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Exchange with a Climate Alarmist at Desmog Blog (unmasking emotion, anger on the other side)

By Robert Bradley Jr. -- November 20, 2019

“The multitude of smoking guns in the Climategate emails made it a war zone. And the ‘missing heat’ raised by Climategater Kevin Trenberth plagues high-sensitivity warmists today.”

“You can be happy and optimistic…. The dense (mineral) energy era (fossil fuels) has been a boom to you, me, and virtually everyone. CO2 is greening the ecosphere while climate-related deaths plummet. And the Paris Climate Accord is failing–a good political outcome for the developing countries in particular.”

A recent post at DesmogUK, titled Why the Climategate Hack was More than an Attack on Science, caught my eye. Funny how the apologists have to defend an event that happened a decade ago! They would love to just ignore it and move on. But in clear words, sentences, and in English, science was tortured in the name of a cause.

The multitude of smoking guns in the Climategate emails made it a war zone, as many have documented. And the missing-heat problem raised by Climategater Kevin Trenberth plagues high-sensitivity warmists today.

The above Desmog piece parroted the very biased BBC documentary,
Climategate: Science of a Scandal. Michael Mann, whose dishonestly was called out by his colleagues in real time, is portrayed as the victim. The police did their job of “investigating the hack with the same seriousness with which they would take a terrorist incident,” author Sophie Yeo wrote. The hacker aside, the real enemy was “climate science denier Steve McIntyre … who runs the Climate Audit climate science denial blog.”

In response to this one-sided polemic, I posted a comment, which inspired this exchange with a self-described “retired scientist” Ian Forrester (a pen name, it seems). I reproduce it below as an example of the mentality of the challenged climate alarmist. I provide a few closing comments:

Me: Also read Judith Curry: https://judithcurry.com/201…

“Ian Forrester“: Curry says: ‘I personally think Delingpole’s article is a superb analysis.’ Tells you everything about how Curry and her fervent band of AGW deniers react to honest science.

Me: Curry has done climate science a great service by exposing the exaggerations. The current failure of the Paris Climate Accord, what James Hansen called “a fraud really, a fake” is reason to reassess the whole climate crusade. https://www.masterresource….

Forrester: You have done climate science a grave disservice with your lies and disinformation. I don’ think you are even a scientist so for you to criticize honest scientists and promote dishonest AGW deniers is just laughable. Is this you …..?

Me: A climate realist. Love CO2 for a greener planet. Positive AGW as a lukewarmer. And ‘guilty as charged” @ https://www.masterresource…. [No name calling please–direct your anger elsewhere to cool the planet.]

Forrester: Why do you AGW deniers always accuse us of “name calling”? An accurate description of your behaviour is not “name calling”. If you don’t like what we say about you there is a simple solution. Start being honest and stop spreading disinformation.

Me: “Start being honest and stop spreading disinformation.” You seem to be an angry, emotional, close-minded chap who refuses to realize that there is another view about CO2 that is positive. Are you accusing me of being a willful liar? Purposefully dishonest? If so, you have issues. Personally, I’m happy that climate/weather-related deaths have fallen 95% in the last century, thanks to capitalist institutions and dense mineral energy. And you?

Forrester: You know nothing about science, why do you think you know better than the honest climate scientists who are in consensus about the negative effects of rising CO2 levels in the atmosphere? You should be ashamed of yourself but I doubt that is likely since most of your lot are arrogant, ignorant of the science and love to hear their own dishonest voices.

Me: So before I was a liar … now I am willfully ignorant. Regarding the science, I have written a book on the subject and many posts. I studied under a mainstream climate scientist for years to get the hard questions defined. Visit MasterResource and you will find plenty if you scroll down.

Please answer the question of substance rather than resorting to ad hominem and argument from authority: “Personally, I’m happy that climate/weather-related deaths have fallen 95% in the last century, thanks to capitalist institutions and dense mineral energy. And you?”

Forrester: You are both! Like all AGW deniers you do not understand what an ad hominem comment is. Describing one’s behaviour, which is obvious for all to see, is not ad hominem. Making an unverifiable comment such as “I studied under a mainstream climate scientist for years to get the hard questions defined” is completely meaningless and just shows your arrogance. In science there is nothing wrong with quoting experts with accurate knowledge. The accusation of “argument from authority ” is just another dishonest tactic used by you AGW deniers. The future for climate/weather related deaths in not good but you will deny that.

