If I have seen further than others, it is by treading on the toes of giants
Foolishly I did read through the latest installment. Its impenetrable.I spent a long time looking at it a few months ago and sat through the NAS sessions - many of which were fascinating. Two things struck me - firstly it will never be resolved - and secondly when I spoke to Hughes he said that they could only be 66% certain they were right about the warmest decade claim. If that caveat was always attached no-one would bother arguing.For some reason it brings to mind this famous historical quote:"Only three people understood the Schleswig-Holstein question. The first was Albert, the Prince consort and he is dead; the second is a German professor, and he is in an asylum: and the third was myself - and I have forgotten it." - Lord Palmerston.
Hughes' belief carries no scientific weight - only evidence will do. The Hockey Stick carries no weight of evidence.
John,Such assessments ("likely" etc) can only ever be a summary of the judgement of the scientist, informed by (but not purely determined by) the data. To pretend otherwise is at best naive. See my posts on Bayesian v frequentist reasoning (eg here) for more background...
The 66% comment is interesting. You've got 100 decades in a millenia. So a 66% odds on one of those 100 being the premier one is impressive. Now we actually have 20 decades of observed records (about). So if that decade is the warmest of those 20, making a coment that it is the warmest of 200 is a bit less impressive. Perhaps still impressive though. Need some math inserted here. Some little person do that please. I'm more of a strategy guy...
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