A Teapublican Conspiracy? Exchange

Terry Amburgey, our brave liberal friend tried one on Facebook, thinking I had my back turned to deliver one of his drive-by pronouncements. I caught him red-handed. Below is  a recent Facebook exchange. (He is brave liberal because he keeps coming back for more punishment.)

Amburgey: The teapublican love of conspiracy theories goes well beyond anti-muslim and birther conspiracies; lets not forget climate-change-what-climate-change? whackos. I know one idjit that will tell you that climate scientists around the world fake their data as part of a grand international conspiracy.

Jacques Delacroix

Is it not true that one of the main university research centers in charge of climate change research was caught plotting “conspiring” not so long ago? This is a real question. Not all “scientists” around the world are scientists and many scientists have never joined the chorus. More are leaving through the back door as we chat. There is no need for a conspiracy for great falsehoods to spread anyway. Unexamined faith will generate a culture of belief that is more powerful than simple evidence. Human-made global warming about which we must worry instantly has all the attributes of a religious cult, including instant excommunication for doubters. The absence of criticality among otherwise well-educated believers is tangible. Thus, I learned recently in Le Monde that the Ocean was rising faster in some places than in others! Le Monde is the flagship of French-language left-leaning intellectuals. I don’t know where you went to school, Dr Terry but I learned in mine that when a theory had great big chunks of untruth, it needed to be reviewed. Here is a chunk: What did the Norse of Greenland eat with great frequency in 1100, in 1200, that you would not expect at all? The answer is in that great Tea Party Republican conspirationist Jared Diamond “Collapse.” And after being entombed,  Jesus just got up and left under his own power. It must be so because billions believe it. Right?

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About Jacques Delacroix

I am a sociologist, a short-story writer, and a blogger (Facts Matter and Notes On Liberty) in Santa Cruz, California.
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29 Responses to A Teapublican Conspiracy? Exchange

  1. Terry Amburgey says:

    To be clear, you’re not the idjit in question. I think you know who I mean but I’d rather not bring up his name. I will if you’d like to get him re-involved. Now let’s dis-aggregate your wall-of-text into discrete chunks. To my mind the most important is the first: “Is it not true that one of the main university research centers in charge of climate change research was caught plotting “conspiring” not so long ago?” We both believe that facts matter; what are the facts in support of a conspiracy?

    Btw, this thread does not get you off the hook for an entry about food. You asked for suggestions and afaik 100% of the replies were for food.

    • jacquesdelacroix says:

      Terry: I think you make up Republicans and conservatives to people your nightmares. It’s a common wetdream substitute for aging liberals. That’s only a speculation, of course. No way, I am in any way in any corner of your dreams. If I ever show up there, please kill me directly. Thank you.

  2. Terry Amburgey says:

    So this is not a good time to tell you that you’ve been the cornerstone of my erotic dreams for decades? Invariably as a procuror 🙂 Now on to business. I apologize for the wall-of-text

    “In November 2009, the servers at the University of East Anglia in Britain were illegally hacked and emails were stolen. When a selection of emails between climate scientists were published on the internet, a few suggestive quotes were seized upon by many claiming global warming was all just a conspiracy. A number of independent enquiries have investigated the conduct of the scientists involved in the emails. All have cleared the scientists of any wrong doing:

    In February 2010, the Pennsylvania State University released an Inquiry Report that investigated any ‘Climategate’ emails involving Dr Michael Mann, a Professor of Penn State’s Department of Meteorology. They found that “there exists no credible evidence that Dr. Mann had or has ever engaged in, or participated in, directly or indirectly, any actions with an intent to suppress or to falsify data”. On “Mike’s Nature trick”, they concluded “The so-called “trick”1 was nothing more than a statistical method used to bring two or more different kinds of data sets together in a legitimate fashion by a technique that has been reviewed by a broad array of peers in the field.”

    In March 2010, the UK government’s House of Commons Science and Technology Committee published a report finding that the criticisms of the Climate Research Unit (CRU) were misplaced and that CRU’s “Professor Jones’s actions were in line with common practice in the climate science community”.

    In April 2010, the University of East Anglia set up an international Scientific Assessment Panel, in consultation with the Royal Society and chaired by Professor Ron Oxburgh. The Report of the International Panel assessed the integrity of the research published by the CRU and found “no evidence of any deliberate scientific malpractice in any of the work of the Climatic Research Unit”.

