Climate Change: the Facts - Part One

It takes some guts to publish a book titled, "Climate Change: the Facts." Climate change is a subject of great dispute, meaning making a list of facts regarding it would be incredibly difficult. Plus, you're just begging for jokes about wanting to "change the facts."

Unfortunately, having the guts to do do something doesn't mean you have the skills to do it. The publishers of this book definitely did not. Even the simplest review of this book shows it doesn't come close to accurately describing the facts surrounding the climate change debate. I pointed this out about a week ago when I saw the book recommended to people. A user disagreed with me, and despite an fruitless discussion, he offered to give me a free copy of the book. I agreed to read it if he did, and I received a copy of the book a few days ago.

My view of the book hasn't really changed. If anything, I'd say the book is worse than I thought. It is a fairly well-polished book, unlike the last one I reviewed. I noticed a few mistakes editors should have caught, but by far and large, the book's problems are just ones of content. As such, my review is going to focus on that content.

Before I do though, I want to point out a peculiarity regarding this book. This book was published in 2014, but in 2010, another book with the exact same name was published by some of the same people with a similar cover image but very different contents. It's quite unusual.

Anyway, let's get to the "facts." The second page of Chapter One of the book states, as a fact, CO2 is good for life on Earth:

As all farmers know, CO2 is plant food and the emission of increasingly large amounts of CO2 by humans is good for life.

This is supposedly in reference to CO2 causing a "greening" of the planet, but the phrasing clearly goes beyond that. I don't know if it's a rhetorical trick or just bad writing, but either way, it's should make one cautious. Such caution would be proven wise as the very next page says:

The first 100 parts per million (ppm) of CO2 have a significant effect on atmospheric temperature, whereas any increase from the current 400 ppm will have an insignificant effect.

After denying carbon dioxide will lead to "ever increasing global warming." The chapter then goes on to hit every talking point to claim global warming won't happen. This is a common theme in many chapters, perhaps best shown in Chapter Five which says an:

analysis revealed worldwide errors in the range of 1-5C for individual sampled area-boxes, i.e. errors that far exceed the total claimed twentieth century warming of -0.7C.

Then claims:

Though global average temperature may have warmed during the twentieth century, no direct instrumental records exist that demonstrate any such warming within an acceptable degree of probability.

Meaning this book claiming to show the "facts" of climate change denies we can even know global warming has happened. Not only is that absurd on its face, the book's argument is obviously wrong given any examination of it. The book compares the large uncertainty in "individual sampled area-boxes" to the amount of global warming. Checking their references shows the area-boxes in question are 1°x 1° boxes. There are 360 longitude degrees and 180 latitude degrees. That means there are 180 x 360 = 64,800 of these area-boxes.

This book uses the uncertainty we have if we look at less than .2% of the globe to claim we can't know global warming has happened. That's the entirety of its argument on the issue. That, combined with the hand-wavey talking points it useds to claim global warming won't happen in the future leads it to conclude:

The reality is that no scientist on the planet can tell you with credible probability whether the climate in 2030 will be cooler or warmer than today.

Cooling! This book about the "facts" of climate change seriously suggests cooling over the next 15 years is a serious possibility!

There's a lot more wrong with these first five chapters. I could write an entire essay about how Richard Lindzen's Chapter Three is based entirely upon cherry-picking and bad analyses, but for the sake of time, I'll just quote this random remark from it:

Moreover, mild warming is likely to be a net benefit.

Poor grammar aside, this sentence is absurd because it has nothing to do with anything else said in the chapter. There is no analysis or evidence offered to support it. It's just a random sentence thrown in there, as though it's some given fact everyone should just accept as true. That's the sort of writing this book has. An even better example of this sort of bold and baseless assertion is found in Chapter Two where Patrick Michaels makes the idiotic claim:

In the United States, 63 Democratic Party seats were lost in the House of Representatives in the 2010 election. Almost every close race was lost by a member who voted for cap-and-trade. In the Senate, which did not pass or even bring up similar legislation, every close race went to the Democratic candidate. Given that both Houses had voted for the President's unpopular health care nationalisation, the blame for the loss in the House of Representatives lies squarely with cap-and-trade.

Nobody who knows anything about politics in the United States would ever believe such a stupid claim (even if Michaels hadn't gotten the facts of the election wrong). Heck, even people who know nothing about politics in the United States could probably guess he's way off-base since this is basically nothing more than a figment of Michaels' wild imagination, stated as fact in a book titled, Climate Change: the Facts.

Perhaps the worst part of all this is the people writing these chapters are obviously just doing it to promote their personal views. Nobody did research or studying for this book. All that happened is a bunch of people wrote essays about matters they were interested in, and the essays were all collected together. This is well-demonstrated by Chapter Four which is by William Soon and could be summarized as:

My work is good and proves everybody wrong, but nobody listens to me.

I get why this sort of approach might be used to create a book, but the result in this case is a huge lack of critical review or coherence in the book. Because of that, Soon was able to say this in his chapter:

Contrary to reports of a '97 per cent consensus', the 2014 paper by Legates et al. demonstrated that only 0.5 per cent of the abstracts of 11,944 scientific papers on climate-related topics publicshed over the 21 years from 1991-2011 had explicitly stated an opinion that more than half of the global warming since 1950 had been caused by human emissions of CO2 and other greenhouse gases.34 The overwhelming majority of scientists in climate and related fields, therefore, remain commendably open to the possibility that some other influence--such as the sun--may be the true primum mobile of the Earth's climate.

Anybody who's followed my blogging knows I am a huge critic the (in)famous Cook et al paper claiming to find a 97% consensus on global warming. I've flat-out accused the authors of the paper of lying about their results. I've shown the authors have intentionally misrepresented their results again and again.

Despite that, I will still say Willaim Soon's claims here are utterly wrong. It could never survive any sort of critical analysis. His argument is only ~60 of 11,944 abstracts explicitly stated humans have caused most of the observed warming, therefore 99.5% of scientists don't think humans have. That's absurd. We obviously cannot possibly tell scientists don't believe something because they didn't say it in the summary of a paper.

Even worse, those 11,944 papers weren't all "climate-related" as Soon claims. One of the most common criticisms of the Cook et al. paper is they included many papers which had nothing to do with global warming in their "consensus," a "consensus" which first filtered out ~8,000 of the 11,944 papers in the data set. Soon apparently wants us to ignore this central problem with Cook et al's work... because it lets him promote his own work.


There is a lot more to be said about this book. I've only discussed the first five chapters, and I haven't even tried to touch on all the problems in those chapters. It'd take a lot more space to cover everything wrong with this book. Just discussing the remaining 16 chapters would take quite a bit of effort.

I might go ahead and review the rest of the chapters. In case I don't, I should point out things do get better after these first five chapters. There are actually some chapters which don't suck. Some of them might even be okay if taken on their own.

But anyone whose work is included in this book should be embarrassed by how bad a book it is.

40 comments

  1. " This is well-demonstrated by Chapter Four which is by William Soon and could be summarized as:

    My work is good and proves everybody wrong, but nobody listens to me."

