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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Events in Perth coming up next week

Two events coming up in Perth next week. Tuesday – Gary Johns; Saturday – Archibald, Evans, & Nova.

Get the details below…

Tuesday 20th November, 2012      What can Voters Expect?

The Council for the National Interest (CNI) invites you to attend a free Public Forum to be addressed by  Hon Dr Gary Johns

Dr. Johns has wide experience as a Federal Labor Member of Parliament, 1987-1996. He was a Minister in the Keating Government 1993-1996 and is now a frequent correspondent for ‘The Australian Newspaper’ and other publications.

  • Carbon Abatement – Will present policy fail?
  • Welfare/Superannuation – Are we too dependent?
  •  Education – Do we spend too much unwisely?
  •  National Disability Insurance – Will it happen?
  •  Immigration/Asylum Seekers – Who is in charge?

 7.30pm Royal Perth Yacht Club. [The Flyer] No booking required…

Saturday Nov 24th: Perth ATA Launch with Jo Nova, David Evans & David Archibald

Join Jo Nova, David Evans and David Archibald for the Perth Launch of the Australian Taxpayers’ Alliance!

This is a great opportunity to meet like-minded people, learn the latest about what is happening in science and  politics, and see how big government is taking away our freedom, our choice, and our money.
Most importantly, this will be a great night out!

7pm Floreat Athena Football Club. Britannia Rd, Mt Hawthorn, Perth WA.

Registration Price: $30 includes food. Cash Bar.  (Use the code “nova” to save $10 off the entry price).

Book here.

If you with to pay by phone, cheque, money order, or direct debit, please email events@taxpayers.org.au or phone (02) 8964 8651

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84 comments to Events in Perth coming up next week

  • #
    Inappropriate Jim

    Jo,
    Saw the photo.
    You are a complete babe.
    Along with the devestating intellect – WOW!
    How can the Warmies match us?
    kind regards
    Jim


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  • #
    Mattb

    hmm… potential confusion with the well established ATA?
    Alternative Technology Association…
    anyway enjoy the Council facilities y’all


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    • #
      John F. Hultquist

      The link below, in addition to the organization you mention, shows 135 other common meanings for the acronym ATA. But, there are 250 others in the data base; that’s 386. The ‘Australian Taxpayers’ Alliance’ now brings that total (in English) to 387. Again, the one you mention is ranked 11; not bad. You should suggest this new meaning (‘Australian Taxpayers’ Alliance’ to the site and see how fast it climbs.

      http://www.acronymfinder.com/ATA.html


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    • #
      Rereke Whakaaro

      There is a world shortage of TLA’s. with most of them being recycled many times. This is conservation and recycling in action! Surely you are not suggesting that we move to FLEA’s instead?

      The acronym, FLEA – “Four Letter Extended Acronym’s”, originated in a Technical Bulletin circulated within IBM during the ’80′s, and originally released on 1 April.

      By way on explanation, IBM was famous for its use of TLA’s in training material, where they would be defined in the first chapter, and then strung together in sentences explaining technical concepts. further into the manual. For example, “The PCB in the PSB references the DBD through the … “.


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    • #
      Catamon

      Will make google searching for their website interesting.

      Gee Aye’s idea of ATAXIA is…..possibly a bit of a low blow.

      Although i do remember years ago when the Western Australian Institute of Technology was becoming a university that some wag suggested Curtin University of New Technology as a new name. :)


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  • #
    John from CA

    WUWT-TV To Counter Al Gore’s ‘Dirty Weather Report’ With Live Webcast
    24 Hour Live Webcast Will Air Starting in the USA on Nov 14 at 8PM EST (5PM PST).

    source: PR Newswire (http://s.tt/1tluw)

