JoNova

A science presenter, writer, speaker & former TV host; author of The Skeptic's Handbook (over 200,000 copies distributed & available in 15 languages).


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August 4th Weekend Unthreaded

For all those thoughts that don’t fit somewhere else… -

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August 4th Weekend Unthreaded, 7.8 out of 10 based on 31 ratings

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115 comments to August 4th Weekend Unthreaded

  • #

    I’ve been looking at the current release of BEST data (monthly anomalies). I calculated 5 year averages backwards (the most current 5 year period is Dec/2006 to Nov/2011) and ranked them.

    For TMAX, the most current 5 year period is 2nd overall after a drop of .41C from the previous period.
    Note that the current 5 year period is only .36C warmer than 1911-1918 and only .5C warmer than 1876 – 1881 .

    If you took away UHI …

    1 2001 – 2006 0.95
    2 2006 – 2011 0.54
    3 1986 – 1991 0.43
    4 1976 – 1981 0.34
    5 1991 – 1996 0.28
    6 1996 – 2001 0.21
    7 1956 – 1961 0.2
    8 1911 – 1916 0.18
    9 1981 – 1986 0.17
    10 1876 – 1881 0.04
    11 1961 – 1966 0.02
    12 1896 – 1901 0
    13 1941 – 1946 -0.02
    14 1966 – 1971 -0.03
    15 1936 – 1941 -0.03
    16 1921 – 1926 -0.06
    17 1901 – 1906 -0.06
    18 1926 – 1931 -0.11
    19 1881 – 1886 -0.14
    20 1886 – 1891 -0.15
    21 1931 – 1936 -0.16
    22 1971 – 1976 -0.18
    23 1891 – 1896 -0.29
    24 1946 – 1951 -0.3
    25 1951 – 1956 -0.32
    26 1916 – 1921 -0.35
    27 1906 – 1911 -0.35
    28 1866 – 1871 -0.49
    29 1871 – 1876 -0.52
    30 1861 – 1866 -0.54
    31 1856 – 1861 -0.81

    Data: http://berkeleyearth.lbl.gov/auto/Regional/TMAX/Text/australia-TMAX-Trend.txt
    Graph: http://berkeleyearth.lbl.gov/regions/australia

    The graph would be more interesting if they graphed 5 year means (the data has them).

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    • #
      Graeme No.3

      And the “accuracy” of the basic measurements is ±0.28 ℃.

      Personally, I think that using anomalies is a waste of time. What assumptions, adjustments or errors are included? Do all these anomalies refer back to the same time period? At first glance the 1920′s and 1930′s appear downrated considering that (at a time before “adjustment”) there were more warm years then than in the 1990′s.

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      • #
        KinkyKeith

        Yes G3

        You’ve hit the nail on the head.

        “And the “accuracy” of the basic measurements is ±0.28 ℃.”

        And that is just the reading error.

        Other errors would include placement variations, time of day, UHI etc.

        The point is.

        The Earth’s atmosphere is NOT a laboratory with sterile conditions.

        It is a gigantic Engineering Plant with lots of dynamic activity.

        Feel the ground shake. Hear the waves crash. Get lashed by a Hurricane, Frozen in winter, Dried to a crisp in Summer.

        Energy being absorbed, dissipated , reflected and radiated.

        If only the Sun would stop being so Restless.

        KK :)

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        • #
          Bruce J

          “And the “accuracy” of the basic measurements is ±0.28 ℃.”

          How the hell do they get accuracy to 2 decimal places when until about the mid 50′s thermometers were hand made and only graduated in half degree increments? Repeatability was unmentionable and the accuracy of reading was very dependent on the height and eyesight of the postmaster’s wife. And then there were the variations in the location of the thermometers, from proper standard installations to the ones in remote areas where they were hung on a nail on the verandah post. So really, many temperature readings before 1950 (being fairly generous)were just about in the “by guess and by God” category!

          Two decimal place accuracy is just the dream of somebody sitting in an office miles from reality.

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          • #
            AndyG55

            They are working on a mathematical fallacy.

            True, in an controlled experimental situation, the precision (not accuracy, they are different things) of a result is generally increased with more experimental trials.

            But historic temperature readings ARE NOT a controlled situation and they ARE NOT a repeated experiment, in fact EVERY measurement is made under a DIFFERENT situation, so there are many adjustments, each often by a guess, (or a specifically biased adjustment mechanism), that need to be made, and they are basically just PRETENDING about the final accuracy.

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        • #
          Leo G

          Don’t forget the error associated with use of minmax temperatures as a proxy measure of the mean daily temperature. The frequency distribution of temperatures through a day is typically a double binomial shape with considerable more day-to-day variability in the degree of symmetry. The minmax temperatures would vary greatly with respect to the true means and error would have seasonal variation.

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          • #
            Philip Bradley

            And to follow up on Leo G’s point. While both minimum and maximum temperatures are sensitive to cloud/insolation changes. Minimum temperatures are more sensitive, because the minimum generally occurs just after dawn, when insolation exceeds outgoing LWR. Decreased clouds disproportionately increase early morning insolation and cause an earlier and higher minimum temperature.

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    • #
      Philip Bradley

      I noticed something interesting in UAH satellite anomaly data. In recent years the summer anomaly is increasing and the winter anomaly is decreasing. The effect is large, more than half the total anomaly amount. You see the same thing in the Reynolds SST data, and in the Arctic ice extent. While Arctic sea ice minimum is around the record, the maximum hasn’t decreased by much, which means there has been record winter ice formation.

      What it means is that something climaticaly significant has changed in recent years, and the summer – winter difference points to decreased clouds.

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  • #
    Roy Hogue

    For anyone interested in a well researched, accurate and nonpartisan look at political corruption in the United States, this is your must read book.

    THE CORRUPTION CHRONICLES
    Author: Tom Fitton, president of Judicial Watch
    ISBN 978-1-4516-7787-4 (hard cover)
    ISBN 978-1-4516-7789-8 (electronic)

    You can get it from Amazon and other outlets or from http://www.judicialwatch.org.

    I’m not completely through it yet but the depth of good solid investigation behind it is already astounding.

    [typo fixed]

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  • #
    Roy Hogue

    PS:

    Already a number 1 best seller — get it while they last.

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  • #

    Around 1990 a huge amount of politically driven funds were being directed into fields supporting the global warming hypothesis. Further, arguably nearly all of the post 1990 climatologists did not get accepted to their programs without agreeing with the “science” of the warmists. In this sense, these post 1990 vintage climatologists by and large lack credibility on the subject of… climate. Seriously. And here’s a good comment from the dailymail:

    - Chrome from San Francisco [said] “It is funny how every story supposedly challenging climate change has an “expert” who isn’t a climatologist. In this case it is a guy with no quoted credentials from a geography department. Why anyone would think an unknown geographer is credible on climate change I have no idea.”
    Yes but you see until recently there wasn’t a science called “climatology”, there were meteorologists, physicists, geographers etc. Then along come a load of activists calling themselves climatologists and bingo – no one else has a right to comment. Argumentum ad verecundiam at its finest.

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  • #
    EternalOptimist

    Plants harvest sunlight for energy. Are there any examples where they harvest the wind ?

    or are we the only suckers ?

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  • #
    alan neil ditchfielld

    Dear JoNova,
    I read your posts regularly. In style and depth they remind me of Letters of Junius, the editorials published for three years in Public Advertiser, a London newspaper. In the 18th century, as now, the cause is the same: citizen’s rights versus government infringement of such rights. Also, in addition to mastery of English, your posts show sound knowledge of quantitative methods, a skill essential to perceive the fake arithmetic that goes with false claims. Keep up the good fight.

    Cheers,
    Alan Neil Ditchfield

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  • #

    It is rather like the situation in my field of software development. HR departments advertize for 5 to 10 years of experience in technologies that have been around for at most for six months to a year. Then they say they can’t find anyone “qualified” and hire an HB1 import for ten cents on the dollar to implement ill designed “solutions” but who could not solve a problem for which a solution was not given to him.

    Following that, the managers in the software departments wonder why all the code that is produced is garbage: not to specification, over budget, and way beyond schedule. They then demand higher quality people at even lower cost, dictate the tools to be used, and demand tighter control over the work to be done. The cycle continues without interruption and the real problem never gets addressed let alone solved.

    The goal is failure to be used to justify still more people and larger budgets, and longer time schedules. Rinse and repeat to get more of the same.

    Cynical? No, just experienced in the real world. Your mileage may vary.

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    • #
      Another Ian

      Re Lionel Griffith #7

      Lionel, check out

      “Losing Your Company in 45 Minutes”

      at

      http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2012/08/02/losing-your-company-in-45-minutes/

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      • #
        Roy Hogue

        After 45 years in the software game three things are painfully obvious:

        1. Computers are very good slaves.

        2. Computers are very bad masters.

        Let them do the heavy work for you but never let them do your decision making.

        3. If you’re going to have anything to do with software development, learn humility.

        You’ll need that humility over and over.

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    • #
      Greg Cavanagh

      I’ve been observing managers for the last 28 years of my working carrier. They tend to fall into the following categories.
      a/ Completetly incompetent. But they have an impressive resume and sell themselves very well.
      b/ Out of their depth and they know it. They ask for support from their staff. They muddle their way though their job, and projects stumble forward. Making progress at least.
      c/ Skilled people managers. (I like this kind). They help and support their staff and put all their trust in their staff because they know they don’t have the skill to do the job. However, when a job goes bad it goes very bad.
      d/ Skilled with the job with varying degress of people skills. (These are also good managers). They know the job and make sure it is on track.
      e/ Skilled with the job and people. Never met one, probably a fictional character.

