Louis Proyect: The Unrepentant Marxist

June 11, 2007

Alexander Cockburn and Zbigniew Jaworowski

Filed under: Ecology — louisproyect @ 5:57 pm

Zbigniew Jaworowski

Alexander Cockburn in the 6/9/2007 Weekend edition of Counterpunch:

Take Warsaw-based Professor Zbigniew Jaworowski, famous for his critiques of ice-core data. He’s devastating on the IPCC rallying cry that CO2 is higher now than it has ever been over the past 650,000 years. In his 1997 paper in the Spring 21st Century Science and Technology, he demolishes this proposition. In particular, he’s very good on pointing out the enormous inaccuracies in the ice-core data and the ease with which a CO2 reading from any given year is contaminated by the CO2 from entirely different eras. He also points out that from 1985 on there’s been some highly suspect editing of the CO2 data, presumably to reinforce the case for the “unprecedented levels” of modern CO2. In fact, in numerous papers prior to 1985, there were plenty of instances of CO2 levels much higher than current CO2 measurements, some even six times higher. He also points out that it is highly unscientific to merge ice-core temperature measurements with modern temperature measurements.

Cockburn failed to identify Jaworowski’s professional qualifications. He is in fact not a climatologist but a professor at the Central Laboratory for Radiological Protection in Warsaw, Poland. He also fails to identify 21st Century Science and Technology as a publication of Lyndon Larouche’s bizarre ultrarightist cult that used to beat leftists up in the 1970s, provided snitches on the antinuclear movement to the Reagan administration, received paramilitary training from a KKK leader, blamed modern day capitalist ills on the Jews and Queen Elizabeth, etc.

Lyndon Larouche

In addition to the abovementioned article, Jaworowski also wrote “The Truth about Chernobyl is Told,” which claimed that fears about radiation illness were unfounded.

Twin brothers from Chernobyl (the healthy-looking one is deaf)

Here are some other gems from 21st Century Science and Technology:

Why Hanford’s Nuclear Waste Cleanup Wastes Your Money

It’s Time to Tell the Truth about the Health Benefits of Low-Dose Radiation

Lyndon Larouche Proposes a 25-Year Solution to the Energy Crisis

Terraforming Mars to Create a New Earth

Genetically Engineered Crops Can Feed the World!

From Zbigniew_Jaworowsk wiki:

Stephen Schneider said of him that “Jaworowski is perhaps even more contrarian than most, claiming that he can prove the climate is going to get colder through his work excavating glaciers on six different continents, which he says indicates what we should really be worrying about is ‘The approaching new Ice Age…’.”[2] Jaworowski wrote The current sunspot cycle is weaker than the preceding cycles, and the next two cycles will be even weaker. Bashkirtsev and Mishnich (2003)[3] expect that the minimum of the secular cycle of solar activity will occur between 2021 and 2026, which will result in the minimum global temperature of the surface air. The shift from warm to cool climate might have already started..

When approached to see if he would bet on future cooling, Jaworowski denied making any prediction, stating “I do not make my own detailed projections. In my paper I referred the reader to B&M paper, and that is all.”[3]

Jaworowski published several papers (Jaworowski, 20007; Jaworowski, 1999; Jaworowski, 1997) in 21st Century Science and Technology, a non-refereed magazine published by Lyndon LaRouche.[4]

From Jim Easter’s blog:

To honor exceptional achievement in mendacity, I would like to present the Golden Horseshoe Award to that writer who has out-performed his or her peers in density of false statements per column-inch. To receive the first Golden Horseshoe Award, I can think of no more worthy recipient than Zbigniew Jaworowski.

From Tim Lambert’s blog:

Jaworowski claims that rather that selecting the most accurate values, Callendar made an arbitrary selection to produce the result (increasing CO2) that he desired. Jaworowski has not a scrap of evidence for his claim and all other data supports Callendar. The green line shows measurements of CO2 concentration from ice cores at Law Dome. Notice how it agrees with the values Callendar chose and the red line of the Mauna Loa measurements. Jaworowski has an answer to this. The ice core measurements are fraudulent, as are the Mauna Loa measurements. Multiple independent ice core measurements agree with those from the Law Dome, so presumably Jaworowski believes that these are the product of a huge conspiracy as well. It should come as no surprise that Jaworowski’s theories were not published in a scientific journal, but in 21st Century, a magazine published by Lyndon LaRouche, renowned for his belief in various conspiracy theories.


17 Comments »

  1. One good thing about Counterpunch is that it doesn’t force its other writers to buy into Alex Cockburn’s denialism, for example, in this interesting biographical piece, at the end, Michael Simmons writes:

    “Mechanized transportation is becoming prohibitive with the price of fuel and reality of global warming.”

    Comment by eugene — June 12, 2007 @ 8:19 am

  2. I think Cockburn is on an ego trip in this case. It is bad when one of your favourite journalist starts writing bizarre things. He is pretty good on all other things. But when it comes to global warming he behaves rather stupidly. It is like a nightmare. I really hope he stops making a fool of himself.

    Comment by Ajit — June 12, 2007 @ 10:27 am

  3. Any eye opener for many, Proyect’s simply, factual approach is, as always, invaluable.

    Comment by J, Marlin — June 12, 2007 @ 12:10 pm

  4. Any eye opener for many, Proyect’s simple, strongly researched, factual approach is, as always, invaluable.

    Comment by J, Marlin — June 12, 2007 @ 12:11 pm

  5. “He is pretty good on all other things.”

    I beg to differ. Cockburn hasn’t been himself since he started boosting Paul Craig Roberts. From 9/11 conspiracy theories (“Did Israeli Intelligence Know About 9/11,” etc.) to blaming the VA Tech shootings on the fact that students weren’t armed, he’s been trashy for quite awhile now. His writings on global warming fit the model of his pseudo-scientific contrarian anti-SSRI rantings to a T.

