Climategate in the Popular Media

Admin

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Tony Crocker":1qaundu7 said:
Have lots of :popcorn: :popcorn: :popcorn: ready if Admin and Patrick are going to :sabre fight: politics. :lol:

No, I'm bored with this already. No point in trying to change the mind of someone who's lost their objectivity.
 

Skiace

New member
Tony Crocker":2yjf5iny said:
I saw that on Daily Show last night. Jon Stewart is not likely to run out of material anytime soon with the amount of idiocy being spewed from all directions these days.
But the criticism of Fox News is more than just the usual media hype and pundit idiocy that makes up the bread and butter of Daily Show fodder. He rails on everyone for the general circus-act nature of cable news, but Fox seems to have a special talent for graphics "mistakes" and other inaccuracies that suggests an agenda. Patrick pointed out the most recent one, but within the last month or so they have twice showed canned crowd footage from large events/rallies when the event they were commenting on had a small fraction of that turnout. Then there were the numerous times they mislabeled republican lawmakers as democrats while reporting on the individual's sex scandals (yes that same "mistake" has happened more than once).

Not that any of this is relevant to a discussion on climate change however. I think "climate change in the popular media" is about as useful as "healthcare in the popular media" which is to say, almost completely unproductive and misguided.
 

rfarren

New member
Fox news aside. There are many smart people, scientists as well as professionals, who have a healthy amount of skepticism in regards to the IPCC report. If we just look at the data and forget the politics and the media, the connection between man and global warming becomes somewhat less stated.

That being said, I dry-heaved today when listening to NPR talk about global warming, and man's connection to it,... and their wholesale buying into it.
 

Geoff

New member
rfarren":197p4iy3 said:
Fox news aside. There are many smart people, scientists as well as professionals, who have a healthy amount of skepticism in regards to the IPCC report. If we just look at the data and forget the politics and the media, the connection between man and global warming becomes somewhat less stated.

That being said, I dry-heaved today when listening to NPR talk about global warming, and man's connection to it,... and their wholesale buying into it.

I figure the climate modeling is done by the same people who can't predict the weather a week out and make hurricane predictions for big hurricane years when no hurricanes of significance happen. I can only conclude that our modeling technology isn't up to the task yet. I know for certain that the climate will change since it always changes. I don't think anyone knows with any certainty the relative impact of man on climate change compared to things like solar activity, meteor strikes, and volcanic activity. My wild-assed guess of the impact of man on climate is just as good as theirs.

That said, since we don't know it makes sense to try to limit the damage in the event that the manmade component is actually significant enough to dramatically impact climate change. Fossil fuels are a finite resource. It is fairly obvious to me that we need to start investing in scalable alternative energy sources. I'd put my bet on hydrogen. You can produce it from clean sources like hydro, geothermal, and tidal. You can then pipe it anywhere in North America. You can heat and cool your house with it. You can run your car on it. You can produce electricity from it. Nuclear also makes a ton of sense. Both technologies need some government help due to the Not-In-My-Back-Yard syndrome.
 

Tony Crocker

Administrator
Staff member
Not that any of this is relevant to a discussion on climate change however. I think "climate change in the popular media" is about as useful as "healthcare in the popular media" which is to say, almost completely unproductive and misguided.
I would certainly agree that it would be difficult to find useful info to form an opinion on climate change in the popular media. The primary reason for raising the "climategate in the media" topic was that due to political correctness I expected the mainstream media to duck the issue completely. Which they generally did for the first week or two. So I thought it was noteworthy to see the clip from Canada public TV, and I thought the other 2 clips had good entertainment value.

Now that the issue has some traction there is a varying range of responses:
1) Fox is all over it as it's embarrassing to their adversaries.
2) Washington Post is a rare example I've seen personally that at least in a news article is trying to play it down the middle. ABC Sunday News a couple of weeks ago had Paul Krugman being dismissive when George Will raised climategate as a serious problem. The "roundtable" format is useful IMHO as long as a wide range of views are represented.
3) NY Times and LA Times feel they can't ignore it, but are dismissive like rfarren's NPR reference.
4) I have heard that major network evening news is mostly ignoring climategate. I watch very little TV news so I could be way off here.
 

Patrick

Active member
Tony Crocker":36rxjedc said:
1) Fox is all over it as it's embarrassing to their adversaries.

:rotfl:

Skiace is entirely right.

How that they be taken seriously with the reporting of numbers like that. Either they're stupid or they are trying to mislead people.