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      • #
        Geoff Sherrington

        Greg, we managers (my colleagues) got studied by teams of behaviour experts just before the HR dept concept became fashionable and the rot set in. Among the most noteworthy high points was “Ability to select correct advisors and then to accept their recommendations”. Since then, I’ve often thought that the ability to select, which is really a primary function of a Company Board vis a vis CEO etc, really is high up there. The concept of open communication vertically was also quite strong. Although our Chief was a formidable personality, he was scrupulously honest and fair & consequently was invited to the informal Shrove Tuesday pancake lunch in the carpark, where he was awarded a gold star if the troops thought he had a good year.
        Academia is a different culture, especially now. We were just a large extended corporate family.

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      • #

        Greg Cavanagh:

        “I’ve been observing managers for the last 28 years of my working carrier. They tend to fall into the following categories. … e/ Skilled with the job and people. Never met one, probably a fictional character.”

        Unusual at least – I’ve had two of category e/ in 42 years.
        They seem to understand that ‘there’s more of them than me’ so if ‘they’ start white-anting they will win. Loyalty has to be earned, don’t take it for granted. Don’t criticise anyone in public. If you have something adverse to say do it in person and in private. Roll your sleeves up and join in the spade work when the going gets tough.
        They usually have their limits. One of mine threatened to go down on the floor and chew the carpet if two of the units he was responsible for could not reconcile an area of conflict. And he did just that. Tore a chunk out of it. The other marched into his office, slammed the door, swept everything off his desk, and flung the (2nd floor) window open. We had a little meeting after that. Was it workplace stress because we thought he was going to jump, or was it workplace stress because he didn’t?

        Personally, I think “management” is one of the pandemics of this age. As soon as the ratio of technical to management/administration moves away from 80:20 the rot sets in. When it gets to 40:60 the tail is wagging the dog. You could sometimes get problems solved with personnel officers, then HR came along. People who have no people skills whatsoever become HR consultants.
        Ok, there’s plenty like that. Builder’s house is never finished (me). “Look what’s happened to my ironing board – and you call yourself an engineer …”. Best one recently: ” … Nothing sustainable about you … ” said by wife of sustainability consultant.

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      • #

        Lessons for Leaders

        Part 1 of 496: Leaders

        German General Kurt von Hammerstein-Equord has been quoted as saying

        I divide my officers into four classes; the clever, the lazy, the industrious, and the stupid. Most often two of these qualities come together. The officers who are clever and industrious are fitted for the highest staff appointments. Those who are stupid and lazy make up around 90% of every army in the world, and they can be used for routine work. The man who is clever and lazy however is for the very highest command; he has the temperament and nerves to deal with all situations. But whoever is stupid and industrious is a menace and must be removed immediately!

        Part 2 is also directly relevant.

        No. There aren’t 496 listed on that web page.
        (poosting feiled so I is trying agun)

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    • #
      MadJak

      Lionel,

      The problems go much deeper than that. Having been trained in both Business and IT, over the last 15 years I have seen the business realm and the IT Realm become so divergent that it’s actually almost becoming impossible for some organisations to succeed.

      I have been lucky enough to work in an area that bridges across all areas of the Development process. I see on a daily basis where if the Developers did something a little differently, how that can positively impact the testers, which in return will help the developers. I see these things, measure them and implement them and I have been doing this for most of my career.

      And having IT people not willing (or not being allowed to) step up into line management roles has and will continue to make it even worse.

      I have been in successful projects and organisations and have often been called into help sort out the poor development endeavours as well. Whether they drank the ITIL Koolade, the Agile Koolade or the Prince2 Koolade, or any of the other silver bullets, doesn’t make a difference. The reason, IMO is that the development teams are really good at misapplying techniques and methods to solve problems they think they have rather than the problems they actually have (and can measure). The exception to this is, of course the low hanging fruit.

      A classic case in point is a Team I encountered (not alone), who had the continuous integration build server going, hooked up to the Lava lamp, but were preparing the requirements at the end of the project – initial attempts to bring them inline came back with responses about us “infringing on their creativity”. Hell, I was implementing CI back in ’99 – and that was to solve a real problem.

      The Tech sector has compounded the issue – churning out graduates with no applied skills (computer science) and put them into specialised roles with no real understanding of even the overall development processes let alone the environment the system is going be there to fulfil. How many CS graduates ended up doing MBAs as they discovered they only had half the skillset?

      And no, just going and doing a requirements management course or a short small business course ain’t going to cut it – well no more than a Commerce graduate doing a Scrum masters course.

      Sure, Enrolments in IT courses has been declining for over a decade worldwide. After all, why get into a high risk industry just to have your job offshored? You know how to use facebook, so you’ll be able to pick things up, I’m sure /sarc.

      On the other side of the fence, the business realm, after many attempts at managing IT (which many of them have no real understanding of), and the failures that result, have decided that if given the choice between some expensive locals from failing the project and some offshore people failing it, they would prefer the offshore teams to fail.

      And then there is the structure of most IT endeavours – Project management (a once prominent discipline which has been dumbed down) reigns supreme – even though the project is just a means for making changes. Very little emphasis on the product or the product line. Has anyone else seen quality mechanisms ripped out of the project as soon as the schedule pressure comes in? It’s when the product gets released that the quality of the work and processes provides most benefit – as anyone who has been called in to work on some old code that wasn’t well documented will tell you.

      The result is that right now, the only real choice customers have is which of the major IT firms is going to rip them off next. They might even sell you some software without having the capability to help you get it done and dusted. After all, it’s not about your business’ success – it’s all about the sales guy making their quarterly numbers.

      But don’t worry some other “thought leader” will come out with some other technique based on some responses from a blog survey he had on his private blog. Even if there is any value in the technique, teams will go ahead and misapply it en masse.

      Just like over the last 30 years. All of these issues are very well documented, but like a pack of morons, we continue to repeat these mistakes.

      That’s why I’m moving out. The Industry embarrasses me.

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      • #
        Graeme No.3

        One sympathises even if not experienced in the IT business. Your crack about “the only real choice customers have is which of the major IT firms is going to rip them off next” bought tears to my eyes (mostly of laughter). I recall us being saddled with a business system from a major supplier which was virtually impossible to use at the bottom end (but would solve our Y2K problem). I told the IT Manager at one stage “that it was like something out of the early ’70s” and was told tartly by her not to speak nonsense as “it was like something out of the early ’60s”.

        It would have bankrupted the company if we hadn’t been just taken over by a large USA company (who had chosen the system from the …big O). It cost them multiple millions to adapt it to their needs, and I am not exaggerating. Factor in 35 full time IT personnel for 4.5 years, travelling the World to get it up and running in each Division, let alone the millions in annual fees. Then the cost of a smallish software firm set up to write front ends for various uses, e.g. technical, so it could be used. Before that inputing 2 formulas a day was considered a good effort, and when there are 480 formulas between the 2 of you, to be done in addition to your other work, you can see why I wonder about the management who chose the scheme. The general view at the bottom was a large bribe to someone, but I may overate the collective decision making ability.

        Before the “add-ons” came on board result was as you describe, a series of individual systems based on
        Access of all things. I was gone by then, thank goodness. Oh, the old software that was going to fail Jan 2000 – that was still going in 2008 (for archival reasons).

        As for the quality of managers I lost count of requests to develop products “that worked just like the opposition’s, but with improved attributes, and cheaper”. Even to the point of saying to one “manager’s” face and just getting a “yes” as answer.

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    • #
      Andrew McRae

      Something has always bugged me about the entire idea of estimating software projects.

      On what possible realistic basis can the developer predict the amount of time required?
      The customer (or product development manager) goes to the developer and asks for an estimated delivery date for some vaguely worded description of the software. Even if the request is well described to the point of being a spec I don’t think it fixes the basic problem. Here’s the problem.

      The customer is asking for custom software to be developed. Surely this means they have searched the universe of software out there and have not found anything off-the-shelf that suits their needs. That’s why they are asking for a custom solution. But if no software out there does what they need, that means nobody has ever developed the system they want developed. They want a unique solution to a unique problem. That means nobody in the world has historical information on how long such a system would take to develop. Yet here is the customer (or manager) asking for an estimate of how long it will take, as though that estimation is as easy as estimating moving a pile of dirt or making a Quarter Pounder With Cheese. And the developer is expected to play this impossible game if they want to get paid, and so they do.
      I am surprised anything gets delivered on time under this arrangement, and when it does it is only through a combination of “sandbagging” the estimates at the front end and working unpaid overtime at back end to deliver on promises made. Basically the developer pays the price of playing the impossible game. Given how much discovery is involved during requirements gathering, surely the customer should bear more risk in development.

      I think you must have some feasible solution to this by now. What’s the secret sauce to estimating project schedules? Does it depend ultimately on individual developers keeping logs of what features they have implemented over the years and how long they each took?
      Got any silver bullets? ;)

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      • #
        MadJak

        Andrew,

        In short, there are no silver bullets. However, if you have a system that at least tracks who has implemented similar features in the past using the same technology, maybe getting those people involved in the estimation process will help to make the estimates more accurate.

        But that would mean getting the Geeks involved in the sales process, and they have a terrible habit of telling the truth – which will adversely affect the salemans’ next BMW payment.

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        • #
          Andrew McRae

          It’s all starting to make sense now.