    Live Webcast: http://www.ustream.tv/channel/wuwt-tv-live

    Speakers Include:
    Andrew Montford (Author of The Hockey Stick Illusion)
    Richard Lindzen (Alfred P. Sloan professor of Meteorology, MIT)
    Marc Morano (Climate Depot)
    John Coleman  (Founder of the Weather Channel, now at KUSI-TV)
    Chris Horner (Senior Fellow, Center for Energy and Environment, CEI)
    Steve McIntyre (editor of ClimateAudit.org)
    Dr. Ross McKitrick (University of Guelph)
    Dr. Roy Spencer (co author of UAH global temperature dataset)
    Joe D’Aleo (Certified Consulting Meteorologist, WeatherBell)
    Joe Bastardi  (Lead forecaster, Weatherbell)
    Senator Jim Inhofe (retiring from Senate EPW )
    Bob Tisdale (author of Who Turned on The Heat?)
    Dr. Ryan Maue (meteorologist, Tropical storm specialist, Weatherbell)
    Burt Rutan, (Engineer and Aviation Pioneer)
    Dr. Sebastian Lüning  (co-author of Die kalte Sonne)
    Harold Ambler (Author of Don’t Sell Your Coat)
    Donna Laframboise (Author of The Delinquent Teenager)
    Pat Michaels (former State climatologist of Virgina, fellow of the Cato institute)
    Pete Garcia (Producer of the movie The Boy Who Cried Warming)
    Christopher Monckton (SPPI)
    Dr. Timothy Ball (climate scientist, commentator)
    John Kehr (Author of the book, The Inconvenient Skeptic)
    Dr. David Evans (Author of The Skeptics Case)
    Dr. David Stockwell (Climate Modeller)
    Mike Smith (Certified Consulting Meteorologist)
    Steve Mosher and Tom Fuller (authors, The CRUtape Letters)
    Kenji (member – Union of Concerned Scientists)


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    • #
      John from CA

      3 hours 7 mins to 24 hours of insight ; )


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    • #
      James

      Are the recommendations of this “alliance” to be based on the advice of a small number of scientists, many of which are not climate scientists, and will they repeat previous mistakes?

      http://www.skepticalscience.com/david-evans-understanding-goes-cold.html
      http://www.skepticalscience.com/Lindzen_Illusions.htm
      http://www.skepticalscience.com/Monckton_Myths.htm

      Funny how Stockwell is NOW labelled a Climate Modeller: http://joannenova.com.au/2012/10/man-made-global-warming-disproved/#comment-1132801


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      • #

        Are the recommendations of this “alliance” to be based on the advice of a small number of scientists, many of which are not climate scientists, and will they repeat previous mistakes?

        The representative for the “Union of Concerned Scientists” is likely to repeat the same mistakes over and over(for a biscuit).


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      • #
        Rereke Whakaaro

        … based on the advice of a small number of scientists, many of which are not climate scientists …

        Ah, “not climate scientists”. Not one of the cabal. Not one of the anointed. Not in possession of the arcane wisdom. Not able to make the secret sign, or utter the special phrase. Not paid from the Public Purse. Not prepared to skew “or adjust”, or “homogenise”, the observations to make the facts fit the theory. No, probably not.

        But people grounded in math, or physics, or chemistry? They don’t or can’t have a valid opinion about the holy climate change, can they.

        “Many of which are not climate scientists (deity bless their profession)”. Really, is that the best you can come up with? Score: C- Needs to try harder.


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        • #
          James

          Yeah – you’re getting the hang. Someone who publishes in newspapers rather than peer-reviewed journals.


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        • #
          Rereke Whakaaro

          Oh, I am terribly sorry, I didn’t realise that publishing in newspapers (which reaches an awful lot of people), and publishing in pier* reviewed journals which are only read by the cabal, were mutually exclusive.

          In fact, according to the Shorter Oxford Dictionary, one of the definitions of “journal”, is “A daily newspaper, any daily publication”. In fact, none of the definitions mention a use in science pier reviewed or otherwise.

          Perhaps you should write to the Oxford Press and tell them they are wrong.

          *Pier review: sitting on the end of a jetty, having a few beers, and discussing what the hell went wrong with the scam”. There! A much better definition for you.


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      • #
        AndyG55

        Or perhaps a cartoonist who could never make it in the world of real science (or as a cartoonist for that matter), so had to start a blog called Sk-S. DOH !

        Linking to that site destroys your credibility of any scientific intelligence, right from the start.


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      • #
        Brian of Moorabbin

        Funny James, I see more scientists listed to appear on WUWT-TV than in the BBC Climate28 list that lead to the BBC’s “no airtime for skeptics” position on AGW…

        … and I don’t think I need to say anything about Executives from British Petroleum, do I?


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  • #
    Don B

    OT-

    Jo, this deserves a separate post – Tom Nelson’s sendup of Jeremy Grantham:

    “Epic cage match: Planet-healing warmist Jeremy Grantham versus super-evil, greedy planet-destroying fossil fuel investors like Jeremy Grantham.”

    http://tomnelson.blogspot.com/2012/11/epic-cage-match-planet-healing-warmist.html

    The man for whom the UK’s Grantham Research Institutes are named relies on the views of people such as Jim Hansen, Bill McKibben and John Holdren. He thinks understatement regarding climate change is unethical. He believes “The damaging effects of climate change are accelerating.” (Would the preceding be a Grantham-ethical statement, or a lie?) It is a target rich environment.


