Tuesday, January 12, 2010

New Blog

I moved over to wordpress. My new URL is http://zombiehero213.wordpress.com/

Monday, December 28, 2009

Government Failure vs Private Solutions

Government failure:
Senate Homeland Security Committee Chairman Joseph I. Lieberman (I-Conn.) joined GOP critics in asking how the suspect was able to retain a U.S. visa — issued by the U.S. Embassy in London in 2008 — after his name appeared in the terrorist database.

“What happened after this man’s father called our embassy in Nigeria?” Lieberman asked. “What happened to that information? Was there follow-up to try to determine where this suspect was?”

Private Solution:
Jasper Schuringa, an Amsterdam resident, lunged toward the fire in Row 19, jumping from one side of the plane to the other and over several other passengers. He burned his fingers as he grabbed a piece of melting plastic held by Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the Nigerian man accused Saturday of trying to bring down the passenger jet with a homemade explosive device.

Schuringa, a video producer, restrained Abdulmutallab as others used blankets and fire extinguishers to douse the flames.

"When I saw the suspect, that he was getting on fire, I freaked, of course, and without any hesitation I just jumped over all the seats," Schuringa told CNN on Saturday. "And I jumped to the suspect. I was thinking like, he's trying to blow up the plane."

"I am grateful to the passengers and crew aboard Northwest Flight 253 who reacted quickly and heroically to an incident that could have had tragic results..."

Friday, November 27, 2009

ClimateGate Denial

There is a lot of denial out there, from the alarmist crowd on the effect of ClimateGate on Global Warming, err, Climate Change. Jones wrote: “My colleagues and I accept that some of the published emails do not read well… Some were clearly written in the heat of the moment, others use colloquialisms frequently used between close colleagues.”

As can be suspected, RealClimate is still in full "Cover Our Ass" mode. They are saying that it is all taken out of context. As I said before, I'm sure some of it is out of context. The code that CRU used is the worst offender. The code used to plot the data and create those wonderful "hockey Stick" graphs used to scare everyone to cut off their left foot to save the planet, was not, I repeat not out of context nor was is written in the "heat of the moment." The coding is deliberate, and as such gives a greater insight into what was going on.
  • In the Files maps12.pro maps15.pro maps24.pro
; plot past 1960 because these will be artificially adjusted to look closer to
; the real temperatures.
of growing season temperatures. Uses “corrected” MXD – but shouldn’t usually
  • From documents\harris-tree\recon_esper.pro:
; Computes regressions on full, high and low pass Esper et al. (2002) series,
; anomalies against full NH temperatures and other series.
; Specify period over which to compute the regressions (stop in 1960 to avoid ; the decline
  • From file documents\harris-tree\recon1.pro
; Computes regressions on full, high and low pass MEAN timeseries of MXD
; anomalies against full NH temperatures.
; Specify period over which to compute the regressions (stop in 1940 to avoid ; the decline
  • From file recon_mann.pro
; Computes regressions on full, high and low pass MEAN timeseries of MXD
; anomalies against full NH temperatures.
; THIS IS FOR THE Mann et al. reconstruction
  • briff_sep98_e.pro:
; PLOTS ‘ALL’ REGION MXD timeseries from age banded and from hugershoff
; standardised datasets.
; Reads Harry’s regional timeseries and outputs the 1600-1992 portion
; with missing values set appropriately. Uses mxd, and just the
; “all band” timeseries
Of course there is more. It will take time to figure out all the tricks they used to "avoid the decline." The main point is that they CRU crew were deathly afraid of this decline. Specifically the divergence from the tree ring data and temperature. Here is what the graph would look like if the post 1960 data is put in to the graph.
Where is the sudden rise in temperatures that the very "credible" CRU crew has been telling us is right there? There is no "Hockey Stick!" Tell Gore to give back his Nobel.

Now there can be something said that the tree ring data for post-1960 isn't accurate. So if it's not accurate post-60's, how can we be certain it's accurate pre-1960? There is a serious lack of credibility in the data here. This same data has been used to write up IPCC reports that keep telling us we are cooking the planet. These same data sets have been referenced and used in hundred of climate models. The same models that fail to show the recent cooling/stability in global mean temperature. Simply put, the whole deck of cards has been built on a very weak foundation, that is now starting to crumble. Every paper that has used the CRU data sets, has to be re-written and reevaluated. Anything less is sloppy and junk science. This from CBS news.
...the CRU wields outsize influence: it claims the world’s largest temperature data set, and its work and mathematical models were incorporated into the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s 2007 report. That report, in turn, is what the Environmental Protection Agency acknowledged it “relies on most heavily” when concluding that carbon dioxide emissions endanger public health and should be regulated.

