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UQ’s Denial 101x : Putting the stink in distinction

Guest Post By Tony Thomas*

A keen student, I have just completed Week One of John Cook’s MOOC at Queensland University: “Denial 101x – Making Sense of Climate Science Denial.”

A MOOC is a Massive Online Open Course, and Cook’s course has 13,000 students so far.  He is a Climate Communication Fellow for the Global Change Institute at the University  and author of the notorious 2013 study purporting to find a 97% climate consensus in the science literature.

One normally gets a buzz from study. But my brain needs a shower and scrub to feel clean again.

I was not intending to write about my studies so early, in case that got me prematurely expelled. But one week of it is enough.

For example, in case I forget elements of Cook’s denialist ideation, he provides an acronym FLICC. This covers Fake experts, Logical fallacies, Impossible expectations, Cherry picking and Conspiracy theories.

Worse is in store. Cook says, “Next week’s interviews are equally exciting, as we speak to Phil Jones from the University of East Anglia…” Jones is the author of   “pretty awful emails” (his words) in Climategate. Other stars in the Cook course firmament will be Michael “Hockey-stick” Mann and sort-of historian Naomi “Merchants of Doubt” Oreskes, who in another book fantasizes about how warming may kill your kittens and puppies in 2023.

Cook is clearly stung by FOI and other determined requests for the data on which his work is based. He complains in his course about deniers “accusing the scientific community of falsifying their data”, and of attacking the scientists themselves via emails and blogs, hacking their personal correspondence and excessive FOIs. Incredibly, the lavishly-funded Cook plays the victim card for himself and the team  – at a time when scientists like Willie Soon are being subjected to Joseph McCarthy-style attacks. Cook says:

Perhaps the most damage to the integrity of science comes in the form of pressure being applied to academic journals and universities.

There’s a growing body of literature into the nature of complaints being received by academic institutions…The intent is to interfere with one of the basic principles of scientific work – the freedom to responsibly conduct research and accurately communicate the results.

The immediate consequence is that some academics are now facing what amounts to scientific censorship.”

He also claims – incredibly – that fear of denialist attacks is causing climate scientists “to underestimate the impacts of climate change, in order to avoid a hostile response.”

Cook begins the course by breezily defining “denial” as coming to a conclusion first, and then discounting any evidence that conflicts with your belief. [Like what Cook does, right, says Jo, who used to believe, but changed her mind.]

Ambitiously, Cook wants to ‘reclaim’ the word sceptic from the sceptics. [No chance, says Jo who wants to reclaim the word scientist from the unskeptical believers, who hide data, declines, and pander to a "consensus". - Jo]

And given Cook’s cognitive psychology  background, he intends to teach his students about ‘drivers of denial’, denial psychology, and ‘tell-tale characteristics of denial’.

Screenshot of Pistachio the koala in the course material

Cook reaches down to kindergarten-standard teaching. He enthuses about securing an interview with ecologist Sir David Attenborough, then says, a la Play School,  “But giving Sir David a run for his money is another star of this course – Pistachio the koala. “ [I think it makes a "grate" segue, says Jo.]

“And we mustn’t forget Christine Hosking, the University of Queensland scientist who researched the impacts of climate change on koalas.

Another highlight of the MOOC that I’m particularly excited about is “The Climate of Middle Earth”, featuring a climate scientist from the University of Bristol, Dan Lunt. We captured so much exciting footage of Dan simulating the climate of Middle Earth that we divided his interview into a trilogy starting in week 4.”

I had to check that Lunt isn’t talking geology but yes, Lunt is talking Gandalf and Frodo Baggins.

Lunt of Bristol U., in role.

Cook’s rhetorical gyrations are puzzling. Having found fame and fans with his “97% consensus” paper,  oft-cited in the course, he also remarks,  “Science isn’t based on a show of hands. It’s based on evidence.  The more lines of evidence we have, the more confident we are that our scientific understanding is correct.”

[Jo says: Righto -- they don't count hands, but they do count lines?]

He drills his students that the “consensus” is that human-caused CO2 promotes warming. This is hardly controversial. I can’t find anywhere in Week 1 where he explicitly states, rather than implies, the orthodox case that humans have been causing most of the past half-century’s warming – an assertion at the heart of the climate controversy.

Instead he says that  satellites are showing   “less heat escaping to space”. And  this somehow proves that greenhouse gases are responsible and what’s more, it’s “a human fingerprint in outgoing heat”.

[This'll be Harries et al, which shows that CO2 is indeed a greenhouse gas and does absorb the frequencies we think it does. It doesn't show that there is less heat escaping overall, just that there is less heat escaping in a small part of the spectrum. It shows that CO2 levels have increased, which skeptics agree with, and which we already know.  - Jo]

Another   “distinct human fingerprint”, he says, is that there’s a warming lower atmosphere (not for the past 18 years, actually) but a cooling upper atmosphere. The two fingerprints, plus others, “rule out” the sun and internal variability as causes of the (halted) global warming.[i]

[The warming lower atmosphere and cooling stratosphere can also be due to changes in ozone, it's not unique, and it doesn't show that the models have their calculations right. The key fingerprint that climate experts predicted is the tropospheric hot spot that is absolutely, completely missing. - Jo]

All the following phenomena do not involve ‘internal variability’ as a climate driver, Cook maintains: Cooling upper atmosphere; less heat to space; rising tropopause; annual cycles; daily cycle; ocean warming; more heat back to earth; and  land warming faster than oceans.

The human-caused warming evidence, says his co-lecturer Scott Mandia (Suffolk College, New York), is just as strong as the settled fact that smoking increases the risk of lung cancer.

“(E)ven if you threw out every climate model in the world, our confidence that humans were causing global warming would be just as strong. That’s because we have many human fingerprints all adding to a great pile of evidence,” Cook says.

Strange, that the Australian Academy of Science cites the models as   primary evidence for human-caused warming.[ii]

Cooks considers that  his feeble exposition 100% validates his global warming case, and hence anyone disputing it must be in thrall to psychological and ideological obsessions. At great length he and Mandia probe  into denialist political beliefs and neuroses, which is their academic specialty.

Now put yourself in a student’s shoes, and take some of this Cook course’s official exam, intended to gauge if you have mastered the Week One material.

Question #1: What characteristics of denial are used in the Global Warming Petition Project, the petition listing over 31,000 scientists who don’t believe that humans are disrupting climate (you may mark more than one):

  1. Cherry Picking
  2. Fake Experts
  3. Conspiracy Theory
  4. False Dichotomy
  5. Magnified Minority

Question #3: What characteristic of science denial is used in the following 1946 advertisement:

  1. Fake Experts
  2.  Logical Fallacies
  3.  Impossible Expectations
  4.  Cherry picking
  5. Conspiracy Theory

Question #6: Tick which of the following examples of media coverage are examples of balance-as-bias that distort an issue (you can choose more than one):

  1. A story on the link between smoking and lung cancer featuring a cancer researcher and a tobacco industry spokesperson
  2. A story on tax reform that features a conservative and a liberal
  3. A story on space travel that features an astronaut and a moon landing conspiracy theorist
  4. A story about the solar system that features an astrophysicist and a geocentrist (thinks the universe revolves around the Earth)
  5. A story on religion that features a religious believer and an atheist

Question #9: Identify the category that each tactic fits in

(i) Sending complaints to universities and scientific journals. [Your choice is]

  1. Cast doubt on scientific evidence
  2. Attack scientists

(ii) Petitions featuring non-climate scientists   [Your choice is]

  1. Cast doubt on scientific evidence
  2.  Attack scientists

(iii) Conspiracy theories about falsified data [Your choice is]

  1. Cast doubt on scientific evidence
  2.  Attack scientists

My main disappointment with the course is that Cook’s grasp of the climate science debate is so flabby.   He’s not a serious opponent for anyone. Cook and Pistachio the Koala say something about standards at Queensland University, somehow  ranked 3rd in Australia, sixth in Asia/Pacific and 85th in the world.\

* Journalist Tony Thomas has 63 climate essays at tthomas061.wordpress.com


[i] Cook’s course says nothing yet about the tropical tropospherical hotspot which was supposed to verify the climate models and become an AGW fingerprint, but is missing in action.

[ii] Climate models allow us 
to understand the causes of past climate changes, and to project climate change into the future. Together with physical principles and knowledge of past variations, models provide compelling evidence that recent changes are due to increased greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere. 
 -; AAS, Feb 2015,  p4

UPDATE: My other posts on John Cook

 

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UQ’s Denial 101x : Putting the stink in distinction, 8.9 out of 10 based on 117 ratings

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225 comments to UQ’s Denial 101x : Putting the stink in distinction

  • #
    Graeme No.3

    I am not surprised you dropped out.
    I am not sure where Lunt fits, but it seems to me that Pistachio the koala is the brains of them all.

    472

    • #
      tony thomas

      There seem to be dozens of sceptics enrolled, including Brandon Shollenberger and Barry Woods. Cook has whinged about it in the press:
      Barry Woods — in the Brisbane Times and in it he makes some claims referring to some students of this course… http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/queensland/climate-change-deniers-sign-up-to-uq-course-tackling-climate-change-deniers-20150430-1mwt52.html
      Mr Cook said organisers were not surprised that a few dozen climate change deniers had enrolled and were trying to discredit the course from the inside.
      “It is ironic and somewhat precursive, because we’re explaining the techniques of denial, and then when our course is being attacked or I’m being questioned, all those same techniques are on display,” he said.
      “It’s happening in the forums of the course right now, we’re seeing a small minority of the students who reject the science posting their arguments against it.”
      Looking at the Discussions in 101X there is a fierce battle now in progress : sceptics vs Cookists. AFAIK sceptic posts are not being routinely deleted, unlike on The Conversation.
      Here’s one example:
      Why is it so upsetting to discuss climate change with a denier?
      question posted about 5 hours ago by sue1201

      Hi, my name is Sue and I’m in the UK. I started this course precisely because I find it so frustrating and upsetting when I get into conversation with a denier (I know several!) about global warming / climate change.
      Reading people’s comments below, I see that more than one mention “losing their cool” when talking to deniers. Why is it that we, who accept the consensus of scientific opinion, feel threatened, while the deniers just shrug it off? It makes me feel like I’m in the wrong somehow.
      OsoPolitico
      about 4 hours ago
      Maybe because you are. Nobody denies that climate changes, not even we evil skeptics.
      OsoPolitico – please stop repeating your “nobody denies that climate changes” comments as they are just strawmen. This course is called “Making Sense of Climate Science Denial” and if you don’t like that topic you don’t have to participate in the forums but if you do then please heed the forum guidelines.
Comments like this one are not productive at all but seem to be posted with the aim of disrupting (or at least derailing) the discussions which is against the guidelines.
Thanks
Baerbel
      I then posted:
      “I agree with Sue. Whenever I try to reason with deniers, they say things like, “Climate sensitivity is turning out in peer reviewed papers to be more like 0.7-1.5 rather than the 3-4-5 times proved in the earlier IPCC reports. And they ALWAYS start talking about “the UHS and RSS satellites show no warming for 18 years, and the land based measures show no warming for more than a dozen years.” What should I reply when they say these obviously wrong things? I find it so frustrating!”
      This got the helpful reply:
      posted about 11 hours ago by tthomas061
      The trouble is that these things are not obviously wrong. All it takes is a little bit of cherry picking (pick 1998 as the year things changed) and a little exaggeration (saying “no warming” rather than “not much warming”) and those things are close to true.
      So I would suggest simply giving up on your goal of immediately convincing them they are wrong. Instead pin them down so they can’t move the goalposts so easily. Ask them what they expect to see over the next 5 years – resumed warming, a continuation of high temperatures but no significant rise, or clear-cut temperature decrease. Make a bet with them. Then resume the debate in 5 years.
      posted about 4 hours ago by jmenegay

      BTW I forgot to mention in the essay about Cook’s emphasis on “Vested Interests” behind the deniers. He gives an illustration – between 2005-08 Exxon Mobil spent all of USD9m (all up) on anti-warmism. OMG.
      By the way, the course is technically excellent and I’d rate it 99% for user-friendliness and sophisticated technology. The lectures are also well illustrated and quite ‘exciting’ rather than dreary droning.

