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« Department for Exaggeration, Crookery and Conmen | Main | The BBC's latest green recruit »
Tuesday
Dec022014

Niceness at home and abroad

Shub Niggurath is bemoaning the lack of venues in which there can be conversations across the lines of the climate debate.

Good discussions used to take place, on occasion, at WUWT or BH. There were brief periods when the old Collide-a-scape blog and Bart Verheggen’s site provided such moments. They are hard to come by now. Maybe the consensus and conspiracy poison spread mindlessly and artlessly throughout the blogs by certain people is to blame.

He's right of course. I have struggled long and hard to make BH the venue where that can happen, but it seems that a visit from, say Richard or Tamsin is guaranteed to get some people riled, with the result that moderation becomes a full-time occupation. I can't afford to spend that amount of time on it.

Still, it's interesting to see that from some people's perspective, the limited exchanges here at BH are something to aspire to. As Judy Curry explains in her retrospective post on climategate, the state of the climate debate, and in particular the recent furore over Tim Ball's posting at WUWT and the riposte by Richard and Tamsin.

...the 1100 comments at WUWT were absolutely vitriolic against Betts and Edwards.  On twitter, the vitriolic comments were coming from the warm side, i.e. how stupid they were to post at WUWT...Well, it seems Betts and Edwards are trying to promote civility, something that the UK does pretty well.  Presumably they thought that posting at WUWT would be like posting at BishopHill.  NOT.  Climate change and social media is mostly blood sport over in the US (and Australia and Canada), where the situation remains very polarized and polarizing.

So I guess things could be worse. But please, everyone, do try to keep the temperature down when a comment thread features someone you disagree with. Even if they refuse to admit they are wrong or refuse to engage with your arguments or misquote you. If you start a shouting match, few people will hang around to see how right you are.

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Reader Comments (422)

ATTP

thinkingscientist has shown on many occasions that he warrants his nom de plume

you could learn a lot from him.

Dec 3, 2014 at 4:33 PM | Unregistered CommenterH2O: the miracle molecule

H2O,


thinkingscientist has shown on many occasions that he warrants his nom de plume

I wasn't really suggesting otherwise.


you could learn a lot from him.

I'm sure I can.

Dec 3, 2014 at 4:43 PM | Unregistered Commenter...and Then There's Physics

Thinkingscientist: You see, you asked a simple yes/no question of the Pedant-general and he gives you about 150 words of dissembling crap about how GCMs give us information - and that as we don't get anything other than that then info must be the next best thing to evidence. (But later, he will argue that he never said that).

As I said about him yesterday, he will not commit to a straight answer that can be later laid at his door. He does not want to be on the wrong side when the warming turns to cooling. He wants to be able to talk his way out by saying he never said it in the first place. Like I said, he's 'Frit!' - and a waste of space.

Dec 3, 2014 at 4:43 PM | Unregistered CommenterHarry Passfield

Thinking Scientist is not a scientist. The fundamental impetus of science is that observations by themselves are number gathering. They provide no meaning. To extract meaning you need a model. Models can be restricted, focusing on one thing or global. Global models tend to provide little detail, restricted models tend to tell you nothing outside of their limits. Models can be implemented in hardware, software or squishware

Once one has a model, it can be used to project forward, but you also have to provide a scenario of what the input parameters of the model will be in the future. As someone once said, if we had data from the future we would use it, but since we do not models will have to do.

Dec 3, 2014 at 4:46 PM | Unregistered CommenterEli Rabett

Shub, Harry Passfield, Thinkingscientist et al: save your fingers – aTTP will never give a straight answer, so why fret yourselves by trying to make him give one? I suspect he is just sitting in his basement, giggling at how he can twist you so.

Eli Rabett: interesting logic. Surely, the only evidence that models can give you is that the assumptions made in building that model were correct. What other evidence could possibly be gained? (I have a feeling Raff would be keen to know, too.)

