Fatalism & Will of God

Sep 2nd, 2009, in Opinion, by

Other worldly factors in climate change, are Indonesian students right?

GLOBAL WARMING - 'GOD'S WILL?'

A report in the Jakarta Post, which said that a significant proportion of young Indonesians were content to regard the current climate change panic as

God's Will

caught my attention, even before my agnostic and atheist friends exploded into mirthful indignation. (Why is it that so many non-believers here, who'd not think to blare out their scepticism back home, tend to take on a noisy resemblance to the long-dead League of Militant Godless - is it a reaction to the local fanatics?)

I'm certainly not an especially godly sort, but it seems to me that these young folks have a broader perspective than the panic-merchants. The more we read of the Gore Brigade, the more we find that their hysteria is manufactured. Gore's own film was faulted by a British court of law, which decreed that, not least in view of the various lies/errors/inaccuracies it contained, showing it in schools had to be accompanied by a bias health warning.

If we think there's a God up there, or even just Mother Nature, then it is patently His, or Her, doing that the climate is changing. Many scientists tell us exactly that, and get stridently abused and even persecuted for saying so. Others insist the climate is not significantly changing, or even going the other way from that which the panickers tell us.

A while ago we had a lengthy thread of argument on IM about climate (Saving the Planet?) and it became so self-absorbed that I gave up reading it. Since then I have paid sporadic attention to the issue, mainly due to my interest in free speech, and what I've learned from reading back and forth into the past decade has worried me about the character of the scientific establishment. A lot of these guys want and need government grants and are unlikely to upset their cosy apple-carts by challenging the in-crowd's prejudices. Why should those people quoted in the Jakarta Post article be held up to scorn for preferring explanations that don't depend on vested interests?

An article in the Wall Street Journal by a Mr. Lindzen, Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Atmospheric Science at MIT, in April 2006, reported that

Henk Tennekes was dismissed as research director of the Royal Dutch Meteorological Society after questioning the scientific underpinnings of global warming. Aksel Winn-Nielsen, former director of the U.N.'s World Meteorological Organization, was tarred by Bert Bolin, first head of the IPCC, as a tool of the coal industry for questioning climate alarmism. Respected Italian professors Alfonso Sutera and Antonio Speranza disappeared from the debate in 1991, apparently losing climate-research funding for raising questions.

He also states that censorship is in vogue in the journalistic sphere.. 'At Science and Nature, such papers are commonly refused without review as being without interest.' Not a very open dialogue, is it?

Lindzen's own experience with a paper he worked on is also worrying.

'...Normally, criticism of papers appears in the form of letters to the journal to which the original authors can respond immediately. However, in this case (and others) a flurry of hastily prepared papers appeared, claiming errors in our study, with our responses delayed months and longer. The delay permitted our paper to be commonly referred to as "discredited." Indeed, there is a strange reluctance to actually find out how climate really behaves. In 2003, when the draft of the U.S. National Climate Plan urged a high priority for improving our knowledge of climate sensitivity, the National Research Council instead urged support to look at the impacts of the warming--not whether it would actually happen.'

God, Nature, man-made, inevitable...? We are not being given the whole story, for sure, and cui bono? In these circumstances, it makes more sense for Indonesians and the rest of us to seek answers from a level we trust, rather than bought-and-paid-for apparatchiks. What is really behind the panic? Is there a hidden agenda?


147 Comments on “Fatalism & Will of God”

  1. avatar Ross says:

    Without wishing to re-play the ‘debate’ with the Flying Dutchman, I hope readers have noted the ClimateGateScandal in the UK.
    While the chicanery of the ‘experts’ speaks for itself, what are we to make of that disgusting creep Jones?
    I often go on the attack here, but even though I abhor some folks’ views, I wouldn’t gloat at their deaths!
    ————
    COMPUTER hackers have broken into Britain’s leading climate science research centre, making public thousands of private emails between top climate change scientists.

    The messages – more than 2000 emails and 3000 documents – lay bare bitter disagreements about the cause of climate change.

    In one email, the head of Britain’s Climatic Research Unit, Phil Jones, says he is “cheered” by news of the sudden death of a prominent Australian climate sceptic, John L. Daly, who died of a heart attack at his Launceston home in 2004.

    Others show scientists referring to sceptical colleagues as “prats”, “charlatans” and “idiots”.

    The emails also acknowledge the frustration of trying to find evidence to “prove” man-made climate change.
    ===========
    Yuk!

