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The discovery of intelligent alien life would be met predominantly with...

Capsaicin Re:It'll never happen (306 comments)

Sufficiently intelligent beings who have learned to travel faster than the speed of light would be totally uninterested in visiting low life forms such as humans.

For which reason humanity never developed any interest in biology generally but restricted its research exclusively to human biology, yeah?

3 days ago
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Cause and Effect: How a Revolutionary New Statistical Test Can Tease Them Apart

Capsaicin Re:Always (137 comments)

So why can't they properly take into account time?

Because the original set up may be buried in time. You find a wind-turbine turning, the wind is blowing. Merely by measuring the speed of each how can you tell which came first? (Yes, I know ... you compare the noise profile of the respective data sets.)

But now back to dwelling exclusively on the potential problems without acknowledging any even limited usefulness of this methodology might have ...

about a month and a half ago
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Cause and Effect: How a Revolutionary New Statistical Test Can Tease Them Apart

Capsaicin Re:Great... (137 comments)

Would you give yourself a 99% confidence interval, or only a 95%?

The question of the different criteria used in different fields of research is itself a social science question. Using OP's own criteria, they would require only 95% confidence. Obvious ... no?

about a month and a half ago
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Cause and Effect: How a Revolutionary New Statistical Test Can Tease Them Apart

Capsaicin Re:No problem. (137 comments)

[I]t deserves a more accurate headline: new statistical test can form confidence bounds for how unlikely a it would be for a new parameter to be of this magnitude if there were causation: when combined with existing test it may discredit more potential claims of causation than previously practical.

Did you really need to give it such an obviously click-baity title?

about a month and a half ago
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Last Three Years the Quietest For Tornadoes Ever

Capsaicin Re: And where are all the hurricanes? (187 comments)

Although "suggest" is far from a confident prediction, I agree Mann is overstating the case made in the paper he cites for the claim "models suggest more frequent and intense storms in a warmed world."

However that paper cited is itself very interesting --and thanks for bringing my attention to it! It's by Kerry Emmanuel, who was one of the joint authors in that Knutson et al. (2010) I cited above --which given the range of expert opinion (ie. from Emmanuel all the way to the sceptic Chris Landsea) carries some gravitas.

What Emmanuel is doing here is "downscaling" (which is to insert more localised modelling into the global model), a technique which has been shown with regard to temperatures, to have given results which more closely match recent short-term trends (for which reason alone they are not to be preferred over long-term global models). I've not had time to study this paper in detail (I suggest you might, along with the earlier Knutson paper), but applying this technique apparently gives a different result from that of the raw global models with increases in both frequency as well as intensity. However, we must not fall victim to latest paper syndrome, I doubt this is the last word on longer-term prediction regarding tropical storm formation and intensity. I'd like to see what Landsea's team makes of this for a start. But an interesting paper nonetheless, thanks.

The reason I suggest you ought to shy away from blogs, opinion pieces and interviews in favour of the actual science as published in reputable scholarly journals, should be clear when you measure the loose language that is thrown around on those fora as compared to the mathematical accuracy required of real science. This is obvious from the previous Mann article you cite, e.g. what "if I were a betting man," (is that a serious scientific prediction or just a "vibe"), means rather vague.

If you want a serious understanding of the current science, -- if you want to know if Cook, Mann, or Watts and Mcintyre for that matter, are straying from the bona fide science; if you want something better than some filtered mythological view of the science --you have little choice but to do the hard yards and read actual papers.

Merry Christmas!

about a month and a half ago
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At 40, a person is ...

Capsaicin Re:It's my birthday today! (286 comments)

40 feels barely different from ...

Don't fret ... you still have another good 7 years or so before the decline begins to feel (and look) obvious. :l

about a month and a half ago
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Last Three Years the Quietest For Tornadoes Ever

Capsaicin Re:And where are all the hurricanes? (187 comments)

John Cook

Shouldn't really have allowed him as he's not, from my understanding, actually a publishing climte scientist. The article is about extreme weather events not about topical storm formation per se. That being said the by-line (most likely the work of a sub-editor) does state "cyclones ... will become more commonplace." That clearly is to mistate the science as it is currently understood.

In the body Cook himself (as we can now assume) writes " our physical understanding of climate tells us global warming will cause the water cycle to grow more intense. This means both more heavy downpours and more intense drought" which downpours may or may not relate to tropical storms. Given however that this statement is in an article which leads with a description of Cyclone Yasi I think it would not be unreasonable for a reader to infer that Cook is claiming that tropical storms will increase in frequency just as other extreme events will.

So I will accept that, Cooks status notwithstanding, as fairly good example to prove your point.

Michael Mann

There can be no question he is a "climate scientist of ... note." However he doesn't seem to deal with the question of hurricanes formation, but rather tornado formation. It is also an odd article to chose since in it Mann is rejecting the notion that he is with any certainty predicting an increase in Tornado frequency. In fact defending his "betting-man" quote as being out of context and not adequately conveying his doubt. He states definitively "It is in fact too early to tell whether global warming is influencing tornado activity." [Orig. emphasis]

In summary that citation is not to the point, and even if the point were tornado formation, it hardly bears the accusation out.

