Team ugliness – a call to get a skeptics PhD thesis revoked

Guest post by Dr. Patrick Michaelsoriginally on Forbes, reposted here at the request of the author.

Climategate II: An Open Letter to the Director of the National Center for Atmospheric Research

To: Dr. Roger Wakimoto

Director, National Center for Atmospheric Research

Boulder, Colorado

Roger, you are the head of what is perhaps the most prestigious atmospheric science laboratory on the planet, and, as such, I presume that you will always go the extra mile to protect the reputation of the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) and its related University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR).

I’m sure you have seen and discussed with your staff many of the “Climategate” emails released first in November, 2009, and then more recently, earlier this month.

Everyone agrees that the tone and content of many of them is a bit shrill and occasionally intolerant (kind of like University faculty meetings), but there is one repeating thread, by one of your most prestigious employees, Dr. Tom Wigley, that is far beyond the pale of most academic backbiting.

The revoking of my doctorate, the clear objective of Tom’s email, is the professional equivalent of the death penalty. I think it needs to be brought to your attention, because the basic premise underlying his machinations is patently and completely false. Dr Wigley is known as a careful scientist, but he certainly was careless here.

The global circulation of this email has caused unknown damage to my reputation. Also, please note that all communications from Dr. Wigley to his colleagues on this matter were on the NCAR/UCAR server.

The relevant email was sent to Rick Piltz, a UCAR employee at the time, and copied to Michael Mann, Pennsylvania State University, James Hansen and Gavin Schmidt, NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies, Benjamin Santer, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory,the late Steven Schneider, Stanford University, and several other very prominent climate scientists. The influence of these individuals is manifest and evidence of a very serious attempt to destroy my credential.

What Dr. Wigley wrote to this group of individuals was:

“You may be interesting [sic] in this snippet of information about Pat Michaels. Perhaps the University of Wisconsin ought to open up a public comment period to decide whether Pat Michaels, PhD needs re-assessing?”

As I said, revoking the doctorate of a scientist is the equivalent of imposing a professional death penalty. Unfortunately, Wigley’s rationale for organizing this effort was based upon a pure fabrication.

Wigley’s call for a “re-assessing” of my dissertation stems from his contention that I either misled my academic committee or my committee was guilty of professional malfeasance, both very serious charges. (His email is reproduced in its entirety at the end of this note.)

My 1979 dissertation was a model relating interannual and interseasonal variations in the shape of the atmosphere, as reflected by the surface barometric pressure field, to variations crop yields across the United States.

In this type of model, one usually factors out the technological component of crop yields (which, incidentally, explains much more variation than any climate component) and then models the remaining variation in yield with the climate factor, in order to “isolate” the climate component. The explained variance of this residual yield by climate is generally about 50%, which is very close to the average I found for corn, soybeans, and winter wheat.

Wigley said in his email that I claimed to have explained 95% of the variation in crop yield, which he said “would have been a remarkable results” [sic]. In fact, there is no such statement, nor anything related to that, in my dissertation. He went on to state that I did this by simultaneously modelling the technological, spatial and climate components of agricultural yield, instead of separating out technological components first.

Despite his claimed familiarity with my dissertation, I did no such thing. Table 2, beginning on page 154 of the dissertation, is labelled “DETRENDING FUNCTIONS”, and gives the equations that were used to remove the technological component. All subsequent analyses were on the detrended data.

Wigley then alleged that either I lied to my examination committee, or that they were buffoons. It is worth noting that the committee included the famously tough Reid Bryson, father of the modern notion that human beings could change the climate.

“Apparently, none of Michaels’ thesis examiners noticed this. We are left with wondering whether this was deliberate misrepresentation by Michaels, or whether it was simply ignorance.”

This came to my attention with the release of the first East Anglia emails in November, 2009. This email and other, new statements by him about my dissertation have surfaced with the recent release of additional emails, and his letter about my dissertation is again being circulated around the web.

I think you will agree that it is time for Dr. Wigley to state that his attempt to generate a movement to remove my doctorate was based upon clear errors on his part, errors that he should have known about, and yet he has let the record stand for over two years. What he “discovered years ago” was certainly not in my dissertation.

Roger, I don’t think you would put up with this, and I think Wigley must be compelled to come forth. Remember that he did this on NCAR’s (and the taxpayer’s) dime.

Thank you very much.

Patrick J. Michaels

Cato Institute and

George Mason University

From: Tom Wigley [EMAIL REDACTED]

To: Rick Piltz [EMAIL REDACTED]

Subject: Re: FYI–”Phil Jones and Ben Santer respond to CEI and Pat Michaels attack on temperature data record”

Date: Tue, 13 Oct 2009 19:45:45 -0600

Cc: [E-MAILS REDACTED]

Dear folks,

You may be interesting in this snippet of information about Pat Michaels. Perhaps the University of Wisconsin ought to open up a public comment period to decide whether Pat Michaels, PhD needs re-assessing?

Michaels’ PhD was, I believe, supervised by Reid Bryson. It dealt with statistical (regression-based) modeling of crop-climate relationships. In his thesis, Michaels claims that his statistical model showed that weather/climate variations could explain 95% of the inter-annual variability in crop yields. Had this been correct, it would have been a remarkable results. Certainly, it was at odds with all previous studies of crop-climate relationships, which generally showed that weather/climate could only explain about 50% of inter-annual yield variability.

How did result come about? The answer is simple. In Michaels’ regressions he included a trend term. This was at the time a common way to account for the effects of changing technology on yield. It turns out that the trend term accounts for 90% of the variability, so that, in Michaels’ regressions, weather/climate explains just 5 of the remaining 10%. In other words, Michaels’ claim that weather/climate explains 95% of the variability is completely bogus.

Apparently, none of Michaels’ thesis examiners noticed this. We are left with wondering whether this was deliberate misrepresentation by Michaels, or whether it was simply ignorance.

As an historical note, I discovered this many years ago when working with Dick Warrick and Tu Qipu on crop-climate modeling. We used a spatial regression method, which we developed for the wheat belt of southwestern Western Australia. We carried out similar analyses for winter wheat in the USA, but never published the results.

Wigley, T.M.L. and Tu Qipu, 1983: Crop-climate modelling using spatial patterns of yield and climate: Part 1, Background and an example from Australia. Journal of Climate and Applied Meteorology 22, 1831–1841

There never was a “Part 2″.

199 thoughts on “Team ugliness – a call to get a skeptics PhD thesis revoked

  1. Enormously ugly. I’m no lawyer, but if anybody made similar claims about my own Ph.D., even in a supposedly private forum (but one that obviously could have an enormous impact on my career) I wouldn’t talk to their boss, I’d sue their ass. Let them attempt to defend their statements in a courtroom.

  2. Emails and attitudes like this keep innovation from happening. No one wants to push science (or anything else for that matter) in the public forum for fear of ridiculous reactions like Wigley. The field of education (from elementary to doctoral programs) will continue to suffer from actions like this.

  3. Robert Brown says: “I wouldn’t talk to their boss, I’d sue their ass. Let them attempt to defend their statements in a courtroom.”

    I’m not a bit fan of suing, but I’d have to say that he probably has a much stronger case than Mann does with his silly “State Pen” suit.

  4. I would bet that this is but the first shoe. I can see a boatload of FOI requests to the named government institutions. Michaels can look after himself.

  5. I’m an addicted WUWT lurker — not a scientist, just a citizen. What Wigley has done is a heart-breaking insult to all of science and all scientists. It deserves the equivalent of what the NCAA must surely be considering at this very moment for Penn State — the death penalty.

  6. This is really really bad. When I was in grad school I was naively surprised by my inability to slip into the cool kids clique and my incredulity at some grad school antics must have shown on my face way too often for my own good, but this…this is beyond the pale. I agree with Robert below.

  7. Happy to put a few bob in the pot if he wants to hire a good lawyer.

    The sooner these buggers are on the stand the sooner the truth comes out.

  8. NCAR seems to be a hotbed of climate activism. In addition to Wigley, Trenberth also resides at NCAR. I would not hold my breath regarding an apology being issued.

  9. Wigley is a coward. There’s no doubt someone will mention this article to him, and of course he will read it because it exposes him as either a deliberate fabricator, or completely ignorant. But being a PhD it is hard to believe that his libel is based on ignorance. A coward would hide out and not respond or apologize for these documented misrepresentations. Time will tell if Wigley will man up and apologize, or cringe in the safety of his ivory tower like the rest of his climate alarmist pals.

    As we see in their emails, all of those involved in the global warming scare have little in the way of professional ethics or basic honesty. There is only a difference in degree regarding which ones are the most dishonest and ethics-challenged. And as I read the Climategate emails, Wigley is one of the less reprehensible scoundrels. Others are worse.

  10. He should have started it with the words “Formal Complaint” – those usually start “official” type processes up and running without needing lawyers – yet…

  11. OMG…personal attacks as this are beyond academic freedom. I believe his must be curtailed via either a lawsuit or institution ethics investigation.

  12. “Misrepresenting the work of scientists is a serious offense.” — Michael Mann 23 October 2009 4666.txt

  13. When I started reading Wigley’s email, I thought it was a joke. You know, like when Jeremy Clarkson said that striking public sector workers should be shot. And that caused a big outcry from the usual suspects, let me tell you.

    But as I read on, I realised that he wasn’t joking at all. He started giving all kinds of reasons why the thesis was flawed, and it sounded like he was seriously trying to organise a campaign to discredit Michaels, using the attack on his thesis as weapon (I assume even Wigley isn’t so arrogant as to believe he could actually get the phd anulled – but you never know).

    First Chris de Frietas, now Pat Michaels.

  14. Yeah, but Tom’s son did a tree-ring science project right in NCAR’s back yard that showed the tree-ring/temperature relationship is questionable.

    Maybe Tommy’s lashing out at others because he can’t control his own kid.

  15. Well written, Mr Michaels. You have reason for a clearly non-frivolous law suit. The other side has lot’s of money but is finally beginning to lose it. We’d all love for you to sue. Your winning would start to show that selling out science for politics will now start costing more than just prestige or even embarassment. A example can be made of Wigley and NCAR. Losing a multi-million dollar suit would be the right message. It doesn’t trash all NCAR, just gives organizations an additional, financial reason to maintain their integrity. Good luck.. Be careful!

  16. please, Dr. Michaels, force the issue until you have public contrition.
    make the paper. assert a demand for relief. get orders issued.
    because they are what they are – they’ve defined themselves by their deeds.
    be the vector or be the treatment – that’s your choice with this disease.

  17. Sue Wigley and in the process depose Mann, Hansen, Schmidt, Santer, and every other “prominent climate scientist” copied on this email. Force them to tell the truth under oath, but be sure to wear your toughest foul weather gear. Depending on how arrogant or trapped they feel, it’s sure to be either a BS festival or a poop slinging contest.

  18. The value of a lawsuit in this case, is not in winning, it is in discovery. If someone could fund this suit and discovery, well, who knows what might be found in the email dumps from the various involved institutions.

    Or you might get a quick high dollar settlement.

  19. Wigley’s letter is unprofessional plus any number of other adjectives, none complementary. This kind of thing draws the man’s and by association his colleagues and institution’s ethics into question. They must distance themselves from this kind of thing or live with a taint

  20. Scott Covert says:
    December 2, 2011 at 9:10 am

    Why not contact the author or publish a rebuttal?

    Until the emails were released, the entire episode was between Wigley and his correspondents. The current post here at WUWT constitutes the first rebuttal opportunity Michaels has had. The only reason Michaels would have to contact Wigley would be to demand he appear publicly in sack cloth and ashes and admitting his guilt, or expect law suit to be filed that would preclude any future trips to Tahiti.

  21. There are three issues here.

    1 There is an unsuported assertion which makes absolutely no attempt of replicate the study and see if the same conclusions are apparent.
    2 This insults the men doing the oral exam for a dissertation or thesis.
    3 In directly, having
    Mann’s name on an oral review and or Dissertation is going to be considered a blemish.
    This “incident” tarnishes the school and makes one want to choose another program which isn’t swirling with controversy.

  22. I appreciate these open letters on WUWT, they are public declarations that require publiuc answers. By their nature they have to have been thought about before they are put up ,which make them the more remarkable and newsworthy. Has Phil Jones responded to Willis’ open letter where he calls him out as a serial liar? Perhaps he believes saying nothing will reduce the publicity and he can ride it out.

    I know I am being boring and repeating myself, but I believe these sorts of posts should be accomapanied by a press release sent to maybe thousands of journalists and blogs. I do think such a method would accelerate media interest in the scandals that are now emerging as we get to know the climategate emails better.

    This would be a lot of work, however I feel so strongly about this that I would be willing to sponsor anyone with funds to employ a secretary for a fews days to help set up a database of journalists which could then be used in a pilot scheme to find out if my suggestion would work.

  23. OT: Today’s Wall Street Journal features the difficulty medical researchers have in replicating academic studies:

    Scientists’ Elusive Goal: Reproducing Study Results

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970203764804577059841672541590.html?mod=WSJ_hps_RIGHTTopCarousel_1

    Some quotes from the article:

    This is one of medicine’s dirty secrets: Most results, including those that appear in top-flight peer-reviewed journals, can’t be reproduced.

    There is also a more insidious and pervasive problem: a preference for positive results.

    “Among the more obvious yet unquantifiable reasons, there is immense competition among laboratories and a pressure to publish,” wrote Dr. Asadullah and others from Bayer, in their September paper. “There is also a bias toward publishing positive results, as it is easier to get positive results accepted in good journals.”

    Dr. Begley suggests that academic scientists, like drug companies, should perform more experiments in a “blinded” manner to reduce any bias toward positive findings. Otherwise, he says, “there is a human desire to get the results your boss wants you to get.”

    Adds Atlas’ Mr. Booth: “Nobody gets a promotion from publishing a negative study.”

  24. “…all communications from Dr. Wigley to his colleagues on this matter were on the NCAR/UCAR server.”

    Dr. Wigley’s address has been redacted but if it is an NCAR address and if Dr. Wigley does not withdraw and apologise does not Dr. Michaels have a good case to sue his employer, NCAR? There appear to be precedents in English law for such an action but I am not a lawyer..

  25. crosspatch says:
    December 2, 2011 at 9:23 am
    “Misrepresenting the work of scientists is a serious offense.” — Michael Mann 23 October 2009 4666.txt

    Indeed, unfortunately it’s something that Michaels engages in!

  26. I’m with Robert Brown on this one. This doesn’t read like a man fighting for his professional career nor his reputation in any serious way. It reads more like a minor nuisance at best or perhaps a minor disagreement at worst. In fact this is the exact type of thing in the climate “science” field where the lads on the AGW side play hardball and play for keeps. Exactly like it is our here in the real world – we play for keeps.

