Coffee House

Nursing prejudice: how climate change activists are prisoners of their own politics

19 February 2013

3:07 PM

19 February 2013

3:07 PM

Sir Paul Nurse, the Nobel laureate and President of the Royal Society, has been hitting out at global warming sceptics. In a speech to the University of Melbourne recently, he attacked dissenters from the climate change orthodoxy, declaring that their objections were in reality political rather than scientific:

‘A feature of [the global warming] controversy is that those that deny there is a problem often seem to have political or ideological views that lead them to be unhappy with the actions that would be necessary should global warming be due to human activity. I think that’s a crucial point. Because these actions that are likely to include measures which include concerted world action, curtailing the freedom of individuals or companies or nations, and curbing some kinds of industrial activity.’

It may have escaped Nurse’s attention, but the vast majority of scientists calling for concerted action on climate change are vehemently and often outspokenly left-wing – some have even publicly admitted to lying to promote political action. It therefore seems a little odd for Nurse to accuse only those who dispute the official story of having political motivations.

The explanation for this short-sightedness may lie in his own politics: Nurse is a lifelong socialist who used to fill his leisure hours selling Socialist Worker on street corners. But it is also possible to confirm that Nurse’s political prejudices are getting the better of him by analysing the quotation above.

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Nurse’s argument – that restrictions on individual freedom are required to avert global warming – has its roots in demands for immediate and sweeping reductions in carbon emissions, a case which in turn is usually justified by reference to the Stern Review of the economics of climate change. However, as all global warming sceptics (but perhaps few Nobel laureates) know Stern’s conclusions depend on making extreme and highly controversial assumptions about how we balance the rights of current and future generations.

Stern has declared that his assumptions are necessary on ethical grounds, arguing that they prevent people alive today from passing on costs to future generations. However, as the eminent economist William Nordhaus has pointed out, Stern’s approach is not the only one that could be adopted. For example, since even under Stern’s calculus people in the future will be much richer than those alive today, we could aim to maximise benefits to the poorest generation – namely us. In this view, passing costs on is the correct thing to do and we should be aiming to reduce, not raise the price of fossil fuels.

When one understands the ‘ethical’ choice that Stern made, it is easy to see that immediate cuts in carbon emissions, brought about by ‘curtailing the freedom of individuals or companies or nations, and curbing some kinds of industrial activity’ are not necessary at all. They are simply Nurse’s ethical, philosophical and political preferences. And they are ugly ones at that.

Andrew Montford is the host of the Bishop Hill blog. Hiding the Decline, his history of the Climategate affair was published recently.


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Show comments
  • Dr. Casby John

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  • stevemeikle

    that warmists are often leftists is unfortunate but not universal. I am a life long leftist who also rejects that AGW is real, especially as as I know my history and was well aware of the Medieval Warm period long before warmist activists had to tell lies about it. Of course the refutation of this error rests in the evidence, not in appeals to wrong politics

  • http://www.facebook.com/leslie.wilson.1804 Leslie Wilson

    The authentic voice of anti-science and disinformation, this piece.

  • retundario

    No-one serious takes “climate change” seriously anymore, it’s just tolerated as background noise that keeps loony left-wingers entertained.

  • phinniethewoo

    how come we have a “conservative” government but everywhere it is socialists if not communists (the NHS) put in charge??
    Dave lost the plot.

  • http://twitter.com/etonmessuk etonmess

    Let’s sum this article up: ‘scientists are all evil commies who talk about ‘facts’ and ‘evidence’ and stuff, which is why we should all ignore science ‘coz it’s clearly all rubbish’.

    Amazing. And to think you went to school at some stage.

    • phinniethewoo

      Nurse talks about cherrypicked facts which he lined up to strut a narrative. Subsequently he cooks the facts and projects conclusions out of them which are complete hyperbole. He does not know what will happen in 50y time. Neither does ayatollah Gore or any other of the high carat idiots in the “Team”.

      • FMarion

        Phinnie: Now, now. Don’t dismiss Gore as an “idiot.” He has made several hundred million dollars on this global warming stuff, lives like a pasha with multiple mansions, flies everywhere in a private jet and except for the occasional embarrasment with a hotel employees (usually known as a “DSK problem”) has done quite well for himself, just like his daddy did (check out Albert Gore, Sr, and Armand Hammer for some of the details on that). No, young Al isn’t an idiot. There are other–much harsher–words for what he is, but “idiot” isn’t one of them,

  • foxoles

    Are you absolutely sure that’s not Bruno Brookes?

  • http://twitter.com/MackyDee1 Macky Dee

    Here’s a system for you… Rather like Carbon Credits, we all get an allocation. Those who wish to travel more could buy credits from those who travel less. Oh hang on! The rich won’t like that… Oh well, back to the drawing board.

    • FMarion

      Macky: Here’s a different idea. Why don’t you guys simply leave the rest of humanity alone and stop trying to impose your schemes on us? If you want to live a regimented socialist life, fine. Go join a left-wing comune and invent all the rules and regulations you want. But the constant need of leftists to try to regulate the lives of everyone else represents an emotional or psychological issue on your parts that you really shouldn’t try to export it to everyone else.

  • Jeff Norman

    Sir Paul Nurse is quoted as saying:

    “… the actions that would be necessary should global warming be due to human activity. I think that’s a crucial point. ”

    Yes, I think that is crucial too: “…should global warming be due to human activity.” Should? Does this mean he is not certain?

    HELLO MR. GUMBY

  • moonrakin

    Paul Nurse can’t even be dignified about being the titular head of a smaller quango … A notable feature of Nurse’s “presidential output” is that his public pronouncements both resonate and synchronise with other official AGW climate PR – surely – he isn’t being told what to say? The use of the word denier and signs of a fortress mentality are not positive traits in the supposed Chief Scientist. His conniving with creepily contrived BBC pieces attacking perceived heretics speaks volumes about his motivation and principles – he appears to have skipped self awareness class.

    People quote him time and again – but that doesn’t dilute the message – another Nobel Laureate Richard Feynman had a name for Nurse’s Climate Delusion™ = “Cargo Cult Science”.

    In all an abysmal performance.

  • Curnonsky

    Socialists have latched onto Global Warming in order to wipe out the embarrassing evidence that, in every nation where capitalism and socialism have been respectively tested, socialism impoverishes the ordinary man and capitalism enriches him.

    • Daniel Maris

      Haiti and Cuba? You decide.

      • Tim Reed

        Some choice.
        North Korea and South Korea are better examples.

        • Daniel Maris

          Ecuador? Growing at over 5% this year. Has been registering high growth over the last few years.

          I am not arguing for unthinking statism, and certainly not for tyranny, but the idea that the common man or woman is always better off under capitalism is sheer BS. It’s pretty clear for instance that Cuban socialism improved health outcomes for Cuban people dramatically and prevented a lot of women being drafted into prostitution.

  • PK thinks

    Nurse makes one suspect the royal society is the illuminati and appears to question the validity of free debate , he makes science sound like religion
    He appears to have no interest in climate science per se but rather defends the politics of what he wants us to accept as the infalible truth
    Shame on him

  • Paul J

    And Koch funded denialism continues to eat into previously sensible conservative thought. It’s all a leftwing conspiracy apparently, as a few dozen scientists obviously have vastly more lobbying power than the oil, car and manufactoring lobbies put together.

    • doubting_rich

      Hahahaha

      Don’t you have your own lies to tell? Why are you recycling other people’s likes about funding?

      Who have the Koch’s funded with regard to climate? Do you not know that the alarmists have an estimated 1000-6000 times the funding of sceptics? So if funding is corrupting, we know who is corrupt.

    • ParmaJohn

      As long as your “few dozen” scientists continue to rant on like this: “…these actions that are likely to include measures which include concerted world action, curtailing the freedom of individuals or companies or nations, and curbing some kinds of industrial activity…” and continue to get in bed with our elected leaders then they certainly look like they are carrying out their left-wing conspiratorial dreams. If they would simply go back to printing rambling treatises that nobody in the real world reads I think we would all be much better off.

      By the way, where exactly do I sign up for my Koch money? They owe me big-time arrears.