          It’s a bit like when you go to install a piece of software or register with a web site or sign an employment contract at a new job, and you are confronted with 12 pages of legalese saying what kind of relationship you are entering into. Somehow all that detail just fades away and all you see in front of you is the text “So do you want to do this or not?” and so you click Yes.

          Look sales guy, I want a hoohaa that can do wazoo and probably also doohicky three times faster than MasterCard and ideally it should flap wings and translate russian architecture into Chinese poems, and you aren’t starting from scratch you have to shoehorn it into our existing scrapheap product, so can your guys do that in 11 days or not?
          (Vroom vroom)
          “Yes”.

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          • #
            MadJak

            And the sales guy makes his numbers for the quarter.

            Then come in the people that know the product who spend the next few years getting their arses kicked.

            Start:
            Q. Do you know the difference between a Software Salesman and a used car salesman?
            A.The used car saleaman knows he’s lying.

            Now replace Software salesman with climate scientist and goto start

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      • #

        If you start off with the understanding “All estimates are wrong”, you have started well. Not only is there no silver bullet, there is no gun powder, no gun, and no trigger to pull.

        The best approach I have found is to require a front end study so that the problem to be solved can be defined, the environment in which the solution is to be used can be identified, and the people who are to use the solution can be understood. Then you must require that the problem is to determined its solution as well as the resources and tools for doing the work. Finally, breakdown the design of the solution into as many one to three day chunks as necessary to solve the problem. Each part will be done within the range of times two and divide by two. If you have well over 50 parts, your estimate will likely be strikingly good.

        Be warned! Do not negotiate an estimate without also negotiating the feature set. If the customer wants things done faster or for a lower price, promise to deliver enough less to make up for the difference. Keep in mind that out of more, faster, better, cheaper you can pick only two and survive the experience solvent.

        If you are not permitted to do the above then give the following estimate: 10 million dollars, two years, no guaranteed results, and a non-refundable full payment up front. Such a response is justified because if you can’t be permitted to understand the problem you can’t possibly estimate how difficult it will be to solve. If they do give you the money, take it and escape to the south pacific, buy a beach bar, and take it easy for the rest of your life. Otherwise, look for another job.

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        • #
          Andrew McRae

          That is gold.

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        • #
          Roy Hogue

          $10 million sounds good to me. I’ll tell management Monday morning. Maybe I better make sure the fan isn’t running before I do it though — you know…better safe than sorry. ;-)

          Seriously Lionell, do you always have such an ideal working situation?

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          • #

            The times I was permitted to use my method up front, the project was a smashing success. It usually came in within a few percentage points of the estimate leaving the customer very happy.

            The rest of the time it was the same old same old “make it work for the price promised and on time. You must use these tools and resources to do the work”. Those projects were never pretty nor on time, on budget, nor on spec. By expending an extraordinary effort and secretly doing the front end, some were successful. I eventually learned to find a new job when a project started that way.

            Now I work alone on projects of my choosing. I have no problem getting all the work I want. Unfortunately, getting paid for it is a challenge. As they say, it is going to happen “real soon now.”

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          • #
            Roy Hogue

            As I suspected, the world muddles on. But I was involved in one very well managed project. It was on time, on spec and actually able to do its job when it was finished. The two top level managers were impressive (the only impressive ones, by the way). They later wrote a book which I was forced to read during my masters degree program. Unfortunately they were better managers than writers and the book was an overbearing bore.

            It’s truly amazing that very complex systems ever get done. And scary… Medical systems and fly-by-wire with a computer standing between the pilot and his airplane, bother me no end. Cars are now being equipped to override the driver both on the throttle and the break. The price of a mistake in these systems is lives, not just money — 9 confirmed deaths from uncontrolled acceleration in Toyotas according to the report I read.

            I’m quite happy to be near the end of my career. Maybe I’m just getting old but having that kind of weight on my back is not appealing.

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        • #

          I’m an Engineer. I’ve helped to prepare tenders for supplies of simple systems (steel poles), systems of intermediate complexity incorportaing stuff I had to “invent”, and intensely complex systems. All those Engineering tenders required understanding the specifications and agreeing to e.g. liquidated damages if the project was not be completed to spec. on time. There were provisions for variances; where customer-requested changes could be accommodated in the payment structure of the contract.

          Tenders for IT systems used to work like that too because it was often Engineers drafting spec’s by an understanding of the “problem” and knowing better than to pre-define a solution out of an unfamiliar and rapidly-changing technology. Systems were defined by the “black box”. They didn’t care how they worked, just that they worked and did the right things by everything else around them..

          That was before IT became an industry in its own “right”; coinciding with support-heavy desktop PC systems with dodgy software becoming popular; alas in part as a consequence of “isolationist” computing departments. Instead of IT systems being a tool, they have since then become an end to themselves. The objective is almost invariably blurred; the problems remain poorly defined. So the result is no surprise. To me, anyway.

          Corporations have been trained to think that computers are a panacea to business; that they can solve problems which they themselves do not understand. But by magic, those who write the software and build the hardware are, via the “sales force” able to implement the right solution for the customer. None of them needs to understand the business processes of the customer, the products that they make and the industry environment. Computers make all that messing about obsolete.

          Unfortunately for many businesses, the proffered “solution” is one to somebody else’s problems. But they’re used to dodgy software; to bug fixes that lose data; software changes that lose stock levels for millions of lines in warehouses. That’s Industry Standard.

          (OOPS. This is an unthreaded weekend. It seems that I’m unravelling.)

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          • #

            Ouch! I feel your pain.

            Marketing departments are trained to make promises. They do that extremely well. The thing they don’t do is connect their promises to reality. Actual reality is held to be irrelevant.

            Managers are trained to make decisions. They to that extremely well. The thing they don’t do is connect their decisions to reality. Actual reality is held to be irrelevant.

            Sales people are trained to overcome customer objections by using golden words. They to that extremely well. The thing they don’t do is connect their golden words to reality. Actual reality is held to be irrelevant.

            (See the pattern here?)

            The engineer responsible for making “it” happen is trained to deal with reality and to connect each feature of “it” to something real or something that can be made real. For him, reality is the only thing that matters. Unfortunately, this is in direct contradiction to the purpose and method of the three groups that determine the “solution” he is to build. The three groups are paid multiples of what the engineer is paid so they must know what they are doing and the engineer doesn’t or so they think.

            The net result is that the engineer cannot do what he is trained to do and must apply magic to get the work done. The magic is supposed to deliver the impossible, immediately, for free. If the engineer can’t do that, he is held to be uncooperative and not a good team player. No good can come from this.

            Putting it in the simple words of a marketing/sales person I have worked with off and on, for over 20 years “Guess and make a mess or do it right.” He actually told that to a current VAR-in-process for my software package. The VAR appears to have accepted it because they have explicitly agreed to a proper front end and understand that they are to pay for it.

            It took him only 15 years to get to that point. His getting there was a long and painful experience for everyone involved but he finally got there. He finally understands that he is being used for his people skills and his ability to use and communicate the technology but not to invent or modify the technology. He is explicitly prohibited from making ANY promise about the product not first passed through me.

            Early on (ca 1970), I made this sign: “I promise it, I will deliver it. You promise it, YOU will deliver it.”

            There are a bunch of sales reps out their who discovered I meant it and will make it stick. They learned to be careful about what they promised. The only down side is that you really must deliver on YOUR promises.

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  • #
    EternalOptimist

    lionel griffith

    software developer , me too.
    the scenrario you describe is known as the ‘red van’ scenario

    Van driver required. must have experience of driving red vans

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      Sorry, I have never encountered a description of a “red van” scenario. However, having been in the business since the mid 1960s, I have likely driven the van, been run over by the van, and have cleared out before the van was driven over a cliff.

      Right now I work for myself, meet my own standards, and like it that way. The closest I get to driving a red van is my 2003 Maroon Saturn Ion.

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    Ross

    It appears Richard Muller and Micheal Mann have “history”. I haven’t listened to this podcast yet but from Bishop Hill they say Muller has some interesting comments worth listening to ( esp. from 10 mins –18 mins into the interview)

    http://prn.fm/2012/08/01/green-front-dr-richard-muller-080112/#axzz22R4YezCa

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    David Wood

    Does anyone else get somewhat annoyed by the repeated use of phrases such as “rare and endangered species”, “pristine environment”,”sacred sites”, “prime agricultural land” etc. when used by those environmentalists (usually of the dark kind) who seen to be misanthropic opponents of everything; when they seek to prevent, or at least stall, just about any development , be it urban subdivisions, mining ventures or even supermarkets.
    They never bother to check (and if they did they would probably ignore it anyway) just how much of our vast country is actually used by for, example urban intensive uses or mining .
    Some years ago the Bureau of Rural Science produced a report entitled “Land Use in Australia at a Glance which among many interesting statistics included the following land use numbers (Table 1. Land Use in Australia bases on 2001/02 Land Use in Australia, Version 3, Bureau of Rural Science));

    Nature conservarion 6.9%
    Other protected (incl. Indigeonous use) 12.82%
    Urban Intensive use 0.18%
    Mining 0.02%

    The numbers would have changed a little since 2001/02, but somehow I don’t think anyone in the present government is the slightest bit interested in updating them!

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    AndyG55

    Frankly, I really hope the CO2 haters ARE right about it causing some warming.
    A bit warmer, with extra CO2 in the atmosphere will only make the Earth more abundant, more able to support humanity.

    If, however, geologists like Easterbrook are correct, and we are headed for a downturn in temperatures, the world is in for one heck of a lot of hurt.

