Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Nate Silver's New Site Stirs Climate Controversy

samzenpus posted about 5 months ago | from the hornet's-nest dept.

Earth 335

First time accepted submitter taiwanjohn (103839) writes "One of the first articles on Nate Silver's highly anticipated data-driven news site used flawed data to make its conclusions, according to some of the nation's top climate scientists. Silver's FiveThirtyEight published its first article about climate change on Wednesday, entitled 'Disasters Cost More Than Ever — But Not Because of Climate Change.' But climate scientists are condemning the article and its author, Roger Pielke Jr., saying he ignored critical data to produce a 'deeply misleading' result. The crux of Pielke's article is this: Extreme weather events are costing us more and more money, but that is not because climate change is making extreme weather more frequent or intense. The reason we are losing more money, rather, is because we have more money to lose. Pielke came to this conclusion by measuring rising disaster damage costs alongside the rising global Gross Domestic Product. He also cited a U.N. climate report, along with his own research, to assert that extreme weather events have not been increasing in frequency or intensity."

cancel ×

335 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Comment Count Record Draws Nigh (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46539323)

There is nothing interesting here to comment on. Let the fun begin!

I know why they're annoyed (1, Troll)

Cryacin (657549) | about 5 months ago | (#46539375)

Since the correlation of GDP vs damage caused via disasters is being painted as causation, the Pro Climate change crows is just annoyed that their patent didn't go through on this new "scientific approach", and don't like an opposing view using their own "scientific methods" against them.

Completely understandable!

Go after em Nate (4, Insightful)

Stumbles (602007) | about 5 months ago | (#46539343)

Refreshing there is some common sense creeping into this global warming/climate change/the new name when the current one looses its umph. Naturally the pro-we-ignore-the-earths-climate-has-changed-over-millions-of-years crowd cry foul. I cannot ever recall a group of scientists like these folks be so opposed and go to the lengths they do to squelch any and all dissenting views. That is not science but fanaticism.

Re:Go after em Nate (0)

Cryacin (657549) | about 5 months ago | (#46539387)

So, you're saying that Five-Thirty-Eight got past the Four-Twenty of the climate debate?

Re:Go after em Nate (1)

Stumbles (602007) | about 5 months ago | (#46539409)

No, the eleventy-seventy group was passing bad data.

Re:Go after em Nate (1, Insightful)

lgw (121541) | about 5 months ago | (#46539413)

It's amazing how they jumped quickly on the heretic for the slightest non-orthodoxy. We've gone from grouping those who doubt that human CO2 emission costs more than eliminating it would with modern Nazis who deny the Holocaust, to burning the witch for claiming "you don't need global warming to explain this rise in costs".

Clearly he weighs the same as a duck!

When you start attacking people who say "I don't need your theory to explain this observation", not even doubting your theory is true, you've become a religion.

Re:Go after em Nate (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46539531)

It's amazing how they jumped quickly on the heretic for the slightest non-orthodoxy. We've gone from grouping those who doubt that human CO2 emission costs more than eliminating it would with modern Nazis who deny the Holocaust, to burning the witch for claiming "you don't need global warming to explain this rise in costs".

Clearly he weighs the same as a duck!

When you start attacking people who say "I don't need your theory to explain this observation", not even doubting your theory is true, you've become a religion.

This is how science works.

Scientists debate REALLY REALLY REALLY hard about every little detail of their stuff. I mean, Pielke and Mann both agree on the big picture of climate change as is clear from their article - the just disagree on the details. But, scientists debate hard on the details.

But this is what scientists are supposed to do (although its not supposed to be in such a bitchy, personal, nasty way - Mann always comes across as an ass). Work over every little thing until a consensus is reached. After all, thats why the general public should have some trust in scientific consensus - scientists debate so hard amongst themselves, so if they all agree on something, it must be fairly believable.

Re:Go after em Nate (2, Insightful)

riverat1 (1048260) | about 5 months ago | (#46539737)

We've gone from grouping those who doubt that human CO2 emission costs more than eliminating it would with modern Nazis who deny the Holocaust ...

The people making that connection are the climate science deniers themselves. They're just trying to redefine the meaning of "denier" to take the heat out of it. Mark Twain famously said "Denial ain't just a river in Egypt" long before there was any Holocaust denial.

Re:Go after em Nate (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46540367)

When you start attacking people who say "I don't need your theory to explain this observation", not even doubting your theory is true, you've become a religion.

Nope, it just means plebians have been educated too much in areas they are incapable of actually understanding. Think of how they are educated: they are instructed to memorize facts, viewpoints, talkingpoints, etc - they never actually learn a subject. When you combine that kind of brainwashy "learning" (in quotes because you can't really teach a monkey to understand gravity - even if you teach it to motion downward when asked which way is gravity pulling you) with anything you get the zealous behavior of a fanatic. Trying to education the incapable is as anti-science as it gets beyond the fact that it was worth a try, but now that we know what it does we should stop it. If someone isn't capable of understanding a subject in full they have no business being taught it, it's just damaging in the long run and they will never make use of it anyway.

Re:Go after em Nate (1)

Yaur (1069446) | about 5 months ago | (#46539417)

In fact, today’s climate models suggest that future changes in extremes that cause the most damage won’t be detectable in the statistics of weather (or damage) for many decades.

So he isn't a denier exactly. He is saying that damage from natural disasters is not a significant contributor to the damages at this point. Someone making a, data backed, nuanced argument about climate change... seems like its time to get the popcorn.

Re:Go after em Nate (5, Insightful)

riverat1 (1048260) | about 5 months ago | (#46539505)

Pielke Jr. is a lukewarmer. He accepts that climate science is basically right but thinks the effects won't be as bad as it's being made out to be.

One of the criticisms I've seen of this paper is that Pielke doesn't take into account the fact that we've built more resilient structures in response to past natural disasters so the fact that the costs remain about the same means either those responses haven't been very effective or that the natural disasters have been getting worse but the additional resilience keeps the costs about the same.

Re:Go after em Nate (2)

Yaur (1069446) | about 5 months ago | (#46539599)

But he does talk about exactly that. Specifically about the relationship between per capita GDP and the expected death toll from natural disasters. How do you account for that if the reason isn't better, or at least more widely available, technology and preparedness. Is the counter argument that we are getting better at preventing damage from disasters faster than they are getting worse? That doesn't seem particularly different than his POV.

