the Air Vent

Because the world needs another opinion

A Half Hour of Wrongthink by Michael Mann

Posted by Jeff Id on March 1, 2010

I couldn’t finish this, there is an MP3 at the bottom of the page linked below.  Michael Mann defends……well everything ….the team has done.  Listen to it at your  own risk, I linked it here with the warning that you must understand it will cost you IQ points and you will be dumber than when you started.

http://www.pointofinquiry.org/michael_mann_unprecedented_attacks_on_climate_research/

He characterizes criticism as attacks from a well organized and funded climate denial industry.  Talk about a role reversal. Mann fully believes that it’s perfectly ok to throw out data that doesn’t fit your conclusion, trees are thermometers, his reconstructions are good for the past 1000 years, there is only a reasonable trick and no ‘hide the decline’, the emails are out of context ….blah..blah…

I reject your reality and substitute my own – Michael Mann or Adam Savage Mythbusters.

He’s lost complete attachment with reality, besides making accusations that because some IP addresses from the thousands of comments at Real Climate come from oil companies, it must be about a funded anti-science movement.  It’s all anti-science and it’s all against the good guy scientists who use clever tricks to hide the decline.

I don’t know if the man is a liar or just so full of wrongthink that he’s convinced himself that his “science” is somehow reasonable but there is not one detail in this interview that is true in my opinion.  The show hurts my engineer ears because it’s two people making one incorrect point after another back and forth.  It was very painful to listen to and therefore I was unable to finish.

—-

I originally saw this link on CA and wasn’t going to run it.  It was also sent this morning by email from someone who used their full  name and I’m unsure of whether they want credit.


56 Responses to “A Half Hour of Wrongthink by Michael Mann”

  1. Gary said

    It would be interesting to have a psychologist evaluate what looks to the layman like sociopathic behavior. Might make a nice project to see all the principles over the whole spectrum of AGW positions evaluated. Not saying anyone is crazy, just that some behaviors are very peculiar.

  2. tarpon said

    The fear of jail time does this to people.

  3. Hoi Polloi said

    Narcicist

    1. has a grandiose sense of self-importance (e.g., exaggerates achievements and talents, expects to be recognized as superior without commensurate achievements)
    2. is preoccupied with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty, or ideal love
    3. believes that he or she is “special” and unique and can only be understood by, or should associate with, other special or high-status people (or institutions)
    4. requires excessive admiration
    5. has a sense of entitlement, i.e., unreasonable expectations of especially favorable treatment or automatic compliance with his or her expectations
    6. is interpersonally exploitative, i.e., takes advantage of others to achieve his or her own ends
    7. lacks empathy: is unwilling to recognize or identify with the feelings and needs of others
    8. is often envious of others or believes others are envious of him or her
    9. shows arrogant, haughty behaviors or attitudes

  4. AMac said

    My Comment #11 there —

    To his credit, Chris Mooney stated the objective of the interview at the beginning of the podcast-—to offer support to Prof. Mann, as a way of participating in the defense of Climate Science against the attacks of the corporate-funded denialist conspiracy.

    That may (or may not) be a laudable goal, and Mr. Mooney’s thumbnail description of the roiled waters may (or may not) be correct and complete. Opinions vary…

    In any case, this was not a good jumping-off point for a compelling podcast. Like anybody else who has been paying attention, I could anticipate Prof. Mann’s answer to each question posed. Call-and-response.

    In that light, it’s too bad that Mr. Mooney didn’t select the two questions I submitted on the contributions of the Tiljander proxies to the Mann group’s 2008 paleoclimate reconstruction.

    Prof. Mann knows these proxies intimately. They were the focus of the Response he authored in reply to a Comment published in the peer-reviewed journal PNAS last February.

    I couldn’t have predicted Prof. Mann’s answers to those questions, had Mr. Mooney posed them. But I can guarantee that they would have been interesting, informative, and newsworthy—-whatever they turned out to be.

    That used to be what journalists aimed for…

  5. Ron H. said

    Jeff, thanks for sacrificing some of your own IQ points to save the rest of us. Your brief summary of the Mann interview is sufficient for me, so I don’t need to spend 30 min in pain. Thank you for that.