    In June 2010, the Pennsylvania State University published their Final Investigation Report, determining “there is no substance to the allegation against Dr. Michael E. Mann”.

    In July 2010, the University of East Anglia published the Independent Climate Change Email Review report. They examined the emails to assess whether manipulation or suppression of data occurred and concluded that “The scientists’ rigor and honesty are not in doubt”.

    In July 2010, the US Environmental Protection Agency investigated the emails and “found this was simply a candid discussion of scientists working through issues that arise in compiling and presenting large complex data sets.”

    In September 2010, the UK Government responded to the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee report, chaired by Sir Muir Russell. On the issue of releasing data, they found “In the instance of the CRU, the scientists were not legally allowed to give out the data”. On the issue of attempting to corrupt the peer-review process, they found “The evidence that we have seen does not suggest that Professor Jones was trying to subvert the peer review process. Academics should not be criticised for making informal comments on academic papers”.

    In February 2011, the Department of Commerce Inspector General conducted an independent review of the emails and found “no evidence in the CRU emails that NOAA inappropriately manipulated data”.

    In August 2011, the National Science Foundation concluded “Finding no research misconduct or other matter raised by the various regulations and laws discussed above, this case is closed”. ”
    source: http://www.skepticalscience.com/Climategate-CRU-emails-hacked.htm
    There are pdf copies of several of the reports but trying to get them crashes my browser [my punishment for using internet explorer] maybe you’ll be more successful.

    • jacquesdelacroix says:

      Penn State investigated itself! Can this get ever more ridiculous? You really don’t know better than this after so many years in universities? Didn’t another Pennsylvania university just give us a masterful demonstration of universities ability to police themselves? (the state is incidental, of course.)

      What I read in sources more respectable than a university’s report about itself showed a conventional conspiracy. That included the WSJ and , the Weekly Standard. That the latter is respectable though libertarian seems obvious.

      The conspiracy has several aspects. One that comes to mind easily was a plot of non-submission to a scientific journal. There were also several direct quotes of language showing beyond a reasonable doubt an intent to deceive.

      If your cause is good, you never need to plot or to deceive, I think. How about you?

      I am going away and I will not be able to reply to this not to give references. I apologize for this interuptus.

      I suspect yous seldom read or listen to anything not from your corner of the ring. I do. Frankly, there is no choice is you are a conservative.

  3. Terry Amburgey says:

    Fine. Let’s ignore the universities, they have a conflict of interest. What about the UK government’s House of Commons Science and Technology Committee, the US Environmental Protection Agency, Department of Commerce Inspector General, the National Science Foundation. We know the reaction of your wingnut friend: they’re all part of the international conspiracy. Is that your position now? You believe a journalist is more credible than the National Science Foundation? A journalist!?

    Non submission to a journal is a conspiracy? Then my hard drive is riddled with decades of conspiracies.

    I’ll address the ‘direct quotes’ after your return. For now I’ll give you a Romneyesque splice job from your posts above.

    “Human-made global warming about which we must worry instantly… I learned recently in Le Monde that the Ocean was rising faster in some places than in others…” Unlike the teapublicans I had the decency to insert elipses. Based on the direct quote, I now know that you 1) believe in global warming, 2) that said warming is caused by mankind, 3) the issue is pressing, 4) you believe that the ocean is rising more in some places than others.

  4. Terry Amburgey says:

    Still no reply eh? We know facts matter, I guess inconvenient facts matter even more.

  5. jacquesdelacroix says:

    “Inconvenient” facts. N. S. !

    Reply to what? People who believe in absurdities, people who don’t believe that the conspiracies constructed before their eyes are conspiracies, people who put their own judgment in parentheses in deference to the kind of authorities you cite, such people don’t get to give me automatic reading assignments. (The US Environmental Protection Agency? You are kidding, right?)

    You have to give me a reason to read what you want me to read. Life is short. Before I allow myself to be distracted from a favorite French soap opera, I have to have a reason.

    Here is what I think, right now:

    There is no man-made global warming that requires urgent attention. Among other reasons, three feet of predicted maximum rise in sea level in one hundred years in not an urgent problem. Just tell the Dutch to take care of it.

    I don’t make it my business to try to become an expert in everything that might be important in the eye of some zealot or other. I don’t fool myself into believing that I am such an expert either I am however, an expert in credibility. Here is an example:

    Would you believe that the Norse settlers of Greenland around 1100 ate large quantities of beef?

    If you believed it, would it affect your judgment on the likelihood that there is man-made global warming?

