Stupid is as Ted Cruz does

Ted Cruz denies that global warming is even happening.

Appearing on “Late Night with Seth Meyers,” Cruz had this to say:


Many of the alarmists on global warming, they’ve got a problem because the science doesn’t back them up. In particular, satellite data demonstrate for the last 17 years, there’s been zero warming.”

— Ted Cruz on Tuesday, March 17th, 2015 in an interview on “Late Night with Seth Meyers”

Cruz was criticized by California governor Jerry Brown for denying scientific reality. On Sunday Cruz said that “global warming alarmists” like Brown “ridicule and insult anyone who actually looks at the real data.”

Let’s look at the real data.


To get at the truth of whether or not there’s been warming, let’s look at 5-year average temperature. Satellites began monitoring the atmosphere’s “microwave brightness” since about 1979, and that information is used to infer the temperature of the atmosphere. It’s easy as pie to average the temperature over 5-year time spans, starting with 1980 to 1985, ending with the 2010-2015 interval. That’ll tell us the real story of whether there’s been warming or not — it might even inform Ted Cruz, if he’s willing to look at the real data without denying reality.

Here it is, from UAH (the University of Alabama at Huntsville). [Note: I’d love to hear Ted Cruz complain about the choice of data — so I can inform well-known climate deniers Roy Spencer and John Christy that Ted Cruz might suspect them of faking the data to make it look like the globe is warming.]

uah_5y

Evidently, Ted Cruz’s idea of “zero warming” doesn’t agree with the real data.

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68 responses to “Stupid is as Ted Cruz does

  1. Ah, but when they say “satellite data”, they of course mean the satellite data which show the least warming, RSS. Even though the RSS results are known to be flawed for a good few years now:

    http://www.drroyspencer.com/2011/07/on-the-divergence-between-the-uah-and-rss-global-temperature-records/

    In that article, Spencer says:

    Anyway, my UAH cohort and boss John Christy, who does the detailed matching between satellites, is pretty convinced that the RSS data is undergoing spurious cooling because RSS is still using the old NOAA-15 satellite which has a decaying orbit, to which they are then applying a diurnal cycle drift correction based upon a climate model, which does not quite match reality.

    Of course, the deniers are obliged to use the one data set of all the data sets we have that shows the least amount of warming. It’s the way they roll. The fact that it shows the least amount of warming because of a known problem doesn’t matter to them, because it takes longer than a sound bite to explain the problem.

  2. Charles Nagy

    Of course, that is not what deniers would do. They would just start at 1998, the hottest year in the 20th century, and go from there, ignoring all previous years. No 5 year moving average for them.

  3. I agree that Cruz’ comment is stupid. Having said that, I’m not entirely comfortable with the approach of putting data into bins, and then looking at the trend between bins… I feel like there was a good example in one of Tufte’s books about the dangers of presenting data that way – perhaps one of the cholera graphs? In any case, a five year smooth such as http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/uah/mean:60 may not show as much warming in the past 17 years, but still shows warming. And, more importantly, sea level rise as shown at http://sealevel.colorado.edu/ continues unabated, and that is a much better measure of heat going into the system that a satellite-measured temperature trend in the lower troposphere.

    -MMM

    • The notes for WFT says they use UAH LT v5.4, but UAH is now publishing v5.6. The results look a little different, especially for the last couple of years of the 5yr moving average — no downward dip at the end.

    • ALL climate data is binned by aggregating observations over some period of time. One usual side effect of binning climate data at longer intervals is the reduction of autocorrelation.

      • A moving average is different than binning. (okay, somewhere in there the data are binned by day, but binning by 5 year increments is in my opinion generally inferior to moving averages. Though I will admit to having occasionally personally used the decadal binned NOAA graphs showing that the 2000s were warmer than the 1990s were warmer than the 1980s, because it is so visually clear… but I think it also had all the individual years in there as blue dots, so there was no information loss)

      • Possibly. But if phenomenon moves slowly, then aggregating at longer intervals is entirely appropriate. What you see then is not information loss, rather you see information sharpening.