    • FMarion

      Paul J:
      Do you really think that phrases like “Koch-funded denialism.” constitute effective proof of your beliefs? And do you really think that it is wise to demonize people (such as the Kochs) given the pretty ugly history that left-wing demonization campaigns have had over the past 100 years? (“class enemies,” “wreckers,” “kulaks”, “Poles,” “the Jews,” “landlords,” “rightists,” “the educated’, “Zionists,”)

      Why don’t you put together a sensible argument explaining why your beliefs are correct and not simply asserting that people who disagree with you are “deniers?”

  • Daniel Maris

    I am agnostic on AGW. Clearly something funny has been happening to the weather. It seems much more erratic than 40 years ago. Whether it’s a result of AGW though is not at all clear.

    Also the whole subject is bedevilled by scare tactics used by doltish types such as Stern. Have any Maldives islands actually gone under yet? Not that I’ve heard. Also, bedevilled by measurement issues. I looked into the issue of sea level rise. You soon discover how difficult it is to measure sea level. For one thing land or sea bottom is either rising or falling everywhere – nowhere is it static. For another, measuring sticks at ports and so on are likely to be sinking into the sea floor, giving false results. But even if there is a sea rise, in 100 years you’re talking about perhaps 30 cm maximum – most countries around the world would deal easily enough with such a rise.

    • 2trueblue

      Has the weather actually become more erratic or do we just have more news on it that is instantly reported?

      • Daniel Maris

        It’s a reasonable question but I think it has. Weather does go in cycles. There is a 30 year hurricane cycle.

        But I think if you look over the last 20 years there have been so many 100 year records broken on heat, drought, rain and so on that I do feel the weather has become more erratic. However, I am not dogmatic on that. Happy to hear expert opinion.

        • FMarion

          You are right on the issue of measurement error, and if you will look further there are significant measurement issues on temperature as well. You are incorrect, I believe, on the isue of 100 year records. Since there are so many 100 records, all sorts of 100 year records will statistically be beaten every year–even assuming that there are no measurement issues over that time span, which is seldom going to be the case.

          That being said it is clear that humans are causing at least parts of the world to be getting warmer through urbanization. I don’t think anyone doubts that urbanization raises temperatures locally, although the few attempts to see if that effect could be enough to cause a small global rise in temperatures appear to have been treated as rank heresy by the AGW people. Apparently,to avoid being a “denier” one most solely focus on CO2 and avoid thinking about urban warming or, even worse, the sun. Indeed, it perhaps does not go too far to say that one must avoid thinking altogether and just accept what one is told.

          • Daniel Maris

            There are not a limitless supply of 100 year records any more than there are a limitless supply of sports records. Clearly as with sports, there are significant records e.g. temperature and rain.

            • FMarion

              For all practical purposes there is a limitless supply. Every city, county and country can possibly set a temperature or rainfall or snow record every day. Constantly on American television you will hear someone announce that “this was the third record temperature for Manhattan this month.” But was it also a record temperature day for nearby Rockland County, New York? How about Bergen County, New Jersey? How about NewarK? Queens? Brooklyn?

              On average, you would expect each one to record 2-3 temperature “records” every year–but with wide variation. So, if Manhattan has 7-8 record days one summer, it will seem to be a lot, but standing alone the number means absolutely nothing (even if measurement issues don;t prevent it from being meaningful at all). A lot of what seems to be important data is just statistical noise.

              • Daniel Maris

                I wouldn’t disagree with that, but that’s just like pointing out there will be thousands of school sports records. It doesn’t mean that batting records for England or most goals scored in the Premier League by a team aren’t significant.

                • FMarion

                  But temperature records for England alone–even if they are correct (and there are real issues in that regard)–are unlikely to be significant, and world wide temperature “records” depend on far too few observations and far too many shifting measuring points to be particularly robust.

                  Given the problems, it is extrmely hard, if possible at all, to tell what information is just statistical noise and what is relevant data.

    • doubting_rich

      “Clearly something funny has been happening to the weather. It seems much more erratic than 40 years ago.”

      What makes you think that? What statistics do you have that make this so clear?

      • Daniel Maris

        That’s my personal impression and life experience. What evidence do you have that that isn’t the case. We’ve had several of the hottest years in the last 100 years in the last 15 years for instance. We’ve had very bad droughts as well. This year was the wettest on record for a very long time. It’s not just in this country – Australia’s just had one of its hottest years ever I believe. Of course records are always going to be broken but it is the number of records being broken that is indicative of something.

        • doubting_rich

          I am not making a claim. The burden of evidence is on you, since you say that “clearly” something funny is happening, Without evidence it is far from clear.

          “We’ve had several of the hottest years in the last 100 years in the last 15 years for instance”

          That is not erratic, nor is it funny considering that we are emerging from the Little Ice Age and there has been a warm period about every thousand years for some time – meaning the last 100 years lacks any representation of this.

          “Australia’s just had one of its hottest years ever I believe”

          You believe wrongly. Before official records began early settlers included scientists who recorded temperatures in excess of this summer’s by several degrees Celsius. In at least one recorded case the thermometer, calibrated to 130 Farenheit (about 54 Celsius) broke due to the heat (left in the shade).

          “Of course records are always going to be broken but it is the number of records being broken that is indicative of something.”

          What evidence do you have of that? You state categorically that it “is” indicative of something, so you must have a statistical analysis that demonstrates this. What are the test you used? What is the significance level?

          • Daniel Maris

            We are talking about “since records began”. You can’t rely on the dodgy themometer of a rogue meteorologist from 150 years ago to discount the evidence of the records.

            Weather is always indicative of “something” – the something is the Sun, number one, and then how the Sun reacts with the sphere of regolith/atmosphere, constituting a planet and then factors relating to the planet itself (e.g. volcanic eruptions) or factors coming from outside such as comet impact.

            • HooksLaw

              But we are relying on dodgy thermometers even now.
              The siteing of many weather stations do not meet the necessary parameters as urbanisation has increased. The records we rely on are false.

              • Daniel Maris

                I would agree that satellite measurements are our best hope for determining trends.

            • doubting_rich

              Hahahaha

              That really takes the prize. You are implying that the weather cannot have been warmer because they had not begun to take official records.

              You further suggest that the professional scientists using the same instruments as used everywhere else (made by British scientific instrument makers for this purpose) but investigating an exciting undiscovered country, were somehow “rogue” and “dodgy” respectively because they were working in a new land without a formal network for recording temperatures In my mind I compare that with the bored, harassed harbour master, or the local teacher in his lunch break, using the same instrument in England. The man you assume was making an accurate enough reading we can tell the world mean temperature to a tenth of a degree.

              You didn’t say weather was indicative of something. You said “… the number of records being broken that is indicative of something”. In your last comment were you mistaken about your own words that I had quoted, or dishonest?

              This is a purely statistical claim, so you must have some statistical evidence to back it up of course. I repeat, what is your statistical finding? What are the test you used? What is the significance level?

            • doubting_rich

              P.S. “Australia’s just had one of its hottest years ever I believe”

              “We are talking about “since records began” ”

              So no, we are not talking about since records began.

        • doubting_rich

          “This year was the wettest on record for a very long time.”

          Just to add that this is simply dishonest, although I believe the dishonesty is in the presentation from the Met Office, not in your misunderstanding of it. There has been no increase whatever in rainfall over the last century (I am not saying no statistical increase at the 95% level: actual rainfall averaged over a reasonable period of a few years has no identifiable trend at all). We had a wet year last year, yes, but not outside the normal statistical bounds, and not a record year

          • Daniel Maris

            My bad memory – second wettest on record.

            But look at this – four of the five wettest years since records began have been in the 2000s , which underlines what I was saying about recent erratic weather. Talking about the “95%” level won’t cut it with me when we are talking about how much rain falls in a year.

            *ttp://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-20898729

            • Latimer Alder

              Your link is not accessible. The removal of the initial ‘h’ means that the browser has not identified this as a link and has truncated it to the rhs.

              Please repost the complete link which supposedly shows that

              ‘four of the five wettest years since records began have been in the 2000s’

            • doubting_rich

              Apparently your reading comprehension isn’t great here either. I was specifically not talking about 95% confidence intervals. I was pointing out that there has been no detectable trend at all, even at very low confidence levels.

