Stories
Slash Boxes
Comments

SoylentNews is people

posted by martyb on Monday February 09 2015, @09:45PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the heated-discussion dept.

The Telegraph reports "The fiddling with temperature data is the biggest science scandal ever"

From the article:

"When future generations look back on the global-warming scare of the past 30 years, nothing will shock them more than the extent to which the official temperature records – on which the entire panic ultimately rested – were systematically “adjusted” to show the Earth as having warmed much more than the actual data justified."

It seems that the norm in science may well be to cherry pick the results, but the story points to evidence that some climate data may have been falsified to fit the theory.

Sure, it's clickbait, but we've recently discussed cases where science and scientific consensus has gotten it so very wrong. Can we trust the science if we can't trust the data?

Related Stories

Science’s Biggest Fail - Everything About Diet and Fitness 89 comments

Scott Adams of Dilbert fame writes on his blog that science's biggest fail of all time is 'everything about diet and fitness':

I used to think fatty food made you fat. Now it seems the opposite is true. Eating lots of peanuts, avocados, and cheese, for example, probably decreases your appetite and keeps you thin. I used to think vitamins had been thoroughly studied for their health trade-offs. They haven’t. The reason you take one multivitamin pill a day is marketing, not science. I used to think the U.S. food pyramid was good science. In the past it was not, and I assume it is not now. I used to think drinking one glass of alcohol a day is good for health, but now I think that idea is probably just a correlation found in studies.

According to Adams, the direct problem of science is that it has been collectively steering an entire generation toward obesity, diabetes, and coronary problems. But the indirect problem might be worse: It is hard to trust science because it has a credibility issue that it earned. "I think science has earned its lack of credibility with the public. If you kick me in the balls for 20-years, how do you expect me to close my eyes and trust you?"

This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.
Display Options Threshold/Breakthrough Mark All as Read Mark All as Unread
The Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not responsible for them in any way.
  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by zugedneb on Monday February 09 2015, @09:56PM

    by zugedneb (4556) on Monday February 09 2015, @09:56PM (#142856)

    TL:DR, article seems to have been written in a fit of rage, so here is the question?
    Which stations?
    1: obscure ones belonging to some department
    2: weather stations belonging to governments, and official meteorological institutes?

    less rage, more info and more trolling please =)

    --
    old saying: "a troll is a window into the soul of humanity" + also: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Ajax
    • (Score: 5, Informative) by buswolley on Monday February 09 2015, @10:05PM

      by buswolley (848) on Monday February 09 2015, @10:05PM (#142864)

      I did google searches citing this article, and I found nothing but hot air, fixnews kind of sites. I would like to see a rebuttal from a rational party.

      --
      subicular junctures
      • (Score: 5, Insightful) by The Mighty Buzzard on Monday February 09 2015, @10:38PM

        I'd prefer to see a skeptic go down and either verify or disprove the claims. A rebuttal at this point would be nothing but he said she said. Mind you, that's good enough for most people.

        --
        My rights don't end where your fear begins.
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 10 2015, @08:01PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 10 2015, @08:01PM (#143281)

        Ages ago when I was mining weather data there was a huge problem when sensor drift showed a massive shortfall of arctic ice [nationalweatheronline.com]. With all the inaccuracies and constant fiddling of official numbers it's no wonder we have global warming skeptics. Kinda like when "we" just adjusted the baseline for background radiation when the chunks from Fukushima came to Cali. Now the graph looks just like before Fukushima, only there's 100x the radiation all along the west coast.

    • (Score: -1, Troll) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @10:06PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @10:06PM (#142866)

      Wherever a starving scientist is desperate for funding, there will be the sweet smell of fudge.

      • (Score: 2, Flamebait) by buswolley on Monday February 09 2015, @10:12PM

        by buswolley (848) on Monday February 09 2015, @10:12PM (#142872)

        Well fucking pay scientists more.
        I'm Fucking tired of being on Welfare while also conducting state-of-the-art NeuroScience research.

        --
        subicular junctures
        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @10:15PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @10:15PM (#142877)

          Damn. I bet she meant to post that anom.

        • (Score: -1, Troll) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @10:19PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @10:19PM (#142881)

          I bet she is a slutty scientist in glasses with kids at home

          • (Score: 0, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @10:29PM

            by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @10:29PM (#142887)

            The children aren't even hers. She kidnapped them to use for Welfare fraud.

        • (Score: 5, Insightful) by DeathMonkey on Monday February 09 2015, @10:50PM

          by DeathMonkey (1380) on Monday February 09 2015, @10:50PM (#142904) Journal

          Well fucking pay scientists more.
           
          They can easily get more money (by going to work for the Oil & Gas industry).

    • (Score: 5, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @10:07PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @10:07PM (#142867)

      The article doesn't even source anything in it except a blogger. Frankly I don't trust any bloggers on pretty much any mater of import.

      Shoot even in the articles own comments The Telegraph is being ripped for this. This is another ridiculous article that sounds more like click bait then anything.

      Comon Soylent lets be better then this. If we are going to do the climate change argument, at least bring on some articles with sources, facts, something tangible besides a blogger.

    • (Score: 5, Informative) by anfieldsierra on Monday February 09 2015, @10:39PM

      by anfieldsierra (3609) on Monday February 09 2015, @10:39PM (#142898)

      Which stations?
      1: obscure ones belonging to some department
      2: weather stations belonging to governments, and official meteorological institutes?
      less rage, more info and more trolling please =)

      OK, you want references ?

      Just for starters, how about we start with Paraguay - https://notalotofpeopleknowthat.wordpress.com/2015/01/26/all-of-paraguays-temperature-record-has-been-tampered-with/ [wordpress.com]

      And Bolivia - https://notalotofpeopleknowthat.wordpress.com/2015/01/30/cooling-the-past-in-bolivia/ [wordpress.com]

      And the rest of the world - https://notalotofpeopleknowthat.wordpress.com/2015/01/29/temperature-adjustments-around-the-world/ [wordpress.com]

      Or maybe you want some US stations - http://www.rockyhigh66.org/stuff/USHCN_revisions.htm [rockyhigh66.org]
      Perhaps an analysis of many stations summarised - http://www.itia.ntua.gr/en/docinfo/1212/ [itia.ntua.gr]

      In each case, the "adjusted temperatures" have served to make the past cooler and the present warmer, thereby artificially creating a pattern of "global warming" far in excess of what was actually measured.