    However, if you didn’t listen to the whole thing, isn’t it possible that you missed the most important part? At the end of the interview Mann may have said something like this:

    “You know, I’m really tired of maintaining this charade, so I’m not going to do it any longer. You folks have been right all along to be skeptical of an idea as silly as that tree rings could be used to indicate past temperature. What a ridiculous notion.

    I knew I had made mistakes as soon as Steve McIntyre questioned my work, but pride and vanity kept me from admitting them, so I continued to defend my work all these years.

    Mr McIntyre, by the way, deserves a Nobel Prize of some sort for his patience, persistence, and his absolute integrity. It shouldn’t, of course, be a peace prize, as those are now meaningless. I believe they are offered as prizes in boxes of Cracker Jack ™.

    I am now admitting my failures. The “Hockey Stick” is a joke, and should be rejected by any thinking person. Current warming IS NOT unprecedented in recent history, and shouldn’t be any cause for alarm, whether entirely natural, or influenced in some small way by the activities of mankind.

    Please accept my humble apology for the harm I have done. I promise to do only good science in the futre”

  6. Michael not Mann said

    Jones and Hansen admit they don’t have the statistical education to do climate models.

    Mann has the education and knows his work is fraudulent. He should be sacked, flogged and quartered.

  7. AMac said

    > Mann knows his work is fraudulent.

    Listen to the interview. It strongly suggests the opposite. He has full faith in his methods and results. See Steve Mosher’s “Noble Cause Corruption” piece at Pajamas Media from a week or two back.

    > He should be sacked, flogged and quartered.

    Allusions to violence as a way to improve science and the shaping of public policy?! Super unhelpful remark. AGW Consensus advocates read tAV too, y’know. They ought to get the sense that a return to reason and civility is possible. The point shouldn’t be to burn down the village (for one thing, it releases too much CO2 and not enough albedo-increasing particulates).

  8. Jeff Id said

    #7, I agree with your points. There is a difficulty with Mann which has driven me wild since the beginning of tAV. His 08 work used data elimination with the intent to create a hs blade. Before even starting my first analyisis it was obvious that this method would cause an artificial blade on any noisy data. I vented on the subject at CA until they threatened to snip me, tAV was a couple of weeks old.

    The point is that the problem is that friggin obvious that even a guy like me can spot it without any analysis. The arguments made in the paper about correlation verification are MOOT and anyone with a lick of math understanding should be able to see it. Why they don’t therefore drives me nuts. Why don’t peer reviewers pick up on this and say, hey, um, not so fast. Why is it that climatologists across the science aren’t screaming, hell no you can’t do that? I spotted it, vented on it, proved my vents correct, and am still faced with the fact that scientists haven’t figured it out – or won’t admit it.

    Then we hear Mann rambling on as though everything is ok. So I wonder now, is he really not a liar and just wrong. Is that even possible with such bald faced and simple errors. Censored directory, hide the decline, data infilling, elimination of existing data followed by the complete denial that any problems might exist.

    What is really going on here.

  9. UFO said

    Mann is using the paranoid defense . . . people are out to get me.

    Desperation leads down many paths, some of them, like Mann’s paranoia, can lead to tragic consequences.

  10. dfbaskwill said

    “Just because he’s paranoid doesn’t mean people aren’t out to get him!” hehehe

    The new manual of psychiatric diagnoses definitely has a syndrome in there that fits his personality. Any experts know which fits best?

  11. Kevin said

    In this interview the requests for data via FOI were characterized as harassment. Given Chris Mooney’s book Unscientific America: How Scientific Illiteracy Threatens our Future, when does scientific illiteracy end and harassment begin?

  12. Michael not Mann said

    > Mann knows his work is fraudulent.

    Listen to the interview. It strongly suggests the opposite. He has full faith in his methods and results. See Steve Mosher’s “Noble Cause Corruption” piece at Pajamas Media from a week or two back.

    Mann SHOULD know.

    > He should be sacked, flogged and quartered.

    I was over at Bishop Hill and being half British, it came though. Skip the quartering. Sacking should be sufficient. Flogging is a personal choice.

  13. Jimchip said

    OK, given the facts, Mann is aggressively in denial.

