Climate Change!

Should you squeeze the toothpaste tube in the middle or from the end?
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steveo73
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Re: Climate Change!

Post by steveo73 » Fri Jan 20, 2017 5:39 pm

bryan wrote:
7Wannabe5 wrote:I think the good news is that every time I try to trace up the system from me, I find that the people who should be concerned and taking action, are concerned and taking action.
Ditto. I am quite happy with China's momentum here, especially bringing down the cost of photovoltaics.

@steveo73, I mostly wonder what your motivation/incentive is for taking this side of the debate? I don't mind listening to "climate change science" sceptics so long as they make sense because certainly the other side of the aisle is guilty of misleading the public, in some ways, and both sides should be heard until such time as the science is better settled. However, your latest 10 point list is extremely misleading. Your facts are more dishonest than, say, @jacobs facts. So, what may I ask is your motivation/incentive? (@jacob's seems pretty clear given this whole ERE thing).
I don't get this. I provide facts. They can't be dishonest. Why do this ? I find this a little frustrating. My facts are freaken spot on. I provide links to reputable scientists. I describe the real facts and the real science. There was an earlier post stating that CO2 increases warmth just like a flashlight or something that heats up something or other. That is factually completely untrue. Debating these types of points to me is amazing. I wonder if people are really that dumb ? Is that the case or is it just a political viewpoint that is so extreme that the facts don't matter ? It's one of the two. I suppose it could be that people are completely uneducated on the topic. I think that the uneducated part is definitely true. I haven't heard on this thread I think one good scientific argument that AGW is real.

As for my motivations. I answered this earlier. I studied the topic at university and I've always found it fascinating. I continue to keep myself informed about it.

Honestly I don't understand why the AGW proponents/alarmists take the high moral ground here. I think if anything the reverse is true.

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Gilberto de Piento
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Re: Climate Change!

Post by Gilberto de Piento » Fri Jan 20, 2017 7:40 pm

As for my motivations. I answered this earlier. I studied the topic at university and I've always found it fascinating. I continue to keep myself informed about it.
Steveo also said he has a lot of time on his hands. I think he's just bored and likes to argue.

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Re: Climate Change!

Post by black_son_of_gray » Fri Jan 20, 2017 8:11 pm

@steveo73: I'm wondering, because you emphasized that you are "extremely well educated" on the topic, and also that others are 1) self-delusional with their politics or biases or 2) just dumb/uneducated... could you please fill me in as to what you specifically did to become so enlightened about climate change?

For example, could you provide more details about your university studies or what your routine is to keep informed?

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bryan
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Re: Climate Change!

Post by bryan » Fri Jan 20, 2017 9:14 pm

By "dishonest facts" I mean of course the application of facts (often statistics) in a dishonest way (to mis-represent or confuse the state of things, in this case). Again, I think both sides are guilty but your ten point list left me really scratching my head as to their pertinence to the topic.

> There was an earlier post stating that CO2 increases warmth just like a flashlight or something that heats up something or other. That is factually completely untrue.

I hadn't read that but I could see the correctness if the post was simply an attempt to simplify the explanation of what the greenhouse effect is (i.e. that the "flashlight" was the sun and within the flashlights beam next to each other were two identical enclosures with a thermal probe inside each, the only difference being what gaseous masses were inside the sphere). Of course if people are suggesting the primary heating of the planet's surface in recent years is a result of more CO2 giving off radiation...

What in particular do you find fascinating on the topic of climate change that keeps you so engaged?

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Re: Climate Change!

Post by ducknalddon » Sat Jan 21, 2017 6:59 am

Gilberto de Piento wrote:
As for my motivations. I answered this earlier. I studied the topic at university and I've always found it fascinating. I continue to keep myself informed about it.
Steveo also said he has a lot of time on his hands. I think he's just bored and likes to argue.
I don't think we are posting here to convince steveo, rather for other people who may come across this thread, who will see some vague postings on one side of the argument and a lot of reasoned facts on the other. I doubt there are many people who approach this with an open mind would come out thinking climate science is bunk so it has been worth participating.

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Gilberto de Piento
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Re: Climate Change!

