Saturday, May 20, 2006

Banned in Boulder....

UPDATE 1/2/2007: Sometimes circumstance is fell. It turns out that one of Roger Pielke's children has a similar name to the one I used in this post which is now replaced by XXXX. This explains his negative reaction. For that I sincerely apologize. There was no intent or knowledge on my part about the child's name - Eli Rabett
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Something that Eli said has really bothered Roger P, so it was Banned in Boulder. Should anyone be interested it was a response to this trio of statements from Andrew Dressler

Let's go back to what I said: "I would argue that there is a strong consensus that most of the warming over the last 50 years is likely due to human activities."

At the stated level of precision/uncertainty, there is no argument that a strong scientific consensus supports this statement ... do you disagree with either the statement or that a consensus exists, Roger?

Jim Clarke

All studies that attempt to determine the percentage of the recent warming that is man-made, use GCMs to make that determination. There are a significant number of well-qualified scientists who dispute that the GCMs have any skill (whether you like it or not). Therefore, there is still a significant debate as to how much of the recent warming is man-made.

and Roger Pielke, Jr.

You write, "There is no reasonable definition of "significant" that would allow one to truthfully say that "significant debate" is occurring over this statement."

Well the IPCC is debating this statement right now and is changing key parts of it from "most" to "dominant" and "likely" to "very likely" --- all that seems pretty significant.

To which I replied that the discussion reminded me of an old story. Andrew and XXXX were walking along a park path. XXXX jumped with shock when she saw a woman lying motionless in a pool of blood. Andrew went over and felt for a pulse, finding none, he said: XXXX this woman is certainly dead.

In another version Jim and XXXX were walking along the same park path. XXXX jumped with shock when she saw a woman lying motionless in a pool of blood. Jim grabbed her elbow and said: That is red wine she spilled, obviously a drunk, sleeping it off, let's go.

Finally Roger and XXXX were walking along the same park path. XXXX jumped with shock when she saw a woman lying motionless in a pool of blood. Roger said, not very interesting, we all know she is dead, but the real question is whose policy is to blame. If you read my paper (link provided) you will learn that it is all the fault of the criminologists.


18 comments:

Anonymous said...

Seens like Roger is getting his undies in a bunch over nothing. But I don't think you have gotten very far with your criticisms of Roger. I also find his position disturbing, but usually have a hard time figuring out exactly what is wrong with his postion. So I think a more direct and clear argument would help me.

greg lewis

QUASAR9 said...

Eli, let me grab the bull's horns from another angle.

You always hear people with cars (whether gas suzzlers or eco-friendly) cursing all the other idiots, when they get caught up in rush hour traffic, traffic jams and traffic congestion. The hotter the day, the hotter they get under the collar, and sometimes the cussing turns to road rage.

The same with Global car use. Everybody thinks, what can however many gallons I burn do to the environment. The World is a big place. They forget that the US alone burns 20 million gallons A DAY. I guess Europe is not that far behind, and Russia is playing catch up.

But imagine if China with almost 4 times the population of the US were to burn 80 million gallons a day, supposing there was that much oil available. Or imagine that India with again almost 4 times the population were to do the same.

Apart from the obvious. The US would have to nuke China & India, to be able to ensure it could provide enough oil for its needs (or economic growth as some put it).

By 2030 the World will be burning twice as much oil as today. The US will no longer be the 'biggest' culprit with car ownership & car use growing exponentially in China & India.

But by then it will be too late. The argument will no longer be that we have too much CO2, but that in point of fact there are not enough oil reserves to supply an increase of demand from 100 million barrels a day to 200 million. There just aren't.

Only a fool would argue that because supply & demand has doubled in the last 25 years, making OPEC Nations and Oil companies very rich in the process, that we can somehow sustain or provide for a doubling of demand in the next 25.

That is a quadruppling of CO2 emissions from Oil, with little reduction in emissions from coal, as output & demand is set to double for coal too.

So by 2030 the CO2 emissions from Oil & coal are set to grow eight fold to what they were 50 years ago.

Man made disaster comes to mind.

You cannot stop growth in China & India, the US has done pretty well to suppress their development in the last 25 years. But the cat is out of the bag.

It is down to the EU & US to find alternatives, contain if not reduce emissions, and provide the technology so that China or India do not become the dirty men of the Globe, as Eastern Europe was the dirty man of Europe.

But this is a matter of political will, not Science. No matter how much Science is thrown at Son of Bush or The US administration, the answer is always: "I will not do anything that is negative to the economic growth & interests of the US".

Yes that may well be a necessary Presidential Oath. But not doing something about Climate Change, Global Warming or demand for Oil and/or coal today, is acting against the interests of the US, and US economic growth for that matter.

