Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Willis Eschenbach beclowns himself as a racist Trump fan who tries to distract people away from reality

President Obama, V-P Biden, and House Speaker Pelosi, 2009
Source: White House
Willis Eschenbach hasn't been wondering as much lately. Perhaps he didn't like the way I discussed his articles. Today he's a lot more positive and forthright - if wrong, conspiratorial, and showing his bigotry.

Willis was whining about the fact that in the Policy Forum of Science today (or yesterday here) there was an article by President Obama. It appears to be a Science mag article, in which case it will probably be in this week's edition, which will come out this Friday. For now the full article is available online (open access).

The article has the title "The irreversible momentum of clean energy" and is about, yes, renewable energy and particularly how mitigation of greenhouse gases can boost the economy, and doesn't have to conflict with economic growth. The subtitle is "Private-sector incentives help drive decoupling of emissions and economic growth".

Now whether you are a "Limits to Growth" person or you think that growth can go on and on for the long term, the article sets out some of the achievements in the USA since Obama took office in 2008. For example:
Since 2008, the United States has experienced the first sustained period of rapid GHG emissions reductions and simultaneous economic growth on record. Specifically, CO2 emissions from the energy sector fell by 9.5% from 2008 to 2015, while the economy grew by more than 10%. In this same period, the amount of energy consumed per dollar of real gross domestic product (GDP) fell by almost 11%, the amount of CO2 emitted per unit of energy consumed declined by 8%, and CO2 emitted per dollar of GDP declined by 18% (2).

The Science article addresses a number of points, including:
  • the cost of renewable energy is falling dramatically, citing the US Department of Energy: "Renewable electricity costs also fell dramatically between 2008 and 2015: the cost of electricity fell 41% for wind, 54% for rooftop solar photovoltaic (PV) installations, and 64% for utility-scale PV",
  • investment in clean energy is at a record high, citing an article at Bloomberg: "2015 was a record year for clean-energy investment, with those energy sources attracting twice as much global capital as fossil fuels"
  • the many economic benefits of a low carbon future
  • the benefits to business and industry of increasing energy efficiency and reducing energy waste,
  • the increase in jobs, and the dominance of renewable energy employment, compared to employment in the fossil fuel sector. Citing another report from the Department of Energy (BW Research Partnership, U.S. Energy and Employment Report (DOE, Washington, DC, 2017) - no link): "A U.S. Department of Energy report released this week found that ~2.2 million Americans are currently employed in the design, installation, and manufacture of energy-efficiency products and services. This compares with the roughly 1.1 million Americans who are employed in the production of fossil fuels and their use for electric power generation",
  • the risk to the USA and the world if it reneges on the Paris agreement, 
  • the fact that so many countries, not just developed countries, have signed on to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and 
  • most important of all, the danger caused if there is no ongoing action to mitigate global warming.

That last point was made forcefully throughout the article, from the opening para through to the end.
Left unchecked, the continued growth of GHG emissions could cause global average temperatures to increase by another 4°C or more by 2100 and by 1.5 to 2 times as much in many midcontinent and far northern locations....

...We have long known, on the basis of a massive scientific record, that the urgency of acting to mitigate climate change is real and cannot be ignored.
The achievements of the past eight years are quite good, but they could have been so much greater if not for a hostile legislature, filled with anti-science lawmakers in thrall to fossil fuel companies.

In closing, outgoing President Obama left a message for incoming President Trump:
Despite the policy uncertainty that we face, I remain convinced that no country is better suited to confront the climate challenge and reap the economic benefits of a low-carbon future than the United States and that continued participation in the Paris process will yield great benefit for the American people, as well as the international community. Prudent U.S. policy over the next several decades would prioritize, among other actions, decarbonizing the U.S. energy system, storing carbon and reducing emissions within U.S. lands, and reducing non-CO2 emissions (23).

Of course, one of the great advantages of our system of government is that each president is able to chart his or her own policy course. And President-elect Donald Trump will have the opportunity to do so. The latest science and economics provide a helpful guide for what the future may bring, in many cases independent of near-term policy choices, when it comes to combatting climate change and transitioning to a clean-energy economy.

