"I prefer to compare us [John Christy and he] to Barry Marshall and Robin Warren, who rejected the scientific consensus that peptic ulcers were due to too much stress or spicy food."I hear this from contrarians a lot. It refers to the finding by Marshall and Warren that peptic ulcers weren't caused by stress or food, as was once thought, but by the bacterium Helicobacter pylori. It's also a favorite talking point of Oregon's resident climate denier, Gordon Fulks (here, here, here).
It seems that Spencer and Fulks think the peptic ulcer example shows that any and all consensus is science is wrong -- or, at least, the couple of consensuses they disagree with. (Perhaps it also means they think they deserve a Nobel Prize, as was shared by Marshall and Warren in 2005.)
If Roy Spencer or Gordon Fulks wants to disprove AGW, or show it's not a serious concern, they have to show why it's not a serious concern. With evidence and with science. That's all. But they can't simply refer to some historical scientific idea that was disproven as if it gives their claims about AGW any weight. It doesn't.
There is no disproof by proxy. If contrarians want to prevail in the debate, they need to produce evidence and science that is convincing. Not just convincing to them -- because it's too easy to fool oneself -- or to just their buddies who all live in the same bubble -- but convincing to the scientific community. That has worked in science since it began -- indeed, it's how the peptic ulcer claims themselves were corrected -- by hard work, better evidence, and superior science.
|Graph (mis)titled by Roy Spencer|
PS: And there's also this. In a recent post, Spencer puts up a graph he's titled himself, using the words "global warming or global cooling." But look at the fine print -- the graph is for the extra-tropical Northern Hemisphere. In fact, from the paper's abstract, it only pertains to the region from 30 N latitude. That's not the globe -- it's only one-quarter of the globe (25%)!
The title Spencer choose is misleading (at best.)
I see these kind of shenanigans again and again on his blog. He's certainly not going to disprove any theories of peptic ulcers with this kind of work.