    It’s sorta funny (if one takes it a certain way) that a “skeptic” gets turned into (other words) and Professor Mann feels like he needs to lash out at all the baddies.

    {Note to Prof, Mann…Your dude, Gavin isn’t doing it for ya, is he?

  14. AMac said

    Jeff Id #8 —

    > What is really going on here.

    Why did cops use to routinely take the stand and lie at the trials of street criminals (eg RAMPARTS)? “Yes your honor, the suspect had the Exhibit A handgun in his pocket when I arrested him [because I planted it there]“.

    Noble cause corruption. Does it still go on today? I’m sure it does. Is it as prevalent as in the bad old days? I’m sure it is not.

    So what’s changed?

    A lot, obviously, for better and for worse, obviously too. Re: the matter at hand, I’d focus on a couple of things.

    1. Professional standards and expectations have changed. Used to be common knowledge that the only way to Protect and Serve was to quietly take a few short cuts.

    2. There used to be a lay “Law And Order” crowd that would back any cop coming down on any supposed bad guy. Recall that the Spiro Agnew–a crook himself–made his career on this sort of demagoguery. That sort of cheerleading sends its own signal. Today’s police have a lot of problems, but this isn’t one of them, any more. At least where I live.

    3. Good cops kept their heads down, think “Serpico.” The alternative was workplace hell and a dead-end career. That’s changed too.

    – – – – –

    [speculation follows]

    I can imagine analogous forces at work in climate science.

    1. Climate science and climate advocacy are intertwined, per Judith Curry and Roger Pielke Jr. The Good Fight as far as advocacy means alerting policymakers, the media, and the public to the imminent dangers posed by CAGW. Everybody knows this. Let the rationalizations begin…

    2. There’s an articulate, intelligent, well-heeled, and fashionable group whose cause is CAGW. They know that Science is good, and that Climate Denialists, like Creationists and anti-vaccine activists, are anti-science. Prof. Mann is the honored guest at Chris Mooney’s party, leading the fight against secular satanists. Fun! Start talking about the screwups in your work, and the cheerleading falls off. Not so much fun.

    3. The only people who have called out Prof. Mann’s science are no-accounts (like you, Jeff Id) and evil fossil-fuel shills (like, f’r’instance, Steve McIntyre). As far as his social and professional circles, nobody’s speaking up. They aren’t idjits–Kaufman and McKay’s Climategate emails make that clear–but there’s no enthusiasm for educating the media, the cheerleaders, the policymakers, and the public about this messy world of science-as-it-is, full of uncertainties, goof-ups, and ambiguities. Not when we’ve got a planet to save.

    [/speculation]

  15. Jeff Id said

    The cop analogy hit home, as its something I’ve witnessed myself. A large group of officials police and others decided what was ‘just’ and lied to make it so. In that case though, the people knew they were lying.

  16. nigguraths said

    “If you talk about a severe flood or drought or heat wave—if climate change expresses itself in those terms—then people can understand climate change much better. So often those advocating for action, which in my personal opinion is advisable, use those sorts of examples out of context to try to make a point.”

    -Michael Mann, in 2005

    I’ve collected a few more gems such as this, in my blog. Nothing surprising really – the Mann speaks like this.

    Regards

  17. kim said

    Well, Mooney and Plait both are deep into the paranoia that skepticism is industry funded and astroturfed. They are hopeless, and they ought to be among the ones who could spot the fraud the first.

    Storm World. Ah, hahahaha.
    =================

  18. lucia said

    Re: dfbaskwill (Mar 1 14:04),

    “Just because he’s paranoid doesn’t mean people aren’t out to get him!” hehehe

    Just because people are out to get you doesn’t mean you don’t deserve to be gotten!

  19. When personal survival is at stake, the lies come thick and fast. Cops who tell them may not be as articulate as scientists who tell them, and the scientists have more jargon to fall back on, but otherwise there is no difference. Except some of us may want to continue to bask in a little of the hypnotic effect of Orthodox Science.

  20. Phillip Bratby said

    “Those whom the gods wish to destroy they first make mad”. William Anderson Scott.

