, confidential data is not required.”

    As a British taxpayer, I want my climate research unit to have all of the data it can possibly have, so I therefore disagree with your statement that it’s not required. Besides, if they hadn’t acquired the data in the first place, how would anyone know if they needed it or not? They’re not prescient. Chickens and eggs and all that.

  • Willis Eschenbach

    J Bowers Says:
    April 29th, 2010 at 6:43 pm
    Willis Eschenbach; “Clearly, I must have missed that. Where did you address the fact that you were wrong about the confidentiality agreements allowing sharing for scientific purposes? I still can’t find it, despite looking.”

    #515:
    “Firstly, my IIRC wasn’t quite correct (it was late and I’d just finished a 21 hour working day). The third party scientist must approach NERC for permission. But, the UK agreement is quite clear and quite draconian (in the spirit of our Civil Service having to generate revenue”¦ thanks Gov), and as I find it’s a frequent necessity to clarify what was in the agreement (if I had a quid for every time”¦) here are the relevant parts. The bolding is not mine but the UKMO’s:”
    I’m still confused. What you have posted solely covers who can get the information from NERC. It says nothing that gives CRU any authority to redistribute the data, as you have claimed. In fact, it says specifically that CRU cannot redistribute the data as you have claimed.
    .
    In short, there is nothing in the document to back up your claim that CRU could pass the data on to scientists. It says if you want data, you have to apply directly to NERC. Let me quote the relevant section of the document in full (emphasis mine):
    .

    UKMO data / software so obtained may be used solely for the purpose for which they were supplied. They may not be used for any other projects unless specific prior permission has been obtained in writing from the UKMO by a NERC Data Centre. Note that this applies even for other bona fide academic work.
    .
    UKMO does not discourage the use of its data for commercial applications, but different licensing arrangements and charges will apply. Should any commercial prospects emerge subsequent to the original supply of the data, the licensing position must be clarified, and any appropriate fees negotiated with UKMO before such prospects are followed up.
    .
    Data sets must not be passed on to third parties under any circumstances. Any scientist requiring data which happens to have been supplied already to someone else, even within the same institute or programme of research, must first approach one of the NERC Data Centres, who have agreed to maintain records of data users for UKMO.

    .
    Seems quite clear to me. If you want the data, you have to apply to NERC and get it from them. I see nothing there that says your claim is correct. I see nothing saying that CRU is free to redistribute the data to other scientists as Jones did. It specifically says they are not free to redistribute. In other words, your claim:
    .
    J. Bowers: But, IIRC, it says in the license agreements that it is permissable to share data with collaborators for scientific purposes, as long as (and it is quite specific about this at least in the UK agreement) the work will be published in the recognised scientific literature.
    .
    is simply not true.
    .
    What am I missing here?

  • Willis Eschenbach

    J Bowers Says:
    April 29th, 2010 at 7:51 pm
    Steven Mosher: “In 2005 he sent this confidential data to Rutherford and ask Mann to have Rutherford take care in NOT posting it to an open FTP site.”
    Protecting the data as required, perhaps?
    Surely you are not serious. He is required by the confidentiality agreements not to share the data. He shares the data anyway, with the proviso that the recipient not allow that fact to become public knowedge.
    And you call that “protecting the data as required”??? You have definitely lost the plot here. Protecting the data as required means not sending it in the first place. It doesn’t mean “I’ll send you the data if you promise to take good care of it and not tell anyone”.

  • Bill Hunter

    Judy is to be commended.

    One can argue till ones blue in the face whether you have fraud or incompetence.  But does it matter that much?  Sloppy or questionable work and refusals to disclosure.  Lost documentation to verify results.  Errors and a cavalier dismissal of their discovery.  Incompetent investigations that don’t even make a pretense of investigating the real issues giving the appearance of a deliberate whitewash.

    The problem is the entire attitude about what amounts to serious omissions of obligations to the public regarding documentation,  disclosure, and discretion. 

    We have had children running the show and its not going to be acceptable.  Judy cannot fix this with just her and a few compatriots, its going to take the entire world of science to take a close look at how credibility issues arise and how to prevent them.  Judy is taking the first steps and lets hope that many others see the importance in what she is doing.

    but clearly you have one or the other and the solution

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    Sorry, guy, listen to the BBC, then look into what McKitrick claims when he accuses Jones of “falsification” of the IPCC record.  He means his paper didn’t get in.  Yes, you do have to have been reading a while to know, or else you have to look it up for yourself.

    Try here for an orientation to the issue and his complaint.  Their summary conveys a good idea why it’s a big yawn, and not the number one item you’d bring up given airtime at the BBC:

    http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2010/02/25/the_fp_guide_to_climate_skeptics?page=full

    Or here for the teardown:
    http://deepclimate.org/2010/04/05/mcclimategate-continued-mckitrick-wrong-on-ipcc/

    Or for the complete copypaste list of echoes, this will get 280+
    http://www.google.com/search?q=montford+jones+fabrication+mckitrick+climate+%2BIPCC

  • J Bowers

    Willis Eschenbach: “It says nothing that gives CRU any authority to redistribute the data, as you have claimed. In fact, it says specifically that CRU cannot redistribute the data as you have claimed.”