    While you may not have intended to do so, this appeared to me as a quotation because of the italics. Indeed, all of the other italicized statements appear to be direct quotes. I could summarize this entire page with such editorializing, which I am sure we agree do not amount to "facts". I am sure it was just an honest mistake.

  2. Soon's research does not in fact cause him to say that " 99.5% of scientists don’t think humans have" contributed to global warming; he said that the "overwhelming majority remain commendably open to the possibility....." etc., which is obviously true. Be very careful of putting words in your straw-men's mouths. Speaking of being careful, considering the large number of typos and editing errors in your rant here, you've got a commendable nerve in criticizing this book on that count.
    In addition, the statement "mild warming is likely to be a net benefit" is so self-evident that the author likely thought it tiresome to remind everyone of its benefits - lower heating-energy consumption, higher agricultural yields, less difficulty with transportation, fewer strains on roads & infrastructure, to name a few.
    A few facts supporting your own view would go a long way in countering the ones you don't like, rather than just the name-calling and arbitrary crankiness, so de rigeur in lefty blogs.

  3. Marshall Gill, I don't know why you would interpret something stated to be a summary as a quotation. If I'm summarizing a chapter, I can't be quoting it.

    Richard, if you're going to claim I make mistakes, you ought to say what the mistakes are and explain how they are mistakes. For instance, you claim I made many "typos and editing errors" in this post (which you incorrectly call a rant), yet you don't point out a single one. That's weird. It's especially weird since even if you are correct, a blog post shouldn't even be held to the same standards as a book that's mass-marketed by an organization.

    Then again, you claim I've created a straw-man yet in the process you misrepresent what I said in an obvious way. Anyone who looks at the sentence of mine you quoted will see I did not say what you claim I said. I think that shows the standards to which you hold yourself when criticizing things you dislike. I don't think a word you said about this post was remotely accurate, but it seems likely you wouldn't care. I mean, portraying this as a lefty blog?

  4. "I pointed this out about a week ago when I saw the book recommended to people. A user disagreed with me, and despite an fruitless discussion, he offered to give me a free copy of the book. I agreed to read it if he did, and I received a copy of the book a few days ago."

    So, ignoring the tortured and clumsy syntax, the writer seems to be saying that he was dissing the book before he even read it. Kind of makes you wonder about any objectivity of the reviewer, eh wot?

  5. " 'Moreover, mild warming is likely to be a net benefit.' Poor grammar aside ...."

    What's poor about it?

  6. I was wondering the same thing. Perhaps he thinks it is better to write 'mild warming will likely be a net benefit.'

  7. "I should point out things do get better after these first five chapters. "

    Brandon, I would be interested if you could comment on the chapters you think are good or acceptable, and which ones those are (McKitrick? Essex? Darwall?)

  8. You panned a book before you read it, knowing nothing more than the title and (it is to be assumed) the name of the contributing authors.

    That you did so establishes the questionable and likely ideological nature of your opinions. It also establishes why you are not be considered trustworthy.

  9. First off, I want to apologize for my slow responses. I got sick on Easter, and apparently I haven't recuperated as much as I thought. Hopefully I'll feel better soon so I can get back to responding/posting regularly. That's especially true since I've finished writing my new eBook and just need to do the formatting for it. I'd really like to get that uploaded.

    Anyway, in response to the idea I:

    panned a book before you read it, knowing nothing more than the title and (it is to be assumed) the name of the contributing authors.

    Anyone who read the comment I wrote panning this book would know this idea is false. As I said in that comment, I read a preview of the book. That preview included the introduction and first two (three?) chapters of the book. I specifically referred to the material I had read when I gave my judgment of the book. There is no way any fair-minded individual would come up with this interpretation.

    In response to the question:

    Brandon, I would be interested if you could comment on the chapters you think are good or acceptable, and which ones those are (McKitrick? Essex? Darwall?)

    I'd definitely like to write about more chapters. I've started writing another post about the book, but I don't know how far I'll get. For a quick reaction, I can say I wholeheartedly endorse Ross McKitrick's chapter. Rupert Duwall's chapter seems good (though I don't know enough about the facts to unhesitatingly endorse the chapter). Christopher Essex's chapter is fairly meh. It doesn't seem bad (aside from the first few paragraphs, which are misguided), but it also doesn't seem to say anything insightful.

  10. Oh! I forgot the issue of grammar. MikeN and John Archer asked why I said there was poor grammar in this sentence:

    Moreover, mild warming is likely to be a net benefit.

    The point of this sentence was to argue (mild) warming will likely be beneficial. The problem is the sentence says warming will be a benefit. That portrays warming as the benefit rather than portraying warming as beneficial.

    If you want to discuss whether warming will be good or bad, you should discuss the effects of warming. When doing so, warming would be the cause and things like improved agriculture would be the effects. This sentence gets things wrong by discussing warming as the effect instead of the cause.

    Mind you, the grammar isn't really wrong. I called it "poor" because it does kind of work. It's just not good. It's the sort of thing an editor would mark as needing a minor revision, and since I was quoting the sentence, I had to make a note of the issue. I don't think it is important though. If I wanted to focus on those sort of issues, there are some worse mistakes I'd point out. For instance, that same chapter uses "bases" instead of "basis" as either a spelling mistake or verb/noun mismatch.

    I doubt many readers would even notice (or care about) things like those, but I find it difficult to ignore them when commenting on the text they're in.

  11. MikeN, I don't know why you think that's responsive. I agree a "benefit" is "something beneficial." That's no different for this matter, however, than saying it is an "advantage" or "profit." Under all these definitions, we are talking about an object, not a cause.

    Neither warming nor cooling is a benefit in and of itself. Warming and cooling are things which may cause benefits. They are not benefits in and of themselves. The only way to claim warming is a net benefit is to say warming is, in and of itself, inherently desirable, independent of any effects it may cause.

    You can see the same situation with any number of other things. One obvious example is inflation. Inflation benefits some people. Those people say, "Inflation is beneficial." They do not say, "Inflation is a benefit." The reason is inflation is not the objective, but rather something which leads to the objective. The same is true for warming. Warming is not a benefit; it is something which may (or may not) be beneficial.

  12. At the risk of derailing a discussion in minor details, I think you meant the semantics were poor, not the grammar.

    I think I agree with you about the book. I am reading now, and some of the chapters (Essex, Dellingpole) are good. I think the title is dreadful. I think a book asking some very (im)pertinent questions about the weaknesses of climate modelling and the claims made by the ghastly IPCC would have punctured the religious fervour of the field better than a book claiming to be the facts.

  13. Aiden, I think you're right. I'm not sure if I had a specific reason for saying grammar there, but if I did, I don't remember it. It was probably just a silly mistake. That's what I get for not having an editor!

    And yeah, the book definitely has positive aspects. I just can't justify recommending it when it presents so many wrong things as "facts." I think the strangest thing about the book is the quality seems to get better the further the book gets from actual facts. I'm not sure how you write a book claiming to present "facts" then make your section on facts the worst part.

