Sigh …. Skeptics Doing What Skeptics Do Best …… Attack Skeptics

USHCN Raw Adj Count     image


This is unnecessary, senseless, and frankly demonstrates a character flaw.   

So, lukewarmers and near skeptics are attacking Steve, again.  This time, though, they’ve even managed to wander outside the skeptic community.

We see this at the Libertarian magazine, Reason.

Did NASA/NOAA Dramatically Alter U.S. Temperatures After 2000?

And, this is one of the many reasons, I don’t link to Reason, very often.  This is a rag blog post which gives us nothing but one side of the argument.  I hope Mr. Bailey doesn’t actually believe this is any sort of journalism. 

For those who may not be aware, Steve Goddard (pseudonym) runs a terrific blog Real Science.  Steve goes about it a little differently than I do, but, I think we complement each other quite nicely.  The second graph I posted is from Steve’s blog.  I would invite people who are not familiar to pop over there and just scroll down for a while.   He puts out a lot of information, and it’s all fact based. 

Recently, he’s been showing the malfeasance of our government lunatics who call themselves scientists.  Apparently, Steve’s been making some good headway with this.  Lukewarmers, such as The Blackboard seem compelled to respond

The attack by the Blackboard, and Anthony’s response to an inquiry seems to be all the journalistic integrity Mr. Bailey could muster. 

Don’t get me wrong.  There’s some fantastic mathematicians and statisticians at The Blackboard.  And, the skeptic community, indeed, the world, owes a bit to Anthony.  His WUWT blog was the first that allowed for average, everyday people an opportunity to see the controversies with the climate issues.  There were other skeptic blogs before Anthony, but, some of them were pretty heady and difficult to follow for the novice in maths and sciences. 

The problem with the Blackboard’s response to Steve’s postings is that it fails in reasoning and logic.  The maths are quite good, I’m certain.  But, they fail to understand what they’re seeing.  Steve isn’t failing to understand, although, it may be some of his plain bluntness is failing to capture all of the nuances in the temp record. 

What The Blackboard did was actually affirm Steve’s assertions.  The first graph I posted is from The Blackboard.  Essentially, it affirms what Steve is saying.  The USHCN used to have 1214 stations which reported real data.  Now, they have about 800 or so stations.  But, we keep reporting temps from the dropped stations via gridded infilling. 

The Blackboard made it a point to say Steve made two errors. 

Where did Goddard go wrong?

Goddard made two major errors in his analysis, which produced results showing a large bias due to infilling that doesn’t really exist. First, he is simply averaging absolute temperatures rather than using anomalies.

I’ll touch on that in a bit, but, not much, mostly because The Blackboard’s error is related to what they deem as Steve’s second error, which leads to their first statement.  They go on to describe what they call Steve’s second error ….

His second error is to not use any form of spatial weighting (e.g. gridding) when combining station records. While the USHCN network is fairly well distributed across the U.S., its not perfectly so, and some areas of the country have considerably more stations than others. Not gridding also can exacerbate the effect of station drop-out when the stations that drop out are not randomly distributed.

And, this is the problem.  We know that the stations dropping out are not randomly distributed.  Later, they give us their rationale ….

This difference is largely due to the changing composition of  stations in the network over time. Interestingly, simply spatially gridding absolute temperatures eliminates much of the difference, presumably because the other stations within the grid cell have similar climatologies and thus avoid skewing national reconstructions.


This is a presumption which is demonstrably false, which lays waste to their first argument.  They say you have to use anomalies because of the changes in the stations.  But, is is precisely because the movement and dropping of stations which is the problem. 

The Blackboard shows the drop-off of reporting stations.  I’m quite certain they know the drop off is not random distributed.  It’s mostly rural stations which are dropping off.  They know rural stations will report cooler absolute temps than urban located stations, but simply assume the anomalies will cover the differences.  That is to say, yes, it’s cooler in the rural areas, but, the changes in the temps are the same.  If it gets 10 degrees cooler in the rural areas, it would get 10 degrees cooler in the urban, or warm the same. 

But, that’s wrong.  It’s always been wrong, and continues to be more wrong with each passing year.  It’s sophomoric, and frankly born from willful ignorance and a hatred for plain speaking.  It’s a form of affirming their arrogance.  With their babbling bs, they’re essentially saying, Steve’s wrong because we believe we’re smarter than he is and the rubes who believe we shouldn’t just be making up data. 

Let’s think about this, for just a moment.  Recently, there’s been a paper published …. I’d give the link, but, I don’t want to take the time to look for it.  I posted about it, I think, but, it wasn’t anything earth shattering.  It was something we all knew, already.  Essentially, it stated that more and more people have access to air-conditioning.  So, as the summer comes into full swing, more and more people are turning on their ACs.  As, more and more people turn on their ACs, it dramatically (relative) effects the local temperatures.  Anyone doubting this, go stand behind an AC on a hot day. 