    And its not very pretty – Billions upon BILLIONS of dollars are at stake here, entire nations and their wealth squandered on fairy tale ideology at the expense of real working families and massive loss of jobs in energy sectors virtually bringing nations into destitution. Its nasty out here – common for fists and boots and what have you – turning neighbor against neighbor, brother against brother, family against family, entire nations against itself. Ultimately turning nation against nation.

    This isn’t some academic exercise anymore where niceties are the rule of the day – this is real out here. You wanna hold on to your reputation then FIGHT for it man. You have the tools to fight in the very internal emails YOU printed in this article. Believe in your work ENOUGH to stand UP and fight like I have to do our here on the street everyday. I ask for no quarters and I give NONE. The stakes are so high we MUST have scientists who are willing to fight for the TRUTH – nothing less is acceptable. History WILL judge everyone of you guys – and at this stage of affairs HISTORY is NOT going to be very kind to many of you.

  27. @Wil “This isn’t some academic exercise anymore where niceties are the rule of the day – this is real out here. You wanna hold on to your reputation then FIGHT for it man. You have the tools to fight in the very internal emails YOU printed in this article. Believe in your work ENOUGH to stand UP and fight like I have to do our here on the street everyday. I ask for no quarters and I give NONE. The stakes are so high we MUST have scientists who are willing to fight for the TRUTH – nothing less is acceptable. History WILL judge everyone of you guys – and at this stage of affairs HISTORY is NOT going to be very kind to many of you.”

    But litigation is a fool’s game unless you have very deep pockets and a lot of time to burn. This behaviour is dirty and disreputable and a stain on all scientists. It is up to the profession at large to stand up for Dr Michaels. Enough is enough. These guys need to pulled out by their peers and asked to explain themselves or apologise and make amends..

  28. This is exactly why I could never see myself as a part of modern Academia and dropped out 3/4 through my PhD. to become a journalist and freelance writer. Today’s universities, dominated by irredeemably corrupt leftists, are hotbeds of intellectual dishonesty and socialist conformity. Sorry, not going to become part of that machine. I want to throw monkey wrenches in it.

  29. Hey Bernie, you’re exactly right! It’s hard to believe, given the recipient list, that it wasn’t forwarded everywhere.

    Be nice if a bunch of you forwarded the forbes link to Drudge.
    PJM

  30. JKB says:
    December 2, 2011 at 9:45 am

    The value of a lawsuit in this case, is not in winning, it is in discovery. If someone could fund this suit and discovery, well, who knows what might be found in the email dumps from the various involved institutions…..
    ______________________
    Just what I was thinking.

    A lawsuit is a must with full page ads taken out in all the major newspapers…..

  31. “I’m with Robert Brown on this one. This doesn’t read like a man fighting for his professional career nor his reputation in any serious way. It reads more like a minor nuisance at best or perhaps a minor disagreement at worst.”

    True in real business life there are always people trying to get other people thrown out of their jobs, and probable for reasons as equally venal as the Team’s. However in the “real world” we live in those kicked out of their jobs they get appropriate compensation and keep their reputations.

    Dr. Michaels if you want to set up a fund to sue the ass off those who tried to destroy your career, let us know, it would be a pleasure to contribute a few $$ to the fund.

  32. Even if I didn’t question the science of the Globalwarmists, their tactics for dealing with skeptics prove the unethical nature of “The Cause”.

  33. RogueGovt on December 2, 2011 at 10:40 am said:
    This is exactly why I could never see myself as a part of modern Academia and dropped out 3/4 through my PhD. to become a journalist and freelance writer. Today’s universities, dominated by irredeemably corrupt leftists, are hotbeds of intellectual dishonesty and socialist conformity. Sorry, not going to become part of that machine. I want to throw monkey wrenches in it.
    ———————–
    I had the same feeling in grad school but suffered through the entire ordeal. Against the wishes (or rather threats) of my advisor I fled to corporate America upon completion. Academia is a sick, juvenile, pedantic cult. However the behavior of these so-called climate scientists makes my experience of academia look tame.

  34. To Geronimo: I agree. I’d contribute to a fund that would get the Globalwarmers into court. They’d have to perform their dog and pony show in an adversarial, public forum that would allow the other side to be heard. I keep waiting…

  35. This goes way beyond Kyoto Ugly.

    This is Kyoto Libelous.
    Time to pull the funding from these idiots.

  36. Patrick J. Michaels is yet another person who would have a claim
    to know exactly what e-mails were circulated among the
    American contingent of the Team in reguard to his reputaion and professional
    standing.

    These should, by numerous state and Federal laws, be available for his personal
    review as government-held documents in the University of Virginia’s Prince
    County court case involving the Mike Mann e-mails the were on the UVa server(s).

    Mike Mann is trying to say they’re his e-mails and doesn’t want anyone
    else looking at them !!

  37. The “Team” has created a hostile work environment (the world) for any scientist that disagrees with them. Legal action can be brought against them and their employers.

  38. Phil. says:

    “Indeed, unfortunately it’s something that Michaels engages in!”

    Phil., don’t be an ass.

  39. I believe that Mr. Wigley is squirming right around now.

    Look for a disavowal soon. Less than heartfelt, of course.

  40. Academia is a sick, juvenile, pedantic cult.

    It isn’t the only place. I had the opportunity to work in another field populated by very intelligent prima donna types. The same sort of backbiting went on there, too. If one could not directly advance their stature in the group, they took to trying to tear down that of the others they were “competing” against (even though it wasn’t a competition at all). The idea is to attempt to discredit another in the hopes that what they might say in the future will carry less weight with the recipient of that communications. We even see it in our regular lives with political affiliations. I can show you an example that is very easy to do.

    Take two groups of friends that lean toward either the right or the left. Find a wire service news story (AP, Reuters, AFP, UPI, doesn’t matter) that is interesting but is carried on both Fox’s and MSNBC’s websites. Send one group the Fox link and the other group the MSNBC link. You will generally get an immediate response that the story is not to be believed from people on the left who get the Fox link or people on the right who get the MSNBC link even though the content is the identical wire service output. Much effort is invested in “shooting the messenger” so to influence people’s perception of a message.

    What we see here is not so much the fact that an attempt to have someone’s PhD withdrawn was made as it taints the minds of those who received that train of messages when it comes to receiving future communications from that source. It is a matter of influencing how information will be weighted in the future. It is a sick and twisted game and it is not limited to academia.

  41. Bearing in mind this a sceptic website or science blog, it seems to me there are a lot of warmists posting on it (not necessarily in the above posts but certainly in many others ). Yet Al Gore who has influence with Google attempts to block it. How many warmists sites are there and why are they so inferior when compared with Wattsupwiththat.

  42. Unbelievably vicious back-stabbing politics from the supposedly noble climate czars….. the usual quotation attributed to Henry Kissinger that “academic politics are so vicious because the stakes are so low” needs to be recast for the Climategate crew:

    [me]: “Climategate politics are so vicious because they imagine the stakes are so high AND their pompous self-righteousness knows no bounds”

    If anyone can think of a pithy way of stating this the world will be in your debt.

  43. how about (channeling The Team’s mentality):

    “climate politics are so vicious because WE are self-appointed to save the world, right NOW”

    Sincerely,

    The Team

  44. It really amazes me how the so called “climate scientists” get any work done at all – if anyone were to actually read all the ClimateGate 1 and 2 emails from this groups they seem to be spending ALL their time trolling the web specifically looking for anyone who disagrees with them as well as trolling ALL the media outlets for any sign of disagreement, managing the various “science” magazines and who does and does NOT get published, as well as constantly looking for more funding. WUWT and Steve know the reach of these guys better than most.

    Which leads to the question – then who actually does all the grunt work?

  45. Phil. says:
    December 2, 2011 at 10:21 am
    “crosspatch says:
    December 2, 2011 at 9:23 am
    “Misrepresenting the work of scientists is a serious offense.” — Michael Mann 23 October 2009 4666.txt

    Indeed, unfortunately it’s something that Michaels engages in!”

    Phil, you just showed that you understand as little of science as Michael Mann.

  46. Louis Hooffstetter says:
    December 2, 2011 at 9:43 am
    Sue Wigley and in the process depose Mann, Hansen, Schmidt, Santer, and every other “prominent climate scientist” copied on this email. Force them to tell the truth under oath, but be sure to wear your toughest foul weather gear.>>>

    I recommend clothes pins also. For your nose…..

    Seriously, with all the dirt being exposed, and all the potential law suits that evidence is turning up to support, one can only wonder…. how long before one of “the team” defects, cuts a deal, and throws the rest of them under the bus to save their own skin?

  47. Dr. Michaels,

    Hail, Fellow Badger!
    I’m a ‘two time offender’ (BS/MS), out of the Metallurgical Engineering department. Is there anything your brother UW – Madison alums might do to help you redress these back stabbing slurs?
    On Wisconsin!

    MtK

    PS: Big Ten title football game this Saturday against Michigan State – Go BADGERS!!!!!!!!

  48. Aren’t we missing something here? The Malfesence of MANN et.al. actually demands the retraction of his (and their) Phd’s by the spirit of the granting of Phd’s.

    Turn about is fair play.

    Max

    PS: Their Phd’s are worthless anyway. These folks produce NOTHING worthwhile for humanity.

  49. “Wil says:
    December 2, 2011 at 11:38 am
    It really amazes me how the so called “climate scientists” get any work done at all …
    Which leads to the question – then who actually does all the grunt work?”

    Same people who always do the dull leg work in any department, the grad students and postdocs and, above all, the technicians, the Harrys of this world. Imagine being a young scientist or, just as dangerous, a lowly technician in an environment like this, especially if you had the slightest doubt about The Cause. You know you’d never get any work or be bullied out if they knew. That’s what the ‘consensus’ is really about, people far too scared to speak up. And it stinks.

  50. Julian Wiliams in Wales says:
    December 2, 2011 at 10:39 am

    … This behaviour is dirty and disreputable and a stain on all scientists. It is up to the profession at large to stand up for Dr Michaels. Enough is enough. These guys need to pulled out by their peers and asked to explain themselves or apologise and make amends..

    New to climate science, are you? The odds of mainstream climate scientists saying anything to one of their peers, much less asking someone “to explain themselves and apologize”, are zero. Not small. Zero. They’re all too dedicated to “the cause”.

    w.

  51. Tax them do not retract their PHD’s.

    They are in the evil 1% after all, evidence, the grants.

    Any PHD with a record of supporting AGW gets a life time “Sir” tax of say 50% over all the other PHD’s rate.

  52. Again not much of surprise, we know their a set of dirty bast**d willing to attack any who ‘cross them’ for some time , it would be truly funny if their downfall came about becasue of their own ego and their inability to understand the control they have of their own world means nothing outside of it especially in a court of law.

  53. “….Wigley is one of the less reprehensible scoundrels….” –Smokey

    Which is why he probably will apologize…

    “Misrepresenting the work of scientists is a serious offense.” — Michael Mann

    …and say that he was misinformed by someone he will refuse to name..

  54. Mac The Knife–

    U rah rah!

    All my committee members are either dead or not at Madison any more. My guess is that NCAR/Wigley/Wakimoto are meeting right now and trying to figure what to do…and maybe deleting emails like crazy. I think they can see the writing on the wall and they probably are not going to have a good weekend when they think about all the implications, and game where this is inevitably headed.

    Nothing really for us to do…just watch Bucky win and enjoy the weekend. If Climategate 1 and 2 are any guide, they will do all the heavy lifting for us.

    You do know Tom Wigley was Ben Santer’s PhD advisor, right?

  55. Actually an anecdote is worthwhile. Back in the late 1970s, Wigley came to Madison and stopped in the suite of graduate student offices that I was in, asked me a few questions about my work, said a few words, and then left in some kind of huff. I remember at the time, one of my colleagues, Paul Kostrow, commented “Man, what’s with that guy, he think’s his doesn’t stink!”

  56. The reference to medical study results reminded me…

    A long time ago, I worked for a well-known pharmaceutical company research center (in Paris).
    One day, one of the researchers cam to my office to ask if it were possible to write an editor for his raw-result data.

    I told him it was possible, but why would he need to do that?

    Basically, the answer was that when he plotted the results, there was a pronounced and unexplainable blip in the graph. He wanted to remove the data points that caused it.

    I asked if it were not more reasonable to run some more experiments, and the added data would either smooth out the blip, or make it me apparent. In the case that it became apparent, there would probably be more work to do to explain why.

    He didn’t like that answer, mumbled stuff about expense, time and the need to get the results completed and looking good for submission to the various EU and US drug agencies.

    I (of course) said I wouldn’t help, unless he could persuade one of the directors to put a request in writing. I suspect he found someone else to do it.

  57. I said something similar on Willis’ thread earlier; I cannot imagine what it must have been like to see your “worst paranoid fantasies” turn out to be not paranoid enough. Sure, since you are at Cato and GMU you probably expected that the Team was black-balling you for committees, making sure the “right” people reviewed your papers, countering your “industry supported dis-information” with their rapid response element (those helpful volunteers, NGOs, and media Team members). Who could conceivably imagine that they would maliciously lie about your 30 year old dissertation in secret to the leadership of your profession? I feel like I should start looking into tin-foil hats.

  58. This goes beyond suppression of peer reviewed literature. Dr. Michaels is both diplomatic and correct. Wrigley should be called before a professional review panel and stripped of all titles and honors. He has no honor and his conduct indicates he is undeserving of any titles.

  59. I hope that we will soon learn what the response of Roger Wakimoto is. Since the disgraceful attempt by “the Team” to destroy Patrick Michaels’ reputation and career have been made public the response of Roger Wakimoto to Michaels’ message should also be made public. Anything less than a outspoken denunciation of the disgraceful behaviour of “the Team” will merely compound the original offence.

    Furthermore grant awarding bodies should be very careful in judging any future requests for funding from people who were party to the plot to destroy Michaels’ career. It is hard to see any justification for the award of public money to people who cannot be trusted to undertake their research in an honest and unbiased way.

  60. Donations to a legal fund? Do we need that? OK, I mean does Pat need that….

    This all happened in the United States? The most litigious nation on earth? Where uber sharp legal firms extract million dollar settlements out of McDonalds because a little old lady spilled coffee on herself and argued that McDonald’s hadn’t taken the appropriate steps to warn her that it was hot? Land of the lawyer who bought a case of cigars, insured them, smoked them, and then won a court award against the insurance company by arguing that the cigars were clearly lost due to fire, and his insurance covered loss by fire? (Of course the downside was they got him charged with multiple counts of arson, one for each cigar he had testified in a court of law to having lit and smoked). There’s even a law firm in the U.S. that reportedly searches for bankrupt companies that they can buy out for pennies but have actual IP that other companies have been using and so can be sued for violating the bankrupt company’s patent rights (in fact, I think that’s what the recent big law suite against RIM was founded upon).

