the Air Vent

Because the world needs another opinion

Supply and Demand in Journalism

Posted by Jeff Id on May 18, 2010

A few days ago I had a little fun with Grist.Keith Kloor took a bit of exception to it. Keith wrote the following article, which includes your humble host in an unflattering grouping with Romm.

Why Climate Journalism is a Rotting Carcass

Some quotes for entertainment.

So, are you ignoramuses still with me? Now a common refrain on Romm’s blog is that the mainstream media is just drop-dead dumber than dumb when it comes to reporting and writing on climate change.  At least once a week he calls attention to another supposed foul-smelling abomination (in a subhead, of course):

So far, I think that may be the first time I’ve agreed with Romm– crazy day.

Many climate advocates and climate scientists couldn’t agree more with Romm. One climate blogger, who is starting to sound like Howard Beale, thinks the press is easily manipulated. An environmental ethics philosopher is sympathetic to “Hide the Decline” climate scientists because…well, you read (emphasis added):

More likely to me, and more defensible in many ways, is that Mann and others were fudging the findings in order to “smooth them out” so that they were easier to read, so that their findings would not be misinterpreted by a lazy and apathetic press, so that an anomalous line wouldn’t distract from the overarching observation, which is that there is persistent change.

Kind of interesting. So chopping off of inconvenient data isn’t a plan to make sure that people are unaware of the low data quality or uncertainty in result.  It had nothing to do with the ‘unprecedented in a thousand years message’ presented in the IPCC.  It is in fact, a sophisticated statistical technique to prevent readers from spraining their brains on uncertainty.  All that consternation in the emails about insuring that their story was consistent for the IPCC was actually about making it easier to read….. Hmm.. I hadn’t heard that angle before.

At this point, you might be tempted to conclude that journalists are screwing up the biggest story of the century, that the world is on a collision course with climate doomsday because a bunch of hacks are falling down on the job. Or rather, is it because we’re not imploring everyone to stick their heads out the window every night and scream:

Well they are screwing it up, because they cannot look at the emails and review committees objectively.  There has been almost no attempt to understand the issue and report it accurately.  Of course, looking to Romm for guidance on climate is like looking to Iran for their opinions on Israel.

I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore!

But wait, the Air Vent’s Jeff Id, no doubt speaking for many climate skeptics, says we are doing exactly this. And by god, it’s costing us our jobs, too! Here he is, explaining:

Perhaps if reporters stopped turning out a constant stream of alarmist, envirowhacko drivel like this link, they and the NY Times, LA Times, MSNBC, CNN, ABC and every other politically left media outlet wouldn’t have such financial difficulty.

Good, be mad, Romm is an extremist and journalists can’t see the difference between tAV and Romm? It’s a fantastic example Keith (the journalist) has provided here. Pitting reasoned argument against propaganda is precisely the point.  Journalists pretend not to know the difference between those willing to say or do anything to make a point and a position of the typcial skeptic.  Perhaps it’s not a lack of ability or honesty, but that journalists refuse to spend the time to understand the issue well enough to figure it out — naw, I’m 41 and long ago figured out that it’s just politics..

Audiences (consumers) are bombarded with constant leftist politics from  nearly every single news source, yet America (at least) is still full of people who know that business and capitalism feed the world.  Journalists keep supporting the Romms who tell us to shut everything down and build wind farms, but we who work in industry are just not that dumb.  We know photovoltaic doesn’t work yet, we know that biofuel is a farce.  Yet they continue to hammer away at thier propaganda… It’s actually journalists in this instance communicating to us that ‘hide the decline’  to help our pretty little heads not hurt is a reasonable point. Where are the neurons Keith???

Very kind of them to help my pretty little head, but I don’t want to read any more propaganda.  Perhaps a little criticism of Romm’s blatantly untenable position on the climategate emails situation would be useful?  Or hasn’t Keith taken the time to understand it?

And that’s why journalism is a rotting carcass, supply and demand work in media too, and there is way too much supply of the envirowhacko perspective.

