By JR on Thursday, February 09, 2012
THE SKEPTICS SOCIETY is an old-time band of brothers who were originally devoted to exposing "magicians", the "paranormal", religion and various scientific frauds. Some time ago however, they went over to the dark side and became peddlers of scientific fraud. Far from being skeptical about global warming, they now proselytize for it in an entrely unskeptical way.
I myself gave a talk to their local chapter a few years ago and found them very poorly informed about the science involved but zealous apostles nonetheless. I asked them to put their hands up if they thought 20th century warming was greater than one degree Celsius. Nearly everyone did. As I pointed out at the time, they thus showed that they didn't even know the Warmist case, let alone the skeptical one. So they were a perfect example of credulousness founded on ignorance: Exactly what they purport to oppose!
Their latest magazine continues the crusade. The skeptical letter in the WSJ from 16 eminent scientsts seem to have disturbed them deeply and in reply they trot out all the usual Warmist boilerplate that has been refuted and mocked hundreds of times on this blog.
I did however find a lighter moment in their rave: The graph below. They are actually a bit more honest about it than "The Team" of Phil Jones. Michael Mann etc. so I suppose that is to their credit but they show no sign of understanding what they have done.
As the team did in a less obvious way, they have used proxy data for most of their graph but suddeny abandoned that for the 20th century and substituted the thermometer record instead. We REAL skeptics know why they did that -- because the proxy record shows a FALL in temperature during the 20th century -- a decline that had to be "hidden". So if the 20th century thermometer record is correct (far from given when we know who is in charge of it) then the proxy record is not.
In other words their proxies are NOT a valid measure of temperature. So their whole graph is based on faith. There is no certainty about what, if anything, it measures. Amusingly, though, if we took their alleged proxy record at face value, it would show no trend, let alone an upward trend. The skeptics can't see for looking.
A summary comment on the article mentioned above received by email:
It doesn't present much of a scientific argument other than dragging out the refuted Hockey Stick again and a few other abstract charts using scale to embellish the argument.
It opens with a photo of a glacier with a (OMG!) crack in it (normally referred to by non-alarmists as a crevice). That's what ice does -- it cracks; glaciers move and icebergs are born. And, of course, the projection of the dreaded calving is estimated in square miles (350) for effect, because saying 19 by 19 isn't as alarming.
The text itself opens with ad hominem to set the stage and the mindset of the reader (i.e. the old "bad guy" tobacco and holocaust denier association), then red herrings and other blatant examples of fallacious argumentation follow.