Post by Gilberto de Piento » Sat Jan 21, 2017 3:43 pm

I don't think we are posting here to convince steveo, rather for other people who may come across this thread, who will see some vague postings on one side of the argument and a lot of reasoned facts on the other. I doubt there are many people who approach this with an open mind would come out thinking climate science is bunk so it has been worth participating.
I completely agree, and said the same thing back a few pages.

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Re: Climate Change!

Post by steveo73 » Sat Jan 21, 2017 3:48 pm

bryan wrote:By "dishonest facts" I mean of course the application of facts (often statistics) in a dishonest way (to mis-represent or confuse the state of things, in this case). Again, I think both sides are guilty but your ten point list left me really scratching my head as to their pertinence to the topic.

> There was an earlier post stating that CO2 increases warmth just like a flashlight or something that heats up something or other. That is factually completely untrue.

I hadn't read that but I could see the correctness if the post was simply an attempt to simplify the explanation of what the greenhouse effect is (i.e. that the "flashlight" was the sun and within the flashlights beam next to each other were two identical enclosures with a thermal probe inside each, the only difference being what gaseous masses were inside the sphere). Of course if people are suggesting the primary heating of the planet's surface in recent years is a result of more CO2 giving off radiation...

What in particular do you find fascinating on the topic of climate change that keeps you so engaged?
I don't understand why you would be scratching your head with the points that I raised. They are factual. The point regarding the flashlight was a long long way from the truth. It's the AGW proponents who consistently use dodgy facts. They can't even face the fact that their models aren't working and then they state they are using science. Anyone who believes in the scientific method has to see that this is crazy stuff.

I find the topic fascinating because the evidence is so poor and yet the political clout/alarmist beliefs are so strong.

A couple of points:-

1, There is some truth I like arguing. The point is that it has to be something I find interesting.
2. I have the reasoned facts on my side and it's not close. I've provided a tonne of links on this thread to well reasoned arguments. When it comes to the alarmists there has been some terrible facts laid out. I suggest you go and check this by re-reading through the thread.

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BRUTE
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Re: Climate Change!

Post by BRUTE » Sat Jan 21, 2017 4:54 pm

sometimes brute wonders if there is an actual, objective truth, or if it's all subjective.

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Re: Climate Change!

Post by steveo73 » Sun Jan 22, 2017 6:12 pm

BRUTE wrote:sometimes brute wonders if there is an actual, objective truth, or if it's all subjective.
I think that there is but in a complex system like climate and with the knowledge that we now have there isn't a way to definitively conclude that AGW is a complete non-issue or possibly an issue.

The problem is that people want a black and white answer that the facts definitely do not support.

I also think that AGW ties into some self-loathing of people and the human race in general. It's the theory that the Earth is ending. This has been around forever. For some reason people love this stuff. AGW is giving them a justification for this and they buy it without utilising clear reasoning.

I've come into this debate/discussion from a viewpoint of utilising facts to draw reasonable conclusions. The facts need to be based on science. I still stand by this approach however AGW is not a scientific rational discussion. It's a political/sociological debate and it should be viewed from the basis that people have an urge to believe that human impact on the Earth is inherently bad. This is the predominant belief of AGW alarmists. It isn't based on science.

I think in time the science though will improve. It's just going to take a lot of time.

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BRUTE
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Re: Climate Change!

Post by BRUTE » Sun Jan 22, 2017 6:56 pm

yea, brute hates that Malthusian bullshit ("humans suck"). humans DO suck, but so does the earth, and especially nature. if humans create an extinction-level event, they should at least have the balls to take everything else down with them.

(only a little bit joking, brute does actually hate Malthusianism).

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Re: Climate Change!

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Mon Jan 23, 2017 7:08 am

Human beings are a critically important keystone species. IMO, that is the objective ecological perspective. My subjective perspective is that human beings are one of my favorite species because they are the only one capable of providing me with decent conversation.

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Re: Climate Change!

Post by BRUTE » Mon Jan 23, 2017 10:39 am

they aight

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Re: Climate Change!

Post by jacob » Mon Jan 23, 2017 11:20 am

https://phys.org/news/2017-01-psycholog ... -news.html

This is an interesting take/new approach to understanding how facts and alternative facts enter human brains using concepts from virology. Someone who has read at least a book or two combined with some scientific background(*) is somewhat inoculated. This is likely why scientists and intellectuals usually call for "more education" as the solution to misinformation. However, this "more education"-strategy only works a small fraction of humans, so what about the other 95%+ who "don't read books". The problem is that it takes time to read a book.