Only fools like Cheney still trying to win the korean & vietnam wars, who think you can just impose your military might on Afghanistan & Iraq, would be stupid enough to think you can do the same with China, India or Russia.

Ostriches burying their head in the sand is a fair analogy for Son of Bush & his Advisers. And I fear is equally valid for the 'next' administration too.

EliRabett said...

Greg and Quasar, I need to make a fairly long post in response to your comments. The short version is I may have shifted (somewhat) the views of both the climate community and lurkers about the types of arguments being offered by the Pielkes and that is what I set out to do.

Much of my attitude goes back to conversations that I had in the late 1990s with climate scientists. At that time I had become aware of the Singer, Michaels and Lindzens of the world. Especially Linzen appeared to be playing both sides of the street, working both as a climate scientists and interacting with his then colleagues on a professional level while attacking them and their science on the political side. I always wondered why they refrained from responding and if they realized what was happening to them in the public sphere.

In more than a few cases what I am arguing against ranges from slippery to purposefully (ok, that is in the eye of the beholder) incomplete. There are nastier ways of saying the same thing, but I have tried not to use them. Such comments can easily appear to be personal. I hope that I have not strayed too far over the line in doing so. What I do try to be is direct.

ankh said...

Did he delete whatever you said that scared him or threatened him? There's nothing apparent on his site now that's remotely so.

Apparently RPjr hasn't figured out how IP numbers work on the Internet, or he'd be threatening your anonymity. I recall he was outraged when the Congressional staffers were posting to RealClimate and the admins pointed out they were using their office IP addresses to do so, back around the time Wikipedia had its big blowup over people from Congressional IP range numbers editing their bosses' biographies on Wikipedia. RPjr really seems to believe there is anonymity on the Internet. Which is a bit scary in itself.

Is RPjr correct that you don't want to be identified by academic connection?

EliRabett said...

ankh, yep, he deleted it. I think he did so to a couple of my posts in the past, which shows either my attention span or the seriousness with which I take the whole thing. Live and let live.

RP did "threaten" my anonymity. The reason for the scary quotes ("") is that for anyone to do so unless people are in the witness protection program, CIA agents or equivalent, is completely fair. Whether it is nice or not or worth the effort is another question which kind of depends on the viewer.

Also RP is right about my relationship with my day job. Why has a number of reasons. First, this is not really my field, and I want to keep issues separate. Second, I got tired of fending off a certain type of abuse which reflected on my students and to which you might be sensitive also. Third, it is kind of futile for others to direct curses at a sock puppet which at least makes the ad homs interesting.

It is possible to effectively hide your identity on the internet, although it does require more work than most are willing to put in and constantly paying attention.

Mark said...

I don't know what the deal is with Pielke.

Anonymous said...

"...I may have shifted (somewhat) the views of both the climate community and lurkers about the types of arguments being offered by the Pielkes and that is what I set out to do."

I hope you are right, but I am not so sure. I would really like to generate or see a detailed response to many of his positions. He is hard to get a handle on.

Greg Lewis

Steve Bloom said...

Eli, I think you're not using "sock puppet" correctly. A sock puppet, as I understand it, is where one party (anonymous or not), participates in a discussion using a second identity that appears to be a different person (e.g., when Steve McIntyre used Nigel Persaud). All you're doing is using a pseudonym.

On the substance of all of this, I don't understand what was so offensive about your post in terms of the usual understanding of netiquette. OTOH, it's perfectly clear why it got under RP Jr.'s skin. His response on this and with respect to some similar past situations seems a little immature, IMHO.

Dano said...

IMHO, Roger is walking a very fine line, and balancing on that line requires energy. Science Policy requires one to be a balancer and to accept the other sides' position as valid in order to compromise and move forward. In this scheme, when someone cuts a bit too close to the bone, it takes yet more energy to respond, protect your views, and balance. We're all human & make mistakes & when Roger makes a mistake it is jarring because it is out of character.

In my view (and I do this too), Eli gets frustrated at the seeming intransigence of Roger's position, esp. wrt Eli's perfectly rational view that Roger stop playing both sides. Some of Eli's words certainly get under Roger's skin, as they are supposed to do. It's really hard to look like you have a side in the Policy field, and when folk can see your side, well, it makes the balancing that much harder.

Best,

D

llewelly said...

Eli, it seems to me that your use of the violent death of a woman - combined with Roger's name appearing in the story - is the direct cause of Roger's interpretation of the comment as 'somewhat threatening and disturbing'. (Unfortunately, I cannot find your original comment. If Roger has deleted it, he has confused the issue somewhat.) I do not condone his decision to ban you - but the use of emotionally evocative narratives that employ the personal name of a moderator carry the risk of being censured in some fashion. Sometimes it's better to take the risk than to neuter your post, but it's useful to know the risk you are taking.