Dec 3, 2014 at 5:36 PM | Registered CommenterRadical Rodent


Shub, Harry Passfield, Thinkingscientist et al: save your fingers – aTTP will never give a straight answer, so why fret yourselves by trying to make him give one?

And here was me thinking we were having a discussion about science, not verging into politics. I can't give a simple answer if there really isn't one that would be honest.


Surely, the only evidence that models can give you is that the assumptions made in building that model were correct. What other evidence could possibly be gained? (I have a feeling Raff would be keen to know, too.)

I think you have it the wrong way around. In a sense it's more like "given these assumptions, the models suggest....". Of course, a model may be built on well understood physics and be modelling an aspect of a system we understand well. In this case we'd be quite confident of the results. In other cases, there may be assumptions about which we are less certain. In that case, we would have less confidence in the results. In neither case would one conclude that the models have no value (unless you discovered something that definitively lead you to that conclusion). Of course, as Eli also points out, data by itself has no value. You always need some kind of model so as to turn your data into something that tells you something of the system that you're studying. Sometimes, however, you might not realise that you're doing this, as it will be something that we do naturally. That doesn't mean that it isn't a model, though.

Dec 3, 2014 at 5:47 PM | Unregistered Commenter...and Then There's Physics

Whether models are evidence or not, is distinct from what ATTP thinks about the question.

Clearly, there is no simple answer forthcoming.

I like how climate activists give themselves infinite latitude whereas the doubting Thomases get just one shot (tell me a Yes or a No, now!) and get classified as a denier if you choose not to answer.

Dec 3, 2014 at 5:48 PM | Registered Commentershub

Here's a tweet for you Harry

Observations by themselves are number gathering & provide no meaning, Meaning requires a model. That's science

110 characters, you could even add something about how scientists understand this and people like you don't.

Dec 3, 2014 at 6:03 PM | Unregistered CommenterEli Rabett

RR: And then there's pedantry says: "Of course, a model may be built on well understood physics [yadayadayada] In other cases, there may be assumptions about which we are less certain. In that case, we would have less confidence in the results."

I bet the Pedant has not read (I mean, really read) the Harry-read-me file with it's hilarious expose of the use of 'fudge-factors'. (He probably thinks it was stolen/hacked/leaked so is not something he would comment on).

Dec 3, 2014 at 6:11 PM | Unregistered CommenterHarry Passfield

And then there's physics

You are wasting your time here . These are ideological sceptics, not scientific sceptics, which is why they keep drifting from science into politics.

The second giveaway is their tendency to use the political debating style, not the style you would expect at a scientific seminar or a conference.

Dec 3, 2014 at 6:16 PM | Unregistered CommenterEntropic man

EM,
Well, yes, that was rather my conclusion too. I do find it useful to check every know and again, just in case things have changed or, maybe, my initial impressions were somehow wrong. It is important to try to build a statistically significant sample.

Dec 3, 2014 at 6:20 PM | Unregistered Commenter...and Then There's Physics

Careful gentlemen with the back-slapping, you could give a new meaning to 'productive discussion' .

Dec 3, 2014 at 6:43 PM | Registered Commentershub

EM & Pedant: You call what you're doing 'scientific debate'? As my dog would say: You're 'avin' a larf mate!
If this was ever a 'scientific debate' ATTP would have answered the questions put in less of a self-serving, dissembling manner. As for getting it into politics - you've got me there. Not something I learned at my University (even though I went to the same one as John Major - great campus!)

Dec 3, 2014 at 6:49 PM | Unregistered CommenterHarry Passfield

Shub,


Careful gentlemen with the back-slapping, you could give a new meaning to 'productive discussion' .

Indeed, with all the "warmists" on this page, this was starting to feel like a comment thread on my blog. Good thing you stepped in there and stopped it before it got out of hand!

