Seen elsewhere

Click to get the Josh 2016 calendar.

Click images for more details



Recent comments
Recent posts

A few sites I've stumbled across recently....

Powered by Squarespace

Use your HSI effectively

H/T to Lord Beaverbrook, who found this in the comments at WUWT:

I am not sure if this is the best place to post this, but I wanted to mention an interesting conversation I just had with my local Liberal MP Peter Chandler.

Some time ago I had dropped my copy of the book “The Hockey Stick Illusion” as I was aware from previous conversations that he and I saw pretty much eye to eye on matters relating to climate change, conservationism and power generation and I believed the book would be a good source of infor providing links and a clear discussion which not all MP’s in this country are willing to do.

My first call in after some time to see if he had read it revealed he had not yet had time to do so, however that was not the case today.

I called in to the office and we had a discussion on the book and he let me know that he has used it extensively in climate change discussions – and in fact in a number of cases related to but not always directly about CO2 emissions. In addition, he has quoted passages and given sources in local parliament and says that “the best thing about the book is that it is very clear on giving source information so when the people who are ‘enusiastic’ on climate change ask him questions such as ‘where is his source?’ he can easily give references’. He also said that with some of these people he drives them up the wall somewhat because every time he does bring up these points some people do not like them because it brings solid facts to the table.

I was somewhat floored by the use to which he has put the book and wanted to just let you know that here is a good example of where the book has had direct impact on discussions of policy for my local electorate (Darwin, Australia).

He also warned me that the book was currently on his nightstand and that when I got it back it would be a “work in progress” (referencing it will likely not come back in pristine condition) which I have no problem with as I have a feeling it has been put to very good use and more use than I probably could have done.


How to get to the top

Donna Laframboise has uncovered the remarkable story of the IPCC lead author, Sari Kovats, who was appointed a lead author on the IPCC report before publication of her first scientific paper and years before she had completed her PhD. In the meantime she appears to occupy the position of senior lecturer at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, desite the fact she was only awarded a PhD last year.

It stinks.


St Andrews tonight

Just to confirm that I'm speaking tonight in St Andrews. The talk is 8pm in the Physics Building (Lecture Theatre B). The public are welcome.


Quote of the day

The anonymous peer review process is the enemy of scientific creativity…peer reviewers go for orthodoxy.

Professor James Black

Quoted in Donald Gillies' submission to the House of Commons Science and Technology COmmittee. H/T Judith Curry.


No opposition

Peter Gill emailed me a couple of days ago. Some of you may remember Peter as the man who famously didn't write the Institute of Physics submission to the House of Commons inquiry into Climategate. Peter wanted to tell me about a recent invitation he'd had to take part in a global warming debate at one of the bits of the University of London. After several months of to-ing and fro-ing, the who event has now been cancelled because nobody was willing stand up to represent the other side of the argument.

This is a rather familiar story, isn't it?

(I had a similar experience a few weeks back, although the reason given was lack of ticket sales).


Science in hot water

Cumbrian Lad points to a BBC Radio programme starting at 9pm tonight called Science in Hot Water. It's about scientific misconduct and will apparently feature CRU at some points. Strange, I thought they'd been exonerated.

When the University of East Anglia's Climate Research Unit got into hot water over leaked emails, the case review stated: "[In] a matter of such global importance, the highest standards of honesty, rigour and openness are needed". In this two-part documentary, Adam Rutherford reviews some high-profile cases where scientists didn't take those responsibilities quite seriously enough. As he trawls through a fascinating rogues' gallery, from Piltdown Man to a South Korean geneticist's claim that he had cloned stem cells, Rutherford wonders whether scientific misconduct is more prevalent than we think


SciTech peer review inquiry

The House of Commons Science and Technology Committee have started to publish the submissions of evidence on their website.

