One of the most salient features of cranks is their inconsistency. A major difference between someone who is trying to reason scientifically and someone who has a fixed belief they are trying to defend against rational inquiry is the scientific thinker is looking for synthesis. They want things to fit together nicely, to make sense, and incorporate as much of the data as possible into a cohesive picture or theory that is convincing to ones peers so they adopt your view.
A crank, on the other hand, doesn’t care about internal consistency, presenting a cohesive picture of any kind, or creating a body of knowledge to be adopted and utilized by their peers. If someone has a different theory that is completely different from theirs they don’t care, as long as it remains opposed to the scientific theory that impinges upon their fixed belief.
Case in point, Jennifer Marohasy’s blog features this post which exclaims with glee that Kerry Emanuel has reversed his position on the role of global warming on hurricanes based on this news piece. In an example of crank magnetism Dave Scot at Uncommon Descent has also picked up this thread only he exclaims that Emanuel has reversed his position on global warming itself (check out the intellectual company you keep when you’re a global warming denialist, sheesh).
What becomes immediately clear, however, is that this is only evidence of the scientific incompetence of these individual writers, their lack of reading comprehension, and the inconsistency of global warming denialists’ approach to the scientific literature. So, what is it we do, boys and girls, whenever a crank mentions some finding in a scientific paper? Look at the primary source! It’s the first step, and I guarantee you the crank’s didn’t read or comprehend the paper at all. Here it is, free at MIT (PDF). Not only does the paper consistent with an impact of global warming on hurricanes, but the cranks have latched on to a paper that uses computer models *gasp*. You see, the endless refrain from global warming denialists that computer models have no value goes out the window the second they perceive a modicum of support from a paper that uses them.
As far as Kerry Emanuel reversing his position, they got that wrong too. Here’s what he told me:
Unfortunately, reports about my paper have been greatly distorted. I am certainly not denying global warming, nor am I denying a link to increasing hurricane power, but I am pointing out that one particular technique suggests less of an increase going forward than we previously feared. Also, the technique, when applied to historical climate data from 1980-2006, strongly re-affirms earlier analyses that show that hurricane power has increased by about 50% over the past 25 years.
Oops. It’s hard out there for a crank. This paper is consistent with global warming increasing hurricane intensity, it just predicts less of an effect going forward. I’m sure Dave Scot and Marohasy will immediately retract all their bogus claims, distortions and lies about this paper, Kerry Emanuel, and, no doubt, their sudden belief in models. While I’m waiting for that to happen though, let’s keep this in mind as an example of how cranks don’t actually care what kind of evidence they must use to preserve their fixed belief, or that it be consistent with their previous statements, arguments, etc. All that matters is that science they oppose ideologically gets crapped on.
27 thoughts on “The inconsistency of cranks”
As Mr. Hoofnagel should be aware of by now, the cranks and denialists couldn’t care less about understanding a scientific paper. Their only interest is finding isolated sentences and paragraphs to quote mine.
Look after being called Holocaust Deniers for years you could call us “cranky”.
All is good, however, because the insults only make us more determined to press on and expose the greatest scientific hoax in human history. It will be glorious when it goes down.
“It will be glorious when it goes down.”
What will you do on the day you realize you are wrong? If you can’t answer that question, you might just have religion…
Case in point. “It will be glorious when it goes down” sayeth the man with no scientific evidence.
“Alas, it is not enough to wear the mantle of Galileo: that you be persecuted by an unkind establishment. You must also be right.”
If you deniers have this great evidence, why not bring it out? Any evidence? Anything at all, at all? I thought not.
For an explanation of the “insult” that has your panties in such a bunch, see here
Get a clue.
“Also, the technique, when applied to historical climate data from 1980-2006, strongly re-affirms earlier analyses that show that hurricane power has increased by about 50% over the past 25 years.”
Wouldn’t it be better to analyze at least a WHOLE hurricane cycle?
