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The Bore Hole

Filed under: — group @ 6 December 2004

A place for comments that would otherwise disrupt sensible conversations.

1,816 Responses to “The Bore Hole”

  1. 1801
    Victor says:

    “This dependency to physical conditions . . .”

    My apologies for this totally off-topic post, but I am so disturbed by your use of the word “to” in this phrase that I can’t resist. I’ve noticed for some time that the word “to” is, in some quarters, becoming a kind of all purpose preposition, which strikes me as in many cases not only ungrammatical, but also rather lazy. This seems to have become standard practice by British writers, even the most highly educated, and I can’t help but wonder why. Unless it’s become sort of a fad, like beginning a sentence with the word “so” (which also annoys me no end).

    The correct usage is “dependency ON physical conditions.” “Dependency to physical conditions” is not only incorrect but also illogical. In this case I see no ambiguity, but in other cases lazy usage of this kind could lead to serious misunderstandings.

    I’m not directing this at you personally, Rasmus, because I see this sort of thing all the time and from very respectable sources. “This color is different to that” is an example of another unfortunate, but all too common, usage. (And just in case any British readers may have forgotten, the correct usage here is “this color is different FROM that.”)

    I realize, of course, that language is continually evolving and that usages that were once considered ungrammatical have now been universally accepted. Which seems to be what is now happening. But I don’t have to like it. For me, language is a precision instrument and this sort of lazy usage dulls the edge.

  2. 1802
    Victor says:

    Paul donahue #155: “Now please explain to me why, over a couple decades, stations are increasingly recording daily, monthly and even annual record high temperatures at a rate that now averages three times the rate that record low temperatures are set.”

    All the fuss over broken records is one of the many reasons I’ve become a skeptic on this issue. Because it is simply dishonest. No one on either side of the fence, aside from a few crackpots, denies that the world is now warmer than it’s been for a very long time — at least since the Medieval Warm Period and possibly earlier. There was a significant period of warming during the last 20 years of the 20th century, followed by a significant slowdown in warming during the 21st. Once such a peak is reached, then any increase in temperatures, however slight, will set a record. The real question is: what has caused the elevated temps we are now seeing?

    What’s more important than any records being set is the pattern of warming and cooling we’ve seen over the last 100 years or so, and that pattern is NOT consistent with a correlation between warming and CO2 emissions. CO2 emissions have been steadily rising, with the greatest rise beginning in the 1950’s, yet we see a significant period from the 1940’s through the late 1970’s where temperatures became mostly cooler. Preceding that period, we see a long period of significantly rising temps (1910 to 1940) while CO2 levels were only a fraction of what they are today. The ONLY period where we see what looks like a clear correlation is ca. 1979-1998. Other than that we’ve seen a significant increase in temps over the last couple years, most likely due to the recent El Nino, which was indeed extreme.

    As I see it, the claim that there has been a long term correlation between warming and CO2 despite the very clear evidence to the contrary is yet another reason why I became a skeptic. Because that too strikes me as dishonest.

    So yes, it is now warmer than it’s been for some time. And that enhanced warming might be possible for some of the disturbing weather events we’ve been witnessing. But I see no reason to associate these events with the burning of fossil fuels, as has been alleged.

    Sorry to be repeating myself, but that’s the only way I could honestly respond to your post.

  3. 1803
    Mr. Know It All says:

    Speaking of the jet, did most of the participants ride one to get there? Those things put out a pile of CO2 you know. Just ask Al Gore – I think he OWNS his own jet.

  4. 1804
    Victor says:

    My oh my, all this heated verbiage wasted on an ignorant, stupid troll. I’ve been to many scientific meetings and never witnessed anything close to such a first magnitude set of hissy fits. If I were the only target of this sort of invective I’d take it more seriously. However, I’ve seen similar attacks directed at well-known scientists with impeccable credentials, such as Judith Curry, Roger Pielke, Freeman Dyson, Bjorn Lomborg, Nobel prize winner Ivar Giaever, Richard Lindzen, the list goes on and on. For some reason, these hopeless cretins also insist that there is something wrong with the “consensus” view of climate change. Many dismiss it as a cult. The indignant and unreasonable responses I’ve been getting here are, indeed, more consistent with the defensive rantings of a cult than with a seriously scientific gathering, either online or off.