      441

      • #
        RB

        Could someone ask Sue why she had to enrol in the course if people who were denying The Science were irritating her so much? One would think that she knew it back to front before she decided to be reclcitrant. She has found it interesting before she even got to the coding for the homogenisation!

        280

      • #
        Bill

        Thanks for your willingness to put up with this garbage “course” in the interests of informing everyone. Personally, if it were me, I’d have been vomiting profusely.

        281

      • #
        OriginalSteve

        Call me old fashioned – but applying common sense here – why should he be worried about ( or complaining about ) sceptics enrolling? If after all, the science is settled, then sceptics should become believers because the truth stands for itself and is self evident and should handle being attacked by those very very naughty sceptics, and its all lollipops and rainbows from there…..

        280

        • #
          Just-A-Guy

          OriginalSteve,

          Cook et.al., don’t believe that skeptics are skeptics because of a lack of knowledge or comprehension of the ‘science of climate change’. The whole course is based on the premise that skeptics are skeptics for political and ideological reasons. This BS hypothesis is what Lewandowsky and Kahan use and abuse to reject any rational discussion about the science itself. It’s also a non-falsifiable hypothesis. Anything a skeptic says that questions the ‘orthodoxy’ is not even considered on it’s own merit. They simply claim the skeptic’s challenge is based on political ideation.

          By promoting this line of attack, with the full force of a University behind it, they close off any and all rational discussion about the science proper.

          Technically, political ideation is a non-sequitur, it does not follow from the surveys and studies that claim it’s validity. They prop it up by way of an appeal to authority, the University.

          Can you see how this is a serious problem? Can everyone else see this?

          Abe

          181

          • #
            OriginalSteve

            The USSR had Political Commissars to ensure ideology was “pure”…..woe betide you if you fell foul of them.

            Are we seeing a resurgence of the USSR in our universities?

            Th eonly problem with the Commissars is they had a lot of people executed….

            70

            • #
              Just-A-Guy

              The Russian language version of USSR is CCCP.

              Catastrophic Climate Change Propaganda.

              Climate Change Catastrophism Productions, Ltd.

              Climate Change Con-job Proliferation.

              Creative Climate Change Predictions.

              Climate Con-job Creates Poverty.

              Climate Cult Consumes Productivity.

              Climate Change Comunicators Project. (as in ‘prjection’ not ‘plan’)

              Climate Change Contrarian Penalization.

              Abe

              30

          • #
            OriginalSteve

            Maybe its worth pointing out to the Warmists that science is a-political. Its evidence and facts, not policy and nonsense.

            They will no doubt try and use a Saul Alynski tactic to “freeze” the political bit and remorselesly attack it, however if we remove that as a avenue of attack by truthfully pointing out this is not politics, its about facts. Yes no doubt many scpetics may have right wing views, but so what? Yes I am annoyed by the Left, but the Left rarasly plays noce and has an appalling track record, of course we are wary….and if you look at the bulk of genocides in the 20th Century, its caused by the Left wingers.

            As to science –

            Truth is truth, even if your enenmy teaches it.

            70

            • #
              Brute

              “Truth is truth, even if your [enemy] teaches it.”

              This simple insight is out of reach for most people.

              Motivation (speculation about it, really) is generally used instead as the measure of trueness.

              20

          • #
            ExWarmist

            It begs the question of how they explain people who shifted from firm belief in AGW to die hard skeptic, w/o changing their political position.

            Such as myself.

            80

      • #
        mbllau

        Alert: Cook is doing a Reddit ama. I have posted a question here

        Could use some upvotes against their usual left bias. He won’t answer but at least someone might see it if it’s voted up a little?

        21

        • #
          Seer

          He not only answered your post, he demolished it. So did several others.
          So can we expect you to replicate the study or perform you own similar study and publish the results anytime soon? Why haven’t any of the so called ‘skeptics’ done this?


          [Seer, thanks for commenting. It's useful to show how empty the defenders of John Cook are. No links, no arguments, nothing but bluster. If he really debunked it, and he was a good communicator, you'd be able to explain why we were wrong eh? - Jo]

          00

      • #
        Lord Jim

        Ask them what they expect to see over the next 5 years … Then resume the debate in 5 years.

        That is hilarious.

        But, really, the onus of proof is on the warmists, who are making the claim; they should be making the predictions…

        So, back in 2010 warmist says: ‘I expect to see warming resume over the next 5 years.’

        5 years later… no warming.

        00

    • #
      Peter Carabot

      I didnt enroll in the first place, I know that even with the little knowledge I have on the subject, the keybord would have been smoking and the screen on the PC would be, by now, melting! Cannot afford a new one….
      Thank you for taking the pain for us!

      70

    • #
      Sonny

      Can there be any greater proof of the intellectual cowardice in the alarmist camp that they need to create a university course on “how to beat the bad bad deniers”. How utterly pathetic. How hilarious. How terrifying!

      Well i propose the following serious actions.

      Jo Nova, with your knowledge and network of intelligent, knowledgeable and ethical contributers, scientists and engineers I believe it is time that we created our own university course.

      Unlike John Cook’s cowardly, hateful approach of teaching the artform of attacking the person,
      This course would show people the falacy of “consensus”, the dangers of groupthink, the nature of cults, the techniques of propoganda. (Ofcourse we would include the common sense scientific evidence that so utterly destroys the CAGW consensus).

      As is always the case, the alarmists have the money and the backing of the politicians and the media. Yet we have the POPPULATION on our side (even if the majority are too scared to publically voice their horror at the unfolding psychopathy of the alarmists).

      Make no mistake, this course is an admission that they are SCARED. Whenever an alarmist storms away from a conversation and rejects debate they are SCARED.

      This course is one in a long line of examples of well funded polotical activists dressing up New World Order, Agenda 21 propoganda in the robes of academia.

      The good news is that the Sun has gone really quiet, and with their every attempt to rail against the cold reality of nature, they make bigger and more total arses of themselves. They go to Antarctica and get Stuck in Ice, all their predictions fail. And now, it is plain for the while world to see (since we will be recording every single word of your peurile excuse for a university course, the absolute, undeniably unscientific PROPAGANDA, that is destroying our academic institutions.

      Time to fight back!

      50

  • #
    Dave

    .

    Funny how they only use one side of any story

    Culled Koalas

    “And we mustn’t forget Christine Hosking, the University of Queensland scientist who researched the impacts of climate change on koalas.”

    Yet 700 Koalas killed for overpopulation?

    Good one, anther Cooked up story.

    292

    • #
      Peter Miller

      One of the things I love about ‘climate science’ is that must be the only field of study where:

      Only the future is certain, the past is always changing.

      Few would dare accuse Cook of scientific or statistical integrity, other than the bolts-in-the-side-of-the-neck alarmist fraternity. This course sounds very similar to the re-education camps forced on those unfortunate enough to be born in an equally rigid and uncompromising society as the climate alarmist cult.

      Perhaps a good analogy is those poor people who had to listen to Fidel Castro’s regular 8 hour wandering rant at Cuba’s annual communist party meeting. Woe betide you if you had to respond to a call of nature,.

      The bottom line here is that unless you are forced to listen to BS, you will quickly leave the room.

      561

      • #
        Truthseeker

        One of the things I love about ‘climate science’ is that must be the only field of study where:

        Only the future is certain, the past is always changing.

        I am sooooo stealing that …

        491

      • #
        Owen Morgan

        Appropriately enough, considering the leftist motivation behind many self-proclaimed greens, that does echo a remark made about the old Soviet Union, shortly after its collapse:

        “The thing about the soviet system was that you never knew what was going to happen yesterday.”

        One example was the way in which subscribers to the official encyclopaedia were sent a new, extended article about the Bering Strait, to take the place of the one about Lavrenti Beria, who had recently suffered extreme lead-poisoning and become an unperson.

        171

  • #

    They forgot to ask how often deniers mistreat baby koalas. Is it a)once a week, b)three times a week, c)ten times a week, d) more than ten times a week?

    I used to think universities had hit rock bottom back in the ’90s when academics were cranking out theses and courses with titles like “Neo-Destructuralism Within Post-Derridan/Marxian Gender Analysis”. Those now seem like the good old days.

    450

    • #
      Ceetee

      What the heck is “Neo-Destructuralism Within Post-Derridan/Marxian Gender Analysis”?. Sounds like something that requires an antibiotic.

      210

    • #
      ExWarmist

      Have you stopped mistreating Koalas yet?

      It’s the key question.

      00

  • #
    David-of-Cooyal in Oz

    Thanks for trying Tony. I wouldn’t have had the patience.
    Somewhat related:

    I keep wondering about why the IPCC can’t get the value of the “climate sensitivity factor” that it’s been looking for for so long. And I think I’ve found the answer! Perhaps the mathematics their climate scientists use doesn’t have the zero, which after all has only recently been discovered.
    I know they know about the numeral “0″, because they use it to separate the decimal point from significant digits as in .00003 for the amount by which 2014 is warmer than 1910, or in $250000…000 to indicate how much money they’d like, or have already used. But the number zero?
    We had it back in the middle of last century when I taught high school mathematics for a while, and it was really quite useful. And visible, sitting nicely between the equal, infinitely large sets of positive and negative numbers, and sitting conveniently in the cross hairs of many graphs. But the IPCC seems to have lost it, especially as a possible value for their climate sensitivity factor.

    In these days of the multiverse, have we introduced a new mathematics, suitable for climate calculations here on earth, but without a zero? I’m not aware of anything in AR5…
    Or perhaps their super computers have a floating point function which only approximates zero?
    Or would it just be too inconvenient to allow my friend the zero to come into their calculations.
    I suspect the latter, so I doubt they’ll reward me for reducing their computational load to a simple, common language statement:
    Anything multiplied by zero equals zero.

    Now we have that there is no correlation between increasing CO2 and any global warming*, i.e. that correlation is zero, so the probability that CO2 causes any temperature increase is zero, and in turn:
    Climate sensitivity = zero,
    hence probability of AGW = zero,
    the probability of CAGW = zero, and the value of reducing human initiated CO2 emissions is also zero. ($0.00 in accounting shorthand.)
    And there’s the amount we should spend to reduce such emissions – zero.

    What a fine number.

    Cheers,
    Dave B
    * I suggest Ian Plimer’s “Heaven & Earth” is a suitable, and sufficient, reference here.

    461

    • #
      handjive

      Music reference: Billy Preston – Nothing from Nothing

      I’m not tryin’ to be your hero
      ‘Cause that zero is too cold for me, Brrr
      I’m not tryin’ to be your highness
      ‘Cause that minus is too low to see, yeah

      30

    • #
      Popeye26

      Well done D of C in O.

      Absolutely STUPENDUOUS breakdown of the non-threat of a ridiculously high number like “0″.

      It’s REALLY scary to think how dangerous that simple “0″ can be, what with “end of days”, climate catastrophes, tipping points, extinction of all life on earth and the myriad of other things that are DEFINITELY going to befall us – all because of that dastardly evil “0″!

      I think that John Cook’s next course should be all about “0″ and how bad it is for all mankind and how to avoid meeting one accidentally, especially if it should pop out of a climate modelling computer – egads!!!!!!

      Cheers,

      142

    • #
      Geoff Sherrington

      David of Cooyal
      You would not be offended by my reminder that you forgot to cite references to your study.
      Might I recommend the 1954 book “The Story of O” see Wiki that covers inter alia dominance submission and groupthink.
      BTW, on CA a month ago I directly asked the studious independent scientist Nic Lewis, why he seemed to exclude the value of zero from his sensitivity estimates. No simple answer yet.
      Geoff who gave you a tick.

      Also BTW, decades ago there was a sign in a Qld bush pub ‘Credit’s dead. Tick klled if.’

      150

      • #
        David-of-Cooyal in Oz

        G’day Geoff,
        I confess I thought that Plimer was an adequate reference for my theme. His whole book justifies his position that an increase in CO2 follows warming, rather than the IPCC-claimed converse. (But he did find more variabilty than the British court’s 800 year delay.) To me that is enough to justify my statement that there is no correlation between increasing CO2 and any warming. And the next step, to my first probability statement is a simple quantification, and one which requires no error bar either. The set of equations is intended to be a logical sequence, emphasising the zero.

