Medieval Paintings Explode Global Warming Myth!

Climate science - and perhaps the definition of science itself - is in for an update, thanks to the tireless work of tobacco and oil industry apologist, Dr. S. Fred Singer.

Singer and his current writing buddy, Hudson Institute Senior Fellow Dennis Avery, have discovered an artful argument to prove that we don't have to worry about climate change. Specifically, they found t housands of museum paintings that portrayed sunnier skies during the Medieval Warming and more cloudiness during the Little Ice Age .”

Well, no wonder everyone is so nostalgic about Medieval times: the weather was better. Or, at the very least, the painters were more cheerful.

Faithful DeSmog readers will know from previous posts that Singer is happy to tell the most flagrant and easily disputed lies on behalf of his oily clients. Here's a man who denied an oil-industry connection even while Exxon was citing him as a funding recipient on its own website. We also know that Exxon has funded the Hudson institute and that Avery has (coincidentally?) shifted his preoccupation from misrepresenting the cuddly nature of pesticides to propagating doubt about climate change.

We know that ever since the Oregon Petition, these clowns have been rustling up bogus lists of “scientists” who dispute the science behind climate change.

What we don't know - what is, indeed, unknowable - is whether either Singer or Avery will ever develop a conscience, or even a passing sense of embarrassment.

As when waiting for North American governments to start taking this issue seriously, we live in hope.


I love it. I happen to be an art historian, so I know a little something about this. I don’t know what they were looking at, but they should have taken “Mediaeval Symbolism & Iconography 101” before drawing such an hilarious conclusion. The idea that paintings from this period could be used as a reliable documentary source for determining actual weather conditions is laughable (unless we are prepared to accept that the sky was periodically gilded and full of Seraphim).

Although Singer is a familiar name, I hadn’t come across Avery before, so I looked him up, and he’s quite a character, too. Doesn’t let the facts get in the way of a good rant. see:

The link to their actual article is not working. I want to know how they dug up all those paintings: Google Images?

Apparently this stuff has been excerpted from their book, Unstoppable Global Warming: Every 1500 Years

Just to refresh & confirm my memory I pulled out a few books on mediaeval painting, and I am left wondering what on earth they can be talking about, given the lack of naturalism in painting of this period (ie, roughly 800-1300AD). I suspect they’ve got their dates mixed up, or just didn’t bother to check.

Thanks, that works. Gosh, the press release refers to all sorts of research that’s been done. I wish somebody would pay me to do that kind of research. There was this specific claim that I haven’t run across before. Does anyone know about it?

…Temperatures during the Medieval Warming Period on California’s Whitewing Mountain must have been 3.2 degrees warmer than today, says Constance Millar of the U.S. Forest Service, based on her study of seven species of relict trees that grew above today’s tree line…

Funny, you wouldn’t think she could get such a specific number, 3.2 degrees, by studying trees. And is that Fahrenheit or Celsius degrees?

Kevin has been trying to sort this out for me. It seems that everything I post after the two above in this thread is cursed! The spam blocker is reading me as spam, and although some of our fellow posters may prefer it this way, I am finding it alternately funny & irritating.

The gist of the post that keeps disappearing is that Avery & Singer have misrepresented Constance Millar’s work, cherry-picking a single statement citing a temperature without any context. She states quite emphatically in a paper (2006) that natural forces alone cannot explain the current warming trend, and that only the output of CO2 by humans can account for it.

That’s strange, Femack, because you did have a post there which lasted for a day or so, and which I replied to.

Sorry for not checking the link, but how do they attribute the recent warming to the natural cycle if it occurs every 1500 years? This is a similar kind of criticism to your comment regarding the fact that the earth is actually less dimmer now during warming, but interestingly incompatible somehow. They have some ‘splainin’ to do.

Even if they can prove there are such things as 1500 year cycles, that is not proof that the current global warming is caused by a natural cycle. Natural cycles can be disrupted by unusual events, such as humans producing way too much CO2 for the past century.

I found this painting that obviously proves the existence of alien life.

And this one clearly proves that bigfoot walks the earth.  

Also, it’s always sunny and warm in Nova Scotia, and tartan-clad lasses wade through knee-high grass along every highway. We absolutely never have a foggy or rainy day.

It must be true: just look at the tourist ads.