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February 10, 2006



This is PR stunt. Everyone in the field agrees that the hockey stick data are simply wrong. No reputable scientist cites Mann any more. Why bother revisiting this silliness.


The Steve McIntyre link doesn't work... just letting you know. ;)

Gary Maxwell

I think this goes back to Boelert R form upstate NY taking on Barton R from Texas. Boelert was looking for something to hang his hat on and went to the NAS. Barton may have pulled a rope a dope on h8im by saying he doubted they would address all his concerns. I wonder how much data we have on solar flares. If Mars is heating up at the same time as the Earth, does that argue for looking at the Solar activity or are we exporting greenhouse gases to nearby planets?


You didn't cite the blog correctly. It is

And Nittypig's comment that "No reputable scientist cites Mann anymore" is true only if you think that climate scientists are all disreputable. As anyone who reads Climateaudit will discover, Mann and the rest of the hockey team say they have "moved on" from the 1998 Hockey Stick article, but only to promote new versions of the same stuff. And the notion that the twentieth century was the warmest in "at least" the last 1000 years is still based on the faulty "temperature proxies" continually spun by the hockey team (mixed metaphor alert).

Climateaudit is a terrific site, because the debate going on there is a great David v. Goliath story, and Goliath is beginning to feel dizzy.

Rick Ballard

Steve McIntyre blogsite

I concur with JohnH concerning McIntyre - interesting info.


Rick, If you do a single thing to knock Gore out of the running I will track you down and give you a hockey stick to remember! SHHHH


Do you mean a hockey puck?

Rick Ballard


Kerry, Gore and Hillary are all struggling to lead the "math is hard" contingent from the left side of the bell curve.

Facts do not impress Luddites and can be talked about freely in their presence. You have to be careful about when speaking of feelings, though. And be sure to keep a look of deep concern on your face which can be alternated with a look of anger when speaking of the total unfairness of whatever matter is being discussed.

I'm not taking any risks with this.


Yeah. Want to break up a party? Mention DDT.


Read Crichton's "State of Fear", a novel packed with facts. His speech on "consensus" science is excellent, too.


i had a thought about a storyline thread either dealing with the election of 2000 and Gore's campaign or a futuristic thread on the 2008 election where Rove decides to go for one last campaign.


Go for it. It is Friday night!


That paper by McKitrick is pretty interesting.

Dispensing with the PC (principal components) methodology entirely and simply taking the means of all normalized proxies from Mann's data yields a 600-year flat trend centered around zero with no major variance, and no 20th-century global warming trend.

Looking only at borehole data, with a large sample size, indicates we're recovering from a 500-year "Little Ice Age" which occurred after an even worse "Medieval Warming Period" of 1000-1400AD, and not experiencing a significant 20th-century trend.

Mucking with selectively weighted individual series and scaling all data by the 20th century mean of the selection creates the "hockey stick," and implies we're in a new and unique warming phase, which the simple and straight-forward methods don't support.

Did I read that right? Is this really the level of the scientific debate on this?


I have looked at the percentages of carbon dioxide over time, glacial cyclicity, general global cooling which has been going on for quite some time and the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere against average global temperature.


This post that I put down on my random musings on such things. Basically, I just don't get it seeing what has happened over the last 4 billion years or so. I don't think anyone has done the economic forecast of curtailing industrial productivity against the lowering of the standard of living for doing so against the projected cost of global warming and the expected effects it *might* have, if it ever happens as the doom-n-gloomers predict.

Probably a few larger things to worry about... Yellowstone caldera event, Canary Island slump, Cascadia fault slippage, and the random burpings of Mt. St. Helens and other Cascades volcanoes. Not to mention any rocks in space that give us closer than expected calls in the next few decades...



Rove was excited-it was true then, there was going to be South Carolins caucas right after the Iowa caucases because the Dems thought New Hampshire was not diverse enough to claim a frontrunner position in the nominating calendar. As Rove/Schrum prepared for the meeting to finalize plans with Dean he could only chuckle to himself- Talk about a dumb as dirt idea! His call earlier in the day to alert the editor at The Manchester Union Leader was going to pay off "big Time" Talk about frontloading the primary season....

Rick Ballard


Yep. Phrenology - backed by statistical "methodology" tied to light sampling and suspect interpretation of what the width of tree rings actually mean.

One must read Gore's "Earth for the Unbalanced" in order to comprehend what an utter fool can do with such data. Or watch the UN and EU make a power grab based upon speculation and the need to "really, really hurry, 'cause we're all gonna die if we don't".

Let these boys shine your shoes and there's a fifty-fifty chance that you will never want to wear them again.

