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If You See Something, Say Something

Filed under: — mike @ 17 January 2014

Gavin provided a thoughtful commentary about the role of scientists as advocates in his RealClimate piece a few weeks ago.

I have weighed in with my own views on the matter in my op-ed today in this Sunday’s New York Times. And, as with Gavin, my own views have been greatly influenced and shaped by our sadly departed friend and colleague, Stephen Schneider. Those who were familiar with Steve will recognize his spirit and legacy in my commentary. A few excerpts are provided below:

THE overwhelming consensus among climate scientists is that human-caused climate change is happening. Yet a fringe minority of our populace clings to an irrational rejection of well-established science. This virulent strain of anti-science infects the halls of Congress, the pages of leading newspapers and what we see on TV, leading to the appearance of a debate where none should exist.

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My colleague Stephen Schneider of Stanford University, who died in 2010, used to say that being a scientist-advocate is not an oxymoron. Just because we are scientists does not mean that we should check our citizenship at the door of a public meeting, he would explain. The New Republic once called him a “scientific pugilist” for advocating a forceful approach to global warming. But fighting for scientific truth and an informed debate is nothing to apologize for.

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Our Department of Homeland Security has urged citizens to report anything dangerous they witness: “If you see something, say something.” We scientists are citizens, too, and, in climate change, we see a clear and present danger. The public is beginning to see the danger, too — Midwestern farmers struggling with drought, more damaging wildfires out West, and withering, record, summer heat across the country, while wondering about possible linkages between rapid Arctic warming and strange weather patterns, like the recent outbreak of Arctic air across much of the United States.

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The piece ends on this note:

How will history judge us if we watch the threat unfold before our eyes, but fail to communicate the urgency of acting to avert potential disaster? How would I explain to the future children of my 8-year-old daughter that their grandfather saw the threat, but didn’t speak up in time?

Those are the stakes.

I would encourage interested readers to read the commentary in full at the New York Times website.

Constructive contributions are welcome in the comment section below :-)


606 Responses to “If You See Something, Say Something”

  1. 401
    flxible says:

    “What you are seeing presently are the perspectives of relatively few individuals, repeated endlessly”

    YES, so please STOP! We can all get a perspective on what’s possible and what’s being done in terms of mitigation and adaptation by looking around us in the real world, and reading blogs devoted to that. What this blog is about is the actual science of climate, not the disparate and desperate reactions to it by one species with no apparent interest than pulling it’s own bacon out of the fire.

  2. 402
    DIOGENES says:

    Walter #384,

    “He shouldn’t bother. Diogenes would be better off taking his excellent ideas elsewhere and discussing them further with people who appreciate them and him.”

    If ‘elsewhere’ is another climate blog, it is not clear to me the reception would be much different. RC seems to get a broad-based readership focused on the science, with much more eclectic interest. I suspect my message is not what the vast majority of climate bloggers or the public in general want to hear. Remember, there are two components to my plan: species survival and lifestyle maintenance. My emphasis has been on the species survival component, with its attendant requirement for sharp reductions in emissions. From what I see, most members even in the climate advocacy community focus mainly on the lifestyle maintenance component.

    My recommendation is reductions as harsh as the traffic will bear, based on lifestyle restrictions. Kevin Anderson recommends substantially less harsh demand reductions, on the order of 10% per year, along with rapid implementation of renewables and energy efficiency improvements. My reading of his papers and viewing of his videos convinces me that he has little hope that reductions of even that order of magnitude can be achieved. Jeff Sprouss’ reference that I evaluated this morning targets emissions reductions about an order of magnitude below those of Anderson, and states quite frankly that meeting them will be a challenge.

    So, it seems to me that a very few percent reduction in emissions is what the traffic will bear, and these in turn will result mainly from technology improvements under lifestyle maintenance rather than increased lifestyle restrictions. That is completely on the other end of the spectrum from my message and my plan. There seems to have been a decision made by the global community, knowingly or probably unknowingly, that lifestyle maintenance will trump species survival. The numbers tell the whole story.

  3. 403
    wili says:

    JB at #392 wrote: “…more recently, Californians were very successful in re-distributing water…”
    Thanks for the laugh. That fits under the category of things that work…until they don’t.

    (reCaptcha confesses: ibutwa some)

  4. 404
    ying yang says:

    Making the bus free would increase ridership and to some extent collection of fees and new fee advisory committees etc, makes up much of the cost of the system.” I don’t take the bus so why should I pay for those who do.” The answer is, of course, take the bus or pay for it anyway. At some point you will lock your keys in your car and have no change. Just think of how happy you will be and quickly put on your happy helmet.

    You can build new roads for the proposed increase in cars for the future or make smaller cars and reduce congestion by 50%. In some cases there is no more room for new roads unless you bulldoze houses, anyway. People like large cars and feel safer with the steel dash classic tank. If everyone is driving small cars everyone is safer. So how do you quickly change? Well if you make parking half for small cars and ferries half for small cars and hov lanes only for small cars, suddenly they become less of a gay idea. You can also build A very small garage if you are including total cost of ownership. More carrots, less sticks, makes happy fluffy bunnies.

  5. 405
    SecularAnimist says:

    Diogenes: “but this blog has been around for almost a decade, and we don’t see an acceptable solution around which many people can coalesce.”

    Please read the “About” page for this blog (emphasis added):

    RealClimate is a commentary site on climate science by working climate scientists for the interested public and journalists. We aim to provide a quick response to developing stories and provide the context sometimes missing in mainstream commentary. The discussion here is restricted to scientific topics and will not get involved in any political or economic implications of the science.

    In short, this is not a site that is intended for discussions of potential technological, political or economic “solutions” to the climate crisis — it is a site for informing and educating journalists and the public about climate science.

    I have observed that the working climate scientists who maintain this site, and who write the highly informative articles for this site, and who moderate the comment pages, do allow a certain amount of off-topic discussion, usually on the monthly “Unforced Variations” threads, of potential solutions or strategies for addressing the GHG emissions problem. It’s gracious and generous of them to do so.

    But if you are looking for a venue that is focused on developing and debating solutions, you are in the wrong place. There are many other blogs on the Internet that are focused on that.

    And if you want to actually accomplish anything, however large or small, posting comments on blogs is not going to do it.

  6. 406
    ying yang says:

    ” A fungus and E. coli bacteria have joined forces to turn tough, waste plant material into isobutanol, a bio fuel that matches gasoline’s properties better than ethanol.

    University of Michigan research team members said the principle also could be used to produce other valuable chemicals such as plastics.”

