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30 March 2010



Ever since I started blogging in August of 2004 and started supporting the idea that global warming was the result of natural cycles, I have been sparing with Anna Haynes. Initially as an unknown person, with just a obscure avatar for a name, then eventually as Anna Haynes.

She came and went on my NC Media Watch blog over the years, challenging me to prove I was not funded by evil "big oil companies." When she could not respond to my scientific questions, I was soon banned from posting on her blog NC Focus, especially after following up with global warming facts for her consideration. Soon she post a notice there were no skeptics allowed at NC Focus blog.

Recently she started stalking Ellen and I at our local coffee shop hang outs. We were forced to change our regular routine to avoid Anna. Then she started asking personal questions about my family in posts on NC Media Watch. Other Media Watch readers thought this was another form of stalking. Finally, when I would not respond to her directly, she started calling our house, asking why my family supported global warming.

Still not satisfying with my responses she started attacking SESF which I am a Board Member and currently the Executive Director. Why? For what purpose? She had made queries to the State Attorney General's office and the Internal Revenue Service several years earlier. Neither agency could find any reason for her queries. SESF had meet all state and federal requirement as a qualified non-profit organization.

Anna's stalking history indicates to me that she needs some professional help in resolving her obsession to prove that SESF and its Boards of Directors are being funded by oil companies to be global warming skeptics. Her obsession has become so pervasive that she is intruding into the personal live of our family and friends. This is unacceptable behavior. If you are a friend of Anna Haynes please council her to seek some professional help with this obsession.

Martin Light

On Tuesday afternoon, March 16th, Ms. Haynes called me at my home to interrogate me about CABPRO (California Association of Business, Property and Resource Owners). I spent a few minutes answering Ms. Haynes' questions which appeared to be biased towards a direction that clearly showed she had not done her homework prior to calling me. She was very confused as to what CABPRO's legal status is and thought it her right to access privileged information about CABPRO. Ms. Haynes said she had driven by CABPRO's office 5-6 times in days prior when it was not open and therefore found it necessary to call me at my home. Ms. Haynes' negative opinions about CABPRO are protected by the First Amendment however, her "code pink" like tactics of trying to bushwhack people at their offices and at events and then, when not satisfied, to call their homes to harass is crossing a line that could lead to a variety of legal actions.

Dick Marshall

So sadd thaththe Bill of Rights applies only to liberal folks and not those of us who have a different opinion. The difference is that we would defend their right to voice their opinion,but they engage in questionable tactics to stifle ours.

Anna Haynes

George, first some basic netiquette: when you write a critical post about someone local, you really should notify them, e.g. by leaving a comment or sending an email. Perhaps you did this and it went astray?

Martin, you're executive director of CABPRO; if you had returned my phone calls, or ever been in the CABPRO office the 5+ times I stopped by, I would not have resorted to your home number.
(I'd still like to meet you in the CABPRO office, at your convenience; please let me know when you will be there, since the office seems to be invariably closed.)

Russ, I believe I've called your home twice, in five years now?

George, I believe I've called your home once, during the same period.

Since you prefer not to be disturbed, from here on I'll email asking to speak with you, so we can arrange for a convenient time.

And Russ, you and George are welcome to comment on my blog anytime, as long as you do so under the guidelines I've set up:
"Don't espouse climate-denial crankery unless you're local and willing to stand behind it."

You haven't been willing to stand behind yours.

Anna Haynes

p.s. Dick Marshall, I'd love to meet you for coffee and talk sometime; we have a mutual acquaintance who holds you in high regard.

Anna Haynes

p.p.s. George, another bit of blogger netiquette - try to link to what you're criticizing, since it helps readers to calibrate your judgment.

e.g. here's my March 27 TechTest post:

Anna Haynes

George, did the proposed SESF high school student mentoring project come to fruition? If so, I'd like to talk to you about it.



"Stand behind." I stand behind every thing I write. You have failed to refute the data I present in my posts, so you raise artificial barriers by making stupid demands that "I stand behind what I write." Under your rules you get to pick the standard and then decide if I met your dumb standard for "standing behind" my writing. It is a loosing game that I am not going to play. Read NC Media Watch for the facts on climate change and global warming. I have no need to post on your blog.

Anna Haynes

Russ, when you're ready to stand behind your words to the point that you'll make a *one* dollar bet that the point you're making is bogus, you're welcome to come & comment on my blog.

But you aren't even willing to do that, and you forge ever onward in a blogger's Gish Gallop, not acknowledging nor learning from past mistakes.
That makes engagement with your writing an all-consuming, and very low return on investment, activity.

Let me know when you're willing to bet me $1 that your arguments have merit. You've never even tried this.

Anna Haynes

s/make (a *one* dollar bet)/take/

George Rebane

Anna, your continual return to these and NC Media Watch pages is an odd way for you to claim such efforts to be "very low return on investment". If this is so, you must be contributing novelettes to blogs whose contents are more in tune with your beliefs. Perhaps a respite is in order.

Anna Haynes

George, did the proposed SESF high school student mentoring project come to fruition? If so, I'd like to talk to you about it.


Anna, I think George and Russ are politely asking for you to leave them alone. It is pathetic to see you continually BEG them to comment on your blog.

Here's a bone: http://www.junkscience.com/


This is just a test post. I want to see if my gravitar tiger photo appears.

Anna Haynes

Also George, just to be absolutely clear about this:
Did you make any attempt to notify me that you'd published this post?
(and if the answer's yes, could you also say roughly when (an hour later? a week?) and by what means)

Thanks much -

Dixon Cruickshank


Anna Haynes

More help for readers who want to calibrate -
Exchange with George Rebane from back in January.

Anna Haynes

Here's more info for readers who'd like to calibrate, since this post is showing up in searches for my name -
Dick Marshall commented above in support of the poster. To calibrate Mr. Marshall: in his May 14 "CABPRO Report" post "As California goes, so goes the nation" ( http://cabproreport.typepad.com/weblog/2010/05/as-california-goes-so-goes-the-nation.html ), he asserted that "[California's] school system spends more money per student than any other state..." - but has ignored repeated requests that he provide a reference for this assertion.
(& since comments there are pre-moderated, it's not because the queries weren't seen.)

That is all...

Anna Haynes

Oops, I seem to have forgotten my CABPRO post that Martin Light alluded to above:
Q&A with Martin Light, executive director of CABPRO

(and thank you George for permitting these comments)

Anna Haynes

oh, and one more, from this esteemed blog -

"No Anna, in spite of your persistent questions whenever we meet, you have always been a lady." (link)



I think if I were any of the people you are harassing, you would have a lawsuit AND a restraining order against you. Give up. It is people like you that cause me to NEVER use my real name when commenting.

Greg Goodknight

For those of you who might need to "calibrate" Anna Haynes, she's made a splash recently:




Before Anna claimed responsibility yesterday, I'd written Russ Steele using a two year old email address (from the last old Telecom-list post) asking if he knew if Antony Watts' visitor was from Nevada County. The tactics sounded so familiar...

Anna, you still owe me a dollar after losing our bet.

Anna Haynes

Of the three links Greg provided, you'll learn the most by reading the comments in the Tamino post.

Greg Goodknight

Anna probably likes the "tamino" thread the most because "tamino" (actually one Grant Foster, a minor Climategate figure) got a couple of nice libels in against me, which WordPress assures me he has been directed to remove. It's nearly as safe as Anna's blog for Anna, though Tamino did ream her pretty good about her antics at Antony Watts' office.

Anna has asked multiple times for my permission to do one of her famed confrontations with her audio recorder on me, and despite being refused in writing at least twice, she keeps asking. While a popular definition of insanity is repeating the same action multiple times while expecting a different result, it may be Anna’s lucky day. I’m hoping to get approval of a local law enforcement official for use of their facility, and for them to provide copies of their recording to both of us; if that can’t happen, perhaps just with law enforcement there just to keep the peace. What do you think?