  21. Kenneth Fritsch said

    Michael Mann and Chris Mooney are first and foremost advocates for immediate mitigation of the threats they see from AGW. Chris Mooney, as a journalist, is as guilty, or worse, than Mann in this interview in that he like Mann is far a field from their chosen professions.

    In addition they both have a leftwing view of capitalism and yearnings for more government regulations. With that combination the bent of the interview should not be surprising.

    Interviews such as this one can be informative from a sense that one gets as to whether a Mooney or a Mann, given their advocacy and political dispositions, can at this point revert to any of the rationality of their journalism and science training sufficiently to ever utter or concede to any hard evidence counter to their positions.

  22. hunter said

    I hope Mann gives this sort of interview many, many times.

  23. Kenneth Fritsch said

    The most obvious feature of this interview is the non-controversial science issues that are covered ever so lightly and the deeper science issues that get a hand wave with an “in my (expert)opinion” and then all this covered over with rather emotionally laced terms and innuendos about a concerted right wing political effort that colors all of, or nearly all, the skepticism.

    In my view the partisan use of emotion provoking terms and the dwelling on it in an interview between a professional journalist and a scientist is, well, it’s unprecedented.

  24. RickA said

    #8 – Jeff:

    I don’t think Mann thinks he is lying.

    I think he thinks he is right on the science and anything which doesn’t agree with his worldview is either wrong, mistaken or will be corrected by later science.

    It is not productive to call anybody a liar in this debate, in my opinion.

    If they disagree with you, they call you a liar – if you disagree with them, you call them a liar – it is just name calling from both sides.

    I would rather see people on both sides of the debate simply say they disagree with the person on the other side, or that the person on the other side is wrong or mistaken.

    Then explain why and call it a day.

    Sorry for the rant – but I get tired of hearing everybody call somebody who they disagree with a liar – I don’t think it is productive.

  25. Jeff Id said

    #24, Liar is one of my least favorite words. I never use it unless I believe the intent exists. The elimination of data is so bad a practice and it’s been preceded by equally invalid pca math with correct results found in a censored directory, and more recently by data elimination methods through MV regression. There appears to be intent.

    Therefore, it seems reasonable to question whether he is lying or is he confused.

  26. ZT said

    Mann probably should have become a psychologist not a climatologist.

  27. AMac said

    I agree with RickA #24.

    There’s way too much mindreading and speculation about motives. People just aren’t very good about knowing their own hearts, never mind some stranger’s. The physics of a situation may be crisp, the psychology rarely is.

    The main goal is to fix the science. Correcting or retracting faulty work, and examining then revising the procedures that contributed to the development of the problems in the first place.

    Even if in some sense true, inflammatory charges are rarely helpful.

  28. SamG said

    I didn’t look at the link but I’m sick and tired of the mainstream acceptance of the term ‘denier’. The irony is too great to express.
    People use it like an involuntary movement, they don’t even understand its implications. Amazing.

  29. Andrew said

    I wonder if Mooney or Mann got more thrill up their leg?

    Surely their mutual admiration is not unlike a certain MSNBC anchor’s for a certain President.

  30. KimW said

    The incestous mindset of a closed shop that produced Mann and his ilk, was fully displayed in this report from the UK Parliamentary Inquiry questioning Prof Jones on his climate papers was in this extract from http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/cif-green/2010/mar/01/phil-jones-commons-emails-inquiry

    ” The most startling observation came when he was asked how often scientists reviewing his papers for probity before publication asked to see details of his raw data, methodology and computer codes. “They’ve never asked,” he said. ”

    No wonder Mann is so convinced that he is right and everybody else is wrong.

  31. Philemon said

    The publications in which Mann used faulty statistics should be retracted.

  32. Peter of Sydney said

    It’s time to get more serious about the AGW fraudsters now that suicide has entered the picture.

    http://www.news.com.au/world/family-massacred-over-global-warming-fears/story-e6frfkyi-1225835900133

    If someone went around falsely alarming everyone that the moon was going to collide with the earth and people start committing suicide, shouldn’t that person be charged with some crime? You bet you life they should be. So why aren’t the likes of Mann, Jones, Al Gore and all the other leading AGW alarmists being charged with various crimes? The time has come to take the gloves off and stop this AGW hoax before more suicides occur. This has the potential to become an epidemic amongst those who can’t help themselves. I’m very serious about this.