Oops! Forgot to cite that quote…
“Alas, it is not enough to wear the mantle of Galileo: that you be persecuted by an unkind establishment. You must also be right.” – Robert Park
See, that is called “Intellectual Honesty”. You deniers should try it sometime.
Obviously, the Global Warming Mafia got to Emmanuel. Their reach is far and their grip is strong. If they didn’t have all the most significant data on their side, they’d be nothing.
I don’t call you holocaust deniers, I call you denialists. The sad fact is that the global warming denialists use all the same tactics as holocaust deniers, and the point of this site is that all practitioners of pseudoscience must ultimately use these tactics as they fight to maintain a fiction against scientific data.
If you don’t want to be called a global warming denialist, then don’t use the tactics. Even if global warming proves to be a failed theory – highly unlikely but always possible in science – it would not excuse the tactics. Anti-science is defined by behavior moreso than one’s absolute position.
So DaveScot’s Christmas carol could be ‘Oh come, oh go Emmanuel’?
Fixed that for you. HTH.
Computer models are useless unless they support our ideas!
Correlation doesn’t mean causation unless it’s our correllation!
Peer reviewed journals are all rigged unless it’s our paper that got published!
Scientific credentials are meaningless unless it’s our hero!
that pretty much sums it up
According to Newshounds, the MIT guy had to bitch slap Fox News too.
Jennifer Marohasy’s blog does not claim that Emanuel has ‘reversed’ his views on Hurricanes or global warming.
‘Reconsiders’ is not ‘reversed.’ The blog post quotes the Houston Chronicle and links to the actual paper, which is about 7 models – 2 showing a decrease in hurricane intensity, and 5 showing a moderate increase. So, if Emanuel considered previously that global warming has a large effect on hurricane intensity, his latest work suggests otherwise.
There never was any consensus in the literature – the likes of Chris Landsea and others published oposing views to Emanuel. The WMO consensus statement did not establish a link between global warming and hurricanes.
The calls for a new category 6 after 2005, and Gore’s AIT, look silly now, but then they looked sily to me at the time!
As for hurrucanes increasing over the past 25 years – so what!? It’s the old “let’s use a short record” con and ignore earlier periods when there was high hurricane activity. Pretty much everything in nature is cyclical, including hurricanes.
So, get your facts straight, not that you are interested in facts!
I do not intend to vist this climate alarmist ‘echo chamber’ again.
“global warming denialists”
Just stumbled on this blog and it amuses me quite a lot.
And as an amateur global warming denier and a professional holocaust denier I might have something to contribute.
I think the fallacy that “denialists” (ie people who label viewpoints they disagree with deniers…. an intellectual tradition that goes back to the inquisition when Jews and others were accused of denying the Christ) fall into is a failure to grasp that humans are not pure rational angelic reasoning entities but rather social and biological creatures that fit into distinct and rigid social hierarchies of dominance and control. Hence our “knowledge” and our “facts” can be determined by social, political and group identification power structures rather than the pure reasoning that we sometimes delude ourselves that we indulge in.
Hence the Holocaust either in Germany or Rwanda is not “true” as such rather convenient for the dominant elite. Catastrophic Global Warming is not “true” rather a dominant fashion amongst careerists scientists which another generation of careerists scientists will equally happily knockdown in order to assert the dominence of a new generation.
As one of your bloggers is a physiologist I am sure he is conversant with the prevalence of negative feedback systems to avoid a signals being amplified out of control. Global Warming Catastrophism is predicated on the complete lack of the existence of any negative feedback mechanism.
For example, it is grudingly accepted that Co2 and temperature ice core data can be explained by milhanovich cycles which periodically bring the earth closer to the sun. When the earth is closer to the sun, the temperature rises, when the temperature rises the solubility equibilibrium of dissolved CO2 in the oceans shifts and CO2 is released (another concept a physiologist should have no problem agreeing to) and so atmospheric CO2 levels rise. Now according to the simplistic computer models which omit negative feedback mechanisms this increase of CO2 released from the oceans should result in even further catastrophic rises in temperature which in turn lead to further release in CO2 from Oceans and so on ad infinitum.