    Comment #515 by Yours Truly;
    Firstly, my IIRC wasn’t quite correct (it was late and I’d just finished a 21 hour working day). The third party scientist must approach NERC for permission. ..”

    In other words I say I was mistaken. I made a mistake. I was wrong.

    W E: “I see nothing saying that CRU is free to redistribute the data to other scientists as Jones did.”

    Yes. I know.

    Does anyone know if the  IACGEC Framework for Data Exchange allows for data to be exchanged between  collaborators on academic climate research?

  • J Bowers

    Willis Eschenbach: “Surely you are not serious.”

    Actually, I am. Maybe I give the benefit of the doubt where I feel appropriate. I make no excuses for that nor do I need to explain myself. Perhaps it’s what differentiates sceptics from cynics?

  • Steven Mosher

    Piltdown Mann!

    I absolutely love it when people refer to that post. That post from Nov of 2007 does several things. First, when people refer to it they propagate that meme. Now, most people who have been around have learned the lesson of not referring to it because they know that it just propagates the meme. Typically it propagates the meme at venues where they dont want to propagate the meme. Later the sharper tools in the box explain that to them.

    The comment is also ALWAYS quoted in isolation. So, if you go to the thread, you will see that I explain what motivated that Meme, what it means, and how the hockey stick is different from the Piltdown man.  Neat trick lede.

    http://climateaudit.org/2007/11/09/al-gore-and-dr-thompsons-thermometer/#comment-116266

    In Nov 2007 Climate audit was up for science Blog of the year. There were two opponents: Pharengyla and bad astronomy. Pharengyla threw his support to Bad astronomy and said several nasty things about CA. Visiting the site I found it was about evolution, but the discussion wasnt much about the science. It struck me then. Evolution as a science had withstood the test of a Hoax.
    Why couldnt climate science just admit that the hockey stick was a piece of bad science and move on.
    But when I read the rantings
    at the ferengi site ( I thinks I gots that name wrong) it occured to me that they should KNOW the harm that bad science does.”

    http://climateaudit.org/2007/11/09/al-gore-and-dr-thompsons-thermometer/#comment-116324

    http://climateaudit.org/2007/11/09/al-gore-and-dr-thompsons-thermometer/#comment-116276

    Some people saw the humour
    http://climateaudit.org/2007/11/09/al-gore-and-dr-thompsons-thermometer/#comment-116307

    Anyways, I spent some time researching the history of the piltdown hoax and how it happened and how it took almost 40 years to get rid of it.  I think if people read the history surrounding the piltdown man they will see some interesting similiarities between that hoax and the hockeystick. “

    The parallels with the hockey stick were stunning.
    http://climateaudit.org/2007/11/09/al-gore-and-dr-thompsons-thermometer/#comment-116365

    I have an extended piece on that that I’m saving for the right day. Anyway, I went to CA, posted a hilarious picture of the Penn State Mann carving a hockey stick. Then in subsequent comments I explained the similarities and differences, Basically concluding that the hockey stick was not a hoax. Primarily because we had no evidence that Mann knew he was wrong. What we had was a mistake, rather than a Hoax:
    “Here is where I come down. One can believe in evolution as I do and still see the piltdown
    man as a hoax and bad science. The theory Doesnt get knocked down because of the hoax.
    Similiarly, one should be able to accept GW or even AGW and recognize the hockey stick for what it is. The “hoax” comparison is a bit harsh on Dr. Mann. I think he made a mistake. But carrying on as he has in light of what experts have said takes it to the level of “willful ignorance”

    http://climateaudit.org/2007/11/09/al-gore-and-dr-thompsons-thermometer/#comment-116371

    But, in terms of how that mistake gets perpetuated, the similarities are striking. Even down to some of the journals involved, and down to the inaccessibility of the original data. Essentially the thesis,  is that mistakes and hoaxes get perpetuated by the same sociological forces. By the same strategies and happy coinicidences. What makes them different of course is the  motivation. In Piltdown we have a person knowingly perpetuating a fraud, while in the hockey stick, we have a mistake perpetuated. Still the mechanisms that determine the longevity of the error ( be it hoax or mistake) are similar.

    As always thanks to those who continue to mention this. I need that reminder to finish the piece.

  • Willis Eschenbach

    J Bowers Says:
    April 29th, 2010 at 9:54 pm
    Willis Eschenbach: “Surely you are not serious.”
    Actually, I am. Maybe I give the benefit of the doubt where I feel appropriate. I make no excuses for that nor do I need to explain myself. Perhaps it’s what differentiates sceptics from cynics?
    .
    You have agreed that Jones did not have the right to redistribute. He refused to give me the data, saying he did not have the right to redistribute.
    .
    Yet you defend him redistributing. You call this “giving the benefit of the doubt” … I don’t get that. I say he didn’t have the right. You say he didn’t have the right. Jones said he didn’t have the right. We all agree he didn’t have the right.
    .
    Sooooo … where is the doubt coming from, that you are giving him the benefit of?

  • Steven Mosher

    Briffa “Stealing ” Wahl’s work

    I’ll get a ahead of myself just a bit in discussing the Briffa/Wahl issue, just because the Wegman discussion puts it to the forefront. I LOVE IT when people discuss wegman. because we can do an interesting compare and constrast. its the perfect lead in to Briffa “stealing” Wahl’s work to counter Mcintyre.

