Friday, September 28, 2007

An Inconvenient Truth is about as truthful as a Michael Moore documentary...

... That is to say, not at all. Now Al Gore's pack of fucking lies is to be distributed to brainwash every kid in the country. One man is fighting back valiantly, but losing.
A parent is urging a judge to reconsider a ruling that the government did not break the law when it sent schools copies of a film by Al Gore.

Stuart Dimmock, a father from Kent and a member of the New Party, is at London's High Court.

In late July, a judge there ruled that the decision to send the climate change film "An Inconvenient Truth" to England's secondary schools was lawful.

Mr Dimmock had argued that circulating the film amounted to indoctrination.

It is indoctrination. At worst, An Inconvenient Truth is a pack of lies; at best it is presenting a flawed and highly biased point of view. The unproven theories that it presses are the same unproven opinions as those of the government and thus for the government to send it out is, quite obviously, an act of propaganda.
But the judge, Mr Justice Beatson, ruled: "The fact that the presenter is a public figure and active in US politics does not arguably make the film as a whole one of political indoctrination.

"Nor does the showing [of] it in an educational context as a supplement to other teaching methods, and accompanied by suitable reservations and indications as to what is political and controversial, arguably the 'promotion' of partisan political views."

Yes, it fucking well does. Because we know full well that those "suitable reservations and indications" will not be detailed enough.
In the High Court on Thursday, Paul Downes, appearing for Mr Dimmock said: "Given the serious inaccuracies in the film and the misrepresentations it contains, the film is irredeemable".

He said he was seeking to persuade the court the film constituted "just over half scientific material, 30% pure politics and about 20% sentimental mush - mush there to soften up the viewer for persuasion".

Guidance notes accompanying the film pack went "nowhere near correcting these flaws - indeed they don't even set out to do that," he said.

Just over half is scientific content? Really? I would seriously doubt that. Let's look at one of Gore's most "compelling" arguments: that the ice core records show that there is a relationship between CO2 and temperature. Well, that is entirely true but that relationship is not the one that Gore infers.

As the Coyote blog points out, there is an 800 year lag between temperature rise and CO2 rise. (I highly recommend that you read the rest of that article, as it also deals with positive feedback issues.)
The Swindle movie, however, claims that Gore is hiding something from that analysis in the scale of his chart -- that the same ice core analyses show that global temperature changes have led CO2 concentration changes by as much as 800 years. (short 2-minute snippet of this part of the movie here, highly recommended).

Well, this would certainly be something important to sort out. I have not done much real science since my physics days at Princeton, but my sense is that, except maybe at the quantum level, when B follows A it is hard to argue that B caused A.

So I have poked around a bit to see -- is this really what the ice core data shows, or is Swindle just making up facts or taking facts out of context ala the truther hypotheses about 9/11? Well, it turns out that everyone, even the die-hard global warming supporters, accept this 800-year lag as correct (Watch the Al Gore clip above -- it is clear he knows. You can tell by the very careful way he describes the relationship).

Conclusion: Al Gore is a liar.

Oh, and one of Gore's other claims is that we will see other disasters, such as hurricanes increasing in strength and frequency. Er, not according to this NOAA-funded paper, we won't.

Conclusion: even if Al Gore was unaware of this, his film is outdated.

Gore also claims that we will see sea level rises of 22 feet. In an excellent article on climate sensitivity, the Climate Sceptic concludes that no, Al, we won't.
The chief debate really boils down to those of us who think that climate sensitivity to CO2 is closer to 1C (ie the degrees the world will warm with a doubling of CO2 concentrations from pre-industrial levels) and those who think that the sensitivity is 3-5C or more. The lower sensitivity implies a warming over the next century of about a half degree C, or about what we saw in the last century. The higher numbers represesent an order of magnitude more warming in the next century. The lower numbers imply a sea level rise measured in inches. The higher numbers imply a rise of 1-2 feet (No one really know where Al Gore gets his 20 foot prediction in his movie).

So, even if this film is not "political" in nature (which it clearly is), it is very bad science. It contains superannuated theories and falsified data. It should not be shown in schools for those reasons alone.

So, assuming that this film is not going to be shown in creative writing classes—where it deserves to be—in what context will it be shown?
Schools in England are being sent a copy of the film by the former US vice-president in a package of resources for use in science, geography or citizenship lessons.

This inaccurate piece of shit is going to be shown in science lessons? What as—a teaching aid for showing how to falsify your data in order to put across the view that you want to make other people believe (even though the data doesn't support it)? Seriously, what the fuck?

And citizenship classes? What on earth has this to do with citizenship? And when the fucking cunt did they start "citizenship" classes? What the fuck is going on?

Doesn't anyone else here think that the very sound of citizenship classes is a little totalitarian? What, preceisely, constitutes a good citizen these days? It seems that I have leapt onto this bandwagon somewhat late: our government seem to have started the brain-washing already.

But what about these safeguards? You know, those ones that are going to tell the kiddies that this film may not be the Gospel truth?
Guidance notes accompanying the film pack went "nowhere near correcting these flaws - indeed they don't even set out to do that," [Paul Downes] said.

