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Discussion > The Consensus on AGW (CAGW): Why do they want you to die?

Shub

Could you post the full context of when I told you to 'go away' or 'die' etc.

I'm having trouble remembering doing so.

Thanks.

Nov 5, 2011 at 11:35 AM | Unregistered CommenterBBD

In a recent discussion thread:, BBD told me to "go away" or "die" etc.

Why does the consensus want to kill/murder or in some way destroy you, or hope that you just disappear? Al Gore exploded the skeptical singing fat lady, 10:10 exploded a handful of people, Phelim McAleer was strangled, and now they have burned a sceptic.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=U5iS7BL1tDA

Nov 5, 2011 at 2:07 PM | Unregistered CommenterShub

Hi Shub

Am I part of "the consensus"?

I don't want to "kill/murder or in some way destroy you, or hope that you just disappear" ! You have a right to your opinions.

Having said that, I think it's pretty clear that the video you just posted is meant to be a joke not a death threat, because of the cartoony way he goes up in ashes leaving just his eyes. Very Loony Tunes if you ask me!

Unlike the 10:10 exploding heads video, which I do agree went too far. When I first saw it I thought it was made by sceptics to lampoon green activists!!! :-)

Cheers

Richard

Nov 5, 2011 at 3:13 PM | Unregistered CommenterRichard Betts

Hi Richard
Of course, I know you don't want me to disappear etc. But BBD probably want that. :)

We all know it is an attempt at humour but I was just wondering about the violent imagery . Why does it recur?

One idea is that: You know how attention-grabbing is done - get a bunch of people riled up and get them to make noise - on your behalf - to get the crucial word of mouth going.

What is different about the more recent efforts in the same vein, is that - the marketing effort does not concern itself with whether its actions may bring blowback. This is key. You can look at metal music videos on Youtube. Justin Beiber - the Canadian child artist's minders ran a long campaign of fake users showing up on metal videos to enter comments condemning Beiber and exhorting metal fans to follow suit.

Venues for broadcasting have multiplied and audiences have fragmented. The only way to achieve even a decent level of synchronicity of response, it seems, is to resort to a 'synchronicity of blowback'. It is quite intriguing.

Secondly,
Why would anybody want to burn a sceptic, in any way at all, looney tunes or otherwise? My only conclusion is that hatred brings the consensus together more than anything else.

Nov 5, 2011 at 4:29 PM | Unregistered CommenterShub

I think at heart Shub's asking a fair question. How about the suggestions to suspend democracy, or to jail deniers, or to send abusive emails to scientists? Or public accusations of bad faith, dishonesty and all the rest of it? It is the activists in part, but not only them. Yet on the surface people are only talking about energy policy or science, and there are good arguments on both sides.

Nov 5, 2011 at 5:35 PM | Unregistered CommenterPhilip

In a recent discussion thread:, BBD told me to "go away" or "die" etc.

I will enter this discussion after Shub posts up the comment(s) he is referring to.

Nov 5, 2011 at 7:31 PM | Unregistered CommenterBBD

@Shub

Why would anybody want to burn a sceptic, in any way at all, looney tunes or otherwise? My only conclusion is that hatred brings the consensus together more than anything else.

I'm not sure that "hatred" is the word I would use. It has been bandied about so much during the last few years (and in so many different circles) that it has almost lost its meaning, IMHO.

Unwarranted invocation of knee-jerk contempt and desire to denigrate, yes. Willfully blind intolerance of dissent and/or different views, yes. Inability to engage in intellectually honest discussion, yes. But not "hatred".

That being said, I'm surprised (and somewhat disappointed) to see that Richard Betts evidently fails to recognize that there is little (if any) difference between the bottom-line imagery and underlying message of the 10:10 video and that of this latest advocacy/activist marketing ploy.

Nov 6, 2011 at 10:31 AM | Unregistered Commenterhro001

hro001

Hi Hilary

There are 2 differences:

(i) the style - the 10:10 video attempts to look fairly realistic, with blood and gore (small g!) flying everywhere, while the other one does not)
(ii) the way in which is happens - the 10:10 video show someone deliberately blowing up the other people whereas this doesn't happen in the other video - the guy just catches fire. Nobody actually burns him.