              I also noted that how wet it was compared to other years is not a relevant metric, as long as it is within the bounds of a relevant (probably normal) statistical distribution, which it was.

              The Met office is cherry picking to highlight last year as very wet. That is a single year, and so irrelevant (you, like many alarmists, are mistaking weather for climate). The point is that there is no trend.

              The one relevant point about last year’s rain is that the Met Office, using the same assumptions, models and computers as they use to predict CAGW, predicted a drought. That is evidence against their models and assumptions.

              Your link doesn’t work. However I suggest that posting a link to an organisation like the BBC, whose policy has been made by a bunch of activists and companies that are making money out of the myth of CAGW, does not increase your credibility.

            • doubting_rich

              England and Wales rainfall:

              http://bishophill.squarespace.com/storage/UK%20rainfall2.png?__SQUARESPACE_CACHEVERSION=1357379048398

              Note that 2012 was 1245should be either third or perhaps joint second here (within the precision of the graph. Note also that the highest was before 1900 and the second in the 1760s. Hardly shows great influence from human activity that began to be significnat in the 1940s, does it?

        • HooksLaw

          No, the global temperature has been stable for the last 15 years and its statistically true to say there ha been no global warming for the last 20 years.

    • HooksLaw

      There is nothing funny happening about the weather. Nothing is happening now that has not happened in the past. the recent storms in America happened ion the not too distant past.
      After Katrina Attenborough forecast that the Florida coast would be uninhabitable by now, but hurricane activity is in fact less than normal.

      Its plain wrong to suggest that the climate is behaving strangely.

  • Bhaskar

    The idea peddled by certain elements of the hard right that anyone who believes in man made climate change is an anti capitalist leftie, is a myth. Like all modern myths, as it gets recycled from one right wing website into another, it eventually transmutes itself into a conspiracy theory which states that the hypothesis of man made global warming is some kind of a gigantic conspiracy against free market capitalism. Yet it only takes a few minutes of rational thinking to demolish this conspiracy theory. Consider this- the main American scientific society has said man made climate change is an established scientific fact. One can hardly categorise members of this venerable institution as anti capitalists since they are an integral part of the military industrial complex which is the US of A and often participate in US defence and space research.

    The first Western leader to pass comprehensive environmental protection legislation was Richard Nixon, hardly a left liberal. The toughest anti climate change legislation anywhere in the Western hemisphere was passed in the state of California when the Mad Austrian (otherwise known as the Terminator) was in power and he was as right wing as Genghis Khan.

    • Latimer Alder

      I tend to take with a pinch of salt any opinion that uses the word ‘elements’ in relation to people.

      Sounds far too reminiscent of the old USSR denouncing ‘enemies of the state’.

      .

    • Colonel Mustard

      The “hard right”? Go and take a pill you deluded loon.

    • http://twitter.com/aDissentient Bishop Hill

      Again, read the article. Nurse has raised what he thinks are the poltical views of his opponents. I have merely countered by raising his own politics. Sauce for the goose and so on. I then pointed out that in reaching his political conclusions he is ignoring rational economic objections. If he is going to be the voice of rationality, he can’t do this. If he wants to persuade everyone of the superiority of socialism, he should stay silent until he is no longer the President of the Royal Society, some of the fellows of which will have different political, ethical and philosophical views.

    • FMarion

      Bhaskar:
      I certainly don’t know about every supporter of the AGW theory, but the few people I know who are convinced about it are indeed anti-capitalist lefties, and perhaps not coincidently, none of them seems to have the least idea about the science behind it–they simply take it as a matter of faith. Perhaps the ones I know are unrepresentative, though.

      But let me ask you this question. Are you an anti-capitalist leftie? The rhetoric (“the hard right”) certainly paints that picture.

    • doubting_rich

      “…the main American scientific society has said man made climate change is an established scientific fact”

      How can a society say anything? What you mean is that a small number of scientists who have used politics to reach positions of authority in a body that has no real meaning to most scientists apart from being a talking shop and an association have said this. Not one scientific society has had the confidence to poll its members before making these anti-scientific statements, and that is very telling.

      As for Arnie the RINO being right-wing, you must be f’in kidding. He is indeed as right0wing as Genghis Khan, who was of course a raving socialist.

    • Curnonsky

      Just to clarify your assertion about “Ahhnold”, he pushed through green legislation in California as a favour to his wife Maria (who was growing suspicious that the housekeeper’s son looked a whole lot like the Terminator).

      Alas, the marriage came unglued but the appalling legislation lives on.

  • http://www.facebook.com/george.wilson.3517 George Wilson

    This really is quite a poor article. The fact that someone has argued a point badly does not mean that it isn’t true, it’s just that they presented it poorly. The vast majority of scientists – i.e., people who have done the research and actually know what they are talking about – consider man made climate-change to be self-evident. Why must everything be a leftist conspiracy to you and your readers? Do a bit of reading for pete’s sake! – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientific_opinion_on_climate_change

    • http://twitter.com/aDissentient Bishop Hill

      George

      I’m not sure you have read the article. It’s about the economics of climate change, not the science.

    • Makroon

      Absolute rubbish.

      The only valid scientific viewpoint is scepticism. The evidence is sparse to non-existent, the data-base is paltry, the ‘modelling’ laughably primitive.

      Notice how Nurse uses the pejorative “deniers” ? Just like the deliberate confusion of Eurosceptic with rejectionist.

      Nurse is a geneticist, Stern an economist.
      You may as well listen to the witterings of a high court judge.
      It is called bogus science.

      • http://vvattsupwiththat.blogspot.com/ Lucian

        And there’s no denying Montford isn’t a scientist at all.

        The best way to combat those who use the environment as a pretext for social engineering is with better science , not worse, which is what makes the likes of Monckton God’s gift to the Left.

        • Latimer Alder

          Mr. Montford has a degree in Chemistry from a well-respected university.

          So I’d submit that he has had a better scientific training than many others posting here.

          Chemistry is an intensely practical and experimental subject. And chemists are among the least likely to be seduced by ornate but untested theories and models and speculations.

          • Fergus Pickering

            So the blessed Margaret was a scientist, then?

            • anneitaanddavid

              Yes she was, unlike the current generation of politicians who are mainly PPE graduates, many of whom dropped the “E” as soon as they could. Has no bearing on the rest of the discussion, but it is a simple fact.

            • Latimer Alder

              Mrs. Thatcher has a BA degree in Chemistry from Oxford and worked professionally as a research chemist before becoming a full-time politician.

              As an interesting sideline, Fr. Merkel of Germany is also a chemist. she has a Doctorate in Physical Chemistry from Berlin.

              I’d hazard that between them they have as much scientific experience as the rest of their respective Parliaments put together….with the exception of Graham Stringer, MP – a noted climate sceptic and also a chemist.

    • Colonel Mustard

      “Why must everything be a leftist conspiracy to you and your readers?”

      Because it usually is. The left are the ones who want to control everything and determine everything, q.v. the comments from the deranged telemachus above, really rather repulsive – especially the one about putting people into camps.

    • FMarion

      George:
      Many of those “scientists” have never spent any time investigating the science, they simply signed various petitions and the like. Nor is there anything magic about science. If the case for man-made global warming is overwhelming, then its proponents should put forward their case in a manner that any reasonably intelligent person could understand and investigate. Denouncing those who question the concept as “deniers” is simply a modern form of Lysenkoism in which thuggish tactics are used to suppress the usual scientific processes.

      Real science allows debate and the current attempt to shut down debate and questioning regarding man-made global warming is nothing less than a disgrace to science.

    • 2trueblue

      Just because people disagree with your theories does not mean they are wrong, or lack knowledge in the area. The climate change activists have aligned themselves with people who have become distrusted because they have colluded, lied, and foisted their opinions a the new religion. If they had not lied, colluded then there would not be the controversy that currently exists. The evidence has not won the day, accept that and go forward. You need to work harder at proving the case rather than being rude, arrogant and suggesting that those who disagree with your cause are idiots.

