Sunday, 28 June 2015

SS's Myth Creator John Cook

Skeptical Science (SS) is a disinformation site which more correctly should be labelled UNSkeptical UNScience.

It is run by a cartoonist John Cook who likes to dress in SS costume. The image above was on the SS site but has since been removed. One of his cartoons here (link)

And Popular Science's "
The Truth about Skeptical Science" tells us:
A link from the Skeptical Science "About" page originally went to his cartoonist page,
"John Cook: A cartoonist working from home in Brisbane, Australia

               John Cook
A cartoonist working from home in Brisbane, Australia, John is currently juggling the tasks of taking care of his daughter Gaby, drawing new Sev Space cartoons, casino online,continually developing and programming the Sev Wide Web, developing a new cartoon series Terrible Twos, posting regular updates in his cricket blog as well as obsession about past and future Ashes series, dabbling in screenwriting, programming for PaperWeb Design and consequently getting nothing done! 

Previous about on SS: (link)

This site was created by John Cook. I'm not a climatologist or a scientist but a self employed cartoonist and web programmer by trade. I did a Physics degree at the University of Queensland and while I achieved First Class Honours and could've continued onto a PhD, I instead quit academia and became a professional scrawler. Too much doodling in lectures, I think. Nevertheless, I've pursued a keen interest in science and if anything, found my curiosity about how the world works increased once I wasn't forced to study for impending exams.
An example of Cook's Work was:

Quantifying the consensus on anthropogenic global warming in the scientific literature (link)

 From the abstract:
We analyze the evolution of the scientific consensus on anthropogenic global warming (AGW) in the peer-reviewed scientific literature, .......... Among abstracts expressing a position on AGW, 97.1% endorsed the consensus position that humans are causing global warming.
However a paper by Legates et al found: (link)
inspection of a claim by Cook et al. (Environ Res Lett 8:024024, 2013) of 97.1 % consensus, heavily relied upon by Bedford and Cook, shows just 0.3 % endorsement of the standard definition of consensus: that most warming since 1950 is anthropogenic.
Whooops! Slight error, Reichsführer- 97.1% found to be 0.3%.

And yet Reichsführer Cook is the man that the University of Queensland put in charge of a course that "uncovers why the topic of climate change is so controversial, exploding a number of climate myths along the way."

ON UNSkeptical UNScience, Cook et al have a page titled
Global Warming and Climate Change Myths
This is a scrappy crappy page and all the "Myths" are easily debunked.

"Climate's changed before" Climate reacts to whatever forces it to change at the time; humans are now the dominant forcing.

This SS "myth's" answer has been debunked
Here - 

UNSkeptical UNScience's Manufactured Myths.

SS's No. 4 "Myth" is
"There is no consensus"

As has been shown above, Cook et al's 97% consensus paper has been shown to be very flawed.

Friends of Science site has debunked a whole range of other "Myths" on their page headed:

  • MYTH 1:  Global temperatures are rising at a rapid, unprecedented rate.
  • MYTH 2:  The "hockey stick" graph proves that the earth has experienced a steady, very gradual temperature decrease for 1000 years, then recently began a sudden increase.
  • MYTH 3:  Human produced carbon dioxide has increased over the last 100 years, adding to the Greenhouse effect, thus causing most of the earth's warming of the last 100 years.
  • MYTH 4:  CO2 is the most common greenhouse gas.
  • MYTH 5:  Computer models verify that CO2 increases will cause significant global warming.
  • MYTH 6:  The United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has proven that man–made CO2 causes global warming. 
  • MYTH 7:  CO2 is a pollutant.
  • MYTH 8: Global warming will cause more storms and other weather extremes.
  • MYTH 9:  Receding glaciers and the calving of ice shelves are proof of global warming.
  • MYTH 10:  The earth’s poles are warming; polar ice caps are breaking up and melting and the sea level rising.
All debunked.

More on the SS "Myths" to follow on this blog.