Me: Trying to get you to educate yourself by visiting MasterResource to see the dozens of posts on scientific issues. My multi-year consultant was Dr. Gerald North of TAMU–and I regularly take on alarmist Andrew Dessler there. Now for your homework: google my name and climate change and my name and books to see what my climate book is about. (I assume as a ‘retired scientist’ who have time and enjoy researching….).

Forrester: Why do you “take on”, whatever you mean by that, honest scientists like Andrew Dessler? He has more knowledge about climate science in his thumb than you will ever have. You support well known dishonest scientists like Curry who encourages the spread of disinformation through her scurrilous blog. As for your comment about working with Gerald North, i will leave that to the readers of this thread to have their own take on that. i certainly know what mine is.

Me: This is strange … The high-sensitivity alarmist scientists like Michael ‘Hide the Decline’ Mann and Andrew ‘we-are-going-to-have-to-live-underground’ Dessler are honest; and the low-sensitivity optimistic scientists (and economists) are dishonest? Aren’t you engaging in self-flagellation?

Forrester: Please explain to us just exactly what you think was hidden by Mann. This AGW denier canard has been shown to be baseless and was openly discussed in the scientific literature 2 years before the e-mails were stolen. The divergence problem has been known for many years before 2009.
https://skepticalscience.co… And you had better give a link to your claimed quote from Andrew Dessler otherwise I don’t think it exists.

Me: ‘Hide the decline’ is verbatim from the emails and the title of a book by Montford. ‘Mike’s Nature trick’ also. Words and words and sentences sentences. Mann cheated–no secret there. Dessler is here: https://www.masterresource….. Send me your email to get more information on the latter.

Forrester: “Send me your e-mail”, Is that a threat? Why on earth should I send a dishonest person like you my e-mail? I’ve had my personal information, including address, pictures of my house, a map of how to get to it and other personal information, spread on the internet by another dishonest AGW denier.

So you quote an off the cuff remark a scientist said to you, a scientist who I can assume knows full well that you are an AGW denier. I’m afraid as a scientist I don’t accept off the cuff remarks as having any relevance to reality at all. Of course any thoughtful, intelligent and honest person knows that things are going to be terrible down the road if we continue to emit CO2 from the burning of fossil fuels at the same rate as we are doing today.

You still have not explained what you think :”hide the decline” means. Typical of AGW deniers to avoid answering questions.

Me: So I am a liar and now am threatening you??? I just was going to forward the email where Dessler said this very thing to me (same thing he said at the lunch with two others). Black-and-white just like ‘Mike’s Nature Trick.’

You are very angry and evidently into self-flagellation if you don’t want to explore the much more certain science of plant physiology (see https://co2coalition.org/). I think just about any neutral person can read our exchange and know who the emotional name-caller is and who is trying to be polite and scholarly. Climate Alarmism is just the latest false scare, sort of like the population bomb in the 1960s, resource exhaustion in the 1970s–and even global cooling!

You can be happy and optimistic, Mr. Forrester. The dense (mineral) energy era (fossil fuels) has been a boom to you, me, and virtually everyone. CO2 is greening the ecosphere while climate-related deaths plummet. And the Paris Climate Accord is failing–a good political outcome for the developing countries in particular.

Forrester: Have you ever read any sites that don’t belong to the dishonest AGW denying group? There are many honest sites out there. How come you have never found one or at least linked to it, or to the peer reviewed scientific literature? CO2 coalition is a disgracefully dishonest site, cherry picking and disinformation is what they sell. Have you ever read what happens to food crops when the CO2 and the the temperature are raised? You should since it might shock you into becoming honest. https://www.pnas.org/conten…
https://onlinelibrary.wiley… The more you post the more you show yourself as a dishonest AGW denier. You are the one involved with “:self-flagellation”. CO2 may be “greening the ecosphere” but i don’t eat the stuff that is doing the “greening”. Food crops are being negatively affected by increasing CO2 and temperature.

Me: So you agree that CO2 is plant food (and when you exhale you are not polluting) but believe that the benefits are swamped by a postulated (but not known) enhanced greenhouse effect. Simply substitute a lower climate sensitivity and CO2 fertilization is enhanced, not diminished. A positive on a positive–synergistic.

