Judith Curry versus the GTMS

It is interesting how various people are treated in public discourse. Certain propaganda techniques are used to either advance careers or destroy people and minimize their exposure. Since most science is funded by the National Science Foundation, that is where the agenda is set. If a scientist wants to be funded, that scientist had better conform to the current paradigm.

In other words, science in general is corrupt. But readers here already knew this. I have come across two terms that grate like fingernails on a blackboard: “debunk” and “deny.” Both are used as a wave-of-dismissal technique for anyone outside the NSA-funded paradigm, better defined as a “groupthink mindset,” or GTMS (they love their acronyms!). To assert that the current GTMS on climate change is overstated, especially with use of observational evidence, is not science. It is denial! Using the Google to locate anyone skeptical about GTMS usually results a cascade of links on how that person has been debunked.

“Debunked” in my mind produces a SCREECH! It is not an advance of knowledge or method for analysis of information. Rather, it is a form of argumentation that is fallacious and in need of a name. I choose to call it the “patronizing condescension fallacy,” or PCF.

This is all by way of introduction. Judith Curry runs the blog Climate Etc., and who is a climate denier who has been debunked. In other words, she is a scientist who resides outside GTMS. The Rational Wiki page on her is a steaming pile of arrogance and condescension.

I was linked to her in reading Patrick J. Michaels’ work on climate change. He refers to climate change as a mere “lukewarming” that is not an emergency, and is probably even beneficial.

ScreamersHe notes that Curry, like himself, stopped applying for and accepting NSF money. This introduced freedom and independence from GTMS into their work, and brought down the hoards of nattering nabobs who immediately began chanting denial and debunk in their faces.

Ah well, as Michaels like to say, quoting Kurt Vonnegut, so it goes.

I spend a few hours yesterday reading not the Judith Curry blog, but rather the links … that is most of what she does, scouring the landscape for scientific papers and articles that either support or debunk the GTMS regarding climate change. I urge readers to give it a look, and start your own journey among the works of many serious scientists.

I am quoting but one paper as an example. Here is the abstract from the paper titled Impacts of exposure to ambient temperature on burden of disease: a systematic review of epidemiological evidence:

Ambient temperature is an important determinant of mortality and morbidity, making it necessary to assess temperature-related burden of disease (BD) for the planning of public health policies and adaptive responses. To systematically review existing epidemiological evidence on temperature-related BD, we searched three databases (PubMed, Web of Science, and Scopus) on 1 September 2018. We identified 97 studies from 56 counties for this review, of which 75 reported the fraction or number of health outcomes (include deaths and diseases) attributable to temperature, and 22 reported disability-adjusted life years (include years of life lost and years lost due to disability) related to temperature. Non-optimum temperatures (i.e., heat and cold) were responsible for > 2.5% of mortality in all included high-income countries/regions, and > 3.0% of mortality in all included middle-income countries. Cold was mostly reported to be the primary source of mortality burden from non-optimum temperatures, but the relative role of three different temperature exposures (i.e., heat, cold, and temperature variability) in affecting morbidity and mortality remains unclear so far. Under the warming climate scenario, almost all projections assuming no population adaptation suggested future increase in heat-related but decrease in cold-related BD. However, some studies emphasized the great uncertainty in future pattern of temperature-related BD, largely depending on the scenarios of climate, population adaptation, and demography. We also identified important discrepancies and limitations in current research methodologies employed to measure temperature exposures and model temperature-health relationship, and calculate the past and project future temperature-related BD. Overall, exposure to non-optimum ambient temperatures has become and will continue to be a considerable contributor to the global and national BD, but future research is still needed to develop a stronger methodological framework for assessing and comparing temperature-related BD across different settings.

That’s pretty much how it works with scientific papers, written for others in the field. Such language is inaccessible to most Americans, unable to process and comprehend a large volume of words. I took a shot at it, and here is what I came up with:

More people die from cold weather than hot weather, and there is no evidence that a warming climate is causing any increase in heat-related deaths. But we are still working on it, so please don’t call us deniers! Give us some more money and we will find that evidence for you.

The Curry blog is a refreshing journey for any yet to be convinced that the GTMS is anything more than professional hogwash. Give it a few hours, and go there frequently to stay on top of things. As Michaels notes, “… it is worth reading regularly even if you must put up with the fact that it is a strong attractor for wonks.”

