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DeLong and Deltoid: “The thing about a Roger Pielke Jr. train wreck is that you just can’t look away.” Plus Roger’s must-read post that Rabett called “The great Pielke meltdown.”

By Joe Romm  

"DeLong and Deltoid: “The thing about a Roger Pielke Jr. train wreck is that you just can’t look away.” Plus Roger’s must-read post that Rabett called “The great Pielke meltdown.”"

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http://ralphlosey.files.wordpress.com/2009/01/fish-eat-fish.jpgRoger Pielke Jr. has written the most Titanic whine in the history of the climate blogosphere, “Giant Fish, Big Fish and Minnows of the Liberal Blogosphere.”  And I do mean Titanic with a capital T.

Tim Lambert (aka Deltoid) calls it the “Pielke Pity Party.”  Eli Rabett calls it “The great Pielke meltdown.”

The woe-is-me post is a substance-free ad hominem attack on Berkeley economist Brad Delong and some of the leading science bloggers, including me.  What is so fishy about the whole thing is that it tries to paint Pielke as some sort of innocent victim whose only sin is to have — cue violins — “patiently and persistently built upon an academic record of peer-reviewed research on aspects of the climate that they disagree with.”

In the real world, of course, Pielke routinely tries to drown the reputation of top scientists — including all three thousand attendees of an Al Gore talk at the American Association for the Advancement of Science and a coauthor of the recent NOAA-led climate impacts report — with no justification whatsoever (click here or see below).

In this piteous post, Pielke announces, “I have a major book on climate coming out next year that will be in bookstores everywhere.”  How disappointing for those of us who thought he was “voluntarily” going into semi-exile when he shut down his popular Prometheus blog and started his obscure but cleverly named “Roger Pielke Jr.’s Blog.”

So let’s set the record straight.  Roger Pielke Jr. is the most debunked person in the science blogosphere, possibly the entire Web. Heck, computer scientist Tim Lambert (aka Deltoid) has a whole category just for Roger, which I commend to anyone who still takes the man seriously.  Lambert’s latest withering must-read takedown is “Another Pielke train wreck” (reposted by DeLong):

The thing about a Roger Pielke Jr train wreck is that you just can’t look away. Check this one out. Pielke claims that there were 1,264 times as many news stories about a Michael Mann study that suggests that hurricanes are at a 1,000 year high as about a Chris Landsea study that found no increase in hurricanes over the past century. (Mark Morano , of course, links to Pielke’s post.)

The fun is in the comments as folks try to explain to Pielke that there is a film director called Michael Mann and that maybe Pielke shouldn’t count those stories. Pielke comes back with the claim that restricting the search to “Michael Mann” + nature + hurricanes + Aug 13-15 gives 1,412 stories. Some folks might wonder how restricting the search gives you more results, but not Pielke. In fact, if you read what Google says at the link Pielke gave it says that there are “about 20″, and if you look at all the results there are just 11. A similar search for the Landsea paper gives 5 news stories. This difference may be due to one paper being published in Nature and the other in The Journal of Climate.

Update: Soon after I posted this, Pielke finally made a correction, allowing that being out by a couple of orders of magnitude was a “bit sloppy”. Heaven knows how wrong he would have to be before he admitted to being sloppy or very sloppy.

Where there is a “Another train wreck,” you can be sure there is an initial Pielke train wreck and the Pielke train wreck continues.  Lambert himself recommends starting with this debunking of RPJ.  After DeLong posted an email from someone pointing out that Pielke (Jr) is “dishonest and wrong,” came this must-read email exchange where DeLong questions Pielke’s sanity.

One could publish an entire book of debunked nonsense by RPJ, but it looks like Roger is going to save us the trouble. I have every confidence his collecution of confused contrarianism will be a poor man’s Superfreakonomics, just as “error-riddled” but with only 1% of the sales.

Roger is right less often than a broken clock.  He’s like a clock that knows what time it is and then shows the wrong time just to get attention.

