Can’t we Alarmists and Skeptics agree about one thing? Namely, that the sea-ice is not going to melt away by the year 2013?
One definition of hell is to be separated from love, and agreement, and harmony. The way to avoid going to hell is to find a thing you can agree upon. You might not love, or harmonize, but by finding a single thing you can agree upon, you have made a start. There then is a hope, be it ever so slender, that you can build upon that tiny agreement. Who knows? It might be a seed crystal, and someday become the emerald of harmony, or the ruby of love.
Admittedly the likelihood of love and harmony seems very slender, between Alarmists and Skeptics, but shouldn’t we at least give it a chance?
You see, I’m getting old, and don’t much want to go to hell when I die. I’ve experienced enough hell while alive. Therefore I make this gesture of rapprochement: Can’t we agree the sea-ice at the North Pole didn’t melt away by 2013?
Somewhat amazingly, some Alarmists won’t even do that. Try it for yourself, if you don’t believe me. They act like FBI agents before Congress. When you ask them, “Did the sea-ice melt away by 2013 as predicted?” they find it strangely impossible to state the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, which is “No”. Instead you will witness an amazing defensiveness and avoidance, and they will deflect and sidetrack and do intellectual back-flips, and never answer the question. Then they’ll look very smug, as if they won something by avoiding an honest answer.
For the sake of argument, let us suppose they died just them, and then faced the final judgement. At that time God, or Saint Peter, or some other Higher Authority would judge them, asking them a simple question, namely, “Did you Love Truth”? They, being creatures of habit, (as all humans are), would answer with deflections and sidetracks and intellectual back-flips. Apparently that does not go over too well, at the Pearly Gates. Rather than entering a landscape of Love, Understanding, Agreement, Harmony and Truth, they would then reap what they have sown.
Well, that is what you go to hell to find out.
I cannot accept the idea that hell is eternal. Rather it is an opportunity to vividly realize the error of your ways. (If God is Love, He would not punish without hoping punishment would improve those deserving punishment, and the Bible does state that, between the time Jesus died on Good Friday and to time He arose from the dead on Easter Sunday, He went to hell. And what did he do there? He “preached to the sinners of Noah’s time”. Why would He preach, if it couldn’t help? If the damned are damned eternally, wouldn’t He just be rubbing salt in their wounds?)
I figure hell improves you, though it is a hell of a way to be improved. It makes the drill sergeants of boot camp, and the cruelest coaches, and most demanding physical therapists, look like sissies. It is like a spanking, but the one spanking you is yourself. It is the opportunity to reflect upon your past transgressions in a leisurely manner. Not that leisure is a good thing, when you are in hell. There simply is nothing else to do. Life is over. All you have left is the mess you made of it. It haunts you, you twist and turn to escape it, but you cannot escape what you have become.
And then? After you have learned your lesson? Well, then you go to whatever is next. And what is that?
Perhaps it is as some Catholics suggest, and after what they call “purgatory” you might be admitted to heaven. Or perhaps it is as other cultures suggest, and rather than everlasting life you move towards dying another time. In other words, you reincarnate. The One Life continues here on earth, and ends in death after death after death, thousands of deaths, tens of thousands of deaths, hundreds of thousands of deaths, until you finally get sick of dying and prefer Truth, and then, finally, at long last, live forever in Seventh Heaven.
I’m not sure about all that spiritual stuff. I prefer Truth for more practical reasons. If I plant kale and what grows is thistles, I want to throttle the fellow who sold me the seed. If I buy a tape measure and use it to cut lumber the wrong length, the fellow who sold me that measure better have left town. But perhaps it would be better for him to face rebuke here on earth. I understand it is worse in hell.
Which brings me to the subject of Dr. James Hansen. For reasons which I am sure he deems are altruistic, and which he will deflect and side-track and do intellectual back-flips defending, he has been untrue. He is what the Bible calls a false prophet, in that nothing he has predicted has come to fruition. Because this post is about sea-ice, I will not list his many other failed prophesies, and simply state he propagandized the sea-ice would be gone by now, and it isn’t. What should his punishment be?
According to the Old Testament, the punishment for false prophecy is to be taken to the center of town and stoned to death. This might be very gratifying, but it is not politically correct. Therefore Dr. Hansen will have collect his fat pension and sit drumming his fingers, waiting until after he dies to receive his punishment in hell.
And what might hell look like, for him? It does my heart good to imagine it. I think it might look like this:
Yes, hell for Dr. Hansen would be to sit in a hot room with the windows open on the hottest day of the year, wearing a suit, sweating and endlessly attempting to explain to inane politicians that what isn’t going to happen is going to happen. There would be no end to it. He would not be allowed to escape from the room, unless he broke down and finally blubbered, “I confess! I confess! This is all bullshit! There is no scientific certainty! The only high probability is the high probability my computer models are crap!”
Judging from discussions I’ve had with other Alarmists, there is a high probability it would take at least a thousand years for Hansen to become so humble. But that is what he has sowed, so we must leave him to hoe that row. Fortunately we can take a different path.