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  • #
    Neville

    Good luck with the two functions Jo and David.

    BTW Terry McCrann has a good article today on Combet and Gillard the two biggest BS merchants and liars.

    China is doing sweet FA about co2 emissions and he makes some very good pointa.

    We will cut real co2 emissions by only 50,000 tonnes pa.
    Most of our cuts will come from the purchase of super expensive certificates from Europe, about 66%.
    I’ve explained years ago that Europe’s co2 trading is rort with corruption and has been closed before to try and clean up their unholy mess.

    So our our real cuts will be swamped by India and China by a factor of 90 or a ratio of 90 to 1.

    Does anyone still believe in our co2 tax mess? But why is the Gillard govt lying once again to the Aussie electorate? What is wrong with the ABC and Fairfax media?

    http://blogs.news.com.au/heraldsun/andrewbolt/index.php/heraldsun/comments/the_bull_of_greg_combet/#commentsmore


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    • #
      AndyG55

      “Most of our cuts will come from the purchase of super expensive certificates from Europe, about 66%.”

      And most of those will be of highly dubious origin. Pocket lining stuff, with no cut in CO2 emmissions what-so-ever. !!

      Making the real CO2 cut something like -ve 400:1 in favour of China and India.

      This is good because it gives a massive increase of plant food gas in the atmosphere.
      Good for the planet !!!!

      I just wish the we in Australia didn’t have to pay for this increase.


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    • #

      Neville very correctly says above:

      China is doing sweet FA about co2 emissions…..

      Consider this.

      In the article linked to, both Combet and Gillard mentioned that China is really taking action on CO2 reduction, by closing down one coal fired plant every couple of weeks.

      Yes they may be. Very old, very small, and very dirty plants, and replacing them with much cleaner very large plants.

      Let’s look then at the actuality of what China is doing, and this is just in the coal fired sector alone.

      Keep in mind here that this is not total power but just the rate of INCREASE when it comes to China.

      1. For the year 2005 to 2006 China increased CO2 emissions just from coal fired power by a factor of 1.6 times the total emissions from all Australian plants.

      2. For the year 2006 to 2007, China increased CO2 emissions just from coal fired power by a factor of 1.75 times the total emissions from all Australian plants.

      3. For the year 2007 to 2008, China increased CO2 emissions just from coal fired power by a factor of 1.2 times the total emissions from all Australian plants.

      4. For the year 2008 to 2009, China increased CO2 emissions just from coal fired power by a factor of 1.2 times the total emissions from all Australian plants.

      5. For the year 2009 to 2010, China increased CO2 emissions just from coal fired power by a factor of 1.2 times the total emissions from all Australian plants.

      6. For the year 2010 to 2011, China increased CO2 emissions just from coal fired power by a factor of 1.3 times the total emissions from all Australian plants.

      China now emits 18 times more CO2 just from coal fired power than Australia does. From this figure alone comes the utterly bogus per capita emissions figure so played up by green travellers, because China’s population is 61 times that of Australia, so it’s easy to see that Oz has a higher per capita emissions rate.

      However, what it actually means is that in China, very few people have access to electrical power at the residential level, and that’s any power at all, let alone a constant and regular regulated supply. Across China as a whole, barely one home in 10 has access to any electrical power. In Australia, 25% of all power generated is consumed by the residential sector, while in China barely 8% of generated power is consumed by the residential sector.

      China is not increasing its power generation (especially from coal fired power) to thumb its nose at the Worldwide call for emissions reduction. They are doing it to give their vast population access to something we take so utterly for granted as a staple of life now.

      The following may seem to be a somewhat misleading application of data because power plants are not constructed on a day to day basis, but come on line at the rate of one new large scale plant every week in China. Each new large scale plant adds an extra 330,000 tons of CO2 each week, so Australia’s reduction of 50,000 tons a year is effectively negated by China every 25 hours.

      So, when Combet and Gillard say China is doing something by closing down a coal fired plant every fortnight or so, at best, that is just one part of the whole story. It’s sorta like the Britney Spears analogy really.

      Tony.

      Source: International Energy Statistics


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      • #
        Rereke Whakaaro

        China is not increasing its power generation to thumb its nose at the Worldwide call for emissions reduction..