Back to the the pity party.  Roger writes:

Here is how it works. The really giant fish — public intellectuals like Tom Friedman and Paul Krugman — confer authority on the big fish of the liberal blogosphere. They do so by applauding the work of the big fish and saying that they trust them.  This is a useful exchange because the big fish amplify the writings of the giant fish in the blogosphere and do the dirty work of taking down their political opponents by playing some gutter politics that the giant fish would rather not be seen playing. This has the effect of establishing the big fish as people to be listened to, not because they are necessarily right about things, but because the giant fish listen to them and the giant fish set political agendas.

Among these big fish feeding the giant fish are Joe Romm, Brad Delong, RealClimate, and there are of course many others, but these are the ones I have first-hand experience with (lucky me). Each of these professionals has great potential to positively influence policy debates in positive ways. Instead they all actively have chosen to engage in pretty embarrassing and unethical behavior that caters to tribal, echo-chamber politics.

[UPDATE:  No, the metaphor and his graphic of big fish eating smaller fish eating even smaller fish (similar to the picture above) don't actually make sense, since the really giant fish don't actually eat the big fish, but I digress.]

But wait, Roger Dangerfield gets respect from people in the blogosphere with more readers than he has all the time, too.  Well, one person.  The Swift Boat smearer Marc Morano is his Boswell.  Sure Morano doesn’t have a Nobel Prize, but he does have a long history of pushing disinformation, just like Roger.

What do I mean when I say that they engage in embarrassing and unethical behavior? For instance, their blog etiquette is simply a disgrace, especially for people who claim to be professional, e.g., they each disallow substantive comments that they disagree with, either from me or from those supporting things that I have said.

A lecture in blog etiquette from Pielke is like a lecture in business ethics from Bernie Madoff.

Pielke has one primary mission in his professional career and on his blog “” other than working with his colleagues at The Breakthrough Institute (TBI) to spread disinformation aimed at stopping any serious climate action, of course “” and that is to shout down any talk of a link between climate change and extreme weather.

For completeness sake — so there’s one post I and others can link to when pointing out “Roger Pielke Jr. is the most debunked person in the science blogosphere” — let me return once again to the most egregious multiperson smear by Pielke (see  Unstaining Al Gore’s good name, Part 1: The NYT’s false “guilty of inaccuracies and overstatements” charge began with a false charge by Pielke):

On February 13, Gore gave his talk at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in which he used the slide. The video is here and the slide is at minute 7.  You’ll probably end up watching the whole video a few times because you’ll find it hard to believe how Pielke spun a perfectly reasonable presentation into a vicious assault not just on Gore, but on the integrity of the hundreds of scientists in the audience….

On February 15, two days after the talk, our old friend Roger Pielke, Jr, wrote a blog post titled, “Not A Peep from Scientists” in which he quoted the CRED report just as I did and then not only sharply criticized Gore for using that slide to make his argument, not only attacked Gore for supposed “blatantly” misleading the audience with “scientific untruths,” but attacked every single member of the audience for not objecting:

And of all of those scientists in attendance, here is a list of those who sought to set the record straight on blogs and in the media: OK, I couldn’t find any, but if you know of any such reactions, please share in the comments”¦. But as the non-response to Al Gore’s in-your-face untruths shows, the misrepresentation of climate science for political gain has many willing silent collaborators.

So for Pielke the entire audience of three thousand scientists are “willing silent collaborators” in the “misrepresentation of climate science” because of their supposed “non-response to Al Gore’s in-your-face untruths” shows. But this string of “in-your-face untruths” doesn’t exist. Please listen to the video yourself and try to find them. I challenge any credible person to find them. Remember, we aren’t talking about one or two ambiguous word choices here. You need to find a bunch of blatant in-your-face untruths.

Good luck.

Pielke writes:

In his speech Gore attributed a wide range of recent weather events to human-caused climate change including floods in Iowa, Hurricane Ike, and the Australian bush fires.

No he doesn’t….  Gore does show a picture of Ike and say

It is the view of many scientists that the intensity of hurricanes is affected by the warming issues.

That is a fact. I interviewed many such scientists for my book. Indeed, that carefully worded sentence should be a strong clue to any listener that Gore understands the science, that he understands the debates over what can and can’t be attributed directly to global warming right now, and is working hard not to make any inaccurate statements. Gore doesn’t attribute the 500-year flood in Iowa to human-caused climate change. He does refer to the “heat that puts more moisture into the atmosphere that causes longer downpours,” but that is such a well-confirmed impact of warming that even the Bush report cited above acknowledges it.