Re:Go after em Nate (5, Interesting)

reve_etrange (2377702) | about 5 months ago | (#46539899)

You've misunderstood the 538 post. The argument there is simply that higher GDP means there is more GDP available to lose. Ergo, greater losses. Its author claims that technological and preparedness advances are not significant.

Re:Go after em Nate (5, Informative)

penix1 (722987) | about 5 months ago | (#46539639)

One of the criticisms I've seen of this paper is that Pielke doesn't take into account the fact that we've built more resilient structures in response to past natural disasters so the fact that the costs remain about the same means either those responses haven't been very effective or that the natural disasters have been getting worse but the additional resilience keeps the costs about the same.

Disclaimer: I am the State Hazard Mitigation Officer for my state...

Having said that, I can vouch for the fact that every state gets 15% of the cost of the disaster just for mitigating future damages. Everything from acquisition / demolition and elevations for flooding to safe rooms and wind resistant construction for hurricane and tornadoes. This has been going on since the late 80's and is part of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act (Public Law 93-288) as amended. Section 404 covers the Hazard Mitigation Assistance and 406 covers Mitigation for Public Assistance (infrastructure).

http://www.fema.gov/robert-t-s... [fema.gov]

Currently, our state has over 1,500 properties that are under deed restriction preventing any structures from being built there ever again.

Title 44 of the Code of Federal Regulations stipulates how the Hazard Mitigation Grant programs are to be implemented.

http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/C... [gpo.gov]

Add to that the newly (and controversially) enacted Biggert Waters National Flood Insurance Reform Act of 2012 and it makes the NFIP risk based as it should be.

http://www.fema.gov/flood-insu... [fema.gov]

So yes, this nation has been actively seeking ways to make communities much more resilient to natural disasters.

And from an anecdotal point of view having been in emergency management for 15 years, I can say from personal experience that storms are getting more frequent and more powerful.

Re:Go after em Nate (5, Informative)

owski (222689) | about 5 months ago | (#46539735)

And from an anecdotal point of view...

That's why we have science, because "anecdotal point of view" is completely untrustworthy.

Re:Go after em Nate (1)

penix1 (722987) | about 5 months ago | (#46539755)

Well from what I am seeing from the comments here and the bitchfest going on over there the science isn't very trustworthy either...

Re:Go after em Nate (2)

Namarrgon (105036) | about 5 months ago | (#46539859)

Why would a whole branch of science suddenly get untrustworthy? Did the peer review process selectively stop working, or are they all in a massive global conspiracy to sabotage their own careers, perhaps?

Or perhaps it's just uninformed opinion that says it's untrustworthy, which has got to be one of the bigger examples of irony around.

Re:Go after em Nate (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46540527)

Did the peer review process selectively stop working? Yes!

Re:Go after em Nate (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46540291)

Not at all. The consensus from many anecdotes is what we eventually based our science on. If more people are experiencing harsher and harsher storms, that's like everyone always experiencing gravity. It's just not the same type of scientific construct.

Re:Go after em Nate (0)

riverat1 (1048260) | about 5 months ago | (#46539825)

If I could still use my mod points in this discussion I would give you an Interesting. Thanks for the report from someone in the front lines. You understand the finer points often missed in a high level overview like Pielke's.

Re:Go after em Nate (5, Informative)

penix1 (722987) | about 5 months ago | (#46540179)

Well then here is another piece for you...

Every state that receives federal assistance for disaster is required by the Stafford Act to have a FEMA approved mitigation plan. It can be one of two flavors. Standard all hazards mitigation plan or enhanced all hazard mitigation plan. Larger states go for enhanced because it gives up to 20% instead of 15% but to be enhanced a state has to demonstrate a capability and dedication to running their own programs. Smaller states like mine don't have the staffing to pull that off properly so we go standard. These plans are public documents (sensitive critical infrastructure mitigation may be redacted) so check with your State Hazard Mitigation Officer who is responsible for those plans. (WV citizens can find theirs here: http://www.dhsem.wv.gov/mitiga... [wv.gov] )

Add to that each local unit of government must have an approved local plan if they want to participate in mitigation funding programs. (Again, WV citizens can use the link above for their regionalized plans).

State plans have an update cycle of 3 years while local plans have an update cycle of 5. SHMOs nationwide have been arguing this update cycle is backwards. After all, which is more likely to change over time, local or statewide?

Re:Go after em Nate (1)

riverat1 (1048260) | about 5 months ago | (#46540253)

Wow, you folks must have been scrambling pretty hard back in January when that chemical spill in the Elk River occurred.

Re:Go after em Nate (4, Interesting)

LynnwoodRooster (966895) | about 5 months ago | (#46540263)

And from an anecdotal point of view having been in emergency management for 15 years, I can say from personal experience that storms are getting more frequent and more powerful.

Interesting, must just be your neck of the woods, since hurricane/cyclone frequency and energy is decreasing [policlimate.com] on a global scale. Sure, we're spotting more hurricanes/cyclones, but fewer are making landfall and are weaker as well. Perhaps our ability to spot hurricanes out at sea, and classify them correctly is what is getting better, not the actual number occurring.

Likewise with tornadoes [noaa.gov] , which have remained more-or-less constant. Damage caused by F1 to F5 tornadoes is actually dropping; it's the little guys, the F0s, that are increasing damage. Is that because there are more tornadoes? No, there are not more tornadoes. I suggest it is because there is more lightweight construction in/near tornado zones and so damage is happening where in the past it would not - nothing to damage.

Re:Go after em Nate (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46540399)

No, in fact its MORE nuanced than that, he's saying that the COSTS of natural disasters isn't due to the increased frequency or intensity of the natural disasters themselves but due to the increased WEALTH of society. Which makes some sense on its face, considering that for instance more people likely drive expensive BMW's & MB's now than ever before etc. Clearly, when you have more & more expensive 'stuff' to destroy it costs more to rebuild it to its replacement state. How that could not be considered so 'heretical' given the comments I read is beyond me & suggests that those attacking him have entirely different agenda than getting at the truth.

Speaking of ignoring evidence (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46539429)

I'm guessing you ignored the part where he fudged the data he did use, and ignored a whole other pile of data and criticisms of his previous analyses, in order to produce this result? The reason scientists always seem to go after results like this is that results like this are pretty much always based on shit science. If you're hanging your views on shitty analyses like these, perhaps your views are wrong.

Re:Speaking of ignoring evidence (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46539461)

I'm guessing you ignored the part where he fudged the data he did use, and ignored a whole other pile of data and criticisms of his previous analyses, in order to produce this result?

