During the recent measles outbreak, the mainstream media blamed the epidemic solely on non vaccinated children, even though people who were vaccinated caught the disease and some vaccines have proven to be inefficient in the past. Without the slightest nuance, the mainstream media constantly portrays people reluctant to accept just any vaccine as “anti-vaxers”, irresponsible and misinformed people, relying on irrational fears and the one and only “fraudulent” Andrew Wakefield study linking autism to vaccines. (Watch Lina B. Moreco’s documentary Shots in the Dark, which features Dr. Wakefield and thankful parents of his young patients with autism.)
In reality, many so-called “anti-vaxers” are not ALL totally against vaccines. While some people may be totally against any kind of vaccination, many, including doctors and health specialists, question certain vaccines, ingredients in the vaccines and/or the vaccination schedule. This is not based on a survey but on my own perception resulting from the fair amount of articles on vaccines and the pharmaceutical industry that I’ve read over the last five years as a journalist. There are a large number of doctors and health specialists who have done truly independent research and who criticize vaccination based on scientific studies and solid evidence.
Why is the media so keen on portraying Big Pharma critics as crazy, uneducated, unscientific and irresponsible people?
Dr Marcia Angell worked for over two decades as editor of The New England Journal of Medicine. She was fired after criticizing the pharmaceutical industry, which had exerted an overriding and negative influence on the scientific literature. She said:
“It is simply no longer possible to believe much of the clinical research that is published.”
Numerous journalists say the same goes for the mainstream media.
We bring to the attention of our readers 25 facts which constitute only part of a larger body of independent scientific research and articles on vaccines and the pharmaceutical industry. Some mainstream articles have been included as well to show how the media overlooks stories it has published in the past because they don’t fit with their “anti-vaxer” portrait.
The objective of this list is to provide independent research and sources of information on vaccination and Big Pharma, which is what the mainstream media fails to do and instead blindly promotes the narrative and agenda of Big Pharma.
(All emphasis added. Most titles are quotes from the articles they are linked to.)
25 Facts About the Pharmaceutical Industry, Vaccines and “Anti-Vaxers”
1- China has measles outbreaks but 99% are vaccinated
A recent study published in PLoS titled, “Difficulties in eliminating measles and controlling rubella and mumps: a cross-sectional study of a first measles and rubella vaccination and a second measles, mumps, and rubella vaccination,” has brought to light the glaring ineffectiveness of two measles vaccines (measles–rubella (MR) or measles–mumps–rubella(MMR) ) in fulfilling their widely claimed promise of preventing outbreaks in highly vaccine compliant populations. (Sayer Ji, Why Is China Having Measles Outbreaks When 99% Are Vaccinated?, GreenMedInfo 20 September 2014)
2- Mandatory Chickenpox Vaccination Increases Disease Rates, Study Shows
Varicella, or the chicken pox vaccination, has been mandated in South Korea since 2005. Infants from 12 to 15 months are required by law to receive a vaccination. By 2011, the country reached a near universal compliance rate, however, varicella patients did not decrease; they have increased since reaching this mandated level of vaccination.
The number of chicken pox patients reported to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC) has increased from 22.6 cases per 100,000 in 2006 to 71.6 cases per 100,000 in 2011. That’s a huge difference and ample proof that the vaccination program isn’t working to control the spread of the disease. (Christina Sarich, With 97% Compliance Chicken Pox Vaccine Still Causes Outbreaks, Natural Society, January 08, 2015)
3- In a 2012 measles outbreak in Quebec (Canada) over half of the cases were in vaccinated teenagers
An investigation into an outbreak in a high school in a town that was heavily hit by the virus found that about half of the cases were in teens who had received the recommended two doses of vaccine in childhood — in other words, teens whom authorities would have expected to have been protected from the measles virus.
It’s generally assumed that the measles vaccine, when given in a two-dose schedule in early childhood, should protect against measles infection about 99 per cent of the time. So the discovery that 52 of the 98 teens who caught measles were fully vaccinated came as a shock to the researchers who conducted the investigation. (The Canadian Press, Measles among vaccinated Quebec kids questioned, CBC, October 20, 2011)
4- In 1987 a measles outbreak was documented among a fully immunized group of children
In 1987, for example, a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) documented a measles outbreak that occurred in Corpus Christi, Texas, in the spring of 1985. Fourteen adolescent-age students, all of whom had been vaccinated for measles, contracted the disease despite having been injected with the MMR vaccine. Researchers noted that more than 99 percent of students at the school — basically all of them — had also been vaccinated, with more than 95 percent of them showing detectable antibodies to measles. (Ethan A. Huff, Measles Outbreak Documented Among Fully Immunized Group of Children, Natural News 15 February 2015)
5- Centers for Disease Control’s (CDC) Own Data Shows Links Between Vaccines and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS)
What happens when the actual evidence from the scientific and clinical literature produced by these very agencies contradicts their own vaccine policies?
This is exactly what has happened with the publication of a new study in the Journal of Pediatrics titled ,”Adverse Events following Haemophilus influenzae Type b Vaccines in the Vaccine Adverse Event ReportingSystem, 1990-2013,” wherein CDC and FDA researchers identify 749 deaths linked to the administration of the Hib vaccine, 51% of which were sudden infant death linked to the administration of Hib vaccine. (Sayer Ji, Centers for Disease Control’s (CDC) Own Data Shows Links Between Vaccines and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), GreenMedInfo 23 January 2015)
6- Japan banned the MMR vaccine in 1993 “after 1.8 million children had been given two types of MMR and a record number developed non-viral meningitis and other adverse reactions.”
The Japanese government realised there was a problem with MMR soon after its introduction in April 1989 when vaccination was compulsory. Parents who refused had to pay a small fine.
An analysis of vaccinations over a three-month period showed one in every 900 children was experiencing problems. This was over 2,000 times higher than the expected rate of one child in every 100,000 to 200,000. (Jenny Hope, Why Japan banned MMR vaccine, Daily Mail)
7- A study concluded nations that require more vaccine doses tend to have higher infant mortality rates.
The US childhood immunization schedule requires 26 vaccine doses for infants aged less than 1 year, the most in the world, yet 33 nations have better IMRs [Infant Mortality Rates]
Some countries have IMRs that are less than half the US rate: Singapore, Sweden, and Japan are below 2.80. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), “The relative position of the United States in comparison to countries with the lowest infant mortality rates appears to be worsening.”
These findings demonstrate a counter-intuitive relationship: nations that require more vaccine doses tend to have higher infant mortality rates. (Neil Z Miller and Gary S Goldman, Infant mortality rates regressed against number of vaccine doses routinely given: Is there a biochemical or synergistic toxicity?, U.S. National Library of Medicine, September 2011)
8- The U.S. has a vaccine court apparently designed to “Shield Manufacturers from Liability”
For years, the corporate media was reluctant to admit that it even existed. But the special court system designed to handle vaccine injury cases — and ultimately sweep them under the rug as quickly as possible — has hit the mainstream news for its failure to adequately and propitiously compensate families of vaccine-injured children. (Ethan A. Huff, Secretive Vaccine Court Exposed: Designed to Shield Manufacturers from Liability, Natural News, November 19, 2014)
9- Beyond admitting to fraud in a 2004 Centers for Disease Control (CDC) study that exonerated the MMR vaccine, Dr. William Thompson, a CDC scientist, asserts there is a connection between mercury (thimerosal) in vaccines and autism. (Jon Rappoport, U.S. Centers for Disease Control Whistleblower: Mercury (Thimerosal) in Vaccines Causes Autism, No More Fake News, September 05, 2014)
10- Back in 2002, William Thompson was already aware of study results linking the MMR vaccine to a very large increase in autism risk among African-American children. See Brian Hooker’s published paper here, with a full analysis of the CDC’s own data revealing a 340% increased risk of autism in African-American children following the MMR vaccine. (Mike Adams, Autism Links to Vaccines: Whistleblower Reveals Evidence of Criminal Coverup by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Natural News August 26, 2014
11- According to a CDC epidemiologist named Tom Verstraeten, who had analyzed the agency’s massive database containing the medical records of 100,000 children, a mercury-based preservative in the vaccines — thimerosal — appeared to be responsible for a dramatic increase in autism and a host of other neurological disorders among children. (Robert F. Kennedy Jr, Vaccinations: Deadly Immunity. Government Cover-up of a Mercury / Autism Scandal Rollingstone.com, 20 July 2005)
12- Instead of taking immediate steps to alert the public and rid the vaccine supply of thimerosal, the officials and executives [discussed] how to cover up the damaging data. (Ibid.)
The CDC paid the Institute of Medicine to conduct a new study to whitewash the risks of thimerosal, ordering researchers to “rule out” the chemical’s link to autism.
It withheld Verstraeten’s findings, even though they had been slated for immediate publication, and told other scientists that his original data had been “lost” and could not be replicated. And to thwart the Freedom of Information Act, it handed its giant database of vaccine records over to a private company, declaring it off-limits to researchers. By the time Verstraeten finally published his study in 2003, he had gone to work for GlaxoSmithKline and reworked his data to bury the link between thimerosal and autism.
11- Since 1991, when the CDC and the FDA had recommended that three additional vaccines laced with the preservative be given to extremely young infants […] the estimated number of cases of autism had increased fifteenfold [in 2005], from one in every 2,500 children to one in 166 children.(Ibid.)
Here is the CDC chart available today on its website:
An MIT researcher has linked autism to glyphosate, the chemical herbicide used in Monsanto Roundup.
12- Vaccine manufacturers […] continued to sell off their mercury-based supplies of vaccines until last year .
The CDC and FDA [bought] up the tainted vaccines for export to developing countries and allowed drug companies to continue using the preservative in some American vaccines — including several pediatric flu shots as well as tetanus boosters routinely given to eleven-year-olds. (Ibid.)
13- Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, who has received $873,000 in contributions from the pharmaceutical industry, has been working to immunize vaccine makers from liability in 4,200 lawsuits that have been filed by the parents of injured children. (Ibid.)
14- Seasonal Flu Shots still contain thimerosal.
Look at the monographs. For example the one from Vaxigrip from Sanofi Pasteur states on page 4 the mercury-based preservative is in its multidose vial:
“Clinically Relevant Non-medicinal Ingredients: thimerosal* , formaldehyde, Triton® X-100†, neomycin”
15- Dr. Scott Reuben former member of Pfizer’s speakers’ bureau published dozens of fake study in medical journals
Dr. Reuben accepted a $75,000 grant from Pfizer to study Celebrex in 2005… His research, which was published in a medical journal, has since been quoted by hundreds of other doctors and researchers as “proof” that Celebrex helped reduce pain during post-surgical recovery. .. No patients were ever enrolled in the study!
He also faked study data on Bextra and Vioxx drugs… [T]he peer-reviewed medical journal Anesthesia & Analgesia was forced to retract 10 “scientific” papers authored by Reuben… 21 articles written by Dr. Reuben that appear in medical journals have apparently been fabricated, too, and must be retracted. (Big Pharma researcher admits to faking dozens of research studies for Pfizer, Merck (opinion), Mike Adams, NaturalNews.com, February 18, 2010)
16- To this day thimerosal is still used in flu vaccines
For example, in the Vaxigrip monograph says: “The multidose vial of this vaccine contains thimerosal as a preservative. Thimerosal has been associated with allergic reactions.”
17- There are at least 97 studies showing links between vaccines and autism.
18- The CDC claims “there is no convincing evidence of harm caused by the low doses of thimerosal in vaccines”, but that health authorities “agreed that thimerosal should be reduced or eliminated in vaccines as a precautionary measure.”
On thimerosal, the CDC website states:
“Since 2001, with the exception of some influenza (flu) vaccines, thimerosal is not used as a preservative in routinely recommended childhood vaccines. Thimerosal is a mercury-containing preservative used in some vaccines and other products since the 1930′s. except for minor reactions like redness and swelling at the injection site. However, in July 1999, the Public Health Service agencies, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and vaccine manufacturers agreed that thimerosal should be reduced or eliminated in vaccines as a precautionary measure.“
19- Industry-sponsored trials published in medical journals consistently favor sponsors
In view of this control and the conflicts of interest that permeate the enterprise, it is not surprising that industry-sponsored trials published in medical journals consistently favor sponsors —largely because negative results are not published, positive results are repeatedly published in slightly different forms, and a positive spin is put on even negative results. A review of seventy-four clinical trials of antidepressants, for example, found that thirty-seven of thirty-eight positive studies were published. But of the thirty-six negative studies, thirty-three were either not published or published in a form that conveyed a positive outcome.” – Marcia Angell, MD (Dr. Gary G. Kohls, Beware the Drug Companies, How they Deceive Us: “Criticizing Big Pharma” Global Research, February 16, 2015)
20- Nearly half of published articles in scientific journals contain findings that are false. (Dr. Gary G. Kohls, Beware the Drug Companies, How they Deceive Us: “Criticizing Big Pharma”Global Research, February 16, 2015)
“Six years ago, John Ioannidis, a professor of epidemiology at the University of Ioannina School of Medicine in Greece, found that nearly half of published articles in scientific journals contained findings that were false, in the sense that independent researchers couldn’t replicate them. The problem is particularly widespread in medical research, where peer-reviewed articles in medical journals can be crucial in influencing multimillion- and sometimes multibillion-dollar spending decisions. It would be surprising if conflicts of interest did not sometimes compromise editorial neutrality, and in the case of medical research, the sources of bias are obvious.
21- Most medical journals receive half or more of their income from pharmaceutical company advertising and reprint orders, and dozens of others [journals] are owned by companies like Wolters Kluwer, a medical publisher that also provides marketing services to the pharmaceutical industry.” — Helen Epstein, author of “Flu Warning: Beware the Drug Companies” (http://aaci-india.org/COI/Flu_web_final.pdf) (Dr. Gary G. Kohls, Beware the Drug Companies, How they Deceive Us: “Criticizing Big Pharma” Global Research, February 16, 2015)
22- The FDA’s own web page admits that the drugs it certifies as safe contribute to over 100,000 deaths per year. (Constitutional Attorney on US Federal Drug Administration (FDA) Corruption, Disinformation and Cover Up of Health Dangers, Activist Post, 8 February 2015)
23- The FDA routinely approves drugs over objections from its own medical reviewers. (Ibid.)
24- The FDA does zero independent medical testing of its own.
It is a system built upon conflicts of interest that leaves consumers completely in the dark about the true consequences of taking Big Pharma products. (Ibid.)
25- In 2012 GlaxoSmithKline Pleaded Guilty and Paid “$3 Billion to Resolve Fraud Allegations and Failure to Report Safety Data”
According to the US Justice Department:
The resolution is the largest health care fraud settlement in U.S. history and the largest payment ever by a drug company. …
GSK agreed to plead guilty to a three-count criminal information, including two counts of introducing misbranded drugs, Paxil and Wellbutrin, into interstate commerce and one count of failing to report safety data about the drug Avandia to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Sometimes it really pays to be persistent.
That’s what Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth found out this week when the organization achieved something truly remarkable. It succeeded in getting a commitment from the largest association of architects in the U.S. to debate and vote on a resolution supporting an investigation into the destruction of World Trade Center Building 7 on Sept. 11, 2001.
The vote will take place at the annual convention of the American Institute of Architects, May 14-16, in Atlanta, GA. (If you’re not sure how much of a big deal this convention is, the keynote speaker is former president Bill Clinton.)
After several failed attempts to get the AIA to even consider looking into Building 7, AE tried a different approach in early 2015. Instead of simply appealing to the AIA leadership, they used the organization’s own rules to create a resolution that, pending approval by the AIA resolution committee, would come to the floor of the convention where it would be debated and voted on by delegates.
That approval came this week. The committee made only minor changes to the resolution so that it conformed to AIA style. The substance remained unchanged.
“We’re ecstatic about this,” says AE9/11Truth founder Richard Gage, who will be attending the convention with a team from the organization.
For any resolution to be considered by convention delegates, it must be sponsored by the AIA’s board of directors or strategic council; a regional, state or local AIA chapter; or 50 AIA members. In this case, the sponsor was AE board member Dan Barnum, who holds the prestigious title of Fellow of the American Institute of Architects. Another 54 AIA members are listed as co-sponsors – all of whom are signatories of the AE9/11Truth petition.
WHAT THEY’LL VOTE ON
Here is the text of the resolution that was just approved by the AIA resolution committee:
WHEREAS, under the AIA Public Policies and Position Statements, it is the responsibility of architects to design a resilient environment that can more successfully adapt to natural conditions and that can more readily absorb and recover from adverse events; and
WHEREAS, architects and others involved in the design and construction of buildings depend upon the information obtained from investigations into building failures to inform the development of model building codes; and
WHEREAS, on September 11, 2001, 7 World Trade Center, a 47-story high-rise building, suffered a complete collapse; and
WHEREAS, on November 20, 2008, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) released the final report of its three-year investigation into the complete collapse of 7 World Trade Center, which concluded that fires, an unprecedented cause of failure for a modern high-rise building, were the primary cause of failure; and
WHEREAS, the cause of failure identified by the NIST investigation would mean that hundreds of high-rise buildings in the United States are susceptible to similar failure from fire; and
WHEREAS, thousands of members of the architecture and engineering professions, including the 55 sponsors of this resolution, believe the NIST investigation did not adhere to the principles of the scientific method and, as a result, the conclusions of the NIST investigation are fatally flawed.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the AIA Board of Directors shall adopt a Position Statement, to be published in the AIA Directory of Public Policies and Position Statements, stating:
- The AIA’s belief that incidents involving the catastrophic failure of buildings and other structures must be investigated using the highest standards of science-based investigation and analysis in order to provide accurate and meaningful information in the development of model building codes;
- The AIA’s recognition that many members of the architecture profession believe the NIST investigation into the complete collapse of 7 World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, did not adhere to the principles of the scientific method and, as a result, the conclusions of the NIST investigation are fatally flawed;
- The AIA’s belief that this perspective merits further study; and
- The AIA’s support for a new investigation into the complete collapse of 7 World Trade Center.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that it is advised that this Position Statement be incorporated as Position Statement #3 under the Construction Industry Regulation Public Policy. The recommended language of this Position Statement is as follows:
- World Trade Center 7
The AIA believes that incidents involving the catastrophic failure of buildings and other structures must be investigated using the highest standards of science-based investigation and analysis in order to provide accurate and meaningful information in the development of model building codes. In adherence to the scientific method, investigations should:
- Consider all available data;
- Consider hypotheses that most readily explain the available data;
- Test those hypotheses and analyze the results without bias; and
- Provide for external review and replication by making all data available.
The AIA recognizes that many members of the architecture profession believe the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) investigation into the complete collapse of 7 World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, did not adhere to these principles and, as a result, the conclusions of the NIST investigation are fatally flawed. The AIA believes this perspective merits further study and supports a new investigation into the complete collapse of 7 World Trade Center.
AE9/11Truth approached the AIA in both 2013 and 2014 about supporting a new investigation but was turned down with the AIA claiming that this goes beyond their purview. Shortly before the 2014 convention, that position appeared to soften somewhat as then AIA president Helene Combs Dreiling formed a committee to examine the evidence provided by AE9/11Truth. (Interestingly, Combs Dreiling has just now succeeded AE9/11Truth petition signatory John Braymer as CEO of the Virginia Society of the American Institute of Architects.)
AE got the news in January that the AIA had rejected their request because it fully supports the official story that office fires alone were sufficient to account for Building 7’s destruction.
Now it will be up to AIA delegates to debate this carefully crafted and scientifically sound resolution – which puts the focus on the integrity of buildings and not on conspiracies. While it will still be an uphill battle, just bringing it to the floor –j to be deliberated on by this major professional association is a significant accomplishment.