  2. avatar Ross says:

    And I see protestors in Toronto drawing attention to the exposee of alarmist dishonesty have been warned off by security goons when they tried to confront Gore in that fair city. He’s still rolling in the cash from his ‘panic evangelist’ role
    As CFP notes,….’Gore, in his Canadian hide-y-hole, obviously hopes that Climategate will have blown over by the time he returns to his Tennessee mansion, which, as one Canadian blogger points out “produces more pollution a month than a normal household in one year.”

  3. avatar Arie Brand says:

    Summary of the report by the British House of Commons Science and Technology Committee on that “disgusting creep Jones” (Ross McKay)

    Phil Jones Exonerated by British House of Commons

    The British House of Commons today issued a report exonerating Professor Phil Jones, the director of the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East ……………

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/james-hoggan/climate-scientist-phil-jo_b_519298.html

    (I will not react to protestations by McKay because his main debating strategy is to keep talking regardless.)

  4. avatar Ross says:

    Brand, Brand, Brand (I skip the Mister or Ms, since he/she neglects the civility) you can splash the white-wash anyway you want, but your GW Panickers will not recover easily from the succession of set-backs to their propaganda war. Himalayan melting…yeah, right!

  5. avatar Ross says:

    Brand is correct to say I used derogatory words about Jones, and no more than a man who gloats at the fatal heart-attack of a dissenter surely deserves.
    But here’s a good comment, from not me but an ‘Independent’ reader in the UK, on the latest white-wash.

    ———-
    Err.. no they didn’t. Read the report!

    The report doesn’t exonerate Jones at all! It just shifts the blame for Jones’ actions onto the university and onto the culture in climate science. It’s like saying “he’s not really bad at heart, he’s just been brought up badly and not been taught right from wrong.” What the report does is call into question the integrity of climatology as a science in a much broader sense.

    The report, which didn’t even explore the validity of the science – contrary to your implicit message, Connor – does absolutely nothing whatsoever to address the concerns of the sceptics. Public perception, which is mentioned in the report towards the end, is not going to be improved by this political gesture.

    It’s quite clear that Stringer has effectively been gagged in this report. He’s a politician and he has to toe the Labour Party line, so despite being a scientist and very clearly a climate science sceptic, he’s largely been kept silent in the report – despite being irresistibly drawn to criticise Jones during the enquiry for being “fundamentally anti-scientific.”

    The report is mostly the white-wash that anyone with an ounce of common sense had expected that it would be. Nobody should be surprised.

    If you want a proper appraisal of the report by appropriately sceptical minds and science writers, rather than environmentalist advocacy journalists like you find here at the “Independent”, watch for what Anthony Watts and Bishop Hill/Andrew Montford have to say.

  6. avatar Arie Brand says:

    I forgot to mention that McKay, apart from his strategy of the talking head, has another double pronged one – if an investigation yields the slightest factoid in his direction he sees his conspiracy theory confirmed – if it doesn’t he has evidence of a cover up. It is a strategy of heads I win tails you lose.

  7. avatar Arie Brand says:

    “Appropriately sceptical mind and science writer” Anthony Watts. See:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P_0-gX7aUKk

  8. avatar Oigal says:

    Sorry Ari, No matter what view you have on the science are you seriously suggesting what this clown Jones did was in anyway a subjective or honest implementation of data available.

    The damage this man has done to mainstream science cannot now be undone and has set back the cause of GW supporters by at least ten years.

  9. avatar Arie Brand says:

    Your first sentence: see the report.

    Your second sentence: wishful thinking.

  10. avatar Ross says:

    And Brand crits me for saying to much….when challenged, he clams up like a Climate Panic scientist when asked for info under the Freedom of Information Act.

  11. avatar Arie Brand says:

    Challenged?

  12. avatar Oigal says:

    Seriously, you cannot be supporting as correct, honorable or ethical the self admitted actions of leaving off data or suppressing emails that Jones did with such gay abandon. Simply bizarre position for anyone to take.

    Funnily enough Jones obvious dishonest practices in an effort to support the GW angle had turned him into the skeptics greatest friend.

  13. avatar Arie Brand says:

    You obviously haven’t followed this story closely. The key point is made in para. 51 of the House of Commons report:

    “Even if the data that CRU used were not publicly available—which they mostly are—or the methods not published—which they have been—its published results would still be credible: the results from CRU agree with those drawn from other international data sets; in other words, the analyses have been repeated and the conclusions have been verified.”