    … in other news, university members invited on hunting trip with Dick Cheney.

    This also would make bio fuel that could be readily mixed into bitchymen extremely fracking crude oil pipelines or other. If some Super President were to say…say, that bio is mixed at an ever increasing rate (or no pipeline), there would be many more jobs created and less inclusion of Jurassic co2 into the atmosphere from whenever Moses killed off the dinosaurs. These are real jobs and not the 20 thousand phantom people, supposedly standing around watching a fully robotic, pipeline welding machine.

  7. 407
    Dwight Mac Kerron says:

    This thread has demonstrated the extremely low probability (no matter how much you might wish otherwise) of significantly reducing ff emissions any time soon. But then, I, knowing only a piddling amount about the science, but a fair amount about my fellow citizens, already said that.
    You have to live with what is possible which might include expanding forests and working on ways of getting water from where there is too much to where there is too little. I know that is not what you want to hear, and that you also “know” that we SHOULD be greatly reducing ff consumption, but that is not going to happen for some time. On the other hand, if you start to gather hard figures on the amount of government subsidy going to ff production (not your estimates of all the damage that is out in the future somewhere) people will pay some attention to that. Did I say, hard SPECIFIC figures?
    Whether or not Diogenes or anyone else feels that this plan is enough to avoid the carbon bankruptcy, doesn’t matter because that is not actually a known number, and much more importantly, you have to work with what you CAN do.

  8. 408
    Walter says:

    #305 SecularAnimist, I really do hope you are not a ‘scientist’ as your observations and memory skills appear to me to be extremely limited.

    You say: “In short, this is not a site that is intended for discussions of potential technological, political or economic “solutions” to the climate crisis..”

    Really? Who says? You must be one of the people that Hank spoke about recently … “It’s a tag-team Occupation, by people who don’t have real names, don’t have publications, don’t have their own blog, and insist they’re the most important news you could see today. Advertisers for themselves.”

    Yes? Sure appears so as that description by Hank fits SecularAnimist and several others to a tee. It also fits Hank, who posted many a non-climate science “political or economic” item himself in this here very thread as well. We are all doomed to a netherworld of ‘do as I say, not as I do’ on Real Climate it appears if this SecularAnimist world view rulership prevails.

    To tin tacks then. First of all on this thread Michael Mann did mention Gavin’s recent thread here about his GRU talk. Yes? Yes. That wasn’t strictly about the ‘science’. Yet SecularAnimist was happy.

    Then Mann referenced his NYTs artilce. And that wasn’t strictly about the ‘science’ either. In fact it was actually about the IMPLICATIONS specifically of climate science today and the politics of it.

    Allow me to remind SecularAnimist exactly what the topic of that article and this thread is actually about here, and do remember that it was posted by Mann a founder of this very RC blog site:

    QUOTING: “This virulent strain of anti-science infects the halls of Congress, the pages of leading newspapers and what we see on TV, leading to the appearance of a debate where none should exist.
    In fact, there is broad agreement among climate scientists not only that climate change is real (a survey and a review of the scientific literature published say about 97 percent agree), but that we must respond to the dangers of a warming planet. If one is looking for real differences among mainstream scientists, they can be found on two fronts: the precise implications of those higher temperatures, and which technologies and policies offer the best solution to reducing, on a global scale, the emission of greenhouse gases.
    For example, should we go full-bore on nuclear power? Invest in and deploy renewable energy — wind, solar and geothermal — on a huge scale? Price carbon emissions through cap-and-trade legislation or by imposing a carbon tax? Until the public fully understands the danger of our present trajectory, those debates are likely to continue to founder.”

    In case that is a bit of a blur here are some Keywords:
    newspapers, TV, debate, climate change is real, must respond, dangers, differences, implications, technologies, policies, best solution, reducing, emission, nuclear power, renewable energy, wind, solar, geothermal, scale, Price carbon, cap-and-trade, legislation, carbon tax, public, understands, the danger, present trajectory, debates, founder.

    It seems necessary to spell out the bleeding obvious here: Diogenes comments and his subject matter were INSPIRED by and encouraged by Mann’s article, to be discussed here, and are therefore totally ON-TOPIC here.

    It is a pity that the moderators and other readers here couldn’t or wouldn’t acknowledge this simple fact of observation.

    In case this is not enough, consider these points made by Mann in his article:

    “In my view, it is no longer acceptable for scientists to remain on the sidelines.”

    “James Hansen, who has turned to civil disobedience to underscore the dangers he sees.”

    Dr. Hansen … making a compelling case that emissions from fossil fuel burning must be reduced rapidly if we are to avert CATASTROPHIC climate change.”
    [See my response to a complaint about word usage which discusses this very point http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2014/01/if-you-see-something-say-something/comment-page-7/#comment-454196 ]

    “Should we resist commenting on the implications of our science? There was a time when I would, without hesitation, have answered “yes” to this question.”

    “.. nothing inappropriate at all about drawing on our scientific knowledge to speak out about the very real implications of our research.”

    “If scientists choose not to engage in the public debate, we leave a vacuum ..”

    “WE SCIENTISTS are citizens, too, and, in climate change, we see a clear and PRESENT DANGER.”

    “The URGENCY FOR ACTION was underscored this past week by a draft United Nations report warning that another 15 years of FAILURE to cut heat-trapping emissions would make the problem virtually IMPOSSIBLE TO SOLVE.”

    None of the above are about the ‘hard science’ or GCMs or data analysis NONE OF IT!

    It was in FACT ALL ABOUT the politics and the implications of climate science. This should be patently obvious to all readers here, even SecularAnimist and all the others who complained about the subject matter.

    Unbelievable, but true. Did you actually read the article by Michael Mann? Why do you then fail to see the direct connection between that and the issues raised by Diogenes?

    Why be Nasty, when you could equally be Nice? Would you treat Hansen and Mann like that just because you disagreed with a single idea they might propose or ask others to at least consider?

    However, the last line by SecularAnimist I totally agree with:
    “And if you want to actually accomplish anything, however large or small, posting comments on blogs is not going to do it.”

    SecularAnimist, then I have to ask, why are you here? According to you, you do not “want to actually accomplish anything”. On that score, it appears you are fully achieving your ‘own goal’.

    Walter

  9. 409
    Walter says:

    #26 DIOGENES first comment on this thread to help the memory http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2014/01/if-you-see-something-say-something/comment-page-1/#comment-451708

    In that he mentioned many climate science orientated facts quoting Published Papers, in line with the serious questions posed by Michael Mann in his NYTs article:

    “Actually, all you need is to offer up the truth; that is scary enough. The truth has been published extensively in the literature, and is quite straight-forward.”