As for bushfires, Gore says the fires have “ignited a nationwide debate that is very much focused on global warming.” That is also a fact. Many Australians who are suffering through a once-in-a-thousand year drought make the climate connection explicitly. For instance, Australia’s climate change minister Penny Wong recently said, “All of this is consistent with climate change, and with what scientists told us would happen” (see “Australia faces collapse as climate change kicks in”).  So far the non-response of the audience to Gore’s quite reasonable statements does not seem very shocking at all. They heard what Gore said, not what Pielke claimed he said.

It is quite clear that Gore is not attributing every single extreme event that he shows to climate change “” that is clear from his wording. Gore is making a statistical argument that we are seeing more extreme weather events and more intense (i.e. record-breaking) weather events “” which is why he has so many “anecdotal” or individual extreme weather event slides “” and that “many can be linked to factors that are worsened by human emissions.”

How do I know this is the case Gore is making? Because I went to the page (102) in the book An Inconvenient Truth where Gore has his original figure from Munich Re and other insurers (whose “science experts have made the attribution” of rising extreme events to climate change as Kalee explained to Revkin). Gore writes of ” hurricanes, floods, drought, tornadoes, wildfires,” and says:

Many can be linked to factors that are worsened by global warming.

All this is quite in the mainstream of scientific analysis. And has been for a long time…

And what is even more unbelievable about Pielke’s smear of thousands of AAAS scientists for refusing to speak out when Gore supposedly linked extreme weather events to climate change is that Pielke himself told Nature in 2006:

Clearly since 1970 climate change (i.e., defined as by the IPCC to include all sources of change) has shaped the disaster loss record.

Yes, that is what Pielke said.  You can look it up yourself (see Pielke in Nature: “Clearly, since 1970 climate change “¦ has shaped the disaster loss record”).

Pielke is the uber-denier.   Pielke denies everything, including that which he himself has said. After his latest smear, no other word fits him.

In fact, here’s an extended excerpt from the 2006 Nature story, “Insurers’ disaster files suggest climate is culprit” (PDF here):

Insurance companies, acutely aware of the dramatic increase in losses caused by natural disasters in recent decades, have been convinced that global warming is partly to blame. Now their data seem to be persuading scientists, too. At a recent meeting of climate and insurance experts, delegates reached a cautious consensus: climate change is helping to drive the upward trend in catastrophes.

The meeting, held near Munich on 25-26 May, was jointly organized by Munich Re, the world’s largest reinsurance company, and the University of Colorado in Boulder. It brought together climate, atmosphere and weather researchers with economists and insurance experts to discuss what could be behind recent disaster losses, both economic and human”¦.

Delegates seem to have found the record persuasive. Their consensus statement, to be released on 8 June, says there is “evidence that changing patterns of extreme events are drivers for recent increases in global losses”"¦.

Dissent over the issue is clearly waning,” says Peter H¶ppe, head of Munich Re’s Geo Risks department, who co-chaired the workshop with Roger Pielke Jr, director of the University of Colorado’s Center of Science and Technology Policy Research. “Climate change may not be the dominant factor, but it has become clear that a relevant portion of damages can be attributed to global warming.”

Previously sceptical, Pielke says that he is now convinced that at least some of the increased losses can be blamed on climate: “Clearly, since 1970 climate change has shaped the disaster loss record.”

Now in his fishy meltdown post, Roger the not-so-innocent victim of attacks by every serious science blogger, writes:

So why me? Maybe I’m just lucky. But maybe it is because I have patiently and persistently built upon an academic record of peer-reviewed research on aspects of the climate that they disagree with, but cannot touch via conventional academic argumentation. Among the arguments I have made (with colleagues of course)…:

1. There is no greenhouse gas signal in the economic or human toll record of disasters.

I apologize for not warning you in advance to put your head in a vise to prevent explosion.

What you fail to realize is that for Roger “climate change” as defined by the IPCC, “global warming” and a “greenhouse gas signal” are obviously and utterly completely different things.  Sort of.  In a June blog post, Pielke praises a new article, “Tropical cyclone losses in the USA and the impact of climate change “” A trend analysis based on data from a new approach to adjusting storm losses” (subs. req’d), which concludes:

In the period 1971-2005, since the beginning of a trend towards increased intense cyclone activity, losses excluding socio-economic effects show an annual increase of 4% per annum. This increase must therefore be at least due to the impact of natural climate variability but, more likely than not, also due to anthropogenic forcings.