I gather you didn't read to the end where the update explained why none of what you said is true?

Re:Speaking of ignoring evidence (2, Insightful)

reve_etrange (2377702) | about 5 months ago | (#46539909)

It didn't explain why it might not be true, it just asserted that it isn't. Contrary to popular belief here is a difference between bald assertion and actual argument.

Re: Speaking of ignoring evidence (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46540543)

No, there isn't.

Re:Go after em Nate (2, Informative)

saloomy (2817221) | about 5 months ago | (#46539439)

Its sad to see these scientists cry fowl, controversy, and blasphemy at dissenters . Isn't science supposed to have opposing views, with fact-based research on multiple view points using the "scientific method" for cross-checking each-others work? These "scientists" sound more and more like high priests from the middle ages every time I read a climate-change article. It also irks me that they always point to "in-the-last-800,000-years" graph, where "in-the-last-34,000,000-years" graph from the exact same source (ice-cores), having data that is just as accurate reveals that the earth was in a period of historically low CO2 levels during the ascent of man. Until we start cold-fusing He to form C, were only releasing carbon that was at one point or another already in the atmosphere. The earth was not formed with oil reserves in place before there was an atmosphere....

Re:Go after em Nate (5, Insightful)

Applehu Akbar (2968043) | about 5 months ago | (#46539501)

As soon as the climate issue transitioned from being a scientific issue to a political cause, it has been fought according to the rules of politics, not science. It's why people line up for and against on the basis of ideology. It's why the collegial peer skepticism that is the norm all through regular science has been replaced by angry political terminology in this one instance.

Re:Go after em Nate (5, Insightful)

grcumb (781340) | about 5 months ago | (#46539555)

Its sad to see these scientists cry fowl, controversy, and blasphemy at dissenters . Isn't science supposed to have opposing views, with fact-based research on multiple view points using the "scientific method" for cross-checking each-others work?

First off: Let's leave the chickens out of this, shall we?

Second: No, it's not sad at all. This is exactly the kind of debate we want - one where people disagree about specific and detailed issues, and respond to one another on points of fact. Yes, it's heated and the antagonism is distressful to some, but the plain fact is that this is real, healthy debate.

I don't see propaganda, mis- and disinformation from 'high priests'; I see a bunch of pencil-liner geeks getting furious with one another over data. And I like it.

The only thing that saddens me in all this is that people think disagreement is equivalent to enmity these days.

Re:Go after em Nate (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46540211)

Because people have forgotten how to disagree in a civil manner.

Re:Go after em Nate (5, Insightful)

Urza9814 (883915) | about 5 months ago | (#46539947)

It also irks me that they always point to "in-the-last-800,000-years" graph, where "in-the-last-34,000,000-years" graph from the exact same source (ice-cores), having data that is just as accurate reveals that the earth was in a period of historically low CO2 levels during the ascent of man. Until we start cold-fusing He to form C, were only releasing carbon that was at one point or another already in the atmosphere. The earth was not formed with oil reserves in place before there was an atmosphere....

Yes, humanity evolved and developed to our current state in a period of low atmospheric CO2. Nobody really denies that. It's pretty obvious.

But...we have no way of knowing if our current civilization -- or even the human species -- can survive a world with those higher CO2 levels. Most people would be in favor of acting to prevent massive natural disasters or the extinction of the entire human race if possible.

Not that I'm saying humanity WOULD go extinct...I think climate change will be very painful for us, and we should try to mitigate that, but we'll survive regardless. We're pretty damn good at that. But it could certainly set us back a few hundred/thousand years....along with causing millions of deaths...so it's probably a good thing to try to avoid.

Re:Go after em Nate (1)

dryeo (100693) | about 5 months ago | (#46540231)

For an example of a planet that hasn't sequestered any carbon in the form of hydrocarbons or carbonate rocks, look at Venus. Personally I think it is good that so much carbon has been removed from the atmosphere that temperatures are milder then Venus and considering we have evolved during an ice house phase of the Earth I also think that we're lucky we're still in the ice house phase.
Eventually the Earth will flip back to the hot house phase and most of the life that we know will die out, including us, but why rush it.

Additionally (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46539445)

Nobody is ignoring natural climate fluctuations. Nobody. The fact that the climate fluctuates naturally does not argue against anthropogenic climate change any more than the fact that the weather changes from day to day argues against the existence of seasons. How about you come back when you have an argument that hasn't already been debunked based on evidence here:

https://www.skepticalscience.com/argument.php

Re:Go after em Nate (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46539483)

Eh, the Pielke guy who is getting complained about by Mann et al. has a lot of peer reviewed articles in what appear to be major climatology journals (read the update at the bottom of the article). So its not like he is some outsider who has been squelched.

He appears to agree with the climate change consensus by and large - after all, his own models eventually predict some fairly negative effects from climate change, just in future decades rather than right now. Its just that he has some (rather nasty) disagreements about some of the fine details of what is happening with climate change right now with some other people.

This is just a debate between some academics about the details of climate change. Both sides appear to accept a similar overall big picture, its the kind of nasty quibbling of details that you get in academia.

Re:Go after em Nate (1)

riverat1 (1048260) | about 5 months ago | (#46540331)

What Roger Pielke, Jr. has is a B.A. in mathematics, an M.A. in public policy and a Ph.D. in political science. But he also has his father who is a highly cited atmospheric scientist so he's probably better versed in the science than many. They are both what is commonly called lukewarmers in that they accept the science to a large degree but think the effects have been exaggerated by others. Pielke, Jr. worked for a time a the National Center for Atmospheric Research which is probably why he has been published in climate journals.

Re:Go after em Nate (2)

rasmusbr (2186518) | about 5 months ago | (#46539579)

It is true that the climate has changed over time and it is also true that it has been much warmer than we could ever hope to make it by burning fossil fuel and that the sea levels have been much higher than today. There is one crucial difference: that was before the apes evolved walking on two legs and complex language and eventually went on to build huge cities, most of which are only a few meters above sea level.

Re:Go after em Nate (1)

symbolset (646467) | about 5 months ago | (#46539761)

Will the temperature get hotter than walking apes can deal with? Generally signs point to "no".

Re:Go after em Nate (4, Interesting)

reve_etrange (2377702) | about 5 months ago | (#46539915)

Just because skin wont burst into flames doesn't mean that millions or hundred of millions of people might not be displaced or deprived of food and water.