Of course it didnt and it doesnt. So much for Global Warming Catastrophism.
But since when will cold hard scientific facts triumph over the psychological satisfaction of crying Chicken Licken and the sky is falling in?
Actually, J, the computer models the IPCC use omit potentially powerful positive feedback. Also, in a natural cycle why would you assume it to go on ad infinitum? Where is the infinite supply of CO2 going to come from? Eventually things need to even out since CO2 has an atmospheric lifetime on the order of 10,000 years or so. Eventually the system will equilibriate.
Also, you do realize the seas have been 10’s of meters higher than they are now, right? That would be a catastrophe for the billions of people living near the coast. I don’t think I’ve heard anyone argue that climate change would lead to a global extinction.
a couple quick searches on “milhanovich” found nothing useful. what mechanism do you speculate for changing the earth’s orbital parameters, and where do you stick the difference in kinetic energy?
“Actually, J, the computer models the IPCC use omit potentially powerful positive feedback”
You are missing the point. The point is that in complex systems (such as physiology) positive feedback cycles are rare and limited in duration. For the obvious reason that a positive feedback cycle will spiral out of control.
Now the very simplistic model of global warming is present to us is
Increased CO2 -> Increased Temperature
Increased Temperature -> Increased CO2
Increased CO2 -> Increased Temperature
Increased Temperature -> Increased CO2
Now that would be fine and possible, if the complex system known as Gaia has never been challenged with external inputs that increase CO2 before. But, au contraire, every 100 000 years the Milankovitch cycle brings us closer to the sun and this is matched by spikes in the ice core CO2 levels each year. Yet this increased CO2 does not lead to a spiralling positive feedback mechanism. So we can infer that there exist negative feedback mechanism that allow the biosphere to continue.
Hence we have to assume that Milankovitch induced CO2 increase good, anthropogenic induced CO2 rise bad. Although for reasons that the Global Warming acolytes wish to conceal from the hoi polloi.
“Also, in a natural cycle why would you assume it to go on ad infinitum? Where is the infinite supply of CO2 going to come from? Eventually things need to even out since CO2 has an atmospheric lifetime on the order of 10,000 years or so.”
Actually as a physiologist could tell you CO2 is highly soluble in water, but this solubility is decreased by temperature and other factors. The oceans represent a virtually inexhaustable source of CO2.
“Also, you do realize the seas have been 10’s of meters higher than they are now, right? ”
An utterly meaningless statement given tectonic movement and continent uplift or sinking. I suppose if someone could magically measure from the exact center of the earth one could make such a statement. But at present that is beyond our abilities – that is to make historical exact measurements of sea levels expressed as distance from the exact center of the earth.
Nomen, the correct spelling is Milankovitch. My apologies.
ah, those cycles are variations in the planet’s rotational axis. they do not bring us significantly closer to the sun, although they do change seasons and climate. you may notice, however, that they act over geologic time; the whole concern about artificial climate change is that it appears to be happening much faster than that.
(wikipedia’s page on Milankovitch cycles appears to be a fairly good introduction to the topic, as well as some of the shortcomings of the theory and how it fails to explain some of the physical data. about as good as wikipedia gets, i’d say, even.)
“ah, those cycles are variations in the planet’s rotational axis. they do not bring us significantly closer to the sun, although they do change seasons and climate.”
Not precisely. It appears you cant read your own link.
Nevertheless the important point for this discussion is
“Milankovitch studied changes in the eccentricity, obliquity, and precession of Earth’s movements. Such changes in movement and orientation change the amount and location of solar radiation reaching the Earth. This is known as solar forcing (an example of radiative forcing).”
Precisely, and when peak amounts of solar radiation is reached, CO2 is released from the oceans and atmospheric CO2 goes up.
I am afraid this is very basic science.
What is usually obscured and what the simplistic climate change models can not explain is why this solar induced CO2 rise does not lead to a positive feedback loop?