Rick Ballard

Rick Perry was thinking. Thinking very, very hard. He sat in his office in Austin, sat in what he called "the President's chair", his eyes moving about the well appointed room, not really seeing anthing at all, as his mind flicked from thoughts of the campaign that had brought him to this office, to Kay Bailey Hutchinson and John Conryn and then to Lee Atwater. What would Lee think of this? But Lee was gone and there was no one else who could offer a better opinion than the man whose name was on the message slip laying before him on the desk. Only seven words - and not a hint as to any specific meaning. "Karl wants to see you on Saturday." He decided to wait a bit longer before returning the call. He needed to collect his thoughts and be prepared. Karl did not mince words and had no patience for the unready.

Meanwhile, in Tallahassee....


maryrose, why not repeat your opener on the Ya Think thread which is sort of dead and we can play there withoutinterfering with this discussion?



All was not well in Hillary!land.

Whoever thought it was a good idea to hire all those Iowans to impress the Heartland with their down home accents, forgot one thing.When it comes to duplicity, Middlewesterners are deficient. Horribly deficient.
Each of the "working gals" (as they called themselves) had a drawer full of chatchkies which they were to don to make visitors feel at home:not too discete crosses, giant Stars of David, Back the Troops,Naral buttons Bring them Home Now buttons, and, hijabs.

At first the idea was to have the doorman alert them as to what --or rather who--was on the way. But he proved not up to the task,regularly confusing nuns with Moslem women and vice versa.
The task was shifted to the small, weak eyed, slightly chubby receptionist with the cheap wig that always seemed to meet her head at some odd angle.
This afternoon, she confused the ANSWER delegation with the Gold Star Mothers and screaming and the sound of glass crashing could be heard as far away as Farragut Square, a good two blocks from Hillary!land.


What the "gals" in Hillary!land lacked in the way of dishonesty, was more than made up for at tthe den of scoundrels known as the Just One Minute blog, where a pack of slick tricksters met night after night to plot the doom of their political enemies.
John Kerry was considered particularly loathesome but at Rick's clever suggestion it was decided, to steal and twist a phrase "to build him up before they leet him down".


Jeb Bush was in despair, after Nelson had gotten re-elected beating a late surging Harris by a whisker he had gone into political retirement. Now there was a lot of V.P. talk going around.' God I'd give my right arm for a chance to make the short list"...


Cheeseheads everywhere; as far as the eye could see...but somehow Russ Feingold felt right at home; it was the place he was meant to be. Internet funding for his campaign had reached gargantuan proportions surpassing his wildest expectations. Moveon.org had been and continued to be especially generous since they had virtually turned their back on Hillary. Tinseltown had been a welcome surprise; the anti-war crowd turned out to be larger than even he expected.


Each of the JOM scampsters had 50 or more different sock puppets (and it is a tribute to their intelligence that they were able to keep them straight.Though they were helped by the fact that each used the same password, Frigh Him.)

All these monickers were put to good use,posting miles of drivel on Kos and DU reminding everyone of the brave, almost solo fight John had waged to filibuster Alito. How. he'd voted against the war (well for it and THEN against it, but AGAINST it, nevertheless)."Kerry or we lwave," they ended every message.

And in Hillary!land, the media watchers were reading and reporting back.As if Feingold weren't troublesome enough.
Hillary!'s backers were stuffing Sharpton's campaign office with money to keep him in the race to make her look reasonable, but she feared the left flank was growing and it was too late in the game for her to go left again before the general election.


"Nine is the charm for me " thought Schrummy as the bus coasted over the snow-packed roads of New Hampshire; "this time I'm going to make it into that winner's circle. " Though why I agreed to manage Gore's campaign I'll never know." " I had hoped Kerry would have wanted to team up with me again because we came so very very close last time... Oh well a good broom sweeps clean. I'd challenge anyone to top oue environmental message and the greens are firmly in our pocket. No worries about Ralph Nader this time out. God I hate the cold.. I'm getting too old for this!


"This time is going to be different; I'm not going to have to worry about money! Teresa is finally going to let go of some of her Ketchup money because we are playing for big stakes this time. "How in God's name did Hillary get all that cash? Oh I know- she hardly spent any money at all running against Spencer the token republican from New York in her senate re-election campaign." And of course she's got the Rock Star Bill in her corner to parade at all her rallies and fundraisers. Well her negatives are higher than mine so she's got to work harder on the likeability factor than me. Now if I can only convince Bayh to be my running mate I think I'll have Indiana in the bag and won't need Ohio this time. I hate Ohio-it's too damn unpredictable..


In the front of the bus, Gore had installed a large mirror and a giant chart explaining why we only had 9 years,340 days and a handful of hours before the world heated up and died. He was having a bit of trouble because the reflection was, of course, in reverse, and (unknown to him) the chart was upside down. (After algebra and earth science at St Albans he'd never ventured further into these disciplines.Nevertheless he fancied himself a science and economics expert. And no one had the nerve to tell him about the chart.)

