Monday, March 10, 2014

Luverly! Judith Curry supports "the GWPF objectives"

Sou | 6:06 AM Go to the first of 21 comments. Add a comment

Oh, this is just luverly!  Judith Curry today:

In the midst of all this noise I wasn’t sure what GWPF was all about.  Now I have a better idea, and I certainly support their objectives.

Weirdly, Judith implies that she did no investigation before effectively endorsing the GWPF by writing a foreword to a report of theirs.

Nigel Lawson offers a sample of "what the GWPF" is all about, which I expect would delight Judith Curry, knowing her views on the IPCC.  And I wonder would Judith agree with GWPF Director Benny Peiser who seemed to be suggesting that we might be heading for an ice age?

Do you reckon she's angling for a job on the GWPF's Academic Advisory Council with science deniers: Bob Carter and William Happer and Richard Lindzen and Ross McKitrick and Ian Plimer and Matt Ridley and Nir Shaviv and Henrik Svensmark and David Whitehouse and others?

What's next? An endorsement of James Delingpole, interpreter of interpretations?

(It's more likely she's angling for a job with the GWPF's US cousin, the Heartland Institute.)


  1. Also interesting who the interesting Judith Curry finds interesting: Ben Pile, "climate researcher" of the right wing UKIP.

    1. Victor, Judith is a big fan of Ben Pile. She has referred (deferred?) to him on more than one occasion.

      She wrote that this article of his was "an interesting addition" - where he compares climate scientists to "eugenicists of mid 20th Century Europe and America".

      The UKIP isn't just right wing, it's extremist right wing. It's looking more and more that Judith shares the same ideology.

    2. That is quite remarkable. I had assumed that there were some people even Judith wouldn't endorse, Ben Pile being one of them. Seems I was wrong about that.

    3. I stopped saying "even Judith" after her last testimony to the Senate.

    4. Joe,
      Yes, I should probably have learned the same by now myself. I continue to live in hope, however small that might be :-)

  2. I always thought the 2008-2010 period was decisive in Judith Curry's separation from the mainstream and her drift to the lunatic fringe accelerated. Before that, she (for example) had good relationships with people like Joe Romm, and some of her quotes reflect the consensus of about 2007.

    However, 2008 was the year of the election of Barack Obama in the USA, which saw the Republican Party double down on its extremism on many things, cliimate change included. Even Obama lost control of the narrative, and the Tea Party scored a triumphant victory in the 2010 Congressional Elections. It looked then as if Republicans would sweep to victory in 2012 and regain the White House and the Federal Bureaucracy.

    For a scientific denier or "bridge builder", it must have seemed as if 2014 might bring opportunities for government jobs that would not be within range otherwise.

    However, it was not to be. What else to do but make those separations permanent, make a viriue of necessity and cleave to whatever friends you can find, no matter how dubious?

  3. She is an idiot. Nothing less. I wish I could be more constructive, but it isn't as if the GWPF's motives, aims and methods are not well observed and bloody obvious.

  4. Apparently David Evans is to be Tony Abbott's climate change advisor...


    1. Is this fact or rumour? If fact, can you provide a source, Nick? (I've seen WTD's speculation and the AIMN but nothing else so far.)

    2. If Evans is appointed as the Climate Change Adviser, the next logical step for Abbott would be to get his favourite horse the number 1 position on the Liberal ticket for the re-run of the West Australian Senate election on the 5th April this year.

  5. Might be speculation, the link I had has been taken down



  6. I've actually just read Judith's post and her final comment. She appears to be saying "they claim to be really decent people and that their goal is to simply encourage open and honest debate, therefore I'm pleased I now wrote the forward to the report". What else did she expect them to say? "We don't believe the IPCC can be trusted, we think climate scientists are either stupid or dishonest, and there's no chance that climate sensitivity can exceed 1.6 degrees. Warming will either not happen, be low, or be beneficial. Anyone who thinks otherwise is stupid".

    Of course, it's possible that if they had said that she may still have agreed with them and still been happy to have written the forward to the report.

    1. Anders, Judith isn't stupid. She also has access to the internet. She can't pretend not to know what the GWPF is even if she were only in the backblocks of Georgia, which she's not. She's got enough info from comments on her own blog for one thing.

      However noone for one second would think she'd write a foreword for an organisation she didn't support.

      To see where she stands on climate science you just need to look at her "friends", the people she likes and the people on her blog roll. Ben Pile, Donna Laframboise, Bob Tisdale, Tony Brown and various other deniers (including greenhouse effect deniers) all feature prominently.

      It's only a matter of time before she is writing articles for Heartland Institute and CATO (if she hasn't already).

      BTW Judith has herself said that the IPCC should be "put down". She's not suggesting it change. She's not suggesting changing the report type or frequency. She wants it to disappear. She doesn't want science promulgated. She doesn't like it that it reflects mainstream science from an authoritative base - that is from a whole lot of different scientists.

      I think its because she wants fake sceptics to have an "equal" voice with scientists, which despite Fox News and Judith's mate David Rose, they will never do as long as the IPCC is around.

      By writing what she did she is not just endorsing the GWPF's objectives, she's saying that she admires the objectives the GWPF has. Not the stated ones (they are just for show and not what they adhere to). It's their unstated objectives that she admires. The ones they actually practice.

