RealClimate Co-Founder Exposes His Inability to Grasp Complex Subjects

And most regulars will recall William Connolley. Connolley’s likely best known for his hijinks as a former editor at Wikipedia. (See the WattsUpWithThat posts here, here, here, here, here, here here….and here.) But Connolley is also a former climate modeler with the British Antarctic Survey…plus a co-founder of, and former contributor to, the blog RealClimate, where he authored or co-authored a grand total of 14 blog posts from December, 2004 to March, 2008. Connolley now blogs at ScienceBlogs/Stoat.

WattsUpWithThat regulars will remember “Sou”, a.k.a. Miriam O’Brien. As Anthony Watts notes in his post My Blog Spawn:

Proprietor:Sou from Bundangawoolarangeera” aka Miriam O’Brien of Mt. Beauty, VC, Australia

Some of Miriam’s skills: being a “a sixties-something woman with an interest in climate science“, sniping at WUWT, snark, Twitter snark, photography, business consulting, being on a board of directors.

Anthony continued:

Given her daily rants, she has now qualified for “Internet stalker” levels of infatuation and invective. Assigned to the permanent troll bin.

How do those two bloggers form the basis for an article?

More background: Connolley was the first troll to appear on the thread of my post I’m Retiring from Full-Time Climate Change Blogging. See his January 3, 2014 at 3:11 pm comment. But that’s not the subject of this post. This post is about Connolley’s first link in his blog post, one that serves as his reference for my work on the processes and aftereffects of El Niño and La Niña events—a body of work that includes more than 150 well-illustrated, data-based blog posts about El Niño and La Niña processes and one book solely about ENSO. Connolley writes. [I’ve removed his hyperlink attached to my name so that readers don’t get ahead of me]:

I hasten to add that RP Sr is not speaking of me, no, he is talking of renowned blogger Bob Tisdale.

Where would you have expected the hyperlink to lead? My blog? Maybe WattsUpWithThat? Maybe the exchange I had last year at SkepticalScience about the long-term effects of ENSO?

Give up? The hyperlink was to a post by Miriam O’Brien from HotWhopper. (I’m glad I hadn’t been drinking coffee when I clicked on that link.)

As a reference for his understanding of my work, Connolley linked Miriam O’Brien’s post Bob Tisdale is Perennially Puzzled about ENSO [Miriam hyperlinks to archives, not the original blog posts, so I’ve done the same here]. Miriam’s post is her response to my post titled SkepticalScience Still Misunderstands or Misrepresents the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO). (The WattsUpWithThat cross post is here.) In that post, I provided graphs of a number of datasets broken down into logical subsets that contradicted the SkepticalScience representation of ENSO, and I challenged SkepticalScience to provide links to climate model-based, peer-reviewed papers that explained why those variables for specific parts of the globe responded as they did to El Niño and La Niña events.

Of course, Miriam O’Brien did not address the content of my post. She did not discuss the datasets I presented, as I had presented them. And Miriam quoted me out of context—nothing surprising there. Miriam could have saved herself a lot of time by simply noting that she agreed with Nuccitelli’s post and disagreed with mine–but she didn’t. Miriam O’Brien wasted her time creating a couple of illustrations so that she could restate Dana Nuccitelli’s misunderstandings and misinformation.

Miriam O’Brien fancies herself an expert on just about every climate-related subject. Yet she is only capable of using the Monty Python contradiction approach to argument, which is why I find her blog so amusing…and, at the same time, I find her blogging style pitiable because she doesn’t realize she’s become an embodiment of a Python caricature.


It’s quite telling that William Connolley, a co-founder of RealClimate, used Miriam O’Brien’s HotWhopper post as a reference for his knowledge of ENSO. It indicates his understandings of the complex coupled ocean-atmosphere processes and aftereffects of El Niño and La Niña events are as limited as Miriam’s. And if Miriam O’Brien serves as one of his scientific or technical experts, it also suggests Connolley’s arguments about human-induced global warming have grown as laughable as hers.

About Bob Tisdale

Research interest: the long-term aftereffects of El Niño and La Nina events on global sea surface temperature and ocean heat content. Author of the ebook Who Turned on the Heat? and regular contributor at WattsUpWithThat.
This entry was posted in CAGW Proponent Arguments, El Nino-La Nina Processes, HotWhopper. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to RealClimate Co-Founder Exposes His Inability to Grasp Complex Subjects

  1. Brian H says:

    I believe Connolly just received a sideways promotion, and he has long been defacto reinstated at Wikipedia.

  2. Mark - Helsinki says:

    WC is of the same caste as Schmidt and Mann. I’m sorry you had to read a hotwhopper post link or otherwise, such an awful bitter website, why would people go to such a site, to satisfy some weird need?

    WC cheered Bob Carter’s passing away, so I don’t even rate him as a human being.

    Bob did you expect any different? You backed them into a corner, so they attacked. You gave them a direct answer which demanded a direct reply, the only option they had was to go full retrd, which they did.

    I read MOBs post, that is what they call “science”, pseudo logic.SKs is full of that, spurious claims not backed by any science.

    We are not really sure how intense El Nino La Nina have been in the past, that’s what makes me laugh about Sks, they make these absolute claims based on such flimsy evidence or no evidence.

    A New lie I read out there is the Viking leader lied to his people to get them to Greenland and it was covered in ice, yup, A resident guardian moderator said that in his blog

    Carry on sir. Great work

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