In the back of the bus Shrum pulled out his Mont Blanc pen and a thick sheet of creamy vellum and began writing Gore's virgin campaign speech.
"I'm goin' to fight for you," he wrote, when the bus hit some ice and began a sharp skid off the road..


After the Triple AAA pulled the bus out of the ditch , Shrummy continued writing and reconsidered something Carville and Begala had said in their new book "Take IT Back"-we need a narrative- something the American people can grab unto and believe in. Too bad Begala and Carville were on Warner's team. Shrum desperately needed them to motivate his lethargic candidate,who lately seemed to be just going through the motions-they had hit a dry cold spell in the campaign and needed some Gorementun.


Science can't support the policy changes demanded.


That's what I get for commenting before updating a thread. Woof, you two are something else.

Soylent Red

More literary genius afoot here tonight. Some one mentioned it before, but I will humbly do it again: We should do this every Friday night. I have such little joy in my life...

The helicopter circled the island languidly, like a sleepy black mosquito. The pilot reviewed the GPS coordinates one more time and dropped in low to look for the landing strip.

In the passenger cabin The Bald Man fidgeted nervously. He hated flying, and resolved to begin leaking technical data for his teleportation device to his contacts in DoD. Although it would be more efficient to mass produce them via the industrial arm, such a breakthrough would go over with The Boss and the boys at Halliburton like a turd in a punchbowl.

Crichton should be there already, replete with the drafts of his latest speech for The Bald Man to approve. But that was not at the top of the agenda.

As the helicopter settled onto the flyspeck island, The Bald Man quickly collected his oversized baby seal skin satchel and trotted out the door. It was a short walk to the stairwell leading into the mountainside.

Volcanos are tricky things to build secret bases in, and this one had taken The Bald Man literally days to design. Overall he was pleased with the results, but the magma played hell with the satellite reception.

As he strode into the dimly lit conference room he caught his own reflection in the polished titanium. Could he do it? Would the plan work? He quickly dismissed his doubts and reached out to shake Crichton's hand.

"Glad you could make it Mike. I trust the arrangements were to your liking?" The Bald Man asked rhetorically.

"Yes, yes. The money is fine. And the results are more than I could have imagined," Crichton said nervously. "It's the plan itself that has me worried. I just don't see how I fit in."

"Of course you don't Mike. How could you?" The Bald Man was, as usual, impatient with the plodding stupidity he was forced to deal with. "That's why I'm going to explain it to you. But before I do, well... I don't think I have to tell you what leaking this information would mean to your family, do I?"

"No. We've gone over that before," Crichton whispered.

"Excellent! So let's get to it. Mike, are you familiar with Roswell? You know, where the UFO crashed?"

Crichton had suspected that there was more to the story than he had ever been told. He nodded.

"When the story broke in '47, people inside the government spent years, years, planting false memories into people to perpetuate the story," The Bald Man began. "Now of course the story was quite true, but why do you suppose we would go to such great lengths to spread a story we wanted to hide?"

"I have no idea," Crichton said in disbelief.

"Well Mike, here's the beauty of it. Have you ever seen a UFO abductee or someone who has spotted lights in the sky that you'd classify as, oh...rational?" The Bald Man chuckled. "Of course you haven't! Our people scoured every backwater trailer park to find the Springer rejects that constitute the vanguard of the UFO movement."

The Bald Man strode confidently around the bar, pausing briefly to gently close Crichton's gaping jaw with his index finger.

"I...I still don't understand how I fit in," Crichton stammered.

"Well Mike, I'm about to tell you. Oh I'm sorry...Scotch? Here, you look like you need one."

The Bald Man set the heavy crystal glass in front of Crichton and continued.

"Mike, back in '47 the country had a serious shortage of idiots. We had to take action. Ultimately we hid the truth by causing the feebleminded to proclaim it's reality.

"These days though, you can't swing a dead cat without knocking someone's tinfoil hat off. So we don't really need to work quite so hard. Just need to stir the pot a bit."

The Bald Man could see that Crichton was still confused, which simultaneously irritated and amused him.

"OK Mike, let me spell it out for you. Global Climate Change is, of course, a reality. I should know–I'm making it happen.

"It's pretty simple really. Furnaces, air conditioners, what have you, all run on energy. And energy is money," The Bald Man explained. "Best part of this whole thing is, it's a directional effect generated on this island! So it has other uses as well!"

Crichton's jaw fell open again. The Bald Man sighed.

"It's like this Mike. Imagine the effects of a radical temperature change on say, Manhattan. Those Com-symps up there like to talk a good game about the environment, but when it comes right down to it, they'd set their own grandmothers on fire to stay warm. Talk about an oil lobby!"

"Even better, imagine the effects if we blanked the whole Northeast on election day. No one would show up! We'd have to call Diebold and set things up to look like the Dems got any votes!"

The Bald Man was on a roll. He forced himself to contain his glee, then leaned over to whisper in Crichton's ear, "I'm even working on a plan to make a hailstorm that follows Gore around."