Tell me, if the natural local temperature increases to where everyone who can runs their AC, would there be more, less, or the same temperature differential in the urban vs rural settings?  Obviously, plainly, and self-evidently, the rise would be more in the urban settings than the rise in the rural.  It doesn’t matter how big your grid is.  If you’re basing your temp change (anomalies) more on urban settings than rural, then you’ll see a larger change.  You will in the summer, and you will in the winter.  Apparently, they don’t teach logic or critical thinking, any longer.  Your maths can be as sophisticated as Einstein’s, but, if you lack logic and critical thinking, they’re useless. 

Further, even the notion of a gridded area with near equal population distribution having the same climatology is a utter, nonsensical notion. 


Yeh, sure, the changes are all the same, or will average out to be the same.  We know this because ….. well, we don’t know this.  But, some people really good with maths assume this because it meets their conceptions of data and numbers, which is unrelated to the actions of the earth. 

Clearly, Little Rock and Salina have the same climatology.  Or, Tulsa and Sedan….. right?

They make a presumption, they can’t possibly know, and use that as the base of their post supposedly refuting Steve. 

Well, I’m not a mathematician, but, I am a database manager.  I have, in the past, used infilling for an estimate.  But, had I ever used the infilling based upon nearly 40% of missing data, without a demonstrable history which demonstrates the infilling to be correct, and swear that it was exactly and precisely correct, I would have gone to prison, and rightfully so. 

Gridded infilling for temp data is one of the most incorrect ways to go about finding an average temperature of any area, much less the globe, than I can think of.  It’s simply a fabrication.  People may feel it’s justified, but, it is no less of a fabrication. 

Consider how much the lunatics believe we’ve warmed.  ….. about 0.8 deg C.  They can’t tell us from what temp to what temp we’ve warmed, but, they believe it’s about 0.8 deg C.  But, they use gridded infilling in areas which vary by well over 2 degrees C on any given day.  And, they assume the changes are the same from one location to another, within a certain area. 

Who’s betting Little Rock’s winter temps to be the same as Salina’s next year?

Some may scoff at this, but, in all data sets, there is a starting point.  What was Salina’s when GISS started their data set?  What was Little Rock’s?  Prolly, 90 deg F for both, right?

As to Anthony.  Anthony, please stop.  This isn’t becoming.  I understand you don’t agree with his style.  But, he’s not the only one being stubborn.  Let it go.

Your seeming motto ….

Never ascribe malice to what can be explained by simple incompetence.

But, it is malice if they’ve been told, and refuse to address the problem, and instead, increase the problem.  Anthony, it is malice!  These are predators and parasites.  You’re trying to assign traits to them which are demonstrably untrue.  These people are Malthusians, they’re Marxists, they’re globalists.  They despise the notions of individual rights, and the advancement of humanity.  They would rather lie to us about polar bears drownings than tell us the truth.  But, you don’t believe they’d intentionally lie to us about the temperatures.  That makes no sense. 

Did I explain, to where the readers understand how The Blackboard was wrong?  Or, do I need to go into further detail?

Did I demonstrate that some writers at Reason cannot be trusted to give you an honest piece, or do I need to go into further detail?

A note before I end this post.


This, combined with his inability to openly admit to and correct mistakes, is why I booted him from WUWT some years ago, after he refused to admit that his claim about CO2 freezing on the surface of Antarctica couldn’t be possible due to partial pressure of CO2.

That’s quite a different story you told us when Steve left WUWT.  Further, CO2 freezing on the surface of the Antarctica has no play in the temps at the Antarctica.  I would also note, Steve has never called you out for anything, to my knowledge.  Even though, your comments on The Blackboard and discourse with Mr. Bailey attacks “Steve”, he refers to you as a “Well Known Skeptic”.


And, to Anthony, specifically,

PS.  Yes, I’m drinking beer right now.  And, even with half my brain tied behind my back, I’ll still be too much for alarmists and lukewarmists. 

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45 Responses to Sigh …. Skeptics Doing What Skeptics Do Best …… Attack Skeptics

  1. kim2ooo says:

    Reblogged this on Climate Ponderings and commented:

    Never ascribe malice to what can be explained by simple incompetence.

    But, it is malice if they’ve been told, and refuse to address the problem

  2. copernicus34 says:


    • copernicus34 says:

      to add; I really think you may have hit the nail on the head with the ‘not liking Steve’s style’ comment. Goddard is direct and tough and unforgiving, I’m sure that rankles Anthony a bit. I get it, I understand what Anthony has built, and I respect tremendously what he has done; but he is wrong on this one for sure. He needs to own up to it quickly and move on. He has his role in this, and so apparently Goddard. Anthony may feel (I don’t obviously know this as fact) that Goddard mat rub people the wrong way and give skeptics a bad name. I would argue its needed because the alarmists need to be put in their place and sometimes “nice” and “respectful” doesn’t work.