      • Presumably the binning is done using a taper of some kind (cosine, Epanechnikov, or exponential smooth, or something) so the features of the boxcar window aren’t confused with the actual data.

  4. According to my calculations, (having actually looked at the real data) the five year average temperature anomalies of the two satellite series RSS and UAH ending in i) December 1997 and ii) 17 years later in December 2014 are as follows (I give figures to four sig.figs. simply to help checking, not to indicate that level of precision):

    RSS
    5yr end 1997 temp. anom. = +0.0435C
    5yr end 2014 temp. anom. = +0.2535C
    Difference = +0.2100C

    UAH
    5yr end 1997 temp. anom. = -0.0927C
    5yr end 2014 temp. anom. = +0.2433C
    Difference = +0.3360C

    Both refute Ted Cruz by showing an increase, but there is a considerable difference between the two calculated increases. Do we know why that is?

    • It is hard to imagine how there could not be some atmospheric warming when everyone (with a clue) agrees that that SST’s have continued to rise. So Far. Therefore, my money is with UAH.

      The point Cruz is making, one made repeatedly by many of us skeptics, and one which you evangelists repeatedly ignore, is that the observed warming is completely disproportional to human respiration (in the largest sense), which continues to increase exponentially.

      [Response: So you’re telling us that “The point Cruz is making” isn’t what he said, it’s something different. Interesting defense of what he said …]

      Science is performance based. No manipulating the data. No calling in sick for the results. No refusing to debate serious critics. No pass-fail grading…

      [Response: Why does your version of “science” invoke false accusations of manipulating data? Probably because you don’t like the data. Science thrives on debate with serious critics, but when it comes to fools debate is a fool’s errand; they don’t discuss, they babble.]

      Go ahead, delete this. I have a copy.

      [Response: Who cares?]

      • Charles Nagy

        Why is it that people who have no idea about science are constantly telling scientists what science should or should not be.

  5. He was talking about RSS, not UAH. When you say “Ted Cruz says this” you should not include something Ted Cruz didn’t say.

    Show us the real data, not the 5 year mean cherry picked for certain years.

    [Response: When did Ted Cruz mention the satellite data from RSS? What part of “Late Night with Seth Meyers” was that on? Please point us to the youtube video supporting your claim — because I don’t believe you. I don’t believe Ted Cruz even *knows*.

    As for “the real data,” this is it. The real reason — and the ONLY reason — you smear it, is that it shows how wrong Ted Cruz is. As for “cherry picked” — you have taken leave of your senses.]

    • check out the link on his name for some of the usual psuedoscience

    • Come on, Tamino, admit it: you cherry-picked by sneakily using all the data.
      My God you’re clever.

    • Charles Nagy

      Morgan,

      “Show us the real data, not the 5 year mean cherry picked for certain years.”

      You clearly have no idea what “Cherry Picking” is. Tamino has taken the whole dataset from when satellites started measuring, until now. How is that cherry picking? That is the whole available data! Sheesh! And for your information, a 5 year moving average is a standard technique used by even stock market analysts.

      It never ceases to amaze me how ignorant the average denier is about standard statistical techniques.

  6. Their vision is so narrow, they automatically stretch the x-axis. When you do that, the data would look flat.

  7. He must be a fan of RSS which, to my faulty eye, shows a decline since 2005 and little to no rise since 1998. Granted, all other widely accepted temperature records show a continued rise over the past 17 years, although at a lower rate of increase if one were to cherry pick a favorable 1998 start date, something you are loath to do for good reason.

  8. Ah, but ‘real’ data is that which confirms denialist preconceptions…

  9. Please can you publish a link to the raw data. You’re being accused of making this up with inappropriate smoothing techniques. Obviously you’ll want to put the trolls back in the box with proof you haven’t done this.

  10. Good!, but anybody with high school library skills and a semester of college statistics should be able to work out this answer. Did Cruz not go to class? Was his Harvard Degree honorary? Harvard should retract it for disgracing Harvard Law’s reputation for it alumni doing their home work.

    However, I have a friend that teaches data management and statistics at a graduate level (he works for a software company in after-sales advanced training) who simply does not accept the concept of ongoing AGW.