James Hansen

Again a notable climate scientist, but I'm sorry I'm not listening to a >1hr talk just to see if he actually is stating the science as predicting an increase in tropical storm formation. I'll presume like Mann, he is not. Can you quote or give the time when you think this happens?

about a month and a half ago
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Linking Drought and Climate Change: Difficult To Do

Capsaicin Re:Duh. (222 comments)

Of course, it's physically impossible for a die to be 100% completely unbiased. Yet, we carry on as if it was.

Of course it is. And I was tempted to reply to khallow's observation that "nobody knows what unbiased dice roll like" to that effect --with the addendum that we will presume two perfect platonic dice (even though, by definition, there could only be one :). But since he wasn't talking actually about dice that would have been disingenuous, wouldn't it?

Actually for present purposes we don't even need to assume perfect dice. Even with physical dice, adding placed weights is liable to alter the frequency at which certain numbers come up and calculating the influence those weights have on any individual roll is impractical.

about a month and a half ago
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Linking Drought and Climate Change: Difficult To Do

Capsaicin Re:It's not difficult to erect a Strawman (222 comments)

OP is also saying that they're waiting on this one, meaning show me the drastic increase in Katrina level events

But OP would be somewhere between oh ... 50 to 500 years too early to make that statement, had they genuinely been talking about in increase exclusively of events of which the frequency is measured in centuries. If OP is honestly "waiting," (after less than a decade), they could not have had the point you raise in mind.

You're using models to say that overall hurricane frequency should decrease. But OP is saying the frequency of Katrina-level will increase.

I've already granted you, that ignoring the connotation and context of what was being said, the strict denotation of "Katrina-level events will ... increase in frequency," is not inconsistent with predictions of lowered frequency of tropical storm formation. Obviously.

However I disagree that OP intended to restrict their observation to that extent, or if they did, it is a strikingly disingenuous way to pose it. I put it to you that the statement "climate researchers [are] claiming Katrina-level events will drastically increase in frequency. (we're still waiting on this one)" is not the clearest way to convey the current expectation that global warming should lower the frequency of hurricane formation. In fact it is liable to convey the opposite meaning.

The two of you don't agree, but your point doesn't rebut their position

If my point doesn't rebut their position then how do we disagree? ;)

about a month and a half ago
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Last Three Years the Quietest For Tornadoes Ever

Capsaicin Re:And where are all the hurricanes? (187 comments)

This is not specificaly about tropical storms though it goes to my point.

Nope sorry the issue here is very specifically the science of tropical storm formation. As you admit your citation does not go to that issue and is out for want of relevance.

A bit of searching on the site you quote, got me from a page entitled What is the link between hurricanes and global warming?. This page does not claim that global warming will increase frequency of tropical storm formation, it claims the jury is still out on that question. I note this page is more than ten years old so it really doesn't go to what current science says either.

Because its not the sensible scientists im worried about, its the craxy [sic] ones luke Mann, Cook, Hansen and the UN political agenda.

Do you have any interview from the last 5 years with Mann, Cook, Hansen or any publishing climate scientist who contributed to the recent IPCC process in which they predict that global warming will lead to increased frequency of hurricane formation (as opposed to hurricane intensity, as opposed to any other extreme weather event or any other irrlevancies)? You made the claim these exist ... now's the showdown, show me the cards or muck your hand.

about a month and a half ago
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Linking Drought and Climate Change: Difficult To Do

Capsaicin Re:It's not difficult to erect a Strawman (222 comments)

If you're only tallying hurricanes of Katrina level events or worse and exclude anything less, then models can very well show an *increase* (as stated by the OP)

Sure, but I don't agree that is what OP had in mind. After all moving from a once a century event to a twice in a century event might constitute OP's "drastic[] increase in frequency," but that hardly sits well with the observation that "we're still waiting on this one."

about a month and a half ago
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Last Three Years the Quietest For Tornadoes Ever

Capsaicin Re:And where are all the hurricanes? (187 comments)

So why are they going on interviews saying the opposite?

Are they?

Who? Actual climate scientists or environmental activists?

When? Since (sceptic) Dr Landsea blew out of the water any suggestion that the historical record showed an increasing frequency of hurricane activity (and compelled the climate science community to accept his finding by showing the damn maths)?

Are you able to cite an interview from recent years (say the last 5 or so) in which a climate scientist of any note is predicting increasing frequency (as opposed to intensity) of tropical storm activity? What is the empirical basis for their scepticism of the (now) orthodox position (and the paper I cited above which includes as authors both Kerry Emanuel and Chris Landsea (ie. both sides of the debate) has to come close to expressing the orthodoxy)?

I feel that if you restricted yourself more to reading the published science (in the reputable journals) and shied away from blogs and interviews, you should be much better informed on matters of science. That's terribly conservative of me, I know.

about a month and a half ago
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Linking Drought and Climate Change: Difficult To Do

Capsaicin Re:Duh. (222 comments)

Keep in mind that a few rolls also don't confirm that the dice are as loaded as you claim they are.