    But contrarians are not really interested in results: ” “There’s no amount of evidence or data that will change somebody’s mind,” says Michael Shermer, who is the publisher of Skeptic magazine and a columnist for Scientific American, and who holds an undergraduate and a master’s degree in psychology. “The more data you present a person, the more they doubt it … Once you’re committed, especially behaviorally committed or financially committed, the more impossible it becomes to change your mind.” Any inconvenient facts are irrelevant. People who believe in a conspiracy theory “develop a selective perception, their mind refuses to accept contrary evidence,” Chip Berlet, a senior analyst with Political Research Associates who studies such theories, says. “As soon as you criticize a conspiracy theory, you become part of the conspiracy.” ”

    This comes from an article regarding the ‘birthers’ (a front your fellow climate-contrarian McKay is also busy on) but it is equally applicable to climate contrarians (‘skeptics’ is of course an usurped title).

  14. avatar Ross says:

    Oigal, I’m not sure that you are eintirely in agreement with me on the GW panic propaganda issue. It certainly seems to me that it’s simply a big con for governments to increase their powers and tax folks till they bleed.
    But you are doing well to wind up old ‘dry-as-dust’ Arie.

    You notice how Brand’s intellectual impoverishment is such that he neglects the opportunity to comment usefully (or at all) on the Himalayan melting scam which got exposed recently, and I suppose he’s still taking skinny-dip lessons to rescue those polar bears that aren’t really drowning due to global warming.

    He is of course entitled to his eccentricities, but what is most obnoxious about him is his total failure to see anything off-putting about that creep Jones’ open gloat at the death of a critic.
    Presumably AB would dance on the graves of all who dissent from his ‘scientific’ high priesthood.

  15. avatar David says:

    No love lost here! Best to avoid the personal stuff though…. this popped up on A&L Daily today –

    Climate Catastrophe – A Superstorm for Global Warming Research

    http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,687259,00.html

  16. avatar Arie Brand says:

    The case for global warming is basically quite simple and clear. Not that that makes any difference to poor McKay. If he suspected that “Big Government” was behind the equation 2+2 = 4 he would deny the truth of that as well.

    So not for the benefit of this latter day Colonel Blimp, who has to cobble some halfway believable identity together amid the distractions of Jakarta’s fleshpots, but for the rest of us these simple steps:

    1. The physics underlying the link between rising temperatures and the increasing CO2 content of the air is quite clear and has been so for more than a century (google on Fourier and Arrhenius);

    2.The CO2 content of the air has been increasing – a measurable thing.

    3. Temperatures have been increasing. The World Meteorological Organisation and NASA agree that the last decade was the warmest on record.

    4. CO2 due to human activities can be distinguished by its chemical type from that due to natural phenomena, such as volcanic eruptions.

    5. Moreover, possible non-human causes for the increase in CO2 and the rise in temperature have been exhaustively investigated. And the case for the human share in this phenomenon still stands.

    I am aware that all this doesn’t make the slightest difference to McKay. He would rather discuss the character of Phil Jones or focus on one particular error in thousands of pages of script. Amid the intellectual company he seems to keep that will do. If these folk bother to inform themselves at all they do so through the sources castigated in one of Peter Sinclair’s videos. Here it is:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cp-iB6jwjUc

    Patung, the Spiegel article you referred to is just above that level – but only just. It comes with many old chestnuts. For instance, the so-called urban heat island effect or the poor environment of certain weather stations. As far as the former is concerned, the hobbyhorse of Canadian economist Ross McKitrick, Tim Lambert (a computer scientist at the University of New South Wales) has taken his case quite convincingly apart in his blog Deltoid. The latter, the drum on which Anthony Watts made so much noise, was of course the topic of one of Peter Sinclair’s videos of which I gave the address above. For my money Watts ended up with egg on his face on that one. He was presumably aware of this – that is why he tried – in vain – to suppress it on “copyright” grounds.

    The article refers also to the hockey stick controversy and the alleged medieval warming period as serious thorns in the flesh of the global warming case. They aren’t. Check up for yourself.

    On the whole it is, however, not your usual “denialist” article. “Der Spiegel” is somewhat above that level. It takes a bit here and gives a bit there (so nobody will cancel his subscription).

    Steve McIntyre, who is the moderator of the ClimateAudit blog (where the somewhat more sophisticated contrarians come together), came here with the surprising admission that he still believes in global warming and doesn’t want “to throw out the baby with the bathwater”. I am not aware that he has ever said this clearly on his blog and he certainly doesn’t try to rein in some of his more fanatical followers on that basis.