Yes, you read that right.

Pielke says an article that concludes there is a better than 50% chance that human-emissions are contributing to increased losses from hurricanes since 1971 is “a valuable paper.”

But he just asserted that his work (with colleagues, of course) makes the case, “There is no greenhouse gas signal in the economic or human toll record of disasters.”  But he himself told Nature “Clearly since 1970 climate change (i.e., defined as by the IPCC to include all sources of change) has shaped the disaster loss record.”  But he smeared the professional reputation of thousands of scientists because they didn’t complain or walk out when Gore perhaps implied a connection betweenclimate change and the disaster loss record.

As I’ve written before (see here):

Pielke’s obsession on this point is so extreme that he trashes the reputation of any scientist who even suggests that there is the tiniest link whatsoever between climate change and extreme weather “” even though he himself has stated such a link exists.  Indeed, he has smeared the integrity of many hundreds of the country’s top scientists for merely sitting through a discussion of the issue that doesn’t meet his extreme form of political correctness

This is why so many people in the science blogosphere block his comments or ignore his diatribes.  It is impossible to engage him in debate because he is the Humpty Dumpty of climate policy:

‘When I use a word,’ Humpty Dumpty said, in a rather scornful tone,’ it means just what I choose it to mean, neither more nor less.’

But Humpty Dumpty isn’t the right metaphor.  No, when I mentioned to one blogger I was thinking about writing on Pielke’s meltdown, he wrote me “require all comments to uses a fish metaphor.”  And that got me thinking.

If Roger calls Krugman a Giant Fish and me a Big Fish and Lambert a Minnow, what fish is Roger?  One fish immediately leapt into my mind’s eye — Remoras aka suckerfish or sharksucker.  As Wikipedia explains:

The host they attach to for transport gains nothing from the relationship, but also loses little. The remora benefits by using the host as transport and protection and also feeds on materials dropped by the host. There is controversy whether a remora’s diet is primarily leftover fragments, or the feces of the host.

Is that not Roger Pielke, Jr.?

Here’s the best photo I could find on the Web, something to keep in mind whenever you think of Roger:

Comments are welcome, but please, please — use a fish metaphor or metaphor!

‹ 350 Islands Being Hung Out To Drown

Investing in a clean energy recovery to create 1.7 million net new jobs ›

33 Responses to DeLong and Deltoid: “The thing about a Roger Pielke Jr. train wreck is that you just can’t look away.” Plus Roger’s must-read post that Rabett called “The great Pielke meltdown.”

  1. windansea says:

    Gore is making a statistical argument that we are seeing more extreme weather events and more intense (i.e. record-breaking) weather events

    http://www.coaps.fsu.edu/~maue/tropical/global_year_ace.jpg

  2. Charlie says:

    And you accuse Pielke of indulging in diatribes? Get a mirror, buddy.

    [JR: Learn the difference between debunking posts with lots of content and multiple links and woe-is-me content free diatribes against every other major blogger in this area.]

  3. So obviously the thing to do is to ignore viciously self-righteous ranting ideologues like Pielke. Because, after all, that’s worked so well in the past.

    And “Charlie,” do please entertain the abstract possibility of learning how to read simple English sentences. Dr. Romm accused Pielke of engaging in self-pitying fabrications, dissembling, misrepresentations, and outright lying; all of which Dr. Romm supported with ample factual evidence. Your post in #2 is one of the more gratuitously egregious forms of specious analogy (http://www.fallacyfiles.org/wanalogy.html) that I’ve read all day.

  4. mike roddy says:

    People out there actually believe Pielke, along with Spencer, McIntyre, Lomborg, and that whole sorry crew. It’s an exhausting job to just come out and debunk them, but here’s what happens otherwise: they show up on a blog, sound perfectly reasonable, and get away with lies because many readers don’t know any better.

    It’s not just a matter of the need to expose false and poisonous statements. Obviously, there is a lot more at stake here. I think Joe and many others would rather kick back with an HP Lovecraft book (actually, the characters are similar) than have to slap these guys down. So thanks for doing this irksome work.