    It’s why Jones asks people to delete mails. Hollands FOIA sought out these communications. Finding these mails probably made the hackers day.

    To recap: Briffa contacts Wahl in voliation of  IPCC polices and Overpeck’s orders. he needs wahls help. The deadline is coming. Now since Wahl isnt a reviewer, he should not be providing comments directly to Briffa. This circumvents the review process. There is a process for getting Wahl added as a reviewer and Overpeck could also per IPCC policies call for a workshop to discuss these issues. A late paper into the process, a controversial issue, calls for sunlight.
    Especially since his comments are going in AFTER the official reviewers have met their deadline.In this case, Wahl is allowed to promote his own findings against Mcintyre. Wahl gets the last word, outside the process. unaccountable. Lets just pull quotes from the thread

    July 22 2006 Wahl
    “What I am concerned about for the time being is that nothing in the review article shows up anywhere. It is just going in, and confidentiality is important. The only exception to this are the points I make in my blue comments in the big review file on page 104, concerning the MM way of benchmarking the RE statistic. Those comments are fine to repeat at this point. [Please excuse my hesitance in this way.]”

    Briffa responding:

    Gene
    >here is where I am up to now with my responses (still a load to do) - you can see that I have “borrowed (stolen)” from 2 of your responses in a significant degree – please assure me that this OK (and will not later be obvious) hopefully.
    You will get the whole text(confidentially again ) soon. You could also see that I hope to be fair to Mike – but he can be a little unbalanced in his remarks sometime – and I have had to disagree with his interpretations of some issues also.

    Please do not pass these on to anyone at all.
    Keith

    Wahl:

    Here is the text with my comments. I will go over the “stolen”
    parts (highlighted in blue outline) for a final time tomorrow
    morning, but I wanted to get this to you ASAP…..
    This is really a lot of work you’ve taken on, and I REALLY
    appreciate what you and the others are doing!
    [I've also been a lot involved with helping to get a person from the Pew Center for Global Climate Change ready to testify in front of the House Energy and Environment Committee tomorrow. That is why I
    couldn't get this done and sent to you earlier today. Send Mike Mann and Jay Gulledge (Pew Center) all good thoughts for strength and clarity.]

    Interesting that wahl should bring this up.

    And the exchange ends with this mail from Briffa:

    From: Keith Briffa [mailto:k.briffa@xxxxxxxxx.xxx]
    Sent: Mon 7/31/2006 10:29 AM
    To: Wahl, Eugene R
    Subject: RE: confidential

    First Gene – let me say that I never intended that you should spend
    so much time on this – though I really appreciate your take on these
    points. …..
    I am attaching what I have done (see blue highlighting) to the
    section in response to comments (including the addition of the needed extra section on the “tree-ring issues” called for by several people). I have had no feedback yet on this as it has not been generally circulated , but thought you might like to see it. PLEASE REMEMBER that this is “for your eyes only ” . Please do NOT feel that I am asking /expecting you to go through this in any detail – but
    given the trouble you have taken,I thought it reasonable to give
    you a private look. Cheers
    Keith

    So how is this different from the Wegman affair. how is it the same? If we did an FOIA on Wegman to get his emails and he suggested to someone that they should be deleted, what would we say?

  • Steven Mosher

    Lets play a game called flipping the script.

    there is a reason why climategate is still in the news and still on the blogs. It works like this. Your goal when you have bad news is to get all the bad news news out and then prevent any stories that allow people to bring the bad news up again. You want to prevent them from flipping your script. here’s the deal with climategate and the mails, something that dawned on me with the first   hours of reading. The mails allow skeptics to flip the script ANY TIME you attack them.  let me see how I put it early on, nov 21.

    steven mosher (Comment#24087) November 21st, 2009 at 12:42 pm | Reply w/ Link

    lucia (Comment#24055) November 21st, 2009 at 8:59 am
    Couldnt agree more. for me the big story is the erosion of confidence in institutions like journals, peer review, universities, NAS.
    It hasn’t been corrupted enough to produce FALSE answers, but it’s not producing the best science. Principly because they fear debate.
    They fear releasing data and code, the good the bad and the ugly. They fear delay, and they may just have ensured the very thing they fear. Call me a trusting soul but I think if you free the data, free the code and open the debate that you’ll get the right result. And that result will be measured action to prevent a climate catastrophe.
    But, they are living under this fear that somehow corporations are controlling the message. Their response, adopt the tactics of their perceived enemy. They became what they feared”
    It was clear to me that the “team” had adopted the tactics of their perceived foe. Had become the thing they feared.  That means this. Mann feared journals being corrupted, so what did he suggest: generating files on editors. Whats this create? the perception that all journals may be corrupted. So now, when you attack a skeptic for publishing in a corrupt journal.. he has the perfect script flipper. he pulls up the mails about journals. the story lives. Accuse Wegman of plagarism… flip the script, bring up Briffa. Doesnt matter that there are differences, its enough of hook to keep that story going. Attack their funding… flip the script bring up the shell oil funding. Attack the skeptics for being mean ( the latest charge by some against Mcintyre?) flip the script Phil Jones talking about John Daly death. Each and every attack against skeptics is just an invitation to flip the script? why? simple. the team became the enemy they feared.  Noble cause corruption. It works like that.
    Hence the need for new spokespeople. Hence the need for a new strategy.
    Ha funny: found this.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SgTbmFrtZ_4

