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Not Physics ― Rather, Fudge Factors

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  • Not Physics ― Rather, Fudge Factors

    I have spent a lot of time pondering the fact that people who are demonstrably quite well educated in terms of science ―especially physics ― are nonetheless adamant defenders of the IPCC processes and products.

    I have gotten the impression, and seem to remember explicit statements made by TWebbers, that said defense of the IPCC perspective is based on the science of physics.

    That has caused me to wonder why it is, then, that renowned scholars of physics such as Freeman Dyson and Richard Lindzen are quite critical of the IPCC's processes and products.

    More on Lindzen, perhaps, in a later post. For now, consider this excerpt of an interview with Dyson by Paul Mulshine in The Star Ledger via the GWPF

    Posted by Anthony Watts at Watts Up With That?
    Freeman Dyson speaks out about climate science, and fudge

    Climatologists Are No Einsteins, Says His Successor

    Freeman Dyson is a physicist who has been teaching at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton since Albert Einstein was there. When Einstein died in 1955, there was an opening for the title of “most brilliant physicist on the planet.” Dyson has filled it.

    So when the global-warming movement came along, a lot of people wondered why he didn’t come along with it. The reason he’s a skeptic is simple, the 89-year-old Dyson said when I phoned him.

    “I think any good scientist ought to be a skeptic,” Dyson said.

    Then in the late 1970s, he got involved with early research on climate change at the Institute for Energy Analysis in Oak Ridge, Tenn.

    That research, which involved scientists from many disciplines, was based on experimentation. The scientists studied such questions as how atmospheric carbon dioxide interacts with plant life and the role of clouds in warming.

    But that approach lost out to the computer-modeling approach favored by climate scientists. And that approach was flawed from the beginning, Dyson said.

    “I just think they don’t understand the climate,” he said of climatologists. “Their computer models are full of fudge factors.”

    A major fudge factor concerns the role of clouds. The greenhouse effect of carbon dioxide on its own is limited. To get to the apocalyptic projections trumpeted by Al Gore and company, the models have to include assumptions that CO-2 will cause clouds to form in a way that produces more warming.

    “The models are extremely oversimplified,” he said. “They don’t represent the clouds in detail at all. They simply use a fudge factor to represent the clouds.”


    Dyson said his skepticism about those computer models was borne out by recent reports of a study by Ed Hawkins of the University of Reading in Great Britain that showed global temperatures were flat between 2000 and 2010 — even though we humans poured record amounts of CO2 into the atmosphere during that decade.

    That was vindication for a man who was termed “a civil heretic” in a New York Times Magazine article on his contrarian views. Dyson embraces that label, with its implication that what he opposes is a religious movement. So does his fellow Princeton physicist and fellow skeptic, William Happer.

    “There are people who just need a cause that’s bigger than themselves,” said Happer. “Then they can feel virtuous and say other people are not virtuous.”

    To show how uncivil this crowd can get, Happer e-mailed me an article about an Australian professor who proposes — quite seriously — the death penalty for heretics such as Dyson. As did Galileo, they can get a reprieve if they recant.

    I hope that guy never gets to hear Dyson’s most heretical assertion: Atmospheric CO2 may actually be improving the environment.

    “It’s certainly true that carbon dioxide is good for vegetation,” Dyson said. “About 15 percent of agricultural yields are due to CO2 we put in the atmosphere. From that point of view, it’s a real plus to burn coal and oil.”

    In fact, there’s more solid evidence for the beneficial effects of CO2 than the negative effects, he said. So why does the public hear only one side of this debate? Because the media do an awful job of reporting it.

    “They’re absolutely lousy,” he said of American journalists. “That’s true also in Europe. I don’t know why they’ve been brainwashed.”

    I know why: They’re lazy. Instead of digging into the details, most journalists are content to repeat that mantra about “consensus” among climate scientists.

    The problem, said Dyson, is that the consensus is based on those computer models. Computers are great for analyzing what happened in the past, he said, but not so good at figuring out what will happen in the future. But a lot of scientists have built their careers on them. Hence the hatred for dissenters.

    Full story. See video interview with Dyson at end of story.
    Last edited by John Reece; 09-11-2014, 08:08 PM.