  5. Rabid Doomsayer says:

    The denial pond has been swept clean so many times only reguritated cr@@ is left. Soon all that will be left is for the denierfish to turn cannibal.

    If Joe is a “shrill alarmist” what am I?

  6. Tom W. says:

    Joe Romm,
    If I was a recipient of any degree from MIT let alone a Ph.D. like yours,

    [snip]

  7. Tom W., since you are so embarrassed by it, please go away and don’t come back …

    OK, I don’t get to make that claim. But as has already been pointed out so many times that anyone capable of reading at a third grade level could understand the problem, playing nice with infantile ideologues like Pielke does not work. It absolutely beggars the imagination how anyone could be so willfully stupid as to believe that playing nice with infantile ideologues like Pielked might possibly work some time in the indefinite future, despite the fact that it has never worked in the entire history of human existence.

    Yet as utterly beyond any scintilla of patience as I am with the infantile ideologues like Pielke, the viciously unreflective enablers such as “Charlie” and “Tom W.” above (who conveniently and cowardly hide their real identities) simply cause me to delaminate.

    thank you “Tom W.” (whoever you are, since you provide no identifiable links) for that “amply supported” argument with all of its lavishly developed logical and empirical detail. (That’s me being sarcastic, by the way. There was nothing in your announcement which could, be even the most reckless stretch of the imagination, ever be mistaken for an argument, much less a logically valid one.)

    I am not, and cannot possibly be presumed to be, speaking for Dr. Romm, and at that moment when I am so out of line that it merits a comment, I will cease providing my less than patient input on this subject altogether. But for now:

    It is entirely beyond the capacity of a reasoning person to suppose that the “business as usual” method of pretending that these willfully ignorant — if not out-right stupid and lying — individuals like Pielke Jr & Sr, Inhofe, Crichton, the entire Right-Wing Bloviathon, Exxon-Mobil, etc., in the desperately wishful hope that they might somehow respond to reason. TWENTY-FIVE

    [JR: My apologies about any confusion. I snipped Tom W's absurd and factually wrong comment after this post.]

  8. (I can’t believe that I hit the key…)

    TWENTY-FIVE year of actionable opportunities have been wasted as we tried, without the littlest shred of success, to reason with these people. The only thing these individuals are capable of noticing, much less responding too, is a bludgeon of sufficient size that it leaves a mark.

    Once again, as I have already pointed out, Romm’s discussion was amply supported by more than a little bit of logic and empirical evidence. And now all we get are the puling and whining, hand-wrining enablers whimpering and flooding the room with their tears because Dr. Romm had the unmitigated audacity to speak the truth about Pielke, and do so without mercy.

  9. (Hopefully the comment currently awaiting moderation will show up before the “part II” that my lack of typing skills slid into place)

  10. MarkB says:

    Can we start calling him Pastor Pielke Jr.? His preachy sermon is like that of a hypocritical televangelist – complaining about behavior and ad hominens immediately preceding a slew of childish behavior and ad hominens. His post is quite revealing. It’s interesting that he never applies such standards of behavior to “skeptics” or even to himself.

    He sure doesn’t seem to like “liberals” either, a label used in his post towards anyone who disagrees with him, or is supportive of those who disagree with him, including Tom Friedman, a moderate Pulitzer-prize-winning journalist (who supported the invasion of Iraq among other things) and the credentialed climate scientists at RealClimate (whom he’s claimed are liars). His post doesn’t read all that different than one by Rush Limbaugh. The difference is Limbaugh doesn’t really pretend to be something he’s not, with a self-appointed “honest broker” label.

    I’m glad that Joe Romm is calling out this hypocrisy. Someone has to be willing to get their hands dirty – inevitable when dealing with those kind of posts.

  11. Greg says:

    Joe,

    Love it, love it, love it. The Ramora is just delicious. You are now entered into history as a hero for the voices of reason for the last generation of carbon inebriates. You make the irksome smackdown task seem almost fun. Thank you for educating and entertaining me on this 70 degree day in late October in Virginia. I look forward to more KO’s until these deniers are finally stalled.

