“Worse Than Michael Mann”

Three years ago, Anthony Watts announced that I was worse than Michael Mann – because I said 40% of USHCN stations were missing. Anthony also conflated the frost point with the freezing point, as did many other commenters on his blog.

The Blackboard » How not to calculate temperature

Water freezes at 0C, but ice won’t accumulate on the surface until it the temperature gets below the current frost point.  This is because sublimation is happening faster than freezing. The frost point is determined by the partial pressure of H2O. The freezing point is independent, and is fixed at 0C. Same concept is true for CO2. The fact that a person doesn’t have any savings, doesn’t necessarily mean they aren’t getting paid. It just means they are spending money faster than they are making it.

No matter how many times I tried to explain this simple concept, I couldn’t make any headway. I have had to put up with this nonsense for almost a decade.

I still have people throwing Anthony’s comment at me.

On average, 43% of the 1218 USHCN stations report no monthly temperatures, and are marked with an “E”. i.e. they are missing from the USHCN database. This is up from less than 11% in 1991.


I’m working very hard to get the message of data tampering out, and often have to fight people on both sides of the imaginary climate change debate.

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48 Responses to “Worse Than Michael Mann”

  1. richard says:

    Even the WMO admit the temps in Africa are estimated and it needs 5000 temp stations.

  2. gator69 says:

    One reason why I don’t spend much time at Anthony’s site. Open minds that find sheep to be annoying are more my thing.

    • RAH says:

      I spend time there because there are lots of interesting posts on diverse subjects and despite the rather haughty attitude of some of the regulars, there is a pretty broad base of knowledge in many scientific fields to learn from. I also regularly visit the sites of Jo Nova, Paul Homewood, P Gosselin, with less frequent visits to various other climate science blogs.

      • RAH says:

        I should add that this site I the one out of all that I visit most frequently and I owe Tony a donation for this year enjoying his blog. It will be coming.

      • gator69 says:

        I was a regular at WUWT for years, and I still read the posts and scan the comments. But discussions at WUWT still get side tracked by the same old alamrmist claptrap that has been disproven here for years. It’s like debating with flat earthers, and I don’t have the time or the patience for that.

      • menicholas says:

        “I spend time there because there are lots of interesting posts on diverse subjects”

        Also, it is so far the only place I have found to make a jackass out of guys like Nick Stokes.
        Actually, it is more accurate to say I can prove him a jackass…he already is one.
        And there are more than a few there.
        But people I otherwise have respect for seem to think it is the thing to do to treat guys like that with respect and deference.
        Being polite is all well and good, and a dandy way to conduct oneself in daily life…but there is a time and a place for everything, and discussions with alarmists and their apologists aint one of them…nowhere on my list of times and places to be polite.

        • AndyG55 says:

          The alarmists are trying to bring down western civilisation, they have state that in no uncertain terms.

          WHY should we EVER be polite to them !!!!

          • menicholas says:

            Well, every day is a fresh chance for a person to mend their ways…so I think at the outset of any particular conversation, being polite, right up until they start lying or making false assertions, is not uncalled for.
            I am not sure if leopards change their spots…but they do not usually do so.
            Guys like Stokes pretend they are being reasonable, but they are on the side of the evil criminals, giving them cover if nothing else.

          • AndyG55 says:

            I am polite to newbies until they prove to be anAGW cultist, rather than a rational human being, by their comments.

            Then I feel zero restraint in what I might say to them. Sorry if others think I go overboard sometimes, but these are evil, lying, desperate people we are dealing with, and I see no reason to back down.

          • menicholas says:

            I am not disagreeing with you.

            And besides for everything else they are, the warmistas are wrong…just plain wrong, about nearly everything they say, and exactly everything they predict.
            It is actually scarily uncanny how they are literally never correct.
            Which is perhaps the one thing that makes it impossible for me to understand how so many people buy what they are selling.

    • Ben Vorlich says:

      Sheep are much maligned, born survivors. Much like elephants they use knowledge passed from generation to generation to make the most of their environment. Elephants seem to have had better PR.


      Check Hefting for example

  3. ItsGettingHotinHereSo says:

    What is the reason why 43% of the stations do not report monthly temperatures?

    One would think that with better automation and digital collection of data that the % would be much higher.

    • Gerald Machnee says:

      There can be various reasons:
      Some may be contract, some may not be staffed 7/24. Automation may actually be causing more problems. Originally, management thought that they could close down manned stations and replace them with auto stations at less cost and have more. So we saw expansion. The we see less stations as they close rural auto and manned stations. Auto stations may require more maintenance. Manned stations could be repaired by the observers on site most of the time. Auto stations found themselves short of techs especially when they were placed in remote sites.