      • (Score: 5, Interesting) by moondrake on Monday February 09 2015, @10:58PM

        by moondrake (2658) on Monday February 09 2015, @10:58PM (#142908)

        FYI, the references show claims by certain people that raw data != final data. These people where not scientist, just people interested enough (guess why) to go over a lot of numbers.

        There are lots of reasons why data gets calibrated. The fact that this calibration sometimes goes in the same direction as the effect you get at the end it not a problem per se. However, it does not mean that calibrations can not be wrong, that all depends on why they were done.

        If you read some of your references and many other "denialist" websites, you will also see that they do not find such "warming-induced-by-calibration" (or tampering, if you prefer) for all stations, or for all time periods even (they are careful to show you only ranges of the whole dataset in some cases, watch those time-axes!).

        I personally find it hard to be believe that a some people in rural Paraguay in the 60's would want to affect the global averages by changing some numbers. It is far more likely they had reasons for adjusting the numbers (new equipment, influence of local environment, etc etc). That is not to say that calibration can not be done wrongly, and who knows, the data in question may really be bad.

        Unfortunately, in the past, and in remote areas, it was not always carefully documented why and how exactly the data was adjusted. This is a lot better now (and we can thank the denialist for that), but you cannot do much about all these old numbers.

        Like others, I put more faith into my colleagues than into some random blogger who thinks there is a problem. Unlike some people think, there is not actually much of a reason to say warming happens when it does not, whereas there are clear financial and economic reasons to claim there is no warming (which is why google shows a shit ton of news articles from the usual suspect press agencies all claiming scientist are somehow in a conspiracy to kill the world economy because then they..ehh..whatever. No really, you just go ahead and trust the 1% instead).

        • (Score: 5, Insightful) by mrchew1982 on Tuesday February 10 2015, @02:48AM

          by mrchew1982 (3565) on Tuesday February 10 2015, @02:48AM (#142967)

          I agree with 99% of what you said and give you extra bonus-points for saying it in a calm and rational manner. I do however take issue with this statement:

          "there is not actually much of a reason to say warming happens when it does not, whereas there are clear financial and economic reasons to claim there is no warming"

          There are huge financial incentives out there going both ways. When government takes a stand on climate change and enacts legislation to curb emissions or increase efficiency standards someone has to pay, which implies that someone gets paid. Especially if we start talking "carbon credits." Sometimes the cost gets passed on to the consumers, and most times it cuts into profits.

          Not that it's a bad thing mind you, I happen to like the earth the way that it is right now and think that a lot of corporations have and are getting rich by exploiting the environment, but if you follow the money that is lost or taken from the old guard (oil and gas industries, traditional power generation, etc.) and follow it... it leads to some people with really deep pockets and loads of political and media influence. GE springs to mind immediately, but there are lots of others.

          I personally believe that "winning" this argument about climate change will require everyone to take a step back and be honest about *all* of the interests at play, not just the ones on the opposing side.

          • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Thexalon on Tuesday February 10 2015, @04:02AM

            by Thexalon (636) on Tuesday February 10 2015, @04:02AM (#142984)

            When government takes a stand on climate change and enacts legislation to curb emissions or increase efficiency standards someone has to pay, which implies that someone gets paid.

            Yes-ish. This would probably not be an instance of the government giving out a huge subsidy to somebody, more like the government making CO2 emissions more expensive, which causes a lot of behavior and market adjustments. For example, solar and wind power companies would do well because their prices would become more competitive, that kind of thing. The companies that would pay the heaviest price due to the reduction in demand for their products would be coal miners and oil drillers, with a corresponding drop in jobs in West Virginia and Texas, unless they converted into other energy-related sectors.

            What it sounded like you were afraid of is that the public policy response would be along the lines of "BP, give us $4 gajillion or else, for carbon offsets. Solyndra, here's $4 gajillion to do with as you please, and ignore that kickback^Hcampaign donation everyone." But that really isn't what anyone has been suggesting is the right government action to take.

            --
            Alcohol makes the world go round ... and round and round.
          • (Score: 2) by moondrake on Tuesday February 10 2015, @09:58AM

            by moondrake (2658) on Tuesday February 10 2015, @09:58AM (#143060)

            Good point. I think I was thinking too much from my own perspective. I could (have not done so) submit a proposal related to climate change. I would do this because it is seen as a worthwhile justification for my research (and the powers that be have decided that we should do "useful" research). Hence, if I want to have any chance of getting a grant, I have to write why it is important. Many EU grants even force you to pick a topic related to something that "they" (i.e. the bureaucrats) find interesting.

            I would not care much (and I think most scientist would care little, the exception being the people that did nothing else than claim there was warming, but only the older established names would suffer a bit) if there was no money in relating my research to global warming. With minimal changes, it could also be useful for agriculture or other interests of society (I will leave in the middle here whether or not governments should attempt to regulate basic research in this way).

            I am not familiar with all the economics surrounding carbon credits and such, but I assume guess in the end, its mostly the government that gets paid? I would hazard a guess that governments always find ways to tax things, be there warming or not.

            I think what I am getting at is that I feel "money" is the cause of claiming there is no warming, but money is merely an effect of claiming there is warming. But I admit that I have little insights on the broader politics surrounding this issue.

        • (Score: 1) by anfieldsierra on Wednesday February 11 2015, @09:26PM

          by anfieldsierra (3609) on Wednesday February 11 2015, @09:26PM (#143775)

          I personally find it hard to be believe that a some people in rural Paraguay in the 60's would want to affect the global averages by changing some numbers. It is far more likely they had reasons for adjusting the numbers (new equipment, influence of local environment, etc etc). That is not to say that calibration can not be done wrongly, and who knows, the data in question may really be bad.

          You're completely off base. People in rural Paraguay didn't have anything to do with this. The question is why the "climate scientists" have decided that whatever happened in rural Paraguay in the 60's was somehow incorrect and now needs to be changed.

          Unfortunately, in the past, and in remote areas, it was not always carefully documented why and how exactly the data was adjusted. This is a lot better now (and we can thank the denialist for that), but you cannot do much about all these old numbers.

          You've completely misunderstood the nature of the raw vs adjusted data. No-one in the 60s/in remote areas adjusted the temperature measurements. The old numbers are the raw un-adjusted data. The adjustments have been made recently, after the fact.

          • (Score: 2) by moondrake on Wednesday February 11 2015, @10:57PM

            by moondrake (2658) on Wednesday February 11 2015, @10:57PM (#143843)

            well, the various sources did quite a bad job at explaining who when made what changes. So my first impression when I posted this was that it happened locally.