Some questions I’d have for Anna, some of which are new:

1) I understand you majored in Genetics at Berkeley. My contacts there confirm life science majors at Cal generally pass up the real Physics and Chemistry classes in order to take the watered down classes acceptable to their departments, and not risk a hit to their GPA. Which did you take? Did you take any real classes in the physical sciences in your college career, or any real (ie major track) math beyond a possibly obligatory calculus of one variable class? Statistics doesn’t count in this context. It does appear from the Cal web pages that only physics appreciation and chemistry appreciation is actually required of Genetics majors. In fact, if not pre-med, they only need take one semester of physics appreciation.

1a) Did you apply to any medical schools? If so, did you get any acceptances? If not, current Cal Genetics majors are only required to take one semester of physics appreciation.

2) You mentioned in a post of yours at Tamino (“The Open Mind” is such a misnomer) that your slamming of the door into Brad was coincident with some sort of "toxic" problem with a medication. Was that a psychiatric drug? Just asking, Anna; it's a fair question. Until you posted that, I don't think anyone here had a clue.

3) What do *you* do for a living? No one I know has an inkling. Did you ever have any position that took advantage of your Biology degrees? Besides your 1988 dissertation “Developmental constraints in the Drosophila wing” I can’t find any evidence of you in that world.

4) Just what sort of software do you write, besides perhaps html to drive your ncvoices.us page, which has a homebrew look to it? Do you have formal education in computer science or software engineering, or are you an autodidact in that realm?

5) Have you taken any class in a physical science at an accredited baccalaureate or graduate institution since your freshman year in college? Any class directly involving meteorology or climate? If so, what and where?

6) When will you pay me the dollar you owe me from your little bet challenge (our first meeting, when you broke into my conversation with a friend) that you expected to just give you cover to leave, rather than discuss the climate science you claimed to understand?

Looking forward to it. However, I'd look forward even more to you dropping this junior 60 Minutes reporter persona and have you let all of us live in peace in our nice little town.

PS Despite Tamino’s libels to the contrary, like “Ask Dr. Science”, “I have a Masters degree… in Science!”. Also a BS in Physics. From a college

PPS Can anyone here relate just what Tamino/Grant Foster’s academic credentials are? I’ve not found any authoritative, just hints here and there that he’s a statistician, perhaps self taught, and a mention of civil engineering, perhaps self taught. One supporter of his just says he has a "math based" degree, which almost fits civil engineering...

George Rebane

Greg, we all look forward to Anna's answers to your questions.

Greg Goodknight

Upon my documented complaint of specific libels and libel per se, WordPress gave "tamino", a minor Climategate figure named Grant Foster, a directive to delete his libelous comments from my posts to his blog, with the option of deleting my posts, too. He choice to delete it all. It may well be the first time his blog had some adult supervision.

Anna Haynes

George Rebane, some individuals forget to draw a distinction between the personal and public spheres. And some individuals find it difficult to report accurately.

I asked Lucia to remove this comment of Greg's (posted here on your blog at 18 June 2010 at 02:56 PM ) because it constitutes libel at worst and invasion of privacy at best. I request that you remove it too.

Anna Haynes

p.s. for the record, I did not receive any notification from Greg Goodknight or from Dr. George Rebane that Greg's comment - dated two days ago - had appeared here.


I don't see anything in what Greg wrote that represents libel of any sort or invasion of privacy in Greg's comments. Although if you wish, you could explain what might be libelous-- why don't you write something about it at your blog? Then we will all know the truth about whatever it is he said you think might be false.

At worst, Greg's questions might be obnoxious. Since they may be seen as obnoxious, and Anna requested I remove them, I did.

P.S. I see no idea why George would be required to inform you that Greg posted a comment-- no not even if Greg mentions your name. I don't see why Greg would be required to do so either. In fact, I don't even see why he needs to give informing you a second thought.

Also, after the incident, I wrote a brief email to Eugene Volokh about this incident. He made me aware of 7 USC sec. 230 which he describes as giving "..pretty good protection against possible lawsuits based on comments posted by readers". Of course, I don't know the full ramifications. (I'm not even sure anyone does!) See http://www.lctjournal.washington.edu/Vol3/a014Horowitz.html

Anna Haynes

A "diatribe" (Mr. Goodknight's term) at:

George Rebane

Thank you for the clarification Lucia. I'm sure I don't quite understand what Dr Haynes is about in these comment threads and in her extended quest. But they do corroborate my posted assessment and reinforce my recommendation. In the interval I am happy to see that the discourse is kept civil.

Jon P

Don't bother going to Tamino's. He deletes what he does not like. And he obviously has broken some Wordpress rules. What's the point of having a conversation if Tamino is using "cones of silence" over many opinions. You only read what he WANTS you to read. I just told him he should rename his blog to "Closed Mind" as he does not have an open one.


You seem to be to be rather obnoxious and give very little respect to people's personal wishes about their space. How can you expect any respect in reutrn? Baffling.


This just keeps getting better.

Love it.

You know Anna deleted a couple of my posts from her blog. I expect that sort of behavior from strangers but it really hurt my feelings when Anna did it.

My standard practice is to feel out an alarmist blog with a short pithy comment, see if it survives the moderation. If it does then I move into more detailed and time consuming posts.

So Anna comes over to NC Media Watch posts a link to her omnibus of alarmist science links. I visited her link and took the time to show her the error of her ways, linking back to a Lubos Motl post. Kept it pithy and sweet.
Anna comes back at me with insults , talking about me and questioning the qualifications of Motl, couched in the third person in coversation with her presumed legion of like minded readers.

Note that she didn't inform Prof Motl or me of her disparagements, instead leaving it for me to discover. ( I searched for the post, but couldn't find it. Maybe she deleted the whole thing? It was a long time ago.)

I noticed that the "legion" failed to comment, so I said to Anna "if you have questions about Lubos' post please feel free to ask him. He is always happy to explain these things."

That post and all subsequent comments by me , have been left in moderation by Anna.

Anna, if you are going to walk that walk, demanding notifications, courtesies, fair hearings, and things of others, first you have to pluck the mote from your own eye.

Greg Goodknight

Here's the first post that I made to the misnamed "The Open Mind", but without Grant Foster's additions... now that Tamino took down the thread, it needs a home:

Here’s a story that’s apropos. First, some background; I’ve a BS Physics from a college that included two semesters of physics (major track classes), three semesters of chemistry (also major track, including one physical chemistry) and systems engineering as general ed requirements; and also an MSEE that today would probably be deemed an MS Computer Engineering.

One morning late last November, I found myself chatting on the subject of the breaking Climategate news over morning coffee with a friend of mine at a local cafe’. A woman sitting at another table whom I had never met broke into the conversation offering, when and if we decided to seek understanding, instruction on the science involved. She didn’t have the common courtesy of introducing herself.

I asked what her qualifications were…
‘I have a Ph.D. from Harvard’.
This was about 30 seconds after we sort of met, I didn’t know her name nor did she know mine.

I asked what subject…

That doesn’t sound very applicable to climate science…
‘I know how science works and I can judge who to believe’
She was also as condescending as I can ever recall ever being witness to.

I then let her know my educational background and got a delightful ‘deer-in-the-headlights’ gobsmacked stare back. I then tried to engage her in a discussion of the science involved, and it was clear she did not have much understanding of any of the physical sciences. I’m particularly impressed by the 2003 Shaviv & Veizer “Celestial driver” paper; the Solanki letter to Nature in 2004 on “Unusual activity of the sun”; Svensmark’s works including the Cosmoclimatology paper, the SKY experiment and the Forbush event paper of last Fall; and the CERN colloquium given by Dr. Kirkby a year ago. I gave her an outline of why I believe the theories I’ve found to be compelling, but she was not willing to talk about any of it. In fact, she had to leave. Had no time at all, but challenged me to a $1 bet to back up what I had claimed. And she left.

My friend did know who she was, and when I got home, I googled her and found her blog. Perhaps an hour after she walked away from the conversation that she had no time to continue, she had posted 500 words about climate cranks and that the best way to handle them is to challenge them to a $1 bet to prove it, and walk away with the knowledge that they’ll never be able to do it. She also observed that climate cranks tend to be working class guys, and guys with physics or engineering degrees, which was a pretty good description of the folks she had offered to give climate science instruction to just minutes earlier.

