Journal takes Lewandowsky and his supporters to task on ‘threats’ over retracted ‘Recursive Fury’ paper.

This will be a top sticky post for a day, new stories will appear below this one

Dana Nuccitelli, the Guardian, Joe Romm, and other overly emotional climate propagandists should heed this message, you’ve been put on notice in a rare statement about the false claims of “threats” being the cause of the retraction.

From the Frontiers in Psychology blog, setting the record straight once and for all, bolding in text is mine:

Retraction of Recursive Fury: A Statement

(Lausanne, Switzerland) – There has been a series of media reports concerning the recent retraction of the paper Recursive Fury: Conspiracist ideation in the blogosphere in response to research on conspiracist ideation, originally published on 18 March 2013 in Frontiers in Psychology. Until now, our policy has been to handle this matter with discretion out of consideration for all those concerned. But given the extent of the media coverage – largely based on misunderstanding – Frontiers would now like to better clarify the context behind the retraction.

 

As we published in our retraction statement, a small number of complaints were received during the weeks following publication. Some of those complaints were well argued and cogent and, as a responsible publisher, our policy is to take such issues seriously. Frontiers conducted a careful and objective investigation of these complaints. Frontiers did not “cave in to threats”; in fact, Frontiers received no threats. The many months between publication and retraction should highlight the thoroughness and seriousness of the entire process.

As a result of its investigation, which was carried out in respect of academic, ethical and legal factors, Frontiers came to the conclusion that it could not continue to carry the paper, which does not sufficiently protect the rights of the studied subjects. Specifically, the article categorizes the behaviour of identifiable individuals within the context of psychopathological characteristics. Frontiers informed the authors of the conclusions of our investigation and worked with the authors in good faith, providing them with the opportunity of submitting a new paper for peer review that would address the issues identified and that could be published simultaneously with the retraction notice.

The authors agreed and subsequently proposed a new paper that was substantially similar to the original paper and, crucially, did not deal adequately with the issues raised by Frontiers.

We remind the community that the retracted paper does not claim to be about climate science, but about psychology. The actions taken by Frontiers sought to ensure the right balance of respect for the rights of all.

One of Frontiers’ founding principles is that of authors’ rights. We take this opportunity to reassure our editors, authors and supporters that Frontiers will continue to publish – and stand by – valid research. But we also must uphold the rights and privacy of the subjects included in a study or paper.

Frontiers is happy to speak to anyone who wishes to have an objective and informed conversation about this. In such a case, please contact the Editorial Office at editorial.office@frontiersin.org.

Costanza Zucca, Editorial Director

Fred Fenter, Executive Editor

Full statement here

Translation:

lewpaper

To all reading this, I have a personal favor to ask; please go to the media outlets and blogs that are carrying the claims of ‘threats’ being the cause of the retraction, and post a link to the Frontiers in Psychology statement: http://www.frontiersin.org/blog/Retraction_of_Recursive_Fury_A_Statement/812

Related: A stunning revelation from a UWA Vice Chancellor Paul Johnson over access to Lewandowsky’s poll data

See also: My complaint letter regarding the Lewandowsky affair

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157 thoughts on “Journal takes Lewandowsky and his supporters to task on ‘threats’ over retracted ‘Recursive Fury’ paper.

  1. Read that Social Science Space article. For the life of me I cannot see what Mosher might have liked about that paper. Its trash, and has been trashed. Science is not something that comes to mind when reading that unless you are predisposed to bias.

  2. Feh. [Any] “retractions” will be under the fold, page 16 in 8 point type with so little context as to be meaningless.

    REPLY: Doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try. -A

  3. I am so glad for ‘Frontiers in Psychology’ stepping up to their responsibility. It is good to see some integrity. Thank you for passing on this good news.

  4. Like many others here, I used to eagerly await each new issue of Scientific American, but never again. They posted this article by Lewandowsky peer reviewer, Elaine McKewon:

    http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/climate-deniers-intimidate-journal-into-retracting-paper-that-finds-they-believe-conspiracy-theories/

    I tried to post the following comment:
    “Science is reproducible. Research that cannot be replicated is not science, PERIOD. Because Lewandowsky and the University of Western Australia flatly refuse to release the original data for replication, ‘Recursive Fury’ fails to meet the basic minimum requirement of science. The journal retracted it because it isn’t worth the paper it’s printed on. It’s sad that Scientific American doesn’t understand this. Stephan Lewandowsky and Elaine McKewon are not scientists.”

    This was SciAm’s reply:
    This submission has been marked as spam.
    Louis6439 is a Troll. Please report all commentary by this user…

  5. “To all reading this, I have a personal favor to ask; please go to the media outlets and blogs that are carrying the claims of ‘threats’ being the cause of the retraction, and post a link to the Frontiers in Psychology statement: http://www.frontiersin.org/blog/Retraction_of_Recursive_Fury_A_Statement/812

    I just tried to submit this to Scientific American only to discover that I have been blocked. I hope others will submit if for me. – Thanks

  6. “Frontiers came to the conclusion that it could not continue to carry the paper, which does not sufficiently protect the rights of the studied subjects. Specifically, the article categorizes the behaviour of identifiable individuals within the context of psychopathological characteristics”

    Interesting that none of those identifiable individuals who were basically called screwballs have sued. I suspect this retraction wasn’t as high minded as frontiers pretends.

    In any case, they’re standing by the science, which as far as I’m concerned is the most important issue. Then again, since they published it what else can they do? Admit to a mistake? Who does that these days?

  7. Judging from the contents of the statement, Frontiers’ singular objection relates to a failure to protect identity of survey respondents. Essentially, they are taking the high road, as we all know, most of the respondents are phony in the first place. Lew has been convicted of a lesser charge…he should keep his mouth shut and be glad it wasn’t worse.

  8. harsh! they will stand by – pause – “valid research”

    “We take this opportunity to reassure our editors, authors and supporters that Frontiers will continue to publish – and stand by – valid research.” – Frontiers

  9. Carl “Bear” Bussjaeger says:
    April 4, 2014 at 10:56 am
    Meh; too late. Timothy Geigner at Techdirt is using Frontiers’ own disclaimer as “proof” that the “Climate Change Deniers Have Scientific Paper Disappeared”.

