Ross McKitrick a fish out of water

Another IPCC contributor with think tank connections is Ross McKitrick who says "far from being an open network of top experts it has turned itself into a narrow clique of like-minded activists."

I'd like to venture why Professor McKitrick feels that way. McKitrick served on Working Group I which deals with the physical science basis for anthropogenic global warming. McKitrick's field is the dismal science of economics.

McKitrick is far more at home at the Fraser Institute . In 2001 this libertarian think tank published  "Global Warming A Guide to the Science"  an opus which staes "A review of the scientific literature concerning the environmental consequences of increased levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide ... have produced no deleterious effects upon global climate or temperature." It also tells us  "There is no clear evidence, nor unique attribution, of the global effects of anthropogenic CO2 on climate."  Although this guff was published in 2001 it didn't stop Professor McKitrick from contributing to the IPCC's 2007 report. 

Has the IPCC been infiltrated by right wing think tanks?

Some months ago I started a wiki listing skeptical scientists who have served on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. I found the IPCC welcomes representatives not just from academia but from well known corporate interests too like Boeing Exxon Chevron Shell and 3M so I listed the involvement of some of those too. But why are there so many corporate afilliations for outfits whose product is nothing but advocacy or policy? 

A quick look at the list of contributors to Working Group III contributors to the Fourth Assessment Report reveals some familiar names like Pat Michaels representing his University and the Cato Institute, yes the Cato Institute funded by those famous progressive leftie pinkoe watermelon Koch brothers.

There's also a Lenny Bernstein of L.S. Bernstein & Associates , L.L.C. Who they? Well  L.S. Bernstein & Associates are an environmental consultants employing a staff of approximately one, Lenny has a profile page on the website of the slightly more well known George C. Marshall Institute .

Then there's the representatives from outfits no one has heard of like IPIECA, turns out that's  the 'global oil and gas industry association for environmental and social issues' or Research Triangle Institute who get at least two seats at the table, or the more generically titled think tanks like 'Policy Solutions'.  We don't know who their clients are and what interests they represent at the IPCC.

Whether this amounts to infiltration depends on your definition, and the definition doing the rounds now is posited by Donna Laframboise  in her ludicrous book with egregious errors I have already noted elsewhere on this blog. She has been taken so seriously the WWF have taken the bold step of issuing a press release denying her claims.  So where are the press releases clarifying what the George C. Marshall Institute and the Cato Institute have been up to at the IPCC?

The Fundamental Flaw in Laframboise's new book

Donna Laframboise posits that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has a make up of scientists pre-disposed to accept the consensus. To make her point she focusses on any scientist (out of 2500 plus IPCC scientists) that can be shown to have a link to say Greenpeace or WWF and suggests that makes them an 'activist'.  Fair enough you might say but a scientific analysis would consider the other side of the picture too, and ask if there are skeptical IPCC contributors.  Donna clearly hasn't looked at this question yet her twitter profile states "If we've only listened to one side of a debate, we haven't made an informed decision. Let's be civil & fair-minded." 

In chapter 3 Donna introduces some skeptics William Gray, Paul Reiter and Nils-Axel Mörner "Each of them possesses highly specialized knowledge . Each of them is a seasoned professional with long experience in his field. They are in other words exactly the kind of people you'd expect to find at the heart of  [the IPCC]" 

Donna goes on to say "But they are all IPCC outsiders" .  In the case of Reiter and Nils-Axel Mörner this is simply not true. Nils-Axel Mörner served on Working Group II of the IPCC's fourth assessment report . Paul Reiter served as an expert reviewer on Working Group II of the Fourth Assessment Report. An astonishing omission especially when you consider all three have been active in promoting doubt about anthropogenic global warming outside of the IPCC. Perhaps that would make them 'activists' too in Donna's weltanschauung. A question alas, we will never know the answer to.

*Skeptic* blogger wants less accuracy in Mail's climate output

Now read this sentence carefully and see if you can spot a call for for press censorship to protect climate policies from criticism.
"So if Dacre wants to strengthen the case for continued self-regulation of the UK press, perhaps he should consider how it is currently being undermined by his own newspaper's coverage of climate change and its blatant disregard for the PCC's rules."

Spot it? No, neither did I.  Blogger "Climate Resistance" did though. He was so sure about it he tweeted. When pressed "Climate Resistance" was unable to support his assertion and insisted the call for censorship was implied.  But how did "Climate Resistance" conclude that Bob Ward was implying 'to protect climate policies from criticism' ?  "Climate Resistance"s response sheds no light on that mystery.

The twitterstorm was over the indefatigable Bob Ward's examination of the contradictions in the Daily Mail's stance over climate change and Paul Dacre's efforts to resist any kind of external regulation . Bob's article, which is well worth a read, is a criticism of the Daily Mail's editing . And of course it's an editor's job to cut and hence censor bad reporting. So if Bob's conclusion adds up to a call for censorship and "Climate Resistance" is certain of that , it's also implied that Climate Resistance wants to see less accurate climate reporting in the Daily Mail. I wonder if  "Climate Resistance" knows what a corollary is.

