the Air Vent

Because the world needs another opinion

Archive for April, 2009

Damn Lies

Posted by Jeff Id on April 28, 2009

I don’t buy the horsecrap story about a photo op. Something happened here, a fighter pilot called in to a radio program today to describe the classic herding pattern of the F16’s formation which he picked out from the video on the news. He described it as, one in close ready to shoot down and one behind in case the primary get’s hit. I actually got my aeronautical degree because I was planning to join the Air Force. After a couple years I realized I don’t tend to follow rules very well and had fallen for the intricacies of the science in the planes rather than the flight. Anyway, there are a few technical details missing from the media reports. – Nothing unusual there (no sarc). Still I take the word of a trained military pilot pretty seriously.

There are several other reasons why this story about a photo-op is absolute crap. First, in order for one of the presidents planes to be used an alternate backup vehicle must be provided in case primary Airforce one fails (there are two 747’s for that reason). An ex-secret services agent called in to make that point on another radio program. The contingency plans are deeply layered. For instance there’s a plan for bio-attack, dirty bombs, nukes in the city, conventional war, terrorist attack on Washington, snipers and apparently conservative soldiers returning from Iraq. For that reason, the moving of an important asset such as the AF1 backup plane would require substantial restructuring of the contingency plan. Therefore, it’s impossible to conclude that any use of the presidents 747’s would not be very well known by the president. His direct permission is almost certainly required.

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Steig’s Verification Statistics – Part 2 (A little more majic)

Posted by Jeff Id on April 28, 2009

A guest post from Ryan O.  The second part of Ryan’s Steig et al. verification statistics.  It’s amazing what you can find by replicating a paper.  The title above is my own.




Fig. 1-Geographical assignments for ground data comparison.

This is kind of a misnomer since I won’t actually be doing any replication, but as there was a Part One, there needed to be a Part Two.  Originally I had intended to replicate the r, RE, and CE statistics in Table S2 of the Supplemental Information, but doing so would require that I first replicate the restricted 15-predictor TIR reconstruction, an activity that I consider has little value at this point.

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Maximum Triviality Reconstruction

Posted by Jeff Id on April 27, 2009

I did this reconstruction of Antarctic temperatures some time ago. It is a true Voroni area weighted reconstruction using only surface station data. Instead of infilling NA values, this reconstruction simply uses the closest station weighted by the area of the polygon. Many advocates have suggested that I am a denier yet I’ve known about this simple evidence that the Antarctic isn’t warming at 0.12C/Decade +/-0.07 for some time. The fact that I haven’t presented it yet is because of the lack of complete data for the trend calcs at some stations. This lack of trend results in extreme slopes at certain stations, so I don’t like this recon as much as others. This is despite the fact that this recon presents the lowest average trend of any reconstructions – denier food. Still it’s not bad though simply because it represents the least fooled around with reconstruction I know of.


The Antarctic temperature distribution shows the difference. Here’s the most simple reconstruction.

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A Grand Experiment

Posted by Jeff Id on April 27, 2009

sunspots_max_min_big.jpg Sunspots image by dantless

If you didn’t know yet, the sun isn’t making any spots. David Hathaway, now famous among skeptics for correcting his own solar cycle predictions so often that the only accurate prediction is that the prediction will be corrected. Seriously though the sun isn’t following it’s consensus ordained pattern, almost like it doesn’t care what we humans say.

“This is the quietest Sun we’ve seen in almost a century,” says NASA solar scientist David Hathaway.

The disappearance of sunspots happens every few years, but this time it’s gone on far longer than anyone expected – and there is no sign of the Sun waking up. “This is the lowest we’ve ever seen. We thought we’d be out of it by now, but we’re not,” says Marc Hairston of the University of Texas.

What’s most interesting about this situation is the temperature variation we’re seeing globally. Temps have basically stopped rising since the beginning of this century. This does not mean AGW has stopped but it may explain why we aren’t seeing the rise. What an extended event would do is give us an opportunity to judge the effect the sun has on long term warming of the Earth.

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What if Bush had said it.

Posted by Jeff Id on April 26, 2009

From WUWT, Henry Waxman Democrat global warming leader using his brain to sit on.

From an interview on NPR as relayed by Tavis Smiley:

We’re seeing the reality of a lot of the North Pole starting to evaporate, and we could get to a tipping point. Because if it evaporates to a certain point – they have lanes now where ships can go that couldn’t ever sail through before. And if it gets to a point where it evaporates too much, there’s a lot of tundra that’s being held down by that ice cap..”