        I also should have put a sarc tag on “1910″ and the two numbers in the same sentence.

        But the rest comes from way back, and references are lost to me. I hope I’m not mis-remembering… I’d like to think the equations are original, but the idea for them has certainly come from reading here.
        Also thanks for the reference, and the “like”.

        Cheers,
        Dave B

        50

      • #
        David-of-Cooyal in Oz

        Hello again Geoff,
        I should also have said thank you for your upgrade of my post to the status of “paper”. While it was a considered post, the editing was by me, and it was certainly not peer reviewed.
        Also, i have no reference to prove my assertion that “if correlation is zero, probability of causation is zero”. But, perhaps obviously, it makes sense to me.
        Cheers,
        Dave B

        20

    • #
      ExWarmist

      The difficulty with discovering “Zero” climate sensitivity is that it guarantees “Zero” future funding.

      REF: “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!”

      20

  • #
    BilB

    Your problem, Jo, is that, despite your endess claims to being an evidence based science communicator, you are, to my observations, actually immune to empirical information an convey anything but actual science. You will eventually succeed, I expect, as a fiction writer most effectively where the plot has been laid down by someone else.

    I was particular bemused by your “where are the cyclones” thread. Since then we have had a continuous flood of them on the East Coast. But then I suspect that you have not heard about them there in far off Perth.

    497

    • #

      Such projection of your own mental state Bilb. :-) Keep it coming.

      I keep posting empirical evidence, and you never see it. And after 262 comments you still haven’t found empirical evidence for the water vapor amplification.

      PS: On cyclones, get back to me when you have any trendline support at all for the predictions made in the billion dollar Grand Fear Campaign. Otherwise your flood is “noise”. Rave on…

      933

      • #
        Peter Miller

        Jo

        I think you should have ended with the expression: “Rant on.” And not “Rave on.”

        The comments of alarmists are allowed on sceptic blogs, while on alarmist blogs almost all comments are routinely censored. Similar to the difference between a democracy and fascist and communist dictatorships.

        This comment fell under the category of being that from a pathetic troll, as opposed to being insightful and informative, as I am sure its author thought it was

        372

        • #
          ExWarmist

          This has to be close to the central difference in approach between the Warmist and the Skeptic camps.

          One is willing to debate, and the other is not.

          It says everything really.

          50

      • #
        Roy Hogue

        How they do love their fictional little world. They can’t help it I guess. You would expect at least a little embarrassment from time to time but alas, no such thing.

        191

    • #

      Gosh BilB, you must be so pleased that your side has called for the arrest, fining and jailing of all of us. I’m also gladdened that you’re even thinking of not allowing us legal representation, you know, star chambers and the like.

      (remaining 400 words self snipped)

      Tony.

      613

    • #
      tom0mason

      It must be hot where you are. :)

      90

    • #
      el gordo

      Bilb

      Since the 1870s the number of cyclones making landfall have more than halved.

      ‘The linear trend in the number of severe TCs making land-fall over eastern Australia declined from about 0.45 TCs/year in the early 1870s to about 0.17 TCs/year in recent times—a 62% decline. This decline can be partially explained by a weakening of the Walker Circulation, and a natural shift towards a more El Niño-dominated era. The extent to which global warming might be also be partially responsible for the decline in land-falls—if it is at all—is unknown.’

      Callaghan 2010

      The Klimatariat claims there might be less but they are becoming stronger. :-)

      382

      • #
        Rud Istvan

        Good parochial answer to BilB. Globally, there has been no increase in the number of tropical storms (the stronger being cyclones) nor in their ACE, over the satellite observing era, which for these storms spans the entire supposed AGW era.

        170

        • #
          ExWarmist

          All the ACE data is here

          Dr. Ryan N. Maue moved his site.

          ACE has been relatively flat overall for the last 40 years – scary stuff indeed – I almost feel compelled to pay more taxes and give up control over my life to unelected fascist bureaucrats.

          50

    • #
      Timboss

      Maybe Jo will start her own school. Perhaps based on her own special science?

      246

      • #
        Winston

        Timboss,

        The problem with “climate science” is that it lacks even a modicum of predictive ability regarding climate, and it has precious little “science” in it. Now, THAT is what I call a “special” science.

        353

      • #
        James Bradley

        Timboss,

        No need, physics and chemistry have been around for ages.

        240

      • #
        Manfred

        You mean like Cook’s Denial 101x at UQ?
        I doubt it. You’re likely to expire holding your breath waiting so don’t. W
        We really wouldn’t want the premature release of your sequestered carbon would we?

        60

    • #
      Glen Michel

      Excellent!BilB returns with another round of dopey comments- exemplifying the cretinous beliefs of climate alarmists.Please o Lord is there any of the brainwashed able to present something sensible or intelligent…..throws more Permanganate of potash on the BBQ.

      271

      • #
        TedM

        Yes KMNO4. A most effective oxidising agent. How I exploited that property in periods of irresponsibility in my teens.

        90

    • #
      Winston

      BilB,

      Your problem, if I may be so bold, is that you require absolutely no evidence whatsoever to go off on your chosen intellectual tangent, and in the process, whether by accident or design, inducing unnecessary financial hardship and widespread economic havoc on your fellow man, purely in the deluded belief that you are somehow “saving the planet”. The mere fact that the planet actually doesn’t really need “saving” doesn’t dawn on you, nor that the importance of the outlandish claims being made apparently mightn’t carry with it any need for anything quite so tawdry as hard evidence or concrete proof to back it up, since mere hand-waving and speculation clearly suffices in justifying placing others into harm’s way if it earns one’s ego the kudos it no doubt so richly deserves.

      Of course, it also doesn’t apparently bother you in the least whether the proposed “renewable” solutions, wind and solar, actually mitigate any CO2 production at all, or whether they are even remotely practical or functional in delivering what a modern functioning society might actually need for people to maintain their health and wellbeing. No. This is for less anointed fellows than your good self to be bothered with such trivia. Such quibbles are clearly beneath you, and obviously poor plebs like us who raise inconvenient questions about the validity of some of the obviously contentious (and often palpably incorrect) statements of alarmists, we are clearly being “irresponsible” in pointing out these flaws and should, in the interests of science of course, just allow these issues to slide through unchallenged as though it were holy writ. Purely by being a CAGW alarmist, BilB, you should be allowed to make even the most baseless assertions without having to ever engage in rational discourse of any kind, since all that you clearly believe is sacrosanct and it is a gross obscenity to question your wisdom in such matters. Of course, one has to wonder at a science that can’t brook dissent, since that is the very foundation of science as I, in my naivety, understand it. Still, you know best.

      492

    • #
      Bill

      Nonsense.

      94

      • #
        Bill

        Just to be clear for the “thumbsdowners”, my comment of nonsense was directed towards “bilb”. Nothing more needs to be said to such fools.

        20

    • #
      Tim

      “…most effectively where the plot has been laid down by someone else.”

      Bill, in your case, I would suspect Brussels.

      90

    • #
      John F. Hultquist

      Flannery preached that the AU East Coast would have a lack of rainfall and the reservoirs would need replacing by desalt-plants. I guess that didn’t work out too well as BilB now informs us that “we have had a continuous flood”, and, I will add a link to the record:
      http://www.sca.nsw.gov.au/water/dam-levels
      On Sunday, May 3, all dams monitored by the Sydney Catchment Authority indicate a 92% (automated; unverified) storage.

      So while BilB seems to be aware that the prediction (I wonder what Flannery used to make such a prediction) has turned out to be spectacularly wrong, she/he doesn’t comprehend the concept of “evidence based” —
      It doesn’t matter how beautiful your theory is, it doesn’t matter how smart you are. If it doesn’t agree with experiment, it’s wrong.” [Richard P. Feynman]

      281

    • #
      John Smith101

      BilB, it would help your argument to understand the differences between tropical cyclones, to which you refer, and east coast lows, which have been experienced along parts of the temperate east coast of Australia over the past few weeks. Different weather systems; different causes. Using an equivocation, as you have done, is a logical fallacy. Wise up!

      210

  • #
    bemused

    I am truly lost for words.

    80

  • #
    Tim

    Loosing on the science front, so they release the psychologists to denigrate and ‘educate’.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2015/05/01/climate-communications-strategic-use-of-climate-uncertainty-in-media-education-and-politics/

    151

    • #
      me@home

      Tim, the following quote from the fools you linked to shows just how innumerate and unscientific they are: “if human population were to shrink by a factor of 3″

      30

    • #
      ExWarmist

      The pathologization of dissent is a fair way along the descending path to dictatorship and death camps.

      40

  • #
    Another Ian

    Jo

    Cut if needed

    Talk about having one’s degrees devalued – when they come from what seems to be aiming for being the

    “Wooniversity for Wankers”

    [I'll let it through. I understand the complaint and so will readers.] AZ

    161

  • #
    Ken Stewart

    Good summary Tony. I’m still in but way behind as very busy in the real world. Some of the comments by participants are truly amazing.

    180

  • #
    handjive

    I have stuck out the first week.

    I completed the Macquarie Uni climate course run by Leslie Hughes e.g.: (youtube)

    After 8+ years in the climate wars, I had heard the propaganda so much that I knew the answers.

    I passed with 80%, attempting all questions once only, even though you could go back and do it until every section was perfect.

    But, Cook’s mooc has a subversive feel about it, an underlying evil psychology.

    The answers they seek are not climate related.

    Climate change deniers sign up to UQ course tackling climate change deniers (brisbanetimes.com)

    I might persevere, but, like Tony Thomas, I come away from the lesson feeling like I have been violated somehow.

    462

    • #
      Glen Michel

      Amyl Nitrate was a popular substance once during Psychology lectures.

      100

    • #
      C.J.Richards

      Subversive ? Can you imagine he’s not using your participation already in his next study ? You cou be instrumental in getting his Doctorate.

      100

    • #
      Andrew McRae

      Stick with it, handjive, stay the course, we know you can do it. Your tour of duty will end before you know it. Make notes and screenshots as you go and it will make fabulous retelling in 6 weeks’ time.

      Indeed, Cook should really own this. He should aim for a low contrarian attrition rate and convert as many heathens as possible. He should make it a glorious political motto:
      NO D3NIER LEFT BEHIND.
      Will the climate d3niers act, or will they become irrelevant?
      He might even call it a “scorched earth policy”.

      And after Cook has gone completely Bush Jnr in his new war on climate, he might even take up golf. I hear his backswing leads to Mennian slicing.

      [FYI. Denier would be allowed in a comment like this, even if initially in moderation. What's not allowed is directly or indirectly calling skeptics, deniers. Cook couldn't get away with it but you can.] AZ

      202

    • #
      OriginalSteve

      Well yes… its like putting up stainless steel cable to train a young vine alone so it grows where you want and into the shape you want.

      I think the analogy I am using is simple enough – it seems the “course” is trying to establish a precedence/beach head from which further one-sided nonsese can spring forth.

      I like to use history as a reference – large open air gatherings with waving flags, uniforms and empassioned speakers from the 1930s come to mind….scary stuff.

      40

  • #
    Ross Handsaker

    re Cook’s statement that satellites are showing “less heat escaping to space”. This is contrary to NOAA website which shows Outward Longwave Radiation (OLR) leaving the top of the atmosphere over the equatorial areas has seen an overall net increase since the turn of this century.

    380

    • #
      Peter Miller

      But that would be fact, what the heck has that got to do with ‘climate science?”

      262

    • #
      Radical Rodent

      One question to be asked is, how long have they been measuring this with satellites?

      Suspected answer: since about the turn of this century.

      When we have a few centuries of measurements, we might be able to make sense of the tangled web of interactions constantly underway on our planet. Until then, all we can do is watch.

      60

      • #
        Ross Handsaker

        Satellites have been measuring OLR since 1975.

        00

        • #
          Radical Rodent

          Well… on the geological scale, that is still pretty close to the turn of the century.

          So, we now have forty years of measurements. We have yet to get enough information to make rational conclusions about the patterns that might start emerging; give it another 160 years or so, I suppose.

          00

  • #
    Ursus Augustus

    The glimpse into the Mobius strip of John Cooks mind is exactly what I thought it would be.

