Friday, January 30, 2015

Mr. Jim Steele, Can you clarify your argument?

A) That wildlife biologists working in extreme conditions and over continental landscapes make mistakes?

B) Disputing that Anthropogenic Global Warming with it's profound changing climate driven landscapes alterations causes adverse cascading consequences for wildlife and eco-systems (read our biosphere) 

Can Mr. Steele come clean and explain what his fundamental thesis is?
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

I have been wrestling with Mr. Jim Steele's YouTube "Climate Science Horror Story" talk to the IEEE for quite a while because it slammed right into my long-time {some call it} obsession with trying to grasp how people can so easily lie to themselves about something as fundamental as understanding and appreciating how our fantastic, beautiful, bountiful, wonderful planet Earth functions and how our society and we ourselves are damaging it.

Besides the YouTube talk Mr. Steele has a blog "Landscapes And Cycles" and his spiel is that local landscapes and natural cycles are ALL important and that we the people should disregard the global.  His talk ignores that natural cycles and wildlife dynamics operate within the biosphere which is dependent on our Earth's protective atmosphere… which regulates the conditions our biosphere inhabits.  

To me it seems that Jim and his public doesn't want to recognize that we exist within a "global heat distribution engine" and that as with any engine when we supercharge it with extra fuel/energy {just like at NASCAR} that engine will break loose.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Senator Inhofe's Medieval Warm Period deception - by John Mashey

Here's a slight digression.  While Jim and I are engaged in our little "climate science horror story" altercation, the big boys running our country are playing the same intellectually dishonest juvenile games as Mr. Steele does.  For instance, Oklahoma's Senator Inhofe, now Chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works committee, a force not to be dismissed.  This man has real power and yields it with brutal efficiency.

Tragically for our children this Senator Inhofe is an absolutist with open contempt for serious science (see here and here) and anyone who disagrees with him on anything.  

I mean this is the Senator who brought in a writer of pulp thrillers to testify on climate science!  Worse, Inhofe's fiction author was in the middle of a book-selling campaign for his most recent yarn.  But than, that was no coincidence, was it?  Farcical though it seems this paperback writer was put in front of a US Senate committee that was charged with learning about what professional climatologists were discovering - a fiction story peddler!  And Republican's are good with that.

Then Inhofe used this storyteller's words to justify ignoring what actual professional scientists, who have dedicated their lives to understanding these processes, were trying to convey.  What up with that? 

And now this powerful Senator has repackaged another fable, the infamous Medieval Warming Period's "Lamb Graph" - of no purpose but to waste yet more precious time - rather than getting down to business.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Peter Miesler Helps Expose USHCN Homogenization Insanity - WUWT

That's Mr. Jim Steele talking in that title, I myself intend to expose something quite different.

Although it'll be a few days before I'm ready to comment on the USHCN itself and the way Mr. Steele puts their data to work, (too many other things going on, for now I offer the following reading list courtesy of VV at VV).
  ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Victor Venema at Variable Variability 
put together a good reading list of articles that look into temperature adjustment: 
Climatologists have manipulated data to REDUCE global warming 
Variable Variability
Phil Plait at Bad Astronomy comment on the Telegraph piece: No, Adjusting Temperature Measurements Is Not a Scandal 
John Timmer at Ars Technica is also fed up with being served the same story about some upward adjusted stations every year: Temperature data is not “the biggest scientific scandal ever” Do we have to go through this every year? 
The astronomer behind And Then There's Physics writes why the removal of non-climatic effects makes sense. In the comments he talks about adjustments made to astronomical data. Probably every numerical observational discipline of science performs data processing to improve the accuracy of their analysis. 
Steven Mosher, a climate "sceptic" who has studied the temperature record in detail and is no longer sceptical about that reminds of all the adjustments demanded by the "sceptics". 
Nick Stokes, an Australian scientist, has a beautiful post that explains the small adjustments to the land surface temperature in more detail. 
My two most recent posts were about some reasons for temperature trend biases: Temperature bias from the village heat island and Changes in screen design leading to temperature trend biases 
You may also be interested in the posts on how homogenization methods work (Statistical homogenisation for dummies) and how they are validated (New article: Benchmarking homogenisation algorithms for monthly data)
   ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
For now I want to focus on two more fundamental issues:  
1) Why does Mr. Steele rely on a few graphs based on a data set he also belittles as next to worthless?  
2) Why doesn't he allow the copious observational evidence to guide his convictions - rather than obsessing over fractions in a very complex data set?

