Thursday, December 11, 2008

The Tim Ball Nominees

Readers of this blog will realize that it is the Award Season. In past years, the Bunny Blog has asked for nominations for the S. Fred for Climatology Incoherence and Eli hisself was awarded second and fourth in the Bag of Rocks sponsored by cohenite. Now in past years, Eli has admonished Marc Morano, by giving him the Gold Plated Mouse, for lazy cut and paste posting. Marc works as Sorcerers Apprentice to Wizzer Inhofe, but Marc has a little list he keeps adding to. Last year there were 400 folk who are scientists, might have met one once, or has played golf with one. Now there are 650

Thus, the Tim Ball Award for Resume Stretching. Tim, you may remember, was the former First Ever Climatologist in Canada who got called and stomped on by Dan Johnson, for, well, resume stretching.

Morano is in charge of nominations and, thanks to his strenuous cut and pasting, and quality decontrol, we have some new high quality nominations.

Tim Lambert and friends do the dozens on Louis Hissink, one of the Aussies who is very, very grumpy because people only laugh at him. Bernard J at #21 had it pretty well

Hissinkfit's efforts though eclipse everything that we ever came up with, and they are all the more flabbergastingly hilarious for the fact that he apparently has a Masters, and that he genuinely believes in what he concocts.
Some science historian in the future is going to review the two sides of the climate change debate that is currently percolating, and when that person analyses the fruitcake that is the body of current denialist dogma they will shake their heads in disbelief.
Tuvalu Marc has the touch. Eli found an interesting one straight off
“Many [scientists] are now searching for a way to back out quietly (from promoting warming fears), without having their professional careers ruined.” - Atmospheric physicist James A. Peden, formerly of the Space Research and Coordination Center in Pittsburgh.
Now James is retired from a job in the defense industry and earns his keep as a webmaster in Middlebury and a part time, garden troll flourishing in a CO2 rich environment, and at the bottom put his qualifications
James A. Peden -better known as Jim or "Dad" - Webmaster of Middlebury Networks and Editor of the Middlebury Community Network, spent some of his earlier years as an Atmospheric Physicist at the Space Research and Coordination Center in Pittsburgh and Extranuclear Laboratories in Blawnox, Pennsylvania, studying ion-molecule reactions in the upper atmosphere. As a student, he was elected to both the National Physics Honor Society and the National Mathematics Honor Fraternity, and was President of the Student Section of the American Institute of Physics. He was a founding member of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry, and a member of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics. His thesis on charge transfer reactions in the upper atmosphere was co-published in part in the prestigious Journal of Chemical Physics (JCP). The results obtained by himself and his colleagues at the University of Pittsburgh remain today as the gold standard in the Astro Chemistry Database. He was a co-developer of the Modulated Beam Quadrupole Mass Spectrometer, declared one of the "100 Most Significant Technical Developments of the Year" and displayed at the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago.
Tim Ball, could learn from this guy. The web, being the world wide web, this gets taken a bit apart in yahoo questions, with Peden dropping in for amusement value. They quickly find out that he has two papers (you turn up a couple more reports in Google Scholar) that one of them has no cites and the other 31. More about that later. d/dx + d/dq + d/dz actually reads Peden's climate blather and remarks
That's two more papers than I surmised by reading part of the article. There are more errors in the paper than I want to list, but the first few are:
and he lists them closing with
I find it difficult to conceive of a practicing scientist making so many blunders. Is Peden actually alive, or is someone else abusing a name taken from a tombstone? If he were dead that would explain the lack of papers.
Eli wants to take some time to show you the little guy hiding behind the curtin. The first clue is that the last author of the JCP paper was Wade Fite, the founder of Extranuclear, a company that made the best quadrupole mass analyzers. The bit about "co-published" means that some of the results from Peden's thesis appeared in an article in JCP, which is a good journal, but still "published in the prestigious" is insecure overkill. The paper has three authors. Peden's advisor, Wade Fite is the third author, the place where group leaders generally go in these things. What is important to note is that Peden is the second author, which means that his contribution was less than that of the first author. This is unusual for something based significantly on a student's thesis, which indicates that it was not or that he pissed Fite off, or something. (Steve Bloom says in the comments that there is no evidence that Peden has a doctoral degree so he may have a Masters. That is consistent with the evidence. The research division of Bunny Labs is looking in to this.) The American Society for Mass Spectrometry was founded in 1969, when Peden was a student of Fite's so he may have joined when it was founded, but it is a bit hard to believe he was one of the founders. One of the first members, yeah, but WTH that goes with the style.

Fite and Brackmann used modulated beam mass spectrometry in 1959 while they were at General Dynamics, so Peden may be slightly exaggerating his role, again, in keeping with the general trend. He probably worked on the instrument while with Fite.