Re:Go after em Nate (1)

Urza9814 (883915) | about 5 months ago | (#46539979)

...so we won't go extinct, civilization as we know it will just collapse?

Or are you just going to ignore the parts of the post you're responding to that don't fit in to your bias?

Re:Go after em Nate (3, Insightful)

rahvin112 (446269) | about 5 months ago | (#46539723)

Scientists go after any scientist or report claiming to be scientific that violates scientific principles or that is blatantly false. It happens all the time.

Maybe if you weren't predisposed to an answer you would realize that attack on the science might just indicate that the science is bad.

Nah mate (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46540423)

They give them accolades, awards etc.

Re:Go after em Nate (-1, Flamebait)

MrBigInThePants (624986) | about 5 months ago | (#46539777)

As per usual your type, in the face of overwhelming evidence, has to resort to irrational straw man and ad hominem attacks against the scientists themselves. I am truly sick to death of reading posts like these from Ostriches who are too afraid to see the truth for what it is so they can remain blissfully ignorant and do nothing about it.
After all if it WAS true and you wilfully ignored it that would make you a terrible person....best to just pretend it is not happening. Well sorry, no you don't get to do that without being called out on your bullshit.

There are a number of points about this issue you are missing - almost certainly on purpose. This is why the situation is actually unique and not just due to what you have called "fanaticism":

1) Rarely do scientists HAVE to go after people spouting complete and utter bullshit about their field in public that is so demonstratively wrong. Typically the debate is within the field with people who know what they are talking about.
2) Rarely is a scientific issue turned into such a ignorant political and PR fiasco requiring public defence for the benefit of laypeople.
3) Rarely are the potential consequences of ignoring/maligning a finding so dire.
4) Rarely have so many idiots responded to a battle cry for ignorance and made it their personal mission to post complete and utter shit in public wherever they can - as you have done just now and probably countless other places.
5) While each of the above is rare in itself, although they happen, I cannot think of ANY other issue which combines all of the above. This may be a historical first.

That is why this is different. Not because of the ridiculous, quite obviously incorrect and deceitful reason you have given above.

Why I am even bothering I don't know. Your ears are most likely filled with too much wax to hear anything anybody has to say on the issue. (as are all others like you)

Re:Go after em Nate (1)

riverat1 (1048260) | about 5 months ago | (#46540359)

With the possible exception of #3 in your list I think it could be applied to the evolution issue too. #3 could apply if the creationists/ID'ers gain enough traction to remove the consideration of what we know about evolution in biology but that seems unlikely.

Re: Go after em Nate (1)

Scowler (667000) | about 5 months ago | (#46539779)

You didn't even RTFA, did you? Nowhere in the article does it say that Global Warming is wrong. This is about extreme storms, those strong enough to cause insured damages. That's a tangential point in regards overall climate patterns. Try reading first before accusing others of "fanaticism."

Nate isn't "going after 'em" (1)

globaljustin (574257) | about 5 months ago | (#46539857)

You're projecting your ideas onto what's happening. Full disclosure, I'm a FON (fan of Nate).

This article is about **launching a site**...it's about being "controversial" to get clicks.

Nate Silver doesn't agree with you. He isn't fighting against some imagined climate change fanaticism or intolerance, b/c **none exists**

Pollution hurts the environment. End of story.

This article was about getting "clicks"...it's not trying to overturn decades of science...at best it's a "opposing viewpoint" kind of thing that is attempting to do for climate change deniers what you're attempting to do with TFA...

Re:Go after em Nate (5, Interesting)

pitchpipe (708843) | about 5 months ago | (#46539889)

I cannot ever recall a group of scientists like these folks be so opposed and go to the lengths they do to squelch any and all dissenting views.

I cannot ever recall groups of people who are not experts in a field so fervently trying to discredit the experts in that field, and to disprove the science in that field, all while using anything but the generally accepted methods of that field.

I don't see wildlife biologists using historical populations of wolves to try to disprove Einstein's theory of relativity. I don't see archaeologists using ancient mummy wrapping techniques to try to disprove the theory of solar spot formation. But here we have a political scientist using statistics from economic data to try to discredit the theory that more energy in a weather system will cause more energetic events. It's getting to be so ridiculous that I bet in the near future we *will* see a wildlife biologist using historical wolf populations to disprove that the globe is heating up, or that it is but man is not the cause, or that man is the cause but you can't do anything about it anyway, or that you could, but it's actually better for everybody so don't do anything, or please, just anything but not to burn less oil.

You guys that deny climate change is happening (or whatever your flavor of denialism is taking on these days), do you ever wonder if by buying into what these guys are saying that you're just playing the stooge?

Re:Go after em Nate (1)

meglon (1001833) | about 5 months ago | (#46539997)

I cannot ever recall groups of people who are not experts in a field so fervently trying to discredit the experts in that field, and to disprove the science in that field, all while using anything but the generally accepted methods of that field.

Point, set, match. You don't go to a car mechanic if you're having a heart attack. Pielke isn't a actual scientist, he's a political scientist who doesn't understand real science enough to make use of it, but he has a big enough mouth and the tenacity of diarrhea of that same orifice to gather a following of other incredibly intentionally ignorant dipshits who's world view his basic stupidity confirms.

If we're losing more money to natural disasters because we have more money in general, we be losing more money to ALL natural disaster types across the board, not just seeing a spike from weather related ones.

This Pielke numbnut is basically like a radical religious homeschooled idiot trying to debunk The Theory of Natural Selection using the Bible; only already true believers without a functioning ability to use logic will agree with his clearly incorrect screed.

His pedigree is way better than you let on (3, Informative)

SuperKendall (25149) | about 5 months ago | (#46540467)

Pielke isn't a actual scientist, he's a political scientist who doesn't understand real science enough

He worked at the National Center for Atmospheric Research as a REAL scientist for eight years [colorado.edu] . Possibly using his mathematics degree, you realized he had one?

You weren't actually basing your understanding on who he was based solely on what someone trying to discredit him painted him as... right? Right?? Sigh.

Re:Go after em Nate (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46540475)

Wow, clearly we know which side of the fence you two are on. This article isn't even about SCIENCE it's about ECONOMICS, you do not have to be a physicist specializing in climate science to do the analysis in question. In fact being an economist/statistician would be far more helpful. If you want to argue that he cherry picked data in his analysis go right ahead and do so, publish your own analysis with more data and expected correlations etc. etc., but attacking Pielke because he isn't a 'climate scientist' demonstrates you have no freakin' clue about the article in question. Pielke wasn't trying to build a model of climate change, he is doing an economic analysis of the costs of said change.