    Yeah sure. ‘Cuz if skeptics had the power to “disappear” a paper, that’s the one we’d “disappear”? We’d sink hole that one while leaving Mann and Briffa and Marcotte and Trenberth and countless other pieces of pure tripe standing? Seriously? If I could list out the top 100 papers that OUGHT to be retracted for valid scientific reasons, I’m not sure that this one would even make the list.

  10. I am very impressed by the statement and actions by the management of ‘Frontiers in Psychology’.

    I will post a link to its statement whenever I see irresponsible claim that ‘we were threatened by skeptics’.

    John

  11. Wow. I mean, really, Wow. Talk about a straight shot to the solar plexus. Lew is bent over trying to breathe right around now.

    That said, Frontiers set themselves up for this by not “identifying” any ethical or academic problems with the paper in their first statement.

    As I surmised at the time, that statement was so carefully parsed as to be meaningless. The lawyers probably worked on it for months. It allowed Lew to claim his academic reputation was intact. That no longer is true. Rather than keeping his mouth shut, they started claiming Frontiers “caved in to threats.” Big mistake. I’m going to find out if it was Lew who actually used that phrase. If he did, he probably violated the agreement between them.

    This puts Paul Johnson in a particularly difficult position, which he fully deserves.

  12. Louis Hooffstetter says:
    April 4, 2014 at 11:00 am

    “To all reading this, I have a personal favor to ask; please go to the media outlets and blogs that are carrying the claims of ‘threats’ being the cause of the retraction, and post a link to the Frontiers in Psychology statement: http://www.frontiersin.org/blog/Retraction_of_Recursive_Fury_A_Statement/812”

    I just tried to submit this to Scientific American only to discover that I have been blocked. I hope others will submit if for me. – Thanks
    ______________________
    Oh Wa
    Tah Goo
    Sci AM

  13. let me try again.

    Louis, I submitted the Frontiers retraction to SciAm, as did Eve. Lets see if they stay.

  14. I concur with some above commenters. Given that strong statement by the ‘Frontiers in Psychology’ concerning the ‘Recursive’ paper, the VC of UWA has no place to hide now from his irresponsible and irrational rejection of requests for info on both the ‘Moon’ and ‘Recursive’ of Lewandowsky performed while he was on faculty at UWA.

    In addition, given that strong statement by the ‘Frontiers in Psychology’ concerning the ‘Recursive’ paper, I also strongly advise the VC of UWA to expeditiously disclose the full text of ethical and academic investigations on Lewandowsky associated with his ‘Moon’ and ‘Recursive’ papers.

    John

  15. I just tried to submit this to Scientific American only to discover that I have been blocked. I hope others will submit if for me. – Thanks
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    Welcome to the club. SCIAM is now blocking and removing any comments that they disagree with. They have sunk to the level of a pathetic and irrelevant sci-porn mag. Anybody remember Bob Guccione’s Sci-porn mag “Omni”? No?? There goes SCIAM down the same path to obscurity and bankruptcy.

  16. Wow! I agree with other comments above that this Frontiers statement has got to be a smack in the face for the smug and unprofessional CV of UWA Paul Johnson. I hope that this is brought to the attention of the that institution’s Board of Governors along with Johnson’s obstructionist, arrogant and anti-collegial behaviour.

    I also hope that the ethics parameters at UWA and at Bristol University are re-examined and procedures tightened in the wake these revelations about Lewandowski’s turbulent and blatantly unethical, self-congratulatory and agenda-driven work.

  17. So the question now arises as to why Frontiers In Psychology accepted the paper in the first place. The rule that individuals being studied must not be identified should be fairly easy to enforce.

  18. At least there’s one individual who has now been identified as firmly entrenched in psychopathological behaviour.

  19. Louis Hooffstetter says:
    April 4, 2014 at 10:53 am……..

    Louis, I went to the link in your comment: (McKeown’s piece from The Conversation). How amateur can she be? It was obvious that some of the comments had been deleted but they couldn’t be bothered to delete the responses to these (now) ghost comments. I’m really having trouble working out the low level of competence that passes for education in people like McKeown.

  20. Louis Hooffstetter says:

    I just tried to submit this to Scientific American only to discover that I have been blocked.

    ScAm makes no bones about it: they are 100% propaganda, 0% science. They delete and block anyone who does not agree with man-made global warming.

    My recent comment was deleted for “name-calling”, and I was banned from ever commenting there again. This was the comment that got me banned, verbatim:

    The following are a few scientific facts, and comments regarding scientific evidence [please note that scientific "evidence" has a specific meaning. 'Evidence' means raw data, and verifiable empirical (real world) observations. Peer reviewed papers, IPCC reports, and computer climate models are not scientific evidence. Rather, they are assertions.] :

    Global warming STOPPED, 17+ years ago. [We cannot call it a "pause", unless it resumes.] No computer climate model was able to predict that event. They were ALL wrong.

    Further, it is a scientific fact that the climate Null Hypothesis has never been falsified. That means that the climate parameters being observed now [temperatures, extreme weather events, etc.], have ALL been exceeded in the past — when CO2 ["carbon"] was lower.

    Current global temperatures have been exceeded in the past by a large degree. Therefore, nothing currently being observed is either unusual, or unprecedented. The fact is that we are currently living in a “Goldilocks” climate: not too hot, not too cold, but just right. There is no evidence that global temperatures are rising, as was incessantly predicted for many years — until it didn’t happen. Global warming has stopped. That is a fact that even NASA/GISS acknowledges.

    Next, to put the “carbon” scare into perspective: CO2 has increased from about 3 parts in 10,000, to only 4 parts in 10,000 — over a century and a half.

    The recent rise in global temperatures, beginning around 1980 and ending around 1997, was only temporarily coincidental with the continuing, steady rise in CO2 — and the only verifiable correlation shows that ∆CO2 is CAUSED by ∆T; not vice-versa. Effect cannot precede cause, therefore CO2 is not the cause of any measurable global warming.

    CO2 is a very tiny trace gas, currently just 0.000397 of the atmosphere, but it is essential to all life on earth. At current and projected concentrations, more CO2 is better. There is no scientific evidence proving that CO2 is anything but a completely harmless trace gas, which is very beneficial to the biosphere.

    CO2 has been up to 20X higher in the past, when life on earth flourished. The current rise is of no concern. Certainly some of the rise is due to human activity. However, if CO2 was the cause of any measurable global warming, then the recent large percentage rise would have forced temperatures up sharply. But as we know, global T stopped rising many years ago.