The courier font are Mr. Steele's words lifted from his January 7th, 2015 WattsUpWithThat blog post. "Peter Miesler Helps Expose USHCN Homogenization Insanity and Antarctic Illusions."
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
¶6  I have referred to Yosemite’s temperature trend because it represented similar trends recorded in USHCN data throughout montane California, from the north at Mt Shasta in the Cascades, to Lake Tahoe (where my research was focused) and south to Death Valley. Likewise the peak warming in the 20s and 30s supported past analyses of California’s climatologist illustrating California’s rural counties had not experienced any warming that exceeded the 30s. 
~ ~ ~
Check it out, here Mr. Steele relies on a two decades old study that affirms the Urban Heat Island effect.  There is no climatologist out there that would disagree, and every climatologist will also explain that real though UHI effect is, it does not make a fraction of the global impact that humanity's injecting some 3 gigatonnes per month of insulating greenhouse gases into our atmosphere does. (think: compounding interest)
Goodridge, James D. "Comments on regional simulations of greenhouse warming including natural variability." Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society 77.7 (1996): 1588-1588.
Also, one might ask, what do today's climatologists think?

Monday, January 26, 2015

Regarding the question of USHCN homogenization

Regarding Mr. Steele's January 7th, 2015 WUWT blog post, while I won't respond to the personal stuff beyond answering any question in the comments section - Mr. Steele's January 7th, 2015 WUWT blog post does make some interesting points regarding US Historical Climatology Network (USHCN) and data homogenization.  Now that stuff get's up into pure expert level and is quite frankly beyond the abilities of non-experts such as Mr. Steele and myself to realistically judge.  But, he does open up yet another avenue of investigation and I will be making inquires at the USHCN to see what they can teach me about their records and temperature data processing.

In relation to my dialogue with Mr. Steele, the irony is that he relies on his interpretation of USHCN data to make his point that California is not experiencing any warming, yet he broadcasts contempt for USHCN homogenization methods and their models.  What's up with that?  I also have to wonder why he didn't respond to my emails requesting more details and share this information with me.  In any event, I'll share the information I'm able to gather over the next days and weeks.

In the meantime, perhaps it would be good to bring all this back down to Earth and actual observations.
Mr. Steele's repeatedly claims it's the local that matters.  But in truth any appreciation of the "local" is impossible without understanding how it fits into the global pattern.  I hope the following video drives that message home (followed by 2014 NOAA, NASA videos and look at California temperatures):

NASA | A Year in the Life of Earth's CO2

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Dear Mr. Steele, regarding your 1/7/15 WUWT post - an open letter...

Yesterday I became aware of a shocking, misinformation laced "Watts Up With That" blog post written about me January 7th by our good Mr. Steele.  Considering Anthony Watts won't allow me to comment at WUWT it seems appropriate to share this email I've just sent to Mr. Steele (among others).  I won't be responding to the specifics in that contorted dishonest WUWT blog post.  Although I'll be happy to answer any questions submitted to the comments sections after this open letter.

