Monday, November 11, 2013

Ethically-challenged Anthony Watts is seeking revenge, playing games with tragedy. How low can he go?

Sou | 7:20 PM Go to the first of 29 comments. Add a comment

Postscript: And it continues...

Anthony Watts is not one to admit mistakes.  Nor is he one to let an opportunity go by to protest global warming.  Nor will he miss an opportunity to have a go at people who criticise his behaviour.

After a series of disgusting articles in which Anthony Watts slammed people, not for what they wrote but for what he decided they were going to write, he's now decided to dig in deeper and in a most appalling manner.

Anthony has doubled down on his dreadful series of Typhoon Haiyan articles and is wanting payback.  He's trying to get revenge on Greg Laden, who wrote that "WUWT Science Denialist Blog Hits New, Historic Low".

People will tell you that records are broken all the time.  Now, another record is broken.  That "new, historic low" has just been broken again.

Consider what Anthony Watts has done so far:

1. Super-Typhoon Haiyan "will be hyped" - sez Anthony Watts

He started his first protest article with:
Prepare yourselves for the second coming of Katrina, because you can bet that this storm will be hyped as an indicator of “global warming”.
This article was all about pre-empting any link between weather disasters and global warming.  The tragedy was just unfolding and all Anthony Watts was worried about was whether or not it would be viewed as a sign of things to come as the world warms.  In that first post he was also having a go at Heidi Cullen for goodness knows what.  All she did was tweet a link to a NASA article, which seemed to have escaped Anthony's attention at the time.

2. Super Typhoon is "another overhyped storm" - sez Anthony Watts

Next Anthony put up an article arguing that the unfolding disaster was being "overhyped".  Yes, the title of his article, if you can believe it, was:
Super Typhoon Haiyan/Yolanda – another overhyped storm that didn’t match early reports
The WUWT article was arguing about windspeeds (which the media got from NASA JPL and the US Tornado Warning Centre).  It was Anthony and his guest blogger who got it wrong not the media.  But the real point is that while Anthony and his mates were arguing over wind speeds and saying the disaster was being "over-hyped", thousands of people had died in the tragedy and hundreds of thousands had their homes and businesses destroyed.

3. Adapt don't mitigate

Then he posts an article by Bjorn Lomborg, arguing that while global warming will make the worst cyclones worse, it's going to be "cheaper to adapt" at the global level by the end of the century.  Not only wrong but no consolation to the people who lost all in Typhoon Haiyan.  Ironically, in that article, Bjorn Lomborg was making the very link that Anthony had spent a lot of his blog space decrying!

4. "Global-warming-alarmist hype"

Then Anthony goes full circle and posts about the very same article that Heidi Cullen linked to in her tweet.  The same tweet that Anthony Watts complained about in his first protest article.  I don't think he knew what he was doing.  This time he and his guest poster were apparently trying to argue that NASA was wrong about the Tropical Cyclone Heat Potential or some such nonsense.  And calling reports of the typhoon "global-warming-alarmist hype"

5. Payback time.  "An ethical challenge"?  Seriously?

Now, instead of admitting his errors, Anthony is trying for one-upmanship (archived here and here).  It is truly weird to see this sort of appalling behaviour from a grown man.  Anthony has decided to stick the boot into Greg Laden for being one of many who were utterly disgusted with Anthony using the typhoon to play climate politics.

What Anthony is trying to prove, and failing dismally, is that he is "ethical" and Greg Laden isn't.  All because Greg Laden called out Anthony for his appalling response to the tragedy unfolding in the Philippines and now Vietnam.

"It's payback time", thinks Anthony!

He is basically trying on:  "Look at me, I'm the good guy.  I made a donation of $115 to the Red Cross".

Who on earth goes and posts their donation on the internet?  Especially when they are doing it just to play games and get revenge?

Then Anthony plays the sympathy card: "One of my wife's relatives lost their home."  I have to wonder what his wife's family would think if they knew he was busy arguing over wind speeds while hundreds of thousands of people were in a daze, looking at their broken towns and cities?  What would they think if they knew Anthony was using their loss to seek payback?

I am getting more and more disgusted by the minute.  It's hard to comprehend Anthony Watts' behaviour.

Unethical doesn't cover it.

If Anthony Watts had any decency he'd stop posting about the typhoon altogether.  Or better yet, he would admit that his first reactions were way out of line.

He wouldn't be playing games like this.  He certainly wouldn't be playing one-upmanship with his donation or trading on the loss of his wife's relatives just to get revenge for someone telling him how dreadful his behaviour has been.

(If Anthony Watts just wanted to raise funds for the Red Cross he wouldn't be playing games with the tragedy.  All he'd have to do is urge his readers to give and provide a link, for those who can't use Google.)


The above wasn't enough for Anthony Watts.  He still hasn't stopped behaving badly.


cRR Kampen said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
uknowispeaksense said...

Anthony's moral compass http://www.facultycommons.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/12/BrokenCompass.jpg

Anonymous said...