H/T reader AMac

50 Responses to “Supply and Demand in Journalism”

  1. timetochooseagain said

    What’s incredible is how thin skinned people like Romm are. Think about the volume of pro-AGW articles out there, bursting with alarmist terminological inexactitudes (a parliamentary term for a lie, Churchill) and yet when even a single article appears which for some small reason gets Romm upset (evidently even recognizing Lindzen exists, and is a notable figure, is too much) the entire media is idiotically incapable of following his Marching Orders. What? The media is by and large on Romm’s side. What a whiny brat.

  2. kkloor said

    You missed my point, but like you I got youngins and it’s their bedtime, then Lost is on, so back later tonight…

  3. Jeff Id said

    #2 I reread according to your comment and understand what you are saying about the internet, however you should pay attention to my reply. The internet is taking over standard media partially, but Fox news is doing well. There is a reason, although I don’t watch the news.

    I would suggest you pay attention to my point which is valid. The fact that anyone can read Romm without blasting his opinion is unfortunate. The fact that this blog is the extreme Romm is compared against is equally unfortunate.

    Honesty vs propaganda, IMHO.

  4. The reporters are fundamentally ignorant. They never took chemistry, physics, biology, statistics, calculus or geology in college. Never learned about instrument accuracy doing a science lab. They cannot evaluate the information they get from the warmists or the skeptics. It’s just words to them. So they pick the side they like and print it.
    It has been said that a free press is the foundation of democracy. We may have a free press, but it’s so stone dumb ignorant that citizens and taxpayers don’t learn anything from reading/viewing it. Which might be why newspapers are going out of business one by one.

  5. timetochooseagain said

    3-“The internet is taking over standard media partially, but Fox news is doing well. There is a reason, although I don’t watch the news.”

    Very true-not all traditional media are suffering due to the growth the internet. Not only is Fox doing much better than the other TV News networks, but there is one Newspaper which isn’t dying, namely the Wall Street Journal, which is widely acknowledged to have a right leaning editorial page, which is not true of any other major paper. That, and the fact that they only make their content fully available online to subscribers, appears to make the difference that makes them grow while all other papers shrink in circulation.

  6. timetochooseagain said

    Also, if traditional media are obsolete, how to explain talk radio? Now THAT’S Stone Age technology!

  7. mrpkw said

    # 4
    Not “fundamentally ignorant”, but willfully ignorant. They have incredible access to data and information and choose to ignore/hide 90% of it.

  8. Lady in Red said

    #’s 2 & 3:

    I hope you make up, later. …smile. You are both White Hats. …Lady in Red

  9. Jeff Id said

    #8 We might, but what I want from journalism is a return to truth. Of all things, I hate dishonesty, or even the hint of it. Journalism today is pathetically dishonest, biased, and without center as of late. They can blame the internet, but the reality is the internet has nothing to loose.

    If I write that I hate puppies, and every reader decides I’m an idiot, I’ve lost a lot of fun, but no fun..ding. A bias has taken over the MSM, it has penetrated government in the US and it is destructive. The problem is not the internet as Fox has proven, but rather a problem of content.

    Dishonest content, no viewers, how simple is that. It’s not like people would prefer to have to type to find their news.

  10. Lady in Red said

    Well, the bottom line is that we would all be better off if we bit our pencil erasers a tad more. More
    Steve McIntyre and Judith Curry; less Joe Romm and Gavin Schmidt.

    But, then, why just today someone wrote about/to me on another blog (about AGW):

    “Lady in Red:
    You should avoid giving you opinion regarding complex scientific theories about which you obviously know only what Glenn Beck tells you, which is nothing. Just stick to what you know, and stay on-topic.”

    I should have ignored the jerk. Did I? No.

    “….complex scientific theories…?” Surely you jest! …smile.
    Those are Simple, Straight-forward, Solved, Scientific *Principles* of which you write and about which the entire world (that matters) — scientific and otherwise — is in drum-major, lock-step agreement. Haven’t you heard? …L in R

    It’s not knowing what’s right that’s the problem; it’s the living of it. …smile. Good night. …L in R

  11. kkloor said

    Jeff,

    1) You go astray right at the outset:
    “A few days ago I had a little fun with Grist.Keith Kloor took a bit of exception to it.”

