Monday, October 08, 2007

"Cheap, tawdry, and useless" - Tim Ball wins Best Response Award to my climate bet offer

Deltoid notes that Tim Ball and Tom Harris are predicting declining temps for the next 20-plus years and wonders if they're willing to bet. Wonder no more! (For Ball, anyway.)

I emailed Ball and Harris with my usual, tiresome "willing to bet? You're betting with other people's lives, how 'bout some of your money, blah blah blah" and then, hijinks ensued:

Ball Response #1:
I don't bet on anything, it has nothing to do with science.  I
especially don't bet under coercive conditions. Your claim that if
the bet is not taken it is explicit evidence of a lack of belief or
that warming won't happen is ridiculous. You then cheapen it further
by suggesting that somehow I am emotionally responsible for the
deaths from warming. How on earth are peoples lives dependent on this
bet?
I suggest you spend your time reading and trying to understand the
science of climate and climate change rather than gambling.

Me:
I don't think conclusory statements do much to support
your position. Your best argument is that you don't
bet on anything, although you should qualify that you
don't bet on anything with your own money. It's a
mysteriously common personality trait among climate
skeptics.

Anyway, I'll report a summary of your response on my
blog, or with your permission I'll just post your
response.

Sincerely,
Brian Schmidt

P.S. I give you credit for responding though - 90% of
the skeptics can't be bothered.

Ball Response #2:
They were not intended to support my position on climate or climate
change, if that is what you mean. I find your exercise cheap, tawdry
and useless. You can post my response on your blog if you wish. I
suppose it is a way of pretending to be knowledgeable and important
about climate and climate change. I am amazed how many people have
such certain positions yet know virtually nothing and I include many
scientists in that comment.
I try to respond to everyone because unlike so many including Gore,
Suzuki, and many others I am prepared to answer questions.

I love the cheap-tawdry-useless line, especially seeing as the compliment is the only thing I and the world will get from this guy to compensate for all his effort to stop people trying to stop a disaster.

I think I'll adopt it for the blog.

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