Something that may apply as well to climate as to stumbling financial markets…from Michael M. Grynbaum ‘s “Forecasters race to call the bottom to the market“, IHT, Oct 27, 2008:
[…] Even in normal times, forecasters have a strong incentive to make extreme predictions, which is why those “Dow 1,000!” reports persist. “It’s eye-popping. It’s relevant. It seems exciting,” Lamont said. Such predictions attract publicity, name recognition and a bigger client base in a business where investors pay thousands, if not millions, for stock advice and investment guidance.
And even if a forecast is off-base, there are few repercussions because they are almost always quickly forgotten […]
Even the guys forecasting in 1999 that the Dow would soon reach 36,000, are still well employed.
I have a feeling, there is something deep inside human nature that makes wild claims, especially wildly gloomy claims, simply too good news and marketing material.
Pity on us then if signs of worldwide cooling accumulate…the smart climatologist will simply extrapolate into upcoming billions of ice-encases deaths.