    Finally, the unspoken agenda is to pass a huge new carbon tax. That is the motive behind the “carbon” scare. As if hard-bitten taxpayers are not paying enough already.

    Where is the “name-calling”?

    ScAm used to be one of my favorites. Then it was bought by a gang of German enviros. Now look at it.

  21. Scientific American have long been known to be propagandists for the globalist establishment.
    New Scientist is just as bad.

  22. It would be helpful to know which sites are talking about threats. I haven’t followed this craziness closely, but I’d love to fulfill the favor.

  23. ” But given the extent of the media coverage – largely based on misunderstanding – ”

    Largely based on lying, making things and not giving a damn about the truth if it isn’t caused by CO2.

  24. Not to rain on the parade, but the new statement from the publisher is not consistent with its initial retraction note.

    “This investigation did not identify any issues with the academic and ethical aspects of the study. It did, however, determine that the legal context is insufficiently clear and therefore Frontiers wishes to retract the published article. The authors understand this decision, while they stand by their article and regret the limitations on academic freedom which can be caused by legal factors.”

  25. Off Topic:
    “Anybody remember Bob Guccione’s Sci-porn mag “Omni”?”
    I think that’s where I got the plans to make the “Insectivore” from a radio controlled car and Radio Shack parts. My very first robot that searched for light sources. What a blast. Anyone else remember that?

  26. Edward Teller (I think):
    “Scientific American is neither scientific, nor american.”

  27. Tim Walker says:
    April 4, 2014 at 10:41 am

    I am so glad for ‘Frontiers in Psychology’ stepping up to their responsibility. It is good to see some integrity. Thank you for passing on this good news.

    Correct. I respect Frontiers for that! It is a pleasant surprise to see some have integrity when so many fail.

  28. wow, just totally wow to Louis and to dbstealey.
    Not to worry Louis, a lot of people are commenting at SA. I suspect mine will be deleted shortly as will others. We will need to keep up the comments.

    One tactic, especially at Kos or Huffpoo. is to post so many comments on top of an unfavored so that it is buried into older pages. I am watching and noting the same behavior at SA. Keep posting.

    Abuse of science and politicizing of research has to be stopped.

  29. empiresentry says:
    April 4, 2014 at 12:27 pm
    ____________________
    Good to see you over here, epmire.
    Some of us have made screen caps and page saves.

  30. All being said, it would have been both simple and advisable to anonymize the identities of the individuals (Jo Nova, Geoff Chambers, Steve McIntyre, and Anthony Watts) whose public reactions to NASA faked the moon landing were classified into various categories* by Lewandowsky et al.

    * NI=nefarious intent; NS=nihilistic skepticism; PV=persecuted victim; MbW=must be
    wrong; NoA=no accident; SS=self sealing; UCT=unreflexive counterfactual thinking

  31. Leaves UWA in a doubly untenable independent of McIntyres request for data on the original paper. First, the ethics violation happened and this paper was written while Lew was still there. They have oversight responsibility. Second, apparently, the paper is still available through them, so they continue to abett an ethics violation. Perhaps some Australian readers or Jo Nova can point this out down under using an appropriately sharpened stick.

  32. Over at Scientific American the first option available to readers of comments is to “flag as spam”. Quite possibly the whole operation of deleting and blocking comments is triggered by readers and is quite automatic. That would be a good way to create a consensus.

  33. CLAIM

    Guardian – 21 March 2014
    Contrarians bully journal into retracting a climate psychology paper
    After threats of frivolous libel and defamation lawsuits, a journal will retract an academically sound paper

    COUNTER CLAIM

    Frontiers – 4 Apr 2014
    Retraction of Recursive Fury: A Statement
    …Frontiers did not “cave in to threats”; in fact, Frontiers received no threats. The many months between publication and retraction should highlight the thoroughness and seriousness of the entire process….

  34. Lewandowskis paper Titanic has hit the iceberg and is now going down, stern already high in the air. I’d love to hear the last bulkheads burst….

  35. “Fury” defined:

    intense, disordered, and often destructive rage
    or
    extreme fierceness or violence
    or
    a state of inspired exaltation : frenzy
    ================
    Don’t even retract the paper, just retitle it Recursive Projection.

  36. If

    “Type I errors are philosophically a focus of skepticism and Occam’s razor. A Type I error occurs when we believe a falsehood.[4] In terms of folk tales, an investigator may be “crying wolf” without a wolf in sight (raising a false alarm) (H0: no wolf).”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/False_positive#Type_I_error

    then if they don’t want skeptics then they shouldn’t make type 1 error and cry wolf?

    originally science was not part of the government but individuals [they would be called amateurs these days] who did repeatable experiments that demonstrated a truthto their peers. Looks like real science is going back to those days [via the web] as the official process gets corrupted by money and power and vanity?

  37. @Rud Istvan

    Leaves UWA in a doubly untenable independent of McIntyres request for data on the original paper. First, the ethics violation happened and this paper was written while Lew was still there.

    If I were trying to save the UWA, I would claim that, since there was an ethics violation, no one can have any of the data because it identifies individual people…

  38. I have often stated my admiration for the slick and professional way the Warmists have run their media and PR campaigns, right from the earliest days.
    This Lew Paper fiasco however, demonstrates that they’re starting to lose their edge.
    Many of the staunch believers like Nutticelli have allied themselves with Lew out of blind, tribal loyalty, defended themselves with wild claims of conspiracy….and are now paying the price of open humiliation.
    Cooler heads would have seen that Lew was a lemon and let his paper (and him) go down alone and unremarked.

  39. Louis Hooffstetter says:

    April 4, 2014 at 10:53 am

    I tried to post the following comment:
    “Science is reproducible. Research that cannot be replicated is not science, PERIOD. Because Lewandowsky and the University of Western Australia flatly refuse to release the original data for replication, ‘Recursive Fury’ fails to meet the basic minimum requirement of science. The journal retracted it because it isn’t worth the paper it’s printed on. It’s sad that Scientific American doesn’t understand this. Stephan Lewandowsky and Elaine McKewon are not scientists.”

    This was SciAm’s reply:
    This submission has been marked as spam.
    Louis6439 is a Troll. Please report all commentary by this user…

    A request for proper science is flagged as “spam”!?

    Is it any coincidence that “SciAm” can be pronounced the same as “scam”?