  • Steven Mosher

    567:

    willis, the benefit of the doubt is like a royal fizbin

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BlK-Usd1tBM

  • Steven Mosher

    or willis, its like calvin ball.

    http://calvinball.wikidot.com/

    Jones to Hughes: this data should be released according to WMO resolution 40.
    Jones to Hughes: i wont release it even if the WMO say so
    Jones to Mcintyre:  here is the data, but I have to be careful I dont want to get in trouble
    Jones to Mann: I gave the data to rutherford, make sure he doesn’t put it on an open FTP, we dont want it getting into the wrong hands
    Jones to Wigley: if anybody asks for the data Ill hide behind the agreements
    Jones to Webster?
    Jones to McIntyre: only academics can get it.
    Jones to the Academic Dr. Hu Mcolluch: You are an academic, but nobody can get it.
    Jones to HTTP: heres my data, make sure anybody can get it.
    Jones to McIntyre: we lost the agreements that say you cant have it.
    FOIA appeal officer to McIntyre: We agree that jones screwed up and violated agreements by releasing it to webster, but thats no reason for us to make the same mistake again
    Jones to  Ross McKittrick: releasing this data would harm international relations.

    Mosher to CRU: Did you inform the third parties that you had violated their agreements by posting the files in the internet and by transmitting them to webster..

    FOIA officer to mosher:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K8E_zMLCRNg

  • kuhnkat

    Steven Mosher,

    Unfair quoting facts and actual statements/communications. I thought this was a Climate Science discussion!!

  • http://bishophill.squarespace.com Bishop Hill

    Hank

    You say “listen to the BBC”, but I don’t know which BBC piece you mean. You can’t mean my BBC interview I think.

    McKitrick’s allegation is that Jones inserted statements that had no foundation in the scientific literature. You say his beef is that “he didn’t get in”. This is wrong. It couldn’t be his complaint because Jones did eventually cite the paper.

    You then argue that the paper was no good. You point to a Foreign Policy article which doesn’t appear to discuss the issue at all – why do you think this article is relevant?

    You then point to a blog post which argues that McKitrick is wrong. Again, this is not relevant to McKitrick’s case that Jones inserted statements into the IPCC report that were unfounded in the scientific literature. To clarify, it is possible that a basis for Jones’ statements could subsequently be found and published in the literature, but this would not be any defence of Jones.

  • http://bishophill.squarespace.com Bishop Hill

    Whoops, some problems with the italics there. More coffee required.

  • http://hankroberts.wordpress.com Hank Roberts

    BH, if you’re claiming McKitrick means something else, please say what you think he’s talking about.  I find nothing but that one issue, which as Foreign Affairs says is an ‘ink blot’ capable of endless argument.  Want to speculate what the AR5 will say about it?

  • Phil Clarke

    So how is this different from the Wegman affair. how is it the same?

    One is two academics collaborating each with the tacit agreement of the other. One is on the face of it an academic copying stuff from wiki, textbooks etc and altering the meaning to suit an agenda without the knowledge, much less the agreement of the original authors.
    Simples!

    Dunno about other readers but I am finding this endless dissection of procedural transgressions absolutely riveting;  a lot more enjoyable than discussing the boring old science….

  • http://bishophill.squarespace.com Bishop Hill

    Hank Roberts #573

    The reference to an ‘ink-blot’ issue in the article you cite refers to the Hockey Stick affair. McKitrick’s allegation concerns a paper on the urban heat island effect.

    Are you clear on which paper we are discussing here?

  • freespeech

    Phil Clarke wrote: “One is two academics collaborating each with the tacit agreement of the other. One is on the face of it an academic copying stuff from wiki, textbooks etc and altering the meaning to suit an agenda without the knowledge, much less the agreement of the original authors.
    Simples!”

    Gee, I thought plagiarism is copying someone’s work without attribution. I sure know that lot’s of students copy from each other with cooperation, and yet they are charged with plagiarism.

    Now Briffa contacts Wahl to help him include something to defuse a problem, Briffa can’t acknowledge the source because it would violate the IPCC rules, so he deliberately doesn’t. So fraud and plagiarism.

    Using the “Bowers metric” Wegman can’t be accused of deliberate plagiarism because we can’t possibly know he didn’t attribute on purpose, in addition to which there would have been no issue if he did attribute, so there really was no motive for Wegman. Perhaps just a stupid oversight, would be the worst reaction that J Bowers could possibly muster on this, based on his much more extreme examples of “benefit of the doubt”.
    However the Briffa example has motive for lack of attribution, has Briffa contacting people with upfront requirements of “confidentiality”, and has him publish text that lacks the attribution that would have revealed him to have circumvented the IPCC procedures. Doesn’t seem much doubt that Briffa acted deliberately to conceal malpractice in his IPCC work, and it seems he was encouraged by other to do this.

  • J Bowers

    Willis Eschenbach: “Sooooo “¦ where is the doubt coming from, that you are giving him the benefit of?”

    Any doubt would be coming from yourself and Steven Mosher.

    W E: “You have agreed that Jones did not have the right to redistribute. He refused to give me the data, saying he did not have the right to redistribute.”

