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« Quote of the day, Mark Maslin edition | Main | Mark Maslin does fallacy »
Wednesday
Dec172014

On John Timmer

John Timmer is someone I come across from time to time on Twitter. He describes himself as the "Chief science wrangler for Ars Technica" which is a publication you can find here. Timmer has a fairly yawnworthy post up here, in which he seeks to justify use of the term "denier". It's not really worth much of your time, except for one paragraph. This one:

For example, atmospheric physicist Richard Lindzen has been a prominent figure trotted out to suggest that climate scientists have gotten it wrong; but he also seems to think health authorities got it wrong with smoking

The link is to a Newsweek article, the relevant sentence of which is this:

[Lindzen will] even expound on how weakly lung cancer is linked to cigarette smoking.

Uh huh. Which brings us onto this transcript of an interview Lindzen gave in Australia, I think in 2012:

Anna: ...Did you dispute that there was not a link between smoking and health problems?
Richard: I have argued as most people who have looked at it that the case for second-hand tobacco is not very good. That was true of the World Health Organization also said that...With first-hand smoke it's a more interesting issue. There's clearly an issue ...The case for lung cancer is very good...

Illuminating, isn't it? About John Timmer, I mean.

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Reader Comments (129)

The typical behaviour of someone with a short attention span looking for confirmation bias. The first bit he read that supported what he was hoping to find satisfied him.
This juvenile behaviour is seeping out of climate science and into other fields.

Dec 17, 2014 at 9:23 AM | Unregistered CommenterSteve Jones

Another one talking out of his Technika?

Lindzen is quite right. Just more statistical meanderings. And the guy I heard, briefly, trying to talk about 3rd-hand smoking (whatever that is(n't)) was clearly told to shut up, presumably because they couldn't get away with that.

PS. I don't smoke, and don't like the stuff.

Dec 17, 2014 at 9:26 AM | Unregistered CommenterAllan M

I posted a comment on Ars Technica in response to an article about the 'worst drought in California's history', merely pointing out, in completely non-inflammatory language, that the increase in population from 15m in 1960 to 33m in 2000 might be a contributory factor along with lack of rain.

My punishment - permanent banning. My crime - 'trolling the front page'. When I emailed Ars Technica, asking what exactly that meant - stony silence. Ars is obviously run by similiar types to those who wanted Galileo imprisoned for daring to question their theories!

Dec 17, 2014 at 9:35 AM | Unregistered CommenterDavid Leigh

I posted earlier in the week on the way the AGW lobby goes in for ad hominem attacks as their first port of call,as against any reasoned debate. Can anyone claim that the use of the word "denier", does not carry holocaust denial association? With regard to Lindzen, I have learned over the yearsto read the full article/quote as against an edited snippet.

Dec 17, 2014 at 9:44 AM | Unregistered Commentertrefjon

I remember him being slandered by some senator or something somewhere about a year ago.
Uunfortunately I cannot remember the forgettable idiots name but he was in a debate and having been demolished his final snipe was that Lindzen was "Someone who thinks smoking is good for you."
At the time I already knew the facts you cover above but I bet few others did and this guy basically got away with this ridiculous claim unchallenged. As usual.

Dec 17, 2014 at 9:45 AM | Unregistered CommenterKeith L

Ars Technica has also been promoting the idea that concerns about global cooling in the 1970s was not widespread and was relegated to a few journals only, which is of course not true as I lived through those times, even considering emigrating south from Canada because of concern about my future family.

Dec 17, 2014 at 9:45 AM | Unregistered CommenterGary Mount

Why tell the truth when a lie sounds better?

Dec 17, 2014 at 10:23 AM | Unregistered CommenterRadical Rodent

Ars Technica's stance on climate change borders on religious zealotry. On those pages you will find every scare story trotted out and woe betide anyone who dares to hold a differing opinion.

Dec 17, 2014 at 10:32 AM | Unregistered CommenterNick Milner

Smoking is an interesting one. There's a strong correlation between smoking and increased risk of lung cancer (and other nasty diseases), but when the link was first made (in the '50s I think) it could not have been said that smoking caused lung cancer as correlation is not causation. To claim causation a mechanism muct be proved by which the smoke interacts with the lungs.