    • doubting_rich

      “Self evident” is about as unscientific as it is possible to be. It is self-evidence that each particle has a defined position and momentum. It’s self-evidence that time runs at the same pace for all observers. It’s self-evidence that the Earth’s continents have always been in roughly the same relative positions. It is self-evidence that a heavy weight falls faster than a light one. It just isn’t true.

      As for Wikipedia – you do realise that is one of the most biased sources on the internet for this issue? Even they had to suspend one of their own editors for egregious bias (he is back now, and his suspension made little difference). Much of that article is utter garbage – for example the “Statements by scientific organizations”. How can an organisation make a statement? It is political folk at the top, like the idiot Nurse, making statements. Not a single one of those polled its members, so the statements are utterly unrepresentative of the organisations.

      There is plenty of debate in the scientific community, with some world-renowned scientists (Freeman Dyson being one of the greatest). Of course that is entirely irrelevant. Science is not a popularity contest.

      It is an undeniable fact that the models get the feedback wrong. There are multiple, independent, unequivocal lines of empirical evidence. Therefore the alarmists are wrong in the main point of contention. That is scientific fact, not a popular opinion.

    • HooksLaw

      False. Indeed so false it is not even wrong.

      ‘It originated from an endlessly reported 2009 American Geophysical
      Union (AGU) survey consisting of an intentionally brief two-minute, two
      question online survey sent to 10,257 earth scientists by two
      researchers at the University of Illinois. Of the about 3.000 who
      responded, 82% answered “yes” to the second question, which like the
      first, most people I know would also have agreed with.

      Then of those, only a small subset, just 77 who had been successful
      in getting more than half of their papers recently accepted by
      peer-reviewed climate science journals, were considered in their survey
      statistic. That “98% all scientists” referred to a laughably puny number
      of 75 of those 77 who answered “yes”.’

      http://www.forbes.com/sites/larrybell/2012/07/17/that-scientific-global-warming-consensus-not/

    • doubting_rich

      Not true. A recent poll found that only 36% of Earth Scientists believe CAGW to be true. So what actual studies do you have to back up your assertion? Not Wikipedia, that is an activist site on CAGW, and not the old master’s thesis 97% lie.

    • http://twitter.com/eric144144 Eric Smith
  • http://www.facebook.com/phillip.bratby Phillip Bratby

    The proponents of man made global warming tell us that CO2 traps heat. If anyone can explain to me the physics of this heat-trapping ability of Co2, I will be very interested – there could be a Nobel Prize in it. Perhaps this Nurse chappy knows; he seems to think he is a bit of an expert in physics and he is a Nobel Prize winner after all.

  • http://twitter.com/hengistmcstone Hengist McStone

    “the vast majority of scientists calling for concerted action on climate change are vehemently and often outspokenly left-wing”

    Oh dear , Andrew Montford dressing up his own opinions as fact again.

    • newminster

      Hi, Hengist. Where have you been all this time? We’ve quite missed you.
      Not.

    • Colonel Mustard

      Oh dear, another silly lefty troll with an even sillier avatar.

  • Fergus Pickering

    I gather Nurse is, or was, one of those eugenics nutters. Is that so?

    • Latimer Alder

      There is a rumour that he was president of the Galton Institute (one time Eugenic Society) earlier in his career. But I haven’t been able to substantiate it.

      Nonetheless, the GI held their annual conference at the Royal Society last year. I doubt it was done without his knowledge and/or blessing.

      See

      http://www.galtoninstitute.org.uk/

      • Fergus Pickering

        He was, and doubtless is, a eugenics nutter then? So much for science.

      • Svanhildur

        Regarding this false rumour, please see the comment made above, referring to the retraction made by AlecM, who is responsible for this error, and who has repeated the assertion in a number of places on the net. He has explicitly stated that the error is his, and apologised for it.

    • HooksLaw

      if so this is quite shocking. just what is going on in our scientific community? Mind you Attenbourgh was saying the other day that humanity infests the planet is a pest and there are too many of us.

  • Alex

    “those that deny there is a problem often seem to have political or ideological views that lead them to be unhappy with the actions that would be necessary should global warming be due to human activity”.

    Yes, and these actions are matters of economics and politics. So why is the opinion of a geneticist on such matters any more important than the opinion of anybody else?

  • Dorothea Orme

    I don’t believe anyone denies there is Climate Change; however, what is causing the climate change is another matter. I am a sceptic and have no political reason to think otherwise. I am sceptical that Climate change is caused solely by what people are doing on this planet. By their own admission, Scientists can only give us answers based on research and data available to them…..whether that information contains the answer to climate change is debatable. However, it is good to have people challenge these claims regarding climate change and global warming…what a strange world is would be if we never questioned these matters.

  • John

    It’s amazing the paranoia in evidence on the Spectator website. Anthropogenic climate change isn’t a left-wing plot – it’s a pretty well-evidenced reality for anyone who can be bothered to look at the evidence. And contrary to popular characterisation, ‘scientists’ aren’t distorting evidence or engaged in a maniacal conspiracy – climate science is a hugely complex area of lively scientific debate; it’s just that on the core question of whether or not human activities are causing changes to the climate, there’s little disagreement. Not because of denial or socialist sensibilities – simply because the evidence doesn’t point in that direction, and rational people cannot therefore adopt a contrary position.

    • http://twitter.com/eric144144 Eric Smith

      There’s little disagreement because as James Lovelock said in the Guardian

      “Sometimes their view might be quite right, but it might also be pure propaganda. This is wrong. They should ask the scientists, but the problem is scientists won’t speak. If we had some really good scientists it wouldn’t be a problem, but we’ve got so many dumbos who just can’t say anything, or who are afraid to say anything. They’re not free agents.”

      http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/blog/2010/mar/29/james-lovelock

      They are horrid little boys involved in a conspiracy of silence, inspired also be grants.

    • http://www.facebook.com/gary.gudalefsky Gary Gudalefsky

      Oh good! In that case, you can explain to me how a less than Cat One hurricane, Sandy, was more powerful than the Cat 3 and Cat 4 hurricanes that struck NYC back to back in one week, in the 1950s, in October.

    • John

      Please state the scientific empirical evidence which reinforces your belief in man made GW!!

      I bet all you can come up with for the 3.3 degr CATASTROFIC warming due to CO2 doubling is…..computer models.

      And those are NOT empirical evidence. And furthermore they have been incorrect from the start. The empirical evidence contradicts them at every turn.

    • Latimer Alder

      John

      ‘ Anthropogenic climate change isn’t a left-wing plot – it’s a pretty
      well-evidenced reality for anyone who can be bothered to look at the
      evidence.’

      Well, I’ve been looking at the evidence for a few years now and I haven’t yet been very convinced that the small and patchy effect that increased CO2 has on global temperatures is very much to be worried about. Either in its magnitude, nor in its effects.

      But from your extensive research, what four things in particular would you care to draw to my attention that might persuade me to change my mind?

      PS wild speculation about things that might/could/perhaps happen in the future based on untested and unverified models are not likely to do so. I’m a chemist by training so real observed data rates much more highly than theoretical models for me.

      • Latimer Alder

        Surprised not to see a response from ‘John’ after nearly four hours.

        Perhaps the ‘well-evidenced reality’ needs a bit more work before he is able to distill his wisdom into the four key persuasive points I asked for.

        Or perhaps the concentration on actual data rather than unsupportable scary prognostications is proving troublesome.

        I’ll look again in the morning, but it’s not looking too hopeful.

    • anneitaanddavid

      You might find that a number of the people you refer to as paranoid have spent a lot longer than you have looking at the evidence, Philip Bratby and Latimer Alder in particular. Swallowing IPCC reports whole does not constitute bothering to look at the evidence. Read Montford’s demolition of MIchael Mann’s hockey stick, or look at the history of global temperature records, and if you are numerate, you will become a sceptic.

      • Latimer Alder

        Point of order.

        The actual ‘demolition of Mann’s Hockey Stick’ was done by McIntyre and McKitrick.

        Mr Montford’s contribution was to document how it was done in an easily accessible way which cast a harsh and unflattering light upon both the hockey stick ‘science’ and the scientists concerned.