Polling Numbers presented on the Fox News:

Did scientists falsify research to supports their own theories on Global Warming?

59% Somewhat likely
35% Very likely
26% Not Very likely

Survey and Poll numbers reporting 101...you don't publish the row like this. Regardless of THAT the numbers the add to 120%..this is the way to present it. From greatest to smallest.

35% Very likely
59% Somewhat likely
26% Not Very likely

Let's see what the actual numbers are...

35% Very likely
24% Somewhat likely
21% Not very likely
5% Not at all likely
15% Not sure

Let's group it up. Now this makes sense and it adds up.
59% LIKELY (very and somewhat likely)
26% NOT LIKELY (Not at all and Not very likely)
15% Not sure

Less spectacular than the 94% saying that it's likely. :roll: Oh yeah, first job in Ottawa was for a major national public opinion research company, so I've seen my far share of survey and design a few questionnaires. :-"

North America (mainly in the US) is the only place where Climategate 'scandal' is taken seriously. BTW Creationalism is also limited here.
 

Patrick

Active member
Admin":1trvz37x said:
Tony Crocker":1trvz37x said:
Have lots of :popcorn: :popcorn: :popcorn: ready if Admin and Patrick are going to :sabre fight: politics. :lol:

No, I'm bored with this already. No point in trying to change the mind of someone who's lost their objectivity.

Totally agree with you on this one. :twisted:

I didn't start this. Global warming has been my major concern ever since 1985. This was way before Al Gore knew about it and before it made the media. I've got a degree in Geography, but before specialized in Human Geography we had a few courses that would touch on different elements which are all interconnected. Oh yeah, and the Climatology course was one of them. A good friend also did a Masters in Climatology, so this isn't being influence by the media.

Let's be selfish a bit. Anything that would affect Winter and my favorite activity has been worth fighting for, even if we were thought that GW would bring greater snow accumulation to Quebec in the short-mid term. What will the ski season be like for my kids adults life? Season are changing, I've noticed a different as a kids to now. Today was the first non dusting of snow in Ottawa, this used to be before Halloween when I was a kid.

But if we forget about my skiing, what about the others? Problem with the food and agriculture land by changing climate (more droughts), melting of the polar ice caps and raising sea level, Fresh water supplies, Pacific island nations disappearing, refugees, greater tension between North and South, etc etc

Some of the people mentioned that we shouldn't pay or it's going to hurt the economy. What about China? What about India? What is their current standard of living right now? And you (and the planet) ready to have China and/or India reach the level of pollution and consumption per capital as we have in North America? Can the planet survive if we don't try to control this? Can we say to these country to produce less when they are still years behind the NA standard of living. China's population is 4 times greater (1.3 billion) than the US and Canada together (330 million). What about India with it's 1.1 billion. Imagine if we do nothing. We are headed for a brink wall.


March 09, 2005
Learning from China: Why the Western Economic Model Will Not Work for the World
Lester R. Brown
http://www.earth-policy.org/index.php?/ ... 5/update46
 

rfarren

New member
Patrick":ux302ogm said:
Some of the people mentioned that we shouldn't pay or it's going to hurt the economy. What about China? What about India? What is their current standard of living right now? And you (and the planet) ready to have China and/or India reach the level of pollution and consumption per capital as we have in North America? Can the planet survive if we don't try to control this? Can we say to these country to produce less when they are still years behind the NA standard of living. China's population is 4 times greater (1.3 billion) than the US and Canada together (330 million). What about India with it's 1.1 billion. Imagine if we do nothing. We are headed for a brink wall.

Seems to me that over-population is a greater threat than global warming. Besides, the odds are that peak oil will take care of the Co2 issue better than carbon credits. That is if we ever actually reach peak oil.
 

Skiace

New member
rfarren":7y4wq1ou said:
Patrick":7y4wq1ou said:
Some of the people mentioned that we shouldn't pay or it's going to hurt the economy. What about China? What about India? What is their current standard of living right now? And you (and the planet) ready to have China and/or India reach the level of pollution and consumption per capital as we have in North America? Can the planet survive if we don't try to control this? Can we say to these country to produce less when they are still years behind the NA standard of living. China's population is 4 times greater (1.3 billion) than the US and Canada together (330 million). What about India with it's 1.1 billion. Imagine if we do nothing. We are headed for a brink wall.