In short, she told a fib to get away rather than to discuss the climate science she claims to be so passionate about, not exactly intellectually honest, or honest in any way. The next day I had a stack of the above papers to give to her and to discuss; it took a couple days for her to return, but faced with the papers, all from respected journals, she was entirely uninterested in actually learning something about atmospheric physics and walked out rather than continue a conversation that was obviously not going to end in her favor. She wouldn’t take the papers.

She once ( a few months ago) harassed, audio recorder in hand, a friend of mine in a local theater before the film started, to the point that he had to either leave the theater or react to the provocation as if she was a guy. I saw him moments later at our favorite Irish bar, and he was followed by his wife who had choice words about the mental stability of the harasser. In fact, that’s a fairly common comment by locals.

She once sent me a message that she’d like to know about my late wife. How did she die? I made it clear I did not consider her to be a friend, and I would not share that information. She then started asking friends of mine about my dead first wife, and they all told her off for even asking.

She also once, witnessed by multiple people, intentionally slammed the door (of that same cafe) into the back of a climate skeptic (and, gasp!, a Republican) who was sitting by the door, as she angrily left one conversation of the usual morning martini gathering. It’s my understanding that both hurt and left a bruise.

Anna Haynes, you still owe me that $1. And no, you’ve asked multiple times and I do not consent to one of your recorded inquisitions, or any recording of any reasonably private conversation of mine, period. If I ever address a crowd over a loudspeaker, feel free to capture that moment.

Anna Haynes

> "BS Physics from a college that included two semesters of physics"

Greg, if you'd like us to know what additional physics education you've had beyond just these two semesters, please do share...

Anna Haynes

and re Greg's "It’s my understanding..." - as I've previously explained (after asking the party who was present), this "understanding" is incorrect.

Greg Goodknight

Anna, I think in the months you've been hassling me, you've not answered any question of mine besides the subject you studied at Harvard, and mutant ninja fruit fly wings really have no bearing on physics, do they? And climate science is a branch of applied physics.

The current Cal Genetics majors don't take a single major track chemistry or physics class, no multivariable calculus or linear algebra, nor any differential equations. Even at your alma mater, pretty much all the chem, physics and engineering students do. You don't even know what you don't know, do you?

Eli Rabett

Rather curious that Greg Goodknight brags on undergraduate physics at Harvey Mudd while Tamino has a doctorate in same.

Perhaps two comments from that lost thread would help here. The first from Ray Ladbury goes
See, this is exactly the sort of problem I have with confronting denialists directly in public venues. It makes the issue personalities rather than evidence.

Greg, I am afraid I am not impressed with a Bachelors degree in physics when it comes to understanding the science of climate change. See, I know how hard I had to work to understand the science even with a PhD in physics and 15 years working and publishing in the field.

What would impress me is a cogent explanation of a mechanism whereby you turn a tiny modulation on a background signal of 6 particles per square cm per second into a global climate driver. It would be especially interesting to understand why the effect would be delayed by longer than a week!

I am afraid, though that you are rather unlikely to be up to the task, since your undergraduate degree in physics did not even equip with sufficient understanding to grasp why the experts in a field who publish most actively and are held in highest esteem by their peers are most likely to have real insight into their subject matter. I’m afraid that is rather basic.

But Horatio nails is

Don’t be silly, Ray.

Anyone who has completed the 2-semester freshman physics sequence at any college on the planet KNOWS that they know more about everything than anyone else (with the [possible] exception of Steven Hawking).

And way more than all those biologists (put together), who are actually under the silly misapprehension that living things have some impact on climate by virtue of some imaginary impact on the carbon cycle.

All the best


I did my best *not* to get into where my education was, but "tamino's" libels (WordPress agrees) is what focused it on my education rather than Anna Haynes lack of any physical science in hers. And because I've been posting under my own name (try it sometime), my sordid past leaked into these threads.

First, as far as I can tell, you, "Eli Rabett" are actually a chemistry professor named Joshua Halpern from Howard University, with financial ties to NASA-Goddard, who likes to sling mud from behind a nom de net, and usually in forums that don't actually allow a two way conversation.

If this isn't you, my apologies, but many seem to believe this to be true. I am flattered you felt a need to follow me to Nevada County to repeat ad hominems that I was unable to respond to in the closed forums they from which they came.

Of course, the "Horatio" dig ignores the reason for the mention of real physics, real chemistry, real engineering and real math (and now real biology) as general ed requirements; you don't end up with one trick ponies like Anna Haynes who think that a Ph.D. in Biology gives them the tools to pick experts to believe in from entirely different fields despite never being in the same room with those folks and having no language in common. And it continues the corruption of my message into the one that stuck in the tamino thread, that I was claiming to have a BS in Physics with only two semesters of the subject under my belt, rather than my actual message that all of my classmates had two semesters of major track physics by the end of their freshman year whether they were chemistry, physics, math or engineering majors.

Ray Ladbury has recycled that same basic attack multiple times from behind the RealClimate moat. Regarding his detailed question of how cloud nucleation could possibly be delayed for a week, well, that is what the current CERN CLOUD (Cosmics Leaving OUtdoor Droplets) experiment should be shedding light on sometime soon, isn't it? It could have been done a decade ago, but IPCC partisan politics ripped the funding from that inconvenient experiment circa 1996... until the Copenhagen SKY experiment got results that put CLOUD back on the front burner in 2006. In the meantime, we have computer simulations that predicted about the same delay between GCR and significant cloud condensation nuclei changes, and the Danes have published their having actually found a significant worldwide dip in cloud moisture about six or seven days after large Forebush events, ejections from the sun that significantly sweep away the galactic cosmic rays that seem to be significant factors in cloud nucleation.

Rather than putting the cart before the horse, demanding I predict the outcome of research that is underway, let me ask you this: why, over a 500+ million year period, are average ocean temps in synch with proxies for galactic cosmic rays and not CO2? Astrophysicist Nir Shaviv and geochemist Jan Veizer both worked independently from the vantage point of very different fields and independently came up with the same periodicities of ocean temperatures and galactic cosmic rays. If GCR can be associated with what sure looks like a oscillation bound by negative feedbacks with maybe a 5 degC swing in ocean temperatures, driven by GCR, why would it be so hard to imagine there is a physical process that is linking the two?

The cleanest graph of the Shaviv & Veizer result is included in the Svensmark Cosmoclimatology survey article in Astronomy & Geophysics; check out Figure 8 on page 5...

The originals are even better, just harder for the non-technical to grok.
See figure 1 for the non-correlation between CO2 and temp, and figure 2 for the correlation between temps and GCR flux.

So, can we agree the sea temps *can't* be affecting incident galactic cosmic rays, it *has* to be the other way around? And there must be a physical mechanism to account for that correlation?

Finally, thanks for the information that "Tamino" has a Ph.D. in Physics; . Can you also verify his name as being Grant Foster? If you would, I also need his address and legal contact information for my records.

Greg Goodknight


Mr. Goodnight:

I believe it's quite unaxeptable to be "outing" people like you continuously do in this thread. Besides, it's only emphasizing the impression a cry-baby. There are very good reasons for blogging under a pseudonym. You should consider them.

Chris S.

I've looked up the alumni of Harvey Mudd & can't find a 'Greg Goodknight' in their lists, I've also checked the ISI Web of Science - none there either. Could it be that this august personage is opereating under a "nom de net"? An interesting position given his comments about Eli Rabbett & tamino in this thread...


Greg, if you're so good in science: any comment at the (apparent) debunking of Shaviv & Veizer given in http://www.pik-potsdam.de/~stefan/Publications/Journals/rahmstorf_etal_eos_2004.html ?


Two main conclusions result from our analysis of [Shaviv and Veizer, 2003]. The first is that the correlation of cosmic ray flux (CRF) and climate over the past 520 m.y. appears to not hold up under scrutiny. Even if we accept the questionable assumption that meteorite clusters give information on CRF variations, we find that the evidence for a link between CRF and climate amounts to little more than a similarity in the average periods of the CRF variations and a heavily smoothed temperature reconstruction. Phase agreement is poor. The authors applied several adjustments to the data to artificially enhance the correlation. We thus find that the existence of a correlation has not been convincingly demonstrated.