    Lay a problem from any of the classic texts on statistics or sampling in front of him and he can solve it correctly in a flash. Nevertheless, he thinks there has been “over correction” of the weather data. Nor is he interested in how the “data” tracks: glacier, permafrost, and ice sheet melt, bloom and harvest dates, surface and ocean temperatures, sea levels, . . . .

    I see a certain class of people that seem smart, but are unable accept a reality that is different from the reality that they learned as children. I see another class of people that cannot accept a changing reality until they perceive that a majority of their peers have accepted the new reality. I see this as a refinement and extension of Merchants of Doubt, rather than a conflict.

  11. Ted Cruz seems to have an extreme case of narcissistic self-worship, and no doubt he laps up the adulation. However, on his education, The New Yorker did a good piece a little while ago: imho it is unwise to underestimate your opposition. The guy is evil, but he believes in himself: a dangerous and all too prevalent form of worship on the right these days. As to facts, he would argue that the world conspiracy is capable of manufacturing the last two centuries of science to order and they’re out to steal your money and impose a new world order with their good friends you and me.

    “At Princeton, Cruz was a national debating champion (and was, according to a roommate, known to carry a book entitled, “Was Karl Marx A Satanist?”). At Harvard Law School, from which he graduated in 1995, he was also known as a formidable public speaker. “He had brilliant insights and he was clearly among the top students, as revealed by his class responses,” the Harvard professor Alan Dershowitz told the Daily Caller last year.”
    http://www.newyorker.com/news/john-cassidy/can-you-imagine-ted-cruz-as-president
    This was new, and looks like it might appear in the newest issue, but I was remembering an older one:
    http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2014/06/30/the-absolutist-2

    • None of which, however, made his announcement speech, at all coherent from a policy POV–as opposed to an emotional/rhetorical one. But I suppose I’m basically restating your point, Susan!

  12. Yesterday Ted Cruz announced his intention to run for President. His comment was aimed to establish his climate sceptic credentials with his target vote on the Republican Right.

    He was not talking to the scientifically literate, but to a particular mindset.
    None of them are likely to doubt him, or check the facts.

    In Northern Ireland they are represented by a Free Presbyterian who complained about my teaching evolution to his children. When I began discussing the evidence he said

    “My mind is made up. Don’t confuse me with facts.”

  13. OK, Ted Cruz doesn’t know what he is talking about. Rep. Peter King (GOP) calls him a carnival barker. He’s been called worse (and deserves it). But to me the disturbing aspect of this is that Cruz and other politicians who think as he does about this are taken seriously by the mainstream media, who seem to follow this as if they are following a sporting event, without any fundamental substance other than who is scoring points with whom. Maybe some news outlets are getting better, but overall, journalistic coverage of this seems pretty dismal to me.

  14. Ted Cruz should be taken seriously. Not for his opinions on science—he’s no authority in that field. But because he’s better than most at arguing any side of any case and seeming to make a good case. That’s what debate is all about, as a competitive sport. And he’s good at it.

    • Nonetheless; Physics beats a strongly held belief. Every single time.

      It also beats a good debater, every single time.

      • To be sure, “nature bats last”, but in politics it may be a “win” even if one successfully simply delays “losing” for another decade or two. It matters little that his science isn’t robust if he can maintain a base that has little appetite for nuance and no desire for change.

      • MarkB has the right of it, I strongly suspect. What Cruz actually believes is irrelevant. He’s a professional politician, after all. His public pronouncements are surely calculated to win him the support he needs to reach the next stage of the coming election. He’s counting on funding from donors who have the most to lose if fossil-fuel consumption is curtailed. His likely donors also help fund the disinformation campaign aimed at keeping his voting base convinced AGW is a stalking-horse for big government. He can be expected to tell them what they already believe is true.

    • I don’t see much evidence that he’s good at making a case. What I see is evidence that he’s good at clearly and distinctly asserting his position. There’s a difference.

  15. Hi Tamino
    Welcome back! Your analyses which get to the root of the problem and show the ‘skeptics’ for what they are has been missed recently.