Crichton was incredulous. "I still don't get how I fit in."

The Bald Man whirled around and slammed a meaty fist on the table. "That's the easy part. You keep writing and giving lectures. The environuts will go crazy debunking you, and the masses will naturally fall into disbelief."

Crichton stood up and paced toward the bar. The money and research are worth it, he thought.

"OK. I'm in," he finally said.

"Of course you are," The Bald Man said cheerfully. "Now. Let's step out on the deck and see what you've been up to down here!"

As they walked out onto the spacious deck perched high above the jungle clearing, and out to the rail, Crichton surveyed the terrain below. The Bald Man stood silent next to him.

Below, a pack of six adult velociraptors moved rapidly in to bring down an hulking brachiosaur.

"What do suppose a couple of those could do if we let them loose in Long Island?" The Bald Man asked.

Then he roared with laughter at the look of horror on Crichton's face.




This is the seminal critique of the hockey stick? Check out the verbiage on lines 180-185 and look at the plots in Figure 3. They're backwards! Sheesh.


Just why the scientists have perverted the data is the question. Is it the lure of policy influence, or God forbid, money? I haven't the expertise to critique the debate technically, only stylistically, and I agree, David hums as he loads his sling, the sling hums as he swings it, the stone hums in flight, and the target breaks into disharmonic cacaphony. Emphasis on the caca and the phony. Steve McIntyre points to the heart of the matter, academic dishonesty.


However, E, the Figure is labelled correctly, and the point is correct, I think. The document is marked 'article in proof'. Just point out the error in 180-185 to the author. Then you can help with the definitive critique.


I sent the author of the WSJ article the following comment:

Mr. Regalado,

You write:

Dr. Mann's critics, including two amateur Canadian climate researchers, say his work contains serious inaccuracies.

Quoting slashdot.org, a computer science site (which in general is very critical of this administration)


The ongoing debate over the 'hockey stick' climate graph has an interesting side note. McKitrick & McIntyre (M&M), the critics , have published their complete source code and it's written using the well-known R statistics package (covered by the GPL). Mann, Bradley & Hughes, the defenders, described their algorithm but have only released part of their source code, and refuse to divulge the rest, which really makes it look like they have some errors/omissions to hide (they did publish the data they used).

In another context, if the government said something was true but wouldn't show you the books, and critics said the government was wrong and was gave you their version of the books, wouldn't you think that relevant? In fact more relevant than that the critics were "amateurs"?


and received the following auto-reply:

Despite what you may have heard, I have left the office. Please reach me on my cell phone at {mohammed-cartooned}.

Thanks, Antonio

If you are so technically challenged as to put your cell phone number in an auto-reply after that email address is posted in a WSJ article should you be writing about any scientific subject?


I noticed it was submitted in 2004, and it looked like it was supposed to be published some time in 2005. Maybe not yet, though, so I think I'll take up the suggestion. At any rate, I'm kind of surprised that there's no math in a statistics article, especially one debunking another guy's statistics. That normalizing of tree ring data to a 20th-century mean instead of that of the entire series does seem pretty suspicious, though.


I've not the technical cast to understand the statistics or presence or absence of math, but motionview makes a point that should be giving Goliath motion sickness. Just waiting now for him to barf it up.


The M&M's are the size of hockey pucks and the Goliathee is getting whacked upside the head with shots that then drop into the goal.


Soylent, BRAVO!


The hailstorm follows the thunder and lightning. Than one was one of his easier tricks. There was snow on the ground this morning. I want to know how Tom predicts the weather.

Rick Ballard


Isn't there just a teeny tiny problem with time scale ab initio? "The best we can do with the data we have been able to collect." is OK for a very short time scale with "agreed upon" data series. If we say, "OK - how long has "climate" existed and what portion of that length of time does our hypothesis encompass?" the precision of the measurements and scope of the sample data are eclipsed to the point of absurdity. Arguing the validity of sample data taken at a very few points representing 1/?0000th of the time axis seems to be (to me, anyway) simply amusing.


Excellent post, I love the setting the scene and the avid description along with the iiustrative details!


should be illustrative

richard mcenroe

Global Warming is the new religion for folks who think the Seventh Day Adventists were too vague about the Rapture date...


ROFLMAO,richard! (Do you know Rush has on his website a picture of Al Gore with a clock ticking off the days, hours and minutes until his predicted too late to act date on global warming occurs?)

Soylent Red

Richard and Clarice:

Since according Al Gore's estimates I only have just under 10 years to go, I have revised my New Year's resolutions to the following:

1. Drink more bourbon whiskey.

2. Smoke more cigarettes.

3. Quit paying down my credit card bills altogether.

My New Year's resolution 11 years from now will be:

1. Sue the hell out of Al Gore for causing me to ruin my health and destroy my credit.


Now, that's a plan Soylent. Maybe we ought to set up a special website for like minded "believers"--"We're With Gore" or something. I do think we'd get more followers if we added:
4. Sexual profligacy.