    Sounds to me like there’s a lot of good law suits hanging around. Summarize the detail, send a letter to the top ten or so litigation firms, and ask them to make an offer. One or more of ‘em will have a hot shot to two…or four hundred… that will take it on and fund it for a cut of the pay out.

    Isn’t America wonderful?

  61. I think most [SNIP: Policy -REP] can pretty much agree that the real enemy is the profoundly negligent MSM. The story is right here, in front of their eyes. A magnificent piece of low-hanging fruit. The story of the century. One way to break through would be to convince some journalist of note, one with substantial liberal cred, that he has an absolutely golden opportunity. CAn you imagine the job a Matt Taibbi could do on Michael Mann and co.? That he writes for Rolling Stone…an as in-the-tank progressive publication as I can think of…is all to the good.

    I’ve written him a few emails which I’m certain he’ll ignore. But it can’t hurt to try.

  62. Phil. says:
    December 2, 2011 at 10:21 am
    crosspatch says:
    December 2, 2011 at 9:23 am
    “Misrepresenting the work of scientists is a serious offense.” — Michael Mann 23 October 2009 4666.txt

    “Indeed, unfortunately it’s something that Michaels engages in!”

    For example?

  63. He makes up falsehoods about Michaels and lets James Hansen run around lying 24/7. Of course, the former is a skeptic and the latter a compatriot in the scam.

  64. This is all a complete and typical overreaction! When Wigley wrote:

    “..You may be interesting [sic] in this snippet of information about Pat Michaels. Perhaps the University of Wisconsin ought to open up a public comment period to decide whether Pat Michaels, PhD needs re-assessing?..”

    ..he was NOT talking about Dr Michaels’ PhD. Of course not! What had happened was that there was a ‘Best Dressed Scientist’ competition going on at the time, and Wigley had just heard that Michaels had bought a new Armani suit.

    He always refers to him as ‘Pat Michaels, PhD’ out of courtesy…

  65. Wil says:
    December 2, 2011 at 11:38 am
    Which leads to the question – then who actually does all the grunt work?
    =================================================
    ………….Harry

  66. @Smokey says:
    December 2, 2011 at 9:18 am

    Dang it! You beat me to it. The first word that jumped to my mind was ‘reprehensible’ and you’ve done gone and used it… early, I might add.

    Well, I can repeat for effect; reprehensible is the only way to describe it.

  67. From Wigley’s letter”
    As an historical note, I discovered this many years ago when working with Dick Warrick and Tu Qipu on crop-climate modeling. We used a spatial regression method, which we developed for the wheat belt of southwestern Western Australia. We carried out similar analyses for winter wheat in the USA, but never published the results.
    Wigley, T.M.L. and Tu Qipu, 1983: Crop-climate modelling using spatial patterns of yield and climate: Part 1, Background and an example from Australia. Journal of Climate and Applied Meteorology 22, 1831–1841>>>

    OK, so they published or they didn’t publish.
    I’m hoping they published.
    Citing something that isn’t true to refute something that is true, ought to be grounds for having one’s PhD revoked?

  68. IANAL, but, unfortunately I’m not seeing what benefit could be gained by a lawsuit at this time – except to enrich both party’s lawyers.

    (Not defending the actions, but…) Since the PhD was not revoked, nor does it appear Mr. Michaels was aware of this until the one email surfaced in 2009, unless there is evidence that Dr. Michaels’ reputation was damaged or that he lost opportunities directly due to Mr. Wigley, what damage would Dr. Michaels be able to sue for at this time?

    At this time, the direction Dr. Michael’s is taking appears to me to be the most appropriate. Posting of a public letter to defend against the (originally closed circle?) accusations made against him while at the same time putting the employer on notice regarding the questionable / unethical(?) actions of their employee. Also, by posting this publicly, Dr. Michaels is able to “put a feeler out there” for others who may be able to step forward to provide evidence that Dr. Michaels was harmed by Mr. Wigley’s emails / actions – which could then lead to Mr. Wigley, et. al. being sued.

  69. If you watch this video of the 1990 documentry “The Greenhouse Conspiracy

    You will see Wigley in the embarrassing position of being faced with questions that he can’t answer and Patric Michaels forcefully exposing the flaws of AGW.
    This video also features Roy Spencer, Richard Lindzen and several other key players.
    At point 1:50 in the Video is an appearance by Pat Michaels.
    At point 9:25 in the video is Wigley
    At point 12:40 Wigley appears again and at point 43:48 Wigley comments on funding followed by other commentary on funding at point 45:15
    It is worth watching this 51 minute video from start to finish to fully appreciate the fact that this whole AGW theory was completely demo0lished 21 years ago yet it is still in effect today because of misrepresentation of fact by the IPCC in service of its own political agenda

  70. There ought to some in the UEA who are a trifle uneasy right now.
    Here in England the legal definition of the crime of Conspiracy is:-
    Section 1(1) of the Criminal Law Act 1977 provides:
    “…if a person agrees with any other person or persons that a course of conduct shall be pursued which, if the agreement is carried out in accordance with their intentions, either –
    (a) will necessarily amount to or involve the commission of any offence or offences by one or more of the parties to the agreement, or
    (b) would do so but for the existence of facts which render the commission of the offence or any of the offences impossible, [added by S.5 Criminal Attempts Act 1981]
    he is guilty of conspiracy to commit the offence or offences in question.”

    That’s not crickets in Essex you can hear chirping, it’s the sound of fibrillating sphincters!

  71. Aloha from Hawaii:

    It is obvious to me and has been obvious for many months that should a PhD be revoked, it is that of Dr. Mann’s!

    L.T. King MD

  72. Is this something that should be brought to the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education’s (F.I.R.E.) attention. This seems to be an academic issue of the kind that they are very useful in resolving. They may not get a monetary settlement but a very public apology should go a long way.

  73. Phil Jones might be a bit uneasy also.

    email #4945

    “date: Thu Sep 17 08:28:03 2009
    from: Phil Jones
    subject: FW: Environmental Information Regulations 2004 request
    to: “Myles Allen”

    Myles,
    Never say you got this email from me! I probably shouldn’t be passing this on – maybe
    it’s protected under the Data Protection Act.”

    Seems the “team” hold all the high ground when it comes to ethical behaviours.

  74. Davidmhofer,

    Not germaine to this conversation, but you may want to reconsider the McDonalds incident. I was probably of the same opinion as you when I first heard about it in the news. But as is usually the case, modern journalism doesn’t have very high standards and they left out the most salient facts to the story.

    The plaintiff had simply asked McDonalds to cover about $5,000 of out of pocket medical expenses which her insurance didn’t cover. She was rather badly burned, required some skin grafting and also missed work. Also not covered was the fact that this particular McDonalds kept their coffee at a temp several degrees higher than called for in the corporate manual and had been cited by the Health Dept a couple of times previously and told to lower the temp they brewed their coffee. Granted, the reason for doing this was in response to feedback from customers who said their coffee often was cold before they ever reached work – long commutes in Arizona are not uncommon. Still they were out of compliance with both their own corporate guidelines and an order from the Health Dept.

    Upshot was that McDonalds told the woman to go piss up a rope. Unfortunately for them, they told this to the wrong woman. She was so pissed off by the arrogance of Micky D’s that she consulted an attorney and the rest is history. These were just some of the facts the jury heard and the size of the settlement was based almost entirely on the degree of arrogance and unreasonableness of McDonalds, as determined by the jury. In otherwords, this really isn’t a good example to use.

  75. “The global circulation of this email has caused unknown damage to my reputation.”
    “…and his letter about my dissertation is again being circulated around the web.”

    I hate to point this out but it seems Patrick Michaels is doing the most to see this email gets circulated!!

  76. Why do they redact the email addresses of those employed by publically funded organizations? It’s public knowledge: wigley@ucar.edu

    The words “chilling effect” keep running through my mind.

  77. At this late date it would probably be pedantic to suggest that we need an apostrophe in the title of this post.

    So I won’t. : > )

  78. I think the redacting of the email addresses is merely a courtesy to reduce the spambots that troll the web. The real email addresses are intact in the actual emails themselves which you can download and unzip and peruse yourself if you wish.

  79. Wigley in the same multiple-recipient email – in 2009 – cast a defamatory light on Reid Bryson – who died in 2008. Bryson was, as Michaels says, “father of the modern notion that human beings could change the climate” back when Bryson believed in global cooling, and Bryson changed his mind and said in 2007, “All this argument is the temperature going up or not, it’s absurd. Of course it’s going up. It has gone up since the early 1800s, before the Industrial Revolution, because we’re coming out of the Little Ice Age, not because we’re putting more carbon dioxide into the air.” http://www.wecnmagazine.com/2007issues/may/may07.html

    For Wigley, there was incentive for a twofer. knocking Michaels and saying that Bryson could have been so ignorant as to miss Michaels’ supposed error. In the email (http://www.ecowho.com/foia.php?file=0452.txt)

    Wigley: “Michaels’ PhD was, I believe, supervised by Reid Bryson.”
    Then, in the same email:
    Wigley on Michaels’ supposed big error: “Apparently, none of Michaels’ thesis examiners noticed this. We are left with wondering whether this was deliberate misrepresentation by Michaels, or whether it was simply ignorance.”

  80. The Team is out trying to destroy their enemies.

    This means the gloves are off. It’s no more about science. It’s about victory. They were no scientists to begin with, they are no scientists now, only scientist stand-ins.

    Steve McIntyre’s reserved tone is entirely inappropriate. We have to destroy them; in the US, in Germany.

  81. This email appears to be pure malicious gossip. The thing that his friends need to be asking themselves is – What is he saying about me when he thinks I won’t know about it?

  82. Out of curiousity, I just googled Wigley’s entry in Wikip. It’s pretty skinny, got no particularly recent statements of achievement.
    Except at the bottom:
    “This page was last modified on 25 November 2011 at 16.50″

    Has anyone any idea what may have necessitated an amendment? – or what it was?

    [REPLY: on the wikipedia page click on the “view history” tab. THAT page will allow you to view versions. You may find it interesting reading, seeing what was cut out. -REP]

  83. timg56;
    These were just some of the facts the jury heard and the size of the settlement was based almost entirely on the degree of arrogance and unreasonableness of McDonalds, as determined by the jury. In otherwords, this really isn’t a good example to use.>>>

    You make coffee by boiling water. Period. Spin it any way you want, you make coffee by boiling water. It was a nice spin story all right, and she clearly had a sympathetic jury, else the argument that she didn’t know coffee was hot would be just silly.

    In fact it is a great story. A slick lawyer somehow convinced a jury of regular folks (plus you it seems) that people shouldn’t be responsible for knowing that coffee is hot and to be carefull not to spill it on themselves. If you think that lawyer did a great job representing her, you might want to check out the rest of the story. The aware (over $1 million) was over turned on appeal, and the damages reduced. I’ve forgotten to how much. But the reduced award was less than her legal fees.

    I’ve since lost track of it, but last I heard, he was trying to extract $100K from her. Nice guy.

  84. I wouldn’t lose any sleep if federal funding of NCAR was cut by half or more. It is about time to slim down on all these tea leaf gazing freeloaders.

  85. There is more than enough here to wonder about possible actions for defamation, tortious interference with contractual relations, false claims (was this email written on taxpayer time?) and simple violation of contract: if Wigley’s agreement with UCAR/NCAR required him to act in a professional and ethical manner, how does this kind of baseless and vindictive agitation square with such an obligation?

    In general I am not eager to see the law used to discipline shabby conduct. But this is about 6 standard deviations out. It will be interesting to read what (if anything) Dr. Wakimoto offers in reply. The question cannot rest where it is now. Stay the course!

  86. DirkH;
    We have to destroy them; in the US, in Germany.>>>

    Might stink up the country side. How about the ocean instead?

  87. It is pretty evident that in the case of the team, PHD (hereafter referred to in lower case only) does mean piled higher and deeper.

    I too had to abandon my quest for such because I would be too prone to violence.
    I am also a fair shot.

  88. @davidmhoffer

    I make coffee by boiling water. So the coffee is hot. True.
    You make coffee by boiling water. So the coffee is also hot. True.

    But did you know that you can make coffee by making the water REALLY REALLY REALLY HOT? Boiling hot water is dangerous. REALLY REALLY HOT water is REALLY REALLY REALLY dangerous. At a certain temperature, the water is DEADLY dangerous. True.

    Hence the woman’s injuries. Hence the judgement. Hence that McDonalds no longer serves REALLY REALLY REALLY HOT coffee…

    There are plenty of foolish judgements made by foolish juries and foolish judges – this isn’t one of them.

  89. I take it this is not really a question of the science behind the thesis, rather members of the team communicating with each other about possible ways to destroy a professional enemy by attacking their qualifications. If that is so, then it just shows how deep the conflict is. But suppose the situation was reversed. Would it be wrong for a group of skeptics to privately communicate about possible ways to revert the qualifications of prominent warmists?

    Professional shit-fights can be very damaging. Lots of lies get told to decision makers. You have to stand your ground and prove your worth.

  90. FWIW
    the piece cut out of Wigley’s Wiki entry was:

    “Wigley is also alleged to have authored a Climategate 1.0 email asserting that his fellow Climategate scientists “must get rid of” the editor for a peer-reviewed science journal because he published some papers contradicting assertions of a global warming crisis.”

    The editor’s IP is 98.230.86.114

  91. timg56 says:
    December 2, 2011 at 2:44 pm

    I seem to recall reading at the time that the reason the woman’s injuries were as severe as they were was because before driving away from the window she placed the cup of hot coffee between her thighs in close proximity to her crotch. Is it your position that, if you sell someone a product and they immediately do something with it that almost guarantees that they will be injured, you have a legal responsibility to defray their medical expenses when that injury eventuates. McDonald’s was entirely correct to deny her claim and the fact that she received any damages at all is further proof that tort law in the U.S. is just a tarted up extortion racket.

  92. Where’s Roger Rabbit, aka Peter Cottontail? I’d like to see his take on this.

    So far this second batch of emails has revealed a race to the absolute bottom of some people who I didn’t think could get any lower if they tried.

    I was wrong! And prior to this I didn’t even handicap Wigley for the race!

  93. I have never heard of a university revoking a degree. Does anyone know of any cases? I suspect it would require a blatant and incontrovertible case of fraud in the earning of the degree, and not just error or incompetence.

    It’s certainly one of the most vicious tactics I’ve ever read of. Where is their decency?

  94. This is utterly disgusting and this must not stand! I try to maintain some level of civility but this incident and the many other episodes of outright bullying, suppression and attacks conducted by the “team” are completely beyond the pale. Their conduct has been nothing short of villianous and they MUST be called to account their crimes. I urge you to all contact your elected representatives and demand a full investigation on all the treacherous conduct by government officials and taxpayer funded scientists engaged in this disgusting attack on science and that the ones who are in public service be dismissed from their positions and any university who refuses to similarly disipline the proffessors and other public funded scientists involved should have all federal grant money revoked.