    I did no such thing. My post wasn’t about Grist at all. In fact, I didn’t mention them once.

    2) You quote from my post, where I say Romm regularly accuses the msm media of being drop dead dumb, then you write:

    “So far, I think that may be the first time I’ve agreed with Romm– crazy day.”

    Bingo. That’s the point of my post. You guys occupy opposite poles in the climate debate and you both think the press sucks. So do the readers of Romm’s blog and tav. The irony, which you don’t seem to appreciate, is that you both think msm suck for opposite reasons: Romm, because msm doesn’t beat the doomsday drum on cue (eg., latest weather disaster) and you, supposedly because msm beats the doomsday/alarmist drum all the time.

    Pure poetry, the juxtaposition of you both.

    3) After quoting from another portion of my post, you write:

    “Well they [the press] are screwing it up, because they cannot look at the emails and review committees objectively. There has been almost no attempt to understand the issue and report it accurately. Of course, looking to Romm for guidance on climate is like looking to Iran for their opinions on Israel.”

    Who’s looking to Romm for guidance? The press? The only people in msm looking to Romm (as far as I can tell) are T Friedman and P Krugman. But they are opinion columnists, not reporters.

    4)You write:
    “Audiences (consumers) are bombarded with constant leftist politics from nearly every single news source, yet America (at least) is still full of people who know that business and capitalism feed the world. Journalists keep supporting the Romms who tell us to shut everything down and build wind farms, but we who work in industry are just not that dumb.”

    Can you get a broader brush, please? Are you channeling Limbaugh here, or what?

    5) You write:
    “I don’t want to read any more propaganda. Perhaps a little criticism of Romm’s blatantly untenable position on the climategate emails situation would be useful? Or hasn’t Keith taken the time to understand it?”

    You’re talking to the one journalist who has criticized Romm more than anyone and he hasn’t been too happy about it. I guess you’re not familiar with this history.

    Finally, you write (9):
    “what I want from journalism is a return to truth. Of all things, I hate dishonesty, or even the hint of it. Journalism today is pathetically dishonest, biased, and without center as of late. They can blame the internet, but the reality is the internet has nothing to loose.”

    I love the monolithic “journalism” here, as well as the broad brush (again, can you get a bigger one?). I’d also love to know when this gilded age existed? Did it have Jimmy olson and lois lane in the newsroom?

    Puhleeze. Let me know when you’re ready to stop ranting (like a right-wing Howard Beale) and have a rational debate.

  12. Jeff Id said

    Keith,

    Have you turned on CNN, MSNBC, BBC, NBC, CBS, etc. etc as of late?

    “A few days ago I had a little fun with Grist.Keith Kloor took a bit of exception to it.”

    How about this –

    “A few days ago I had a little fun with Grist.Keith Kloor took a bit of exception to my post.”

    Would that make you happy.

    “Bingo. That’s the point of my post. You guys occupy opposite poles in the climate debate and you both think the press sucks. ”

    And again, you have missed my point, and the point of my original post which you criticize. Romm and I don’t occupy opposite poles in the climate debate. I occupy a region which posts trends that are higher than Romm would from the same data.

    Pay attention. I criticize journalists that can’t see that Romm is not reasonable, come here and see a conservative post and determine that it’s a polar opposite to Romm. Journalism that can’t tell the difference between right and wrong and refuses to look.

    As far as the guilded age, at least 30 years ago, democrats could be criticized by the media. At least then tough questions would have been asked of the president, house and senate. At least at that time, when climategate committee got up and proclaimed ‘hide the decline’ was no problem, some news outlets would have taken a moment to question it.

    Today— nothing.

    Journalism is dead, and despite your hopes, it ain’t the internet.

    “Puhleeze. Let me know when you’re ready to stop ranting (like a right-wing Howard Beale) and have a rational debate.”

    I will not apologize for my political views. Just because you are blind to my point, doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist. Read carefully and you may find it.