If the AIA delegates have the courage to vote for this resolution, then the 9/11 Truth Movement will have made a mainstream breakthrough that could seriously change things.
A long shot? Perhaps. But watching this play out is going to be very interesting.
The Washington Post has this dramatic headline: Global warming is now slowing down the circulation of the ocean with potentially dire consequences.
A new paper has been published that has the media talking about The Day After Tomorrow [link]. What is this new paper?
Exceptional twentieth-century slowdown in Atlantic Ocean overturning circulation
Stefan Rahmstorf, Jason E. Box, Georg Feulner, Michael E. Mann, Alexander Robinson, Scott Rutherford & Erik J. Schaffernicht
Abstract. Possible changes in Atlantic meridional overturning circulation (AMOC) provide a key source of uncertainty regarding future climate change. Maps of temperature trends over the twentieth century show a conspicuous region of cooling in the northern Atlantic. Here we present multiple lines of evidence suggesting that this cooling may be due to a reduction in the AMOC over the twentieth century and particularly after 1970. Since 1990 the AMOC seems to have partly recovered. This time evolution is consistently suggested by an AMOC index based on sea surface temperatures, by the hemispheric temperature difference, by coral-based proxies and by oceanic measurements. We discuss a possible contribution of the melting of the Greenland Ice Sheet to the slowdown. Using a multi-proxy temperature reconstruction for the AMOC index suggests that the AMOC weakness after 1975 is an unprecedented event in the past millennium (p > 0.99). Further melting of Greenland in the coming decades could contribute to further weakening of the AMOC.
Stefan Rahmstorf has a post at RealClimate Whats going on in the North Atlantic? Excerpt:
The North Atlantic between Newfoundland and Ireland is practically the only region of the world that has defied global warming and even cooled. Last winter there even was the coldest on record – while globally it was the hottest on record. Our recent study (Rahmstorf et al. 2015) attributes this to a weakening of the Gulf Stream System, which is apparently unique in the last thousand years.
Climate models have long predicted such a slowdown – both the current 5th and the previous 4th IPCC report call a slowdown in this century “very likely”, which means at least 90% probability. When emissions continue unabated (RCP8.5 scenario), the IPCC expects 12% to 54% decline by 2100. But the actual past evolution of the flow is difficult to reconstruct owing to the scarcity of direct measurements.
What is new is that we have used proxy reconstructions of large-scale surface temperature (Mann et al, 2009) previously published by one of us that extend back to 900 AD to estimate the circulation (AMOC) intensity over the entire last 1100 years. This shows that despite the substantial uncertainties in the proxy reconstruction, the weakness of the flow after 1975 is unique in more than a thousand years, with at least 99 per cent probability. This strongly suggests that the weak overturning is not due to natural variability but rather a result of global warming.
Well, if there is anything I distrust more than climate model simulations of decadal to millennial scale ocean circulations and internal variability, it is Mannian proxy analysis of same. It seems like strip bark bristlecones and Tiljander sediments can tell us about Gulf Stream flow rates, as well as global temperatures. Remarkable.
So what do the actual ocean observations have to say? Anthony Watts has an extensive critique of the paper, pointing to a 2014 paper by oceanographer Thomas Rossby: On the long-term stability of Gulf Stream transport based on 20 years of direct measurements. The title pretty much speaks for itself, but Rossby had this to say in an interview:
“The ADCP measures currents at very high accuracy, and so through the repeat measurements we take year after year, we have a very powerful tool by which to monitor the strength of the current,” said Rossby. “There are variations of the current over time that are natural — and yes, we need to understand these better — but we find absolutely no evidence that suggests that the Gulf Stream is slowing down.”
In 2010, NASA issued a press release NASA Study Finds Atlantic Conveyor Belt Not Slowing, citing a paper published by Josh Willis of JPL using measurements from ocean-observing satellites and profiling floats. Punchline:
For now, however, there are no signs of a slowdown in the circulation. “The changes we’re seeing in overturning strength are probably part of a natural cycle,” said Willis. “The slight increase in overturning since 1993 coincides with a decades-long natural pattern of Atlantic heating and cooling.”
Pierre Gosselin cites additional critiques from German scientists. Notably:
Climate scientist Martin Visbeck of the GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research in Kiel sees Rahmstorf’s assertion of the results critically: ‘The study’s focus on the sub-polar part of the Atlantic and the spectral analysis are interesting,’ he says. But there are other AMOC assessments that point to a completely other development. The paper does not offer any strong indication of the development of the AMOC during the past fifty years.”
So, who you gonna believe? Climate models and Mannian proxies, or direct and satellite observations of ocean circulation?
Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation
What is going on the high latitudes of the North Atlantic can’t be understood without the context of the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation. If you are unfamiliar with the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO), see this summary. For reference, the AMO figures prominently in the stadium wave. While the method to define the AMO is still debated, here I show the canonical analyses from NOAA.
The monthly values of the AMO are shown below.
A blow up of the more recent data (through Dec 2014) is shown below:
While the AMO index shows substantial variability, there are multi-decadal periods when the index is predominantly positive (warm) and negative (cool). To the extend that past behavior is any guide to the future, the current warm phase is expected to transition to the cool phase sometime in the 2020’s. While the the 1995 transition was sharp, the transition to the next cool phase might be sharp, or it might ‘flicker’ for a few years or even a decade. We’ll have to see how this plays out.
There is some evidence that the warm phase of the AMO has peaked circa 2007, see the upper ocean heat content data shown below.
What we are seeing in the high latitudes of the North Atlantic is natural variability, predominantly associated with the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation. Based upon observational analyses, there is no sign of a slowdown in the Gulf Stream or the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation.
Now, I am very interested in the AMO, since it strongly influences Atlantic hurricanes, Arctic sea ice, and Greenland climate. We are already seeing a recovery of the Atlantic sector of the Arctic sea ice, and some hints of cooling in Greenland.
With regards to Atlantic hurricanes, Bill Gray and Phil Klotzbach are looking at a new definition of the AMO that they feel relates better to Atlantic hurricane activity [link], and they are seeing a transition to negative values.
And finally, the AMO does not act in isolation (e.g. the stadium wave); there are very interesting things going on in the Pacific also – perhaps a topic for a future post.
This summer will mark the ninth anniversary of the Journal of 9/11 Studies. In that time, my co-editors and I have published over 150 peer-reviewed articles and letters addressing various aspects of the 9/11 crimes. Although it’s been hard, thankless work at times, the job of co-editor has also been rewarding and I’ve learned a great deal.
Through publishing articles in mainstream journals, I’ve learned that our peer-review process is at least as rigorous as that of others. At our Journal, submissions often fail to pass the editor’s initial assessment and are never reviewed. Of those remaining, dozens have failed to make it through the peer-review process to become published. It’s definitely a disappointment when that happens but it’s important that whatever we publish lives up to certain standards. The end result is a treasure-trove of reliable research, freely available on the web.
For example, here are six articles and two letters that should be widely read.
Intersecting Facts and Theories on 9/11, by Joseph P. Firmage
This short article was published in August 2006. It presents a comparison of competing theories for what happened on 9/11 with respect to known facts. The comparison clearly shows that the “create a new reality” theory, in which U.S. officials were involved in the attacks, is by far more sensible than other possibilities.
118 Witnesses: The Firefighter’s Testimony to Explosions in the Twin Towers, by Graeme MacQueen
This highly influential article focuses on eyewitness testimonies to the World Trade Center (WTC) destruction. The testimonies were collected by New York City officials after 9/11 and then kept secret for nearly four years. Professor MacQueen delves into these explosive eyewitness accounts in a way that makes clear why officials did not want the public to see them.
Extremely high temperatures during the World Trade Center destruction, by Steven E. Jones, et.al
This lucid article from January 2008 was a breakthrough in 9/11 research. Establishing the WTC thermite theory on a firm grounding of experimental evidence, it set the stage for a series of scientific articles that were published in multiple journals. In the future, this breakthrough article may be seen as one of the greatest contributions to forensic science.
Obstacles to Persuasion: Lessons from the Classroom, by Mark Vorobej
This article from December 2008 is from a professor of philosophy who examined the responses of university students as they were exposed to alternative explanations for 9/11. In a five-week segment of his course on Argumentation Theory, Professor Vorobej was able to lead his students to objectively examine 9/11 from different perspectives while fostering further, constructive debate.
Falsifiability and the NIST WTC Report: A Study in Theoretical Adequacy, by Anonymous and F. Legge
In March 2010, we published this examination of the scientific principle of falsifiability in light of U.S. government reports on the WTC destruction. This often-overlooked article is well constructed and provides detail on why the official reports failed to meet some of the most critical requirements of the scientific method.
Letter on the 11th anniversary of 9/11, by Lorie Van Auken
A series of nine letters was published on the tenth anniversary of 9/11. The letters came from leading researchers, activists, and legal experts around the world. Perhaps the most compelling contribution was that of Lorie Van Auken, whose husband Kenneth was killed in the north tower on 9/11.
Letter to the Royal Society from Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth, from the Board of Directors, AE911Truth
In June 2012, we published a letter that was sent from the board of directors of AE911Truth to Paul Nurse, president of the Royal Society in England. The letter emphasized how the official account for what happened at the WTC was in direct contradiction to the laws of motion described by one of the Royal Society’s most famous members—Sir Isaac Newton.
The “Strategy of Tension” in the Cold War Period, by Daniele Ganser
In May 2014, Swiss historian Daniele Ganser contributed this updated version of a previously published article. Dr. Ganser’s article provides important historical perspective for considering what happened on 9/11. His conclusion, based on historical fact, is that objections to U.S. government or military involvement in 9/11 are based on unsupportable, a priori arguments.