    Regardless. As I’ve reminded Mr. Roger, this discussion is not about me, but about the actual science of climate change. And all anyone here need do to refute me is explain how air conditioners that have been turned off can heat up a room (or if you prefer, cause the temperature of the room to rise). To make the challenge crystal clear, let’s add the qualification that the room in question has previously cooled due to a cooling of the external environment. Now. Do you REALLY want to insist that those turned-off air conditioners could possibly function as a source of heat (or temperature rise) under such conditions and actually warm up that cold room? Similarly, do you really want to insist that, under analogous conditions, where for some reason solar radiance has gone down and as a result the atmosphere is cooling, that somehow an absence of significant volcanic activity could possibly produce a rise in temperature?

    Of course not. So, by all means, attack me personally, change the subject, blow smoke, shift the goalposts, nitpick, do anything to divert from the obvious fact that the widespread claim regarding the warming effect of a lack of volcanic activity is simply wrong. And if you want to argue that we’re not talking about a lack but a diminishment of volcanic activity, then you are doubly wrong — because aerosols from any degree of volcanic activity will have a cooling, NOT a warming effect, as you very well know.

  5. 1805
    Mr. Know It All says:

    42, 51 – m
    “Digby asks at 42: What sort of people have so little regard for humanity as a whole that they have no scruples about exploiting the planet to ruinous ends, simply to advantage themselves in the present day?”

    The sort of people who will exploit the planet to “advantage” themselves are the types who like to eat food, have a roof over their heads, heat in the winter, medical care when needed, a steady paycheck so they know where the next meal will come from, money to help their kids get a start in the world and possibly to help out aging parents, money they can save to get them thru old age when they can no longer work, money to give to charity or church, etc.

    Imagine a man or woman being so arrogant, and selfish, that they’d take a job driving a CO2 belching truck, or dig for coal in a mine, or fish for salmon in the ocean, or fly a CO2 belching airliner, or flip beef patties that came from CH4 exhausting cows, or teaching a classroom of students all of whom belch CO2 and exhaust CH4 and whom will have offspring that produces even more of those evil gases, or working as a climate scientist in an office heated by CO2 belching FFs and occasionally traveling around the world by CO2 belching airliner – all the while using computers made from FFs and powered by CO2 belching FF power plants, or working as a Senator from Tennessee who was President of the USA for a few hours and who travels all over the world in CO2 belching airliners, or one of the millions of people who mine, process, manufacture and transport every product you have ever seen in your life and all the ones you haven’t seen as well. Imagine the selfishness of such people. And then imagine the selfishness of those who might belittle them for going out and being productive people. The HORROR of it all………it’s unspeakable.

  6. 1806
    Mr. Know It All says:

    49 – KM
    “Well, now, that’s fantastic news, given the policy of the current federal government. So–what do we do to ‘solve this as individuals’? I’m all ears.”

    It’s simple. Walk your talk. Put your money where your mouth is. Stop using FFs in every act you take. How hard can that be? Sell your belongings, cash in your investments and property, and buy a small farm with fertile soil in the bottomlands of the SE USA – preferably one with a reliable stream, a good well with hand pump, and a few acres of woods. Then what? Get to work. Don’t ever leave that land unless you’re going by foot, bike, horse, skis, skateboard, wing-suit, etc. Fabricate a cabin from the trees on your land, plant a garden using the tools and seeds you purchased after selling out your stuff from your old evil life which was based on FFs that belch CO2. After that, eat, drink and be merry. You have arrived in the paradise world of the future – no more CO2 belching machines for you! You are an environmentalist and YOU are going to show the world how to live! It’s a revolution! BERNIE! BERNIE! BERNIE! :)

  7. 1807
    Mr. Know It All says:

    56 – scott nudds

    Yes, I’d vote for Trump again with no hesitation. One of the greatest presidents ever! NOONE gives him any crap:

    Hilarious reaction from the audience at 0:25. :)

    If the world agrees that AGW is a serious problem, they should get to work walking their talk. AND the 1/2 of the people in the US who believe in AGW can get busy and walk their talk also. They should stop whining about Trump and start taking actions that actually provide the benefits they claim to want. They should stop telling others to change their lives and just change their lives. Why not? Is that hard? Wouldn’t we be a lot better off with 1/2 of Americans walking their talk than the miniscule number that are doing it today? Am I wrong? Stop using FFs. Show us the way. We’re waiting. Environmentalists have been preaching about the evils of FFs before AGW was on the public radar – at least since the 70s that I am aware of when the debate was about drilling in ANWR. Here we are 40 years later and all those preachers are still using FFs. Stop it. If US enviros walk their talk and the rest of the world that which we are constantly told are so much better than the USA on AGW will walk their talk then it will make no difference what those who support Trump do – they’re an insignificant number of people in the CO2 game. So ignore them. Do what you know is right.