Our second conclusion is independent of the first. Whether there is a link of CRF and temperature or not, the authors’ estimate of the effect of a CO2-doubling on climate is highly questionable. It is based on a simple and incomplete regression analysis which implicitly assumes that climate variations on time scales of millions of years, for different configurations of continents and ocean currents, for much higher CO2 levels than at present, and with unaccounted causes and contributing factors, can give direct quantitative information about the effect of rapid CO2 doubling from pre-industrial climate. The complexity and non-linearity of the climate system does not allow such a simple statistical derivation of climate sensitivity without a physical understanding of the key processes and feedbacks. We thus conclude that [Shaviv and Veizer, 2003] provide no cause for revising current estimates of climate sensitivity to carbon dioxide."

Anna Haynes

> "...months you've been hassling me"

Never mistake a mirror for a window. And vice versa.

Case in point: Gentle reader, you can calibrate Mr. Goodknight's recent powers of perception by reading Tamino's post "Silence" (reporting Mr. Goodknight's recent actions) - which is a diatribe, according to GG - and consider whether his characterization is accurate.

It shouldn't take more than 30 seconds; it's a good investment.

George Rebane

Gentle readers, into this discussion of climate change and AGW I would like to point you to 'Climate Change - A Format for Reasoned Dialogue' that offers a perspective from the systems sciences.


Eli Rabett

It would be hard to add to what Anna just wrote at @9:31, but allow Eli to try. Greg is actually quite easy to deal with, he keeps posting the same nonsense and Ray and Eli and Horatio and others keep posting the same refutations. It sort of conserves electrons.


Checking my driver's license and looking at my diploma and the program from my graduation, it would appear I really am who I thought I was. For good or ill, I've been using my own name since the ARPAnet days, save for posts at one particular far leftwing magazine's blog.

Yes, there are fine reasons for blogging under a pseudonym, mostly to be able to defame others while retaining plausible deniability and lack of web hits when people start looking for dirt. Fabricated Americans like Eli Rabett, in positions of some power in their alter egos at NASA Goddard, should have better things to do with their time than chase after the likes of me while hiding behind a sock puppet.

Joshua Halpern, if I was that easy to dismiss with you'd come up with something, or someone, original.

luminous beauty


I took a quick look at your thesis and quickly discovered this glaring misapprehension:

All currently known general circulation models (GCMs) or climate models are chaotic. This
means that their algorithmics[sic] are such that small variations (or errors) in their input parameters,
or restrictions on the precision of their internal computations will yield wildly varying futures of earth’s climate.

It is short term weather models that are subject to initial condition chaotic behavior. It is from studying empirical weather data and models that Ed Lorentz discovered what has become to be known as 'strange chaos', where the chaotic behavior of a closed system diverges and then converges in a repeating pattern around a strange attractor; what is known as 'boundary conditions'. It is this behavior that gives GCMs a degree of long term predictability (climate) that doesn't exist for short term (weather) predictability.

When skepticism is based on such basic misunderstandings it is difficult to give it much credence.

And for Mr. Goodknight, some analysis that reveals his hobby-horse theory isn't quite up to snuff:


George Rebane

Ms? Luminous beauty – I agree about the existence of a “glaring misapprehension”, but on whose part I am not certain. All large, stochastic, multi-dimensional, non-linear, dynamic, and numerically complex models of realworld processes are by their very nature chaotic, GCM’s included. Lorentz was the first to discover a relationship between the analytics of such models applied to natural phenomena.

The states of such models have very complex trajectories through their respective state spaces which may or not ‘converge’ to a useful manifold (subspace) and reside there for some time. Such manifolds are known as attractors, which is a generalization and expansion of the notion of limit cycles described in classical non-linear systems theory. Lorentz had a class of such attractors named after him. There are no attractors named “boundary conditions” which term is used to describe the (usually) higher dimensional limits to system state, control (exogenous forcing) inputs, (endogenous) transfer function dynamics, variable probability distributions, and/or (exogenous) environmental parameters.

The derivation of the system transfer function is a process known as system identification. For large scale systems such as GCMs, identification is not possible through analytical approaches. Instead, the large scale model or (under dubious assumptions) its submodels must be identified through a process of numerical estimation (glorified regression fits) that use measured and presumed observations of the past behavior of the process to be modeled. Unfortunately the identification is even more complex than this since in such estimation schemes the model flow topology is also a ‘variable’ in addition to the order of perhaps a hundred or more system ‘constants’. All of these must be systematically varied as thousands of computationally intensive iterative runs are made to attempt to retrodict the input data.

At this stage of human evolution, we do not have the necessary processing power to carry out this identification process systematically for such large scale systems as GCMs and other so-called climate models. Instead, we proceed with a large dose of heuristics and humility if we know what we are doing. (The humility part seems to have gone by the board in the IPCC work.) But positing a resulting model that allows us to keep a straight face, we must then make the audacious assumption that the process we have retrodicted will remain sufficiently constant over the future time horizon over which we desire to predict the values of (climate) state.

At this point we now ‘integrate’ forward hundreds (thousands) of times for EACH set of endogenous and exogenous input variables numbering at least in the hundreds to generate probability distributions for the output variables of interest. I can guarantee you that this has not been done for any such model, simply because it is yet not feasible. And it is the ‘shortcuts’ which raise knowledgeable eyebrows and give lie to ‘the debate is over’.

And I have not yet begun discussing the holes in our knowledge of the fundamental physics and chemistry and … required to accurately understand, let alone model, the sub-processes that make up such large scale models of the top layers of earth. Since the system (real process) is chaotic, here we don’t even know what we don’t know. This is the substance that gives rise to the humility that a growing cohort of climate scientists (and all systems scientists like me) are attempting insert into this politicized issue of climate change, its causes, and its anthropomorphic control.

Yes indeed, there are glaring misapprehensions afoot here.

Eli Rabett

Mr. Rebane, the atmosphere is full of turbulent winds. Turbulence is chaotic. Therefore airplanes cannot fly.

As the saying goes, all models are wrong, some are useful. GCMs are useful. You are wrong.

Greg Good night. Sweet delusions.


The trouble with all of the 17 IPCC climate models is that they are base on assumptions of climate sensitivity, and the average cloud cover is the same all over the globe. According to recent work by Dr Roy Spencer, he found that none of the IPCC models came any where near the exhibiting the sensitivity or the real climate system, and that cloud cover varies across the globe.

The modelers claim that their models do a reasonable job reproducing the average behavior, but the real issue is how the average behavior changes over time. Spencer found by studying the radiative forcing of clouds, that the feedback can be negative making the sensitivity far less than that used in any of the IPCC models.

In his book The Great Global Warming Blunder, Dr. Spencer explains how using satellites we can measure the earths radiation budget, providing both forcing (warming) and negative feedback (cooling) information for a ten year period. This limited data indicates the climate sensitivity in the real climate system is far less than than used in the IPCC models. If this result holds up over time, we should have little concern over increases in CO2.

Let's stop making climate sensitivity assumptions and start using real data in those pesky IPCC climate models.

George Rebane

Mr Rabett - I don't know who you are, but your response is the typical summary dismissal that one gets from true believers with either maximum hubris or minimal knowledge or, perhaps, both. The dialogue is then mercifully short, ending in a burst of heat and no light.

Anna Haynes

Russ, in case you missed this:
"The more peer-reviewed papers a climatologist has published and the more often those papers are cited, the more likely it is that the researcher supports the science underpinning anthropogenic climate change (ACC). That's the conclusion of a paper published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences."

re Russ's
> "In his book The Great Global Warming Blunder, Dr. Spencer explains..."

Russ, you might want to consider who published this book. The publisher is Encounter Books, "an activity of Encounter for Culture and Education, Inc., which is supported by The Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation."

Culture and Education. Not science. And Encounter Books is headed by an *art critic*, for heaven's sake.