That mechanism may now have been found by modern science, I'm not a doctor, but when restrictions were first brought in it was purely from a correlation perpective. Obviously there are other things at play than just smoke: The vast majority of smokers don't get lung cancer, and some people who have never smoked do get it. These other factors tend to get ignored. The Mayo clinic lists the other factors as radon gas, asbestos, and family history (genetics). It may be that people without the genetics may never get lung cancer (although I would say one would be unwise to take the risk...)

In many ways it reminds me of the saturated fat issue.

Dec 17, 2014 at 10:42 AM | Unregistered CommenterDavid Blake

If it were not for the billions of dollars from the BigShoe and the BigFluorescentLight industries spent on misinformation campaigns, everyone would know by now that smoking is the cause of catastrophic climate change.

I urge the world governments to immediately pass legislation to rise the standard height of door frames.

Dec 17, 2014 at 10:43 AM | Unregistered CommenterBrute

Lefties in general have a very difficult time with tolerating those who might challenge them to think outside their box. Ars Technica, if I recall, is very lefty.

Dec 17, 2014 at 11:31 AM | Unregistered Commenterhunter

There is only one reason we are called deniers, and most folk know it. It is the most derogatory expression that the warmists could conjure up. Also, I remember a very prominent Labour cabinet minister telling the world, on the radio, that we were akin to terrorists, and should be banned from the media.

Dec 17, 2014 at 11:41 AM | Unregistered CommenterPeter Stroud

It seems that when some folk fail to evidence the veracity of their claims - they switch instantly to vehemence and volume - and wind the volume up to 11 and the vehemence gets full of spluttering lies and insults. This isn't rattle out of pram stuff it's reprehensible antics from a supposed grown up.

The pious posturing - and subsequent personal attack on perceiving effective criticism simply reinforces the already strong suspicion that one is dealing with an irrational zealot Attacking the individual rather than engaging with the evidence self selects Timmer as a prat.

Dec 17, 2014 at 11:42 AM | Registered Commentertomo

@David Blake

...Smoking is an interesting one. There's a strong correlation between smoking and increased risk of lung cancer (and other nasty diseases), but when the link was first made (in the '50s I think) it could not have been said that smoking caused lung cancer as correlation is not causation. To claim causation a mechanism must be proved by which the smoke interacts with the lungs.

That mechanism may now have been found by modern science, I'm not a doctor, but when restrictions were first brought in it was purely from a correlation perspective....


It is, actually, even more interesting than that. The initial correlation was made with early statistical techniques/data gathering processes, and has never been questioned - indeed, to question it would be equivalent to declaring yourself insane and unemployable. Where have we come across that before?

Since the 1950s much research money has been expended in looking for this connection between smoking and cancer - if there was a direct connection the cause of cancer could be found, from that a cure could be developed, and the researcher would have provided an inestimable service to humanity/become very rich. So there has been a huge impetus to find this connection.

It has not been found. The most credible theory I know is that tar in the smoke may settle in the lungs and could trap small natural radioactive particles - but then so could tar from other sources...

I believe that the statistical connection between smoking and cancer should be examined in a much more sceptical manner with the benefit of modern techniques for determining confounding variables. But I know better than to say that under my own name...

Dec 17, 2014 at 11:48 AM | Unregistered Commenterdodgy geezer

It's a typical political strategy to discredit your opponents. Generally employed by the Left; but then this is hardly surprising given that most of the Left don't trust the populous - as if the populous owes them something - to decide what's best for them.

Dec 17, 2014 at 12:04 PM | Unregistered Commentercd

Personally I like the denier label. I like the insults and the jeering. I welcome every petty, nasty lie they tell, because they're making enemies out of bystanders. With people like that I know where I stand. I can happily take the polar opposite view to people like that because even if CAGW is real, those people will destroy any hope of co-operation anyway. They're playing the same games that politicians roll out. Dissing the enemy and bad mouthing anything sceptics have to say. Fine. No matter how dumb they paint us, we're not so stupid to think cutting CO2 can be done by only one half (being very generous) of society.

Dec 17, 2014 at 12:06 PM | Unregistered CommenterTinyCO2

Oh dear Timmer and dimmer.
And who does this "Chief science wrangler" work for?

Ars* Technica- says it all, really.

Dec 17, 2014 at 12:07 PM | Unregistered CommenterBitter&Twisted

John Brignell at Numberwatch has been debunking junk science for years, he covered the background and the fraud to second hand smoke here, well worth a visit:

"The March of the Zealots"
http://www.numberwatch.co.uk/zealots.htm

"One of the most frequently heard pieces of propaganda is that passive smoking causes childhood asthma. Children of the fifties did more passive smoking in one visit to the cinema than modern children do in their whole lives. Childhood asthma was then virtually unknown.