    I salute the author for the patience and fortitude to submit himself to the inanity of Cook et al.

    Apart from that the COOKMOOC just seems more like self satire than anything else.

    Is John Cook a denier in the deepest of deep cover? That is the only rational explanation I can see for this COOKMOOC madness.

    292

  • #
    Brill

    OT. Has anyone got a data base of (incriminating) statements made by warmists. For example, the one about using global warming to change the world order (can’t remember who said it or exact words), and ones from climategate (Example, stopping skeptics getting published). I want to spread them around, one by one. Ask Jo for my email. Thank you.

    223

    • #
    • #
      handjive

      Global Warming Quotes & Climate Change Quotes: Human-Caused Global Warming Advocates/Supporters

      via C3 headlines a comprehensive collection.

      90

    • #
      Geoff Sherrington

      Brill,
      After reading Tony’s reference, slip over to Bishop Hill blog and hear 2 hours from our hallowed University of Melbourne on video under Academic demands totalitarian response to AGW. It is not a list, but an ammplification of some matters referenced by TT.
      Then, like others, come away feeling like both you and the UHI should benefit from a shower.

      112

    • #
      Rud Istvan

      Your first is from Chrisina Figueres, head of UNFCCC, in a speach. Your second is from Phil Jones, an email in the original Climategate release. Google will lead you to exact citations.

      60

    • #
      Ross

      Brill

      Here are two references to Christiania Figuere’s comment re the economy ( there is a video around of the press conference but I haven’t got it saved)

      http://news.investors.com/ibd-editorials/021015-738779-climate-change-scare-tool-to-destroy-capitalism.htm#ixzz3RVEQCzIX

      http://www.unric.org/en/latest-un-buzz/29623-figueres-first-time-the-world-economy-is-transformed-intentionally

      30

    • #
      ExWarmist

      I wonder if Herr Cook marks his students papers while enjoying the feeling of wearing his favorite uniform.

      00

    • #
      metro 70

      Rudd’s adviser for his 2007 election win, academic David McKnight, on his blog Beyond Left and Right, described the CAGW issue as a great opportunity for the resurgence of the Left.

      He said…

      ‘the social and political consequences will be volatile and unprecedented. The battle to lower use of fossil fuel will cause social conflict and economic disruption.

      ‘the cost of energy will need to be enormous’

      ‘ we are talking about far, far more than what we pay at the petrol station, and in our electricity bills. Rather we are talking about the cost of everything that is produced and is transported using energy and that includes, well, just about everything, starting with food, clothing and shelter.
      ‘The collectivist and egalitarian values associated with socialism will acquire a new relevance in the emerging political situation.’

      ‘The most pressing issue is the need to reinvent an inspiring, new kind of mass politics to struggle for sustainability and against the powerful coal, energy and electricity corporations.’

      He warned that response to the CAGW issue would cause ‘ massive dislocation and deprivation’, but would be worth it for the rejuvenation of Socialism.

      He took it down from his blog at one point – don’t know if it’s still down.

      And in Europe..

      German Economist academic Hans-Werner Sinn wrote an essay/book called The Green Paradox in which he described how a UN-controlled ‘seamless consumer cartel’ so that ‘suppliers will find no takers’ might be formed to force resource countries to leave their resources in the ground, their value at the mercy of and virtually ‘owned’ by the UN.

      It would amount to .. ‘ a partial expropriation of the resource owners and a partial substitute of the market mechanism by a centrally planned control of quantities.’

      ‘the UN will become, in economic terms albeit not legally, the joint owner of the fossil fuel.’

      Hans Werner Sinn says ‘only taking resource owners by surprise—can get the desired effects’, and even then he concedes military conflict could result.

      Sinn says..’ Possibly a worldwide black market for carbon will arise with a Mafia-style counter force arising that escapes democratic controls.’

      ‘ In the final analysis we will probably have no choice but to let the UN take over the
      central planning.’

      http://www.cesifo-group.de/portal/pls/portal/docs/1/1191466.PDF

      With pressure being brought to bear now on the world’s biggest funds to divest of fossil fuel investments, the move towards this Socialist blitz—on Australia especially—is accelerating even as the pillars of CAGW crumble.

      The Left will destroy Australia.

      30

  • #
    thingadonta

    The course could actually backfire, as brighter students will find anomalies and doubts in the way many of the questions are framed, and the way that various pre-determined assumptions are built into the very questions themselves, and therefore also into some of the answers.

    Cook will never understand that to doubt is the beginning of knowledge. Like in religion, he thinks doubt is a weakness, rather than a strength. The question of course is whether a particular doubt in an issue is justified, but anyone with intelligence can pick holes in the type of questions he asks, and the way they are framed.

    Socrates, for example, would make good reading for anyone doing this sort of course, as Socrates was very astute in picking holes in people’s various beliefs and assumptions, with which they were generally unaware. 2000 years later and the same sort of issues arise.

    261

    • #
      Glen Michel

      well, the bien pensant being what they are it makes no difference;they have their superior lliberal democratic/socialist confirmation bias mindset to back all thisup.no time or inclination to engage with others who will disagree with their so-called utopian new world order.humanities great new step forward,Naiive fools.

      50

      • #
        OriginalSteve

        I was watching “The Fall” the other days…..sort of brings back hints of that when reading all the comments here.

        00

      • #
        tom0mason

        Glen Michel,
        .
        “…who will disagree with their so-called utopian new world order.”
        ¯
        “so-called utopian”, that’s more bleeedin’ refugees!
        Utopians?
        Send ‘em back to Utopia,
        ,, or wherever it were they come from I say,

        stealin’ our jobs,…

        :)
        {If it gets snipped — I know but I couldn’t resist}

        [Understood the Southpark reference. - Mod]

        10

  • #
    Yonniestone

    I don’t know if this course is serious projection or an elaborate childish mimicry of actual science, one thing I do know is people this delusional should not be given a public platform to vent their disturbed mindsets, it’s both cruel to them and the general public.

    Thomas says his brain needs a shower and scrub, well I need a caustic enema from just getting a taste of this first course!

    190

  • #
    tom0mason

    Typical faux-science from a very poor tutor. IMHO this is nothing less than appalling use of the education system.

    This course is an example of a very poor understanding of what real science is about — being skeptical of convention and consensus, and knowing the difference between an unproven hypothesis and what is known and verified truths, for a start.

    If this is the standard of university education these days, my, how standards have slipped. Richard Feynman must be rolling in his grave if this is the level that teaching scientific understanding and education has stooped to.

    291

  • #
    Dariusz

    ” FLICC. This covers Fake experts, Logical fallacies, Impossible expectations, Cherry picking and Conspiracy theories.”
    Classic self projection. They accuse anyone of the same thing that they are guilty of.
    Fake experts – al gore and co
    Logical fallacies – 10% co2 increase and no temp increase at the same time
    Impossible expectations – more than 1 m sea level rise
    Cherry picking looking at the last 30-50 years only, not geological record
    Conspiracy theories – JO and co supported by big oil, Koch brothers, tobacco industry, evil gina Reinhard, right wing media moguls.

    332

  • #
    Dariusz

    ” FLICC. This covers Fake experts, Logical fallacies, Impossible expectations, Cherry picking and Conspiracy theories.”
    Classic self projection. They accuse anyone of the same thing that they are guilty of.
    Fake experts – al gore and co
    Logical fallacies – 10% co2 increase and no temp increase at the same time
    Impossible expectations – more than 1 m sea level rise
    Cherry picking looking at the last 30-50 years only, not geological record
    Conspiracy theories – JO and co supported by big oil, Koch brothers, tobacco industry, evil gina Reinhard, right wing media moguls.

    110

    • #
      Peter C

      Classic self projection. They accuse anyone of the same thing that they are guilty of.

      Isn’t it extraordinary? Most people can see the contradiction, but not an OFFENDRON ( term introduced 2 days ago, which captures Cook and all alarmists – and many others).

      What worries me is how many of them there seem to be. Is mass hysteria catching?

      181

      • #
        Just-A-Guy

        Peter C,

        All the trully massive funding goes to them. It’s all an optical illusion. They aren’t that many, and that’s why this course. To hopefully recruit more ‘gullible adherents’. Haven’t you noticed that it’s always the same ten to fifteen people at most that are pushing this cult forward?

        As many others before me have put it. “It’s the usual suspects every time”.

        Abe

        30

  • #

    Tony, thanks for the write-up.

    If memory serves, Cook’s online course was free. It makes sense then that students are getting absolutely nothing in return.

    Cheers.

    500

    • #
      Roy Hogue

      Oh come now, Bob! Students are getting a good lesson in failure to think, failure to… …almost everything.

      120

    • #
      tom0mason

      Bob Tisdale,

      Sorry Bob, it may be free to the students but it is not free unless Mr Cook has paid (from his pocket) for all the resources that are being used, and Mr. Cook and staff have given their time for free to make this course possible.

      I feel sure that someone somewhere has (IMO) foolishly paid for or donated these resources (tax payers perhaps?).

      150

      • #
        ATheoK

        I agree with you tomomason.

        Almost immediately, from Tony’s description of the course, I was under the impression that it is a very expensive professional design.

        The contents may be rubbish, but the whole approach and layout is professionally scripted.

        Someone or some organization spent a lot of cash for Cook’s propaganda course.

        60

  • #
    handjive

    Seems Cook could’ve used this advice:

    Communicating climate change – without the scary monsters (rtcc.org, 19 August 2014)

    “The climate disaster narrative hasn’t worked. Ignorance is bliss. So how do experts plan to wake up the world?

    But forget about the climate monsters. They didn’t seem to scare anyone.”

    GregLaden, the stoats partner in crime @scienceblogs, also missed the memo: Dire Predictions: Understanding Climate Change, Must Read Book

    80

  • #
    sophocles

    We captured so much exciting footage of Dan simulating the climate of Middle Earth that we divided his interview into a trilogy starting in week 4.”

    I wonder if they have Sir Peter Jackson’s permission to wander so far into Sir Peter’s “intellectual property?”

    110

  • #
    TinyCO2

    I’ve got a sneaking admiration for the organisers of this course. How hard was it to round up the dream team of poor academics and rabid activists? I’ve an open mind about AGW but if I could put my finger on where much of my sceptic leanings come from then the contributers to this course would feature highly.

    I can understand how poor work can creep into a field or how respected people can some times produce embarrassingly bad ideas but you’d expect there to be some sweeping under the carpet and red faces but not for these guys. I could lay out the timeline for the moon landing paper to ten year olds and they’d spot the stinkers. They’d laugh. So why has a field… no multiple fields of study let these clowns continue? It’s like one of those tortuous sitcoms where the central character is a complete nutter but holds the other characters in thrall. The audience are invited to feel superior because they can spot the disasters coming. The bumbling and/or supercilious star wreaks incalculable damage to their cause, even as they try their best to help. I don’t know if you’ve seen it but The Brittas Empire springs to mind.

    If I were to write such a comedy I would have to use titles like ‘the bully’, ‘the cloying religious one’, ‘the obsequious underling’, ‘the manipulative one’, ‘the gossip monger’ and so on. I’d have the Koala as the sarcastic voice over that says what the audience is thinking.

    191

    • #
      Glenn999

      You got me thinking. Perhaps an absurd comedy to poke fun at the sheeple and their twisted leaders. Nothing like absurdity to make fun of the global climate absurdity movement. Need to flesh out a couple pages of script!

      70

  • #
    TdeF

    So a real university has a real course on zombie vampire slaying? Is Global Warming the new crazy topic in the world? When did science stop and someone let in the loonies?

    The world has not warmed at all for 18 years. Yet they believe.
    No hot spot. Yet they believe.
    The ice in Antarctica is at record levels, yet they believe.
    220,000 windmills have not added 1% to power and not reduced CO2 at all.
    The Polar bears are fine.
    Those 250,000 Caribou were in a different valley after all.
    Food is up, the planet is greener, cyclones are down and the drought is over nearly everywhere and no one has drowned.
    Even warmists like Flannery and Gore have their waterside houses.
    Yet they believe.
    No explanation for a total failure in every prediction. Yet they believe.

    So it is time to bring out a mass course in denying deniers their denial. Time to be sceptical about sceptics. You know it makes sense. The only question is how to get government funding? Jacqui Lambie. She knows how you feel.