  6. Terry Amburgey says:

    In a nutshell: the notion that some emails are proof of some climate change conspiracy have been debunked a number of times. If the National Science Foundation is not a credible source for you we no longer have a basis for reasoned discourse. Climate change is an established fact except for cranks. To what extent it’s due to human acttivity is still an open question. BTW, I’m on sabbatical and will be in Jersalem for the next 5 months so my browsing cycle will be out of sync with yours for a while.

    • I did not denounce the National Science Foundation. Why distort my words?

      The emails I saw constituted a conspiracy against a scientific journal judged too lukewarm to the cause.

      My often re-iterated position is that there is no mam-made global warming that requires urgent action.

      How can you reply to someone who accuse you of being a religious zealot by excommunicating him as you just did? (“rational discourse”)

      I have been excommunicated before, Once that stick to my mind was by communists It was ten years before the inward collapse of the Soviet Union. At the time, everyone around me knew that …. and I was considered a crank and I had a lot of trouble getting anything published.
      Of course, the fact that I was right then does not make me right now. It just vaccinates me against the disease of unanimous opinion.

      Aren’t all conservatives cranks anyway?

      • Terry Amburgey says:

        The topic of the thread is conspiracies and very early you opined “Is it not true that one of the main university research centers in charge of climate change research was caught plotting “conspiring” not so long ago? This is a real question.” The real answer to this real question is: NO. Among the entities debunking this myth is the NSF. If you follow the lead of your internet acquaintance Scott you expand the conspirators to include the NSF. Why bother conversing with someone to whom facts don’t matter?

        Not all conservatives are cranks. Unfortunately the number that aren’t cranks seems to be declining precipitously. I think it’s safe to summarize my change of political party affiliation to the takeover of the Republican party by religous fanatics and ‘neo-cons’ of unlimited mendacity. The Libertarians would provide a home on social issues [I voted for Ron Paul for President once] but I can’t abide the fiscal and foreign policy.

      • Am I responsible for what my friend Scot says? This make no sense. I took you to task for citing the Environmental Protection Agency as a legitimate source of truth. That was absurd.

        Whatever the NSF (obviously a liberal bastion though on the main honest) says, what I read of those emails constituted a conspiracy against a journal. (Repeating myself).

        The Republican Party was taken over by religious fanatics? News to me. The evangelical Christians get the same treatment from the Republican Party that blacks receive from the Democratic Party.: At election time, they bend over. THat’s it.

        Any thought on Greenland?

        Of course, I think it’s not useful to discuss party affiliation with old guys who are going to die soon anyway. I play for the young mostly.
        Discussions f between us are useful for the edification of the young.They help determine, in particular, who is a religious zealot.

      • Terry Amburgey says:

        My only thoughts aboout Greenland is the vast relief I still feel that I wasn’t assigned there. Back during the Vietnam war I mentioned to the non-com in charge of our section that I should speak to the Inspector General about some activities that weren’t strictly ‘by the book’. He sent me off to see the Colonel in charge of our unit. The Colonel told me that I not only had the right but a responsiblity to bring to the attention of the IG any deserving matters. Then, in an entirely unrelated way, told me that there was an opening for someone of my skills at Thule Air Force Base. I decided to drink beer at the NCO club instead of seeing the IG. Did I make the right decision?


      • Cute but slippery.

        Go back to my question about Greenland if you are a man.

  7. Discussions f between us are useful for the edification of the young.They help determine, in particular, who is a religious zealot.

    Exactly. I enjoyed watching the Liberal with Impeccable Liberal Credentials (including wanting to bomb Syria for Syria’s sake) condemn non-believers for their heresies like a street preacher does on major boulevards to the unwashed masses.

    • Terry Amburgey says:

      What’s the Libertarian thinking about war with Iran?

      • One place to go for an answer is the Independent Institute.

        I stopped paying dues there because I think they are unconditional pacifists pretending otherwise.

      • Dr. A writes:

        What’s the Libertarian thinking about war with Iran?

        Um, what a stupid idea.

        Washington’s foreign policy created the regime in Tehran. The people in Iran don’t mistrust the United States for no good, darn reason, after all.

        Can you give me a good reason why we should go to war with Iran?

