Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Examining denialist dodges #4 K gets down to brass tacks

{edited Wednesday morning}
Slowly wrapping up my virtual dialogue with K at the OurChangingClimate "Is Climate Science Falsifiable" thread, he has drifted a long way from discussing how falsifiability in science works, instead preferring to dodge my questions with diversions into politics, so I figure it's a good excuse to consider the Libertarian Mind in a bit more depth by going through his comment and offering my responses.   As mentioned previous this exercise offers interesting insights into the workings of the contrarian mind and might come in helpful for some.


krischel Says: 
August 18, 2014 at 01:27
@citizenschallenge: You are a natural climate change denier :)

What's that mean pray tell? How can anyone deny natural climate change? 

It appears K hasn't figured out that it's impossible to grasp Manmade Global Warming without first understanding the science of "natural climate change." 

A reminder, K never did respond to my explanation that his "null hypothesis" doesn't make sense, since there's nothing "unnatural" about increased CO2 levels increasing our planet's insulation, nor that humans increasing GHGs will increase global average temperatures.
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K writes
CC: “You dismiss the guy’s academic record”
K: "Because Mann’s academic record doesn’t make up for his lies and fraud."

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I've addressed this echo-chamber fantasy regarding Mann's alleged misdeeds in essay  #3 of this series.
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CC: “Your McIntyre doesn’t understand the science”
K:  "On the contrary, he’s incredibly well educated, and shows his work. Mann hides it behind lawsuits :)" 

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How's being incredibly educated in mining, and investment strategies qualify him to judge climate science?

Also, what the lawsuit want's isn't Mann's work which is readily available for any serious researcher to examine {don't believe it, click here} - the lawsuit basically want's every piece of paper Mann ever wrote on.  It's a political witch hunt nothing more.
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CC:  “Believe it or not krischel I am trying to understand you”
K:  "Then understand this – I’m a radical atheist low carb small government libertarian who believes in individual freedom including gay marriage, abortion, and the right to bear arms." 

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"a small government libertarian?"  Is that supposed to impress me?  

To me Libertarians are Ayn Rand fantasists of the worst sort, with a child like naivety towards the complexities of our modern times instead focusing on short sighted pursue of personal desires.

For instance, our Colorado Libertarian candidate for Governor proposes a serious solution for our state's problems -  'return Homesteading to the (bark beetle ravaged) National Forests of Colorado.'  It worked so well a hundred years ago, how could it not rescue us today?

K, how does "individual freedom including gay marriage, abortion, and the right to bear arms" qualify one to understand Earth systems or honestly assess the work of scientists.  

{I myself have spent my life learning about our planet, how it got here and how it operates, excuse me for believing such a background gives me a better footing  in this discussion than someone who's only interested in defending the politics of personal gain.  So be it.  Prove me wrong... with something rational.}
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K says: "I see the AGW panic as one predicated on poor Malthusian reasoning, pushing forward solutions that hurt the poorest of the poor, and damage humanity more than any amount of global average temperature change possibly could."

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What panic? Seems to me everyone is dang laxidaysical about it considering the threat it offers society.
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K says: "I see the AGW panic as one predicated on poor Malthusian reasoning, pushing forward solutions that hurt the poorest of the poor, and damage humanity more than any amount of global average temperature change possibly could."

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And of course I should have anticipated the phony "think of the poor" ploy.

The only time l hear "libertarians" and neo-Republicans talking about the poor is in this sort of political ad setting -  when it comes to real world actions that help the poor - such as tighter pollution rules and industrial leadership that understands why such regulations are needed - plus the good-faith implementation of those rules...  Or supporting fair living wage movements... Or realizing that we live in the 21st century and our planet has become increasingly finite and that the 'Reaganomics Notions' of too much is never enough and  greed is good are basically a Ponzi Scheme.

Give me a break - this concern for the poor from a political group of people who whole-heartedly pushed for our nation to create a war-of-choice and obliterate the neighborhoods and homes and lives of millions of poor and middle class regular folks and their children, people who did nothing to America, heck their hated leader did nothing to do USA.

But, "we" had a libertarian personal Wild West Vendetta going on - our young Bush Jr. avenging his daddy's honor (well and a little free market war profiteering on the side, but hey, liberty has it's price).  

Great stuff for a western melodrama or the neighborhood mafia - but a hideous way to run the world, {as we can see from the ensuing state of affairs.  The new age of deteriorating into a world of tribalism and the conviction that it takes weapon sales and use to solve the world's problems and keep the coffers of thee Free Market healthy.}. 

So tell me again K, why should I be impressed with your politics?  : - |

OK - I got a bit caught up in rhetoric myself, up there.  What can I say, thinking about the unmitigated (and 100% predictable) disaster of USA's invasion of choice in Iraq can do that to me.  I'll admit that Libertarians could point to this, but it's not that clear cut 

Krishel, I invite you to prove me wrong, show me where "Libertarians" are standing up to support a better world for poor folks.
Please I'm interested in hearing about efforts to help the poor. 

