Monday, December 28, 2015

Light Amusements

Now some, not Eli to be sure, might thing that blogging is all serious work and philosophizing.  However there are things that make life worth living.  Amongst them are some twitter sites such as

Florida Man

and of course, Florida Woman
People of Walmart is not recommended for those of you trying to hold your dinners down, they may have greeters but they don't turn anybody away, maybe except for the fully naked.  OTOH, academics appreciate Associate Deans
and news from Durango that Roger Cohen, a former Exxon exec is folding his bet with Roger Grossman, a retired doc, that it will be colder in 2017 than in 2007
In 2008, fed up with doomsday predictions about global warming, Cohen threw down the gauntlet on a $5,000 bet that the Earth’s overall temperature would be colder in 2017 than in 2007. The wager was inspired by Wharton School of Business professor Scott Armstrong’s similar $10,000 challenge to Al Gore over climate change, which the former vice president declined.
back in the 1980s when Exxon was actually researching climate change Cohen had writtern
“It is distinctly possible that the (research scenario) will later produce effects which will indeed be catastrophic – at least for a substantial fraction of the earth’s population,” he wrote in a 1981 memo. 
Cohen said he doesn’t remember writing the memo, but that in the days before he became more familiar with the science, it’s possible he was influenced by the “drum beat” telling everyone to be afraid of a new threat from something called “global warming.”
Since the proceeds went to charity it is a bit of a push, but as Grossman said, although he is too old to see the worst to come
I am concerned about my three granddaughters and the generations that come after us. They’re going to know a world very different than the one we have known and selfishly enjoyed.
Then a rather longer piece in the Griffith Review with a fine history of climate change
IT IS 1859, the Origin of Species has just burst upon the world and we are in London in the laboratory of the Irish scientist John Tyndall. Like Louis Agassiz, Tyndall is a very keen mountain climber, and he too is spellbound by glaciers. He has just returned from a summer in the European Alps and in a few years will lead an assault on the Matterhorn. Tyndall is investigating a possible cause of ice ages; he is interested in how the atmosphere might control Earth’s temperature. He wants to test the accepted notion that all gases are transparent to radiant heat. In his laboratory he first tests the main gases in the atmosphere, oxygen and nitrogen, and he finds that, yes, they are indeed transparent. Perhaps he will abandon this experiment. But then he thinks to test coal gas. There it is, easily accessible to him, for it is piped into his laboratory for lighting, an industrial gas, mostly methane produced by heating coal. When he tests it, he finds that it is opaque – it traps heat rather than letting it through. ‘Thus,’ as one writer put it, ‘the Industrial Revolution, intruding into Tyndall’s laboratory in the form of a gas jet, declared its significance for the planet’s heat balance.’ Tyndall then tries other gases and finds that CO2 is also opaque. In 1859, already a celebrated year in the history of science, the role of greenhouse gases in controlling the temperature of the planet has been identified.
BTW, there is a bit of a subtle mistake in that paragraph.  Anybunny notice it?

The Information and Technology and Innovation Foundation has a list of 22 reasons why USAns and others should be thankful for federal support of research

And finally the Washington Post at the end of November had an excellent graphic based piece for Uncle Bob at the festive table, explaining why climate scientists are running about with their hair on fire.  The last time the Uncle Bobs of the world ignored such we had 9/11

 Each of those indicators has a little blurb explaining exactly why things are going wrong.


Russell Seitz said...

"coal gas" is the reaction product of steam and red hot coke-- a mixture of hydrogen and carbon monoxide with traces oc CO2 & hydrocarbons

Everett F Sargent said...

Well then this seems like a good place to be disgusted with this via Denial Etc. (now run by Eric Worrell, Inc.) ...

Global Temperature Trends Adjusted for Unforced Variability

Looks like someone is messing with the LHS of the 'equation' the SAT index and the AMO index (both dependent variables and metrics of the same general type (temperature)).

Now, how this could possibly affect the RHS of the 'equation' is, I guess, TBD? Temperature causes temperature.

New Open-Access Publisher Launches with 66 Journal Titles

Young Assistant Professor Helps Promote Questionable Conferences, Journals

I guess this is somewhat related to the scientific method, as it would appear to be practiced by certain parties in the 21th century (bucks from schmucks).

If you whirling dervishes of dead science philosophers would stop spinning your heads, for a moment or three, perhaps you all could explain the free market of the scientific method. TIA

EliRabett said...

Yep Russell, you are as old as Eli.

EliRabett said...

There are 250 companies registered at the address for that New Open Access Publisher. It's a postbox:) just like Lomborg's US address

Everett F Sargent said...


My name is William P. Hite, President of the informally known "Plumbers & Pipefitters Union" ...

Uncle Bob (several thousands, in fact) dropped me a note. Something about the Earth's plumbing as portrayed in the WaPo and thus filed under the category "WaPo don't know nuffin' 'bout plumbing or pipes or fittings thereof" as it would appear that Antarctica is not "properly" fitted to the rest of the Earth 'fluids model' for some rather odd reason.

To say the very least, we are very concerned about this situation.

Yours truly,
Uncle Bill

PS: We are but simple plumbers and pipe fitters, but we do think the Earth is a closed system (them their high falutin eggheads call it a "control volume" or some such, but we don't know about all that sciency stuff dontcha know), not an open system as shown in the WaPo, but what do we know, as we are but simple plumbers and pipe fitters.

Nick Stokes said...

"Yep Russell, you are as old as Eli"
Well, I claim to be even older. And according to my 1919 Holmyard, what Russell describes is water gas. Coal gas is from distillation, and does have methane - probably a majority by mass or calorific value.

The site does say that US usage may be different.

Wishing all the best for the New Year.

Brian said...

On the Durango bet, it was poorly designed - at the very least the donation should have gone to the charity favored by the winner alone, or all the money should've been donated by the loser. The bet also should've been designed so that the loser would in effect concede that his priors were badly off (I'll concede this is the hard part).

And the random environmental scientist who doesn't see the value in a properly designed bet, doesn't know what she's talking about. You often find people who are personally disposed against betting making broad anti-betting statements that are unfounded.

bluegrue said...

Cohen has just moved on to the next talking point (from the linked article):

“Regardless of what’s happening to the temperature, the fact that there’s more carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has provided a major increase in plant life on the surface of the planet,” Cohen said. “Which benefits us all.”

Russell Seitz said...

Nick, sorry for the ambiguity

On this side of the pond, coal gas used to come from a coke plant, along with 'coal tar', , but municipal gas works didn't sell coke or make tar- they ran the 'water gas ' reaction to completion , sending forth for gaslight , gas logs, and stoves a 2: 1 H2/CO mix , and leaving only ash behind.

More bang or btu for the buck, and the higher flame temperature from the burning hydrogen lit up gas mantles wonderfully well.

Hank Roberts said...

Speaking of "... a little blurb explaining exactly why things are going wrong."

Someone remind me what happened that militias are not well regulated.

Case in point, the Malheur Wildlife Refuge; lake ecosystem trashed by invasive carp, and the militiants occupying the place are doing not a damned thing to care for it.

They should be out there hauling carp out of the water 24/7, since they took responsibility for managing the place.

Where's our priorities?

Hank Roberts said...


Hank Roberts said...

Aside -- Gavin sure has collected a passel of stalkerbots on Twitter.