According to this study, alternative facts cancel out objective facts, if they are presented like this ...

A says: "Here is _objectivefact"
B says: "No, here is _alternativefact"
A says: "That's a lie. Here's _objectivefact"
B says: "No, that's a lie. Here's _alternative fact"

... and so on and so forth.

You see an example of this process in the Facebook's newsfeed, twitter feeds, ... and in this thread above. Some people really enjoy this process.

It also happens when journalists lazily figure they can just present "both sides" (the earth is spherical <-> the earth is flat) and then let viewers decide on the actual shape figuring they've done their job in presenting some good TV-compatible material with two people arguing with a moderator in the middle chair. What happens in humans who lack the intellectual immune system for a particular field of expertise is that alternative facts cancel out facts and vice versa. A side-effect is that other humans think the matter is unsettled/being debated.

Obviously, this kind of immune-deficiency can be exploited by those who provide alternative facts, i.e.

The black hat play book:
1) Provide an alternative fact whenever a fact is provided. Not just to cancel out the fact but also the maintain the idea that the subject is unsettled.
2) Whenever asked to back up or otherwise explain the alternative fact in detail, just ignore the request and provide some other unrelated alternative fact.
3) Repeat ad nauseum.

Now, traditionally, the recommended way to counter misinformation was to provide a detailed counter-argument to each made-up assertion. The problem with that is that it requires the audience to read and think + it plays right into the black hat book because they can simply make up something else. It's much more effort to defend than to attack when the target is a mostly uneducated mind. Figure most of the audience won't easily be able to tell the difference between sound theory and made up assertions. Non-experts can't tell a difference of quality. Those with a bit more experience will be able to tell [meta-level] if one side is composed of random lists of kettle logic or whether there's more structure behind it. However, the random person who doesn't really pay attention (because tl;dr) won't easily be able to tell the difference between someone who claims to be an expert and someone who actually is an expert. In particular, the random person will inclined to side with whoever is more relateable/etc. Rhetorics matter a lot to a layman audience.

(*) Where the standard is a good deal higher than taking an elective class twenty+ years ago or having watched a lot of youtube videos.

Therefore assuming that the other party is actually willing to play by the scientific rules is a mistake. (Easily countered by them just saying something like "I've laid out my argument in a scientific manner, and ... here are my alternative facts". The black hat book works almost as well on the meta-level as in "I may not be a real doctor but I play one on youtube" (and that's good enough for some people).

So apparently, what has actually turned out to work (see link) based on real testing on real people rather than what intellectuals think should work when it comes to learning is to pre-inoculate people whenever one makes a statement. You can see this strategy being applied when for example facebook is talking about tagging fake news with a cute piece of warning sign graphics.

What does this mean in terms of virology?

It means that pretty much every single piece of publicly available research needs to come with a disclaimer. Either a general one like "Some politically motivated think tanks use misleading tactics to try to convince the public that <general subject>" or a highly specific one involving details, e.g. "A common but misleading objection is to say that temperatures haven't increased for 16 years. This is done by only showing the most recent two decades and and cherry-picking the starting year as 1998 (an unusually strong El Nino year with high surface temperatures) while deliberately ignoring that 15 warmest years recorded in human existence have all happened in the past 18 years or showing a longer timeline. Another misleading tactic is to only consider tropospheric data (2.3% of the heat absorption) while ignoring the continuously increasing ocean temperature that accounts for 93% of the heat absorption as well as the melting cryosphere."

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Re: Climate Change!

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Mon Jan 23, 2017 11:59 am

@jacob: So, you are saying that the most effective method is to figure out what alternative fact or exception to the rule etc. etc. might be offered, and then include it in a clause prior to your statement? For instance, "Since most human beings are not built like Arnold Schwarzenegger or Iskra Lawrence, BMI is well-correlated to various health risks associated with visceral fat deposits."

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Re: Climate Change!

Post by jacob » Mon Jan 23, 2017 1:06 pm

@7wb5 - Okay, you might have missed the news cycle over the past 48 hours?!

