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« Lew fan gong | Main | Global swarming - Josh 297 »
Monday
Oct272014

All the talents

 

Elizabeth Truss's performance on the Sunday Politics yesterday certainly caught the eye as an indication of the extraordinary levels of numptiness within the government, but it may be that another government minister has managed to go one better.

...Viscount Ridley, a Conservative peer and critic of government efforts to stop temperature rises, questioned [DECC minister Baroness Verma] on when warming would start again.

He told peers at question time in the House of Lords: 'The fifth assessment report of the Intergovernmental Panel On Climate Change has confirmed in the same words that there has been a hiatus in global warming for at least the last 15 years.'

And he asked Lady Verma: 'Would you give us the opinion of your scientific advisers as to when this hiatus is likely to end?'

Lady Verma told him: 'You raise a couple of issues that we would dispute in a longer debate, but what we do recognise is that there a change in weather patterns happening across the globe, that climate change is occurring.

'It may have slowed down, but that is a good thing. It could well be that some of the measures we are taking today is helping that to occur.'

This truly is a government of all the talents.

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Reader Comments (28)

If she really believes that the UK alone has the ability to control the climate then she really ought to inform the MOD.

It seems we have developed a new WMD without even trying.

Is this the excuse for the stupidity of her science advice? She can't go into detail as it's covered by the Official Secrets Act?

Couldn't be the worst means of hiding how out of their depth she is.

Oct 27, 2014 at 9:49 PM | Unregistered CommenterM Courtney

We were asked a question at the Cheltenham event pretty much along those lines. Tamsin was very good at letting the questioner down gently.

Oct 27, 2014 at 9:50 PM | Registered CommenterJonathan Jones

Good grief. So according to our wonderfully informed Government, weather patterns across the world never used to change. Who'd have thought that? In biblical times there were never floods and droughts.

How is it possible for the Government to be so taken in by this scientific advice and appear to be so stupid?

Oct 27, 2014 at 10:04 PM | Registered CommenterPhillip Bratby

Phillip Bratby:

"How is it possible for the Government .... to be so stupid?"

Years of practice.

Oct 27, 2014 at 10:12 PM | Unregistered CommenterGraeme No.3

Perhaps they don't expect their Chief Scientists to be outright liars.

Oct 27, 2014 at 10:15 PM | Unregistered CommenterIanH

As far as I can find Baroness Verma of Leicester has no scientific qualifications.
Given that Lord Lawson can not give his opinion on public radio and television on the subject due to his lack of qualifications, should an unqualified person define and affect important policy on this matter.

The Baroness Verma of Leicester
University of Wolverhampton Business School
Honorary Degree of Doctor of Business Administration

Born in Amritsar in 1959, Sandip Verma ....Sandip embarked on higher education courses in psychology and then a business degree, successfully operating a high fashion hosiery business before setting up in the service sector with a care business.


from - http://www.wlv.ac.uk/alumni/honorary-graduates-2013/honorary-graduates-2011/honorary-graduates-2010/the-baroness-verma-of-leicester/

Oct 27, 2014 at 10:20 PM | Unregistered Commentertom0mason

"Lady Verma told him: 'You raise a couple of issues that we would dispute in a longer debate, but what we do recognise is that there a change in weather patterns happening across the globe, that climate change is occurring.

'It may have slowed down, but that is a good thing. It could well be that some of the measures we are taking today is helping that to occur.'"

Wow what incredible stupidity! You simply can't make this stuff up. Is there anyone in the political classes who actually has any understanding of the science (including the so called advisors)?

Oct 27, 2014 at 10:20 PM | Unregistered CommenterCharmingQuark

All the talents?

Apart from an inexcusable inability to carry out logical due diligence.

Oct 27, 2014 at 10:22 PM | Registered CommenterGreen Sand

"It could well be that some of the measures we are taking today is helping that to occur".

Because the climate knows we're trying to reduce CO2 and even though it's increasing faster than ever, it's the thought that counts?

