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May 17, 2010


In one of the New (Pseudo)Scientist articles, a hack psychologist does a long-distance diagnosis of denialists. Did Brendan's BS detector fail to sound an alarm?

An example of the simplistic approach of the magazine is the statement, "Either the Earth is getting warmer or it is not, regardless of how many believe it is or is not." Totally ignored in that formulation are questions about how to measure whether warming has occurred, where any measurement devices are placed and of course the causes of any such warming. Nothing to see here, folks, just move along.

The dissenting opinion published by the magazine has much the better argument.

Brendan, you should be blasting that New Scientist article for lumping the climate skeptics in with Holocaust deniers, truthers and creationists. Many respectable expert scientists question anthropogenic global warming. Shermer writes:

A climate denier has a position staked out in advance, and sorts through the data employing "confirmation bias" - the tendency to look for and find confirmatory evidence for pre-existing beliefs and ignore or dismiss the rest.

I have never seen any evidence that this description fits any climate skeptic. In particular, leading skeptic Steve McIntyre began studying climate science on his own with no preconceptions according to The Hockey Stick Illusion.

OTOH there's lots of evidence that scientists supporting AGW have looked for confirmatory evidence and ignored the rest. It has been difficult to get grants and get published if a scientist questioned AGW. Thus, scientists have been encouraged to produce results supporting AGW.

A notorious example is Michael Mann's "hide the decline" comment divulged in the hacked e-mails. Mann intentionally modified his model to force it to produce a more clear-cut indication of global warming. Then, he crowed about his trick in an e-mail to his climate colleagues.

BTW Shermer left out an option when he said "climate deniers" believe Global warming either (1) isn't real (2) isn't caused by humans or (3) doesn't matter. He should have included
(4)the Cap and Trade plans being considered would reduce CO2 by far too little to have a significant effect on GW. He would have trouble disputing #4 because it follows from the models used by the climate believers.

Shermer also slanders Steven J. Milloy and his blog Junk Science. Shermer claims JunkScience...warns people not to believe any scientist who says something "might be" true or uses statistics This is a serious claim, but Shermer's link offers no evidence that this is the case. In fact, I read Junk Science from time to time, and I've never seen any such assertions there.

Brendan, both you and Michael Shermer, the self-congratulating author of the New Scientist article you cite, could really use the directive, "Physician, heal thyself" -- especially before either of you again accuses others of "resist[ing] scientific and factual evidence they don't like".

Michael Shermer's attempt to conflate the terms global warming and anthropogenic global warming is only the starting point of his snowjobbing trip. He intends the terminus to be where his readers point and holler "denier!" at anyone who doubts Almer Goretry is the true prophet of the climate disaster endtimes.

Shame on Shermer for pretending to be a fair-minded arbiter of science, facts and truth. And a stern look toward you for propping him up as such.

I'm still convinced that a lot of these "birthers" know full well Obama was born in the States (or is a legit President), and they just say he's a birther because they hate him. People have been known to lie when being asked questions by pollsters.

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