The team trying to get “direct action” on Soon and Baliunas at Harvard

Direct Action at Harvard

By Steve McIntyre

Attention has been drawn today to Mann’s request to other Team members for suggestions as to how to take direct action at Harvard against Soon and Baliunas. Not noticed thus far is that Kevin Trenberth reverted almost immediately with suggestions and that Mann followed up on these suggestions. Later, Soon’s supervisor has a small cameo when we (Ross and I) enter on the scene.

The email reported today (4032, 276) was dated 2003-07-23. It was by no means an isolated attempt.

On April 24, 2003 (email 1999), Mann complained to a very large email distribution list that Soon and Baliunas’ association with Harvard-Smithsonian added damaging prestige to their article:

This latest assault uses a compromised peer-review process as a vehicle for launching a scientific disinformation campaign (often viscious and ad hominem) under the guise of apparently legitimately reviewed science, allowing them to make use of the “Harvard” moniker in the process.

On May 14, 2003, (email 2524), Mann wrote to Trenberth and other “colleagues” alleging that Soon and Baliunas had “hijacked” Harvard’s public relations office. Mann requested contacts at Harvard:

Dear Colleagues,
Baliunas and co. appear to have successfully hijacked Harvard’s PR office on this. Any of you have contacts there you might be able to get some information from? Both of these appeared in the “Harvard Gazette”:
[1]http://www.news.harvard.edu/gazette/2003/04.24/04-sun.html
[2]http://www.news.harvard.edu/gazette/2003/04.24/01-weather.html
That provides the appearance of Harvard’s stamp of approval for unsound claims which have otherwise been ignored by any other mainstream media outlets (despite the repeated attempts of the authors and their promoters to get wider coverage, the story has generally only been picked up by right-wing online sites and Murdoch-owned newspapers).

Trenberth wrote back suggesting Dan Schrag and Paul Epstein.

On May 15, Mann wrote Epstein as follows (email 2524), claiming that there was an “investigation” into the practices of editor de Freitas.

Read the rest here at Climate Audit

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34 thoughts on “The team trying to get “direct action” on Soon and Baliunas at Harvard

  1. the schizoid WSJ:

    28 Nov: WSJ: Climate Talks Open Amid Funding Spat
    A 2008 report by the FAO showed Uganda had five droughts from 1991 to 2000, compared with just eight in the previous 80 years.
    The report also warns about more severe flooding. The FAO predicts temperatures across Africa will rise between 2% and 3% in the next 100 years.
    Meanwhile, the World Meteorological Organization said the five hottest years on record for the continent all occurred since 2003…

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204753404577064213425399928.html?mod=googlenews_wsj

    barrie harrop is, unsurprisingly, the first to comment. remember him?

    18 Nov 2009: WUWT: Wall Street Journal on McIntyre: Global warming’s most dangerous apostate
    From one of the comments by Bulldust:
    Unfortunately Barrie Harrop seems to have the ear of the Australian politicians. Maybe this is because he saved the South Australian Premier from a savage, magazine-wielding maniac:

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/world/australia/2925848/S-Australia-premier-bashed-at-dinner

    Clearly one should not mess with Harrop, because he is a man of action.
    He also has a lot vested in windmill-based desalination R&D. He, like the Goracle, is an eco entrpeneur:

    http://www.copenhagenclimatecouncil.com/user-profile/1248-barrie-harrop.html

    His rent-seeking snout is well in the UN trough:

    http://hughespublicrelations.blogspot.com/2009/05/wind-desalination-expert-to-represent.html

    Is it any wonder he rants and raves when people undermine the CC science his investments rely upon? Sadly the man fails to understand that he is his own worst enemy in the blogosphere….

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/11/18/wall-street-journal-on-mcintyre-global-warmings-most-dangerous-apostate/

  2. “scientific disinformation campaign (often viscious ”

    So was this a sticky campaign or a savage campaign?

  3. Harvard is up to it’s ears in the wind scam. It is heavily involved with Boston based First Wind, UPC Wind, and whatever new names they (First Wind) and a number of it’s other LLC’s use. Ironically, it’s executives worked for GE Capital and then Enron Europe in London.

