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FOX and Friends dig up hurricane expert to slam AL Gore

Reported by Chrish - October 15, 2007 -

Citing his reknown for annual predictions of "hurricanes and tropical storms and stuff like that" and alleging that "every news outlet quotes" him, Steve Doocy effectively bestowed expert status on Dr. William Gray at Colorado State University, legitimizing his criticism of Al Gore and "An Inconvenient Truth." He says the theories behind AIT are all wrong; "ridiculous," to be exact. But other scientific organizations are not so impressed with Dr. Gray's work or credentials.

Gray argues that humans are not responsible for the warming of the earth, and says that salinity determines the temperature of the oceans' waters. All three friends were participating in the Gore-bashing. Brian Kilmeade read a graphic, a quote from Gray that said "We're brainwashing our children. They're going to the Gore movie and being fed all this. It's ridiculous."

He also charged that scientists won't speak out against something they know is wrong, because they won't get the grant money they need for research, but he claims he doesn't care about grants.

Gray said (if I'm interpreting Doocy's labored stumbling explanation correctly) that there were more hurricanes in the first half of the 20th Century, when it was chillier on average, than there were in the second half, when it was warmer.

This was an attempt to single out one man with expertise in a related field and present him as some kind of final say-so to discredit AL Gore and the Oscar-winning film.

But does Gray have a bone to pick with Al Gore? The Washington Post reports

"Gray's crusade against global warming "hysteria" began in the early 1990s, when he saw enormous sums of federal research money going toward computer modeling rather than his kind of science, the old-fashioned stuff based on direct observation. Gray often cites the ascendancy of Gore to the vice presidency as the start of his own problems with federal funding. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) stopped giving him research grants. So did NASA. All the money was going to computer models. The field was going off on this wild tangent."

The WaPo article continues

"Someone like Bill Gray seems to be a fully credentialed authority figure. But when you press him on his theory of how thermohaline circulation has caused recent warming of the planet and will soon cause cooling, he concedes that he hasn't published the idea in any peer-reviewed journal. He's working on it, he says.

The Web site Real Climate, run by a loose group of climate scientists, recently published a detailed refutation of Gray's theory, saying his claims about the ocean circulation lack evidence. The Web site criticized Gray for not adapting to the modern era of meteorology, "which demands hypotheses soundly grounded in quantitative and consistent physical formulations, not seat-of-the-pants flying."

The field has fully embraced numerical modeling, and Gray is increasingly on the fringe. His cranky skepticism has become a tired act among younger scientists. "It's sad," says Emanuel,(Kerry Emanuel, an atmospheric scientist at MIT) who has vowed never again to debate Gray in public."

The Real Climate article notes that

"Gray's paper begins with a quote from Senator Inhofe calling global warming a hoax perpetrated on the American people, and ends with a quote by a representive of the Society of Petroleum Geologists stating that Crichton's State of Fear has "the absolute ring of truth." It is the gaping flaws in the scientific argument sandwiched between these two statements that are our major concern."

It is no coincidence or surprise that this man was chosen over the thousands of scientists who support the theories put forth in "An Inconvenient Truth" to bash Gore upon his receipt of the Nobel Peace Prize.
Rupert Murdoch, who announced he would turn his News Corp. carbon neutral by 2010, continues to allow his mouthpieces to undermine the theory that humans are contributing to climate change because it's bad for business/the economy to suggest that we need to cut our consumption. And Murdoch's a profit-driven businessman, first and foremost.