- Jan 1, 1970
What strawman? A straw man is a component of an argument and is an
informal fallacy based on misrepresentation of an opponent's position.
How does citing a petition signed by 31,487 alleged scientists
constitute a misrepresentation of YOUR position.
**It's a strawman, in the sense that you were previously referring to a
completely different situation, concerning 1,000 scientists. 30,000
scientists, which do not necessarily have any experience, knowledge or
interest in climatology is pretty much irrelevant, given that there are
MILLIONS of science degree holders. In fac, 30,000 is a drop in the
ocean, by comparison.
No never answered my question. What would you consider to be the
minimum qualifications necessary to have an opinion in the matter?
**ANYONE is entitled to an opinion. Regardless of educational
qualifications. 30,000 people who have no experience, nor knowledge of
climatology means nothing. The Oregon Petition is an exercise in
college degree? Ability to understand the data massaging? Carnal
knowledge of statistics?
Incidentally, the last time I checked, representative democracy only
requires that the voter be able to read (but not necessarily
understand) the ballot, and sign their own name. There's no minimum
standard for intelligence, logic, political experience, or even that
they understand English. If the founding fathers wanted the
government run by academics, they would have done things quite
My guess is at least half the list of signers are bogus.
**Your guess is duly noted. I have no idea how many are bogus. I know
that at least one MD is dead and is still on the list. I don't know how
many more are dead, bogus or just disinterested bystanders.
That's not a
wild guess. That's from experience working with the local elections
officials counting petitions and ballots (before computers made voter
fraud easy. At the time, a typical local ballot petition would
require about 25,000 valid signatures. There was not enough time or
resources to check everyone, so we picked out a few "sheets" of
signatures, each of which had either 20 or 40 signatures. Based on
the ratio of valid to signatures on a sheet, we extrapolated the total
number of valid signatures. If it exceeded 25,000, the petition was
deemed valid. If low or close, we grabbed another few more random
sheets and did it again. From experience, at least half the
signatures were bogus. On politically volatile issues, which tends to
invite fraud, we were lucky to get 20% of the signatures valid.
**For the most part, here in Australia, dead people don't get to vote.
They are removed from the electoral rolls.
So, using 20-50% valid, would 6,300 to 15,700 valid signatures be
**Dunno and I don't care. 30,000 people who have no experience of, nor
interest in climatology means squat.
**It is sufficient to prove that an ALLEGED 30,000 scientists (out of a
total of MILLIONS) have ALLEGEDLY signed a petition. That is all it
means. Nothing more, nothing less.
Apparently, you haven't had much dealings with the medical profession.
**I've had a little.
My experiences have been that much of the medical profession leans
towards useless procedures, defensive medicine, and padding the bill.
**Then you have several issues:
1) A nonsensically expensive medical system, which is geared to provide
huge profits to large corporations (HMOs), that has almost no control by
2) No trustworthy local doctor.
Where I live, I am able to rely upon the same doctor I've used for the
last 30 years. He has never steered me wrong and has always provided
honest accurate and economical advice. Moreover, like many fair skinned
Aussies, the most serious problem I've had in my life, has been the
appearance of pre-cancerous skin problems. My doctor has a very keen eye
(gained by hard years of study and 40 years' of experience) and has
treated many of these growths by freezing or small surgical procedures.
A goodly number have been on my back. A hit with the liquid nitrogen or
the scalpal and I am back at work, losing a mere 40-odd minutes from my
day and, maybe $20.00 from my wallet. Can't complain about life-saving
procedures at that price. All your internet searches would be worth
diddly under such circumstances. The system we have here in Australia is
tightly regulated by the government and HMOs do not have the ability to
gouge consumers in the way they are in the US. Last time I looked,
Australia's health system cost the nation around 9% of GDP, whilst the
US system cost the US people around 13% of GDP. Even better, our system
is truly egalitarian. Some years ago, Australia's richest man (now
deceased) suffered a major heart attack and was rushed to hospital. The
surgeon who operated on the man was the best in the counbry. The very
next day, that same surgeon may well have operated on a homeless person,
or a plumber, electrician, whatever. Everyone in the nation has
(theoretically, at least) access to the best (life-saving) health care.
At low cost.
If I want to know something about medicine, I will ask the medical
profession for their opinion, do my own research, and then decide for
myself. Throwing oneself to the mercy of the medical profession is
**Like I said: You have a serious problem with the medical system where
Same with climate experts. These are often the same people that can't
predict tomorrows weather successfully
* No they're not, though SOME are.
* Weather prediction has reached quite a high standard of accuracy.
Somewhere around 90% for 24 hours. 80% for 48 hours and so on.
, but are expected to do the
same 100 years in the future.
**Not the same thing. Weather prediction is not the same as predicting
climate changes in 100 years.
Yes, I know that there's a difference
between weather prediction and climate research, but if you look
carefully, you'll see that almost everyone with weather experience is
now also considered an expert on climate (because that is where the
funding goes). Passing our economy and our lifestyle into the hands
of the climatologist is equally dangerous. Following their lead, we
may solve or delay global warming, but at what price?
**If you had taken the time to read IPCC AR4, you would already have the
answer to that question. The risk is that the cost of inaction may be
impossible to fund.