To whom it may concern,
Ms. Mendoza, Assistant to the Dean, San Francisco State University 
Ms. Griffin, Public Affairs, San Francisco State University 
Ms. Kelly, Academic Affairs, San Francisco State University 
Mother Jones
Four Corners Free Press
Climate Science Defense Fund

I am copying you on this email to Mr. Jim Steele because I feel seriously threatened by your emeritus instructor ( and I'm hoping for an objective moderating arbiter.  I do appreciate Mr. Steele has a bone to pick with me, for reasons best understood by reviewing: 
INDEX - Jim Steele's climate science horror collection, Landscapesandcycles, 2014

But, I believe I've written nothing to justify the viciousness and misleading prose of his recent WUWT article - over a matter that would best be handed with dispassionate dialogue.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Mr. Steele, 

regarding your 1/7/2015 WUWT blog post.  I can see we are quite different, you fight your intellectual battles within the confines of an echo-chamber of like-minded who have convinced themselves that scientists are manipulative and untrustworthy - unless they share your "sceptical" storyline that modern climatology is a farce.  Along with that you seem to believe that anyone defending those scientists and their work is an enemy in your no-holds-barred grudge match.

I myself would rather objective, educated, informed individuals judge the validity of our respective opinions, claims and assertions.  I remain prepared to digest new evidence and recognize my mistakes.  Like scientists, I love learning and expanding my understanding, even when new evidence shows that my assumptions were wrong.  Also, just like serious scientists, I willingly allow the strongest evidence to drive my "beliefs".  

I do take heed of Mark Twain's observation, the one you closed your attack piece with:

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

HotWhopper examines David Rose's tricks of the trade

Speaking of Tricks of the Trade I received a comment worth a mention up here:
"We thought you might be interested in our own recent deconstruction of Watts' methodology.

It details the "Arctic Sea Ice Gone in Summer Within Five Yearsmeme WUWTzers have been pounding into the dirt.  GWC looks at the 12/12/2007 National Geographic News article that started the whole thing.  Including Mr. Anthony Watts' selective screenshot cropping and what he hide from his audience.  Echo's of Dr. Nils-Axel Morner's Maldives Tree "evidence".  Not to mention that awful habit of taking an editor's sensational title and pretending it's the science.  You'll find it interesting.

Meanwhile back at Sou's place:

There's an interesting, dare I suggest must read, post at HotWhopper this morning that fits right in with my theme of examining the ways and means of how climate science denialists misrepresent the science in order to mislead the public.  Thus I'm mirroring it over here.  Without further ado, take it away Sou:

Tricks used by David Rose, denier "journalist", to deceive

Sou | 3:41 PM |  WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 21, 2015

This is just a short article to show the journalistic tricks that professional disinformers use. It's excerpts from an article by denier David Rose, who is paid to write trash for the Mail, a UK tabloid of the sensationalist kind. He'd probably claim that he's just "doing his job". His job being to creates sensationalist headlines and not bother too much about accuracy, but try to do it in such a way as to stop the paper ending up in court on the wrong end of a lawsuit. Just. (The paper probably doesn't mind so much getting taken to the Press Complaints Commission. )

Here is what David Rose wrote:

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Dr. Dessler: Alternative Reality of Climate Skepticism

I stumbled onto a recent talk given by Dr. Andrew Dessler that does an excellent job of describing the alternate reality that climate science denialists have so successfully fabricated.  It was sad seeing that it's only had 174 views in the three and half months it's been out.

And since I do get tired of the depressing grind of cataloging, researching and trying to wrap my head around Mr. Steele's malicious nonsense, I decided to listen to the fresh air of a serious scientist discussing the world, even if in this case it's the alternate reality of the manmade global warming denial community.  As is my habit I took some notes and figure I may as well post it over here and perhaps encourage a few more folks to view it... and think about it.  

Dessler's basic message is that we are dealing with an ideological problem and not a scientific one.  Successfully confronting the challenges will take something other than getting more and better scientific information out there.

It makes sense to me.  Consider my pal Mr. Steele's basic MO is to find flaws in wildlife population counts and uses that to deny the physics of global warming and its impacts - it's insane.  But because he's feeding an ideologically entrenched audience, they buy it since they aren't interested in learning, all they want is reassurance.

As for my ideology, I love this planet and it's many wonders and have been attuned to it since early childhood, which is what led me to my love of science, which is the only vehicle to truly appreciating our Earth's wondrous magnificence.