  13. Jeff Id said

    Actually Keith, I don’t mind a good argument on the internet. But my original post, my comments at your blog and this post all address what I see is wrong with journalism. You decided to criticize them on the basis that ‘something else’ is the problem. I have addressed your points but you refer to it as a ‘right wing rant’. If you cannot see the huge bias in the media, and you cannot see how destructive it is to the content, then you might see someone criticizing the politics of the media as ranting on politics.

    All these papers turn out is a constant stream of bilge. Reading them is dragging nails on a chalkboard for most of the country who doesn’t share their views. You are right in that I get my news from the internet right now, there is no question that the media is changing but the media (see Grist) is also producing terrible quality highly biased content – the subject of my original post. If everyone writes the same bilge, who’s going to tune in?

    If you would like me to try editing a bunch of journalists for content it sounds horribly boring. I would suggest you hire some conservative (not some centrists that Obama would find conservative) journalists in your magazine and make the whole group report the science and leave their opinions out – as best they can.

  14. kkloor said

    Jeff,

    The fact that your ideology and political orientation shapes (I’d even say warps) your perspective is the problem with your post. (Many liberal climate advocates suffer from the same malady too, btw.)

    I’m actually quite interested to engage with climate skeptics, just I am with climate advocates. But someone who makes ridiculous generalizations about the monolithic liberal media is just as hard to have a rational discussion with as someone thinks that the media is responsible for political and policy inaction on climate change.

  15. Jeff Id said

    If you don’t have he wherewithal to read the emails and determine that Romm is completely full of crap on his point, there isn’t much I can write which will convince you otherwise. If my political views warp my impression of political posts, the ‘warping’ is appropriate. If my views warped my science, I wouldn’t put posts up supporting AGW and I would require you to find one single instance where I have been dishonest in my science postings. Romm is regularly dishonest in support of AGW, yet you put this blog as ‘polar opposite’ on science. Do you mean science vs propaganda?

    Maybe your political views are warping your perspective?

    I’m sorry that you see my generalizations on the media as too monolithic, perhaps the AP and reuters should be disbanded then. My political opinion is that your profession is being killed by groupthink and constant leftism far more than the internet. Grist, the subject of my original post, is a delicate blend of leftism and envirowhackoism.

  16. kkloor said

    Jeff,

    Another problem with your post is that it’s riddled with assumptions of what I think. Case in point is this reiteration (15) that I somehow don’t think that Romm is “completely full of crap” about the significance of Climategate.

    Where did you pluck this from? Can you point me to it? My original post didn’t address his stance on Climategate. It wasnt necessary to throw this into the mix in the discussion about why he’s just as hyperbolic as you. So you just make all these leaps. But you’re helping me emphasize my larger point: he thinks it’s a non-story that that the press has leaped on like a pack of wolves; you think the press has ignored it because of liberal bias.

    Again, the irony of this charge by you is that AGW advocates have roundly accused me of treating Climategate like a legitimate story (because it is). Did you happen to read my set of interviews with Judith Curry a few weeks back and any of the comments in the three threads that have combined for over 1,000 comments at my site?

    Dude, you’re arguing with your shadow. But I think this all stems from your annoyance of being equated with Romm. The funny thing is that he no doubt is just as pissed (or would be, if he were aware of it) by me equating his overheated rhetoric with yours. The ironies just pile up.

  17. Lady in Red said

    Something you need to understand, Jeff, is that, although me and thee believe in an objective truth out there,
    the world is, truly, more gray.

    The leftists, much as I hate their f***king smugness, view the world through a different lens and you, at present,
    are not making things better.

    There is a project, at Princeton, I think, similar to the Myers-Briggs, analyzing the extent to what people THINK
    about the world is a function of underlying BELIEFS. It’s individualistic vs. group and hieristics vs. …?

    Where you stand on the scale affects your understanding of TRUTH. My suspicion is that (hard to believe, I know)
    that Joe Romm actually cares and believes in what he does.

    Years ago I did publicity work (I launched the NOVA science series… smile) and I couldn’t work for a client
    I did not believe in. Sometimes it took some mental pretzel-twisting, but I had to do it to do a good job. I
    suspect that’s where Joe is. He has forced himself to believe.