    “If, however, we GROW emissions by ~1% per annum, as the most likely scenario from EIA predicts, and the CO2 emissions in 2040 are over 40% greater than those of 2010, then we would probably be in serious, in fact extremely serious, trouble.”

    “How do we reconcile the emissions we need by 2040 (~0) with those projected from BAU?”

    “We have advocates assuring us that rapid introduction of renewables, or rapid introduction of nuclear, or rapid introduction of carbon capture, are all we need to avoid catastrophe;”

    “See the comments in Unforced Variations; very little support for the hard reality even among climate advocates!”

    And that’s a problem because …… SecularAnimist et al doesn’t want to hear it?

    Well tough, eat it up I say!

    Walter

  10. 410
    Walter says:

    #402 DIOGENES “My reading of his papers and viewing of his videos convinces me that he has little hope that reductions of even that order of magnitude can be achieved.”

    He’s right Diogenes. Better get used to it. Not going to happen. That window of opportunity closed about 5 years ago. The anti-science and anti-reason crowd won that global ‘debate’ already.

    We are in a slow crash – like being in a car crash where things happen slowly – and all we can do is make ourselves safe where ever we are now. Then maybe slow down the forward momentum, maybe steer away from serious obstacles… and keep doing those things until the crash is done unfolding.

    This is a horrid future. I am actually quite forgiving of simple deniers – because it is a horrible future to consider. And nobody wants it… and nobody wants to face it. Not so forgiving of those who propagandize denial though. That’s why promoting denial is so easy and rewarding, because people want to believe everything will be OK.

    I haven’t figured out how to talk to a child or young teenager, or my own adult children. What will their life be like? But I think it is important to talk to others and listen to them too.

    There are some very predictable societal events: Regional destabilization will progress in its own way – this is not the time for deniers to speak out. The future belongs to those who network, and those who landed in the wrong network may feel quite left out of the future.

    And so the best general advice is to make yourself safe, encourage co-operation with family and friends, and encourage governments to mitigate harm in the future.

    I once met the author/researcher Naomi Oreskes, and asked her how she handles stress and despondency – she quickly answered “Yoga”. And I asked others the same question but with similar answers like meditation or religious acceptance – or even Tai Chi. I must say that such discipline is important, and each individual may find true solace – but I wanted a mechanism that could save the future of all humans.

    It may be that is not possible, and it may be something that the world will realize very soon. Such a difficult and disruptive thought, I think we are fortunate to process this notion now. I know that I need lots of time to think about what is happening.

    Always good to talk with others. It sounds like you understand the situation well. I get discouraged often. But I set my goals to connecting with one person at a time. Making a small difference adds up, and gives one a sense of at least achieving something worthwhile, while everything else goes to hell in a hell basket.

    We want to influence millions, and exhort them to change quickly – a noble goal, hard to see how it is possible. But we can find ways to talk to others individually who do have such a clout – I have a good feeling about this year. Like maybe ‘reality’ might actually hit home in the west finally.

    The denialist movement, with its parasitic infection – should be ending soon. One can only hope! Thanks for all that you do.

    Walter

  11. 411
    DIOGENES says:

    Walter #408,

    “However, the last line by SecularAnimist I totally agree with:
    “And if you want to actually accomplish anything, however large or small, posting comments on blogs is not going to do it.”

    SecularAnimist, then I have to ask, why are you here? According to you, you do not “want to actually accomplish anything”. On that score, it appears you are fully achieving your ‘own goal’.”

    You raise an excellent question, and it gets into the Clintonesque definition of what we mean by ‘accomplish’. It is obvious from our posts that you, Wili, myself, and a few others view accomplishment as presenting potential approaches for avoiding the Apocalypse. It is obvious from SA’s posts that accomplishment is convincing the readership of this blog to support purchase and implementation of renewables and energy improvement technologies, independent of whether doing so will avoid the Apocalypse. That is the main reason he avoids any mention of targets, and what implementation of his technologies will do toward achieving these targets.

    The posting of the Spross article was a perfect example. It had a provocative headline ‘ Cut Carbon Pollution By 75 Percent In 5 Simple Steps’ that would lead the unsuspecting reader to believe we have a simple effortless solution for avoiding the Apocalypse; no hardships required. Any reader with an understanding of the science would see immediately this article offered emissions reductions on the order of 1% per year, whereas I (and others) have shown that tens of percents per year reductions are required to even have a chance of avoiding the Apocalypse. But many readers, especially those who either don’t understand the science or don’t have the time to read the full article, will look at the headline and draw the inferences intended. That’s the audience for SA’s comments, and no doubt the main goal was achieved.

    What you are seeing is a disinformation campaign of the type described in Merchants of Doubt. The difference is, the Merchants of Doubt in the book had to be credible scientists selling their distorted research to the peer-reviewed journals. On the blogs, we have people hiding in the shadows throwing out data with no targets attached, and substituting IMAGE for substance.

  12. 412

    Now, reading this thread, why do I keep thinking of this?

  13. 413
    Ray Ladbury says:

    Dwight Mac Kerron: “This thread has demonstrated the extremely low probability (no matter how much you might wish otherwise) of significantly reducing ff emissions any time soon.” – See more at: http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2014/01/if-you-see-something-say-something/comment-page-9/#comments

    I’d be careful with statements like that. If you start drawing conclusions about what is possible in the real world based on comments on a blog, you face a real risk of being declared non compos mentis. What we see is a lively debate about how to achieve the needed reductions–a healthy component of the political process that begins when people face reality and accept the fact of climate change. I would be a lot more worried if everyone agreed without dissent.

  14. 414
    Ray Ladbury says:

    Walter: “That window of opportunity closed about 5 years ago. The anti-science and anti-reason crowd won that global ‘debate’ already.” – See more at: http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2014/01/if-you-see-something-say-something/comment-page-9/#comment-455083

    One thing that has always astounded me is the ability of people to witness a glaringly untenable or unsustainable situation and yet project it into the future indefinitely, drawing conclusions that are not just wrong, but laughably wrong. I would be awfully careful making prognostications like this, as they have no basis in reality. Our future actions can always make things better, or they can make things worse. They can buy time–time in which we may develop an effective remediation–or they can squander time. If there is anything the past teaches us, it is that we should be wary of those who think they glimpse the future clearly.

    And even if there is no probability of avoiding catastrophe, we must preserve the hope of doing so. The consequences of climate change will unfold over a very long time–preserving hope is essential to preserving civilization as long as possible.