16 thoughts on “Judith Curry versus the GTMS

  1. Irrespective of whether conditions are “overstated” or not, or “anthropogenic” causes are driving the train or not, does not change certain metadata. Trees are responding naturally to hotter and drier conditions. What we do with trees and forests may or may not be of significance. Currently, clearcutting, prescribed burning and thinning are widespread practices that provide no assurance of regeneration/restocking. Perhaps doing nothing is the best course of action. There are real debates within the subject of climate risk that may be worth some serious thought and planning. https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/25/climate/trees-climate-change.html

    Or not. Denial is so convenient and routine.


  2. I hear what you are saying, and data can lie as easily as people, but here is a study from Jia Yang et al on historic forest fires impact. This is figure Six from that study, liked below:

    Fire impact


    It is not written for Joe Sixpack, but I am going to take a shot at getting through it in the morning. The sense I am getting is that we are in a Chicken Little environment, and that certain forces in government are using media to blow every single issue regarding climate out of proportion. We need to calm down, analyze the data. If one pciture is worth a thousand words, it is this:

    IPCC Graph

    The climate change models diverged form reality in the 1990’s. The blue and green lines are satellite and balloon lower atmosphere measurements of temperature.

    I am no expert, I am just getting my feet wet.


    1. In its assessment of those 79 installations, which included Army, Air Force and Navy installations — and notably no Marine Corps bases — the services reported that 53 of the 79 faced current threats from flooding; 43 of the 79 face current threats from drought and 36 of the 79 faced current threats from wildfires.

      We are having fewer droughts and wildfires due to increased CO2, and flooding is hardly anything new. Linking it to warming would be work of legerdemain. This fish smells.


  3. I am not promoting this story, just noticed that DOD was involved, too.

    Here’s a link to research by a woman at Montana State Univ. whom I have met. She seems quite innocent. Her studies produce real date, which can be interpreted in a fairly straightforward manner, if the overall proxy thesis is valid. Core samples measure lake sediments for charcoal and pollen. Her timelines cover millennia.



    1. I will look at that. One thing that I have learned is the nature of NSF funding for research … you either promote AGW or you don’t get funded. They control the agenda. If your friend got a grant for her work, 50% it goes to MSU without strings.

      The link I cited above in this piece had findings that did not promote AGW, with more people dying of cold temps than warm, so read the last half of it, see how they almost apologize for failing to come up with the right result, hinting that they will find it in the future. The whole thing is predetermined.


  4. As it ever was. Nicholas Copernicus’s heliocentric study (1514 – 1532) and 100 or so years later Galileo Galilei (study from 1616-1633) were both out of step with the powers of the day, the source of most major scientific support. The money and power is usually corrupting anything new, especially if it may be real. When we must choose between two, both sides are likely wrong on the merits. Climate change is in the news a lot. That alone is cause for concern.


    1. As it ever was. Nicholas Copernicus’s heliocentric study (1514 – 1532) and 100 or so years later Galileo Galilei (study from 1616-1633) were both out of step with the powers of the day, the source of most major scientific support.

      This is the Disney fast-food version we got told in school, but it’s hogwash.

      All three celestial models; geocentrism (Ptolemaic), heliocentrism (Copernican) and geo-heliocentrism (Tychonian) were embraced by certain main figures of the time (and before; Kopernik was not the first to suggest a heliocentric model). Astronomy in that time was dominated by Jesuits and jews and in quite some cases those were the same person. A comprehensive overview you can find here.

      But the simplified view told in school is complete crap.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Then, pray tell, what magical power, if it wasn’t the Vatican/Pope, kept heliocentrism in under wraps for so long?


    2. By the way, your MSU friend, apparently honest, probably is. She is like all of us, carrot and stick.If she does not participate in GTMS, she waits tables. In science, there is not much of a living to be made outside the dominant paradigm. Get in the parade, pick up a sign and march, or do what Curry and Michaels do, live free.

      That something is in the news? That all of the major outlets promote the same agendas tells me that there is a central writing committee.


  5. Excellent and succinct write up, thank you for it. The phrase ‘further research is still needed’ made me feel somewhat nauseous and brought memories flooding back of essentially every academic study I read as an undergraduate.


  6. OT but… Ralph Nader’s grand-niece was on the Ethiopian Airlines crash, they say…

    Do people think thus Boeing story is “obviously” a scam? If so, I do wonder how pro pilots and industry don’t notice.. NakedCapitalism.com has had lots of comments from seeming pilot, coders, etc who believe the story… Even as they delve into extreme minutiae.
    Also.. What would be the agenda wrt Boeing?


    1. I think you’re on the wrong thread. Once a scam is spotted, we are also expected to instantly understand its implications? One idea advanced is to move the American airline construction industry to China. Do other pilots know it is a scam? No, or maybe a few. Who are they going to tell? Are they going to run to the news media? Which news media would repeat their story? I don’t know of any, as media is completely controlled.


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