Pulp fiction psychology

Wattsupwiththat.com had a discussion on an article in SOCIETY FOR PERSONALITY AND SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY.   Matthew Hornsey (University of Queensland) described behaviour of skeptics as “thinking like a lawyer,” in that people cherry-pick which pieces of information to pay attention to “in order to reach conclusions that they want to be true.”  Right after he says skeptics are just as smart or smarter than warmists.  Interesting that he completely ignores that reality and dives into “you’re wrong, we’re right and  you must be defective if you disagree”.

Of all the areas of science, global warming has devolved the quickest into pulp fiction psychology.  Unable to present a cogent, scientific argument, but allowing no possibility the theory might be wrong, only that people “don’t understand” or they would agree, believers have dived into “it’s your politics or your religion or your mood today”.  Anything but that the theory is just not proven.

Since skeptics are at least as smart as global warming believers, this argument is not going to change the mind of any skeptic.  They will immediately see projection or desperation, anything but a real reason to not believe the theory, say like lack of open discussion, all data “adjusted” or “lost” in many cases, all the normal things science has a basis.  Believers go so far as to say they won’t release data because skeptics will only try to prove them wrong.  Neon sign “WE MIGHT BE WRONG AND WE AREN’T GOING TO LET YOU FIND OUT”.  Come on, we’re smart people.  We see the desperation.

Some commenters will refer to “cognitive dissonance” (on both sides) but cognitive dissonance is a very specific psychological term.  It applies to people who pretend to believe or not believe based on those around them.  If the entire family believes except one, the one will often go along, which can create cognitive dissonance if the person feels guilt for lying about what they believe.  Often, the person will end up changing sides to stop the guilty feelings.  It’s a response to bullying and group-think in some cases.

Then there’s double-think, which is holding two contradictory ideas both to be true.  There is NO dissonance.  The person simply believes both.  An example is climate skeptics are “deniers of science” but anti-vaxxers are enlightened people.  In one case, the science is followed, in the other, denied.  Based on who knows what?  The ideas are contradictory because one says science is always right and the other says science is wrong.

Another example is something I ran into on Facebook:  You teach a child not to be violent, not to harm animals and small children, by beating the hell out of him for throwing a kitten against the wall.  That level of double-think boarders on psychotic.

Pulp psychology techniques have become the trademark of global warming.  The science FAILED and failed miserably.  So intimidation, bullying, psyching people out are all that’s left.  Honestly, it’s like the last remnant of the Flat Earth Society trying to pass laws and/or bribe people into saying the earth is flat lest they be proven wrong.  After all, global warming CANNOT be wrong.  EVER.

Sure.

dscn3694

They’re just trying to scare us.

scan0015

Told you they were just kidding.  Wind had nothing to do with this.  Really.

If only the warning had been worded to match the politics, religion and so forth of the driver, he would not have ignored the sign.  Or maybe the driver is just oblivious to reality?

 

Just when you thought there was hope, out comes the rediculous.

 

Skeptics_v_Realists

Realistics, no.  True believers, yes.  Maybe if it didn’t fit their politics so well…..

Exploit the dead–the ends justify the means

It had to happen. All crisis and human life lost must be blamed on humans causing climate change. And here it is: Mother Jones
One Reason It May Be Harder to Find Flight 370: We Messed Up the Currents.
It’s not enough that humans are soooo powerful they messed up the atmosphere, but they messed up the oceans too. Let’s see–tgdaily had this:
A new study by the University of Pennsylvania’s Irina Marinov and Raffaele Bernardello and colleagues from McGill University has found that recent climate change may be acting to slow down one of these conveyer belts, with potentially serious consequences for the future of the planet’s climate.
Read more at http://www.tgdaily.com/general-sciences-features/91136-report-deep-ocean-current-may-slow-due-to-climate-change#sheKk39GBik3pe54.99
MAY be slowing. Not is, not will, not we are sure about this. Not anything but MAY BE.

