It is time to stop quivering in our boots in pointless fear of the future and just roll up our sleeves and build it.
- Ray Pierrehumbert

Saturday, December 22, 2007

The Inhofe 400

In case somebody asks you about it, you could send them here.

4 comments:

David B. Benson said...

Thanks for the link.

Marion Delgado said...

Michael:

two tangential questions, on Revkin and on debates:

1. Do you think someone could point out to Revkin the many, many times he's directly steered "the debate" - which should instead be reporting on issues and events - back to being more denialist and inaction leaning than is public opinion, and created out of thin air the kind of dichotomy you've advised against? That is, on the one (radical left wing) side, climate data and thermometers and stuff. on the other side, businessmen and conservative scientists and other pragmatists.

I assume one wouldn't make any progress just calling him a spreader of denialism (which is how I see him), but couldn't people pick, say, one topic or event where he "accidentally" got it wrong by creating such a balanced spectrum where none exists, and say, given there are 100,000 people on one "side" and 1 on the other, we wish you had focused on some other issue if you wished to present a controversy.

I thought the person commenting on the dotEarth pew research column about correlation and causation was quite good. I believe people are not being assertive enough with Revkin, who's presenting himself as some sort of wise steward of the climate debate.

2. In addition to the VERY sound points you made about the debate that lindzen and crichton etc. were involved in, did you notice that, not the moderator, but the SPONSOR, who made the true opening statement, was not even a "there's always two equal sides" fake balance glad-hander, but actually used the exact language of climate audit and junk science?

So in addition to the other reasons for either not doing debates or doing so carefully and with showmanship, I would add, don't debate where the sponsor of the debate gets to start everything by taking an even more extreme position than one of the sides in the debate.

I say that because lindzen acknowledged GW up to 1998, Crichton acknowledged AGW, ongoing, but the SPONSOR said all the science was completely up in the air and open to debate, and (essentially the "IPCC side") was trying to suppress discussion.

Bad sponsor. No debate. And so he won't toss in some Alan Colmes fodder and pretend it's a real debate, say publicly that he's a shill, and an inappropriate partisan sponsor.

Michael Tobis said...

Revkin is trying to promote sensible discussion and is moving the window of acceptable discourse closer to reality. I think what he's doing is enormously helpful even though I disagree with him on occasion.

I do question him when he reverts too far to type. You should too.

Marion Delgado said...

Thanks for the suggestion ....

Next stop, strategy.