    We have run down our energy supply systems, spent huge amounts of money on what is now obviously a non-problem, pushed up prices of one of the most essential of commodities, energy, in a vain search for some green alternative utopia of environmentally destructive wind and solar energy supplies.

    Many countries now have nothing left in the larder if things do turn cold. Poorer people, that the left side of politics pretends to support, will be the hardest hit. I suspect many will suffer greatly because of the stupidity of the green energy agenda.

    So let’s all hope the CO2 haters are actually just a little bit correct.

    oops, bad luck :-( !!!

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    Andrew McRae

    Less than 26 hours to go until the MSL enters its 7 Minutes of Terror and (hopefully) touches down in a safe landing on Mars.

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      Joe V.

      Fascinating. Only 15 hours to go now. Track the countdown.
      .
      Great to See NASA doing what they’re good at.
      (I hope they didn’t have to frame the mission in terms of climate change to get the budget ‘though.)
      .
      Follow the build up Live

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      Andrew McRae

      Landed!
      That darn skycrane thing actually worked. Heh.

      First images are supposed to be here (soon).

      The control room is a bunch of teary-eyed delirious engineers at the moment. (In a good way)

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    This will probably be pretty boring, except for the part where there might be a perceived mea culpa, but there is a reason for that. As I’ve said often enough, electricity consumption is spread over three sectors, the residential sector, the commerce sector and the industrial sector.

    I’ve been quoting that the Residential sector consumes around 38% of all power, and without concrete proof, because Australian data is really difficult to come by, almost as if someone doesn’t want you to know the exact data for some reason or other. I based that 38% figure around the consumption data for nearly every Developed World Country where that 38% is fairly constant give or take one percentage point. As confirmation of this, take the link to this data from the U.S. Now, what you are comparing is along the bottom row. That number on the left is Residential consumption, and the number at far right is the total consumption, and the percentage comes in at just under that 38% I have been using, and the same applies for most First World Countries where a constant and regular supply of electricity is available.

    Incidentally, no other Country has data like that from the U.S. with barely a two month lead time. Australian data is published yearly based on data from the previous year, so, in the main, is almost 2 years behind current figures.

    Something was niggling away at me, mainly that I couldn’t find anything concrete, so I’ve been searching on and off for 4 years now, and more intensely over the last couple of months.

    What I have found is a recent Government Paper on Energy Consumption in the Residential Sector, and note specifically the use of the word Energy, because here they throw it all in together, again making actual data for total residential electricity consumption hard to decipher accurately.

    So, it turns out, after much work, that Australia is a larger consumer of Natural Gas than most other Western Countries. That natural gas takes up a pretty hefty swag of energy consumption, and another thing that you may not think would have much impact at all is the adding in of energy from the burning of wood, mainly for space heating, and while you think this could not be very much, that wood burning space heating total energy consumption comes in at 11% of all residential energy consumption for the whole of Australia. Natural gas, in all its applications comes in at 35%, unequalled in nearly any Western World Country. LPG comes in at around 2%, and that leaves electricity (all residential applications) with the remaining 52%. I’ll link to the appropriate data further down in this comment, with an explanation as to where to look.

    So, now ascertaining that electricity is 52% of household energy, the trick is to chase up actual data in something people would actually recognise, as indicated on their power bills, in KWH.

    The data at this government paper is expressed in petajoules (PJ). So, now having a breakdown, I had to convert from PJ to TWH and then find out the total power consumption for all Australia, and then do the conversion for that. Hence 61TWH Residential power to 255TWH total electrical power consumption.

    That indicates that electricity consumption in the Australian residential sector is only 24%, and not the 38% figure I have been using, so there’s the perceived mea culpa on my part, even if there is a relatively reasonable explanation as I have shown here.

    What that does (besides embarrassing me a little) is show that the Carbon tax (sic) compensation is now actually less than what I took it for, because instead of being paid to (part of) 38% of all electricity consumption, it is now being paid to only (part of) 24% of all electricity consumption.

    With respect to the impact of that Carbon Tax (sic) and how the brouhaha seems to have died down a little, just wait till that Winter electricity bill comes in and hear the noise then, and more importantly, wait for the screams when those Winter Gas bills come in.

    So, now I actually have some accurate data, well, sort of anyway, because it’s not easy to trawl through for relevant info, I can base anything I have with better accuracy.

    You’d think with all the data so readily available that the Government would be able to do something like what was at that link from the U.S. because without fraction of doubt, that is the most comprehensive electrical power data anywhere on Planet Earth, and what we have here in Australia is little more than undecipherable gobbledegook.

    Link to Government Paper (pdf format): Energy Use in the Australian residential Sector 1986 – 2020

    That information in that 72 page document is really interesting in parts, and I’m still working through it all, but there is a wealth of stuff in it.

    The energy consumption data chart is shown at Table 2 on page 23 along the 2012 line. From that chart note how electricity consumption is expected to rise considerably over the next few years, no matter what they say, no matter where that electricity comes from. Note also gas usage also rises considerably, as does total energy consumption overall, and it all has to come from somewhere. It gives lie to the call that we need to reduce our consumption, something that will never happen, no matter what they try to do.

    With respect to that consumption there is a Pie chart graphic for better explanation, and that pie chart is shown at Figure 9 on page 23, the bottom of those 2 pie charts, and keep in mind that shows the figures for 2007.

    I do need to apologise for using misleading data, but now I have (relatively) accurate data, I can work with greater accuracy. Now with only 24% going to that Residential sector, that means more goes to the Commerce and Industrial sector, and while I cannot definitively break down that split, I would approximate that to the ratio I was using for the 38/37/24 and best guess that at 24/45/30 for Residential Commerce and Industrial. That of itself gives a better insight into what the absolute Base Load is indeed so high when compared percentage wise with other Western World Countries.

    So, while this has been a long (and probably boring) Comment, I needed to explain how and where and why my earlier statements were a little misleading, and while that earlier information was generic, it alters very little with respect to that generic information.

    From all of this, what is really surprising is that wood burning for space heating comprises 11% of Australia’s total residential energy consumption.

    For those of you who might be interested, that document while seemingly so dull, is in fact really worthwhile having a look at for the wealth of information it does contain, so any of you who do go and have a look, save it somewhere, and if you have any questions, ask away.

    Tony.

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      FijiDave

      From experience, I know how difficult it is to explain, in writing, the minutiae of esoteric matters that are generally of little interest to the ordinary man on the street. It is therefore very refreshing and a privilege to have access here on Jo’s blog to such erudite lectures on the economics of and efficiencies (or lack of) of the many and varied methods of power generation, both in use, and under consideration.

      Tony, you obviously know your stuff and I for one appreciate the knowledge you are imparting. I do note the odd negative comment from the occasional philistine that inevitably rises out of the muck only to slither back to whence they came once their brief foray into the light overpowers their senses, and I hope they don’t put you off.

      It also refreshing to note that, having made an error (not picked up by anyone except yourself, btw) that you own up to it, and for that, I say “Good on you!”

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      Steve R W.

      Tony.

      Your work and commentary is not boring. You are brilliant with your analysis when it comes to electricity, consumption, capacity and the grid. Please keep going.

      I read this a few years back. You’ll probably find it interesting reading.

      The Astounding High Cost of `Free’ Energy

      by Laurence Hecht

      The author is editor-in-chief of 21st Century Science & Technology.
      [PDF version of this article]

      Jan. 31—Every time someone mentions wind or solar power as the answer to our energy needs, the image that should form in your mind is that of 1 billion or more dying and starving children. If you do not yet understand why this is the case, you are forgiven. By the end of this piece you shall have been given the essential concepts and facts both to understand this ugly truth, and to act to prevent it.

      Begin with this: To maintain a global population in a condition resembling a modern 21st-Century standard of living will require an installed electrical generating capacity of at least 3 to 5 kilowatts per capita. Today, only the United States, Japan, and a few countries of western Europe even approximate this level of generating capacity. Let us understand the meaning of this more clearly, before moving on to the crucial question of how we shall generate this power the world so desperately needs.

      Kilowatts are a measure of electrical power, the amount of work that can be done per unit of time. One of the first means of measuring power was to compare it to that of a working horse. The standard horsepower is equivalent to about 750 watts of electricity. That means that it takes 750 watts of electricity, driving a motor or other device, to do the same work as a standard working horse. Thus, 1 kilowatt (1,000 watts) of electricity, is equivalent to the work of about 1.33 muscular horses of the working type. The horse cannot work all day, however, but perhaps for only one third of it, after subtracting the time for meals and rest. Thus, 1 kilowatt of electrical generating capacity, available all day and night, could do the work of 3 times 1.33 horses, which equals 4 horses.

      Here in the United States, we have about 3 kilowatts of electrical generating capacity available per capita—much less than we need to be a truly productive economy, but still, something that most of the world comes nowhere near. Thus, we could say that every person in the United States, on average, has the work of 12 horses available to him every hour of the day and night, in the form of electricity.[1] Without electricity, the work of those silent horses must be done by men and women, laboring to turn pumps, to carry water on their heads, to spend a whole day scrubbing clothes, and another heating irons on a fire to press them, while such simple requirements as water and sewage treatment, refrigeration, and even the light bulb, go wanting. Such and worse remains the condition of a majority of the world’s population—some 1.7 billion people who are entirely without electricity, and several billion more for whom the supply is intermittent and deficient.