  8. 1808
    Mr. Know It All says:

    Apparently there is no 97% consensus on AGW. The number was arrived at dishonestly. This fact is apparently not disputed. From this website we find that of ~12K peer-reviewed papers on AGW, 66% of the abstracts expressed no opinion on AGW. Yet, everyone parades around like clucking chickens claiming that the consensus is 97%. Mind boggling.


    “We analyze the evolution of the scientific consensus on anthropogenic global warming (AGW) in the peer-reviewed scientific literature, examining 11 944 climate abstracts from 1991–2011 matching the topics ‘global climate change’ or ‘global warming’. We find that 66.4% of abstracts expressed no position on AGW, 32.6% endorsed AGW, 0.7% rejected AGW and 0.3% were uncertain about the cause of global warming. Among abstracts expressing a position on AGW, 97.1% endorsed the consensus position that humans are causing global warming.”

  9. 1809
    Mike Wallace says:

    What timing, I’ve just authored a guest post on ozone at WUWT. One could pose the same question to NASA as your title about my findings which negatively correlate humidity to ozone no matter how the atmosphere is sliced.
    Here is a link:

    There’s somewhat more traffic on that post at WUWT. This site seems fairly lonely. Well, Merry Christmas to all at this site anyway!

  10. 1810
    Mr. Know It All says:

    211 – nigelj
    “I have not heard KM, or Killian, or anyone else oppose smaller population, so why do you keep on repeatedly suggesting we do?”

    Perhaps you have not been watching the news from the USA. We currently have ballpark 400,000,000 people. Official numbers closer to 330,000,000 – those here illegally don’t readily admit it – imagine that!

    In light of the role population plays in environmental degradation, a good question might be: What population would we like to have in the USA? 500,000,000? 1,000,000,000? 5,000,000,000? Unhinged leftists and their unhinged leftist political representatives have invited all in the world who want to immigrate, to do so. What is their goal? I mean, besides votes? I thought they were environmentalists? Apparently not. I think the best advocate for the environment in the USA, from a population standpoint, is the current occupant of the Oval Office.

  11. 1811
    Alastair B. McDonald says:

    Ray in 161 you wrote:

    “This isn’t controversial. It isn’t in question. It isn’t cutting edge. It is established science. Period.”

    I agree, but it is wrong!

    According to the lapse rate feedback, the stratosphere should warm. Where did they predict that it would cool?

    Moreover, there is a little matter of “The Holocene Temperature Conundrum”. Just one of many ugly little facts which destroy your beautiful theory.

    Anderson is right that most climate scientists are not being forthright about the current predicament we are in, but they are not lying. They genuinely believe that we can keep temperatures below 2C, and like you that their models are correct.

  12. 1812

    Gavin I hope you can find time to comment on the methods and forecasts in comment #46 above. A blog version of the complete 2017 paper is on my blog at
    You might find this exchange with Happer of interest

  13. 1813
    Mr. Know It All says:

    131 & 132 Killian:

    Here’s the link to the article you referenced:

    I read it. It’s all true. Comments are good too. Over 600 as of right now.

    2/18/2018 8:13 pm Pacific

  14. 1814
    Mr. Know It All says:

    I’ve discovered the ultimate CC mitigation. Oh yes, I have! Kill the climate deniers! You can’t make this stuff up – supported by our friends down under:

  15. 1815
    Victor says:

    227 CCHolley says:

    Victor @206

    Nothing personal about it. I am certainly not alone in this assessment.

    CC: Your assessment is still wrong. And I’d like to know who in particular of any credibility agrees with your assessment.

    V: As I’m sure you are aware, there is a long list of scientists who seriously doubt the mainstream view of climate change.

    CC: The physics behind climate change is well understood. You make all kinds of claims that it is too complex, but that does not make your claims true. Physics is physics. And you can spout your nonsense ad infinitum and it will still not be true. The climate must conform to the known laws of physics.

    V: Yes, but the MANNER in which the climate conforms to those laws is what we are considering. The climate is not a simple mechanism like a set of billiard balls, whose actions can be predicted by simple rules of cause and effect.

