2011-02-23 09:18:02Dana catches the eye of Lubos Motl
Rob Honeycutt

robhon@mac...
98.207.62.223

 

What... a... fruitcake!  Check him out!

Think we can get Lubos to come over and play "Poptech" for a while? 

2011-02-23 10:05:09
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.60.248

Kind of unbalanced.

I don't know if he has given up physics entirely to become a full-time crank.

0000-00-00 00:00:00
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...

2011-02-23 10:23:32
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

Oh dear,  Motl has nothing so resorts to ad hom attacks.

Dana is hitting sensitive and inconvenient nerves, excellent.

Best to ignore Motl, as he is, IMHO, dangerous; besides he is seeking out attention, so let us not play his  "game".

 

 

2011-02-23 10:36:00
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
84.151.60.248

Albatross,

What do you mean by "dangerous"?

2011-02-23 11:23:29
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

Neal,

I've been following Motl's outbursts and diatribes for a while.  IMO, Motl is unstable.   

He is also dangerous in the sense that he is smart enough to distort, mislead, obfuscate and argue with you until the cows come home. Kinda like PopTech-- but smarter. 

Motl may also have had a hand (with Lindzen) in setting up Phil Jones to "admit that there was no warming since 1995".  Hogwash I know, but very sly and very effective.

Best, IMHO, to now focus  our attention on Lindzen, Spencer and Christy-- they are all the contrarians and deniers really have left. Until very recently they have been flying under the radar and BS detector.  Spencer is particular is becoming more vocal-- I get the impression he sees that their "case" is slipping rapidly and that he is panicking a bit as a result.

2011-02-23 11:34:13
Rob Honeycutt

robhon@mac...
98.207.62.223

I'm pretty confident it was Motl/Lindzen who set up Jones.  I got into a big tiff with Motl on Peter Sinclair's channel not long after the Phil Jones interview when Peter mentioned Motl's comments on a blog about "1995 being the year statistical significance safely fails."  He was livid and was ready to bring lawyers down on Peter for libel, blah blah blah.  

I agree with Albatross.  Motl is Poptech with a brain.  A conniving, devious, deeply demented brain.  

2011-02-23 12:16:15'Motl is Poptech with a brain'
John Cook

john@skepticalscience...
121.223.91.161

LOL to this comment, Rob.

I think this is a great result as it shows Dana's work is having an impact. The Lindzen article was picked up by Treehugger and reposted by Climate Progress. So even though we had hoped to get it in the Guardian (which didn't happen), the effort to write it for a broad audience paid good dividends in the end.

To earn the hatred of the disinformers is a badge of honour, Dana. Wear it well. Good to see they're not always going to blame your writing on me either :-)

Lubos' article is one helluva read. You can almost see the frothy bits of spittle dripping down his monitor while he wrote the article. Angry, angry young man. I have corresponded with him in the past, we've exchanged quite pleasant emails but I think his views have become more extreme as time has gone on. Plus his public persona seems to be a bit more chest thumping than in private correspondance. I logged his article via the Firefox Add-on - not sure if I got all his arguments though, I started skimming towards the end:

http://www.skepticalscience.com/article.php?a=5209

Skeptic Arguments What the Science Says
"There's no tropospheric hot spot" We see a clear "short-term hot spot" - there's various evidence for a "long-term hot spot".
"Climate sensitivity is low" Net positive feedback is confirmed by many different lines of evidence.
"Lindzen and Choi find low climate sensitivity" Lindzen and Choi’s paper is viewed as unacceptably flawed by other climate scientists.
"There is no consensus" 97% of climate experts agree humans are causing global warming.
"Solar Cycle Length proves its the sun" The sun has not warmed since 1970 and so cannot be driving global warming.
"It's the sun" In the last 35 years of global warming, sun and climate have been going in opposite directions
"Climate's changed before" Climate reacts to whatever forces it to change at the time; humans are now the dominant forcing.
"Earth hasn't warmed as much as expected" This argument ignores the cooling effect of aerosols and the planet's thermal inertia.