    • gator69 says:

      What is the reason why 43% of the stations do not report monthly temperatures?


      • wert says:

        We’ll never hear an explanation. An excuse could be heard, when pressed enough.

        Tony, it was good to hear your version on what you think. Please keep being honest and try to keep friends. Anthony is not evil even if he misunderstands you.

      • AndyG55 says:

        Either the sites are genuinely stuffed up…

        .. which is total incompetence on behalf of whoever is meant to look after the system…

        ….. or its because someone doesn’t like the readings and needs to “free up” the data so it can be easily “adjusted™”.

        Either way makes a mockery of the temperature measurement system and the farcical global average surface temperature.

      • David A says:

        Hum?? Does what stations are not used monthly vary by very much?

    • John F. Hultquist says:

      Short answer: People die.
      A station in South Cle Elum, WA reported for years. From a backyard surrounded by trees. The lady doing the readings became sick. She stopped.
      Two years later a new site was developed 1.6 miles away. You can see it here:
      47.189038, -120.913068
      Coordinates from Google Earth. Zoom in until you see a white dot below the point of the marker. That white dot is the temperature sensor. It is about 7 feet** above a light red surface of cinders. Snow and rain gauges are just to the right. Recording instruments are in the small building to the right.
      The site is at the western edge of the town’s sewage treatment facility.
      An approximate location of the earlier reporting site (lady) can be seen if you back off (zoom out) until you see the red dot for South Cle Elum. Her house was just north of the “elum” of the name.

      **Above the highest record snow level.

  4. richard says:

    Best site by far with a lot of humour.

  5. LexingtonGreen says:

    It is too bad there was that break down with Watts. Watts really could use Tony’s genius in juxtaposing the historical past with the present alarmist statements. It is pure gold. So glad I found Tony’s blog.

    • Louis Hooffstetter says:

      I couldn’t agree more. ‘Watts Up With That’ was my favorite source for climate change news until I found Tony’s site. I was shocked and disappointed by Anthony’s comments. I hope he eventually realizes he blew it and apologizes. These two need to bury the hatchet and become friends again.

      • tonyheller says:

        I released some valid data. Anthony went berserk, because it interfered with a paper he was writing with a climate alarmist.
        My message is still being impacted by his 2014 temper tantrum.

        There is nothing I can do. It is entirely up to Anthony.

        • menicholas says:

          I bring up your name and your work there often, and many times to very positive effect.
          Nobody is perfect, but many tend to let their own ego interfere with what is best for the message they wish to convey and the thing see as important.
          The incident in question was before my time on either of these sites…I spent a bunch of years not knowing anything about these blogs and discussions, although I have been fighting global warming alarmism and the basic conclusions of the CAGW faithful since the very beginning.
          I knew it was bogus from the get go, and everyone who sees what is really going on is on the same side, IMO.
          The stakes are now huge…as big as stakes can be with regard to human endeavors…far to large for those who know the truth to be at odds with each other.
          I look forward to the day you two are posting each others articles on your respective sites.

        • RW says:

          Get in touch with Dinesh D’Souza. Convince him to make a documentary on all of this.

      • Disillusioned says:

        The one truth Tony has driven home for me is that the clime syndicate (that I once trusted) don’t care about science.

        When I first began to become disillusioned, I still didn’t want to make waves with alarmists, in case I was wrong. Years on, they’re always wrong, and now I can’t understand why anyone would want to coddle alarmists.

        Tony has nothing for which to apologize. It is time to end this scam. It is costly insanity.

        Hail the mighty wrecking ball.

        • menicholas says:

          Well said.
          It is a giant mystery to me how so many are CAGW advocates or even believers.
          In my mind, it is not only the biggest, but the most obvious case of fraud and deception in history.
          Anyone who is on the CAGW side is either uninformed, really stupid, a money hungry greedy fool, or criminally insane. There are likely a few other reasons in there, some amalgamation of the above mostly.

          • RAH says:

            It is now, to a large extent a partisan political issue and in that realm reason is often lacking. I have some smart nice relatives that buy into the that bull. They are afraid to debate me though so avoid the subject. It is the knowledge I have gained here and elsewhere that makes them afraid to discuss the issue with me. Most people don’t want to have their beliefs blown away with little things like facts.

          • menicholas says:

            I have such relatives as well, and more than a few friends.
            At this point in American social life, politics and subjects like AGW are literally tearing families apart.
            It is a damn shame, really.