    222

    • #
      TdeF

      Sorry. I mean drowned as a consequence of rapidly rising sea levels due to Global Warming.

      60

    • #
      Hugh

      The warming lower atmosphere and cooling stratosphere can also be due to changes in ozone, it’s not unique, and it doesn’t show that the models have their calculations right. The key fingerprint that climate experts predicted is the tropospheric hot spot that is absolutely, completely missing.

      They (John Cook et al) work hard to explain that the hot spot IS there, though it is not there, but anyway, it is not an AGW fingerprint, and yet it is there and proves AGW. See SkS.

      Geez really those people think that they are essentially right, so any discrepancy is because a minor detail is wrong, not because the whole GCM failed.

      20

      • #
        Hugh

        I see, I’m late: Joanne wrote a nice blog entry on goal post moving related to the missing hot spot. And linked it above. Nice.

        10

  • #
    Peter C

    Tony,

    I did enrol months ago but I seem to have been forgotten as I received no follow up or course material. I could on course enrol again or just go to the site and read the material.

    However the only interest for me was either to post embarrassing questions on any discussion thread that they might have , or to make a complaint to the Vice Chancellor about the lack of intellectual integrity.

    Currently I am too busy to contribute in that way. I do hope however that we get reports on all seven (7) weeks of course content, for discussion here.

    I can understand that you have been totally wrung out by your first week of trying to comprehend the mentality of the course. It is beyond comprehension or parody, yet there seem to be an army of supporters.

    Maybe others can tag team the course as it unfolds.

    92

  • #
    pat

    not O/T because it kind of involves UQ Alumni, Peter Doherty.
    on jo’s thread,
    ‘Peter Doherty: Australia is “public enemy number one”, cites “couple of people”’ i posted the following but did not include Robert Bosch Foundation being one of the lead sponsors. url is at jo’s Doherty thread:

    25 April: PIK-Potsdam Press Release: “The great urban transformation“: Nobel Laureates call on cities to tackle sustainability challenge
    Lead Sponsors
    (JP Morgan, Hong Kong Jockey Club) PLUS
    Robert Bosch Foundation. Established in 1964, the Robert Bosch Stiftung GmbH is one of the major German foundations associated with a private company. It represents the philanthropic and social endeavors of Robert Bosch (1861–1942) and fulfills his legacy in a contemporary manner. The Robert Bosch Stiftung works predominantly in the fields of international relations, health and education, and the aims and objectives of modern science…

    well, Robert Bosch pops up again for this “fascinating” event!

    29 April: Brookings Institute: The future of arms control, Internet governance, and geoengineering
    On May 4 through May 6, the Project on International Order and Strategy at Brookings and the Global Public Policy Institute (GPPi) of Berlin will formally release three “Global Governance Futures 2025” research papers. Written by the 2015 Global Governance Futures (GGF) fellows, the 2015 papers focus on issues of global arms control, geo-engineering, and Internet governance.
    Managed by the Global Public Policy Institute and supported by the Robert Bosch Stiftung, the Global Governance Futures program brings together young professionals from Germany, China, Japan, India and the United States each year to look ahead to future policy issues and propose recommendations for addressing a variety of global challenges. The fellows met four times over the course of 2014 and 2015 in working sessions a series of four sessions, entitled Global Governance Futures—Robert Bosch Foundation Multilateral Dialogues held around the globe…
    Read this year’s GGF research papers:…
    Human Intervention in the Earth’s Climate: The Governance of Geoengineering in 2025+ (LINK)
    By Masahiko Haraguchi, Rongkun Liu, Jaseep Randhawa, Susanne Salz, Stefan Schäfer, Mudit Sharma, Susan Shifflett and Ying Yuan (Members of the GGF working group on geoengineering governance)…
    http://www.brookings.edu/research/opinions/2015/04/29-global-governance-futures#.VUErIGWv2tw.twitter

    read all the following for speakers, panelists, etc.
    NOTE: ***The presentation will be held under the Chatham House Rule.

    Global Public Policy Institute: Global Governance Futures 2025: The Future of Geoengineering Governance
    The report focuses on the geoengineering technique of solar radiation management (SRM), which aims to reflect sunlight away from the earth. Although SRM is still in its infancy and may take decades to research, develop and deploy, it is precisely this early stage of development that offers a critical window of opportunity for developing collaborative and inclusive approaches to effective global governance of SRM.
    In a public event on 5 May 2015, the GGF fellows of the Geoengineering Governance Working Group will present their new report at the Brookings Institution in Washington, DC, and discuss their results with three experts: David Goldston, Nathan Hultman and Simon Nicholson.
    Where: Brookings (Stein Room) Washington DC.
    ***The presentation will be held under the Chatham House Rule.
    http://www.gppi.net/index.php?id=251

    71

  • #
    ROM

    13,000 students for the UQ course run by Mr. 97% Cook.

    Considering the subject matter [ ?? ] I am quite certain that 97% of them will pass regardless.

    And UQ will ensure that 97% of the MSM will faithfully report that 97% pass number as fact.

    152

    • #
      Dariusz

      What do you get when you pass? A diploma in repelling the d-monsters? Or perhaps a blue ribbon, may be a medal or even a kiss from the lecturer?
      What is the purpose of this “course”? Do you get more easily employed as a result? Yes of course the abc, and fairfax media the flannery,s organisation can,t wait to get them.
      One thing is certain – expect more trolls on this web.

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    pat

    btw i found the following article, which doesn’t list Doherty among the participants, but does include Brian Schmidt:

    23 April: PIK-Potsdam: “Developing our cities, preserving our planet”: Nobel Laureates gather for the first time in Asia
    ***Participants of the symposium include Nobel Prize winners …Brian Schmidt (Physics, 2011) from Australia…
    https://www.pik-potsdam.de/news/press-releases/developing-our-cities-preserving-our-planet201d-nobel-laureates-gather-for-the-first-time-in-asia

    & there is this.
    the interview was done prior to the meeting, so am not sure if Schmidt actually attended, or if Doherty replaced him:

    17 April: Asia Society: Eric Fish: Interview: Nobel Laureate ‘Scared’ for Humanity as Earth’s Climate Shifts
    Under the world’s current carbon emissions trajectory, average global temperatures could rise by at least four degrees Celsius by century’s end, which scientists warn would bring catastrophic effects…
    These are some of the questions to be explored by Nobel Prize Laureates on April 22 at an Asia Society Hong Kong dialogue titled Sustaining Humanity in the Midst of Climate Change as part of the 4th Nobel Lauretes Symposium on Global Sustainability (The entire symposium will be live-broadcast here).
    One panelist will be astrophysicist Brian Schmidt, who was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2011 for his work demonstrating the universe’s accelerating expansion. In recent years, Schmidt has been vocal on climate issues and the grave need to take greater action. Ahead of the Hong Kong dialogue, he spoke with Asia Blog about the politics of climate change in Asia and humanity’s odds of conquering its biggest challenge ever.
    Q. As an astrophysicist whose job focuses on looking toward the stars, what’s prompted you to be so vocal about climate change here on Earth?
    A. Science is at the core of the issue of climate change, both our understanding of how it works, our understanding of what the consequences of it are likely to be, and our understanding of how we might lessen its future impact. As a Nobel Prize winner, I have the opportunity to talk to a huge variety of scientists, politicians, policy makers, and citizens of the world.
    ***I believe I have an important role in explaining the process of science and its role in understanding and tackling climate change because of my knowledge of how science works, and the opportunity that a Nobel Prize provides to spread this knowledge…
    Q. On the weighing scale balancing optimism and pessimism about the future of humanity, which way are you tilting these days?
    A. I will admit to being scared — I do not know if the world has the discipline to do what it needs to, to live sustainably with more than seven billion people on the planet. But I am an optimist in how I think about the problem; I know it is possible to do it, and there is no sense for planning for failure, so the only sensible way forward is to optimistically challenge the problem head-on, until it is solved.
    http://asiasociety.org/blog/asia/interview-nobel-laureate-scared-humanity-earths-climate-shifts

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    Raven

    1. A story on the link between smoking and lung cancer featuring a cancer researcher and a tobacco industry spokesperson

    What a fallacious crock this is,
    Just show me a period of 18 years where nobody died from lung cancer.

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  • #

    So 13,000 people have enrolled, it’s free except for $100 if you want a “verified certificate”.
    Brave souls above have enrolled and (apart from Peter C) report that the website and associated functions work well. “EdX is based in Cambridge, Massachusetts and is governed by MIT and Harvard”, so this isn’t a ‘roll yer own’ effort by, and at the usual standard of, Cook & Co, or even IT at UQ. The contributors all seem to be professional warmist [self-snip] artists well-remunerated from the trough, so may not require payment. So it is Australian taxpayers paying for this? Presumably the payoff will be another dog’s breakfast analysis along the lines of Cook et al 2013. If they can get away with that, they may as well try and hit the moon. [Oops. Unfortunate metaphor.]

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      Raven

      So 13,000 people have enrolled . .

      What’s the chances these 13,000 people become unwitting anonymised ‘data’ in an upcoming paper by Cook and Lewandowsky.

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      Ross

      Can be sure, with 97% confidence, the 13,000 figure is correct? are the stats peer reviewed ?

      Seriously, I don’t get it. If they are so sure their science is correct why are they worried about a few skeptics who don’t agree
      (they tell us there are not many of us!).Why go to all this trouble?

      Behind the scenes they know they are losing the battle. Despite political statements for appearances sake the Governments of Germany, Japan , Canada, China and others are quietly going about the business of recovering and insuring energy security for countries and are putting money into building coal fired power stations in other countries. Cooke and co would never acknowledge this but who cares what they think.

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    • #
      Krudd Gillard of the Commondebt of Australia

      Martin, I suspect that most of the enrollees do so to comply with welfare eligibility requirements.

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  • #
    JLC

    I can see why Cook would want to do this. It results in more people presenting the CAGW in the terms that Cook wants: a chorus of Cook-esque trolls.

    It puzzles me that so many people have signed up. Are they all activists? Professional or amateur activists? Trolls? I would have thought those sorts of people would already have enough knowledge for their purposes or they would not be activist/trolls/whatever. What do they plan to do with the “knowledge” they are gaining? Psychiatrists? Skeptics reviewing the opposition?

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      C.J.Richards

      “It puzzles me that so many people have signed up. ”
      Haven’t freak shows always been a popular pull. Some kind of mornid fascination I suppose

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      David-of-Cooyal in Oz

      Perhaps it’s manadatory for SMH jounalists?
      Cheers,
      D

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  • #
    James Strom

    Cook! Thanks for the post. It brings me the pleasant news that I have saved the cost of the course.

    Now, if I may be permitted a comment on a slightly related matter . . . .

    The Camels ad reminds me of a study I saw long ago (sorry, no links) that showed smoking declining notably in the US when tobacco companies were allowed to produce ads like that, during the periods when the companies were waging a “health” campaign. The theory proposed was that by constantly reminding customers of the possible link to disease the companies undermined the explicit message of their ads. The theory strikes me as probably true, but unprovable.

    Secondly, note that the pictured customer is a woman. The ad dates to 1946. I recall advertising in the 1970′s for feminine-branded cigarettes, suggesting that since women had been repressed in their desire to smoke for so long it was now time for them to make a bold statement of their independence, Nicotiana Tabacum-wise. But women had been smoking in the clear for at least thirty years. That was deceptive advertising. Maybe Cook could look into it.

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    Roy Hogue

    “Another highlight of the MOOC that I’m particularly excited about is “The Climate of Middle Earth”, featuring a climate scientist from the University of Bristol, Dan Lunt. We captured so much exciting footage of Dan simulating the climate of Middle Earth that we divided his interview into a trilogy starting in week 4.”

    I wish they’d all study the climate of Middle Earth. Then they’d be leaving the climate of Real Earth alone. ;-)

    How much better could it get?

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      Roy Hogue

      And this exposes something I’ve noticed about all these great university type experts for years now. They can’t distinguish fantasy from reality.

      Do they live in the real world? No.

      Do they have to produce something the buying public will want seriously enough to pay for it voluntarily to keep their jobs? No.