And from their 2007 IRS Form 990, here's the charitable-activity purpose of parent org. Encounter for Culture and Education:
"The organization is an editor, publisher and distributor for books related to democratic society **which have no traditional means of publication.**"

Roy Spencer couldn't find a traditional means of publication for his book?

Does all this matter? Yes, if we'd like our children to have any respect for us - "...the time horizon for climate change issues extends beyond 2100 and what is out there is seriously worrying..."

Plus action to prevent it is downright cheap:
EPA analysis: 40 cents a day to fix climate change - http://motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2010/06/fixing-global-warming-40-cents-day

Russ Steele

Anna I could care less about who published Dr Spencer's book. He has put his data in public view for analysis. We all know from the CRU Climategate emails that the climate change peer review systems is busted big time. If you are not a warmer, your papers never see the light of day. Same on the lefty blogs you visit, then bring there snarky crap here, if you ask a tough question on these blogs it vanishes. Why bother? A better use of my time is bringing the FACTS about the human global warming hoax to the general public's attention. I must be succeeding at some level, the general publics concern for global warming keeps declining.

Now, where is Dr Spencer wrong? He has a blog where he published his finding for all to evaluate. Go for it, tell us where the satellite data is in error, and Dr Spencer's analysis is flawed? Baffling us with horse pucky is a waste of our time and your energy. Energy you could invest in refuting Dr Spencer. Too hard? Really?

Why spend 40 cents a day on something that does not need to be fixed? I would rather spend the 40 cents a day on helping third world villagers get clean water.

Good day!


Fabricated Scientist Eli Rabett, aka Dr. J. H. of Howard and NASA-Goddard, enjoying your visit?

"luminous" [Notice how the alarmists are overrepresented by the sock puppet brigade?] ...Regarding the paper "Sudden cosmic ray decreases: No change of global cloud cover" I'd already read it, try it yourself, it's a hoot. Caught with their pants down, they obviously had to fix it up on the fly as the Danes had actually published finding the decreases about when the paper was received. In section [19]) they just patch it up by casting doubt on one methodology... "Without further discussion we would like to state that a study as the one by Svensmark et al. [2009] including Fd events which are associated with the solar proton events leads easily to questionable or even contradictory results".

Of course, that's different than actually finding the results were questionable or contradictory. But that's enough for Lumi, and similar to both Anna Haynes and FlorifullofSomthing, who seem to just search "RealClimate" for discouraging words, and declare this or that research as "debunked" if anything contrary is found. A fine and devastating case is the defense by Shaviv and Veizer from the hit piece by Rahmstorf et al (including Gavin Schmidt) that "Flori" thought the last word.

Try reading it. Choice bits: "As openly admitted in the German/Swiss “manifesto”, publicly released by the Potsdam-Institut f¨ur Klimafolgenforschung (24.10.2003), the attack on SV03 is motivated mostly by political considerations." and "We show that Rahmstorf et al.’s claim for statistical insignificance is based on misunderstanding of the underlying assumptions in Bartlett’s formula for the effective number of degrees of freedom when correlating time series. They employed Bartlett’s formula at a limit where it grossly fails to yield a meaningful result. When properly used, the correlation between the reconstructed Phanerozoic temperature and CRF is shown to be statistically significant, conservatively at least at the 99.7% level. It is in fact the most significant correlation between any climate variable and a radiative forcing proxy on a time scale longer than a few million years. Moreover, the CRF data and the 18O data are backed with additional, independent data sets, making the link redundant and robust. It implies, again, that the CRF was the dominant climate driver on the multimillion year time scale."

The folks fully invested in CO2 driven positive feedback warming just can't deal with the likes of Shaviv & Veizer, and it bears repeating they came to their results completely independently and both had been believers in CO2 warming; in fact, Veizer was about to abandon his research because it didn't match the CO2 record when Shaviv emailed him that he had something that seemed to fit.

This also fits with a claim by a friend of mine, a postdoc managing a paleomagnetism lab, who assured me that in paleontology a correlation between temperatures and carbon 14 had long been noted but was treated something like the crazy aunt in the attic... they knew she was up there but no one knew how to handle her and so pretty much ignored the issue. A big Someone Else's Problem field erected on top of the connection.


Eli says; Mr. Rebane, the atmosphere is full of turbulent winds. Turbulence is chaotic. Therefore airplanes cannot fly.

As the saying goes, all models are wrong, some are useful. GCMs are useful. You are wrong.

That's so funny Josh. Even when describing your own baliwick, you get it exactly backward.
GCMs make the pretense of describing order from chaos, which are then used by puff chested, would be masters of the universe, to demand airports be closed, by threatening the airplanes won't be able to fly.

Met Office atmospheric models cause international chaos

“Not one single weather balloon has been sent up to measure how much volcanic ash is in the air.” Lufthansa spokesman Klaus Walter added. ”The flight ban, made on the basis just of computer calculations, is resulting in billion-high losses for the economy [...] In future we demand that reliable measurements are presented before a flying ban is imposed.”

Eli Rabett

Bart, at ourchangingclimate is commenting on the issue of the brilliant BS, but perhaps Eli might take advantage of this lull to summarize the Goodknight issue by using the WayBack machine to something the bunny wrote a while ago


Uncle Eli has always admired astronomy, botany, and zoology as sciences with important amateur participation. By nurturing the large community of those interested in the science these fields have built important support groups, and amateurs have made important contributions. Many amateurs become obsessed with relatively narrow and previously trodden areas. Within those areas their knowledge often exceeds that of professionals. To Eli the most important thing is that people get to experience the joy of science. The smartest thing NASA ever did was reserve time on the Hubble for amateurs and some good science has resulted.

What amateurs lack as a group is perspective, an understanding of how everything fits together and a sense of proportion. Graduate training is designed to pass lore from advisors to students. You learn much about things that didn’t work and therefore were never published [hey Prof. I have a great idea!...Well actually son, we did that back in 06 and wasted two years on it], whose papers to trust, and which to be suspicious of [Hey Prof. here's a great new paper!... Son, don't trust that clown.] In short the kind of local knowledge that allows one to cut through the published literature thicket.

But this lack makes amateurs prone to get caught in the traps that entangled the professionals’ grandfathers, and it can be difficult to disabuse them of their discoveries. Especially problematical are those who want science to validate preconceived political notions, and those willing to believe they are Einstein and the professionals are fools. Put these two types together and you get a witches brew of ignorance and attitude.

Unfortunately climate science is as sugar to flies for those types.

Eli Rabett

paper tiger, Eli believes that BP made similar comments about various unnecessary safety procedures before the platform hit the bottom of the ocean.


But the part you fail to mention Josh, BP also greased the right palms, and paid homage to the popular dogmas in order to gain cursory government acceptance of their shoddy practices.

Rest assured the oil companies who cleave close to the truth about GW alarmists, and their political allies, are scrutinized very carefully, and their safety proceedures rest on more then PC lip service.

luminous beauty


In spite of your prodigious output of of techno-babble, you have utterly failed to convince me that strange chaos does not give rise to boundary conditions. Perhaps I should take a page from Wittgenstein and just show you.


Instead, the large scale model or (under dubious assumptions) its submodels must be identified through a process of numerical estimation (glorified regression fits) that use measured and presumed observations of the past behavior of the process to be modeled.

A number of things wrong here. Numerical methods aren't regression fits, 'glorified or otherwise'. They are iterative interpolations of the sums of non-linear differential equations. A process much like how we interpolated the value of pi or the values of trig functions before calculus.

The largest number of processes are ab initio calculations from well understood physics that haven't been near a regression fit since they were 'proved' under laboratory conditions. Those small number of processes or 'subsystems' that are empirically derived (for example: how to partition the energy from the atmospheric drag of falling raindrops) aren't inputted as regression fits to 'past behaviors', they are empirical differential equations derived from in situ observations. Because they are limited by observed processes under historical conditions, they actually make the models more conservative.