        No, they are doing it to keep the peace. China has a history of revolutions. The long march was only the last one. They have all been due to an increasing imbalance between the very wealthy elite on the coast, and the impoverished masses in the interior. The net result is that the elite get decimated, and the peasants move to the coast, and the more able rise to power.

        There is a lesson there for the west as well. We are no so different from the Chinese when it comes down to our basic needs.


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  • #
    Rod Stuart

    I regret that Perth is on the opposite side of the continent for me. I would travel a long long way to attend, but unfortunately I’m not up to that trip.


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  • #

    David Archibald has an interesting post on WUWT. Click here. It deserves a slow and thoughtful read.


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  • #
    RoHa

    Can anyone get a message through to Hockey Schtick?

    I’m trying to help them with a better translation of the Humlum article, but their comment system seems to be getting in my way. I understand Norwegian, but I don’t understand these “comment profile” things. (Don’t particularly want to, either.)

    Here is the comment I have been trying to get through.

    I have looked at the original. The phrase

    “probably because the meaning of CO2 in the models are considered in relation to the importance of natural climate variations”

    is better translated as

    “probably because the significance of CO2 in the models is overvalued in relation to the importance of natural climate variations”

    This makes his point even more strongly.

    R. Harwood.

    If someone can pass that on to them, please do.

    ————————————–

    I will email them. Thanks. I’m sure they will appreciate it. – Jo


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  • #
    Mattb

    Given everyone is a taxpayer, and everyone votes, how is the ATA more representative of the will of the taxpayers than, say for example, the Government?

    Australian Taxpayers who are a bit miffed about a few things Association?


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    • #
      Winston

      You can be mindnumbingly naive and/or obtuse on occasions Matt. Since when did Government of any stripe give one flying fig about the will, or even the interests, of taxpayers? Please specify counsellor, because my reading of politicians is that they first, foremost and only care about power and influence, preferably while turning a good buck at it, and shoring up a cushy retirement nest egg on said taxpayers’ coin.


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      • #
        ExWarmist

        Taxpayers = expendable, replaceable, meatsacks.


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      • #
        Mattb

        But how can a small group possibly claim, directly or just via a title, to somehow represent the opinions of taxpayers, to the extent that a Government should feel obliged to pay any attention given they are democratically elected by said taxpayers?

        If the taxpayers as a group are upset they elect a different government… it is pretty straightforward no?


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        • #
          Gee Aye

          Entities that pay tax are not all voters.


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        • #
          JFC

          Yes Mattb I think you might have nailed it here.


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          • #
            Mattb

            I have the same concerns of the RAC who claim to represent road users, when in fact most of their members just get insurance and road assistance through them. Everyone is a road user, so just who is it the RAC claims to represent other than the average citizen – who can vote as they see fit to elect the government.


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          • #
            Streetcred

            One could equally say the same about ‘organisations’ like GetUp! and its ilk, I suppose.


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        • #
          gai

          Good grief are you that dumb?

          The powerful give the Great Unwash a choice between the two candidates THEY want and no one else. Just look at what happen in the USA. Herman Cain who could have won against Obama was wiped out by trumped up sexual harassment charges. The easiest scandal in the books to rig. Wave a cool tax free billion under my nose and I would have a hard time not saying I was meeting the guy on the sly.

          Then take a look at Ron Paul. He was completely sidelined as a Kook by the MSM.

          The MSM owned by the wealthy shape our perceptions of the candidates and J.P. Morgan bought the US MSM back in 1917.

          Good grief follow the money trail for once why don’t you. Greed for money and power run politics not the will of the people.


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          • #
            RoHa

            Nailed it, gai.

            We get the politicians that the power brokers want.

            (And if anyone wants to give me a couple of million to claim I’m having an affair with someone, just let me know here.)


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          • #
            AndyG55

            RoHa.. “And if anyone wants to give me a couple of million to claim I’m having an affair with someone, just let me know here.)”

            So long as she’s super cute.

            But please, not any of the Emily list, not for many million dollars…. I would die of shame before I could use it.


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    • #
      ExWarmist

      Taxpayers???

      You need to measure that net contribution/consumption of each member of society over time.

      Some are net value producers, and some are net value consumers.

      Which are you?


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      Graeme No.3

      It will turn out to be worse than we thought, and urgent action (i.e. more money) is needed to save the earth.

      Nothing to worry about then, especially when you realise those ABC types get lost when more than 10km from the GPO.