    2. Yes, that's kind of what I was implying. I should probably try being more direct :-) It is hard to really believe that Judith is saying "I wasn't sure about this organisation, but they say that they're decent and have decent motives, therefore they must be fine". She can't really be that naive.

  7. As much as she might describe herself as "further towards the Honest Broker box than is Tamsin" (as quoted in the Ben Pile article), the trajectory of Judith Curry's writing has been more and more towards a political argument about 'democratising science', and less about the science itself.

    She states that one of her goals is to "open up space for public discussion and argumentation". This goal makes sense as a kind of libertarian political position, but has very weak justification in terms of the epistemology of science. Given her expertise, she obviously knows the public discussion is riddled with misrepresentations, misunderstandings and downright lies -none more so than the GWPF. It seems the only -actually scientific- principle she has in common with the various pseudosceptics is a fixation on uncertainty, so how could that be enough for her to support them, if the real issue is not politics?

    Perhaps this is why she is adopting a 'wisdom of crowds' approach to building scientific knowledge -but this too has its roots in free-market ideology, particularly the ideas of Freidrich Hayek. It is premised on a notion that the best outcome cannot be planned or centralised, but must evolve out of the biggest possible pool of contributors. Essentially, the attitude to scientific knowledge is the same as the attitude to economies.

    You can see here how a political attitude towards markets and planning feeds into the libertarian's gut reaction against the hierarchical nature of scientific knowledge -they intuitively treat it as authoritarian. The right wing political position -despite the fact it universally increases the wealth of the already-rich- fancies itself as iconoclastic and independent from elites.

    I feel a key moment was Curry's long argument with Gavin Schmidt about Montford on RC; she seems to me to have moved from that time, to resolve that the climate science community is elitist, closed to debate. Over time, of course, she has attracted more and more scorn from those of her peers who see her siding with disreputable rogues -while on the other hand, people like Ben Pile are no doubt reassuring her she is right to attack the scientific 'establishment'.

    No serious person thinks scientific knowledge advances through 'crowd wisdom'; really, Judith Curry nowadays argues for a political philosophy. The 'honest broker' tag works for her, because she happens to be one of those who like to believe the good people are those who have no side.

    1. I don't recall the argument on RC, Mark - or maybe I do. Have you a link or approx date? I recall her touting her epiphany on Keith Kloors blog some years ago (to do with her hurricane paper). Was it around that time? She got stuck into Michael Mann (to the point of obsession), praised Wegman - till his wonky plagiarism was pointed out - and canned the IPCC. From what she wrote back then it was clear that she missed the limelight she got from her hurricane paper and was looking for recognition again. She's got it, but not from her peers. It's probably enough for her these days that she can bask in the praise of the Ben Piles and David Rose's of the world.

      I looked up her publications and it seemed to me that she hasn't been a lead author of anything much (except uncertainty) for a very long time. She's relying on her grad students and post-docs for publications these days from what I can gather. I suspect she's looking to retirement from academia, maybe wanting to get on a speaker circuit like Lindzen.

    2. Yes, Sou, there is certainly a ready audience for 'politics as honest brokerage'.
      This is the RC page I was thinking of:
      Gavin Schmidt got stuck into her about her uncritical reproduction of Montford at around point 80 in the discussion -there are several exchanges -If I recall correctly, that was when Gavin described her a a "conduit for untrue statements".

    3. Oh yes. I do remember that, Mark. Interestingly in that discussion John Mashey refers to the Keith Kloor fiasco, which happened a few months prior. That's what I recall as Judith's grand entrance to deniersville.

      John Mashey's links don't work because KK moved his blog. Here they are at the new spot.

      Judith "one of the most reprehensible attacks" - re Wegman

      Judith backing down "are issues that I have not investigated" - again re Wegman. Par for the course as we know and not credible.

      Actually, those links don't work too well with Discus either, but they'll take you to the very, very long thread, which really isn't worth wading through unless you have a few hours free. It was a real eye-opener for many people and a follow up to her confirmation of her coming out of the ("skeptic") closet. (Her first appearance was also at realclimate IIRC).

    4. Judith Curry an "honest broker"?!

      Um, no.

      Her presentation of the science is demonstrably at odds with an accurate and parsimonious of the evidence and best analyses - in my book this is simply incompatible with scientific honesty.

      And what is she actually "brokering"? Curry is not bringing any clarity of understanding to the lay crowd, so she's certainly not "brokering" education, and she's doing little directly to advance science other than to elicit firmer emphases of the consensus from her scientific betters.

      The only thing that I can see being brokered is an obfuscation of the science on behalf of industrial interests that want to see absolutely no change to the business-as-usual burning of fossil carbon. To that end Curry is a lobbyist-broker of scientific dissemblance and corporate propaganda - the "honest" tag is just advertising in the vein of "quantum" and "new, improved with bioactive hypersonic enzymes".

    5. Those in the climate wars who tag themselves "honest brokers" imply dishonesty in the mainstream scientific process. This instantly disqualifies their own claim to be "honest brokers".

      It's like used car dealers with nicknames like "Honest" Joe Filcher.


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