        And – for anyone with a modicum of interest in following a scientific argument – it is a thoroughly good yarn,

        http://www.amazon.co.uk/Illusion-Climategate-Corruption-Science-Independent/dp/1906768358/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1361338184&sr=8-2

        • HooksLaw

          Correct – maths and statistics demolished it and all these people got for demonstrating facts was to be insulted and worse.
          You could have fed your bus timetable into Manns model and it would have produced a hockey stick.

          Such is what modern science has been reduced to. McIntyre and McKirtick deserve the Nobel prize.

    • Augustus

      If it’s not a ‘left-wing plot’ it’s certainly the greatest hoax of the modern era. Take Al Gore, he spent years campaigning against fossil fuels as the ’cause’ of global warming, but sells his television channel to Al Jazeera, funded by Qatar, a leading oil producer. Or discredited Michael Mann who continues to earn thousands for speeches about global warming. Considering that global warming is a lie from start to finish, one must conclude that all those involved have few, if any, qualms about lying. Other professions, such as the law, drum out such people, deny them the right to practice law in the courts, and treat them with contempt when they engage in criminal or unethical behaviour, but in the world of science these days, such behaviour ends up being rewarded and, by inference, defended. Carbon dioxide does not trap heat. The Earth balances its absorption and release. It is a minor gas in the atmosphere, barely 0.038%. There was a time when science adhered to strict rules of ethics. When those are thrown overboard, everyone is victimized.

    • 2trueblue

      Amazing then that the people who offer the evidence are always close to those who profit from the so called solutions. Solutions of course that are not very well thought out, but widely expensive. The evidence is not sound, it is clouded in theories that have not stood up to scrutiny and mixed up with lies, so that is why there is disagreement.

    • doubting_rich

      “it’s a pretty well-evidenced reality”

      So what is the evidence? What is the empirical evidence for strong positive feedback in temperature?

      So many people like you talk about evidence as if it exists, yet actually know of none. I have been asking for 4 years now, and no-one has been able to answer that question.

      • FMarion

        doubting: What? You didn’t see Al Gore’s swimming polar bear? If that isn’t sure fire evidence what is?

        • doubting_rich

          Ah, I have a theory there. It must have been Photoshopped. Polar bears can’t possibly be swimming.

    • doubting_rich

      Hahahaha

      So “well-evidenced” until someone who knows the meaning of science asks you what that evidence is. You do realise that the evidence has to actually exist, don’t you, you can’t just claim it is there?

  • http://www.facebook.com/phillip.bratby Phillip Bratby

    The vast majority of young socialists grow out of their left wing tendencies as they gain experience of the real world. However, many people are sheltered from the real world by a life spent in academia or politics, where everything is provided to them by taxpayers who have to compete in the real world. Nurse is one such person who has never grown out of his childish beliefs.

    • http://twitter.com/eric144144 Eric Smith

      Same goes for venomous right wing nutters. Most grow up and realise that the captains of industry are blood thirsty sociopaths whio would steal your childrens’ fillings and that you cannot let them roam free any more than you can serial killers.

      • anneitaanddavid

        And your point is..and your evidence that the captains of industry are bloodthirsty and need locking up?

        • FMarion

          Evidence? Leftists have never needed evidence to lock people up. After all, the pursuit of Utopia is more important than borgeoise concepts like evidence.

          • HooksLaw

            They are in fact in search of a socialist nirvana. We must all be purified, even if it kills us.

      • Colin

        I’d be interested in an example of a current or even relatively recent captain of industry, operating in a democracy, who’s blood thirsty or who’s been stealing the fillings from the mouths of children.

        I’d be more than happy to name check a whole host of left wing tw@ts, responsible for some pretty nasty policies.

        • http://www.facebook.com/people/Ali-Babba/670457795 Ali Babba

          The only examples I can think of are the captains of crony capitalism in the green scam.

        • Philsopinion

          The HBOS whistleblower Paul Moore, has estimated that the financial crisis, caused by CEOs with sociopathic tendencies, has killed 100 million people around the world to date. The same CEOs whose banks – like HSBC or Wachovia – have facilitated money laundering for murderous Mexican drugs cartels, assorted mafias and terrorist groups. That list of CEOs would include current Tory Trade Minister Lord Green.

          I’m guessing Colin has missed the atrocities committed by thugs paid by the United Fruit company, Chiquita or Coca Cola in South America. Or Monsanto’s terminator seeds and debt agreements which have led to the suicides of tens of thousands of Indian farmers. Or the malfeasance of Dow Chemical in India.

          Then we have IG Faben, Bayer, Volkswagen, Siemens and IBM’s work for the Nazis.

          And I’d be more than happy to name check a whole host of right wingers, responsible for some pretty nasty policies: Hitler, Pinochet, the assorted south and central military dictatorships (all armed by Washington), Franco, Mobutu, Mussolini, Bush, the Shah of Iran, Diem, Papa Doc Duvalier, Suharto, the current regimes in Kazakhstan, Colombia, Russia, Uzbekistan – one could go on and on.

          And let’s not forget our own Maggie, who sent the SAS to train the murderers of the Khmer Rouge in the 80s. What a gal!

          • Colin

            Did you even read my post?

            • FMarion

              Colin: I think he got about halfway in to the first sentence and exploded. But what can you say about someone who doesn’t know that Hitler and Mussolini were simply another species of left wing collectivist or believes that a small government supporter is a fan of military dictatorships, or thinks that the Khmer Rouge were in power in the 1980’s?

      • doubting_rich

        Another typical socialist comment that is just made up. The ones stealing are the socialists and the cronies. True capitalists have to persuade others to part with their money, it is only the socialists and their statist/corporatist allies that legally use the threat of force to demand money for their profit.

        • http://twitter.com/eric144144 Eric Smith

          What socialists, Peter Mandelson, Rupert Murdoch ?

      • Curnonsky

        Just not true – except for Richard Branson, of course.

    • Colin

      “The vast majority of young socialists grow out of their left wing tendencies as they gain experience of the real world.”

      The three main constituencies of the left are: The Thick, the Naive and the Evil.

      There is a chance that the thick and the naive can grow up or be educated. It’s much harder to sort out the evil ones.

      • Andy

        Stalin answered that one: he just had them shot.

        • anneitaanddavid

          No he didn’t. He shot the others, and promoted the evil ones eg Beria.

          • FMarion

            Well, Stalin was pretty much an equal-opportunity killer. He had Yagoda and Yezhov shot as well as the thick, the naive and a whole lot more.

            • telemachus

              It is all very well highlighting a few local,difficulties
              This genius dragged a nation out of abject poverty and brought them to a modern 20th century society
              In doing so he saved millions of lives from starvation
              He then gave them hope and dignity
              By force of his personality he drove fascism out of Europe
              The great Russian people rue the day they handed his legacy to the mafia

              • Colonel Mustard

                More tripe.

                Stalin was a monster who plunged Eastern Europe into more than forty years of darkness. He replaced national socialist fascism in half of Europe with communist fascism.

                Dragging the nation “out of abject poverty” to a “modern 20th century society” refers to his accelerated and enforced industrialisation programme. It was not philanthropy.

                He murdered, tortured and persecuted millions of his own people and foreigners under Soviet control. His policies caused widespread starvation. Stalin’s collectivisation famine of 1932-33 resulted in the deaths of over 5 million.

                You are repulsive enough without defending the indefensible. But promoting it as something to be admired is obscene. As a British communist creeping around within the cloak of the Labour party (there are many such as you) your pro-Soviet romanticism so far from 1968 is both immature and unhinged.

                • Philsopinion

                  Atrocities have been committed in the name of all ideologies. Last I heard ”free market” capitalism had killed millions through starvation and neglect in the Third World.

                  If the ”free market” is so wonderful, why did life expectancy in Russia go over a cliff after the fall of the Soviet Union?

                • FMarion

                  Phils: Where, precisely is free market capitalism causing starvation and neglect in the Third World? I ask because although both have numerous causes, free market capitalism is not normally thought to be one of them. Indeed, it is pretty clear that most of the Third World could use more makets, not less.