  14. Brandon,

    It's a shame I kicked off with that thread-hijacking grammar thing rather than the substance, which is no doubt what you'd much rather be discussing here. Still, I was curious. I agree with Aidan by the way. 🙂

    Just one more quickie on that though. Natural language is fraught with all sorts of difficulties for the dedicated grammarian. For example, ask him which is correct — "The herd is grazing" or "The herd are grazing" — and he'll be only too quick to tell you. The problem, however, is that neither is correct. So maybe neither are correct then? Nope, not even that: they're BOTH wrong! 🙂

    Proof: Herd is an abstract collective noun, i.e. it denotes a set. Its members might eat grass but no set does. QED

    P.S. I won't hear a word said against Mark Steyn, so you just tread very carefully now! There are a few others in there too. 🙂

  15. Saying inflation is a benefit would also be valid, for the same reason. It is a valid definition to say a benefit is something that confers advantage. It does not have to be the benefit itself.

    Mark Steyn seems entertained enough by your review that he has linked to it a few times.

  16. John Archer, I actually like discussing grammar and semantics, so I don't mind the diversion. Other people might, but at least it led to clarifying what I meant. Besides, it takes a lot less energy to discuss subjects like this than to review more of the book, and right now, that's a good thing.

    I'm not sure I can agree with you on the example you gave though. Collective nouns are routinely used when referring to the concerted actions of a group. I've never heard anyone argue it's wrong. Your proof presents the collective noun as referring to a set performing an action, but that's not how collective nouns are actually used. Everyone understands the word describing the set is referring to the entities which make up the set, just like people understand what is being referred to when one uses synesis. One can come up with the wrong meaning by being completely formal, but doing so ignores widely accepted grammatical rules which have a pretty firm logical basis.

    Consider what might be said by a player after a sports match: "The team played hard so we won!" With your proof, the use of "team" in that sentence would be wrong. Since "we" uses "team" as an antecedent, one would expect it to be wrong as well. However, nobody would take it as wrong. This is an example of synesis, where the formal meaning of the sentence might be wrong yet the implied, and thus understood, meaning of the sentence is clear. (I would go on to discuss the differences in how this arises in British and American English, but I doubt anyone wants that.)

    P.S. I've never understood the appeal of Mark Steyn's writing style, but I recognize others like it so there's not much for me to say on his chapter other than: It doesn't fit in a book supposedly discussing "facts." If you want facts, Steyn's chapter can be boiled down to maybe two paragraphs (it's pretty short already). If you want something else, his chapter might be good for you.

  17. MikeN, again, I don't see how you think your comment addresses the issue. Nobody disputes one can use "benefit" to mean "something that confers advantage." That's no different than saying a "benefit" is "something beneficial." That still leaves "benefit" as an ends, not a means. That's the key distinction here, one you've not even said a word about. To make this clear, the issue is calling warming a benefit requires warming be good, in and of itself. Calling warming a benefit means you can't appeal to the effects of warming; you have to claim warming itself is a benefit.

    Thanks for the heads up though. I don't read Mark Steyn's site regularly, so I'd likely have never seen that. I think it's rather telling Steyn refers to this review in a derogatory tone but doesn't offer a word of actual criticism of anything I said. Steyn may have style, but I always struggle to find much substance.

  18. Yes, Global warming is happening. It has been going on since the glaciers pulled out of Long Island Sound. Anthropogenic Global warming is something else. Try googling Milankovitch Cycle and learn something.

  19. Brandon,

    OK. Most of what I said was tongue in cheek. But not all of it. I don't agree with you.

    Grammarians in general provide a valuable service but some of them go over the top in sheer pedantry and fall flat on their faces as a result — special, specious pleading being their forte, your synesis being an excellent example.

    I'd prefer it if we just said "The herd are grazing" and leave it at that since we're talking about a simple plurality. It makes perfect sense and the meaning is precise.

    The grammarian, on the other hand, will hold his nose in the air and want to fudge it all up by pointing out that 'herd' is singular, and so "by the rules of grammar [Oh yeah? Who says so, and whoTF is he anyway?]" it should take the singular form of the verb. How precious!

    Bollocks, I say. Leave that sort of crap to the mediaeval scholastics.

    Look, if you want to get pedantic at least try to get it ****ing right. [Not you, Brandon — I'm talking to the nose-in-the-air grammarian.] The distinction between a set and its elements is a very easy thing to grasp and it adds clarity to thought. You want to just screw all that up with a dumbarse appeal to an ill-conceived post hoc rule you've invented to make sense of the structure of natural language which emerged way before any prissy poncey grammarians walked the Earth. Get lost.

    Now, contrary to the impression I might have given above, I really don't really give a damn about any of this in itself since we can all generally convey what we mean anyway, poor grammar or not. But a little precision does helps I'll admit. The only thing I don't like is the conceited grammarian shoving his snotty nose up where it's not wanted.

    British English vs American English: both are fine by me. We do however say, "The company are ...." 🙂

  20. Daniel Smith, I'm not sure why you'd bother making a comment like that. It couldn't possibly change anybody's mind, and it's not likely to even get anyone to learn anything. To be honest, I don't even know what it's supposed to be a response to, so I'm not sure what anyone is supposed to "learn."

    John Archer, I'm not sure where you're coming from. You're complaining about what grammarians do, but this isn't a choice of grammarians. Grammarians didn't create the situation. They're merely describing the situation. The truth is collective nouns have existed in the form you condemn for centuries. Heck, I think it even comes up in translation of biblical scripture from over a thousand years ago. It seems incredibly strange to condemn grammarians for describing something which has long been used by people.

    And the entire reason this sort of thing has been around for ages is it's quite useful to be able to use collective nouns the way we do. Sometimes a set acts in concertion. Sometimes it does not. Being able to distinguish between the two with one's verb tense is useful, and there is no downside. You claim it is wrong, but you've offered no grammatical rule to support your claim, and you certainly can't appeal to common usage to justify it. Speaking of which, you say:

    The grammarian, on the other hand, will hold his nose in the air and want to fudge it all up by pointing out that ‘herd’ is singular, and so “by the rules of grammar [Oh yeah? Who says so, and whoTF is he anyway?]” it should take the singular form of the verb. How precious!

    What grammarian says that? Any person with a decent familiarity with grammar should know collective nouns are used in both the singular and plural form depending upon the situation. I get it may not be as common in British English, but it's a well-known issue in American English, as well as many other languages.

    As a simple example of why people make use of the distinction, consider the phrase, "The team shower(s) after practice." It's useful to distinguish between the two meanings there.

  21. On a moderatorial note, I edited your comment to remove a curse word. I'd prefer nobody use any curse words, but I'm very light in my moderation so I'll tolerate some. I can't tolerate all of them though. There are some words an administrator just doesn't want on his or her site (for indexing reasons and others).

  22. "[Grammarians are] merely describing the situation."

    No they're not. They affect it too, with their post hoc rationalisations which in some cases are laughably contrived. And downright ugly to boot.

    I can can see you and I is never going to agree on this.