One route to avoid being humbled in hell is to be humble here on earth, and one way to be humble is to avoid prophesy. None of us wants to be taken to the town square and stoned to death, and something similar is the fate of all weathermen, especial when they forecast a snowstorm and it doesn’t happen. Therefore it is perhaps best to avoid forecasting altogether, and simply to observe.
However while observing I have noticed something odd. Even though I intend not to forecast, I discover I have made one. How I know this? I know it because events surprise me. The very fact I am surprised demonstrates I expected something else, and that expectation is in some way “a forecast”.
In other words there is something in our nature that makes us forecasters. We can’t help ourselves. To avoid being taken to the town square and stoned to death for false-prophesy, we need to freely admit when we are wrong. Not only does this help us avoid getting stoned to death, it allows us to fully enjoy the weather, which is full of surprises.
Every day is fresh and new, full of wonder and surprises. We can either welcome this uncertainty with the joy of a child, to whom every day is uncertain and wonderful, or we can gnash our teeth and rend our garments because of the unexpected, and the fact we blew our forecast. It is up to each of us to respond. However the most ridiculous response of all is to pretend we are right, and have 100% certainty when we haven’t a clue.
In terms of sea-ice at the North Pole, the only thing we really seem certain about is that it didn’t all melt away by 2013. Currently it even seems to be making a “recovery”. We again seem to be seeing temperatures be below normal during the summer. (Green line is average and red is this summer.)
It should be noted that temperatures are indeed above freezing, and thawing is indeed occurring. Also we are mostly talking about a difference of less than a degree. It might seem absurd to fuss about a difference of less than a degree, but like children we can say, “They started it.” It is significant because it is less than a degree in the wrong direction. Rather than above-normal it is below-normal.
At this point a true Alarmist will deflect, side-track, and do intellectual back-flips. One handy way to do this is to discredit the data. Smear the Danish Meteorological Institute. Where other computer models are accepted without question, cast aspersions upon theirs.
I don’t particularly mind this. After all, as a Skeptic I try to be humble, and being skeptical admits imperfection exists. And DMI has in fact attempted to fix its model’s imperfections with improvements on a number of occasions. The green line in the above graph is based on the ERA40 model, which hasn’t been used since 2002, when it was replaced by the improved T511 model.
There doesn’t seem to be much difference between the two models during the summer, but it could be argued the T511 is a hair lower. This enables a dedicated Alarmist to call the below-normal temperatures at the Pole “an artifact”.
The fact of the matter is that the T511 was replaced by the T799 in 2006, and that in turn was replaced by the T1279 in 2010, and then again another improvement called the WCMWF apparently came on line last year. If you like the data you call the changes “fine tuning” but if you dislike the data you claim the models are so different that you are “comparing apples with oranges.”
Alarmists dislike the summer data (red line below), but like the winter data (blue line below) very much.
What the above graph shows us is that the unexpected is occurring. A change in the pattern is underway. We should be exited, but uncertain, for no one predicted it to manifest as it is manifesting.
Personally I feel the “Quiet Sun” has knocked things out if balance, and an extremely loopy (meridional) pattern is bringing warmth to the Pole during the winter, where formerly a more zonal pattern kept the cold locked in. Joe Bastardi advances the excellent idea that the winter warmth is due to the earth’s overall moister atmosphere, caused by the oceans discharging more heat (for whatever reason), and pointing out a tiny increase in humidity makes a very big difference in temperature during arctic winters, when temperatures are down near -40°. And Alarmists, as always, blame a trace gas.
It would be better for Alarmists if the winter warmth decreased the sea-ice, which is one reason they dislike the DMI volume graph, which shows a 4000 km³ increase over last year, and the highest volume in the past five years.
Alarmists are so troubled by the above graph that they are going to great lengths to discredit it. One technique I’ve seen is to suggest the DMI thickness map shows sea-ice the Breman map shows as open water, following that observation with the suggestion that if DMI is seeing ice where it isn’t, then perhaps it is adding volume that also doesn’t exist.
The problem is that we were able to check the Breman maps accuracy in the past, when we had a North Pole Camera and O-buoys bobbing about. We observed often our lying eyes could see sea-ice unseen by satellites. Also the Breman map had a bad habit of making water with 15% sea-ice coverage look dark blue, the same as open water, which confused some Alarmists.
Also the Breman map measures concentration, and not thickness, which made me wonder why it was brought up in a discussion about volume. A green area on their maps, representing 50% concentration, could be 50% burgs six inches thick, or 50% burgs 6 feet thick, which would make a huge difference in terms of volume. (Thickness maps seem to average things out, so an area 50% covered with six-foot-thick bergs looks like it is 100% covered with 3-foot-thick sea-ice.) And the fact the Bremen map misses ice can be seen by comparing the northwest coast of Hudson Bay in the above map, (no ice) with the Canadian Ice Service map (10%-30% ice).
All in all I think it is not easy to discredit the increase in volume. Here is the map they want discredited:
The elephant in the room I think many are missing involves the dramatic change in the pattern. The anomalous low pressure I have dubbed “Ralph” seems to be returning to the Pole this summer, but that will have to be a subject for another post. I’m out of time.