It has increased steadily in subsequent decades, while environmental tobacco smoke has declined. It is now a major health problem. These facts are incontrovertible. Yet to state them is to arouse wrath. The sad side-effect of the dogma is that it diverts impetus from the search for the real cause: not a unique result of zealotry."

Dec 17, 2014 at 12:38 PM | Registered Commenterdennisa

@hunter and @cd
Accusing people of being "lefties", "lefty" or "the left" seems unhelpful to me. It's an imprecise accusation, as is accusing people of being "denier" (of what?).
Is Labour MP Graham Stringer a "lefty"? He certainly labelled "denier" a lot.

Dec 17, 2014 at 12:45 PM | Unregistered Commenterrotationalfinestructure

I've had my posts on climate change deleted from Arstehnica and they weren't inflammatory or non-factual.

You would think that with billions of dollars on your side and settled and consensus science, that they or their other readers could simply use the 'robust' science of climate change to refute what I and others have said.

Ars looks to be just another left-wing science source trying to push the globalist managed and controlled left-wing one-world utopia.

Dec 17, 2014 at 12:51 PM | Unregistered Commenterkramer

dodgy, tobacco smoking causes cancer, tobacco chewing causes cancer and tobacco contains carcinogens. You are right that the initial suspicions were grounded in epidemiologic evidence and epidemiology cannot prove causality. But cancer has a lag period with carcinogen exposure to develop. By the late '60s there was enough evidence accumulated. But a host of factors prevented people from seeing through it clearly. That does not prove anything. Tobacco control activists were absolutely justified in fighting for smoking to be curtailed. Their case falls apart at second-hand smoke and the moralising that goes with their type of activity.

There is high-quality epidemiologic data that have examined the link between lung cancer and tobacco that overcome several of the problems associated with the earlier studies. There is enough such data available now. There is animal experimental evidence. The problems with tobacco control start when the circle of association is drawn bigger and bigger. Almost everything under the sun has been blamed on tobacco and many of them have been subsequently discredited, and a few others held up, in the scientific literature. In the wider world and the popular press, any 'bad thing' once associated with tobacco smoking, breast cancer for example, retains its association almost permanently.

Dec 17, 2014 at 1:04 PM | Registered Commentershub

shub

that's the problem isn't it? The presumption of idiots seeking to reinforce a case that can stand on its own by dint of the evidence - the need to embroider to the point where something is unrecocnisable.....

As mentioned above and well worth repeating - John Brignell has done sterling service with his "Things caused by Global Warming"

Where the whole thing turns plain nasty is when authoritarianism rears its head as with the recent WHO debacle in Moscow.... The bouncers move in to remove the dissenters...

Dec 17, 2014 at 1:19 PM | Registered Commentertomo

I think it is despicable the way some people continue to DENY the inaccuracy of climate change models, despite all the observational evidence.

Dec 17, 2014 at 1:24 PM | Unregistered CommenterGolf Charlie

Dodgy Geezer is incorrect to say that the correlation between smoking and cancer has never been questioned. When the issue was first discussed in the 1950s, the very eminent statistician R A Fisher raised several objections, notably along the lines that there might be a genetic predisposition to both smoking and lung cancer. Fisher's arguments have been countered in various ways, for example by studies of MZ twins which seem to rule out his 'genetic predisposition' hypothesis. Also, several carcinogens have been identified in tobacco smoke. Overall, the case for a causal relationship between smoking and lung cancer is about as strong as it can be without making randomised long-term experiments on human subjects, which are not possible for ethical reasons, as it would be necessary to force a random sample of people to smoke.

Dec 17, 2014 at 1:43 PM | Unregistered CommenterDavid B

Seen recently on Signs of the Times: "The Oldest People on Earth are All Smokers":
http://www.sott.net/article/282019-The-oldest-people-on-Earth-are-all-smokers

Mme Jeanne Calment, when she relinquished the title of World's Oldest Woman by dying at 122, had smoked for over a century. And, from her name, I'd guess the cigs she smoked would have been French>/i> cigarettes. My own 40-something years on light Virginia are as nothing by comparison!

"Smoking Causes Cancer", like "Manmade CO2 causes Global Warming" or "CCTV makes the streets safe", is one of those "knee jerk" assertions you're not allowed to question and, just like the other two, false. Nature, as usual, is far more subtle.