I can't believe he cited that 1991 Lassen paper on solar cycles. He might be Poptech with a brain but surely he realises the authors debunked their own work several years later as more data became available. Cognitive bias is a powerful force.

2011-02-23 13:16:50Treehugger
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
69.230.107.233
I just saw the article was picked up by CP. http://climateprogress.org/2011/02/22/how-we-know-recent-global-warming-is-not-natural/ Treehugger picked it up too? I gotta start visiting their site more often again. I tried to leave a comment at Motl's. Just having a bit of fun, nothing serious. We'll see if he let's it through moderation.
2011-02-23 13:49:44Lubos let my comment through
John Cook

john@skepticalscience...
121.223.91.161

That time he tried to associate me with a doomsday cult.

Then he emailed me afterwards just to double down on his assertion that my adherence to AGW was equivalent to belonging to a doomsday cult. I think he genuinely believes it. That was the moment I realised he was too far gone to have a rational conversation with.

2011-02-23 14:23:11
Andy S

skucea@telus...
66.183.188.159

Albatross: Motl may also have had a hand (with Lindzen) in setting up Phil Jones to "admit that there was no warming since 1995".

Also, the question that preceded that one was also set by someone who knew exactly what they were doing because they picked the four tends in the past that have both statistical significance and trends that exceeded the 1995-2009 trend. This was a clever muti-dimensional cherry pick since they took account of dates, lengths of the periods, trends and statistical significance. What clued me into this were the irregular lengths of the four periods selected.

For some reason I'm unable to upload images to SkS right now, so this one's at tinypic.

I was going to do a blog post on this but my stats aren't good enough. If anyone wants to lend me a hand, I'd be happy to collaborate,

 

PS: Did anyone else notice all the advertising on Lubos's site to sign save polar bears petitions and to invest in CCS projects? lol 

2011-02-23 17:52:21Added new arguments to database
James Wight

jameswight@southernphone.com...
112.213.164.22

I have added a new argument which I have assigned to Motl’s post: “Non-CO2 forcings have higher efficacy”. I’m not sure if this is the most accurate paraphrase of Motl’s argument because he doesn’t say it explicitly, but it seems to be what he’s getting at when he talks about the climate sensitivity studies involving solar and volcanic forcing. I wonder if Motl even understands the distinction between efficacy and sensitivity. Anyway, John can reword if necessary – maybe “Climate is not very sensitive to CO2”?

It is striking how certain (and unskeptical) Motl is about climate sensitivity:

“The reason why tens of billions of dollars were not enough to reduce the error in the estimate of the climate sensitivity well below 100% is that the right value is not in this interval.”

I’ve also added another of Motl’s arguments: “Many forcings could explain stratospheric cooling”.

2011-02-23 21:10:06
MarkR
Mark Richardson
m.t.richardson2@gmail...
134.225.187.80

Different forcings do have different effects.

 

E.g. 1 W m^-2 from the Sun can have a different effect than 1 W m^-2 from CO2.

 

But by allowing for stratospheric adjustment most of the divergence disappears iirc. So that's why IPCC RF is defined the way it is, and it is a pretty solid metric.

2011-02-24 03:47:05efficacy
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
38.223.231.252

Good idea about the efficacy argument, James.  I've been seeing this more frequently - it's the 'skeptic' attempt to have their cake and eat it too, arguing that the climate is sensitive, but only to 'natural' forcings.  Studies have actually shown that the solar and volcanic efficacies are, if anything, lower than the CO2 efficacy.

I've got another climate sensitivity post in mind, and I might tackle the efficacy argument at the same time.  I'll need to do more research on efficacies first though.

2011-02-24 04:07:17
Rob Honeycutt

robhon@mac...
98.207.62.223
Dana...  Looks like Lubos didn't approve of your comments and didn't let your post through moderation.  (Whatta wuss.)  But good ol' Pierre got on with his own little diatribe of ad hom.  I find the whole thing amusing.
2011-02-24 04:17:07he did
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
38.223.231.252
Motl did allow my comment and responded to it.  It's amazing how many of his readers thought this completely stupid blog post was just brilliant.  Reminds me of WUWT readers, only quite possibly even dumber.
2011-02-24 04:47:27
Daniel Bailey
Daniel Bailey
yooper49855@hotmail...
97.83.150.102

All right, dana:  you sucked me in.  Read the Motl post, comments and all.