These eight papers are just a sampling of the wide-range of peer-reviewed research and commentary available at the Journal of 9/11 Studies. If you want to learn more about that fateful day through an evidence-based approach, the Journal is a great resource. For anyone interested in contributing, we continue to seek out new perspectives that have not yet been expressed. Guidelines for submission are published at the website.
The Truth About Animal Fat: What the Research Shows
The Big Fat Surprise: Why Butter, Meat and Cheese Belong in a Healthy Diet lays out the scientific case why our bodies are healthiest on a diet rich in saturated fat from animal products. Analyzing study after study, Nina Teicholz leaves no doubt that the number one cause of the global epidemic of obesity, diabetes and heart disease is the low fat high carbohydrate diet doctors have been pushing for fifty years.
Blaming the Victim
My initial reaction on learning how the low fat diet became official government policy was to feel ripped off and angry. For decades, the medical establishment has been blaming fat people for being obese, portraying them as weak willed and lacking in self control. It turns out the blame lay squarely with their doctors, the American Heart Association (AHA), the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), Congress and the food manufacturers who fund the AHA (Proctor and Gamble, Nabisco, General Foods, Heinz, Quaker Oats and Corn Products Refining Corporation) for foisting a diet on them that increases appetite and weight gain.
The low fat diet is based on a “theory” put forward in the 1950s that heart disease was caused by elevated cholesterol levels – and a few deeply flawed epidemiological studies. In other words, the low fat diet is a giant human experiment the medical profession conducted on the American public while attempting to prove that saturated animal fats cause heart disease. Fifty years of research would show the exact opposite: not only do low fat high carbohydrate diets increase the risk of cardiac death, but they’re also responsible for a myriad of other health problems, with obesity and diabetes being the most problematic.
The studies Teicholz cites also debunk the myth that animal fat increases the risk of breast and colon cancer.
Heart Attacks Rare Prior to 1900
Coronary artery disease and heart attacks were virtually unknown prior to 1900. When Ancel Keys, the father of the low fat diet, began his anti-fat crusade in the 1950s he claimed that industrialization and an improved standard of living had caused Americans to switch from a plant based diet to a diet that was higher in animal fats. This was total rubbish. Prior to 1900, Americans had always eaten a meat-based diet, in part because wild game was much more plentiful in North America than in Europe. Early cookbooks and diaries reveal that even poor families had meat or fish with every meal. Even slaves had 150 pounds of red meet a year, which contrasts unfavorably with 40-70 pounds of red meat in the current American diet.
What changed in the twentieth century was the introduction of cheaper vegetable fats into the American diet, starting with margarine and Crisco in the early 1900s.
Keys was also responsible for the theory, again without research evidence, that high cholesterol levels cause heart disease. This was also rubbish. Fifty years of research negates any link between either total cholesterol or LDL* cholesterol and heart disease. In study after study the only clear predictor of heart disease is reduced HDL. The same studies show that diets high in animal fats increase HDL, while those high in sugar, carbohydrates and vegetable oils reduce HDL.
Teicholz also discusses the role of statins (cholesterol lowering drugs) in this context. Statins do reduce coronary deaths, but this is due to their anti-inflammatory effect – not because of their effect on cholesterol.
Researchers Silenced and Sidelined
For decades, researchers whose findings linked low fat diets with higher rates of heart disease, cancer, stroke and tooth decay were systematically silenced and sidelined. As frequently happens with doctors and scientists who challenge the powerful health industry, their grants were cut off and, in some cases, their careers destroyed.
For fifty years, the medical establishment simply ignored the growing body of research linking the high sugar/carbohydrate component of the low fat diet to heart disease, as well as those linking vegetable oils to cancer. Vegetable oils oxidize when cooked, leading to the production of cancer causing compounds such as aldehyde, formaldehyde and 4-hydroxnonene (HCN). Unsurprisingly diets in which vegetable oils (other than olive oil) are the primary fat are linked with an increased incidence of cancer. Several studies overseas have found high levels of respiratory cancer in fast food workers exposed to superheated vegetable oils.
The Atkins Diet
The Big Fat Surprise includes a long section on the Atkins diet, a popular high fat/protein low carbohydrate weight reduction diet in the 70s and 80s. The use of a high fat low carbohydrate diet for weight loss dates back to 1862 and was heavily promoted by Sir William Osler in his 1892 textbook of medicine. According to Teicholz, recent controlled studies totally vindicate Dr Robert C Atkins, who was ridiculed as a dangerous quack during his lifetime. They also debunk claims that high levels of protein in the Atkins diet cause kidney damage. In addition to being perfectly safe, controlled studies show it to be extremely effective for weight loss and treating diabetes.
The USDA and AHA Quietly Reverse Themselves
As Teicholz points out in her conclusion, the nutrition researchers who blindly pursued their anti-fat campaign – and politicians and corporate funders who supported them – have done Americans an immense disservice by creating a virtual epidemic of obesity and diabetes.
A few years ago, the tide began to turn, largely due to the 29,000 subject Women’s Health Initiative launched in 1993. In 2013, the USDA and AHA quietly eliminated fat targets from the dietary recommendations. Because they made no real effort to publicize their change of heart, many doctors are still giving their patients the wrong dietary advice and hounding them about their cholesterol levels.
Dump the Skim Milk
The take home lesson from this book is that it’s virtually impossible to eat too many eggs or too much red meat, cheese, sausage and bacon. Americans (and their overseas English-speaking cousins) need to dump the skim milk and margarine down the sink because whole milk and butter are better for you. People need to go back to cooking with lard, bacon drippings and butter. Cooking with vegetable oils can give you cancer.
Anyone with a weight problem needs to totally eliminate sugar and carbohydrate (the Atkins diet recommends less than half a slice of bread a day).
And if your doctor hassles you about your cholesterol tell him or her to read this book.
*LDL (low density lipoprotein) is referred to as “bad cholesterol” due to its alleged link to heart disease. HDL (high density lipoprotein) or “good cholesterol” appears to provide some protective effect against heart disease.
The Secrets of Sugar
The Secrets of Sugar is a Canadian documentary about the conspiracy by the sugar industry and processed food companies to conceal the damaging effects of sugar on human health. For decades, the medical establishment has led us to believe that our intake of animal fat is responsible for soaring rates of obesity, diabetes and heart disease. It turns out the real culprit all along is sugar (see The Big Fat Surprise).
Investigators have uncovered industry documents going back to the 1950s linking excess sugar intake with health problems. In 1972, researcher John Yudkin published the book Pure, White and Deadly about research linking sugar to heart disease. The response by the food industry was a vicious campaign to portray Yudkin as an incompetent quack. This, in turn, led to a thirty-year shutdown of institutional funding for research into sugar’s health effects.
For me, the film’s most shocking revelation was the immense amount of sugar hidden in so- called “healthy” processed foods, such as yoghurt, oatmeal, soup and Healthy Choice frozen dinners. In one segment, a former industry scientist nicknamed “Dr Bliss” explains the importance of the “bliss point,” the quantity of added sugar that makes you crave a particular product.
A close look at product labels suggests they are designed to confuse consumers about the actual sugar content of foods. Meanwhile like the tobacco industry, Food Inc spends billions of dollars lobbying against government (and UN) recommendations for a maximum daily sugar intake and clearer food labeling laws.
For years, doctors and dieticians have been telling us that sugar is bad because of all the “empty” calories. New research indicates sugar acts as a poison, inflicting direct damage on the liver and brain via its impact on insulin production. In addition to studies implicating high sugar intake in obesity, diabetes, heart disease and cancer, others point to its role in the development of Alzheimer’s Disease and polycystic ovarian disease.
Industry scientists interviewed in the film manifest the same “blame the victim” mentality as the tobacco industry. They maintain the responsibility lies with the consumer to choose whether to eat sugar – or to smoke. The filmmakers counter that healthy choices are impossible without good information.
The film follows an obese couple over three weeks, who achieve significant weight loss, as well as reductions in cholesterol and triglycerides, simply by eliminating all processed foods from their diet.
Bad News for Trenberth’s Missing Heat – New Study Finds the Deep Oceans Cooled from 1992 to 2011 and…
… that some of the warming nearer to the surface came from the deep ocean
The paper is Liang et al. (2015) Vertical Redistribution of Oceanic Heat Content. The abstract reads (my emphasis):
Estimated values of recent oceanic heat uptake are of order of a few tenths of a W/m2, and are a very small residual of air-sea exchanges with annual average regional magnitudes of hundreds of W/m2. Using a dynamically consistent state estimate, the redistribution of heat within the ocean is calculated over a 20-year period. The 20-year mean vertical heat flux shows strong variations in both the lateral and vertical directions, consistent with the ocean being a dynamically active and spatially complex heat exchanger. Between mixing and advection, the two processes determining the vertical heat transport in the deep ocean, advection plays a more important role in setting the spatial patterns of vertical heat exchange and its temporal variations. The global integral of vertical heat flux shows an upward heat transport in the deep ocean, suggesting a cooling trend in the deep ocean. These results support an inference that the near-surface thermal properties of the ocean are a consequence, at least in part, of internal redistributions of heat, some of which must reflect water that has undergone long trajectories since last exposure to the atmosphere. The small residual heat exchange with the atmosphere today is unlikely to represent the interaction with an ocean that was in thermal equilibrium at the start of global warming. An analogy is drawn with carbon-14 “reservoir ages” which range over hundreds to a thousand years.
A preprint edition of the paper is here. The paper is full of memorable quotes, including (my emphasis):
An upward heat transport in the deep ocean may appear to be in conflict with the widespread idea that a large portion of the extra heat added to the Earth system in the past decades should be transported into the deep ocean (e.g. Fig. 1 in Stocker et al. 2013). That inference is based on the assumption that the ocean was in equilibrium with the atmosphere before any extra heat entered. When interpreting measurements of the ocean heat content, it is often assumed that the disturbances arise only from the recent past. However, as emphasized by Wunsch and Heimbach (2014) and the present analysis, the long integration times in the ocean circulation imply an observed response involving the time history of the circulation over hundreds of years, at least.