    Maine has been ground zero for them and the locals are not too happy about it.

    http://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/hey-angus-hey-shell-company

    http://news.harvard.edu/gazette/story/2009/11/harvard-to-become-largest-institutional-buyer-of-wind-power-in-new-england/

  4. “pat says:
    November 28, 2011 at 2:40 pm

    barrie harrop is, unsurprisingly, the first to comment. remember him?

    Unfortunately Barrie Harrop seems to have the ear of the Australian politicians. Maybe this is because he saved the South Australian Premier from a savage, magazine-wielding maniac:

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/world/australia/2925848/S-Australia-premier-bashed-at-dinner

    Clearly one should not mess with Harrop, because he is a man of action.
    He also has a lot vested in windmill-based desalination R&D. He, like the Goracle, is an eco entrpeneur:”

    Ha! Barrie Harrop!

    One doesn’t expect to see famous internet trolls headlocking deadly magazine-wielders at $600 a plate corporate dinners with politicians!

    Unless of course said internet troll is using curry flavors to curry favor so they don’t listen to Curry.

  5. Oh my lord, the mention of the Australian Whirligig Salesman, Barrie Harrop himself. Barrie is infamous in the WSJ comments section as being a major source of humor on the topic of AGW. There are urban dictionary definitions of Harrop and Harrops in existence. You may look up both. Neither is very complementary. Actually the awarding of a harrops to a poster is no longer allowed by the WSJ in its comments section. Any article that mentions AGW or water will draw Barrie the same way a cow patty draws flies. As near as anyone can figure out, Barrie has no advanced education of any sort from anywhere. His previous enterprise was a photo kiosk chain that did a nose plant and the source of his money is mainly his ancestors as near as anyone can figure. There are a number of posters in the WSJ that have a fun time of baiting Mr. Harrop into making a fool of himself. It does not take much. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204452104577059830626002226.html is an op-ed on the topic of Climategate 2 in which one may see Mr. Harrop in action in the comments section. Any and all of us make fools of ourselves at times. It is just embarrassing to see Barrie do it non-stop in public.

  6. Is it the role of climate “scientists” to slander others ?

    Mann, with his recent legal action apparently doesn’t think so.

    What a shallow insecure personality this behaviour exposes. Would he have been employed initially if he displayed this behaviour during his studies or job interviews ? As a potential employer of such a hypocrit one would run a mile if one knew.

  7. 0276.txt is an interesting one on this subject.

    Let’s learn from these guys. We don’t have to strain to publish in the peer- reviewed literature – it’s our normal way of working. We do have to find a more effective way of publicizing and interpreting these publications, when appropriate, to a wider audience, including policy makers. How best to do
    this?
    Cheers, Malcolm

  8. Am I the only one to see the irony of Michael Mann currently using the mantra of “academic freedom” in a court of law where it has no legal significance and his history of going to universities to have a professor (or professors) censored, or worse, because they wandered from the True Path?

  9. “The important thing is to deny that this has any intellectual credibility whatsoever…”

    Well, at least they admit who the deniers really are. Incredible…

  10. I published the following article in E&E in early 2005. None of the ClimateGate revelations are really that new – the unethical, repulsive behaviour of the warmist camp was apparent even then. It was just not accurately described in the popular press.

    What IS new is this:
    There are now clear factual grounds for lawsuits for defamation, dismissals for academic fraud, and perhaps even criminal prosecutions – a trillion dollars has been squandered on the global warming scam.

    Drive-by shootings in Kyotoville
    The global warming debate heats up

    Allan M.R. MacRae

    Drive-by shootings have moved from the slums of our cities to the realms of academia. Any scientist who dares challenge the Kyoto Protocol faces a vicious assault, a turf war launched by the pro-Kyoto gang.

    These pro-Kyoto attacks are not merely unprofessional – often of little scientific merit, they are intended to intimidate and silence real academic debate on the Kyoto Protocol, a global treaty to limit the production of greenhouse gases like CO2 that allegedly cause catastrophic global warming.

    Witness the attack on Bjorn Lomborg, author of “The Skeptical Environmentalist”. While Lomborg did not challenge the flawed science of Kyoto, he said that Kyoto was a huge misallocation of funds that should be dedicated to more important uses – such as cleaning up contaminated drinking water that kills millions of children every year in the developing world.