  16. Philippe Chantreau

    In his judgment,Ted Cruz knows what he’s talking about. He sought the information he wanted to find and found it, and there is proibably no doubt in his mind. Now he’s using the tried and true Rove/Lutz techniques of pre-emptively using an argument so as to make it unavailable to your opponent for a response. The take out is “well, Ted Cruz says it does not hold up water if you look at the real data” and this message is the one sent out first. Timing is crucial in Rove/Lutz methods. Because Cruz used that argument first, anyone trying to come back to it with real numbers won’t be trusted. The emotional stage has been set up. It has nothing to do with reality but it is very effective. Cruz talent as a debating lawyer is certainly real. With coaching in the Lutz methods, he will probably achieve great success.

    Tokodave is right, of course. Physics always wins at the end, but it takes time, and emotional responses always prevail in people’s minds in the short term; that’s the only thing that matters to win elections. Since people also have short memories, when Physics eventually claims its prize, they’ll deny ever hearing anything convincing and will blame scientists for not making their case more strongly. They’ll probably blame scientists for putting out confusing information that misled their preferred leaders to come to conclusions opposite to reality. They’ll go back and find countless examples of how the scientific information could be interpreted the way it was by their “side.” For all the progress made possible by science, people are still, fundamentally, emotional beings. Nothing else moves them as much. Most of them do not have the education and critical thinking to harness those reactions. Some are experts at using this to their advantage.

  17. Philippe Chantreau

    Interesting development: Gymnosperm says above that his money is on UAH, which is normal since it shows closer to what he wants to believe. The latest post on SkS about a recent paper suggests that gymnosperm’s money may well go bye-bye.
    Abstract here:
    http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/abs/10.1175/JCLI-D-13-00767.1
    UAH may simply have been wrong, again.
    Of course, one can always go back to the iron-clad “fiddling with the data” defense…

    • Not sure you are talking about the same thing; I thought Gymnosperm was talking about the difference between RSS and UAH trends, and was just confused about which one was actually ‘cooler.’

      What you are pointing to is a potential reconciliation of the ‘tropical troposphere’ conundrum–and I suppose that could also mean a future refinement of both UAH and RSS algorithms.

  18. Well, maybe he needs to be sent in the Arctic area to see how polar bears are struggling to get their food now when the sea contains less ice and temperature has moved up creating some kind of sauna effect for all animals that live there.
    http://www.alternative-energies.net/the-west-antarctic-ice-sheet-is-melting-and-threatens-coastal-cities-with-major-floods/

  19. “T0kodave | March 25, 2015 at 1:10 pm | Reply
    Nonetheless; Physics beats a strongly held belief. Every single time.

    It also beats a good debater, every single time.”

    Regrettably not. Most of those judging Cruz are scoring him on rhetoric and polemic, not science.

    When Judge Gath the Philistine is keeping score, Goliath is recorded as the winner. :-(

  20. As a skeptic, I never bought into the 1998 starting year rhetoric. 1998 is a unique event. However, as the UAH data shows:

    the temp from 2004 to present is indeed statistically flat. Averaging the data tends to distort this flatness, which is disingenuous. Something happened in the early 2000s, and the increase in CO2 since that time is no longer driving atmospheric temp higher, at least to the degree it happened 197x – 200x. I, for one, am still waiting for pro-CAGW scientists to explain why.

    [Response: Your “temp from 2004 to present is indeed statistically flat” is one of the ways you’re misleading yourself. Everybody knows that the statistical significance of trends decreases as time spans shorten, all you’ve done is shorten it enough to make the trend not “statistically significant.”

    If you actually analyze the data since 2004 to estimate the trend, you can’t show it’s warming using only that data (statistical significance and all), but you also can’t show it isn’t warming. In fact it might be warming as rapidly as 0.32 deg.C per decade — much faster than anyone imagines! The only thing we really learn studying ONLY the data since 2004, is that it’s too short a time span.

    As for “Averaging the data tends to distort this flatness, which is disingenuous,” no. Averaging the data does not tend to distort flatness. Your accusation of “disingenuous” is insulting and groundless. Shame on you.

    As for “Something happened in the early 2000s,” read this and you might begin to see that there’s no evidence recent temperature trends have changed at all. Read this and you may begin to see some of the details.