Willis Eschenbach doesn't disagree - he just dogwhistles racism and can't wait for Trump to take office

Who'd have thought - Willis Eschenbach prefers to revert to a twentieth century world, and is a big fan of the unstable, narcissistic, insecure, sexual predator Donald Trump. Well, that shouldn't be a total surprise. Willis hasn't tried to hide his sexism in the past. I'm a bit surprised that he's so against economic revitalisation and modernisation of the energy sector.

Willis isn't one for evidence or sources. He referred to the article as a "puff piece". He didn't deny anything that was in the article. In fact he didn't show much interest in the content of the article at all, except for making a sarcastic comment about this paragraph:
At the same time, evidence is mounting that any economic strategy that ignores carbon pollution will impose tremendous costs to the global economy and will result in fewer jobs and less economic growth over the long term. Estimates of the economic damages from warming of 4°C over preindustrial levels range from 1% to 5% of global GDP each year by 2100 (4). One of the most frequently cited economic models pins the estimate of annual damages from warming of 4°C at ~4% of global GDP (4–6), which could lead to lost U.S. federal revenue of roughly $340 billion to $690 billion annually (7).
Willis' sarcastic response to the notion of the tremendous cost of ignoring carbon pollution was a trite: "Ignoring “carbon pollution” will lead to loss of US Federal revenue? OMG … can’t have that."

Willis started out saying how afraid he is (one of the symptoms of a right wing authoritarian follower) - this is where I got the "beclown" in the title:
I fear that Science magazine has beclowned itself as badly as the Nobel Peace Prize Committee. They’ve published a “scientific” policy paper by the noted climate scientist Barack Hussein Obama. Not a paper with Obama as one of the signatories. No, Science magazine claims that the President wrote the deathless prose all by himself, not a co-author in sight.
On the matter of the claim of "all by himself" and co-authorship, Willis was not very observant. If he'd read to the end of the References and Notes at the bottom of the article, he'd have seen this acknowledgement:
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS: B. Deese, J. Holdren, S. Murray, and D. Hornung contributed to the researching, drafting, and editing of this article.
Further down Willis showed that he's not just sexist, he's also racist. He had the nerve to suggest that President Obama had "help" in becoming the President of the Harvard Law Review. His words were:
Obama made it into Science magazine (or to be the Editor of the Harvard Law Review) on his own merits?
Going by what Willis suggested, it would not be unreasonable to think that he also bought into Donald Trump's birther conspiracy. Actually, the office Obama held with the Harvard Law Review was not just editor, it was President. Back in 1990, it was still considered unusual for an African American to achieve anything, as evidenced by this New York Times article. I particularly liked this quote from the NY Times:
Professors and students at the law school reacted cautiously to Mr. Obama's selection. ''For better or for worse, people will view it as historically significant,'' said Prof. Randall Kennedy, who teaches contracts and race relations law. ''But I hope it won't overwhelm this individual student's achievement.''
I guess Professor Kennedy would now acknowledge it didn't overwhelm the achievement of Barack Obama:)

The conclusion I draw from Willis' puff piece is that he is wanting to paint President Obama as a failure, express his support for Donald Trump, distract WUWT readers away from the message that shifting to renewables is good for the climate and good for the economy.

By the way, in case you missed the link up top, Science often publishes Policy Forum articles. Nature publishes policy-related articles, too. Scientific research isn't done in a vacuum.

From the WUWT comments

Naturally enough, almost all of Willis Eschenbach's fans weren't interested in the content of the article either. Their ideology (and racism) overwhelmed them. There were a lot of silly one-liners (or close) from the empty heads at WUWT.

Chimp's thought you'd think is a Poe anywhere else. I mean how many epithets can a right wing extremist fit into a short sentence?
January 9, 2017 at 1:19 pm
More Stalinist personality cultism from the government-academic-Green industrial complex.

Joel Snider is probably not taking a pot shot at Willis Eschenbach:
January 9, 2017 at 1:19 pm
I think I just burst a blood vessel in my head. 

BallBounces is talking about who knows what. Maybe its code that only white supremacists can understand:
January 9, 2017 at 2:34 pm
We heard the splat all the way down here in Phoenix! 