Actually, ocean current exerts a great deal of influence on climate itself. I checked out aip.org on ocean and it’s part in global warming, but ran across the statement “What was much more certain was that the oceans were rapidly warming and growing more acidic” at which point I stopped. My new rule is if the writer is so scientifically illiterate that they do not know that a ph of 8.1 is BASIC and not acid, I will have to check everything they write due to their obvious lack of scientific knowledge. Does it matter they have a PhD in physics? Actually, how do you get a PhD when you’re too scientifically illiterate to know the difference between an acid and a base? This is just making me think “peer-review” and “degrees” are meaningless. Anyone with any real knowledge of science knows 8.1 is base. A base cannot become more “acidic” if it is not acidic to start with.  It is BASE until it drops below 7.  It is so amazing to me that people who claim to be brilliant can be so very, very lacking in scientific knowledge. In my class, people with PhD’s could not correctly identify the base/alkali nature of the ocean. It’s so incredibly wrong, wrong, wrong.  And it makes me question everything they say because if they don’t understand something this simple, how can they be trusted to understand something as complex as climate?

This constant lack of correct terminology and lying about chemical properties and who knows what else may in part explain why Mother Jones is fully willing to sensationalize a downed plane and use the dead as a banner for claiming climate change is the reason we couldn’t find the plane. It’s the most obnoxious, arrogant, and evil behaviour out there. Global warming is its own worst enemy, damning humans and caring nothing about lives unless they can be exploited.

Problem premises, misplaced blame

I was reading a paper by Hansen et al and found the term “known planetary energy imbalance”. This has always been an interesting term to me. It presupposes that:
(A) Balance is supposed to exist.
(B) We know every factor in the energy mix and it’s contribution to the overall balance

Without verification of these two premises, any conclusions that arise from these premises are not logically true. The conclusion may be true, but the arguments used to “prove” them do not lead to the conclusion and do not serve to verify the conclusion.

(A) How do we know a “balance” ever existed? Humans love balance, that I understand. Mathematical equations have to balance as a matter of definition. Then there are the laws of thermodynamics. Mathematically, we want all the parts to add up—same amount of energy in as out. Right now, the earth is absorbing more energy than it is releasing back into space. The energy is going into the oceans. This is interpreted to mean something is “wrong” and must be fixed.

The need for balance is seen in the use of the global mean temperature (a statistic that reduces thousands of readings to one easy number). Any variation from this temperature is an anomaly. If even the smallest change occurs, it has enormous implications. Should one point out that the temperature of the Earth has always varied, the shrill response is: “Not this much”! Everything must balance and thus must remain stable.

If there is an imbalance and the global mean temperature is going up, we must “fix” it. Fix it to what? The pre-industrial era? Was it in balance then? What about the warming after the LIA? Did that indicate a return to balance or a falling out of balance? Snowball earth—definitely out of balance? What about when snowball earth started to melt? The balance was definitely not present then. So what period in time was the energy in/energy out in balance? Why did it stop being in balance? Was it ever really in balance or are we looking at a system that works without the balance we demand and that system’s imbalance results in what we call “climate”? Is it the imbalance that is the “correct” state?

Hansen is now saying “natural” climate is holding the CO2 in check—El Nino, La Nina, and solar output. However , he continues to claim CO2 from humans is the “predominant forcing”. The 5 year mean (running average) has been flat for a decade, while CO2 continues to rise. I garden. The predominant factor in successful gardening is water. We have had 12 years of drought. For a while, my irrigation watering, fertilizing, etc produced some results. However, year after year, the crop became smaller and smaller. My ability to get enough water through sprinklers was limited by the drought, also. This year, my garden is ¼ the area of the past. This year, rain has been falling. The amount of produce from the smaller area is exceeding the yield from last year’s large area. Nothing I did could overcome the lack of rain. Rain is the predominant factor. It seems problematic that a factor so huge and planet-threatening as human-produced CO2 could be knocked down by natural factors. The claim that warming will return is still clung to, however. Nature will fail to retain it’s current domination and CO2 will again reign. In my case, I know the rain was the dominant factor because when it returned, so did the garden. Until now, that was nothing more than an hypothesis. Just as “the warming will return” is nothing more than an hypothesis until the warming does return. Even then, there is the serious question of how a climate driver the size of human-induced CO2 could be overwhelmed by any natural process.

