Rear View: Lambert Spin Machine

Source:  JoNova

Lambert, victim of his own spin?

Spin Cycle Science Cartoon
Lambert has replied to the post I did that pointed out that his use of the fake “Pinker Tape” in the debate with Monckton was a cheap-shot ambush with no real significance.

As usual, his reply includes major claims like “a dishonest post” and ”there’s no wiggle room here”, and, as usual, he can’t back them up.

Dishonest?  I quote Pinker as saying:

[I]f we give Christopher Monckton the benefit of doubt and assume that he meant “the impact of clouds on the surface shortwave radiation” than it can pass.”

And Lambert thinks that somehow this really means that Pinker said Monckton’s terminology can pass, but his analysis is wrong? This exactly-backward interpretation is delusional (or dishonest, eh?). To read it from Pinker’s statement, you need to throw out the English grammar rulebook, and read from right to left. So now, it’s dishonest to quote someone directly? This is another example of the convoluted way faithful AGW people have to think in order to dig themselves out of the hole they find themselves in.

Let’s recall after all the too-ing and fro-ing, that even if Pinker thinks Monckton is wrong, even if Lambert gets a quote from Pinker saying Monckton is totally, utterly wrong, or that the IPCC did interpret the full implications of her work, this doesn’t prove he is, or they did. It means we need to listen to her reasons and Monckton’s reply carefully. (Notice how those who promote alarm end up discussing opinions and the minutia of who-said-what, rather than the science itself?)

As for Lambert’s other points, he makes some statement about what Pinker is replying too, but still hasn’t disclosed his full letter to her, which makes it impossible to know exactly what she is replying to.

As I pointed out, Monckton said “they were deliberately avoiding the very clear implications of Dr Pinker’s paper.” So when Pinker says: “Our work was properly interpreted in the latest IPCC Report”, she is not refuting what Monckton says, but is sidestepping the point.

Pinker 2005 - Sunlight on the surface of the Earth has increasedPinker 2005 – Sunlight on the surface of the Earth has increased

Pinker’s paper shows pretty strongly that on the surface, the Earth was getting a lot more shortwave radiation (i.e., sunlight) over the period 1983-2001, probably due to fewer clouds or some other change in the atmosphere. Nothing Lambert says alters the fact that it’s hard for the Earth to receive more light without warming up. If this extra sunlight did really hit the surface, it can explain most of the warming, and carbon becomes irrelevant, unless you can simultaneously show that there was some other factor that neutralized the extra sunlight. Believing in the carbon crisis is getting more complicated and filled with IF’s by the minute.

Lambert makes a last ditch effort at the end to “talk science” when he claims that Monckton can’t use Stefan Boltzman equations on the Earth because it’s not a black body. But, it’s very well known that all you need to do is include emissivity, and Stefan Boltzman applies to gray bodies just fine, which of course, is what Monckton has done (see Eq 18 on page 13). It’s another non-point dressed to kill.

But, the confusion feeds the fans: 69 comments so far, and nobody has mentioned black bodies and emissivity…yet.

UPDATE: Monckton includes emissivity, then assumes it’s unity, because Earth is considered to be very close to a black body radiating in the IR. This is standard practice and even pro-AGW modellers Kiehl & Trenberth (1997, 2008) assume emissivity is 1 also. (Thanks Mattb for spotting the issue.)

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