And contrary to climate models:
Furthermore the ocean, far from being a passive reservoir filled and emptied by the atmosphere, is a dynamically active, turbulent element of a coupled system.
And keeping in mind that Balmaseda et al. (2013) was one of the papers that claimed to have found part, but not all, of Trenberth’s “missing heat”:
Global average cooling in the deep ocean conflicts with some previous ocean heat content estimates (e.g. Balmaseda et al. 2013), but is consistent with the long thermal memory of the ocean, and with other recent studies (e.g. Durack et al. 2014; Llovel et al. 2014).
For more on Balmaseda et al. (2013) and Trenberth’s “missing heat”, see:
- Trenberth Still Searching for Missing Heat
- More On Trenberth’s Missing Heat
- Even More About Trenberth’s Missing Heat – An Eye Opening Comment by Roger Pielke Sr.
[My thanks to Judith Curry, who included a link to Liang et al. (2015) in her recent Week In Review dated March 13, 2015.]
The United States has a passion for pills, being the world’s biggest users of psychotropic drugs, consuming 60 per cent of them. And pharmaceutical firms are keen to keep cashing in on the multibillion-dollar market, even if it costs people’s health.
America is regarded as a country with a prodigious appetite for consumption. Today, a widespread fondness for pharmaceuticals has turned the US into a nation of pill-poppers.
With over $14 billion in annual sales, antipsychotics remain the top-selling therapeutic class of prescription drugs in the US.
Dr. Harriet Fraad believes Big Pharma has manufactured a climate of insanity by manipulating and even creating illness for capital gain.
“One of the things that drives Big Pharma is to find a diagnosis that is very vague, so that everybody can fall into that,” she told RT. “Everybody is sad sometimes. There are good reasons. The point is to market pharmaceuticals. And the advertising strategy is to have vague diagnosis and then find wiggle room so that they apply to everyone.”
The US is the only Western country that allows direct-to-consumer advertising of prescription drugs. For example, an ad for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder warns that untreated patients will likely end up divorced. Another commercial promises to make you happier, but side-effects may include dry mouth, insomnia, sexual dysfunction, diarrhea, nausea and sleepiness.”
Critics also say Big Pharma uses its financial muscle to ply doctors with gifts, cash kick-backs and research funding in exchange for endorsing or prescribing the latest and most lucrative drugs.
Harriet Fraad says there is a whole network of doctors hustling these drugs.
“If a patient comes in with a knee injury and says, ‘I’m so sad.’ Oh, are you depressed? Hey write a prescription! They’re given out like M&Ms.”
Last year, prescription drug abuse became the number one cause of accidental death, with more than 30,000 Americans overdosing.
For instance, Seroquel, medication for bi-polar disorder, generated $4.4 billion in sales last year.Listing all its side-effects requires 49 seconds of air-time.
The number of children consuming antipsychotic medication has doubled in the past decade. Millions of American adolescents are taking drugs like Adderall, doled out by doctors to treat hyperactivity.
Author of Surviving America’s Depression Epidemic, psychologist Bruce Levine, told RT that, “All these drugs are very similar to illicit or illegal drugs, except they’re more dangerous. Marijuana is a little safer. But kids have no choice.”
Pfizer, America’s most profitable multinational pharmaceutical company makes anti-depressants not only for people, but also for animals. In 2009, the pharmaceutical giant paid $2.3 billion to settle civil and criminal allegations over illegally marketing one of its drugs. It was the largest healthcare fraud settlement and criminal fine in US history.That being said, the fine amounted to less than three weeks of Pfizer’s drug sales.
“The money is so huge that the fines are immaterial. They’re not thinking about the social effects of what they’re doing. They’re thinking about the profits they accrue,” says psychotherapist Harriet Fraad.
The pharmaceutical industry remains the most profitable business in the US. More success and financial gain for the companies will always remain possible as long as more Americans are encouraged to take drugs.
Once you tug on the thread of undisclosed financial interests in climate science, you’ll find it more a norm than exception. – Roger Pielke Jr (tweet)
I started working on this post last week, in response to the Willie Soon imbroglio. This whole issue has now become personal.
In case you haven’t been following this, Justin Gillis broke the story on Willie Soon with this article Deeper Ties to Corporate Cash for Doubtful Climate Researcher. The Smithsonian issued the following statement on the issue of Soon’s funding and apparent failure to disclose this funding in journal publications. Science Magazine has a summary [here] and Nature has a summary [here].
The ‘plot’ thickened yesterday, as Arizona Congressman Raul Grijalva (Democrat) Asks for Conflict-of-Interest Disclosures from GOP’s Go-To Climate Witnesses [link]. Excerpts:
The conflict-of-interest scandal involving a climate denier secretly funded by the fossil-fuel industry is spreading to other academics who oppose regulation of climate pollution. A top House Democrat has issued letters asking several researchers who have appeared as Republican witnesses before Congress questioning climate science to disclose their funding sources.
“I am hopeful that disclosure of a few key pieces of information will establish the impartiality of climate research and policy recommendations published in your institution’s name and assist me and my colleagues in making better law,” Grijalva wrote. “Companies with a direct financial interest in climate and air quality standards are funding environmental research that influences state and federal regulations and shapes public understanding of climate science. These conflicts should be clear to stakeholders, including policymakers who use scientific information to make decisions. My colleagues and I cannot perform our duties if research or testimony provided to us is influenced by undisclosed financial relationships.”
The letters request the institutions’ disclosure policies, drafts and communications relating to Congressional testimony, and sources of external funding for the academics in question.
The disclosure requests are needed because Congressional “truth in testimony” rules require witnesses to disclose government funding sources, but not private or corporate funding. Under Republican control, the rules are unevenly implemented, with not-for-profit witnesses required to submit pages of additional disclosures, while corporate-sector witnesses are not.
The seven academics who dispute the scientific consensus on anthropogenic global warming who have been asked to disclose their funding are:
David Legates, John Christy, Judith Curry, Richard Lindzen, Robert Balling, Roger Pielke Jr., Steven Hayward.
A copy of the letter from Grijalva that was sent to President Peterson of Georgia Tech is [here].
An article in ClimateWire provides additional context [link].
Skip to JC reflections for my punch line.
Conflict in scientific publication
Conflict of interest related to industry funding is a very big issue in biomedical research (related to drug and food safety) and also related to environmental contaminants. It isn’t a big issue in other scientific fields. Apart from expecting scientists to describe funding sources in the Acknowledgements, many journals don’t even have any conflict of interest disclosure requirements.
For those journals that do have such requirements, the requirements for disclosure are vastly different. As examples:
Nature : In the interests of transparency and to help readers to form their own judgements of potential bias, Nature journals require authors to declare to the editors any competing financial interests in relation to the work described. The corresponding author is responsible for submitting a competing financial interests statement on behalf of all authors of the paper. Authors submitting their manuscripts using the journal’s online manuscript tracking system are required to make their declaration as part of this process and to specify the competing interests in cases where they exist. The definition of conflict of interest relates to funding sources, employment, and personal financial interests.
Science : Science goes further with this statement: Management/Advisory affiliations: Within the last 3 years, status as an officer, a member of the Board, or a member of an Advisory Committee of any entity engaged in activity related to the subject matter of this contribution. Please disclose the nature of these relationships and the financial arrangements. Within the last 3 years, receipt of consulting fees, honoraria, speaking fees, or expert testimony fees from entities that have a financial interest in the results and materials of this study.
Wow. I haven’t published anything in Science in recent years (and never as a first author). So, all those scientists serving on Boards of green advocacy groups [Climate Scientists Joining Green Advocacy Groups] who publish in Science on any environmental or climate change topic should be declaring a conflict of interest.
So, once an author of a climate change paper declares a conflict of interest, what is that supposed to mean? An article in Science Magazine addresses this issue:
Conflict-of-interest controversies are rare in her field, she notes, and “they can be tricky.” Conflict is often in the eye of the beholder, she says, and researchers often accept all kinds of funding that doesn’t necessarily skew their peer-reviewed publications. “I’m for full disclosure,” she says, “but I’m not sure how we’re going to address this.” The journal, published by Elsevier, asks authors to fill out a conflict-of-interest disclosure. But Strangeway admits he’s never carefully examined one—and isn’t sure what he’s supposed to do if he sees a red flag. “We wouldn’t be raising the journal issue if [Soon] had simply disclosed Southern’s support,” he says.
Scientific journals are being alerted by watchdog groups to fossil fuel funding of contrarian climate studies [link]. Are we not to be concerned by fossil fuel funding of consensus climate science (there is plenty of that, see below)? Are we not to be concerned by funding from green advocacy groups and scientists serving on the Boards of green advocacy groups?
DeSmog surprised me with this article: How often were Willie Soon’s Industry-funded Deliverables Were Referenced by the IPCC? I was surprised to find that published journal papers with ties to industry made it into the IPCC, to counter all those gray literature articles by Greenpeace et al.
So, in climate science, what is the point of conflict of interest disclosure? Bishop Hill sums it up this way:
As far as I can see, the story is that Soon and three co-authors published a paper on climate sensitivity. At the same time (or perhaps in the past – this being a smear-job it’s hard to get at the facts) he was being funded to do work on things like the solar influence on climate by people that greens feel are the baddies. They and the greens feel he should have disclosed that baddies were paying him to do stuff on a paper that was not funded by the baddies.
The issue is this. The intense politicization of climate science makes bias more likely to be coming from political and ideological perspectives than from funding sources. Unlike research related to food and drug safety and environmental contaminants, most climate science is easily replicable using publicly available data sets and models. So all this IMO is frankly a red herring in the field of climate science research.
Bottom line: Scientists, pay attention to conflict of interest guidelines for journals to which you are submitting papers. Select journals that have COI disclosure requirements that are consistent with your comfort level.