    In January 2003, the Danish Committees on Scientific Dishonesty (DCSD) declared that Lomborg’s book fell within the concept of “objective scientific dishonesty”. The DCSD made the ruling public at a press conference and published it on the internet, without giving Lomborg the opportunity to respond prior to publication.

    In December 2003, The Danish Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation repudiated the DCSD’s findings. The Ministry characterized the treatment of the Lomborg case as “dissatisfactory”, “deserving criticism” and “emotional”, a scathing rebuttal of the DCSD.

    But such bullying is not unique, as other researchers who challenged the scientific basis of Kyoto have learned.

    Of particular sensitivity to the pro-Kyoto gang is the “hockey stick” temperature curve of 1000 to 2000 AD, as proposed by Michael Mann of University of Virginia and co-authors in Nature.

    Mann’s hockey stick indicates that temperatures fell only slightly from 1000 to 1900 AD, after which temperatures increased sharply as a result of humanmade increases in atmospheric CO2. Mann concluded: “Our results suggest that the latter 20th century is anomalous in the context of at least the past millennium. The 1990s was the warmest decade, and 1998 the warmest year, at moderately high levels of confidence.”

    Mann’s conclusion is the cornerstone of the scientific case supporting Kyoto. However, Mann is incorrect.

    Mann eliminated from the climate record both the Medieval Warm Period, a period from about 900 to 1500 AD when global temperatures were generally warmer than today, and also the Little Ice Age from about 1500 to 1800 AD, when temperatures were colder. Mann’s conclusion contradicted hundreds of previous studies on this subject, but was adopted without question by Kyoto advocates.

    In the April 2003 issue of Energy and Environment, Willie Soon and Sallie Baliunas of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics and co-authors wrote a review of over 250 research papers that concluded that the Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice Age were true climatic anomalies with world-wide imprints – contradicting Mann’s hockey stick and undermining the basis of Kyoto. Soon et al were then attacked in EOS, the journal of the American Geophysical Union.

    In the July 2003 issue of GSA Today, University of Ottawa geology professor Jan Veizer and Israeli astrophysicist Nir Shaviv concluded that temperatures over the past 500 million years correlate with changes in cosmic ray intensity as Earth moves in and out of the spiral arms of the Milky Way. The geologic record showed no correlation between atmospheric CO2 concentrations and temperatures, even though prehistoric CO2 levels were often many times today’s levels. Veizer and Shaviv also received “special attention” from EOS.

    In both cases, the attacks were unprofessional – first, these critiques should have been launched in the journals that published the original papers, not in EOS. Also, the victims of these attacks were not given advanced notice, nor were they were given the opportunity to respond in the same issue. In both cases the victims had to wait months for their rebuttals to be published, while the specious attacks were circulated by the pro-Kyoto camp.

    Scientists opposed to Kyoto have now been vindicated. As a result of a Material Complaint filed by Ross McKitrick of the University of Guelph and Steven McIntyre, Nature issued a Corrigendum in July 2004, a correction of Mann’s hockey stick. It acknowledged extensive errors in the description of the Mann data set, and conceded that key steps in the computations were left out and conflicted with the descriptions in the original paper.

    Hans von Storch et al further criticized Mann’s work in the September 30, 2004 issue of Science Express. Von Storch commented in a Der Spiegel interview: “We were able to show in a publication in Science that this [hockey stick] graph contains assumptions that are not permissible. Methodologically it is wrong: Rubbish.” Researchers from the University of East Anglia and the University of Utah have expressed similar concerns.

    The truth is there never has been any solid scientific evidence in favor of Kyoto. From the beginning, Kyoto has been politically driven, replete with flawed science and scary scenarios for which there is no evidence.

    Kyoto advocates should finally admit that their pet project is foolish and anti-environmental – Kyoto is a massive waste of scarce global resources that should be used to alleviate real problems, not squandered on fictitious ones.

    Allan M. R. MacRae is a professional engineer and investment banker based in Calgary.

  11. Is there one email … one solitary email … where The Team answers a challenge to their work by dealing openly and honestly with the question rather than obfuscating and attacking the questioner?

    Maybe there should be a bounty on finding one.