Jeffrey Sachs Speaks Truth to Power

The City of New York wont allow speakers at Occupy Wall Street to use amplifiers so Professor Jeffrey Sachs uses a human microphone.  It is a video that ought to go viral but it's a little long, the human microphone makes it double it's proper spoken length .  So if you can't spare the full fourteen minutes here's my transcription of the good prof's historic speech.

...what they said in the newspaper today. They said Wall Street Bankers , they said you're unsophisticated. You dont look unsophisticated they look pretty foolish. Here's Mr John Paulson, you know who he is, the biggest hedge fund guy, he says we should like him, he says we should be so happy. He says he created one hundred jobs in New York. Let me tell you a story about Mr Paulson. Mr Paulson went to his friends. He went to his friends at Goldman Sachs. He said let's make a derivative so we can cheat some banks, not our banks on Wall Street we'll cheat some German banks. I'll fill up that derivative with junk. And then Goldman Sachs you know how to tell lies, you go sell that junk to a state bank in Germany. So they made this little story and Goldman Sachs sold that junk and Mr Paulson bet against it and the German people lost a lot of money. And John Paulson made $5 billion ! And that's what he wants us to know. And you know what five billion dollars is ? It's 100 000 people earning $50 000 in a year. So John Paulson you created one hundred jobs, your five billion dollars should have created 100 000 jobs! And that's why people walk to your house Mr Paulson, we're not so happy with you. They think you cheated the system. And you know what so did the Securities and Exchange Commission because Goldman Sachs were charged with violating financial laws because of you. And they paid $550 million in fines because they cheated together with you. We don't like the cheats we're pretty sophisticated.

We know what you've done on Wall Street every one of the big banks here Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, Bank of America, AIG, you all stole from the American people. You brought this economy to the brink of disaster.

I'll read you another story from the Wall Street Journal. These people are more confused than anybody on this planet.  They want to know what's Occupy Wall Street, they don't understand why we're here. They say why do you go for JP Morgan it's a wonderful bank, what's your problem ? Well let's tell them.

JP Morgan hooked up with a hedge fund , they made a phony derivative, they committed the same financial fraud, they sold junk to the markets, and they ended up paying $153 million this year in fines. Why didn't you mention that Wall Street Journal ? Because your editorials are lies every day. You are propaganda.  Mr Murdoch you tell us lies,  you cheat ...  It's a pack of lies.  They also defend John Paulson. They also say why don't we go out and love the keystone pipeline because Rupert Murdoch and big oil are in bed together. The Keystone Pipeline will bring the world's dirtiest energy from Canada to the Gulf, it will help wreck this planet if it goes through. It will profit David Koch. It's all about money for these reckless billionaires.

We are the 99%.  And they are wrecking this planet. And we want this planet back from David Koch. We don't want pipelines bringing dirty energy to the world. We want Rupert Murdoch to stop destroying countries with this propaganda.  Rupert Murdoch we don't need you. Pack of lies the whole thing. Wall Street Journal, Fox News you're wrecking this country with your lies. That's why we're here on Wall Street. It's not 'cos we're envious. It's not 'cos we think wealth is bad. It's because we think you cheat. It's because you don't follow the law. It's because you don't pay your taxes.  And then you say we have no money in this country to educate our children. We have the money. It's your money in the Cayman Islands.  It's your money in the Swiss bank accounts. And if you don't bring it home we're going to bring it home because this is a country of laws, because this is a democracy . And we are the 99%. We have the votes. You may have the money, but we have the votes.  And you are going to follow the law. We're going to have a decent country again, and we're going to start investing in our children again.  And across America they are hearing this message. And around the world today they are hearing this message. 

This is the beginning of change long overdue. Ronald Reagan put us on a path to disaster thirty years ago. He said cut the taxes to the rich, squeeze the poor, don't educate the children. And every President since him has followed in the same path because the big money pays them , and they sup with the rich and the billionaires. And it's over now.  We need a new direction in this country.  You don't need billions of dollars to get elected in America you just need to reach the people. Barack Obama Stop having dinners with $35 000 a plate! We don't want to see you on Wall Street. We want to see you in Queens and Brooklyn and the Bronx and Harlem where people live. We don't need to see you in the Four Seasons Restaurant, we don't need to see you dining every week with rich people.  We don't need to see the whole White House staffed with Wall Street.

Why is your Chief of Staff from JP Morgan?
Why is the head of the budget office from Citigroup?
Why is your Chief Economic Advisor a former worker from Goldman Sachs?
Why is it that everyone there is from Wall Street?

We need a White House that represents the country again. You promised us this President Obama. You promised change. We are calling on you today to stop catering to the billionaires stop catering to the millionaires. You don't need a billion dollars for your campaign. Send your political advisors home. Send the people back to Wall Street. Then you'll win re-election. Because then you will have the people with you. They'll remember why they voted for you, and you have to remember why you ran for office.  You ran to change this country, not to have dinner with billionaires.