  95. Rabbit

    I know of one. Ed Anders, who won the undergraduate teaching award at Chicago (and I took Chem 105 from him–he was great), and designed the alpha particle scatterer for the Lunar Surveyor, had his pulled, for reasons I am not clear on.

  96. These A-Holes are ruining science and all this crap suddenly makes me feel like retching. I hope that everything they were discussing doing to Michaels happens to them 10 fold…or more.

  97. Dave Stephens says:
    December 2, 2011 at 4:53 pm

    Most every McD’s I’ve been in use the same Bunn commercial drip coffeemakers or versions thereof. These machines don’t heat the water beyond boiling. They don’t even heat the water to boiling, the brewing occurs at 200 degrees. Warming plates are usually kept significantly lower because trying to keep the coffee at brewing temp with the warmer will oxidize it to crap in minutes.

  98. Latitude says:
    December 2, 2011 at 1:31 pm

    Wil says:
    December 2, 2011 at 11:38 am
    Which leads to the question – then who actually does all the grunt work?
    =================================================
    ………….Harry

    Funny enough, Latitude, that it bears repeating! (Thanks for the laugh. And is this why “The Cause” is fracturing?–gosh, I certainly hope so!)

  99. Kay says:
    December 2, 2011 at 11:43 am
    Didn’t Wigley threaten to beat up Michaels in the first batch of emails?

    No, that was “Sluggo” Santer. A Fox interviewer asked Michaels about it and he said, “That’s no joke; Santer’s a big guy.” But he didn’t seem too fazed–possibly because he looked like a big guy himself.

  100. Bengu Sezen had her PhD revoked from Columbia this year.
    Jan Hendrik Schön lost his in 2004.
    Gwendolyn Griffith Adell had hers revoked.

    They happen all the time, rabbit.

  101. Those of you pleading for a law suit be aware that the jury will be not be composed of your peers but MY neighbors. I live on the banks of the Potomac River in northern Virginia and the young woman who cuts my hair each month was completely unaware that there was a river nearby. Try explaining to her the finer points of CO2, ENSO, diurnal oscillations, Maunder Minimum, LIA, etc……… That’s your jury pool.

  102. Egotistical people drive me crazy. Unfortunately our universities are full of egotistical people who believe they are smarter than everyone else. It reminds me of the old playground taunt “my Dad is bigger than your Dad”. What a sorry world we live in.

  103. It is a slam dunk prediction that ClimateGate 2 will drive the boys yet deeper into the bunker, making them yet more threatened, more shrill, and more aggressive against opposition … and more ridiculous. They destroy themselves.

  104. DonB,

    In a case like this the most important element may be the days, weeks, and maybe even months of pre-trial depositions under oath. Much more wide-ranging questions can be asked in a deposition than can be asked in a trial. And of course, in a trial witnesses can be called and cross examined. Juries are unpredictable, but most jurors have a feel for which side is being honest, and which side is blustering and tapdancing.

    There are now thousands of statements sent via email on record, by a relatively small clique that controls the climate peer review process and lots of taxpayer money. Many of their statements will be extremely hard to defend. One or two might be explained away. But each one is a brick in the wall, and by now it’s a very big wall.

  105. davidmhoffer says:
    December 2, 2011 at 4:14 pm
    “timg56;
    These were just some of the facts the jury heard and the size of the settlement was based almost entirely on the degree of arrogance and unreasonableness of McDonalds, as determined by the jury. In otherwords, this really isn’t a good example to use.>>>

    You make coffee by boiling water. Period. Spin it any way you want, you make coffee by boiling water.”

    Actually you don’t boil the water since it looses oxygen when boiling and loosing oxygen looses taste. It’s pretty much the same process as when making tea that is.

  106. Jim Barker says:
    December 2, 2011 at 6:45 pm
    Just want to set the story straight on the whole McDonald’s scalding coffee bit.

    http://www.lectlaw.com/files/cur78.htm

    The fact that the old woman was a passenger does change my opinion somewhat, but the rest of the tale seems to be mostly lawyerly BS

    “Other establishments sell coffee at substantially lower temperatures, and coffee served at home is generally 135 to 140 degrees.”

    Not at my house or anyone else who cares about having a decent cuppa.

    From the website of BUNN who supply the majority of commercial coffeemakers in the country

    BUNN COFFEE BASICS

    Holding and serving know how

    When you brew perfect coffee, it should be enjoyed while flavor and aroma are at their peak. BUNN offers a range of holding and serving equipment designed to keep your coffee at its best.

    Ideal holding temperature: 175ºF to 185ºF (80ºC to 85ºC)
    Most all the volatile aromatics in coffee have boiling points well below that of water and continue to evaporate from the surface until pressure in the serving container reaches equilibrium. A closed container can slow the process of evaporation.
    Ideal serving temperature: 155ºF to 175ºF (70ºC to 80ºC)
    Many of the volatile aromatics in coffee have boiling points above 150ºF (65ºC). They simply are not perceived when coffee is served at lower temperatures.

  107. It seems there ought to be a way to show the team members ongoing pattern of fraudulence violates the RICO act; which provides the possibility of severe penalties for criminal convictions, and awards treble damages in civil cases.

  108. Julian Wiliams in Wales says:
    December 2, 2011 at 10:39 am

    … This behaviour is dirty and disreputable and a stain on all scientists. It is up to the profession at large to stand up for Dr Michaels. Enough is enough. These guys need to pulled out by their peers and asked to explain themselves or apologise and make amends..

    The TEAM have no “peers” other than their fellow TEAM members. The end justifies the means because the end is of universal importance and near. Only they can save humanity. They are only semi-aware that they are serving a boot that is poised above the face of humanity. Not much ado coming from the MSM or fellow peers – so far – mainly blogs and bloggers. GK

  109. “”””” Dave Stephens says:

    December 2, 2011 at 4:53 pm

    @davidmhoffer

    I make coffee by boiling water. So the coffee is hot. True.
    You make coffee by boiling water. So the coffee is also hot. True.

    But did you know that you can make coffee by making the water REALLY REALLY REALLY HOT? Boiling hot water is dangerous. REALLY REALLY HOT water is REALLY REALLY REALLY dangerous. At a certain temperature, the water is DEADLY dangerous. True.

    Hence the woman’s injuries. Hence the judgement. Hence that McDonalds no longer serves REALLY REALLY REALLY HOT coffee…

    There are plenty of foolish judgements made by foolish juries and foolish judges – this isn’t one of them. “””””

    Well now when I order coffee, I always ask that it be “McDonalds Hot”, and if it isn’t, I send it back to get nuked until it is. It still isn’t nearly as hot as molten steel; it is generally advisable to not place either of these things down in your crotch in an automobile, and then drive off.

    I once ran through the middle of a burning haystack, and fell over in the middle of it. So I was off school for then next six months. That is at least as stupid as putting a cup of hot coffee in your crotch and trying to drive an automobile with it there. But I was 8 years old; not a supposed adult.

    Charles Darwin wrote a whole book about creatures that do stupid things; getting paid for doing stupid things doesn’t sound liker a great idea to me.

  110. RogueGovt says:

    December 2, 2011 at 10:40 am

    “This is exactly why I could never see myself as a part of modern Academia and dropped out 3/4 through my PhD. to become a journalist and freelance writer. Today’s universities, dominated by irredeemably corrupt leftists, are hotbeds of intellectual dishonesty and socialist conformity. Sorry, not going to become part of that machine. I want to throw monkey wrenches in it.”

    I hear ya. That’s why I ran screaming from a Ph.D. program back in 1985. My department was a freakin’ “Payton Place” soap opera. I’m much happier with a master’s degree and teaching at a community college.

  111. Yesterday, over at Bishops Hill, Alan Kendall, the UEA geologist, tried to defend the UEA’s reputation.
    “I am entering the debate now because my university (UEA) is becoming subject to unnecessary scorn being branded disparingly as “a third-rate university” or the old tag repeated that it is the “University of easy access” in this and other blogs. This derision being made by those who are incensed by a small number of UEA employees, notably in CRU”.

    The CRU has managed to tar the whole of UEA with the same brush and I could feel a little sympathy for Kendall.

    If Wigley does not recant and apologize or NCAR/UCAR does not pull Wigley up over his attempt to destroy Michaels reputation, NCAR/UCAR will be looking at a tar barrel just like the U.E.A.!

    Your move Wigley, it takes a brave person to admit he was wrong!

  112. Excellent letter DR. Michaels.

    Now the ball is in their court. Their response will say a lot about the state of the Team bunker. They can not possibly duck this… can they?

  113. Perhaps one or all will get a visit from the ghost of Hubert Lamb on Christmas eve. Then the ghost of christmas past, etc…………….

  114. Dave Stephens;
    But did you know that you can make coffee by making the water REALLY REALLY REALLY HOT? Boiling hot water is dangerous. REALLY REALLY HOT water is REALLY REALLY REALLY dangerous. At a certain temperature, the water is DEADLY dangerous. True. >>>

    Yup. You can build your industrial class coffee maker to run at a higher pressure and even go so far as to make superheated steam that then runs through the coffee at absurdly high temperatures that are truley dangerous. Not only that, the high temperatures result in chemical reactions that would not have happened at plain old boiling water temperatures.

    Now the coffee then drips down into the coffee pot. Since it is now in a coffee pot and no longer under pressure, the maximum temperature it can be at is…boiling point. Boiling water or superheated steam condensed into boiling water, maximum temperature at sea level would be 100 C or 212 F. Now, if she had stuck her hand inside of the coffee machine and gotten burnt by the superheated steam, that would be REALLY REALLY HOT. But it wasn’t. It was in a cup. Max temp exactly the same as if it was made with boiling water poured out of a kettle.

    The boiling point of black coffee and water are pretty much the same to the best of my knowledge. But adding sugar or powdered cream would reduce the boiling point. Salt would raise it, but I kind of doubt anyone added salt to her coffee.

  115. I’m going to have to sit down and actually figure out the nuances of FOIA request language.

    Clearly everything that’s gone in or out of NCAR from Wigley or Trenberth related to several would-be human sacrifices needs to be exposed to the light of day.

  116. juanslayton says:
    December 2, 2011 at 3:08 pm
    . . .
    So I won’t. : > )

    A moment of levity in an otherwise sorid mess. Good call, though.

  117. By way of comparison, Saif al-Islam Gaddafi (son of the former Libyan dictator) has been allowed to keep the PhD awarded by the London School of Economics (an institution of similar standing to NCAR). The degree was awarded after Libya gave $2 million the LSE and Saif Gaddafi spent thousands of pounds on private tutors who are widely believed to have ghost written those parts of his thesis which were not plagiarised.

  118. Ron Manley;

    A sad story that one. I suppose though, given that it is the London School of Economics, they would have a solid appreciation for the fact that economies run on money. Sadly, the amount of money does not dictate that the economy in question is either well run or ethical. This sounds to me like neither well run nor ethical apply in this case.

  119. Jim Barker says:
    December 2, 2011 at 6:45 pm
    Just want to set the story straight on the whole McDonald’s scalding coffee bit.

    http://www.lectlaw.com/files/cur78.htm

    Just one final point before I toddle off to bed. If the donkey lawyers had based their complaint on the faulty design of the styrofoam cup with the lid that needed to be removed to add cream or sugar, which was the real proximate cause the woman’s injuries, instead of the phony temperature angle, they could have made it a class action on behalf of the many who have been burned in similar incidents, roped in a multitude of codefendants who were using the same bad design, probably landed a settlement closer to a billion, which wouldn’t have been reduced on appeal. The result would have been the adoption by all vendors of the now commonly used lid with with a recloseable port for additions and world wouldn’t be doomed to buying piss warm coffee that tastes like crap and has virtually none of the beautiful fresh brewed coffee aroma which is one of its main attractions. I suspect part of the reason the testimony of the McDonald’s people seemed so hamfisted in their testimony is that their own lawyers realized that by keeping the focus on the temp issue their potential liability was less, even with the superficially outlandish damage award

  120. Funny how my climate professors that propel the notion of human induced global warming sing it from the roof tops with bull horns and cow bells.

    But the ones which I know for certain have serious doubts about it’s validity all seem to say exactly the same thing in public.

    “I’m not positive yet”, “We need more than several decades of data to be certain”, “The complexities of the earth climate system is too complex for the current rudimentary modeling”.

    Group A literally tells you human induced climate change is real…in plain English.
    Group B has to dance around the issue and give you “hints” as to their real interpretation of a lifetime of achievement in the field.

    To me this isn’t how science is suppose to work. It cannot be political…even for the betterment of society against catastrophic damage to our planet. If you wont say what you actually mean then the public is going to pick up on that and it will damage everyone else that is falsely grouped into A!

    Habitat restoration and protection I believe, is taking a direct hit being grouped into the climate change crowd.

  121. Wil says:
    quote
    Which leads to the question – then who actually does all the grunt work?
    unquote

    Linah Ababneh — I wonder what happened to her?

    JF
    The Climate Team, so dedicated to The Noble Cause that they’re prepared to push The Big Lie.

  122. Here they want to get rid of von Storch;

    http://tomnelson.blogspot.com/2011/12/wigley-writes-to-hulme-and-jones-get.html

    It looks a bit like how it was in the Soviet Union with Lysenkoism. We all know what happened with those who disagreed with Lysenko.

    I saw a program the other day about the USSR.
    A guy had been put in an asylum because he showed people the Helsingfors treaty about human rights. They did a big mistake and printed the treaty in the newspaper, you see. Now, later on, they interviewed the guy who got him out, and a doctor.

    The doctor said they were just trying to help him adapting to society…..they helped him…

    We see the same tendencies in Norwegian schools nowadays. More and more young boys get the psychiatric diagnosis; AD-HD.
    They say it is something wrong with them, adapting to the school system…..I wonder….there was a schools reform back in 1994….based on “science”… more and more young boys avoid higher education now.

    But then again, maybe it is just me.

  123. mikemUK says: December 2, 2011 at 4:06 pm
    Out of curiousity, I just googled Wigley’s entry in Wikip…
    [REPLY: on the wikipedia page click on the “view history” tab… You may find it interesting reading, seeing what was cut out. -REP]

    That’s fine so long as there is actually a page there in Wikipedia. One can do that with Soon & Baliunas, and get back before Connolley’s – oh God I want to use Sandusky-appropriate language – let’s say, Orwellisms. But in the case of Tim Ball, even this is not possible. Deleting a Wikipedia page is the one way to truly consign someone to obscurity.

