'Every year climate science seems to get less sure until I want to shout 'Just vanish back into obscurity until you've got a handle on this mess! Go on, go to your room and don't come out till your predictions last longer than it takes the ink to dry on them." '

Jun 29, 2013 'TinyCO2' commenting at Bishop Hill


Thursday, 18 November 2010

Do Climate ScareYouAlls make good teachers or preachers? - a musical offering.

[note: KnowItAll replaced by ScareYouAll 21/11/10]
APOLOGIES: Gilbert and Sullivan
TITLE: I Am the Very Model of a Modern Climate-ScareYouAll
[Pirates of the IPPC]

I am the very model of a modern Climate-ScareYouAll
I’ve information digital, quotable, pictorial
I know the hacks of TV-land, and quote just like an oracle
On ‘News at Ten’ to ‘News at One’, on crises categorical.

I’m sort of well acquainted, too, with matters computational
I’ve heard of those projections, both simple and dramatical
On past and present temperatures I’m teeming with a lot o’news
Tho short of cheerful facts about the Yamal trees we have to use.
I’m very good at scariness and all degrees of fearfulness
I know how children get those nightmares quite horribilis
In short, in matters terrible, fearful and excitable
I am the very model of a modern Climate-ScareYouAll.
I know our media’s trickery, in Nature and the NYT
I dish out press releases and they headline anything from me
I quote in elegiacs all the flaws of Homo Sapiens
With polemics I can dazzle almost any leftwing audience.
I can tell Trenberths and Santers from the Manns and even Houghtons
I know the Schmidts and Hansens  from the Albert Gores and Joneses
Then I can hum a fugue of which I've heard the music's din anew
And whistle all the airs from that infernal M4GW.
I can write a laundry list in Hulmeian Obtusiform
While forgetting every detail of those emails in ExCRUciform
In short, in matters terrible, fearful and excitable
I am the very model of a modern Climate-ScareYouAll.
In fact, when I know what is meant by "lapse rate" and "stratiform"
When I can tell at sight a timeplot from a tephigram
When such affairs as hunches and guesses I'm more wary at
And when I know precisely what is meant by "wet in an adiabat".
When I have learnt of progress made in methods so statistical
When I know more ANOVA than a novice in a nunnery
In short, when I've a smattering of elemental calculus
You'll say a better Climate-ScareYouAll has never been to see us.
For my scientific knowledge, though I'm plucky and adventury,
Has only been brought down to the beginning of last century
But still, in matters terrible, fearful and excitable
I am the very model of a modern Climate-ScareYouAll.

A singalong version, with the original words: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wYZM__VdEjk&feature=related

I posted an earlier version of the above on WUWT yesterday as a comment, but a post there today made me dig it out to polish it up a bit. The post was about yet another agitated professor, this time a professor of astronomy, ranting away on climate, desperately trying to provoke his class. An unedited video of this class is here.
Full Video: LSU Astronomy Class from Campus Reform on Vimeo.

We have professors of many sorts, of various ‘ologies such as psychology, apparently so demented with fear that they make dreadful pronouncements well outside their professional competence.

We have environmental/climate office holders in the media (not least in the BBC), and in all  those organisations previously concerned with other things before they discovered meteorology such as the WWF, FoE, GreenPeace, and Oxfam telling us the end is nigh with much gusto.  Not to mention those organisations previously concerned with meteorology before they discovered other things, such as the UK Met Office, NASA, and CSIRO.  

 We have had the 10:10 zealots scaring even their own followers with the PR disaster of their extremist movie ‘No Pressure'.

And of course, we have the IPCC itself, whose reports, leaders and followers like Albert Gore scatter the word ‘catastrophe’ around like confetti, happily winning plaudits and fortunes from those they have managed to convince.  

Yet I don't find any of them convincing. Nor do many others. No doubt we should deepen our study of what the experts are telling us, but I can do without the emotional, scaremongering excursions into polemics from academics who ought to know better, from journalists who parrot their words, and from no end of political and financial interests finding advantage in the melee. 

Any schools still free to do so, should actively and explicitly distance themselves from this unseemly arena of unsettled science and very settled politics, to concentrate instead on educating and building the 
confidence of their pupils as free agents, rather than scaring and 'mobilising' them to the tune of a very politicised drum.

Note added a few hours after original post: more Gilbert & Sullivan adapted for the modern climate here:
http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2010/4/9/the-modern-climatologist.html   (good verses in the comments as well).
Note added 30 April 2013.  Here is yet another version: http://diggingintheclay.wordpress.com/2013/04/28/a-modern-climatologist/

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It was heartwarming to hear the students expressing how crazy that lesson really was. Hope springs eternal.