But to be honest I don't really want to get dragged into a nit-picking debate about different levels of bad taste. The point of my original post was to distance myself from unpleasant messaging techniques in general, and the observation about one being less extreme than the other was merely an incidental remark.

Not everyone who thinks climate change is a problem wants sceptics to die, just like not all sceptics want climate scientists to die (I realise that the death-threats made to my friends in Australia come from a tiny minority of misguided individuals, and I don't think that you folks here would condone that).

So my final comment: please let's not perpetuate this polarisation of the issue by giving the impression that there are 2 "sides" in which everyone on one "side" agrees with all the actions of everybody on their "side", however stupid they are. Let's all distance ourselves from the extremists at our "own end" of the spectrum, and allow reasonable folk on the other "side" to do the same, then maybe we can have a civilised conversation.

Nov 6, 2011 at 11:52 AM | Unregistered CommenterRichard Betts

Richard
Do you think any of the 'extremists' on your side - who are actually nothing but well-funded think tanks, and not some isolated nutjobs - have faced any consequences or questions ever from the more moderate end?

The fat lady breaking video made with Albert Gore funding.
The kids exploding video made with corporate funding.
The sceptic burning video made with Bill Clinton foundation funding.

Some sceptics in Minnesota made a video lampooning Michael Mann and got a lawsuit slapped on them.

The reality therefore is that, there is a bunch of (well-funded) people acting as though they are on 'your side' and constantly throwing out material to keep the atmosphere polarized, and to create polarization where none exists.

My criticism of these people will be ignored (because after all, I am a 'sceptic') and most of your side will not criticise, because, well..they seem to supporting your side.

A civilised letter to the William J Clinton Foundation, no noisy public vilification and point-scoring - that would be the best way to go forward.

Nov 6, 2011 at 1:45 PM | Unregistered CommenterShub

Shub

You started this thread with this:

In a recent discussion thread:, BBD told me to "go away" or "die" etc.

Please show where I told you to "die etc" or withdraw this comment and apologise for lying.

Thanks

Nov 6, 2011 at 2:28 PM | Unregistered CommenterBBD

Richard,

I hadn't realized the emails had included death threats. I hope very much your friends have not been too badly upset by them.


BBD and Shub,

I think you may have a fair amount in common regarding the energy question at least: it might be worth exploring this topic a little more.

Regarding civilised conversations about science, it is best to take scientist's views about science at face value, irrespective of whether the scientist is James Hansen, Roy Spencer, or anybody else i.e. to criticise the view expressed, rather than the individual's motivation, hairstyle, morals etc. Allegedly, Richard Feynman played bongos and frequented topless bars. I don't believe any climate scientist today is as depraved as this.

I also think it is far too easy to lose perspective. With this in mind, you might find the following articles amusing, interesting, and/or controversial. Please don't read too much into my quotes, the context is some way removed from current arguments over climate.

http://users.math.yale.edu/~bbm3/web_pdfs/fractalGeometryWhatIsIt.pdf

Yet, when, starting in 1963 we advanced a model of the long-run persistance in river discharges, we found that explanation was perceived as mattering very much. ... The first and most frequent questions were the following: 'Why choose so peculiar a model?' 'Has this model already been seasoned in the usual way, by being used in physics?' and 'What is the climatological explanation of this model?' In the water resources community, the most quantitatively inclined practitioners seemed intimidated by assertions of the primacy of explanation over everything else, afraid perhaps of hearing someone thunder 'But where is the science behind what you do?'
...