    Do NOT then come back here to argue with us about it.]

    • It’s 20 degrees colder today than yesterday where I live. Global warming is a lie!!!!111!

    • Adam. You say “the temp from 2004 to present is indeed statistically flat” in the UAH series.

      Here is the NASA GISS series from 1970 to the present.

      http://tinyurl.com/padu9vw

      The overall trend from 1970 to the present is around 0.16C/decade according to the WoodforTrees analysis: – i.e. it is warming over that period of over 44 years, no doubt about it.
      But hang on!!!There was a cooling trend from:
      1970 to 1977
      1976.75 to 1979.5
      1980 to 1987
      1983 to 1988
      1988 to 1997
      1997 to 2001.5
      2001 to 2005
      2005 to 2010
      2010 to 2014
      In other words, during almost ALL of the time over the last 44 years when everyone would agree the long-term trend has been one of warming, someone could have sat in a corner, sucked on his pipe, and truthfully muttered, “Arrh, you mark my words, these last few years it’s been getting colder!”

    • I know Tamino’s reply already makes this point, but it feels important enough to restate to make sure it is not missed. The UAH data from 2004-present is not “statistically flat.” That implies a statistically significant flatness, or zero trend. That is absolutely not the case. The fact is that the central tendency of the data is a positive trend. However, since the time span is short, the error bars are wide, so wide in fact that–limiting the basis of our inference to this data alone–it is *plausible* that the trend is flat, just as it is plausible *on the same basis* that the trend is much higher than anyone is claiming it is. But the data are no more or less “statistically flat” than they are “statistically steeper than anyone previously suspected.” Both statements have the same relationship to the data, and are wrong for the same reason. In other words, Ted Cruz (for example) would have been equally justified in claiming that the satellite data for the last 17 years showed *accelerated* warming, rather than *no* warming. Which is to say, not justified at all…but the the statements have equivalent merit. Similarly for Adam’s statement that the UAH data from 2004 is “flat.” It would be equally right (and equally wrong) to characterize the same data as showing an implausibly steep positive trend. But here’s the thing: it’s only implausibly steep because we do not limit our inference to only the UAH data from 2004 to present. Because of everything else we know, including the rest of the UAH series, the other temperature records, observations of other systems (ice, annual patterns of plants and animals, etc.), paleo data, etc., etc. etc….because we know all of that, we know the trend is not really +.32 degrees per decade. And because of the exact same additional information, forming the context for our interpretations, we know the trend is *also not really flat*. To claim otherwise is, indeed, disingenuous.

  21. “When Judge Gath the Philistine is keeping score, Goliath is recorded as the winner. :-(”

    To a point–Cf., “It’s only a flesh wound!”

  22. Chris Colose

    The slope of the last few data points goes away if you use RSS, but this shows why the satellite data are far from perfect, and in particular how wrong the people are who think their favorite satellite product is the last word on the subject…especially since there’s more ENSO variability for instance in these records.

    I’ve done a “trend-to-date” line from 1850-2014 with the HAdCRUT4 (Surface) data and an estimate of the uncertainties in that trend. So, e.g., the first datapoint is the slope of the linear regression from 1850-2014 and the last data point from 2013-2014 (just annual averages here). Clearly, the meaning of the slopes here changes on this 0-10 or 15 yr timescale…

  23. The RSS annual means for 1979-2014 are:

    1979 -0.095
    1980 0.015
    1981 0.022
    1982 -0.173
    1983 0.066
    1984 -0.224
    1985 -0.261
    1986 -0.139
    1987 0.099
    1988 0.067
    1989 -0.120
    1990 0.074
    1991 0.081
    1992 -0.179
    1993 -0.118
    1994 0.028
    1995 0.159
    1996 0.047
    1997 0.102
    1998 0.550
    1999 0.105
    2000 0.093
    2001 0.247
    2002 0.315
    2003 0.320
    2004 0.201
    2005 0.330
    2006 0.231
    2007 0.253
    2008 0.044
    2009 0.219
    2010 0.469
    2011 0.140
    2012 0.185
    2013 0.217
    2014 0.255

    The regression of dT on Year is
    RSS,[t] = -24.2425 + 0.0121929Year[t] + e[t]

    N = 35
    Student’s t on the slope is 5.489, p < 3.97 x 10^-6
    R^2 is 0.4699, adjusted 0.4543
    F(1,34) = 30.13, same p as the slope t-test.

