His note provides me with an excellent vehicle to define my issues with JNG's, and many others, approach. It gives me a chance to point out some glaring omissions and to ask a couple questions. I have not changed or deleted any of Professor Nielsen-Gammon's words, I have underlined key ideas.
John N-G (February 16, 2014 at 12:30 PM) said...
Cross-posted in comments at ClimateChangeNationalForum:
JNG: "It’s as though I’ve carried on quite a conversation with you without actually participating in it!
I want you to realize the trap you are setting for yourself.
You seem to be arguing that the urgency with which you perceive action to be necessary precludes or reduces the need for accuracy,"
JNG: "and any fact that argues against the need for urgent action should be suppressed lest it distract people from the overall balance of evidence."
JNG: "I believe that many have fallen into this same trap. It’s a trap because it requires the public to trust the judgment of the many, while at the same time allowing those opposed to directly undermine that trust by pointing out that the many are hiding evidence or not telling the whole story."
JNG: "Those who think we should simply emphasize the need for urgent action should by now have noticed that it’s not working."
JNG: "I’m contributing to CCNF because it’s a public forum that allows the evidence to be presented and contested at a proper, scientific level. I’m not going to hide anything, and if I don’t think a complete version of the reliable evidence is being presented, I’ll try to fix that. I may even ask devil’s advocate questions, and if the evidence is robust it will survive such questioning."
JNG: "Also, note that my time is limited, and I’d like to write about much more than I am actually able to write about. Given that limitation, I try to focus my posts on things nobody else is saying."
JNG: "On a separate note, you said:
CC: “Continuing to look beyond the individual you, I suggest it boils down to two different perceptions of our planet and Earth sciences.
“At the heart of one is an appreciation that our Earth is a living organism, one that has taken four and a half billion years, evolving one day at a time, to arrive at the beautiful cornucopia that awaited a restless inquisitive human species.
“The other mindset sees our planet through the lens of ancient texts and tribal dogmas. To this group of humanity our life sustaining planet isn’t anymore “real” than the Hollywood movie on the other side of the screen.
“Therein lies the tragedy of our time.”
It’s my belief that the opposite is true, that the argument for action is much stronger if you view the planet through the lens of ancient text and tribal dogmas than if you view it as an evolving, quasi-living organism. But that will be a discussion for a separate post, probably after CCNF adds policy to its scope."
JNG: "*That's the end of the cross-post, but some comments are in order here regarding Jennifer Francis' work. At present, the experts are divided on whether she's right, and many are deeply skeptical.
One problem is that climate models are quite capable of simulating Arctic Amplification and the resulting slowing down of the jet stream, yet nobody (including Francis) has found more stationary weather in the climate model simulations."
JNG: "There are also logical issues. For example, if a weakening jet stream leads to more severe cold waves, then in the limit of uniform temperatures and zero jet stream there ought to be the most severe cold waves possible, yet that doesn't make sense. For some other issues, check out the work of Liz Barnes."