There'a a dearth of critical thinking and an absence of scientific skepticism there, for sure.

They do seem somewhat more literate than the usual slack-jawed WTFUWTius illiterati; multi-syllabic words abound (though it's evident their users lack real understanding of them).

 

Keep on truckin'...

;)

2011-02-24 04:58:41
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
91.33.110.223

I think there is some value in contesting the point, although you have to weigh the priority of bearding the Motl in his den vs. going after Monckton, Lindzen and Spencer. And you will be disadvantaged, since it will be on his website, which he can edit.

To do that, you will have to focus on ONE point at a time.  It should be possible: I don't see that his arguments are any deeper or more original than what we've seen before, on any of the points. Just pick a point and refuse to be drawn on anything else until the issues relevant to that point have been thrashed through.

No, ultimately you won't be able to convince HIM; but what else is new? The issue is the audience. If you can fight him to a standstill on a few topics, that will definitely shake up his horde of admirers: They are used to thinking that, since he's a string theorist, that he must walk on water (and I'm not sure that statement should be taken figuratively). If you can maintain an even tone, and keep the issue to the science, he'll eventually have to throw you out. That's actually an embarrassment to him.

You should be able to do it: You're quite familiar with the range of arguments covered in SkS, and we have a lot documented there. You can pick your pace of response; you can even preview your responses here.

Think about it.

2011-02-24 05:11:27
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
91.33.110.223
2011-02-24 05:17:55the jackass den
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
38.223.231.252
It would be hard to even know where to start - Motl said so many incredibly stupid things in that article.  I guess the tropical troposphere hot spot might be a good starting point.  I suppose I could make a comment about that and see how he reacts.
2011-02-24 05:34:11
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
91.33.110.223

Pick the topic you're most comfortable with:

- where your understanding is clear, and his arguments/points are wrong

- where SkS has good backgrounders and analyses, backed by peer-reviewed papers

 

Ignore the peanut gallery, unless responding to one of the bystanders helps you

2011-02-24 05:36:47
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
91.33.110.223
I suggest being pretty direct: "Let's talk about this point X, I don't agree with you claim that ..." Establish the point that you're not going to deal with anything else until X is resolved - one way or another.
2011-02-24 05:58:56
Rob Honeycutt

robhon@mac...
98.207.62.223
Would it be worthwhile to bait him to come over to SkS?  Pull him out of his comfy chair and put him in the hot seat.
2011-02-24 06:03:54
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
91.33.110.223

- Why would he agree?

- Also: On his territory, whatever points we make hurt; on our territory, he's nobody special anyway.

2011-02-24 06:04:31
perseus

owlsmoor@googlemail...
78.143.221.122
There is a good explanation of efficacy and the different types of forcing at Realclimate here
2011-02-24 06:17:56
Rob Honeycutt

robhon@mac...
98.207.62.223

I think there's a certainly level of celebrity to Motl.  I don't think he would "agree" to come over.  I'm saying "bait" him.  His ego will bring him over.  My limited experience engaging him suggested there is a LOT of ego there that one can play on.

Again, I kind of go with the broader audience reading the comments.  Would it be entertaining for people who read SkS (readers who don't post) to watch a "battle" with Lubos Motl?  If the discussion is there, HIS readers and his site get the value.  Not ours.

If it's a distraction from the work SkS should be doing, then leave it there.  If there is value to be gained, drag him over here. 

2011-02-24 06:40:58
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
91.33.110.223

Rob,

I don't know if there will be any net effect on "eyeballs". I am thinking more of the educational impact. I think the majority of SkS readers would be put off by his rabid frothiness anyway, so I don't think we get any net effect by demonstrating it here. Whereas the people at his blog evidently can put up with that; what will surprise them is seeing their idol unable to defeat an opponent by logical argument, because of the access to actual research.