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    • #
      handjive

      Truth was one of Catalyst’s victims.

      No mention that Australia is officially drought free in their ‘warmer, high cO2 world’.

      The Catalyst Alarmist Ghoulish Warmers (CAGW) had the ignorant audacity to then point to the recent Australian bushfires as evidence of relentless, deadly warming.

      Respect and honour are just collateral damage now.

      The fires were the result of fallen power lines and arson.

      Many other circumstances conspired that fateful day, but a carbon tax would never have stopped it.

      Catalyst conspires to hide & deny the truth. Shame on Catalyst. Shame.


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      Streetcred

      WHAT ?!@% do they need a pineapple for, we already have been worked over by the sub-prime minister.


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  • #
    ExWarmist

    Ron Pauls final speech in Congress is well worth reading

    Cheers

    ExWarmist


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  • #
    Beth cooper

    Don’t know what’s happened but Judith Curry’s Climate Etc is off line,
    wordpress message,’no longer available, archived or suspended.’Does
    anyone have any information?


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  • #

    Completely off topic… but…

    Just saw you and ‘hubby’ on WUWT-TV. Wonderfully done.

    Sparkle and charm, with depth and wit. And a great presentation.

    Love it…


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  • #
    pat

    david, jo, thanx for your contributions to WUWT.tv. it has been so interesting watching all the presentations (thru the tv) and wondering when last i learned and thought while watching mainstream tv.

    as ads are seemingly country-specific, am wondering if anyone else has been experiencing the sudden appearance of the loudest, heavy-metal screeching Blackmores Vitamins ad!!! cannot imagine it is the soundtrack for a Blackmores Ad. naturally, it popped up precisely as david got to the hotspot!

    i have my sound thru multiple speakers, so have to jump up and turn the controls down to zero each time it happens, and i have never experienced this degree of loudness ever online. am sure the neighbours are wondering what is going on.

    pielke sr. retired his blog this week, and now curry’s site is down and if you google her name, you see a couple of links to her site, but then page after page of links with derogatory headlines. e.g. following a couple of her own sites & wikipedia, the very next result is -

    ” Climate Heretic: Judith Curry Turns on Her Colleagues: Scientific …www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=climate-hereticCached – Similar
    25 Oct 2010 …”

    now why would a 2010 link be right up there prior to all the other derogatory headlines from alarmist blogs, with a few WUWT threads interspersed. after all, she has featured in MSM in recent times.

    click “news” & what is top:

    ” Why the Mail on Sunday was wrong to claim global warming has …
    The Guardian-16/10/2012
    “Professor Judith Curry…told The Mail on Sunday that it was clear that the computer models used to predict future warming were ‘deeply flawed’”

    fair enough the excerpt is fine, but how does the Mail is Wrong get top spot? those google AlGoreithms at work as usual.


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  • #
    Keith L

    Completely irrelevant to the topic but did anyone see Catalyst on ABC tonight?
    Really churning out some AGW rubbish. Oddly they managed to get as far as Fremantle but never managed to find time to test any of their mad ideas on local resident Jo Nova.
    I am hoping that she still gets the chance to rip the episode apart at some stage.


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      Dave

      .
      Keith L

      Just was discussing this with Catamongst here.

      Biggest load of BS seen on the ABC to date.

      She’s now in a Grape Great Big Con job worth millions Billions.


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    • #
      Keith L

      At 13:09 Some Dr Mark Howden, CSIRO Climate Adaption Flagship tells us that the
      chance of 330 months above average temperature is 1 in 100,000 that that could have happened in the absence of human influence.
      I would love to know how he came to that conclusion. They started off by saying that there was a 1 in 2 chance for the first month then a 1 in 4 for the next one, then 1 in 8 … so after 330 months the number would be about 2e99 … if you really believe that all month temperatures are uncorrelated random walk event….
      I think I will write a complaint. I am sick of this crap.


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      • #
        Dave

        .
        Yup.

        Mark Howden, Chief Research Scientist and Theme Leader – Adaptive Primary Industries, Enterprises and Communities. “APIEC

        Good grief another agronomist joining the Garnaut & Flannery CAGW gravy train.

        But this is bigger – he shared the Nobel Prize, WOW.

        Dr Howden was a major contributor to the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), sharing the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize with other IPCC authors and Mr Al Gore.

        Bunch of 28′ers


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        • #
          Brian of Moorabbin

          Isn’t that Michael Mann’s Nobel Prize?