  33. Kenneth Fritsch said

    There is too much grist for the mill in this interview to be guessing at motivations.

    What is rather obvious about the interview is the neglect of the science, except in very general terms, and the terminology that Mooney and Mann used in their description of the “opposition” and implications of motivations. They appeared to be borrowing from the more partisan commentators on talk radio and cable.

    I find it hilarious that Mann plays that game as a policy advocate/politician and then when he is treated like a political opponent he appears to want to retreat to the safe harbor of a disinterested scientist.

    The more I hear from Mann, the more I see a very naive individual, both with regards to how the science should work and what happens when you advocate and get political. It might very well explain why he apparently feels he is a victim and is forever getting his feelings hurt.

    Poor Mann – or should that be poor boy?

  34. woodNfish said

    Lubos Motl says climate science is a mediocre science at best. I agree, and it mostly attracts mediocre scientists. Those that are not mediocre have already spoken out, the others all have a herd mentality.

  35. timetochooseagain said

    33-To paraphrase a partisan talk radio commentator, he’s a Mannchild.

  36. I think Mann is a mediocre scientist with mathematical sleight-of-hand skill and a gargantuan ego, who just “happened” to fit the IPCC bill and enjoys the rock star position. I don’t think he cares a hoot about the supposed dangers of climate change, and how we all need to repent in sackcloth, I don’t see any evidence he’s even thought about it.

  37. Mark T said

    woodNfish said
    March 1, 2010 at 9:39 pm

    I agree, and it mostly attracts mediocre scientists.

    Yeah, like those that fail out of a physics degree.

    Mark

  38. Pops said

    I wonder if what we’re seeing with Mann and others is the phenomenon that people can be educated beyond their intelligence. I’ve worked with engineers who say all the right words in approximately the right places, who pulled down superior grades in their coursework, who have the CEO’s ear, who serve on “important” committees, but who, at the end of the day, could not engineer their way out of a wet paper bag.

  39. John Norris said

    So Chris Mooney is providing aide and comfort to the story that the hide the decline “trick” is nothing more then a clever mathematical idea. He is really going to feel foolish when it sinks in that it was not clever, it was cheating. If one goes to the extent of using principle components to match up temperature proxy data one would have to know that just loping off the misbehaving end of a string of data is cheating.

    They can keep up the charade for a while, but eventually enough inquiring people will look at this, understand what occurred, and the conventional wisdom will swing. At that point supporters and those that knew and chose to look the other way will slump very low in their chairs.

  40. AMac said

    It gets a little, er, bizarre.

    Connected with his journalism activities like interviewing Prof. Mann, Chris Mooney has a blog at “Discover” called “The Intersection.” This is different from–but related to–the Point of Inquiry discussion forum.

    In the “The Intersection” post Mike Mann on Point of Inquiry: Climate Denial Astroturfing Online?, Chris says,

    There are now some 51 comments at the Point of Inquiry forums on the latest show. But so far none are getting into what I found most intriguing in my interview with Mike Mann.

    When I asked his views on the “really energized global warming movement on the web” at around minute 31:30, Mann suggested something that has been on a lot of our minds—namely, that although it may appear that online climate deniers are really fired up right now on the web (hence all the comments on everybody’s blog), he suspects some of it is astroturfing…

    I tell Mann I too have my suspicions, but at the same time, am skeptical and would want to see some solid proof before I fully buy into this idea.

    The Astroturfer/Fossil Fuel Industry Shill/Denialist under oblique discussion appears to be… me.

  41. JAE said

    GAGGGGGGGG!

  42. Sharon said

    Apparently Mann’s grant money still isn’t sufficient to hire a good PR consultant, so I am pleased to offer him some advice for free: “Dude, you really, really need to STFU, like for the rest of the decade.”

    OTOH, I kind of feel sorry for Mann because he doesn’t have a SINGLE CHILI PEPPER on RateMyProfessor. (For some strange reason, two separate entries were created for him) Comments range from fair to awful. My faves are these:

    “Do not ever take this professor. He is a terrible teacher and doesnt know what he is talking about. We had a 16 point curve on our midterm and even going to his office hours doesnt help. Our TA is a better teacher than our actual professor.”

