Another Useful Idiot From Merchants Of Doubt

One of the key players in Merchants of Doubt was a guy named Michael Shermer, who writes for Unscientific Antiamerican magazine. He claimed to be a converted former skeptic, based on finding out that glaciers are melting and sea level is rising.

Had this “scientist” done any actual research, he would have known that these things have been going on for a very long time, and are not evidence of global warming. Glaciers were melting during NASA’s coldest year ever.

ScreenHunter_200 May. 13 14.58

28 Sep 1910 – RECEDING GLACIERS.

ScreenHunter_288 Apr. 18 20.35

ScreenHunter_286 Apr. 18 20.33

ScreenHunter_287 Apr. 18 20.33

A NEW CHAPTER WRITTEN BY THE GLACIER – The Retreat of the Ice Rivers in the Alps 

21 Nov 1908 – THE WORLDS ICE MANTLE.

ScreenHunter_7913 Mar. 14 08.19

21 Jul 1932 – A Warmer World.

26 May 1911 – Grave News about Glaciers.

Sea level rose much faster prior to 8,000 years ago.

Post-Glacial_Sea_Level

A real scientist would know that you can’t determine a change from one point in time. You have to look at whether the trends have changed over time.

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25 Responses to Another Useful Idiot From Merchants Of Doubt

  1. emsnews says:

    Amazing how the fretting about glaciers melting goes back to the Civil War era. Scientists had just discovered we had an Ice Age previously at that point.

  2. Bob Greene says:

    It’s actually worse than you thought. Ph. D. in the history of science (MS in psychology) but he was flipped by “documented” extinctions, Tim Flannery and others. http://www.michaelshermer.com/2006/06/the-flipping-point/

  3. SMS says:

    I don’t see any more credibility in Dr. Shermer with his advanced degrees in psychology than I do someone who takes a science class in high school when it comes to determining scientific results. Science is more about “cause and effect” than whether your brain sees the glass half full or half empty. Dr. Shermer is more interested in why I am a skeptic rather than what the facts were that turned me into a skeptic; and that is his sin.

  4. gator69 says:

    Gee, Michael even admits he never wrote a skeptical piece…

    I mentioned above that I have only ever published one article about the environment, and that was recounting my conversion from global warming skeptic to believer in my monthly column in Scientific American. In that column I closed with this sentence: “Because of the complexity of the problem environmental skepticism was once tenable. No longer. It is time to flip from skepticism to activism.

    So once again we have another fake convert.

  5. Menicholas says:

    I saw Shermer being interviewed on a television program not two months ago, and he expressed the opinion that he believes the world is warming, but that it will not be catastrophic.
    He seems to have altered that view sharply and quickly.
    I wonder why?
    We know SciAm brooks no hint of skepticism on any comment threads.
    Could it be they are equally intolerant of any moderate views among their staff, and insist that everyone promulgate the alarmist view?

    • Gail Combs says:

      $$$$$
      Got to pay that mortgage

      • Menicholas says:

        Losing ones livelihood in order to keep ones integrity is no doubt a real quandary for anyone with financial responsibilities which they would default on if they found themselves unemployed.
        Are we are witnessing, in real time, how such things as fascism gain a foothold on a society?

        • gator69 says:

          I walked away from a good paying job to maintain my integrity. And guess what? I got a better job. Selling your soul is a bad deal.

  6. Bob F says:

    The Swiss glaciers (discussed above) always warrant a good look. Extensively studied for many years.

    http://glaciology.ethz.ch/messnetz/lengthvariation.html

    Mostly retreating in the warm period of the 30’s-50’s, more advancing in the cooling scare of the 70’s now somewhat more retreating.

    Things to note, at least 50% are retreating across the whole period they have been measured.

    The Grosser Aletcsh glacier, the longest in Europe, directly behind the Eiger, Monsch, Jungfrau, has been monotonically decreasing for all the shown period of record (late 1800’s to present day). I join Steve in blaming my SUV.

    • gator69 says:

      We used to vacation in Grindelwald, at the base of the Eiger, and I have skied on the Jungfrau. This was back in the seventies, and the alpine villagers were indeed worried about their advancing glaciers.

  7. Parma John says:

    It’s so embarrassing. Michael Shermer is my hero from several decades ago, when he wrote the book on riding the RAAM–the incredible bike race across America. In his early days of inquiry he founded the Skeptics Society, debunking all of the greatest sciency scams of the 80’s and 90’s. His books were entertaining takedowns of personality cults, holocaust denial, abduction claims, even golden age sagas.

    Then, in 2006, he drank the CAGW Kool-Aid. He admits that he experienced a turning point during an Al Gore TED presentation, and that David Suzuki was right all along with his stunning exaggerations of environmental collapse. His most disturbing revelation was that, where once he was skeptical of environmentalists’ visions of terror since they never came to pass, now there is overwhelming evidence that they are all truly upon us. I wish certain influential people would get out more.

    As if to highlight just how far was Dr. Shermer’s fall, today’s Skeptics Society web site front page touts an essay and book presentation by none other than Bill Nye the Science Guy. I think I need to cry….

    • Parma John says:

      I think what troubled me most was that, in 2006, I was just waking up to the CAGW scare, and I was on my own truth-seeking mission. Shortly before Dr. Shermer published his Scientific American turning point article (http://www.michaelshermer.com/2006/06/the-flipping-point/) I was already well on my way to disbelief of the scientific material that was being proffered as proof of imminent catastrophe. As soon as I got my hands on IPCC’s AR4 WGI (in 2007?) that disbelief would turn to disgust.

      So, while Shermer was on his way from skepticism to booster, I was going from default believer to open-eyed Denier. Al Gore’s fear-fest had a lot to due with my decision, too; I did a lot of reading after setting through his cli-fi garbage. Funny how the same evidence can have such vastly different effects on different minds.

    • Andy Mirlach says:

      David Suzuki is utterly clueless when it comes to Climate Science. This was revealed during a Q&A. http://www.abc.net.au/tv/qanda/txt/s3841115.htm

      CLIMATE – NO RISE SINCE ’9800:01:27

      And this clueless advocate was Michael Shermer ‘s inspiration?

    • AndyG55 says:

      “He admits that he experienced a turning point during an Al Gore TED presentation’

      Enough said. !!!!!

  8. Michael 2 says:

    My opinion of Scientific American would improve dramatically by removing just this one writer.

  9. Lance says:

    Worried about sea level rise? Watch the Netherlands. The Dutch have a better handle on sea levels than either the UN or New Orleans. Having one’s own ass on the line without benefit of sympathy, is a great teacher of fact. If the Dutch aren’t scrambling, then no one else ought to.

  10. I used to be disgusted by Sci Am and the spench they print, but then I found out David Appell has written some of their pieces, so now I realize they are on the same level as National Enquirer or the Weekly World News, and I don’t even look at it anymore. Freedom of the Press means anybody with paper and ink can say whatever they want. Freedom of the press also comes with freedom of the reader to not read it.

  11. rah says:

    Started to watch a NatGeo Wild program on Glacier National Park and had to turn it off because it seemed the whole thing was aimed at blaming man for the Glaciers melting.

  12. Dave N says:

    Former? He still runs a FB page and website claiming to be “skeptical” (which he kind of is, but selectively, depending on whose wind is blowing). I guess he’s more like a Kook and Nutter “skeptic”.

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