Let's put it in terms that the Left knows, Enron scandal.
Enron (CRU) has been keeping it's books closed so know one can verify what they have been doing. A whistleblower (hacker) alerts everyone that Enron has been cooking the books. Auditors (McIntyre/Skeptical crowd) comes in and finds serious breaches in ethics and standards (Emails, Code from Jones, Mann and Hansen).
Do you:
A) Try to prosecute the whitle blower for violating Enron's right to privacy? (Not the case in CG, since CRU is publicly funded and subject to FOI laws)

B) Admit that is looks bad, but assure everyone that Enron is doing a full internal audit and they will straighten everything out themselves. (This is whats coming from RealClimate, Univ East Anglia, WaPo and numerous Left media camps)

C) Demand full transperency and hold Enron (Jones, Mann, Harris, Schmidt etc) accountable for what is, FRUAD! Demand that everyone has a chance too look at the books and do full independent audits and hold Congressional hearing in the matter.

D) A&B

I'm simply amazed at how the Left, in response to Enron, wants C. Now that it's ClimateGate, they want D.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Cure is worse than the disease

A response to this post at Liberal Rapture.

Most of what Bush and Obama has done with the economy is to put lipstick on a pig. That's why the numbers are "farcically low" and yes everyone knows it. Those "economists yapping on TV" aren't economists, I doubt any of them has a solid economic background, most likely just the standard simple Keynesian background. They either can't see the forest for the trees or more simply they are just going with the propaganda that the Feds are feeding them.

CNBC, whose parent company is NBC, whose parent company is GE has a huge stake in towing the Administration line, lest they lose all those generous contracts. Yes it sounds like a conspiracy theory but that doesn't take away from the underlying message. You can't pay the people who are supposed to keep you accountable. Why do you think all those people bought all those mortgage backed securities, because the ratings agencies were being paid by the originators of those securities to rate them AAA. It was a huge con job, back with full faith and credit of the US Government, based on horrible Keynesian economic policies.

The truth of the matter is, everything to government is doing now is all wrong. They are treating the symptoms instead of the disease. More to the point they are treating the symptoms with the disease. Ultra low interest rates fueled the bubble, so what do they do...keep interest rates ultra low. An over investment in low income home ownership built the bubble, so what do they do...expand government housing subsidies for low income earners. They haven't learned anything, and it's naive to think they ever will. There is just too much money to be made and the politicians are on the take, just like any other day.

It will only get worse before it gets better. Housing prices haven't been allowed to correct themselves and the commercial real estate market is on the verge of collapse. Inflation will pick up again once all those reserves that the banks have start to flow into the economy. That will happen once money demand reaches the new equilibrium. Unemployment will stay high for years to come.

More CRU links

There has been more and more commentary on the CRU scandal, aka Climategate.

I for one think that the more people know, the better the debate will be. Knowledge is too valuable to be kept in the hands of a select few.

ClimateGate: The Fix is In.
Yes, this is a theft of data-but the purpose of the theft was to blow the whistle on a much bigger, more brazen crime. The CRU has already called in the police to investigate the hacker. But now someone needs to call in the cops to investigate the CRU.
Iowahawk is a great piece;
But there's a problem: as the worker researchers attempt to store each raw datum into the neat honeycomb hockey stick structure provided by the hive's Alpha Grantwriter, they discover that few will fit. The infrared shows them growing cool with fear. This signals the climate researcher's instinctive behavior to begin viciously beating, rolling and normalizing the data into submission. According to Dr. Nigel V.H. Oldham, professor emeritus at Oxford University's Centre for Metascience, this violent data dance is what makes climate researchers unique among breeds of scientists.
More and more Americans are becoming skeptical.
Since its peak three and-a-half years ago, belief that climate change is happening is down sharply among Republicans -- 76 to 54 percent -- and independents -- 86 to 71 percent. It dipped modestly among Democrats, 92 to 86 percent
Just think what those numbers could be if the MSM hadn't blacked out the ClimateGate scandal?
The Obama administration has another reason to hate Fox: it appears to be the only national television news outlet in America interested in the growing ClimateGate scandal.
ABC, CBS, CNN, MSNBC, and NBC through Monday evening have completely ignored the subject.
Simple explanation as to why the MSM have ignored ClimateGate. It hurts Democratic prospects for passing a Cap and Tax bill. Cap and Tax, Universal Healthcare and the Wars were Obama and the Democrats major platforms over the last election. With the Wars not going as the Liberals had hoped and Healthcare not going well, to put it lightly, all they have left is Climate Change legislation. Reid has said that he will hold off on the Senate version until next spring, when it will actually get warmer. If ClimateGate gets traction, that bill is dead and down goes 2 of the 3 main Democratic platforms before the mid-terms.