  12. I don’t see why these people should not be prosecuted under the RICO statutes.

    It’s clearly an organized attempt to extort money.

  13. On this very topic, the email trail at

    http://foia2011.org/index.php?id=189

    Shows that eventually John P Holdren shows up from Harvard defending Mann and his buddies from some pretty reasonable questions from Nick Schulz, who asks (in relation to the Harvard Crimson critique of the S&B paper:

    “Do you feel the same way about the work of Mann et. al.? If not why not?”

    Holdren gives a long winded answer which can be summarised as ‘they aren’t on the team’.

    But it’s interesting that, given Holdren in now Obama’s science advisor, that we haven’t seen many more emails between top-level government (Obama was ‘in’ during the climategate 2 email period) and Mann and others.

    As speculated by ‘pointman’ on JoNova’s blog : maybe the encrypted part contains emails between scientists and politicians at the highest level? After all – they have communicated in the past before ascending to power, is there any reason why they would have stopped once in power?

  14. u know u have been waiting for Zwick’s considered opinion! LOL.

    read the comments which u need to expand:

    (4 pages) 28 Nov: Forbes: Steve Zwick: “Climategate 2.0″ Looks More Like Climatefluff 3½
    Climate talks are underway here in Durban, and Wingnuts have responded by ratcheting up their efforts to dodge responsibility for the climate mess by discrediting the messenger.
    Their latest campaign is just as lame as previous efforts, and even more embarrassing…

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/stevezwick/2011/11/28/climategate-2-0-more-like-climatefluff-3-12/

  15. “It is disappointing to see Harvard’s press office allow itself to be used as a pawn in this transparently political, pseudo-scientific, and industry-backed stunt…”

    WOW! And what about Penn State?

  16. tokyoboy says: (November 28, 2011 at 5:34 pm)

    I sincerely wish Anthony and Mods take good care of your health.
    Overworking is dangerous.

    I have to agree, equally sincerely, since even as we sit here distracted by the latest tranche of emails, the MSM are blithely ignoring them and pressing on with a predictable shower of alarmist BS. Take the Telegraph today – for Heaven’s sake, this is the paper where you read James Delingpole and Christopher Booker! – in its “Climate Change” section (and isn’t that name just a dead giveaway?), apart from one or two articles about the “disarray” at Durban (but don’t worry, our expert negotiators will surely fix that!) offers such goodies as:

    – “Dame Vivienne Westwood has pledged £1 million to help tackle climate change, claiming governments have been too slow to distribute funding for green projects” …

    – “Extreme weather linked to global warming such as droughts and floods are already causing food prices to rise” …

    – “Time for world leaders to get serious about climate change” (I’d agree, but not at all in the way they’d want me to!) …

    – “Field of dreams, or an environment nightmare?” (shale gas) …

    – “The UK is set to pour up to £1 billion of taxpayers money into helping African countries fight climate change” …

    – “The chances of keeping global warming within a safe limits (sic) are narrowing” …

    – and those – only a few from one day’s listing in one paper – aren’t blogs or opinion pieces, those are in the news sections where all “serious” readers will see them. The overriding impression is that they tolerate the Bookers and Delingpoles of this world merely to give the impression of balance. (I suppose we should be grateful for that, given the daily, ubiquitous drip-feed of propaganda from the objective impartial (ho ho) BBC.) As for rags like the Guardian … (shudder) … all I’m saying is, “Monbiot”.

    So yeah, don’t bust a gut on these emails. They really, truly don’t matter, any more than does any other aspect of the truth. The takedown of our societies will go ahead, on schedule, being forced through in the usual way by those for whom force is their first language. Save your health for the main battle.

    Y’know, I used to think the “2012” crowd were just a load of nutters on the net. Now, in late 2011 and looking around, I’m no longer so sure.

  17. As of UK time 11:30, 29th Nov the original thread on CA seems to end in an odd way and there is no place for comments.

    Has part of it been lost somewhere?