Spencer makes his flimsy hypothetical speculations about as yet unobserved, in fact, contrary to observation, massively increasing nimbo-stratus clouds boiling out of the tropical oceans and limiting the temperature sensitivity of external climate forcings without even postulating any explanatory mechanism. Weak. I'll leave it to your imagination as to whether this would be a good thing. (Think: coastal flooding/inland drought)

Now, I'm not saying such wildly divergent emergent properties in the fractal phase space of meteorological chaotic behavior are impossible or even unlikely. I'm just saying, look before you leap from the frying pan into the fire, thinking it will make everything cozy and nice.

It's this same illogical, short sighted, small minded and biased thinking that permeates those who would resurrect the Greater MWP without inferring what that would mean about equilibrium climate sensitivity.


It is one of the more common tactics of denial to take one small quote out of context from a scientific study, interpret it to mean something other than it does, and tout that interpretation as a complete refutation of the entirety of the study.

The ultimate killer of the cosmic ray hypothesis to explain modern warming is: There hasn't been a correlating decrease, or increase, in cosmic ray intensity over the period of modern warming.

I can only feel sorrow for your poor brain being subjected to such self abuse.

George Rebane

Ms Luminous - you and I have clearly received our training and practiced our crafts in different universes. If not, then at least one of us can make a good case with our university for a full tuition refund on the grounds that they taught us nothing. But thank you for contributing to this comment thread.

Anna Haynes

Thank you luminous and Eli; it's refreshing to see the big dogs take down the local folk.

(...who seem wholly unaware that it's possible they could be wrong & the climate science community be right.)

Dixon Cruickshank

(...who seem wholly unaware that it's possible they could be wrong & the climate science community be right.)

aaahhhhhh - No ----- since the cold period of 60's and 70's and the advent of ther warmers warmimg period (mid 80's )was 20 yrs

No warming in the last 15 and counting - Per - Dr Phil Jones CRU 2010 - so about the same length of time, so why wouldn't we be expecting a return to colder temps - makes more sense than claiming we'll burn up in the next 20 - just say'in

Jon P


Until you can accurately describe events when you write a post on your website, then perhaps people might be interested in what you have to say. You are starting from a position of being mistaken or lying. I prefer not to believe people who post inacuracies and ignore requests to correct them.


So is it a mistake or a lie?

Jon P

Misspelling "inaccuracies", Jon you are killing me here!

Anna Haynes


Greg Goodknight

"The ultimate killer of the cosmic ray hypothesis to explain modern warming is: There hasn't been a correlating decrease, or increase, in cosmic ray intensity over the period of modern warming."

And which cosmic rays are those? I note you didn't actually acknowledge that politics killed the CERN CLOUD experiment funding sometime around 1996 because Dr. Kirkby and other CLOUD collaborators were guessing the cosmic ray connected could account from a half to all of the 20th century warming. The funding got reinstated only recently, in 2006. The experimental apparatus is in place, data is being taken.

I've no doubt all the alarmist sock puppets would be up in arms had politics killed any of their major experiments.

Per Solanki, the 20th century saw about a doubling of solar magnetic flux and solar wind, to about an 8 to 10 thousand year maximum, and the start of this was before we could directly measure such things. Now we're in a significant solar minimum and GCR are at their highest since the space age started. We're in the midst of the experiment, and, as one prominent scientist and celebrated environmentalist recently stated,

"The great climate science centres around the world are more than well aware how weak their science is. If you talk to them privately they're scared stiff of the fact that they don't really know what the clouds and the aerosols are doing. They could be absolutely running the show. We haven't got the physics worked out yet."
-James Lovelock, March 2010.

Keep the stiff upper lip, Dr. Joshua Halpern aka Eli the Bunny. My life will take much less of a hit if the GCR link is disproven than your life and reputation will take a hit if the Lindzens, Svensmarks, Friis-Christensens, Shavivs, Veizers and a number of others turn out to be right. And, with a fraction of the funding, they're still on their feet and you're reduced to insulting guys with BS degrees using your sock puppet front. You really should be ashamed of yourself.


I like my anonymity more than I like any of you characters, but I can assure you that Greg Goodknight's description of HMC fits exactly with my own experience there in the late 70s and early 80s. Down to academic requirements for everyone regardless of major, down to knowledge of the dorms, and our various cultures and stories of each dorm, and down to knowledge of their rather obscure flying program, tail number of aircraft, field most people soloed at, who the program hero was -- and what a great program it was -- and run by one of the most inspirational woman I ever met, Iris Critchell (32 Olympics, WWII WASP P-51 Ferry Pilot, Powder Puff Derby winner, ....)

Why he would somehow obtain that knowledge just to fake out you dumbasses is beyond me.

HMC was a school that heavily emphasized that us geeks should understand the role of science in society. To that end, all of these former Manhattan Project scientists taught us not only the math, physics, chemistry, but also the stories of the scientists who could stand up and say no (or no thank you.)

I read what he wrote about the two semesters of physics, and then I read how lots of people misinterpreted that -- and what was that, some example of intellect by tamino and all? Or just the usual arrogant twittery of so many ph.d buffoons?

Okay, I feel an obStandByMe coming on because of the HMC nostalgia:

obStandByMe: I never had any friends later on like the ones I had when I was twelve nineteen, went away to nerd college, drank beer, and failed out with girls. Jesus, does anyone?


["Thank you luminous and Eli; it's refreshing to see the big dogs take down the local folk."]

ANNA. I take it you have revised your previous disdain toward anonymous commenters who hide their identity. As long as they spout your brand of dogma, they are "big dogs" (assuming that is a compliment) and "refreshing".

How illuminating.


Greg, I'd like to take you up on your description of GRC issues.

Greg:I've no doubt all the alarmist sock puppets would be up in arms had politics killed any of their major experiments.

Here's one I would have liked to see go up, by now we would have had 10 years worth of reliable albedo data and cloud cover. I take it you would agree that having that data would be a Good Thing (TM).

Greg:that politics killed the CERN CLOUD experiment funding sometime around 1996

Two years before the original concept? Dr. Kirby: Original CLOUD concept: Beam measurements of a CLOUD (Cosmics Leaving OUtdoor Droplets) chamber, 24 February 1998, CERN-OPEN-2001-028.

Greg:Per Solanki, the 20th century saw about a doubling of solar magnetic flux and solar wind

Per Solanki, the very nature letter where Greg got this data from:

Although the rarity of the current episode of high average sunspot numbers may indicate that the Sun has contributed to the unusual climate change during the twentieth century, we point out that solar variability is unlikely to have been the dominant cause of the strong warming during the past three decades.

Furthermore, Solanki and Krivova 2003 "Can solar variability explain global warming since 1970?"
This comparison shows without requiring any recourse to modeling that since roughly 1970 the solar influence on climate (through the channels considered here) cannot have been dominant. In particular, the Sun cannot have contributed more than 30% to the steep temperature increase that has taken place since then, irrespective of which of the three considered channels is the dominant one determining Sun-climate interactions: tropospheric heating caused by changes in total solar irradiance, stratospheric chemistry influenced by changes in the solar UV spectrum, or cloud coverage affected by the cosmic ray flux.

I'm still looking forward to the CLOUD results, as they will likely improve our understanding on cloud formation.

luminous beauty


I don't doubt that you might be a competent systems engineer. However, the modeling methods used by engineers are not exactly the same as those used by climate scientists. It is wrong to assume you can simply transfer knowledge from one field to another.

George Rebane

On the contrary Luminous, having spent my life in engineering and science, I can reliably tell you that there are no 'modeling methods' that are unique to engineering and others unique to climate scientists. Both fields use the best that is available, and the techniques of large scale numerical models of the kind we are discussing are common to both. And the power and glory of the mathematically based domains of knowledge is that you can transfer knowledge from one field to another. Finally, over the last fifty years it has been the tools and techniques (especially modeling methodologies) of the systems sciences that have spread uniformly and deeply into EVERY other field ranging from financial engineering, through genomics, sociology, econometrics, astronomy, ..., and now especially climate science.

I have been privileged to have worked in both governemnt research and private sector technology developments and have contributed to the expansion of human knowledge in both areas. Not to wave degrees about, but mine are in physics, control/estimation theory, and a dual doctorate in complex dynamic systems/computer science (machine intelligence).