"Alternative fact" as in belonging to an "alternate universe" but not to this universe. So it has nothing to do with exceptions to the rule ... or outliers to the dataset or attempts to explain details or increase accuracy. Rather it concerns statements about the dataset that say that the dataset is something completely different than what it is in reality.

The Disclaimer method only applies in fields where there is an existing [manufactured] controversy in which there is a list of [widely believed] "alternative facts" than can be demonstrated to be false. Read the link I posted or the last paragraph in my post for an example.

In other words ... if there is a "Snopes" (or equivalent) article wherein some statement about X that has been labeled False ... then [the existence of] that... is a highly pertinent piece of information that needs to be included in your discussion of X.

This method is much more effective than just talking about X and then eventually getting into a back and forth debate about X.

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Re: Climate Change!

Post by bryan » Mon Jan 23, 2017 2:06 pm

Ignoring current events, where lies are presented as "alternative facts", one could say that "the pint glass is half empty" is an alternative fact to "the pint glass is half full."

Or if you have a pint glass and claim that it is half full (the liquid comes up about half the height of the glass) but someone else claims it is _not_ half full since it clearly does not contain one-half pint of liquid. Who is right? Both have the facts on their side but the statements of hypotheses were not narrow enough, thus it is up for debate as to who's fact is more correct and who's fact is "alternative". Maybe the bartender will be the one to judge, and set the precedent, for what a half-full pint glass looks like (oh look, common law).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alternative. Alt-rock is still rock, alt-comics are still comics. Alt-news is still news.

Both are facts but either could be used towards some ends.

And to bring recent events back into the fold, the lies from US gov have simply been taken to a new level. I guess we could have expected as much considering the lies presented as facts on social media leading up to the election and "fake news," but the US gov hasn't had such obvious lies akin to showing us a picture of a dog and telling us it's a cat.

I'd never considered an alt-fact to be an alternative universe fact :lol:

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Re: Climate Change!

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Mon Jan 23, 2017 3:10 pm

@jacob: Gotcha. Seems a lot less fun than old school lively debate. Sigh.

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Re: Climate Change!

Post by steveo73 » Mon Jan 23, 2017 3:55 pm

Is is really possible to simplify the AGW alarmists argument to being about people who can't read books ? I personally don't believe that this is the case. I think that alarmists can read. I think they just choose to ignore the facts.

I think that there is also insufficient and poor data coupled with limited science. I think when you add this fact to my theory on a broad section of human beings wanting to believe that humans are ecologically bad then we have this political/sociological movement.

I bet it'd be pretty easy to disprove the theory regarding AGW alarmists not reading books. I accept that they can't look at the facts and if we were using the scientific method they would have to concede that the theory is really looking extremely shaky. For the record I think that is already occurring. I linked to an article by an AGW proponent who clearly stated that the idea that extreme weather events were occurring could not be validated by the scientific data/maturity that we currently have.

I think the alarmist theories that a lot of people hold too are really just from people that only want to believe in my theory about mankind being an ecological disaster. I don't think many scientists are taking the alarmist line anymore. I think all they are going to state is the precautionary principle. So I think in essence it's not as bad as some want to make out.

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Re: Climate Change!

Post by jacob » Mon Jan 23, 2017 4:21 pm

@bryan - Yes, one could say that but that was obviously not how I used to word and it does not relate the problem being discussed above either, nor does it relate to why it's considered such a problem in current events.

If the pint glass is half empty and people can go and look at the glass and see how much water is in there, then an alternative fact to saying that it's half empty/half full (any reasonable person would consider this to be the same thing) is to say that "the pint glass is completely full" or "empty"---which is indisputably wrong to anyone looking. The problem at issue here is not one of nitpicking for lack of word definitions either; something which would be an entirely sophomoric discussion. If that was the problem, one can easily ask for clarification, for example:

Fact: "The boiling point of water is 100 degrees at one atmosphere"
Question: "Fahrenheit or Celcius?"
Clarification: "Celcius"
Question: "Whose atmosphere? Earth or Mars"
Clarification: "Earth or 101325Pa"
Question: "What do you mean by BP?"
Clarification: "When the water turns to steam"
Question: "More exactly?"
Clarification: "When the vapor pressure of the liquid equals the surrounding pressure"