The listing of undergraduate clubs and honors is one of those things you do to get into graduate school, but not much thereafter, again a sign of insecurity. The Space Research and Coordination Center in Pittsburgh was a center for students studying the natural sciences, social sciences, engineering, or health areas related to the aerospace field at the University of Pittsburgh that was opened in 1962. It's hard to say for sure, but being an Atmospheric Physicist sounds a lot like doing graduate research in the building. He might have post-doced a bit( check above on degrees) , aka couldn't get a job elsewhere, those were tough times for science jobs

As a service Eli rewrote the bio
James A. Peden -better known as Jim or "Dad" - Webmaster of Middlebury Networks and Editor of the Middlebury Community Network, did his graduate research in atmospheric physics at the University of Pittsburg Space Research and Coordination Center and Extranuclear Laboratories. He studied ion-molecule reactions in the upper atmosphere under his adviser, Wade Fite. As an undergraduate Peden was elected to honor Physics and Mathematics societies at XYZ College . He has been a member of the American Society for Mass Spectrometry, and a member of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics. His (Masters??) thesis was on charge transfer reactions in the upper atmosphere, parts of which were published in the Journal of Chemical Physics. The results of that work are still used. At Extranuclear he assisted Fite in commercializing the Quadrupole Mass Spectrometer. It was declared one of the "100 Most Significant Technical Developments of the Year"* by xxx magazine and displayed at the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago. Peden left atmospheric chemistry in the 1970s to work in the defense industry, from which he recently retired.
There is a trend here folks, you just have to read the self-descriptions of the ignorati**, Hissink, Gray, Courtney and this guy, to see it. Eli is but a simple Rabett.

* Vaguely Eli has it between his ears that the award was for the commercializing of the quad, not the modulated beam part. It may have been the IR100 awards. Eli is a VERY old bunny

** They who are to be ignored, any other meaning is strictly in the minds of the gentle reader, for which Rabett Run assumes no liability.


stuffmaster said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

The listing of undergraduate clubs and honors is one of those things you do to get into graduate school, but not much thereafter, again a sign of insecurity."

... ie, sucking up to profs. :)

Richard Feynman's credentials:

"As a student, he was elected to both the National Physics Honor Society and the National Mathematics Honor Fraternity"

(fine print)
... and, almost inconsequential (but we will list it here for completeness) also has a Nobel prize in physics.)

EliRabett said...

En passant to the Nobel. . .

Magnus W said...

There is more to come from Sweden... keep your ears to the ground...

greenfyre said...

All worthies to be sure, but simply not in the same class as Potty Peer Lord VoldeMoncton.

Monckton actually seems to believe his own fictitious credentials and adequacy.

Steve Bloom said...

Eli, I spent a little time looking into Peden's particulars about a year ago and could find no evidence that he had gone beyond the master's degree level, let alone post-doc. Certainly if he had a fud he would be putting that up front. More generally, IIRC there was no evidence at all that he had persisted in the field beyond the point where he got his master's.

makron said...

I took another name from the 400 list and trailed it:

"Chief Meteorologist Mike Thompson of Kansas City’s Fox TV Channel 4 is a former U.S. Navy meteorologist who holds the American Meteorological Society (AMS) Seal of Approval and is a certified Broadcast Meteorologist."

The 400 list claims:

"Thompson dissented from the view of a man-made climate crisis in 2008"

Yet looky here, a blog post Mike Thompson wrote in 2006 making it clear he was skeptical before 2008:

In this article he even says, in context of climate: "I cannot claim to be an expert by any stretch of the imagination."

But he can make it onto Inhofe's list 2 years later.

He also wrote in 2006:
"The key to understanding what is true, and what is not…is to take time to learn as much about the subject as possible."

and then posted a link to at the end.

The article the 400 list used to claim he dissented in 2008 is a later blog entry from this April:

In which he makes several of the usual claims and some oddly unique ones:

"The truth is that only 3.5% of the CO2 in the atmosphere comes from human sources"

"and the warming is coincident with the rise in solar irradiance since the mid 1850s"

"More and more climate scientists are admitting that the sun has played a major...if not the only...role in the warming that we have experienced"

"If you look at charts of CO2 content over the past centuries, you will find there were times when the CO2 concentrations were at or above 7,000 ppm"

"today we're at 360 ppm"

So these are the kind of arguments that lie behind Inhofe's list..

makron said...

One more:

"Geologist Richard Mourdock, a licensed professional geologist and former field geologist who now serves as an environmental and energy consultant"

again it claims he "dissented from man-made warming fears in 2008"

yet it also says: "With a graduate degree in geology, Mourdock said his studies have convinced him that global warming is not happening."

He graduated in 1975 after which he moved on to working as a field geologist with a coal company and then an oil company and then becoming a president/vice president of a coal company.

Why then would he suddenly "dissent" because of his studies in 2008 of all years?