Hansen’s theory also presumes there exists a dominant driver of climate and that it will remain dominant except for brief periods. It is equally possible, and may be probable, that there exists no single factor or single group of factors that rule climate. Many factors may rise to dominance for periods of time, then are overpowered by others. In other words, there are multiple drivers that move up and down in their level of influence.

(B)We know every factor in the balance and it’s part/percentage in the balance. This is obviously false. Until the temperatures “flattened”, natural forces were said to be completely overwhelmed by CO2—that CO2 is the driving factor. If we did know everything there is to know about climate, we would have realized that nature might be a very large part of climate changing and that our contribution was not large enough to rule the climate kingdom continually. Climate scientists would have been telling us that CO2 was one factor but there were many others, and that their current understanding was that CO2 was the major driver at the moment (plus forcings, of course). They would have clearly stated that leveling off was possible and that nature could prevail for at least short periods. This was not found in the narrative until the temperatures flattened and there arose questions about why the warming of the atmosphere had stopped or slowed. As far as I know, it is not found in the research papers either. The narrative and research say warming is primarily due to CO2. It is the questioners who suggest otherwise.

Climate scientists bemoan the fact that people do not believe or trust them. Statements are made to the effect that Fox News is having more influence over people’s beliefs than the scientists themselves. Fox News is spreading an anti-science message and damaging the climate scientists standing.

That is NOT the problem. This sudden “nature is stronger at the moment but we assure you it will get continue to get hot just like we said it would” is clearly viewed as a CYA statement. When scientists predict warming for years and then circle the wagons and put out CYA statements when the warming flattens, they look just like politicians. People don’t trust politicians—the same happens when scientists start to act like politicians: Distrust.

Problem premises and CYA tactics are why people distrust climate science. Try clearly stating the premise and backing it up with solid evidence, not a “trust me” from the people promoting the theory. Of course, you will need a theory that actually can be verified. When models fail, the theory fails. When the theory cannot account for changes in what warms and how much, the theory fails. It is this failure that is the problem. Pure and simple.

Scientific Badger

Scientific Badger

Arctic Ice

I have reached a point in my studies where I can present my conclusions on what a melting of arctic likely means. Is it a sign of the apocalypse, or a natural phenomena?

First, I note with interest that the National Snow and Ice data center will be updating the sea ice baseline from the currently used 1979 to 2000 to the 1981 to 2010 interval. This means 10 years of diminished ice cover will figure into the average used for comparisons. This should result in the ice extent anomaly becoming smaller—in other words, the melt will be closer to average. In July, the change will be implemented and I look forward to seeing the effects.

Where to start? Studying arctic ice proved enlightening. There are many hypotheses for what causes ice melt. Plus, forces acting on sea ice are not the same as that acting on land ice. Land ice melts in reaction to air temperature, wind, storms, snow cover. Sea ice melts mostly due to water temperature underneath the ice, wave motion and storms.

There are terms:
slp sea level pressure
AO Arctic Oscillation
NAO North Atlantic Oscillation
lfo low frequency oscillation
sst sea surface temperature
enso el Niño southern oscillation
smmr scanning microwave radiometer
ssmi special sensor/ microwave imager
first year ice
multiyear ice (important because the two types of ice have different melting rates)
Beaufort Gyre (a mean annual clockwise motion in the Western Atlantic)

Then the proxies:
Marine sediment records
sea floor sediments beneath the ice give the best information
resolution varies by location—central areas are low resolution with a long time scale
continental margins are high resolution with a shorter time scale
ice rafted sediments are the most direct proxies
skeletons of marine animals/organisms
coastal records, driftwood, whalebone
terrestrial vegetation, ice cores
historical records
the 18O/16O ratio
Use of multiple proxies is required to reduce the probability of errors.