  40. Personally, I think a small set of, “thank you for you thoughtful consideration of the issues raised” is due to Frontiers. Publishing of ALL scientific endeavors is of utmost importance and the fact they they have seeming worked this forward to a very professional result needs to be acknowledged.

  41. @Louis Hooffstetter
    I posted the link to the journals statement with no cometary. Well see how long it stays up.

  42. One of the the little details that means a lot here is the response to dissent – not only are people regularly blocked and banned, but the reasons are often lies.

    Tells you a lot about people. Yeah, had that happen to be too (a *while* ago, I don’t bother addressing them directly anymore as they’re such petty thugs).

  43. Psychology and altering worldviews is seen as the latest means of combating skepticism. You have education go directly to the prevailing mental models. It tracks to Chapter 20 of the new IPCC report and what Adaptation really means. The adaptation is really psychological via primarily education and Chapter 20 says so. I started a Trilogy on it yesterday.

    This paper from American Psychologist in 2011–“The Dragons of Inaction: Psychological Barriers that Limit Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation” came up as a cite in my research on altering Worldviews. http://psychologyforasafeclimate.org/resources/The%20dragons%20of%20inaction%20Robert%20Gifford.pdf

    When you hear terms like Growth Mindset during a conference with a teacher or principal, this psychological level is precisely what is being targeted. Makes students amenable to fundamental change or anxious for it at an unconscious level.

    Psychology is indeed the new frontier.

  44. Boy oh boy how times have changed.

    Welcome to: Watts Up With That?
    Posted on November 17, 2006
    As a frequent contributor to other blogs, I’ve found it to be a fun way of sharing ideas and discussions. I’d been toying with the idea of doing one of my own for awhile, and now that elections are over I felt the time was right as it appears I’ll have more time on my hands ;-)

    The idea here on this blog is somewhat “gee-whiz” in nature. I’ve always been fascinated by useful trivia, i.e. things that make you think rather than pointless things like Britney’s and KFed’s latest celebrity gossip……………

    3 Responses to Welcome to: Watts Up With That?
    Juanita Sumner says:
    November 18, 2006 at 8:38 am……….

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2006/11/17/welcome-to-watts-up-with-that/

    Journal takes Lewandowsky and his supporters to task on ‘threats’ over retracted ‘Recursive Fury’ paper.
    Posted on April 4, 2014
    Dana Nuccitelli, the Guardian, Joe Romm, and other overly emotional climate propagandists should heed this message, you’ve been put on notice in a rare statement about the false claims of “threats” being the cause of the retraction……..
    56 Responses to Journal takes Lewandowsky and his supporters to task on ‘threats’ over retracted ‘Recursive Fury’ paper.

  45. Cook chose unwisely to be Lewandowsky’s faux-psych water boy.

    I envy those of you who escaped the painfully embarassing spectacle at the 2013 Fall AGU meeting in SFO where John Cook (Lewandowsky’s co-author of ‘Recursive) gave several incoherent talks where he hyped his research in the ‘Recursive’ paper. I was not so lucky to escape it. I felt a moment of fleeting conflicted pity for Cook at the time.

    John

    REPLY: I decided not to go, mainly because I didn’t have any rotten fruit or cabbages to throw ;-) – Anthony

  46. I actively cancelled Scientific American more than a decade ago. For those of us who remember the great magazine of the days of Martin Gardner and C.L. Stong, etc. – well – we try not to cry.

  47. Has anyone noticed the really quite sublime irony going on here?

    The whole point of the paper was that we are a bunch of conspiracy theorists. Yet look at the tangled tale of intrigue, threats, and blackmail they themselves have concocted as the reason for its retraction.

    Projection, much?

  48. Dr Lew’s timing is as priceless as is his mastery of logic and scientific detachment.
    He posts just prior to his evisceration by a journal lambasted by him and his good buddies as cowardly and spineless speleologists (caver-inners!)

    http://www.shapingtomorrowsworld.org/rfmedia.html

    Read it and smile or chuckle or, more likely, ROTFLYAO.
    Dr Lew, meet Mr Nemesis. He would like a quietword in your ear
    :)

  49. I have not been involved in this affair in any way, shape or form but ironically may have an entire chapter devoted to this incident in my up and coming new book A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Climate Science Forum.
    ggm

  50. Am I the only who doesn’t care about the results of some sociologist regarding climate change? Come on, this is not the science that has to be discussed, no matter if the methology is done right or wrong. Don’t focus on that bs.

  51. Oh dear. Surely Wikipedia, that bastion of truth, will be shortly updated….

    Study retraction

    [snip]

    After some climate change denier bloggers accused the paper of being defamatory, it was retracted on March 21, 2014.

  52. Spot the difference.

    “…the article categorizes the behaviour of identifiable individuals within the context of psychopathological characteristics.”

    If she weighs the same as a duck, she’s made of wood, and therefore, a witch!.

    The latter one doesn’t hide the data or methodology.

  53. There might be a correlation, actually I would even bet on a clear correlation between the believe in conspiracy theories and the refusal of climate science. But that’s not the point. A climate sceptic doesn’t refuse the science, he refuses the belief in the certainity of models that haven’t been proofed yet in yielding accurate results for the future.

  54. We remind the community that the retracted paper does not claim to be about climate science, but about psychology

    Best part of the whole letter. Made my day!

  55. Jimbo says:
    April 4, 2014 at 2:34 pm

    Boy oh boy how times have changed.

    Welcome to: Watts Up With That?
    Posted on November 17, 2006
    As a frequent contributor to other blogs, I’ve found it to be a fun way of sharing ideas and discussions. I’d been toying with the idea of doing one of my own for awhile, and now that elections are over I felt the time was right as it appears I’ll have more time on my hands ;-)

    The idea here on this blog is somewhat “gee-whiz” in nature. I’ve always been fascinated by useful trivia, i.e. things that make you think rather than pointless things like Britney’s and KFed’s latest celebrity gossip……………

    3 Responses to Welcome to: Watts Up With That?
    Juanita Sumner says:
    November 18, 2006 at 8:38 am……….

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2006/11/17/welcome-to-watts-up-with-that/

    ======================================================
    Thanks for that. Reminds me of a poem.

    One man awake can waken another.
    The second can waken his next door neighbor.
    And two awake can rouse the town and turn the whole place upside down.
    And many awake can raise such a fuss that it finally awakens the rest of us.
    One man awake with dawn in his eyes, multiplies.