    And

    “This course is poorly designed and even more poorly taught. The majority of the class has zero stat experience (there are no prerequisites), yet Dr. Mann dives headfirst into 400-level stat by the third week with no concern of whether his students understand. He lectures to hear his own voice. A 25-point mid-term curve should raise a few red flags.

    16-point and 25-point grade curves! Now that’s what I call “hiding the decline”.

  43. dribble said

    I think it best to view Mann as an opportunist who has found the perfect niche for his particular talents in the manifestly corrupt milieu that has grown up around the issue of climate change.

    There is no question that Mann is a self-deluded mediocrity only too willing to make false product in order to advance his career. He may even pretend to himself that he is actually a truth seeker but I doubt it. He can only succeed because the system that supports him wants him to succeed.

    The most obvious comparison is with scientific creationism. This system of belief requires an a priori faith that the world was created according to the book of Genesis. Facts must therefore be interpreted according to this a priori belief. Details are unimportant as long as you can vaguely attach some sort of usable explanation to the visible evidence. Thus, in this frame of mind, the multiple layers of sediment in the Grand Canyon, with all their detailed geological variation, become merely a layer of mud left behind by the Great Flood. A scientific creationist will tell you that the Grand Canyon proves the book of Genesis rather than disproving it.

    Concerned about fossils? If all else fails, declare that fossils were created by Satan in order to fool atheists into not believing the Bible. After all, no scientist can prove that the fossils were not created by Satan. With a similar form of magical thinking, Mann declares that all climate denialism is a product of Big Oil conspiracy. Can he prove that this is the case? No, he does not even need to prove it. Merely raising the possibility is enough for committed apologists in the system.

    Climate science is a textbook case of the inherent flaws in the scientific method as it is currently practiced. Ultimately nothing will really change until massive and overwhelming evidence for or against AGW eventually makes its appearance.

  44. twawki said

    Mann et al keep shooting themselves in the foot. All these woeful interviews and appalling statements by him and his brigade in the clear light of the future will really be his undoing. He may think he can get away with it now but as the AGW machine crumbles and records of these interviews persist it wont be pretty!

  45. Peter B said

    #34 and #37

    On this, Richard Lindzen had this to say to the US Senate in 2001:

    Although the press frequently refers to the hundreds and even thousands of participants as the world’s leading climate scientists, such a claim is misleading on several grounds. First, climate science, itself, has traditionally been a scientific backwater. There is little question that the best science students traditionally went into physics, math and, more recently, computer science. Thus, speaking of ‘thousands’ of the world’s leading climate scientists is not especially meaningful.

    My take on Michael Mann is that he’s an intellectual mediocrity whose main goal in life is to persuade himself and others that he’s not an intellectual mediocrity, and that’s why he went into “science” and academia in the first place. His reaction to Steve McIntyre, as revealed in the mails and from his behavior when finding himself at the same location as SM, is most revealing. Steve McIntyre is Michael Mann’s worst nightmare – a man who effortlessly exposes Mann’s intellectual limitations to the whole world. For Mann, the alternative to his telling himself the nonsense he does in the interview is to admit that, yes, he’s as intellectually mediocre as he fears he is. And that he may never do, no matter what happens.

    Unfortunately, there are quite a few individuals like Mann in universities and even in business, who behave pretty much the same way.

  46. Peter B said

    Sorry, used the wrong tags for the quotation in the previous post.

  47. kim said

    Peter O’Sydney @ #32.

    Yah, the relevant fables are ‘The Boy Who Cried Wolf’ and ‘The Man Who Cried “Fire” in a Crowded Theatre’.
    ==============

  48. Kevin said

    My comments have been removed from Mooney’s Discover blog. Pretty lame defense…

  49. Kevin said

    Now I can’t post on Mooney’s discover blog anymore. Have I been officially banned? ..LOL… What happens when I do something really bad?

  50. AMac said

    Kevin #48 —

    When making a possibly controversial remark on an aggressively moderated blog, it’s a good idea to make a local cut-&-paste copy of your submission. If you put some thought into composing it. Deletion of some dissenting comments seems to be common practice among AGW Consensus bloggers. RealClimate has a particularly strong reputation in this regard.