Link to WUWT post.

It’s astounding how stupid our leaders are.  This is the man pushing climate legislation down our throats.  He hasn’t got a F…… clue about climate.

I guess that pretty well settles what his goals must be then.  Wouldn’t you say?


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Interesting Developments on Cap and Trade

Posted by Jeff Id on April 26, 2009

LuisGonzalezCap.jpg Luis Gonzalez Cap image by Reddkl

Cap and trade is a centerpiece of Obama’s administration. He was involved in funding the creation of the Chicago climate exchange years ago serving on the board of the Joyce foundation. Even a short review of it’s history reveals a stark mixture of corruption and payoffs for different friends pet projects.  I would urge people who are interested to check out the names of board members, their personal histories, links and positions on other boards and moneys transferred. Sit by a bucket though cause it will probably make you sick.

The Joyce group operated primarily as a strong anti-gun group directing money to non-profit’s around the country in an effort to eliminate the second amendment.  My point is, Obama does have a personal horse in the cap and trade race just as Al Gore does, although the links are a little more complicated.

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Replicating Steig’s Verification Statistics – Pt 1

Posted by Jeff Id on April 24, 2009

An excellent guest post by RyanO. Ryan has spent a great deal of time in an attempt to replicate the correlation/verification of the quality of reconstruction statistics of Steig et al. in the Antarctic. This is a complex post which should take an experienced reader several careful looks to understand the meaning. I have not verified the work simply due to the incredible time and substantial calculations put in, his math processor has been sweating a bit. Ryan is trying to understand the statistical calculations which are the absolute center of Steig’s warming paper yet the code used for the calculation has been refused so far.
I very much enjoyed reading it in the same way you might enjoy finding the answer to a crossword, but I’ll leave my own thoughts for later. In the meantime let’s revel in the mathematics one has to go through just to understand what should be a simple temperature trend calculation on the Antarctic. While you’re doing that, imagine you are the unpaid peer assigned to review the paper without the code used in making the described calculations.


The verification statistics used by Steig et al. in their paper are r (correlation coefficient), r2 (coefficient of determination), RE (reduction of error), and CE (coefficient of efficiency). The first two – r and r2 – are probably familiar to most of you. They are simply the Pearson product-moment correlation coefficient and its square. The second two may not be as familiar, so I will explain them briefly.

RE and CE are defined as the following:


Fig. 1

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Posted by Jeff Id on April 23, 2009

Lawyer.jpg Lawyer image by Pic_99

From Miriam Webster

Main Entry:

1ad·vo·cate Listen to the pronunciation of 1advocate
ˈad-və-kət, -ˌkāt

Function: noun Etymology: Middle English advocat, from Anglo-French, from Latin advocatus, from past participle of advocare to summon, from ad- + vocare to call, from voc-, vox voice – more at voice

Date: 14th century

1: one that pleads the cause of another ; specifically : one that pleads the cause of another before a tribunal or judicial court

2: one that defends or maintains a cause or proposal

3: one that supports or promotes the interests of another

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Kidney Stones

Posted by Jeff Id on April 22, 2009

I called my doctor cause I have kidney stones pre-diagnosed yet not removed so far. No pain now but it’s coming and I have a few stories for you wusses. Wouldn’t recommend it to anyone except asssmajinidad. The new doc wants me to do an IVP, he’s new cause I didn’t like the last idiot. In the past I’ve had a stone broken up without a IVP. I have to note, IVP’s/cat scans are considered a minor nothing test by the less informed public. I’ve been very lucky with my health, yet I’ve had too many adventures with cat scans for a variety of unrelated reasons. After a dozen trips through the radiator’s you have to start wondering.

Turns out, cat scans involve not too small amount of radiation. Sites I’ve read claim a 1/100 chance of cancer— but according to the web sites which don’t even attempt to specify the possible issues created by not having cat scans, it’s usually worth it. As some of you might have noticed in passing, I make my own damn choices.

So I dialed the doc and got the receptionist Pam. After a few preliminaries, I asked the receptionist/expert in life if I could talk with doc and ask why I needed the test.

Well after she looked up my records in her instantly annoyed office voice she told me – single quote, ‘your doctor recommended it, you just do what the doctor said !! (really that’s what she said and that strong!)

