Yet more bollox from Oreskes

PXL_20230603_160413359 Via complete and utter Twatter, apparently an amicus brief for the United States Court Of Appeals FOR THE NINTH CIRCUIT:
At least fifty years ago, Defendants-Appellants (hereinafter, “Defendants”) had information from their own internal research, as well as from the international scientific community, that the unabated extraction, production, promotion, and sale of their fossil fuel products would result in material dangers to the public. Defendants failed to disclose this information...
Can you see the problem with this? Just as a hint I've bolded some of it. Yes, that's right: these idiots are actually trying to claim in a court of law that the Evil Fossil Fuel companies failed to tell the world about published scientific research. FFS. They'll get ripped to shreds, if anyone even bothers read this drivel. Not that Monkers was dissuaded, so there's a fine exemplar for them to follow.

You cannot rescue this rubbish by claiming that "their own internal research" was the important factor, because it wasn't.

This is yet more of the deeply morally broken attempt to blame the world's problems on Someone Else; to pretend that the public and the politicians were mere innocent victims of the EFFCs. It is nonsense1.


1. Not that the EFFCs haven't done their share of lying. But "I did bad things because people lied to me" is pretty feeble; and definitely no excuse since the turn of the millennium, when (true) information has been so widely available.

2. It took me some time to work out which case this is, even. It's probably this one, if you care. Which enables me to tell you that Mario J. Molina, Michael Oppenheimer, Susanne C. Moser, Donald J. Wuebbles, Gary Griggs, Peter C. Frumhoff, and Kristina Dahl are idiots as well; the lesson from the Alsup tutorial was that the science isn't in doubt in court. But don't miss their shameless Foote fanbois stuff, although why anyone would want to yawn through their tedious rehearsal of well-known not-in-dispute stuff I don't know. Perhaps they had the slides pre-prepared and were reluctant not to use them.

3. With reluctance, I've updated the image used on this post. The old image was gratuitously offensive (if you really want to see it, there's an archive here) and since this has become the post that I link to the name "Oreskes" it seems fairer to include only rude words.


Nierenberg, concluded: Oreskes is wrong.
I was a teenage Exxon-funded climate scientist?
Gongos and Bongos
Holy Alsup, Batman!
* And don't get me started on the Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and 12 years to death meme.
CAN THE EULIPOTYPHICENE SURVIVE THE ANTHROPOCENE? - no issue is too trivial for govt to intervene.
* Verification, Validation, and Confirmation of Numerical Models in the Earth Sciences - what looks like another shit paper from Oreskes, Grud knows how it got into Science; h/t WUWT (arch).
* Oreskes also talks bollox about gunz: see the addendum to Gunz: constitutionalism and majoritarianism.


Andy Mitchell said...

It is hard to see how this can work when I can watch my peers still living their high carbon lifestyles even today. On the face of it, even if the fossil fuel companies did conceal anything, then they need not have bothered.

But where the crime may lie is how we got to this point. The general public is capable of great things if they have inspirational leadership. It is the fossil fuel companies role in denying the public that leadership that needs to be examined.

William M. Connolley said...

Companies are not there to be leaders. We have pols for that, no? You may be automatically dismissing pols as useless, but they *are* the mechanism you're looking for that our democracy provides; so it's no good trying via yet another route to deflect blame onto the EFFC.

And of course, who decides which pols we get? Yes, that's right.

Andy Mitchell said...

I'm not saying companies are there to be leaders. I'm saying that the fossil fuel companies have played a large part in shaping politics on both sides of the Atlantic. When it comes to tackling climate change we don't have a Churchill or a Roosevelt to choose, not even a Chamberlain. We can choose between Lord Halifax or Oswald Mosely.

Saying our democracy lets us choose our representatives does not match my experience of the process. I vote in every election, but not for a candidate I want, only for the candidate who appears to be the least insane from those on offer and with a chance of being elected.

Hank Roberts said...



Now why would they have anticipated raising oil platforms against sea level rise, so long ago?

William M. Connolley said...

> http://graphics.latimes.com/oil-operations/

Aka http://archive.is/3aYjm. Wherein you will find the answer to your question: During planning and construction of major engineering and infrastructure projects, it is standard practice to take into account many types of risks both short-term and long-term, likely and unlikely,” said Alan Jeffers, a spokesman for Exxon Mobil, which merged in 1999. “These risks would naturally include a range of environmental conditions, some of which could be associated with climate change.

I really don't understand this obsession with what the EFFCs said. It's like everyone had some charming naive idea that everyone tells the truth all the time. If you want to tell me that the EFFCs actions-at-the-time clearly belied their words, then that only stengthens my point.

> https://www.topic.com/giant-mirrors-ocean-whitening-here-s-how-exxon-wanted-to-save-the-planet

And as you know, plenty of people including not-EFFCs are discussing geoengineering. The article takes the piss, but ignorantly. It would appear that Exxon's crime wrt geoengineering was to think about it before it became respectable.

William M. Connolley said...

> We can choose between Lord Halifax or Oswald Mosely.

Well that's not down to the EFFCs. They don't make these candidates. They may push money in the direction of ones they like, but that's different.

> Saying our democracy lets us choose our representatives does not match my experience of the process.

Err, no; this is exactly the process. You may not have the choices you want, and even amongst those choices the one you want or least dislike may not get elected. I'm increasingly coming to the view that our democracy is badly flawed. Many people would agree with that - perhaps you do too - but we tend to differ in our responses. My reaction is that we should have less govt, since govt is so bad. I still want a carbon tax, though.

Andy Mitchell said...

I think the flaw in the process is that the people who get to choose candidates with a chance of actually winning are the party members. What that means is that at the moment - with a Tory govt. - the people we are governed by were chosen by just 124,000 people. All the rest of us got to do was choose between them and another bunch chosen by 540,000 labour party members.

Membership of UK political parties

To add to the black comedy, there is the idea that there are currently so many Labour party members because sufficient Tories bought Labour party memberships to tip the leadership election in favour of an unelectable left winger.

William M. Connolley said...

Mmmm, but the point I'm trying to get at is even those like you who think current politics is bad always focus on political solutions to the problem. We'll reform it, somehow. I find that unconvincing. The solution is to avoid it.

Andy Mitchell said...

Off topic - not far off though. Here's an unforgettable quote.

Jacob Rees-Mogg, a Conservative MP and keen supporter of Brexit, told the Mail on Sunday he believed the plans showed unnecessary panic by officials over a no-deal Brexit as senior royals had remained in London during bombing in the second world war.

So Rees-Mogg seems to be saying Brexit won't be any worse that the Blitz? That seems to fall a tad short of what the Leave campaign promised during the referendum campaign.

William M. Connolley said...

Ah, Queen to be evacuated if Brexit turns ugly – reports. That's kinda surreal... however, in this case I think Moggers is at least half correct; but also this is typical newspapers turning a non-story into noise.