If even one person on his website takes home some doubt, that's a win. 

 

2011-02-24 06:48:29
Rob Honeycutt

robhon@mac...
98.207.62.223

Can we make that his official title?  "His Rabid Frothiness."  As in, "Ladies and gentlemen, introducing His Rabid Frothiness, Lubos Motl!"

(It's a title he would obviously have to share equally with Poptech.)

So far we've had Monckton in for a brief visit.  We've had Pielke Sr here.  Didn't JoNova stop in at one point?  Poptech I don't think counts a celebrity.  But I think there is value in trying to get high profile deniers over here.  Maybe Motl doesn't fit the bill, but it's something to think about. 

2011-02-24 08:32:36moving goalposts
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
38.223.231.252

I've got Motl on the run in the comments already.  He's backtracked from "the hot spot is an anthropogenic fingerprint" to "the lack of a hot spot means the models are falsified and dead".  I'm hammering him on the fact that the physics of the adiabatic lapse rate is not limited to or derived from climate models.

He seems a bit flustered - he's starting to personally attack me again, saying I "don't have a clue".  It's pretty funny to watch.

2011-02-24 08:44:50Lubos is an idiot
Robert Way

robert_way19@hotmail...
134.153.163.105
Literally he's a dummy. He even attacked Dana for not publishing as if he is some publishing person on issues climate related.
2011-02-24 08:45:01
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
91.33.110.223

Keep it even and calm, but don't let him off the point.

If he says, you don't have a clue, you can always ask him what it is about the hotspot that you don't have a clue about? Keep pulling him back to the point.

If he wants to give up on the point, give a fair and objective summary of the results of the discussion.

And then open up topic #2.

2011-02-24 08:49:49
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
91.33.110.223
Where is this being posted? When I go to the original thread, it seems to end...
2011-02-24 08:49:51
Rob Honeycutt

robhon@mac...
98.207.62.223
I'll back up what Neal says.  Keep on an even keel.  The minute you get frustrated with his stupidity you lose the audience.  If he attacks you and you ignore it you come off smelling like a rose for being the bigger man!
2011-02-24 08:54:33banned
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
38.223.231.252

I kept an even keel and Motl banned me from commenting on his site (blocked my IP)!

You have to click the comments, and then it opens up a separate page.  Please do give him a hard time for banning me from his site for doing nothing more than politely pointing out his error.  He also deleted my last comment which discussed that the adiabatic lapse rate is fundamental to atmospheric physics and not specific to climate models.

Score that Dana 2, Motl 0

2011-02-24 09:08:28Comment
Robert Way

robert_way19@hotmail...
134.153.163.105
Yeah he deleted my comments too. What a douche. Print screen the comments and use it as a blog post to highlight what we deal with here. Particularly you could highlight all the words used such as "idiot" and such.
2011-02-24 09:12:22
Rob Honeycutt

robhon@mac...
98.207.62.223
What a freaking wuss! You didn't even have to turn up the heat and he folded like a cheap suit!!  I guess his work in string theory doesn't help too much with climate science.
2011-02-24 09:12:37coward
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
38.223.231.252
Motl is an ignoramus, a raving lunatic, and a coward.  It amazes me that his blog traffic is on par with SkS.  Fortunately, outside of his devoted and misguided fans, nobody gives a hoot what Motl says.
2011-02-24 09:13:06
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
91.33.110.223

OK, that's the weak point about doing this on his territory: he can ban you.

But you gave him a run for his money. 

I wonder if we can run this game several times? I don't know how often he bans people; but it can't look good for him to keep banning apparently well-behaved visitors to his website - which is kind of the point.

Here's an idea: Copy the transcript and post it somewhere, maybe in SkS, or maybe at another friendly climate site. Give a commentary. 

Hyena bait.

2011-02-24 09:31:34blog post?
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
38.223.231.252

I did save a copy of the comments - unfortunately he deleted my last comment before I could.