    Bottom line, again: you ain’t making things better, Pet! …L in R

  18. AMac said

    Re: kkloor #14 (May 19 07:22),

    Keith,

    I don’t agree with much of Jeff Id’s politics, and scan or skip most of his political posts. But this observation is incomplete–look also at Jeff’s technical posts.

    They are perceptive (as far as I can tell). More than that, the outcome of the journey isn’t predestined. A line of inquiry might end up “Anthony Watts is right, handling of anomalies causes huge distortions in the GISS temperature record.” Or it might not.

    In the event, it didn’t. Jeff’s graphs and Zeke Hausfather’s were more-or-less superimposable. That may not have set well with some of Jeff’s fan base. But Jeff said he’d call ‘em as he sees ‘em. As far as I can tell, he does.

    Contrast Jeff with the advocates of the AGW Consensus that you have weighing in over at Collide-a-scape. As Steven Mosher quipped, much of their writing is like the “u” after a “q”–to read the first sentence is to know the gist of their argument (Bart Verheggen is the notable exception).

    As for Joe Romm, I stopped checking his blog a while ago. Can you cite a recent “Climate Progress” post that a scientifically-literate person who’s generally informed on the AGW debate would profit from reading?

  19. j ferguson said

    Kkloor,

    JeffID provides real value in the many technical analyses his blog publishes and the informative comment threads which follow. Do you really think there is any equivalent content in Romm’s?

  20. Lady in Red said

    Go, Jeff, go!

    I can’t find the Princeton study (?) but this is a not-bad beginning. And, yep, AMac and JFerguson are correct.
    At the same time, the *point* is for truth to win. To do that, you have to convert some Black Hats. You won’t
    do that by playing, sometimes, their Q followed by U game.

    Of course, you decide how to play the hand.

    http://www.thenextright.com/max-borders/the-art-of-persuasion-no-3-value-typology

    Off to work! …Lady in Red

  21. Jeff Id said

    #16, Yes part of my grumpiness is being compared to Romm and it doesn’t matter that he also get’s angry because the difference is between truth and propaganda. I’m not interested in Judith’s interviews beyond the fact that she seems to be honestly trying to play the middle ground on climategate – a difficult task when one side of the issue is so incorrect. I’m not discussing the science, but rather the corruption of it.

    So I’ll point out the obvious, the comparison between myself and Romm is objectionable because I separate science from political conclusion, your comparison falsely assigns equal credibility to Romm as here and leaves readers with the FALSE impression of equal honesty or objectivity. Therefore your opening remark in 16 has nothing to do with assumption but rather with exactly what you wrote. After working for a year and a half to process data and admit errors, it’s highly objectionable (and bad reporting) to be compared to a political hack pretending to be a scientist.

  22. kkloor said

    AMack (18) & JFerguson (19):

    You’re asking me to do the same that AGW advocates have said I should do with Romm: ignore the hyperbole and get value from his posts on energy technologies and policy. So the equation continues!

    And of course I try to keep in mind the body of a person’s work, which is why I try to keep my criticisms limited to a single post. That is how you should interpret my reading of Jeff.

    At any rate, I will say that repeated broad-brush tarring and hyperbolic rhetoric (of which Jeff and Romm are guilty of) eventually undermines a person’s credibility. I’ve said that to Romm’s fans and I’ll say it here.

  23. Chuckles said

    Keith,
    I think you are going to have to repeat about 50 time more that you are ‘commenting on particular instances of commenting on journalism’, not about the specific blogs and their content?

    I think that Jeffs article was more a comment on the irony of Grist asking him for money, with an aside about an example of his dislike of their journalism, rather than a direct attack on them or one of their articles.
    So it is perhaps unfair to draw a direct comparison with Romm zeroing in on a specific target article?
    I also thought it a bit odd that you specifically mentioned 2 other blog posts and then simply dropped them from the narrative?
    But, as has been noted, if you’re getting it from all sides, you must be doing something right?

  24. kkloor said

    Jeff,

    Prepare to get grumpier, because I stand by the equation. Here’s what you wrote in your original post that I quoted from in mine:

    “Perhaps if reporters stopped turning out a constant stream of alarmist, envirowhacko drivel like this link, they and the NY Times, LA Times, MSNBC, CNN, ABC and every other politically left media outlet wouldn’t have such financial difficulty.”