  23. John Archer, I am certain you and I will never agree on this if all you do is say, "Nuh-uh." You blamed grammarians for something. I've pointed out the issue you're complaining about is present in many languages, and has been for centuries. You don't dispute this. Instead, you merely say:

    No they’re not. They affect it too, with their post hoc rationalisations which in some cases are laughably contrived. And downright ugly to boot.

    Which may be true but is not responsive to the point at hand - the issue you're complaining about predates any actions from the grammarians you blame for it. You can insult them as much as you want, but you've done absolutely nothing to justify your insults. It's silly.

    If that's how you want to end the discussion, you can, but...

  24. Dear Mr Shollenberger,

    I suspect the reason Mark Steyne links to your review is not only because it is so logically flawed, but because the supercilious, authoritarian tone in which it is written, so effectively serves to encapsulate the quality of the books critics.

    Even a cursory review of your critique shows that you are guilty of not only malice, but worse, that of projecting your own logic failures on others. You made extraordinary claims, but provided no verifiable facts, or references for your derisive diatribe. It appears you have a superiority complex so complete that you feel people should be so grateful for your pontifications, that you do not need to bother with anything as menial, dare I say it, as demeaning as providing evidence.

    The extent of the grip this superiority complex has on you is epitomised, not only by your apparent false belief that English is something that is so tightly codified, it can be policed, but the reprise of your authoritarian nature in taking on the role of self appointed sheriff.

    So, please do continue to use your obscure blog to present your most cogent critique of great scientists, globally published authors and of course, we poor fools will try, albeit in a completely futile manner to live up to your expectations.

    Kind regards.

  25. Joe Stroud, I hope you recognize the humor of your comment. Your first sentence alone should cause giggling fits. Despite me using tamer rhetoric than either you or Mark Steyn, you claim:

    Even a cursory review of your critique shows that you are guilty of not only malice, but worse, that of projecting your own logic failures on others.

    Which is followed by the, what I hope is ironically placed:

    You made extraordinary claims, but provided no verifiable facts, or references for your derisive diatribe. It appears you have a superiority complex so complete that you feel people should be so grateful for your pontifications, that you do not need to bother with anything as menial, dare I say it, as demeaning as providing evidence.

    Because the lack of a single specific or verifiable remark in your comment would be too much to handle otherwise. Plus, if that was intentionally done, it'd be a wonderful send-up of Mark Steyn's rhetorical style. You've aptly demonstrated Steyn's approach of using pretentious style while refusing to make any sort of verifiable arguments.

    If that was all intentional, you're awesome. I really hope it was. Not only would I like to be impressed, but I'd find it depressing if you really believe I am making "extraordinary claims" when I say things like, global warming is real and is happening.

    I will say this though, if you genuinely believe it is extraordinary to claim the planet is not going to start cooling in the next few decades, this book is perfect for you. In the meantime, I want you to realize the humor of saying:

    So, please do continue to use your obscure blog to present your most cogent critique of great scientists,

    When the person I've written the most posts criticizing is... Michael Mann.

  26. @ Joe Stroud

    "He draweth out the thread of his verbosity finer than the staple of his argument". - William Shakespeare

  27. “After denying carbon dioxide will lead to “ever increasing global warming.” The chapter then goes on to hit every talking point to claim global warming won’t happen. This is a common theme in many chapters, perhaps best shown in Chapter Five which says an:”

    This is supposedly a claim that this book seems to dogmatically deny global warming will happen. “ I don’t know if it’s is a rhetorical trick or just bad writing, but either way, it’s (sic) should make one cautious.”
    I have actually read this book cover to cover, as I do even with things I don’t agree with. I cannot find this determination anywhere throughout the book, so I must assume you are indeed using a rhetorical trick. I can find multiple instances, in which claims are made of insignificant warming due to manmade greenhouse gases as opposed to natural variability. Yet I cannot find a single place to back up your specious claim. I am disappointed. (By the way insignificant does not mean…none..nothing etc).

    I really don’t care about grammar that much, as I find ideas to be the crux of trade in information. Although, in a published book, one would hope most gross grammatical mistakes would be corrected. I know I would need an editor after rambling on, as it seems you do as well. Words are but vehicles for ideas (to borrow from Isaac Watts), the man who is fixated on winning an argument by focusing on the vehicles rather than the conveyed ideas, is one who cannot see past his own nose.

    You take issue with a statement which basically illustrates the complete unpredictability of climate:

    “The reality is that no scientist on the planet can tell you with credible probability whether the climate in 2030 will be cooler or warmer than today.”

    Then you seem to discount cooling entirely. I was unaware of your climate omniscience, however, since now I have been made aware, would you please make your 2030 prediction. Also if a cooling trend presents itself between now and then, I would expect you to eat your shorts, jeans if you would rather. There is nothing behind this statement so grotesquely off. One cannot predict much of natural variability, one cannot predict the offsets this will have to anthropogenic influence, and if anything the hiatus that we have experienced since 98 shows that direct correlations between one aspect of the climate be it just the AMOC or CO2 are woefully inadequate, even if an ostensible variable for vertical exchange, PDO, solar cycles and everything else is included. Our models simply are not complex enough, and the information we have is not uniform nor broad enough to encapsulate a fully accurate predictive model. The fact is, as it has been shown in the past, at this moment, no scientist can say whether the earth will be warmer or cooler in 15 years, 20 years or 200. They can make an hypothesis, and provide reasoning as to why they believe the earth will be so, or will not be, but this is just an approximation. All that have come before have failed miserably. Being as you seem to omnisciently be aware of exactly how it will trend, I am sure we can count on you to provide the correct answer as to all upcoming trends.
    Of course you also take issue with the statement “mild warming is likely to be a net benefit”. Once we get past your grammatical (lack of substance) objections, you cannot disprove this statement, nor do you. It is something that at face value is meant to correlate to long standing known ideas. Even historically mild warming shows in many parts of the world archaeologically and otherwise that mild warming does provide many benefits. The use of “likely” conveys the idea that the author believes it is probable that mild warming provides a net benefit. It does seem in historical periods, MWP even recent warming, that this statement certainly has ground to stand on.

    With Soon you are just nitpicking. I certainly have a higher regard for his intellect and knowledge than your own. Perhaps you should try to have a debate with him about how much nonsense he spews, and while you focus on grammar and rhetorical devices, maybe people can hear something of substance from him.

  28. DB, I'm unclear on what you claim you can't find. You say you can find multiple instances where it is said there will be insignificant amounts of warming, so we can both agree the book says that much. The only dispute is whether or not the book... "dogmatically den[ies] global warming will happen"? I'm not sure I said it does that. What I said is the book denies:

    carbon dioxide will lead to “ever increasing global warming.”

    Which it clearly does. Chapter One has a section headed:

    ii. The increased carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas, will lead to ever increasing global warming

    Which begins with the sentence:

    Point (ii) has been shown to be invalid on all time scales.

    I don't think it could be any clearer in saying greenhouse gases will not lead to "ever increasing global warming." If that's enough, there are plenty of other examples. For instance, two paragraphs later, the book says "atmospheric CO2 does not drive atmospheric temperature change."