            But, as expressed by various other people here, even if changes were made afterwards, there can be many good reasons for them.

    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by FatPhil on Monday February 09 2015, @10:43PM

      by FatPhil (863) <{pc-soylent} {at} {asdf.fi}> on Monday February 09 2015, @10:43PM (#142900) Homepage

      Paraguay is the one in Cowtan's youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qRFz8merXEA [youtube.com] But there's a bit of a fight over the global data too, in particular of one of the graphs in teh above youtube: http://www.sealevel.info/Cowtan_unintentionally_vindicates_Booker.html [sealevel.info]

      That latter page contains a couple of bogosities: 1) he measures the trend of a graph simply by taking the end-points 2) he *divides* two gradients to evaluate how much the fiddling is.

      To see how invalid the latter is, consider the following graph, containing raw and adjusted data:
      |----------------------------------------------------------=============================================
      |
      |
      |
      |
      +--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

      One of the lines is supposed to have gradient 0.0001, and the other is supposed to have gradient 0.00001.

      So the change caused by the fiddling is one of increasing global warming by 900% (i.e. multiplying it by 10!)
      Were the lower line to have gradient 0, then the fiddling would have had an *INFINITE* effect - it's the biggest fraud ever in teh whole of science!!!!!!!

      I'm not saying I support the 3% figure, I've not done the maths, but I certainly don't support the 34% figure. If Booker used the same technique, then Booker's just as wrong, as Cowtan seems to claim.

      --
      Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people; the smallest discuss themselves
      • (Score: 3, Interesting) by FatPhil on Monday February 09 2015, @10:56PM

        by FatPhil (863) <{pc-soylent} {at} {asdf.fi}> on Monday February 09 2015, @10:56PM (#142907) Homepage
        I know Monbiot's not egg-free, but there were some lulz herein:
        "The superhuman cock-ups of Christopher Booker"
        http://www.theguardian.com/environment/georgemonbiot/2011/oct/13/christopher-booker
        --
        Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people; the smallest discuss themselves
    • (Score: 5, Interesting) by khallow on Tuesday February 10 2015, @03:39AM

      by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday February 10 2015, @03:39AM (#142979) Journal
      The strongest claim [wordpress.com] seems to be that a major local climate event in the north Atlantic was wiped out by this sort of adjustment.

      There was a very sudden climatic shift in Iceland in 1965, with temperatures falling dramatically. The following six years were known there as the “Sea ice years” and saw major economic upheaval as a result.

      This event is well known in meteorological circles, for instance H H Lamb reported that sea temperatures around the Faroe Islands fell by 1.0C and were as cold as at any time in the previous 100 years. ( This series of sea temperatures is one of the longest in the world, dating back to 1867).

      The Icelandic Ministry of Fisheries report that “After a generally warm period in the northern North Atlantic from 1920 to 1964, the period from 1965 to 1971 was characterized by very low temperatures and salinity typical of polar water. This was often accompanied by sea ice over the northern shelf. In some of those years, the sea ice covered the whole north and east coasts of Iceland. Temperature differences in the waters north of Iceland between these two periods were up to 3°C. “

      The article then goes on to show a before and after (raw versus adjusted by "GHCN", the Global Historical Climatology Network) which shows Reykjavik temperatures adjusted down as much as 3 C over 1920-1965 (the period right before the "sea ice years"). That has the effect of eliminating most of the signal from the climate effect in question.

      Anyway, I believe the angle here is that if the temperature adjustment algorithms are filtering out legitimate changes in local climate, what else are they filtering out?

  • (Score: 1, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @09:59PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @09:59PM (#142858)

    Not scientific dishonesty! How could this happen?! Aren't scientists required to swear an oath on a stack of Principia, to report only the truth, before they receive a license to practice science??

    • (Score: 2) by Jeremiah Cornelius on Monday February 09 2015, @10:01PM

      by Jeremiah Cornelius (2785) on Monday February 09 2015, @10:01PM (#142860) Journal

      This is HARD! Won't SOMEONE tell me WHAT to THINK! I want them to be EXPERTS, so I can call my attachment "SCIENCE"!

      --
      You're betting on the pantomime horse...
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @10:04PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @10:04PM (#142863)

        It's called SCIENCE not FICTION and they're supposed to be EXPERTS not LIARS.

  • (Score: 4, Funny) by frojack on Monday February 09 2015, @10:05PM

    by frojack (1554) Subscriber Badge on Monday February 09 2015, @10:05PM (#142865) Journal

    This should start a good flame war. The third rail of both science and politics!

    --
    No, you are mistaken. I've always had this sig.
    • (Score: 4, Interesting) by buswolley on Monday February 09 2015, @10:10PM

      by buswolley (848) on Monday February 09 2015, @10:10PM (#142870)

      Well for the most part it will be Anoms spouting anti-science bullshit and registered users defending science.

      --
      subicular junctures
      • (Score: 1, Troll) by The Mighty Buzzard on Monday February 09 2015, @10:30PM

        Erm, so would that be defending accurate and truthful measurements or the scientists who've allegedly been pulling numbers out of their asses to match their predictions? Which is science to you? I know I'm not going to believe a fucking word they say until a skeptic has gone over the readings from non-urban centers and verified that they match what they've been using for calculations showing warming.

        --
        My rights don't end where your fear begins.
        • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @10:49PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @10:49PM (#142903)

          a skeptic

          A skeptic or denialist? A lot of people seem to think that denialists are skeptics. I don't know that I've ever seen an actual skeptic when it comes to global warming, just denialists trying to hide behind the word "skeptic"; skeptics simply want more data and can be convinced once enough is collected, rather than ignoring that the data exists or attacking the people who gather it with ad hominems.

          • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @11:07PM

            by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @11:07PM (#142910)

            Here's one guy who fits your definition of skeptic: Richard Muller [businessinsider.com]

          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @11:08PM

            by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @11:08PM (#142911)

            "A skeptic or denialist? A lot of people seem to think that denialists are skeptics. I don't know that I've ever seen an actual skeptic when it comes to global warming, just denialists trying to hide behind the word "skeptic"; skeptics simply want more data and can be convinced once enough is collected, rather than ignoring that the data exists or attacking the people who gather it with ad hominems."

            Using your definitions, the two groups are indistinguishable and indivisible.

            They could theoretically diverge into two separate groups at some point in the future, if the warmers started doing science.

            Not holding my breath on that one though.