    This control of the “facts” is as we know spiked by the memes
    * there is consensus – no reasonable scientist doubts any longer
    * in light of what needs to be done, we cannot afford to give – “deniers” – air space
    * Wikipedia / Nature / the Royal Society / Scientists for Global Responsibility / Schumacher College / etc etc/ is reasonable enough to be trusted

    “Who controls the past controls the future; who controls the present controls the past.”

  124. I meant to state conclusions:

    (1) The rehabilitation of Michaels and of Soon & Baliunas – though the science – is essential.

    (2) The restatement and legal binding of Scientific Method in terms of accountable replicability (published data, methods, and key factors like station history) is essential

    (3) The recognition of the importance of the human dimension, and the contribution of amateur scientists, is essential

    (4) It would be nice to develop a form of 12-step program for recovering scientoholics propagandists. Heck, aren’t some of us that already!

  125. davidmhoffer says: of Wigley & Qipu paper on December 2, 2011 at 1:34 pm, …
    We carried out similar analyses for winter wheat in the USA, but never published the results.

    The scientific way to look at this is to obtain a copy of the Wigley & Qipu paper, which is at

    http://journals.ametsoc.org/doi/pdf/10.1175/1520-0450%281983%29022%3C1831%3ACMUSPO%3E2.0.CO%3B2

    You then read the paper to determine if it within your field of expertise. If it is, you might notice some statements that are worth revisiting. For example, in the Abstract, we read
    “the study area divides into three zones: a high rainfall area where rainfall is generally more than optimum so that lower rainfall gives higher yields; a low rainfall area where rainfall is, on average, less than optimum so that positive rainfall anomalies are associated with higher yields; and an intermediate zone where average rainfall is close to optimum so that anomalies in either direction tend to suppress yields.” This is fairly advanced language for a 1983 paper – it can be too wet, too dry or just right, like the 3 Bears story. It mentions the inverted U-shaped response of plant growth to external factors as discussed extensively in the last 5 years under dendrothermometry.
    There is “early” statistical work that discusses principal component analysis and how to accept or reject certain components to optimise results explaining variance. This has been the subject of later papers such as Eric Steig’s work on Antarctic warming theory and a rebuttal/discussion by a few people known well to readers here.
    The gossipy question, of course, is whether the quality of this paper is greater than or lower than the quality of the PhD thesis of Pat Michaels. (Poeple in glass houses, etc.) In my past, I worked mainly on factors effecting yield and it’s a rather pedestrian paper. I left the statistics to statisticians, who might well be interested in a dissection of Wigley and Qipu.

  126. Lucy Skywalker(2:16am)

    Darn, I had just typed something very similar and fortunately your post appeared before I hit “post comment”. You said it better anyway.

    New subject: enough about hot coffee already.

  127. Eric Anderson says:

    “Robert Brown says: “I wouldn’t talk to their boss, I’d sue their ass. Let them attempt to defend their statements in a courtroom.”

    I’m not a bit fan of suing, but I’d have to say that he probably has a much stronger case than Mann does with his silly “State Pen” suit.”

    From what we’ve seen lately, it looks like Penn State should be the state pen.

  128. If you want these guys (at least the ones residing in the USA) called on the carpet, vote Republican in the next election. The Democrats will never ever go against the phony baloney AGW religion or its priests.

    Have to dump Obama and get a Republican majority in the Senate while keeping the Republican majority in the House – and hope they don’t go all stupid on spending like the last time they had a dual house majority in the mid 90’s. (‘Course their spending then wasn’t a patch on what O’Bummer has done!)

  129. I’m a bit surprised at the idea that being awarded a doctorate comes from research and taking holy vows of purity. The personal integrity and honesty of folks with doctorates was set long before grad school. I saw enough dishonest little tin gods in undergrad, grad and post doc periods that I decided that I really didn’t want to be in academia. Idea theft, jealousy, unwarranted personal attacks seemed to be all too common. I had a Nobel Laureate tell me that it was perfectly OK to distort facts for a higher political purposes. He did it in front of my high-school-aged daughter who was attending the seminar as part of a class project. I’ve been watching this kind of stuff for 45 years, I’m cynical enough to find nothing terribly unusual about Wigley’s email other than he had the absolute arrogance to do it in a traceable manner.
    Although most Ph. D.s I know are folks of high integrity, they seem to tolerate those who are not. Me, I’ve fired a couple of folks for falsifying data. Too bad it took two before everyone believed that nothing short of absolute honesty was acceptable.

  130. cc: Thomas.R.Karl@noaa.gov, Jim Hansen , Steve Schneider , Gavin Schmidt , Kevin Trenberth , Michael Mann , Stefan Rahmstorf , Phil Jones , Ben Santer
    date: Tue, 13 Oct 2009 19:45:45 -0600
    from: Tom Wigley
    subject: Re: FYI–“Phil Jones and Ben Santer respond to CEI and Pat
    to: Rick Piltz

    Dear folks,

    You may be interesting

    You may be interesting? I think someone should investigate Wigley’s PhD. Granted he got it in Australia at University of Adelaide but last I knew the native language in Australia was english so we might expect Wigley could write as well as a fifth grader who would certainly not write “interesting” instead of “interested”.

    I include the cc: list so y’all know who Tom Wigley was demonstrating his own incompetence to while denigrating the competence of someone else.

    Wigley goes on to make another ignorant blunder in the first paragraph by inventing a word “re-assess”. The word he was struggling for in this case is “reassess”.

    Then in the next paragraph Tom Wigley can’t decide the correct way to hyphenate and consecutively uses “crop-climate” and then “weather/climate”. Which is it Wigley, a dash or a slash? It must be so confusing for him.

    Then in the next sentence Tom Wigley invents yet another new word “inter-annual”. The word is “interannual”.

    Nest the illiterate Tom Wigley demonstrates he doesn’t know when or how to use a plural.

    “it would have been a remarkable results”

    “How did result come about?”

    No Wigley, the remarkable result is that YOU have a PhD. Did you get it out of a crackerjack box?
    One might wonder if Tom Wigley bribed someone or whether the University of Adelaide is in the habit
    of simply awarding PhD’s to ignorant slobs like Tom Wigley?

  131. Duster says:
    December 2, 2011 at 9:59 am
    >Scott Covert says:
    >December 2, 2011 at 9:10 am

    >Why not contact the author or publish a rebuttal?

    Until the emails were released, the entire episode was between Wigley and his correspondents.

    =======================================

    Hey Duster! Covert was suggesting that Wigley contest Michaels in a scientific journal instead of writing a libelous nastygram to Michaels’ peers and to Rick Piltz who founded Climate Science Watch which purports to be a watchdog agency to expose government interference in climate science.

  132. On the one hand Wigley’s email shows he is careless and nasty when he doesn’t like someone. On the other hand, since the email was in private I think there is no basis for legal action. He did not make a formal complaint to Michael’s univ dept.
    It is also hilarious in the sense that thousands of Ph.Ds are awarded for shabby work and tens of thousands of published papers are flawed, dubious, have too little data, etc. Many profs never learn to publish a proper paper. So if you think people who do shoddy work should have their Ph.D. removed, there are a lot of people who need to be fired. It is selective outrage on Wigley’s part (even if he were right, which he is not) because papers assessing impacts of climate change on agriculture or species or health are some of the sloppiest around, but Wigley does not complain about those. Egregious errors like Tiljander upside down are allowed to stand by Wigley’s buddies, and he doesn’t complain about that.

  133. George E. Smith; says:
    December 2, 2011 at 8:26 pm
    “I once ran through the middle of a burning haystack, and fell over in the middle of it. So I was off school for then next six months. That is at least as stupid as putting a cup of hot coffee in your crotch and trying to drive an automobile with it there. But I was 8 years old; not a supposed adult.”

    The coffee was sold in a Drive In; in a foam cup. When you sell a hot beverage in a foam cup to a person driving a car, maybe you shouldn’t make it 90 centigrade hot. And if you absolutely insist that a coffee has to have that temperature, maybe you should be prohibited from selling it in a Drive In. Because it’s just dangerous and dumb to act like that as a company.

  134. Appreciate your comment, David L. I’m moving back to Moscow, Russia where I can pursue a relatively honest and professional career in journalism. Best to you and yours, Kyle

  135. In the case of a civil suit, the truth of the matter, who is right and who is wrong, is a jury question. Typically, for professionals, some kind of Errors and Omissions insurance is carried and if there is one thing those carriers don’t like…it’s jurys deciding what is right and wrong. Given the power to punish, ie…to find for the plaintiff and award compensation in this case but award not only damages, but, punative damages(punies in legal parlance) would virtually guarantee a concilliatory insurer willing to settle under obligation to protect their insured. Punies are not necessarily insured, defamation law suits look like they’d be expensive to bring, and hard to quantify. Any Lawyers out there like to weigh in As part of any settlement a gag order would be part of the mix.

  136. Is Wigley a “government employee”? File suit against the government entity. The government entities usually pay for the litigant’s attorney. Well, they do for all of the “green” socialists, in any event.

  137. The real damage to Michaels’ reputation, as he says, comes from the Climategate release. These e-mails led to nothing in terms of an effort to revoke a Ph. D. meaning they would not have been known about except by maybe five people otherwise. Michaels should be complaining to the leaker who released this to the masses.

  138. Just asked my attorney domestic partner about this. She said that this was actionable even before the Climategate release. It’s just that it took Climategate to make Michaels aware of it. Defaming in private to an audience of one is just as actionable as defaming in public.

  139. The Team?: `The excreta which clings to men`s boots` (the late Richard Llewelyn, author of `How Green was my valley).

  140. Jim D says:
    December 3, 2011 at 8:41 am

    “Michaels should be complaining to the leaker who released this to the masses.”

    Legally, the way you need to look at this is like a 3-car accident. Wigley is like the first car that hit the second car that damaged the third car. If he hadn’t committed mens rea, this wouldn’t have happened. I don’t see any mens rea on FOIA’s part. FOIA is what we in the civilized world call a whistleblower.

    Besides, good freaking luck suing FOIA.

  141. I keep getting this image of a TV commercial featuring a twenty first century Iron Eyes Cody shedding tears while walking dejectedly through a climate lab in disarray with a multitude of modeling computers humming away inching above climategate emails strewn all about.
    An announcer in a very somber tone voices over; “people start scientific pollution, people can stop it.”

  142. What I find interesting about Wigley’s Wiki page is that the version where he authored a climate gate email lasted for one minute.

  143. ChE, Wigley started his sentence with “Perhaps…”. This was a speculative statement that didn’t seem to be picked up by any of those addressed. It is a sad world if people can be sued for speculative e-mails when no action ensued. In your car accident analogy, it is like he commented to his passenger that he wanted to ding Michaels, but didn’t, and this comment was recorded by a third party and released to the world, and then used against him by Michaels as though he really did ding him with only his speculative comment that was meant for his passenger.

  144. timg56 says:
    December 2, 2011 at 2:44 pm

    Davidmhofer,

    Not germaine to this conversation, but you may want to reconsider the McDonalds incident. I was probably of the same opinion as you when I first heard about it in the news. But as is usually the case, modern journalism doesn’t have very high standards and they left out the most salient facts to the story.

    May be late to the party and IANAL, but I read about this too. Although you may be technically or legally right, SHE PUT HOT COFFEE BETWEEN HER LEGS WHILE SHE WAS DRIVING! That’s the most salient fact to the story. She burned herself by doing something stupid.

    Anyone who drinks coffee knows it’s hot. Anyone who drinks coffee probably has burnt their lips and tongue more than once. Anyone who drinks coffee has probably spilled it after being bumped into or a bounce in the car. Common sense would tell anyone NOT to put hot coffee between their legs while they are driving. Hot coffee is hot and I doubt that if it was a few degrees cooler it would have been much better.

    I don’t know what it is about corporate hate, but when you say. “…the degree of arrogance and unreasonableness of McDonalds,” I’m sorry, your wrong. First, McDonald’s or any company has the right to defend themselves against frivolous lawsuits. Second, with all the ambulance chasers, if they settled up front they could set themselves up for tons of lawsuits by anyone who thought they could get into their deep pockets.

    As an aside, I wonder how many people have seriously injured themselves at home by their own stupidity or even an honest accident, say using a chain saw or table saw or falling off a ladder, or any number of things and had to cover their deductibles and other non-covered expenses by themselves, even if they had insurance, and didn’t have a company with deep pockets to sue. Sorry, I have no sympathy.

  145. http://www.ecowho.com/foia.php?file=1109021312.txt&search=+regarded

    0diggsdigg
    Share
    From: Phil Jones
    To: ???@virginia.edu
    Subject: Fwd: CCNet: PRESSURE GROWING ON CONTROVERSIAL RESEARCHER TO DISCLOSE SECRET DATA
    Date: Mon Feb 21 16:28:32 2005
    Cc: “raymond s. bradley” , “Malcolm Hughes”

    Mike, Ray and Malcolm,
    The skeptics seem to be building up a head of steam here ! Maybe we can use
    this to our advantage to get the series updated !
    Odd idea to update the proxies with satellite estimates of the lower troposphere
    rather than surface data !. Odder still that they don’t realise that Moberg et al used the
    Jones and Moberg updated series !
    Francis Zwiers is till onside. He said that PC1s produce hockey sticks. He stressed
    that the late 20th century is the warmest of the millennium, but Regaldo didn’t bother
    with that. Also ignored Francis’ comment about all the other series looking similar
    to MBH.
    The IPCC comes in for a lot of stick.
    Leave it to you to delete as appropriate !
    Cheers
    Phil
    PS I’m getting hassled by a couple of people to release the CRU station temperature data.
    Don’t any of you three tell anybody that the UK has a Freedom of Information Act !