Conflict in Testimony
The HillHeat article provides links to the relevant testimony by the 7 individuals (see original article for actual links):
- David Legates, Department of Agricultural Economics & Statistics, University of Delaware climatologist (6/3/14, 7/29/03, 3/13/02)
- John Christy, University of Alabama atmospheric scientist (12/11/13, 9/20/12, 8/1/12, 3/31/11, 3/8/11, 2/25/09, 7/27/06 (video), 5/13/03, 5/2/01, 5/17/00, 7/10/97)
- Judith Curry, Georgia Institute of Technology climatologist (1/16/14, 4/25/13, 11/17/10)
- Richard Lindzen, Massachusetts Institute of Technology atmospheric physicist (11/17/10, 5/2/01, 7/10/97, 1991 (Senate), 10/8/91)
- Robert C Balling Jr, Arizona State University geographer (3/6/96; North Carolina Legislature 3/20/06)
- Roger Pielke Jr, University of Colorado political scientist (12/11/13, 7/18/13, 3/8/11, 5/16/07, 1/30/07 (video), 7/20/06, 3/13/02)
- Steven Hayward, School of Public Policy, Pepperdine University historian (5/25/11, 10/7/09, 4/22/09, 3/12/09, 3/17/99)
HOLD ON. The article ‘forgot’ to reference my earlier testimony for the Democrats in 2006, 2007:
- House Committee on Govt Reform, “Hurricanes and Global Warming,” 7/20/06 [link]
- House Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming, “Dangerous Climate Change,” 4/26/07 [link]
I can see that this earlier testimony is ‘inconvenient’ to their argument.
When you testify, you are required to include a financial disclosure related to your government funding. Presumably this is relevant if you are testifying with relation to performance by a government agency. There is no disclosure requirement that is relevant to individuals from industry or advocacy groups, or for scientists receiving funding from industry or advocacy groups.
To clarify my own funding, I have included the following statement of financial interests at the end of my testimony:
Funding sources for Curry’s research have included NSF, NASA, NOAA, DOD and DOE. Recent contracts for CFAN include a DOE contract to develop extended range regional wind power forecasts and a DOD contract to predict extreme events associated with climate variability/change having implications for regional stability. CFAN contracts with private sector and other non-governmental organizations include energy and power companies, reinsurance companies, other weather service providers, NGOs and development banks. Specifically with regards to the energy and power companies, these contracts are for medium-range (days to weeks) forecasts of hurricane activity and landfall impacts. CFAN has one contract with an energy company that also includes medium-range forecasts of energy demand (temperature), hydropower generation, and wind power generation. CFAN has not received any funds from energy companies related to climate change or any topic related to this testimony.
I note that during congressional questioning, I was never asked anything about my funding sources.
Again, I think that biases in testimony related to climate change are more likely to be ideological and political than related to funding.
So what is the point of asking for detailed financial information (including travel) from these academic researchers?
Intimidation and harassment is certainly one reason that comes to mind. Roger Pielke Jr seems to think this is the case, as described in his blog post I am Under Investigation:
I have no funding, declared or undeclared, with any fossil fuel company or interest. I never have. Representative Grijalva knows this too, because when I have testified before the US Congress, I have disclosed my funding and possible conflicts of interest. So I know with complete certainty that this investigation is a politically-motivated “witch hunt” designed to intimidate me (and others) and to smear my name.
The relevant issue to my mind is to expect non-normative testimony from academic researchers. I discussed this issue on a previous blog post Congressional testimony and normative science. Consensus climate scientists routinely present normative testimony, along the lines of ‘urgent mitigation action needed’. On the other hand, I personally work to make my testimony non-normative, and I would judge Christy’s and Pielke Jr’s testimony to be generally non-normative also (note Christy and Pielke Jr are the two on the list of 7 that I know best).
The issue of concern of Congressman Grijalva is funding from the Koch brothers and fossil fuel companies somehow contaminating Congressional testimony from scientists invited by Republicans to testify.
The reality is that fossil fuel money is all over climate research, whether pro or con AGW. Gifts of $100M+ have been made by oil companies to Stanford and Princeton. Anthony Watts notes the prominence of oil companies in funding the American Geophysical Union [link]. The Sierra Club and the Nature Conservancy take fossil fuel money [link]. The UKMetOffice has stated that energy companies are major customers.
NRO has an article Follow the Money, excerpt:
In truth, the overwhelming majority of climate-research funding comes from the federal government and left-wing foundations. And while the energy industry funds both sides of the climate debate, the government/foundation monies go only toward research that advances the warming regulatory agenda. With a clear public-policy outcome in mind, the government/foundation gravy train is a much greater threat to scientific integrity.
With federal research funding declining in many areas, academics at universities are being encouraged to obtain funding from industry.
I have to say I was pretty intrigued by Soon’s funding from the Southern Company. Southern Company (SoCo) provides power to Georgia. Georgia Power (a SoCo subsidiary) has provided considerable funding to Georgia Tech (although I have never received any). For most of the time that I was Chair, the School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences had an endowed Chair from Georgia Power. When the faculty member left Georgia Tech, I chose not to hire a replacement, since I felt that my faculty hiring funds would be more productively used on younger faculty members in different research areas. I also note that one of my faculty members received funds from Georgia Power that was a ‘charitable donation’, without overhead and without deliverables. I also ‘heard’ that Southern Company/Georgia was very unhappy with the Webster et al. 2005 paper on hurricanes [link]. Note, I have received no funding from SoCo/GaPower.
My first reaction to this was to tweet: Looks like I am next up in this ‘witch hunt’. My subsequent reactions have been slowed by a massive headache (literally; cause and effect?)
It looks like it is ‘open season’ on anyone who deviates even slightly from the consensus. The political motivations of all this are apparent from barackobama.com: Call Out The Climate Deniers.
It is much easier for a scientist just to ‘go along’ with the consensus. In a recent interview, as yet unpublished, I was asked: I’ve seen some instances where you have been called a “denier” when it comes to climate change, I am just curious as to your opinion on that? My reply:
As a scientist, I am an independent thinker, and I draw my own conclusions about the evidence regarding climate change. My conclusions, particularly my assessments of high levels of uncertainty, differ from the ‘consensus’ of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Why does this difference in my own assessment relative to the IPCC result in my being labeled a ‘denier’? Well, the political approach to motivate action on climate change has been to ‘speak consensus to power’, which seems to require marginalizing and denigrating anyone who disagrees. The collapse of the consensus regarding cholesterol and heart disease reminds us that for scientific progress to occur, scientists need to continually challenge and reassess the evidence and the conclusions drawn from the evidence.
Well, the burden is on Georgia Tech to come up with all of the requested info. Georgia Tech has a very stringent conflict of interest policy, and I have worked closely in the past with the COI office to manage any conflicts related to my company. Apart from using up valuable resources at Georgia Tech to respond to this, there is no burden on me.
Other than an emotional burden. This is the first time I have been ‘attacked’ in a substantive way for doing my science honestly and speaking up about it. Sure, anonymous bloggers go after me, but I have received no death threats via email, no dead rats delivered to my door step, etc.
I think Grijalva has made a really big mistake in doing this. I am wondering on what authority Grijalva is demanding this information? He is ranking minority member of a committee before which I have never testified. Do his colleagues in the Democratic Party support his actions? Are they worried about backlash from the Republicans, in going after Democrat witnesses?
I don’t think anything good will come of this. I anticipate that Grijalva will not find any kind of an undisclosed fossil fuel smoking gun from any of the 7 individuals under investigation. There is already one really bad thing that has come of this – Roger Pielke Jr has stated:
The incessant attacks and smears are effective, no doubt, I have already shifted all of my academic work away from climate issues. I am simply not initiating any new research or papers on the topic and I have ring-fenced my slowly diminishing blogging on the subject. I am a full professor with tenure, so no one need worry about me — I’ll be just fine as there are plenty of interesting, research-able policy issues to occupy my time. But I can’t imagine the message being sent to younger scientists. Actually, I can: “when people are producing work in line with the scientific consensus there’s no reason to go on a witch hunt.”
“More than 50 conditions can cause or mimic the symptoms of dementia.” and “Alzheimer’s (can only be) distinguished from other dementias at autopsy.” – from a Harvard University Health Publication entitled What’s Causing Your Memory Loss? It Isn’t Necessarily Alzheimer’s
“Medications have now emerged as a major cause of mitochondrial damage, which may explain many adverse effects. All classes of psychotropic drugs have been documented to damage mitochondria, as have statin medications, analgesics such as acetaminophen, and many others.” – Neustadt and Pieczenik, authors of Medication-induced Mitochondrial Damage and Disease
“Establishing mitochondrial toxicity is not an FDA requirement for drug approval, so there is no real way of knowing which agents are truly toxic.” – Dr. Katherine Sims, Mass General Hospital -http://www.mitoaction.org
“It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!” – Upton Sinclair, anti-fascist, anti-imperialist American author who wrote in the early 20thcentury
“No vaccine manufacturer shall be liable… for damages arising from a vaccine-related injury or death.” – President Ronald Reagan, as he signed The National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act (NCVIA) of 1986, absolving drug companies from all medico-legal liability when children die or are disabled from vaccine injuries.
Over the past several decades there have been a number of well-financed campaigns, promoted by well-meaning laypersons, to raise public awareness to the plight of patients with dementia. Suspiciously, most of these campaigns that come from “patient support” groups lead the public to believe that every dementia patient has Alzheimer’s dementia (AD).
Not so curiously, it turns out that many – perhaps all – of these campaigns have been funded – usually secretly – by the very pharmaceutical companies that benefit economically by indirectly promoting the sale of so-called Alzheimer’s drugs. Such corporate-generated public relations “campaigns” are standard operating procedure for all of BigPharma drugs, especially its psychopharmaceutical drugs. BigPharma has found that the promotion and de-stigmatization of so-called “mental illnesses” (for which there are FDA-approved drugs) is a great tool for marketing their drugs.