Excuse me fellas, but why are you still talking to jnovitz after he said this:
He’s a crank, ignore him. If he sticks around I’ll just disemvowell him. We don’t argue with denialists here, especially not scum-sucking holocaust deniers.
Blogs aren’t good for defenestration, so I guess we end up stuck with dimevoweling.
“He’s a crank, ignore him. If he sticks around I’ll just disemvowell him. We don’t argue with denialists here, especially not scum-sucking holocaust deniers.”
My my, what a lot of anger and hate you have pent up there. I hope I never sink so low as to deny [your favorite word] the humanity of others simply on the basis of disagreeing with their views. I can assure you that I genuinely believe that there were no homicidal gas chambers at Auschwitz or Treblinka. I may be right I may be wrong, but my convictions are sincere and genuine and hence I am no more “scum-sucking” than all those fine Americans who cheered when they dropped nuclear weapons on Hiroshima or Nagasaki, or invaded Iraq on trumped up pretexts.
What the hell is is disemvowelling anyway? You will have to forgive me, I don’t spend as much time on the internet as most Americans.
Its really up to you of course, if you feel unable to respond to reasonable points that query your sacred cows you should indeed either ignore me or ban me.
As it is the point remains.
Ice core data clearly demonstrates that rises in CO2 correlate with rises in solar radiation received by the earth according to Milankovitch cycles. This can be easily accounted for by increased temperatures triggering release of CO2 from ocean sinks.
There is no historical data to support the contention that temperature induced release of CO2 induced a positive feedback cycle of further catastrophic temperature increases – suggesting the existence of negative feedback controls. So then why should anthropogenic CO2 induce catastrophic temperature increases?
Please send answers on a postcard while the fragile anti-denialists still allow these posts to appear.
notiz=[like I said holocaust deniers are not welcome here, get lost]
On Milankovitch Cycles:
That is just simply wrong. If you’re going to repeat lies, at least make them plausible.
Ha! At least I understand what disembollment is now. Seriously, if you are so afraid of debate why not just remove the post all together rather than vandalise your own blog?
It is, of course, your blog and you are free to do what you like with. I would simply suggest that when you respond this way to people who engage in polite, reasoned and scienfically grounded debate (regardless of whether my conclusions are right or wrong) you make yourself look weak and insecure.
Just my opinion.
“That is just simply wrong. If you’re going to repeat lies, at least make them plausible.”
Lance, I am afraid you don’t understand the point here – although given the rather strange reaction from Dr Hoofnagle that migth not be your fault.
The thesis is not that current CO2 levels are the result of Milhanovitch cycles rather these cycles clearly explain historical data. In fact if you read the wikipedia
you will see the ice core data is presented in just that context.
We also know from purely thermodynamic principles that CO2 is highly soluble in water and this solubility is decreased by increasing temperature (in fact CO2 gas exchange in the lungs depends on precisely on similar thermodyanmic principles – hence I mistakenly thought this might be of interest to Dr Hoofnagle).
Its not hard to conclude therefore that HISTORICALLY, increased solar radiation led to increased CO2 levels and not vice versa, in the same way that the rotation of the moon leads to tide levels but tide levels do not cause the rotation of the moon.
Hence temperature increases are the causative agent in the global temperature/CO2 correlation and not the other way round. So that anthropogenic CO2 need not lead to catastrophic temperature warming, just as solar radiation triggered CO2 rises has not done so in the past.
Lance, I am giving you the benefit of the doubt that you are not using Dr Hoofnagle’s assault on debate here to misrepresent my argument and your misunderstanding is genuine.
After all, if climate change science is soooooooo strong, you would hardly need to stoop to such a level.
notiz=[we don’t debate denialists, it’s a waste of time]
incidently, Dr Hoofnagle, you might enjoy this quote
Aldous Huxley: “The propagandist’s purpose is to make one set of people forget that certain other sets of people are human.”
After all, if climate change science is soooooooo strong, you would hardly need to stoop to such a level.
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