I also love my, now grown, children and am heart broken by the diminished world be are leaving behind for them.  Watching us consume and destroy it's marvels one by one has been a profound tragedy to me.  Thus I engage in this effort to add my feather weight towards counter-balancing the dishonest politically motivated nonsense being produced by the likes of Mr. Steele, Anthony Watts and the rest of the Climate Science Denial Industry.

Andrew Dessler's The Alternative Reality of Climate Skepticism

Published on Oct 1, 2014
Oct. 01, 2014

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Rejected? Request for Steele's CA temperature graphs provenance

I have made a second 'official' request to Mr. Steele to provide support for his claims, in this case I want to know the provenance of the temperature graphs he uses to support his claim California has not been experiencing any unusual warming these past decades.  (For the first request see here)

I did find out that his Yosemite National Park temperature graph is a fraud in that the information it displays doesn't agree with the data at the Western Regional Climate Center (For the details see:

Steele's four California (Yosemite Nat'l Park, Lake Tahoe, Mt. Shasta and Cuyamaca) temperature graphs all have the same homemade look and feel and I believe it's very fair to ask: 
Who compiled those graphs?
What is the source of the data used when creating those graphs?

Considering the wind Mr. Steele expends preaching about "civil dialogue"; the wisdom of Carl Sagan and Mark Twain; and the standards scientists need to hold themselves up to - it seems to me, it's all decidedly one-sided.  That is: "do as I say, not as I do."

For example in Mr. Steele's essay "Blinded by Beliefs: The Straight Poop on Emperor" paragraph #12, he remarks: "Mark Twain again provides insight to why bad science so easily goes viral having written, “In religion and politics people's beliefs and convictions are in almost every case gotten at second-hand, and without examination, from authorities who have not themselves examined the questions at issue but have taken them at second-hand from others.” And apparently scientists suffer the same second? hand folly."

But try to apply that to Mr. Steele and he responds with silence or veiled threats (here), but no serious engagement regarding the questions at hand.  

Since, Mr. Steele makes much of his connection to San Francisco State University (he's an instructor at their Sierra Nevada Field Campus) lending him an air of authority he milks for all it's' worth, I had decided to include his boss in my quest to get Mr. Steele to respond.  I do this for two reasons,  A) being a nobody I prefer witnesses when dealing with intimidating characters,  B) I figure that San Francisco State University has certain academic standards they expect their instructors and professors to uphold - but who knows, I may be wrong.

Director Blair wants none of it, Mr. Steele remains silent, legitimate inquires remain unanswered, and me, I'm going to keep doing the best I can with what I have.  Here I share the most recent email exchange.

Monday, January 12, 2015

INDEX - Jim Steele's climate science horror collection, Landscapesandcycles, 2014

This blog has been a personal learning process and I'll admit some posts are duds, others aren't all they should be, but then, a few hit the nail.  

Since the past decade has taught me that climate science denialism is an insuperable ideological point of faith with many - I've switched my focus to the few who want to study the tactics and dynamics that climate science denialist types employ in order to misrepresent and distort the science.  These tactics are dedicated to confusing and misleading people.  

Thereby turning what should have been a sober learning process into a contorted dishonest political farce.  A farce forced on us by special-interests employing disingenuous jokers such as the "Lord" Monckton or this current rising star Mr. Jim Steele.  

His message: 
'Think locally, ignore the global.' 

His tactics:
    Obsessive focus on flaws in extremely challenging wildlife population studies.
    Misrepresent the scope of those flaws and the learning process. 

As an excuse to:
     Ignore the physics of atmospheric greenhouse gases.
     Ignore the fact that industrialized society has increased our planet's atmosphere's insulation medium (GHGs) by nearly 40%.
     Ignore the fact that our climate system is a global heat distribution engine.
     Ignore the overwhelming observational evidence of continued global warming.