        • (Score: 3) by buswolley on Monday February 09 2015, @11:12PM

          by buswolley (848) on Monday February 09 2015, @11:12PM (#142912)

          No. Just a defense in the scientific method and not believing in a pervasive conspiracy without substantial evidence.

          --
          subicular junctures
        • (Score: 4, Informative) by LancePodstrong on Tuesday February 10 2015, @01:57AM

          by LancePodstrong (5029) on Tuesday February 10 2015, @01:57AM (#142957)
          http://arstechnica.com/science/2011/10/climate-skeptics-perform-independent-analysis-finally-convinced-earth-is-getting-warmer/ [arstechnica.com]

          Last week, a project called Berkeley Earth released drafts of its findings. The project was started by a physicist, Richard Muller, who had previously expressed doubts about the mathematical rigor of climate science; it received funding from a variety of sources, including the Department of Energy and foundations set up by Bill Gates and the Koch brothers. The Berkeley Earth team set out to analyze records of the Earth's surface temperatures to answer questions about the trajectory of the planet's recent warming that had been raised by skeptics and contrarians. To a very large degree, it discovered that climatologists had been doing a pretty good job after all.
          ...
          Recording stations were moved, their surroundings urbanized, and researchers performed adjustments or dropped some stations entirely in order to compensate. Various parties hostile to the findings of climate science have raised questions about this process. Have the scientists really compensated for urbanization? Was the trajectory of the modern warming really as extreme as the temperature records were showing?

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @10:11PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @10:11PM (#142871)

    The sky doesn't exist! Stop looking at it! It's an illusion put there by GOD to distract you! Look down, not up, and think only of the eternal firmament!

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by FatPhil on Monday February 09 2015, @10:14PM

    by FatPhil (863) <{pc-soylent} {at} {asdf.fi}> on Monday February 09 2015, @10:14PM (#142874) Homepage
    We need to extend it to "Can we trust the data if we can't trust the scientists?".

    I'm all for these libelous-sounding stories, because there is one sure-fire defence against libelous claims - and that's to show them to be untrue, and support your data. If you can't do that, then your name should be mud. If you can do that, then the libellor's name should be mud. If two things contradict each other, at least one of them must be wrong. Find out which one, and burn it. That's science, spiced up with a bit of witch-hunting. Name and shame and blame and flame, and other words ending -ame! (Is disdain close enough?)

    I am a scientifically-fluent person who is very dissatisfied by the state of many fields of scientific inquiry currently. Climate science being one of those fields. In order to move things forward, you need to start with valid premises, apply valid logic, and draw valid conclusions - if *any one* of those components is flawed, then you're not doing science, and your conclusions, even if they are correct, are not valid. "F |= anything" as we mathmos used to say.
    --
    Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people; the smallest discuss themselves
    • (Score: 1, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @10:19PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @10:19PM (#142880)

      support your data. If you can't do that, then your name should be mud.

      I'll have you know that I fully support my data, I fabricated it myself, and I resent your accusations.

      - Harcourt Mudd

    • (Score: 5, Interesting) by DeathMonkey on Monday February 09 2015, @10:48PM

      by DeathMonkey (1380) on Monday February 09 2015, @10:48PM (#142902) Journal

      I'm all for these libelous-sounding stories, because there is one sure-fire defence against libelous claims - and that's to show them to be untrue, and support your data.
       
      It's FUD, pure and simple. There is no claim to defend. It's hand-wavy and vague specifically so it can't be rebutted.
       
      Seems like a shocking pattern of systematic alterations would leave some evidence. Why isn't it presented here?

      • (Score: 5, Informative) by FatPhil on Monday February 09 2015, @11:15PM

        by FatPhil (863) <{pc-soylent} {at} {asdf.fi}> on Monday February 09 2015, @11:15PM (#142913) Homepage
        It's not that handwavey. Explain the paraguay adjustment. Explain the Arctic adjustment. Those are very concrete things. If you can't justify it, it was not justified. After doing some reading, I am happy that both can be explained. Booker's now mud. The Torygraph (which I had the displeasure of reading 2 weeks ago, when I visited my parents) is mud, more so than at any prior point in history that I remember. I mean, truly, it's a dreadful "newspaper". Booker's association with it makes perfect sense, he fits right in.
        --
        Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people; the smallest discuss themselves
      • (Score: 2, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @11:45PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @11:45PM (#142919)

        May I examine your data and the protocol(s) you used to gather it?
        May I see the method you used to analyze the data?
        Where are your results published for peer review?

        Any further discussion should -follow- the receipt of acceptable answers to those queries.
        Most of this junk isn't Science.

        When things are done to their proper conclusions, you get results like Andrew Wakefield being forbidden to practice medicine any longer.

        -- gewg_

  • (Score: 2, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @10:14PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @10:14PM (#142875)

    See, the way this works is you take all the data, discard the outliers, and average the rest. I'm halfway through a stat course at community college so I know what I'm talking about. Science just works, bitches.

    • (Score: 1) by zugedneb on Tuesday February 10 2015, @01:17AM

      by zugedneb (4556) on Tuesday February 10 2015, @01:17AM (#142952)

      though you will probably get modded troll, there is a big grain of truth in this: statistics is a seriously hard subject, and scientist =/= statistician.
      Just take averaging/smoothing data: there are a number of window types to use, and they all have different properties with respect to Bias and Variance...
      If you "want" to, there will always be a reason to disagree with the method used to work with some time series...

      --
      old saying: "a troll is a window into the soul of humanity" + also: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Ajax
  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by NotSanguine on Monday February 09 2015, @10:17PM

    That no actual data or specific databases are referenced.

    Does that make the claim false? No. No more than it makes the claim true either.

    Show us the data and let those who can actually use their brains decide. Everyone else, please pardon the interruption. Look down, your navel is there.

    Also interesting, the fortune at the bottom of the page for this article read: "A man's best friend is his dogma." Apropos, methinks.

    --
    No, no, you're not thinking; you're just being logical. --Niels Bohr
    • (Score: 2) by hubie on Monday February 09 2015, @10:32PM

      by hubie (1068) Subscriber Badge on Monday February 09 2015, @10:32PM (#142889) Journal

      It would not surprise me if this boils down to a basic misunderstanding in how scientific instrument data are processed. If you want to know the temperature, you look at a thermometer. If you want an accurate temperature, you'll need to apply a correction factor to make up for the fact that your thermometer is not an ideal thermometer.

      • (Score: 2, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @10:35PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @10:35PM (#142892)

        And WHY are eggheads not using ideal thermometers? With the amount of money they steal from the public purse and the public pocket, our tax dollars, they should be able to afford some ideal thermometers, by golly.