Why am I not surprised?
The government's counsel, Martin Chamberlain, said guidance notes distributed to schools with the DVD, warning against political indoctrination, would ensure that the documentary was presented in a balanced way.

Although teachers could present the film in any way they wished, they were under a duty to provide balance - for instance, by explaining to pupils that some of the views expressed in the documentary were political and asking "What do you think about it?".

What? I mean, seriously, what the fuck? That's your fucking safety net? Fucking hellski.

These guidelines should be pointing out that the film involves some serious scientific flaws and that nothing in the movie should be taken as truth, because it isn't. It is, quite simply, incorrect: it is a lie. It is contaminated data and should not be shown to anyone; let alone impressionable children who are already being mind-wiped by these eco-fascists.

And if the government insist on showing this film, then they should also provide a counter-balance in the same medium. If you believe that the Great Global Warming Swindle is too controversial (although it is rather more accurate than Gore's alarmist polemic), how about showing An Inconvenient Truth Or Convenient Fiction, an extremely measured and balanced view.

And Dr Steve Hayward has some background in science and is not simply a fucking journalist. (It bears repeating, by the way; Al Gore has no scientific qualifications whatso-fucking-ever; he is a hack, pure and simple.)

In short, An Inconvenient Truth should not be sent to schools: not because it is political (although it undoubtedly is) but because it is inaccurate, misleading, emotive and, in far too many places, demonstrably and deliberately false.


Mark Wadsworth said...

Judges = bastards, they are a large part of what is wrong with this country.

Roger Thornhill said...

IIRC Citizenship classes currently include explanations about the HoC, HoL etc. One pundit said they were "boring". Dr Watson remarks upon a lack of manure. What is the point of discussing process unless you explain why it came about in the first place.

If Citizenship taught kids WHY we have the rights and HOW they were won with blood, I think they could be interesting and teach kids the importance of our freedoms. Of course the Sociofascists will not like such things as it will make kids less likely to swallow their totalitarian and authoritarian bullshit.

Magna Carta. Peasants' Revolt. Chartists. The Civil War. Restoration. Glorious Revolution. Reformation. Corn Laws. Star Chamber.

These things are vectors. Teaching about the HoC now is just a point in space-time. It gives no clues as to why, where from and where to from here.

Chuck Unsworth said...

Government counsel therefore has, in open court, provided categoric assurances that the education system will provide balance. He presumably will be able to show how teachers and those 'delivering' this course material have been trained to do this - and will be able to provide example materials (the same level?) which have been distributed to those same schools.

Providing 'approved' materials to present a particular stance and failing to provide the same level of training and/or material to counter those views is by no means 'balanced'. And while we're at it, what about all of the other subjects which are being taught, such as history and geography etc etc?

Education in this country has been politically biased for decades, if not centuries. We are simply not serious about 'balance'.

Ingram said...

Citizenship classes - wtf?! Missed that also, though I'm not surprised. For me it started going downhill when my younger brother was given Home Economics (cooking) classes when 3 years previously I wasn't subjected to them. This was at an all boys Grammar School also ffs!

I haven't seen that Al Gore film so I can't comment, but from what I have read of it, we're fucked if people start believing it. Though 22' sea level rises would be a good start to wash out the shithole of a Thames Estuary I live in :)

Trixy said...

Well done that man! Judicial review please on wasting tax payers money brainwashing children

Clovis Sangrail said...

Of course it's bloody political indoctrination. It's just that 90% of the damned judges agree with it.
The bastards don't know the first fucking thing about science; couldn't give a stuff about replication and would entirely agree with the idea that science is fuelled by polemic and grant acquisition.

All I can say, to encourage people, is that most of the real statisticians are catching on to the fact that it's rubbish. They are well aware that most of the `statistics' in this pseudo-science is perpetrated by people who haven't got a clue and wouldn't know what overfitting meant if you gave them a concrete overcoat.

woman on a raft said...

Yes, it is political indoctrination not science teaching. Considering we are so short of scientists and it really helps to get that basic curriculum done, you'd think the government would be ferocious in protecting the time from all the people who want to grab it for their pet messages.

Coincidentally, the government had made stern - but not stern enough - warnings about wasting time on the creationists who just want to smuggle their own brand of propaganda in to the science class. They've been shooed back in to citzenship lessons, but the government has left a tiny chink in the argument for them to slip back in to the lab and boy will they try to worm back if they can.

The report has been in the the Guardian science blog.
Creationism out of the classroom
James Randerson, Sept 28 2007

Gore and his video should be sent back to the citzenship class to take his chances with all the other theories and arguments which the children crack there - just like the creationists.

Stephen Tolkinghorne said...

I thought citizenship classes were another of Blunkett and Brown's wheezes in 2002 for brain-washing small children into believing the Ministry of Truth propaganda that old Britain = bad, brave new Labour Britain = good.

Also, that it is their solemn duty to report their parents for any thought crimes that they may suspect them of engaging in.