That the dice are loaded was a given in the above example. Even if we know the dice are loaded we cannot with any certainty say that any single occurrence of snakes-eyes is the result of loading. That's the point.

about a month and a half ago
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Apparent Islamic Terrorism Strikes Sydney

Capsaicin Re:Don't worry guys... (880 comments)

To think that is to misunderstand what Judaism is all about.

Solomon at least (and most likely David too) was (were) clearly polytheistic. Judaism, as opposed to ancient Hebrew religion, requires monotheism and it requires the Torah, which did not exist at that time.

You're trolling now, right? Abraham was provoked into intervening in someone else's war, in order to rescue his cousin...and that makes him a warlord?

No trolling no, I'm quite serious about biblical scholarship.

Abram is said to have "called out the 318 trained men born in his household." That makes him a warlord. Elsewhere the figure of Abram/Abraham that emerges from the text appears at times like a defenceless refugee, however, in Gen 14 he is explicitly described as a warlord (i.e. having a retinue of trained men).

about a month and a half ago
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Linking Drought and Climate Change: Difficult To Do

Capsaicin It's not difficult to erect a Strawman (222 comments)

that didn't prevent climate researchers from claiming Katrina-level events will drastically increase in frequency

No, that's the exact opposite from what climate researchers have been claiming. To repeat myself, "[w]ithin the science of climate change that regarding hurricane (and other tropical storm) formation is famously unsettled." The models at least, seem to suggest a probable decrease in the frequency of formation (along with a possible increase in intensity) (Knutson et. al.).

about a month and a half ago
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Linking Drought and Climate Change: Difficult To Do

Capsaicin Re:Duh. (222 comments)

...there is no way to link any particular snake eye event to the hidden weights.

Therein lies the quandary. You know the dice are loaded to come up snakes-eyes; they come up snakes-eyes; but you cannot with any certainty state "those snakes came up because the dice were loaded."

Instead you have to say, "those snakes-eyes coming up again so soon is consistent with the fact that the dice are loaded," or "we could see more and more snakes-eyes with these loaded dice." That doesn't make for so compelling a narrative. And narrative thinking comes much more naturally than statistical thinking.

about a month and a half ago
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Apparent Islamic Terrorism Strikes Sydney

Capsaicin Re:A Godsend (880 comments)

In a fantasy world ... the sort of thing they would run as a "false flag" operation to look "strong"

Fantasy indeed. While there's no chance, I trust, of the Australian government running this kind of thing as a "false flag operation," success in politics consists of exploiting those circumstance fate throws in your direction.

Reality appears to be a violent idiot doing something counterproductive to his cause ...

In the vaguest sense of 'cause.'

... and a government with no clue what to do about it.

It didn't end particularly well. Whether the LNP is able to extract any political capital from the event remains to be seen.

about a month and a half ago
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Apparent Islamic Terrorism Strikes Sydney

Capsaicin Re:Don't worry guys... (880 comments)

Judaism existed prior to Moses.

Balderdash. Judaism proper didn't yet exist in the days of David or Solomon. Prior to the days of Moses, yhvh was likely unknown to the Hebrew people.

During the monarchy there was worship of yhvh, and of Elohim (aka El Shadday ... El *) (possibly even the notion central to Judaism that the two were identical) and clearly also other deities. Judaism, as we would understand it, needed to to wait till after the composition of the Torah, which didn't really coalesce until exilic/post-exilic times.

Abraham and Jesus can not accurately be describe as warlords.

Jesus certainly not. As far as Abram/Abraham is concerned, he is clearly described as a warlord in Gen 14.

about a month and a half ago
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Apparent Islamic Terrorism Strikes Sydney

Capsaicin Re:Don't worry guys... (880 comments)

Judaism is considered as founded byAbraham who precedes Moses by multiple centuries.

You can argue that either way. Your link is too garbled to discuss your source, but if it's the wikipedia article on Judasism that reads "Abraham is hailed as the first Hebrew and the father of the Jewish people ..." Whereas "God revealed his laws and commandments to Moses on Mount Sinai" for which reason it is Moses that is usually considered the legendary "founder" of Judaism.

about a month and a half ago
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Apparent Islamic Terrorism Strikes Sydney

Capsaicin Re:You don't know your Bible or your history (880 comments)

Yes, Moses can be described as a warlord, but as he was not the founder of Judaism (or any other religion) I fail to see your point!

Well the very historical existence of Moses can't be confirmed. However the character described as Moses, (ie as he appears in the Torah) is clearly the founder of henotheistic Yahwism (remember Abraham worshiped El instead). That is to say that strain of ancient Hebrew religious thought which would eventual win out over Hebrew polytheism (largely by authoring the text in exile) to become monotheistic Judaism.

So Moses can certainly be described as the legendary founder of Judaism.

about a month and a half ago

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