  15. 415
    Hank Roberts says:

    Yeah, a while ago I came across their discussion elsewhere of their shared efforts here, but that site seems to have disappeared. It’s teamwork, anyhow. Aptly illustrated, Kevin.

  16. 416
    DIOGENES says:

    Walter #408,

    “Dr. Hansen … making a compelling case that emissions from fossil fuel burning must be reduced rapidly if we are to avert CATASTROPHIC climate change.””

    In fact, the detailed case he makes for a 1 C peak interim temperature target is so compelling that I increased emphasis on the 1 C peak temperature target in my plan at #291. I have appended excerpts from his Plos One article on slow feedbacks that show the necessity of staying within the 1 C target. Overall, these comments make the point that within the prior Holocene range of ~1 C, these slow feedbacks are known, modest, and can probably be excluded from the climate models with relatively modest error. Above that temperature range, the slow feedbacks become more important, need to be included in models, and their rates of increase and functional forms may not be known that well. I would also argue the possibility that new, unforeseen feedbacks may kick in, since increasing temperature, as McPherson has identified, tends to activate these mechanisms.

    “However, distinctions between pathways aimed at ~1°C and 2°C warming are much greater and more fundamental than the numbers 1°C and 2°C themselves might suggest. These fundamental distinctions make scenarios with 2°C or more global warming far more dangerous; so dangerous, we suggest, THAT AIMING FOR THE 2°C PATHWAY WOULD BE FOOLHARDY.

    First, MOST CLIMATE SIMULATIONS….DO NOT INCLUDE SLOW FEEDBACKS such as reduction of ice sheet size with global warming or release of greenhouse gases from thawing tundra. These exclusions are reasonable for a ~1°C scenario, because global temperature barely rises out of the Holocene range and then begins to subside. In contrast, GLOBAL WARMING OF 2°C OR MORE IS LIKELY TO BRING SLOW FEEDBACKS INTO PLAY…..The lifetime of fossil fuel CO2 in the climate system is so long that it must be assumed that these SLOW FEEDBACKS WILL OCCUR IF TEMPERATURE RISES WELL ABOVE THE HOLOCENE RANGE…..with our ~1°C scenario it is more likely that the biosphere and soil will be able to sequester a substantial portion of the anthropogenic fossil fuel CO2 carbon than in the case of 2°C or more global warming…..With the stable climate of the ~1°C scenario it is plausible that major efforts in reforestation and improved agricultural practices, with appropriate support provided to developing countries, could take up an amount of carbon comparable to the 100 GtC in our ~1°C scenario. On the other hand, with warming of 2°C or more, CARBON CYCLE FEEDBACKS ARE EXPECTED TO LEAD TO SUBSTANTIAL ADDITIONAL ATMOSPHERIC CO2, perhaps even making the Amazon rainforest a source of CO2…..a scenario that slows and then reverses global warming makes it possible to reduce other greenhouse gases by reducing their sources. The most important of these gases is CH4.”

  17. 417
    SecularAnimist says:

    Walter wrote: “You say: ‘In short, this is not a site that is intended for discussions of potential technological, political or economic solutions to the climate crisis’ … Really? Who says?”

    Walter, please read the About page for this site.

  18. 418
    SecularAnimist says:

    Diogenes wrote: “It is obvious from SA’s posts that accomplishment is convincing the readership of this blog to support purchase and implementation of renewables and energy improvement technologies … What you are seeing is a disinformation campaign of the type described in Merchants of Doubt.”

    This is just another personal attack, utterly devoid of substantive content.

    Which is pretty much all you have been posting here in your last several dozen interminably verbose comments.

    Except, of course, your “plan” to prevent “Apocalypse” by closing ski resorts.

  19. 419

    #415–Thanks, Hank.

    I think we all agree that Things Are Bad. There may be some marginal utility in knowing whether it’s ‘Just Bad’ or ‘Really, Really Bad.’ But, IMO, there is more utility in actually making things ‘Less Worse.’

    Could be actual planning: meaning something that has a reasonable probability of leading to, or influencing, real action. Could be educating, which I make periodic stabs at in my Doc Snow persona. Could be running, oh, a climate science blog (educating by another name, mostly.) Could mean bugging congresscritters, city councilpersons, or state senators. Could mean being active in media conversations. I know a lot of folks on this site do one or more of those things already.

    But increasingly, I think, it needs to mean actual activism: feet on bricks, signs in hands, imaginations fully engaged. And even more important than those, building relationships and organizations. I’m not very good at that; by instinct I’m a loner and contrarian. But I’m doing my best, because we are not at our most effective in social isolation.

    It’s one thing to say that you care. It’s another thing to visibly invest energy and social capital and scarce and precious time; to risk looking like an idiot or a sucker; to take ridicule, libel, and intimidation in stride.

    I’m contemplating a saying of George Bernard Shaw:

    Reasonable people adapt themselves to the world. Unreasonable people attempt to adapt the world to themselves. All progress, therefore, depends on unreasonable people.

    The science around climate change is eminently reasonable. But the effort to ‘turn the Titanic’ on carbon mitigation transcends the merely ‘reasonable’ in social terms–which are the terms from which I take Mr. Shaw to have being operating.

    Some of us on this thread seem to get that–but is this really the place to make change by sheer force of insistence? Or would that work better on a street corner near you? After all, here, the conversation is carbon 24/7; there, it runs much more to the Justin Bieber or Miley Cyrus of the hour.

  20. 420
    DIOGENES says:

    Walter #410,

    ” I haven’t figured out how to talk to a child or young teenager, or my own adult children. What will their life be like?”

    I have the same problem, but I am less forgiving than you. I look at the statements and actions of the Type 1 deniers (those who deny the climate science) and the Type 2 deniers (those who accept the climate science but deny the hard requirements for avoiding the Apocalypse), and especially the actions of their well-heeled sponsors, and draw a direct link to the increased difficulties and potentially reduced life-spans of my progeny. So, when I read comments on this blog aimed at placing personal benefit above species survival, I don’t just see harmless words, I see people contributing in some small way to accelerating the demise of my progeny.

  21. 421
    Rick Brown says:

    Ray @ 414: “And even if there is no probability of avoiding catastrophe, we must preserve the hope of doing so.”

    Thank you.

    F. Scott Fitzgerald, in The Crack-Up: “The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function. One should, for example, be able to see that things are hopeless and yet be determined to make them otherwise.”