Please show me where it has been discredited?
**Sure: First off, here are the precise words that the alleged
scientists allegedly signed their names to:
"There is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of carbon
dioxide, methane, or other greenhouse gasses is causing or will, in the
foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth's atmosphere
and disruption of the Earth's climate."
Pretty 'rubbery' stuff. No outright claims that the climatologists are
wrong. Just a claim that "catastrophic heating" will not occur.
Here is another claim from the delightful liars at the Oregon Petition:
"Predictions of global warming are based on computer climate modeling, a
branch of science still in its infancy. The empirical evidence actual
measurements of Earth's temperature shows no man-made warming trend.
Indeed, over the past two decades, when CO2 levels have been at their
highest, global average temperatures have actually cooled slightly."
These words constitute an outright lie. And here is what Scientific
"Scientific American took a random sample of 30 of the 1,400 signatories
claiming to hold a Ph.D. in a climate-related science. Of the 26 we were
able to identify in various databases, 11 said they still agreed with
the petition---one was an active climate researcher, two others had
relevant expertise, and eight signed based on an informal evaluation.
Six said they would not sign the petition today, three did not remember
any such petition, one had died, and five did not answer repeated
messages. Crudely extrapolating, the petition supporters include a core
of about 200 climate researchers---a respectable number, though rather a
small fraction of the climatological community."
I did some digging and
all I could find was a bunch of unsubstantiated rubbish and word
games, such as:
If you use the same criteria that the elections commission uses for
petitions, and samples the signatories, the petition would be anywhere
from 20-50% valid, which I consider good enough.
**It may be, but it is still irrelevant, unreliable and nonsensical. As
I have stated, ad nauseum: It doesn't matter what a an orthopaedic
surgeon (allegedly) claims about global warming. That surgeon has not
published any credible science, relating to AGW anywhere that I can
find. Can you?
I have a calculator, with a substantial collection of known bugs. Duz
that make the calculator useless?
**ONE bug can make a calculator utterly useless. It depends on the bug.
I just selected a name that would be easy for me to research. No other
reason. The results I turned up were disturbing. Not conclusive. Just a
reminder that the Oregon Petition is just that: An informal petition of
Of course not. Even if half the buttons were broken, there would
still be enough functionality left to make the calculator usable. Same
with a petition. Even if half the signatures are bogus, the remainder
is sufficient to make the petition useful.
Please show me where it has been discredited. Finding a few invalid
names does not magically discredit the entire petition.
**Indeed. What it does show is the lack of rigorous standards applied to
how the petition was conducted.
You avoided my question.
**No, I did not. By ANYONE, I mean ANYONE. Science degrees or not.
Precisely what qualifications do you believe
are required in order to have an opinion on the subject?
**None, whatsoever. I believe I already clearly stated that.
mean an uninformed opinion, but rather one that you would consider to
**Appropriate education in some form of climate science is appropriate.
Something like atmospheric physics, for instance.
Do they need to have a degree? Experience in
writing papers? Well known in their specialty? Involved in weather
or climate in some manner?
Wisdom does not come from experts. It comes from those who question
**Not always. Sometimes, idiots need to shut the **** up and listen.
So, you only listen to those who completely agree with your values?
**Absolutely not. However, ANYONE that embraces Creationism has serious
problems with their ability to think critically. Critical thinking is
essential for any scientific discipline. Ever wondered why we no longer
see major scientific advances from societies mired in religious
I ran background checks on my favorite scientists, politicians, and
engineers, I would find a very mixed bag of religions, party
affiliations, philosophies, and mystical practices. The mistake
you're making is that you're judging the person, not the content.
**Partly, yes. Spencer, however, has been proven wrong many times.
has fought many revolutions and wars in the name of freedom of speech,
thought, religion, philosophy, and economics.
**And I support a person's right to be an idiot. Spencer is an idiot. Or
do you, too, embrace Spencer's idiotic religious compulsions?
Now that almost anyone
has the right to an opinion, without risk of official retaliation, you
offer the principle that only those that are academically qualified,
politically correct, and follow the correct religions, are considered
**Of course. ANYONE who embraces Creationism is a fool and may be
summarily disregarded, as a serious scientist.
I'm not sure what you mean by "target". Assassination is not a useful
method of argumentation.
**"Target", in the sense that he is easy to dispute, due to his
preference of religius belef over science.
Some do, most don't. One of the reasons you see a large number of
names as authors on global warming papers is that the effort usually
involves a team of specialists. Sometimes its in collaboration with
other climatologists, but usually some of the names are statisticians,
professional writers, proof readers, and editors.
Not directly. Try reading the book "Disconnect" by Devra Davis:
The author is an epidemiologist, and one of the authors of the IPCC
working group III (Mitigation) report.
In her book, she details how some cell phone research reports were
allegedly edited to conform to the position of those paying the bills.
By the time the various reports were published, they had allegedly
been edited sufficiently that even the authors would have difficulty
recognizing their own work. In one case, the summary and conclusion
were changed to show a result different from what the data
demonstrated. These anecdotes were meant to alarm the readers, but is
really a fair description of how things are done in research.
**YOu would need to prove that the science presented in the IPCC reports
has been seriously altered from the original work, to make your claim stick.