Dec 3, 2014 at 6:50 PM | Unregistered Commenter...and Then There's Physics

Brandon,

Originally, you said:

Martin A, I don't agree with that. Leaving aside that I disagree with your risk assessment, I suspect releasing those e-mails would have been illegal even for someone with root access* Having an account with access to material does not mean you can automatically do whatever you want with that material.

More importantly though, the police who investigated say there was illegal access. Unless one has reason to believe the authorities are being dishonest or have blundered badly, the most likely answer is there was illegal access.
Dec 2, 2014 at 10:45 PM Brandon Shollenberger


* note that I said a legitimate root logon. If the employer gives them that they are implicitly authorising them to access anything that is readable.

Then you said

Martin A, while it depends on the jurisdiction you're in, there is generally data you cannot freely disseminate. For instance, if you knowingly distribute (government classified) confidential documents, you can get in trouble. (etc etc etc)
Dec 3, 2014 at 1:39 AM Brandon Shollenberger

Brandon - what you are saying is just stuff like "I suspect" "they might" and waffling on about what might be illegal under US law. You have not come up with any evidence that an offence was committed under English law, which is the only law relevant here.

OK so the police said so. The also police investigated Jimmy Savile and said that no offence had been committed by him. You believe them?

" if you knowingly distribute (government classified) confidential documents, you can get in trouble" Obviously. But Climategate did not involve classified information. Nor any other protected information - or if it did, then I have never heard of that.

It involved emails generated and received by English university academic staff in the course of their work. Under English law, universities are classed as "public authorities" and therefore information generated and received by their academic staff in the course of their work is subject to FOI. That is not open to question. I have successfully FOI'd such emails myself.

I have never heard of anybody being prosecuted for releasing information that would be subject to FOI and it's hard to figure out on what basis such a prosecution could pursued. Can you suggest anything? (Under English law, please)

As I said before, anybody with a legitimate root logon has been given implicit permission to access anything on the system unless told otherwise. In the chaos of UEA CRO IT it's hard to imagine there was even a record kept of who was given root access.

The Computer Misuse Act applies exclusively to unauthorised access.

So unless you can come up with something specific things that apply under English law (not US Federal law relating to schoolkids or other irrelevancies, please) I can see no reason to believe that a crime was committed.

______________________________________________________________________________________________

I think that Plod based their statement on the fact that some stuff was accessed via untraceable external access. Of course, even if I had authorised access to a system I might not want it to be known, for a range of possible reasons, that it was I who had downloaded the data. So I'd be sure to access the system via a chain of Russian and other inaccessible-to-Plod computers. If, while doing that, I had a legitimate root logon, I would not have contravened the Computer Misuse Act even though, to anyone looking at the logs, it would appear to be an external hacker.

Dec 3, 2014 at 7:00 PM | Registered CommenterMartin A

I had always assumed that ATTP was just another troll, that this blog seems to be becoming infested with. Having had a good look at his blogsite I am interested that he does not apply his own 'comments policy' and 'moderation policy' to his own behaviour on other's sites.

Dec 3, 2014 at 7:01 PM | Registered CommenterSalopian

“...as a result of our enquiries, we can say that the data breach was the result of a sophisticated and carefully orchestrated attack on the CRU’s data files, carried out remotely via the internet. The offenders used methods common in unlawful internet activity to obstruct enquiries.
This is what the Norfolk police said:

“There is no evidence to suggest that anyone working at or associated with the University of East Anglia was involved in the crime.”

They couldn't be more clear. The idea that the emails were leaked is just one of many lies told about the climategate affair and eagerly repeated on blogs such as this. I'm amazed people still try it on, even now, when all the facts are widely known.