Goldrider has fallen for fake news and conspiracy nonsense:
January 9, 2017 at 2:45 pm
There’s a reason why Trump won. A whole lot of them, actually. Denial of reality by the Left for me was Reason Number One for my vote.

Adam Gallon thinks a science journal is no more than light theatrical entertainment:
January 9, 2017 at 1:22 pm
Peer revued, must be right, true, truthful!

Scott Frasier responded to Willis' racist dogwhistle and wrote:
January 9, 2017 at 1:35 pm
“Yo, Barry, you did it, mah ni88a!”
That drew a negative reaction from MarkW, who didn't object to Willis' racist prompts:
January 9, 2017 at 1:49 pm
racism has no place on this site.

Either Willis Eschenbach acknowledges that he himself is odious, or he figures he's the only one allowed to make racist remarks at WUWT:
January 9, 2017 at 1:51 pm
Agreed. Racism is odious.

Oddly, SMC isn't too concerned about Donald Trump getting him "into a nuclear"
January 9, 2017 at 1:24 pm
As long as President Obama doesn’t get us into a nuclear before he leaves, I really don’t care what he says about anything. He’s gone in 10 days, and some change. Jan 20 can’t come fast enough. 

Most of the comments echoed the sentiments of Sunsettommy. That's despite the fact that President Obama leaves as one of the most popular US Presidents of all time:
January 9, 2017 at 1:32 pm
Worse President in American history.

After getting more than half way down the page of mindless meanderings, I finally came across someone who claims to have actually read the article in Science. jimbobby wrote:
January 9, 2017 at 2:00 pm
Had a quick look at the full report of BHO – I only lasted the first two paragraphs and had to leave laughing. BHO trumpeting his “achievement” … 8% reduction in CO2 “pollution” (when CO2 is an inert gas) and at the same time increasing economic growth of 10% over 8 years.
Think about that .. economic growth measured in $terms averaging 1.25% for each year of his presidency. Factor in inflation and there is no economic growth – factor in the increase in the cost of power alone and there is economic decline
But BHO says it so beautifully I’m sure the environmentalists are amazed by his brilliance !!

I'll leave you with the last comment, from Dan Pangburn, who you may recall gets science woefully wrong. He might not be right this time, either. I'll bet that some deniers now at WUWT will go to their graves with their heads full of "climate hoax" conspiracy theories, even if all the sea ice in the Arctic has melted and some parts of the world have become uninhabitable from global warming.
January 9, 2017 at 3:59 pm
Eventually politicians and charlatans will be forced to understand that Mother Nature does not do politics or take directing.

References and further reading

Barack Obama. "The irreversible momentum of clean energy". Science (2017) DOI: 10.1126/science.aam6284 (open access)

Revolution...Now - US Department of Energy, September 2016

Clean Energy Investment By the Numbers - End of Year 2015 - Angus McCrone and Luke Mills, Bloomberg,

From the HotWhopper archives


  1. Apparently China intends to invest $360 billion in clean energy, creating 13 million new jobs by 2020. Meanwhile Trump will be trying to bring back jobs to the coal industry. Sigh.


    1. Put like that really emphasises how the DT policies are backeard looking and stuck in the past. It is a bit of a shock to see America not leading progress.

    2. The only chance that the US has to keep up with China and Russia over the long term is to lay the foundation in the next few years.

      The only chance that the planet provide a modicum of preservation of its biodiversity and global civilised culture (such as it is) over the long term is to lay the foundation in the next few years.

      Unfortunately, Trump is the person in the driver's seat. I hope that his backers remember that when it all goes pear shaped.

    3. The irony is that the Chinese are not investing in renewable energy because of climate change but to tackle the horrific pollution caused by the coal stations they only recently built. If WUWT was a genuine climate change denial site, not just a fossil fuel industry front, they'd be supporting renewable energy because it saves lives.

    4. Millicent.
      People lived in China before they installed the coal power stations. Generally, they used, as their primary source of energy, coal. Which they combusted in low tech furnaces and boiler systems.

      The new high tech coal power stations would produce less pollution under current energy demand than the old systems they replaced. And they are 16% more efficient than similar older tech systems used in Australia.