But it's your idea. You decide.

Lew Clark

And this is Texas. I can imagine how cold it is up in those mountains where those "overheated" Bristlecone pines live!

Lew Clark

Oops only half the post came back from spellcheck. Was just remarking how cold it is in North texas today.

richard mcenroe

Clarice — According to the UK Independent, we're already past the survival date. So you might as well chuck that catalytic converter and save a couple bucks on gas. (hat tip: Tim Blair)


Who did their math,Fisk? (You know he still uses a lunar calendar.)


For some reason it messes up my computer--go to scrappleface--Ott seems to have stolen from our Friday night R/S/S threads

"Dean:Rove Plans Bush Failures toEmbarrass Dems"


Open invitation to join in writing our Friday night R/S/S thread. I'm not always good on descritive detail and setting the scene and there are some wonderful writers on the JOM site. There are so many different players and possible scenarios so let's keep it going.


should be descriptive detail

JM Hanes

Previously, on Friday Night Ice....


Maybe TM can give us a Fri night thread so we aren't interfering with an ongoing discussion--or we could snatch an old dead thread for our scribblings..Soylent was the big winner this weekend..and his prize is that he has to start it next Friday..LOL

Rick Ballard

We need the "opening show" - how young Karl came by his powers. I have a few ideas but Soylent will probably come up trumps. We don't need to worry about the "ongoing" part. The Dems have not failed to generate new ideas on a weekly basis for a very long time. On a 'politics as comedy' basis, anyway.


Fabulous idea--Somehow we have to fit the secret meaning of turd blossom in the opening act.


I suppose they mean 'shoots the man who has been her imprisoner', JM H.

This has been the Friday Night Icing on the Cake for all the grist that has risen during the week.


secret meaning of turd blossom

It could have something to do with the old saying about "coming up smelling like roses".


I understand it's a Texas expression for a wildflower that springs up out of cow dung--but I am sure we can find a more entertaining, less obvious meaning.


My brother has a friend whose PhD thesis is on dung beetles. Fascinating critters.


Do you suppose the ox patties plastered on the outside of every rural house in India are wallflowers?


Ah, a common cause for the conservative Republican and the liberal Democrat: The idolatry and the irony of the images in honor of 'The Bald One' adorning each little castle.



The whole principle-components idea seems fraught with hocus pocus possibilities to me. I'm not familiar with it, but from what I gather it's a way to combine measurements of entirely different physical quantities together, assuming they all relate to the independent variable of interest. Since each parameter type would have different dependencies on other independent parameters (ice layers on rainfall, coral growth on salinity, etc.), I think I'd rather see each plotted independently and call it significant if multiple dissimilar parameters show the same trend. Huang's borehole data shows the Medieval Warming Period and the Little Ice Age, but I'm not sure about the tree rings, coral growth, etc. If they all show it, that would be pretty convincing, but just to mix them all together with weird weightings based on recent data from certain series makes any conclusion seem more dubious, at least to me.

Ok, back to our program...

(And however talented he seems to us humans, I still say Rove is Cheney's droid.)

Soylent Red

4. Sexual profligacy. You decide.


If it were really up to me, it wouldn't need to go on the list.

What the hell though– Do it in the streets! The End is Near!


Excellent, Extraneous. "Call it significant if multiple dissimilar parameters show the same trend'. Tell that to Steve, too.

Also, more telling raw data, and more telling of methods by Team Hockey.


Rove as Cheney's droid-fraught with possibilities.

JM Hanes

"Fabulous idea--Somehow we have to fit the secret meaning of turd blossom in the opening act."

You do know why a woman is like a butterfly, don't you? Because she'll land on a turd as often as a flower. I could swear I thought that old country saying was funny the first time I heard it, but having actually written it down here, I think maybe it's only amusing once. Oh well, we report.... Maybe Rove is just covering all the bases?


I once heard of a south asian subcontinent sweetmeat shop that appeared from a distance to be surrounded by a cloud of flies. On closer inspection the bugs turned out to be bees. There were marvelously scented candies in that land of multiflorid gardens.

The yaller rose of Texas would ever smell as sweet.
Our Boy treks in and flutters by,
What Texas ox just shat.
The tracks spring forth such blossoms,
It just can't be denied;
Our Feller has the magic
To send rays to all minds.


Extraneus: At any rate, I'm kind of surprised that there's no math in a statistics article, especially one debunking another guy's statistics.