      China, for example, which produces a great part of the manufactured products consumed in the U.S.A., had only 0.3 kilowatts of generating capacity available per capita in 2005, which increased by 2008 to an estimated 0.5 kilowatts. Well over half of this electricity goes to power Chinese industry, the product of which is primarily exported. Thus, the amount available per person for use in China is less than 0.25 kilowatts, about one-third of a horsepower. Taken over the full 24 hours, we can say that the average person in China has available to him the work of 1 horse, compared to the 12 horses available in the United States. The source of most U.S. manufactured products is the low-wage labor of millions of Chinese, many of them from families with no access to even the electric light.

      In India, Egypt, most of the rest of Africa, and large parts of South America, it is far worse. In Mexico, another major source of U.S. manufactured goods, the electricity available per capita is about the same as China. Such an injustice cannot continue for long. How then will we remedy it?

      No one can seriously propose that the world energy shortage can be solved with windmills and solar panels. The proponents of these systems have never addressed the world need, except to propose such patronizing and pathetic schemes as solar-powered refrigerators for African villages, which only work, if at all, when the Sun is shining. But even the proposals to use solar and windmills in the developed countries are a chimera. They have never proven economically or technologically feasible, despite the enormous public expense in tax credits and subsidies which they have drawn upon.

      To bring the present world population of 6.7 billion people up to a level of just 1.5 kilowatts of electrical generating capacity per capita will require that we build 6,000 gigawatts[2] (6 million megawatts) of generating capacity. The only feasible way to accomplish this is to embark now on a crash program to build nuclear power plants, making use of our limited existing capabilities and gearing up for a serial production capability for the new breed of fourth-generation, high-temperature helium-cooled reactors, among other models.

      Could solar or wind power possibly address the world electricity deficit? The largest existing solar power plant, the solar concentrator known as Nevada Solar One, produces less than 15 megawatts of power, averaged over the course of the day.[3] The largest solar plant using photovoltaic panels is in Jumilla in southeastern Spain. It is rated at 23 megawatts maximum capacity. Divide this by four, and you have the actual average output of less than 6 megawatts! A single large nuclear power plant can produce 1,000 megawatts (1 gigawatt) or more of electrical power. It can do this all day every day, not just when the Sun shines, and on a land surface area hundreds of times smaller than the equivalent solar plants or wind farms.

      Continued.

      http://www.larouchepub.com/other/2009/3606expensive_free_energy.html

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        Steve makes a good point here, and one I have been attempting to get across for years now.

        In the middle of last year, China became the largest power generator on Earth, overtaking the U.S.

        This may be simplified but look at this comparison. (RES is residential)

        COUNTRY—–TOTAL POWER—–PERCENT RES—–POWER RES—–POPULATION—–POWER PER PERSON

        USA————3700TWH————-38%—————-1390TWH———-311 Million———4.47KWH

        Australia——-255TWH—————24%—————–61TWH————-22 Million———-2.77KWH

        China———4000TWH—————8%—————–320TWH———-1.344 Billion——–0.24KWH

        Now, as I mentioned in my earlier comment, we here in Australia consume more Natural gas in the residential sector than any other Western Country and also burn Wood for space heating which is all part of our residential energy mix, so that’s why we are lower per capita electricity consumers than the U.S. However, our electricity consumption on a per capita basis when compared to China sees Australia consuming 11.5 times more power than China at that residential level.

        As I have tried to say so often, are we to deny China the chance to have access to regular and constant electricity supply, or, for the sake of the environment are we to go back and join them at that level of electrical power consumption. How would you get by at home with barely 8.6% of the power you currently consume, or in a similar situation, if we are to stay at that same level of consumption, then that’s one home in twelve having access to that electricity.

        It’s not that they consume so much less power in China, but due solely to the fact that barely one home in ten in China on an overall basis has any power at all, let alone the constant and regular supply we take so utterly for granted. Large cities have power but most of China does not.

        It’s an easy thing to point at China and indicate that bogus per capita consumption, but when you see this, which is actual data, you see exactly why it is such a bogus thing to use as a reference.

        Tony.

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          Richard C (NZ)

          Tony, I was looking at NZ wind data but got sidetracked by some other figures in this report:-

          Energy Link Market Review
          Issue 795
          Week ending 5 August 2012

          http://www.energylink.co.nz/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/mr-12-08-05-issue-795.pdf

          At the bottom there’s a graph of estimated weekly NZ elec gen CO2 emissions. Take a look at Genesis’ e3p plant. See here for about:-

          E3P 385MW CCGT at Huntly Unit 5

          http://www.power-technology.com/projects/ep3/

          Emissions are approx constant at about 20,0000 tonnes CO2 per day so a rough estimate of what Genesis would pay if it were paying the AU$23 carbon tax is:

          20,000 x 365 x 23 = AU$167,900,000 per year

          This seems to be an extraordinary amount for one new and efficient 385MW CCGT plant so I’m wondering if I’ve got this calc wrong or if I’ve got it about right, what are the Australian generators are actually paying?

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      Roy Hogue

      Tony,

      Never apologize for getting the job right. You’ve done excellent research. Being suspicious of your data and looking for something better is an outstanding trait. I wish the IPCC and many others could say they work that way.

      Roy

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    Richard C (NZ)

    Is there a feedback expert here?

    I’ve placed a long comment (too long to reproduce here I think) at Climate Conversation Group re Andrew Dessler’s 2012 paper ‘Observations of climate feedbacks over 2000-2010 and comparisons to climate models’ preceded by Carl Brehmer’s 2012 paper ‘The Greenhouse Effect . . . Explored Is “Water Vapor Feedback” Positive or Negative?’

    The latter, hot-linked at The Hockeyschtick post on D12, in an effort to get to grips with Desslers feedback system.

    I’m struggling to relate Brehmer’s explanations and definitions to D10 because both Dessler’s positive water vapour, albedo and cloud feedbacks and negative temperature feedback seem to me to be against undefined (D10 paywalled so can’t see definition if there is one) “climate variations”.

    Surely this cannot be a valid system because the initial process (“climate variations” apparently) must be either increasing or decreasing for the feedbacks to either intensify or reduce the intial process?

    Brehmer states a scientific definition of “feedback” thus:

    “When the result of an initial process triggers changes in a second process that in turn influences the initial one. A positive feedback intensifies the original process, and a negative feedback reduces it.”

    Also (going by the Supplementary paper) Dessler seems to be working with an increasing global average temperature from 2000 – 2010 which is odd because GAT hasn’t risen over that period and temperature is one of his feedbacks, not an initial process.

    I’m guessing this D12 paper will re-instate previous ructions provoked by Dessler papers. CCG link to extended comment here:-

    http://www.climateconversation.wordshine.co.nz/2012/08/ava-is-very-cute/#comment-109760

    Some feedback would be appreciated (Ha!).

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      Richard C (NZ)

      Should be:-

      “I’m struggling to relate Brehmer’s explanations and definitions to [D12]“

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        Richard, I’m not clear why you want to spend time on Desslers definitions. His definitions are irrelevant.

        Brehmer has quoted the IPCC definition of Climate Feedback found at the link he provides http://www.ipcc.ch/ipccreports/tar/wg1/518.htm

        Remember, this is the “gold standard”, peer reviewed line by line by many scientists and every interested government in the world.
        The IPCC definition of climate feedback stands, therefore the IPCC claim of a positive feedback by water vapour falls.

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          Richard C (NZ)

          Baa,

          I’m not clear why you want to spend time on Desslers definitions.

          Reason being I couldn’t relate his system to the Brehmer definition. Now that you point out Brehmer’s is as the IPCC’s I’m even more curious. Please look at Brehmer’s two generic graphs on page 5 (pdf) here:-

          http://myweb.cableone.net/carlallen/Greenhouse_Effect_Research/Water%20Feedback_files/Is%20Water%20Vapor%20Feedback%20Positive%20or%20Negative.pdf

          The initial processes are either ascending or descending. Brehmer says:-

          As you can see, positive feedback amplifies the change while negative attenuates the change regardless of whether the direction of change is up or down.

          However, Dessler’s “direction of change” (his initial process) is “climate variations”. What exactly are “climate variations” (what is his definition)? And is this initial variation ascending, descending or oscillating somehow? The plural use indicates that the climate (as per his definition) is both ascending and descending (oscillating) which means that in both of Brehmer’s generic graphs, climate is the black line, temperature is the blue line (positive) and WV/albedo/clouds is the red line (negative).

          That makes sense except for the initial process (black line) which I can only infer from Dessler’s abstract is the undefined “climate variations”.

          It get’s murkier because now I see the first sentence of the D12 Introduction implies that Dessler’s initial process is in fact “a change in surface temperature”:-

          Feedbacks change the top-of-atmosphere (TOA) net energy balance in response to a change in surface temperature, thereby altering the warming required to reestablish equilibrium.

          It’s impossible for temperature to be both the initail process and a feedback in his system.

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            in both of Brehmer’s generic graphs, climate is the black line, temperature is the blue line (positive) and WV/albedo/clouds is the red line (negative).

            No that’s not what I understand from those generic graphics.

            The black line is the variation (say temperature or blood sugar level)
            The red line is the result of positive reinforcement. It’s still temperature or blood sugar levels, but is the result AFTER positive feedback.
            The blue line is again still temperature or blood sugar levels, but the result after negative feedback.

            Essentially Brehmer is proving what we’ve been saying all along, water, in all its forms, reduces (dampens) extremes. The highs are lower, the lows are higher, which makes H2O a negative feedback.

            You’ll find the only come-back from the warmists will be “semantics”. But as Brehmer says, this is more than just semantics.

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            Richard C (NZ)

            Baa, I’ll use caps for clarity because I think there’s a subtle misunderstanding. Please note I’m not shouting.