In fact its the climate scientists that have no 'expertise in the field of discussion' who are the ones 'off base'. When they get economics degrees THAN they can come back & so can you two.

Re:Go after em Nate (1)

riverat1 (1048260) | about 5 months ago | (#46540387)

I cannot ever recall groups of people who are not experts in a field so fervently trying to discredit the experts in that field, and to disprove the science in that field, all while using anything but the generally accepted methods of that field.

Ahem, evolution.

Should be easy to prove or dis-prove (4, Interesting)

saloomy (2817221) | about 5 months ago | (#46539347)

He also cited a U.N. climate report, along with his own research, to assert that extreme weather events have not been increasing in frequency or intensity. Aren't extreme weather events and their relative energy levels easy to gauge and track? Why is this controversial? Either there are more extreme / extremely powerful events, the average energy level increasing, or there aren't. Im sure that (like economists do for inflation), factors that are constant and not constant (like solar output) can be factored.

Re:Should be easy to prove or dis-prove (1)

saloomy (2817221) | about 5 months ago | (#46539379)

He also cited a U.N. climate report, along with his own research, to assert that extreme weather events have not been increasing in frequency or intensity.

Meant to quote the above... comment : Aren't extreme weather events and their relative energy levels easy to gauge and track? Why is this controversial? Either there are more extreme / extremely powerful events, the average energy level increasing, or there aren't. Im sure that (like economists do for inflation), factors that are constant and not constant (like solar output) can be factored.

Re:Should be easy to prove or dis-prove (2)

quantaman (517394) | about 5 months ago | (#46539629)

He also cited a U.N. climate report, along with his own research, to assert that extreme weather events have not been increasing in frequency or intensity.

Aren't extreme weather events and their relative energy levels easy to gauge and track? Why is this controversial? Either there are more extreme / extremely powerful events, the average energy level increasing, or there aren't.

Im sure that (like economists do for inflation), factors that are constant and not constant (like solar output) can be factored.

Those things are checkable but it's non-trivial and subject to interpretation. I don't know if there is a scientific consensus on this question but I'm pretty sure it's non-trivial.

For me the issue isn't that the story is necessarily wrong, it's that it could have had the opposite conclusion and been just as convincing and justified. Silver hired a proponent of one side in a scientific debate (no idea if it's the bigger side or not), now that person is presenting his view as if it's the only conclusion once you take a five second look at the data. It's a misleading article.

Re:Should be easy to prove or dis-prove (5, Informative)

Namarrgon (105036) | about 5 months ago | (#46539905)

Well, here is a major study [ametsoc.org] : 19 different peer-reviewed analyses by 70 climate scientists in 18 separate research groups. Brief summary of their findings:

  • * Climate change helped raise the temperatures during the run of 100F days in 2012’s American heat wave;
  • * drove the record loss of Arctic sea ice;
  • * fueled the devastating storm surge of hurricane Sandy;
  • * heatwaves are now four times as likely;

However, they also found there are of course still natural events that climate change has not affected, such as:

  • * Britain’s miserable summer in 2012, which was the rainiest in a century;
  • * the Netherlands’ cold spell in 2012;
  • * the drought that devastated America’s corn belt;
  • * the droughts in Kenya and Somalia.

TL;DR: Climate change IS affecting our weather, but only some things.

Re:Should be easy to prove or dis-prove (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46540019)

What noone seems to mention is that with oceans covering 70% of the earth's surface, ANY populated area's data is all but anecdotal...
Do we have any "whole earth" data? or are we just measuring what happens to humans(which is, if you go by the numbers, just a minor statistic, oddly enough)

Re:Should be easy to prove or dis-prove (1)

riverat1 (1048260) | about 5 months ago | (#46540491)

Since the dawn of the satellite era (about 1979) we have gotten a lot better at covering the whole Earth. The only area that still gets missed to some extent is very near the poles since the orbits don't go directly over them. At the South Pole we have a permanently manned station that collects data but we can't put a permanent station at the North Pole.

Re:Should be easy to prove or dis-prove (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46540511)

NONE of which says that the increased COSTS for cleaning up after these disasters has anything to do with the actual increase or intensity of the disasters! How is it at all controversial to at least posit the premise that because we have more stuff & more expensive stuff that the increased costs are due to that alone & than doing an analysis to determine if its true, including authoring several papers on the subject...the analysis isn't a 'scientific analysis' its an 'economic analysis' which anyone with a degree in Economics or Statistics & doing due diligence can perform, you don't need a degree in climate science to do this analysis...and frankly I think THAT's what is irking these supposed 'scientists' the most...he's not 'one of them' so he can't POSSIBLY be right.

Re:Should be easy to prove or dis-prove (1)

a2wflc (705508) | about 5 months ago | (#46540043)

Detection of extreme weather events hasn't been consistent so it's hard to say for example if there are more or more powerful hurricanes now than in the 1930's. Hurricanes need an eye witness to label them. These days we see something on radar and send a plane. In the 1930's it depended on having a boat in the area or making landfall in a populated area. One result is that there are a lot more recorded cat 1 and 2s now than 100 years ago but not so many more 4s and 5s (very likely they usually made land or were big enough that a boat recorded them before as now).

Around TAR timeframe this was not a generally accepted explanation so skeptics were called wrong when they pointed it out. But now it is more accepted and the latest IPCC report reduced their confidence that AGW will make hurricanes worse.

We can "prove or dis-prove" a lot if you're talking about 20-30 years. When you go back further it's much harder to say things are worse. Methods and devices have changed. We don't always even have access to those devices or the people who used them, especially if you want to go back 100s of years. We know about a few decadal oscillation and 60 year oscillations and there's evidence of multi-century natural oscillations. We don't know enough about the longer oscillations to say where we are in them and how extreme weather events are affected by them vs AGW. The medieval warm period and little ice age could cause problems for AGW supporters if it ends up that there is a multi-century cycle peaking that contributes to these extreme events. But, we really don't know much about those centuries or weather events in them.

Cherry Picking is Much of the Issue (1)

pubwvj (1045960) | about 5 months ago | (#46540335)

Much of the problem is that the Alarmists and the Deniers like to cherry pick the data. What they do is pick a span of time that proves their point. If you look at the last 17 years then you come to one conclusion. If you look at the last 34 years you get another conclusion. That sort of thing. This is classic bad science and both sides are doing it. It's annoying.