  18. “Dear Colleagues,
    Baliunas and co. appear to have successfully hijacked Harvard’s PR office on this. Any of you have contacts there you might be able to get some information from? Both of these appeared in the “Harvard Gazette”:
    [1]http://www.news.harvard.edu/gazette/2003/04.24/04-sun.html
    [2]http://www.news.harvard.edu/gazette/2003/04.24/01-weather.html
    That provides the appearance of Harvard’s stamp of approval for unsound claims which have otherwise been ignored by any other mainstream media outlets (despite the repeated attempts of the authors and their promoters to get wider coverage, the story has generally only been picked up by right-wing online sites and Murdoch-owned newspapers).”

    What a despicable Man(n).

  19. “A 2008 report by the FAO showed Uganda had five droughts from 1991 to 2000, compared with just eight in the previous 80 years.”

    FAO report forgot to add, that early 20th century was even drier. Business as usual.

  20. Why am I reminded of how Scientologists go after dissidents when I read about “direct action”? And I believe it is actually a term used by anarchists to persuade others to smash things. Lovely company the Team is keeping…

    As well, the entire reactionary defense against Those Who Would Dare To Change The Paradigm is, unfortunately, not that rare in science.

    It happened with the Dead Sea Scrolls, where a small, incestuous cabal kept the Scrolls to themselves and ridiculed the dissenters as know-nothings, because, er, they didn’t have the same level of knowledge as the cabal had by examining the Scrolls. Nice tautology, that.

    Tom Dillehay challenged the Clovis theory, was ridiculed, then exonerated when the science was released from its political straitjacket.

    Alfred Wegener and continental drift.

    Robin Warren and Barry J. Marshall and Helicobacter pylori causing stomach ulcers.

    And perhaps the best example of all: Dan Shechtman and quasicrystals. I mean, its hard to recover from being called a “quasi-scientist) by the likes of Linus Pauling, (I know, the irony burns), but a Nobel prize (earned, this one) is a decent bounce back…

  21. We need Rep. Stearns to ask some very pointed questions regarding the climategate issues now that it is quite evident what is going on and how it ties into the financial sector, (he is doing great work with the Solyndra fiasco and other ‘loan’ issues)… Here is Stearns in action regarding Hank Paulson (an avid warmest) and the bait and switch that happened during TARP. We all know that Goldman Sachs and others have a huge financial interest in this fraud and it needs to exposed for what it is. I cannot wait for the next installment of e-mails.

    http://dailybail.com/home/the-hammer-gets-hit-by-a-tree.html

    A bit about Mr. Paulson here:

    http://www.greenbiz.com/blog/2009/01/12/hank-paulson-climate-regulate

    http://blogs.wsj.com/environmentalcapital/2009/01/13/hank-paulson-use-free-trade-to-fight-climate-change/

  22. I don’t know Dr. Soon, but I spent my undergraduate years in the same department as Dr. Sallie Baliunas. Even then, I (and everyone who knew her) realized that she was head and shoulders above her peers. We also knew that she was a good friend and sparkling personality, but for this, that’s irrelevant.

    But what is not irrelevant is that she was uncompromising in her desire to follow the truth. Although it was decades ago now, I doubt that “socially conservative ideas” interested her for their own sake then and I doubt they do now. She *would* follow the data wherever it led, however, politics be damned. She was not apolitical, but Dr. Baliunas showed us what scientific integrity meant. She had it then, has it now, and any suggestion to the contrary, no matter how indirect, is simply ridiculous. That includes innuendo by Dr. Mann.

    I can offer nothing but anecdotes to support this, but I can also muster a small army who will agree.

  23. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sternberg_peer_review_controversy#Smithsonian_controversy

    Same playbook. I’m tellin ya. Tribalism is tribalism.

    If the Smithsonian is involved that changes things because the the Smithsonian is a public institution. In the case above Rick Sternberg is a biologist employed by the Smithsonian and was the editor of a Smithsonian science journal. Sternberg let an article be published written by another scientist who was persona non-grata in the evolutionary biology bandwagon. The NCSE (National Center for Science Education) colluded with religion-hating parties at the Smithsonian to create a hostile work environment. The long and short in this case was a congressional inquiry which exonerated Sternberg who did nothing wrong and followed standard practice with the article in question.

    Tribalism indeed.

  24. Rob Crawford says:
    November 29, 2011 at 10:30 am

    “They do seem to like to toss around “right-wing” as a pejorative.”