  • #2
    Now that was interesting!
    Atheism is the cult of death, the death of hope. The universe is doomed, you are doomed, the only thing that remains is to await your execution...

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jbnueb2OI4o&t=3s

    Comment


    • #3
      Something to ponder about models: What good is a 1:1 map?

      Comment


      • #4
        John Reece has stated that he won't respond to any posts of his threads, that being said I don't mind giving my opinion on this news reporting.

        Originally posted by John Reece View Post
        I have gotten the impression, and seem to remember explicit statements made by TWebbers, that said defense of the IPCC perspective is based on the science of physics.
        I haven't talked specifically about the IPCC, just the fact that Earth is getting warmer, and the well founded theory that this based on the undeniable increase of CO2 content in the atmosphere, with humans being the main contributing factor. And since discussing this, and its effects, such as the accelerating melting of the Arctic, this is a science issue.

        That has caused me to wonder why it is, then, that renowned scholars of physics such as Freeman Dyson and Richard Lindzen are quite critical of the IPCC's processes and products.
        Short question: Are they climatologists?

        This makes all the difference because no matter how brilliant any given physicist may be, they're not competent when go outside their chosen field. I know of many examples of otherwise bright nobel prize winners who turned into cranks later in their life, the discoverer of the superconducting quantum interference phenomenon and inventor of the SQUID using this principle to finely measure magnetic fields, has so far spent the rest of his life trying to prove the existence of paranormal powers.

        Linus Pauling, arguably the greatest chemist in the world spent the rest of his life as a health science crank, pursuing megavitamin treatments based on specious logic that might have worked well when dealing with the chemistry he was used to, but couldn't be translated to the biochemistry of the body.

        Newton himself ended up pursuing alchemy.

        As for the interview:

        Climatologists Are No Einsteins, Says His Successor
        As there really aren't that many climatologists out there who deny the basic facts of global warming, people like Anthony Watts are trying their hardest to find high profile dissenters. So when they do find one they'll drum up their careers. Freeman Dyson is an important figure in the realm of Quantum Field Theory, one of the fathers of the field, but he's still nowhere nearly as well cited as Einstein.

        There's an implied argument from authority here "This guy is very smart, as smart as Einstein and he's on our side, so you better believe him and everyone else better too."

        “I think any good scientist ought to be a skeptic,” Dyson said.
        This is true, and basically any scientist worth his salts is. However being a skeptic is not the same thing as being in denial, or forever holding off assent. Anthony Watts isn't a scientist merely for denying that the Earth is getting warmer, or claiming that its getting colder.

        But that approach lost out to the computer-modeling approach favored by climate scientists. And that approach was flawed from the beginning, Dyson said.
        ...
        The problem, said Dyson, is that the consensus is based on those computer models. Computers are great for analyzing what happened in the past, he said, but not so good at figuring out what will happen in the future. But a lot of scientists have built their careers on them. Hence the hatred for dissenters.

        “I just think they don’t understand the climate,” he said of climatologists. “Their computer models are full of fudge factors.”
        The blog post spends a long time talking about all the fudge factors without actually mentioning them. Only that in Dysons opinion they're there. I'm also not sure what is being proposed instead, as you can't do experiments to find the future.

        Pen and paper calculations aren't better than computer models, that's for sure.

        A major fudge factor concerns the role of clouds. The greenhouse effect of carbon dioxide on its own is limited. ... , the models have to include assumptions that CO-2 will cause clouds to form in a way that produces more warming.
        There's no "fudge factor" about it. This is based on a simple theory of water vapour feedback. Water vapour is a greenhouse gas, the more of it there is in the atmosphere the more of an effect it will have. The amount of water vapour in the atmosphere is mainly determined by the global average temperature, increase the temperature and you'll increase the amount of water vapour, which will again cause even more of a temperature rise. So it gives a net feedback effect to any independent temperature increase.

        It can also act with negative feedback.

        Both are added into the current models.

        Studies have indicated that water vapour roughly adds back the same effect as CO2, so a 1C increase from CO2 becomes 2C. Other feedback mechanism are discussed, but he doesn't mention them. He doesn't even mention if the way this is done is the fudge factor.