As and aside; you know Obama is in trouble when celebrities come out against him.

Barack Obama does not have Angelina Jolie’s seal of approval.

“She hates him,” a source close to the U.N. goodwill ambassador, 34, tells the new issue of Us Weekly (on newsstands now).

“Angie isn’t Republican, but she thinks Obama is all smoke and mirrors,” the source says.

Angie IS perfect now! ha ha

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Credibility Meltdown

I loved that title, so I lifted it from Mises.org. Sorry bout that.

This has been and exciting week for anyone that is skeptical of the "consensus" on Global Warming. A hacker or someone from the inside out to get someone, posted emails, documents, and other sundries from the Climate Research Unit (CRU)'s webmail server. There is even a search engine for you to enjoy. I won't blame anyone in the US for not knowing about it, the only US MSM outlet that I know to do a story about it was Washington Post. Leave it to the Brits to call out the MSM for their shoddy reporting on what can be described as one of the greatest scandal for science in the last 100 years.

Skeptics have wanted to see the data for years. If AGW is the threat that the alarmist have been saying, then the data should speak for itself. Only then, can we all agree on a course of action to take. Much to the chagrin to the alarmist side of the debate, there is no "consensus." The debate is far from "over." These series of email show how some reportedly "reputable" scientists have been doing not so scientific things to the data. They have been hiding data, messaging data, threatening journals not to publish contrarian views and much much more. Here are some of the highlights:
  • From Michael E. Mann (withholding of information / data):
Dear Phil and Gabi,I’ve attached a cleaned-up and commented version of the matlab code that I wrote for doing the Mann and Jones (2003) composites. I did this knowing that Phil and I are likely to have to respond to more crap criticisms from the idiots in the near future, so best to clean up the code and provide to some of my close colleagues in case they want to test it, etc. Please feel free to use this code for your own internal purposes, but don’t pass it along where it may get into the hands of the wrong people.
  • From Nick McKay (modifying data):
The Korttajarvi record was oriented in the reconstruction in the way that McIntyre said. I took a look at the original reference – the temperature proxy we looked at is x-ray density, which the author interprets to be inversely related to temperature. We had higher values as warmer in the reconstruction, so it looks to me like we got it wrong, unless we decided to reinterpret the record which I don’t remember. Darrell, does this sound right to you?
  • From Kevin Trenberth (failure of computer models):
The fact is that we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can’t. The CERES data published in the August BAMS 09 supplement on 2008 shows there should be even more warming: but the data are surely wrong. Our observing system is inadequate.
  • From Michael Mann (truth doesn't matter):
Perhaps we'll do a simple update to the Yamal post, e.g. linking Keith/s new page--Gavin t? As to the issues of robustness, particularly w.r.t. inclusion of the Yamal series, we actually emphasized that (including the Osborn and Briffa '06 sensitivity test) in our original post! As we all know, this isn't about truth at all, its about plausibly deniable accusations.
  • From Phil Jones (withholding of data):
The skeptics seem to be building up a head of steam here! ... The IPCC comes in for a lot of stick. Leave it to you to delete as appropriate! Cheers Phil
PS I’m getting hassled by a couple of people to release the CRU station temperature data. Don’t any of you three tell anybody that the UK has a Freedom of Information Act!
  • From Phil Jones (fudging the data to fit the model)
Once Tim’s got a diagram here we’ll send that either later today or first thing tomorrow. I’ve just completed Mike’s Nature trick of adding in the real temps to each series for the last 20 years (ie from 1981 onwards) amd [sic] from1961 for Keith’s to hide the decline. Mike’s series got the annual land and marine values while the other two got April-Sept for NH land N of 20N. The latter two are real for 1999, while the estimate for 1999 for NH combined is +0.44C wrt 61-90. The Global estimate for 1999 with data through Oct is +0.35C cf. 0.57 for 1998.
  • From Michael E. Mann (using a website to control the message, hide dissent):
Anyway, I wanted you guys to know that you’re free to use RC [RealClimate.org - A supposed neutral climate change website] Rein any way you think would be helpful. Gavin and I are going to be careful about what comments we screen through, and we’ll be very careful to answer any questions that come up to any extent we can. On the other hand, you might want to visit the thread and post replies yourself. We can hold comments up in the queue and contact you about whether or not you think they should be screened through or not, and if so, any comments you’d like us to include.

