New Video : Potholer Vs. Real Science

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22 Responses to New Video : Potholer Vs. Real Science

  1. R Shearer says:

    Tony, excellent video! Your explanation of the Milankovitch cycles is among the best that I have seen.

    You thoroughly debunked Potholer and exposed the most serious of his fallacies. If he is as intelligent as his voice sounds, my opinion is that he is knowingly being deceptive. If he is not as intelligent as his voice makes him sound, then I wonder who is feeding him the narrative. In a debate, he is going to score points simply because of the way he speaks. That is, of course, superficial and you clearly show how he is wrong. The truth will win out in the end.

    If you were addressing an audience of PhD scientists, such as myself, then I would recommend that you use the terms absorptions, absorption bands or even peaks for the methane absorptions in its spetra. You used the term “spikes” which to me is too colloquial, but this is a minor irrelevant point of style. I do admire Potholers style.

    Anon posted something here the other day regarding ideological vs principled thought. You clearly argue via principles and Potholer argues via ideology.

    • Menicholas says:

      I have never had any sense that he is intelligent.
      What it sounds like to me, is that he is merely a proficient bullshitter.
      Spewing bullshit with an accent may sound fancy to some.
      To me it sounds like pretentious bullshit.

    • richard says:

      I think he used to be a presenter and uses the style much used a decade or so ago.

      It’s hard to listen to and just sounds dated.

  2. MrZ says:

    He responded…
    You must take him on in a F2F debate. Not sure if he (pothole) is up it though.

  3. Grilled Tomatoes says:

    Very helpful video on Milankovich cycles. Thank you again.

    I should take voice lessons to develop an authentic UK accent so I could advance scientific theories with “authority.”

  4. Gator says:

    Potheader sounds dumber each time I make the mistake of listening to him. He really jumped the shark with his childish poison analogy. Pathetic.

    • rah says:

      It is common for alarmists of all levels to use analogies when they try to hide deceptions or justify their positions when they really don’t understand the science.

      • Gator says:

        Another telling fact, Potheader was unfamiliar with likely the most common and cited ice core graph. Real journalists know not to cover subjects with which they are either too infatuated or too repulsed, as their bias must come through over the facts.

        Potheader is no journalist, he is an activist.

    • gregole says:

      I have found him tolerably stupid until the poison analogy. Anyone claiming methane can do anything at all in its currently minute mole-fraction of the atmosphere instantly qualifies with me as an ignoramus. Accent doesn’t do anything for me personally. Unless they’re reciting poetry, giving an excellent sermon (our pastor is British), or speaking the truth about something, that accent just pisses me off.

  5. arn says:

    Interessting to see that > 0.01% of something is supposed to have the same impact as a 25% variation in radiation,
    especially when it is ALL about radiation.
    Something in AGW seems to be really strange.

    The analogy with strichnin is BS btw.
    There is a huge difference between an alien substance that attacks a key element of a supercomplex system by repressing the original substance(glycin)
    and switching the system off and a substance that already exists inside the system and get inflated by a small margin(and always existed for millions of years in higher quantities).
    Strichnin is in terms of climate more an aquivalent to something that gets injected into the core of the sun to stop the fusion and can not be compared to a tiny nothing that is on the surface.
    Poholers trick is as missleading as the greenhouse claim.
    If you built a greenhouse around your house it will get warmer and you will need significantly less energy for heating.
    But it does not matter wether there is 100% co2 in the greenhouse or 0% as the glass is doing the trick and you have an isolated system around your house.

    • Menicholas says:

      No need to go to any great length to get specific about why the comparison is meaningless.
      Sure, small amounts of some things can have large effects, like the one part per million of things like gasoline or motor oil in pure water which will render it unpotable.
      But other things do not have a large effect in small quantity.
      Some things that are poisonous are completely benign and even beneficial in small amounts, but deadly in larger amounts.
      In fact, almost everything that is toxic in some quantity is beneficial at some smaller amount. Unless you do not believe in hormesis, do not believe our bodies have the repair and detoxification mechanisms that are turned on by exposure to small amounts of harmful substances and stimuli.
      Vitamin D deficiency is very harmful, and we need somewhere north of 2000 i.u. of it daily to stay healthy. This is the amount produced in our skin by 15 minutes of direct sun exposure on bare skin.
      But this is a very small unit…amounting to 50 micrograms.
      10 mg/kg of body weight will kill 50 percent of healthy adults, making it about as deadly as sodium cyanide.
      Aspirin is a medicine with numerous benefits…it will save the life of someone with a high fever. But it will kill someone who takes too much of it. It has an LD-50 comparable to table salt…another necessary nutrient that will kill you if you get to little…or too much.
      Chlorine has perhaps saved more lives than nearly anything that might be named, rendering drinking water safe, keeping swimming pools sanitized and bacteria free…but it will kill you if you breathe too much of it, or blind or burn you if it splashes on you.
      Everything is toxic at some level…even plain water…drink a few gallons straight down and you will die, even though in some situations you need that much to keep from dying, but spread out over a day.
      A splash of it in your lungs can kill you in minutes.
      The simple truth is…different things are, um, different.
      And nothing is all bad or all good.

  6. billtoo says:

    and hopefully much longer

  7. Steven Fraser says:

    Very well done, Tony.