The CO2 Coalition does outstanding work with many hundreds, if not thousands, of peer-reviewed articled. See the recent review of Truchelut, R.E. and Staehling, E.M. 2017. An energetic perspective on United States tropical cyclone landfall droughts. Geophysical Research Letters 44: 12,013-12,019. Hurricane alarmism can be tempered down, and this year was mild.  Very good news, right? 

[Bringing in Enron]

Forrester: Did you learn how to be dishonest while working for one of the most dishonest companies around, Enron, or did you bring that character flaw with you when you joined?

Me: Enron, before BP, pushed climate alarmism, restarted the stalled solar industry, and rescued the wind industry. I document all this here: https://www.texaspolicy.com…I fought hard against Enron’s climate alarmism and cronyism as shown by my emails here: http://www.politicalcapital….

Forrester: Enron was a dishonest company full of dishonest executives and their peons. If they were promoting the science behind the increasing temperatures from the burning of fossil fuels good for them and good for them to promote wind and solar power. However, that does not excuse them for the harm they did to investors with their lies and misinformation about how the company was doing. The fact that executives were found guilty and sent to prison tells us all we need to know. I wont embarrass you by commenting on those two atrocious pieces of fishwrap you linked to. In fact fishwrap is too kind, I wouldn’t even put them in the bottom of a parrot’s cage.

Me: Did you know that Enron’s first clear crime involved wind power in early 1998? Do you have any of the Enron books? See Enron Ascending, pp. 547-48.

Yes, Enron was a crony company promoting climate alarmism even before “beyond petroleum” BP. And we got into the coal business big time. CEO Jeff Skilling told a coal executive “We are a green company, but the green stands for money.” (Google it)

Progressives, even yourself, might have gotten the lessons of Enron backwards: https://www.masterresource….Maybe you should reverse course on corporate cronyism: https://www.masterresource…. Climate alarmism and corporate cronyism are two peas in a pod–just another reason to check your premises.


Forrester: You are completely wrong (because you are dishonest:) about the economics of solar and wind power. But you AGW deniers will never, never admit that but instead spread all sorts of disinformation such as”wind mills cause cancer), you know who that is don’t you? He must spend a lot of his time at your various blogs reading your trash.

Me: Wind, solar, and electric-vehicle companies are desperately trying to retain and expand their US federal special tax subsidies as we comment. That’s the opposite of competitive. Wind and solar are dilute and intermittent energies, requiring open-ended subsidies. This is why James Hansen stated: “Suggesting that renewables will let us phase rapidly off fossil fuels in the United States, China, India, or the world as a whole is almost the equivalent of believing in the Easter Bunny and Tooth Fairy.” https://www.masterresource.org/hansen-james/james-hansen-renewable-energy/

It still a fossil fuel world thirty years after Hansen’s 1988 alarm. 85% global and 80% US. See https://www.instituteforenergyresearch.org/fossil-fuels/fossil-fuels-still-winning/

Winning despite alarmism–and government activism/waste that we both do not like or want.

Forrester: The biggest recipients of subsidies are the fossil fuel companies, why don’t you dishonest AGW deniers ever bring that up? https://www.vox.com/2019/5/…

Me: “… the vast majority of the IMF’s subsidy tally comes from failing to price greenhouse gas emissions, a.k.a. ‘post-tax subsidies’.” Well, on those grounds, we are missing a noise tax and flicker tax and a visual-blight tax and a transmission tax on wind power. The reason CO2 is not taxed is because it has positive externalities, and dense, reliable, affordable energy create consumer surplus for users.

Anyway, the developing world is relying on coal to affirm Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Paris Accord. (https://www.eenews.net/stor…

Forrester: You really like to make a fool of yourself, don’t you? The greenhouse effect is not just “postulated” but was shown to exist by physical experiments over a 150 years ago. https://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/features/Tyndall

I’m not even going to waste my time rebutting your promtion of AGW denying web sites. You are pathetic, no wonder Enron went down the tube if you are representative of the intelligence and honesty of the people running it.