          How dare all those other hangers-on try to dilute his award by claiming it for themselves…

          (Do I really need the ‘/sarc’ tag for that one?)


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        Catamon

        GASP, SHOCK and AWE!! Someone posting here would be complaining about an ABC production on Climate Change? :)

        There is a 1 in 2 chance of the temp in any given month being above the average for a given period. Or actually a bit less is suppose as it could be equal to the average? So the point you are making is that the chances of 330 consecutive months being above the 100 year average is actually a lot less than 1 in 100 000? On the face of it i’d say your right, but maybe that “bit less” multiplied up over 330 months accounts for the difference?

        Be interested to see the reply to your complaint.

        Not a bad show though for a pop science presentation. Presented the BOM position pretty clearly at a level accessible to the general public. And Newby is pretty cute. :)


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          Keith L

          Catamon
          If you really think that average month temperatures are independent events in the same way that coin tosses are then you are already lost.
          Secondly if you DO believe that then the chances of each subsequent event is 0.5
          After 330 months the result is 1/2e99 not 1/1e5. So even by the ridiculous model they suggest the numbers do not add up.
          And this was meant to be the chance of the events happening “without human influence”. How they even included human influence in the model is beyond me.
          If you have any period of 100 years in which there is a net monotonic increase in temperature (as has happened countless times over the past four billion years) then you are going to have the 330 month condition satisfied. This is just basic maths and does not required human influence.


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    pat

    just posted these cached versions of judith curry’s pages on bishop hill in response to a comment by omnologos from memory mentioning mark thompson was being quoted last time he went to her site. now i don’t see the comment i responded to:

    cached version of homepage with the Mark Thompson quote:

    ClimateEtc: Policy, rhetoric and public bewilderment
    Posted on November 14, 2012 | Leave a comment
    by Judith Curry
    Science is the most formidable intellectual force of our age, perhaps any age. The irony is that, without the insights of the humanities, it may still find itself without words. – Mark Thompson
    Continue reading →
    http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:5Hf4842Llg0J:judithcurry.com/+%22judith+curry%22+%22mark+thompson%22&cd=2&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=au

    full cached version:

    Policy, rhetoric and public bewilderment
    Posted on November 14, 2012 | Leave a comment
    by Judith Curry

    Science is the most formidable intellectual force of our age, perhaps any age. The irony is that, without the insights of the humanities, it may still find itself without words. – Mark Thompson

    Bishop Hill points to a remarkable essay by Mark Thompson, the former head of the BBC. This was a lecture given at Oxford about science and rhetoric, focusing on the climate change debate and the problems of the Global Warming Policy Foundation. It is rather lengthy (16 pages), the whole essay is well worth reading. I excerpt here the parts of his argument that I found particularly interesting:

    I’m going to explore the present state of the argument from authority through a single prism—namely the way in which science is handled in argumentation about public policy. And I’m going to attempt to tease apart a paradox which genuinely perplexes most of the scientists that Iknow, which is this: almost everyone accepts that science gives us our most secure understanding of the physical world – so why doesn’t it always carry the day?

    Surely, if anything can, science can pierce what I’ve called the cloud of unknowing and replace public bewilderment with public enlightenment. So why is it so often questioned and challenged by non-scientists witout anyone accusing them of stupidity or absurdity? Why, when it comes to public policy formulation or media discussions, is science typically regarded as one of the considerations rather than the card that trumps every other card?

    Hume’s sense that science represents an epistemological gold standard almost universal today. Like most non-scientists of my age and background, I accept that fundamental authority completely and whenever it comes to an argument I usually find myself instinctively on the side of mainstream science. I don’t do that because I have personally checked the evidence which underpins The Origin of Species or examined Bohr’s or Schrodinger’s equations: I haven’t the expertise to do either. No, I back science because I find Popper’s account of the scientific method and its falsifiability intellectually compelling and because, at the level of common sense, the explanatory and predictive success of science is so overwhelming. Moreover, I’ve spent enough time with scientists to be wholly convinced that the culture and practice of science genuinely aim at truth.

    As non-scientists then, our acceptance of the primacy of science is based less on our own scientific training than on a mixture of cultural, social and philosophical factors. This is exactly what is implied by the argumentum ad verecundiam if you can work out the equation for yourself, after all, you don’t have to take it on trust.

    At the same time, many of us know that it’s too simplistic to say that science always and immediately right. Sometimes there’s not enough data, or the puzzle of what the data means has yet to cracked, or the whole thing is still a work in progress: sometimes, in other words, the science is or at least appears unfinished.