    If you can’t understand why that is the mirror opposite of what Romm claims regularly on his site, then we’re probably talking past each other. Your overwrought statement isn’t even close to the truth. It’s something that Limbaugh spit outs every other breath.

    Even putting Grist, which has been essentially ruded to an environ huffington post, on par with the NYT is so off base. This is what I mean by having your perspective warped by political ideology. I mean, practically every week Romm accuses the NY Times or Time or the Boston Globe or some msm publication of of being a stenographer and mouthpiece for “deniers.”

    You’re just not getting this, are you?

  25. Geoff Sherrington said

    The trick is to have fun with the journos. At Kakadu, Australia, some years ago, we were visited by the Prime Minister and a huge entourage, to view a new mine that we wished to dig as an open pit. Along the way, the media kept wandering off to unrelated places to take pretty photos so thay could say we were bent on destroying them. I borrowed this technique from them. I stopped the convoy some miles away from the real spot, the PM got in front of the half dozen tv cameras and he started a rant about how insensitive it was to dig up a beautiful place like this for the sake of a few hundred millions of dollars of uranium.

    Enter stage right an eccentric but preconditioned reporter, who was dressed for a punt near Oxford, out of place in the 40 deg C heat and high humidity. Boater hat, scarf casually over neck, striped jacket, white shoes. (Alas, he’s dead now). Just as the PM was turning beetroot in the face with impressive acting rage, the reporter whispered in his direction, but loud enough for the cameras, “Bob, you are in the wrong place. This is not where the mine will be. You were had.” There were some strong PM words used about devious miners on national TV that night.

    However, I managed a good calm sleep, suddenly freed of loads of accumulated intellectual debt.

  26. [...] Jeff Id is pissed that I'm equating him with Romm. We've had a spirited exchange over at his [...]

  27. stan said

    Keith,

    AGW is ultimately about politics. And journalistic practices have a major impact on politics. Unfortunately, the political desires of journalists has also come to dictate their coverage. Since journalists tilt left by an overwhelming margin, so does their coverage.

    If you haven’t been able to perceive the overwhelming left-wing tilt of the MSM, you haven’t been paying attention. While you are likely beyond persuasion and this forum ill-suited to a presentation of the mountains of evidence, you might benefit from comparing media coverage of a few similar situations:

    * Bush’s service in the National Guard vs. Kerry’s service in Vietnam and after
    * Sarah Palin’s background vs. Barack Obama’s
    * the speculation in ‘October Surprise’ vs. the documentation in ‘Year of the Rat’
    * Choice rallies in DC vs. Right to Life rallies in DC

    The evidence of overwhelming bias is massive. But these four comparisons involve almost exact mirror image circumstances.

  28. stan said

    Keith,

    The fact that the Times and the MSM get criticized from both sides doesn’t mean they are balanced and unbiased. It only means that they aren’t located at one or the other extreme edge. There are people who think that the Nation isn’t left enough and people who think National Review isn’t right enough. That doesn’t make either of those publications unbiased.

    At least try to cite an argument that has some logic behind it.

  29. Mike the Geochemist said

    Mr. Kloor, your inability to see the overwhelming leftist bias in most of the media is a classic example of cognitive dissonance. Any rational look at media coverage would come to this conclusion. Wow, just wow.

  30. Lady in Red said

    #27:

    You are right — without a doubt! That *still* won’t get us over the hump, finally convince some Black Hats
    to stop squeezing their eyes shut, covering their ears and chanting lalalalalala until truth goes away.

    You are going to have to sneak up on them. Keith is trying to do that. …Lady in Red

  31. AMac said

    Kieth Kloor #22,

    Thanks for the rebuttal. It’s an admirable thing–that you engage with your critics, substantively and with good humor. A lost art as far as the AGW Wars.

    You’re asking me [in #18] to do the same that AGW advocates have said I should do with Romm: ignore the hyperbole and get value from his posts on energy technologies and policy.

    I asked that? Can you quote me? You can’t, because I was noting that your equating of Id and Romm could be tempered by a significant distinction between the two.