Where would you suggest posting it?  I don't think we would want to do a blog post - that would just give him unwarranted attention, right?

2011-02-24 09:37:16
Rob Honeycutt

robhon@mac...
98.207.62.223

Yeah!  I say make it a blog post.  "Motl a Cheap Suit."

Poke him.  Turn it into a short lesson on the tropospheric hot spot. 

2011-02-24 09:37:40
MarkR
Mark Richardson
m.t.richardson2@gmail...
134.225.187.80

I don't think SkS is the right sort of place for this type of thing.

Only for dealing directly with physical arguments. Only use 'skeptic' idiocy/lies for education.

2011-02-24 09:40:12
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
91.33.110.223

Motl suffers from an excess of "physicist's arrogance": The incorrect idea that just because you understand some physics, that this enables you to instantly assess any scientific or intellectual endeavor without any information beyond what can be found in the apropriate Wiki page.

He also calls himself a "conservative physicist", which to me sounds like a non-concept, somewhat like being a Republican carpenter or a libertarian art historian.

I believe his original audience came from the period that he was employed as an assistant professor at Harvard in string theory, and was issuing highly opinionated but somewhat relevant commentary on that topic. Unfortunately, he fell in love with the sound of his own writing, and branched off into promoting/attacking random issues. Eventually, Harvard got tired of this, and dismissed him in mid-term.

If we can find a way to keep engaging him, I think we can bring him down: His actual knowledge of the relevant science is not very strong, and the SkS material is perfectly arranged to trap him. He is a bit unstable (as shown by his history and by his manner): If we can get him to blow his cool, each time it happens he'll lose a bit of his aura for his dedicated readers.

Easy to say, but can we get a plan to do this?

2011-02-24 09:51:38
Rob Honeycutt

robhon@mac...
98.207.62.223

MarkR...  I question that thinking.  The idea here is to get the real science out to more people.  Right?  This is an extremely important issue that we need as many people as possible to be engaged in.  Sticking to the science is good.  We don't want to make stuff up.  But we also should be creating an atmosphere that draws people in.  

I know it's bothersome but sometime a good old fashioned car crash draws a crowd.  Hollywood knows this well.  If it's possible to use that as a tool to help teach people about the science, then it's a win for the planet and our children's future.

Being a dry old boring "Just the facts ma'am" science site is never going to get the message out to people. 

2011-02-24 09:58:53
Rob Honeycutt

robhon@mac...
98.207.62.223

Neal...  Yes we can do it!  Absolutely.  I don't think it would be that hard either.

Dana should be the lead since he woke the beast first.

"Motl a Cheap Suit."  or maybe "Motl(ing) a Cheap Suit" 

A short paragraph on how Lubos folded under the slightest of pressure.  Then teach three or four simple things about the tropospheric hotspot.  

Lubos will be here in two shakes of a garment brush.

Get John Cooks permission first, for sure. 

2011-02-24 10:27:27hot spot
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
38.223.231.252

One problem with your proposed strategy Rob is that we already have two hot spot posts in the pipeline - a guest post from things break, and a Monkton Myth from MarkR.  So I wouldn't want to add a third hot spot post.  And obviously I can't take up any of Motl's other errors on his blog, since he banned me.

I guess one option would be to briefly touch on the hot spot (referencing the other two posts on the subject), then going into one of the many other errors Motl has made, and mentioning that I can't correct them on his site, because he's banned me.

2011-02-24 10:32:32
Rob Honeycutt

robhon@mac...
98.207.62.223

I don't think it needs to be a huge blog post by any means.  Any information on the hot spot can be a lead into the other upcoming posts.  You just want to make it clear that he folded like a cheap suit.

Who knows, he may not bite.  I think his rather over inflated ego will compel him to. 

2011-02-24 10:35:54This afternoon's hot spot post
John Cook

john@skepticalscience...
121.223.91.161

By coincidence, several hours from now, I plan to post TB's repost on the hotspot:

http://www.skepticalscience.com/Dispelling-two-myths-about-the-tropospheric-hot-spot.html

I hate to tread on TB's toes - but the article does have a "green box intro". The thought did occur to me, we could add a short commentary in the green box intro. Something to the effect of:

Anyone think this amendment is a good idea? If so, I'll ask TB for permission before I make the change.