      Do they need to acquire and then keep a reputation for honesty, integrity and reliability to keep their jobs? No (and I can think of examples).

      It isn’t limited to academics either. Many of our politicians are in this same appalling condition.

      Tolkien wrote fiction. What do these academics and politicians write? Fiction. Grrr. :-(

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        Roy Hogue

        I could write a book about this. But Jo has already said so much of what needs to be said over the years that I’ll sit back and (try to) enjoy my retirement instead.

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        Debbie

        Top questions!
        These people are accessing government grants to fund employment & because they are supposedly independent they have legislation that allows them to write up their own contracts and mark their own homework.
        They are not accountable to anyone or anything other than their own self designed, box ticking, 100% risk averse, process orientated agendas.
        The last thing they want is a publicly desirable outcome, or a sensible solution to a real problem or a way to reduce the tax burden & etc…
        That would mean their job was actually completed!!!! ( no more tax payer funded grants needed) :-)

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    C.J.Richards

    You can watch on Twitter without signing up for the whole experience. I suppose the comments that get through on there will be filtered but there are already some doozies, like

    @denial101x #denial101x I am auditing this course because I want to be able to debate climate change issues with some confidence of facts!

    * – ‘auditing’ seems to be a MOOC term for following without doing the assessments.

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  • #
    TdeF

    It is obvious that the pushers of man made Global Warming, Cook, Orsekes, Manne, Jones, Flannery, Gore and the rest made their fame and fortune from Global Warming. In the Tobacco analogy, it was money that corrupted and it is this group who are clearly the ones backing Big Carbon, Big Wind, Big Solar now bigger than Big Tobacco at $1Bn a day. They are the ones being paid and handsomely. These are truly Lord Monckton’s Profiteers of Doom. Solar will save the day. Windmills are the future. Carbon is your enemy. Liars.

    In total contrast, their skeptical opponents here and everywhere are volunteers, retirees, concerned people and a lot of really annoyed professional scientists and this absurd, illogical University course exists simply because the skeptics are winning everything, apart from being right.

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    • #
      manalive

      Besides that ‘more doctors smoke …’ claim looks ludicrously like as Cook’s ’97%’ claim.

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    bobl

    Don’t forget folks doing the course to rememeber to drive the stake throught the heart of the fake morality, that kills grannies, children and poor black people by denying them energy. One might remind them that for each 20PPM reduction in atmospheric CO2 we lose about 5% of our food production capacity. How moral is sending 7 billion people back to an atmosphere suited to feeding just 1 Billion people, at the same time moving energy needed to survive such condition out of reach?

    The war on coal is Political, not scientific, don’t lose sight of that.

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    Jaymez

    If the purpose of the course was to pretend that climate sceptics have been arguing all along that CO2 cannot cause any warming, and people believe that, then I guess they will have achieved their objective. What I can guarantee you wont see is any real scientific evidence showing:

    a) How much of the warming since 1950 (or any date they choose) and now, is caused by humans versus natural climate variation.
    b) The global temperatures today are at an unprecedented level compared to global temperatures during human habitation on Earth.
    c) That there has been any statistically significant warming since 1998 or that any of the IPCC climate models predicted either the warming hiatus since 1998, or the current average global temperature.
    d) That global temperatures which were higher than today in the past, such as during the Medieval Warm Period, or the Roman Warm period, were worse for humans than temperatures at the end of the Little Ice age in 1910 which were about 1.0C lower than today’s global average.

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    Ruairi

    A skeptic could hardly survive,
    Where warmists would blossom and thrive,
    As they learn to obey,
    And are told what to say,
    To keep consensus science alive.

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    David C

    While Obama was attending the G20, he made a presentation to students at UQ. Perhaps Cook could get his classes to compute the carbon dioxide footprint of the Obama visit (Air Force One, C-17s, V-22 tilt-rotor helicopters, multi-vehicle motorcade, several thousand hotel rooms, etc). From a denier perspective, of course!

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    TedM

    Jo didn’t this same John Cook” post an image of himself online dressed in SS uniform? And he has the gall to refer to us as denialists. Surely this is just too good an opportunity to bypass.

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      Glen Michel

      Photo shopped in Himmlers uniform as well-the reichsfuehrer ss at the bottom left of pic gives it away!!I would wonder how many people would view this as proper.Does anyone think UQ or ABC would be interested?

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      Eddie

      I don’t think it was published so much as left around to be ‘hacked’. The allusions to a Propaganda Chief are not lost though.

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    DonS

    Does this course count for credit toward a degree?

    If so then the numbers enrolled are easily explained, it’s a lazy way to pick up 2 or 3 credit points. Even the dullest of students should be able to figure out what answers will get a pass mark from these people.

    It would be outrageous to think that students doing physics, chemistry, geology, biology courses etc.. may be getting the same credit towards their degrees as those doing this sort of intellectually weak “study”.

    Not to mention the resources the university is putting into this so that the personal socio-political views of a few academics can be raised to the level of serious university study and stamped with the legitimacy of an institution of higher education.

    I’ve got a lot of opinions about a lot of things, can I get to present my opinions as a course of study at a university? If only I had the right connections to the right people.

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    gbees

    all of this just confirms that your average warmist is stark raving mad …

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    pat

    if u can access it Hedley Thomas has a piece which includes mention of solar roof panels:

    Builders warn cheap building material imports can kill | The …
    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/…/builders-warn-cheap-building-material-import...
    10 hours ago – Builders warn cheap building material imports can kill … He said solar roof panels that caused fires, asbestos taps, exploding glass that …

    rarely see these kinds of stories getting widespread coverage in the CAGW-infested MSM but:

    20 April: BBC: Hove town hall fire ’caused by solar panels’
    A large fire at Hove Town Hall is believed to have been caused by an electrical fault in solar panels on the roof, the city council has said.
    The blaze produced a large column of black smoke that rose over Brighton and Hove…
    “The source of the fire is believed to be an electrical fault with a solar panel on the roof. An investigation is under way.”
    The council said all its solar panels were checked annually, with those at the town hall checked two weeks ago.
    ESF&RS said solar panels were no more dangerous than any other electrical product.
    “Anything electrical can develop a fault through any number of reasons,” said spokesman Stuart Black.
    “We will investigate if that particular brand has had any incidents of fires throughout the UK but I am not aware of any at the moment.”…
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-sussex-32382795

    27 April: WFSB TV: Experts warn about potential dangers of solar panels
    While they are popping up everywhere, many people may not be aware of the dangers that come along with them…
    “Look, we have very high electric rates in Connecticut and they continue to go up and so our electricity costs are high and that makes the whole value proposition of going solar really compelling,” O’Neill said…
    A fire that broke out in Vernon last month wasn’t caused by solar panels on the roof, but it became more difficult to fight the fire because of them.
    “There was some fire underneath some of the panels. They’re hard to work around. They’re very dangerous,” Vernon Fire Chief William Call said.
    Solar panels pose an extra level of danger to firefighters, as they are always electrically charged, even in the moonlight. There is no way to turn them off.
    If firefighters come into contact with them, they’re at risk of shock or electrocution.
    “Don’t step on the panels. Don’t lean on the panels. Don’t put your tools on the panels. Don’t break the panels,” said Robert Duval, senior investigator of National Fire Protection Association.
    He said the panels can also inhibit firefighters’ efforts to ventilate through the roof.
    Plus, the added weight of the panels can also cause the home to collapse more quickly…
    “We won’t risk one of our firefighter lives in an unstable structure, unless somebody’s inside there and that’s where the risk is worth the reward.” Rocky Hill Fire Chief Michael Garrahy said.
    When firefighters can’t ventilate through the roof and are worried about a potential collapse, they may be forced to fight the fire from the outside, which means it could take longer to put out…
    The alarming problem is just coming to light for some fire departments in the state as they scramble to have their knowledge and training catch up with the technology…
    http://www.wfsb.com/story/28886201/experts-warn-about-potential-dangers-of-solar-panels

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    angech

    Doing the course as well but may have to drop out due to an overseas trip.
    Really enjoying seeing all the opponents in the flesh on the videos.
    The message is self aggrandizement Cook promotes the 97% consensus which was derived from Cook.
    Hence the more people doing the course the more notoriety/fame John gets.
    The concept is that if people push the line that 97% of Climate scientists agree that humans cause some global warming all skeptic arguments will be demolished.
    The mantra is repeated over and over in every video.
    Of interest Naomi Oreskes speaks well but looks unwell. Michael Mann appears as a lovable benign entity, amazing but only week 1.
    Mandia looks nothing like superman but has the same sleek look and used car salesman approach as Cook.
    Lewindowsky made an appearance but said nothing substantive.
    I would encourage a look at the course as the irony of propaganda like this, lost on the enthusiastic green participants,
    is that every bit of delusion thinking and denialism and conspiratorial thinking is evident in the actions and words of the people running this course.
    AS with other motivational pushing the opposite reaction to this course will cause more people to desert the cause than join it
    but also more hate and intolerance in the AGW group.

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      ianl8888


      The concept is that if people push the line that 97% of Climate scientists agree that humans cause [some] global warming all skeptic arguments will be demolished

      Unhappily, as PR it’s very effective indeed … and the qualifier [some] is mostly MIA

      The MSM rely entirely on this propaganda line as it is then relieved of any necessity for investigative work in areas where it is both illiterate and innumerate

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    KinkyKeith

    Who authorized this Course and who is providing supervisory scrutiny of the content and implementation of it?

    Or does the UQ not function like normal Universities?

    KK

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      Matty

      Psychology Departments are usually sandboxed within University institutions.
      Anything goes, but it’s easy to dismiss them as a wunch on bankers.

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    Simon

    It is sad that these fruitloops think that a highly skewed course designed to attract the vulnerable will bolster their cause. This stuff makes my day. My favourite hobby is engaging an alarmist in conversation only to have them storm off with only a confused whimper – comedy gold.

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    • #
      Matty

      Remember the participants need help. It’s the dealers who will twist your participation to endorse their twisted cause

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  • #

    Well that’s 13,000 people – give or take – that are having so much trouble talking with sceptics that they need a group therapy session. That’s a good base for an exponential growth after december and a base for serious commercial exploitation.

    My Deprogramming Futures are looking more solid by the day.

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    Just-A-Guy

    John Cook (in absetia),

    You course has led to this thread. Reading through the many comments here, I’ve spotted about fifteen of them, (a conservative estimate), which could easily be expanded into stand-alone articles.

    Which reminds me of a popular saying that originates in Mexico:

    “No hay mal, que por bien no venga.” The translation of which goes like this: “There exists no evil, that for the good does not come forth”.

    Thank you, John, for bringing out the best in us.

    Abe

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    KuhnKat

    “Incredibly, the lavishly-funded Cook plays the victim card for himself and the team – at a time when scientists like Willie Soon are being subjected to Joseph McCarthy-style attacks”

    Mr. Tony Thomas, while I am supportive and sympathetic of your intent, I cannot let this scurrilous attack on Senator Joseph McCarthy pass unremarked. The fact that you are repeating communist propaganda that was created to destroy the man and his investigations of US Government employees thought to be communist agents is quite ironic as you are doing so in the attempt to counter the leftist propaganda of Climate Change. Specifically McCarthy did NOT go FISHING by accusing people of being commies with no supporting evidence. Most of the other accusations made against the man are distorted or flat lies. Most of them are actually actions taken by the Hollywood Unions blacklisting commies, the House Committee on Unamerican Activities (McCarthy was a Senator and did NOT work with them) etc.

    Allow me to recommend a book that will help you understand why I am calling you on this:

    Blacklisted by History: The Untold Story of Senator Joe McCarthy and His Fight against America’s Enemies by M. Stanton Evans

    another book I highly recommend to understand the multiple personality disorder of the US political system that supports the above is:

    None Dare Call It Treason by John A Stormer

    The Venona Papers and

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      A C

      I agree entirely. Tony – you of all people (Tony Thomas- The pocket Windshuttle / Stiolen Generations) should know better than to repeat old myths.

      Please sit in the naughty corner.

      Here is another book to read thats a bit closer to home – Hal Colbatch’s book “Australia’s Secret War – How unionists sabotaged out troops in WWII.”

      Its time we reclaimed McCarthy.