    To repeat the non-rhetorical question from #18,

    Can you cite a recent “Climate Progress” post that a scientifically-literate person who’s generally informed on the AGW debate would profit from reading?

  32. Jeff Id said

    #24, The comparison is a false one beyond the political views. You said in your comments that I couldn’t abide by any climate change and disasters on this blog. That is exactly the kind of false comparison which needs correction. No comments are snipped here and nobody has to pass the moderator.

    Your comparison is false beyond anything except the opposition of my view of politics and Joey’s. His rant’s against an already leftist extremist press for not being left enough have the same credibility as his argument that climategate was about making the document easier to read.

    My criticism of your post here, is different from my criticism of grist, but your comment falls right in the middle of this. You have failed to recognize that the reason my argument is pertinent and Joey’s is stupid is because any reading or observation of the media or climategate confirms one and eliminates the other. You pretend that they are of equal validity, yet it’s quite clear that the media is left biased and all selling the same perspective together.

    So I wonder, is the problem that journalsits aren’t smart enough to figure out the climate emails or are you so left that you are blind to the media bias?

  33. Jeff Id said

    #27,28 Well said, that’s how I see it also.

  34. j ferguson said

    #27 Stan,
    After my initial irate reaction based on careless reading of your post, I would have to concede that Gov. Palin’s background was investigated in almost painful detail while Obama’s was assumed.

    Did any of you ever see a detailed investigation of Obama’s history post high school? I didn’t. but maybe I didn’t look for it either.

    I read his books and think highly of him, but I do think you are correct in your appraisal of the imbalance in background reporting of the two.

  35. Bill S said

    The only reason that Fox succeeds as a network is because it provides the balancing viewpoints that are lacking from the MSM. I started really noticing it when Bush Jr took office, but the liberalization of the other TV networks and the large newspapers has been happening probably since the 70’s. It’s an artifact of where they are located–big cities are more liberal as a matter of course, so it happened naturally over time. And since it took so long, most people did not notice. If you can watch CBS or NBC news today and agree with which stories they select/investigate/report, the interviews they do and how they do them, and also agree with the conclusions they draw, then you are a liberal whether or not you believe you are.

  36. kkloor said

    Jeff,

    We’ve been slugging it out here and at my place and it appears neither of us is giving much ground. All I can say is that I promise to read your blog more fully in context,and when the opportunity arises, I’ll revisit the issue and see if we can better understand each other next time around.

  37. timetochooseagain said

    I tend to think the media are biased because most conservatives don’t get stupid degrees. We take real Majors, not Leftist-Arts.

    I apologize to anyone out there who majored in a “soft” subject, but that’s how I feel.

  38. AMac said

    Re: kkloor (May 19 15:06),

    Keith Kloor’s points, here and at C-a-s, are very good ones. I don’t have to agree with all of them to say that.

    Keith is right–Jeff being open about his political passions is going to ding his credibility among moderates, in the same way as that’s true for Michael Tobis or Joe Romm.

    My goal is to find a math and stats heavy blog, where I can trust what’s being said and not have to worry about what’s being snipped. If tamino or realclimate had fit the bill, I’d have probably ended up there.

    My judgment is that Jeff Id is willing to post technical pieces that are consistent with the Consensus worldview–if that’s what the numbers say. And to criticize incorrect anti-Consensus pieces.

    But that’s an unusual trait. It takes close observation to see that dynamic in operation. I don’t blame Keith for not seeing it. And in the context of a “culture war”, it’s totally understandable that most passers-by won’t see any such thing.

    Having decided to be transparent and passionate, might as well stay with it. The boosters of the Consensus have tAV’s archives and will use them for their own purposes anyway.

    FWIW, I think Keith Kloor has been a model of good behavior, in this episode and earlier with Judith Curry. He’s exposing a lot of readers to a lot of ideas.

  39. Layman Lurker said

    #36 KKloor

    I would suggest trying to separate the political blog posts from the science related ones as Jeff has suggested. In the science posts, look at how the commenters line up as points are argued and discussed. In many cases, the opinions evolve or change over time as the questions are better understood. Jeff’s current post “Proxy Methods” has already stimulated some intruiging comments. IMO, Jeff has demonstrated that he is capable of separating his political views from his scientific views.