    BTW, I assume Ray is using hope “hope” in the same connotation as Joanna Macy — “Hope isn’t something you have, it’s something you do,” and the poet Tracy K. Smith — “Hope is not about receiving, about being the beneficiary of some nebulous good fortune, it’s about putting desire into action. Hope is an idea with an engine.”

  22. 422
    Walter says:

    #414 Ray Ladbury:

    One could equally say it has always astounded me the inability of people to witness a glaringly untenable or unsustainable situation, and not see it for what it is, in reality. Do nothing, and then suffer the consequences.

    If I were you Ray, I would be awfully careful making prognostications like this, as they have no basis in reality. The evidence is already in.

    Our PRESENT actions can always make things better, or INACTION will make things even worse.

    Ray, you are unwilling to listen. “If there is anything the past teaches us, it is that we should be wary of those who think they glimpse the future clearly.” Ray, I was speaking of the PAST not the future. The past is a fact that can be observed if one chooses to look at it. Pretending the historical evidence which already exists is not so is mystical thinking not reason.

    Regarding this “The consequences of climate change will unfold over a very long time”. You see Ray this is where you and so many others have it wrong. Consequences are already upon us, right now.

    As to “preserving hope is essential to preserving civilization as long as possible.” To what end for as long as possible, if it goes down the toilet anyway? For that is where it is going, like the frog in a slow boiling pot.

    This kind of belief to me, is illogical, irrational, and mythical as it is not grounded in truth nor reality and certainly not in scientific facts and other evidence already available. Hope is nothing more than “wishful thinking” … I hope I win the Lottery tomorrow! It is a cop out and an abdication of personal responsibility to Act. The trains were full of people who “hoped” they were being relocated to a reasonable life when they arrived at the Birkenau train station. What about common sense and reason instead based upon the previous 10 years of proven history before being loaded onto the cattle carriages?

    But the most telling example of wishful thinking is this one Ray: “And even if there is no probability of avoiding catastrophe, we must preserve the hope of doing so.”

    Ray, if there is no probability of avoiding catastrophe, then the time for every rational sane person is to start acting now in their own best interests. One example is planning to relocate one’s family out of the city as a first logical step.

    Hope is for losers! It’s a nothingness option. But we always believe that we know best, and that the person suggesting things are actually not looking so great is a negative delusional loser. Don’t we?

    You know Ray, like the best advice from climate scientists for the last 25 years that Climate Change is the most serious problem the ‘civilized’ world has ever faced? Like, how easy it was to misrepresent that ‘truth’ and that ‘evidence’ as being the raving lunacy of doomsayers, idiots, corrupt leftist scientists and delusional gullible Warmists.

    Even though you have been surrounded for 25 years by the exact opposite manifestation of your beliefs, you still choose to not see it right in front of your face? Which I totally understand, and accept you are being sincere and honest. It’s still not my problem though.

    Tell me all you wish that I am laughably wrong. It’s meaninglessness. That’s your opinion. One that defies both the present and history in my view. I already know better, thank you. I trust myself here to make the best choices for my self and loved ones. Screw ‘civilization’. Not my concern, it’s what created the problem and is still making it even worse.

    Listen and consider for your own benefit, or reject out of hand. It makes no difference to me. Each to their own self be true.

    Walter

  23. 423
    Walter says:

    Kevin McKinney says:
    6 Feb 2014 at 8:51 AM
    Now, reading this thread, why do I keep thinking of this?

    Answer: Because maybe (?) you are not reading it correctly Kevin? Instead skimming it and cherry picking tiny bits and so you are missing the really important take away ideas. In this world of twitter today, so many have been trained to seek only simple instant answers without having to personally engage in some complex deep thought. Everyone’s in a hurry these days. Like lemmings lazily pouring over the cliff.

    Walter

  24. 424
    Walter says:

    #411 DIOGENES says: “What you are seeing is a disinformation campaign of the type described in Merchants of Doubt.”

    Yes.

    But they mean well. They even believe they are right.

    Such is the ‘certainty effect’ of holding tightly to false beliefs while misinterpreting those as the ‘reality’.

    Even graduate Scientists and Ph D Professors can do this, for no one is immune from such a virus. Roy Spencer, Richard Lindzen, Bob Carter, Judith Curry et al. All highly trained scientists. Deny the evidence as well as Reality. Their education, the scientific method, and status didn’t save them.

    Therefore there must be some other key component involved than simply being a scientist or academic, and for others believing in their wisdom and expertise.

    Walter

  25. 425

    They were completely wrong and inappropriate.

    Walter, the fact that you spent several paragraphs demanding an apology from me makes me think even more that I was right on the mark with your remark.

    I’m glad I didn’t waste my time reading it. But I saw something, more precisely – you projecting your thoughts on what others do or should think, and I said something. Take it or leave it. If you have something specific to say about what YOU think, say it. But broad sweeping generalizations about what other ill defined groups should or do think doesn’t cut it, with me at the very least. Maybe that works with the masses, maybe not, but if you are addressing the masses about some vague irrelevant subject and expect ME to take you seriously or to remain silent or even apologize for something I say, then you can expect someone (me for instance) to respond to that, and not in the way that you expect or desire. That’s science for you. That’s how it works, sorry.

  26. 426
    SecularAnimist says:

    Kevin McKinney wrote in comment #363:

    Just going to say that, long about the time comments from yesterday were edging toward the new page, I was seeing a few dozen other people bearing witness against Keystone XL, on a cold Atlanta street corner. Love realclimate, and cherish the insights often to be found here.

    But this morning I want to suggest that perhaps some of the energy around this particular thread would be more usefully manifested on some other street corner on a like occasion. There will be many more such occasions, no doubt, and the more energy, the better.

    In my humble opinion, that is the best and single most important comment posted on this thread.

    Hopefully the folks who are convinced that they have found “THE ONE PLAN” for preventing “the Apocalypse” are conveying their insights most urgently to those who actually have the power to do something about it — and not merely posting comments on a blog.

    It takes no more time or effort to send an email, fax or letter to the White House, for example, than it takes to post the same thing in a comment here.

  27. 427
    Walter says:

    #413 Ray Ladbury says: “What we see is a lively debate about how to achieve the needed reductions–a healthy component of the political process that begins when people face reality and accept the fact of climate change.”

    I also see a lot of childish immaturity where some people keep telling other people (in so many words) to shut up and go away. “I’m right you’re wrong, na na nah, get lost!”

    AS is usual on such forums, 99.99% of responses are only ever about a small point someone wants to challenge. Rarely do people say, yes yes what you say is true about the fact that GHGs are programmed to increase massively, and yes yes, less then 2% of all current energy use is renewable like wind, solar, geothermal, wave and yes yes by 2040 the world will be lcuky if it 3% of the total, while Fossil Fuel use increases another 50% in the next 25 years.