Warmists are so nervous of generating scepticism they only ever give others an abbreviated version of the science. The result is a staggering lack of knowledge in politicians with climate responsibilities. I'm not even sure the Chief Scientist is much better informed. To a certain point it works because the person is uninhibited about speaking utter tosh. If they are pulled up on it they can claim ignorance or in other words plausible deniability. However it leaves them without any sensible arguments if things go off script and they start talking drivel.

Oct 27, 2014 at 10:47 PM | Unregistered CommenterTinyCO2

Why should you imagine that either of these two have any ability to critique "scientific" advice I can't imagine, although
Liz truss can certainly count better than me and the Baroness knows at least as much about Profit and Loss! It is perfectly evident neither understands anything about the technicalities of "global warming" anymore than anyone on either front bench.
Even Entropic Man has a far greater grasp of the fundamentals and gives more plausible answers (actually the politicians do not give answers so he hasn't much to beat). Liz truss's answers to Andrew Neil were just a collection of non-sequitur sound bites. To carry this off with a straight face and without wetting herself laughing is skilled politics.
Politics has taken linguistic and logistic gymnastics to contrapuntal levels Bach would admire, beautiful constructions with only abstract mathematical meaning, no wonder Liz was good at it.
I pine for the seventies when politics was about the price of a Wonderloaf and how many times the postman rings.

Oct 27, 2014 at 10:56 PM | Unregistered Commenterdiogenese2

'It may have slowed down, but that is a good thing. It could well be that some of the measures we are taking today is helping that to occur.'

I'll take the glass-half-full approach to the reported statement.

Re:
a) It is an acknowledgement that the global warming temperature thingy has not performed as the models said it should.
b) It is an attempt to take credit for (a), suggesting they can justify saying no further action is necessary.

Now they just need to repeal the Climate Change Act. That is the current price of my vote.

I'd say I was a floating voter. But I might float past the Conservative party to vote for some other party that will both repeal the Climate Change Act and give the green-spurt the bum's rush.

Oct 27, 2014 at 11:07 PM | Unregistered Commentermichael hart

"Perhaps they don't expect their Chief Scientists to be outright liars." --IanH

Perhaps. Naïve, at best, but even I was surprised at the degree of venality of typical "climate scientists."

Oct 27, 2014 at 11:37 PM | Unregistered Commenterjorgekafkazar

According to CDIAC, from 1990 to 2013 global emissions increased by 61%. Of that increase, 67% was from China & India. This is not surprising as they were both growing fast from a low base, and combined contain nearly 40% of global population. The UK, with less than 1% of global population managed to decrease its emissions by 19%. In doing so, they managed to offset nearly 1.2% of the combined increase in China & India. It reminds me of a metaphor concerning excreting body fluids in the open air on a blustery day.
http://cdiac.ornl.gov/GCP/ for 2014 Carbon Budget figures.

Oct 27, 2014 at 11:44 PM | Unregistered CommenterKevin Marshall

'It may have slowed down, but that is a good thing. It could well be that some of the measures we are taking today is helping that to occur.'

There was a good comment at CA in the last few days relating to another issue that said something about temporal mechanics, but I think that fits perfectly here. According to her statement, "measures we are taking today" helped cause the pause that started 15-18 years ago. I'd like to see her 'splain that, although I think the point would be lost on her.

Oct 28, 2014 at 12:17 AM | Unregistered CommenterPhil R

Warmist politicians:

a1. If AGW doesn’t happen, they will claim victory
a2. If AGW does happen, they will blame us all for not trying hard enough, and introduce ever harsher policies in order to… appear to be doIng something about AGW

Skeptic politicians:

b1. If AGW doesn’t happen, they will claim victory, but
b2. If AGW does happen, they will be blamed by us all for not trying hard enough

http://omnologos.com/blair-and-gore-cannot-be-wrong-on-climate-change/

as predicted by yours truly more than 7 years ago,..

Oct 28, 2014 at 1:43 AM | Registered Commenteromnologos

Now covered in the Mail. Unfortunately, the Box about the IPPC is full of errors. It says the IPCC is a "scientific body" and it even says Pachauri is a scientist.