    Comment by Zach — June 12, 2007 @ 2:17 pm

  6. I am afraid that Zach may be right.

    Comment by louisproyect — June 12, 2007 @ 2:26 pm

  7. I am curious about what connection Zach sees between the gun control issue and global warming/peak oil. I disagree with Cockburn on the latter but agree on the former.

    Comment by eugene — June 12, 2007 @ 4:57 pm

  8. From 9/11 conspiracy theories (”Did Israeli Intelligence Know About 9/11,” etc.)

    Cockburn and St Clair didn’t say Israelis carried out 9 11 , they didn’t even say Israelis knew about this. They just pointed out some curious stories which are true which were not pursued to their logical end nor were they given the publicity they deserved.
    Some of these stories were from Jewish Daily Forward itself. They are not from any Neo nazi sites or LaRouche magazines.
    It is amazing zach is calling cockburn erratic for running such a big story which Mainstream Media was not ready to run.
    What next? Calling Cockburn a nut for running stories on Israeli Lobby?

    Comment by Ajit — June 12, 2007 @ 6:05 pm

  9. My beef is not with Cockburn’s take on gun control proper, but rather his implication that college students should be carrying concealed weapons to classes.

    I apologize for using an Israel example for all the anti-anti-Israel Lobby hysteria it was bound to produce. Still, my point would be clear to anyone who regularly reads CounterPunch or even watched Cockburn’s recent appearance on CSPAN’s BookTV.

    Comment by Zach — June 13, 2007 @ 1:45 pm

  10. I get the impression Cockburn stubbornly “staying the course” now that his position has been under relentless attack by the left. The fact that he has not fully researched his sources screams “sloppy journalism” to me.
    That has nothing to do with his terrible take on the VA tech shootings, which in practice would amount to drunken frat boys armed with Tec-9s, shotguns, and god knows what else, running around campus living out Counter-Strike fantasies.

    Comment by Binh — June 13, 2007 @ 3:25 pm

  11. [...] was a reference to my blog entry “Alexander Cockburn and Zbigniew Jaworowski,” where I called attention to the Polish scientist’s pro-nuke [...]

    Pingback by Alexander Cockburn digs a deeper hole « Louis Proyect: The Unrepentant Marxist — June 17, 2007 @ 5:02 pm

  12. very interesting, but I don’t agree with you
    Idetrorce

    Comment by Idetrorce — December 15, 2007 @ 4:04 pm

  13. This’ll undoubtedly shoved down the memory hole because it’s not just another echo, but…

    I find it hilarious that you bitch about Professor Jaworowski’s technical qualifications (ignoring the fact that his critique involves the manipulation of mass transfer differential equations, something common to both nuclear physics and chemical processes) –

    “Cockburn failed to identify Jaworowski’s professional qualifications. He is in fact not a climatologist but a professor at the Central Laboratory for Radiological Protection in Warsaw, Poland.”

    – and then not provide anthing like a logical rebuttal (a picture deformed people?.. come one…)about his paper that says that the consequences of Chernobyl have been vastly exaggerated (not non-existant, exaggerated).
    “…professor at the Central Laboratory for Radiological Protection”, remember?

    But then again, when else (agitprop) should one expect from an “Unrepetant Marxist”?

    Incidentally, I’ve dug out my old Diff EQ and Bennet and Myers textbooks to see if I can follow his paper, which is a hell of a lot more than I’ve seen from most of the naysayers on this thread.

    Comment by bud — March 10, 2008 @ 7:03 pm

  14. Fortunately for the ‘mendacious’ (sic) ‘deniers’ (sic), ‘contrararians'(sic) and all the other ne’er-do-wells, rogues and vagabonds who have the temerity to disagree about a scientific issue, virtually all the arguments on this site are ad hominem.

    But why make life so easy for these people? Why not try to present some valid arguments against their wickedness? Trying to say they’re all paid by the oil industry, or (!) have been published by a right wing (gasp) publication are happily beside the point, as far as the ‘deniers’ are concerned.

    Worse for your ‘side’ (sorry) is the (false) insinuation Jaworowski knows nothing about the environment because he’s employed by the Warsaw Central Laboratory for Radiological Protection (sic!). Do you know anything at all about their work?

    Tim Lambert either hasn’t read or hasn’t understood Jaworowski’s point about the ice cores, and has lamely introduced his own prejudices which are quite simply missing in Jaworoski’s papers.These are rigourously methodical, and call no-one any names. Why should you?

    Hit them where it hurts, say I – right in the facts. Meet the argument, not the people behind them

    Comment by El nono — October 16, 2008 @ 12:18 pm

  15. [...] This is not to speak of his climate change skepticism which has drawn from the poisoned well of bogus science, including from a character who has written numerous articles for a Lyndon Larouche magazine. [...]

    Pingback by Alexander Cockburn: fetus fetishist « Louis Proyect: The Unrepentant Marxist — August 15, 2009 @ 5:50 pm

  16. [...] lurid conspiracists in political history”. I guess that he must have forgotten that he has called upon  Zbigniew Jaworowski, an expert in Larouche’s stable, to support his global warming [...]

    Pingback by Alexander Cockburn, Marc Cooper, and Castro’s Cuba « Louis Proyect: The Unrepentant Marxist — September 20, 2010 @ 4:54 pm

  17. [...] This is not to speak of his climate change skepticism which has drawn from the poisoned well of bogus science, including from a character who has written numerous articles for a Lyndon Larouche magazine. [...]

    Pingback by Alexander Cockburn, 71, no More | वसुधैव कुटुंबकम — July 21, 2012 @ 9:50 pm


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