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      Yonniestone

      Thumbs up from me also Kuhn Kat, I remember reading this article around 8 years ago giving an alternate account of Senator Joseph McCarthy regarding the left wing comparison of the Salem Witch Trials that somehow became what passes for conventional wisdom today.

      Another great book is The Naked Capitalist by W.Cleon Skousen which gives some excellent insights into what we are witnessing now with UN agenda 21 and a push towards a NWO, Skousen was an FBI special agent 1949 to 1951 and gives some excellent first hand insights of J. McCarthy.

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      Bill

      I can agree with your intent but you are factually incorrect with regards to McCarthy. Suggest you do your research rather than relying on a revisionist book that lauds the Loonie Senator.

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  • #

    Tony,

    I’m also participating. I had to have three goes at the Week 1 quiz to get all of the answers wrong.

    I don’t want it said that I got anything right in this “course”!

    I believe we’ll switch from the predominately psychology and marketing of week one and be told more about the wonderful fingerprints.

    Pat

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      Rollo

      Yes , let’s not forget man’s evil fingerprints all over the virgin mother earth. Anyone currently publishing a climate related paper must use the word “fingerprint” at least twice in every sentence as a guarantee of peer approval. After the next part of the course Pat, you’ll probably feel nauseous every time you encounter the word “fingerprint”.

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      Peter C

      Thanks Pat Lane,

      I went to your website and read the whole post.
      Excellent.

      I don’t know how it will be received back at Denial 101.

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  • #

    CSIRO denies real science. (link to CSIRO Facebook posting)

    Seems that CSIRO’s PR staff have never heard of Karl Popper.

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    • #
      TdeF

      Yes, a lot of absurd barracking without logic. However I cannot agree with Popper either. “Popper argues that science should adopt a methodology based on falsifiability, because no number of experiments can ever prove a theory, but a single experiment can contradict one.” An interesting observation but Einstein’s experiment to prove the bending of light by gravity was a reverse experiment where if he was right, you could see a star that you could not see if he was wrong. So he famously and simultaneously proved his theory by experiment and disproved the Newtonian belief that light travelled in a straight line in a vacuum. For this in 1919 he was given the only ticker tape parade in New York ever for a scientist.

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      • #

        Popper’s a bit more subtle.

        The observation’s didn’t falsify Einstein’s predictions. i.e. the theory held. But it wasn’t proof that Einstein was correct.

        Popper’s philosophy of science supports the iterative process of being progressively less-wrong. That is sufficient for science to advance.

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    A C

    13,000 registrants? That figure sounds about as fishy as 97%.

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    OriginalSteve

    I think its worth recognizing the Alynski influence in the Warmists tactics.

    From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rules_for_Radicals

    1.“Power is not only what you have, but what the enemy thinks you have.”

    2.“Never go outside the expertise of your people.”

    3.“Whenever possible, go outside the expertise of the enemy.”

    4.“Make the enemy live up to its own book of rules.”

    5.“Ridicule is man’s most potent weapon.”

    6.“A good tactic is one your people enjoy.”

    7.“A tactic that drags on too long becomes a drag.”

    8.“Keep the pressure on. Never let up.”

    9.“The threat is usually more terrifying than the thing itself.”

    10.”The major premise for tactics is the development of operations that will maintain a constant pressure upon the opposition.”

    11.“If you push a negative hard enough, it will push through and become a positive.”

    12.“The price of a successful attack is a constructive alternative.”

    13.“Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.”

    The “antidote” to these tactics the Warmists love to use, is simply speaking the scientific truth and never ever let up doing so.

    http://fellowshipoftheminds.com/tag/saul-alinsky-dedicated-book-to-satan/

    “Alinsky was not the first to realize that successful Marxist revolutions depend on organizational prowess, but he was the first to write a “how to” organizational manual for aspiring Marxist revolutionaries in the United States — the now famous Rules for Radicals: A Pragmatic Primer for Realistic Radicals (1971).”

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      Alinsky previously wrote a biography of John Llewellyn Lewis, his mentor, president of the American Federation of Labour and founder of the Committee for Industrial Organisation. As I remember, it was a detailed and well written account of a man who had just one word to describe his approach – ORGANIZE.

      The RfR book was rubbish. Nothing original and basically quite childish and received far more attention than it deserved.

      Lewis’s background was in the coal miners unions and a history of organisation going back centuries – possibly to the early bronze age. His message was simple, universal, and effective. He didn’t need ideology. Organising sceptics is, and probably should stay, in the realm of herding cats – crowd dynamics rather than mob dynamics.

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  • #

    The map on the course site show 2206 registered as of 3:49 PM AEST 4/5/2015. I’m not sure where 13,000 came from

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    • #
      Ross

      Same old BS Pat. Given it is available worldwide it has to be seen a massive failure if they can only get 2206.

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      C.J.Richards

      One of the main things about this Cooky MOOC Course is it’s Ease of Access. Like 1000s of MOOCs before it it costs nothing to sign up. Registrants don’t even have to follow it but those that do can feel qualified at the end of it, regardless of their backgrounds.

      It uses a now well established format to give questionable material a slick presentation.
      Cook will thrive on any outrage it creates. The message of Jo’s earlier post with ‘ Offendotrons’ isn’t lost on such operations.
      The only cost will be to the UoQ’s reputation, the effect of which they already seem rather absorbed in themselves to notice.

      It’s been done before, without MOOCs.
      The Wave .

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      Ava Plaint

      Don’t be impressed by the numbers. One a number becomes a measure of something to impress with, it’s not long before it’s being distorted. Apart from the effect of easy & no cost access that C.J. mentions, they are probably mostly stool pigeons & sock puppets. Whatever some will do for a following, 97% of them will agree.

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      tony thomas

      “Week 1 of Denial101x: 14,000 students from 159 countries

      Posted on 4 May 2015 by John Cook
      Last week, we launched our Massive Open Online Course (MOOC), Making Sense of Climate Science Denial. Already, there’s been a great deal of interest in the course, with articles in Newsweek, Salon, Lifehacker and the formidable IFLScience. Currently, the MOOC has 14,000 enrolled students from 159 countries.
      As you might imagine, the discussion forum has been vigorous and thought provoking, with a great deal of questions, suggestions and feedback.”

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    TdeF

    More articles are appearing along the lines of “my father/friend/older relative/person I respect/ does not believe in Global Warming. I believe, but I cannot beat them logically, their arguments are too good and they have more facts, and seem to be right logically, so please help”.

    This was recently the case in the National Geographic lead story and front page where sceptics were compared to people who did not believe in the moon landing, anti vaccination people etc. and perhaps worse. The author was actually distressed because even her father did not believe, so she blackmailed him into agreeing so they could have peace in the house. You could sense the heart felt grief at his refusal to convert.

    However this how to win an argument is surreal and more reminiscent of Doug and Dinsdale Pirahna in Monty Python. “Everyone was scared of Doug. He had all the tricks, dramatic irony, metaphor, bathos, puns, parody, litotes and satire. By a combination of violence and sarcasm, the Piranha brothers by February 1966 controlled London and the South East.”

    Why do presumably young people really want to believe? Does this silly course really have 15,000 people who just want to win an argument over Global Warming? Or is someone pulling our legs? Do people really think science is just about winning arguments? Is truth just a matter of debate? Where has our education system failed?

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      Safetyguy66

      Love your work TdeF, the Python reference is spot on.

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      Originalsteve

      I think as people have poo pooed religion and made science a cargo cult in its own right, young people have gravitated to the group-think endorsed quasi religion of CAGW. It’s the lack of comparison that exists in the typical leftist vacuum-sealed “reality” that allows completely normal people list dangerously close to starboard gunwales even in calm conditions….

      This is also what happens when you have left wing dominated press and education – where people like Obummer getting a Nobel for just being Obummer, and lunatics become law and truth Is whatever the Commisars say it is is…..unless we push back hard now, our kids will live in UN controlled lunacy.

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  • #

    Please show that this is spoutings is from a a keen student, rather than an ignorant dweeb?

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    Safetyguy66

    Isnt it patently obvious that when your so called “science” needs this much “shoring up” you are basically publicising the weakness of your position.

    Cook is a public relations consultant. He not a scientist or a scientist’s bootlace. Hes a mouthpiece for an industry based on exploiting the stupidity and apathy of the general public, on a topic that makes fairies in the garden look credible.

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    pat

    ***seven Australian Goverrnments at the altar of the UN!!!

    4 May: Guardian: Oliver Milman: UN climate chief says the science is clear: there is no space for new coal
    Christiana Figueres says Australia needs a national consensus to achieve maximum effort in fight to avoid dangerous climate change
    The UN climate chief, Christiana Figueres, has said there was “no space” for new coal developments and stressed the benefits of ambitious renewable energy targets after a meeting with representatives from ***seven Australian governments.
    At the meeting in Adelaide, organised by the South Australian government, federal, state and territory administrations agreed to work more closely to drive an uptake in renewable energy, coordinate energy-efficiency schemes and help communities adapt to climate change…
    The meeting was attended by the environment ministers of the Labor-run states and territories – Victoria, South Australia, Queensland and the ACT. The federal government, Tasmanian and New South Wales governments were represented at “senior official level”, and Western Australia and the Northern Territory were absent…
    “States and territories are a lot closer to citizens than the federal government and perhaps they are reflecting more the concerns about climate change and the opportunities that are there.”…
    Figueres would not comment directly on the lengthy political impasse over the federal renewable energy target (RET) but said: “In general, the higher the renewable energy target, it does attract investment. If there’s anything that’s growing in recent years in Australia, it’s renewable energy investment. It’s a positive factor to have an ambitious renewable energy target.”… BLAH BLAH
    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/may/04/un-climate-chief-says-the-science-is-clear-there-is-no-space-for-new-coal

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    pat

    heard this story on radio for the blind this morning, but can find nothing except for The Australian article, which is behind a paywall:

    Communities count cost after lethal east coast storms
    The Australian (blog)-18 hours ago
    Despite the significant change to the state’s water catchment capacities, with water levels in some dams shooting up 20 per cent in just a fortnight. … the Bureau of Meteorology’s website had failed to provide an update for two weeks …and data, and expect to have the site working again later this week…

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    • #
      Eddie

      Paywall shouldn’t be a problem. Just Google for “Communities count cost after lethal east coast storms”.

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    pat

    if you can understand this, you get an A+ :

    4 May: Age: Markus Mannheim: Who dares to discount future lives born into a ravaged climate?
    The planet is clearly warming – relatively fast – but no one knows what the precise effects of that will be; the Earth is too complex. Nonetheless, economists try to model the costs of the consequences, and debates rage over their projections. The differences are seen in the discount rates used, which are functions of the forecast net damage caused by climate change. These rates determine the optimum carbon price and, in turn, the extent that it’s “worthwhile” trying to prevent global warming or, instead, adapt to it when it happens.
    The problem, as with all cost-benefit analyses, is the quality of information relied on. If a benefit, or a cost, is measured inadequately or perhaps not at all, the analysis will mislead…
    The most glaring omission is the failure of almost all analyses to account for the risk of disastrous climate change – because, again, the potential damage is impossible to measure. Harvard professor Martin Weitzman regularly points this out, saying many economists’ models are effectively illusions and they should stop pretending they are “an approximation to something that is accurate and objective”. He said recently that, if the world continued on a business-as-usual trajectory, “then there is some non-trivial probability of a catastrophic climate outcome materialising at some future time”. “If we don’t start buying into this insurance policy soon, the human race could end up being very sorry should a future climate catastrophe rear its ugly head.”…
    If policymakers are willing to discount future lives, perhaps we should also expect them to name the exact price, in dollars, of each community they are willing to risk disappear.
    http://www.theage.com.au/national/public-service/who-dares-to-discount-future-lives-born-into-a-ravaged-climate-20150504-1myhmf.html

    reality bites:

    4 May: SMH: Peter Hannam/Tom Arup: Brown coal extends rebound, pushing up power sector emissions: Pitt & Sherry
    Brown coal’s share of the main national electricity grid has surged to its highest level since September 2012, increasing the sector’s greenhouse gas emissions, energy consultants Pitt & Sherry say.
    The fresh data came as climate change ministers from around the country met in Adelaide on Monday to discuss how state governments might co-operate on emissions.
    Coal-fired power plants accounted for just under 75 per cent of the supply to the National Electricity Market (NEM) in April, and brown coal – with its higher emissions – accounted for almost 24 percentage points of that total…
    The meeting was also addressed by the head of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, Christiana Figueres, who is visiting Australia.
    The communique said Ms Figueres told the meeting “Australia needs to work fundamentally as a national to tackle climate change.”..
    She also stressed the science was clear and there was no space for new coal or unmitigated coal because of its high carbon content…
    http://www.smh.com.au/environment/brown-coal-extends-rebound-pushing-up-power-sector-emissions-pitt–sherry-20150504-1mchww.html

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      el gordo

      From the Age article:

      ‘The planet is clearly warming – relatively fast – but no one knows what the precise effects of that will be; the Earth is too complex.’