    I don't think Ted Cruz is stupid. I think he's dishonest.

  24. BPL,
    TC’s position is also outside that of his church’s position – see http://erlc.com/article/getting-into-hot-water-evangelicals-and-global-warming.

    His church says AGW is real, and is a problem. If he cannot accept the ethics statement of his chosen church, I do not see how he can call himself a member of that church.

    • Good link, Aaron. However, Baptists (Southern or otherwise) aren’t a centrally-governed denomination. Membership is primarily to specific congregations, not the wider denomination. Moreover, ‘ethics statements’ are secondary to creedal ones.

      So, by the applicable rules, Ted Cruz–and the members of the Cornwall Alliance, which may include Dr. Roy Spencer, IIRC–would indeed be safely able to claim membership of their church.

      Of course, his position is thereby no smarter on the merits of the case.

      • I suppose I should correct myself, just slightly. The SBC website says: “Southern Baptists are not a creedal people, requiring churches or individuals to embrace a standardized set of beliefs, they are a confessional people. The BF&M represents the confessional consensus of “certain definite doctrines that Baptists believe, cherish, and with which they have been and are now closely identified” (BF&M, preamble).”

        But that ‘confession’ looks kinda creedal to me. Anyway, the document is here, if anyone wants to look:

        http://www.sbc.net/bfm

        Seriously OT: One sidelight that I didn’t know: SBC membership has been declining slightly but not insignificantly for most of the last decade. (I’m guessing that it’s due to a loss of membership to ‘rock ‘n roll megachurches.’ My professional life exposes me to them, from time to time, so I can testify that they provide a powerful ‘feel-good’ liturgy, if you care for that sort of thing. Think satellite-linked multiple campuses, large multimedia and IT staffs, instrument endorsement deals, and drum iso-booths on altars–if there even are traditional altars.)

  25. Horatio Algeranon

    “Trends”

    As sea level rises
    Politics drops
    No surprises
    From usual crops

  26. Satellite data are uncertain ;-)

    Weng et al. (2014) Uncertainty of AMSU-A derived temperature trends in relationship with clouds and precipitation over ocean

    Microwave Sounding Unit (MSU) and Advanced Microwave Sounding Unit-A (AMSU-A) observations from a series of National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration satellites have been extensively utilized for estimating the atmospheric temperature trend. For a given atmospheric temperature condition, the emission and scattering of clouds and precipitation modulate MSU and AMSU-A brightness temperatures. In this study, the effects of the radiation from clouds and precipitation on AMSU-A derived atmospheric temperature trend are assessed using the information from AMSU-A window channels. It is shown that the global mean temperature in the low and middle troposphere has a larger warming rate (about 20–30 % higher) when the cloud-affected radiances are removed from AMSU-A data. It is also shown that the inclusion of cloud-affected radiances in the trend analysis can significantly offset the stratospheric cooling represented by AMSU-A channel 9 over the middle and high latitudes of Northern Hemisphere.

  27. Information is surely lost when you average data into temporal bins, but what’s lost is information about the fast variability, not slower trends. A similar effect happens with moving averaging, a closely related filter (binning amounts to regular grabs from a moving average, spaced at the averaging interval). It’s entirely conventional to lump time series data like that for analysis — global temperature data itself is nearly always viewed as an annual series, which is just binned monthly data.

    I prefer to at least have a look at the full temporal resolution, because there may be stuff there that’s interesting and important. Here are eight popular global temperature series plotted at the monthly resolution at which most are prepared: http://gergs.net/?attachment_id=2839

    I observe:
    . RSS has departed from consensus in the last two years, after following the others closely for most it’s history. Likely something is wrong with it, or maybe all the rest are wrong*.
    . All of the series look pretty flat over the last 14 years (not 17). That’s largely an illusion caused by the unusually low recent variability; there is no meaningful departure from the trend line.
    . RSS looks even flatter over that interval because of it’s recent down-tick.
    . UAH does not; it’s followed the others up along the trend.
    . All of that has been happening well within the noise channel. A stock trader would still be confidently backing “momentum”, and rightly so. Is Cruz just another mad market contrarian? Those guys mostly lose their pants.