    X-Sender: ???@pop.uea.ac.uk
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    Date: Mon, 21 Feb 2005 15:40:05 +000 ???
    To: ???@uea.ac.uk
    From: Keith Briffa
    Subject: Fwd: CCNet: PRESSURE GROWING ON CONTROVERSIAL RESEARCHER TO
    DISCLOSE SECRET DATA

    Subject: CCNet: PRESSURE GROWING ON CONTROVERSIAL RESEARCHER TO DISCLOSE SECRET DATA
    Date: Mon, 21 Feb 2005 15:02:37 -0000
    X-MS-Has-Attach:
    X-MS-TNEF-Correlator:
    Thread-Topic: pressure grows on climate modellers to relase secret data
    Thread-Index: AcUXiV64e/f3Ii8uQSa0X88pndSQgQAl2O1w
    From: “Peiser, Benny”
    To: “cambridge-conference”
    X-UEA-MailScanner-Information: Please contact the ISP for more information
    X-UEA-MailScanner: Found to be clean
    CCNet 22/2005 – 21 February 2005
    PRESSURE GROWING ON CONTROVERSIAL RESEARCHER TO DISCLOSE SECRET DATA
    ——————————————————————–
    This should have produced a healthy scientific debate. Instead, Mr. Mann tried
    to shut down debate by refusing to disclose the mathematical algorithm by which
    he arrived at his conclusions. All the same, Mr. Mann was forced to publish a
    retraction of some of his initial data, and doubts about his statistical methods
    have since grown.
    –The Wall Street Journal, 18 February 2005
    But maybe we are in that much trouble. The WSJ highlights what Regaldo and McIntyre
    says is Mann’s resistance or outright refusal to provide to inquiring minds his
    data, all details of his statistical analysis, and his code. So this is what I
    say to Dr. Mann and others expressing deep concern over peer review: give up your
    data, methods and code freely and with a smile on your face.
    –Kevin Vranes, Science Policy, 18 February 2005
    Mann’s work doesn’t meet that definition [of science], and those who use Mann’s
    curve in their arguments are not making a scientific argument. One of Pournelle’s
    Laws states “You can prove anything if you can make up your data.” I will now add
    another Pournelle’s Law: “You can prove anything if you can keep your algorithms
    secret.”
    –Jerry Pournelle, 18 February 2005
    The time has come to question the IPCC’s status as the near-monopoly source of
    information and advice for its member governments. It is probably futile to propose
    reform of the present IPCC process. Like most bureaucracies, it has too much momentum
    and its institutional interests are too strong for anyone realistically to suppose
    that it can assimilate more diverse points of view, even if more scientists and
    economists were keen to join up. The rectitude and credibility of the IPCC could be
    best improved not through reform, but through competition.
    –Steven F. Hayward, The American Enterprise Institute, 15 February 2005
    (1) HOCKEY STICK ON ICE
    The Wall Street Journal, 18 February 2005
    (2) SCIENCE AND OPEN ALGORITHMS: “YOU CAN PROVE ANYTHING WITH SECRET DATA AND
    ALGORITHMS”
    Jerry Pournell, 18 February 2005
    (3) OPEN SEASON ON HOCKEY AND PEER REVIEW
    Science Policy, 18 February 2005
    (4) CLIMATE CHANGE SCIENCE: TIME FOR TEAM “B”?
    The American Enterprise Institute, 15 February 2005
    (5) BRING THE PROXIES UP TO DATE!
    Climate Audit, 20 February 2005
    (6) CARELESS SCIENCE COSTS LIVES
    The Guardian, 18 February 2005
    (7) RE: MORE TROUBLE FOR CLIMATE MODELS
    Helen Krueger
    (8) HOW TO HANDLE ASTEROID 2004 MN4
    Jens Kieffer-Olsen
    (9) AND FINALLY: EUROPE FURTHER FALLING BEHIND IN TECHNOLOGY AND RESEARCH
    EU Observer, 10 February 2005
    ==================
    (1) HOCKEY STICK ON ICE
    The Wall Street Journal, 18 February 2005
    [1]http://online.wsj.com/article_email/0,,SB??? 608-IdjeoNmlah4n5yta4GHaqyIm4
    ,00.html
    On Wednesday National Hockey League Commissioner Gary Bettman canceled the season, and
    we guess that’s a loss. But this week also brought news of something else that’s been
    put on ice. We’re talking about the “hockey stick.”
    Just so we’re clear, this hockey stick isn’t a sports implement; it’s a scientific
    graph. Back in the late 1990s, American geoscientist Michael Mann published a chart that
    purported to show average surface temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere over the past
    1,000 years. The chart showed relatively minor fluctuations in temperature over the
    first 900 years, then a sharp and continuous rise over the past century, giving it a
    hockey-stick shape.
    Mr. Mann’s chart was both a scientific and political sensation. It contradicted a body
    of scientific work suggesting a warm period early in the second millennium, followed by
    a “Little Ice Age” starting in the 14th century. It also provided some visually
    arresting scientific support for the contention that fossil-fuel emissions were the
    cause of higher temperatures. Little wonder, then, that Mr. Mann’s hockey stick appears
    five times in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s landmark 2001 report on
    global warming, which paved the way to this week’s global ratification — sans the U.S.,
    Australia and China — of the Kyoto Protocol.
    Yet there were doubts about Mr. Mann’s methods and analysis from the start. In 1998,
    Willie Soon and Sallie Baliunas of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics
    published a paper in the journal Climate Research, arguing that there really had been a
    Medieval warm period. The result: Messrs. Soon and Baliunas were treated as heretics and
    six editors at Climate Research were made to resign.
    Still, questions persisted. In 2003, Stephen McIntyre, a Toronto minerals consultant and
    amateur mathematician, and Ross McKitrick, an economist at Canada’s University of
    Guelph, jointly published a critique of the hockey stick analysis. Their conclusion: Mr.
    Mann’s work was riddled with “collation errors, unjustifiable truncations of
    extrapolation of source data, obsolete data, geographical location errors, incorrect
    calculations of principal components, and other quality control defects.” Once these
    were corrected, the Medieval warm period showed up again in the data.
    This should have produced a healthy scientific debate. Instead, as the Journal’s Antonio
    Regalado reported Monday, Mr. Mann tried to shut down debate by refusing to disclose the
    mathematical algorithm by which he arrived at his conclusions. All the same, Mr. Mann
    was forced to publish a retraction of some of his initial data, and doubts about his
    statistical methods have since grown. Statistician Francis Zwiers of Environment Canada
    (a government agency) notes that Mr. Mann’s method “preferentially produces hockey
    sticks when there are none in the data.” Other reputable scientists such as Berkeley’s
    Richard Muller and Hans von Storch of Germany’s GKSS Center essentially agree.
    We realize this may all seem like so much academic nonsense. Yet if there really was a
    Medieval warm period (we draw no conclusions), it would cast some doubt on the
    contention that our SUVs and air conditioners, rather than natural causes, are to blame
    for apparent global warming.
    There is also the not-so-small matter of the politicization of science: If climate
    scientists feel their careers might be put at risk by questioning some orthodoxy, the
    inevitable result will be bad science. It says something that it took two non-climate
    scientists to bring Mr. Mann’s errors to light.
    But the important point is this: The world is being lobbied to place a huge economic bet
    — as much as $150 billion a year — on the notion that man-made global warming is real.
    Businesses are gearing up, at considerable cost, to deal with a new regulatory
    environment; complex carbon-trading schemes are in the making. Shouldn’t everyone look
    very carefully, and honestly, at the science before we jump off this particular cliff?
    Copyright 2005, The Wall Street Journal
    =============
    (2) SCIENCE AND OPEN ALGORITHMS: “YOU CAN PROVE ANYTHING WITH SECRET DATA AND
    ALGORITHMS”
    Jerry Pournell, 18 February 2005
    [2]http://www.jerrypournelle.com/view/view349.html#hockeystick
    Science and Open Algorithms: You can prove anything with secret data and algorithms.
    There is a long piece on the global “hockey stick” in today’s Wall Street Journal that
    explains something I didn’t understand: Mann, who generated the “hockey stick” curve
    purporting to show that the last century was unique in all recorded history with its
    sharp climb in temperature, has released neither the algorithm that generated his curve
    nor the data on which it was based.
    I had refrained from commenting on the “hockey stick” because I couldn’t understand how
    it was derived. I’ve done statistical analysis and prediction from uncertainty much of
    my life. My first job in aerospace was as part of the Human Factors and Reliability
    Group at Boeing, where we were expected to deal with such matters as predicting
    component failures, and deriving maintenance schedules (replace it before it fails, but
    not so long before it fails that the costs including the cost of the maintenance crew
    and the costs of taking the airplane out of service are prohibitive) and other such
    matters. I used to live with Incomplete Gamma Functions and other complex integrals; and
    I could not for the life of me understand how Mann derived his famous curve. Now I know:
    he hasn’t told anyone. He says that telling people how he generated it would be
    tantamount to giving in to his critics.
    More on this after my walk, but the one thing we may conclude for sure is that this is
    not science. His curve has been distributed as part of the Canadian government’s
    literature on why Canada supports Kyoto, and is said to have been influential in causing
    the “Kyoto Consensus” so it is certainly effective propaganda; but IT IS NOT SCIENCE.
    Science deals with repeatability and openness. When I took Philosophy of Science from
    Gustav Bergmann at the University of Iowa a very long time ago, our seminar came to a
    one-sentence “practical definition” of science: Science is what you can put in a letter
    to a colleague and he’ll get the same results you did. Now I don’t claim that as
    original for it wasn’t even me who came up with it in the seminar; but I do claim
    Bergmann liked that formulation, and it certainly appealed to me, and I haven’t seen a
    better one-sentence practical definition of science. Mann’s work doesn’t meet that
    definition, and those who use Mann’s curve in their arguments are not making a
    scientific argument.
    One of Pournelle’s Laws states “You can prove anything if you can make up your data.” I
    will now add another Pournelle’s Law: “You can prove anything if you can keep your
    algorithms secret.”
    =============
    (3) OPEN SEASON ON HOCKEY AND PEER REVIEW
    Science Policy, 18 February 2005
    [3]http://sciencepolicy.colorado.edu/prometheus/archives/climate_change/000355open_seaso
    n_on_hocke.html
    By Kevin Vranes
    The recent 2/14 WSJ article (“Global Warring…” by Antonio Regaldo) addresses the
    debate that most readers of this site are well familiar with: the Mann et al. hockey
    stick. The WSJ is still asking – and trying to answer – the basic questions: hockey
    stick or no hockey stick? But the background premise of the article, stated explicitly
    and implicitly throughout, is that it was the hockey stick that led to Kyoto and other
    climate policy. Is it?
    I think it’s fair to say that to all of us in the field of climatology, the notion that
    Kyoto is based on the Mann curve is utter nonsense. If a climatologist, or a policy
    advisor charged with knowing the science well enough to make astute recommendations to
    his/her boss, relied solely on the Mann curve to prove definitively the existence of
    anthropogenic warming, then we’re in deeper trouble than anybody realizes. (This is
    essentially what Stephan Ramstorf writes in a 1/27 RealClimate post.) And although it’s
    easy to believe that national and international policy can hinge on single graphs, I
    hope we give policy makers more credit than that.
    But maybe we are in that much trouble. The WSJ highlights what Regaldo and McIntyre says
    is Mann’s resistance or outright refusal to provide to inquiring minds his data, all
    details of his statistical analysis, and his code. The WSJ’s anecdotal treatment of the
    subject goes toward confirming what I’ve been hearing for years in climatology circles
    about not just Mann, but others collecting original climate data.
    As concerns Mann himself, this is especially curious in light of the recent RealClimate
    posts (link and link) in which Mann and Gavin Schmidt warn us about peer review and the
    limits therein. Their point is essentially that peer review is limited and can be much
    less than thorough. One assumes that they are talking about their own work as well as
    McIntyre’s, although they never state this. Mann and Schmidt go to great lengths in
    their post to single out Geophysical Research Letters. Their post then seems a bit
    ironic, as GRL is the journal in which the original Mann curve was published (1999, vol
    26., issue 6, p. 759), an article which is now receiving much attention as being flawed
    and under-reviewed. (For that matter, why does Table 1 in Mann et al. (1999) list many
    chronologies in the Southern Hemisphere while the rest of the paper promotes a Northern
    Hemisphere reconstruction? Legit or not, it’s a confusing aspect of the paper that
    should never have made it past peer review.)
    Of their take on peer review, I couldn’t agree more. In my experience, peer review is
    often cursory at best. So this is what I say to Dr. Mann and others expressing deep
    concern over peer review: give up your data, methods and code freely and with a smile on
    your face. That is real peer review. A 12 year-old hacker prodigy in her grandparents’
    basement should have as much opportunity to check your work as a “semi-retired Toronto
    minerals consultant.” Those without three letters after their name can be every bit as
    intellectually qualified, and will likely have the time for careful review that typical
    academic reviewers find lacking.
    Specious analysis of your work will be borne out by your colleagues, and will enter the
    debate with every other original work. Your job is not to prevent your critics from
    checking your work and potentially distorting it; your job is to continue to publish
    insightful, detailed analyses of the data and let the community decide. You can be part
    of the debate without seeming to hinder access to it.
    ===============
    (4) CLIMATE CHANGE SCIENCE: TIME FOR TEAM “B”?
    The American Enterprise Institute, 15 February 2005
    [4]http://www.aei.org/publications/pubID.21974/pub_detail.asp
    By Steven F. Hayward
    The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is currently working on its fourth
    assessment report. Despite the IPCC’s noble intent to generate a scientific consensus, a
    number of factors have compromised the research and drafting process, assuring that its
    next assessment report will be just as controversial as previous reports in 1995 and
    2001. Efforts to reform this large bureaucratic effort are unlikely to succeed. Perhaps
    the time has come to consider competition as the means of checking the IPCC’s monopoly
    and generating more reliable climate science.
    As the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) moves toward the release of its
    fourth assessment report (fourth AR) in 2007, the case of Chris Landsea offers in
    microcosm an example of why the IPCC’s findings are going to have credibility problems.
    Last month Landsea, a climate change scientist with the U.S. National Oceanic and
    Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), resigned as a participant in the producing the
    report. Landsea had been a chapter author and reviewer for the IPCC’s second assessment
    report in 1995 and the third in 2001, and he is a leading expert on hurricanes and
    related extreme weather phenomena. He had signed on with the IPCC to update the state of
    current knowledge on Atlantic hurricanes for the fourth report. In an open letter,
    Landsea wrote that he could no longer in good conscience participate in a process that
    is “being motivated by pre-conceived agendas” and is “scientifically unsound.”[1]
    Landsea’s resignation was prompted by an all too familiar occurrence: The lead author of
    the fourth AR’s chapter on climate observations, Kevin Trenberth, participated in a
    press conference that warned of increasing hurricane activity as a result of global
    warming.[2] It is common to hear that man-made global warming represents the “consensus”
    of science, yet the use of hurricanes and cyclones as a marker of global warming
    represents a clear-cut case of the consensus being roundly ignored. Both the second and
    third IPCC assessments concluded that there was no global warming signal found in the
    hurricane record. Moreover, most climate models predict future warming will have only a
    small effect–if any–on hurricane strength. “It is beyond me,” Landsea wrote, “why my
    colleagues would utilize the media to push an unsupported agenda that recent hurricane
    activity has been due to global warming.”[3] Landsea’s critique goes beyond a fit of
    pique at the abuse of his area of expertise. The IPCC, he believes, has become
    thoroughly politicized, and is unresponsive to criticism. “When I have raised my
    concerns to the IPCC leadership,” Landsea wrote, “their response was simply to dismiss
    my concerns.”[4]
    Landsea’s frustration is not an isolated experience. MIT physicist Richard Lindzen,
    another past IPCC author who is not participating in the fourth report, has written: “My
    experiences over the past 16 years have led me to the discouraging conclusion that we
    are dealing with the almost insoluble interaction of an iron triangle with an iron rice
    bowl.” (Lindzen’s “iron triangle” consists of activists misusing science to get the
    attention of the news media and politicians; the “iron rice bowl” is the parallel
    phenomenon where scientists exploit the activists’ alarm to increase research funding
    and attention for the issue.[5]) And Dr. John Zillman, one of Australia’s leading
    climate scientists, is another ex-IPCC participant who believes the IPCC has become
    “cast more in the model of supporting than informing policy development.”[6]
    And when the IPCC is not ignoring its responsible critics like Landsea and Lindzen, it
    is demonizing them. Not long ago the IPCC’s chairman, Dr. Rajendra Pachauri, compared
    eco-skeptic Bjorn Lomborg to Hitler. “What is the difference between Lomborg’s view of
    humanity and Hitler’s?” Pachauri asked in a Danish newspaper. “If you were to accept
    Lomborg’s way of thinking, then maybe what Hitler did was the right thing.”[7] Lomborg’s
    sin was merely to follow the consensus practice of economists in applying a discount to
    present costs for future benefits, and comparing the range of outcomes with other world
    problems alongside climate change. It is hard to judge what is worse: Pachauri’s
    appalling judgment in resorting to reductio ad Hitlerum, or his abysmal ignorance of
    basic economics. In either case, it is hard to have much confidence in the policy advice
    the IPCC might have. […]
    Time for “Team B”?
    The time has come to question the IPCC’s status as the near-monopoly source of
    information and advice for its member governments. It is probably futile to propose
    reform of the present IPCC process. Like most bureaucracies, it has too much momentum
    and its institutional interests are too strong for anyone realistically to suppose that
    it can assimilate more diverse points of view, even if more scientists and economists
    were keen to join up. The rectitude and credibility of the IPCC could be best improved
    not through reform, but through competition….
    FULL PAPER at [5]http://www.aei.org/publications/pubID.21974/pub_detail.asp
    ===========
    (5) BRING THE PROXIES UP TO DATE!
    Climate Audit, 20 February 2005
    [6]http://www.climateaudit.org/index.php?p=89#more-89
    Steve McIntyre
    I will make here a very simple suggestion: if IPCC or others want to use “multiproxy”
    reconstructions of world temperature for policy purposes, stop using data ending in 1980
    and bring the proxies up-to-date. Let’s see how they perform in the warm 1990s – which
    should be an ideal period to show the merit of the proxies. I do not believe that any
    responsible policy-maker can base policy, even in part, on the continued use of obsolete
    data ending in 1980, when the costs of bringing the data up-to-date is inconsequential
    compared to Kyoto costs.
    I would appreciate comments on this note as I think that I will pursue the matter with
    policymakers.
    For example, in Mann’s famous hockey stick graph, as presented to policymakers and to
    the public, the graph used Mann’s reconstruction from proxies up to 1980 and