Dec 17, 2014 at 1:45 PM | Unregistered CommenterSteve C

I think we are mostly missing the key point - Lindzen can say what he likes about fags and cancer, that doesn't automatically make him wrong about climate change.

Some of the greatest scientists in history have refused to believe some part of the "canon" (Einstein and quantum mechanics and Hoyle and the Big bang for example. I doubt whether any scientist believes everything they "should - if they did, we would never progress.

Dec 17, 2014 at 3:18 PM | Unregistered CommenterTim Hammond

"the case for a causal relationship between smoking and lung cancer is about as strong as it can be without making randomised long-term experiments on human subjects": that's my view too.

It's also my view that the fuss about secondary smoking is probably wrong, and indeed probably fake. But since I loathe cigarette smoke, and because the routine bad manners of smokers would otherwise expose me to a great deal of it, I grudgingly welcome the outcome of that fakery.

Dec 17, 2014 at 3:41 PM | Unregistered Commenterdearieme

When I frequented Ars Technica I found John Timmer to be an arrogant ass who would tolerate no dissent. I ran foul of him on the question of linear no threshold response to radiation. Apparently because I wouldn't accept the official view and wrote that one of his colleagues was wrong I was banned for a couple days - and never returned.

HIs comment about Lindzen and second hand smoke is typical and probably wrong too. Just like the religious believers in the consensus view of AGW who fail to provide proof.

Dec 17, 2014 at 3:50 PM | Unregistered CommenterAdrian Ashfield

Look at this remarkable series of tweets. John Timmer knows Lindzen's statements pertain to second-hand smoke yet chose to represent them as though they meant to 'smoking' in general. This is prima face a case for a successful libel suit.

(Link)

Dec 17, 2014 at 4:01 PM | Registered Commentershub

This is OT and not intended for addition to this thred, however I thought interesting in view of my earlier comment.

Problems in the radon vs lung cancer test of the linear no-threshold theory and a procedure for resolving them.
Cohen BL1.
Author information
Abstract

It has been shown that lung cancer rates in U.S. Counties, with or without correction for smoking, decrease with increasing radon exposure, in sharp contrast to the increase predicted by the linear no-threshold theory. The discrepancy is by 20 standard deviations, and very extensive efforts to explain it were not successful. It is pointed out that, unless a plausible explanation for this discrepancy (or conflicting evidence) can be found, continued use of the linear no-threshold theory is a violation of "The Scientific Method." Various explanations that have been offered for ignoring these results are examined and shown not to be valid. A simple procedure for clearly settling the issue is proposed.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9119688

Dec 17, 2014 at 4:04 PM | Unregistered CommenterAdrian Ashfield

Could John Timmer and ar5 Technica organise a competition to find the "least inaccurate climate model"?. Healthy competition would help raise standards, above the levels achieved by a chimpanzee with a dice. Hopefully.

Chimpanzees with dice, would not demand so much tax payer funding, and any cr@p they produce, would be easier to recycle

Dec 17, 2014 at 4:08 PM | Unregistered CommenterGolf Charlie

dodgy geezer & Steve C:

I was stationed in England (RAF Chicksands) from Oct '68 thru Sep '70. While I was there, a medical study was published/released examining the statistical evidence connecting smoking and various health problems. It was a long term study involving 10s of thousands of health records maintained by your NHS. I recall reading many articles in major British news papers and several reports by the BBC on the conclusions of the research. As a non-smoker, I didn't have a dog in the fight, but my father was a life-long smoker so I did have a serious interest in the topic.

The study was controversial because the researchers believed they had found a confounding factor which accounted for the positive correlation between smoking and a large number of health problems and diseases. When they partitioned the sample population into three groups based on certain medical/physiological criteria, they found that the positive correlations disappeared. Within the three groups, smokers and non-smokers had quite similar rates of the various problems. The positive correlations were the result of the quite different smoking habits of the three groups. That is to say, the group most likely to suffer from X whether they smoked or not, also had a much higher percentage of smokers than the group least likely to suffer X.

What I found strange, was that everyone who attacked the study (including the AMA and WHO, etc.) would not address the science (if any) but, savaged the conclusions using emotional arguments and political-correctness and, yes, ad-hom attacks on the researchers motives and presumed hidden interests. Long story short, the research was pulled, and disappeared! To this day (now that I have Al Gore's Internet) I have never been able to find any reference to the study in question.