    I'm not sure if there is some relevant difference in the wordings we used, but I believe it is clear what I said is taken straight from the book. Supposing, however, we use your wording which I believe to be a higher standard, I'd say the book meets even that. The introduction of the book says "there is no evidence the next 50 years will bring human induced warming" while Chapter Five denies that we can even tell global warming has happened:

    Though global average temperature may have warmed during the twentieth century, no direct instrumental records exist that demonstrate any such warming within an acceptable degree of probability.

    Even leaving aside the fact that claim is based upon a glaringly obvious misrepresentation of the reference used to support it, it's absurd. And taken with the rest, it means the book says:

    1) We can't know global warming has happened.
    2) We have no evidence global warming will happen in the next 50 years.
    3) The planet may cool in the next 15 years.

    Which I think we should all be able to scoff at. And no, despite what you try to suggest, scoffing at these does not require omniscience. You suggest my scoffing at this means I "seem to omnisciently be aware of exactly how it will trend," but that's completely silly. All I've said is there is no basis to suggest there is a significant probability of the planet cooling in the next 15 years. You've offered no rebuttal to this, choosing to instead respond by creating a ridiculous caricature of my view.

    You then make a point that I don't disprove global warming will be beneficial, but... why would I even try? I didn't say the argument was wrong. I said the book offers nothing to support the claim. I said the book just randomly says global warming will be beneficial. In what world would saying, "You've done nothing to show that is true" require also saying, "It's wrong"? The answer? None. Because it's a stupid idea. And by misrepresenting what I've said in such an obvious way, you've promoted it.

    As for Soon, he completely misrepresented what the Cook et al study showed, and you claim pointing that out is "just nitpicking." I suppose that's not surprising given you've happily misrepresented things I've said in obvious ways, but I hope even you realize, "You're just nitpicking" is not a compelling argument.

  29. "The chapter then goes on to hit every talking point to claim global warming won’t happen. This is a common theme in many chapters, perhaps best shown in Chapter Five which says an:"

    This is not factual, and is as misleading as you claim the book is. Saying that it does not lead to an "ever-increasing" trend and saying global warming won't happen are vastly different ideas. It would be hard indeed to state factually that anything leads to ever-increasing warming, as offsetting factors cannot be known..and CO2 does not trend with ever-increasing warming, although it might trend with it at times. This to me is nitpicking and a strawman. You present something in the quotes above, that I must have missed over, for I didn't see what you see.

    Ok let me interject and say here, that I have actually read a lot of what you have to say, and I even purchased your Amazon book, thank you for your diligent work on it, and much of your diligent work in the entire subject. Mostly here, I just believe you are nitpicking sentences instead of approximating the totality of the ideas. I apologize if I err.

    Nonetheless, I continue, I do believe your next quote " (Though global average temperature may have warmed during the twentieth century...)" is indeed questionable at best, albeit still not necessarily dishonest, although perhaps dubious, yet now we just banter in semantics. The context as I have inferred it throughout the book is more that Co2 cannot be linked as the driving cause behind the observed warming trend. Although it is at this point indeed good to point out that really perhaps the only reliable source we have of temperature on this planet since it's existence is satellite data, which is a microscopic slice of everything being compared. All other sources, including SST, etc, do indeed have many mitigating factors, assumptions, approximations, and gaps that elicit due concern in accurately providing "global" temperature, although for many regions the accuracy is excellent. Regardless I never got the impression from context in the books that global warming was being denied as ever having happened, so much as to the extent or primary drivers of such warming.

    As far as in your 3 points, I think these are misrepresentative of the book, and especially many specific chapters, you should not post such until you review the entire book at least so you can be intellectually honest to yourself. I never thought your point 1.) was conveyed at all throughout the whole book, not in such a dogmatic sense. Although there were sections where I certainly could have ascertained the author was positing that we cannot know the extent of global warming that has happened within any true degree of accuracy..which short of observational methods, and so many conflicting studies would seem to be true. However, I never got the sense that it happening was denied.

    As for your second point, we have plenty of evidence to support whatever theory you want, just bend it however you want. That is at least, what seems to be done these days, and when you are wrong blame it on something you didn't count on. I would actually agree with your second point, not only that the book conveys it, but that it is true. We do not have at our disposal any models with near enough complexity to predict warming, stasis, or cooling trends whatsoever in the next 50 years. That is not to say predictions cannot be made based on hypothesis, but the accuracy of them in the past has been dubious at best. Too many people put forward ostensible variables that end up not bearing out, or needing clarification with an a priori variable unaccounted for. I don't understand why such a statement is a logical problem. The truth is, if we cannot predict warming cycles accurately, it stands to reason we cannot predict cooling or stasis, as well. IT is more a general defect in our own predictive prowess. You, nor I, at this point without omniscience, can know at all whether the world will cool or warm in the near short term or long term. Although I would opine that given enough time we will see trends of both, as it seems evident in the limited information we have of the past. Nonetheless stating that scientists cannot determined whether the earth will cool or warm by 2030 does not mean that one is predicting cooling, it means they don't have a friggin clue.......and well ... not one has come along yet that has.

    You offered no rebuttal to anything either, all you have posted is opinion, while cherry picking a few quotes, out of context, and deciding the author's intent. Positing that people don't know how the climate will be, is not suggesting to know how it will be. At no point does this book say the planet will cool, or even "may" cool, although there is an inference in the idea that it promotes scientists cannot predict whether or not it will warm or cool. That is not the same as the way you make it out to be. You are taking something with no basis and applying your own interpretation, which is what we do as humans, still yet, the idea in itself is pretty well grounded. Scientists really do not know what will trend in the next 15 years, just look at past models and the past 15 years, almost all predictive analysis failed, well not almost..all did. The simple truth is that we cannot know, what will spring up via thousands of interlocking mechanisms to affect the climate in the next 15 years, much less 20 or 30. To infer otherwise is to assume omniscience, or absolute belief in an hypothesis, at which point it is effectively religious zeal, and probably not very wise insofar as all past guesses have failed. That should not prohibit, or slow others from attempting to gain a better understanding of trends and predictability measures, but obviously those that we have, and how they are weighted now is incorrect.

    I will say that calling the book "The facts" was a mistake. That is most of my point even in this post, so much of this is impossible to prove or disprove in many ways, leaving it in a grey area of opinion and prediction.

    Soon I believe you nitpicked in that, much of what you pick at is grammatical inference and semantical interpretation. He does not say that 99.5 percent of scientists believe Co2 is not the primary driver, he says they remain commendably open to the possibility of other driving forces. This is a misrepresentation made by you, albeit Soon's may be rhetorically dubious as well, but not as much as yours which is much more dogmatic. The truth is that many more of these scientists may hold that position and simply not made it clear in those papers, which I understand. However, using the papers as a bar, all we know is that it is possible that the majority of scientists do not ascribe a dogmatic confidence in co2 being the foremost driver due to it being not a theme of their work, that does not mean they do not still believe it may be so, but are not explicit, while some are implicit, this does indicate a varying level of confidence, and in turn an openness.