    (I hesitated to post that because it was written about the Good News of Jesus Christ. That’s eternal. But I think it is apropos for WUWT even though tomorrow the “CA” of CAGW may be about CAGCooling. Thanks and respects to Anthony.)

  56. John Whitman says:
    April 4, 2014 at 2:36 pm
    “Cook chose unwisely to be Lewandowsky’s faux-psych water boy.
    I envy those of you who escaped the painfully embarassing spectacle at the 2013 Fall AGU meeting in SFO where John Cook (Lewandowsky’s co-author of ‘Recursive) gave several incoherent talks where he hyped his research in the ‘Recursive’ paper.”

    Oh lordy mine, the guy talks as well as he draws cartoons; that is a “climate communications fellow”? What I find interesting is he talks about how this or that influences “climate belief”. Meaning, what we call warmists are in his words “climate believers”.

  57. Max Erwengh says:
    April 4, 2014 at 3:55 pm
    “There might be a correlation, actually I would even bet on a clear correlation between the believe in conspiracy theories and the refusal of climate science.”

    Highly unlikely. Nearly all leftists believe in conspiracies when it pertains to the Bush presidency but willingly accept everything from the IPCC. Destroys your correlation completely.

  58. Not to forget great comments from:
    Tlitb1
    IanW
    JonathanC

    No supporting comments at all for the Prof yet.

    That’s gotta hurt!
    :-)

  59. Robin says:
    April 4, 2014 at 2:34 pm
    “Psychology is indeed the new frontier.”

    Nope; integral part of the imperial project since about 1917 (Bernays, advisor to Woodrow Wilson and nephew of Siggi freud, uses his Uncle’s techniques to present Wilson as bringer of democracy to war-torn Europe; 1933: Goebbels uses Bernays’ techniques, installs nation-wide propaganda media network; 1945: Allied start reprogramming Germans, keeping Goebbels’ propaganda network in place to this day; prohibit said network from reporting about war crimes committed by the Allied, at least until 1990, maybe even today – don’t know whether that particular SHAEF law is currently in force; bit sketchy there; you gotta track the layers of “negation laws” that declare an earlier law invalid, but are sometimes themselves rendered invalid by later laws).

    Also, and complementary to Freud: Wundt’s research into conditioning, continued by Pavlow, Skinner. Humans as reprogrammable automata. Also : experiments to wipe out “defective” personalities with “electroconvulsive therapy” in the 1950ies, 60ies, and reprogram “blank” humans.

    A “frontier” it might be, but not so new.

  60. Anthony writes, “..please go to the media outlets and blogs that are carrying the claims of ‘threats’ being the cause of the retraction…”

    Why do you think you don’t see me comment here as much as I used to. Seems all I do these days is take the fight to the warmistas !

  61. Magma says:
    April 4, 2014 at 12:16 pm

    Not to rain on the parade, but the new statement from the publisher is not consistent with its initial retraction note.

    “This investigation did not identify any issues with the academic and ethical aspects of the study. It did, however, determine that the legal context is insufficiently clear and therefore Frontiers wishes to retract the published article. The authors understand this decision, while they stand by their article and regret the limitations on academic freedom which can be caused by legal factors.”

    Unless they explain the discrepancy, we’ll have to speculate. Personally, I would read the original retraction as being diplomatic to save offending the authors. The blog entry has decided that being diplomatic hasn’t worked and they need to be more blunt.

  62. Graeme W on April 4, 2014 at 5:15 pm

    Unless they explain the discrepancy, we’ll have to speculate. Personally, I would read the original retraction as being diplomatic to save offending the authors. The blog entry has decided that being diplomatic hasn’t worked and they need to be more blunt.

    – – – – – – – –

    Graeme W,

    I think what you said is what the journal meant when they said in the latest statement (in lead post above),

    ‘Frontiers’ said,

    “[. . .] Until now, our policy has been to handle this matter with discretion out of consideration for all those concerned. But given the extent of the media coverage – largely based on misunderstanding – Frontiers would now like to better clarify the context behind the retraction.

    [. . .]”

    Also, I think it is certain that higher level journal leadership stepped in to handle the ‘Lew’ paper situation between their first retraction statement and the second. It was a an effective move for the sake of the journal’s reputation, I think.

    John

  63. Pho,
    “Some good comments ARE getting on:”
    These will be the study subjects for the next paper “Retraction Fury”.
    LOL

  64. Looking at more stuff from the fall 2013 AGU SFO meeting.
    Gavin Schmidt, chief temperature history rewriter: Use pictures, not graphs, people respond much better to pictures.

    (didn’t mention in his advice about how to communicate climate science: Delete all comments that come from non-“climate believers”)
    (Also didn’t mention: freely rewrite history if it helps the story)
    13:28 : “Do not go near questions of data access.”
    (Don’t say FOIA to him!)
    14:35 : “Perceived attempts to shut down debates are frequently counterproductive”
    (Oh. Guess he looked at his tanking alexa rating recently.)
    15:00 : “Avoid arrogance, elitism, argument from authority”
    (What?)
    15:47 : He is clearly in favor of the D-word and avoids calling us skeptics.

  65. Only one comment so far in support of Lew. Of course, it’s not actually in support of Lew, but rather an ad hom against Barry. Churlish. It’s all they have remaining.

  66. “…the article categorizes the behaviour of identifiable individuals within the context of psychopathological characteristics.”

    There is an error: It is not “psychopathological” behavior, It is psychopathetic.

  67. “Jim Bo says:
    April 4, 2014 at 3:54 pm

    Oh dear. Surely Wikipedia, that bastion of truth, will be shortly updated….

    Study retraction

    [snip]

    After some climate change d____r bloggers accused the paper of being defamatory, it was retracted on March 21, 2014.”
    ———————————————————————————————————————-
    wiki’s “climate change d____r” page is a real hoot
    Yeah, seems a little unbalanced doesn’t it? For example, were is the page for?????

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Climate_change_advocate

    And interesting that Wikipedia inserts a quote from Peter Christoff,, who is not only a colleague of Lew, he’s also a Climate_change_advocate, and is on the board of the ACF.

    http://www.acfonline.org.au/about-us/governance/acf-council

    According to The Conversation:

    “He is also currently a Board member of the Australian Conservation Foundation and was its Vice President for eight years.”

