Lying “Friends of Science” are no friends of mine

Looks like the ironically named Friends of Science are back with some radio ads. Only problem is they lie. Lie, lie, lie.

They make three claims that are easily debunked.

  1. It hasn’t warmed for the past 10 years.
  2. That global warming is caused by the sun.
  3. That scientists politicians and celebrities refuse to debate.

Lets take them on one at a time.

Did global warming stop 10 years ago?

The short answer is no. A quick look at the instrumental record shows that quite clearly.

And an blind test of statisticians arrived at the same conclusion: We are not cooling. Any cooling trend that one might find is a clear cherry pick, and has no statistical significance.

But more importantly, even if there had been a decade of cooling it wouldn’t disprove anything. The models don’t expect global temperatures to increase monotonically, and neither do climatologists.

Is Global warming caused by the sun?

Again the answer is no. No it isn’t. Does this look like a good correlation to you:

The fact is that the effect of the sun on our climate has been studied in great detail, but the sun cannot explain the current warming trend.

Do scientists refuse to debate the science?

I am ignoring politicians and celebrities because what they do or don’t do, say or don’t say, has absolutely no bearing on the scientific case for global arming. The fact that Friends of Science lumps scientists with politicians and celebrities is telling.

But do scientists refuse to debate?

Absolutely not. The peer-reviewed literature is full of scientific debates. So are scientific conferences, and even science blogs (real ones, written by actual scientists, not shoddy weathermen). But they wont debate with anyone. They wont debate with people who repeat fully debunked denier talking points (like warming ended 10 years ago, or its all the sun’s fault).

It’s important to recognise that you shouldn’t play their game. They’ll never be satisfied because they simply don’t want to believe the science – for ideological reasons.

They know the problems of one-way-hash arguments, and the absolute time sink that is responding to the same debunked claims over and over again. Time which could be better spent furthering our understanding of the climate system. The fact is that while scientists do debate, their debates look nothing like other forms of debate (political debates). Scientists debate with research, they don’t pander to public opinion. But that doesn’t mean they don’t debate.

Three errors in the ads (actually there are more, but these three are the major ones). Errors that anyone with even a basic understanding of the science can debunk. Errors so obvious that it is difficult to believe that Friends of Science doesn’t know that they are wrong. Or in other words Friends of Science is lying to us. But this isn’t surprising.

3 thoughts on “Lying “Friends of Science” are no friends of mine

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  1. One nit: usually advertisements are called ads, not “adds”, especially when they are really more like subtracts.

  2. Arg! Thats what I get for writing and posting this so early in the morning. It’s been fixed. Thanks.

    BTW I just currently reading your paper on the APS petition (well much of it, not all 100+ pages!). Very enlightening. If you don’t mind I’d like to post the executive summary here, along with a link to the whole document.

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