        • (Score: 2, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 10 2015, @12:30AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 10 2015, @12:30AM (#142934)

          It's those frictionless surfaces in vacuums that keep eating up the budget.

      • (Score: 1, Disagree) by The Mighty Buzzard on Monday February 09 2015, @10:36PM

        No, you absolutely do not adjust data. If your measuring instrument is shit, you throw it out and use one that isn't. Thermometers are not expensive. Not even accurate ones.

        --
        My rights don't end where your fear begins.
        • (Score: 1) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @10:39PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @10:39PM (#142899)

          There's raw data and there's adjusted data. You report both. But you absolutely do not make stuff up.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 10 2015, @12:00AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 10 2015, @12:00AM (#142921)

          If you report temperature in degrees you have already adjusted the data. Thermometers truly measure changes in volume, generally.

        • (Score: 5, Informative) by hubie on Tuesday February 10 2015, @12:40AM

          by hubie (1068) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday February 10 2015, @12:40AM (#142941) Journal

          You've directly addressed my point. When I look at the output of my thermocouple it gives me something in volts. No matter how many thermocouples I purchase, they're going to keep giving me volts. I have to do something to convert it to a temperature, I have to apply some mathematical formula to do the conversion. Now, if I go to the hardware store and buy a multimeter that reads thermocouples, it will tell me a temperature converted to my favorite degree scale. However, if I plug in a different thermocouple, I'll find it gives me a slightly different temperature reading because my multimeter has some standard conversion programmed into it that doesn't accurately represent the thermocouple I want to use. However, if you get by dealing with the accuracy of a reading out of a multimeter, then the standard conversion is plenty good. If you are trying to make very accurate measurements, then you'll apply a proper calibration curve to the instrument you have.

          • (Score: 2, Redundant) by The Mighty Buzzard on Tuesday February 10 2015, @01:43AM

            Which is all fine and good to calibrate your thermocouple reader. Myself, I'd expect this to be done on site so the readings were accurate. I have never heard of leaving one uncalibrated and adjusting the numbers later. Not in any of the fields I've worked in and several of them it has come up. It is not however fine and good to come along after accurate readings have been taken for a station and adjust them in any way whatsoever, which is what was alleged.

            --
            My rights don't end where your fear begins.
            • (Score: 5, Insightful) by c0lo on Tuesday February 10 2015, @02:32AM

              by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Tuesday February 10 2015, @02:32AM (#142966) Journal

              I have never heard of leaving one uncalibrated and adjusting the numbers later.

              I guess you didn't live in South America during '60-ies either. Nor did you go change the thermometer in the Arctic in submarine infested North Sea. Even more, I don't think one used thermocouples and digital multimeters to read the temperature in those times.
              At most you can do now is ask those measurements be discarded.

              --
              https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
            • (Score: 3, Informative) by moondrake on Tuesday February 10 2015, @10:09AM

              by moondrake (2658) on Tuesday February 10 2015, @10:09AM (#143065)

              The adjustments are needed in many cases. It depends on what you are doing with the numbers. For example, suppose you want to calculate a global average. But your temperature measurements are done at 10:00 AM in some countries, but at 15:00 in others, and depending on daylightsaving or whatever, it could even change over time. So you need to somehow correct those numbers. You could estimate the temperature at noon based on an estimate of the temp fluctuations at that stations. Or you could estimate the max temperature during the day for all stations.

              Then there are looking differences. Perhaps those guys in Paraguy put there thermometer at 200m above sealevel, but in Peru they were at 2000 m....see what I am getting at?

              • (Score: 1, Redundant) by The Mighty Buzzard on Tuesday February 10 2015, @12:18PM

                Yep, but that's an excuse not a good reason. You don't guess on numbers in science beyond estimating one significant decimal place if possible. If you do it's no longer science.

                --
                My rights don't end where your fear begins.
                • (Score: 5, Informative) by moondrake on Tuesday February 10 2015, @02:08PM

                  by moondrake (2658) on Tuesday February 10 2015, @02:08PM (#143125)

                  I am sorry but I think that is a rather short-sighted comment. Calibration is quite prevalent in science, and though I would agree it is often a nuisance and a source of errors, but it is also impossible to do many things without using it.

                  Contrary to what you may believe, most machines (including thermometers) have actually problems with doing measurements in standardized ways and there are lots of sources for drift, variation, etc, that can and need to be accounted for.

                  The example I quickly gave was not even correcting for known issues with a device but simply a consequence of the need for standardization when you are pooling data. It has nothing at all to do with guessing, so I am rather annoyed why you would suggest something silly like that in this discussion.

                  If you would just treat all numbers as-is, the situation would often be worse, as you would induce variation (and possibly bias) into your data. Accounting for this kind of thing, either by taking the measurement in a standardized way or by correcting for deviations from standard conditions is exactly what distinguish a scientist from a person who just reads the thermometer output. I am the first to admit that correcting afterwards is always worse than actually doing the measurement better, but in the real world, this just is not always possible.

                  And, to be frank, this is also why society need scientists that do their work correctly, because data are rarely 100% made-up, it is exactly in this kind of calibrations that a scientist might err from the "right path". We are still figuring out protocols and ways-of-conducts to prevent the latter (it is far more a problem now than in the past, especially in political sensitive fields). But mindlessly claiming all science that calibrates data is wrong is simply unreasonable.

                  I am sorry if this does not fit into your personal view how science should be.

    • (Score: 2, Insightful) by anfieldsierra on Monday February 09 2015, @10:52PM

      by anfieldsierra (3609) on Monday February 09 2015, @10:52PM (#142906)

      That no actual data or specific databases are referenced.
      Does that make the claim false? No. No more than it makes the claim true either.
      Show us the data and let those who can actually use their brains decide.

      There is plenty of actual data available if you simply follow the links in the article. Actual data and specific official databases are cited. The Telegraph article is an opinion piece which I wouldn't expect to have direct references to information sources in. But just follow the links to the earlier article mentioned in the 1st paragraph "How we are being tricked..." and in that article there is a link to Paul Homewood's "Not A Lot Of People Know That" blog which inlcudes references to specific NASA.gov databases.

      From here you can check all the data yourself. Both raw and adjusted data is there so you don't have to trust anyone else's analysis. You can use your own brain and decide for yourself.