One of the more active topics of research in the system sciences is the extent of our ability to predict futures which has deep philosophical implications as to what kind of universe we live in. We believe we have already hit the limits of predictability in an intrinsically stochastic and chaotic world. There probably exists a deep principle of future uncertainty equivalent to the various forms of present uncertainty represented in Heisenberg. All we currently see is that all of our numerical extrapolations have attendant dispersion measures that explode as we bravely stride into computational futures. Even the attractors that we have discovered turn out to be intrinsically unreliable upon deeper study.

In sum, basing what might be draconian public policy on this 'science' is something that we should do very carefully because we really know less than the little read and the politicians think we know.

luminous beauty


Common methods of interpolation via statistical regression used in the usual engineering studies are eschewed in climate models, specifically because they are useless for the explicit purpose of the exercise. You are making the incorrect assumption that is what is done in GCMs.

As for your broad hand-waving rhetoric about 'attendant dispersion measures that explode as we bravely stride into computational futures' and 'attractors that we have discovered turn out to be intrinsically unreliable', that may be reasonable in abstract musing of some unquantified distant future or unphysical speculation about unforseeable emergent properties, but that doesn't mean GCMs don't have any utility within limited time spans.

George Rebane

Luminous, I wasn't referring to "common methods of interpolation via statistical regression", in fact I wasn't referring to any "interpolation" per se at all. And your disparaging "broad hand-waving rhetoric" remarks while at the same time ascribing my comment to be an "abstract musing", and concluding from my compact summary that I have claimed "GCMs don't have any utility within limited time spans" persuades me that this conversation may be over because you may have an agenda to promote, and/or that our knowledge bases don't have a large enough intersection to make future exchanges in this format productive.

You see, I don't know anything about you or your background, and the occasional insertions of technical language in your comments made me believe that I could talk to you as a fellow professional. But that clearly is not the case. Anyone who has developed GCM models would instantly understand my remarks and build upon them, but would not consider them to be "broad hand-waving" since they address the heart of the matter.

luminous beauty


I admit you haven't referred to statistical interpolation explicitly, though you have implied as much. Would you like to re-phrase this statement?

Instead, the large scale model or (under dubious assumptions) its submodels must be identified through a process of numerical estimation (glorified regression fits) that use measured and presumed observations of the past behavior of the process to be modeled.
Jon P

Anna Haynes | 24 June 2010 at 06:34 PM

Good catch that must be Eli's problem. Have you told him yet?

George Rebane

Luminous, (near) linear systems can be identified (ie. their transfer functions computed) through a process of convolving its output and input series. Convolving actual data streams can viewed as a 'glorified regression fit' although it is much more. Complex non-linear processes are often modeled by generating their response surfaces through some pretty intensive number crunching. Such highly dimensioned response surfaces map input vectors into output vectors. BTW, the response surface itself may be expressed as a high-dimensioned distribution, and the resulting transfer function implemented through a process of stochastic sampling.

This process is very general and very powerful, and very computationally intensive. The alternative is to implement sub-process analytical models using, say, known physics and chemistry. But for complex processes like the earth's atmosphere interfacing with ground, water, and space energy transfers, such analytical models are either not known or are (dubious) analytical approximations revealed by the most recent research. An example of this is central to discussing global GCMs is the current state of ignorance about the global carbon budget and, specifically, flow of CO2 dynamics which defines the oft bandied carbon cycle. There are many other similar and significant sub-processes that involve everything from solar wind, to cosmic rays, to even quantum effects - all of which are described fairly well by local analytics, but poorly understood in the large scale (where even more dubious assumptions are made to cobble together the sub-processes). Anyway, here's a link that gives a high-level indication of these kinds of problems. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/05/070509161113.htm

Greg Goodknight

Thank you to the "bluegrue" sock puppet for finding a nit to pick; yes, the 'around 1996' was indeed 1998. And I note bg does not dispute that it was shameful and partisan IPCC politics that killed CLOUD the first time around... Folks who think much like the big bunny just knew CLOUD was a waste of time; it's important to have big rodents around to tell the small rodents what to think if they want to have any chance at getting the proper results, a tenure track position, funding and papers published.

No one thinks the GCR flux is the only driver that matters; I've not seen anyone with a claim on having a valid model of the great oceanic oscillations and there are reasonable claims that most of that warming was due to those natural factors. I note 'bg' doesn't dispute the meat of Solanki's Nature letter, that the 20th century saw a solar grand maximum. The latest I've seen from Solanki (the AGW talk in December) is that he now sees our Sun is most likely entering into a Dalton-style minimum.


Greg, you are welcome to interpret data in a way contrary to the opinion held by the original author, as in the case of Per Solanki. However, in general when people cite a paper to support an argument they also roughly agree with the interpretation of the data as given by the author. Therefore it is common curtesy to make readers explicitly aware, if you reinterpret data in a way contradicting the original author. That's at least the case in my circles, your milage may vary.

As for CLOUD, there's that CLOUD proposal of April 2000. Prominently in figure 2 they use the Friis-Christensen and Lassen 1991 correlation of sunspot cycle length and Northern heimisphere temperature. They ignore the Lassen 1999 (December) paper, which highlights the break-up of the correlation past 1990. Three months time to recognize and put it into context in the proposal, but nothing of the sort is done. Do you really think, that such an omission goes unnoticed in the grant application process? Oh, and as I've stated in my previous post, I look forward to see the results.

Greg Goodknight

Solanki, in his original letter, made the comment "...we point out that solar variability is unlikely to have been the dominant cause of the strong warming during the past three decades".

I do not disagree nor am I aware of others disagreeing with that too strongly; good cases have been made for oceanic oscillations being the *dominant* cause. There are a number of other forcings, and all the GCR-cloud link needs to do is account for about one-third of the 1.7W/m2 attributed to fossil fuel use to allow the current GCMs to balance with *no* positive feedback terms for CO2 and water vapor, and therefore no chance of a "tipping point" due to increasing CO2. No positive feedback, no tipping point, no chance for catastrophic warming and no justification for reparations from the first world to the 3rd world or need to immediately scale back carbon footprints in the USA to per capita levels not seen since Lincoln was President.

Please, name one runaway positive feedback warming event in the geologic record.

Al Tekhasski

Eli "Rabbett" Halpern wrote: "Rather curious that Greg Goodknight brags on undergraduate physics at Harvey Mudd while Tamino has a doctorate in same."

I don't see his degree mentioned in this announcement of the first fellow recipient of prestigious [eh] Janet A. Mattei Research Program,


with generous funding up to $55,160 as per 1/12/2010.

Eli, would you care to support your statement with some evidence? Does the HMC even have a PhD program?

P.S. I really wonder why computer programmers tend to lose screws at the end of their software career and turn to climatology? Tobis, Grant, Mashey, Pratt, the list never ends... Same goes for many people who turn into vocal global warming groupies while having no foggiest clue about fluid dynamics or anything else ...


Solanki, in his original letter, made the comment "...we point out that solar variability is unlikely to have been the dominant cause of the strong warming during the past three decades".

Congratulations, Greg, you've found the exact place, where Solanki cites his 2003 paper "Can solar variability explain global warming since 1970?", which I quoted above.

Oh and the goal poles have just been moved by a few miles. Now it's no longer AGW that may be dangerous, no, you claim that only run-away AGW can be dangerous to mankind. Great. Allow me to decline your gracious offer of goal-post-chasing. Farewell.

Greg Goodknight

'BG', I've not moved an inch, you apparently completely misunderstand the issue and the Solanki opinion is immaterial, except perhaps as a genuflection to alarmists that might otherwise be wanting to interfere with his grant applications.

Without positive feedbacks, there is no danger, and AGW is small when compared to natural variations. And the only experimental/observational evidence that CO2-H2O positive feedbacks exist (that I'm aware of) are the GCM simulations that are made to fit the 20th century warming by turning that feedback 'knob' within the models.

However, with negative feedbacks, which appear likely to be the case, there is less than a degree of warming per doubling of CO2. Very much no danger, and AGW very much being lost in the noise of natural variations.