I don't understand this criticism. For example, McIntyre and McKitrick say:

MBH98 used principal components (PCs) to reduce the dimensionality of tree ring networks and stated that they used "conventional" PC analysis. A conventional PC algorithm centers the data by subtracting the column means of the underlying series. For the AD1400 step highlighted here, this would be the full 1400–1980 interval. Instead, MBH98 Fortran code contains an unusual data transformation prior to PC calculation that has never been reported in print. Each tree ring series was transformed by subtracting the 1902–1980 mean, then dividing by the 1902–1980 standard deviation and dividing again by the standard deviation of the residuals from fitting a linear trend in the 1902–1980 period. The PCs were then computed using singular value decomposition on the transformed data. (The effects reported here would have been partly mitigated if PCs had been calculated using the covariance or correlation matrix.) This previously unreported transformation was recently acknowledged in the Supplementary Information to a Corrigendum to MBH98 [Mann et al., 2004], where they asserted that it has no effect on the results, a claim we refute herein.

PCs can be strongly affected by linear transformations of the raw data. Under the MBH98 method, for those series in which the 1902–1980 mean is close to the 1400–1980 mean, subtraction of the 1902–1980 mean has little impact on weightings for the PC1. But if the 1902–1980 mean is different than the 1400–1980 mean (i.e., a hockey stick shape), the transformation translates the "shaft" off a zero mean; the magnitude of the residuals along the shaft is increased, and the series variance, which grows with the square of each residual, gets inflated. Since PC algorithms choose weights that maximize variance, the method re-allocates variance so that hockey stick shaped series get overweighted. In effect, the MBH98 data transformation results in the PC algorithm mining the data for hockey stick patterns.

That sounds and awful lot like math to me, and to the limited extent I understand principle component anaysis, seems like a valid criticism.


Sorry MJW, you,ve lost me now- maybe it was the mention of math and an equation in the same sentence.


Thanks for the earlier Jack Bauer link. I hope Larwyn sees it.


Not much on statistics jargon but I wrote a multi component analysis application for chemical spectroscopy once. Pretty sure I know what they're doing with pink noise. Most any dataset will produce measurements that fall near the mean and taper off away from the mean in a gaussian distribution. Generating a random signal with the same distribution curve would be called trendless pink noise. Reproducing the hockey stick "signal" by processing trendless pink noise instead of actual measurements is a dead giveaway that the "signal" is an artifact of the process and most likely not real.


Yeah, there be math and hippogryffs. And insofar as I can understand the argument, it seems valid. "A claim we refute herein" indeed!

JM Hanes


Rove as Cheney's droid? How about Rove as Ewok?


ROVE as EWOK? hmmm
Or Rove as the Man with a Thousand Faces!


Soylent Red:
" Do it in the Streets" You are really on your game today; I was going to say feeling your oats but let's not go there.

Harry Arthur

Many excellent observations above. Crichton's book, State of Fear is an excellent fictional story with factual footnotes throughout. His comments in the epilogue are insightful, logical and well reasoned. Another excellent book that addresses global warming and other environmental subjects, is Bjorn Lomborg's The Skeptical Environmentalist. There are many more and there are many superb web sites.

A few other observations:

The global warming predictions are all based on theoretical models.

The more accurate (more robust and able to deal with more variables) the model, the less warming is predicted.

No model currently models cloud action very accurately if at all. Data that are not currently "modelable" have to be "tweaked" based on the best guesses (and biases) of the modelers. Cloud data are "tweaked" in most models.

There is some evidence to suggest that cloud formations, particularly in the Pacific Ocean, act as "heat sinks" to counteract natural warming.

The oceans produce in excess of 90% of the CO produced on earth.

If we can't produce a model that analyzes enough variables in the atmosphere to predict the weather in a few days, does it make sense to suggest that we can predict the weather in 50 years? 100 years?

No one is "sure" whether CO causes warming or warming causes CO. Remember the post hoc ergo propter hoc logical falacy when analyzing CO data.

In 1973 virtually every "reputable" scientist was predicting global cooling, arguing that it was a crisis, and suggesting that we take immediate and drastic action, to include spreading coal dust on the arctic to warm it.

No one is "sure" whether, given the small warming trend we're in, man actually contributes materially to any warming occuring or not. In any case, warming is at the very least "predominantly" natural.

The best models now predict about 0.6 deg C warming in the next 50 years or so, hardly a crisis worthy of wrecking the economy over.

Kyoto is a great treaty if the goal is to place the US and the EU on equal economic footing - equally bad, that is.

Whenever there is a new high temperature record it is generally cited as supporting evidence for warming. Whenever there is a new low temperature record, it is either not reported or cited as evidence for ... warming.

Mars also appears to be warming.

Global warming is no longer science. It cannot be questioned without subjecting the questioner to ridicule. It is now almost completely a political belief if not a religious belief.

If one indicates that they believe mankind is causing global warming then they are an enlightened, scientifically educated, person. If one indicates that they are less than convinced that mankind is causing global warming, they are by definition a backward, uneducated, right wing religious nut. Only an idiot would not accept the "fact" of human-caused global warming.