Our study of prices kept eliciting the comments already mentioned in the context of hydrology, the third one being phrased as 'Your models look fine, but how do you relate them to economic theory?'. In moments of irritation, we are quoted as responding 'There is, as yet, no explanation for these findings; in fact no explanation could reasonably be expected to come from existing economic theory. After all, this theory has been growing for well over a century, and has yet to predict anything'.

http://www.pnas.org/content/97/1/28.full

The fact that the essential role played by higher organizing principles in determining emergent behavior continues to be disavowed by so many physical scientists is a poignant comment on the nature of modern science. To solid-state physicists and chemists, who are schooled in quantum mechanics and deal with it every day in the context of unpredictable electronic phenomena such as organogels, Kondo insulators, or cuprate superconductivity, the existence of these principles is so obvious that it is a cliché not discussed in polite company. However, to other kinds of scientist the idea is considered dangerous and ludicrous, for it is fundamentally at odds with the reductionist beliefs central to much of physics.
...

For the biologist, evolution and emergence are part of daily life. For many physicists, on the other hand, the transition from a reductionist approach may not be easy, but should, in the long run, prove highly satisfying. Living with emergence means, among other things, focusing on what experiment tells us about candidate scenarios for the way a given system might behave before attempting to explore the consequences of any specific model. This contrasts sharply with the imperative of reductionism, which requires us never to use experiment, as its objective is to construct a deductive path from the ultimate equations to the experiment without cheating. But this is unreasonable when the behavior in question is emergent, for the higher organizing principles - the core physical ideas on which the model is based - would have to be deduced from the underlying equations, and this is, in general, impossible.

Nov 6, 2011 at 4:40 PM | Unregistered CommenterPhilip

BBD
You get nothing. You said it, you go and figure out what you said.

Nov 6, 2011 at 4:56 PM | Unregistered CommenterShub

Shub

Said what?

That you should die? Where?

I'm getting fed up with your constant smearing and this time I'm calling you out formally.

Show it or retract it, or be exposed as a liar.

Nov 6, 2011 at 5:47 PM | Unregistered CommenterBBD

BBD
You are a fine one to talk about smearing. Not too long ago you stated

AR4 WG1 is totally corrupt, lying, and without scientific basis. Because matthu says so.

I called you up on that at the time saying that it was totally false and without foundation. You chose not to substantiate your statement.

Many people are getting fed up with your constant smearing and this time I'm calling you out formally. Show it or retract it, or be exposed as a liar.

Nov 6, 2011 at 7:27 PM | Unregistered Commentermatthu

matthu

Despite the irrelevance of your comment, please accept my apologies for that single overstatement on my part.

Many people are getting fed up with your constant smearing and this time I'm calling you out formally.

Examples or retraction.

Thanks.

Nov 6, 2011 at 7:54 PM | Unregistered CommenterBBD

Retract what? My statement that you said something? But you said it. And I didn't even take it seriously.

Anyway, don't spoil a joke...and let us know, given your exacting standards as is clearly evident here, what you think of 'the burning issue'?

Nov 6, 2011 at 9:02 PM | Unregistered CommenterShub

@Richard Betts

There are 2 differences:

(i) the style - the 10:10 video attempts to look fairly realistic, with blood and gore (small g!) flying everywhere, while the other one does not)
(ii) the way in which is happens - the 10:10 video show someone deliberately blowing up the other people whereas this doesn't happen in the other video - the guy just catches fire. Nobody actually burns him.

Richard, I'm not disputing the differences in either the "the style" or the "script". I am concerned about the "bottom-line" conveyed by the imagery and (more importantly) the underlying message of these marketing ploys.

I appreciate that you may not be concerned with such "bottom-line" stuff. Just as you did not appear to have any concerns regarding the Met initiated 'statement of support' in the aftermath of Climategate - which made no mention whatsoever of the behaviours of the individuals whose actions had precipitated the circulation of the statement.

But I noticed your more recent attempt to defend (the increasingly indefensible) IPCC, by twisting a (not particularly obvious) IPCC error into a suggestion that Donna needed to "check more carefully"! And I must say that I found it somewhat amusing that, in your "correction" tweet, you had written:

Actual ch3 LAs: Trenberth, Jones, Ambenje, Bojariu, Easterling, Klein Tank, Parker, Rahimzadeh, Renwick, Rusticucci, Soden, Zha

Were Trenberth and Jones doing "double-duty" as CLAs and LAs in Chapter 3? Or is there another error on that part of the IPCC website that Donna should have miraculously divined?!

