Global Warming - Balanced Newspaper Article

First half of 2006 warmest on record in U.S.
MSNBC - July 18, 2006

This article was different than usual because

However, the facts are still a little misleading and the authors obviously still want to blame people even though they say that many scientists don't agree.

Misleading Facts | Humans and Warming | Thoughts

Misleading Facts

This article is better than most specifically because it provides a lot of hard facts. However, the facts are not sufficient to draw a proper conclusion. Instead, the article interprets the facts for you in a way that most people would not notice or object to. For instance,

implies that 55.3 degrees is extremely hot.

However, stating that some temperature is 2.5 degrees above average really has no meaning - you must also provide the normal spread. For instance, if the three sigma annual variation was 2.4 degrees, then 2.5 degrees is no big deal. However, if the variation was 2.0 degrees, then 2.5 could be a big deal ... or not, depending on other (also missing) information.

Basically, this is an example of how to distort the truth by providing only a part of the data.

Note - three sigma is a statistical concept meaning that 99.73 percent of the measured values are that close to the average. A two sigma range would contain 95.45 percent. Basically, an average value without some kind of range conveys no real information.

Humans and Warming

Near the end, the article says which I interpret as really meaning In other words, this is really a variation on - Is the glass half full or half empty? - and you can spin it either way.

Perhaps the recent Al Gore propaganda film convinced a lot of real scientists to finally speak up and disagree with the politicians.

There is a significant amount of evidence that the planet started warming around 1650 AD. There is also evidence that human society has had no effect at all on the rate of warming. In the article, "at least partly to blame" indicates that the author has decided to listen to scientists instead of politicians, but the spin indicates the author's bias.


Overall, this article is much better than most.

I wonder

Author: Robert Clemenzi
URL: http:// / Global_Warming / NewsPapers / MSNBC_2006_07_18.html