    I don’t know because I haven’t been privvy to CRU’s correspondence, digital or analogue. I’m sure I’ve at least suggested this a couple of times now.

    Phil Clarke: “Dunno about other readers but I am finding this endless dissection of procedural transgressions absolutely riveting;  “

    Not I.

    Willis Eschenbach: “You have agreed that Jones did not have the right to redistribute. He refused to give me the data, saying he did not have the right to redistribute.”

    No, but I will agree that CRU did not have the right to give the data to you specifically. You were not an academic climate scientist collaborating with Phil Jones, correct? UEA specifically point out in their FOIA response to Charles Arthur, which I have quoted and linked to already, that they are not allowed to give the data to non-academics under regulation 12(5)(f). I can’t comment on Georgia Tech and the others because I don’t have enough information to form an opinion.

    As for not being able to find the paperwork (#545), me thinking it’s not a big deal, and you requesting I never come work for you (not a problem), those particular agreements go back to March 1994. I really don’t see what your problem is with them not being able to find the agreements, given that you didn’t make your request until well over a decade later (correct me if I’m wrong on that timing).

  • RichieRich

    Phil @ #574

    Here are four options:

    1. Wegman: no impropriety, CRU: no impropriety
    2. Wegman: no impropriety, CRU: impropriety
    3. Wegman: impropriety, CRU: no impropriety
    4. Wegman: impropriety, CRU: impropriety

    My own view, for what it’s worth is that 4 is the best description.  The attribution stuff re Wegman leaves me feeling rather uncomfortable though, at the same time, I don’t think it affects Wegman’s critique of the statistics.  Eli Rabett argues that Wegman didn’t answer Ritson’s critique of his statistical methods.  Alternatively, in his book, pp263-4, Biship Hill suggests Ritson’s concerns had little merit.

    J Bowers suggests that there is not enough evidence to reasonably come to a view about impropriety on the part of CRU.  Respectfully, I have to disagree and suspect, though of course can’t prove, that a random selection of persons on a Clapham omnibus would disagree too.  It seems to me that in his numerous posts Steve Mosher has made a pretty convincing case as to impropriety at CRU.

    One can seek to offer explanations, justifications, pleas of mitigation and views on the significance of the impropriety but it seems to me that the impropriety is pretty hard to deny.

    Just wondering where you stand on 1-4?

  • Phil Clarke

    Just wondering where you stand on 1-4?

    Assuming you’re addressng me the frank answer is ‘bored stupid’.

    I find the science interesting, the politics less so, and pettifogging about alleged impropriety that may or may not have occurred half a decade ago [whether by Wegman or the 'Team'], or alleged but apparently immaterial statistical flaws in a massively-scrutinised study from more than a decade ago earns a huge ‘So what?’ from me.

    All this effort put into making the details of how papers got included in an Assessment report (rather than the merits or otherwise of the papers) or the fight to get data released (rather than what the data tell us, or how they compare with other datasets) into the story itself is just an amusingly transparent, obvious and slightly obsessive attempt at misdirection, seems to me. YMMV.

  • RichieRich

    Phil @ #579

    Given that, for example, both Judith Curry and Steve Mosher have clearly stated that they are (luke)warmers. I’m not clear in what sense you regard them as engaging in misdirection.  Is it not possible to take climate change seriously and be concerned about process.  Indeed, one might be concerned about process because one takes climate change seriously and, for example,  holds that impropriety in process negatively impacts on public trust in science.

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  • J Bowers

    RichieRich: “One can seek to offer explanations, justifications, pleas of mitigation and views on the significance of the impropriety but it seems to me that the impropriety is pretty hard to deny.”

    Only if you put these people on a pedestal, but I’ve commented on that further up. There are a number of definitions of impropriety, ranging from malfeasance to mistake. So, on the former, no, and on the latter, possibly yes. But,  I refuse to base any opinion on a set of deliberately redacted and stolen emails, most likely chosen to do as much harm to the reputations of these particular scientists as possible, to derail Copenhagen, and cast doubt on the science itself. Sorry, but I just won’t do it.

    At the end of the day, HadCRUT has been verified at least eight  times now through independent means (not by rote replication):

    Tamino
    Jeff Id and Roman M
    Dr Roy Spencer (for the Northern Hemisphere)
    Clear Climate Code
    Zeke Hausfather
    NOAA
    GISS
    UKMO

    Attacking Phil Jones does nothing to get around the fact that Jones and CRU are right. Their work has been verified. Attacking the science by proxy and scoring points on procedure pales into insignificance when put against the implications for what Jones and CRU have found, and its specific implications for the next generations of our species.

    So, Jones gives data to Georgia Tech and not you guys, and there may be some procedural gaffs. All I can do is, in the spirit of Steven Mosher’s previous posts, quote Willis Eschenbach #545
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CB3coG_FjvE

  • J Bowers

    And while we bicker…

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2010/apr/28/arctic-sea-ice-loss-warming

    “The Arctic is locked into a destructive cycle that could see its icy cover rapidly disappear, scientists have confirmed. A new analysis shows that dwindling levels of sea ice are responsible for unusual levels of global warming in the region. The findings reinforce suggestions that a positive feedback between ice loss and temperature rise has emerged in the Arctic, which increases the chances of further rapid ice loss and warming…”

    Letter to Nature. The Central Role of Diminishing Sea Ice in Recent Arctic Temperature Amplification. Screen & Simmonds (2010)
    http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v464/n7293/full/nature09051.html

  • RichieRich

    J Bowers

    LOL at YT!