While one may ask for ever more clarification, it seems that at some point there would be sufficient agreement on the definitions. Then reasonable people (<- people using reason as a heuristic) should be able to agree. Actually, I would rather that people "just be adults about it" and get on the same page about basic conventions (like what words mean in the dictionary or common parlance) sooner rather than later. I think it should be possible to infer the technical context based on the 'Fact' as stated based on that alone ... so we avoid wasting time on the technical definitions because ultimately they don't matter to the 'Fact' as stated. IOW ... if it's not clear wrt this 'Fact' that I'm operating under the metric system on planet Earth ... then you're almost surely just being argumentative for the sole purpose of being argumentative.

Alternative fact: "I agree with all the clarifications but I say the boiling point is 700 degrees or infinitely tremendous".

To which a reasonable person would ask: "What planet are you on?" because it's clearly not this one. There's just no way to get 700 under the constraints/definitions specified above; because we will all share a common reality sooner or later.

The point here is that "alt-news" is not news insofar that news refers to things that actually happened. If news becomes redefined to refer to random stories one comes across ... then sure, alt-news is news, but then "news" under the new definition (made up stories) doesn't really mean the same as news under the old definition (things that actually happened). In other words, alt-news is properly classified under "entertainment" ... it has nothing to do with news classified as information even if "news" shares four letters with "alt-news".

Same deal with the word fact... EITHER fact means "a statement that can be verified with experiments or another commonly accepted method" (like the boiling point of water) OR fact just means "random statements that anyone can make which doesn't need true or in any way connected to reality" which pretty much renders the word fact meaningless. Those two are definitely not equivalent under any measure. Very different standards apply.

Anyone who thinks reality is irrelevant eventually suffers the consequences of that belief when the real world catches up.

The very reason that everybody is now talking about "alternative facts" is of course that some people have used the word "fact" in the latter sense a little too much/freely. Therefore some other people now desire to create a new word to distinguish the two [very different] concepts. Whereas yet other people now think the two concepts are the same. I expect the last two groups to further separate/stop talking to each other going forward. At that point each will be in their own boat but still on the same sea. It'll be interesting to see how that goes. A lot of people are starting to wash their hands of the other side on both sides. DSKla's rightly, I think, pointed out that the policy-recommendations in Mann's book were half-assed. I kinda agree with that. There's almost no way that we're actually going to achieve the 2C goals that are being pushed. In between the physics and the politicians (the executive summary), things get translated into what politicians think they can sell... there's a gap between where the world is going in reality and where it's willing to go politically. So the people trying for reconciliation is understandably some of the more optimistic amongst the highly informed ones thinking that politics will eventually snap into reality somehow. The rest are more inclined to look out for #1 being disgusted with the whole process---Which is also where I side/plan for.

@7wb5 - In the old days there were a lot more checks and balances demanding that people "had to be at least this smart to ride this ride". Therefore debates were more stratified ensuring that people were interacting/debating with people more or less within their own [intellectual] "weight class". Previously, in order to discuss science at a high or current level, you pretty much had to be a senior grad-student or beyond because it took that long to work your way into the required level of complexity (3000+ hours)---and you'd be talking to profs and other grads. Undergraduates would discuss it at a mid level usually lagging 2-3 decades behind current research because it hadn't made it into the textbooks yet. (So 100 hours/class) They'd talk to other undergrads, etc. and indulgent profs. High-schoolers would talk popularized non-fiction (Brian Greene and string theory anyone?) with lots of opinion substituting for equations or scientific arguments (resembling this thread---the original climate thread was slightly better but still focused on repeated debunking of bs arguments some of which were decades old, the record being just over a century :? :roll: ) (10 hours). And laymen just had a vague idea that the subject existed (10 minutes -- 1hr).