    • suyts says:

      Indeed. My position is, we tried “nice”. Nice didn’t work. We tried showing them their stupidity and errors. That didn’t work, either. We got called all sorts of things for pointing out facts. Which is exactly what Steve does. People can argue what the facts mean, but, they can’t challenge the facts.

      I don’t give a flying fk about the blackboard. They can babble their stupidity until the sun doesn’t shine, it doesn’t change the fact that the more stations lost, the higher the temps are reported. Math and science dictates that one won’t know why until one goes back and checks the temps of the stations which dropped. The Blackboard is an embarrassment to anyone who understands how math should be applied.

      I’ve given up on “Reason” long ago. They don’t reason. In many ways, they try to move libertarians to the left. It’s subtle, but, unmistakable, if you look for it. Confirmation bias my arse!

      And, Anthony just needs to stop. He should enjoy his success and not begrudge Steve’s his. So, they have different notions about our climate science …. who doesn’t? But, he’s going to interview and leave comments on another blog attacking Steve and comparing him to Mann? Even knowing WUWT could have never …. never achieved what it achieved without Steve. I know, I was there when it happened.

      A couple of more beers and I’m going to lose all niceties. This stuff pisses me off.

      • kim2ooo says:

        Actually, Mr Watts surprised me on this.

        It sounds very much like a personal problem, to me.

      • DirkH says:

        “I’ve given up on “Reason” long ago. They don’t reason. In many ways, they try to move libertarians to the left. It’s subtle, but, unmistakable, if you look for it. ”


  3. tom0mason says:

    If 40% ‘infill’ of data is ok why not 99.99%? Just have one US reference station and statistically calculate/adjust/generate all the missing stations data from that.
    When does anyone know when the ‘infilled’ data is the major trend maker? When will the ‘infill’ overwhelm the measure data trend?

    These ‘scientist’ do not see the problem they blather on about anomilies and gridding but ordinary people, and more so engineers, geologists, etc., living in the real world, know that there is no statistical replacement for true measured data.
    Science is after all about testing your best guess against the measurements of reality.

  4. leftinflagstaff says:

    I know a lady who’ll infill your future for a couple bucks at the fairgrounds.

    And, often the most fierce competition is between siblings.

  5. philjourdan says:

    The axis is in retreat, so the allies are squabbling over the spoils of the impending victory.

  6. kim2ooo says:

    Precision Vs. Accuracy

    Posted on June 25, 2014 by stevengoddard

    One of the most fundamental mistakes which wannabee scientists make, is to attempt to apply precision to a problem which hasn’t been sanity tested for accuracy.

    • suyts says:

      Sadly, the Blackboard, with their description of the way they regard our temps is neither precise, nor, accurate. This isn’t how one applies mathematics!!!

    • Jim Masterson says:

      . . . is to attempt to apply precision to a problem which hasn’t been sanity tested for accuracy.

      I’m afraid that Mr. Goddard doesn’t state it right either. Precision and accuracy are related, but they are very different entities. You can have an accurate measurement that isn’t very precise, and/or a precise measurement that isn’t very accurate. You can also have accurate and precise measurements, and/or inaccurate and imprecise measurements.

      When a measurement is made, you should include error bars or ranges. Those error terms are references to how precise the measurement was made and say nothing about accuracy. Indeed, accuracy is something you have to guess about. This is where statistics come into play. Assuming that there is no bias in your measurements, then repeated measurements of the same entity should begin to zero in on the accurate value.

      There’s the rub–when measuring temperature, you have no idea about what your biases are–if any.

      Temperature measurements are one of those entities where biases abound. First, temperature is an intensive thermodynamic property. It only can be made on systems that are in equilibrium. The atmosphere doesn’t qualify. Meteorologists get around that problem by assuming that Local Thermodynamic Equilibrium (LTE) holds. That is, the atmosphere is in equilibrium for small, local regions.

      Second, averaging temperatures is not a valid process. What is an average temperature of a system that isn’t in equilibrium? You’re not trying to home in on a specific, measurable value; you’re trying to home in on a computed, average value of a dynamic, changing system. There aren’t enough measurements of the atmosphere to get anything meaningful, and no one has defined what that procedure would be to arrive at something meaningful.

      Third, climatologists can’t seem to figure out the difference between Surface Air Temperature (SAT) and surface temperature. The two aren’t the same, but they are often treated the same in climate models.

      Fourth, I’ve never seen a proper treatment of UHI. There is some mysterious correction that climatologists apply, but no one knows what that process is. So basically UHI is another bias that isn’t properly accounted for.