Curious that?

Dec 17, 2014 at 4:13 PM | Unregistered Commenterdadgervais

The link between cigarette smoking and lung cancer, and other respiratory and cardiovascular diseases is clear and unequivocal, and has been for decades. On the other hand, the evidence for the health effects for second-hand smoking is shaky to say the least. It largely rests on meta-analysis of studies dating back as far as the '60's, and often based life-time relatives/partners of heavy smokers who living in small, poorly ventilated homes. Once, while I was at the DH, playing Devil's Advocate I asked the two epidemiologists on the committee that was advising us on passive smoking, if; they were working for the 'other side', how easy would it have been to come up with a negative link, and they said - very easy.

Dec 17, 2014 at 4:26 PM | Registered CommenterSalopian

Please note that these figures are not exact but I believe them to be in the right ballpark.

90% of the people who die from lung cancer have smoked.

But wait, water is even worse: 100% of the people who die from lung cancer have drunk water!

In fact, only 10% of the people who smoke die from lung cancer. If smoking caused cancer should that not be higher? Why did the other 90% escape?

Anyway, what has a view on smoking got to to with a view on anything else.

Dec 17, 2014 at 4:45 PM | Unregistered Commentergraphicconception

"Anyway, what has a view on smoking got to to with a view on anything else.

Dec 17, 2014 at 4:45 PM | Unregistered Commentergraphicconception"

The possible health effects of passive smoking is, like CAGW, yet another example for science being manipulated, if not prostituted for political reasons. I've said it before and I'll say it again; once politicians get involve in scientific issues, politics drives the science and not vice versa

Dec 17, 2014 at 4:59 PM | Registered CommenterSalopian

Infant mortality rates from starvation, disease, lack of water etc remain very high, in areas without reliable power supplies. Whether the parents were, or had ever been smokers, is an area of research, awaiting an eager seeker of tax payer funding.

Dec 17, 2014 at 5:00 PM | Unregistered CommenterGolf Charlie

@shub

...There is high-quality epidemiologic data that have examined the link between lung cancer and tobacco that overcome several of the problems associated with the earlier studies. There is enough such data available now....

Perhaps you could provide some? I have difficulty in finding it.

However, the key point I made was that there may be a correlation, but in the absence of a mechanism it is not correct to say that 'smoking causes cancer'.

@David B

You are correct to say that the link has been questioned - the tobacco companies, for instance, in the early days funded a lot of questioning. But they were simply smeared and any research they produced ignored on principle - whether it was biased or not. I should really have said " Cannot be questioned today" - where 'today' refers to the 1980s onwards...

...Overall, the case for a causal relationship between smoking and lung cancer is about as strong as it can be without making randomised long-term experiments on human subjects...

No, that is not the case. The case for a casual relationship could be proven by showing a mechanism. In the absence of such a mechanism the best the statistics can do is show a correlation. Showing a very strong correlation is NOT the same as showing a causal relationship.

Dec 17, 2014 at 5:16 PM | Unregistered Commenterdodgy geezer

Dec 17, 2014 at 4:04 PM | Adrian Ashfield

This is quite a comprehensive look at the subject of radiation effects from someone who spent much of his life studying it -

http://www.angelfire.com/mo/radioadaptive/jaworowski.html

Life has existed for billions of years with natural radiation levels much higher than today (they're decaying, not increasing), and still does in parts of the world.

Dec 17, 2014 at 5:19 PM | Unregistered CommenterAllan M

I've said it before and I'll say it again; once politicians get involve in scientific issues, politics drives the science and not vice versa
Dec 17, 2014 at 4:59 PM | Salopian

I agree; but it's not just politicians. It's, in general, do-gooders. I don't like do-gooders. I have experience of them. It isn't that doing good is wrong, but do-gooders have to preen their superiority by being the only ones who know what good is. Anyone who gets in their way will have 'good' done to them, whatever the cost; and it won't cost the do-gooders.

Dec 17, 2014 at 5:29 PM | Unregistered CommenterAllan M

"do-gooders have to preen their superiority by being the only ones who know what good is"

Nicely put.