2011-02-24 10:39:17
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
91.33.110.223

Dana,

The topic this time is not so much the hotspot, as it is Motl's inability to deal with a straightforward scientific discussion of the hotspot. If he shows up, then it gets into a detailed discussion: the fact that this is also done elsewhere on the site is irrelevant, because that is not a live debate. The point is to try to argue towards reaching an agreed conclusion (which will have to be compatible with the best science), rather than arguing "for points". He cannot argue that he doesn't want to come to a common understanding; but the fact that what he wants to believe is not compatible with other known science is going to kill him.

The most important point is to engage him, and hold him to a topic, where his shallowness of understanding can be exposed thoroughly. And document the hell out of it. 

2011-02-24 10:46:41
Rob Honeycutt

robhon@mac...
98.207.62.223

I'm with Neal.  In fact, having these other posts on the hot spot helps to bolster any arguing points that come up.  It's almost like he's accidentally playing into our hands.

I think John's suggestion is going to lack impact.  I think it should be a short blog post with a provocative title.  This should act to create more interest in the other hot spot blog posts. 

2011-02-24 12:48:21In the works
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
69.230.107.233

Rob and I have a Motl post in the works for publication tommorrow. Will post it here in a few hours for feedback.

*update* here it is.  I'm not sure about the ending - feedback would be appreciated.

2011-02-24 15:28:16Appreciated feedback ;)
Alex C

coultera@umich...
67.149.101.148

Third paragraph, this:

"and, to be blunt, simply don't warrant the effort" 

the subject is "sheer volume" and its modifier is "statements," so since it's singular it ought to be "doesn't warrant..."

The following hyphens in that paragraph and the next can be replaced by colons I think, though the second one perhaps ", thus..."

 

 

And that's all for grammar, got sucked into the article.  I'm still trying to absorb the full story here (haven't yet gotten through the 50 replies yet), though even being a slight outsider to this mess, some suggestions on how to organize the post:

-  perhaps not so many sections.  I understand the "i'll tell you what you'll see, what you're seeing, what you saw" approach, but I think a continuous flow would suffice and not seem so diced up.

- a better way to transition between hot spot and Motl?  You switch from one to another and I think you could focus more on the hot spot first and then your dealings with Motl afterwards.

- I agree that the end is unnecessary.  It's preaching to the choir, if you will.   Even including the second to last paragraph, I think the concluding remarks start to go off on a tangent that is not warranted by either the scope of the preceding material or Motl's popularity.  The conclusion seems more fitting for the NIPCC only, which should be handled in a more formal and larger blog post, and less fitting for Motl, who has been the talk of the forum for what, a day or two?  No need to prod him with the "we're skeptical and you're not" line.  It doesn't seem fitting for someone like him, a nobody as it were, unless I'm drastically unaware of the extent to which he's known or has been targeting SkS.

 

Edit:

 

I like the article though.  Since I also feel like I left you without a recommendation for a conclusion, perhaps something along the lines of "This (string of events?) has illustrated the need for civil and unhindered discussion, which we'd like to remind all of our readers to pursue lest the possibility of a common ground from the debate be lost" so on.  So not necessarily attacking him himself (as I feel the current conclusion does), rather his destructive tendencies that ruined a chance for a good debate.

2011-02-24 15:35:01
Daniel Bailey
Daniel Bailey
yooper49855@hotmail...
97.83.150.102

Nice.  Like the Moncktonian proportionsTM. bit (who has the trademark, I wonder?).


FIRST PARAGRAPH

You have:

I was interested to see if he could produce an knowledgeable critique of my arguments.

Recommended:

I was interested to see if he could produce a knowledgeable critique of my arguments.

 

And

 

THIRD PARAGRAPH

You have:

The sheer volume of scientifically absurd statements proceeding the introductory unpleasantries would take significant effort to debunk, and, to be blunt, simply don't warrant the effort.

