How to argue with a global warming "skeptic"


You almost make it sound like he is being blasphemous.

Not what I said or meant. The circumstances of his retracted study, his failed predictions, his affiliations with very political think-tanks and fossil fuel industry ties - as well as his very odd activities and statements (like accusing NASA of fraud without bothering to contact that organization) - pointing these out doesn’t make me any kind of zealot. I know contrarian experts like him tend to be the hero of tech people like Scott Adams, but IMO they are engaged in their own kind of hubris, thinking they are somehow qualified to pick and choose among experts of other fields when they decidedly are not. Anyone betting their savings (or their civilization) on him at Vegas would be a fool.

My favorite expression of this principle is by former CATO VP Jerry Taylor… who switched sides after being lied to by resident climate experts (since CATO, probably Patrick Michaels, among others):

In every other context where you have this degree of risk and uncertainty we rightly hedge, we rightly address the full range of possible outcomes. To not do so in the climate arena when you have this much at stake is incredible to me … Do we really want to go to Vegas and put all our money on one roulette wheel and say, ‘Well, that’s the most possible outcome?’



Toothbrushes made from wood can be pretty great. Shouldnt knock em till you try em.


I can’t imagine them being very good for your gums.


Right, this seems to be a sensible comment and it leads into the precautionary principle. Which I agree with, still doesn’t address many of the issues I brought up nor does it mean anyone who has a different conclusion need to be treated like an apostate rejecting a religion. Plenty of people in the Global Warming side have made corrections to papers, pointing that out doesn’t invalidate everything else they might say. That’s not how science works that’s ad hominem political attacks.


You’d be wrong. Bamboo brushes are great. Mainly it depends on the design of the toothbrush head and the bristles not the handle material. It’s very difficult to replace the nylon in toothbrush bristles.


We were talking about the kind where the head and bristles are actual twig.


Well twigs are great…For people.who like twigs.
But bamboo brushes are actually a good and useful invention . Not perfect, but not worse than plastic toothbrushes.


Yeah but again… that’s not what I said, is it? As far as that paper, I said the circumstances of that retracted paper. And I said other stuff as well, in terms of red flags.

And I’m not going into the whole “yes but what should we do about it” hole again. Been down there before… with you, in fact. It’s where IMO genuine debate can happen… but not if some on one side are pointing to people like Lindzen and still trying to claim 2+2 equals something other than four.


But thats the point, models are not settled science, how accurate they are is debatable. but they are not like 2 + 2, as is the actual total radiative forcing including feedback. You making the claim or drawing the analogy are being disingenuous.


You’re right that’s not a good analogy… but what is a good analogy is the Vegas metaphor, and in the Vegas situation, you don’t go with “2+2=4” as the necessary level of certainty. You go with, what does the preponderance of the research / experts say. You don’t point at some outlying expert with red flags for bias all over him.


I agree he is an outlier and he downplays those numbers, sometimes obviously, but dismissing him completely is employing the same thinking you accuse the denialists of doing, i.e. not recognizing when there is a valid point to be made.

He may overemphasize how little can be deduced but by the same measure those global warming alarmists do the same by overplaying just how certain they are. Which has a knock on effect of the media being even more alarmist and frankly dishonest. Discussions about the effectiveness of the Paris Accord immediately descend into cries of climate denial despite having legitimate reasons to doubt it. Let’s not drag Trump into this from what I have seen he uses a moronic argument.

The point I am making is when the actual facts get tossed aside due to political motivations and schools only push one way to address the issue, you get idiots like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez getting up and proclaiming the world is going to end in 15 years.

It’s stupid, nothing annoys me more than people making stupid statements. Before you ask, yes Trump annoys me on this topic too.



Arctic sea ice volume last spring the highest in the past decade.
From Danish Meterological Institute. Yes, the country that sort of runs Greenland.









As 2018 came to a close, Arctic sea ice extent was tracking at its third lowest level in the satellite record, while sea ice in the Antarctic remained at historic lows. Slightly faster growth in the first few days of the new year, mostly in the Pacific sea ice areas, has the daily sea ice extent at fifth lowest as of this post.



The NASA research team found that in the 1980s, sea ice on average in the Arctic was 6.6 feet thick in October. From there, on average 3.3 more feet of sea ice would form through the winter. Comparing that to today, where average sea ice in the Arctic is 3.3 feet thick in October but will grow on average 5 feet more of sea ice through the winter. Hence, the combined sea ice thickness in the 1980s was 9.9 feet thick, compared to 8.3 feet thick today.

The negative feedback of increasing rate of wintertime sea ice growth will help slow down the overall decline in Arctic sea ice. However, the seemingly inevitable ice-free Arctic will win out in the end, adds