    Of course they do. This isn’t science. It’s the culture war. Career academics in natural sciences employed by universities are predominantly on the liberal side of the culture war. There are some honest brokers of course but the majority are culture warriors who will compromise science to further “The Cause”. I think tenure tends to attract Marxist sympathizers and the natural sciences tends to attract pagan earth worshippers. The result is manifestly evident.

  25. The Harvard connection is interesting. Harvard is located in Cambridge MA where a communist friend had to register as a republican and work at the polls so elections could be held. The area leans so far left it has fallen over and Heaven help you if you do not fall in line with all of their thinking. Thinkers outside the box are met with threats and abuse (Based on several first hand experiences and one of the reasons I moved.)

    The public image of the “Left” is all about concern for the poor and underdogs. This bit of reality shows Harvard is a bit different in its actions compared to its words.

    US UNIVERSITIES IN AFRICA ‘LAND GRAB’

    Institutions including Harvard and Vanderbilt reportedly use hedge funds to buy land in deals that may force farmers out

    Harvard and other major American universities are working through British hedge funds and European financial speculators to buy or lease vast areas of African farmland in deals, some of which may force many thousands of people off their land, according to a new study.

    Researchers say foreign investors are profiting from “land grabs” that often fail to deliver the promised benefits of jobs and economic development, and can lead to environmental and social problems in the poorest countries in the world.

    The new report on land acquisitions in seven African countries suggests that Harvard, Vanderbilt and many other US colleges with large endowment funds have invested heavily in African land in the past few years. Much of the money is said to be channelled through London-based Emergent asset management, which runs one of Africa’s largest land acquisition funds, run by former JP Morgan and Goldman Sachs currency dealers…. http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/jun/08/us-universities-africa-land-grab

  26. RoHa says:
    November 28, 2011 at 3:06 pm

    “scientific disinformation campaign (often viscious ”

    So was this a sticky campaign or a savage campaign?

    Either way, it’s wrong! “Viscous” and “vicious” are the choices. Mann’s trying to have it both/all ways at once, as usual.
    >:-P

  27. joe says:

    November 29, 2011 at 4:51 pm

    I don’t know Dr. Soon, but I spent my undergraduate years in the same department as Dr. Sallie Baliunas. Even then, I (and everyone who knew her) realized that she was head and shoulders above her peers. We also knew that she was a good friend and sparkling personality, but for this, that’s irrelevant.

    But what is not irrelevant is that she was uncompromising in her desire to follow the truth. Although it was decades ago now, I doubt that “socially conservative ideas” interested her for their own sake then and I doubt they do now. She *would* follow the data wherever it led, however, politics be damned. She was not apolitical, but Dr. Baliunas showed us what scientific integrity meant. She had it then, has it now, and any suggestion to the contrary, no matter how indirect, is simply ridiculous. That includes innuendo by Dr. Mann.

    I can offer nothing but anecdotes to support this, but I can also muster a small army who will agree.
    _______________________________________________________________

    Thank you Joe for your fine words.

    I too know Sallie and she is highly intelligent, totally honest and utterly decent.

    Sallie has been subjected to harsh, dishonest criticism by certain parties who are acolytes of the global warming “cause”. These miscreants should be censured by their academic institutions and professional societies for opprobrious professional misconduct.

    ________________________________________________________________

    I sincerely hope that class-action lawsuits are initiated soon, prior to possible expiry under statutes of limitations.

    As the evidence mounts that the “global warming crisis”, was not only false, but fraudulent and the product of a conspiracy,
    and
    costs of corn and other staples rise due to nonsensical corn ethanol and similar schemes,
    and
    hunger increases in the world,
    and
    energy costs rise as utilities are forced to add worthless wind and solar power to the grid,
    and
    people in the UK and Western Europe have to choose between buying groceries and heating their homes
    and
    costs of funds squandered to “fight global warming” exceed one trillion dollars,
    and
    millions of children per year die from contaminated drinking water, due to lack of funding…

    … perhaps there will be NO expiry of the right to sue under statutes of limitations.

    One wonders if the legal departments at Penn State, U of Virginia and U of East Anglia are already preparing their defenses.

    One can assume, based on past behavior, that emails are being deleted and files shredded, as we speak.

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