    instrumental temperatures (here, as in other similar studies, using Jones’ more lurid
    CRU surface history rather than the more moderate increases shown by satellite
    measurements). Usually (but not always), a different color is used for the instrumental
    portion, but, from a promotional point of view, the juxtaposition of the two series
    achieves the desired promotional effect. (In mining promotions, where there is
    considerable community experience with promotional graphics and statistics, securities
    commission prohibit the adding together of proven ore reserves and inferred ore reserves
    – a policy which deserves a little reflection in the context of IPCC studies).
    Last week, a brand new multiproxy study by European scientists [Moberg et al., 2005] was
    published in Nature. On the very day of publication, I received an email from a
    prominent scientist telling me that Mann’s hockeystick was yesterday’s news, that the
    “community” had now “moved on” and so should I. That the “community” had had no
    opportunity to verify Moberg’s results, however meritorious they may finally appear,
    seemed to matter not at all.
    If you look at the proxy portion of the new Moberg graphic, you see nothing that would
    be problematic for opponents of the hockey stick: it shows a striking Medieval Warm
    Period (MWP), a cold Little Ice Age and 20th century warming not quite reaching MWP
    levels by 1979, when the proxy portion of the study ends. (I’m in the process of
    examining the individual proxies and the Moberg reconstruction is not without its own
    imperfections.) In the presentation to the public – see the figure in the Nature article
    itself, once again, there is the infamous splice between reconstruction by proxy (up to
    1980) and the instrumental record thereafter (once again Jones’ CRU record, rather than
    the satellite record).
    One of the first question that occurs to any civilian becoming familiar with these
    studies (and it was one of my first questions) is: what happens to the proxies after
    1980? Given the presumed warmth of the 1990s, and especially 1998 (the “warmest year in
    the millennium”), you’d think that the proxy values would be off the chart. In effect,
    the last 25 years have provided an ideal opportunity to validate the usefulness of
    proxies and, especially the opportunity to test the confidence intervals of these
    studies, put forward with such assurance by the multiproxy proponents. What happens to
    the proxies used in MBH99 or Moberg et al [2005] or Crowley and Lowery [2000] in the
    1990s and, especially, 1998?
    This question about proxies after 1980 was posed by a civilian to Mann in December at
    realclimate. Mann replied:
    Most reconstructions only extend through about 1980 because the vast majority of
    tree-ring, coral, and ice core records currently available in the public domain do not
    extend into the most recent decades. While paleoclimatologists are attempting to update
    many important proxy records to the present, this is a costly, and labor-intensive
    activity, often requiring expensive field campaigns that involve traveling with heavy
    equipment to difficult-to-reach locations (such as high-elevation or remote polar
    sites). For historical reasons, many of the important records were obtained in the 1970s
    and 1980s and have yet to be updated. [my bold]
    Pause and think about this response. Think about the costs of Kyoto and then think again
    about this answer. Think about the billions spent on climate research and then try to
    explain to me why we need to rely on “important records” obtained in the 1970s. Far more
    money has been spent on climate research in the last decade than in the 1970s. Why are
    we still relying on obsolete proxy data?
    As someone with actual experience in the mineral exploration business, which also
    involves “expensive field campaigns that involve traveling with heavy equipment to
    difficult-to-reach locations”, I can assure readers that Mann’s response cannot be
    justified and is an embarrassment to the paleoclimate community. The more that I think
    about it, the more outrageous is both the comment itself and the fact that no one seems
    to have picked up on it.
    It is even more outrageous when you look in detail at what is actually involved in
    collecting the proxy data used in the medieval period in the key multiproxy studies. The
    number of proxies used in MBH99 is from fewer than 40 sites (28 tree ring sites being
    U.S. tree ring sites represented in 3 principal component series).
    As to the time needed to update some of these tree ring sites, here is an excerpt from
    Lamarche et al. [1984] on the collection of key tree ring cores from Sheep Mountain and
    Campito Mountain, which are the most important indicators in the MBH reconstruction:
    “D.A.G. [Graybill] and M.R.R. [Rose] collected tree ring samples at 3325 m on Mount
    Jefferson, Toquima Range, Nevada and 11 August 1981. D.A.G. and M.R.R. collected samples
    from 13 trees at Campito Mountain (3400 m) and from 15 trees at Sheep Mountain (3500 m)
    on 31 October 1983.”
    Now to get to Campito Mountain and Sheep Mountain, they had to get to Bishop,
    California, which is hardly “remote” even by Paris Hilton standards, and then proceed by
    road to within a few hundred meters of the site, perhaps proceeding for some portion of
    the journey on unpaved roads.
    The picture below illustrates the taking of a tree ring core. While the equipment may
    seem “heavy” to someone used only to desk work using computers, people in the mineral
    exploration business would not regard this drill as being especially “heavy” and I
    believe that people capable of operating such heavy equipment can be found, even in
    out-of-the way places like Bishop, California. I apologize for the tone here, but it is
    impossible for me not to be facetious.
    There is only one relatively remote site in the entire MBH99 roster – the Quelccaya
    glacier in Peru. Here, fortunately, the work is already done (although, needless to say,
    it is not published.) This information was updated in 2003 by Lonnie Thompson and should
    be adequate to update these series. With sufficient pressure from the U.S. National
    Science Foundation, the data should be available expeditiously. (Given that Thompson has
    not archived data from Dunde drilled in 1987, the need for pressure should not be
    under-estimated.)
    I realize that the rings need to be measured and that the field work is only a portion
    of the effort involved. But updating 28 tree ring sites in the United States is not a
    monumental enterprise nor would updating any of the other sites.
    I’ve looked through lists of the proxies used in Jones et al. [1998], MBH99, Crowley and
    Lowery [2000], Mann and Jones [2003], Moberg et al [2005] and see no obstacles to
    bringing all these proxies up to date. The only sites that might take a little extra
    time would be updating the Himalayan ice cores. Even here, it’s possible that taking
    very short cores or even pits would prove adequate for an update and this might prove
    easier than one might be think. Be that as it may, any delays in updating the most
    complicated location should not deter updating all the other locations.
    As far as I’m concerned, this should be the first order of business for multiproxy
    studies.
    Whose responsibility is this? While the costs are trivial in the scheme of Kyoto, they
    would still be a significant line item in the budget of a university department. I think
    that the responsibility here lies with the U.S. National Science Foundation and its
    equivalents in Canada and Europe. The responsibilities for collecting the proxy updates
    could be divided up in a couple of emails and budgets established.
    One other important aspect: right now the funding agencies fund academics to do the work
    and are completely ineffective in ensuring prompt reporting. At best, academic practice
    will tie up reporting of results until the publication of articles in an academic
    journals, creating a delay right at the start. Even then, in cases like Thompson or
    Jacoby, to whom I’ve referred elsewhere, the data may never be archived or only after
    decades in the hands of the originator.
    So here I would propose something more like what happens in a mineral exploration
    program. When a company has drill results, it has to publish them through a press
    release. It can’t wait for academic reports or for its geologists to spin the results.
    There’s lots of time to spin afterwards. Good or bad – the results have to be made
    public. The company has a little discretion so that it can release drill holes in
    bunches and not every single drill hole, but the discretion can’t build up too much
    during an important program. Here I would insist that the proxy results be archived as
    soon as they are produced – the academic reports and spin can come later. Since all
    these sites have already been published, people are used to the proxies and the updates
    will to a considerable extend speak for themselves.
    What would I expect from such studies? Drill programs are usually a surprise and maybe
    there’s one here. My hunch is that the classic proxies will not show anywhere near as
    “loud” a signal in the 1990s as is needed to make statements comparing the 1990s to the
    Medieval Warm Period with any confidence at all. I’ve not surveyed proxies in the 1990s
    (nor to my knowledge has anyone else), but I’ve started to look and many do not show the
    expected “loud” signal e.g. some of the proxies posted up on this site such as Alaskan
    tree rings, TTHH ring widths, and theories are starting to develop. But the discussions
    so far do not explicit point out the effect of signal failure on the multiproxy
    reconstruction project.
    But this is only a hunch and the evidence could be otherwise. The point is this: there’s
    no need to speculate any further. It’s time to bring the classic proxies up to date.
    =============
    (6) CARELESS SCIENCE COSTS LIVES
    The Guardian, 18 February 2005
    [7]http://www.guardian.co.uk/comment/story/0,3604,1417224,00.html
    Dick Taverne
    In science, as in much of life, it is believed that you get what you pay for. According
    to opinion polls, people do not trust scientists who work for industry because they only
    care about profits, or government scientists because they suspect them of trying to
    cover up the truth. Scientists who work for environmental NGOs are more highly regarded.
    Because they are trying to save the planet, people are ready to believe that what they
    say must be true. A House of Lords report, Science and Society, published in 2000,
    agreed that motives matter. It argued that science and scientists are not value-free,
    and therefore that scientists would command more trust “if they openly declare the
    values that underpin their work”.
    It all sounds very plausible, but mostly it is wrong. Scientists with the best of
    motives can produce bad science, just as scientists whose motives may be considered
    suspect can produce good science. An obvious example of the first was Rachel Carson,
    who, if not the patron saint, was at least the founding mother of modern
    environmentalism. Her book The Silent Spring was an inspiring account of the damage
    caused to our natural environment by the reckless spraying of pesticides, especially
    DDT.
    However, Carson also claimed that DDT caused cancer and liver damage, claims for which
    there is no evidence but which led to an effective worldwide ban on the use of DDT that
    is proving disastrous. Her motives were pure; the science was wrong. DDT is the most
    effective agent ever invented for preventing insect-borne disease, which, according to
    the US National Academy of Sciences and the WHO, prevented over 50 million human deaths
    from malaria in about two decades. Although there is no evidence that DDT harms human
    health, some NGOs still demand a worldwide ban for that reason. Careless science cost
    lives.
    Contrast the benefits that have resulted from the profit motive, a motive that is held
    to be suspect by the public. Multinationals, chief villains in the demonology of
    contemporary anti-capitalists, have developed antibiotics, vaccines that have eradicated
    many diseases like smallpox and polio, genetically modified insulin for diabetics, and
    plants such as GM insect-resistant cotton that have reduced the need for pesticides and
    so increased the income and improved the health of millions of small cotton farmers. The
    fact is that self-interest can benefit the public as effectively as philanthropy.
    Motives are not irrelevant, and unselfish motives are rightly admired more than selfish
    ones. There are numerous examples of misconduct by big companies, and we should examine
    their claims critically and provide effective regulation to control abuses of power and
    ensure the safety of their products. Equally, we should not uncritically accept the
    claims of those who act from idealistic motives. NGOs inspired by the noble cause of
    protecting our environment often become careless about evidence and exaggerate risks to
    attract attention (and funds). Although every leading scientific academy has concluded
    that GM crops are at least as safe as conventional foods, this does not stop Greenpeace
    reiterating claims about the dangers of “Frankenfoods”. Stephen Schneider, a
    climatologist, publicly justified distortion of evidence: “Because we are not just
    scientists but human beings as well … we need to … capture the public imagination
    … So we have to offer up scary scenarios, make simplified dramatic statements, and
    make little mention of any doubts we have.”
    But in the end motives are irrelevant to the validity of science. It does not matter if
    a scientist wants to help mankind, get a new grant, win a Nobel prize or increase the
    profits of her company. It does not matter whether a researcher works for Monsanto or
    for Greenpeace. Results are no more to be trusted if the researcher declares his values
    and confesses that he beats his wife, believes in God, or is an Arsenal supporter. What
    matters is that the work has been peer-reviewed, that the findings are reproducible and
    that they last. If they do, they are good science. If not, not. Science itself is
    value-free. There are objective truths in science. We can now regard it as a fact that
    the Earth goes rounds the sun and that Darwinism explains the evolution of species.
    A look at the history of science makes it evident how irrelevant the values of
    scientists are. Newton’s passion for alchemy did not invalidate his discovery of the
    laws of gravitation. To quote Professor Fox of Rutger’s University: “How was it relevant
    to Mendel’s findings about peas that he was a white, European monk? They would have been
    just as valid if Mendel had been a Spanish-speaking, lesbian atheist.”
    · Lord Taverne is chair of Sense About Science and author of The March of Unreason, to
    be published next month
    Copyright 2005, The Guardian
    ========== LETTERS =========
    (7) RE: MORE TROUBLE FOR CLIMATE MODELS
    Helen Krueger
    Dear Dr. Peiser,
    I just want to let you know how much I am enjoying being included in your list so that I
    can benefit from your astute handling of alarmist information personally and with my
    students.
    Thank you so much!
    Regards,
    Helen A. Krueger
    Educational Consultant
    Phone: 203???
    FAX: 203???
    ===========
    (8) HOW TO HANDLE ASTEROID 2004 MN4
    Jens Kieffer-Olsen
    Dear Benny Peiser,
    In CCNet 18/2005 – 11 February 2005 you brought an
    interesting article on the possible breakup of
    NEA 2004 MN4 in the year 2029:
    > But there’s another reason for concern. According to Dan
    > Durda, another SWRI astronomer, 2004 MN4 is likely to be
    > a “rubble-pile” asteroid, consisting of material only
    > loosely held together by gravity. Because the asteroid
    > will pass us at just 2.5 times Earth’s diameter, tidal
    > forces could tear it apart. The result would be a trail
    > of rocks drifting slowly apart with the passage of time.
    > One or more of these might hit Earth in the more distant
    > future, creating a spectacular fireball as it burns up
    > in the atmosphere.
    > –Bill Cooke, Astronomy Magazine, 10 February 2005
    First of all, a 300m asteroid could break into 100 pieces
    each larger than the Tunguska impactor. Secondly, the years
    for which a TS rating of 1 already exist for the object
    are NOT in the distant future, but 6, 7, and 8 years later.
    That reminds us that neither the Torino nor the Palermo
    scale takes into account the possibility of such a MIRV’ed
    approach. Furthermore, the Palermo scale is designed to
    take into account the lead time. Even if 2004 MN4 were not
    to break up, the lead time to virtual impact in 2029 would
    be down to one sixth of the time to-day. In other words,
    if the post-2029 orbit is not being resolved before then,
    we may as well up the PS rating accordingly. If my math is
    correct, we should add 0.78 to its Palermo Scale rating,
    ie. log10(6), for a total of -0.65.
    Yours sincerely
    Jens Kieffer-Olsen, M.Sc.(Elec.Eng.)
    Slagelse, Denmark
    ==========
    (9) AND FINALLY: EUROPE FURTHER FALLING BEHIND IN TECHNOLOGY AND RESEARCH
    EU Observer, 10 February 2005
    [8]http://www.euobserver.com/?aid=18382&print=1
    By Lucia Kubosova
    BRUSSELS / EUOBSERVER – Europeans are still failing to show world leadership in
    technology and research, a new report shows.
    The paper, published on Thursday (10 February) has evaluated the EU research and
    development programmes and their impact on Europe’s knowledge-base and potential for
    innovation.
    While it argues that EU funds for the programmes make a “major contribution”, it
    suggests that more resources, industry participation and simplified administration are
    needed for them to have a greater effect in future.
    “We have somehow lost momentum”, said Erkki Ormala, chair of the panel issuing the
    report.
    “The EU is falling behind. And we are now under pressue not only compared to our
    traditional rivals like the US or Japan, but also China, India or Brazil. We are facing
    a much tougher competition in talent and knowledge than we are used to”.
    Research Commissioner Janez Potocnik considers the paper’s results as a reason for
    doubling the funds in his portfolio within the next budgetary period of 2007-2013.
    “We don’t want to achieve our economic growth by lowering the social or environmental
    standards. So to compete globally, we need to focus on knowledge”, Mr Potocnik said to
    journalists, adding that the EU programmes should “make a bridge between practical
    innovation and research”.
    The report has listed several possible solutions for tackling outlined setbacks.
    It argues that the EU must attract and reward the best talent, mobilise resources for
    innovation and boost cooperation between governments, businesses and universities in
    research.
    It supports the idea of setting up a European Research Council to promote excellence and
    encourages more industry involvement, mainly on the part of small and medium-sized
    enterprises (SMEs).
    However, SME representatives complain that their ideas about EU research and innovation
    funding are not taken into consideration.
    “It’s not about how big the budget is for SMEs and their involvement in such projects.
    It is rather about the allocation of the funds. Most of them are granted for huge
    long-term projects which cost millions of euro and they can hardly attract smaller
    companies”, according to Ullrich Schroeder, from UEAPME, the main umbrella organisation.
    He argues that while several reports have already pointed out that SMEs must be more
    involved if the “Lisbon agenda” goal of 3 percent of GDP to be invested in research and
    development in the EU by 2010 is to be achieved, in reality they are not as well
    supported as huge transnational companies.
    “It is not that the EU member states invest much less in universities than the US, but
    the greatest difference is that European SMEs are only investing 8% of the US amount,
    and it is simply not enough”.
    Mr Schroeder also said that while “there is a lot of rhetoric from politicians, that the
    SMEs should get involved, innovate and compete, when they come up with good projects,
    they are not sufficiently supported”.
    “The European Commission is more concerned about big companies and hightech areas, while
    innovation is needed also in more down-to earth sectors”, Mr Schroeder told the
    EUobserver.
    © EUobserver.com 2005
    ——
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    Professor Keith Briffa,
    Climatic Research Unit
    University of East Anglia
    Norwich, NR4 7TJ, U.K.
    Phone: +4 ???-1603-593909
    Fax: +4 ???-1603-507784
    [9]http://www.cru.uea.ac.uk/cru/people/briffa/