Seems to me that over-population is a greater threat than global warming. Besides, the odds are that peak oil will take care of the Co2 issue better than carbon credits. That is if we ever actually reach peak oil.
Not as much as you might think. As standards of living rise, population growth falls. Essentially all first-world nations are at zero or negative growth right now. Japan is at negative growth (to the point that it is possibly a problem for them), western Europe is neutral or negative. The US would have negative population growth if it wasn't for immigration. With improved access to cheap energy and therefore an improvement in living standards, even India and China will see their population level out over time. Of course, that requires a significant increase in per capita energy usage, hence the need for better energy sources.

And if CO2 is an issue, peak oil isn't going to take care of it so neatly when we are still a long ways off from running out of coal and natural gas.
 

Tony Crocker

Administrator
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Not as much as you might think. As standards of living rise, population growth falls. Essentially all first-world nations are at zero or negative growth right now. Japan is at negative growth (to the point that it is possibly a problem for them), western Europe is neutral or negative. The US would have negative population growth if it wasn't for immigration. With improved access to cheap energy and therefore an improvement in living standards, even India and China will see their population level out over time. Of course, that requires a significant increase in per capita energy usage, hence the need for better energy sources.

And if CO2 is an issue, peak oil isn't going to take care of it so neatly when we are still a long ways off from running out of coal and natural gas.
Couldn't have said it better myself. But given that the IPCC estimate is likely overstated by a factor of 3, a response to peak oil would also push the "crisis" timeframe farther into the future.

1985. This was way before Al Gore knew about it and before it made the media.
No. Gore (I read his 1992 book) first got the CO2 warming theory from a Harvard prof in 1973, which is why I don't doubt his sincerity. He believed in the theory when more people were worried about an ice age, then it warmed up the next 25 years so he thought he was a genius.
 

Marc_C

Active member
Tony Crocker":2e0476p9 said:
Not as much as you might think. As standards of living rise, population growth falls. Essentially all first-world nations are at zero or negative growth right now. Japan is at negative growth (to the point that it is possibly a problem for them), western Europe is neutral or negative. The US would have negative population growth if it wasn't for immigration. With improved access to cheap energy and therefore an improvement in living standards, even India and China will see their population level out over time. Of course, that requires a significant increase in per capita energy usage, hence the need for better energy sources.

And if CO2 is an issue, peak oil isn't going to take care of it so neatly when we are still a long ways off from running out of coal and natural gas.
Couldn't have said it better myself. But given that the IPCC estimate is likely overstated by a factor of 3, a response to peak oil would also push the "crisis" timeframe farther into the future.

1985. This was way before Al Gore knew about it and before it made the media.
No. Gore (I read his 1992 book) first got the CO2 warming theory from a Harvard prof in 1973, which is why I don't doubt his sincerity. He believed in the theory when more people were worried about an ice age, then it warmed up the next 25 years so he thought he was a genius.

Sorry for the partial hijack here....
Tony, why do you never give attribution in your posts when you quote a post from earlier in the thread? It's particularly confusing (and sort of <can't think of appropriate word - dishonest or unethical are both far too strong...unfair perhaps?>) when you mix quotes from two different posters as you just did. It's not hard - the opening tag simply becomes quote="poster_name". The "Quote" button even does it automagically.

OK, back to the argument..... :popcorn: :popcorn:
 

Tony Crocker

Administrator
Staff member
Marc_C":52o1bb9k said:
[- the opening tag simply becomes quote="poster_name". The "Quote" button even does it automagically.
#-o I never noticed that, mainly because it takes the entire quote. I'm in the habit of copy/pasting just the part I need. I've occasionally typed in the "=poster's name," but the quote button and then deleting what's not used is probably easier. I agree that if a response uses quotes from different posters it's probably a good idea to note that.
 

Harvey

Administrator
Staff member
Wow you miss a lot when you snooze for a week or two.

Whether global warming is real or not - most of activity that is purported to cause GW is degrading/poisoning the environment. Cutting down on fossil fuel use just makes sense. You can't breath tailpipe emissions and thrive.

I may be incredibly naive, but can someone tell me why the GW fight breaks so cleanly along political (right vs left) lines? I don't understand.
 

rfarren

New member
Harvey44":1oaywiul said:
I may be incredibly naive, but can someone tell me why the GW fight breaks so cleanly along political (right vs left) lines? I don't understand.

I think that it doesn't in real life, but the media for some reason breaks along those lines. I'm a liberal, and many liberals I know, especially those who are a bit older tend to be like me and, a) acknowledge the earth as been warming, b) are skeptical about humans connection to with climate change.
Harvey44":1oaywiul said:
Whether global warming is real or not - most of activity that is purported to cause GW is degrading/poisoning the environment.