Dec 3, 2014 at 7:03 PM | Unregistered CommenterNoel Darlow

EM
You're wrong. The reason we keep straying into politics is because politics is the be-all and end-all of the global warming/climate change bandwagon.
If you haven't been reading what I have been saying for years and what Tim Ball actually said in his posting at WUWT then that is hardly our fault but climate science is incidental to the politics of de-industrialisation which has been pursued since the 1970s by the environmental activists. Initially it was going to be global cooling until nature decided to switch the heat back on.
If this pause ends in a downturn — which is more than likely since the evidence for positive feedbacks to enhance the notional warming caused by CO2 is looking more iffy by the day — then it will still be CO2 that is to blame but this time allied to pollution which will be causing the negative feedbacks that threaten us with a new Ice Age unless .... same old, same old.
And I am sure that you and ATTP and raff and others will shift seamlessly from one non-existent panic to the other without even drawing breath.

Dec 3, 2014 at 7:04 PM | Registered CommenterMike Jackson

ATTPhizzics:

...this was starting to feel like a comment thread on my blog.
To coin a phrase: bwahahahaha! If this 165 comment-length thread had appeared on your blog it would be 20 comments long - and 19 of them would be from you, with one from your mate EM. All the rest would have been deleted.

Anyway....I really would like to know: what ONE piece of 'evidence' would you take to your desert island as 'proof' of CAGW? (In as few words as possible - like single figures).

Dec 3, 2014 at 7:06 PM | Unregistered CommenterHarry Passfield

Eli Rabbett

I think the regulars here are well aware of the need for a model in science

But we don't need a model to identify arrogance

Dec 3, 2014 at 7:08 PM | Unregistered CommenterH2O: the miracle molecule

Noel Darlow
You will need to explain why these hackers of yours knew exactly what they were going for.
You will also need to convince a lot of very sceptical people that the police had a clue what they were talking about and that they actually pursued enough lines of enquiry to draw any sort of conclusion about what actually happened.
It was of course in UEA's interests for this to be a hack rather than a leak and, given their propensity for obfuscation and dissembling, one wonders whether the information they gave the police was, shall we say, totally frank and forthright.
Either way, the emails said what they said, and the stench still lingers.

Dec 3, 2014 at 7:11 PM | Registered CommenterMike Jackson

Noel: I guess you have faith in UEA's ability to manage their systems data. Tell us, are you familiar with 'software level control' (or equivalent)? I don't think UEA were (see harry-read-me where he discusses this).

Any data-centre that cannot control its datasets is open to having that data leaked - and never knowing.

Dec 3, 2014 at 7:22 PM | Unregistered CommenterHarry Passfield

Harry pass field

One piece of evidence?

The increase in the area under the curve occupied by CO2 absorption in the OLR spectrum.

Dec 3, 2014 at 7:29 PM | Unregistered CommenterEntropic man

EM:

The increase in the area under the curve occupied by CO2 absorption in the OLR spectrum.
What? Not the parasitic oscillations due to inter-stage feedback in the Eccles-Jordan mono-stable double-diode flip-flop?

Is that actual or modelled?

However, the increase in CO2 etc has not kept pace with T. Your hypothesis has always been based on the correlation between CO2 and T. But T has stalled/peaked for 18-20 years while CO2 has continued to climb.

Some correlation.

(Edit: BTW EM: I asked the questio of ATTP...are you his spokesperson now?)

Dec 3, 2014 at 7:37 PM | Registered CommenterHarry Passfield

This is truly hilarious. If you pop over to ATTP's site, you can see that TinyCO2 has gone there to pursue his arguments and is receiving exactly the treatment that ATTP has been displaying here - evasiveness, focus on trivia rather than the crux of the argument, basic lack of reading comprehension skills, lofty condescension of the "I am a physicist so I understand these things and you don't" kind, insistence that he is correct but that he wants to find things out.. I am afraid that Brandon has been way too kind to him. ATTP is a l;iar and all his supporters on his site are in cahoots with him. All exhibiting the same pack behaviour. They don't want dialogue. They know they are right, even though ATTP insists that he did not say what he said, and they get very angry or, in ATTP's case passive-aggressive, when people insist on contesting their bizarre belief system.