      And they lead to what may be a viable long term plan:


    5. "The new high tech coal power stations would produce less pollution under current energy demand than the old systems they replaced."

      I love the way you dress something up with fine words. Lets put that in a more honest fashion: newer coal plants are marginally less polluting than old ones.

      I suggest you go spend your days on fossil fuel industry front websites where you belong Marke.

  2. "CO2 is an inert gas". alt-science right there.

  3. Isn't it about time WUWT started carrying fossil fuel industry topics in general rather than restricting itself to attacking its threats?

  4. Wondering Willis, the MASSAGE THERAPIST, is impugning the intellectual capacity of Barack Obama? That's rich. He's shattering the irony meter.

    Yup, the hallucinating right wing deniers will continue to desperately search for the future in the rear view mirror. But their feverish ideological delusions don't change the laws of physics, the fact that CO2 is a greenhouse gas, the fact that we've emitted too much of it, or the fact that it's warming the Earth & causing increasingly nasty consequences. Sorry deniers.

    All they'll do is GUARANTEE that their progeny will have to cope with the intrusive government & enormous costs they fear most. They'd better train their grandchildren in science, because those grandchildren will have to extract from the atmosphere the excess CO2 they're irresponsibly emitting now.

  5. Oh this is a good one!
    "Obama is probably the most ungracious, least intelligent, dishonest, most self-centered, phony, and hateful president we have ever had. He defines racist by his ever action. He is mean spirited and low minded, unprincipled, and most unpatriotic man to ever serve as President."


    1. That person must have been watching a different president over the last 8 years. Hey, kids and dogs like him (just look at the photos) so he can't be all that bad.

    2. Obama is sandwiched between Dubya and Trump. He's already blamed by Republicans for much that was caused by Dubya, and they'll blame him for all that comes from Trump.

    3. Pure projection. Funny how common it is.

  6. For those who did not notice the double dogwhistle "ni88a". 88 is short for HH (8th letter of the alphabet), Heil Hitler.

    1. Yeah, just found that out when I watched a recent episode of Homeland.

      I realise we shouldn't read too much into these things, but shouldn't that be "ni77a"? Not that consistency or rationality is the strongpoint of yer typical wingnut, mind you...

    2. The "8" looks like g. "Barry" refers to Barack.

      The comment is racially derogatory as the two subsequent comments point out.

      And Watts has not removed it. That in itself says much.

    3. And looking at the comments made there you have to say most of the commenters are a disgraceful lot. Sick bitter and twisted beyond belief. Sad sad cases indeed.

  7. Interesting, Scott Frasier on twitter only follows three things. The Cato Institute, Heritage Foundation and Mark Levin.

    Bot or Not pegs his twitter as %40 bot.


  8. RING ... RING ... RING ...

    Hello, who is it?

    Its the 1950's calling and we're looking for some white trash.

    Willis, pick up the telephone, Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III wants to know if you wrote this on your own blog ...

    "I also am not interested in “ad hominem” attacks, attacks “against the man”. That is to say , attack a person’s ideas all you want, but please don’t attack their person (morals, education, honesty, style, parentage, personal history, experience)."


  9. Jeez, The Trump administration is going down the rabbit hole:


    Next, an "expert" on chemtrails to be appointed to head aviation?


    1. Oh lord, Myron Ebell, Jeff Sessions, and now RFK Jr. It's the Dream Team from Dante's Inferno!

      About a year ago I remember watching the Brazilian “semi-coup” and thinking that the new President and cabinet, etc, had to be about as unsavoury a group as one could collect in a country that was not an authoritarian dictatorship.

      How wrong I seem to have been. They were just a bunch of crooks and grifters with a possible murderer or two thrown in for balance. But, other than the fact that they seemed to be willing to steal anything that was not bolted and welded to the floor they appeared more or less sane. The Trump cabinet and assorted advisers seem, well surreal does not even begin to describe them.

      It looks like, in the short term, every country in the world is going to have to start demanding vaccination certificates from any US citizen travelling abroad.

      The USA has already had some significant outbreaks of measles due to poor vaccination rates; I just hope the next outbreak is not something like pertussis, quite possible or polio, unlikely, but possible (thanks CIA).