A number of familiar names are there, and I'll try to read these when I get a chance:

  • Philip Campbell, the editor of Nature who had to resign from the Russell inquiry after prejudging the findings (not to mention his conflict of interest)
  • Richard Horton, the editor of The Lancet, who replaced Campbell and whose advice was ignored where Russell found in convenient to do so
  • Michael Kelly, of the Oxburgh panel, whose observations on the indequacies of CRU's work was not reported by Oxburgh
  • Nic Lewis, of O'Donnell et al fame
  • Prominent sceptics, McLean, de Freitas and Carter

There are also two from UEA and one each from the big learned societies, including the Royal Society.


IJoC - business as usual

Long-term readers may remember my efforts to get the International Journal of Climatology to adopt a sensible policy on data and materials - this was prompted by Steve McIntyre's attempts to extract information from the journal and one of its authors, Ben Santer.

At that point the journal had no policy, simply referring requesters to the author, and apparently happy to let the authors refuse if they wished. IJOC is a journal of the Royal Meterological Society, and the society's head, Paul Hardaker, was initially very favourable, with an undertaking to instigate a review. However, as months turned into years it became fairly clear that the society was caught between a rock and a hard place. If their policy was tough enough to ensure that data became disclosable then mainstream climatologists would not publish there. Climategate brought some confirmation of this, with the revelation of an email in which Santer and Jones discussed a boycott of the journal over a future data policy. Santer's words:

If the RMS is going to require authors to make ALL data available - raw data PLUS results from all intermediate calculations - I will not submit any further papers to RMS journals.

Click to read more ...


Vested interests

Rob Schneider emails to say that BBC Radio 2's Jeremy Vine has today been discussing public reactions to nuclear power experts - namely to distrust their advice because of their vested interests.

And quite right too.

So why does the BBC treat this same argument as risible when it is raised about the advice given by global warming scientists?


Scottish Sceptic

A new blog for your attention - Scottish Sceptic is the site of Mike Haseler, a former Green party candidate, who has now seen the error of his ways...


McKitrick on Earth Hour

Ross McKitrick has posted some thoughts on Earth Hour, as told to a journalist last year:

The whole mentality around Earth Hour demonizes electricity. I cannot do that, instead I celebrate it and all that it has provided for humanity. Earth Hour celebrates ignorance, poverty and backwardness. By repudiating the greatest engine of liberation it becomes an hour devoted to anti-humanism. It encourages the sanctimonious gesture of turning off trivial appliances for a trivial amount of time, in deference to some ill-defined abstraction called “the Earth,” all the while hypocritically retaining the real benefits of continuous, reliable electricity. People who see virtue in doing without electricity should shut off their fridge, stove, microwave, computer, water heater, lights, TV and all other appliances for a month, not an hour. And pop down to the cardiac unit at the hospital and shut the power off there too.


Commenting part 25

I've been asked to get more details of the commenting problems. If you are affected again could you

1. Note exactly what you were doing

2. Give details of the error message

3. Give browser type and version, OS and version and IP address


Did the IAC "lose" some submissions

Hilary Ostrov continues her dogged pursuit of the IAC (Update: Not forgetting Donna Laframboise too!). She has been analysing the submissions of evidence to their inquiry into the IPCC and, as regular readers of her site know, she has found some amazing things.

The latest revelation is that while the IAC announced that there had been over 400 submissions of evidence, only two hundred or so have been published. The inquiry chairman, Harold Shapiro, is not answering his email.

Stranger and stranger.

Read the whole thing.


Hastings notices energy gap

Max Hastings, writing in the Mail, notices that we may have a bit of a problem with our energy supplies here in the UK.

To be sure, if Fukushima releases lethal radiation affecting thousands of people, it will become much harder politically for any government to push through a new nuclear programme. But, today, this still seems unlikely.

What could be a catastrophe for Britain, however, is the crisis that will fall upon us ten years hence unless this Government comes to its senses, and starts to plan for a credible energy future which must include nuclear power.

If it continues to duck the issues and leaves policy in the hands of Chris Huhne and his foolish green friends, start hoarding candles.

H/T Breath of Fresh Air


Is commenting fixed?

Now the new domain host has been in place for a few days, has anyone noticed an improvement in the commenting problems?