Without pause, she continued in her annoyed voice, ‘ But since you canceled your last appointment for the IVP you need a KUB before you can see the doc again.’
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Fat Responsible for Global Warming

Posted by Jeff Id on April 21, 2009

Your daily dose of political insanity.

If you still think the Global Warming movement is driven by science we have a disagreement. In my opinion this is a political movement first. That doesn’t mean all the scientists are paid off or anything, it only means the ones which say the right things get the stage.

Here’s the latest from the worlds brightest.

Fatties cause global warming

Scientists warned that the increase in big-eaters means more food production — a major cause of CO2 gas emissions warming the planet.

Overweight people are also more likely to drive, adding to environmental damage.

Lard help us ... overweight must eat less for planet

Dr Phil Edwards, of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, said: “Moving about in a heavy body is like driving in a gas guzzler.”

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Retrended RegEM Recon

Posted by Jeff Id on April 20, 2009

Well most know I think RegEM in the case of Steig’s Antarctic paper is scrambling trends based on correlation. This weekend I had a great idea, what if we re-trend all the data to a known value and run RegEM. Well I’ve always been a bit of trouble so I retrended it to a negative value of -0.2 C/Decade and ran Steig et al’s RegEM.

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Antarctic Ice is Increasing – Duh.

Posted by Jeff Id on April 19, 2009

Finally, a little reality from the press.

Antarctic ice is growing, not melting away

Antarctic / Reuters

ICE is expanding in much of Antarctica, contrary to the widespread public belief that global warming is melting the continental ice cap.

The results of ice-core drilling and sea ice monitoring indicate there is no large-scale melting of ice over most of Antarctica, although experts are concerned at ice losses on the continent’s western coast.

Antarctica has 90 per cent of the Earth’s ice and 80 per cent of its fresh water, The Australian reports. Extensive melting of Antarctic ice sheets would be required to raise sea levels substantially, and ice is melting in parts of west Antarctica. The destabilisation of the Wilkins ice shelf generated international headlines this month.

However, the picture is very different in east Antarctica, which includes the territory claimed by Australia.

East Antarctica is four times the size of west Antarctica and parts of it are cooling. The Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research report prepared for last week’s meeting of Antarctic Treaty nations in Washington noted the South Pole had shown “significant cooling in recent decades”.

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Change You Can Believe In

Posted by Jeff Id on April 19, 2009

The following is excerpts from the technical support document from the EPA leading to the building to the regulations on climate change. I have to say this is unfortunately for me, another political post but global warming is political. I would encourage anyone interested to read the whole happy document at this link HERE.

Steve McIntyre has a quieter discussion of the issues in this document at Climate Audit.

As it is a political post, keep the comments reasonable. That’s about it.

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Posted by Jeff Id on April 18, 2009

Having or projecting anomalous characteristics. Is that a word?

Several of us have been wondering what the point of including Campbell and Macquarie were included in the RegEM reconstruction. Look where they are located.


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Spatially Weighted Antarctic Temperatures – No Peninsula

Posted by Jeff Id on April 18, 2009

This post is also running with some improvement at WUWT.

What happens to Steig et al’s warming when you divide Antarctica into two distinct climate zones?


From this post and others I’ve determined that the temperature trend in the RegEM versions of the Antarctic are not entirely created by smearing of the peninsula station’s data.

In order to interpret the RegEM results from the previous peninsula free reconstruction, we need to see a baseline reasonable reconstruction without the peninsula. These trends are based entirely on the surface station data. I saw several questions on WUWT about the improved accuracy of satellite temperatures. The satellite temperatures in this paper are of a different type than UAH or RSS use and these are affected substantially by clouds. The result is a much noisier and less trustworthy dataset than surface measurements.

In my opinion this sort of thing is about the best we can do in determining a total trend for the Antarctic over this timeframe. There are a few tweaks which might help but beyond that we have to accept that we don’t know any better than this method shows.

Now removing the peninsula does have basis in science because the ultra thin strip of land is primarily dependent on ocean temperatures and currents. It will be seen as cherry picking because I’ve clipped the part of the Antarctic warming the most. Before TCO or someone points out that I wouldn’t clip it if it didn’t have warming, keep in mind that I show it both with and without the peninsula and I make no claim that clipping the peninsula is the preferred method. It does make some sense though.

First the full trend.

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