Regulation gone wild – Christmas lights are the next target of nanny state thinking

“Regulation gone wild – Christmas lights are the next target of nanny state thinking” (2014-112-28). Anthony Watts discovers the Gub’mint War on Christmas! Obama wants to take away all our Christmas lights!!!!! It’s true because Ernest Istook, a former Republican Congressman from Oklahoma, says so and he’s sure made a dedicated study of the President.

Can you image any other reason the Consumer Products Safety Commission would regulate cheap outdoor electrical products? They can have our Christmas lights when they pry them from our cold dead hands!

Some notes on the Heartland Leak

Some notes on the Heartland Leak (2012-02-15). Anthony Watts urges us, as others have noted, to ‘pay no attention to the man behind the curtain!’ The revelation that he co-ordinates with and has received money from the Heartland Institute does not mean that he’s just an unscrupulous mouthpiece. He’s definitely not panicked by the exposure either.

James Hansen! Algore! The e-mails were stolen! Some of them are fake!

Anthony’s just collateral damage here though. The real story here is that the notoriously partisan Heartland Institute, a “free-market think tank” theoretically ‘providing information to inform policy debate’ but long regarded as the political home of climate denial, tobacco enthusiasm and government hating, has suffered an embarrassing “leak” of documents. Nothing like a little sunshine to make the bugs skitter.

Read about it at:

Of course this is totally different from the “Climategate” e-mails, which revealed that in private conversation some climate scientists didn’t hold high opinions of global warming deniers. The fact that the Heartland Institute spends most of its time and money scheming to confuse the public and to undermine objective scientific advice (i.e. funding Anthony Watts) is an irrelevance in comparison! Thus ending Global Warming forever.

Anthony’s personal defense boils down to noting that the Heartland Institute and an “Anonymous Donor” have (to our knowledge) only given him $44,000 for one particular project. Dr. James Hansen has received way more dough, therefore Anthony is less of a hypocrite. Now that’s what I call claiming the high ground.

However, Anthony’s concealed “scientific” funding came from a biased political organization. That’s a tough one to skate away from, huh?

Note to Anthony: you just look stupid when you try to contrast all money spent in support of any environmental cause to just the political funding for opposition to CO2 regulation. Unless of course the Heartland Institute and their ilk are also busy arguing on behalf of, for example, killing more endangered species or putting more mercury in fish.

2012-02-20 update: Peter Gleick, at the Huffington Post, is the source of the Heartland Institute leak and asserts their authenticity.

2012-05-22 update: After much caterwauling by the Heartland Institute about forgeries and the shameful behavior of nasty warmists, the true conclusion can be drawn: “Peter Gleick cleared of forging documents in Heartland expose

The End is Near for Faith in AGW

The End is Near for Faith in AGW (June 25th, 2011). Anthony Watts posts a prediction by ordinary citizen Russell Cook (“semi-retired graphic artist” and right-wing blogger for the climaterealist denialists). It’s over! The warmists have lost! Or are just about to lose. I love these over-the-shoulder declarations of victory from people as they flee the debate.

Apparently his “seventeen+ months of research” allows him to declare that Al Gore’s 2007 documentary film, the last word in climate science, is based on a lie. Perhaps even more than one! Also “the media” are all mean to denialists because they don’t give equal time (except Fox News, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, The Times, The Telegraph, National Post, The Australian, etc.).

Here’s the vile canard that started off all the skeptic-bullying:

Skeptic scientists are accused of being in a fossil fuel-funded conspiracy to “reposition global warming as theory rather than fact“…

Here’s the big problem I found:  That accusation is based on a 1991 memo no one was allowed to see, using an out-of-context sentence, promoted by a person who was not a Pulitzer winner despite accolades to the contrary, who was credited with finding the memo by Al Gore, but Gore had the memo collection in his own possession four years earlier.

Actually, I thought that “skeptic scientists” were being accused of misrepresenting physical science and climate evidence. My bad I guess. So an unseen 1991 memo, declared to be taken out-of-context, is the real smoking gun behind all this cruelty and dispute? Oh, the irony! Oh, the blinding faith!

I will agree that it would be great to see (the eternally constipated?) Richard Lindzen, a Republican “science” witness on any number of topics since 1991, scowling in front of a House Committee again. He didn’t do too well last time, except in the imagination of self-convinced denialists.

Anthony optimistically declares victory too while strangely turning away from the science:

“When the public learns about huge faults in the skeptic scientist accusation, combined with the faults in the IPCC, the result may send AGW into total collapse.”