  8. Terry Amburgey says:

    Hi Brandon. I’ll tell you what I think the scenario will be, good or bad depends I guess. My speculation is that Israel will have a military strike on nuclear sites in Iran within a month or so. Their timeline is shorter than the US since they don’t have all the capabilities of the US. If Iran retaliates by closing the strait of Hormuz the US will get involved. If Iran doesn’t close the straight but retaliates against Israel Obama is boxed in. If he doesn’t get involved he loses the election. The only way that the US doesn’t get involved is if there is no Iranian retaliation which I think is unlikely.

    Special caveat: an empirical analysis of my research career indicates that I’m wrong at least 40% of the time. An honest analysis that includes unpublished work bumps it to closer to 60%.

    • Special caveat

      Hahah! No need to brag or boast. If you’re tight with Dr. J there is a good chance you are a very good scholar.

      Regarding the speculation on Iran: I have heard it all before. Prior to hearing about, I have read it in recent history book as well.

      Tehran still poses no national security threat to the United States.

      Regarding a possible Israeli strike: I think that now would be a good time to do it. The Arab regimes would publicly condemn it but largely look the other way. They don’t want a nuclear-armed Iran any more than anybody else in the vicinity does. Iranian retaliation against the Israeli state would be pathetic. I don’t think any of their missiles would reach Israeli soil.

      Hizbollah would be unleashed, but due to the civil war in Syria and the impotence of Lebanon, the Israelis will be in a good position to withstand any barrages and counterstrike effectively. Hamas, caught between being a political party and a terrorist organization, as well as strife with the PA, will not be a factor.

      The Persians might even get so bold as to close the Strait of Hormuz. The US will then move some its ships into the region. At worst, a firefight will ensue in which the Iranian Navy will be pulverized.

      Ho hum.

      Obama will still lose the election. The economy sucks thanks to the liberal policies of the Democratic Party. Oh, and nothing in the Middle East will be resolved because trading ties will be put on the backburner while a new round of diplomacy gets underway. At worst, things will remain just as they are. At best, the crisis will push the Israelis and the oil-rich Arab states closer together.

      If the US were to be removed from the Middle East equation altogether, the Israelis and the oil-rich Arab states would find it even more beneficial to put aside their petty differences and work together, and Egypt would find that it no longer has a sugar daddy to fund its “independent” course.

      Cairo might find that taking a more bellicose line against Israel is beneficial in an American-free region, but given that Cairo’s other sugar daddies – the oil-rich Arab states – would be working more closely with Israel, Egypt would most likely find a way to tow the line and play nice with its neighbor. Plus, it probably doesn’t want to lose the Sinai again.

      • Terry Amburgey says:

        @Brandon. I dearly hope you’re right. Except about the election of course. I’m somewhat optimistic, the political science models and the leading prediction market are pretty favorable for Obama.

      • I’m always right (I’m a libertarian, after all).

        Does the economy suck? Yes.

        Does it matter “who started it”? No.

        This is Politics 101. The models of the political scientists are going to be in vain.

        Wait a second. Why would you think that a war with Iran is even necessary again?

        A few weeks back, on this blog, a young Iranian got on here. he is a buddy of mine, of sorts. I “met” him on Facebook on a Ron Paul fan page. He was literally begging for people to vote for him.


        Because hostile aggression on the part of hegemonic powers is usually met with domestic suppression by the states being bullied by a hegemon. When the US threatens and cajoles other states, the response is usually to crack down on dissidents and liberties.

        Again: why do you think that a war with Iran is necessary (or even inevitable)?

    • 60% wrong is real good.! Aren’t you bragging?

      • Terry Amburgey says:

        The fact that, in my chosen profession, I’d be significantly better off tossing coins is disconcerting.

  9. Terry Amburgey says:

    “Would you believe that the Norse settlers of Greenland around 1100 ate large quantities of beef?” Yes

    “If you believed it, would it affect your judgment on the likelihood that there is man-made global warming?” No

    I now await your proclamation of my powerful masculinity.

    • This is about Greenland.

      Yes Prof. Amburgey, you are a real man, with powerful blinders.

      Let me guide you further:

      Did the Greenland Norse import the beef cows in their little ships or did they raise them in Greenland?

      Could you raise cows in Greenland now?

      Why not?

      Corrected: Does it mean that Greenland was warmer then, in 1100, than it is now?

      Was it warmer because the Norse dried cowshit fires and the Inuit’s insouciant burning of seal blubber had caused climate change already then?

  10. Terry Amburgey says:

    I will argue that they imported them on their little ships. Prove me wrong. Only double-blind peer-reviewed work ala the Delacroi rules of evidence if you please.

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