This country will change when politicians understand how to get the votes in this country. When they speak to us again. Because we have the free media, because you reach people all over this country . We don't need money to do it. Just put it on You Tube and it'll spread. This is the way to do politics in America now. Young people here, you're in the lead, you know how to do this, you don't have to raise money , you just have to show the camera, put it on facebook, get it tweeted, and get it out there. Because this how news spreads in America. You don't have to buy ads on Fox cable phony news. You don't have to advertise in that junk newspaper the Wall Street Journal. People are tired of the lies. Aren't we ?

[Crowd: Yes ! Applause]

#OccupyWallStreet #occupylsx

 UPDATE March 11th 2012 Prof Sachs has been nominated for World bank President - You can support him by signing this petition

Donna on Activists, the IPCC and Vampires (wtf ???)

Canadian advocate positioned as skeptic Donna Laframboise's schtick is to draw attention to the links between IPCC scientists and any group that can be painted as any shade of green which in Donna's weltanschauung makes them "activists".  I'll let Donna explain in her own words what this adds up to :

"Imagine you're an accident victim on the side of the road. You're told not to worry, that the person who is going to wait with you until the ambulance arrives is trained in first aid. What you aren't told is that he is also a vampire and that the blood seeping from your wound will be difficult for him to resist . You have not been warned about the presence of another agenda - one that changes the picture dramatically."

Scary stuff . That's from her new book which boasts glowing testimonials from Matt Ridley, Ross McKitrick, and Richard Tol.  All three have connections to think tanks such as the Global Warming Policy Foundation (all), The Fraser Institute (McKitrick) and  Economic and Social Research Institute (Tol). A point  Donna and her publisher neglect to mention.


Icecap shrinking, but fake doctors blossom in the deny-o-sphere

Last month I blogged about how climate denier Piers Corbyn allows the inflated claim of him being a Doctor despite not actually being a doctor. Well he's not alone . 

Here's Peter Sinclair's  look at Steven Goddard's claims about the shrinking arctic ice.  Goddard's same claims are also regurgitated by Pierrre Gosselin in a blogpost entitled '2011 Record Arctic Ice Melt Not Even Close' . But Gosselin being on the same side of the argument as Goddard is far more charitable to Goddard, so charitable in fact that he has awarded Goddard a Doctorate.

So , depending on who you read “Steven Goddard” is either a pseudonym used by an anonymous climate denialist crank or Steven Goddard is Dr. Steve Goddard.  My research* has determined that Steven Goddard's claims are that he has a Bachelor of Science in Geology and a Masters In Electrical Engineering. So no doctorate then.  On learning of this does Pierre Gosselin rush to correct the errors in his post on the curiously titled No Tricks Zone ? No. Pierre's cryptic response to the news is 'Steve Jobs and Bill Gates aren’t doctors either.' So Gosselin's error remains uncorrected and 'Doctor' Steven Goddard is not complaining about it either. Or to give him his full academic title Mister Steven Goddard .

* Comment and response (October 5th 2011 5:45pm ) in this piece Arctic Ice Continues To Recover : Real Science

Tribute to Lee Camp

The best American comedian since Bill Hicks . He produces three new videos on You Tube every week so it's difficult just keeping up.

'Evil People Have Plans' is a classic.

He explains what Occupy Wall Street is all about.

Don't be put off by the title of this one.

And he's got it in for Starbucks so he cant be all bad

What is Occupy Wall Street About ?

This Occupy Wall Street thing has been going on in New York for some weeks and appears to be gathering steam.   Perhaps we have something to learn from it, we wont know unless we watch the video and find out what it's all about. So what are going to call our British version,  Occupy Lombard Street ? Occupy Bishopsgate ? Occupy Threadneedle Street ? Oh well, talented American comedian Lee Camp seems to know what it's all about.

Is This Man Britain's most dishonest hack ?

Yes it's a crowded field but Telegraph blogger James Delingpole finds the chutzpah to present two conflicting arguments within days of one another.  James suggests corruption in this interview without presenting any actual evidence whatsoever noting (at 4:25) " You can buy a lot of vested interests a lot of businessmen a lot of politicians for that kind of money."

A couple of days later I suggest James sign himself up for George Monbiot's proposed register of interests for Journalists . James declines but blocks my twitter for the trouble . But  over the next couple of days environmentalists (and Monbiot in particular) persistently trouble James's brain cell  " It simply does not occur to them that those on the other side of the argument might actually hold the views they hold sincerely and honestly" James muses in another blogpost on the Daily Telegraph website.

So in the first case money corrupts , in the second case that same notion is "demonstrably untrue" .

Apropos Delingpole back in July he coined the term Polarbeargate in this blogpost about the travails of hard working scientist Dr Charles Monnett. In an article long on speculation and short on facts Delingpole noted that the investigation of Monnett would be "definitely one to watch." He was right about that. Monnett is now back at work, and the investigation floundered when no evidence turned up.  Curiously , James Delingpole has not updated his readers about any of this "definitley one to watch" story.