Why ATTP holds court with people who really seem to believe that sensitivity might be 8k is something worth pondering. Why he does not ban someone who argues aggressively without producing a shred of evidence that renewables can support an energy grid is another mystery. These people are the real problem.

Dec 3, 2014 at 8:04 PM | Unregistered Commenterdiogenes

@Harry Passfield

This is what the Norfolk police said. They were a neutral party who had full access to all the evidence unlike commenters on this blog who rely upon their firm, evidence-free convictions:

“...as a result of our enquiries, we can say that the data breach was the result of a sophisticated and carefully orchestrated attack on the CRU’s data files, carried out remotely via the internet. The offenders used methods common in unlawful internet activity to obstruct enquiries.

“There is no evidence to suggest that anyone working at or associated with the University of East Anglia was involved in the crime.”

There is no ambiguity in that statement. There is absolutely no reason to believe that the emails were leaked.

Dec 3, 2014 at 8:12 PM | Unregistered CommenterNoel Darlow

@Harry Passfield

Does a short period of 18 years tell us (a) something about the long-term trend or (b) something about the extent of short-term variability?

I'll give you a clue: it's not (a).

Dec 3, 2014 at 8:17 PM | Unregistered CommenterNoel Darlow

Noel: Merely repeating what the Norfolk plod said (I wonder if they know even half of what Harry-read-me knows....) does not gainsay the point I made to you. To wit: Do you or do you not understand the concept of SW level control? And, BTW, do you think UEA/CRU did? (Give you a clue; the answer starts with 'N')

Oh, and if the police are convinced that it was a "carefully orchestrated attack on the CRU’s data files, carried out remotely via the internet." they would - prima facie - need to have evidence (there's that word again) that the attack was made over the internet. And of course, neither you nor I are party to that info. On the other hand, it could quite as easily have been carried out over the intra-net or local network - and we and plod would have as much 'evidence' of that as we have of the internet option.

You're the unquestioning believer here.

Dec 3, 2014 at 8:27 PM | Registered CommenterHarry Passfield

@Harry Passfield

No Harry I'm not an unquestioning believer. I am in fact the only one who has actually presented any evidence, an entirely unambiguous statement from a neutral party who investigated the incident. Let's just look at that again:

“...as a result of our enquiries, we can say that the data breach was the result of a sophisticated and carefully orchestrated attack on the CRU’s data files, carried out remotely via the internet. The offenders used methods common in unlawful internet activity to obstruct enquiries.

“There is no evidence to suggest that anyone working at or associated with the University of East Anglia was involved in the crime.”

Pretty clear, huh?

You presented no facts only speculation - uninformed speculation at that. Evidence-free argument does not bode well for your ability to talk meaningfully about matters of science such as climate change.

Dec 3, 2014 at 8:39 PM | Unregistered CommenterNoel Darlow

Noel Darlow: talking of long or short terms of temperature change… you question the short-term, 18-year trend of no change, yet not the not-quite-as-short (yet) 23-year (1975-1998) trend of rising, and ignore the 30-year (1945-1975) trend of falling. You may cite the circa 200-year rising trend from the end of the LIA to present (though not trumpet the less than impressive rise of less than 1.5°C); however, should you look at the – perhaps more significant, on the global scale – trend over the past 2,000 years, it is falling. There is the significant probability that Earth is heading towards another Ice Age, and there is nothing that we can do about it, other than to try and sort ourselves out. Whipping up scare stories about 2° (i.e. to about what is was during the Roman era) is not the way to do that.

Dec 3, 2014 at 8:55 PM | Registered CommenterRadical Rodent

Noel
There seems to be a strand of people who are concerned about climate who seem to hold the belief that everything was ok with climate until some point in the 1970s, when suddenly it started to change. Are you one of that number?

I think you will find that most people who comment on this site think that climate has been changing throughout the history of the planet.

Dec 3, 2014 at 8:57 PM | Unregistered Commenterdiogenes

Great deflection, Noel. But still you haven't answered the question I've asked many times.

