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2012 SkS Weekly Digest #11

Posted on 19 March 2012 by John Hartz

SkS Highlights

As to be expected, Dana's Prediction: New Surface Temperature Record in 2013 caused a number of raised eyebrows as well as commentary. The article garnering the most comments was, however, Dana's Roy Spencer's Bad Economics summarizing Spencer's incorrect views on a number of climate-related economic issues. Climate Deniers Are Giving Us Skeptics a Bad Name - Fred Singer by John Mason also generated a lot of discussion as it exposed some fissures within the climate denial machine.

Toon of the Week

2012Toon11 \" width=

Source: Joe Mohr's Cartoon Archive

Issue of the Week

If you were in charge of producing the Weekly Digest, what changes would you make to it?

The Week in Review

A complete listing of the articles posted on SkS during the past week. 

Coming Soon

A list of articles that are in the SkS pipeline. Most of these articles, but not necessarily all, will be posted during the week.

  • The Skeptical Science temperature trend calculator (Kevin C)
  • New research from last week 11/2012 (Ari Jokimäki)
  • Fred Singer Debunks and then Denies (Dana)
  • An Open Letter to the Future (climatesight)
  • Global Warming - A Health Warning (Agnostic)
  • Inhofe's Maddow Myths (Dana)
  • Friis-Christensen et al. on Solar Cycle Length and Global Warming (Klaus Flemløse)
  • Catching up with the Younger Dryas: do mass-extinctions always need impacts? (John Mason)
  • Why David Archibald is wrong about solar cycles driving sea levels - Part 1 (Alex C)
  • Advancing Climate Science, One Skeptic Talking Point at a Time(rustneversleeps)
  • Methane - Part 1 (Agnostic)
  • Global Surface Warming Since 1995(Dana)

SkS Spotlights

The Climate Science Legal Defense Fund was established with one goal: to protect the scientific endeavor. Scientific research has brought us amazing advancements in technology, medicine, and in our basic understanding of the planet. Over the last twenty years, a small handful of politically-motivated think tanks and legal foundations, because they disliked certain scientific findings, have taken legal action against scientific institutions and individual scientists. In recent years, the legal attacks have intensified, especially against climate scientists.

The scientific method is designed around the belief that skepticism is good. Results should be subjected to the utmost scrutiny through the peer review process, followed by close examination and replication by others in the scientific community. Those whose ideas do not live up to the standards of rigorous science have instead chosen to litigate.

For the individual scientist these legal actions are a painful burden. Academic salaries were not designed to support ongoing legal expenses. Legal actions also have taken many of our brightest scientific minds away from their research to focus on frivolous lawsuits. This state of affairs is unacceptable. The United States of America should be the leader in science and technology, and it cannot do so if unscrupulous people subject our scientists to these actions.

The Climate Science Legal Defense Fund was established to make sure that these legal claims are not viewed as an action against one scientist or institution, but that they are seen as actions against the scientific endeavor as a whole. As such the Fund will defend climate scientists who are dragged into litigation and act aggressively to protect the interests of the scientific endeavor.

In addition, the Climate Science Defense Fund will create platforms and opportunities for members of the scientific community to gain a better understanding of the legal issues surrounding their work

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Comments 1 to 10:

  1. The links above aren't working I think there is some extra stuff in the "href" tag :)
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    Moderator Response: [JH] Links fixed.
  2. The links to the week's posts are malformed. The url contains strings like\"http:/\"
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    Moderator Response: [JH] Links fixed.
  3. Cartoonist link also ropey! Truly, when The Lorax is spruiking SUV's (and more than 70 other consumer products) we have reached a world where satire is redundant. Thneeds must when the Devil drives?
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    Moderator Response: [JH] Link fixed.
  4. I'd move the issue of the week up above the break. There must be many regular visitors who don't check the digest, having already digested.
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  5. I'm with OPatrick here. The "Week in Review" and "Coming Soon" should be the last 2 items. Always easy to find regardless of the length of the other items. Having 2 SkS Highlights looks a bit odd. Perhaps the second one should be "Spotlights" :) Just like last week.
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    Moderator Response: [JH] My bad. Will edit.
  6. Still curious if a debunking of Plimer's latest book is still on the cards?
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  7. The Week in Review should include all posts (Monckton 2 and 3 did not appear on the daily posts announcements and neither did Lindzen's Junk Science. I don't think any post should appear on the 'Latest Posts' sidebar until they have been notified on the daily listing as having actually been posted.) The Week in Review should have the additional information of the number of comments each has attracted to date, which would give some idea of the interest it has generated. Perhaps a new feature could be a rolling hit parade of the posts that have attracted the most attention in the previous 12 months, in terms of comments, of course. That might give an indication of which topics press the most buttons in the eyes of those attracted to this site. Just a thought starter - admittedly not too deeply considered on my part - would be to have a each commenter's number of posts in the previous 12 months after their name. If on each comment, commenters had to rate out of 10 the factual quality of the post being commented on, it would enable a rating of commenters to be developed in terms of being deniers or genuine skeptics, or somewhere in between, also put after their name. That would be useful in pre-judging the value of the comment. Some people will automatically find fault with anything that doesn't support their pre-conceived ideas on climate change and quite frankly it is not worth even reading what they have to say in any depth, just a skim will often surfice. If I want stupidity, I have an over-supply of it in Today in Parliament on BBC Radio 4, especially Prime Minister's Questions (try it for size and then you will see why it is so difficult to get action from them).
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  8. Just a small ammendment to comment 7, above: Change the need to rate out of 10 the factual quality of the post being commented on from 'on each post' to the first comment and make it automatically added for each subsequent comment about the particular item under discussion. This should be a required item before the post can be displayed.
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  9. Just found out that "Lord" Monckton will be appearing here in San Diego on the 24th. Details here: Monckton will be giving a presentation at the Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace and Justice Theatre, 5998 Acala Park, University of San Diego, Saturday Mar 24 at 7PM. A California Assemblyman from east San Diego County (our own "cultural" outback) will be MC'ing the event. Of course, I don't expect that folks from Down Under will be likely to pop by ;) ;), but if anyone here knows any San Diego area scientists (like folks at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography -- SIO is just a few minutes from USD) who might be interested in "crashing Monckton's party", please pass this along to them Rather short notice, but this event is being promoted to Tea-Partiers and right-wing GOP types here (with very little notice being given to the general public). New info: Pre-registration for the event is available here.
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  10. Monckton speaking at the Kroc Institute Theatre - how apt.
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