    Your criticism as to the papers being climate related is completely valid, being as many were not. However, I consider this nitpicking because Soon was re-iterating results from a paper claiming they were all climate related, so he is guilty of passing on this inference, but I do not consider it something that shatters his scientific credibility.

  30. DB, you say:

    This is not factual, and is as misleading as you claim the book is. Saying that it does not lead to an “ever-increasing” trend and saying global warming won’t happen are vastly different ideas.... This to me is nitpicking and a strawman.

    This is only true if we interpret the text hyper-literally. That's obviously not the intended meaning though. Nobody says CO2 causes "ever increasing" global warming because CO2 has a finite effect. The intended meaning is clear, however, if we read the text in the section. You haven't commented on any of it. For instance, here are two quotes from the six paragraphs that make up the section:

    This shows that the theory that CO2 emission of human origin drive global warming (and climate change) must be rejected.

    This again shows that atmospheric CO2 does not drive atmospheric temperature change.

    And the chapter explicitly says human emissions "will have an insignificant effect." If you want to argue the book doesn't deny global warming will happen, it just denies global warming will happen in any measurable way... fine. I don't really care. The book flat-out says we can't know global warming has happened based upon the size of warming, and it directly says any future warming will be insignificant. The difference between saying there will be "no warming" and "no detectable warming" seems rather unimportant to me, certainly not enough to justify responses like yours.

    Ok let me interject and say here, that I have actually read a lot of what you have to say, and I even purchased your Amazon book, thank you for your diligent work on it, and much of your diligent work in the entire subject. Mostly here, I just believe you are nitpicking sentences instead of approximating the totality of the ideas.

    I'm glad you liked my book, but I must say, I notice people constantly say I'm "nitpicking" when they disagree with me but don't say it when they agree with me. That's true on both sides. Defenders of Michael Mann say it just like the people saying I was wrong to criticize Steve McIntyre's posts on the Andrew Weaver lawsuit.

    Nonetheless, I continue, I do believe your next quote ” (Though global average temperature may have warmed during the twentieth century…)” is indeed questionable at best, albeit still not necessarily dishonest, although perhaps dubious, yet now we just banter in semantics.

    I didn't call it dishonest. I don't think any of the authors of this book are trying to be dishonest. I think they're just wrong. And this has nothing to do with semantics. Robert Carter's claim we can't tell global warming has happened is based upon an obvious misrepresentation of the reference he uses. That misrepresentation was the only basis for his claim. There is no way to spin this. No amount of semantics will change the fact Carter made a claim based solely upon a total misinterpretation of his reference. You can say:

    Regardless I never got the impression from context in the books that global warming was being denied as ever having happened, so much as to the extent or primary drivers of such warming.

    But the reality is the book flat-out states we cannot know global warming has happened. Your claim the point was not made "throughout the whole book" is also misguided. I never claimed these points are carried throughout the entire book. There are over 20 chapters written by different people. Not all the chapters are going to make the same points. I even know some of the authors of the book don't agree with some of the points in the first few chapters.

    That's irrelevant to my point though. My point has never been that this book entirely denies global warming or anything like that. My point has been this book is a bad book because it claims to present "The Facts" while allowing its authors to say many things which are not just wrong, but are completely untrue. In addition, I say the authors who don't do that should be embarrassed to have their work combined with ones who do. As for your remark:

    As far as in your 3 points, I think these are misrepresentative of the book, and especially many specific chapters, you should not post such until you review the entire book at least so you can be intellectually honest to yourself.

    I have no idea why you think I haven't read the entire book. That I've only discussed some of the chapters in the book doesn't indicate that. I've clearly read more chapters than I've reviewed because I've referred to my views on some of the other chapters. Since it apparently needs to be stated, I have read this entire book.

    As for your second point, we have plenty of evidence to support whatever theory you want, just bend it however you want. That is at least, what seems to be done these days, and when you are wrong blame it on something you didn’t count on. I would actually agree with your second point, not only that the book conveys it, but that it is true.

    You're wrong. And not just by a little. There is no scientific basis for your position. You may not believe me. That's your call. Other people may not believe me. That's their call too. I don't intend to argue the point right now. I'm content to say anyone who believes there is no evidence the planet will warm in the next 50 years is completely wrong, and if they present their position as fact, they're a buffoon.*

    You offered no rebuttal to anything either, all you have posted is opinion, while cherry picking a few quotes, out of context, and deciding the author’s intent. Positing that people don’t know how the climate will be, is not suggesting to know how it will be. At no point does this book say the planet will cool, or even “may” cool,

    I'm reviewing the book, not making a scientific argument. This is like saying me saying, "He mugged me!" and responding, "You haven't proved that." Of course I haven't proved anything. I'm making claims/accusations. If people want to know why I make them, I can explain, but I don't have to explain every claim I make in order to make it. (It's not like the book requires justifying claims either, as it frequently makes claims while offering no basis for them.)

    As for the idea the book doesn't say the planet may cool, you are just playing semantics. The book says we can't know cooling in the next 15 years won't happen. That is no different than saying cooling may happen.

    Soon I believe you nitpicked in that, much of what you pick at is grammatical inference and semantical interpretation. He does not say that 99.5 percent of scientists believe Co2 is not the primary driver, he says they remain commendably open to the possibility of other driving forces. This is a misrepresentation made by you,

    Oh puh-leez. You complain about me supposedly nitpicking and arguing semantics, but look at what you're arguing here. I said Soon claims 99.5% of "scientists don’t think humans have... caused most of the observed warming." You claim that's a misrepresentation because Soon actually said 99.5% just haven't concluded humans have caused most of the observed warming.

    All you are doing is arguing about what "scientists don't think" means. You claim I misrepresented the quote by saying "scientists don't think" X means they've ruled out X. The reality is I meant "scientists don't think" X because they haven't concluded X is true. Even if my phrasing was slightly off, it is completely unimportant to the point I was making - that the 99.5% figure is complete BS.

    *I would find it interesting to see what each author of this book would say if they were told there is no evidence the planet will warm in the next 50 years. I bet at least a couple would laugh, and I'm sure quite a few would disagree.

  31. "And the chapter explicitly says human emissions “will have an insignificant effect.” If you want to argue the book doesn’t deny global warming will happen, it just denies global warming will happen in any measurable way… fine. I don’t really care. The book flat-out says we can’t know global warming has happened based upon the size of warming, and it directly says any future warming will be insignificant. The difference between saying there will be “no warming” and “no detectable warming” seems rather unimportant to me, certainly not enough to justify responses like yours."

    I am not arguing that the book denies global warming will happen in any measurable way. I would say the tenor of the book is such that global warming does not happen in a statistically significant way due to anthropogenic CO2 emissions. I highly doubt many of the people in this book would say that global warming will never happen in any measurable way.

    "I’m glad you liked my book, but I must say, I notice people constantly say I’m “nitpicking” when they disagree with me but don’t say it when they agree with me. That’s true on both sides. Defenders of Michael Mann say it just like the people saying I was wrong to criticize Steve McIntyre’s posts on the Andrew Weaver lawsuit."