Never mind. I guess you're just not qualified for that.

However, you (the plod) says:

“There is no evidence to suggest that anyone working at or associated with the University of East Anglia was involved in the crime.”
Which means, conversely (because there is a void here, no?), that there is no evidence that someone associated with the university didn't leak the data. Get the idea? The plods are as adept at dissembling as many warmists commenting on this blog. And that's not uninformed speculation.

PS: Well said RR.

Dec 3, 2014 at 8:59 PM | Registered CommenterHarry Passfield

Talking of models and 'evidence' I just love this quote from the U of Southampton in GRL, as quoted on WUWT (for trolls: this is not WUWT saying it but the UoS saying it):

“Using data from a range of state-of-the-art ocean and atmosphere models, the research shows that the increased oceanic heat drawdown in the equatorial Pacific, North Atlantic and Southern Ocean basins has played a significant role in the hiatus.”
Doncha just love it when 'evidence' confirms all your beliefs? Oh dear....

Dec 3, 2014 at 9:14 PM | Registered CommenterHarry Passfield

@Radical Rodent

You should not presume to tell me what I do or do not question.

Short-term variability is of a magnitude which easily overwhelms the long-term signal even although (by definition) it averages out to zero over the long-term. For this reason, periods less than 35 years or so are not considered significant. It's even longer for some phenomena.

Thus pointing to an 18 year "trend" is a real schoolboy howler of an error. Neil de Grasse Tyson explained it well here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cBdxDFpDp_k (I forget who first came up with the dog walking metaphor for long-term trends and short-term variability).

The Earth is already in the middle of an ice age. According to celestial mechanics, the current interglacial would be expected to last around 30,000 years in total ie it's not due to end any time soon.

Two degrees contains significant risks. We have, for example, already baked at least 10ft of sea level rise into the system due to Antarctic ice loss alone. However, there is every reason to expect that we will face a much greater temperature rise because of our failure to reduce carbon emissions fast and hard.

Dec 3, 2014 at 9:27 PM | Unregistered CommenterNoel Darlow

@diogenes

Climate has always been changing? Alrighty. Let me know when/if you have some kind of point to make.

Dec 3, 2014 at 9:30 PM | Unregistered CommenterNoel Darlow

@Harry Passfield

I am not required to respond to uninformed, evidence-free speculation. All I am required to do is point out that it is uninformed, evidence-free etc. Come back when/if you discover some rational basis for your claim.

Dec 3, 2014 at 9:34 PM | Unregistered CommenterNoel Darlow

Noel:

I am not required to respond to uninformed, evidence-free speculation
I'm gonna remember that line. Especially when I see another of your posts that are so full of it. How easy it must be to be like you: you get asked a question and you attack the questioner. Result. But FAIL.

But anyway, you're busy now telling RR that periods less than 35 years are not significant: tell me, just how long has been the AGW period (minus the 'pause' that has got governments taxing us to death?

And, at the risk of being told I'm unqualified to ask, where did you get that 2Deg contained 'significant risk'? A politician, by any chance? (It has a well-documented history).

And you still haven't answered my factual question about SW Level management. Guess you haven't worked in SW then.

Dec 3, 2014 at 9:48 PM | Registered CommenterHarry Passfield

Norfolk plod were neutral?

Ask Rog Tallboke about that.

And really, folks, ATTP only comes here to threadbomb and drum up business for his dismal little site.

The scroll button was invented for the likes of him.

Dec 3, 2014 at 9:59 PM | Registered Commenterjohanna

Noel


Were you there to criticise Nature when it ran its "mannian" hockey stick graphic?

Dec 3, 2014 at 10:35 PM | Unregistered Commenterdiogenes

"...the 1100 comments at WUWT were absolutely vitriolic against Betts and Edwards..."