  6. I too am grateful to Tony for producing unvarnished temperature data and relevant historical fact. The last time I saw this was Petr Beckmann, also in Boulder, with information on Access to Energy. Nobody could find a mistake in Beckmann’s physics or engineering, so the looter press struggled to ignore him and evade his conclusions. But Reason magazine was then a libertarian publication, with Beckmann on its editorial board. Today’s Reason is infiltrated by mystics, cross-dressing Democrats and God’s Own Prohibitionists. A Janus-faced social-pressure guru with no science degree currently embarrasses the magazine in the eyes of actual scientists and libertarians.

    • gator69 says:

      God is not a prohibitionist Hank, He gave us free will. Why not try commenting on things you do understand, and try doing so without being bigoted. Any point you attempt to make is lost in your misinformed bigotry.

  7. GW says:

    Tony, I thought he apologized to you a couple of years ago; or was that regarding a different subject ?

    • tonyheller says:

      Barely an apology. More of an insult than anything else.

      • wert says:

        Try to work out and solve the misunderstandings, even if they aren’t yours. We need you to have good PR to get the message through. You are being terse and using hard language. Please try to be polite and flexible. It helps you.

        • tonyheller says:

          You are barking up the wrong tree

        • menicholas says:

          Wert, note the list of climate sites on the WUWT page…it is a long list, with some sites that are barely relevant.
          Among them are humor sites, lukewarmers, political climate sites, a bunch of pro-AGW sites, and dozens of skeptical sites.
          But neither RealClimateScience.com or TH’s older WordPress site are even mentioned.
          What does that tell you?
          Does that seem reasonable?
          Does it seem wise, or fair?
          It seems unbelievable to me.

        • Kent Clizbe says:

          “You are being terse and using hard language.”

          Tony is the only one with balls on the side of the realists.

          Watts’ schtick is pitiful–he seems to be motivated by a deep desire for acceptance by the powers of global warming.

          Watts attacked Mr. Heller personally, and blocked Mr. Heller’s participation on his website, during a time that Watts was actively sucking up to the academic clique that controls publication of research. He apparently craved recognition and entree into the rarified world of the AGW Team more than he craved truth.

          Tony is on a mission. Tony deals in truth. Tony is terse and uses hard language. The opposition will eat you alive if you show weakness, like a pack of jackals. They cannot touch Tony. They are terrified of Tony.

          Watts and his time-wasters gaze at their navels, debate how many angels can dance on the head of a pin, and accept the ground-rules laid down by Mann, Mosher and his cabal, in some weird Kabuki dance where they accept their roles as lesser beings so they can be in the same room as their betters. But the price is that they must pretend that the emperor’s new clothes are marvelous, wonderful, well-sewn, bright and beautiful.

          Tony stands up, shouts, “The emperor has no clothes!” Then he shows pictures of the emperor’s nudity, and provides extensive evidence of this truth. Then he calls out the frauds, con-men and scammers who sold the emperor the fakes.

          The Watts crowd is outraged that Tony destroyed their cozy little corner in the back of the emperor’s audience.

          Of course Tony speaks tersely and uses harsh language.

          Until an insider decides that revealing the truth is better than a cushy job, Tony’s tenacious revelations of the truth are pretty much all we reality-based citizens can rely on.

          Tony Heller–strong words, strong message, strong man! You oughta be glad he is.

          • tonyheller says:

            Thanks Kent!

          • GW says:

            Agreed. Sadly….. I gave up paying routine attention to Anthony years ago; when it became obvious they were engaging in semantics instead of the obvious reality.
            Tony, can’t you get any of this published ? In ANY journal ??? It appears to be straightforward and beyond reproach ! If published, in anything at all, your work can’t be dismissed further – at least not without wider recognition – which will lead to the naysayers ultimate exposure and downfall. There must be some receptive publications (e.g. E&E for one) willing to investigate and publish the truth. What about the Cato or Heritage institutes – couldn’t they aide in publishing the truth ?

          • CheshireRed says:

            ‘Tony is on a mission. Tony deals in truth. Tony is terse and uses hard language. The opposition will eat you alive if you show weakness, like a pack of jackals. They cannot touch Tony. They are terrified of Tony. ‘

            There it is. Tony has brought more clarity to this debate than a thousand ‘Opinion’ posts ever will, no matter how important the opinion holder thinks they are. How? By laying down observable facts relating to surface stations, estimated ‘readings’, dates, actual adjustments to data sets and more. Don’t agree with his work? Fine, feel free to rebut it with your own evidence. How many do that on here? Honestly I can’t remember one single person proving that Tony’s assessment of data manipulation is incorrect. He doesn’t need to lie (or even speculate) because the facts as presented speak for themselves. As a consequence he’s driven a coach and horses through the entire climate change bullshit theory and nobody has any answers to disprove him. (I linked one of his posts to family friend True Believers on Facebook once; they both went berserk but pointedly flat-out refused to engage on the article. They couldn’t because their case had been smashed to pieces and they knew it.) Scrupulous honesty is the antithesis of climate change hysterical bullshit and the alarmist industry can’t handle him at all. That’s how it should be done and this is why I’m here almost every day.