Dec 17, 2014 at 5:49 PM | Registered Commenterjamesp

One of the interesting things about the smoking-lung cancer link is that the effect is much greater is the US than it is in Japan. I don't think anyone really understands why that's the case.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11700268

Dec 17, 2014 at 5:52 PM | Unregistered CommenterBloke in Central Illinois

"I remember him being slandered by some senator or something somewhere about a year ago. Uunfortunately I cannot remember the forgettable idiots name..." --Keith L

I think it was Sen. Wheldon something, from Rhode Island. Can't recall his last name.

Dec 17, 2014 at 5:58 PM | Unregistered Commenterjorgekafkazar

@ rotationalfinestructure,
You make a good point. It is just that so many totalitarians dress up as climate concerned to jsutify their inner tyrant.

Dec 17, 2014 at 6:13 PM | Unregistered Commenterhunter

"...Anyone who gets in their way will have 'good' done to them, whatever the cost; and it won't cost the do-gooders." --Allan M

In the last analysis, do-gooders are primarily driven by self-will. Their own hypocrisy and the damage they do to others is irrelevant to them; what counts is getting their own way.

Dec 17, 2014 at 6:14 PM | Unregistered Commenterjorgekafkazar

@Dodgy; With respect, you're flogging a dead horse as far the lack of causality or mechanistic proof that direct smoking causes lung cancer - check out Doll and Peto's work regarding causality and IARC Monograph 38 (Tobacco Smoking) for mechanistic studies. The list of genotoxic and non-genotoxic carcinogens present in the pyrolytic tar from tobacco is long, There does appear to be a dose-response in the development of direct smoking related lung cancer, which suggests that it is not a purely genotoxic effect, which suggests that other factors such as race (as indicated by, Bloke in Central Illinois), diet etc could mitigate or increase the risk. But the mechanism is the carcinogens in the tar.

Dec 17, 2014 at 6:19 PM | Registered CommenterSalopian

The thread illustrates an unfortunately common sociopolitical problem. At the core, there is either a real problem or a potential problem that merits serious scrutiny. Pollution, tobacco, gender roles (everyone's), sexual orientation, religious freedom, regional economic inequality, you name it.

However, we find is that these topics are not dealt with the integrity and graveness required. Rather, they become simplified, deprived of actual content, for social consumption at the service of political agendas, cynical or well-meaning. Consider, for instance, the caricature that political correctness has made of feminism. The inanity of the "debate" is deafening.

Dec 17, 2014 at 6:33 PM | Unregistered CommenterBrute

John Timmer and Ars Technica (I've never heard of either) are the theme of this post. The point being that John T and A.T. are unreliable sources. Once that is known – and thank you for pointing it out – there is no reason for a casual reader, in contrast to someone involved in refuting junk science statements, to visit the site nor read what the person writes. I do not have the time to read these things that I then have to follow with an hour's searching to confirm or deny the truthfulness thereof. Thus, I look for people that I can trust. I visit B. H. blog and a few others and ignore the John Timmers of the world.
~~~~~~~
It is always interesting to see how quickly the theme of a post gets redirected – in this case to the smoke & cancer link.

Dec 17, 2014 at 6:38 PM | Unregistered CommenterJohn F. Hultquist

I too have never heard of this John Timmer - (But I do visit "Jo Abbess" from time to time because i like a laugh the same as the next person!) - however - Timmer's article on Methane on Mars did seem worth a read - and I then had a Tea spluttering moment with his last paragraph:-

"We're right back to the uncertainty that prevailed when plumes were first observed by telescope. But this time, it's limited to uncertainty about the source, not uncertainty about whether the initial observations were correct. In science, that's progress."

Wow - someone who calls those who question advocacy based on flawed computer models "Deniers" - in the next breath states that analysis of OBSERVATIONS is scientific progress.........

Has anyone pointed out the irony to him?

Dec 17, 2014 at 7:06 PM | Unregistered CommenterDoug UK

This claim about Lindzen and smoking seems a particularly telling example of the 'fact too good to check'. A cursory check on Google would show his rather useful summary article (on climate) in the "Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons", 2013. One assumes it was invited. Since the link/association between smoking and cardiovascular or lung disease is one of the pillars of modern medicine, it seems unlikely such courtesy would be extended to a literal denier.

Dec 17, 2014 at 8:02 PM | Unregistered Commenterbasicstats

Their incompetence doesn't end with climate alarmism.

http://arstechnica.com/staff/2014/12/ars-was-briefly-hacked-yesterday-heres-what-we-know/

Dec 17, 2014 at 8:22 PM | Unregistered Commenterdp

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