The science is scuttled: Abraham, Gleick, and Trenberth resort to libeling Spencer and Christy

The science is scuttled: Abraham, Gleick, and Trenberth resort to libeling Spencer and Christy (2011-09-07). Did you know that pointing out the repetitively flawed science of denialist scientists like Roy Spencer and John Christy is “libelous”? Anthony thinks so, and so does Dr. Roger Pielke Sr.

Opinion: The damaging impact of Roy Spencer’s science, recently published in The Daily Climate, is apparently a nasty example of this criminal. How dare they point out that “Over the years, Spencer and Christy developed a reputation for making serial mistakes that other scientists have been forced to uncover”? Well, maybe it’s not actually libelous because it’s kind of true. But surely it’s mean! That alone is proof that AGW is a lie.

The reliable Dr. Roger Pielke Sr. has consulted his friends and they all think Roy and John are swell, so there.

It seems that the denialist defenses have fallen all the way back to complaining about “tone”? Maybe Anthony’s cartoon sinking ship is falsely labeled just like the false science he touts.

16 thoughts on “The science is scuttled: Abraham, Gleick, and Trenberth resort to libeling Spencer and Christy

  1. Well, Anthony needs all the fake diversion outrage he can muster to hide his other boastful shame, the one about the ever-declining Arctic Ocean sea ice by both area and volume.

    PIOMAS August 2011 (new volume record)

    “Let me stress that these volume numbers aren’t observed data, but are calculated using the Pan-Arctic Ice Ocean Modeling and Assimilation System (PIOMAS, Zhang and Rothrock, 2003).”

    NSDIC 6th September 2011

    “There is nothing as eloquent as a rattlesnakes tail. – Navajo”

    “A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on. Winston Churchill”

  2. “LIBEL” (Law): Any statement or representation, published without just cause or excuse… tending to expose another to public hatred, contempt, or ridicule (Webster)

    The ‘just cause’………. is clearly expressed in the last paragaraph of the Trenberth, Gleick, and Abraham opinion piece.

    “We only wish the media would cover these scientific discoveries [Santer’s Christy paper, Dessler’s Spencer paper] with similar vigor and enthusiasm that they displayed in tackling Spencer’s now-discredited findings.”

    [I’d say the denialists didn’t “tackle” Spencer’s findings, they blindly trumpeted them. – Ben]

  3. The Poe is strong with this one. By Anthony’s standards for calculating these things, that would be the final nail in the coffin of denialism. And possibly the penultimate nail to boot.

    [Every time a denialist opens their mouths it’s “the final nail” it seems. It must be exhausting pretending to to show so much enthusiasm for so little consequence. – Ben]

    • Well, you can only double down for so long. Deniers have been claiming for at least five years that global warming alarmism is losing credibility and about to fade away, and yet, here it still is.

      [Doesn’t louder work? – Ben]

  4. “Like most of us, I’ve been a bit taken aback by the ritual seppuku of young academic Wolfgang Wagner, formerly editor of Remote Sensing, for the temerity of casting a shadow across the path of climate capo Kevin Trenberth.” – Said McIntyre, here.

    Information for any ‘climate capo’: .

    That’s where the denialists are coming to. The good news? When one encounters such, one knows one does not have to read any further!

    [McIntyre has been dining out on one trivial contribution for the better part of a decade now, always reflecting his wounded ego. – Ben]

  5. I like Gavin and RC’s restraint on this one.

    I was also left to wonder if Pielke Sr.’s initial comment about being present in the key discussion about one of Spencer’s errors, and minimizing it, if he was actually referencing the specific remote sensing error that others were alluding to?

  6. Thing is, if other scientists have an error pointed out to them they either correct it or retract the paper. Spencer seems to make a habit of ignoring errors until enough people make enough noise that he has to do something about it.

    He also has a bad habit of trumpeting nonsense in the media. Like in the case of this badly flawed paper (and his flawed satellite data).

    You’re spot on, that deniers obviously ran out of coffins and nails ages ago. They keep trying the recycling thingy – but it’s getting very old.

    • Actually, plenty do not correct or retract. I’m currently trying to weed out textbook errors in a small field of science, but several authors I contacted just don’t see they are wrong. Outright incompetence. But unlike Spencer, they don’t get any media attention.

      [So it’s not just toddlers that fail to distinguish between “good” attention and “bad”! – Ben]


    Scroll down to the fifth graph, Cryosphere Today. Says Watts: “Cryosphere Today has an anomaly plot that shows so far, 2011 has not exceeded the 2007 record minimum.”

    Watts can’t tell anomaly and absolute apart (well yes, he can of course, but calling a liar a liar is slander in dem dere bizarro world).
    The record minimum is a fact at CT too: .

    Still, I expected Watts to hail the thin margin of the present record as ‘the total recovery of Arctic sea ice’.

  8. Hmm, a harsh tone towards deniers. I had no idea they had it so tough.

    Those pampered climate scientists just get frivolous investigation lawsuits and death threats.

  9. In an Update, Anthony Watts does respond to the criticisms: he removes the word ‘feedback’ from his title.
    But he makes no changes to the discussion of feedbacks in his article.

    Since Anthony Watts didn’t acknowledge a misinterpretation, potential readers are still advised to read the correcting comments by Bart Verheggen and Roy Spencer, first.

  10. Heh. It is to be hoped that Anthony Watts, doyen of the sceptical crowd, knows his bottom from his elbow.

    Because he sure don’t know a feedback from a forcing:-

    Dunno what’s more amusing the – ‘we knew it all along!’ chorus, or Watts’ refusal to let the penny drop. Even after Roy Spencer and the paper’s author, Richard Allan (and me) drop by to tell him he’s grabbed hold of the wrong end of the stick, he insists that ‘I saw things differently’ and the believes the paper indicates that clouds can be both a forcing and a feedback, even after the author himself tells him ‘This is a basic error by the author of the post’.

    My latest contribution …

    “Show me where there’s positive feedback demonstrated there and the next time I’m in the UK I’ll look you up and buy you a beer. – Anthony”

    Spectacular missing of the point there! The Allan paper simply is NOT ABOUT feedbacks, positive or negative. The entire comparison with the numbers from Dessler and Spencer is bogus, they don’t even have the same units, for Pete’s sake!

    Wasn’t I polite?

  11. Errors are being corrected by Roy Spencer, ooooh the irony ……

    [That’s when you know you’ve blown yourself right out of the water… – Ben]

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