    And yes yes, that will be catastrophic and probably could lead to apocalypse for civilization as we know because that is exactly what the existing climate science tells us it will be. The writing is on the wall, and yes it really is scary to think about. BAU is not an option.

    Yes yes, barely anyone actually knows this bar Rosling, Anderson, Hansen, McGibbon and several others. RC scientists except Mann never say a word about it here. They do not add their own voice to this ‘debate’ even though it was exactly what Mann was calling for.

    The newspapers and the politicians sure don’t seem to get it. But yes yes, this is the reality right now today. And thanks for pointing it out Diogenes, more people need to realize this is the truth of it today. BAU means heading for a human disaster and very dangerous climate change far worse than projections in the 2013 IPCC report.

    Ray you see parts of “a lively debate” while others make pronouncements that this site is not for debates over the implications and policy to reduce GHGs, even though that was actually the subject matter of the Thread. Of if you see something then say something.

    Very little about this kind of behavior is “healthy”. As soon as someone says something they are ridiculed and all kinds of ‘paranoia and distrust’ of dubious claims made about sock puppets, about using made up names by people who use made up names themselves.

    I tend to agree with Dwight: “This thread has demonstrated the extremely low probability (no matter how much you might wish otherwise) of significantly reducing ff emissions any time soon.”

    When people on the same side of the big issue treat others as if they are science deniers or paid Corporate shills or Fox News presenters it’s not healthy. Far from it. I don’t mind pointing that out in my own way. Which at times might include a verbal pointy stick to the rib cage.

    Walter

  28. 428
    SecularAnimist says:

    Diogenes wrote: “On the blogs, we have people hiding in the shadows …”

    You mean people who hide behind the shadow of anonymous pseudonyms, like “Diogenes” and “Walter”?

  29. 429
    DIOGENES says:

    Kevin McKinney #416,

    “But increasingly, I think, it needs to mean actual activism: feet on bricks, signs in hands, imaginations fully engaged.”

    No question that we’re not going to get change without sweat and blood. But, equally important, we need to make sure we’re headed in the right direction, and the change sought is on the scale of the problem. Otherwise, we’re just spinning our wheels; we’re confusing activity with progress! So, if our ‘action’ is on the level of the Jeff Spross study posted recently, with 1% reduction in emissions proposed and we need tens of percent, we are doing very little to impact the real problem. Yes, 1% reduction per annum certainly is better than nothing, but on the scale of what needs to be done, it is indistinguishable from nothing.

    What concerns me here is that on a climate science blog, we are seeing precious little of the critical climate science being addressed in many of the comments. What could be more important than getting a handle on the temperature and other targets we should not be exceeding; what is more critical for setting policy and strategy? Yet, how many posts address this? if we’re going to talk policy and strategy, and specific ‘plans’, they need to have a strong link to what the climate science tells us is required. Otherwise, the plans reduce to arm-waving proposals of technologies with zero understanding of what they will do to ameliorate the climate change problem.

  30. 430
    Walter says:

    It’s human nature to assume our own ideas are the more right ones. If we didn’t, then we wouldn’t already accept them.

    When someone decides to post their ideas to a forum like this naturally they believe those thoughts are right and justified. But the internet has become a space of instantaneous objection and argument, mainly because it is not face to face. People usually react online in a manner they would never behave like in their local saloon bar or family gathering.

    Whilst most people already believe they are more wright than wrong, what they are seeking and need is not so much a default agreement by everyone else, but actually an acknowledgement that their contribution is worthwhile, valued and that they have been at least heard and understood.

    The best way to do this is to apply active listening skills using text responses but this does take time and some effort. Most resident netizens are usually in too much of a hurry to tell someone new how wrong they are instead. Thus circular dysfunctional dialogue is the typical result.

    It is a choice though. Healthy open ended discussion arises when the listener first ensures that they have fully understood what it is another is trying to express. Before firing a volley of criticism back. Really genuine people seeking a discussion do not speak in one liners nor using clever quips. They make more of an effort to explain their thinking by providing the background and context and reasoning behind their ideas.

    That takes time, and it takes up space. Appreciating such an effort is a wholesome attitude to nurture. That’s how we all learn form each other and get pushed out of our comfort zone of always presuming we already got it right.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Active_listening

    Walter

  31. 431
    concerned citizen says:

    Markets do not operate efficiently without a proper indicator / measure. As long as fossil fuels are subsidized, almost all markets are skewed. And I don’t believe that the capitalist society could achieve necessary change without striving for proper indicators / measures, which include all the significant indirect / external costs. Communism and soc(i)alism failed in that and BAU capitalism (and Obama’s “All of the Above”) is failing as well.

    One very specific activity should be to demand elimination of fossil fuel subsidies. If governments do not want to eliminate ff subsidies, then those governments do not really want to tackle the AGW problem.

    As to scientists and climate scientists in particular, why can’t they end their conclusions of each of their articles with:
    “… And btw, based on the IPCC AR4 and AR5 reports and also based on the supporting statements from the Academies of Sciences, mankind should eliminate ff industry as soon as possible.”

    The “Carthago delenda est” kind of statement.

    And that statement should be the starting statement of any interview.
    Only after that should come: “As to Your question, …”.

  32. 432
    Hank Roberts says:

    Another microbiology-and-climate find.

    From a press release:

    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/06/120615125303.htm

    The Iroko tree makes a mineral by combining calcium from Earth with CO2 from the atmosphere. The bacteria then create the conditions under which this mineral turns into limestone. The discovery offers a novel way to lock carbon into the soil, keeping it out of the atmosphere.

    In addition to storing carbon in the trees’ leaves and in the form of limestone, the mineral in the soil makes it more suitable for agriculture.

    The discovery could lead to reforestation projects in tropical countries, and help reduce carbon dioxide emissions in the developing world. It has already been used in West Africa and is being tested in Bolivia, Haiti and India.

    The findings were made in a three-year project involving researchers from the Universities of Edinburgh, Granada, Lausanne and Neuchatel, Delft University of Technology, and commercial partner Biomim-Greenloop. The project examined several microbiological methods for locking up CO2 as limestone, and the Iroko-bacteria pathway showed best results. Work was funded by the European Commission under the Future & Emerging Technologies (FET) scheme.

  33. 433
    SecularAnimist says:

    concerned citizen wrote: “One very specific activity should be to demand elimination of fossil fuel subsidies.”