Al Gore should probably be hospitalized.

richard mcenroe

Clarice — I can't listen to Al Gore too long at one sitting. He has a NEW deadline now? Because in Earth in the Balance there's this graph that shows all life on Earth becoming extinct in the year 2000...


I agree. Lomberg is wonderful. Give it to your children to undue the damage to their brains done by nitwit teachers.


unDO--that is.(After midnight rule)

Soylent Red

maryrose, et al.:

Thanks for the kind words. My work is but a product of the great thinkers herein who have gone before me.

I have already begun preparations for next Friday...


Hey, how can such a brilliantly
witty fellow write " I have such little joy in my life..."

Your posts give me joy,smiles,
laughs and little endorphine rushes
that relax these spasm prone neck
muscles of mine.

Thanks for thinking of me, checked J Hanes link - but can't
play the games on this 97 Gateway with dial up AOL. Cranky
computer and cranky neck - reasons I missed the fun last night.

But must have been receiving or sending "mind rays" as I mentally
composed a contribution to began with:

Racing back into his office, he flung out his arm to receive the proffered pink message slips. But had to stop dead when his private secretary would not release her grip.
"I have been instructed to read this one to you"

"To: T.B. Meeting in OVP at 10:18am sharp.
FROM: Your Boss."

She winked and passed on the pile.

The tiny flash paper note was there:
Check this blog: American Future
Post: Reality, Squarely in the Eye
11:36pm comment.
He opened a cabinet that held the
"non existent" computer.

Reality, Squarely in the Eye

By Marc Schulman
Andrew Sullivan received an email from a leftist British reader who has been "passionately opposed" to the foreign policies of Bush and Blair. But, now he writes:

"What the Islamic world has succeeded in doing is forcing me to decide whether I'm going to side with a US policy which I think is often dirty but is nevertheless open to public scrutiny or an almost medieval, bloodthirsty and closed religious dogma whose intention – and partial achievement – is to undermine my way of life".

This brought the beginning of THE SMILE, he continued to read:

"The British media and Government are, yet again, behaving in the same appeasing way towards Muslim fundamentalism in our own country as Chamberlain did towards Hitler in 1938 and as Stalin did towards Hitler in 1941. In both cases the results were disastrous; whilst the Allies eventually prevailed, it was at the cost of 50 million lives".

Let's hope the Muslim rage over the cartoons will open millions of other eyes, resulting in a widespread consensus as to the nature of the challenge to Western values that has been sorely lacking. If that happens, it will disprove the notion, held by many, that exposing reality will benefit authoritarian governments, Islamists, and terrorists:

Nothing new or different from a lot of blog posts - and he'd already read the Sullivan post. He quickly scanned the rest until he got to the first comment.

Tom Powell says:
February 10th, 2006 at 11:36 pm

A leftist joining, if grudgingly, Bush’s side. I always suspected that Karl Rove drew some of those cartoons.

Knowing that a few FSO's contributed to this site, it wasn't the implication
of his being involved but the implication by a "Tom Powell" on a site
affiliated with DOS employees.

Was this a veiled threat or a friendly warning? He'd find out more in ~3 minutes. He noted the calls he was going to return and
walked to Cheney's office. It wasn't as if he'd used one from Tennessee, it was french, FCS!

Was T.B. going to turn to P.O.S in about 20 seconds?

"They're expecting you"

Cripes, my hand is actually a bit moist, he acknowleged as he
turned the knob and pressed the door forward.

Strips of shredded newsprint showered him(frat boys
never grow up), smiling faces with thumbs up and Condi
giving him a V for victory sign
greeted him.

As he was receiving pats on back,
Andy gathered up the strips from the floor and from his
head and shoulders and placed them in a lovely antique cask
"There's a message in there, for your spare time."


Brava! Larwyn..


Just wanted to mention that McIntyre and McKitrick don't claim that the Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice Age did or didn't exist. They only claim that the the climate reconstructions by Mann and his associates are not statistically meaningful.

Here is my uderstanding of the controversy:

Mann tries to use tree rings as "proxies" to estimate the temperature of past years. Trees grow faster when the temperatures are warmer, so wider annual rings indicate warmer temperatures. Trees are hardly perfect temperture proxies, however, since their growth also varies depending on other factors, such as moisture and carbon dioxide levels.

In order to seperate out the temperature component, Mann applies a fairly sophisicated statistical method called Principle Component Analysis to a number of different sets of tree-ring measurements. PCA attempts to take a large amount of data (in this case, tree rings), and explain variations in the data in terms of a relatively small number of underlying causes (in this case, likely causes would be temperature, moisture, etc.). The most important cause (the one that explains the most variance in the data) is called the principal component, which Mann assumed (I assume) would be temperature.