You’re dancing on the head of a pin, Anthony.

Climate Progress blog shuts down – disappears all previous comments

Climate Progress blog shuts down – disappears all previous comments (May 30, 2011). Nothing like a measured response, eh Anthony? The Think Progress website underwent a redesign over the weekend and Anthony Watts is eager to give a definitive assessment:

It appears the mendacious Joe Romm has been given new marching orders by Center for American Progress Big Brother Blog: “Think Progress”. From what I make of it, it seems the management realized that CP just wasn’t holding much readership, as it looks like the same 30 commenters or so frequent the place.  Sooo…the spin is on. Joe’s doing his best to make his forced merger under Think Progress look like a win.

So none of the cool kids read Climate Progress, Anthony’s blog is way better anyway, and Joe Romm took his ball home (“disappears all previous comments”) because of all the mean things the cool kids, who never go there, were saying.

Reality: It was a website redesign! Sometime comments take a while to reconnect. It’s not a nefarious tactic to suppress the vigorous triumph of denialist criticisms. Climate Progress and Think Progress have always been closely linked, if anything it seems that “Think” will be promoting “Climate” more, not absorbing it.

Christ! Anthony’s grasp of website management is even worse than of climate science. And that is truly saying something. Anthony sounds like a kid who can’t best his school-yard rival hoping their parent will do it for them.

Here are a few Climate Progress posts about the process:

2011-08-24 Update: It took a while, but the old comments are finally up again. So much for Anthony’s accusations.

UVA to supply Mann emails/documents but you can’t look (yet)

UVA to supply Mann emails/documents but you can’t look (yet) (May 25th, 2011). Anthony Watts’s friends at scientific cornerstone the American Tradition Institute have won their Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) legal battle against Dr. Mann and the University of Virginia! They’re going to get everything Dr. Mann, or anyone that even knew him, ever wrote while at the University of Virginia! It will be full of instructions on how to fake global warming evidence! Also Anthony now knows what in camera means.

Chris Horner from the Competitive Enterprise Institute (American Tradition Institute is just one of many sock-puppets) gloats about his FOIA demands:

“In short, the University was forced to part ways from supporting the PFAW/ACLU/AAAS/AAUP demands [damn commie libruls all of them!] and Mann’s interests, and start working to make itself look less bad to a court.” and “we get it all“. (emphasis mine)

Actually, no. But I suppose this is as close to scientific victory as the denialists will ever get.

The material in question is sealed and the only documents that will be unsealed is the fraction that is confirmed to contain correspondence relevant to specific research supported by public grant money. The unrelated material that Horner wanted to sweep up and snoop through will presumably remain excluded.

Chris Horner’s maneuverings are a partisan continuation of the frankly outrageous legal assault on Dr. Mann by the Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli, built on the flimsy excuse that state funds may have somehow been misused. The University of Virginia’s position on these sweeping FOIA demands has always been that correspondence not directly connected to a legitimate FOIA would not be provided.

Funny how denialists and libertarians consider anything to do with themselves inviolably private but anything to do with their targets unquestionably public domain. People who receive work for government are apparently right-less slaves.

When this tactic first came up many denialists were uncomfortable with the invasion of privacy aspects, but they seem fine with it now. Steve McIntyre, the Great Auditor, was against it, but now he’s for it. Even Anthony himself was once merely tepid on this tactic. I guess principle is failing to overrule expediency.

“Get Carter” campaign grows on Australia’s ABC radio & TV

Get Carter” campaign grows on Australia’s ABC radio & TV. Poor benighted Professor Bob Carter gets ardent supporter Bob Fernley-Jones to pass on to Ric Werme an article for Anthony Watts’ blog pointing out how badly he is being treated by (some of) the Australian media. Love those social networks.

Marine geologist Professor Carter has been “long vilified on radio in the Science Show“, where they talk to lots of real scientists but rarely to Bob. This is apparently the source of much resentment as he craves attention.

That was bad enough but now ABC TV’s Media Watch is, you know, watching the media and has taken brief note of Carter’s scientifically foolish book Climate: the Counter Consensus. It’s just too much. I mean, they’re almost communists, we shouldn’t have to listen to them! The program dealt primarily with commercial talk radio’s nurturing of denialist personalities and willful ignoring of more knowledgeable “mainstream” scientists. Poor Bob Carter was just a walk-on, but he’s certainly been cut to the quick.