    (* Or maybe its just magnifying La Niña as the satellite lower troposphere series are want to do. If so it may jump sharply when the Pacific flips, as could be happening right now.)

    • Not sure what you mean by “full temporal resolution”. To my mind, at least, the aggregation interval should at least approximate the rate of change in the phenomenon of interest (erring on the low side, for practical reasons). That is, all the underlying data is available at daily intervals, and some is even more fine grained, I think. It would be silly to analyze climate data at the daily level. Many like months and that probably does catch some phenomena (el Nino/la Nina???) which are at least related to the result of interest. However there is still a lot of noise and other problems. Annual, bienniel, even decadal show climate trends more clearly as the short term non-climate variability is simply not as visible. “Full temporal resolution”–daily at worst–would obscure this greatly. Or so it seems to me. Though of course the signal would still be there in the data.

      • Most* of the global temperature series are prepared and published at monthly resolution. For the instrumental series that is imposed by the averaging procedures used, which take advantage of the spatial coherence of the underlying point temperature anomalies at that temporal resolution. (Coherence would be much lower at daily or hourly resolution, making any higher resolution global spatial average very uncertain.)

        (* The various reanalysis series potentially offer decent quality daily and hourly resolution global averages. I’m not sure I’d want to bother looking that fine … but then again, the odd snapshot of a week or a month here or there might show something interesting.)

  28. Reblogged this on The Casual Enthusiast and commented:
    Tamino delivers another fine take down, this time of Ted Cruz and his dishonest/ignorant (you pick) climate denial.

  29. Horatio Algeranon

    “The Cruzifiction”

    We’re Cruzified
    By pol’s deceit
    And truth denied
    Is our defeat

  30. I made the decision this morning to start fact checking political leaders on climate change on facebook, probably to my followers’ annoyance but oh well. For my first update I compiled each of the 6 common temperature datasets into one graph (baseline 1980-2010) and calculated trends from 1950-1998 and 1950-2015, showing that the trend to now is definitely steeper clearly indicating warming has occurred since ’98. Also the graph itself shows pretty clearly how wrong the claim is, and how reliant on one particular dataset and a cherry-picked interval.

    [Response: I think the test you’re applying isn’t a proper test of whether or not the trend since 1998 is steeper. Including the data from 1950 to 1970 makes the signal decidedly nonlinear, sot that linear fits no longer mean the same thing.]

  31. Tamino,
    My test was only meant to briefly illustrate that there has been warming since 1998, because if there hasn’t the 1950-2015 trend would have a smaller slope than the trend to 98. My selection of 1950 was mostly arbitrary, partially so that I wouldn’t be accused of selecting a starting date that exaggerates the trend. Perhaps I should have left the trends off altogether and let the data speak for itself, but people will see what they want to see if you leave it up to their eyeball’s interpretation.

  32. > Ted Cruz’s idea of “zero ….”

    Obviously, it’s zero all the way — right up to when it’s one.
    And it’s one all the way — right up to when it’s two.
    Those are natural numbers. There ain’t nothing that ain’t natural.
    Get real. See, you can have nothin’ — that’s zero.
    Or you can have somethin’ — that’s one, or two, or three.
    You can count on real numbers. Right up to ten.
    Or twenty, on a warm day.
    Temperature is like age. You’re either one, or two.
    Temperature is like toes. You can have five, or ten.
    You might lose one if the temperature gets too low.
    But nobody loses toes from global warming.
    It makes sense if you think of it the Right way.
    You scientist types cheat by using those fake numbers — the ones that are starting with a dot, to squeeze them in between

    You scientists with your “decimals” — utterly lacking in integerity.

    ——–
    Happy April One.

  33. russellseitz

    What do you expect from a man who owes an apology to the Spanish Inquisition