                  As for life expectancy in Russia, first, you’d do well to doubt every Soviet statistic. Second whatever the other causes, a big reason is the enormous rate of alcoholism, which can at least in part be blamed upon the social breakdown in Russia deliberately formented by the Bolsheviks (the campaign against “bourgeoise morality”, tremendously aggrevated by the enormous number of deaths in the 1930’s and 1940’s combined with the collapse of the economic structures in the 1990’s. Russia was nailed to a cross for most of the 20th century. Those kinds of wounds don’t heal fast.

                • Philsopinion

                  ”Where, precisely is free market capitalism causing starvation and neglect in the Third World?”

                  The majority of African states. The sweatshops of East Asia. The farmers of South Asia. The barrios of South America. At least 2 billion people around the world live on $2 a day or less.

                  The Bloomberg business website reported a few months ago that the calorific intake for the bottom 900 million Indians had actually fallen over the last ten years. China is site of tremendous social foment – there are riots every week s wages go unpaid and people are evicted from their land / houses.

                  While I recognise that Capitalism can spur productivity, there is nothing inherently in the system which says that the fruits of that productivity will be redistributed throughout the society.

                  ”Russia was nailed to a cross for most of the 20th century.”

                  It strikes me that Russia has been nailed to a cross for most of its history. I will never defend the atrocities of the Stalinist regime but to imagine that the Tsarist times – when tens of millions lived in dire poverty – were superior is utterly wrong headed. The Russian population became one of the most educated in the world under the Soviets – which is one reason why the system failed, because the people could see that the reality did not match the rhetoric.

                  Now who controls Russia? Mafias. Just as many socialists predicted to Marx when he advocated his particular version of communism.

                • FMarion

                  Phils:
                  Thank you for the well-thought out reply. While I disagree with most of your points, I appreciate that your were willing to respond to my arguments in a thoughtful manner.

                  Let me go to those areas of disagreement. I cannot agree that free-market capitalism operates in most of the third world. In almost every third world country one find a mixture of corrupt and oppressive but inefficient government combined with a deeply entrenched quasi-traditional power structure. In most third world countries you might be allowed to open a market stall (if you pay off the police) but it is extraordinarily difficult to open a larger business without excellent connections with the powers that be, and property rights are subject to the whims of others. This isn’t free market capitalism and doesn’t pretend to be (though in some places it pretends to be socialism, which it isn’t either).

                  As for Russia, yes it has had a very sad history. But, while I won’t defend the Tsarist government I will say that it killed a lot less people than the Soviets and the Russian economy was growing very fast before WW I and that growth was adding to incomes (the growth wasn’t because of the government but it was largely not interfering with it). Russia plainly would have been better off if the Bolshevik revolution had never occurred. Universal education does not balance out the effects of Leninist/Stalinist terror, murder and famine.

                  I agree about the mafias (though their influence is beginning to break some) and I agree that they are a direct consequence of “Marxism-Leninism” as well as the deliberate attempt to wipe out bourgeoise morality. I hope they wither away over time, but it will take generations before Russia will be largely repaired.

                • http://www.facebook.com/geoff.sherrington Geoff Sherrington

                  PhilsopinionWho is preventing Africans from adopting capitalism?

              • HooksLaw

                Stalin robbed the peasants and created the unmitigated disaster that was collectivisation. Any peasants that did not like their land being stolen were machine gunned. Millions starved.
                The disaster and maltreatment was greatest in the Ukraine and if the Nazis had not been a rag tag of racist idiots they could have built up a Ukrainian army to help them defeat the imbecilic communists.

              • Baron

                You have a chance to sample the genius of another thug, a breed you so admire, go live in North Korea.

                • Philsopinion

                  Care to remind us what ”free markets” have done for Haiti?

              • http://twitter.com/MackyDee1 Macky Dee

                Your history book was written by an evil leftie

                • telemachus

                  The only evil I see is in the selfish pursuit of me and mine

                • http://www.facebook.com/people/Ali-Babba/670457795 Ali Babba

                  that because of your cognitive bias and self delusions, now totter off and get some mental health professional to commit you before you do yourself some physical harm.

                • harpo

                  Don’t you see that those on the left who achieve power are just (if not more) ruthlessly greedy, grasping and selfish as any other dictator? You really would be a gift to any despot needing a mindless thug to do his dirty work.

              • Fergus Pickering

                Good Lord, tele. You’ve flipped. Say you were drunk when you wrote this. Or is it normal in the Labour Party to be a cheerleader for poorl old Joe?

                • telemachus

                  Fergus
                  The future has to be the kind of egalitarian society seen in Russia before Yeltsin created oligarchs and starving peasants again
                  Blair showed we were electable but was absorbed by a city mentality
                  Ed Balls will drive the party the government and then the country as a whole to egalitarianism

                • http://www.facebook.com/people/Ali-Babba/670457795 Ali Babba

                  the future has to be the kind of place that locks up criminally insane totalitarian communist activists like telemachus

                • harpo

                  Ed Balls??? Not quite the same stature as Stalin, I would have thought!

                • brutale1

                  He will drive the country over a cliff more like.Again.

              • FMarion

                telemachus:
                Almost every statement, but one, that you make is a lie. And I use the word “lie” deliberately because they aren’t simply mistakes or errors. You either know they are untrue and thus are lying to us, or you have convinced yourself of them and are thus lying to yourself.
                The one statement that I give you credit for is your assertion that Stalin was a genius. He wasn’t–but I believe that he was a highly intelligent man. Evil–but intelligent. Stalin did not drag the Soviet Union out of abject poverty, Russia was rapidly developing before the murderous Bolshevik thugs took power. He didn’t create a modern society–he create a gulag. He didn’t save people from starvation–most of his victims starved to death in the famines that he personally, created. He didn’t give people hope and dignity, he continued and intensified the Leninist path of dictatorship and slavery.
                He didn’t drive fascism out of Europe. He agreed to a semi-alliance with HItler that allowed the attack on Poland; he shot many of his best officers out of paronoia; he deployed his troops in a completely incompetent manner allowing his best soldiers to be cut off in the first days of the invasion; he panicked during those days and made no decisions until some time in July 1941; he repeatedly issued crazy orders that resulted in the death and capture of hundreds of thousands of his soldiers. What saved Russia were the Russian people, backed up by the Lend Lease food and supplies that they needed.
                And at the end of the war, while the National Socialist German Workers Party was destroyed, fascism still remained in Europe–Bolshevik fascism personified by Stalin.
                Communism and Nazism are simply two types of collectivism with a common core of fascism. Both were inherently evil, and as proof of that, both deliberately murder of tens of millions of innocent people. In that regard, Stalin probably out-murdered Hitler.
                And if your views are common in the Labour party, may God protect the UK.

                • Colonel Mustard

                  Well said. And the last sentence especially. Telemachus must be one of the most repulsive ambassadors for the Labour party ever to tap a keyboard.

              • paulus

                You are entirely wrong, the reasons why the Germans provoked the Russians into war in 1914 was because they have evaluated Russian industrial output, they could not believe it. They believed they had six yrs other wise the Russians could never be beaten. As it transpired even with a communist anchor on the russian economy the germans were out numbered and out gunned by 20/1 any way. Based upon the pre war figures it would have been 200/1

                • harpo

                  It’s certainly true that the Russian economy was powering ahead before the revolution. However, the last thing the Germans wanted in 1914 was a war on two fronts, the continent muddled into a war which only the truly naive wanted.

              • http://www.facebook.com/people/Ali-Babba/670457795 Ali Babba

                telemachus you are both insane and evil

              • harpo

                Are you being serious? Is there any left!wing propaganda that you won’t swallow whole? This type of apology for fascism lost any possible legitimacy when the tanks rolled into Budapest in 1956, nearly six decades later it is really quite bizarre.

              • Colin

                Evil ?

      • Philsopinion

        ”The three main constituencies of the left are: The Thick, the Naive and the Evil.”

        How did the Left come into being? Because the ideology which you favour lead to hundreds of millions of people around the world being worked to death as serfs or wage-slaves. If your conservatism had worked for everybody instead of a tiny elite and their hangers on, there would be no left opposition would there?