    Political theater to dismiss well established science.
    Political theater to disparage dedicated professional scientists.
    The magician's tactic of distraction and sleight of hand.
    The Serengeti Strategy which is explained here and here.

I have invited Mr. Steele's comments and assured him I'll post what he offers, but he does his best to ignore me and has offered nothing. Except occasionally complaining about me at other venues and having me banned from commenting on his YouTube Climate Science Horror series.  Hopefully that will change.

For a detailed look at how I've arrived at and support my conclusions here's the index for my 2014 articles specifically focused on understanding Mr. Steele's "Landscapes and Cycles" game.  Stay tuned, given continued health, there will be more.


Friday, January 9, 2015

Steele's climate horror story, drowning chicks. Who says?

At Mr. Steele's Landscapes and Cycles blog (July 1, 2014) "Blinded by Beliefs: The Straight Poop on Emperor" he writes:
¶1  "Two recent press releases concerning the Emperor Penguin’s fate illustrate contrasting forces that will either advance or suppress trustworthy conservation science."
¶12  "Mark Twain again provides insight to why bad science so easily goes viral having written, 'In religion and politics people's beliefs and convictions are in almost every case gotten at second-hand, and without examination, from authorities who have not themselves examined the questions at issue but have taken them at second-hand from others.' And apparently scientists suffer the same second? hand folly."

I have been doing exactly that and contacting a number of the scientists Mr. Steele singles out in his YouTube 'climate science horror' series.  More times than not, it's turned out to be our Mr. Steele who is suppressing an honest, open and complete review of the available science.  

This morning I decided to go directly to Mr. Steele and request the source of one of his many questionable assertions.  Where did the claim of "chicks falling into the ocean and drowning come from?  I still haven't heard from him and since this is a public dialogue regarding his vehement public attacks on the integrity of respectable dedicated scientists, I've decided to share the following email. This text has been slightly polished, but I will be forwarding this to Steele and Director Blair after posting.


Question re your "drowning chicks" claim 
January 9, 2015

Jim Steele

John R Blair, Director of the Sierra Nevada Field Campus
Dr. Ainley

How climate science denialists employ the "Serengeti Strategy"

Here's an informative post worth passing along, it's a good description of one of my pal Mr. Steele's main strategies, right up there with misrepresenting what scientists have actually written and said.  I tip my hat to for making me aware of this article

Posted on 9 January 2015 by Guest Author Deirbre Fulton

Climate Deniers Employ Predatory Tactics in Fight Against Facts: Scientist 
by Deirdre Fulton 
was originally posted on Common Dreams on Jan 6, 2015.

Michael Mann writes that the strategy 'is similar to what happens when a group of lions on the Serengeti seek out a vulnerable individual zebra at the edge of a herd.'

Serengeti lion and zebras
"The 'Serengeti strategy' is often employed wherever there is a strong and widespread consensus among the world’s scientists about the underlying cold, hard facts of a field, whether the subject be evolution, ozone depletion, the environmental impacts of DDT, the health effects of smoking, or human-caused climate change," Mann writes. (Photo: Bulletin of Atomic Scientists/Brocken Inaglory)
Like lions targeting lone zebras in the Serengeti grasslands, industry-backed climate change deniers prefer to target individual scientists rather than take on an entire scientific field at once, climatologist Michael Mann writes in a paper published this month in the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists.
In "The Serengeti Strategy: How Special Interests Try to Intimidate Scientists, and How Best to Fight Back," Mann describes a concerted effort on the part of fossil fuel interests who find themselves facing overwhelming scientific consensus about the threat of human-caused climate change—and, by implication, the necessity to reduce global carbon emissions.
"By singling out a sole scientist, it is possible for the forces of 'anti-science' to bring many more resources to bear on one individual, exerting enormous pressure from multiple directions at once, making defense difficult," writes Mann, director of the Earth System Science Center at Pennsylvania State University. "It is similar to what happens when a group of lions on the Serengeti seek out a vulnerable individual zebra at the edge of a herd."