      Fifth, GISS and other organizations maintaining historical temperature records can’t seem to keep from revising those records. Basically, they are playing with the numbers so their pet theories look valid. This is fraud–plain and simple. Scientists are supposed to change their theories to match the data, not the other way around.

      Sixth, anomalies don’t do what climatologists think they do. I’ve seen three local sites that should be in LTE and should all change in unison, yet they actually change randomly. If you hold one as the reference, the other two will change or not change depending on the day. Sometimes they are all equal. At other times they change in different directions and this varies from day to day.

      Seventh, assuming accuracy and precision are the same thing. And assuming that a precise measurement is also accurate.


      • kim2ooo says:

        GREAT POST….. Thank you!

        Would you consider letting Mr S… post this as a Guest Post?

      • cdquarles says:

        Amen Brother!

        One thing still bugs me about how real gases in the real atmosphere get treated. Concepts like ‘air parcels’ are just that, convenient concepts. In the real atmosphere, molecules are constantly moving and diffusing to and from sources and sinks. Yes, you can consider an ‘air parcel’ as if it were a balloon; but then you cannot extrapolate too far from that, for your givens and assumptions of state may and will no longer hold true.

        All measurements are subject to Type I and Type II errors. All diagnostic screening and testing are subject to Type I and Type II errors. Replication and reproduction of scientific studies are a must if you want to minimize them. My background is chemistry and biology => physiology and pathophysiology and applied toxicology and pharmacology.

        “Never make vast conclusions from half-vast data!” was the ‘cliché drilled into my head at the University. It seems that no-one in the PTB and their acolytes (yes the religious connotation is deliberate) is aware of this or cares about the ‘unintended’ consequences of their religion. Evil it is. Misanthropic it is. Satanic it is. Fight it, I must. I’ve already paid a heavy personal price in the past; but for the sake of the Love of God I must continue to fight, jail or death mean nothing to me.

      • Gail Combs says:

        The only thing I will add is they have a sample size of ONE (a unique location at one point in time measured by a unique thermometer) and they treat the data as if it were multiple measurements of the same thing. NOT VALID! The error is probably ~ +/- 1C, if we are lucky.

      • cdquarles says:

        Jim, you raised this question in my mind. Where is the linear algebra and/or other papers *showing* that these assumptions about treating this sparse data are valid. Could someone point me to *mathematics* and/or *theoretical/applied* statistics showing this? Please?

      • Jim Masterson says:

        cdquarles says:
        June 26, 2014 at 11:51 am

        Jim, you raised this question in my mind.

        Basically climatologists have wasted time, effort, and all the money on supporting their AGW theory. If they did some original research into verifying temperature tables and filling in missing terms, they might invalidate the technique. That’s why the gate-keepers at various journals won’t publish papers that call into question these basic assumptions. They don’t want to lose their primary bread-and-butter. You won’t find papers supporting the fill-in technique, because it most likely isn’t valid. The gate-keepers won’t publish papers invalidating the technique.

        It’s too bad really. Think of where the science of climatology could have been advanced to, if they had spent all that money, time, and effort on actually doing real science and real theoretical research.


    • philjourdan says:

      Someone has to make the most accurate bull s*it meter.

  7. Eliza says:

    My impression on Lucias site is that WUWT is backing off LOL

  8. Very good post Sir. Please let me say, even ‘righteous indignation’ has a limit.
    Just sayin..

  9. Brad says:

    Disproving CAGW should not be a competition. It appears Watts believes it is.

  10. DirkH says:

    We can say now, lukewarmism depends on the use of anomalies. Using real temperatures makes it disappear. Why did these people navigate themselves into such an absurf position. Thermometers don’t show anomalies.

  11. Gail Combs says:

    “Anthony, it is malice! These are predators and parasites.”

    Anthony should realize that by now. I have been pointing it out for years at WUWT. CAGW was ALWAYS about politics and never about science.

    Thank you for a great rebuttal

    • benfrommo says:

      You forget that “useful idiots” have been used for years by numerous political activists and especially by socialists. There are plenty of incompetents involved as well who just parrot the party line and have no idea what they are doing or saying.

      Most global warming scientists are under that category in my mind. Some are actually malicious, but most are just useful idiots for the cause.

  12. DirkH says:

    Billionaires Steyer, Bloomberg and Paulson take to the crayons, make their own prophecy.

  13. Pingback: Skeptical of skeptics: is Steve Goddard right? | Climate Etc.

  14. bit chilly says:

    this is my first visit to your site,it will not be the last. great summation of the situation.

    • suyts says:

      Thanks, Bit, and sorry about the wait in moderation. I forget to check it sometimes. I do ope you enjoy the posts and the commenters.

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