            No that’s not what I understand from those generic graphics.

            The black line is the variation (say temperature or blood sugar level)
            The red line is the result of positive reinforcement. It’s still temperature or blood sugar levels, but is the result AFTER positive feedback.
            The blue line is again still temperature or blood sugar levels, but the result after negative feedback.

            I agree 100% with that in terms of BREHMER’S graph’s but in saying this:-

            in both of Brehmer’s generic graphs, climate is the black line, temperature is the blue line (positive) and WV/albedo/clouds is the red line (negative).

            I should perhaps have written: “[DESSLER'S "CLIMATE VARIATIONS"] is the black line” because I was trying to apply Dessler’s system that I inferred from the D12 abstract to Brehmer’s generic examples.

            Then from the D12 Intro Dessler seems to imply (in contradiction to the abstract) that temperature is both the initial process AND a feedback (see my # 14.1.1.1 comment). That is impossible in my rudimentary understanding of feedback systems but at least temperature is the initial process of the system in his Intro.

            Isn’t Dessler’s system a variation of what Brehmer describes in the following?

            If we mislabel a negative feedback and call it positive feedback, we might be led to believe that the addition of humidity to a climate system will destabilize it!

            IMO, Dessler has his entire feedback system wrong in the abstract and partly right in the Intro i.e. the system is ill-defined and requires a block diagram as in system engineering. The initial process should be temperature and the feedbacks should be WV/albedo/clouds (intensification feedback) and NATURAL CLIMATE VARIATIONS (reduction feedback).

            This is of course ignoring whether his feedback findings (value and sign either reduction or intensification) are valid or not.

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            Richard C (NZ)

            “…requires a block diagram as in system engineering”

            There’s an entire systems modeling language and diagramming notation (OMG SysML) complete with a 282 page Specification here http://www.omgsysml.org/

            Why doesn’t Dessler use it?

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            Richard C (NZ)

            I could even suggest that Dessler choose from a couple of free system modeling tools to download: Modilio Free Edition or Bizagi Process Modeler.

            Or for a minimal amount he could purchase the very good Australian package, Enterprise Architect.

            All three of which I have on my home computer (but just EA Reader) so I don’t see any problem

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      (D10 paywalled so can’t see definition if there is one)

      Here is the dessler 2010 paper.

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        Also, a preliminary accepted version of D12 is HERE

        I found the Brehmer paper fascinating. It’s HERE.

        I think you should email Jo to see if she’ll do a post on this with you.
        I’m sure it’ll get the warmists hopping.

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          Richard C (NZ)

          Baa

          “I think you should email Jo to see if she’ll do a post on this with you”

          I’m not a systems expert which is why I asked for help and also why I’m not the one to write on it. I was partly hoping to catch Jo’s attention and thence David Evens but you’ve advanced the topic enough for me in your other responses thanks Baa.

          Thank’s for the link to the preliminary accepted version of D12 BTW. I did a little searching but didn’t unearth it, was it from Google Scholar?

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            Sorry about the late reply. Had to get some sleep before going to work.

            I don’t use google scholar. All GS does is send one to a paywall. Regular Google often finds papers on websites of universities.
            I got lots of practice finding papers when I took part in Donna Laframboises audit of the IPCC AR4.

            p.s. Send Jo an email, see what she says.

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            Richard C (NZ)

            OK Baa, I’ll see if I can persuade Jo and David to decipher Dessler’s system.

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            Richard C (NZ)

            Cross-commented JoNova – CCG

            Baa, I’ve emailed Jo, challenging David to define Dessler’s system as per what can be inferred from D12 Abstract and Intro, also asking if David finds that if Dessler departs from classical convention that a Nova/Evans post will eventuate.

            I see a two part sequence:

            1) derive Desslers system from D12 (not easy because you end up with two different configurations depending on Abstract or Intro).

            2) having done 1) to then assemble the system as it SHOULD be by classical convention with correct initial process and appropriate feedback attribution parameters with correct signs and compare to 1). This is best shown in system diagram form I think.

            Brehmers experiments show that water vapour is a negative feedback against temperature so that Dessler has a water vapour feedback sign opposite to classical convention. Brehmer explains this thus:-

            Departing from this classical scientific definition of “feedback” contemporary literature defines positive water vapor feedback one-dimensionally and implies that positive water vapor feedback always results in a warmer temperatures and when you see a counter argument that asserts that water vapor feedback is negative the term is also used one-dimensionally and implies that negative water vapor feedback always results in a
            cooler temperatures
            . Again, positive feedback will only result in a warmer temperatures and negative feedback will only result in a cooler temperatures if the basal temperature is already trending warmer as it does every day from sunrise to mid afternoon. If the basal temperature is trending cooler as it does predictably and repeatedly every night then positive feedback would make the temperature even cooler and a negative feedback would result in a warmer temperature at the end of the night.

            It seems to me that Dessler’s branch of science has designed for themselves a hybrid and very flexible feedback system unconstrained by classical convention, examples from physiology, electronics, or other non-climate nature etc that bends and morphs depending on what the message or bias is to be conveyed and written into contemporary literature as some kind of authority that can be cited.

            Until I’m proved wrong – I don’t buy it.

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        Richard C (NZ)

        Baa Humbug, I meant D12 every time, not D10 sorry.

        D10 created so much controversy that I find myself typing it by default.

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      KinkyKeith

      Hi Richard

      The concept of “feed backs’ or better “amplifications” is one of those warmer constructions designed to get everyone’s eye off the ball.

      There is absolutely no quantitative possibility of human origin CO2 being a “Climate controller” no matter how it is dressed up.

      The Earths atmosphere containing many “greenhouse” gases is a big help to us here : it keeps us alive.

      There is only so much space bound ground IR to be soaked up by CO2 and the other more active GHGs like water.

      After all of the IR is absorbed adding more CO2 will have nil effect: known as the asymptotic rule relating effectiveness of adding more CO2.

      A couple of earlier posts touch on this: 8.2.1.1.2 and 8.2.1.2.1

      KK

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        turnedoutnice

        There is no positive feedback. It’s the artefact of the incorrect heat transfer assumptions in the climate models which leads to the hypothetical generation of 94.5 W/m^2 [difference between the 333 W/m^2 DOWN from the lower atmosphere, black body S-B at 3.7 °C, and the imaginary 238.5 W/m^2 DOWN at TOA, this arising from the incorrect assumption that Kirchhff's Law of Radiation applies to an extreme non-equilibrium situation].

        In the hind-casting, this extra warming is offset by imaginary extra cooling by an outrageous claim of high cloud albedo. That corrects the average temperature but is so doing the evaporation rate over the oceans via ‘back radiation’ being converted at ~98% efficiency into evaporation, dramatically increases the water cycle, hence the absurd positive feedback cannot exist.

        In reality, precipitatable water content has been falling slowly for the past 14 years.

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          KinkyKeith

          Hi TON

          Yes, there is no positive feedback.

          Anyone who has ever been sitting in the comfort of winter sun and then had it turned off by a drifting cloud knows the magnitude of the effect.

          On a clear day anything is possible.

          Solar energy warms the Earth and atmosphere.

          That warm environment enables more water vapour to be suspended.

          Excess water collects as clouds which become a reflective problem for incident solar energy.

          The Earth is heated less under these conditions, Earth and atmosphere cool, and cannot support the water as clouds which must then precipitate as rain.

          The system is a self limiting system as must be obvious from general observation.

          If unrestricted feedbacks existed, such as those proposed in the warmer scenarios, we would have all have been incinerated by now.

          KK

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          Richard C (NZ)

          turnedoutnice and KinkyKeith

          Hi guys, I realize that out in the real world there’s no positive WV/cloud feedback, Vonder Haar et al 2012 found no TPW accumulation, radiation frost and dry Sahara/humid Singapore anecdotes (along with Brehmer’s experiment) demonstrate the actual mechanisms wrt to the effect of WV/clouds and ineffectual CO2, and that the models have what Judith Curry describes as “a hyperactive water feedback”:-

          http://judithcurry.com/2012/08/01/john-christys-epw-testimony/#more-9260

          What I’m trying to do is apply the systems feedback definition (IPCC and Brehmer) to Dessler’s nomenclature and values and to the feedback system of his 2012 paper.

          In this respect Baa is on to it in this comment # 14.1.1.1.1 http://judithcurry.com/2012/08/01/john-christys-epw-testimony/#more-9260

          I haven’t replied to that yet because Baa gets to the nitty gritty and I have to think about it. I think there is a subtle mutual misunderstanding of our respective approaches at this point.

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            Richard C (NZ)

            Oops, link should be:-

            In this respect Baa is on to it in this comment # 14.1.1.1.1 http://joannenova.com.au/2012/08/august-4th-weekend-unthreaded/#comment-1100604

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            KinkyKeith

            Hi Richard

            Yes , could see that but just wanted to put my two bobs worth in.

            My days when I could work out mass, heat and momentum balances are long gone but the basic analysis that is the prerequisite is still there.

            The Earths atmosphere has a number of sub systems that must be analyzed and quantified:

            1 Chemical interactions plus photosynthesis plus oceans

            2. Radiation in

            3. Radiation out

            4 Mass transfer (huge amounts of water lifted from ground to cloud level)

            5. Orbital mechanics. Solar and galactic periodic effects.

            6. geology; effects of vulcanism

            7. Atmospheric and oceanic convection.

            8. Energy dissipation through wind friction and atmospheric turbulence.

            When I first heard that people claimed to have “modeled” the atmosphere I stood in awe of that accomplishment but assumed that simplifications had been made and would be acknowledged.