    Phew! Here I was thinking this page about vested interests would be written by people without a vested interest, oh well.

    http://theconversation.com/profiles/peter-christoff-2050/profile_bio

    I hope by the time wiki gets around to adding the climate_change_advocate page, it inserts plenty of quotes from skeptics!

    Two wrongs make a right
    -Homer

  68. Dirk-new frontier on where climate change would be fought and silenced per the described intentions.

    I’m the lady who laid out all the seminal ed figures who went to Wundt’s lab to train and then brought it back to the US, I know it’s not new. My editor even asked me about the phrase “once again traipsing off to.” It was a long, influential list.

    Psychology and education are the weapons, but most people are not monitoring those areas as the way in to change what is believed and valued, real or not. That needs to change to truly stop these horrific intentions grounded in deceit.

  69. I’ve been reading Hayden Washington’s and John Cook’s ‘Climate Change Denial-Head in the sand’ book. If you want to know where the kind of trash in Lewdonsky’s journal article is coming from, this book is a pretty good start, if you can weather it.

  70. “Some of those complaints were well argued and cogent….”
    =========
    Better get used to it.

  71. Regarding the various papers designed to indicate that expressing a contrary point of view to ‘Climate orthodoxy’ is somehow to be evil, delusional, or even a sign of mental illness; I can’t help feeling that those making such assertions are indulging in a great deal of psychological projection.

  72. dbstealey says

    re name calling

    ‘The fact is that we are currently living in a “Goldilocks” climate’

    Goldilocks is a name.

  73. Wikipedia watch out! An attitude of “we don’t care” may warrant a legal opinion.

    When Wikipedia talk pages are edited with comments based on valid physics, which point out errors in their various articles, they take a “we don’t care” attitude. They deliberately introduce greenhouse talk, even in an article about Venus, where the surface temperature cannot possibly be raised by the small amount of radiation reaching it. All they do is cite 1980’s literature which contains nothing but assertive assumptions that the carbon dioxide atmosphere is “obviously” the cause of the high temperatures.

    I’m just making a suggestion as to what I believe Wikipedia administration ought to find out for themselves from their lawyers, because I don’t think they can hide behind the cover of an encyclopedia (in the eyes of the law) and excuse the propagation of fictitious propaganda about the greenhouse effect, now disputed by hundreds (if not thousands) of scientists and academics. But I’m not a lawyer and I’m not suggesting that I would be involved, unless called to address some committee investigation or court hearing.

    Just suppose, for example, when the truth comes out about the carbon dioxide political hoax, that large companies (affected by elecricity and carbon tax costs) pool their funds to mount a global class action against those parties who have contributed significantly in the promulgation of biased “information” likely to be read by voters and politicians alike, and likely to have led to corruption in numerous ways pertaining to research funding, and also likely to have wasted many billions of taxpayer funds.

    The radiative greenhouse conjecture is false. It is a part of a sinister political agenda. It does not stand up to the rigors of valid physics theory, such as (ironically) WP does also publish. Nitrogen and oxygen hold about 98% of the energy in the Earth’s atmosphere, and they slow the surface cooling. But the cooling stops at night where the gravitationally induced thermal gradient supports the surface temperature. Carbon dioxide and water vapor cool by radiating energy (mostly from nitrogen and oxygen) out of the atmosphere, and also lowering the gradient so that lower surface temperatures result. The key fallacy in the radiative greenhouse effect is assuming that all the radiation from the surface is transferring thermal energy out of the surface, when in fact most of it is just scattering the back radiation.

  74. a couple of links to annoy Lewandowsky.

    ***not even a loaded para such as Neuhauser’s below will win back the trust of the public, i’m glad to say:

    4 April: US News & World Report: Alan Neuhauser: Poll: Americans Still Unconcerned About Global Warming
    Most Americans are not greatly concerned about climate change, a Gallup poll finds.
    Just 34 percent of adults said they worried “a great deal” about “global warming,” about the same as last year. Meanwhile, 35 percent said they felt the same way about “climate change,” just a 2 percentage points more than last year.
    “A major challenge facing scientists and organizations that view global warming as a major threat to humanity is that average citizens express so little concern about the issue,” Gallup said…
    ***The poll was conducted in early March, yet the results were released Friday – just one week after a comprehensive report by a United Nations climate panel reasserted that not only is climate change a man-made phenomenon, but its effects are already being felt around the world, they’re worse than previously predicted and no matter what actions are taken, they’ll persist for centuries to come…

    http://www.usnews.com/news/blogs/data-mine/2014/04/04/poll-americans-still-unconcerned-about-global-warming

    the warming they predicted isn’t happening, and cold, hard facts such as the one below haven’t helped the CAGW-enforcers’ cause, either:

    4 April: CBC: It’s official: Winnipeg’s winter the coldest since 1898
    Environment Canada says it was also one of the snowiest – and it’s not over yet
    “It was 116 years ago,” he said. “And think about it. In 1898, there was no talk of global warming or urban heat islands, no cars or pavements and the population was a twentieth of what it is now in Winnipeg.”…
    “Just keeping your home and your business warm has cost you about another 17, 20 per cent more so, not a lot of good things we can say about it except the fact that you survived it,” Phillips said.
    He said on average, temperatures during the period of December through March were 6 degrees colder than normal.
    Phillips also said the past winter was one of the snowiest since 1898. ..

    http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/manitoba/it-s-official-winnipeg-s-winter-the-coldest-since-1898-1.2598530

  75. 4 April: San Francisco Chronicle Blog: Caroline Lochhead: Stanford economists say social cost of carbon too low
    In an article published Friday in the journal Nature, Nobel laureate economist Kenneth Arrow and Lawrence Goulder, both of Stanford, along with six other law and economics scholars, said the controversial “social cost of carbon” calculations developed by the federal government are too low, not too high, as conservatives argue…
    The Nature authors list four reasons why the cost of carbon is likely to be higher than the administration has estimated…

    http://blog.sfgate.com/nov05election/2014/04/04/stanford-economists-say-social-cost-of-carbon-too-low/

    meanwhile, in the real world:

    2 pages: 4 April: Reuters: EU carbon slips 3.7 pct on weak power, gas
    “(Carbon) volumes have been pretty weak so it hasn’t taken much to move prices lower,” a carbon trader said….
    Many large utilities sell power forward several years in advance, buying the fuel and carbon units needed to generate the electricity at the same time to lock in margins.
    However, if power prices drop, those companies may choose to buy the power back, earning them a profit but meaning they are also likely to sell the fuel and carbon permits back into the market…
    Firms regulated by the EU Emission Trading System will get 6.6 billion free allowances between 2013 and 2020 to help them compete with rivals in other regions which have looser environmental regulations.
    Seven countries, including Poland and Romania, have still yet to award the 2014 allowances, the Commission data showed.
    (Reporting by Susanna Twidale; editing by Keiron Henderson)

    http://af.reuters.com/article/energyOilNews/idAFL5N0MW37A20140404

  76. 5 April: Bloomberg: Alex Morales: U.S. Seeks Changes to ‘Skewed’ Data in UN Climate Draft
    U.S. President Barack Obama’s administration is concerned that a crucial United Nations report on climate science may be too harsh in assessing the cost of fighting global warming.
    Such a finding may lower the incentive for the world to reduce fossil fuel pollution and feed the arguments of those skeptical about whether it’s worth spending money to curtail rising temperatures.
    The report will be completed by hundreds of scientists and government officials at a UN meeting in Berlin next week…
    “The discussion of the economic costs of mitigation is too narrow and does not incorporate co-benefits of action,” U.S. officials wrote in a submission to the UN, according to a document obtained by Bloomberg. They said including only one side of the equation “unnecessarily skews the information.”
    The comment refers to “global consumption losses” identified in the report of as much as 4 percent in 2030, 6 percent in 2050 and 12 percent in 2100 as a result of action to protect the climate, according to a draft leaked in January…
    *** A draft of the study and a 222-page document containing comments from government officials was obtained by Bloomberg from a person with official access to the documents who asked not to be further identified…
    Jonathan Lynn, a spokesman for the IPCC, said that the report’s wording will “certainly be improved” during a week-long session starting April 7 in Berlin to review the text line-by-line…
    Sweden and Norway were among other nations seeking to include in the report data on the benefits of cutting emissions. Those include the avoided damage that would result from a lower amount of warming, and consequently lower sea levels as well as less melting of glaciers…
    The U.S. was among several governments to question why the panel isn’t using GDP instead of the less-understood term consumption losses…
    Japan said it “would appreciate if cost of mitigation is measured in percentage of global GDP.” Canada said the term consumption losses “is not understood by the reader,” and the European Union said “the choice of consumption losses as a metric seems to be unclear and misleadingly suggests relatively higher impact than other metrics.” …
    Rosen (Richard Rosen, executive vice president at the Tellus Institute, a Boston-based nonprofit policy research group) also questioned the validity of trying to calculate costs and benefits so far into the future.
    “None of the costs or benefits of mitigating climate change can be forecast to any scientifically credible level of accuracy over the long run,” Rosen said. That’s because of “the fundamental uncertainties associated with all the hundreds of key assumptions that need to be made.”

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-04-04/u-s-seeks-changes-to-skewed-data-in-un-climate-draft.html

  77. The editors at FRONTIERS IN PSYCHOLOGY retracted Recursive Fury because Lewandowsky did “not sufficiently protect the rights of the studied subjects”? THAT WAS THEIR REASON???????

    The paper was not science — it was a hatchet job

    Was there ever a more blatant example of junk science? How could any editor begin to read Recursive Fury and not immediately recognize it for the absolute claptrap it is? Yet the editors of FRONTIERS IN PSYCHOLOGY published it! And now the editors tell us it was retracted because it did “not sufficiently protect the rights of the studied subjects”?

    Eugene WR Gallun

    • +Eugene WR Gallun

      I fully agree. There is a pretty odd scent around this story, The Lewtanic paper was peer reviewed. The reviewing peers ought to have noticed that it was not up to the standards of ethics in that field of science. Did they really fail to notice it? Or did they take it as a minor risk? Well, so they were either incompetent, or negligent. Do we really need incompetent or negligent peer reviewers? Or did they take the risk that this hoax might not be unveiled? Then that was bad science with a good portion of criminal intent. The publishers, though not entirely incompetent, obviously decided to rely on the reviewing peers, thus shifting responsibility to somebody else. So let us focus on the reviewing peers. Who are they? How are they connected to Lewandowsky? Has there been peer pressure put on Lewandowsky or is Lewandowsky in a position to exert peer pressure onto his reviewing ‘pals’?
      I am absolutely convinced that there is another story behind this story, so that you could even say that it stinks.

  78. @Louis Hooffstetter
    Why are all the tech news agglomoration sites (think Conde Nast) so radical left wingers? The luddites are reporting on tech, and everything green and stupid is their top story. Is there a tech news site that doesn’t share their crazy bias? If not, why can’t WUWT give birth to some competition? Seriously, I read Techdirt every morning.

  79. What is it about physicists who think they are psychologists and vice versa???
    What happened to the days when science was decided by … you know…. SCIENCE?!?!?

  80. also… Has anyone else noticed that even if Lews ‘study’ had been 100% by the book and above board on all counts it would still have been an utterly pointless and inane contribution to the ‘science’ of psychology and an utterly ridiculous and unjustifiable waste of taxpayer dollars?

  81. The information presented and questions raised in this thread are a goldmine of insights into humanity. If the leadership at the institutions involved in this affair would only come here, to this thread and then harness the honesty and courage to confront what they find, then they have a chance to overcome that which has taken them so far from the right course of action.
    We will see.
    Frontiers in Psychology has been the first to stand up.

  82. Lew Skannen says:
    April 5, 2014 at 5:11 am

    “… even if Lews ‘study’ had been 100% by the book and above board on all counts it would still have been an utterly pointless and inane contribution to the ‘science’ of psychology”

    Lew, when I did statistics 101 back in the ’70s I was warned that self-selecting surveys were a complete waste of time and had no scientific value at all. It was drummed into us that they had to be randomised and that even the selection procedure on how the randomisation was arrived at was most important. Finally, I don’t think it says much about the paper that it was ‘pal’-reviewed by a PhD student – who still thinks her idol was bullied into retraction!

  83. Late in the Fall of 2008 (i.e., just before the election), SciAm published an article reporting on a comparison of positive and negative news coverage of Obama and McCain. The bottom line: it found coverage of McCain actually more positive than that of Obama!

    It wasn’t until near the end of the piece that the author revealed WHEN the data had been taken for: the previous Summer and Spring, in other words during the primary season. The significance of this is that during much of that time, Hillary Clinton was lauded as the “inevitable choice” versus Barack Obama, and John McCain was widely regarded as the most moderate Republican. So what we being compared was actually Obama coverage vs. Hillary coverage, and McCain coverage vs. other Republicans!