    That is extremely important — at least as important, I think, as putting a price on carbon pollution.

    According to the International Energy Agency:

    The IEA’s latest estimates indicate that fossil-fuel consumption subsidies worldwide amounted to $544 billion in 2012, slightly up from 2011 as moderately higher international prices and increased consumption offset some notable progress that is being made to rein in subsidies. Subsidies to oil products represented over half of the total.

  34. 434
    Walter says:

    Maybe this has something to do with the entrenched inaction over Climate Change Science?

    The richest 85 individuals now own the equivalent wealth and income of half the world’s population.

    That is these people possess and control more of the world’s resources than what 3,500,000,000 other individuals have or earn in a year.

    This New Yorker explains the background and whole context of this recent CNBC report on MLK Day
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kEGfR6zBHos

    Could be the best value 17 minutes of life you ever spend.

    Walter

  35. 435
    SecularAnimist says:

    Diogenes wrote: “What you are seeing is a disinformation campaign of the type described in Merchants of Doubt.”

    Right.

    You are saying that the fossil fuel corporations have paid individuals such as myself to post comments on blogs demanding that all fossil fuel use be ended as quickly as possible, and insisting that this can be done quickly and easily using today’s renewable energy technologies, without any negative impact on prosperity?

    How clever of them. What will they think of next?

    Maybe something like this.

  36. 436
    ying yang says:

    Posting solutions on a blog does a bit more than single bagging.

    As for future projections there was some projections that were quite accurate in the past of what actually did happen in a 30 year span. Followed by revised (in your face) non climatologist studies under Ronald Ragan who found the problem still significant in 40 years ? The word irreversible had not been invented back then. The quote from Ragan was ” get back to me in 39 ” luckily they didn’t say 70 years or 667. The date is rapidly approaching and Ragan did not leave a forwarding number.

    Projections are based on human contribution. There are others, we know tipping events happened in the past. Deniers seem to realize this if nothing else. The dynamics may be something other or symbiotic to what Frankensteins climate lab has considered.

    There are inalienable laws in the universe, like buttered toast law, law of infinite power cord entanglement, one sock extra lint law, flat tire flat spare law, loaded question law, someone shook that beer law, etc. These all work at the quantum level, especially the etc law and probably also effect the ANO circulation or lurk under the Arctic ice like Dick Cheney… if he were a Russian nuclear sub. ps if it’s under the ice it’s a sub ice, sub. There are sub ice, sub, sub atomic particles on board and probably a toilet plunger.

  37. 437
    SecularAnimist says:

    Walter wrote: “Really genuine people seeking a discussion do not speak in one liners nor using clever quips.”

    You mean like calling those who disagree with them “sock puppets” and accusing them of being paid shills who are lying for money, as Diogenes has done in virtually every comment he has posted here?

  38. 438
    Walter says:

    #428 SecularAnimist says:
    Diogenes wrote: “On the blogs, we have people hiding in the shadows …”

    You mean people who hide behind the shadow of anonymous pseudonyms, like “Diogenes” and “Walter”?

    OMG

    So says ‘SecularAnimist’

    Shoot me through a scan of your SSN SecularAnimist, but first get it signed by a Notary!!!

    How do you spell self-deluded hypocrisy again.

    Please SecularAnimist, how about you just stick to the science? This has become embarrassing just watching it unfold.

    Walter

  39. 439
    Walter says:

    #425 Thomas Lee Elifritz says:
    Walter said “They were completely wrong and inappropriate.”
    Walter, the fact that you spent several paragraphs demanding an apology from me makes me think even more that I was right on the mark with your remark.

    Thomas there is no need to lie or to misrepresent the facts as the evidence is in the thread already. http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2014/01/if-you-see-something-say-something/comment-page-8/#comment-454198

    I never DEMANDED a single thing. Anyone who may be interested can see with their own eyes I spent ONE SENTENCE which said and I quote it:

    “Thomas I suggest you should reconsider the basis of your false assumptions and perhaps apologize for and withdraw your comments unreservedly.”

    Why are you now blatantly lying to the whole world about me Thomas Lee Elifritz?

    I hope you are not a scientist. For I would certainly doubt the scientific rigor in your research and analysis if this is an example of your ‘observation’ and critical thinking skills.

    Since when has correcting egregious errors made by others about the facts?

    Thomas said “But I saw something, more precisely – you projecting your thoughts on what others do or should think, and I said something.”

    And I told you you were completely wrong, for it was YOU projecting your own incomprehensible fantasy beliefs onto what I had actually said. And I explained it, but NOW you say you didn’t even bother to read it? If you are going to make a comment about what someone has said, it is not only necessary but CRITICAL that you first actually read what they said.

    Or are you lying about that too?

    Your behavior here on this matter is that to be expected of a disingenuous and very foolish person. It is not ad hominem opinion, it is a fact. The proof with supporting evidence of this is in the thread.

    Walter

  40. 440
    Walter says:

    #420 DIOGENES

    I can certainly understand and accept that!

    It’s not easy.

    Walter

  41. 441
    Walter says:

    #417 SecularAnimist says:

    “Walter, please read the About page for this site.”

    Already had long ago, and I didn’t need your help nor advice to do it. But you do seem to need my help so please go try and read what my comments said again. Clearly you missed the import.

    Then go read Gavin’s AGU talk thread, and go read Michael Mann’s NYTs article, and then come back to this thread and start at comment #1.

    Then maybe (if you so desire) stop to consider if it’s in your own best interests to spend your life and your time here always insisting you are 100% right about everything when the self-evident proof shows you are not.

    I have some other suggestions for you but prefer not to upset the moderators needlessly. They have enough to do already.

    Walter

  42. 442
    Walter says:

    #415 Hank Roberts says:
    “Yeah, a while ago I came across their discussion elsewhere of their shared efforts here, but that site seems to have disappeared”.

    Are you talking about ‘me’ Hank? It looks like you maybe. Hank if you are, then I can assure you that you could be suffering from some kind of paranoia and tin foil hat syndrome.

    I have no idea who Diogenes is, and I have never in my life spoken about such issues as increasing FF use to 2040 etc., nor do I see any similarities with Diogenes and any other person on a discussion forum or blog or website I have even visited in my life.

    Of course, you are welcome to believe whatever you wish. However you have now totally convinced me, once and for all, about your own credibility, common sense as well as your general attitude and state of mind.

    Thanks for letting me know. It really helps me a lot as it can save me a lot of time and wasted energy.