      • (Score: 5, Insightful) by NotSanguine on Monday February 09 2015, @11:24PM

        From here you can check all the data yourself. Both raw and adjusted data is there so you don't have to trust anyone else's analysis. You can use your own brain and decide for yourself.

        I did. Now the only thing missing is the methodolgy/rationale for the "adjustments" to the data. That (fairly important) information is not discussed *at all* by any of the "articles" you suggested I review.

        The analytical process is documented here [nasa.gov] and here [nasa.gov].

        I skimmed them and noted a few items which *could* account for such changes in the data. However, I'm not a climate scientist, nor am I going to do your work for you. If you want to refute the claims of those folks, then please do so.

        I don't see (in my admittedly superficial review) any real issues with the data transformations and, as such, will give the professionals the benefit of the doubt.

        If you wish to contradict those folks in a persuasive (and none of the links provided or referenced do this) way, you'll need to clearly identify the flaws in the methodologies and analytical processes.

        Otherwise, you're (like that blogger) just jumping up and down screaming "look maw! those graphs don't match! There must be some evil stuff goin' on! Those edumacated folk are tryin' to put one over on us!"

        --
        No, no, you're not thinking; you're just being logical. --Niels Bohr
        • (Score: 1) by anfieldsierra on Wednesday February 11 2015, @09:09PM

          by anfieldsierra (3609) on Wednesday February 11 2015, @09:09PM (#143767)

          I did. Now the only thing missing is the methodolgy/rationale for the "adjustments" to the data. That (fairly important) information is not discussed *at all* by any of the "articles" you suggested I review.

          Surely this is exactly the point. Where in any of the literature is the justification for altering raw data ? You shouldn't be asking me about this. You should be demading that NASA supply their methodology/rationale for altering the past.

          The analytical process is documented here [nasa.gov] and here [nasa.gov].
          I skimmed them and noted a few items which *could* account for such changes in the data. However, I'm not a climate scientist, nor am I going to do your work for you. If you want to refute the claims of those folks, then please do so.

          Unfortunately neither of these links has anything to do with why they have adjusted the raw station data from South America from 30-40 years ago.

          If you wish to contradict those folks in a persuasive (and none of the links provided or referenced do this) way, you'll need to clearly identify the flaws in the methodologies and analytical processes.
          Otherwise, you're (like that blogger) just jumping up and down screaming "look maw! those graphs don't match! There must be some evil stuff goin' on! Those edumacated folk are tryin' to put one over on us!"

          No, no, no. I don't have to justify why adjusting raw data is incorrect. The ones actually making adjustments are those who must justify why they need to do this.

          And does anyone else find it strange that these adjustments only ever increase a warming trend ?

  • (Score: 5, Informative) by gnuman on Monday February 09 2015, @11:05PM

    by gnuman (5013) on Monday February 09 2015, @11:05PM (#142909)

    There are multiple problems with this article. First, and foremost, a simple google search brings up same rehashed "issues" about "adjustments"

    http://www.niwa.co.nz/our-science/climate/information-and-resources/nz-temp-record/why-climate-data-sometimes-needs-to-be-adjusted [niwa.co.nz]
    http://jennifermarohasy.com/2009/06/how-the-us-temperature-record-is-adjusted/ [jennifermarohasy.com]

    The 2nd link brings up same crap as this "new evidence". I will just quote one of the comments there, from 5 years ago,

    Nick Stokes June 27, 2009 at 7:22 am #

    Michael,
    You’ve compared Fig 4, which is global temperature, with Fig 5, which is “raw data”. What you haven’t made clear is that they are different things. Fig 5 is an unadjusted plot of continental US temperature, not global. The features you have discussed are present also in the corrected record. The 0.09C per century is the US figure, not global. I’m not aware of any IPCC estimate that this contradicts.

    But “raw data” is itself a misnomer. By far the biggest component of the adjustment is the TOBS (time of observation) effect. This arises from two main causes:
    1. Actual time shift of recording data. Data is historically often recorded at three hourly intervals. “Raw data” simply uses the clock time as written. But there are time shifts to be accounted for due to introduction of daylight saving etc. The “raw data” is simply wrong in that respect.
    2. Adjustment for missing values. In older times, there are many. “Raw data” simply leaves these out. However, there is a strong tendency for missing values to be at awkward times for human observers, like early morning. Simple omission creates a warm bias, because the missing values are at cold times of day. In effect, it replaces the missing values with the daily average. This is a very rough estimate. It’s much better to replace them with a time-of-day based estimate.

    So adjustment isn’t fiddling with sound data; at least for TOBS, the big one, it’s correcting clear errors.

    Secondly, while generally I don't dismiss people with ad-hominem attacks or their terrible history, the history of the author in this case should not be dismissed. Simply put, Christopher Booker is a denier of reality. By that I do not mean Global Warming. I mean everything. His purpose seems to be to draw attention or otherwise spew bullshit. He should be ignored as an idiot that doesn't know WTF he's talking about. So what does he deny?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christopher_Booker#Views_on_science [wikipedia.org]

    1. Global Warming is a conspiracy according to him (clearly!)
    2. 'Booker's repeated endorsement of the alleged scientific expertise of John Bridle, who in 2004 was convicted under the UK's Trade Descriptions Act of making false claims about his qualifications'
    3. 'Booker has repeatedly claimed that white asbestos is "chemically identical to talcum powder" and poses a "non-existent" risk to human health ... risk of contracting mesothelioma from white asbestos cement was "insignificant", while that of lung cancer was "zero"'.'
    4. 'Booker has also argued in support of intelligent design, claiming that supporters of the theory of evolution "rest their case on nothing more than blind faith and unexamined a priori assumptions"'
    5. He said that passive smoking does not cause cancer.

    And this is just from wikipedia. This is not a journalist people should trust with anything, never mind science. Listening to this guy is like listening to anti-vax crowd about vaccines.

    Finally, why is someone linking unrelated articles from pharma? Is that to get actual science magazine link??

    • (Score: 2, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @11:45PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 09 2015, @11:45PM (#142920)

      The poster of this story is guilty by association.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 10 2015, @12:05AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 10 2015, @12:05AM (#142922)

        Given his comment history it is no surprise.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 10 2015, @12:16AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 10 2015, @12:16AM (#142928)

          Well thanks to gnuman for bitchslapping him.

    • (Score: 1) by BK on Tuesday February 10 2015, @04:49AM

      by BK (4868) on Tuesday February 10 2015, @04:49AM (#142998)

      This one is a classic. [cloudave.com]

      The reasons for the made up data make perfect sense, but in the end, they sound like excuses. The methods used may be statistically valid, but finding refs to the use of statistics to support lies is left to the reader.