Watts runs blocking for Pielke Jr who does much the same line in playing games with tragedy using more subtlety but just as much heartlessness. In a Haiyan tweet he pointed to this "normalized losses" paper http://iopscience.iop.org/1748-9326/6/1/014003/fulltext/#erl369719bib3

"Normalizing" losses is genius denial because it nicely hides all that irritating human suffering so that "adaptation" can continue merrily on no matter what. If cleverly averaged out over a few years overall GDP is unaffected by catastrophes because all the GDP losses are nicely balanced by the rebuilding that happens afterward. And GDP is smaller in those countries away from the US so if the poor die elsewhere what matter.

This way it doesn't register if ever more lives are lost with untold suffering as time goes on. No worries about deaths, famines or flight, economic "growth" will march on regardless. This logic is deeply immoral, not just in ignoring near-term suffering but also in working so hard to cover up future abrupt changes that will occur once cities have to move or crop failures occur ever more often.

It is deeply troubling that peer-reviewers and journals accept such evil sophistries as worthy of publication when they should be treated with derision.

In working so unethically to maintain BAU, when even the always conservative IPCC say it is entirely untenable, Watts, Lomborg and Pielke Jr are pissing on our childrens' future.

Sou said...

I have had trouble with Roger Pielke Jr's position on similar issues. I commented on this some time back, in a different but not unrelated context.

MikeH said...

That is a fairly stupid comment at the best of times but on an article where Sou is pointing out that Watts is an ethically challenged bully, it indicates a certain lack of self-awareness.

You may not have noticed but Sou has been taking Watts apart piece by piece by simply using words and arguments. No physical violence required.

MikeH said...

Pielke Jr is also a member of the Risk Frontiers group at Sydney's Macquarie University. They have attacked the Climate Commission and are active in downplaying the bushfire risk in Australia.

Scroll down the page

Pielke Jr and his followers also "own" the normalisation formula.

Read from this comment.

cRR Kampen said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
cRR Kampen said...

"... are active in downplaying the bushfire risk in Australia." - So guess what Pielke jr. et al are hoping for. A 'Black Week', maybe? Now what do we 'ethically unchallenged people' say of such men? Dare we say what we should say about those? Or are they the only ones allowed to speak their bile?

cRR Kampen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sou said...

I don't wish harm on anyone no matter what their opinions and no matter what they say and do.

Comments like those violate the comment policy in principle. I shouldn't have to spell that out in detail.

cRR Kampen said...

I wish consequences for manipulation of governments, companies and electorate. Jail sentences and vast fines are harm. But an out of hand weather event (called an AGW-nuke in my discourse) would be fairer imo, and also more instructive.

We are dealing with people whose wishes I am merely uttering because they are too cowardly to utter them themselves. Those people e.g. Watts, S. Fred Singer, Bob Carter are NOT naieve, they are NOT fruitcakes. They are fully consciously evil.

For me the AGW 'debate' is over. Spent eight years in that fray and I'm done. I'm calling the bastards the bastards and the rest is mayhem reporting.

Yesterday 100 dead in Somalia from a tropical dep. Wrong place again.

cRR Kampen said...

Australian government has begun the well known extreme right talk (which I will not call what is really is): http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/policy/climate-tax-aid-and-fees-off-table-as-cabinet-toughens-stance/story-e6frg6xf-1226756955449# .

Just wondering whether they'll arrest Flannery in a couple years for 'ecofascism' or some such. Yes, they'd wish.

cRR Kampen said...

"Joseph Bastardi says:
November 11, 2013 at 6:05 am

The whole situation is getting worse with people like this. The May 31 F5 Tornado, later downgraded to an F3 is classic. Grab the headline, and then assume the debunking will not be heard.

This was a strong cat 4 at landfall according to the people observing it."

This abject lie is really making it through the sphere and I've spent five diverse messages debunking it.
Done with that, too.
Let this so-called 'meteorologist' observe a high cat 5 when it's his turn elsewise the Reno-tornado plussed. Maybe then he can rate some for himself.

As if people on Samar were 'observing'.

dbostrom said...

Watts' relative was simply providing an example of adaptation of the kind Lomborg wants us to believe is so warm and fuzzy.

This is what adaptation looks like:

South Florida Faces Ominous Prospects From Rising Waters

Rising sea levels, falling real estate values

To a certain extent, adaptation in the world of human affairs is the same as that in the natural world: adaptation is powered by destruction.

cRR Kampen said...

"adaptation is powered by destruction."

My wording: 'the lesson is only learnt thru confrontation'.
And it is still not 'diplomatically' allowed to state some elementary consequences of this tragic fact.

I announced as of -48h what was going to happen. Illustrated with Darwin's Tracy demise, the geography of Samar/Guiuan and Leyte/Tacloban - and found the upcoming devastation particularly vastly 'underhyped'.
As of -24h CNN began to talk about the upcoming event, that was well done, extremely well done by their stormchasing people having flown in to Tacloban at that time.
But while their first and for a long time only vids emerged, including some of the surge in their downtown street, a significant number of people were still calling Haiyan 'overhyped' and 'overestimated', thanx to the groundfilthing work of u know who.