The basic problem, according to McIntyre and McKitrick, is that instead of measuring the variance in the data from the average (specifically, the mean), as is normally done, he measured it from the average of the 20th century values. This causes the PCA method to single out data sets of tree rings that changed significantly in the 20th century as the "most important," since by Mann's techinique they have large variance, and results in these datasets essentially being assigned the role as the principle component. The fact the the principle component in Mann study depends largely on a single set of data called the bristlecone pines is evidence that this is what happened. There's reason to believe that the 20th century growth spurt in the bristlecone pines wasn't due to temperature.

McIntyre and McKitrick showed that randomly generated data sets when processed with Mann's method will very often generate graphs which rise or fall rapidly in the 20th century.


Clarification: by "data sets of tree rings that changed significantly in the 20th century ," I meant data that was significanlt differnt in past centuries from its value in th 20th century.

Soylent Red


Glad my silliness could help. Here's some more practical help:

Try tennis balls in a sock. Load them up and put them between the shoulder blades while lying on your back. Does the trick every time.


Any guess as to why Mann perpetuates this fraud?


Bristlecone Baloney and a Hackey Sack o' Shit.


Missed y'all yesterday. If I may, some observations on this thread. My apologies if I misinterpret.

Loony Left: We're all gonna die! Everyone else: Yeah. Your point?

Crichton says consensus science is BS. e. g: Copernicus and Galileo were right, consensus wrong about heliocentricity. Consensus held sway for.....decades? centuries?...Millenia if we go back to Aristarchus, whose work Copernicus credited.

Extraneous says there are too many variables not taken into account.

MJW says it doesn't matter, they can't do the math anyway.

The parts of Red's and Larwyn's that aren't way over my head are hilarious. Bravo! Ole!

Such a pity that popularized science is still almost entirely political in our supposedly enlightened age.

Aside: I'm going on record refusing to call the Loony Left liberal. I resent their misappropriation of a perfectly good word.


The Left has become so illiberal.

Beto Ochoa

If you were told the actual reason for the unusual weather patterns and severe winds you would just want to quit it all. So they raise this canard of global warming due to CO2 and give you a little faith that humans have some degree of control over nature. In this way they create for themselves an industry that pads their pockets and garners support from the crazies who believe in throwing treasure and time at phantoms. The Tribal Elders have seen this in their visions and are not worried. Most will perish and earth will return to us a green jewel. Man has thousands of years left and it will be much better without the muderers of the unborn and followers of false prophets of all stripes.
Especially Al Gore.


Well, he certainly seems possessed at times.


The clincher is that Mann refused to provide his source code for evaluating the data. He knew the jig was totally up! The guy should be jailed...just think of all the CO2 that has been generated in the Kyoto hysteria!

Rick Ballard


Thank you for the summary. Clear, cogent and articulate, as always.

I continue to wonder at the "science" involved in all of this when it appears to accept solar activity as a relative constant. One might think that data concerning fluctuations in the amount of energy released from the nuclear blast furnace around which we revolve might have some bearing upon the matter.


Thanks, MJW. Nice summary. I read up a little on the basics of PC analysis, and I haven't seen the technique of normalizing by using the mean and standard deviation from a censored range of data anywhere, but maybe that's just more advanced than what I found. (For anyone interested who's not following the math concepts on this, the reason for subtracting the "mean," or average, is so that all the data is centered around zero, so you can compare different sets or types of data to each other. Otherwise, it wouldn't make sense to plot pine tree ring widths on the same chart as those from some other type of tree, for example, that might normally have much thicker or thinner rings. Another example is comparing completely different types of data, like tree rings to ice layers. Since the different sets of data would normally also have different amounts of "noisiness" or variation, dividing by the "variance" makes it even easier to compare. This is all called "normalization.")

Has anyone seen a plot of all the series on the same graph, with just simple normalization like described here? This must be out there. Maybe it's just so noisy you can't make sense of it without compressing the data somehow, like with the PC method?


Alright parallel processors, answer me this one. Deposits of hydrocarbons is evidence of irreversible sequestration of carbon from the biosphere. What's the end point of that?

Beto Ochoa

Right on the money Rick.
The scientists who have been warning us about the unusual solar activity have been effectively silienced by the press and most alarmingly by their colleagues. I shouldn't call climatologists colleagues of solar scientists and if you read or overhear what climatologists say about solar scientsts, especially the Russians, they equate them with quackery and muttering witches since many see the correlation between solar energy and human emotions and actions.
Ask anyone who operates shortwave and they will tell you how the sun has shut down many of bands. Tune a good AM radio into the upper and lower bands and on a bad solar day you can hear the waves of energy slamming into the ionosphere.
We are being hammered.


BO, psychiatrists have the misfortune to be in charge of the one area of human biology that can't be understood. It is olmost inevitable that the energy of the sun has direct and variable effect on the sensing and processing clayoids we are. Can it be measured, analyzed, predicted? Who knows, certainly not me.

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