Now, social media has connected everybody with everybody. And google et al has made it easy to search for an opinion or factoid given a few keywords and appear that one knows what one is talking about, at least to non-experts (meta or domain). So discussion became open-weight, at least for a while (~1985-2015 ... from 100% in the early days to 0% towards the end --- about one generation's worth, specifically GenX/Boomer who were the two dominant species on the internet in these years). In my case, I eventually grew frustrated with this. On the other hand, that was a new skill to learn. I've started a few threads in the past 2-3 years about Mt Stupid, Dunning-Kruger, etc. which mostly reflected this learning process for me. So the idea was/is pretty much to quickly learn who you're talking to when lacking the old sorting framework. I have a system with two axes now. On one axis, I have expertise from -1000 to 10000+ hrs---I also allow for negative-hours now in the sense that the person may be actively misinformed having spent time learning things that are wrong. The other axis ranges from propensity of or for "learning" to "debating". Just like always, assessing where someone is makes interacting with them much more effective because one knows how to talk to them ... what they respond to, what they ignore, etc. I asses the Wheaton level ... both in terms of willingness to change one's mind (learn vs debate) and technical acumen. If it's too far removed ... I ignore. I don't think I'm the only one who figured this out. In fact, I think I was rather slow at it. It's not like debate or scientific discourse disappeared ... it's just when it comes to climate science, it's not found on this forum. It's found elsewhere. The level of debate in this thread so far is much closer to the climate science analogy of whether water ever boils at all if it's heated far enough. Or equivalently if everybody from planet Krypton can fly.

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Re: Climate Change!

Post by bryan » Mon Jan 23, 2017 5:06 pm

Well, I stopped watching/reading "news" (as defined "at some point there would be sufficient agreement on the definitions") years ago because I discovered it was (not-so-entertaining) entertainment...

This refinement/clarification clearly does not happen at large. I agree it could (I did with some friends recently around what they mean when they say "Nazi punching is good/bad") but it mostly doesn't since it gets lost in the noise of snap judgements and ephemeral views.

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Re: Climate Change!

Post by BRUTE » Tue Jan 24, 2017 1:22 am

7Wannabe5 wrote:Since most human beings are not built like Arnold Schwarzenegger or Iskra Lawrence, BMI is well-correlated to various health risks associated with visceral fat deposits.
somewhat strange examples - the Austrian Oak was the prime example of anabolic steroid abuse in his time, adding absurd amounts of muscle mass at extremely low body fat. Iskra Lawrence is not particularly muscular, and has pretty high body fat levels. brute doesn't know her height/weight, but would be surprised if she wasn't in the overweight BMI category, and not because of surplus muscle.

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Re: Climate Change!

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Tue Jan 24, 2017 7:55 am

I wrote:
Since most human beings are not built like Arnold Schwarzenegger or Iskra Lawrence, BMI is well-correlated to various health risks associated with visceral fat deposits.


Brute replied: somewhat strange examples - the Austrian Oak was the prime example of anabolic steroid abuse in his time, adding absurd amounts of muscle mass at extremely low body fat. Iskra Lawrence is not particularly muscular, and has pretty high body fat levels. brute doesn't know her height/weight, but would be surprised if she wasn't in the overweight BMI category, and not because of surplus muscle.
Right. The estimation of internal central body fat deposits provided by BMI is limited by the fact that it assumes uniform distribution of mass over height squared. It was developed as a tool for population studies, not for use in evaluation of individual risk, because it is so simplistic, it is "stupider" than information that can readily be gathered by simple visual inspection of an individual human. It is not a metric like blood pressure which can reveal a truly hidden useful piece of data for an individual. Waist-to-height ratio or waist-to-hip ratio are better gauges of central body fat risk because they are inherent of one more degree of complexity.
Last edited by 7Wannabe5 on Wed Jan 25, 2017 4:49 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Climate Change!

Post by BRUTE » Tue Jan 24, 2017 10:30 am

example far fetched; how would brute talk with Iskra sitting on his face?

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Re: Climate Change!

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Tue Jan 24, 2017 11:58 am

888

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Gilberto de Piento
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Re: Climate Change!

Post by Gilberto de Piento » Sat Feb 11, 2017 10:19 am

Recently I heard a podcast about the parallels between the fossil fuel industry creating doubt about climate change and the tobacco industry creating doubt about the dangers of smoking. There's a good summary at the link below, including:
- secretly funding biased science
- documentation of plans to sow doubt
- forged letters to congress
- industry pretending to be grassroots groups

http://www.ucsusa.org/sites/default/fil ... ssiers.pdf

Obviously the source is a group that is against climate change but I think this is the most detailed summary I've seen and includes documentation.

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