    Attacking the science by proxy and scoring points on procedure…

    Steve Mosher accepts that the land surface temp record is broadly correct and I would imagine that so too does Judith Curry.  And yet both have concerns about process.  I don’t see how these concerns can reasonably be said to constitute either (a) attacking the science by proxy or (b) point scoring.

    Surely, it’s possible to accept the science and still have process concerns?

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  • AMac

    J Bowers and RichieRich –

    Two recent posts by Jeff Id at the Air Vent are relevant to the tail end of this discussion.

    “Global “˜Land temps’ CRU style” — A skeptic/lukewarmer analysis of the instrumental temperature record.  Consistent with J Bowers’ interpretation in #582.
    http://tinyurl.com/tAV-Global-temps

    “Schizo Sea Ice” — A skeptic/lukewarmer discussion of recent sea ice trends, doubtful of predictions of doom as related in #583.
    http://tinyurl.com/tAV-Sea-ice

  • Phil Clarke

    Given that, for example, both Judith Curry and Steve Mosher have clearly stated that they are (luke)warmers. I’m not clear in what sense you regard them as engaging in misdirection.

    I have no reason to doubt the sincerity of either, however Dr Curry’s behaviour is getting more bizarre by the day and Mr Mosher has said and done things that seem just slightly at odds with such a position, writing for an anti-science site [where the moderator recently allowed accusations of pedophilia against Nobel Peace prize winner Al Gore btw] for example, and co-authoring a book with Tom Fuller based on the illicitly and selectively published private correspondences of climate scientists. I haven’t read it, however it is self-described as:
    For those who have heard that the emails were taken out of context–we provide that context and show it is worse when context is provided. For those who have heard that this is a tempest in a teacup–we show why it will swamp the conventional wisdom on climate change. And for those who have heard that this scandal is just ‘boys being boys’–well, boy. It’s as seamy as what happened on Wall Street.
    Mr Mosher is not so naive as to be unaware that, whatever his own views, such a work will be treated as a propaganda gift by the Moranos and Inhofes of this world….  I am not aware that he has written a book expressing his agreement with ‘the conventional wisdom’ ….

  • J Bowers

    RichieRich: “I don’t see how these concerns can reasonably be said to constitute either (a) attacking the science by proxy or (b) point scoring.”

    True, and I wouldn’t take it literally as being directed at anyone here, so my apologies for that, I could have put it better. But there are certainly others in the wider arena who have done so, and still do to this day with, at times, a particularly unconstructive and unsavoury relish.

  • http://neverendingaudit.tumblr.com willard

    #580

    RichiRich underlines a most important contribution by Mosher, which ends up like this:

    > It would MOST unwise to to have people who dont [sic.] know the facts try to defend Jones. That just invites me to repeat the facts. do [sic.] you not get this.

    Let’s note that the topic Curry is discussing is not especially Jones.  So Mosher is coatracking his own research project into the discussion.  Repeating the same facts over and over again can only win with one argument: the **argumentum ad fatigum**, as Julian Baggini dubbed it.  I don’t know exactly how exactly someone opposed to his views do not want this: he’s simply drowning himself in his own logorrhea.  My bet is that it keeps his SEO advisors happy.

    Another bet is that it works.  Here is the informal “dialogue”:

    A: Look!  Look!  Look!  Look!  Look! (…) Look!

    B: Wrong! Wrong! Wrong! Wrong! (…) Wrong!

    A: Look!  Look!  Look!  Look!  Look! (…) Look!

    B: Off with their heads!  Off with their heads!  Off with their heads!

    C:  Hmmm…  Are you sure what you do is right?

    A: Look!  Look!  Look!  Look!  Look! (…) Look!

    And so on, ad nauseam and ad fatigum.

    ***

    There is something quite revealing about that kind of behavior.  There is absolutely no inference step.  A see of data, not a shred of inference.  The readership is supposed to dig anyhow. 

    And even more importantly, once the readership digs, it is supposed to know what to do about all this, if only that to go “off with their heads”. 

    The most we could get, out of all this sea of words, is that a science spokesman ought to be squeaky clean.  Is this supposed to be informative and prescriptive?

  • J Bowers

    Willard: “B: Off with their heads!  Off with their heads!  Off with their heads!”

    Or, more specifically, (Morano) “… publicly flogged!”, (Limbaugh) “…named and fired, drawn and quartered!”, (Monckton) “Jail the lot.”

    References:
    http://www.cejournal.net/?p=2334
    http://climateprogress.org/2010/03/02/the-rise-of-anti-science-cyber-bullying/
    http://biggovernment.com/bparks/2010/03/12/monckton-on-climate-hoaxers-jail-the-lot/
    http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/stories/s2826189.htm

  • Steven Mosher

    Item # 3 in Gavins response. To recap, I made a comment here about the handling of a paper by ch06 lead author briffa.
    Phil clark thought it was a wise thing to link to RC to have gavin do the defense.