Then there's that old contrarian trick again, toss a label at something such as "poor Malthusian reasoning"  and assume the issue can be ignored.  Thing is that Thomas Malthus published his “An Essay on the Principle of Population” in 1798 and indeed failed to take many unforeseen developments into account, including the size of the world and all the places that England's bursting populations were able to escape to.  But then it was 1798.  

This is 2014, and the basic predicament he lays out can best be summarized by the Tragedy of the Commons and the world is full of examines where once abundance natural resources have disappears because of carelessness driven my thoughtless greed.

Looking at the Tragedy of the Commons
by Garrett Hardin
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The deeper version.
Science 13 December 1968: 
Vol. 162 no. 3859 pp. 1243-1248 
DOI: 10.1126/science.162.3859.1243
The Tragedy of the Commons

Seems to me humanity's greatest test of the past forty, fifth years was the challenge to internalize the reality of our transition away from our age immemorial boundless planet, to a brave new island world, were resource limits are palpable and increasing; with pollution beginning to overwhelm natural biological recovery abilities; and human populations skyrocketing with no place for the young and restless to escape to.

In essence K and his Libertarian/neo-Republican world view demands that we turn a blind eye to such down to Earth modern realities and ignore the basic math, or the facts of compounding accumulating interest along with their self-evident implications.  

For those interested in learning about the Malthusian idea: 

Are Malthus's Predicted 1798 Food Shortages Coming True? (Extended version)
It remains to be seen whether his famously gloomy prediction is truly wrong or merely postponed
Aug 18, 2008 |By Jeffrey D. Sachs
"... In spite of all of the above critiques, Malthus’ theory still applies to many poor countries that are still struggling to get out of the Malthusian cycle. Even among richer countries, a Neo-Malthusian relationship between population growth and the environment has been argued for, based on the idea of the overuse of scarce natural resources. But this problem, too, is more severe in poor countries, which usually depend more on their natural resources."
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Malthusian and Neo-Malthusian Theories/ Ran Abramitzky and Fabio Braggion
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Climate Change and Poverty
A challenge for a fair world policy
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Climate change will hit poor countries hardest, study shows
Drought-prone areas will become drier and wet tropical regions wetter, says Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
John Vidal |, Friday 27 September 2013

- - -
Climate change: the poor will suffer most
UN report says that unless governments act now to reduce emissions, no one will be safe from effects of climate change
Suzanne Goldenberg  | The Guardian, Sunday 30 March 2014
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K believes "...  and damage humanity more than any amount of global average temperature change possibly could." 

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This one makes me wonder if K even thinks about some of the things he puts out there.
It's absolutely disconnected from reality.  

What K suggests makes about as much sense as having a Chicago carpenter work outside in Phoenix all day in August and expect his performance to be equal to his output back home.  It's ludicrous to the point of meta-physics and religion.  

Humans can only function within a relatively narrow band of temperature! To scoff such physical constraints is insane.  As though a warming world isn't going to have big impacts on everything.  
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K says: The fact that so much corruption has been discovered amongst your heroes (Gleick, Mann, Jones, et. al.) only increases the amount of scrutiny that should be applied to the alarmist claims.

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Soo much corruption?  Like what corruption? 

Dr. Mann - using a statistical method that a mining engineer/investor type decrees is a nasty corrupt fraud... a claim all actual experts in the field who have examined McIntrye's facts have repeatedly found his charges be a substance-less? 

K never considers the possibility that McIntyre is himself out of his depth, nor the distinct possiblity that McIntyre does not understand the figures and formulas he's manipulating.
How can someone who doesn't understand the scientific background and complexities make an objective appraisal in the first place?  

McIntyre plays Assumptions and Curve Fitting, his work has been dissected and dismissed by any number of experts, yet someone like K, who like myself has no clue regarding the actual complex math being applied, still chooses to believe McIntyre is a saint and incorruptible genius and that all the experts, who actually understand and work with this stuff are to be disregarded and insulted? 

That is not the way of science.
McIntyre does political theater!
Not the stuff of serious learning, 

About those investigations:
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Dr Jones - What's his real crime beyond pissing off Mr. McIntyre the mining consultant?  A threat to delete something isn't a crime.  Interestingly,  here again McIntyre and pals haven't offered any substantial charges that stand up beyond their hostile Libertarian/Republican echo chamber.   
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Gleick, took advantage of an opportunity that fell into his lap and got some revealing information about a filthy hostile organization.  If you want to wave around such standards - how would you judge the Bush Administrations tampering with evidence and harassing scientists?  