I hope Nate doesn't become another hack (4, Insightful)

Kwelstr (114389) | about 5 months ago | (#46539365)

Most media sites are internet hacks now, posting stories for clicks, that's all they care about (alla Newsweek) and guess what, reddit is their big secret! Nate Silver was one of the very few that stuck to the data, and was trustworthy. But that was then, this is now. He has to prove his new venture is going to be accurate and truthful and not just another HuffPost type bullcrap.

Re:I hope Nate doesn't become another hack (1)

roman_mir (125474) | about 5 months ago | (#46539885)

Nate just showed that true inflation is gigantic, much higher than government admits and the mob yells: hack, hack, can't be, government can't be wrong! Ha ha ha ha ha ha!

Re:I hope Nate doesn't become another hack (1)

TubeSteak (669689) | about 5 months ago | (#46540301)

Most media sites are internet hacks now, posting stories for clicks, that's all they care about (alla Newsweek) and guess what, reddit is their big secret! Nate Silver was one of the very few that stuck to the data, and was trustworthy.

Have you seen the FiveThirtyEight headlines?
They're almost 100% clickbait.

I have no comment about the contents of the articles,
but the headlines are just a step above "one weird trick" type stuff.

Read the update at the end of the article (4, Insightful)

SuperKendall (25149) | about 5 months ago | (#46539397)

Most of the complaints about the original article are suspect, and the primary and most solid complaint (technological innovations in structures) has in fact been accounted for by Pielke.

I would trust someone vetted by Nate Silver a great deal more than anyone posting on a highly partisan site like "Think Progress" - the goal of FiveThirtyEight being to bring real and carefully considered data to have a conversation based on science, not emotion.

Re:Read the update at the end of the article (1)

Yaur (1069446) | about 5 months ago | (#46539499)

If anything I thought it was part of his argument... cost in absolute terms is going up because GDP is going up, but going down as a share of GDP because wealth also allows us to prepare better for disasters (e.g. with better technology). I'm not in a position to say, but assuming that he hasn't doctored the data (which seems sadly common in this domain) it seems like an interesting assessment.

Re:Read the update at the end of the article (2)

MatthiasF (1853064) | about 5 months ago | (#46539705)

I agree, they seem to be smoothing out their response in the update but I also noticed when they were explaining Piekle's background that they failed to recognize he has a very strong environmental sciences background.

http://sciencepolicy.colorado.... [colorado.edu]

He worked for the National Center for Atmospheric Research for eight years and has numerous awards from many non-partisan organizations regarding climate and planetary research.

Yet the ThinkProgress site only mentions he is a "political scientist" as it to cast him as ignorant of the subject matter.

Re:Read the update at the end of the article (2)

meglon (1001833) | about 5 months ago | (#46540023)

Yet the ThinkProgress site only mentions he is a "political scientist" as it to cast him as ignorant of the subject matter.

Pielke earned a B.A. in mathematics (1990), a M.A. in public policy (1992), and a Ph.D. in political science, all from the University of Colorado Boulder.

This is the problem (0, Troll)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about 5 months ago | (#46539469)

This is the problem I've had with this climate change debate all along. It is clearly a very serious thing that we need to address, but there are people that have a ideology that's simply apposed to progress and science period. They're so intense about climate change they think exaggeration and outright lies are acceptable to achieve their goals. If both sides of the argument are tainted, the the general public will just throw up their hands in confusion and get no-where. Despite what many people may think, Jonh-q-public does notice when everyone from one side of an argument ends up being proven wrong eventually while the other side has never done anything but inform him. This is why the majority of the public trusts in science now rather than superstition. If you vehemently believe in climate change, the get the facts... the real facts. Educate and enlighten people. You'll do more for your cause than Al Gore ever did.

Re:This is the problem (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46540107)

Eighty percent of the world's climate scientists agree that climate change is a real, scientifically proven phenomena, caused by human activity, with data to back it up. Or put another way, 80% of the world's climate scientists have decided to promulgate the stance that the science is 100% settled, no matter what the other 20% think.

Re:This is the problem (2)

PPH (736903) | about 5 months ago | (#46540395)

Does someone have a plot of the increase in climate scientists vs global temperature?

There's your problem.

So, pretty much... (1)

Kaenneth (82978) | about 5 months ago | (#46539507)

Just like a new 'Highest Grossing' movie premier, or 'Most Expensive Flop'

Money related comparisons need to account for inflation.

Analysis not as easy outside of spectator sports (5, Interesting)

quantaman (517394) | about 5 months ago | (#46539543)

538's original mix, sports and politics, are both essentially spectator sports. The major interest in entertainment and people watch for the narratives. Seeking to drive interest (and appease partisans) media come up with false narratives that ignore data. This creates a lot of low hanging fruit for 538 to take the data and point out the narratives are wrong.

I think that 538 has made the mistake of believing that this low-hanging fruit exists elsewhere. When you have multiple groups of writers all trying to generate the best 2.5 hours of cable news punditry every week you're going to get a lot of easily debunked BS. When you try to apply that same once over data analysis to areas of serious scientific study you're going to be the one spewing BS.

I hope Silver can find some additional areas of news that are in real need of analysis because trying to do original scientific research in a news article won't end well.

Re:Analysis not as easy outside of spectator sport (1)

crunchygranola (1954152) | about 5 months ago | (#46539797)

Very well put. You have nailed the issue precisely.

This same attempt to apply facile contrarian statistical analysis to real scientific issues led to the sad flame-out of Levitt and Dubner in Super Freakonomics. You need to understand when the analytic techniques you are applying work and when they don't, and don't draw over-broad conclusions for the sake of a headline and some clicks.

Re:Analysis not as easy outside of spectator sport (2)

phantomfive (622387) | about 5 months ago | (#46540167)

Well, did you read the article? Because AFAICT his analysis seems good. Do you see real problems with it, or are you just guessing based on a headline? Because that would be as bad as what you are accusing him of.

Re:Analysis not as easy outside of spectator sport (2)

quantaman (517394) | about 5 months ago | (#46540205)

Well, did you read the article? Because AFAICT his analysis seems good. Do you see real problems with it, or are you just guessing based on a headline? Because that would be as bad as what you are accusing him of.

I read his article and the response.

If I recall his claims were mainly that costs had increased at the same rate as GDP (you really confident with his linear fit of that data? way too much noise) and that the IPCC had stated that extreme weather wasn't getting worse (not sure how true that is).