        This is it, after more than three paragraphs, this is the one fudge factor we're told about. And we don't even know what makes it "fudgy" in Dyson's opinion. Apparently its also the only one Dyson has ever mentioned, since Anthony Watts, who usually links away, never links to anymore documents here. If I've missed something please let me know.

        Dyson said his skepticism about those computer models was borne out by recent reports of a study by Ed Hawkins of the University of Reading in Great Britain that showed global temperatures were flat between 2000 and 2010 — even though we humans poured record amounts of CO2 into the atmosphere during that decade.
        I'm very sorry to see that Dyson bought into those arguments. It might be simple because he's getting old (famous scientists who get old usually get weird, look at Hawking's latest statements), or because he was mainly a theorists and never really dealt with experimental data in a close fashion. With any real data there are significant uncertainties associated with the measurements, and even when there are trends there can be random deviations by the minutia we never modelled.

        Since we cannot predict the weather ahead of time, even more than a few days, its impossible for us to predict those tiny undulations of the yearly measurements. If we could, we would get very close to the graph from year to year. What can be predicted is the global average trend since that doesn't depend on local weather. And with those undulations ten years is simple too little time to determine that there's no warming happening, despite all the other evidence that shows that there should be. Unless physics is basically wrong the Earth should be getting warmer.

        Let me repeat that: Unless physics, as we know it today, is wrong the Earth should be getting warmer. Not colder, not stalling forever, it should be getting warmer.

        Seer and others once asked me why it is that ten years is too short a time frame, so I've given an animated gif that displays two simulations of a linear growth of temperature with random fluctuations. As you can see, even when there's a definite trend, it can look like there's hiatuses now and then over periods of even twenty years.

        hiatus.gif

        To get to the apocalyptic projections trumpeted by Al Gore and company...
        For some reason Anthony Watts and other dissenters talk about Al Gore as if he was an originator of climate science. That its all just political propaganda he drummed up during his bid for presidency. This is simple not the case. He was probably the first political candidate to popularise the fact that there's global warming. As such he made some mistakes that scientists didn't have consensus on.

        To show how uncivil this crowd can get, Happer e-mailed me an article about an Australian professor who proposes — quite seriously — the death penalty for heretics such as Dyson.
        This quote epitomises the rest of the article that doesn't talk about the weakness of models. Anthony Watts drums up a scenario of honest scientists being persecuted for their beliefs. The email whether it is real or not, is irrelevant to this. Michael Mann - whom dissenters have singled out for some reasons - has received hundreds of death threats from people who accuse him of far worse.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Leonhard View Post
          John Reece has stated that he won't respond to any posts of his threads, that being said I don't mind giving my opinion on this news reporting.
          Please cite a quote of me stating that I won't respond to any posts of my threads.

          Not engaging in argumentation is not the same a not responding to any posts.

          Arguing with people who are adamantly convinced of a belief is a futile wast of energy, which is something I have very precocious little to expend.
          Last edited by John Reece; 09-12-2014, 10:56 AM.

          Comment


          • #6
            In the Global Warming Alarmism Isn't Science thread you wrote in post #21

            Originally posted by John Reece
            At age 80+, with more health problems than I can list at any given time, I am very limited in terms of activity I can engage in, on or off the Internet. One thing I can no longer cope with ― to much extent if any ― is argumentation. If that disqualifies me from acceptable participation in any forum or the entire website, so be it.
            Here you pretty much state you won't respond, except rarely, to any rebuttals to what you write. This was after I pointed out that sylas had written you an excellent rebuttal in the same thread.

            Comment


            • #7
              I do not read there that John will never respond to postings, only that he is limiting himself to those that are not argumentative.

              As I posted in another thread, people are free to respond to any of John's posts on climate change or not. If he chooses to not engage that is his prerogative.

              Carry on.


              Securely anchored to the Rock amid every storm of trial, testing or tribulation.

              Comment


              • #8
                The computer models can't even accurately model the past climate so what makes anyone think they can model the future?