  40. Chuckles said

    May I support Amac here, Keith IS one of the good guys.

    But Jeff, I think I can confidently say he does NOT share many of your views on many subjects.

  41. Layman Lurker said

    #38 AMac

    Keith is right–Jeff being open about his political passions is going to ding his credibility among moderates, in the same way as that’s true for Michael Tobis or Joe Romm.

    While you have a point here, it is important to remember that Jeff makes his political views perfectly clear – “full disclosure” if you will. Whether you agree with his politics or not, at least we know when he is being political, and when he is not. Readers know his views and can see for themselves whether Jeff’s science is affected by his political opinions. A dishonest blogger might be ambiguous about their politics to obsucure the fact that their biases creep into their science.

  42. Tom Fuller said

    FWIW, as a liberal democrat who believes in moderate global warming, I consider this blog and its owner very valuable. Jeff has been extremely gracious and accommodating to me, despite our differences.

    Jeff, I think you let your temper get the best of you on occasion. I only say that because it also happens to me. Hope this isn’t an exercise in bridge burning. Don’t know much about Mr. Kloor, but it seems like he’s trying to do the right thing.

  43. Jeff Id said

    #42, Criticism doesn’t bother me much, it’s rare that I write anything which doesn’t get criticized, but climate progress is my least favorite blog on climate because of what I perceive to be a complete lack of honesty. He snips people who disagree, posts utter rubbish claiming it’s science and want’s a political future I want no part of – all the while claiming apolitical tax-exempt status.

  44. Tom Fuller said

    Well, we certainly agree on the lack of value provided by Mr. Romm.

  45. Geoff Sherrington said

    Remember that a fair part of the rest of the world will follow the course of the USA. From this foreign perspective, the USA newspaper media are well left of centre, and they are more so with a leftist in the big house. Grovelling pays.

    It’s similar here in Oz.

    From occasional readings, there is not much elephant in the Romm.

  46. kkloor said

    Just wanted to say that I appreciate how gracious many of you have been, with me breaking all the china in the house. You might be amused to learn that I’ve previously been called all manner of a horse’s ass and worse over in comment threads at Deltoid and Tobis’ site (though he is respectful).

    Additionally, you’ll be further amused to know that Romm once spent thousands of words trying to trash my reputation. (Much of what he wrote was so patently false and over the top that he had to make numerous changes.) My favorite absurdity came when he wrote this:

    “As we’ll see, one sure fire way to know that you are practicing good journalism is to be attacked by Kloor. Kloor’s blog posts this year prove he is the Glenn Beck of bloggers.”

    http://climateprogress.org/2009/11/01/keith-kloor-trash-journalist/

    Oh yeah, he even felt compelled to tone down the original headline, which obviously still stands in the url.

    So Jeff, when I tell you that no journalist has been harder on Romm than me, you can bank on it. It still drives climate advocates batshit that I keep on him for his excesses. The funny thing is I do believe he’s quite smart and that he believes he’s doing good. I just can’t abide his methods. Oh well, eventually he’ll blow his top again and give it another go.

  47. Jeff Id said

    Keith,

    As an example of the differences between blogs again, Zeke at Lucia’s has just done a nice comparison of several different reconstructions of global temp. One thing you should notice, besides the absolute replication of the pro version, is the very slightly tighter confidence interval of the trends presented here.

    http://rankexploits.com/musings/2010/another-land-temp-reconstruction-joins-the-fray/

    I spoke at length with Lucia yesterday also, what a cool person. Outgoing, smart — good people.

    The reasons for the tighter trend confidence are presented in the header bar above.

  48. twawki said

    On journalism why is the role of the sun so ignored – its current behaviour is quite concerning and yet very very little in the media about it!

  49. [...] it’s too bad that Jeff Id can’t grasp that his political rantings undermine his otherwise serious technical posts. Here he is in full [...]

  50. And of course, all through our ER episode she kept on saying that she couldnt wait to write her report. As for Clarence, Im sure he got his wings for today.

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