    On other occasions, scientists disagree there are rival explanations, or there’s one candidate explanation which some sicntists back but others oppose: in these cases, the science is disputed.

    On still other occasions, someone may call into question the good faith of the scientists – they’rein the pay of the government or Big Pharma or they’re committed to some cause and therefore their work may lack impartiality and thus reliability: we might call this corrupted or even perverted science.

    We also know that, on a few very rare occasions, there have been dramatic revolutions in the history of science when a consensus view has been overturned in favour of a radical new theory Copernicus, Einstein and that, before such revolutions, scientific group-think is possible; this is what Lee Smolin alleged about contemporary American physics and M-theory and string theory in his 2006 book The Trouble with Physics, though one would need to understand the science rather better than I do to judge whether he’s right or not.

    So as we listen to a given scientific debate, in theory any number of doubts can appear. Yes, of course we still believe in the authority of good, finished, honest science but maybe in this case it’s not quite ready; or maybe we’re in the middle of a he-says-she-says wrangle and God only knows who’s right; or maybe there is something fishy about the way that report was paid for; or maybe that lone scientist I heard on the radio is right and it’s the other 99% of physicists who will be proven wrong in the end. In an age of pervasive suspicion and uncertainty, and it doesn’t take much for the weevils to get to work.

    Sometimes one comes across a letter about some matter of public concern signed by a long list of notables from many different and unconnected backgrounds: this is authority sliced and diced and repackaged like the Collateralised Debt Obligations which precipitated the financial crisis, authority each piece of which may be far from its point of origin and justification, but where it’s still hoped that the whole can be greater than the parts.

    We might have hoped that authority might be one sure way of piercing the cloud of unknowing. Instead, we find that even the most clear-cut authority, that derived from science, can find itself in the most opaque, impenetrable regions of the cloud. And if what I’ve said this evening is true of science, it is probably even more true of economics and the other social sciences, indeed of any area of professional expertise which intersects with the world of public debate and policy.

    Misrepresentation is undoubtedly often part of the problem, but it’s too easy to blame the public’s lack of knowledge of, or unwillingness to trust science entirely on the dark forces of misrepresentation. When science enters the public arena, it almost always ends up having to play by at least some of the rules of that arena, rules which often confuse the question of authority. It also finds itself in competition with radically asymmetrical rhetorical forces which derive their power from the spheres of morality, culture, superstition, even the mystic.

    But to wish we could eliminate those ‘divisive cultural meanings’ is to wish away the freedom and openness on which modern democracies are built –and, short of dictatorship, its impossible to achieve anyway. In my view our task rather is to find practical ways of helping the public to pick their own way through this difficult, cluttered landscape. I’ve tried this evening to give some examples of how it is possible to parse public statements about science and disentangle them so that one can analyse and understand the different elements: exposition, assertion, opinion and advocacy. It takes time and, in its own way, a little training. Our challenge is how to encourage more people to take the time and acquire the skills to do this for themselves
    http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:QKSn2u4sU7EJ:judithcurry.com/2012/11/14/policy-rhetoric-and-public-bewilderment/+http://judithcurry.com/2012/11/14/policy-rhetoric-and-public-bewilderment/%23more-10472&cd=1&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=au


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    pat

    17 Nov: Spectator: James Delingpole: Here’s a BBC scandal that should really make you disgusted
    http://www.spectator.co.uk/columnists/james-delingpole/8758121/heres-a-bbc-scandal-that-should-really-make-you-disgusted/

    btw found the omnologos comment on a previous bishop hill thread.

    jo, suddenly when i put jonova in my search, i actually get a different set of results to what i normally do, tho i simply link to a thread of yours and go to the home page.

    also, there has been no loud interference from ads on WUWT-tv since the individual live presentations, but now that marc morano has come on, almost immediately, as i type this, the static and interference just interrupted his presentation. as i’m typing this, i didn’t see what ad came up with the noise, but it didn’t have the heavy metal music that accompanied the blackmore vitamin ads.


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    pat

    10 minutes later, next blackmore’s screeching ad interrupts marc morano as he speaks of lovelock’s u-turn. impossible to describe how loud the noise is, and i speak as someone who listens to online concerts at full volume thru my surround speakers.


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    pat

    15 minutes later, blackmores ad interferes morano again.