      I suppose that you could make the arguement that every climate prediction made based on this "adjusted" data has proved to be undeniably correct... and that therefore the ends justify the means. Has the "adjusted" data made for compellingly accurate predictions?

      Why should nations trust policy recommendations based on flawed data?

      --
      ...but you HAVE heard of me.
      • (Score: 5, Interesting) by gnuman on Tuesday February 10 2015, @05:38AM

        by gnuman (5013) on Tuesday February 10 2015, @05:38AM (#143010)

        Why should nations trust policy recommendations based on flawed data?

        Well, here it goes,

        1. I do not make policy recommendations, but if I was, I would say listen to the scientists.
        2. Scientists, in the field, argue and bicker *how* historical measurements should be adjusted to make those measurements match with reality. They consult with others, like mathematicians and physicists on this.
        3. I am not qualified to guess how to adjust individual station measurements. I would need to read a few books and papers on how and why and when to do so. If you are interested, please start reading. You can't just handwave at it and call it "excuses".

        There are people that spend their lives reconstructing temperature patterns from various sources. I'm less interested. The reason is that current temperatures are not indicative of future temperatures. No one ever extrapolates these measurements based on temperature trends anyway (models use CO2 levels, albedo, solar irradiance, etc.). Current measurements just measure the speed of the change that already happened. The important measurements are CO2 levels, historical CO2 levels and approximate temperatures millions of years ago. Correlating historical CO2 levels with historical temperatures gets us the end-point of what Anthropological Global Warming will result in. What climate great-great-great-great-great-grand-children will live in.

        Anyway, you don't even need to look at the thermometer to know that climate is warming everywhere. Everything is moving north, from fish to flies to ticks to trees (though trees have severe problems moving at the speed of the warming climate). Today if you want to reach the North Pole, you certainly can't pack like Amundsen did over a 100 years ago. You'll drown.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roald_Amundsen [wikipedia.org]

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 10 2015, @07:11AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 10 2015, @07:11AM (#143031)

        It is so weird how your post drips with a sort of snarky self-awareness that is actually not self-aware. Obviously you aren't doing it on purpose, but it is fuckin masterful anyway. Like dialogue for a character written by a consummate author, you do an amazing job of painting your personality on the page.

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Gravis on Monday February 09 2015, @11:20PM

    by Gravis (4596) on Monday February 09 2015, @11:20PM (#142917)

    the whole thing about science is that if someone else runs the experiment, the results are the same. unfortunately, humans only live so long and we have a vested interest in the results. so what should we do? a lot more research by a lot more people and groups! in the mean time we should eliminate human generated pollution as fast as possible because it may be killing our ecosystem.

  • (Score: 5, Interesting) by lubricus on Tuesday February 10 2015, @12:51AM

    by lubricus (232) on Tuesday February 10 2015, @12:51AM (#142948)

    I feel that ad hominem is fair when responding to ad hominem. So just who is Christopher Booker [wikipedia.org]?

    Let's see: He thinks climate change is a scam. He also thinks neither asbestos nor second hand smoke is dangerous, and also rejects Evolution for "Intelligent Design", and even thinks that The swine flu was a conspiracy. So he makes a living rejecting science.

    Back to the issue at hand, he criticises the fact that data does not go from instrument to analysis in a raw form. The reality is that weather stations are moved, instruments are drift or go bad and are replaced, batteries go out. I have worked on climate data, and in one case, one out of about 30k weather records had Fahrenheit values instead of Celsius. Correcting for known sources of error is not malfeasance.

    Anybody who has worked on large analyses, (large enough that you could not possibly experimentally collect the data yourself), has dealt with these issues.

    Is this ideal? Of course not, but what's the alternative? Perhaps I should have gone back and placed my own instruments around the world, that I could control and maintain on my own? Before I was born?

    I am a biologist, but I have published a few papers on climate.

    I was interviewed once on this topic: On Cherry Picking data. [wordpress.com].

    As for: "Can we trust the science if we can't trust the data?" ... well that is the goal of FUD, isn't it? My question is why would you trust a random anti-all-science columnist, and reject the 97% of scientists in relevant fields [theconsensusproject.com] who accept it?

    Actually, it gets worse: why would you trust a columnist quoting a blogger "Paul Homewood" summarizing the work of another:

    Dave Burton has taken the Cowton graph from the video, and added the narrative in green as above. Using specialised digital analysis techniques, Dave has calculated that adjustments have increased temperature trends for global land surfaces from 0.7527C/C to 1.01551C.

    ....ooo "specialised digital analysis techniques"... as opposed to "generalized lead pencil on the back of an envelope" techniques.

    Give me a break Soylent... I thought you were better than this.

    --
    ... sorry about the typos
    • (Score: 2) by lubricus on Tuesday February 10 2015, @09:33AM

      by lubricus (232) on Tuesday February 10 2015, @09:33AM (#143053)

      I was curious about these amazing "specialised digital analysis techniques" ... and found this. [sealevel.info]

      I'll save you the click:

      However, Dr. Cowtan's argument also depends on the adjustments being inconsequential, and they are not. I digitized the endpoints of one of Dr. Cowtan's graphs using WebPlotDigitizer and found that his own analysis proves NOAA's adjustments are far from inconsequential. By comparing the adjusted and unadjusted versions of Dr. Cowtan's graphs of globally averaged land surface temperatures, I found that NOAA's adjustments increased the reported warming by 35%

      So let's be clear: he used a digitizing tool to get the endpoint values. He could have just as easily used a ruler or his eyes, it doesn't matter, it's a two point trend, and two-point trends on variable data are absurd.

      --
      ... sorry about the typos
  • (Score: -1, Troll) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 10 2015, @01:50AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 10 2015, @01:50AM (#142956)

    Funny reading the threads here... like that bug one from gnuman who hasnt been watching this story unfold for the last 15 years, cherry picking some articles which would make a normal person go 'huh?'.

    Having 1 temperature station measuring an entire continent should raise alarm bells but when we're talking about religion, facts don't matter much.

    It is a fact that the climate science community hasnt even done a college course on statistics. Statistics are used and abused in an ad hoc basis, the peer reviewers know as much about statistics as the authors. So at the end of the day, how can anyone trust their work?