  12. sod says:

    Pielke has asked for examples for his dishonesty and deceit. and for problems with his professional work. i have answered on Deltoid, but i will repost it here:

    well, there is currently a major example all over the web: his father and Anthony Watts are using an article written by you to contradict this statement in an AP article:

    “Though there are exceptions, the vast majority of scientists agree that global warming is occurring and that the primary cause is a buildup of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere from the burning of fossil fuels, such as oil and coal.”

    but there is a serious problem with their approach (and the Pileke article):

    first, you count positions (answers 6 and 7 in your poll), which suppose that the IPCC report is not representing serious warming issues enough, as a disagreement with the report. but those positions do not contradict the AP claim above! this alone changes the numbers in your poll to 17% vs 77%.

    second, the vast majority of “sceptic” answers to his poll, fall into the fourth category:

    4. There is warming and the human addition of CO2 causes some of it, but the science is too uncertain to be confident about current attributions of the precise role of CO2 with respect to other climate forcings. The IPCC WG1 overestimates the role of CO2 relative to other forcings, including a diverse variety of human climate forcings.

    i strongly doubt, that people in this category can be seen as contradicting the AP claim above. that would leave the sceptic position with 7% vs 92%.

    both his father and Anthony Watts got confused by the deceiving elements in his article, mainly the abstract. i am sure, that Roger Pielke will try to demonstrate his honesty, by correcting their errors.

    and one more point:

    ps: whoever put “The lead scientists know what they are doing.” as a part of one answer into the survey, didn t have the slightest clue what he is doing.

  13. Eli Rabett says:

    Well, true when Roger tries to defend himself he either flounders or carps. This annoys people.

  14. Greg says:

    Oh, right, the fish metaphors. I’m definitely now hooked on Joe’s verbal tonics. Shall we name a new drink after our dear Ramora a “cold Roger”? or a “Jolly Roger”?

  15. If we’re going to name an alcoholic beverage after R. Jr, shouldn’t it be something really tacky, cloyingly sweet, but otherwise free of substance (which is to say, alcohol free)? The “Jolly Roger” (which is great name, by the way …) should be a drink that would go really, really well with rum, but actually be rum free.

    But there I go snarking again …

  16. Rogers walleyed attempts at reason are bassically filletious?

    (Bollocks, that doesn’t work either … )

  17. Joe, you definitely cut Pielke up into little pisces.

  18. Dano says:

    It’s rare that you can point to a single event that decides someone’s irrelevance. Poor RPJr – my only regret over his widdle behavior is that it took so long.

    Best,

    D

  19. DavidCOG says:

    I think Junior’s floundering, little meltdown demonstrates that it’s dawning on him that he’s a bottom feeder in this pool. Each time he tries to get a bit of daylight, the big fish are taking lumps out of him.

    Or perhaps it’s all elaborate performance art?! Perhaps he is doing an aquatic re-make of Monty Python’s Black Knight sketch: “Come back here! I’ll bite your legs (fins) off!”

    > Pielke is the uber-denier.

    Isn’t he just? He’s the Denier’s Denier. He even denies being a Denier! It must be fun around a Pielke dinner table. A continual chorus of “I didn’t say that! I didn’t take it! It wasn’t me! Those are not my views! I don’t have the salt!”

    I’m thoroughly looking forward to his book coming out. Well, not so much that as the gutting it will undoubtedly receive. I’ll wager that it’s going to end up looking like the floor of Billingsgate Fish Market at the end of a busy day.

  20. ken levenson says:

    Bravo, Joe – give them no quarter!

    Although I must say I don’t know my fish. And I don’t think Pielke is so benign….

    Substituting for a WWII analogy I can’t help but think Pielke and his Breakthrough Institute gang have a whole lot in common with the isolationists/defeatists prior to WWII. They reached for any straw from “it’s not our fight” to “the German forces are unbeatable” (my paraphrasing quotes) and in the process perverting the universal good of peace into a catalyst for nasty and counterproductive attitudes of the right wing.

    Both the Civil War and WWII showed we had the wealth, power and knowledge to win – it was just a matter of getting beyond the defeatists/isolationists. Pielke and his ilk are defeatists to be sure, toxic, and a catalyst for the wacko right tactics of obvuscation. Like General McClellan and Lindburgh The Breakthrough Institute’s legacy is in danger of being seen as thoroughly wrong-headed and worse.