Recommended:

The sheer volume of scientifically absurd statements preceding the introductory unpleasantries would take significant effort to debunk, and, to be blunt, simply don't warrant the effort.

 

Rest looks pretty good, AKAICT

2011-02-24 15:41:17
Alex C

coultera@umich...
67.149.101.148
(I don't think preceding should be used in that case if the absurd statements followed after the introductory remarks, as "preceding" means "before."  I don't think though that proceeding should be used either.  Perhaps a simple "following?")
2011-02-24 15:46:40Additional comment
John Cook

john@skepticalscience...
121.223.91.161
I already emailed you some feedback but one tiny nit and this is just me being an anally retentive web designer - I don't suppose you could change your subheadings from h2 to h3? I'm a web designer purist, it just bothers me :-)
2011-02-24 15:46:44AKAICT
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
69.230.107.233
Thanks for the comments guys, but Daniel, what the heck is "AKAICT"?
2011-02-24 16:29:37
Daniel Bailey
Daniel Bailey
yooper49855@hotmail...
97.83.150.102

Wow, what a typo, eh?

I meant: As Far As I Can Tell (AFAICT)

What the hingers (Robin Williams stand-up bit; in mid-bit, he stuttered "fingers" into "hingers" & promptly segued into a Swedish bit to cover the gaffe) type the brain doesn't necessarily say these days.   I find the closer I get to 50 the more oversight the eyes have to pay to the keyboard, as the fingers are typing gibberish.

2011-02-24 17:05:01TM
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
69.230.107.233
Oh btw, the TM was a joking trademark because I have the feeling I'll be using "Gish Gallop of Moncktonian Proportions" again.
2011-02-24 17:10:14Gish Gallop of Moncktonian Proportions
John Cook

john@skepticalscience...
121.223.91.161

I always liked the Monckton version for the Gish Gallop: the Monckton Meander.

I don't think anyone has ever actually used it publicly (at least according to Google), it might just be on this forum. If so, one of us should use it one of these days and if it catches on, we can say it originated from Skeptical Science :-)

2011-02-24 19:16:52
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
91.33.108.242

"A skeptic does not run away"

=>

"An honest skeptic does not run away"

 

2011-02-25 02:31:41
Albatross
Julian Brimelow
stomatalaperture@gmail...
199.126.232.206

I suggest trying an experiment--if John and Dana do post a response to Motl how about everyone on the thread tries (it will be very difficult) be incredibly polite and pleasant.  Motl loves a food fight, so if everyone comes across as especially polite and calm it will probably drive him crazy.  The thread will probably need some diligent monitoring, and it might also be prudent to remind everyone in advance about the house rules.

2011-02-25 03:01:56
Rob Honeycutt

robhon@mac...
98.207.62.223
Albatross...  I think that's a fantastic idea.  Kill him with kindness.  It's one of the most awesome weapons in the world.
2011-02-25 03:13:15agreed
dana1981
Dana Nuccitelli
dana1981@yahoo...
38.223.231.252
As Alex suggested, I toned down the end a bit to ask for civil discussion.  I'll add a sentence asking that those commenting on the post follow suit.
2011-02-25 03:22:47
Rob Honeycutt

robhon@mac...
98.207.62.223

Great stuff Dana!

2011-02-25 04:59:59
nealjking

nealjking@gmail...
91.33.108.242

Part of the same strategy, refined: It might be possible to try to seek an agreed EXPLANATION of the phenomena in question, rather than trying to win the point:

- It puts him on the spot to propose an alternative scenario, which is always harder than shooting holes;

- In principle, it puts the two parties on THE SAME SIDE: Science against the Problem, instead of Party against Party.

and of course it's inherently a less confrontational posture.

For example: With respect to the missing hotspot, steer away from the "The models are WRONG!" conclusion by asking instead, "If the hotspot is really missing, what are the implications? Do you think that the rising air is NOT cooling due to adiabatic expansion?" and so on. Try to get him to think about the physics, instead of defending an interpretation or conclusion.