    Even the possibility of one-sided snippage tilts the playing field. Adherents to the party position can compose-and-send. Dissenters have to choose words with greater caution, and remember to do the local-save each time. When this has happened to me, I usually think, “to heck with this blog” and start visiting somebody else’s site.

    Such purification of the readership base is presumably a bug and not a feature, from the party blogger’s point of view.

    You might be interested in taking a look at “An Inconvenient Comment”, a blog which is trying to serve as a repository for disallowed comments pertaining to the Climate debates.

  51. Tim said

    This post never got throw moderation on Mooney’s blog:

    One thing I have noticed is alarmists are very good a projecting their own flaws and motivations onto the sceptics. The complaint that sceptics are letting their ideology colour their view of the science is perhaps the most ironic because most alarmists don’t care what the science says – they only care about seeing their preferred policies get implemented even if the science shows they have no chance of solving the alleged problem.

    To illustrate: all credible economic analyses that look at the actual cost of replacing our fossil fuel based energy infrastructure with a non-emitting one by 2050 show that the cost for the US alone starts at 400 billion per year and increases from there. More realistic estimates put the cost at $800 billion per year and that assumes the technology works as advertised (zero chance of the that happening).

    To imagine the scale of the problem consider the interstate highway system which laid down 3200 sqkm of pavement over 20 years. Replacing a fraction of the US electrical generation capacity with solar PV would require 20,000-40,000 sqkm of solar panels which cost considerably more per sqft than pavement.

    The bottom line is it does not make a difference what the science says because it is economically impossible to reduce emissions to the levels demanded within the timeframes being discussed. This means that anyone who really cares about the science should be demanding that we focus on adaptation because that is the only available option. Yet most alarmists refuse to discuss that option because the see carbon regulation as a way to expand the power of government and redistribute income. Building dikes and dams does not provide the same ideological payback.

  52. AMac said

    Tim #51 —

    I wrote this at Lucia’s last week. —

    My former home is one of the “bluest” (most liberal) states in the Union, and also one of the “greenest.”

    Two days ago, the Vermont State Senate voted 26-4 to close the only nuclear power plant it has. According to Democracy Now!, “Opponents of the plant gathered at the state legislature broke into cheers after the vote was announced.”

    This pro-environmentalist, partisan site was mum as to any concerns about the impact of such closings on AGW. Neither that account nor any other I’ve read paints this as anything but a victory for the Green movement. The WSJ’s story did point out the obvious, namely that the hole in baseline generating capacity would be plugged by coal.

    Of course, stories like this say nothing about the likely extent of the forcing due to feedback from rising CO2 levels, and the associated uncertainties — the issue at the heart of AGW science.

    But the absence of howls of protest at this “selfish” triumph of the parochial over the global does tell me something about Green politics.

    The environmental movement, AGW Consensus included, is not consistently serious about its own professed priorities.

    – – – – – – – – – – –

    I hope you submit your comment to An Inconvenient Comment. The format is kludgy but the idea’s a good one.

  53. Kevin said

    #50

    Cool..thanks for the tips. I’ll check out AIC.

  54. Noodlehead said

    There is nothing all that unusual about Mann; Washington DC has many like him.

  55. LOL,

    Dr. Mann is running on empty.

    I keep wondering why ANY scientist feel the need for these rants in ANY medium.

    But they are doing it because they are part of a propaganda team on the drive to convince the masses to believe in something,despite that it does not exist.

    The very fact they are STILL ranting on and on,means they are in damage control just the way politicians does.They are behaving like political propagandist.

    A truly competent scientist would never be doing this at all.

  56. dougie said

    Kenneth Fritsch said

    ‘In my view the partisan use of emotion provoking terms and the dwelling on it in an interview between a professional journalist and a scientist is, well, it’s unprecedented.’

    Please tell me Chris Mooney is not a professional journalist, in this interview Mann is a hero!!! hockey stick & all, unbelievable.
    this makes me sick, do they really think we are that stupid!!

    agree with you Jeff & Kenneth.

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