An opinion that can only come from someone who didn't read all or even most of the comments.
Some comments were vitriolic, sadly.
Many comments were or bordered on derisive and focused on lack of attention to science rather than Dr. Ball's article.
Many comments were about Dr. Ball's article and/or Dr. Bett's and Dr. Edward's questioning response article.

Many comments, including mine, centered on Dr. Edward's and Dr. Bett's attempt to stifle Dr. Ball articles and comments. Given the lack of accurate specificity in Dr. Bett's and Dr. Edward's article, quite a few posters questioned if the good doctor's actually read Dr. Ball's article before they went complaining.

Tamsin's involvement in the accusing Dr. Tim Ball article is disappointing given her normal attempt to see many sides, simultaneously. Maybe after Tamsin's read Dr. Ball's article carefully, the two of them can discuss how to have emotional and other kinds of differences without making it a mob hit.

That would be a whole lot better stance than trying to shout down or force an author into absolute and abject silence.

Barry Woods: Such anger and disgust for Dr. Ball's article! Did you actually read Dr. Ball's article?
You do realize that Dr. Tim Ball is still under a lawsuit by the unpleasant and rumored to be un-green Mann? That is what happens when a person gets too specific with the climate bullies.

Barry, just what is your opinion for why there is such a strong motive for CAGW alarmism along with dire consequences for climate skeptics, heretics or even just pure science practitioners.

Dec 3, 2014 at 10:35 PM | Unregistered CommenterATheoK

Martin A:

OK so the police said so. The also police investigated Jimmy Savile and said that no offence had been committed by him. You believe them?

As I said, unless you have some particular reason to doubt the police's conclusions, odds are they're right. You've presented no reason to believe this was an internal leak. As far as I know, you've done nothing to try to find out if it was. It seems the only reason you have to believe it was such a leak is that's what you want to be true.

I have never heard of anybody being prosecuted for releasing information that would be subject to FOI and it's hard to figure out on what basis such a prosecution could pursued.

This is just silly. Governments are subject to FOI. That doesn't somehow mean classified documents the government holds can be freely distributed. FOI laws have exceptions for a reason.

Brandon - what you are saying is just stuff like "I suspect" "they might" and waffling on about what might be illegal under US law. You have not come up with any evidence that an offence was committed under English law, which is the only law relevant here.

My original comment clearly said I suspect a crime was committed even if it were an internal leak. Why would you expect me to act more certain now? I don't know the relevant laws well enough to be sure I know the answer. What I do know about legal systems, however, makes me suspect what I suspect. When people ask why I suspect what I suspect, I'll tell them the reasoning.

That my suspicions aren't based upon the ability to cite a specific law which would cover the offense is unremarkable. If I could cite such a law, I wouldn't just suspect a crime was commited. I'd know it.

If you really want to pursue this matter, try getting some information from the police who investigated this. People have gotten some information from them already. I bet it wouldn't be hard to get more. As far as I know, the only reason people haven't is nobody really cares.

As far as I can see, the issue is pretty much irrelevant save in how we'd judge the person responsible.

Dec 3, 2014 at 10:44 PM | Registered CommenterBrandon Shollenberger

diogenes:

I am afraid that Brandon has been way too kind to him. ATTP is a l;iar and all his supporters on his site are in cahoots with him. All exhibiting the same pack behaviour. They don't want dialogue.

Eh. I'm much more inclined to believe a person is a liar when their supposed lies serve a purpose. Most of the time, I can't see a purpose in Anders saying the things he says. He'll do the same thing in one-on-one conversations with the person he misrepresents. What good comes from lying then? He just seems too committed to his act for it to be an act.

That said, I asked a question on Twitter yesterday based upon this, "Is it wrong to call people who intentionally delude themselves liars? They 'believe' what they say, but only because they lie to themselves." The follow up question was, "If so, doesn't that mean I can be honest while telling any lies I want just by deluding myself into believing them?"