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    pat

    this is the actual blackmores ad, with as i expected, calm gentle music, tho i have only listened to the start as i’m going back to morano.

    this is NOT the soundtrack that has been interrupting WUWT-tv since it started, with the exception of the period of a couple of hours prior to morano.


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    pat

    blackmores noise interrups morano again approx 10 minutes later.


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    pat

    documenting comment from WUWT:

    – Geoff Sherrington says:
    November 15, 2012 at 2:52 am
    At 9.41 pm in Melbourne Australia (AEDST) I tuned into the broadcast from the Bishop Hill site. The following scren cap shows an organisation with a different agenda trying to take over.
    http://www.geoffstuff.com/Henry.JPG
    Noted speakers are Don Henry, an activist for decades and David Karoly, whose name is known to some. The WUWT aqudio is barely audible behing the barrage’

    something to look into tomorrow, as well as the blackmores doctored ad. am going to contact blackmores later today.

    note u have a new thread up, jo, which i’ll read later.


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    pat

    as expected, maurizio morabito’s presentation was interrupted by a number of ads – mostly for University of Central Queensland, which does, quite naturally, have CAGW pretensions:

    (undated, but see second link) CQU: Rocky hosts climate change author from USA
    American academic Dr Elizabeth Malone has been visiting Rockhampton to collaborate with CQUniversity researchers working on social networks and climate change.
    American academic Dr Elizabeth Malone has been visiting Rockhampton to collaborate with CQUniversity researchers working on social networks and climate change.
    The CQUni team is leading a $280,000 project funded by the National Climate Change Adaptation Research Facility (NCCARF)*.
    They will use ‘social networks analysis’ to understand how stakeholders communicate and share information about water resources and flooding disasters in their region.
    Dr Malone, the author of a book titled Debating Climate Change, is based at the University of Maryland’s Joint Global Change Institute…
    “Liz also spoke about the work of the Joint Global Change Institute – a partnership between the Pacific NorthWest National Laboratory and the University of Maryland – to determine whether there are any further collaborations that might be possible with research staff and/or students.”
    As part of Dr Malone’s visit, CQUniversity’s Institute for Resource Industries and Sustainability (IRIS) hosted her presentation on Sociology, Climate Change, and Integrated Research…. How to make up a career!.
    http://m.cqu.edu.au/latest-news/rocky-hosts-climate-change-author-from-usa

    CQU: Events: What’s On
    Institute for Resource Industries and Sustainability (IRIS) invites you to join them for a presentation “Sociology, Climate Change, and Integrated Research…. How to make up a career!” by visiting collaborator, Dr Elizabeth Malone, University of Maryland’s Joint Global Change Institute, United States of America.
    Time: 11:00am to 12 noon
    Date: Monday, 22nd October 2012
    This session will be recorded and can be downloaded at a later date…
    Elizabeth Malone focuses on policy-relevant sociological research in global change issues, integrating disparate worldviews, data sources, and scientific approaches. She works with a team of social scientists on behaviour and institutional change dimensions of sustainability. Malone was an author and review editor for the 2007 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change assessment…
    She edited, with Steve Rayner, Human Choice and Climate Change, which assesses social science research relevant to global climate change. Malone holds a Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Maryland-College Park. Her book Debating Climate Change uses both discourse analysis and social network analysis to explore bases for agreement in the arguments used in the global climate change debate…
    http://www.cqu.edu.au/research/research-organisations/institutes/resource-industries-and-sustainability/events-whats-on


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    Terry Krieg

    It’s true Tonyfromoz China hasn’t done much for the reduction of CO2 emissions mainly because they’re trying to give the great majority who are still without electricity a supply. But they’ve obviously got a long term plan for emissions reductions because between now and 2050 they’re going to build another 200 nuclear power stations which produce NO emissions during generation. In addition to China, 16 other countries are building nuclear reactors as well. Thirty one countries with nuclear will be 48 countries within a few years and you’d have to ask yourself why are so many countries including nuclear in their energy mix? Two reasons: They want a secure,safe, affordable BASE LOAD supply of electricity and WITHOUT CO2 EMISSIONS. Meanwhile we in Australia think we’ll cure the problem by building more costly, inefficient wind farms and solar panels and waiting for CCS and geothermal to come on line. Most thinking countries have relegated those forms to the bottom of the emissions reductions pile where they belong. If Australia wants to reduce its emissions within the time we’d appear to have then we have ONE OPTION. NUCLEAR<NUCLEAR<NUCLEAR. The rest of the world is saying that. Why not Australia??


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