I think the two of you are misreading each other. Just as Roger is mistaken to see your narrative as anything other than a metaphor for the threatening and disturbing reality of AGW, you are mistaken to imply Roger is opposed to either climate scientists, or those advocating CO2 emissions cuts. As far as I can tell, Roger's critiques are driven by his perception that those advocating policy response to AGW are using advocacy tactics he is confident will fail. He does not seem to be blaming climate scientists for AGW; he is telling climate scientists that the strategies they have been using to inform policy makers and the public have been failing for 10-15 years, and likely to continue to fail unless and until they are changed. (Mind you, this my interpretation of Roger's opinion.)

EliRabett said...

Dano, Roger Pielke balances heavily on one side of the debate, throwing an occasional acknowledgement over the side to keep the rabble confused. If his posts remind me of anything, it is those astroturf letters to the editor "As a lifelong Democrat/Republican I must condemn the actions of my party on....

I do not accept that RP is being neutral, but rather he is playing what he knows to be a bad hand as well as possible. Thus his insistance that it is wrong to insist that science policy should start from the science (facts). The advantage to him, is that in the current environment it gains a platform and some influence with an administration proceeding from the same basis.

If there is a neutral person at Prometheus it is Andrew Dressler. Further, in policy forumulation and studies, one does not have to be neutral to work with the other side. I have known, met and talked with a fair number of science policy people and while they are on most occasions judicious, they are not as a group close to being neutral. To be so would be intellectual and professional suicide.

I look at Roger Pielke's writings (and also what he does not write) and I see an inside game whose purpose is clearly expressed in the body of his work. When challenged to comment on the Gang of Four (Singer, Seitz, Michaels and Baliunas) he demurs, but he is happy to tell you about how Hansen, Trenberth, Kennedy and friends have it all wrong. Delay is not only former Congressman from Texas.

EliRabett said...

llewelly: I reproduced the comment as best I could from memory, and I think it was pretty close, both to the original and as a description of the positions, which accounts for much of the bite. However, while it was a rough cartoon, no one was being accused of murder.

Steve Bloom said...

As someone who has been worrying about environmental policy implementation for many years, and not from an academic standpoint, I find RP Jr.'s stuff opaque at best (and not because of any inability to comprehend academese, believe me).

Llewelly, I could go on and on about this, but just have a look at a) the weird attack on Greg Holland in RP Jr.'s newest post, b) the entire long, strange history of his hurricane stuff, beginning with the attack on Trenberth/defense of Landsea when the latter resigned from the IPCC a while back, and c) his critique of RealClimate. The fact that he has people like me and Gavin Schmidt simultaneously scratching our heads at most of his stuff and not much liking the part we do understand is quite an achievement when you consider that Gavin and I are pretty good exemplars of his target audience.

Steve Bloom said...

Speaking of the Holland post, RP Jr. heard from Greg Holland. It turns out Greg had been misquoted by ABC. Fine, but my comment (made before the three RP Jr. just added relating to his interactions with Greg) pointing out this possibility and wondering why RP Jr. hadn't dropped a dime on Greg before making the post has... somehow failed to appear. Well, perhaps there's a good explanation.

Steve Bloom said...

As far as I can see my posting problem was because of some sort of snafu with the switch to Typekey. The original comment seems to be lost, but a new one repeating the main point has now appeared.

Dano said...

Eli:

1. I see Roger has figgered out a way to get rid of us. That leads to...
2. I can see I was a little opaque and should have spent more time on my comment above. Roger's insistence on real names weighs the debate to his side, which is allowing the shill Benny Peiser to continue to post/focus group FUD phrases. Anonymity allows - as you well know - a different type of response, as the right uses the 'civility' cudgel to steer the dialogue along their preferred lines.
3. I agree with your reply to me, and I think we're saying the same thing but again I probably rushed thru the composition of the comment which led to your reply. I started to post at Roger's place because in my view he was just a more sophisticated version of Benny Peiser. I wanted to point that out via the Dano character, as I noticed that he didn't challenge the shills (so Dano did). Certainly by now it is clear to all but a certain ideological crowd that Roger isn't an honest broker. What I meant in my first para is that Roger is balancing on the legitimacy (honest broker) line, but is stepping on the line from the vested interest side but insists he is on the science side. Maintaining that illusion takes a lot of energy, and Roger has failed in that mission, thanks in no small part to the commenters there who have picked apart his rationalizations.

Best,

D

Aaron said...

I cannot believe that a supposed expert in the politicization of science would express bewilderment at the objectives of CEI's, "CO2 is Life" campaign. He is either incompetent or deeply disingenuous.

cannydia said...

As far as I can see my posting problem was because of some sort of snafu with the switch to Typekey. The original comment seems to be lost, but a new one repeating the main point has now appeared.