What does this all mean? Well for one, this means that, as said above, the debate is far from "over." Anyone that used that excuse in the first place, has no notion of what science really is. Science is not about fudging the data. Science is not about withholding data. Science is not about disregarding the data if it doesn't fit the model.

Science is above all else about skepticism. Skepticism is the core of scientific progress. It's about rejecting the consensus view and looking for new answers to old questions and in the process coming up with new questions that need answering. The word skeptic comes from the Latin; 1) to analyze 2) to think through thoughtfully. That's what science is!

This scandal also means that science is not above the political. Hiding, evading and trying to control the message are all elements of the political, not the scientific realm. The AGW skeptics have been trying to show how politicized the debate has become for years. The emails, going back to 2000, show how Jones has been trying to control the message and stifle debate. It can't be stressed enough, that is not science. While Jones and the rest at Hadley have PHds, what they did crosses a very fine line. One could say they should take an ethics class, but just as in the political realm, ethics is very subjective. Even Jones' response seems like a political response, "it was taken out of context." How many times have we heard a politician say the exact same thing.

The AGW alarmist crowd is in full CYA (Cover Your Ass) mode as can be seen at realclimate.org. The cries of how it's "just interoffice emails so please don't pay attention" might reassure some, but it smells of a con job to me. There are emails talking about deleting data that might come under a British FOIA request, that doesn't seem to strike me as just "run of the mill" interoffice mail. Sorry alarmists, your going to have to come up with better. Now I fully admit some of the emails might actually be "out of context." We only have a small sample and the only way to put everything in the proper context would be to release everything; emails, memos, data, reports...everything to the public. Ha, I'll be holding my breath for that one.

While most of the skeptic crowd is jumping on the band wagon, I think people are missing how this fundamentally destroys the reputation of that data we have and are going to use in the future. (Sorry alarmist, but even Jones said the emails were authentic.) The James Hansen affair already shook my confidence in the GISS data. No matter how much NASA might say that the current data is the "true" measure, my confidence in their credibility is gone. Indeed the credibility of all the data is now suspect in my eyes. Once you have "reputable" scientists talking about hiding and deleting data, no amount of spin is going to make me forget that sin.

Crediblity has been lost. I'm afriad of what that might do to some. I'm sure there are a lot of laymen that feel that science is the be all and end all of reason. That science and scientists are above the political and the petty partisanship. In essence, you can question politicians, but the scientists are usually always right, so trust them when they are talking about something; a very romanticiszed veiw of science. Now that romanticizm is crushed. Scientists are now mere mortals and are nto above regular human falibilities. They have been shown to manipulate data to serve their own ends. I'm afriad there might be a backlash against science. Once it is shown that a small group of a whole that is in a position of trust is corupt, then people tend to veiw the whole group as corupt. We do it all the time with politicians, clergy, media; I do it myself. It's a very human emotional response, the whole fool me once...fool me twice cliche. Are the once faithful going to rebel? Are they going to dig in against all evidence contrary to try and save face? I don't know. All I know is that the CRU has betrayed the public trust and hopefully people will be more skeptical in the future.

Update: To add some more thoughts on the Denial of ClimateGate by the Left here.

Saturday, October 17, 2009


Here is my comment to Angus over at the Kids Prefer Cheese blog.

Wasn't the who cares argument also used by Lehman, Bear etc when they were looking at risk?
"Who cares if housing prices go down 50%, we are making a lot of money now!!"
I think your failing into that trap Angus.
Where's Admiral Akbar when you need him?!?
I care less about economic performance now than I do about econ performance later. Meaning, I want a stronger economy for my kids than what I have. Most of the thinking, which indecently I think is a boomer generational thing, is all about the now and the me.

I say boomer generational thing only because it really started to hit in the 70s and 80s, then as the boomers had kids (Gen X), they too became even more infatuated with the now over the future. Now we have the new generation that hardly ever thinks of the future, because their parents (Gen X) and their grandparents (Boomers) taught them not to.