    This illustrates a few things. Phils unwillingness to look at things for himself, his unwillingness to read the references of the primary text. We all saw what Phil Jones thought about these kind of people. He argued, when debating Roger Peilke, that this kind of intellectual sloppiness was a sign that there were other problems afoot. I think Willis called that ” false in one, false in all.” So, Jones agrees with Willis. Lets call that the Jones rule. If Jones wants to use that rule against Peilke, then it only seems fair to use the Jones rule.

    The referencing of gavin also illustrates another thing. here is how you DONT answer critics. You dont answer them by pointing to sources that…….
    A. have a vested interest.
    B. Do a cursory job on a complicated subject.

    Like Judith Curry, when I read Oxburgh, my initial thought was.. crap. They put the wrong people on this thing and they did a 5 page job on 1000 page problem. Like Oxburgh, gavin and Phil think that a sentence or two handles the critic.  It doesnt. On to point three, several more to go:

    The charge:
    3. Briffa consulted with Wahl outside of and in direct violation of IPCC processes that he was aware of.

    [Response: The IPCC report was a two year plus process and there was no injunction about discussing it with other colleagues. This imagining of mysterious inviolable rules in a process which reinvents itself every time is just post-hoc whining. Sorry. - gavin]

    A. wrong. but what do I know about the IPCC rules. lets LOOK TO WHAT OVERPECK TOLD BRIFFA. this would be right before briffa writes to Wahl. I love  it when gavin serves up stupid soft pitches.. READY”¦ And I LOVE IT that Phil Clark, puts his trust in Gavin. Maybe they both should look at Phil Jones Rule. What did Jones tell his grad student…..
    I have just had a meeting with one of my PhD students. He is writing a paper and I suggested he refer to a certain paper. He said he’s been unable to locate a copy of the paper, which I have to admit is a bit obscure. He then recalled that when he started 2 years ago I told him it was essential to read through all the papers he was ever intending to refer to.

    From: Jonathan Overpeck <jto@u.arizona.edu>
    To: “Neil Roberts” <C.N.Roberts@xxxxxxxxx.xxx>
    Subject: Re: ipcc chapter 6 draft
    Date: Thu, 18 May 2006 15:58:25 -0600
    Cc: Keith Briffa <k.briffa@xxxxxxxxx.xxx>, Eystein Jansen <eystein.jansen@xxxxxxxxx.xxx>
    <x-flowed>
    Hi Neil ““ Thanks for your interest in providing feedback on the draft  chap 6 Second Order Draft. Since the IPCC has very strict rules about  all this, I’m going to ask them (the IPCC) to send you an official  invitation to review, along with the process ““ formal, but highly  efficient ““ to follow. If you could send your comments in that way it would be a great help. We’ve been asked to keep everything squeaky
    clean, and not to get comments informally.
    Thanks! Peck

    Thanks GAVIN! you see. overpeck who runs the chapter ( not gavin ) writes briffa and and roberts and explains the rules to them. Not gavin. he writes briffa. THEN, briffa  breaks this rule and contacts Wahl. AND he has as a subject CONFIDENTIAL.
    why? because he is ignorant of the rules? cause the rules change? Nope. Then, when Holland and McIntyre suspect this and Holland does the FOIA. what does Jones say? Jones says this. Jones says”¦ maybe keith can say he never got anything? Now why would Jones suggest this? because Jones knows the rules. gavin might not. jones knew. briffa knew. Overpeck knew. gavin might not. they did. So then, they say lets deny hollands request and argue that the mails are confidential. Why? if the rules dont matter? anyways, Then to make sure an appeal will fail, even if it suceeds he asks people to destroy mails.
    The next defense I suppose is that overpeck had the rules wrong? he didnt. Gavin does not know what he is talking about. The rules governing the Lead Authors ( Briffa) and the review editors ( Overpeck) are all spelled out. Briffa had no right to send Wahl the text for ch06, no right to crib notes from him. no right to incorporate Wahls comments after reveiers gave their input. The relevant procedures are here:

    IPCC Procedures Annex 1 describes the duties and obligations of Lead Authors,

    The functions of Review Editors are described in IPCC Procedures Annex 5

    IPCC Procedures describing the preparation of the Final Draft Report (Section 4.2.5)

    Overpeck knew these. Overpeck communicated them to Briffa. Overpeck prevented Roberts from doing what Wahl did.

    NOBODY is arguing that briffa should not have been able to talk to Wahl. There were proceedures for that. proceedures to insure FAIRNESS, OPENNESS and TRANSPARENCY

    Why? to prevent a potential climategate I suppose.
    Why? to prevent the kind of thing where people go hunting for emails because they suspect you have been hiding something.

  • Steven Mosher

    Phil Clark.

    “I have no reason to doubt the sincerity of either, however Dr Curry’s behaviour is getting more bizarre by the day and Mr Mosher has said and done things that seem just slightly at odds with such a position, writing for an anti-science site [where the moderator recently allowed accusations of pedophilia against Nobel Peace prize winner Al Gore btw] ”

    I’ve offered gavin a excerpt from the book to run on their site. you saw the response. I’ve posted pieces on Big Government, where ai was roundly attacked by skeptics and tea baggers for a couple days. I didnt see you there defending me. I have no issue criticizing Willis and Anthony and other skeptics and posting on their site. My roommate moderates on the site. we dont discuss the site. When the mails came into WUWT, I was given a CD of the mails. I know this “chinese wall” is hard for you to understand. My co author and I disagree about politics. we dont discuss it. I feel comfortable posting on anybodies site. To be clear, I don’t write FOR WUWT. I write posts ( occassionaly) and send them out to the places where I think they will get the most coverage. I have substantial disagreements with Anthony. Still, he is a friend.  Make of that what you will.