Me: No, I said “a postulated” EGE. You assumed a sensitivity estimate high enough to cancel out the base benefits of CO2 as a ecological greening agent. I have never denied AGW–just the magnitude. I think it is more modest than you do, and in the lower end of the IPCC range (even!). Climate economists see it as positive.

Final Comments

Skeptics of climate alarm, even climate optimists, are seen by the neo-Malthusians as purposefully dishonest–or willfully misinformed. Ian Forrester, above, went from the accusation of dishonest to willfully ignorant to … both!

We are “deniers” by questioning the scientific “consensus.” But science is not “consensus,” and virtually everything is still in active debate. The IPCC is off on its own now, with skeptics mostly disengaged. And deep in the reports, there is enough honesty to see the uncertainties and why the ranges are so wide.

We do not know:

  • How much of the present inter-glacial warming is natural or anthropogenic (but thank goodness we are in a warm period).
  • Precisely how SO2 and CO2 net out to define the net anthropogenic forcing.
  • Where is “missing heat” is going, what Trenberth lamented about in a Climategate email a decade ago.

And compared to unsettled climate science, we have quite settled plant physiology science that lauds the CO2 greenhouse effect.

I close by quoting my mentor Gerald North, a distinguished mainstream climate scientist, from 1998 and again in 2010 just before his retirement.

  • “There is a good reason for a lack of consensus on the science. It is simply too early. The problem is difficult, and there are pitifully few ways to test climate models.” (North to Bradley, July 13, 1998)
  • “In another decade of research we will have squared away a lot of our uncertainties about forced climate change. As this approaches we can be thinking about what to do if the warming does indeed appear to be caused by humans and to what extent things are changing as result.” (North to Seldon B. Graham, Jr., January 6, 2010)

We are still just a decade away, right?


  1. rbradley  

    Mr. Forrester (a pen name?) said: “I will not waste my time posting on your dishonest site [MasterResource]”

    And “The science is well established, using the term “enhanced” greenhouse effect is an other way AGW deniers and so called “lukewarners” want us to continue BAU.” To which I responded:

    “Enhanced greenhouse effect is a useful term used by Tom Wigley, a Climategater who called out Mann for fudging. Here are some more quotations from Climategate that are chilling. https://www.instituteforenergyresearch.org/climate-change/climategates-10th-anniversary-the-stain-continues/

    I also asked: “Is Ian Forrester a pen name? And you hiding something?” Stay tuned ….


  2. rbradley  

    And “Ian’s” response:

    “Why should I answer any of your personal questions? Are you another of those cyber stalkers …. Why are you so interested in me personally? That sounds like some sort of threat to me. Get lost.”

    To which I responded:

    “Sounds like you are hiding something, while I have been completely open…. Another reason why you have not come across well in this whole exchange. Glad we had a debate that the alarmists do not want to have (for a reason). Its just hard to be taken seriously when CO2 is not a pollutant and the false alarms go on for decades.”


  3. rbradley  

    More from “Ian Forrester”

    “Bradley has just written about my comments on his disreputable blog. He calls it Exchange with a Climate Alarmist [me] at Desmog Blog (unmasking anger, emotion on the other side)

    Well we have the right to show anger and emotion when those dishonest people spread their lies and disinformation for others to see. It is well understood that the continual rise in CO2 concentrations will have negative effects on our future well being. He knows, or should know that i am correct but he continues to promote his rubbish. That is why I refer to him as arrogant, ignorant and dishonest.

    I will not be contributing to his dishonest blog. I am also worried about his request for my e-mail. Was he going to put it out on his dishonest blog? I know how low these types can go since I have had my personal information outed before.”


    “1,300+ views at MasterResource yesterday–thank you. Not going to ‘out you’ but only note that “Ian Forrester” seems to be a pen name (Google to see why). Will you at least admit that it is a pen name? Don’t need to reveal your identity.”


  4. rbradley  

    Still more from a secret critic (“Ian Forrester’)

    “GET LOST, You are nothing but another cyber stalker. You can keep posting my comments on your scurrilous blog since perhaps some of those 1300+ people will realize what a dishonest person you are. Seems like not too many of them are responding. You are just another dishonenst AGW denying troll. Get lost.”

    I responded:

    “At least tell us why you are using a pen name in hiding Mr. “Ian Forrester”. Then we can close out this exchange….”


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