    2. They were just a bunch of crooks and grifters with a possible murderer or two thrown in for balance.

      You've got a smooth touch with a scalpel, jrkrideau.

    3. Now we can add William Happer to the list.


    4. If Trump is intending to commit ecocide that limits the list of willing candidates.

  10. Isn't it horrifying when the major media, universities, many politicians, environmental media, national anti-fossil fuel crusades, large environmental groups, some science magazines EPA, DOE, NOAA, and even the IPCC and NASA have become so politicized that they aren't trustworthy?

    1. @Stephen Heins

      So you think to be political is to be untrustworthy? That must make it difficult to decide which politician to vote for.

    2. Stephen must have been directed here by mistake (this isn't a conspiracy blog, it's a climate science blog). Perhaps Google is in on his "everyone in the world is so politicized they are untrustworthy" conspiracy theory :D

      I don't know how Stephen manages to get from one end of the day to the other. For him, life must be a very scary experience.

    3. Stephen Heins is obviously a representative of the Tinfoil Hat League. It seems he isn't aware that the Almagamated Aluminum Manufacturer's Association has started most/all of these conspiracy theories to increase bauxite ore prices.

    4. "...have become so politicized that they aren't trustworthy?"

      Let's translate that. One side of US politics has become enslaved by established interests. To support industries that are wrecking the planet its behaviour has had to become so irrational it comes into conflict with every prestigious scientific organisation on the planet.

      And poor Stephen thinks the problem lies with every prestigious scientific organisation on this planet.

    5. @Jammy Dodger - Stephen's solution is probably to vote for the non-politician, I.e., the candidate who knows the least about and has the least experience with and most contempt for the system he (or she*) wants to run.

      *because we mustn't forget Sarah Palin or Michelle Bachman or Carly Fiorina. Arrrgh.

    6. @FLWolverine

      Aaaaarrrghh indeed.

      The thing is he probably voted for Trump because he "feels" he can trust him. Ignoring any evidence to the contrary ...

    7. I read Stephen's comment as obvious sarcasm. Am I wrong?

    8. @numerobis

      You read Stephen's comment as sarcasm. Obviously it was not obvious! :)

      I think you are probably right though.

    9. From googling on his name plus "climate change" the impression given is that he styles himself as a lukewarmer and he thinks mainstream science to be alarmist.

    10. If Stephen meant his comment as sarcasm, I would expect him to be here explaining (or complaining) that we don't understand him. Until that happens, I'll just take him at his word(s).

  11. "Oh lord, Myron Ebell, Jeff Sessions, and now RFK Jr. It's the Dream Team from Dante's Inferno! "

    Signore Aligheri plans to install them across from one another in the new Circle Of the Firing Squad


  12. From the haste with which the thieving has begun it looks like they expect to lose control of Congress in just two years.

    1. Along with Trump's deep unpopularity, a hostile press and a sparse inaugural turnout, this is a thin silver lining in the dark cloud... that, and the fact Putin isn't even trying to give Trump plausible deniability.

      They're acting like smash-and-grab thieves who know the alarm sounds and the clock starts ticking the second they break the store window.

  13. Who authors HotWhopper? I'd like an identity behind all those comments. At least Willis E puts his name out there.

  14. Hi Paige. Welcome to HotWhopper. I'm the author and my (climate) name is Sou, which won't mean much to you if you've not been following climate blogs over the years. I'm just one of the 7 billion plus people alive at the moment. Inconsequential in the bigger scheme of things.

    Just like the name "Paige Goh" means nothing to me, although I expect you're a very worthy person. (Is it that you know Willis Eschenbach personally in real life and you want to know if you've also come across me? I don't believe we've met, if that's what you're asking.)

  15. "At least Willis E puts his name out there."

    That reminds me of Willis E Coyote, the hapless predator who thinks he understands how science works but unerringly fails at capturing a solution. And always failing in spectacular fashion.

    Some day we will see wonderin Willis E photo under the Dunning-Kruger Wikipedia entry.

  16. "I'd like an identity behind all those comments."

    Given that Sou's posts are referenced and linked to primary sources, why do you need to know an identity?


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