Recently Alzheimer’s support groups all around the nation have been sponsoring the documentary about country singer Glen Campbell who has recently been diagnosed by his physicians with Alzheimer’s disease (of unknown etiology) despite the obvious fact that Campbell was infamous for his chronic heavy use of brain-damaging, dementia-inducing, addicting, and very neurotoxic drugs like cocaine and alcohol. And, just like so many other hard-living celebrities like the recently suicidal Robin Williams, Campbell was known to have received prescriptions of legal drugs from their prescribing boutique psychiatrists and physicians, just adding to the burden that their failing livers, brains and psyches had to endure.
Since it is known that Alzheimer’s disease can only be truly diagnosed by a microscopic examination of the cerebral cortex (at autopsy), we have to question the very alive Glen Campbell’s diagnosis. And we also have to question the veracity and motivations of the sponsoring patient support groups and their BigPharma sponsors.
Is the Alzheimer’s Epidemic Actually a Drug-Induced Dementia Epidemic?
Synchronous with the huge increases (over the past generation or so) in
1) the incidence of childhood and adult vaccinations,
2) the widespread use of psychotropic and statin (cholesterol-lowering) drug use, and
3) the increased ingestion of a variety of neurotoxic substances – including food additives, there has been a large parallel increase in the incidence of
a) chronic illnesses of childhood, including autistic spectrum disorders,
b) “mental illnesses of unknown origin”, and also
c) dementia, a multifactorial reality which, via clever marketing and the studied ignorance of what is scientifically known about the actual causes – and diagnosis – of dementia, which has been primarily – and mistakenly – referred to as Alzheimer’s disease (of unknown etiology).
It is important to ask and then demand an honest answer to the question “could there be a connection between America’s increasingly common over-prescribing of immunotoxic, neurotoxic, synthetic prescription drugs and vaccines and some of the neurodegenerative disorders that supposedly “have no known cause”?
Could the economically disabling American epidemic of autoimmune disorders, psychiatric disorders, autism spectrum disorders, etc (all supposedly of unknown origin) that have erupted over the past several decades be found to have recognizable root causes and therefore be treatable and, most importantly, preventable?
These are extremely important questions, especially in the case of the current dementia epidemic, because the so-called Alzheimer’s patient support groups seem to be totally unaware of the powerful evidence that prescription drugs known to damage brain cells (especially by poisoning their mitochondria) would be expected to cause a variety of neurological and psychological disorders because of the brain cell death that eventually happens when enough of the mitochondria (the microscopic hearts and lungs of every cell) have been wounded irretrievably or killed off. (See more info on drugs and mitochondria below.)
One of the big problems in America’s corporate-controlled culture, corporate-controlled media and corporate-controlled medical industries is that the giant pharmaceutical corporations, who are in the business of developing, marketing and selling known mitochondrial toxins (in the form of their drugs and vaccine ingredients) have a special interest in pretending that there is no known cause for the disorders that their synthetic chemicals are causing (or they use the unprovable “it’s probably genetic” subterfuge).
It should be a concern of everybody who knows a demented patient, that some AD patient support groups are known to be front groups for the pharmaceutical companies that profit from the marketing to patients and their doctors the disappointingly ineffective drugs for Alzheimer’s like Aricept, Exelon, Namenda, Hexalon, and Razadyne.
Prescription Drug-Induced – and Vaccine-Induced – Mitochondrial Disorders
Acquired mitochondrial disorders (as opposed to the relatively rare primary mitochondrial disorders like muscular dystrophy) that can be caused by commonly prescribed drugs are difficult to diagnose and are generally poorly understood by most practitioners. When I went to med school, nobody knew anything about what synthetic drugs or vaccines did to the mitochondria.
A lot of mitochondrial research, especially since the 1990s, has proven the connections between a variety of commonly prescribed medications and mitochondrial disorders. That evidence seems to have been cunningly covered-up by the for-profit pharma groups (who control medical education and much of the media) and various other powers-that-be because of the serious economic consequences if the information was allowed in the popular press. The stake-holders in the pharmaceutical and medical industries, most of whom profit mightily from the routine and increasing usage of neurotoxic drugs and vaccines, supposedly operating in the name of Hippocrates, would be very displeased if this information got out. I submit that BigPharma’s cover-up of the connections is totally unethical and, in the opinion of many other whistleblowers, criminal.
An Honest Patient Guide for Dementia Patients from Harvard!
So I was pleasantly surprised to find a reasonably honest guide for dementia patients on a Harvard University website.
(The entire guide can be accessed at http://www.helpguide.org/harvard/whats-causing-your-memory-loss.htm#top.)
The information at that website stated that there were over 50 conditions that could cause or mimic early dementia symptoms. I hadn’t been taught anything about that reality when I went to med school, and I doubt that many of my physician colleagues were either. And besides, what medical practitioner in our double-booked clinic environment, even if he or she was aware, has the time to thoroughly rule out the 50 conditions when confronted with a patient with memory loss?
I have often said to my patients and my seminar participants: “it takes only 2 minutes to write a prescription, but it takes 20 minutes to not write a prescription”. And in the current for-profit clinic culture, time is money and few physicians are given the “luxury” of spending adequate time with their patients. (In defense of the physicians that I know, they are not happy about that reality but don’t know what to do about it.)
It is so tempting to use the popularized, but rather squishy label of AD (of unknown etiology) rather than to educate ourselves about the possibility of drug- or vaccine-induced dementia. But what is so important is that many of the 50+ conditions are preventable or reversible, which will be therapeutic only if the conditions are identified before permanent brain damage occurs.
The Harvard guide actually said that “medications are common culprits in mental decline. With aging, the liver becomes less efficient at metabolizing drugs, and the kidneys eliminate them from the body more slowly. As a result, drugs tend to accumulate in the body. Elderly people in poor health and those taking several different medications are especially vulnerable.”
The guide continued with a list of the possible classes of prescription drugs that number in the hundreds:
“The list of drugs that can cause dementia-like symptoms is long. It includes antidepressants, antihistamines, anti-Parkinson drugs, anti-anxiety medications, cardiovascular drugs, anticonvulsants, corticosteroids, narcotics, sedatives.”
The Harvard guide went on to emphasize that Alzheimer’s can only be accurately diagnosed on a post-mortem examination. The guide states that “Alzheimer’s is distinguished from other dementias at autopsy by the presence of sticky beta-amyloid plaques outside brain cells (neurons) and fibrillary tangles within neurons (all indicative of cellular death). Although such lesions may be present in any aging brain, in people with Alzheimer’s these lesions tend to be more numerous and accumulate in areas of the brain involved in learning and memory.”
“The leading theory is that the damage to the brain results from inflammation and other biological changes that cause synaptic loss and malfunction, disrupting communication between brain cells. Eventually the brain cells die, causing tissue loss In imaging scans, brain shrinkage is usually first noticeable in the hippocampus, which plays a central role in memory function.”
But even the Harvard guide inexplicably failed to mention known mitochondrial toxins such as statin drugs, metformin, Depakote, general anesthetics, fluoroquinolone antibiotics, fluorinated psychotropic drugs, NutraSweet (every molecule of aspartame, when it reaches 86 degrees F, releases one molecule of the excitotoxin aspartic acid and one molecule of methanol [wood alcohol] which metabolizes into the known mitochondrial poison formaldehyde [embalming fluid]), pesticides (including the chlorinated artificial sweetener Splenda, which was initially developed as a pesticide) or the mercury (thimerosal), aluminum and formaldehyde which are common ingredients in vaccines. These are only some of the synthetic drugs that are capable of causing mitochondrial damage in brain cells – with memory loss, confusion and cognitive dysfunction, all early symptoms of dementia.
It is tragic, but all–too-common, for reversible and preventable drug-induced dementias (therefore of known cause and thus not Alzheimer’s) to be mis-diagnosed as Alzheimer’s disease “of unknown etiology” and to then be prescribed costly, essentially ineffective and potentially toxic drugs – whose mitochondrial toxicities have not been tested for.
(The pharmaceutical industry, it should be noted, is not required by the FDA to test its drugs for mitochondrial toxicity when it is doing its studies for marketing approval, again exhibiting the total disdain for the Precautionary Principle by both industry and the regulatory agencies such as the FDA, the CDC and WHO.)
There is much more in the basic neuroscience literature proving the connections, at least from authors who do not have conflicts of interest with BigPharma and BigMedicine. The authors of these articles have raised the questions and have published the proof that concerned families of patients and their physicians desperately need to know.
Don’t expect BigPharma to respond or to offer apologies or mea culpas. Do expect denials, dismissals, distractions, discrediting and then the delaying of real legitimate explorations of the real scientific evidence that exposes its subterfuge in the name of maintaining large profits for their stakeholders.
Here are the abstracts from just two of the many peer-reviewed articles from various science journals that support the thesis of this column.
Medication-induced mitochondrial damage and disease
Published in the Molecular Nutrition and Food Research journal ; 2008 Jul;52(7):780-8.
Authors: Neustadt, J, Pieczenik SR.
Mitochondrial Dysfunction and Psychiatric Disorders
From: The Journal of Neurochemical Research 2009 Jun;34(6):1021-9.
Mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation is the major ATP-producing pathway, which supplies more than 95% of the total energy requirement in the cells. Damage to the mitochondrial electron transport chain has been suggested to be an important factor in the pathogenesis of a range of psychiatric disorders. Tissues with high energy demands, such as the brain, contain a large number of mitochondria, being therefore more susceptible to reduction of the aerobic metabolism. Mitochondrial dysfunction results from alterations in biochemical cascade and the damage to the mitochondrial electron transport chain has been suggested to be an important factor in the pathogenesis of a range of (so-called) neuropsychiatric disorders, such as (psychotropic drug-treated) bipolar disorder, depression and schizophrenia….Alterations of mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation in (anti-psychotic drug-treated) schizophrenia have been reported in several brain regions and also in platelets. Abnormal mitochondrial morphology, size and density have all been reported in the brains of (anti-psychotic drug-treated) schizophrenic individuals. Considering that several studies link energy impairment to neuronal death, neurodegeneration and disease, this review article discusses energy impairment as a mechanism underlying the pathophysiology of some psychiatric disorders, like (psychotropic drug-treated) bipolar disorder, depression and schizophrenia.