    Prof. Phil Jones
    Climatic Research Unit Telephone +44 ???
    School of Environmental Sciences Fax +44 ???
    University of East Anglia
    Norwich Email ???@uea.ac.uk
    NR4 7TJ
    UK
    —————————————————————————-

    References

    1. http://online.wsj.com/article_email/0,,SB??? 608-IdjeoNmlah4n5yta4GHaqyIm4,00.html
    2. http://www.jerrypournelle.com/view/view349.html#hockeystick
    3. http://sciencepolicy.colorado.edu/prometheus/archives/climate_change/000355open_season_on_hocke.html
    4. http://www.aei.org/publications/pubID.21974/pub_detail.asp
    5. http://www.aei.org/publications/pubID.21974/pub_detail.asp
    6. http://www.climateaudit.org/index.php?p=89#more-89
    7. http://www.guardian.co.uk/comment/story/0,3604,1417224,00.html
    8. http://www.euobserver.com/?aid=18382&print=1
    9. http://www.cru.uea.ac.uk/cru/people/briffa/

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  146. davidmhoffer says:
    December 2, 2011 at 4:14 pm

    If you think that lawyer did a great job representing her, you might want to check out the rest of the story. The aware (over $1 million) was over turned on appeal, and the damages reduced. I’ve forgotten to how much. But the reduced award was less than her legal fees.

    I’ve since lost track of it, but last I heard, he was trying to extract $100K from her. Nice guy.

    Heh, I didn’t know this “salient fact” of the story, but I wonder if timg56 has had second thoughts about who’s arrogant and unreasonable now.

  147. Upon the 2 December, 2011 at 9:10 am Scott Covert saith:

    Why not contact the author or publish a rebuttal?

    Indeed. The very first this I do when a mad rapist busts in and starts his business, is to contact his probation officer and determine if there are any papers I can file that would make his rapes and stabs illegal. Then I take out an ad in the Poughkeepsie Journal stating the general impoliteness of this rapists actions and hope that teaches him a good lesson.

  148. DirkH
    And if you absolutely insist that a coffee has to have that temperature, maybe you should be prohibited from selling it in a Drive In. Because it’s just dangerous and dumb to act like that as a company.>>>

    Similarly then, let us ban stoves that get hot enough that people might burn themsleves. Let us limit the length of ladders such that one cannot climb high enough to injure oneself by falling off. As for crossing ther street, shall we ban pedestrians from doing so because they can’t be counted upon to cross safely and might get hit by a car? Or do we ban people from driving cars because they might hit a pedestrian? Or shall we ban car manufacturers from even making cars because someone might drive them? If so, shall we ban people from having children because they might grow up to be pedestrians?

    I find such thinking ties very well into the whole CAGW meme. When we hold ourselves responsible for understanding how the world around us works we blame no one but ourselves for burning ourselves on hot coffee. When we hold others responsible for keeping us safe from our own actions because we think that every ill that befalls us is someone else’s responsibility, and someone else’s job to have prevented, we are turning the keys to our minds over to others to decide for us that coffeee should be tepid and how much CO2 is dangerous.

    A foolish electorate and their taxable income are soon parted.

  149. Mac the Knife says:

    I’m a ‘two time offender’ (BS/MS), out of the Metallurgical Engineering department. Is there anything your brother UW – Madison alums might do to help you redress these back stabbing slurs?
    ———————-

    My suggestion: inform the university that you will no longer be contributing cash in response to their alumni appeals, but will rather be redirecting that money towards a legal fund for Dr. Michaels.

  150. I have not paid any attention to who Pat Michaels is or what he has said.

    But it might be a good idea to check his actual PhD thesis against what he actually says in this letter. Otherwise you could all be getting worked up over nothing.

    And I would would also check to see if Pat Michaels has been busy defaming climate scientist before you all get too keen on legal action. The whole thing might be just a tit for tat response.

    That’s what a real skeptic would do.

  151. LazyTeenager says:
    December 3, 2011 at 4:00 pm

    “I have not paid any attention to who Pat Michaels is or what he has said.”

    Then why comment?

    “But it might be a good idea to check his actual PhD thesis against what he actually says in this letter. Otherwise you could all be getting worked up over nothing.”

    Then check and let us know what you found.

    “And I would would also check to see if Pat Michaels has been busy defaming climate scientist before you all get too keen on legal action. The whole thing might be just a tit for tat response.”

    Then check and let us know what you found (again).

    That’s what a real skeptic would do.

    There’s a difference between being a skeptic and an ostrich.

  152. I suppose the whole thing is very ugly …HOW UGLY…well it depends on the depth of ones understanding of what is right and what is wrong ….here listen to this …Marc Morano of ClimateDepot.com joins us to talk about the latest from the world of crimatology. We explore Climategate 2.0, the massive release of emails that once again demonstrates the brazenly anti-scientific actions of the scientists at the heart of the IPCC. We also discuss the latest “fun in the sun” climate conference, COP17 in Durban, which Morano will be attending next week http://www.corbettreport.com/interview-419-marc-morano/

  153. LazyTeenager;
    And I would would also check to see if Pat Michaels has been busy defaming climate scientist before you all get too keen on legal action. The whole thing might be just a tit for tat response.>>>

    Oh yes, Pat Michaels wrote that letter directly to the head of a major institution, made bold statements about the facts that are easily verified, provided pointers to his own work, copies of the accusations against him by his attackers, including their own references to their own work and pointers as to where to find it, and then made his letter public to millions of people in multiple public forums….

    …and the best you can come up with is, well, I haven’t read his paper, but he might be making the whole thing up…

    Lazy is a pretty good moniker for you. You’re too lazy to read the subject matter, and so just make wild accusations based purely on speculation and for some reason think that’s OK.

    Oh wait…you’re a warmist. With no other way to win a debate, that’s the only tactic you have.

  154. This was tit for tat. Initially Michaels was accusing Jones et al. of destroying data, bringing this up for his own political anti-EPA agenda. Then Santer suggested in an e-mail to others in his circle that maybe they should ask Michaels to produce all his data and programs from his 1979 thesis or withdraw the thesis, which is effectively equivalent to what Michaels said is needed legally, and that led to Wigley’s opinion that the thesis is flawed anyway. The Santer e-mail is not so widely discussed but he does have a valid point by using the reductio ad absurdum argument.

  155. Can’t wait for Climategate 3 wherein Phil Jones informs Trenberth that Steve McIntyre ‘throws like a girl’ and Gavin Schmidt refers to Lubos Motl’s haircut as ‘Worzel Gummide redux’.

  156. Yes, he should have sued, but now that he himself has published / disseminated the slanderous statement. he might have forfeited the right to sue.

    You cannot sue someone for publishing something damaging against you if you then publish it yourself.

    Think about it. Isn’t this a reasonable application of law? If a man complains about something published because it damages him, how can we take him seriously if he then publishes the same statement?

  157. Frank White;
    Isn’t this a reasonable application of law? If a man complains about something published because it damages him, how can we take him seriously if he then publishes the same statement?>>>

    He has a right to set the record straight and defend himself, which would be impossible to do without referring to the remarks made against him in the first place. Even if a court were to rule that his published rebuttal had neutralized the accusations made against him, there is still the matter of any damages that resulted from the time when any false accusations were made until the time they were refuted.

  158. Tom Wigley, about funding: “I dont think funding directly influence the nature of reseach [smirk]”

    (Howto start a youtube video from a given timestamp, ad to url string: #t=XmYs, in this example from “The Greenhouse Conspiracy – Full version”: #t=43m40s)

  159. I think it’s time that we overly polite Climate Realists start using the M-word. And I hope that I don’t get snipped for this. The unwarranted, malicious, and personal attack on Dr. Michaels is the last straw. The Hockey Team is the worst Academic Mafia that I’ve ever run across.

    Dr. Michaels, I hope that you sue the [snip . . . no profanity please].

  160. The attack aside, would somebody please address whether “In other words, Michaels’ claim that weather/climate explains 95% of the variability is completely bogus.”, is an accurate claim?

  161. Craig Loehle says:
    December 3, 2011 at 5:57 am

    Craig, as I recall my own legal training, at least in Texas, as to libel, the act of “publication” is not necessarily only a public rendering of the e-mail as in the Climategate 2.0 e-mails. When we refer to “publication” it is the communication of such falsehood to other persons, whether by private writing or public. The fact that Wigley sent an e-mail based falsehood about Pat Michaels’ doctoral dissertation to his colleagues is definitely sufficient grounds to commence an action in libel. In other words, if you don’t want to libel someone, keep it to yourself. Now he will still have to prove damage to his reputation. The wider publication of the falsehood may create more of an opportunity to prove damages. It would not be an easy lawsuit, nevertheless.

  162. Jake–

    Absolutely not. The explained variances are 40-50+%. From my dissertation, beginning on page 161:

    Model R-squared adjusted for d/f
    Wheat, sensible .55
    North corn, sensible .45
    South corn, sensible .42
    North soybean, sensible .42
    Central soybean, sensible .40
    South soybean, sensible .44

    The pressure based models tend to run a little below these figures.
    Wigley is just making up the 95% in my dissertation.

  163. Any PHD that agrees witth “The unagreeable” should either be applauded or revoked. The Jury is you.
    In th case of our old frind CAGW, The jury is out, – it is out because, and only becaue, the PHDs are ignorent.

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