Then today we meet that 'meteorologist' Bastardi, who is perfectly able to asses a cat 5 when he sees one or its damage, but didn't. I would like him to do some forced labour in Pablo, 60.000 a little south of Tacloban and just being 'rediscovered'.

dbostrom said...

...it is still not 'diplomatically' allowed to state some elementary consequences of this tragic fact.

Yes, part of the conspicuously strange and warped formality governing the discussion. The fossil fuel industry go the jump on shaping the parameters of this public policy debate*. The brackets constraining acceptable speech are tight and skewed.

Here's just one outcome:


*There is effectively no scientific debate, which was long over; the controversy lies in public policy only.

Catmando said...

Can't Anthony's best mates at Doctors For Disaster Preparedness do something?


cRR Kampen said...

O_o I closed that link when I saw stuff about 'sea level measurements' rather near "Willie Soon"... He must be a good dentist too haven't I heard?

bill said...

Wow, the winged monkeys are out in force at Laden's blog!

bill said...

And, regarding Lomborg; well, you can certainly see how by renouncing any action on carbon emissions the Philippines will be well on the way to being wealthy enough to breezily absorb the impact of the potentially even-more-devastating storms of the future, can't you? This is all just a speed-bump on the one true road to prosperity...

As usual, I find it's almost impossible to believe that this guy's asinine ejaculations garner any attention at all, frankly. But then I remember whose purposes they serve...

Anonymous said...

I've said it before and I'll say it again. It bothers me when people let Watts off on something because "he's dumb" or some similar comment. Yes, he's not smart enough to understand even half the climate science that he thinks he does and makes obvious mistakes. However, he's also a horrible human being who willfully misinforms his audience and maligns scientists. This example of horrific behavior is just so over the top that it's inarguable.

Nick said...

Thanks, Sou, for your work on the Watts pathology, yet another of his disastrous engagements with a serious subject. Sorry someone has to do it, and you do it well.

John Russell said...

In Lomborg's eyes the current Philippines situation is not relevant to his proposed 'adaptation' approach to climate change, which only considers developed countries.

However, as demonstrated by the news reports in these days of instant news coverage, disasters in poorer countries will not happen out of sight and there'll be a financial and mental knock-on effect for developed countries as we're bombarded with the need to provide ever more aid and support.

We all know for certain there'll also be an increase in climate-caused migration from the tropics to more temperate climes as events like these increase in frequency and severity.

One also has to bear in mind that the saying "the bigger they are, the harder they fall" is very apt when looking at how extreme weather will affect developed countries. Comparing typhoon Haiyan against hurricane Sandy suggests losses of human life fall with increased GPD (possibly only up to a point we're yet to establish)... but the cost of the infrastructure damage that occurs increases exponentially. I'd also suggest that the better off people are, the less resilient and adaptive they become in situations of adversity. This effect is likely to be exaggerated as extreme weather events become more frequent.

In the days of cheap fossil fuels, rebuilding after disasters always created booms fuelled by debt, creating a world of fantasy economics. But post-2008 we've reached the end of the road on that. Lomborg and so many of his fellow economists are hampered by thinking that's no longer fit for purpose. They lack imagination and are limited to extrapolating from what's happened in the past rather than recognising the new paradigm we confront.

Faced with the uncertainties of climate change and its potential for harm, the only sensible course of action is to assume the worst. Anything else is life-threatening for our species.

Cugel said...

Watts is inded a contemptible little man.

Anonymous said...

Who IS this guy? I've got one of his rabid groupies who just constantly wants to fight with me on this issue. I don't care, but he's always trying to start a fight. Then he insults me when I say I'm not interested. He makes constant snide comments, as if that behavior will somehow convert me.

This Watts guy is making me feel physically ill. He seems to be demented, and so do his fanatical followers.

Anonymous said...

Wow. Look at all the ugly comments on Heidi Cullen's Twitter page. My question is, why are there no supporters of hers in there defending her? If people don't speak out, the bullies win, and Heidi will no longer be tweeting this information.

That's how it's traditionally worked. Be speak out on her behalf, or she will back down and disappear. Denialists will win.

Anonymous said...

I hadn't seen the tweets on Cullen's page until your mentioned them here. Joe Bastardi and Willard Watts are unbelievable in their presumption to speak as they do to her - they are stereotypical proof that there really is no bottom to Denialist Stupid.

Future generations will wish that they could travel back in time to now and slap these denialists around a bit. I wonder if a some point the denial of science to this extent will become a major crime? At the very least that those who are prone to such sociopathic vested interest and magical-thinking ideology will be weeded from the gene pool not only be natural selection but quite likely by manual selection too.

Bernard J.

Sou said...

I don't know what you're referring to so can't help. I didn't see anything on her twitter page that was objectionable. Perhaps I didn't scroll back far enough.

Anonymous said...

They lack imagination and are limited to extrapolating from what's happened in the past rather than recognising the new paradigm we confront. ac repair denver