According to Lora Koenig, (Goddard glaciologist) a melt similar to the current one occurs every 150 years and this one is right on time. For those of you on the advocate side, I give you: http://www.dailykos.com/story/2012/07/28/1114628/-NASA-Made-up-150-year-melt-cycles-NY-Times-Slammed-NASA-for-Unprecedented-Melt-Every-150-Years#
It is a political blog with unlabeled axes on the first graph, but it does provide an alternative point of view (she was pressured by politics—wait—that’s what the questioners say about advocates. Now advocates who rejected that explanation when it was used as an explanation of why climate scientists all stick together and don’t go against “consensus”, are using the argument themselves. Most interesting.) I did not find verification of her political motivation. I did find other articles that verified the 150 year cycles based on ice cores.

Another interesting item was an announcement from NSID that they would revise their algorithm for the Greenland Ice Sheet early. The adjustment resulted in fewer melt days. What is interesting is how measurements are not straightforward. It seems we have to mathematically adjust so many of the measurements. Since no direct measurement may exist, there’s really no way to verify the accuracy, nothing concrete to compare to. The best we can do is have independent calculation and verify the “close fit” or “way off” nature of each method. The change in the algorithm appears to have been
due to temperature records showing the temperature had not hit the melting point. This is as close to direct verification as we get, it seems. This also illustrates the lack of reliability in the science, especially if the melt gets a headline and the correction gets virtually no notice.

In Quaternary Science Reviews, there was an interesting study on the history of sea ice. It explains proxies and many aspects of researching ice. The conclusion was “unexplainable by any of the known natural variations.” The implication was that humans were the only possible cause, not nature. This is basically the exclusionary principle—nothing else explains the phenomena so it must be “x” (in this case, us). In the study, this is not stated but rather implied. The actual conclusion is the ice melt is anomalous. That conclusion is an actual scientific statement that refrains from over-reaching: the ice is melting at a rate outside our defined “normal”.

In researching arctic ice, I found an article with a study saying the record surface melting was caused by “unusual atmospheric circulation and jet stream GrIS. This event was the largest such event since the 70’s and maybe longer. The study involved using a computer model and satellite data. Based on the results, the melt’s main forcing was atmospheric—the NAO, GBI (Greenland Blocking Index—a high pressure system over Greenland) and the polar jet stream. Researchers note that in time we will know if the was anomalous or part of an emerging pattern. Patience before drawing conclusions is a very good practice. So is more data collection.

Sea ice decline is actually small: -2.24% per decade. Headlines such as “Why Arctic Sea Ice will vanish in 2013” are designed to lead people to thinking climate change is much faster and larger than the data would indicate (I’ll wait until September to see if the headline comes true. Also, this story states we have had a stable climate for the last 11,000 years. Any time I ask about a stable climate, I am told “the climate never was stable”. It’s headlines and stories like these that lead people to asking when was climate stable and doubting the accuracy of climate change science.) I also found a report that Peter Wadhams, review editor, IPCC Working Group I report says the arctic will melt by 2015, if not sooner. The exaggerations seem endless.

One of the proxies used for study is historical records. I’m including some here. While there will be an immediate “That’s not science” reaction from many, consider that internet marketing surveys are now being published in peer-reviewed journals. Old newspaper headlines are certainly as reliable a measure as internet marketing surveys.
From Climate Depot:
1922 Washington Post “Arctic Ocean Getting Warm, Seals Vanish and Iceberg Melt”
1923 “Radical Climate Change Melting Down the North Pole”
1935 “Russian Ship Sailed 500 miles from North Pole in Ice Free Water”
1947 “International Agency needed to Stop the Arctic Meltdown” (No word on how that would work)
1907 “Arctic Heat Record—Hottest Place in Europe
Some of these may have been “local” events but the belief in apocalyptic meltdown of the arctic is nothing new.
As you can see, there are many theories/hypothesis on arctic ice melt. What seems most apparent is we lack sufficient understanding at this point to draw accurate conclusions, especially long-range ones. In 2002, satellites from GRACE began detecting tiny variations in Earth’s gravity that indicate changes in mass distribution on earth, including the movement of ice into the ocean. These are detecting decreases, but with only a decade of data, its too soon to establish a pattern as climate change rather than short-term weather changes. Even if we do find a significant decline, we cannot simply jump to “human-caused”. We live on a dynamic planet that is always changing. Monitoring may help us prepare for the changes by alerting us sooner, much like radar for tornadoes and hurricanes. Just like the storm alerts, the knowledge can only warn, not prevent. We can study, learn and adapt, but in all probability, it’s not something we control nor something we can prevent.