    They deserve no quarter.

  21. Greg N says:

    Pielke should reread his Nature story and mullet over.

  22. Ron Broberg says:

    I think that the common thread between Pielke and the SuperFreaks is that they are trying to marginalize Gore and Hansen the rest of the “Global Warming Alarmists.”

    The problem, for them, is that Hansen and Gore stand pretty firmly on the actual science. So they start trying to do their pin-head dance: “CO2 is not the main villian; okay, yes it is.” and “There is no CO2 signal in the extreme weather events; okay, yes there is.”

    The message of the “educated skeptic” is inherently incoherent: the globe is warming; CO2 is a greenhouse gas; but Global Warming Alarmism is dangerous nonsense. That kind of hair-splitting is welcomed by the politicized masses but rejected by mainstream scientists and politicians. Thus the ‘educated skeptic’ finds themselves in bed with full blown denialism: the earth is cooling, NOAA is engaged in fraud, Hadley CRU is part of a conspiracy. I don’t think the ‘educated skeptics’ are happy to find themselves sleeping with the wingnuts and have chosen to look for someone else to blame. Maybe they need to reconsider who they count among their ‘friends’ or just clean up their own dang blog comments.

    I’d like to see guys like Pielke Jr and Christy engaging in a discussion of how best to quantify the costs of global warming in order to create a better cost/benefits analysis of the risks. But as long as they keep putting their efforts into splitting hairs and trying to marginalize Gore and Hansen, it ain’t going to happen. The wasted effort is just sad.

  23. MarkB says:

    DavidCOG writes:

    “He [Pielke Jr.] even denies being a Denier!”

    That’s the quote of the day. Pielke Jr. comes across as a Concern Troll.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Troll_(Internet)#Concern_troll

    Sure he claims to support the consensus on global warming and claims to be concerned about it, but spends the vast majority of his time going after climate scientists and promoting the views of deniers. It’s kind of like someone claiming they aren’t a flat-Earther but spending their time going after those lying alarmist scientists saying the Earth is not flat and promoting the views of flat-Earthers. It’s very transparent.

  24. David B. Benson says:

    I have learned not to look towards so I don’t have to “not look away.”

    RPJr is completely ignorable as far as I am concerned.

  25. Sable says:

    Pielke Jr. has global warming bass ackwards – seems he needs to go back to school.

  26. sod says:

    Concern Troll is a very good description of Roger Pielke.

    i took a look at his work, amd was realy shocked by the lack of substance. his “green” or “environmental” side isn t really showing up in his articles. his policy advice is 90% “do nothing”.

    i especially liked this piece:

    http://sciencepolicy.colorado.edu/admin/publication_files/resource-2540-2007.20.pdf

    asking “so what?” on climate change, seems like a really good and open minded idea. thanks roger for this insight!

  27. Marc Hudson says:

    Thanks Joe, for the pains-taking work,
    the scales have fallen from my eyes about Jolly Roger. “Fin.”

  28. NathanS says:

    Romm is the closest thing to a superhero we have these days!

  29. David B. Benson says:

    NathanS (28) — I’d throw in Jim Hansen and Bill McKibben as well.

  30. DavidCOG says:

    There are a small army of superheros working against The Disinformation Machine: GreenFyre, Tim Lambert, greenman3610 (YouTube) and many others that skewer the Deniers from different angles. And an even larger army of footsoldiers who combat the idiocy that is posted to forums across the ‘net.

    It’s tough being a Denier nowadays – you’ve barely published your latest distortion opus and half a dozen excoriations are handed out by return. It’s heartening to watch!

  31. YallGetBent says:

    You folks need to wake up and smell the cold coffee…

    “Repect the man who seeks the truth…suspect the man who claims to have found it.”

    Mark Twain.

    Don’t hate…Debate!

    [JR: I take it you suspect all your doctors!]

  32. Seth Masia says:

    Hey, Y’all: Debate isn’t necessarily the best way to find the truth. Research works pretty well.

  33. Jeff says:

    I watched 2 minutes of your linked Gore presentation and found 5 exaggerations. How could anyone sit though that presentation with out puking?