Re: [asa] Don J. Easterbrook geologist at Western Washington University

From: PvM <>
Date: Wed Mar 14 2007 - 12:21:12 EDT

 Debunking the NYT's Sloppy Hit Piece on

Yesterday, Drudge breathlessly
coming "hit on Gore" from
*The New York Times*. Today that hit has come, in the form of a
piece of slime from Bill

This may be the worst, sloppiest, most dishonest piece of reporting I've
ever seen in the NYT. It's got all the hallmarks of a vintage Gore hit
piece: half-truths, outright falsehoods, unsubstantiated quotes, and a
heaping dose of innuendo. As usual with these things, unless you've been
following the debate carefully, you'll be left with a false impression -- in
this case, that scientists are divided over the accuracy of Gore's film *An
Inconvenient Truth*<>.

Enjoy the 'rest of the story' where NY Times' assertions are carefully taken
apart and shown to be without much merit. Janice too could have done the
careful research before repeating the NY Times assertions verbatim (in
violation of copyright btw).

The NY Times makes no detailed accusations until late in the article where
they address the following statement


Things start promisingly, as the article names one of these critics: Don J.
Easterbrook, professor of geology. Easterbrook said, "there are a lot of
inaccuracies in the statements we are seeing [from Gore], and we have to
temper that with real data." What inaccuracies? Astoundingly, the article
doesn't cite a single alleged inaccuracy until *28 paragraphs later*. It's

[Easterbrook] hotly disputed Mr. Gore's claim that "our civilization has
never experienced any environmental shift remotely similar to this"
threatened change.

Nonsense, Dr. Easterbrook told the crowded session. He flashed a slide that
showed temperature trends for the past 15,000 years. It highlighted 10 large
swings, including the medieval warm period. These shifts, he said, were up
to "20 times greater than the warming in the past century."

But Gore never said (as far as I know, no one has ever said) that the
temperature swing in the last century is the widest temperature swing ever.
Gore's point is that the *global average temperature has never shifted so
much so quickly* -- about ten times
previous swings. That speed, after all, is the primary evidence of
human involvement.

So far, one minor disagreement about the extent of Gore's statement about
the environmental shift and our civilization. So what about the 'geologist'

<quote>Here's something else you never hear about Easterbrook in the piece:
*he doesn't believe human GHG emissions are causing current global
*. That's fine. More power to him. But it puts him *way* outside the
scientific mainstream; the recent IPCC
confidence in the culpability of human GHGs at between 90-99%. Does
Easterbrook's ... *idiosyncratic* stance on the basic science of climate
change not warrant a mention, since he is the critic most prominently
featured? Apparently not.</quote>

So far all we have is

<quote>OK, let's take stock. So far, to establish that "part of [Gore's]
scientific audience is uneasy," we have a gross misunderstanding from one
scientist who doesn't believe GHGs cause global warming, and the
unsubstantiated quotes of two well-known media hounds. And that's what Broad
*led* with.</quote>

So what do the mainstream scientists have to say about Gore?

<quote>*He has credibility in this community*," said Tim Killeen ...
director of the National Center for Atmospheric Research, a top group
studying climate change. "There's no question he's read a lot and is able to
respond in a very effective way."</quote>

And then the oft repeated assertion that the NAS report contradicted Gore.
For those who actually read the report, such an assertion would seem silly
and yet, it seems quite pervasive amongst Global Warming deniers.


Another cheap shot: "So too, a report last June by the National Academies
seemed to contradict Mr. Gore's portrayal of recent temperatures as the
highest in the past millennium." Did the NAS report contradict Gore? No, it
did the *exact opposite*. Here's a quote from the

The basic conclusion of Mann et al. was that the late 20th century warmth in
the Northern Hemisphere was unprecedented during at least the last 1,000
years. This conclusion has subsequently been supported by an array of
evidence ... Based on the analyses presented in the original papers by Mann
et al. and this newer supporting evidence, *the committee finds it plausible
that the Northern Hemisphere was warmer during the last few decades of the
20th century than during any comparable period over the preceding millennium


So let's not be confused by the poorly supported assertions by the NY Times
and others. Gore's portrayal of what may happen if we do not address the
real scientific fact of global warming and the human component to this,
remains mostly unassailed.

Gore's recent success winning an award for his movie as well as being
nominated for a Nobel prize IIRC, make Gore a likely target for the usual ad
hominems that are to be expected when science has reached an unassailable

Or as the following person observes "NY Times Hit Piece On Al Gore A Sign of
Desperation "

We as Christians should be extra careful to put our support behind such

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Received on Wed Mar 14 12:21:52 2007

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