            The more I got into it the more it became obvious that no simplifications were acknowledged and that they claimed a complete and fully functioning description of how CO2 affects climate.

            I was the astounded that anyone could take that seriously.

            You cannot model the atmosphere.

            It’s not the size of the computer it’s the the sheer complexity of the problem where there are many subsystems that are not amenable to “modeling’.

            Likewise I become a little edgy when people start to debate aspects of the Computer Models because I think that it is just perpetuating the lie that they actually have something useful to contribute or worse that they can be “Fixed”.

            I do however understand that you would find looking into all that to be a very interesting exercise and there are some things you quote in the first paragraph that I must check out.

            all the best

            KK :)

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    Andrew McRae

    (In Adam Smith mode)

    BUT Tony by now you would have received your Australian Government standard issued leaflet alongside your electricity company’s power bill PROVING diagrammatically in full colour on carbon-neutral paper that out of every $100 you spend on your power bill only $9 goes to the carbon tax. How you deniers can get so upset about a tiny little nine dollars is quite absurd. It is the price of three lattés where I live and that is only once a quarter. Obviously the sky isn’t falling blah blah blah blah blah blah Howard’s GST blah blah blah. Blah blah blah blah blah Garnaut is my hero blah blah blah blah. Labor are so kind and generous with compensation blah blah blah blah blah. the tax is okay because Abbot has funny ears blah blah blah blah blah blah. Clearly your main cost is poles and wires which is FIVE times higher than the carbon tax and not nearly as essential to our budget, move along, nothing to see here.
    Random parting ad hominem.

    /AS.

    Sorry it just seems like something is missing these days. It’s just not the same now. Thank God Mod.

    Also as I read the little “National Carbon Offset Standard” logo on the back of the leaflet I said to myself “Oh it’s carbon neutral paper”. :-| Face is now a plain look of total nonchalance.

    Five seconds go by.

    I start laughing at the contradiction in terms of “carbon neutral paper”, as though the tree any paper comes from got its carbon from anywhere other than the air. It took five seconds for the Doublethink to be broken. They are winning the mind game somehow. Truly awful.

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      MadJak

      Andrew,

      Carbon Neutral == “We’re rich enough to have bought a forest somewhere”

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        pattoh

        But MJ, how rich will you be if a lightning strike starts a fire that releases YOUR carbon back into the atmosphere & YOU have to puchase credits in lieu?

        An Act of God perhaps but then ~97% of the carbon in your forrest was probably an Act of God too.

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          MadJak

          Pattoh,

          So I don’t actually believe in a higher being, so does that mean I’m off the hook?

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            pattoh

            MJ
            I have no faith in anything beyond natural forces either. I only threw the “Act of God” bit in as it is the delightful out for the legal smarties. (BUT IT CUTS BOTH WAYS)

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        Joe V.

        “Carbon Neutral” means nothing other than:- ‘we’ve salved our self-righteousness by making a token gesture to some concocted scheme , setup for that purpose’.

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      KeithH

      Andrew. Do the MRET costs that have had to be built into power prices over the last few years get a mention? I haven’t seen anything about compensation to low-income earners for those expenses yet they’re all very much part of the AGW/carbon dioxide tax scam!

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    mobilly1

    If the Government insists on this ludicrous carbon tax lets hit them were it hurts.
    Australia`s land mass 1,882,431,500 acres .
    Australia`s land mass covered by trees 21.31% or 401,146,152 acres .
    co2 levels absorbed by trees 2.6 tonnes/yr per acre ,Giving a total of 1042,979,995 tonnes absorbed by our trees a year .
    Australian co2 emissions 2010 : 405,342,000 tonnes per year .
    This leaves Australia with 637,637,995 tonnes of co2 in carbon credit , that`s 28.1 tonnes of carbon credits for each Australian .

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    North West Passage open, North East Passage along Siberian coast nearly so:

    http://nsidc.org/data/seaice_index/images/daily_images/N_daily_extent_hires.png

    Just look at the loss of icecover! Frightening!

    [another melting scare? pleezzze] ED

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    • #

      Just look at the loss of icecover! Frightening!

      It’s summer up there. Ice melts in summer, doh!

      What’s with the obsession about ice? Nothing grows on ice. Open water is good for life. It’s good for transport. Ships can’t travel on ice.
      Nothing frightening about it.

      More ice, now that would be frightening. You’ve got it backassward.

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      Robina, (Maxine everyone)

      same old same old I see. Tell us Maxine. How much will all that melting Sea Ice raise the levels of the oceans, and tell us also if those Passages have ever been ice free before.

      By the way, that’s 4 screen names now that we know of that you are using.

      That’s a little underhanded of you coming back here with just a name change. Surely Maxine, you stand by what you said at your site when you slimed Joanne. Why not tell us here what you said about her at your site. We’re a pretty forgiving lot. Oh, and I hope you can prove what you said.

      Tony.

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        Tony, how were you able to ascertain that it was Maxine and that she has used 4 screen names?

        Is there an app I can get for that?

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          Eddy,
          he uses two screen names at his own site, and has used Maxine at this site and one or two others, and now, after an absence from here, has come back and used the Robina screen name.

          His site is at the link to the screen name Robina above in his comment. What drew my attention to it is the image he used for that screen name Robina, as it is the image he uses to identify his persona at his own site.

          Tony.

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      Joe V.

      Another from the school of OMG We’re All Gonna die, journalism.


      The actual accomplishment of the North East Passage was quite unsensational.  In 1878-79 A.E. Nordensold took the Vega from Europe to Japan via the Kara Sea …”

      From:
      The Polar Regions, a Physical and Economic Geography of the Arctic and Antarctic
       By Robert Neal Rudmose Brown, Methuen & Co., 1927
      .
      It has been open & the Russians have been exploiting it for years, though throughout the Soviet Era it was largely prohibited to foreign shipping.

      By September there is a good chance that most of the route can be sailed in open water.

      From an excellent account of COMMERCIAL SHIPPING ON THE NORTHERN SEA ROUTE , by
      Jan Drent

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      The Black Adder

      Hey Robina,

      Is your South passage Open ???

      … too much they say! :)

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      Nice avatar! Is that a character from the remake of the classic movie The Planet of The Apes?

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      • #

        Eddy, that image he uses alongside his screen name is the image he uses to indicate Tony Abbott, as you can see at the larger image at his own site. And they complain about some of the treatment dished out to the PM at some of the rallies of recent times.

        Tony.

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      Richard C (NZ)

      “North West Passage open”

      “Just look at the loss of icecover! Frightening!”

      Makes you ponder the meaning of “passage” as in North West Passage doesn’t it?

      Roald Amundsen completed the first successful navigation of the Northwest Passage in 1905.

      The loss of icecover must have been frightening.

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        Joe V.


        The loss of icecover must have been frightening.”

        Only to an OMG Internet generation that hadn’t been born yet.
        The must have been much more to frighten these early explorers, yet they were mostly too busy dealing with real stuff to get frightened.

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      turnedoutnice

      A 70 year cycle known from the 15th Century.

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      Rereke Whakaaro

      Total excreta.

      The North East passage has more ice now, than it as had at this time of year in the last decade and a half.

      Here we are in high summer in the Northern Hemisphere, and the Bering Strait is still closed.

      There are ships trying to go south through that straight, and they have been stuck in the East Siberian Sea for more than nine months. They tried to get through towards the end of Autumn last year, and winter came early. They spent the winter stuck in the ice, and although now free, they still cannot get through the strait.

      And here we have this dweeb dribbling on about, “OMG all of the ice is melting”.

      Background information: During the Second World War, the British Navy started to run convoys through the Arctic Sea to deliver supplies and munitions to the Russians. That sea route remained open after the war, and for specially built and equipped ships, and at the right time of year, can transport cargo from Northern Europe into the Northern Pacific. The Russians even run a fleet of nuclear ice breakers to extend the period when the route is open.

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      Andrew McRae

      Dear Robina/Maxine, I believe the appropriate response to your icy qualms is this famous quote:

      “It will without doubt have come to your Lordship’s knowledge that a considerable change of climate, inexplicable at present to us, must have taken place in the Circumpolar Regions, by which the severity of the cold that has for centuries past enclosed the seas in the high northern latitudes in an impenetrable barrier of ice has been during the last two years, greatly abated.

      This affords ample proof that new sources of warmth have been opened and give us leave to hope that the Arctic Seas may at this time be more accessible than they have been for centuries past, and that discoveries may now be made in them not only interesting to the advancement of science but also to the future intercourse of mankind and the commerce of distant nations.”

      – President of the Royal Society, London, letter to the Admiralty,
      Minutes of Council, Volume 8. pp.149-153, Royal Society, London.
      20th November, 1817.

      Old news is old.

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    Joe V.

    100% wind. I wonder where these people get their 100% wind backup capacity from ?
    Clean, renewable energy is available right here in Pennsylvania, and it’s cheaper than the dirty stuff.

    Citizen Power has teamed up with TriEagle Energy to offer the Green Eagle 100% Pennsylvania-only Wind Electricity Plan.

    Or is it just 100% spin ?
    I like the ridiculous video on their home page.

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      Bite Back

      Fools down to the last one! Reminds me of Enron — big savings, big hype and big failure.

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      Graeme No.3

      Ask Tony, but I am pretty sure that the coal seam gas fired power station is just off screen on the picture on their home page. That is the only way they could offer cheaper power all the time.