    The funny thing is that you are doing EXACTLY what Mann did to start the whole tribalism affair. Same mistake. I had a nice long chat with Mcintyre yesterday. Just catching up, how the kids, hows the R programming coming, chit chat.
    radiative transfer equations… Anyways, we both share this common experience that has really steeled our resolve.
    early on in the climate debate, somebody at RC accused me of being Steven W Mosher. and they trashed my views because they mis understood who I was. They thought I was Steven W Mosher, an anti abortion fellow. So, they attacked my ideas because they mis perceived who I was.
    It’s like this: if you accuse me of being in league with skeptics, then you do TWO THINGS you dont want to do.

    I’ll let you guess what they are

    But Continuing…you write:

    “for example, and co-authoring a book with Tom Fuller based on the illicitly and selectively published private correspondences of climate scientists. I haven’t read it, however it is self-described as:
    For those who have heard that the emails were taken out of context”“we provide that context and show it is worse when context is provided. For those who have heard that this is a tempest in a teacup”“we show why it will swamp the conventional wisdom on climate change. And for those who have heard that this scandal is just “˜boys being boys’”“well, boy. It’s as seamy as what happened on Wall Street.”


    Lets apply the Jones rule. Did you read the references.. Anyways. Since you like to pull quotes, let me pull some:

    Page 8:

    Our criticism does not extend to criticism of the theory of global warming. Both your authors believe global warming exists, is a problem that needs to be addressed

    or criticism should not be construed as criticism of the majority of scientists investigating our climate”

    Now, you criticize us for writing a book on selective and private mails.

    A couple points. First did you read my post on SCRIPT FLIPS?  You have a problem with me writing this book on private mails.. illicitly got? lets see can I find the climate science community doing that… Presto!

    From: Trevor Davies <t.d.davies@xxxxxxxxx.xxx>
    To: m.kelly@xxxxxxxxx.xxx,j.palutikof@xxxxxxxxx.xxx,k.briffa@xxxxxxxxx.xxx, m.hulme@xxxxxxxxx.xxx,p.jones@xxxxxxxxx.xxx
    Subject: Re: CRU Board
    Date: Tue, 04 May 1999 09:08:24 +0100

    Mick,

    CONFIDENTIAL

    I think I’m missing out on something here (refer also to Keith’s email
    where he talked about “CRU being railroaded by ENV”). My recollection was
    that it was agreed that I should approach Reading to see if they are up to
    anything & sound out if they might be interested in talking about a joint
    bid. The suggestion may have been mine originally, but I do not have
    absolute recollection over that. Southampton have approached us via the
    Registrar and via Peter Liss. As far as I am aware, nobody from UEA has
    approached them (although I have certainly argued with Jean that we should
    at least talk with them).

    I now have a leaked document which spells out some of the research
    councils’ thinking. I will get a copy over to CRU today. Please keep this
    document within the CRU5, since it may compromise the source. NERC and
    EPSRC are signed up. ESRC are not yet. Given the EPSRC stake, it will
    certainly be be useful to get RAL etc involved. The funding might be
    2million per year. That might imply that the Councils favour multi-site,
    clusters, etc, but they stress they have no preconceptions.

    Given some of their requirements, the JIF bid may be useful.

    An important requirement seems to be to attract an “internationally
    renowned and charismatic scientist” to be overall Director. Do you think we
    should sound out Schneider? Watson? ??

    SCRIPT FLIPPED


    There is a reason why I can take any criticism and find scientists in the mails doing the same kinds of things. Well first, I read them all. about 72 hours of straight reading. and then I’ve reread them over and over.  Anyway,
    on Nov 19th shortly after noon I sent a message to Andy Revkin on facebook. I told him about the mails and that he was mentioned. I explained that the big story, the only story, was the FOIA story, and that he should follow that story. I told everything to the WSJ.  Two weeks later all we saw in the press was a bunch of distortion on both sides.
    Selective quotes and sloppy defenses. So we wrote the book.


    “Mr Mosher is not so naive as to be unaware that, whatever his own views, such a work will be treated as a propaganda gift by the Moranos and Inhofes of this world”¦.  I am not aware that he has written a book expressing his agreement with “˜the conventional wisdom’”

    We struggled long and hard with the title. My first thought was something about noble cause corruption. We knew that would catch us flack from both sides. That’s pretty much where we wanted to come down. Toms on the record as being a believer in AGW, and in comments over the years on the blogosphere I’ve been probably the most vocal proponent of the Lukewarmer position. You’d have to acquaint yourself with facts to get that. Techincally that is at the low end of IPCC projections, so within the ‘accepted wisdom’

  • J Bowers

    Liverpool losing the Europa League semi-final last night: Gutted. I almost cried.

    Leading experts maybe making sure a good paper makes it into a very occasional report of incredible importance by maybe bending a rule or two to get it in on time: Truly not bothered. I’d like to buy them a beer for upping the quality of WG1. Well done to them.

    There’s a reason people, especially experts, are put in charge of these things, and not robots or computer programme