When Brad Keyes wrote his great Shibbolithic post at WUWT, I just had to tweet it out.
Here’s Some Highlights:
• I asked for examples of climate humor that are funny. Eli Rabett chimed in linking to one of his own snarky posts ridiculing Anthony Watts. Then he tweeted a couple more unimpressive posts and another that I thought was beyond lame. Then Mosh and Brad started arguing about comedy.
• Andy Revkin’s chill out video had a section on climate comedy. I tweeted about it leading to more discussion among me, Brad and Mosh. Mosh knows a lot of actual comedians and academics who’ve turned comedy into an actual science. I compared Brad to Robin Williams.
• The hockey stick brawl started to form when Tony tweeted about engaging directly with climate scientists. I tweeted the well known video of Gavin Schmidt running from Roy Spencer. Brad started a skirmish with Tony by bringing up Michael Mann’s Serengeti strategy. I brought up Gavin’s inline responses to Judith Curry’s comment on the Real Climate review of Andrew Montford’s The Hockey Stick Illusion.
• Brad branched out on Peter Gleick’s forged Heartland memo.
• Tony asked why Mann would fabricate a result that ends up being confirmed by a dozen other subsequent studies? I replied “He’d want all the spoils and acclaim that getting there first brings, and which he got.” Dan Neuman quipped, “So he was able to foresee what all future research would show? Wow, Mann’s even more amazing than I thought.” I replied with David Deming’s Congressional testimony about getting rid of the Medieval Warm Period.
• When the topic got to Principle Component Analysis, I tagged Steve McIntyre and Ross McKittrick. Steve showed up and started rebutting points. Caerbannog had a quote from MBH’98 that he claimed disclosed Mann’s hockey stick mining method. Steve refuted it and I gloated at Caerbannog.
Caerbannog’s quote from MBH’98: “The proxy series and PCs were formed into anomalies relative to the same 1902–80 reference period mean, and the proxy series were also normalized by their standard deviations during that period.”
• Steve brought up Mann’s use of FORTRAN instead of a modern language such as R. Eli replied “r in 1998?” This led to a big discussion about whether FORTRAN is outdated or still useful. Gavin showed up to dispute the usefulness of R in 1998. I actually think the other side sort of won this part of the debate.
• Dan tried to claim there was nothing about the hockey stick that was hidden. I responded “Oh Baloney!!” Rob Honeycutt showed up and mocked me for my use of multiple exclamation marks. Then he started quizzing me. I tried to address his questions. He asked me if I’d read MBH98/99. I like to think that I address questions, so I responded with a three tweet series and some wisecracks.
• Steve commented: “one of the reasons I became interested in it early on was Mann’s incredibly grandiose and pompous verbiage to describe steps in his method that were merely linear regressions. Such inflated language for simple steps indicated pretentious mediocrity.”
• Someone brought up Jon Stewart’s bit about “hide the decline” on the Daily Show. I located it.
• This led to a lot of back and forth over “hide the decline” among Steve, Rob, Ken Rice, Eli Rabett and Tony. The Wegman report even came up. Later Steve made this important point: “Hide the Decline tried to deceive people into thinking that tree ring temperature reconstructions had more validity than they really did. They didn’t want to ‘dilute the message’ or give ‘fodder to skeptics.’ Deletion of decline as done in HTD would be illegal for fund manager.”
• Things sometimes got heated. Rob tweeted “You castigate real science to your own peril.” I responded with a Robert De Niro “you talking to me” video. Steve called it a Freudian slip for, “You castigate Realclimate to your own peril.”
• Then Brad brought up two graphs by Naomi Oreskes that appear to have two conflicting numbers. This led to a couple weeks of arguing with some participants at times leaving, which is probably the best measure of who is winning a Twitter argument.
Brad’s humor can be sharp edged. I asked him what tweets he thought should be included. Some of them are actually my tweets. He came up with these pithy descriptions:
This is my interpretation of what’s significant. Any other participants who don’t like it can write their own. As they say, history is written by the winners.