    Gavin Schmitt is 62% sure 2014 isnt the warmest year on record ;)

  • (Score: 2) by zeigerpuppy on Tuesday February 10 2015, @02:01AM

    by zeigerpuppy (1298) on Tuesday February 10 2015, @02:01AM (#142958)

    But seriously, climate change (the man made type) is really well established by multiple sources, multiple techniques and analyses that have current data to provide confirmation.
    This is not news, it's noise.
    How we deal with climate change is the issue at hand.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 10 2015, @05:09AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 10 2015, @05:09AM (#143005)

    I just want, one time, to use the Creationist objection to all evidence: Were you there? Did you actually see the scientist read the instrument? No? Well how do we know whether the recorded data was the actual data, since we did not observe it ourselves? To prove Andropogenic Global Warming, one person would have to be everywhere at once to check all the thermometers, and since only God could do that, and God can't read thermometers, since they were invented by humans and are an instrument of the Devil! (ask yourself one question: who has a vested interest in knowing how hot it is?), we can never know. So since gas prices are so low, I thought I would drive up (praise Jesus) to visit my (praise Jesus!) gay prostitute with a little powdered religion. What is my name?

    • (Score: 2) by Nobuddy on Tuesday February 10 2015, @09:33PM

      by Nobuddy (1626) on Tuesday February 10 2015, @09:33PM (#143319)

      The writer of this article is a Creationist himself

  • (Score: 2, Troll) by wantkitteh on Tuesday February 10 2015, @02:45PM

    by wantkitteh (3362) on Tuesday February 10 2015, @02:45PM (#143146) Homepage Journal

    The Telegraph? Seriously? This is the same paper than published James Delingpole's original Climategate story back in 2009. To refresh everyone's memory, Delingpole has no science background and claimed in a BBC Horizon documentary ("Science Under Attack") that he had proved that he had destroyed the idea of scientific consensus, the one who claims that he's in the most discriminated against group of people in the UK because he's a middle-class white male educated at public school and Oxford, the one who actually thinks he's saved humanity from the biggest fraud ever.

    Given the Telegraph's history on publishing bullshit written by clueless fuckers on this particular subject, I thought it worth looking at the credentials of the writer of this article, Christopher Booker. Lack of scientific background? Check - has a degree in history, same kind of Oxbridge education as Delingpole. History of ridiculous scientific claims? Check - has claimed that white phosphorus, asbestos, and BSE ("Mad Cow Disease") aren't dangerous, skeptical of links between cancer and passive smoking, supports intelligent design theory of creation.

    tl;dr - article written by idiot in a paper that likes publishing anti-GW articles written by idiots.

    • (Score: 2) by wantkitteh on Tuesday February 10 2015, @03:49PM

      by wantkitteh (3362) on Tuesday February 10 2015, @03:49PM (#143173) Homepage Journal

      Yay, modded Troll in a debate regarding climate change! Don't I get an achievement if I do that every day for a week or something?

      I'm uploading the BBC Horizon documentary "Science Under Attack" for anyone who's interested. It'll be available here [youtu.be] in about half an hour.

      • (Score: 1) by ConceptJunkie on Tuesday February 10 2015, @09:54PM

        by ConceptJunkie (5018) on Tuesday February 10 2015, @09:54PM (#143327)

        Well, to be fair, you're attacking Booker's credibility by looking at other bad things he said that are generally recognized as wrong, or ridiculous or both. That doesn't mean he's wrong about this one, although it makes it much more likely that he is.

        I guess that's how you got modded as a Troll.

        I happen to believe there are a lot of shenigans going on with this issue both by the AGW crowd and the anti-AGW crowd. I don't trust any of them, frankly. And none of them has a good track record, in my opinion. The subject has been politicized beyond all reason, and as soon as something is politicized (e.g., there are money trails to follow), it becomes almost impossible to separate the wheat from the chaff. This is not a matter of distrusting science. As they say, science works, bitches. This is a matter of distrusting people. Being on the skeptic side of things, I thought the headline was very interesting, but as soon as I saw it was the Telegraph, I didn't give it a lot of weight.
         

        • (Score: 2) by wantkitteh on Wednesday February 11 2015, @01:10AM

          by wantkitteh (3362) on Wednesday February 11 2015, @01:10AM (#143393) Homepage Journal

          I don't think attacking someone's credibility is this manner is at all troll-like in this case - a history of poor judgement, pushing bad sources and terrible scientific reasoning is a pretty good indicator that neither of the people I mentioned should be trusted to have a valid opinion on these matters. Your own immediate distrust as soon as you saw it was a Telegraph article is an example of exactly the same thing - I discounted the content of the article based on the publishing history of the author whereas you distrusted it based on the history of the publication it ran in. Poh-TAY-toh, poh-TAR-toh. It's pretty obvious you weren't the one who modded me troll, but background is background whether it's smeared with bullshit or not.

          AGW has nothing to do with politics - which is extremely unfortunate since it's become*ahem*been turned into a political issue and most people don't change their political views ever for any reason at all, short of a few million dead people to clean up. It's enough to make me want to start murdering all the people who did/are doing this as a proactive punishment for the generational tyranny they have inflicted on the future population of this planet now that the human race doesn't stand a single chance in hell of actually doing anything about this, purely so a few arsehats could make a quick a few years ago. The actual evidence isn't hard to follow, provided you can find the original evidence and are able to follow the actual discussion the real climate scientists have been having outside of the public arena.

          • (Score: 1) by ConceptJunkie on Wednesday February 11 2015, @04:05PM

            by ConceptJunkie (5018) on Wednesday February 11 2015, @04:05PM (#143628)

            Well, I don't think you're a troll. I think you just need a kitteh.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 10 2015, @07:43PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 10 2015, @07:43PM (#143272)

      Yeah, this article is a joke. Folks, the Telegraph is barely a step above the Daily Mail.

      There's a reason nobody reputable has picked up this story.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 10 2015, @09:34PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday February 10 2015, @09:34PM (#143321)

      Yes white phosphorus is so healthy it's used in grenades. Yup, the military wastes their money. What a maroon. Heat isn't hot in his world.

  • (Score: 2) by Nobuddy on Tuesday February 10 2015, @09:24PM

    by Nobuddy (1626) on Tuesday February 10 2015, @09:24PM (#143313)

    Christopher Booker is an evolution denier and climate change denier. he shows a constant and persistent lack of ability to grasp even the simplest of concepts in the face of overwhelming evidence supporting the concept. He is also a member and often paid speak of the Heartland Institute- one of the many arms of the Koch anti-environmental regulation/EPA/climate change propaganda network.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christopher_Booker [wikipedia.org]