        Your ideology stood in the way of every progressive change for working people around the world: the vote, women’s suffrage, pensions, universal healthcare, the right to an education, you name it, your party tried to stop it. And it will overturn it all again given half the chance.

        • Colin

          “The ideology which you favour”

          The ideology I favour is really simple: Small state, self reliance, the rule of law and respect for your fellow man. That’s it.

          I come from a part of the world, blighted by decades of deliberate neglect, perpetrated by political crooks (The Evil, in the equation, if you like). Their vile agenda is simple, keep as many people as they can, exactly where they need them – at the bottom of the heap. In economic poverty, if possible. A bonus is aspirational poverty,it fits their Evil needs even better.

        • Daniel Maris

          I agree, what we are dealing with here is very much in the Hegelian mode. First we had the industrial revolution where hundreds of millions lived out miserable, exploited lives, without the cultural comforts of the Medieval Age (religion, local loyalties, and a fairly relaxed attitude to work). Next we see the reaction to that – labour organising and becoming politically active. We’ve been through a few thesis-antithesis- synthesis moments since then (not least dealing with the fascism that grew up in opposition to communism). In Europe we are now in a new phase after a fairly stable period of synthesis – welfare democracy.

          I think we are now in a period of turmoil and need to identify the way forward. For me the way forward (you can never go back) is towards work sharing (reducing working hours), embracing new technology, bringing a halt to mass immigration, abandoning free trade dogma, and developing new social institutions (e.g. John Lewis style co-ops, new forms of banking).

    • http://twitter.com/etonmessuk etonmess

      Science is well rubbish!! Don’t get me started on this commie ‘gravity’ idea.

      That’s why tomorrow, I’m going to dive off the edge of the BT Tower to prove the Marxists wrong.

      Who’s joining me!

      • paulus

        I will join you, but im a bit tied up so ill catch you up, dont you dare disappoint me… you go off at nine and ill go at 9.30.

  • HooksLaw

    There is absolutely no mathematical, scientific evidence to prove man made global warming.
    There is no statistical evidence to show there has been any warming at all over the last 20 years.
    There is no evidence to support the notion that any such warming, man made or not, would be catastrophic.
    There is plenty of evidence to show that current measurement methodologies are significantly unreliable.

    Its sad, shocking to see science being perverted in this way. The BBC and Attenborough are the latest to be caught out parading prejudice as science. Shocking.

    • HooksLaw

      If only everything I said was met with such universal acclaim. Still I’ll take it whilst I can get it.
      The point of course is not me or you or anybody – the point is its all true.

      • http://twitter.com/etonmessuk etonmess

        Being met with universal acclaim for saying ‘science is all rubbish and that’ on the Spectator and being surprised is like getting all happy for having a round of applause by an audience of BNP members after standing up to have a go at the French. I

        • FMarion

          etonmess:
          Congratulations! You win today’s “Straw Man” award for creating a straw man and then fearlessly tearing it down!

          If you have finished admiring yourself in your mirror, however, perhaps you might want to deal with the actual point that was made, which isn’t that “science is all rubbish” but that much of the AGW argument isn’t science, isn’t supported by the evidence, and is simply politics in disguise.

          In making your counter argument, you might want to try to use what are quaintly known as verifiable “facts.” Admittedly that will take some real work and research on your part, and admittedly when you do that you might find out that many of your preconceptions are either wrong or incomplete, but it wouldn’t hurt to try. Unless, of course, you are mainly interested in politically correct posturing.

          • Latimer Alder

            @disqus_GjqNct1S6J:disqus

            You are absolutely right in what you say.

            But I hope that our friend ‘etonmess’ won’t read it and be discouraged from diving off the edge of the BT Tower as he promised.

            ‘Eton’ old buddy…we’ll all be there to cheer you on all the way down!. Right until you truly become a mess.

  • Latimer Alder

    More on Paul Nurse’s views here, where he takes issue with Nigel Lawson and his Global Warming Policy Foundation.

    Ben Pile does a fine job of pointing out the error of Nurse’s ways

    http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2013/2/19/schooling-the-royal.html

  • http://twitter.com/eric144144 Eric Smith

    Mentioning Nurse’s socialist background and failing to tell us that Stern is funded by 100 billion dollar hedge fund owner Jeremy Grantham makes this look like a a poorly researched political hit piece.

    Everything about global warming is right wing and regressive. Paul Nurse is just a slimy little chap who knows how to climb greasy poles. Do what you are told and keep your mouth shut.

    • Rhoda Klapp

      I think Mr Montford has previously had plenty to say about Grantham and the troughers from every corner of the political spectrum who have climbed on the bandwagon to fill their boots. (Mixed metaphors a speciality.) But Paul Nurse has a special responsibility which he has failed to live up to.

  • AlecM

    Maxwell’s Equations show there can be no net CO2-IR band emission from the Earth’s surface when black body GHG band thermal emission from the atmosphere annihilates surface IR. This is straightforward radiative thermal equilibrium taught to every physics-based discipline but with a twist you get from analytical spectroscopy.

    The IPCC modelling is based on a perpetual motion machine and artificial cloud data in the hind casting. Any competent professional with heat transfer knowledge can work it out but there aren’t many around, particularly in academic physics nowadays. None of the models can predict climate. There is no CO2-AGW.

    By 2020, DECC needs to have inshore ice breakers to keep northern ports open in mid winter. As for Nurse, as a non physicists he hasn’t a clue Furthermore, Socialist Nurse reportedly used to be President of the Galton Institute, until 1989
    the Eugenics’ Society.

    In 1934 the Nationalsozialistische Deutsche
    Arbeiterpartei put into action the first of the German Eugenics’ laws,
    which allowed hospitals to kill deformed babies. Late last year, this
    practice, under the Liverpool Care Pathway was stopped from being done
    in UK Hospitals under the guise of reducing suffering of the new born.

    Recognise History rhyming as extremists take over key elements of society?

    • Svanhildur

      AlecM, thank you for you retraction of your false assertion that Paul Nurse was the President of the Galton Institute, which you have now made at my prompting on James Delingpole’s Telegraph blog for 7 Nov 2013 (your retraction was made on 11 Nov).

      You first made this erroneous claim on Tallbloke’s climate blog on 15 Feb 2013, this year. A few days later, you repeated the assertion here, and your original claim on Tallbloke’s Talkshop was also picked up here, by Latimer Alder (see a few comments down).

      You made the assertion again on Bishop Hill on 19 Feb, and then again on 27 April, 13 May, 11 Aug, and most recently 19 Oct. You’ve also made the claim several times on Delingpole’s blog, the final example before your retraction being on 10 November.

      It’s good to have this cleared up.

  • 2trueblue

    As yet unproven, why do these people get so much publicity? And why are they pandered to, and fawned over? They are never interested in any other viewpoint.

  • telemachus

    This nurse chappie has lots of exciting ideas

    He wants the Government to relax immigration rules and treat scientists in the same way that foreign-born professional footballers and ministers of religion are. Members of these professions, unlike scientists, are given freer entry to live and work in the country.

    He will not be hidebound by political constraints

  • Robert_Eve

    Man made global warming is a socialist’s wet dream.

    • ReefKnot

      That’s why they will lie to defend it.

      • telemachus

        Cynicism I’ll becomes you
        Think ye not that the folks whose homes were wrecked by floods this summer are not the thin end of the wedge.
        How much do you care about your grand children

        • Dicky14

          Buy a house on a hill

          • telemachus

            You know that is a comment which goes to the root of why the reasonable need to keep an eye
            Of course I, me, can buy a house on the hill but if I prevent unnecessary heating of the planet maybe my brothers and I can all live together in the valley

            • Showusyertitz

              Are you married to your brothers?

            • 2trueblue

              If your government had sorted out the drainage problems during their 13yrs that might have helped prevent some flooding. Wasn’t it Margaret Beckett who said she would destroy agriculture during her reign as a minister?

              • telemachus

                I see the change in the jet stream was a socialist plot

                • Latimer Alder

                  Nope.

                  Just ‘weather’. We get a lot of it in the UK.