      Or they might be deluding themselves, or trying to delude others. In the latter case unlikely, as they would have to deliver before getting the money, unlike most “green” programs.

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    Bolt has got a thread up concerning Galileo and Malcolm Roberts. Not impressive and the ‘Jewish’ angle is most strange.

    I know Malcolm, Andrew is going down the wrong road on that count. In fact…I believe that Malcolm should have his say on the Bolt Report. Would be the right thing to do.

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      The Black Adder

      I read that too scaper….

      Most strange, I do not know what is going on there?

      What do you call the Rothschilds and Rockfellers of this world?

      PEW, Greenpeace, WWF, Maurice Strong…

      There are certainly some strange connections, why Bolta is upset I do not know!

      Perhaps he is preparing for the upcoming election and scaling back on a few things? Hmmmm.

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      Jaymez

      I’m not sure Bolt is aware of The Club of Rome connection. But if he is listed as a supporter, he should be given the courtesy of a response. Hopefully Malcolm will be in touch in due course and sort it out. I think Bolt is just very sensitive about being linked to any conspiracy theorists. It’s just as bad as Robert Manne suggesting ‘Denialists’ have vested interests or Flannery, Brown et al claiming sceptics are organised and funded by the fossil fuel industry.

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    Joe V.

    Have to get a fresh dose of pure , unadulterated Green catastrophism now and again, just to wonder how we’re still alive.
    Progressive’s radio. Mood music for neurotics.

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    Jaymez

    Andrew Bolt’s demolition of Robert Manne’s (with a link to Jo Nova’s article) is worth a read here: http://blogs.news.com.au/heraldsun/andrewbolt/index.php/heraldsun/comments/how_we_won/#109787

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      Rereke Whakaaro

      Andrew Bolt links to Jo Nova – Now Jo Nova links to Andrew Bolt – OMG we are in danger of runaway recursion!!!! … er ?

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    Sparks

    Black Swan Dies In Sudden Heat Wave, But Polar Bears Survive.
    (1936, November 26)

    http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-page8406311

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    Myrrh

    Just been watching a programme I recorded earlier, a Dr Michael Hudson explaining how current US politics is well on its way to putting all the wealth of the 99% into the hands of the 1%, forcing huge paycuts, having pension funds raided and so on, written a book called The Bubble Beyond. Haven’t looked it up yet, trying to get in some olympics watching, the 100 metres coming up.

    But, the more I think about how the bankers scam all of us by creating money out of nothing with the full backing of governments, the more I think that this is the core problem behind all these shenanigans. Iceland has the right idea about it. We should have let the banks fail, no government had the right to give taxpayers money to bail out their gambling/ponzi schemes. The system itself is what is fraudulent, we can’t times our salary by 10 and claim the imaginary 90% is real money..

    I like this page for the summary timeline it gives on how the bankers achieved this: http://www.iamthewitness.com/books/Andrew.Carrington.Hitchcock/The.History.of.the.Money.Changers.htm

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      KinkyKeith

      Hi Myrrh

      That was a great scam.

      The GFC.

      Looking from Australia we took a really hard hit during this episode in a very personal sense:

      tens of years of savings wiped from the stock market.

      Crushing.

      But hey say what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.

      So my wife and I live in hope that if we work for another few years through our retirement we will be able to stabilise the mess no thanks to our “governments”; all three layers of them who continue to bleed us dry.

      At least we have hope.

      In the US I suspect that generally things are even worse.

      The bank CDOs scam took our local council for 5 million and another Local Government entity about 60 miles down the road lost 24 million.

      CDOs were a breach, in every way, of banking law, banking trust, and government regulation.

      Why no prosecutions?

      KK

      Not Smiling.

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      KinkyKeith

      Wow.

      That banking scam reference is really really interesting and a must read for all voters.

      KK

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    KeithH

    Interesting article at ICECAP the public won’t see in Government spin handouts or reported in the MSM

    Aug 04, 2012
    Spanish Renewable Lesson for Obama

    Excerpt.

    “Spain is the worst example, but not the only.

    A recent International Energy Agency outlook of renewable power this decade suggests how Spain’s model embodies the “wrongs” of unconditionally supporting the industry.

    Now its renewable revision is going to eliminate thousands of jobs and billions in investment, and more critically become another agonizing drag on the economy.

    Many countries overdid it, plain and simple. Renewable industries in OECD reached maturity and have become an economic drain, which is why countries are quietly backtracking, as the data shows.”

    htt://www.icecap.us/

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    This site was hacked into today and offline for about three hours. We are missing up to 400 comments but otherwise there appears to be little damage done. We hope to restore those recent comments too. – Jo

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      Rereke Whakaaro

      More like a Denial of Service attack, if you ask me.

      Your popularity is obviously touching a nerve or two in some quarters, and your comments are obviously on the mark … sometimes the truth is “just too hard to bear”

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    ROM

    This is a post I placed on the Weather Zone site a few days ago and it might be of interest to the JoNova site netizens.

    My original bolding is lost unfortunately so apologies for that. Wording is altered slightly in places to protect the guilty.

    As a couple of radical extremists on WZ regularly fulminate against WUWT I decided to do a little exercise again, one which I have done not so long ago and posted on WUWT where it created quite a bit of interest.

    The exercise was a “post and comment” count on a number of climate related sites starting with the first post on Monday 16 th July through to when I am typing this out this evening Thursday 26th July.
    A period of ten days which I figure should provide a reasonable picture of the activities and interest and the following at each site.

    There are quite a number of very good sites that do not allow comments or have a very low level of comments.
    Sites such as Steve McIntyres Climate Audit is arguably one of the most influential sites in all of climate science although often highly technical in it’s postings.
    I haven’t included it as Steve Mc’s postings of late have been few and far between as he takes a spell from the often intense efforts needed when he does his usual very detailed forensic take down of some poorly supported or seriously bad climate science claim or research.

    There are almost an infinite number of climate related sites out there at present, most of them just poor quality, spittle blowing, fulminating sites against skeptics and some against warmists.
    Their traffic is basically off the scale at the bottom and their contribution is negligible to any debate but, Hey,! they are all going to “correct your errors” in the usual pompous arrogant fashion of all extremists.

    First up was 3 well known and well publicised full on warmist sites;

    1
    A / Real Climate, the propaganda arm of the CRU Hokey Stick Team according the Climate Gate mails.
    Financed indirectly through Fenton Communications by George Soros, the radical left wing billionaire to hide his involvment.

    Posts; 4

    Comments; 721

    B / The apparent source and fountain of all warmist climate knowledge and no doubt the handlers and advisers of various warmist trolls in their mis-representations of facts on a forum.

    Skeptical Science

    Posts; 16

    Comments; 219

    What is not known here is the number of comments that have been deleted, a practice that seems to be somewhat common on the radical and extreme warmist blogs.

    C / Tamino “Open Mind”

    Posts; 5

    Comments; 155

    Next is the Luke Warmers, the bloggers who cover a wide range of beliefs in that they believe mankind has and is warming the climate through his activity and through his CO2 emissions but either any so called danger is not yet proven or there is no long term problems or that the science is still out on the whole supposed problem.
    Some [ most ? ] luke warmers are ex warmists whose search of the science made them realise that the extreme beliefs they had held were unsustainable when the supposed science backing their beliefs was given a hard examination.

    2.

    A / Judith Curry’s Climate Etc

    Posts; 6

    Comments; 2167

    Judith Curry has a fairly esoteric site with some high quality and highly qualified commenters which re not that many in number but have a hell of a lot to say in repeated posts on her posts which brings her numbers right up. However I think those numbers of comments and the standing they bring are justified with the general overall quality of her site,

    B / Lucia’s The Blackboard;

    Posts 3

    Comments; 219

    Lucia Liljegren is a statistician and a luke warmer but generally runs this site as a personal site.
    When she does get into the statistics side of climate matters, the going gets real heavy!

    Next and last is a small list of skeptic sites, one from the UK, one from Australia and one from the USA.
    There are a hell of a lot of quite reasonable skeptic sites out there but these, one from each main western continent will do for this post.

    3;

    A / UK’s Andrew Montford’s Bishop Hill

    Posts; 24

    Comments ; 966

    The “Bishop Hill” site usually deals with the UK climate news and affairs and the now quite rapidly evolving political ramifications in the UK as the UK with the CRU affray as in Climate Gate and Copenhagen, the increasing cascade of FOI’s as CRU and the UEA refuse to release any information and the evolving politics of the now visible political backing away from the longer affordable, massive publicly funded subsidies to the so called “alternative energy” scammers.

    For Australia it is XXXXX and _XX__’s pet hate and bete noire,

    B /The JoNova site;

    Posts; 10

    Comments; 1636

    Joanne Nova is a full on warmist turned full on skeptic.
    What I found very illuminating is that in exactly the same time period of the ten days, JoNova got some 1636 comments
    “Skeptical Science” run out of the University of Queensland where John Cook is located, got just 219 comments.
    Hmmm!

    Last up is the King of the climate blogs both Skeptic and warmist; From the USA;

    C / Anthony Watts WattsUpWithThat

    Posts; 58

    Comments; 4979

    Need I say any more!

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      Thanks for the stats ROM. Interesting. :D — Jo

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        Jaymez

        Perhaps it is no wonder someone is trying to shut you down Jo? Though to be fair, if Skeptical Science stopped moderating skeptics comments they would probably get a lot more – they just wouldn’t like them!

        (Yes and there would many more follow up comments too if the commentators knew they would show up) CTS

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