References:

http://www.sierraclub.ca/en/AdultDiscussionPlease
http://www.livescience.com/28399-clouds-greenland-ice-melt.html
http://junkscience.com/2013/07/14/study-no-consensus-among-scientists-about-the-cause-of-recent-increase-in-ice-sheet-mass-loss-observed-by-satellites/
http://www.climatedepot.com/2012/08/27/dont-panic-arctic-ice-hits-record-low-climate-depot-explains-arctic-melting-hype/
Polyak, L., et al, History of sea ice in the Arctic, Quaternary Science Reviews (2010)
http://phys.org/news/2013-06-jet-stream-climatically-exceptional-greenland.html
http://www.redorbit.com/news/science/1112875668/jet-stream-caused-greenland-ice-sheet-melt-2012-061713/
http://www.curry.eas.gatech.edu/currydoc/Liu_GRL31A.pdf
http://nsidc.org/greenland-today/2013/03/an-early-spring-calibration-for-melt-detection/
http://www.ft.com/intl/cms/s/2/4084c8ee-fa36-11e2-98e0-00144feabdc0.html#axzz2apWLP7jt

Scientific Badger

Scientific Badger

Antiscience? Not.

Scientific Badger

Scientific Badger

WtD currently (as of 10 AM today) has an article on anti-science and some psychobabble about “stages of denial”. Again, it’s based on the 97% of scientists with the appropriate degree who publish in the proper peer-reviewed journals agreeing AGW is real. As I have noted, the qualifications can be waived if scientists agree with AGW and write an article that will help the cause (as in Cook, Lewendoski and Marcott). This appears to be central to the entire theory—the “in” crowd agrees and so should you.

First, psychology and consensus have NOTHING to do with the truth or falsity of a scientific hypothesis/theory. Psychology and consensus are employed to “sell” something. For example—4 out of 5 dentists recommend “Brand X” toothpaste. Unless the dentists are doing this based on scientific evidence that brand X is best (and can produce the research to prove it), it’s nothing more than a toothpaste popularity contest.

There used to be commercials stating more hospitals used Tylenol than any other pain reliever. There was also a report that Tylenol was cutting the hospitals a great deal on the cost of the Tylenol. Today, Tylenol no longer advertises this way—it turned out the “safe” painkiller used by more hospitals was actually toxic in large doses. The medication was added to narcotic painkillers and combination medications, resulting in unintentional overdosing. It was not the “safe, trusted” painkiller that was endorsed by hospitals. Hospitals agreed—consensus existed. Tylenol was safe….but then it wasn’t.

Had someone actually questioned why there was agreement, perhaps the reality of the lack of safety in Tylenol would have come out sooner. Research and experience had always shown acetaminophen was toxic in large doses, due to liver damage. If there had been inquiries into the research and hospitals were asked to prove the safety and usefulness of the product, perhaps fewer overdoses would have occurred. The manufacturer of Tylenol later had commercials saying it was safe IF used as directed, a much more honest statement. At least safety was conditional.

Scientific truth is not determined by endorsement or consensus. It is determined by data, how well any models used predict and match reality, how much data exists versus how much is modeling (hint: the word “model” is prevalent in most AGW research.) A computer model is not a FACT. It’s not real. It’s at best an hypothesis, at worst, a fantasy. So not believing AGW is actually not putting faith in computer models and statistical probability. It is recognition of the limits of statistics and the use of modeling in trying to predict complex phenomena. It is the recognition of the validity of research based on its actual content and not who wrote. It is not a denial of science, scientific method or actual facts in evidence.

This may explain the shift from science in AGW to psychobabble and non-scientific terms like “extreme weather” (There was a study that tried to quantify this without a lot of success—I do give them credit for at least trying.)  If you can’t prove something with actual data, dazzle ’em with psychobabble and scare ’em with “extreme”.