  17. avatar Arie Brand says:

    I have written here on the so-called “hockey stick” controversy:

    http://www.desmogblog.com/review-michael-manns-exoneration

  18. avatar Oigal says:

    Ari,

    In your effort to ram your viewpoint down peoples throats, you are making the same mistake that the unethical Jones and his cronies in deceit do. Passion should not and does not replace ethics. The discussion is not about how valid (or not) the science is but ethical behaviour.

    Let’s assume the science is true, would you really expect anyone to place any trust in a solution provided by people like Jones and his ilk…what are they not telling you?

    Jones approach to the true is a best as a nodding but distant rarely visited relation.

    The Jones approach to facts……..

    Hey Ari I would like to offer you a job as my GW PR Rep at 10,000 a month…

    What he didn’t tell you was its 10,000Rp not dollars, no he didn’t lie but…..

  19. avatar Oigal says:

    Ari, you are not following our conversation. I am asking you to answer the below not provide links to the latest GW temple of doom.

    Seriously, you cannot be supporting as correct, honorable or ethical the self admitted actions of leaving off data or suppressing emails that Jones did with such gay abandon?

  20. avatar Oigal says:

    The physics underlying the link between rising temperatures and the increasing CO2 content of the air is quite clear and has been so for more than a century (google on Fourier and Arrhenius);

    Which then puzzles me as in the seventies I was told we were in for global cooling..now its global warming…same data ..different experts I guess..

    3. Temperatures have been increasing. The World Meteorological Organisation and NASA agree that the last decade was the warmest on record.

    Actually no since 1998 the temp has been cooling which is annoying even to the Jones clones although a decade in this contest means nothing unless of course you a gasping at straws

    Moreover, possible non-human causes for the increase in CO2 and the rise in temperature have been exhaustively investigated. And the case for the human share in this phenomenon still stands.

    No doubt but didn’t the level fall just after WW2 just when you think it would be going up..

    Ari, point is you are dumping gross statements without qaulifers and people just don’t believe it anymore because peoiple liek yourself have been caught out too often toying with the truth. You have no one to blame but yourself.

  21. avatar Arie Brand says:

    If you have gotten over your virtuous indignation about the character of Jones we can perhaps talk about things that really matter. Unfortunately, you are quite unoriginal in the objections you come up with. They have cropped up, ad nauseam, in the denialist literature and been refuted even more often. What puzzles me though is your air of coming up with new and quite telling arguments. I can only conclude that you are simply quite unfamiliar with the literature.

    Because it is so tedious to go over the same ground again and again there is not much fun in debating you. Moreover, for somebody who claims to be a successful businessman you seem to have a surprising amount of time on your hands for blogging so your capacity for harassment is quite considerable. Nevertheless I will give it a go.

    So you were told in the 70s that we were in for global cooling, were you. Remarkable that you relate this old chestnut (the kind of thing Senator Inhofe tries to impress his more ignorant fellow members with) as a personal experience. I lived through that decade too and since my first degree was in social geography and I had to pass, in that context, some exams in climatology and meteorology, one would expect that I would have picked up something of this alleged scare. Nevertheless I remember nothing of it. Perhaps you were a more attentive observer in these matters. More likely though you are giving a personal coloring to an old furphy (sorry for the Australianism – but it seems the most appropriate term here).

    The truth is that we are dealing with a myth here. That so-called concern with global cooling was mainly an affair of some popular press organs (Newsweek being the main culprit). It never figured prominently in the scientific journals. Here you can find a thorough analysis of the myth:

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2005/01/the-global-cooling-myth/

    Of course it is quite possible that you are too lazy to read that partly because you would rather keep clinging to the security blanket of your few poor arguments. If that is the case tell me because I have got better things to do.

    I will deal with your other points in further and later posts.

  22. avatar Oigal says:

    Laugh, no ones debating you, Ari you are only trotting links in support of your particular religion which is not a debate but an exercise in pasting links.

    Once again lets assume your points are valid and true. Why on earth should any reasonable person accept a proposed solution from people who have proven themselves lets just say somewhat economical with all of the facts?

    Obviously Jones’s mob are throughly compromised, despite your inability to recognise that. To whom should us poor souls turn then?