Those are questions I struggle with. I see people like Anders behave so consistently and forcefully it seems they must believe what they say. At the same time, it's easy to see them do "dishonest" things time after time. If they actually wanted to, they could understand people's views. They just choose not to by doing things like refusing to consider the possibility they're wrong on certain points.

Does that make them liars? Does it make them deluded? Is there some other word which actually fits? I don't know. I definitely don't think Anders is a liar in the typical sense, but I certainly don't believe he is intellectually honest. I'm not sure what word I should use to describe that.

Dec 3, 2014 at 10:53 PM | Registered CommenterBrandon Shollenberger

and then there's Physics and his doppelganger, EM.
So with your combined genius tell us poor, dumb sceptics about Karl Popper.

Here's a starter for 10:
When the IPCC was set up it was with the brief to find evidence to support AGW
However Popper shows that we cannot prove that a theory is true, but we can certainly show that a prediction is false.

Just take it from here....

Dec 3, 2014 at 11:00 PM | Unregistered CommenterBitter&Twisted

@diogenes

"Were you there to criticise Nature when it ran its "mannian" hockey stick graphic?"

More to the point, why would you presume to criticise a highly technical subject which does not lie within any competences you may have? What meaning would your criticisms hold?

The limits of what one reasonably claim about matters of science are defined by the set of published papers which have not yet been refuted. As a layperson, all you can do is attempt to inform yourself about the current thinking in a particular subject and ensure that you do not make claims which are not supported in the literature.

There is no honest way to get around this.

Dec 3, 2014 at 11:29 PM | Unregistered CommenterNoel Darlow

Brandon you asked the question "Does that make them liars? Does it make them deluded? Is there some other word which actually fits? I don't know. I definitely don't think Anders is a liar in the typical sense, but I certainly don't believe he is intellectually honest. I'm not sure what word I should use to describe that."

It's really quite simple- it is the blind faith of the religious fanatic.

Dec 3, 2014 at 11:29 PM | Unregistered CommenterBitter&Twisted

@johanna

"Ask Roger Tallboke about that"

You mean the police siezed some computer equipment in the course of an investigation into stolen property? Outrageous. The nerve of these "policemen" acting like they were some kind of official body tasked with upholding the law and investigating crime!

Dec 3, 2014 at 11:36 PM | Unregistered CommenterNoel Darlow

So Noel

When Nature showed that Mannian grpahic that showed temperatures flat-lining over centuries and then sudeenly rising in the late 20th c, you thought that was good science?

And then the subsequent papers ( including some by Mann) that showed that the MBH paper was not well-founded.....did you change your views?

Smiles...no need to reply - i know what you will say.

Dec 3, 2014 at 11:53 PM | Unregistered Commenterdiogenes

Eli Rabett: interesting logic. Surely, the only evidence that models can give you is that the assumptions made in building that model were correct. What other evidence could possibly be gained? (I have a feeling Raff would be keen to know, too.)

That assumes that assumptions models and observations are static. Each gets modified as the others are refined.

It is amusing to note that models can be more accurate than observations, in this context the song and dance about the MSU records comes into the mind, but more often because models show that observations were observations of what was claimed and in addition, additional things.

Assumptions can also be tricky, but the best are those that come from base level theory and observations, such as spectroscopy rather than from observations on the system a bunny is trying to model. You know, like the IR emission and absorption of CO2

Dec 4, 2014 at 12:00 AM | Unregistered CommenterEli Rabett

Noel Darlow, I will not speak on behalf of Roger, but I think if you read his blog posts about the seizure of his equipment, which was not returned to him for months, without cause or result, his take on it might be a bit different.

What "stolen property", anyway? Theft requires the deprivation of the owner of something, which did not happen in this case. The only person deprived of their property was Roger.

Dec 4, 2014 at 12:01 AM | Registered Commenterjohanna

I have yet to see the admission by Mann and co that they fucked up in their 1998 paper. Have you seen it, Noel?

Dec 4, 2014 at 12:03 AM | Unregistered Commenterdiogenes

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