    V: We’re not talking about the greenhouse effect, which is widely accepted. We’re talking about climate change on planet Earth over the last several hundred years, a topic of enormous complexity. Just the problem of measuring the temperature of the entire Earth at any given time is already fraught with tremendous difficulties. Same goes for measuring sea level, not to mention sea ice extent, glacial melt, etc.

    CC: NO, we are talking about how the anthropogenic addition of CO2 and other greenhouse gases to the atmosphere will effect global temperatures and hence climate. No matter how complex *climate* is, it is the energy balance of the earth system that determines temperatures and those temperatures in turn determine climate. The physics and factors behind what drives the energy balance of the earth are well understood. . . .

    The laws of physics are the laws of physics. The climate system must conform to the laws of physics regardless of our ability to assess and observe their application in the real world. Changing the energy imbalance of the planetary system by inhibiting the escape of radiant heat to space WILL result in warming, no matter whether or not you can observe it accurately.

    V: Yes, but it is the nature and scope of that imbalance that is the real issue. No one questions that CO2 is a greenhouse gas; the real question concerns the DEGREE to which CO2 levels affect the climate system.

    CC: . . . The serious questions raised by you are due to your ignorance of the science. There is significant evidence ignored by you. Some of the evidence may be difficult to collect and to interpret, but much isn’t. Probably most of what you call difficult isn’t, it is just part of your bias. The complexity of the climate system does not mean we cannot understand what drives the temperatures of the planetary system because we do. It is based on physical laws.

    V: While preparing my book, I found “A Tutorial on the Basic Physics of Climate Change,” presented under the aegis of The American Physical Society. I think the best way to respond to all the objections of those insisting that the physics behind the science of climate change is both “well understood” and “incontrovertible” is to encourage you all to study this document. Here is the link:

    I included some fairly long excerpts in my book, chosen more or less at random, followed by this statement:

    “Nota bene: I won’t be disputing any of the physics presented in this document for the simple reason that I’m not a physicist and am thus not qualified to dispute it. The point of this little exercise is not to challenge the physics, but to give a sense of how complicated it is. What I’ve quoted here represents only a fraction of the entire argument, which is itself truncated, as its authors acknowledge. What this illustrates is not necessarily any weakness in any of the physics per se, or the math supporting it, but the extraordinarily complex and convoluted nature of the overall argument.”

    “Explanations” of this sort, intended no doubt to provide the uninitiated with a simplified version of the science behind climate science, are far more likely to make their heads spin as they try to follow all the ins and outs of an argument so dependent on so many variables as to make one wonder how anyone was ever able to puzzle it all out. If any one of the many claims, analyses, observations, equations, etc. is erroneous or misinterpreted then the whole thing threatens to come tumbling down. It’s enough to make Occam slit his throat with that famous razor.

    Is this an example of what you mean by “well understood,” CC?

    I’ll leave you with the following excerpt from a document that’s much easier to understand, STATEMENT TO THE COMMITTEE ON SCIENCE, SPACE AND TECHNOLOGY
    OF THE UNITED STATES HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, presented by one Judith Curry on March 29, 2017 (

    Scientific arguments in physics, chemistry and cell biology are typically based on controlled laboratory experiments, where explanation and prediction can be based on a few variables. There are elements of climate science that can be addressed using these methods, notably in atmospheric chemistry and the physics and chemistry of aerosol and cloud particles. However, scientific investigations of the dynamics of the entire climate system have more in common with systems biology and economics than with laboratory physics and chemistry, owing to the complexity of the systems under investigation and the inability to conduct controlled experiments. Complexity of the
    climate system arises from chaotic behavior and the nonlinearity of the equations for motions in the atmosphere and ocean, high dimensionality of the system (many different variables, varying in three dimensions and with time), and the linking of multiple subsystems (e.g. atmosphere, oceans, land surface, glacier ice).

    The aggregate properties and changes of complex systems cannot be determined from sum of the individual components, owing to interactions among the components and the different scales of organization within the system. Complex systems are studied using information theory and computer simulation models (e.g. global climate models.) While some of the equations in climate models are based on the laws of physics, many key processes in the model are only approximated and are not directly related to physical laws.

  16. 1816
    Gordon Jenkins says:

    I signed up to John Cook’s Website, published some photos about snow in the Sahara at Ain El Sarif, Algeria and stated that it had snowed here 3 times in 37 years once this year, once last year and 37 years ago. I am now banned from Skeptical Science.