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by mossrose View Post
                  I do not read there that John will never respond to postings, only that he is limiting himself to those that are not argumentative.
                  Bullseye!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Sparko View Post
                    The computer models can't even accurately model the past climate so what makes anyone think they can model the future?
                    Are you referring to something specific here?
                    Last edited by Leonhard; 09-12-2014, 11:24 AM. Reason: I deleted something about having seen models, since its been a while and I'd rather check up again.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Sparko View Post
                      The computer models can't even accurately model the past climate so what makes anyone think they can model the future?


                      It's that simple.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by John Reece View Post
                        Bullseye!
                        I apologise for having misinterpreted you. I read it as an excuse given to allow for blasting the website with a lot of news articles, and drowning all replies. This was something Truthseeker did on the old forum. He managed to kill the Peak Oil thread by spam posting it to death with alternative energy, and gold currency post of similar form to what you had.

                        I was not aware of your posts in the other areas of this website. I was simple seeing familiar behaviour and not liking it.

                        As such, I might be very convinced that the consensus on the Global Warming science is correct, however I'm also able to change my mind (ask anyone here). If you're similarly disposed, I hope we can have a discussion now and then.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Leonhard View Post
                          I apologise for having misinterpreted you. I read it as an excuse given to allow for blasting the website with a lot of news articles, and drowning all replies. This was something Truthseeker did on the old forum. He managed to kill the Peak Oil thread by spam posting it to death with alternative energy, and gold currency post of similar form to what you had.

                          I was not aware of your posts in the other areas of this website. I was simple seeing familiar behaviour and not liking it.

                          As such, I might be very convinced that the consensus on the Global Warming science is correct, however I'm also able to change my mind (ask anyone here). If you're similarly disposed, I hope we can have a discussion now and then.


                          I appreciate your gracious response here.


                          Securely anchored to the Rock amid every storm of trial, testing or tribulation.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Leonhard View Post
                            I apologise for having misinterpreted you. I read it as an excuse given to allow for blasting the website with a lot of news articles, and drowning all replies. This was something Truthseeker did on the old forum. He managed to kill the Peak Oil thread by spam posting it to death with alternative energy, and gold currency post of similar form to what you had.

                            I was not aware of your posts in the other areas of this website. I was simple seeing familiar behaviour and not liking it.

                            As such, I might be very convinced that the consensus on the Global Warming science is correct, however I'm also able to change my mind (ask anyone here). If you're similarly disposed, I hope we can have a discussion now and then.
                            That is indeed a gracious response, for which I thank you.

                            Here are recent posts of mine in another area of this website:

                            http://www.theologyweb.com/campus/sh...ll=1#post80072 ― click the link to page two after reading to the bottom of page one.

                            In the past, I have for the most part confined myself to the Biblical Languages 301 forum.

                            I came to Civics only to explore the topic of global warming / climate change by way of posting things as a way of learning ― given the fact that from my first post here I was starting from a condition of almost complete ignorance, except for what I had picked up from reading people I have known by way of their writings over a period of many years, all of whom are conservatives, just as I have been since I read Whitaker Chambers (Witness) and Paul Johnson (Modern Times) ― whose respective books prompted me to explore a world view that I had missed while making my way through liberal theological schools and a liberal workplace (local government mental health center)

                            I have learned a lot from the contrary responses of consensus-science advocates ― quite a lot!

                            Although I am not Truthseeker, I am a truth seeker ― one who proceeds with an open mind.

                            I hear what both sides say, but only one side impresses me in a way that resonates with all that I have learned about people I have studied and known during the past 8 decades; well, the other side impresses me too, in an opposite way.
                            Last edited by John Reece; 09-12-2014, 01:05 PM.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by John Reece View Post
                              I hear what both sides say, but only one side impresses me in a way that resonates with all that I have learned about people I have studied and known during the past 8 decades; well, the other side impresses me too, in an opposite way.
                              Thank you for the response you wrote to me, and I will check out the link you gave.

                              I can't say that I've been very impressed with the other side of this discussion. Unfortunately I don't have quite your experience of people, but I do have a good first rate contact with the science departments. And the descriptions of scientists which are very popular in dissenter circles, I don't find fitting at all. More so there's a bad tendency to repeat points long since discussed, as if no discussion has taken place.

                              I am willing to discuss the issues though. Was there anything worth picking up in anything I've written in this thread so far?

                              Looking forward to discussing with you John Reece.

                              Comment

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