    I would post whether or not I agree with you on anything, and I am wrong a lot and right a decent bit too. Just because I made such a statement does not lump me into this category which you seem to see me in. I find many of your arguments here to be inserting your interpretation into more broad statements. I am sure I could find a few instances in your book in which I did not agree with your inferences as well. However I found most of it to be more a recording of events, without interpretive diagnosis.

    "I didn’t call it dishonest. I don’t think any of the authors of this book are trying to be dishonest. I think they’re just wrong. And this has nothing to do with semantics. Robert Carter’s claim we can’t tell global warming has happened is based upon an obvious misrepresentation of the reference he uses. That misrepresentation was the only basis for his claim. There is no way to spin this. No amount of semantics will change the fact Carter made a claim based solely upon a total misinterpretation of his reference. You can say:"

    Fair enough. I would tend to say on this at face value I find myself in agreement with you, albeit there is wriggle room for semantics or gentlemanly embellishment...of which I probably would have gotten my ears boxed for as a child.

    "I have no idea why you think I haven’t read the entire book. That I’ve only discussed some of the chapters in the book doesn’t indicate that. I’ve clearly read more chapters than I’ve reviewed because I’ve referred to my views on some of the other chapters. Since it apparently needs to be stated, I have read this entire book."

    I believe what gave me the impression were a misunderstanding of your words:

    "I might go ahead and review the rest of the chapters. In case I don’t, I should point out things do get better after these first five chapters. There are actually some chapters which don’t suck. Some of them might even be okay if taken on their own."

    This was my misunderstanding and I was wrong to equate review with read, I apologize.

    As far as into me being wrong on the second point, you can have that belief, but I never said we will not have global warming in the next 50 years, I just don't simply believe there is anything concrete we can latch onto to say we definately will or will not, due to the enormous complexity of the science of climate, and our incredibly limited knowledge therein. There may be indicators, and I believe there are of warming over the next 50 years, but at the same time there are indicators of some cooling apparatus within the climate as well, I do not know, nor do I believe anyone knows with any certainty the extent to which these positive and negative forcings and various other elements of climate will come into play at this time. We are stuck with historical measurement, without even then a true sense of knowledge of the absolute drivers behind everything we have already experienced. I do however look forward to your climate model showing your thoughts on the next 50 years. I would not be so bold (everyone that has been has been wrong thus far, but I am sure they are eager to have someone who knows on their side). UAH and RSS show slight cooling and leveling trends even in the past 18 years, and at intervals throughout, I don't know why someone would wish for such dogmatism. You can say I am wrong for basically stating that noone "knows" what will happen in the next 50 years as to warming or cooling or stasis, but if you would point out someone who does know what warming will take effect in the next 50 years I would be happy to review that and correct my knowledge as well (So would every computer model and forecaster that has ever existed). So yes I remain pretty stalwart about my position that we cannot know for sure that global warming will occur in the next 50 years, unless you wish to be extremely literal and point to extremely short trends of seasonal adjustment El NINO etc..however I am under the impression we are talking about trends here as a factor of longevity in time.

    Cooling may happen, and Alien's may come to visit us. Warming may happen...and a stasis trend may happen for 15 years. I just simply don't see a problem with this. I would although posit the Alien's one to be least likely. This isn't some dogmatic statement to be proved true or false it is admitting a deficiency in predictive models. If predictive models do not predict an hiatus, or a warming trend correctly, or cooling trends correctly, then how is it possible to know what may happen. We do not. Ergo the entire argument, and the lack of a correct model. Cooling may happen, warming may happen. Right now it is guesswork. To me that is obvious.

    You are arguing semantics with me about me arguing semantics, about your semantics. It is going beautifully nowhere.

  32. DB:

    I am not arguing that the book denies global warming will happen in any measurable way. I would say the tenor of the book is such that global warming does not happen in a statistically significant way due to anthropogenic CO2 emissions. I highly doubt many of the people in this book would say that global warming will never happen in any measurable way.

    Could you explain what distinction you're drawing between "statistically significant" and "measurable"? As far as I know, the two should be one and the same in this case as warming would become statistically significant when it became measurable in a way that distinguished it from noise.

    I would post whether or not I agree with you on anything, and I am wrong a lot and right a decent bit too. Just because I made such a statement does not lump me into this category which you seem to see me in.

    That's fine, and you may not fit this apparent pattern. The pattern itself may not even exist. All I can say is it appears people often default to claiming I am "nitpicking" or arguing "semantics" when they disagree with me even though they'd accept the same from when when they agree. I still try to judge the claims on their merits, but I'll admit I take them less seriously.

    As far as into me being wrong on the second point, you can have that belief, but I never said we will not have global warming in the next 50 years, I just don’t simply believe there is anything concrete we can latch onto to say we definately will or will not, due to the enormous complexity of the science of climate, and our incredibly limited knowledge therein. There may be indicators, and I believe there are of warming over the next 50 years,

    The issue has never been whether or not we can be certain there will be warming in the next 50 years. As I clearly quoted, the book says "there is no evidence the next 50 years will bring human induced warming." If there is competing evidence as you now claim, then there is, by definition, "evidence the next 50 years will bring human induced warming."

    As far as I can tell, you've now acknowledged the point I've made and disputed the point the book makes, all while telling me I am wrong and the book is right. That's... weird. You keep talking about me arguing against strawman, but by all appearances, your entire point here has been a strawman.

    You are arguing semantics with me about me arguing semantics, about your semantics. It is going beautifully nowhere.

    I'm still at a loss as to what you think I've said that is wrong. You have a tendency not to quote much of what you're referring to, and when you do quote things, you don't do so in that clear a manner (HTML blockquote tags would make your comments more legible). Even so, it appears to me most of your arguments have consisted of exaggerating what I've said then attacking the caricature you've created.

    In other words, you seem to have accused me of nitpicking, arguing semantics and attacking strawmen largely by nitpicking, arguing semantics and attacking strawmen. If you'd like to not argue semantics any more, it'd help to lay out the things I've said you think are wrong and explain why you think they are wrong. It should be easy to do. Just number the quotes from this post you think are wrong, post them and explain why you think they are wrong.

    Because I honestly have no idea what you're thinking right now.

  33. Not really, that is my point I think it is a semantical argument open to interpretation to begin with.

    “there is no evidence the next 50 years will bring human induced warming.”

    I don't really find that much at fault with this statement. There is evidence that human activity contributes to warming (the scale therein is what I feel is mostly argued about, how little or much warming), however just because there is evidence there are human contributing factors to warming does not in turn mean the next 50 years will in fact bring human induced warming. If this is offset by negative forcings and a plethora of other issues, then it will not bring in fact warming on a composite index or as in total warming.

    I think you are wrong in that you are taking such statements and extending them to your interpretation, when many such statements you grab tend to be more generalized. I highly doubt any of the people in this book believe or would say (to make it more plain) (which would then either make your receiving of communication or their ability to communicate the idea properly at fault, one or the other): There is no evidence human causes will contribute to the entire index of the climate in the aspect of warming or cooling. (perhaps it would be good to reach out to the author and ask for clarification as to their intended full meaning of the statements that you pick to analyze).