Any no interest or concern in what that reveals about the Republican contempt for learning and truth about the state of climate science?
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Committee Report: White House Engaged in Systematic Effort to Manipulate Climate Change Science

  • Cached Columbia Journalism Review
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Posted by Olive Heffernan  | 12 Aug 2009 | 
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(the interview itself)
Q&A: Professor Phil Jones 

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K continues: "A few things I’m not:
– I’m not doubtful of the radiative properties of CO2;"

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OK, then why does K deny the scientific evidence regarding their cascading impacts?
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– "I’m not doubtful that global average temperatures have been rising since the little ice age;"

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Why is K limiting himself to the past three to four hundred years?  What about the facts of the past eight, nine thousand years, while our planet experienced a period of unprecedented climate stability which enabled human culture and civilization to developed?  See:

Humans have been exerting ever increasing impact on our climate system for the past millennia.

I wonder if K has ever considered the cumulative finding about pre-Colombian America?  

Turns out the Americas were very populated, with vast tracks of land being managed by fire to suppress forest growth, enabling large scale agriculture and also the vast grasslands that fed huge herds of game animal.  

Then came Columbus - bringing European diseases which spread like wildfire decimating indigenous populations across the continent.  This in turn ended native control burns... this in turn allowed forests to return en mass to vast tracks of land within a few generations... this in turn abruptly sucked huge amounts of CO2 out of the atmospheric circulation system, this in turn resulted in a diminished planetary insulation layer.

Ironically (or not) all things considered, the LIA occurred right when logic would dictate such an event occurring.  Namely,  after an unusual drop in our planet's insulation ability from the previous state.  Go figure.  

For some really fascinating information regarding America's long term human history see:

1491: Rewriting the History Before Columbus - Charles C. Mann
U.S. National Academy of Sciences' Keck Award recipient.
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– "I’m not doubtful that humans emit CO2;"

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Well then why don't the massive amounts of oil and coal we are burning make any impression?  Over two and half gigatonne a month.

World Oil Consumption by Country
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World oil consumption
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For a look at what we burn each year see "Crude - The Incredible Journey Of Oil" at 52:40 - there's much more to be learned from the program

What I'd really like to figure out is why so cavalier about something, like our weather patterns, that we are so absolutely dependent on?

Do you really think your love of and longing for ever more material goods is worth destroying our planet's healthy biosphere; along with our children's future; oh, and also poor people's hopes, for?
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– "I’m not a petroleum executive with a vested interest in natural petroleum;
– I’m not a nuclear executive with a vested interest in nuclear plants;"

~ ~ ~
So what?  Who cares?  It's the way you think; and the words you use; and the lies you feel comfortable spreading that I have my issues with.
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– "I’m not opposed to your proposed solutions because of short term thinking, I’m opposed to your proposed solutions because I believe they’re bad in the short *and* the long run;
– I’m not being selfish by insisting the poorest of the poor be given the advantages of cheap energy;"

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The irony here is that I don't write about solutions.  For me that seems pointless to consider until everyone figures out just what our predicament is - something you are doing everything in your power to avoid.
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The runway behind us won't do us any good !
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K writes: "I’m not an evangelical christian.
I know this doesn’t fit into your worldview – how can an intelligent, rational, atheistic, socially liberal person doubt the great Al Gore, or Michael Mann?" 

~ ~ ~ 
Here K is projecting nonsense onto me.  
But then, he seems more comfortable in the world of his imagination than the real world.

Then K plays the Al Gore card.  Why bring that up? I did not write about Gore, nor have I referenced AIT.  My climate science awareness and on-going educational process stared long before he came on the scene.  Al Gore is a politician who did his best to explain the science, doing a middling job that back-fired horribly.  He is not a scientist and never claimed to be one.

K's grasping at straws at this point and misreads me, it is the Libertarian/neo-Republican ready acceptance of the repetition of lies, strategic attack on science and rejection of learning from new information that I'm railing against!
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K writes: "The answer is that if you take off your political blinders for a moment, and look at your chosen heroes with a critical eye, you can see the truth past their lies."

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K keeps labeling things lies and fraud and crime - but seem incapable of actually describing the wrong doing.  Now he says I have blinders on, though still not offering anything rational to work with.

Seems to me it's K who keeps focusing on these fabricated "chosen heroes".  
I keep wanting to discuss the evidence and the science being produced, but he keep running away from that - instead preferring to stick with his tabloid routine of titillating yet contrived personal scandals.
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K writes: "Because in the end, that’s your problem – you’ve been lied to, and instead of questioning your own bad judgement in heroes, you’ve decided to protect your ego by defending them to the bitter end :)"

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I keep thinking K could use a bit of little introspection and self-examination himself.
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K finished with: "There is a way out of this trap though – the scientific method. Starting with a necessary and sufficient falsifiable hypothesis statement. Demand this kind of due diligence from your heroes, and when they fall short, perhaps you can let go of your blind faith and return to the realm of the rational :)"

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Here he goes, last paragraph and some lip-service about the scientific method and sufficient falsifiable hypothesis, yet K never did seriously consider any of the many options he was offer throughout the comments thread at OurChangingClimate.

Now that all this mucho blah blah is finished with, my next post will try to refocus on "sufficiently falsifiable hypothesis" and how climate scientists have been adhering to best practices standards.

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