The response was that he was disregarding the fact that modern structures and forecasting should reduce costs, and that some work had indicated storms were getting worse. (to which he had a counter-response taking issue with the modern structure claim)

My point isn't that he's necessarily wrong (I honestly don't know), it's that it's a far more complicated question than the article implies.

Re:Analysis not as easy outside of spectator sport (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about 5 months ago | (#46540255)

That post is a lot more clear than your first one, thanks

Global Climate Liars (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46539569)

The "science is in" and the "debate is over". But it wasn't before they changed the name from "warming" to "climate change". When they can accurately predict what the weather will be *tomorrow* maybe I will listen. Also if "the debate is over" then why would you ever need to use that phrase? They lie by reflex.

Re: Global Climate Liars (1)

Scowler (667000) | about 5 months ago | (#46539817)

Most models, including the ones cited by TFA, predict 1-2 C average global temp increase by the end of the century. Troll again, perhaps? The point being argued here, if you need comprehension help, is what the effect of that increase will be.

Re: Global Climate Liars (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46540227)

How can I trust a 100 year model that uses the same data that their 1 day model uses, and yet is wrong in its 1 day prediction? Do you need some comprehension help?

Re: Global Climate Liars (2)

LynnwoodRooster (966895) | about 5 months ago | (#46540305)

Most models, including the ones cited by TFA, predict 1-2 C average global temp increase by the end of the century. Troll again, perhaps? The point being argued here, if you need comprehension help, is what the effect of that increase will be.

Yes, troll again - because whilst most models predict the rise, the models are completely wrong when compared with real data [drroyspencer.com] . So the decision becomes do we trust models which are NOT matching reality, or do we go with real, hard data (empirical science) and toss the models and build anew?

Re: Global Climate Liars (1)

PPH (736903) | about 5 months ago | (#46540375)

We plot the growth in the models' fudge factors over the next century.

Re: Global Climate Liars (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46540437)

http://wattsupwiththat.files.wordpress.com/2013/03/gisp2-ice-core-temperatures.jpg

Same Difference (1)

PaddyM (45763) | about 5 months ago | (#46539643)

My beef with Pielke's conclusions are that they are the same as regular climate "scientists"; namely that a transfer of wealth will somehow save the world. Whether it's carbon credits, or simply giving our money away to have less wealth to lose, global warming proponents simply can't come up with conclusions that allow the status quo to remain in place. When there are some conclusions that point out the advantages of oil spills, recommend increasing the number of wars waged to secure oil resources, show the economic benefits of more subsidies for oil exploration, and demonstrate without a doubt that the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge is nothing more than a make-work program for lazy polar bears who haven't contributed anything of value to humanity since coming into existence 130000 years ago, then I'd be open to supporting more research in this area. Until then, I'll have to take solace in my yachts and record profits since people won't thank how I single-handedly saved all the whales from extinction; whales with the intelligence to spend very little time considering how much methane they produce when they use the bathroom. And once the environmentalists finally succeed in stemming the rising oceans, the whales are welcome to swim in my giant pool of money, while they wait for humanity to figure out how to prevent the oceans from getting too small.

--Big Oil

PS Just don't take my money. The whales will have no place to swim.
PPS If I had more money, the whales could swim in my pool of money, and I could just float the oil on the defunct oceans and save a lot of hassle. Plus all those advantages of oil spills to boot. Where's that research at?

AAAS report released about the same time (5, Interesting)

oneiros27 (46144) | about 5 months ago | (#46539701)

The day before this article came out, the AAAS released a report on The Reality, Risks and Response to Climate Change [aaas.org] , and seems to be starting a publicity push on the topic.

Here's what I see -- the majority of scientists believe that there are real problems with global warming, even if there may be some cyclic effects (heat kills off all the humans, they stop causing problems, everything cools back down).

So instead we have groups trying to sow disinformation with questions about the incidence of some severe weather events (are we just monitoring better and catching more, in part because humans are in more places, or are they actually increasing), and are the increases in intensity statistically significant?

And at this point, I've seen some data that might've been tainted (eg, temperature monitors that have had buildings encroach), but the general concensus is that yes, storms are getting worse.

I'm not going to say his results are completely bunk, as he's likely right in that some of the problems can be explained by how and where people build (eg, in the flood plain -- but the flood plain was resurveyed and is growing in my area ... that might be because of silting up of rivers from construction, it could be because of increased rainfall))

Where I do fault the article is for referencing a 'recent' UN report that hasn't been released yet (website says "The Summary for Policymakers will be released on 31 March 2014"), so we can't actually get to the underlying data that he's basing his claims on.

Re:AAAS report released about the same time (1)

rahvin112 (446269) | about 5 months ago | (#46539775)

The flood plain in your area likely didn't grow. What is going on with the flood plains is related to legitimate science and the history of how they were originally developed. Many many of the original flood plain maps were developed with insufficient data and information to draw the kind of conclusions the flood plain maps do. When you run into those situations you don't throw up your hands and just not produce a flood map, you just do the best you can with the limited data you have.

Now years later work is underway to take all the previous data, plus all the new data collected since the last map was generated and generate new maps. These maps frequently differ because as I noted the original data wasn't that great.

On the other hand, I'm NOT arguing that changing climate hasn't caused changes to flood maps. What I'm saying is that the picture is far more complicated and broad generalizations about why the flood plain got bigger are going to be wrong because they are broad generalizations. If you want to know why a particular flood plain map got bigger you should request a copy of the hydraulic study that evaluated the previous flood plain and developed the new map. The summary at the front of the report will likely list the reasons the flood plain map has changed to the best of the engineers ability to discern. These summaries are often readable and comprehensible by non-engineers because they are targeted at planning and local government officials who will be required to enact the recommendations in the report.

I don't see it. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46539829)

Yeah sorry they just aren't getting worse no matter what the scare mongering media claims. I've been living in the gulf south for 35 plus years just like my parent and their parents before them. I've been through powerful storms multiple times just like my relatives and ancestors. When the coasts start getting slammed with multiple cat 5 hurricanes in quick succession every year for decades on end then maybe you will have a case for increasing storm activity and intensity. All I see right now is media scare mongering and attention whoring centered around statistically anomalous storms that are normal for an area to have every 20-30 years.

Re:AAAS report released about the same time (1)

HiThere (15173) | about 5 months ago | (#46540337)

It's definitely true that a lot of the problem can be explained by things being built in places that they shouldn't be. That's also clearly not the whole story.