Again, nobody doubts the earth has warmed for last 350 years. The contention is the speed it's been warming at recently or/and whether it's normal, or because humans causing it.

Harvey44":1oaywiul said:
Cutting down on fossil fuel use just makes sense. You can't breath tailpipe emissions and thrive.

Right now Co2 accounts for .03% of the atmosphere. In order for Co2 to be dangerous for humans to breath the Co2 levels would have to be above 10% of the atmosphere.
 

Tony Crocker

Administrator
Staff member
Harvey44":3r9oov2f said:
I may be incredibly naive, but can someone tell me why the GW fight breaks so cleanly along political (right vs left) lines? I don't understand.
Probably the trend to more polarized politics since the 1960's, when the parties were less ideological. Along with that goes the tendency for people to get the news from media outlets that reinforce their biases. But rfarren is not the only liberal I know who has taken the time to dig deeper into the AGW issue and conclude that it's a weak case with a lot of exaggerated hype.

Harvey44":3r9oov2f said:
Whether global warming is real or not - most of activity that is purported to cause GW is degrading/poisoning the environment. Cutting down on fossil fuel use just makes sense. You can't breath tailpipe emissions and thrive.
That was the point of the original environmental laws in the 1970's. If any of you were in L.A. in the 1950's and 1960's you would know the truth of Harvey's last statement. Most of that stuff has been cleaned up here (I know, not yet in China), even newer coal plants are scrubbed to prevent acid rain. The current debate is mostly about CO2. The current fixation on CO2 is problematic for a few reasons.
1) It's potentially very damaging to the economy by fiat regulation and inefficient/corrupt by cap and trade.
2) There are finite resources to attack environmental issues, and a misguided focus on CO2 could shortchange more important issues.
3) If temperatures decline noticeably over the next decade, climate science will be about as credible in the public eye as Wall Street derivative traders are now. Few people will believe the next environmental issue even if it's real. Another analogy: trying to deal with Iran's nuclear program after what happened in Iraq. It's not good for society in the long run for leaders and so-called experts to succumb to groupthink and make colossal blunders. Like all the brilliant hotshots in the financial world a year ago.
 

jamesdeluxe

Administrator
Funny how anecdotal evidence plays such a role in whether people believe in global warming. Someone from the Alps -- whose glaciers have suffered a lot over the past few years -- might have a completely different POV from someone in, say, the Wasatch.

While in Quebec the previous four days, locals got really aggravated when members of our group (all from the U.S.) suggested that we may be simply going through a short-term climate blip. The Quebeckers will regale you at length with narratives of how mild and less snowy their winters have become over the past 15-18 years.
 

Tony Crocker

Administrator
Staff member
The Quebeckers will regale you at length with narratives of how mild and less snowy their winters have become over the past 15-18 years.
:rotfl: You mean like their record-breaking snowfall nearly all season 2 years ago? The PC media must be doing a great brainwashing job up there.
 

Patrick

Active member
Tony Crocker":3k7p7f0r said:
The Quebeckers will regale you at length with narratives of how mild and less snowy their winters have become over the past 15-18 years.
:rotfl: You mean like their record-breaking snowfall nearly all season 2 years ago? The PC media must be doing a great brainwashing job up there.
:brick: :brick: :brick:

As I stated before and what I learn during my university years (mid 80s) in Geography from a course and a few good friend that would go on toward graduate studies in Climatogy...in the short term, Precipitation is going to increase (snow AND rain). This was discussed in the 80s and seem pretty much what it's happening. Temps are warmer overall, precipitation has generally increased (summer and winter).

Oh yeah, snowfall in this season is 60% of normal...snow fall in the last 12 months is 49%. Relatively no deep freeze this season. Ottawa's Rideau Canal (the World longest skating rink finally opened at the end of January). Remember that year record snow year in one generation? It was also a record rain year in a few generations or life time.
It's easy to make observations where you don't live here all your life and a place where the weather doesn't vary as much as in the Northern latitudes.

James, Quebeckers is actually spend Quebecers by anglo-Quebecers.

Over and out.
 

Marc_C

Active member
Tony Crocker":3t8sosgt said:
The Quebeckers will regale you at length with narratives of how mild and less snowy their winters have become over the past 15-18 years.
:rotfl: You mean like their record-breaking snowfall nearly all season 2 years ago? The PC media must be doing a great brainwashing job up there.
So Mr. Data Analysis and statistics decides to bet the farm in the argument on a single data point that is most likely an outlier. So much for credibility by the denier crowd.
 
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