What I'm quite curious about, though, is knowing whether it was you who made this monumental discovery regarding Lisa Alexander's somewhat less exalted role - or whether you were merely promulgating that which had been "found" by Gleick, Mandia and their cohorts (or others of their ilk) who had obviously failed to read The Delinquent Teenager ... before initially putting their respective (and disrespectful) knee-jerk denigrating fingers to keyboard?!

Nov 6, 2011 at 9:13 PM | Unregistered Commenterhro001

Shub

Retract what? My statement that you said something? But you said it. And I didn't even take it seriously.

What 'it'?

I have asked you four times for quotes. And?

You overstepped the mark starting a Discussion thread with this sentence:

In a recent discussion thread:, BBD told me to "go away" or "die" etc.

If you had acknowledged that you were out of order you might have salvaged something.

You chose not to. Others will draw their own conclusions.

Nov 6, 2011 at 9:19 PM | Unregistered CommenterBBD

Shub

Retract what? My statement that you said something? But you said it. And I didn't even take it seriously.

What 'it'?

I have asked you four times for quotes. And?

You overstepped the mark by starting a Discussion thread with this sentence:

In a recent discussion thread:, BBD told me to "go away" or "die" etc.

If you had acknowledged that you were out of order you might have salvaged something.

You chose not to. Others will draw their own conclusions.

Nov 6, 2011 at 9:24 PM | Unregistered CommenterBBD

Nov 6, 2011 at 9:13 PM | hro001

Hi Hilary

CLAs are a subset of LAs (and it's convenient in a 140-character tweet to use that as shorthand).

It was me that spotted the error about Lisa, because I knew for sure she wasn't an LA on AR4 (she's a former colleague of mine so I would have noticed if she'd been at the author meetings - CLAs don't attend).

It's not exactly a "monumental" discovery though - you didn't see me shout it from the rooftops that the whole book was discredited or anything, did you? I was just tweeting comments to Donna as I came across points while I read. As I said, there are points she makes that I agree with (like the reliance on one controversial paper for the "30% of species at risk of extinction" statement which became iconic).

Nov 6, 2011 at 9:51 PM | Unregistered CommenterRichard Betts

BBD

Thank you for your retraction.
I have no intention of looking through posts for examples of people getting fed up with your put downs as I don't think that would be constructive (unless you genuinely believe this has never happened).
Let's move on.

Nov 7, 2011 at 2:10 AM | Unregistered Commentermatthu

Richard

I was just tweeting comments to Donna as I came across points while I read.
And I think in that one sentence you've encapsulated why Twitter has the potential to be the biggest mistake that the Internet has spawned.
Why not make a note instead of tweeting and then when you've done write a proper email or a critique that you can check for errors and for potential misunderstandings and for things that have become irrelevant as you read further or things that you would have phrased differently because they can easily be misread or the recipient's meaning becomes clearer or ... etc.?
Criticising bits of someone's work in 140 characters? Recipe for disaster!

Nov 7, 2011 at 12:14 PM | Unregistered CommenterMike Jackson

I agree with Mike Jackson.

In fact I'd say it is one of of the most aptly named applications out there.

Nov 8, 2011 at 1:35 AM | Unregistered Commentertimg56

The best joke about twitter

http://youtu.be/nGTWsm8H4pA

It is the very first minute.

Nov 8, 2011 at 2:52 AM | Unregistered CommenterShub

I personally was happy when former Senator Jesse Helms died, and I will probably enjoy a drink of expensive scotch when Marc Morano, James Inhofe, and Steve Milloy kick the bucket.

-Brian Angliss



Mike,
In an odd way this is cheering news ! One other thing about the CC paper – just found another email – is that McKittrick says it is standard practice in Econometrics journals to give all the data and codes !! According to legal advice IPR overrides this.

Cheers

-Phil Jones on John Daly's death

Nov 12, 2011 at 2:43 AM | Unregistered CommenterShub