    A question: Based on where we are in the combined phases of these cycles, when do the conditions that favor the beginning of the accumulation of NH ice at 65 degrees North?

  8. just a thought says:


    Also, about TSI, and it’s correlation with earth’s temperature: it doesn’t make sense because the change in TSI is so small, so how could it correlate so well? Apparently TSI is just a proxy for other things going on, and it’s correlation tells us that, yes, it’s the sun that’s causing the warming/cooling, but it isn’t the TSI that’s doing it. Nils Axel Morner presents Don Easterbrook’s data here, explaining that and quite a bit more.

    • GCSquared says:

      Potholer insisted there was a tipping point mechanism, “whatever it was”, that caused a runaway change because some scientists said that climate had changed suddenly, so there must be a tipper, and it can’t be solar.
      Well, for instance, Easterbrook pointed out that the Pacific Decadal Oscillation caused sudden short-term climactic changes, but with no clear cause. This sudden change in oscillation mode is a famous characteristic of nonlinear oscillations, so you’d have to rule out spontaneous flips due to nonlinear bhavior before you could unambiguously claim that an independent tipper was needed.

      • just a thought says:

        I know a lot of people, myself included, who say that because it’s never happened, runaway AGW isn’t going to happen.

        But if we want to give the appearance of being more rigorous, we can ask “what is the probability of triggering it as a function of CO2 concentration?” That is, after all, what we are told we have to worry about.

        Remembering that for a probability to be defined, we realize that we must know the distribution of occurrences as a function of CO2 concentration. looking at the paleo record, we have.

        No occurrences between 250 – 500 ppm
        None between 500 – 750
        None between 750 – 1000
        None between 1000 – 1250
        …. etc.
        ….etc., all the way up to 7,000 ppm.

        In other words, no occurrences at any CO2 concentration, ever. (And no, warmists, that does NOT give you the right to make up a probability that suits your narrative.)

        I think you can see where I’m going with this, and that is to show that we cannot properly define a probability for their most feared catastrophe to occur. It is at best “zero”, or more likely “undefined”, because the event does not exist as one of the possible outcomes associated with any historical CO2 concentration, and certainly not for any amount of CO2 humans could conceivably ever add to the atmosphere.

  9. GCSquared says:

    The problem is Potholer is arguing by narrative, whereas Tony is arguing by explanation. The fact that everyone loves a good story and nobody likes to think too hard gives Lord Potty his advantage. The storyteller beats the thinker in almost every debate, regardless of the merits of the argument. Sigh….

    Maybe in this site, reason carries more weight, so I’ll mention another theory, which was ignored by both Tony and the Pothead., but which I actually believe explains most temperature fluctuations. (Spoiler alert: it’s not CO2).

    Solar physicists have come up with a pretty good theory explaining climate changes on time scales shorter than Milankovich cycles. The ideas correlate well with the decades-long temperature swings that have occurred from Roman times onward.

    It has long been known that (pre anthro CO2!) climate warmed and cooled in concert with sunspot activity. TSI solar radiation also changes its tiny bit alongside these two, but more importantly, the solar magnetism that shields the earth from the cosmic radiation that permeate the universe, follows as well. The Danish scientist Svensmark theorized that when the solar magnetic field is weak, clouds will be more prevalent because the larger amount of cosmic radiation will ionize the atmosphere and provide more sites onto which water vapor could condense into water droplets. Since clouds reflect sunlight, the earth should cool whenever cosmic rays could get through,. That is, when sunspots are few.

    All the correlations hold. It was found that cloud cover indeed correlated with cosmic ray penetration. And there are more Be and C isotopes created by cosmic rays during cold periods and fewer in warm, as indicated by the geologic ice core record. And of course, this tracks sunspot count also. In summary, global temperature, solar (magnetic) activity, cosmic ray presence and cloud formation all vary in concert as expected by this hypothesis.

    A final embellishment: other solar physicists, notably Charvatova, Landscheit and Zharkova, have come up with models of internal solar circulation, modified as well by the gravitational tug of the large planets. These theories provide the explanation of why sunspots (and all the above associated phenomena) vary in the first place. Zharkova in fact has gone out on a limb, and she is predicting a “Grand Solar Minimum”, involving drop in sunspots and a sudden cooling, for the decades following 2020. We’ll see: if she’s right, it will vindicate the entire set of hypotheses.

    She’s not the only one predicting a mini-ice age, and I tend to think that a serious cold spell is on its way. I just hope that the CO2 proponents stop pretending we’re in an endless summer, in time for us to implement sane adaptive policies to deal with the cold.

  10. Robert B says:

    Well presented. I’ve mistrusted Potholer after the very first video that I saw debunking that only 3% of total emissions are from humans burning fossil fuels. What he did was show some people say its 3% and some say 4%, “which one is it”. I couldn’t watch until the end to see if he was honest in the last few minutes that the values come from alarmist scientists, not sceptics, although absolute rather than percentages. 3% from burning of fossil fuels and another 1% from deforestation. I watched about 5 minutes of him throwing doubts on the claims even though he knew he would have to eventual admit they are accurate (reporting of consensus) and portray it as wrong because its 100% of what Gaia can’t cope with.

    Very much a weasel rather than a sincere but mislead reporter.

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