    "Could you explain what distinction you’re drawing between “statistically significant” and “measurable”? As far as I know, the two should be one and the same in this case as warming would become statistically significant when it became measurable in a way that distinguished it from noise."

    I am not really trying to draw a distinction. I think really the statement you are looking at "have an insignificant effect". It can be measurable and still be statistically insignificant within a broader scheme. Otherwise to borrow an old completely absurd example, cows farting might indeed produce ghg emissions that are measurable, but affect the overarching climate in an insignificant way. Co2 specifically anthropogenically sourced CO2 is indeed measurable, and will indeed have an effect on some way on the climate. The extent of that effect and the meaning of the word "insignificant" I think is the issue here. Which once again cannot really be proven or disproven due to the fact that our ignorance of natural variability and causal factors is exceedingly slim, so to isolate in totality the effect of such a small fraction of the equation is virtually impossible. Just look at varying ECS estimates, noone agrees hardly, except to push their ideology, because so much of the equation is related to assumed forcings. I personally do not believe at this moment AGHG emissions, are distinguishable from the noise in terms of causal Global Temperature relationships due to us not even knowing what all the noise is to begin with. Correlations with assumptions is all we have thus far and all have been wrong. We are missing many variables or the significance of known variables.

    Many times in your post you state "the book" and use one quote by someone specific in a specific chapter to juxtapose what you interpret as their beliefs upon the rest of the authors, even if not so, thus the language is. Once again this quotation:

    "The reality is that no scientist on the planet can tell you with credible probability whether the climate in 2030 will be cooler or warmer than today.

    Cooling! This book about the “facts” of climate change seriously suggests cooling over the next 15 years is a serious possibility!"

    By your logic that statement also is seriously suggesting that warming over the next 15 years is a serious possibility. When the statement is really just one of ambiguity, saying that noone really has an accurate model prediction of what will happen within the climate in the next 15 years. Can you state that going through a cooling trend in the next 15 years is not a possibility? Would you have preferred they assign statistical numbers to it? Regardless, I don't believe this is even a valid criticism, unless you come from the viewpoint that we can predict the climate and have ruled out any possibility of any factors human or natural causing any trend in cooling over the next 15 years, which to my knowledge has not and cannot be done. Once again if so, then take over all the computer models, you're a rockstar (esp after you re proven right in 15 years).

    "My work is good and proves everybody wrong, but nobody listens to me."

    This is a gross oversimplification and a definitive strawman.

    Look, I agree with you that it is a terrible title. Sensationalist even, but to discount it all with such a broad brush with so many varying opinions contained therein is just as bad a slip to make. Just because an overzealous publisher included the words "the facts" does not discount the entire book, and certainly it is not discounted by a few picked examples of a few authors.

    On that note any book or blog that has the words "the facts, the truth about...the real truth...discerning the truth etc" is likely a terrible title, as when you talk about theories, and such you cannot really establish them as facts. Not like gravity and 2+2, although as we see in me Disraeli referred to it thus: "There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics." That statement can be backed up, just study climate models for a while.

    Even so, it appears to me most of your arguments have consisted of exaggerating what I’ve said then attacking the caricature you’ve created.

    That is what I feel you have done with this book, except for in your language extrapolated it out to the whole of the book rather than with specificity to chapters or authors.

    Meaning this book claiming to show the “facts” of climate change denies we can even know global warming has happened. Not only is that absurd on its face, the book’s argument is obviously wrong given any examination of it.

    This extends this thought to all authors in your language. I never got this feeling anywhere in the book, even where you quote, it is an exaggeration. I interpreted the entire context to convey the idea that, even with the recorded warming we have, it's all so negligible that it is within the margin of error (That does not mean warming didn't happen in fact in the beginning of the quote it specifically says

    Though global average temperature may have warmed during the twentieth century,"

    I construe this to relate to the lack of authority in attributing said warming to Co2 as a primary driver. I highly doubt were you to question any of the authors that any of them would "deny" that global warming ever happened. I do think it is true that we really do not have an exceedingly accurate picture of how much global warming or cooling have happened although we have many fine guesses some much better than others.

    I suppose on a whole after reading the whole book, I don't see this book as a travesty. Poorly titled, sure. Woefully inaccurate...no. A lot of theories and hypothesis some of which have come to fruition and many of which will be hard to judge. Why not go through chapter by chapter and provide context exclusive to the individual authors, instead of lumping so much together and extrapolating it across. There are many parts of this book I find highly insightful, and I would recommend it as reading to anyone.

  34. DB:

    I don’t really find that much at fault with this statement. There is evidence that human activity contributes to warming (the scale therein is what I feel is mostly argued about, how little or much warming), however just because there is evidence there are human contributing factors to warming does not in turn mean the next 50 years will in fact bring human induced warming.

    Again, you're ignoring the simple distinction that whether or not something will happen is different than whether or not there is evidence it will happen. The book says there is no evidence the planet will warm in the next 50 years, which is absurd. You constantly misrepresent this as the book merely saying we can't be sure the planet will warm in the next 50 years (which is still fairly absurd), and then you go on to say things like:

    I think you are wrong in that you are taking such statements and extending them to your interpretation, when many such statements you grab tend to be more generalized.

    No, I am not. You're just constantly misrepresenting what the book says, as well as what I say about the book, in order to defend things the book never says. It gets so bad you say things like:

    I am not really trying to draw a distinction. I think really the statement you are looking at “have an insignificant effect”. It can be measurable and still be statistically insignificant within a broader scheme.

    No, it cannot. You are wrong, by definition. Statistically significant merely means distinguishable from noise. It does not mean anything more.

    You don't get to just make up definitions for words and phrases then insist people are wrong because they use the real definitions, used by everybody but you, because you want to use some other definition which exists only in your imagination. You don't get to defend a book by saying it is right if we just ignore what words mean whenever it says things which are wrong.

    Your comments about arguing semantics are obscene at this point. Not only is every point you make seemingly based upon you misrepresenting simple sentences, you then rely upon stupid semantic arguments like:

    By your logic that statement also is seriously suggesting that warming over the next 15 years is a serious possibility. When the statement is really just one of ambiguity, saying that noone really has an accurate model prediction of what will happen within the climate in the next 15 years.

    Of course the statement is saying warming is a serious possibility. That was obvious. There was no point in saying it other than making a rhetorical point. The reality is there is no reason to believe we will see cooling over the next 15 years. You think otherwise. That's all there is to this. All of your comments and rhetoric come down to that. But you won't be straight about this because, for some reason, you seem to think arguing a bunch of stupid rhetorical and semantic points supports something. It doesn't.

    You, wrongly, think we know far less about what will happen in the future. You're wrong. That's all there is to any of this. I'm sure you don't agree with me, but that's the entirety of your case against my review. Well that, and your constant misrepresentations of what I and the book have said, ones you've never attempted to correct or make amends for.

    If you actually think I've gotten anything wrong, quote what I've said, quote what the book says, and show how they don't mesh. You constantly claim I've misrepresented or exaggerated things, yet you've not once demonstrated I've described anything the book says inaccurately. Most of the time, you haven't even tried.

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