      The earth is a complex system, but out of the chaos something is abundantly clear, human induced CO2 has not made the world warmer. This AGW structure is built upon the Planck effect, which in hindsight has been a spectacular failure.

      Natural variables rule and the precise effect of a blank sun should lead to cooler conditions on earth, within a decade, unless of course this warm PDO plays a significant part and upsets our calculations.

      Anyway, Fairfax is a disgrace.

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    • #
      TdeF

      Thanks. That’s a new unintelligible phrase from Christiana Figueres. Expect more of it..

      “unmitigated coal”

      As far as can be determined this is not a special type of coal or badly treated coal or brown coal, it is short for “unmitigated coal ash”. Without scrubbers in chimneys this was once a curse in the 19th century in England, but a rubbish statement for Australia and insulting.

      According to Ms Figueres and her Labor climate ministers, Australia has power generation so badly controlled that children are dying from black lung? Is there nothing power and money hungry UN people will not say?

      Our power stations are perfectly clean and unless you count odorless, harmless, invisible CO2 as pollution, there is no problem at all, except that wet brown coal produces too much harmless, invisible CO2, the gas which combined with water produces all life on Earth? So Ms Figueres, from what chemicals are people made? Boron? Cadmium? Nickel?

      What actual science qualifications does Christiana have? An anthropologist, diplomat mother and her brother was once President of Costa Rica. So she presumes to lecture Australia on unmitigated coal (ash) as if we were a third world country? What ignorance. How embarassing for those who applauded, Labor/Green apparatchiks.

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      • #
        OriginalSteve

        Figueres produces unmitigated nonsense.

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      • #
        ianl8888


        … short for “unmitigated coal ash”

        Nope

        Figueres intends the phrase “unmitigated coal” to mean coal-fired power stations without carbon offsets, mitigation of emissions, no renewabubble relief etc

        It’s just another slick marketing phrase, meant to smear rather then enlighten, and as such will enjoy increased use in the MSM

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        • #
          TdeF

          Ah, thanks. I could not work it out. So no matter how much CO2 you produce, it is all ok if you pay someone? Who? Sorry, Christiana of course.

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        • #
          Just-A-Guy

          ianl8888,

          I agree with your version and specifically the carbon offsets/credits. The first thought that came to mind when reading that statement in pat’s comment was that Figueres has stated that the goal is to get an agreement in Paris to get a Global Carbon Market up and running with everyone, including Oz, on board.

          Carbon credits/offsets have always been at the top of the list for CO2 abatement along with a carbon tax and cap and trade.

          That’s what she’s referring to when she notes that the ultimate goal is to fundamentally transform the world economy.

          Abe

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  • #
    pat

    “A new era has entered” says Mr. Winter…er Winther:

    4 May: BBC: David Shukman: Climate drives ‘new era’ in Arctic Ocean
    Changes in the Arctic Ocean are so profound that the region is entering what amounts to “a new era”, according to Norwegian scientists.
    A switch from a permanent cover of thick ice to a new state where thinner ice vanishes in the summer will have far-reaching implications, they say.
    The Norwegian Polar Institute has been mounting an expedition to the Arctic Ocean during the year’s coldest months.
    Scientists have to brave extreme temperatures and total darkness…
    (Director of the institute, Jan-Gunnar Winther): “A new era has entered, we are going from old ice to young ice, thinner ice and the climate models used today have not captured this new regime or ice situation.
    “So knowing how it is today can improve climate models which again improve the projection for global climate change.”…
    Another threat is from polar bears, and one approached the ship while we were on board.
    In the darkness of the polar winter, Dr Jennifer King was in a small group working under the Lance’s floodlights when a bear guard suddenly spotted one of the animals emerging into the light.
    “It was 25m away, standing up on ridge looking at us, looking like a majestic king of the Arctic – it was very beautiful but the heart stops.”
    The bear was scared away with flare guns…
    The expedition, known as the Norwegian Young Sea ICE cruise, can be followed at http://www.npolar.no/nice2015.
    http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-32553668

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    pat

    ***unsurprisingly, nothing population control and addressing climate change can’t fix. lol.

    4 May: WaPo: Horribly bleak study sees ‘empty landscape’ as large herbivores vanish at startling rate
    By Fred Barbash and Justin Wm. Moyer
    “Growing human populations, unsustainable hunting, high densities of livestock, and habitat loss have devastating consequences for large, long-live, slow-breeding, and, therefore, vulnerable herbivore species,” reads “Collapse of the world’s largest herbivores” in “Science Advances,” a publication of the American Association for the Advancement of Science…
    “The main threats … are hunting, competition with livestock and land-use change such as habitat loss, human encroachment, cultivation and deforestation,” the researchers found, noting that “extensive overhunting for meat across much of the developing world is likely the most important factor.”…
    ***The solution to these many problems? Oh, nothing big: lowering human birth rates, improving opportunities for young women, eating less meat, ending poaching, better managing protected areas and addressing climate change…
    “The world’s wealthier populations will need to provide the resources essential for ensuring the preservation of our global natural heritage of large herbivores. A sense of justice and development is essential to ensure that local populations can benefit fairly from large herbivore protection and thereby have a vested interest in it.”
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2015/05/04/horribly-bleak-study-sees-empty-landscape-as-large-herbivores-vanish-at-startling-rate/

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    Anton

    The Vatican issues this piece of “socialism disguised as environmentalism”:

    http://s3.documentcloud.org/documents/2068632/climate-change-and-the-common-good.pdf

    http://www.casinapioiv.va/content/dam/accademia/pdf/protect/declaration.pdf

    This Pope is said to be preparing a statement (“encyclical”) on the subject in the next few weeks. He is not a scientist and is therefore dependent on others for advice, but he still bears responsibility for whatever words are issued in his name. And he was present at part of the conference that concluded by issuing this piece of toilet paper and is hardly likely to contradict his own scientific academy on whom he relies for advice. Sceptical climate scientists have issued an open letter to him

    http://www.speroforum.com/a/OWCJICAVKV41/75842-Open-letter-to-Pope-Francis-on-climate-change?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=DUELAXTEOM42&utm_content=OWCJICAVKV41&utm_source=news&utm_term=Open+letter+to+Pope+Francis+on+climate+change#.VUdKgo5Vikp

    but it seems not to have made an impact. Given his influence, that is a great shame.

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    • #
      tom0mason

      Anton,

      If the Pope wishes the church to be fully green he better ensure that “encyclicals” are sustainable and recyclable.

      A reminder to the Pope — “Eppur si muove”. (The motto of Pope Science magazine?)

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    • #
      Safetyguy66

      I don’t understand why religious people care???

      I was visited on the weekend by a sad soul with his pamphlets and good book. Even sadder he had two boys in tow. Their young lives being snuffed out by the delusional behaviour of their provably abusive father. But I digress…

      His nonsense main point was “its all coming to an end any day now”. I said, ok, example please. He stammered out “volcanos”….

      Once I had finished laughing, I explained to him he needs to have a read of the section of his little book called “revelations” then come back and have another go at explaining his religious position. I encouraged his boys to abandon him before it was too late and sent him on his insane, deluded and stupid way.

      My point being. The end of the world is laid out in writing. Correct me if Im wrong but Im assuming the Pope is one person who actually believes this crapola?

      So why worry about AGW, its a side issue isn’t it? Does it matter if the 4 horseman come to a desert or a rain forest? The end result will be the same wont it?

      One would call it cognitive dissonance, but that implies working cognition in the first place.

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      • #
        OriginalSteve

        Safetyguy,

        I think it best not confuse Christians ( who adhere to the Bible ), and pretenders.

        FWIW, I came to Christaity late in life, based on events going on that exceeeded reasonable mathematical probability and then some, numerous times. I pride myself on being analytical and not easily led at all. A faith is not incopmpatible with a scientific view of the world – Isaac Newton was a devout religious man for example. Gallileo challeneged the church and was later proven right, but the church was the RCC, so…

        Its also worth pointing out that the Pope is head of a religion that, based on its writings, is heavily pagan with a thin veneer of christainiaty wrapped around it to make it look Christain. Not many of its adherents know this.

        As to an encyclincal, its binding on the RCC, but thats it. What is worth pointing out is that as the Roman church is heavily pagan, it should be inherently comfortable with the earth based paganism that the eco movement eschews by default.

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  • #
    el gordo

    ‘My main disappointment with the course is that Cook’s grasp of the climate science debate is so flabby.’

    They are casting a wide net and dumbing it down, which is not to hard for Cook et al. The course is primarily aimed at vilifying members of the Denialati and discussing the science is not an option. Which is a pity because its happening right before our eyes.

    As Antarctic sea ice continues to break all records and the southern ocean gets noticeably cooler, alarm bells should be ringing.

    https://notalotofpeopleknowthat.wordpress.com/2015/05/03/antarctic-sea-ice-expands-to-new-record-in-april/#more-14606

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    Eddie

    The course is pitched as being about Climate Science denial.
    There’s certainly a lot to question about Climate Science, which barely existed over 25 years ago and despite the circus that has grown up around it, still isn’t attracting the brightest students.

    It is wonderful for the Geography students I went through Uni. with, who are now teaching people to be Scientists while we thought then they’d be lucky to get a job with the Ordnance Survey.

    When a Physics graduate goes into Psychology after a career spent cartooning, it shows there is room for would be scientists too.

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  • #

    Next course…

    “Stupidity 101x – Making Sense of John Cook.”

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    Steve Borodin

    This place in Queensland is a University? Oh really!

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    DaveA

    John Cook provides evidence of ‘experts’ being totally wrong. Yes, in 1946, doctors DID recommend smoking.

    Obvious conclusion not so obvious to Cook.

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    sophocles

    Umm. I wonder what keywords I triggered with my last post here?
    It’s gone! AWOL. Been disappeared.

    oh well, another day.

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  • #
    Ron Cook

    I thank God daily that I’m not directly related to the infamous John Cook and I pray that there is no indirect relationship either – I would be so ashamed that my Cook ancestry could be so tarnished by the likes of him.

    Ronald Cook MRACI (CChem)
    R-COO- K+

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    ScotsmaninUtah

    “blog posts not science – somewhat True”

    The comments made by Messrs BilB and Timboss have some basis in fact.
    Their accusation that Joanne Nova’s blog posts are lacking in Scientific content is not altogether untrue.
    Jo does post statements and does relay stories from the IPCC , especially of their activities, involving: the recording of climate data, the massaging of data, and their predictions of future climate disasters.
    and I think many of us have been thoroughly entertained by the Hollywood style production skills of the IPCC, especially the stories detailing an apocalyptic style future and activities involving crime and subterfuge. Obviously none of this is base on science !
    I personally look forward to seeing the IPCC win an Oscar for their work.
    In the category of “special effects” !

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    ScotsmaninUtah

    “In CNN we trust – an American view of the Global Catastrophe”

    Yesterday morning CNN posted a news story about Global Warming …

    “New temperature records highlight global warming’s continued rise”
    and underneath
    “11 ways climate change affects the world”

    There was the ubiquitous picture of a Polar bear …. :o
    but what caught my eye was the one picture of a huge wildfire. and underneath it read;
    “There’s not a direct link between climate change and wildfires , exactly. But many Scientists believe….

    I mention this because of the now tentative link to wildfires….as if they have never happened before in California
    Despite the great work being done by jo’s Blog, there is much more work to be done
    it seems !

    00