And here is why he's on the list:

his arguments:
"Mourdock explained that humans aren't the cause of global warming and that it's something bigger in the universe, such as the sun."

"Global caps in the last 15 years receded until last year on Mars, but what do we have in common with Mars? Last time I checked, only the sun."

Again it's the same old 1st base arguments.

Jim Eager said...

More like foul balls.

greenfyre said...

More in Monckton's favour over at Stoat

But I think R.L. Casey whom I just blogged about should also be considered a very serious under-rated contender. One of the prestigious "400" (and what more credential could anyone want?).

Casey has not only created credentials for himself, he has also founded whole new sub-fields of science where the general laws of physics etc do not apply(OK, that is not so unusual for Deniers eg Monckton). Casey goes further, not only imagining an entire research Institute, but numerous organizations of which he is the Director.

I must confess a soft spot for Casey in that he seems to be intent on defrauding gullible Deniers (redundancy?), and who can't love that?

birdbrainscan said...

I'm still finishing off the citation stats of the AR4 wg1 authors, and tonight I'm on the letter 'R'. When I got to Erich Roeckner, granddaddy of the Max-Planck Institute's ECHAM-4 model, I had a little twinge in one floppy ear ... wasn't Morano trying to use his name?
So a bit more wear and tear on Google, and I found his name in bold letters on this list of "skeptics":
And there he is again in the shiny new Inhofe 650. It quotemines shamelessly from a 2007 hack job in Der Spiegel. Roeckner 'concedes' to Der S. that "Clouds are still our biggest headache" and that "No model will ever be as complex as nature." (no duh)
The catch is that those are not the words of a skeptic - they're honest reflections of the limits of the state of climate science and modeling by a really heavy-hitting "alarmist". Here's a quick counter-quotemine:
ThinkExist (a quoteminer's dream - it just returns snappy soundbite-sized quotes!)
So add Dr. Roeckner to the list of "whoa, I didn't realise I was a cilmate skeptic" skeptics.

Els said...

I saw that list via and noticed the name of a fellow Dutchman, Hajo Smit.

In 1991 he obtained a M Sc specializing in the greenhouse effect and climate modelling and for that spent some time at the Max Planck Institut in Mainz and the University of Illinois. He even was part of IPCC for a short while but apparently got so disgusted with the whole 'fraudulent science' that he decided to reject a prosperous career as climate scientist.

He then went on to write as a freelance journalist for various skiing magazines and is now also an online marketing consultant.

He looks like a nice guy, he's probably smarter than the average man (as a psychologist I can tell from his site that he's very much in love with himself) but what the hell is he doing on that list? I mean, the guy stopped working in the field 15-20 years ago. You cannot have people like Hajo Smit on such a list if you want the list to be credible, now do you?

I forgot to say: Hajo Smit is also one of's climate experts.

Magnus W said...

We smal bunnies try... we do try...

Barton Paul Levenson said...

It strikes me that I could, if I were an unscrupulous person, probably make money from the deniers. Just charge them for a newsletter. Send them some insipid denier argument on a printed sheet every month and collect $20.00 a year from each subscriber.

Anonymous said...

You mentioned future review of the climate debate.

When is that debate scheduled for, and will Nobel Laureate Albert Gore participate; he says he never takes questions; only delivers speeches for his fee.


EliRabett said...

Planning is already underway

EliRabett said...

BPL, what do you think the Idso's are up to?

shinn said...

Tim must have overused a resume builder to prop up his credentials. LOL

bathmate said...

i am enjo your comment. thank you very much


spindoc said...

get on the proverbial ball guys. peden's second article was a sole authorship under the nebulous title, "Quadrupole Approach". from the prestigious underground Journal of Industrial Research. we should be high-fiving this dude for getting an article published with a title so utterly meaningless that no one could decipher the contents without knowing him. the seminal "Quadrupole Approach". enough fun, i need to submit an article on newly discovered monopoles to J Industrial Res. cheers

John O'Sullivan said...

Oh dear, something's gone awry with your Tim Ball narrative....

marcoclimate said...

Quite the win, John:

“the Article is poorly written and does not advance credible arguments in favour of Dr. Ball’s theory about the corruption of climate science. Simply put, a reasonably thoughtful and informed person who reads the Article is unlikely to place any stock in Dr. Ball’s views, including his views of Dr. Weaver as a supporter of conventional climate science.”

So, Ball 'won' his case, because his writing clearly isn't credible to any reasonably thoughtful and informed person.

So, I assume you also don't consider Ball's writing credible, otherwise you are, according to the judge, not a reasonably thoughtful and informed person!

Right, John?

Unknown said...

Judge also said that Ball was either an idiot or a liar:

"Further, despite Dr. Ball’s history as an academic and a scientist, the Article is rife with errors and inaccuracies, which suggests a lack of attention to detail on Dr. Ball’s part, if not an indifference to the truth."