          • just a thought says:

            “Watts’ schtick is pitiful–he seems to be motivated by a deep desire for acceptance by the powers of global warming. ” – Kent C.

            My impression is that he wants to be accepted by both sides, a fence sitter, if you will. But, yeah, I think he lists a bit to the warmist side.

  8. Andy DC says:

    You are shaking a very large tree, and have truth on your side, thus character assassination is their only remaining way to attack you.

    Now jealousy and envy is rearing its ugly head even with presumed allies. I imagine that was bound to happen with petty idiots.

  9. menicholas says:

    Physicists and physical chemists prefer to refer to 32 F as the melting point of ice, at 1 atm of pressure.
    In fact, they use this terminology for all solids.
    There are a number of reasons for this, but the main thing is that it is simply the way such temperatures are defined.
    I can recall from college chemistry labs in various classes, the way melting point was determined makes it clear that one could not use a freezing process to arrive at a similar result. Crystalline solids are typically assessed for purity by measuring the melting point, and this is done in a particular type of apparatus by direct observation, wherein a small diameter glass tube is packed with a sample of the material, the tube placed in a device which has a magnifying glass and a thermometer, and is warmed very slowly. The melting point is taken to be the temp at which the first appearance of melting takes place, because this phase change is often an asymmetric process: All of the atoms in a crystalline lattice are not in the same energy state, while those in a liquid are all in the same energy state…in a crystal, all the atoms do not have the same properties. The atoms at the edges of the lattice become dissociated more readily than those further inside the lattice.
    In the familiar example of water, the phase transition to the solid state takes place over a range of temperatures…the volume of the liquid begins to expand well above the melting point of 32 F…clear proof that this assertion is true. The physical explanation is straightforward…as the atoms lose energy, they begin to arrange themselves, and degrees of freedom are lost.

    On top of all that, and relating to the very good point you are making, as that measuring the temperature of an outdoor environment is problematic. Surfaces and the air are at various temps in most places and most times, and under certain conditions these differences can be dramatic even over tiny distances, and can have dramatic effects such as plants in one spot being killed and those a short distance away being undamaged.
    It is well known that frost will form at 38F if the sky is clear and the winds are light, below about 5 mph. Many surfaces reach 38 long before others will as the temp gradually falls during radiational cooling at night…it is readily apparent that the metallic roof of a car will have frost long before most other sorts of surfaces, while under a leafy tree, frost will not form no matter what the temperature is. Ditto for surfaces near a radiating source like a house, or a concrete slab which was warmed by the sun that day.
    Frost point and freezing point are two different things indeed.
    Scientists must speak in precise language, because different words mean different things.

  10. Eliza says:

    I Posted a long time ago at WUWT that Watts would lose 50% of his audience 1 day after after he posted some disgusting statement about Tony at Lucias site some 5 years ago if I recollect which is now a non event site and always was. I rarely go to that site WUWT these days

  11. PeterF says:

    The ftp link comes up completely empty????

  12. RW says:

    Submit a guest post at WUWT. Make the analysis based on anomolies. Stick to the U.S. data. Write a disclaimer about how one cannot generalize to the globe using this data alone. No quotong old papers. No quoting crazy idiotic pseudoscientists from the past. Tackle one issue, like time of observation, that you’ve done here. Front end it with an invitation for commentary and critique and a pledge of sorts to respond with a follow up post. That’s a common format over there.

    • just a thought says:

      My experience is that their guest post format is that it must suit the arrogant and usually petty whims of Watts’ and his flying moderators’ biases. And don’t you DARE disagree with them, ever!

  13. just a thought says:

    While Tony makes mistakes (everyone does), he’s not an arrogant control freak, nor a concrete thinking blockhead, as are many of Wattsians.

    First time I posted there, I made comments about the politics, which I see as the real issue. Watts himself threatened to ban me because “we only discuss the science here.” Within a month, he was making political comments himself.

    The last time I posted there, quite a few years ago, I was also threatened with being banned for introducing a subject that is verbotten, despite the fact that I was not the one who brought it up, but only casually commented on it after the fact.

    While a lot of good material is posted there, I think that they are vastly overrated, and wouldn’t put too much stock in any of their criticisms of you. They’ve alienated others whose opinions I respect, as well, so I wouldn’t lose sleep over their nincompoopery.

    Thanks for your excellent quality assurance, and please keep the fire the feet of those whose feet deserve to be singed, whichever side they are on.

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