Oct 28, 2014 at 7:58 AM | Registered CommenterPhillip Bratby

Look, if President Obama can change the climate (which he insists that he can), is it not grossly unreasonable to think that the Former UK government cannot also match such an achievement? After all, the Met Office has a new mega-expensive computer, which can forecast one metre resolution at one minute intervals, and also the climate in, say, 100 years plus, and probably change both the weather AND the climate with a little nifty programming. They've cracked it, or something - they know that the planet is warming by 3 or 4 degrees due to our activities - the man on the wireless this morning said so, so it must be true...

Oct 28, 2014 at 8:22 AM | Unregistered CommenterOld Goat

A government of all the talentless
From Somerset levels to Helmand province
Always a sturdy guarantee
Of another bloody mess
Sorry for this doggerel ditty
They just get on my titty

Oct 28, 2014 at 8:38 AM | Unregistered CommenterStacey

Another minister supports Paterson's ideas in a way (R4 Today prog 8.23am)
Minister of State for Business and Enterprise and Minister of State for Energy
Matthew Hancock MP was being interviewed about "will the lights go out this year ?"
- Interviewers angle was "should we suspend the climate change act ?"
He didn't answer directly but said something like 'Paterson's arguments make a lot of sense, we still have to tackle climate change, but that doesn't mean ....err um ...it means you try to do it at the lowest cost.. nuclear is very attractive , it's near zero carbon"

Seems he was on BBCTV breakfast just before that

Did anyone spot a comment on R4 Any Questions on Friday from the permanent panel member from the Green Party called Jonathan Dimbleby ? He tried to say well gas is more expensive than wind, it costs £160/MWh
(realised he was parroting a fig .including cost of CO2 mitigation) ..2 panel members quickly corrected him

Oct 28, 2014 at 8:41 AM | Registered Commenterstewgreen

Honorary Degree of Doctor of Business Administration

Those are the ones that come free in a packet of cornflakes

Oct 28, 2014 at 9:03 AM | Unregistered CommenterStephen Richards

King Canute meets the Emperor with no clothes.

Phenomenal.

Oct 28, 2014 at 11:13 AM | Unregistered CommenterImranCan

La Truss replaced Paterson as a perceived safe pair of hands to hold the line until next May, as he was attracting too much flak - a sure sign he was over the target. However much she evaded and obfuscated she did in meejar inteview terms hold the line, despite Neil's best efforts. So a result - for her and her department. She is only the parrot, after all.

Oct 28, 2014 at 12:44 PM | Unregistered CommenterVictoria Sponge

"It may have slowed down, but that is a good thing. It could well be that some of the measures we are taking today is helping that to occur."

I knew it would happen, and I know we need to expect much more of it, as the Climate continues to refuse to change expect more and more credit to be claimed by the Planet Savers.

Oct 28, 2014 at 12:58 PM | Unregistered CommenterMikky

King Canute meets the Emperor with no clothes.

Phenomenal.

Oct 28, 2014 at 11:13 AM | ImranCan
================================================================
<pedant> Canute's stunt was intended to show his Barons that he could NOT hold back the tides</pedant>

Similarly, "The exception proves the rule" - "prove" in this case, means "test", not "confirm". Think abahtit.

This has been a Public Service Announcement on behalf of the Board of Clarity

Oct 28, 2014 at 1:26 PM | Unregistered CommenterJeremy Poynton

Baroness Verma 'successfully ran a high-fashion hosiery business..'
However, when it comes to pontificating on climate change, she really needs to pull her socks up...

(Geddit..?)

Oct 28, 2014 at 1:32 PM | Unregistered Commentersherlock1

A veritable cnut of a government.

Oct 28, 2014 at 2:28 PM | Unregistered CommenterNicholas Hallam

Neil made the mistake of "not" correcting her claim of last winter being the wettest I recorded history, by pointing out that the winter of 1929-30 was the wettest pretty much on all timescales, 6 monthly, 4 monthly, 3 monthly, & monthly! Once you start to let little details like that slip through the net they will wreak havoc with the data!

Oct 29, 2014 at 12:34 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlan the Brit

This is the way it works:

1) generate scare
2) wave arms
3) take credit for averting tragedy

H5N1 did Liam Donaldson's career not harm whatsoever.

Oct 29, 2014 at 4:28 PM | Unregistered Commenterclovis marcus

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