It's now about 10 1/2 years since the maximum of solar cycle 23, our Sun remains in a deep minimum, and there's been no statistically significant warming in about 15 years. We live in interesting times.

Russ Steele

The Reference Frame has some information that readers might find interesting on the influence of the sun.

The analyses of the influence of the Sun on the climate in the latest IPCC report relied on one solar physicist, Dr Judith Lean. Ms Lean is a co-author with this paper:

Lean J., Roltmann G., Harder J., Kopp G.: Source contributions to new understanding of global change and solar variability, Sol. Phys., 230, 27-53, 2005

The paper claims that the solar activity didn't rise when the global climate was heating up a little bit in the recent decades. There were no other solar physicists or astrophysicists in the IPCC.

The influence of the Sun is a pretty important question, isn't it?

Isn't the Sun a conceivable factor that could influence things? Even the people who like to believe the IPCC conclusions seem to agree that it's very bad if such a report depends on a single paper and a single IPCC author who actually finds herself in a conflict of interest because she's a co-author of the single paper that the IPCC evaluates.

You will find out that a total of six "solar" papers were suggested for inclusion in the IPCC Report, like a couple of people who understand cosmic rays. But the proposal was rejected - so the IPCC only relied on a single "solar" paper and a single solar/astro physicist.

This task for Ms Lean was determined from the very beginning: after all, this task is what the IPCC is all about. She was selected for her ability to fulfill this task in a disciplined way which is what she has done, indeed. She may be a fine scientist. But the way how she was chosen - and the fact that no one else was added - speaks volumes.


Gregory, 1) I don't get the point about Bartlett's formula. 2) What about Veizer's later reinterpretation of paleo temp data? Cf.: Came RE, Eiler JM, Veizer J et al (2007) Coupling of surface temperatures and atmospheric CO2 concentrations during the Palaeozoic era Nature 449, 198-201.
("Our results are consistent with the proposal that increased atmospheric carbon dioxide concentrations drive or amplify increased global temperatures")

Greg Goodknight

"Flori", I doubt Veizer would consider that as a "reinterpretation" and I can't think of a single scientist who doubts a doubling of CO2 would increase temperature. The issue is whether it's very little or a whole bunch.

Without any feedbacks, it would be about a degree C. Some have found evidence of negative feedbacks (more heat evaporates more water but more clouds reflect more sunlight) and perhaps a half degree C for a doubling; MIT's Lindzen found evidence for that from ERBE satellite data. The general circulation models, which assume a positive feedback loop with water vapor (the main greenhouse gas in the atmosphere) were apparently fitted to the 20th century surface record by plugging in something closer to 2 to 4 degrees C for a doubling of CO2. The GCM also predict a hotspot in the atmosphere above the equator as a result of that positive feedback warming, but that hotspot doesn't exist.

*ANY* newly discovered forcing that can account for the 20th century warming decreases the possible feedback coefficient and reduces the justification for haste in formulating public policy, which is why the link to galactic cosmic rays is contested so vigorously.

If you want to discuss technical details of Nir Shaviv's defense of SV03, I'd suggest asking him about it. Try www.sciencebits.com

Anna Haynes

> "we all look forward to Anna's answers"

Mr. Rebane professes to want to know my answers, yet is refusing my request to meet in person or to speak on the phone. It's quite odd.

Some other adjectives also come to mind.

(and no Greg, it wasn't a "psychiatric drug" as you so charmingly put it. And yes, I would like to go back to for-pay work, but the economy's not so hot right now, plus there's a fellow defaming me online.)

OK, 'nuff said. Perhaps too much, but there comes a point when you do have to counter the really sleazy stuff.

George Rebane

Dr Haynes, I believe it was Greg Goodnight's questions to which the interest in those answers referred. And why all this 'Mr' Rebane condescension?

Greg Goodknight

Anna, Lucia and I both asked you for specifics regarding your claims of defamation and invasion of privacy, and you declined to answer. I freely admit the question I posed was obnoxious, and it, along with the other questions, was intended to give pause to your harassment and name calling. Sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander. I've been driven to countering your sleazy stuff since last November; like you, I have had a choice of either countering the attacks or slinking away. For good or ill, I prefer Pyrrhic victories to slinking away, and unless you wish to call a truce and stop your denunciations of me such as "crank" and "intellectually dishonest" (or even autodidact, which calls into question my education), the unpleasantness is unlikely to stop.

Diatribe, n, 1) A bitter, abusive denunciation. ... Yes, that does fit the referenced tamino thread perfectly. It may be time for another recreational impossibility.

Regarding the drug query, made after you had mentioned some medication was involved in that prior incident, either "yes", "no", "none of your business" or "I won't dignify that with an answer" (either explicit or implied) would all have been acceptable answers.

Since "Eli Rabett" (aka Dr. Joshua Halpern) mentioned "tamino" (aka Grant Foster of Portland, ME) and his Ph.D. in Physics, whether real or imagined by some of his followers, it is interesting to me that it looks like tamino also has time on his hands:


There seems quite a bit of childishness running through these posts. The topper is the poster whose sense of self-importance must be enormous to repeatedly and actively demand real-time interaction. Every post from this person seems to revolve around the refusals to grant this demand. I have to wonder why written communication won't suffice. Is the reason merely arrogance in demanding one's own way?

What is the best course of action when confronted by a petulant tantrum thrower? I leave that as an exercise for the reader.

George Rebane

DAV - I believe the most likely reason for this unrelenting behavior is given in the original post; this comment stream merely serves to corroborate it. But as for the "best course of action" as a response to this "petulant tantrum thrower", please don't abandon us to exercise of its discovery without your help.


George, too bad the remedy for mosquitoes and similar is considered unacceptable. A good whack can work wonders. Lacking that, I believe you said it yourself, don't respond. Forbearance can be quite a penance, though. My sympathies.

Anna Haynes

Re Mr. Goodknight's "I've been driven to countering your sleazy stuff since last November" - for the record, he's referring to this Nov 2009 post.
Feel free to assess for yourself.

Greg Goodknight

Yes, Ms. Haynes, it's sleazy to lie about needing to leave a conversation that *you* started, making a bet you apparently had no intention to pay off because you never had before, and then running off to make a blog post about a person you didn't even have the courtesy of introducing yourself to as you were offering to lecture them on the science you didn't have *any* understanding of yourself. Or to get their name.

You still owe me the dollar. Everything I said to you that November morning was backed up by research published in established and respected journals, and none of it has been falsified to date. You could have walked away with copies had you had the courtesy of being interested in the information you said you wanted.


You are a kook in word and deed.

Anna Haynes

"when a man publicly proclaims through the far-sounding trumpet of the [high Google rank blogpost], he should be answerable for it, at any rate with his honour, if he has any; and if he has none, let his name neutralise the effect of his words." - Arthur Schoepenhauer

Douglas Keachie

Oh my, what fun we have going on here!

Douglas Keachie

Perhaps all this explains where "Forbrunator," came from?

Greg Goodknight

I didn't notice this all too typical post of Anna's in a timely fashion, nor did Anna notify me she was doing so, not that I'd expect it. I'm not surprised she manages to misappropriate Schopenhauer in her attempt to lead the reader to decide her earned torment is due to some lack of honor among those who oppose her.

Anna first interrupted a conversation of mine, a complete stranger, in order to offer to instruct me on climate science. I had the opportunity to ask her a question on the record last August in a local cafe, and the question was, "what is 'temperature'?". She didn't have a clue besides that it's what thermometers measure. That is below the level of a high school introductory chemistry class.

A mutual friend sitting at the table, a local defrocked commercial pilot and local bon vivant who scrapes by while enjoying drink and good company, knew it had to do with the energy of the air, a far better answer than 'it's the number on the thermometer'.

It's unfortunate the local progressives rally around Anna as their climate science expert. No, a Ph.D. in a completely unrelated "life science" does not mean the person can out think a high school kid with a 3 on their AP Chemistry exam on a truly basic physical science question.

Anna Haynes

My response to this post.

(and apologies; I hadn't realized until now that Mr. Goodknight had left the above comment. I'm sure he can run rings around me in basic physics, & assumed he'd expected a more complex answer.)

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