Media Watch expressed their opinion of Professor Carter’s talk-radio credentials in part based on this villainous general observation about Climate: the Counter Consensus (“despite that it has had high acclaim”) by professional climatologist Dr. David Karoly:

“it has fewer gross errors than Ian Plimer’s book Heaven+Earth, it is a mixture of scientific facts with misinformation and misinterpretation, as well as outright errors, spun around a framework of personal opinion. Its conclusions are inconsistent with any scientific assessment of climate change prepared by any major national or international scientific body”

– e-mail excerpt from the March 21st 2011 Media Watch transcript.

But other cranks loved his book! Isn’t that proof that it’s sound? I guess not. Why are Dr. Karoly’s observations fairly general? It seems that neither he nor any other qualified scientists can work up the energy to catalog all the bunk Carter has packed into it.

Climate: the Counter Consensus was printed by Stacey International Publishers who brought us the “Independent Minds” series of publications including such titles as The Wind Farm Scam, The Hockey Stick Illusion – Climategate and the Corruption of Science, and Climate: the Great Delusion. Detect a theme?

Time Magazine blizzard science sets low standard for green journalism

Time Magazine blizzard science sets low standard for green journalism. Ryan Maue complains about biases of the “liberal media” (that would be Time Magazine). Apparently environmental journalist Bryan Walsh says that while most unusual weather events can’t be tied to “climate change”, the 2010 Christmas snowstorms fit into an expected climate pattern. Now that is an outrage!

Ryan’s evidence: a Star Trek clip from YouTube. But is Ryan arguing against heavier snowfall under Global Warming (apparently not), or the origin of this particular blizzard? It seems he’s trying to accuse Walsh of saying the blizzard was caused by “climate change” which isn’t something that Walsh claimed.

A reply to Senator Menendez from Santa

A reply to Senator Menendez from Santa. Har, har. Two days before Christmas, Anthony Watts delights in an insulting joke response from Santa, recycled from a 1974 letter from the Cleveland Browns, to Democratic Senator Robert Menendez’s “Letter to Santa” on

Compelling denialist argument, or thuggish frat house “hijinks”? Same thing really.

ABC interview wrongly torches skeptic position

ABC interview wrongly torches skeptic position. Does Anthony Watts really think that denialists fighting in “the cause of climate skepticism” accept that “both CO2 and CH4 are “greenhouse gases”, and yes they do have a warming effect by backscattered long wave infra red“? Guess he doesn’t read his blog’s comments. Wait he does, compulsively and passive-aggressively. Anthony’s only other contribution here is to helpfully provide e-mail addresses that can be bombarded.

The reposted ‘concern troll’ complaint by Canadian denialist Tom Harris maintains that Australia’s ABC Radio Science Show interview with Bob Ward from the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment was too soft by half. (Funny how these guys manage to be on top of such distant matters and have their posts pop up in so many places at once.)

Harris thinks the interviewer should have asked a juicy leading question like “which is more important – the health and welfare of people suffering today, or those not yet born who might suffer someday due to climate change that even you admit is highly uncertain?” I think what he really wants to say is “why should I have to do anything I don’t want to when the effects will only be felt after I’m dead”. I’d be surprised to see a libertarian or Republican tenaciously fighting to improve the lives of anyone other than themselves.

The rest of the post is mere high-school rhetoric and deliberate misrepresentation (try to find the “vilification [of] Professors Carter, Lindzen and Plimer” that Harris claims). There’s something about denialists that compels them to recreate public debates in their minds and explain to themselves how they were really won them.

I love Harris’ embrace of eyeballed temperature trends “showing” negative temperature trends since 2002 though. What happened to “1998 was the hottest year”? Keep the cups moving Tom, keep ’em moving.

Mann’s old University gets another subpoena

Mann’s old University gets another subpoena. Anthony Watts is a bit muted on the topic of Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli’s attempt to restart his deeply ill-advised “investigation” of Professor Michael Mann over some of the grants he received while at the University of Virginia. On the one hand, he loves to see climate scientists being harassed. On the other, Cuccinelli’s clearly way out of his depth and jurisdiction.

But Anthony does have the energy to repost what the denialist lobbyists at the Science and Public Policy Institute are saying about it, and his commenters have no problem waxing ignorant, rattling on about “taxpayer’s money”, “hiding evidence”, etc.

The ethics, politics and legality of Cuccinelli’s maneuverings have all been covered before, both on this website and at other important places such as Real Climate, Andrew Revkin at the New York Times, the Washington Post (1, 2), even USA Today.

Short version? This is morally and intellectually bankrupt Tea Party harassment.