            • doubting_rich

              How can you prevent heating? What do you mean by “unnecessary”? Do you mean “unnecessary if we don’t mind condemning people to short lives grinding poverty because they are black people in Africa we don’t care about”? That is the logical result of alarmists’ irrational demands.

        • foxoles

          You think we never had floods before? Britain has always had floods.

          • HooksLaw

            Yes – its why we have flood plains.

            • Hugh

              I thought those were for building on.

          • Latimer Alder

            I was riding my bike along the towpath between Guildford and Godalming earlier today. And it was very apparent just by looking at the physical geography and the town layout that in olden times people did not build their houses – or their roads – on flood plains.

            I think it is reasonable to assume that there floods even in those far off days when CO2 was just a molecule, not an agent of death, and England prospered in the Medieval Warm Period :-)

        • Smithersjones2013

          Well if the lefts adoration of the NHS is anything to go by then opposing the left’s diagnosis and punitive prescription to cure climate change is likely to save our grandchildren’s lives.

          If anything the left’s blind faith in their ‘ability’ and creations kills people……

        • HooksLaw

          The money being wasted on global warming is going to cripple your grandchildren.
          in truth the politicians have woken up to the scam and are quietly rowing back on the issue.

        • Latimer Alder

          ‘Will no one think of the children?’ is the sure fire admission that the speaker has run out of any intellectual ammo and must rely purely on emotion.

          Might as well put a picture of kitten and a puppy dog there as well.

          Truly pathetic.

        • newminster

          I care very much for my grand-daughter, telemachus. So much so that I have no wish to saddle her with a life expectancy half mine, a society in which anything that requires the processing of crude oil or coal or other mined raw materials (which is the greater part of modern medicines not to mention most other manufactured products) is banned in order to “save it for our grandchidren”, who will in turn be expected to leave it in the earth for their grandchildren, a society without the benefit of cheap anything and one in which subsistence living — ie dire poverty — is the norm, and all in the name of a pseudo-religious belief that was of dubious accuracy when it was first launched and has steadily lost what little credibility it had.
          You cannot provide me with one single shred of empirical evidence that current weather patterns are outwith normal variation, that CO2 at any likely concentration over the next 100+ years is likely to be anything other than beneficial or that we should pay attention to the well-established mendacity of the eco-loons who have been trying to unpick the Industrial Revolution for as long as I can remember.

          • Bluesman

            Seconded. Plus, I want my grandchildren to live free – especially from statist control freaks.

          • Nicholas chuzzlewit

            I agree wholeheartedly with your well articulated and passionately held views. That said, I should warn you that Telemachus is not an individual but the rapid rebuttal unit of the Labour party. Their modus operandi is to make ludicrous comments in the hope of destroying rational debate on right of centre blog sites. Try not to take them seriously.

            • telemachus

              No
              Everything I see you post reeks of the homage to the great I am, what is mine is mine and if possible I will make what is yours mine.
              We seek fairness
              That is all

              • Showusyertitz

                We?

                • telemachus

                  The reasonable majority

              • 2trueblue

                Yep, your party has always had the attitude that ‘what is ours will be theirs’.

                • telemachus

                  No a fair society is a happy society
                  With the Tory inspired increasing social divide comes envy and divisiveness

                • http://www.facebook.com/matthew.keith1 Matthew Keith

                  Your insight into others moral makeup is flawed and therefore you explain them as others being evil. You might read Tony Haidt’s “The Righteous Mind” for an insight into why those further to the right of you seem to care about other moral issues than “Fairness” and protecting the weak.
                  These can not be the only considerations in ordering human societies, if they were the be all and end all there would be little reason to strive for success if one got preferential treatment as disadvantaged. Were it given time to come to it’s logical conclusion then a society would sow the seeds of it’s own decline.
                  Haidt’s findings seem to suggest that the further left one goes the more simplistic their “moral tastebuds” are, tasting only fainess and protecting the innocent whereas right wingers are equally as concerned with issues necesary to the long term health and survival of society.
                  My personal suspicion is that this has it’s origins in the fact that the left basically has it’s origins in unproven theory that arose, in part, as a Romantic reaction to a certain heartless Enlightenment Empiricism.
                  Fairness is not a concept recognised in nature.

              • doubting_rich

                Then why do you make comments you must know are irrelevant, if you are well-enough informed to know what constitutes fairness?

              • Gonkione

                Your idea of fairness sounds to me that you want to take what is mine and give it to someone else, that someone usually ending up with more than I had in the first place.

                • telemachus

                  Dis you share your sweets as a boy?

                • Gonkione

                  Mind your own business, and proof read before you hit the submit button.

                • harpo

                  No I had them nationalised, so I stopped doing my paper-round since there was no point working for money to buy things.

              • harpo

                Hmm, sounds like Stalin’s philosophy to me. I think you’ll find that in the Soviet Union what was taken from individuals by ‘the people’ ended up being used by top party cadres – on behalf of the workers, of course.

          • telemachus

            Spoken like George Bush

            • doubting_rich

              Spoken like the idiot Obama, whose only argument is “Bush”.

              • telemachus

                Bush who murdered thousands of Muslims in Iraq

                • Latimer Alder

                  Good to see that you are able to keep your remarks strictly on topic.

        • Fergus Pickering

          Well, not as much as I care about my children and not nearly as much as I care about me. Why should I care for posterity? What has posterity done for me. But the left are always ready to maim and slay in order to benefit the unborn. Robespierre, Lenin, Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot, oh and the Millipede.

        • Stuck-Record

          And you’ll immediately post the evidence that the floods this year were brought on by Anthropogenic Climate Warming, won’t you?

          Even the beloved (by warmists) IPCC AR5 out soon says there’s no link. Since that document is supposed to be a collation of all the worst scare-mongering that can be called science (and plenty of reports written by WWF and Greenpeace) it seems it should be on your side.

        • DaBilk

          You prefer your children to be cold and hungry in the dark…cruel.

        • Hexhamgeezer

          If you have your way my grandchildren will be in camps with your grandchildren manning the towers

          • telemachus

            correct

            • Colonel Mustard

              Note this offensive comment in the context of his drooling admiration for Stalin posted above. There are thousands like this in the Labour party. When their masks come off it is chilling.

        • Hugh

          Actually, the greenies tend to be against procreation. They seem to reckon you shouldn’t be having grandchildren.

        • Nicholas chuzzlewit

          Building an Ark worked for Noah and I bet you will claim he was the first victim of global warming.

          • telemachus

            Thinking of it an ark is a good idea
            I guess I know who I would invite along

            • Colonel Mustard

              Why do so many of your posts triumph at the prospect of death or persecution for those who disagree with you politically? Is it something to do with your admiration for Stalin and your belief that legitimate political parties you disagree with should be destroyed by “trumped up charges”?

              Your claim of “reasonableness” is bogus and you are, like so many socialists, just a nasty hypocrite.

        • doubting_rich

          What have floods got to do with the issue?

        • http://www.facebook.com/michele.keighley Michele Keighley

          You mean in the Australian floods as well? – we’ve had them much higher than that, waaaaay back in the 1880’s – plus the hottest day which the BBC trumpeted about was actually in 1923 – and all this well before Global Warming was even invented by the Club of Rome!! Natural weather patterns mate!

    • Smithersjones2013

      Of the most deranged and premature nature

    • charlesx

      To expand on Robert’s point a little, the global warming agenda hits all the buttons of the lefties like Paul Nurse who predominate in academia and the media. The “blame” lies all with big business, capitalism, western society, oil companies and of course the USA. The “victims” are supposedly people in poor countries (even though we are told that warming has more of an effect at the earth’s poles.) The “solutions” require global government intervention, restrictions of freedoms and halting industrial growth. The whole subject seems to have been concocted to satisfy perfectly the political agenda.
      It shows a remarkable lack of self-awareness for Nurse to be accusing those who question global warming of political motivation.

      • HooksLaw

        The oil companies are profiting from the scam as well.
        It all began with the Rio Summit and the Marxist Canadian UN apparatchik Maurice Strong.

    • Bluesman

      And like all socialist dreams, its bollocks.

    • iain davenport

      I am a firm believer in climate change. After all it has been going on since the earth was first created and there is no denying it

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