    Moreover, for somebody who claims to be a successful businessman you seem to have a surprising amount of time on your hands for blogging so your capacity for harassment is quite considerable

    Laugh, I thought the spelling would have indicated just how much time I dedicate to this. Although I do like your attitude of attack the person rather than the issue..very
    jonesish.

    one would expect that I would have picked up something of this alleged scare. Nevertheless I remember nothing of it.

    followed by

    That so-called concern with global cooling was mainly an affair of some popular press organs (Newsweek being the main culprit). It never figured prominently in the scientific journals.

    You seem confused did you hear of it or not. Apparently it was in some fairly major press organs.

    Interestingly your reference sucks in support of your cause. It actually states there was a concern about the cooling period from 1940-70 but now some believe that the data was being read wrong. Thats a hell of lot different from saying that it was all a myth dreamed up by Newsweek. Wow bizarre reference@!

    because I have got better things to do.

    Apparently not 🙂

    By the way…For the third time..

    Seriously, you cannot be supporting as correct, honorable or ethical the self admitted actions of leaving off data or suppressing emails that Jones did with such gay abandon?

    It’s really a pretty simple question?

  23. avatar Arie Brand says:

    Regarding my point that according to NASA and the World Meteorological Society the last decade is the warmest on record you wrote:

    “Actually no since 1998 the temp has been cooling which is annoying even to the Jones clones although a decade in this contest means nothing unless of course you a gasping at straws”

    Well, your arguments are not original but your peculiar brand of English is. But let us leave that aside, shall we.

    That particular argument of yours has also been done to death. !998 was the classical cherry pick because that year happened to be slightly warmer. An extra strong El Nino effect that year was responsible for that. Nevertheless, NASA insists that 2005 was warmer than 1998. The reason why its opinion differs from that of the Hatfield Center is because the latter’s measurements were not truly global, The polar regions had been omitted.

    And oh do I have to go again into (yawn) the argument that in spite of increasing CO2 there was slight cooling between 1940 and 1970? Nobody ‘on the side of the angels’ maintains that CO2 is the only factor determining temperature. When it comes to that 1992, 1993 and 1994 also showed a slight cooling. The reason was Mount Pinatubo’s eruption at the beginning of that period. The sulfate particles pumped into the air by that explosion do reflect sunlight and have thus a cooling effect. Well now the same thing held for the sulfate aerosols and other particulates we were injecting into the air in that mid century cooling period. If your mother or your wife used a hairspray can in that time she must have contributed to it, as did all other users of the countless applications of that stuff.

    In addition there were also volcanic influences in that time that promoted cooling.

    But pollution regulation and improved technology decreased the influence of human particulates and aerosols in the air and CO2 became a more important ‘forcing’ again.

    Now that is it. No doubt you can pick up some other threadbare arguments from the denialist repertoire. I won’t bother answering.

  24. avatar Arie Brand says:

    I can’t resist this one:

    AB:

    Moreover, for somebody who claims to be a successful businessman you seem to have a surprising amount of time on your hands for blogging so your capacity for harassment is quite considerable

    Oigal:

    Laugh, I thought the spelling would have indicated just how much time I dedicate to this. Although I do like your attitude of attack the person rather than the issue..very
    jonesish.

    Now that is your classical “chutzpah”. After making all kinds of nasty remarks about climate scientists, particularly Jones, and expressing the suspicion that I am of the same hue, you accuse your opponent of using ad hominem arguments. Dumb,dumb.

    And about that speliing (and grammar). Do I understand correctly that your English is so lousy BECAUSE you are such a successful businessman?

    Goodbye

  25. avatar Ross says:

    Fair point, Patung, about the personal stuff, but Brand is such a patronising twit that it’s hard to resist.

    He keeps ignoring the issue of Jones’ personal malevolence, thereby tacitly condoning it. As I said, if he wants to swallow the Climate Panic guff, okay, up to him, but it’s his sour character that is wearisome.

    I’ve had my ructions with Oigal and Achmad and many another here, but at least they’re none of them stuck-ups.
    I may even unknowingly have sat in the same Jaksa bar as them. Can’t imagine Brand being so normal, more a muesli-juice-sipper, I suspect!

  26. avatar Oigal says:

    I may even unknowingly have sat in the same Jaksa bar as them

    The thought of such must wake you in cold sweats Ross :-)..beware we are everywhere.

    Ari, I doubt you understand much at all, btw you still haven’t answered the question and Jones and ethics? Any chance of that happening before hell (or the Thames) freezes over?

Comment on “Fatalism & Will of God”.

RSS
RSS feed
Email

Copyright Indonesia Matters 2006-18
Privacy Policy | Terms of Use | Contact