    Walter

  43. 443
    Walter says:

    I was ready to drop this topic and the thread on the last page, and said so. But if people are going to continue on with vapid fantasies and false accusations about me (such as those about Mann now leading towards a court case) and what was really said then I will have to continue setting the record straight and defending myself from this kind of immature ad hominem behavior.

    Translated from Latin to English, “Ad Hominem” means “against the man” or “against the person.” It is more effective to focus instead on the truth or falsity, on the data and evidence presented to support a statement being made and the quality of the argument itself.

    Walter

  44. 444
  45. 445
    Hank Roberts says:

    For those who’ve paid their dues, follow the science, and care about policy:
    AGU Blogs:

    The Bridge: Connecting Science and Policy
    By AGU staff and collaborators

    Latest Posts:
    State of the Union Takeaways
    AGU’s State of the Union Wishlist

    The Biggest Surprise

  46. 446
  47. 447
    Walter says:

    Word meanings.

    HOPE noun, a feeling
    1. the feeling that what is wanted can be had or that events will turn out for the best: to give up hope.
    2. a particular instance of this feeling: the hope of winning.
    3. grounds for this feeling in a particular instance: There is little or no hope of his recovery.
    4. a person or thing in which expectations are centered: The medicine was her last hope.
    5. something that is hoped for: Her forgiveness is my constant hope.

    verb (used with object), hoped, hop·ing. A Belief or a Desire
    6. to look forward to with desire and reasonable confidence.
    7. to believe, desire, or trust
    (idioms)
    10. hope against hope, to continue to hope, although the outlook does not warrant it: We are hoping against hope for a change in her condition.
    Synonyms 1. expectancy, longing.

    OPTIMISM noun
    1. a disposition or tendency to look on the more favorable side of events or conditions and to expect the most favorable outcome.
    2. the belief that good ultimately predominates over evil in the world.
    3. the belief that goodness pervades reality.
    4. the doctrine that the existing world is the best of all possible worlds.
    Synonyms 1. confidence, hopefulness, cheerfulness.
    Antonyms 1, 2. pessimism, cynicism.

    Then there is REALISM, noun
    1. interest in or concern for the actual or real, as distinguished from the abstract, speculative, etc.
    2. the tendency to view or represent things as they really are.
    4. Literature.
    a. a manner of treating subject matter that presents a careful description of everyday life, usually of the lower and middle classes.
    b. a theory of writing in which the ordinary, familiar, or mundane aspects of life are represented in a straightforward or matter-of-fact manner that is presumed to reflect life as it actually is. Compare naturalism.

    5. Philosophy .
    a. the doctrine that universals have a real objective existence. Compare conceptualism, nominalism.
    b. the doctrine that objects of sense perception have an existence independent of the act of perception. Compare idealism.

    Choose your poison: Hope, Optimism, Realism? Or maybe all three?

    Realism is an international relations theory which states that world politics is driven by competitive self-interest.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Realism_%28international_relations%29

    “In summary, realists think that humankind is not inherently benevolent but rather self-centered and competitive. This perspective, which is shared by theorists such as Thomas Hobbes, views human nature as egocentric (not necessarily selfish) and conflictual unless there exist conditions under which humans may coexist.

    It is also disposed of the notion that an individual’s intuitive nature is made up of anarchy. In regards to self-interest, these individuals are self-reliant and are motivated in seeking more power. They are also believed to be fearful. This view contrasts with the approach of liberalism to international relations.

    The state emphasizes an interest in accumulating power to ensure security in an anarchic world. Power is a concept primarily thought of in terms of material resources necessary to induce harm or coerce other states (to fight and win wars). The use of power places an emphasis on coercive tactics being acceptable to either accomplish something in the national interest or avoid something inimical to the national interest.

    The state is the most important actor under realism. It is unitary and autonomous because it speaks and acts with one voice. The power of the state is understood in terms of its military capabilities.”

    The obvious question then should be:

    “What does all this have to do with Climate Science, Scientists, or Dr Michel E. Mann’s articulated ideas about dangerous catastrophic climate change in the near or distant future?”

  48. 448
    David B. Benson says:

    For those, such as me, not courant:
    http://www.internetslang.com/DFTT.asp

  49. 449
    flxible says:

    Kevin quotes George Bernard Shaw:
    “Reasonable people adapt themselves to the world. Unreasonable people attempt to adapt the world to themselves. All progress, therefore, depends on unreasonable people.”

    Isn’t that exactly the attitude that got us where we are today? Thinking that adapting the world to ourselves is “progress”? I’ve long noticed little consideration here of adapting to the world, beyond of course, building more “stuff” to make our surroundings more to our liking, must be a lot of Shaw followers here.

    And will someone please make a killfile to blank the mental diarrhea that’s taken over the comment threads? My scroll finger can’t take much more.

  50. 450
    Walter says:

    #437 SecularAnimist says:
    “You mean like calling those who disagree with them “sock puppets” and accusing them of being paid shills who are lying for money, as Diogenes has done in virtually every comment he has posted here?”

    Yes, actually, I do mean that and I did mean Diogenes as well as others. But I do not agree that was done in “virtually every comment”.

    When I said this Walter wrote: “Really genuine people seeking a discussion do not speak in one liners nor using clever quips.” If that is all they do, it proves it. If they make serious comments mixed with a few quips then maybe they are simply frustrated with the kind of responses they have been getting, or something else is going on. If in doubt, ask.

    Also regarding your friend Diogenes here, perhaps you got back what you yourself was putting out in the first place, and he was responding in kind? That’s what it looked like to me at least. I do not know what he/her was thinking though. Going back a few days and having another look at what you said and how it may have been taken could be a useful insight.

    There is the old saying ‘if it looks like a duck’ but it doesn’t make it true. Also for those who do not know: “A sockpuppet is an online identity used for purposes of deception.” It can get a bit confusing. Intentions are extremely difficult to judge. How many here use pseudonyms, I do not know.

    I suggest you’d get a much better reception from me (and maybe others) if you could simply acknowledge simple things when you yourself are using an anonymous pseudonym, and not ignore that fact when accusing others of doing the same and it is brought to your attention.

    Kind of loses much of your own credibility in the telling. Can you see what I mean? No clever quip by me there, I assure you. A simple observation.

    Same goes for this from Hank Roberts http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2014/01/if-you-see-something-say-something/comment-page-7/#comment-454183 It is the very same thing.

    Beauty and labeling people trolls is very much in the eye of the beholder. If you’re concerned or convinced, then take Hanks advice and dftt. No point getting upset over it. Disagreement and a different point of view and values, does not make the other a troll by default. Neither does a pseudonym.

    Walter


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