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"Stop Lord Monckton!"

Peter Gleick of “weak thought” and “let’s-pump-up-some-controversy-exactly-when-my-book-is-published” fame has surfaced again, this time in a comment to a photograph posted by Andy Revkin on Facebook, showing Lord Monckton and Brad Johnson in Cancún.

Sadly, there isn’t much positive to report this time either.

Ironically (or exactly!), Gleick’s comment is posted exactly underneath my quote from Carl Sagan, “the cure for a fallacious argument is a better argument, not the suppression of ideas“. Here’s Gleick’s:

I cannot believe that Monckton has a booth. Astounding.

And this is my reply:

Whilst I am not surprised by Peter Gleick’s comment, exactly juxtaposed to Sagan’s quote, a quick google search identifies Lord Monckton as “advisor” to CFACT.

Therefore it is incorrect to claim that Monckton “has a booth” in Cancun.

On the… other hand CFACT describes itself as “a UN credentialed NGO [that] has been sending delegations to UN conferences for many years“. So if anybody is itching for a bit of censorship and has a problem with the UN credentials system, an email or two in the direction of that glass building in Turtle Bay are in order.

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Gavin Schmidt's CNN Mystery

This is the comment I have just left at the CNN website, in reply to Gavin Schmidt’s commentary titled “How to get scientists, policymakers to same page on climate change“. Replicated here for future reference 😉 – plus, I have added some hyperlinks

I am surprised by the topic of this commentary. Mr Schmidt has no experience and no qualification in the topic of climate policy, or of policy of any sort for that matters. Indeed, during the past few years Mr Schmidt’s forays outside of science have been a string of disasters, from the public debate lost against Michael Chrichton to an embarrassing situation regarding a data correction first identified by Steve McIntyre, to an unwise escapade in the direction of Feyerabend, not to mention a generally rather heavy hand in “controlling” the flow of comments at the Schmidt-moderated RealClimate website.

Why has Mr Schmidt been given space on CNN then, to talk about “how to get scientists, policymakers to same page on climate change“? What are we going to see next, a rocket scientist writing about how to deal with North Korea, or a livestock researcher arguing about how to design an effective EU milk policy, or an explosive expert lecturing about how to pacify Afghanistan?

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Global Warming As Imperial Surrogate For The United Kingdom

I have just sent my local MP a slightly-edited version of Clive Francis’ “£400 billion” letter. (h/t Malcolm Shykles).

The UK governments’ obsession with AGW had actually been until now a bit of a puzzle really, as it covers the entire spectrum of Westminster’s opinions, apart from a few lonely voices. A bunch of fools they might be alright, but carefully selected to be in the same place at the same time, that’s unlikely.

Then I read a passage from Carl Sagan’s “The Demon-Haunted World“, and everything became clear:

The last scientifically literate President may have been Thomas Jefferson…Britain had such a Prime Minister in Margaret Thatcher. Her early studies in chemistry, in part under the tutelage of Nobel Laureate Dorothy Hodgkins, were key to the U.K.’s strong and successful advocacy that ozone-depleting CFCs be banned worldwide.

Never mind if promising to achieve an impossible target by spending an incredible amount of money makes sense or doesn’t. What matters for successive British governments really _is_ to be able to “show leadership”, i.e. be at the head of the bandwagon. Just like Mrs Thatcher was able to do: a great surrogate for a lost empire, if you ask me.

In other news: when will Mrs Thatcher or one of her scientifically-illiterate male clones finally stop being the UK Prime Minister?