Still, I don't know how I'd approportion the "blame". Sometimes you need both to happen before there's a disaster, sometimes one alone suffices. Sometimes even both together don't yield a disaster. Weather is chaotic. So is climate, though the scale is different. But even in chaos there are attractors. You don't often get snow in June (North of the Equator), unless you are on a really high mountain.

Anyone who tries to deny climate change, as in global warming (which doesn't meant warming in every locale), is either blindly prejudiced, lying, or just unwilling to look at the evidence.

I don't think Nate's the qualifications for this.. (2, Interesting)

rahvin112 (446269) | about 5 months ago | (#46539883)

Nate made a name for himself doing statistical analysis on events where there are generally two possible outcomes and a fairly limited numbers of possible ways to get there. Sports, voting, etc are ALL yes or no answers with very very limited possible ways to get there.

Real science on the other hand frequently involves situations where the answer isn't really known and the possible ways to get there are infinite. So rather than evaluating whether the local voters will vote for candidate A or candidate B is an entirely different situation than evaluating whether climate change is increasing the cost of disasters. There are two variables in the first and good data (such as polling) indicating how people in general will vote. With solid statistical analysis this type of situations should be fairly easy to predict IF your data collection is good. He made his name by doing better data picking than the others.

Climate change disaster levels on the other hand is an entirely different game. Because this is all rather cutting edge science, whether the frequency or size of disasters has gone up (at this time) is a question of open debate in the scientific community. This paper makes blatant assumptions about which side of this debate is right then proceeds to use that assumption as the basis to draw firm conclusions. This isn't good science and it's not good data analysis. Consensus is needed in science if you are going to rely on the conclusions to make predictions on other data sets. And that's exactly the problem, there isn't a yes or no answer to the question there was an assumed answer. There is evidence indicating things and certain scientists may agree or disagree about what that evidence indicates and in time after much research the scientific community will reach a consensus and we'll likely have the real answer with hard evidence at that point.

Nate should stick to what he's good at, fixed data sets with yes or no answers. He apparently doesn't have the scientific background to realize that not all scientific conclusions drawn in papers are either right nor are they the consensus of the community. After all, any jackass can write a paper and draw conclusions and be completely wrong or even fake data, in fact it happens all to often.

Re:I don't think Nate's the qualifications for thi (2)

iluvcapra (782887) | about 5 months ago | (#46540341)

Sports, voting, etc are ALL yes or no answers with very very limited possible ways to get there. Real science on the other hand frequently involves situations where the answer isn't really known and the possible ways to get there are infinite

That's about right. There's a sort of basic ontological fallacy in an article like this. Just because we can construct a question like "To what extent is climate change responsible for the cost of disasters?" it doesn't necessarily follow that it can be answered quantitatively, or that it even has a meaningful answer. Basically the article is two or three graphs and a bunch of qualitative analysis-- it's punditry in scientistic drag.

Running the numbers can never tell us what we have to do, right and wrong aren't subject to cost-benefit analysis. Always be wary of people that try to apply such logic, considering that the wrong thing to do tends to be the cheaper thing.

Facts Possibly Correct but Conclusions Unrelated (5, Informative)

kf6auf (719514) | about 5 months ago | (#46539917)

The evidence claims that so far, there hasn't been an increase in monetary cost of natural disasters relative to GDP. I'll let other, more informed people tackle this factual issue.* My problem is purely based on faulty logic; at the end of the article, the author extrapolates that this trend of disaster damage being correlated with and caused by increases in GDP will continue indefinitely. But the only evidence cited for the conclusion that climate change won't ever cause increased natural disasters actually says that US tropical cyclones won't significantly increase in frequency and severity for several decades; I found nothing about winter storms/polar vortex, crop loss due to drought, sea level rise, etc. and I'm not even sure how accurately you can extrapolate to tropical cycles in other places, not to mention many of us hope to still be around in several decades. I appreciate that Nate Silver is a great statistician, but this is going to go downhill really quick if the conclusions of articles posted on his site are only tangentially related to the actual statistics.

*The other disappointing thing is that the author has claimed this before, has been refuted, and hasn't changed his argument even so much as to mention the points made by various people who had rebuttals.

Back in the day we had rocks! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46539987)

You know, when I was alive millions of years ago these great big rocks came out of the sky and destroyed everything. So I'm really getting a kick out of these "extreme weather events" y'all are having.

- Dinosaurs

Statistics are nothing... (1)

argStyopa (232550) | about 5 months ago | (#46540097)

... in the face of dogma.

Pielke (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46540119)

Climate scientists hate Pielke because he's so much smarter than them.

In other words (1)

manu0601 (2221348) | about 5 months ago | (#46540129)

When I wander around with eyes closed, I hit my head on walls. It is not because my eyes are closed, but because there are too many walls.

Grab the popcorn! (1)

SlaveToTheGrind (546262) | about 5 months ago | (#46540135)

Nate Silver, stats-steeped liberal darling of the past 6+ years, has the temerity to direct his ruthless, data-driven worldview against a liberal sacred cow.

Hilarity ensues.

What nerve! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46540177)

A hard-left Obama-dicksucking socialist doesn't toe the AGW line... how fucking dare he?

This is the way science is supposed to work. (2)

riverat1 (1048260) | about 5 months ago | (#46540193)

Someone (in this case Pielke, Jr.) writes up their research then others with expertise in the field get to criticize it, hopefully producing something better ultimately. What is irritating is criticism from people who obviously don't know what they're talking about.

Cherry Pickers Caught Picking Their Noses (1)

pubwvj (1045960) | about 5 months ago | (#46540411)

Much of the problem is that the Alarmists and the Deniers both like to cherry pick the data to prove their favorite theory. What they do is choose a span of time that proves their point.

If you look at the last 17 years then you come to one conclusion. If you look at the last 34 years you get another conclusion. That sort of thing.

This is classic bad science and both sides are doing it. It's annoying.

Origins of climate change? (1)

Gordon Smith (3584195) | about 5 months ago | (#46540517)

Anyone remember how it all started?

Club of Rome publication "The Limits to Growth" (1972)

"The main thesis was that a foreseable decline of non-renewable resources would have an influence on all of the other factors. The decline of resources was predicted to happen already in the 1970s while by 2015, food production and global industry was thought to decline leading to a shrinking of world population."

So either we're all starving & on our way out, or there's a lot more to climate modelling than we know now, and the current fanaticism people on both side exhibit regarding the subject has more in common with 2 fleas arguing about who owns the dog, than reasoned scientific debate in search of a reliable and accurate model

Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>