Dr Kohls is a retired physician who practiced holistic mental health care for the last decade of his career, and took seriously the Hippocratic Oath that he swore when he received his medical degree. He is also a peace and justice advocate and writes a weekly column for the Reader Weekly, an alternative newsweekly published in Duluth, Minnesota, USA. The last three years of Dr Kohls’ columns are archived at http://duluthreader.com/articles/categories/200_Duty_to_Warn.
The United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) was set up by the United Nations in 1988 and has been trying very hard to demonstrate the threat of a dangerous human influence on climate due to the emission of greenhouse gases. This is in line with their Charter, which directs the IPCC to assemble reports in support of the Global Climate Treaty — the 1992 Framework Convention on Climate Change (FCCC) of Rio de Janeiro.
It is interesting that IPCC “evidence” was based on peer-reviewed publications – but (reluctantly) abandoned only after protracted critiques from outside scientists. E-mails among members of the IPCC team, revealed in the 2009 ‘Climategate’ leak, describe their strenuous efforts to silence such critiques, often using unethical methods.
I will show here that the first three IPCC assessment reports contain erroneous scientific arguments, which have never been retracted or formally corrected, but at least have now been abandoned by the IPCC — while the last two reports, AR4 and AR5, use an argument that seems to be circular and does not support their conclusion. Australian Prof. “Bob” Carter, marine geologist and paleo-climatologist, refers to IPCC as using “hocus-pocus” science. He is a co-author of the latest (2013) NIPCC (Non-governmental International Panel on Climate Change) report “Climate Change Reconsidered-II” www.climatechangereconsidered.org . We also co-authored a critique of the 2013 IPCC-AR5 Summary.
1. IPCC-AR1 (1990)
This first report of the IPCC bases its entire claim for AGW on the fact that both CO2 and surface temperatures increased during the 20th century — although not in lock-step. They assign the major warming of 1910 to 1940 to a human influence — based on a peer-reviewed paper by BD Santer and TML Wigley, which uses a very strange statistical argument. But the basis of their statistics has been critiqued (by Tsonis and Swanson) — and I have demonstrated empirically elsewhere that their conclusion does not hold.
While this faulty paper has never been retracted, it is now no longer quoted as evidence by the IPCC — nor accepted by the overwhelming majority of IPCC scientists: Most if not all warming of the early 20th century is due to natural, not human causes.
2. IPCC AR2 (1996)
This report devotes a whole chapter, #8, to “Attribution and Detection.” Its main feature is what one might call the “invention” of the “Hotspot,” i.e. an enhanced warming trend in the tropical troposphere — never actually observed.
Unfortunately, the “evidence,” as presented by BD Santer, was published only after the IPCC report itself appeared; it contains two fundamental errors. The first error was to argue that the Hotspot is a “fingerprint” of human influence — and specifically, related to an increase in greenhouse gases. This is not true. The Hotspot, according to all model calculations, is simply an atmospheric amplification of a surface trend, a consequence of the physics of the tropical atmosphere.
[Technically speaking, it is caused by increased convective activity whereby cumulus clouds carry latent heat from the surface of the tropical ocean into the upper troposphere. In other words, the Hotspot is not human-caused, but arises from a “moist-adiabatic lapse rate” of the atmosphere. This effect is discussed in most meteorological textbooks and is widely accepted.]
How then did AR2 conclude that a Hotspot exists observationally? This is the second issue: The IPCC selected a short interval in the atmospheric temperature record that showed an increase — while the general trend was one of cooling. In other words, they cherry-picked their data to invent a Hotspot — as pointed out in a subsequent publication by PJ Michaels and PC Knappenberger [see graph below]
The matter of the existence of a Hotspot in the actual tropical troposphere has been the topic of lively debate ever since. On the one hand, DH Douglass, JR Christy, BD Pearson and SF Singer, demonstrated absence of a Hotspot empirically while Santer (and 17[!] IPCC coauthors), publishing in the same journal, argued the opposite. This issue now seems to have been finally settled, as discussed by Singer in two papers in Energy & Environment [2011 and 2013].
It is worth noting that a US government report [CCSP-SAP-1.1 (2006)] showed absence of a Hotspot in the tropics (Chapter 5, BD Santer, lead author). But the report’s Executive Summary managed to obfuscate this result by referring to global atmosphere rather than tropical.
It is also worth noting that while the IPCC-AR2 used the Hotspot invention to argue that the “balance of evidence suggest a human influence,” later IPCC reports no longer use the Hotspot argument.
Nevertheless, one consequence of this unfortunate phrase in AR2 has been the adoption of the Kyoto Protocol, an international treaty to limit emissions of greenhouse gases. Even though Kyoto expired in 2012, it has managed to waste hundreds of billions of dollars so far — and continues to distort energy policies with uneconomic schemes in most industrialized nations.
3. IPCC AR3 (2001)
AR3 attributes global warming to human influences based on the “Hockey-Stick” graph, using published papers by Michael Mann, derived from his analysis of multi-proxy data. The hockeystick graph [bottom graph below] claims that the 20th century showed unusually rapid warming — and thus suggests a strong human influence. The graph also does away with the well-established Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice Age, which were shown in earlier IPCC reports [see top graph below].
It was soon found that the Hockeystick graph was in error and did not deserve continued reliance. Canadian statisticians Steven McIntyre and Ross McKitrick demonstrated errors in Mann’s statistical analysis and in the use of certain tree-ring data for calibration. In fact, they showed that Mann’s algorithm would generate a Hockeystick graph — even if the input data was pure noise. [I served as a reviewer for M&M’s initial paper in Energy & Environment 2003.]
It is worth noting that the IPCC no longer uses the Hockeystick to support human-caused warming, even though AR3 still claims to be at least 66% certain that greenhouse-gas emissions are responsible for 20th century warming.
4. IPCC-AR4 (2007) and AR5 (2013)
Both reports use essentially the same faulty argument in their attempt to support their conclusion of human-caused global warming. Their first step is to construct a model that tries to match the reported 20th-century surface warming. This is not very difficult; it is essentially a ‘curve-fitting’ exercise: By selecting the right level of climate sensitivity and the right amount of aerosol forcing, they can match the reported temperature rise of the final decades of the 20th century, but not the initial decades — as becomes evident from a detailed graph in their Attribution chapter. This lack of agreement is due to the fact that their models ignore major forcings — both from variations of solar activity and from changes in ocean circulation.They then use the following trick. They re-plot their model graph, but without an increase in greenhouse gases; this absence of forcing now generates a gap between the reported warming and unforced model. Then they turn around and argue that this gap must be due to an increase in greenhouse gases. It appears to me that this argument may be circular. Even if the reported late-20th-century surface warming really exists (it is absent from the satellite and radiosonde records), the IPCC argument is not convincing.
It is ironic, however, that IPCC claims increasing certainty (at 90% in AR4 and at least 95% in AR5) for an attribution to human causes, which appears to be contrived. Additionally, while AR4 calculates a Climate Sensitivity (for a doubling of CO2) of 2.0 – 4.5 degC, AR5 expands the uncertainty interval to 1.5 – 4.5 degC. So much for the claim of increased certainty in the IPCC-AR5 Summary.
Yet, while claiming increased certainty about manmade global warming, both reports essentially ignore the absence of any surface warming trend since about 1998. Of course, they also ignore absence of any significant warming in the troposphere, ocean record, and proxy data during the crucial preceding (1979-1997) interval.
In spite of much effort, the IPCC has never succeeded in demonstrating that climate change is significantly affected by human activities — and in particular, by the emission of greenhouse gases. Over the last 25 years, their supporting arguments have shifted drastically — and are shown to be worthless. It appears more than likely that climate change is controlled by variations in solar magnetic activity and by periodic changes in ocean circulation.
[Full disclosure: I have a very small dog in this fight, having demonstrated some time ago that solar-emitted magnetic fields, projected into interplanetary space by the solar wind, modulate the intensity of cosmic rays striking the Earth’s atmosphere; this is no longer a contentious, hot-topic issue. The exact mechanism by which cosmic rays then influence the climate is not known in detail, but current efforts, mainly by a Danish research group, focus on changes in Earth’s cloudiness.]
However, that there is no doubt about the existence of such a solar influence on climate. As shown in the graph below, cosmic-ray intensity (as measured by the radioactive carbon isotope C-14) and terrestrial climate (as measured by the oxygen isotope O-18) correlate in amazing detail over an interval of at least 3000 years (see graph below; the bottom graph is the central section, blown up to reveal detail)
S. Fred Singer is professor emeritus at the University of Virginia and director of the Science & Environmental Policy Project. His specialty is atmospheric and space physics.
ABC Australia Investigative Report on Statin Scam Pulled from YouTube
Dr. MaryAnne Demasi’s documentary on the criminal activity of the pharmaceutical industry regarding cholesterol-lowering statin drugs sent shock waves through the mainstream media in Australia at the end of 2013. Published in two parts on the popular news show The Catalyst, the pharmaceutical industry complained loudly after the first show, and requested the network not air the second episode, “Heart of the Matter Part 2 – Cholesterol Drug War.”
ABC Australia aired it anyway, but the pharmaceutical influence was apparently too strong, as they later announced that the network would remove the videos from their website because “they breached its impartiality standards.” All copies found on YouTube were also removed.
Dr. Michael Eades has published them on his Vimeo channel, however, and you can watch them below.
Heart of the Matter – Part 1
Heart of the Matter Part 2 – Cholesterol Drug War