As demonstrated on this blog already, my track record is very shoddy. I’ve been laughed out of the room by my peers for claiming that it gets cold enough in Antarctica to cause CO2 to freeze out of the air and “snow.” I also made a complete ass of myself in front of those same peers trying to debate a government scientist and ended up having to eat crow. Finally, I was driven off the “Watts Up With That” blog because my posts were so far out to lunch.
But if you remain unconvinced about how much of a clueless, unhinged asshole I am, read on.
One technique I use to give myself a sheen of credibility to unsuspecting dupes that stumble upon my twitter feed or blog is to pepper them with graphs and charts and references to scientific papers. It’s a great way to come across as a knowledgeable authority on climate science even though I’m not. Clearly this technique works. I’m up to 4,200 Twitter followers and I claim to be able to drive 250,000 individuals to my blog each week (Are you listening big oil? I’m a great investment for your disinformation campaigns. Show me the money!)
Luckily, few people will actually take the time to dissect and analyze what I post and just swallow it whole. If there’s one thing I’ve learned in the climate denial business it’s to not let the truth get in the way of feeding the ideological nut jobs. Just give them what they want to hear and your fan base will grow.
Unfortunately, there are a handful of people that do make an effort to point out that I don’t deal in science or relevant data. They call attention to the fact that my “science” is nothing but ranch dressing on a dog shit sandwich. That’s when things can get quite embarrassing for me.
This happened back in 2011 with the launch of Really Sciency, a blog devoted to debunking the disinformation on my denier blog, “Real Science.” Really Sciency has post after stinging post demonstrating out just how full of shit I am. But perhaps the most humiliating moment for me came when Really Sciency caught me red-handed (or in this case blue-handed) doctoring a graphic from this scientific paper in such a way that made it look like the United States was growing much cooler since 1895.
As the Really Sciency blog shows, what I did was cherry pick a perfectly good graphic that looked like this:
As you can see, I “flattened” all the grey areas that show no large change in maximum temperature trends and made them bright blue, which made it look like large areas of the United States were getting colder. The truth was, however, these areas showed little to no maximum temperature change. This was a clear demonstration of why an unqualified, ideologically-driven amateur like me cannot be trusted to interpret scientific papers. All I had to do was read the actual text of the paper and the graphic’s key to understand what the graphic was showing and I would have realized how stupid it was to “flatten” the original graphic the way I did.
So I’m a fucking idiot. But hey, everyone makes mistakes from time to time, right? But that’s not the whole story here. If you want to get insight into my character, examine how I deal with “Lazarus,” the author of “Really Sciency” who called attention to my error. I lash out at him like the cornered, afraid little rat that I am and direct a stream childish invective and ad hominem attacks his way:
Lazarus, you are an idiot. Flattened means that that all regions of increasing temperature are shown in a single shade of red, and all regions of decreasing temperature are shown in a uniform shade of blue.
Lazarus is hysterical and completely FOS.
You are scientifically incompetent.
Admit you are wrong and print a retraction.
Hey Lazarus. You are scum. The chart accurately shows regions of increasing and decreasing temperatures from the NOAA map. If you disagree find a region where my map is incorrect. Otherwise, just admit that you are liar.
OK, so I’m a flaming asshole. But hey, everyone has a bad day, right? But even that’s not the whole story here. For even further insight into my character watch how I behave after another commenter, “mt,” finally convinces me that I completely fucked up, forcing me to post this correction to my blog:
Correction : reader MT points out that in the USHCN map they used various shades of blue for -0.50 all the way up to +0.05. This means that some of the blue area may actually be a slightly positive trend. Given that there is a large area of just barely blue (-0.05 to +0.05) on their map, there is no way to distinguish whether most of the country was warming or cooling.
So what did I do next after admitting my error? Absolutely nothing. Despite demanding a public retraction from Lazarus when I thought he was wrong—and despite calling him an “idiot,” “incompetent,” “full of shit,” “scum,” and a “liar” when it turns out he was right—I felt in no way compelled to apologize to him on my blog.
Though I claim to not be a sociopath, I’m beginning to have my doubts.