    SciAm allowed the article to be run in the full knowledge that it would APPEAR to be addressing the very timely issue of how the press covered Obama vs. how it covered McCain during the run-up to the Presidential election, and in fact headlined it as such. Only a careful reader would note that it was no such thing. I believe there is a word for such behavior, and it is “mendacity”, which is loosely a synonym for “lying”.

    That’s when I cancelled my subscription of 30-some years.

  84. Ray Van Dune says:
    April 5, 2014 at 6:35 am
    ________________________
    You speak of the mendacity of Scientific American and you are wholly correct, but they are only one publication among many who have so compromised their integrity that nothing which they publish can be trusted. You have only scratched the surface of what we have witnessed over the course of the CAGW controversy. The entire body of advocacy for societal change because of climate hazard is rife with meretricious dishonesty. None of the warmists visible to the public amount to anything at all on their own, but taken in concert, have struck against mankind like a tsunami of deceit.

  85. andywest2012 says: April 5, 2014 at 5:43 am

    Re wiki update. Done, but you better go there quick, it may not last long!

    Having been previously subjected to (on a non-climate change subject) a standard kangaroo court that postures as Wikipedia “oversight” and barred from further contribution on that subject (in which I’m rather well versed), I’ve given up on Wikipedia as a credible source for anything with political implications/ramifications. The leftist praetorian guard owns the joint…period.

    For entertainment purposes, I’ll follow that article evolution with some amused interest.

  86. thingadonta says: April 4, 2014 at 7:28 pm
    “I’ve been reading Hayden Washington’s and John Cook’s ‘Climate Change Denial-Head in the sand’ book.”

    Why?

  87. Non Nomen says:

    “The Lewtanic paper was peer reviewed. The reviewing peers ought to have noticed that it was not up to the standards of ethics in that field of science. Did they really fail to notice it?”

    It should be noted that Elaine McKewon, who wrote the article claiming that the paper was withdrawn due legal threats (which Frontiers has denied was the case), was one of the peer reviewers. The fact that she has not withdrawn her claims about legal threats after Frontiers wrote that there were no legal threats speaks a great deal about her standards of ethics.

  88. news flash, prominent ally of Lewandowsky/Cook decides to trash the journal “Frontiers” —

    Dana N. has posted a couple of very ‘interesting’ remarks, angry and bitter, claiming personal knowledge that the Lewandowsky authors had agreed to all revisions sought by Frontiers. Now Dana is exploring the “let’s trash the journal” approach to defending Lewandowsky et al.

    Dana N. on Lewandowsky et al.

    [emphasis added]

    “…Now they throw the authors under the bus, claiming their revised submission “did not deal adequately with the issues raised by Frontiers.” I happen to know the authors agreed to all the revisions requested by Frontiers, so if those revisions did not adequately deal with the issues they raised, that’s Frontiers’ own fault for not requesting changes that would satisfy them. To announce that like it’s Lewandowsky et al.’s fault is just despicable behavior by Frontiers….”

  89. Anthony and others may want to see Dana N’s new defense of Lewandowsky & co. over at RetractionWatch.com

    My comment here linking the thread over there is in moderation, so I’m just noting that Dana has now taken to angry attacks on the journal over their latest statement. Funny times…..

  90. Now for Lewandowsky’s latest (cross-posted at Bishop Hill if I may)

    Wow! Add this to the list of deceptive, dishonest, and/or delusional utterances by Stephan Lewandowsky. Yesterday he posted a faux ‘summary’ of what he claims are the mainstream media coverages of his retracted paper. One problem is that although he purports to summarize ‘mainstream’ …. ‘media’ …. coverage, almost all of the quotes on his list are from his closest allies in Blogworld. Only 2-3 out of the 10 items could plausibly be described as coming from the mainstream news media (depends on whether or not one considers Salon.com or an activist’s blog article at The Guardian as mainstream news media).

    Sure, most of us are fans of what (we regard) as good blogs, and want our favored blogs to be taken seriously, but we don’t pretend that they are identical to the “mainstream news media.”

    Also, he utterly avoids confronting the new statement from Frontiers; instead he quotes a stream of mostly fringe commentary that came out well BEFORE the new statement from Frontiers. So Lewandowsky is doubly deceptive here: little of his material is ‘mainstream’ media and none of it (so far) comes after or with any cognizance of the new position statement from Frontiers.

    Lewandowsky on his ‘mainstream’ media support

    title: “Recursive Fury: A Summary of Media Coverage”

    Lewandowsky: “This post highlights some of the mainstream coverage”

    Lewandowsky then includes blog quotes from such renowned mainstream news media eminences as PZ Myers, Graham Readfearn, Scholars and Rogues, “Sou” at “HotWhopper”…. also Dana N’s blog at The Guardian, the blog of activists at the “Union of Concerned Scientists” etc. etc.

  91. So while Michael Mann sues everyone in sight over the merest slight, real or perceived, it is considered “intimidation” when the shoe is on the other foot. Yet nobody has actually sued. Compare/contrast…

  92. Jim Bo says: April 5, 2014 at 8:21 am

    I’ve had some edits unreasonably zapped at wiki too in the past, though gave up on the issue early as I could see it was futile to go to an editing war I wouldn’t win. I won’t pursue it this time either I guess, but I thought that at least I’d get the first pass of factual correctness from the journal itself in there, before the inevitable edit fudges start and erode this away. Need at least a token challenge to those who’d rather hide or disguise the facts!

  93. Maybe it’s because I am just a Simple Redneck, but the only two points l see are: there were no threats and the paper didn’t protect the identity of the participants. Left unsaid is that the underlying science is acceptable to them. It is my understanding that the science was dog poo.

    So, while this statement was better than nothing, a comment on the ethics and quality of the methodology would have made the statement better by a factor of ten.

    I guess that I see the glass half empty,

    Regards
    Steamboat Jack (Jon Jewett’s evil twin)

  94. Below I’ve linked portions of Brandon Schollenberger’s article and led by Anthony’s article above about the journal Frontiers in Psychology published retraction statement.

    My subject line is similar to Brandon’s; but reflects some of my concerns instead. Elaine McKewon apparently has admitted that she was a ‘Peer Reviewer’.

    Which brings up the question, “What is an independent ‘Peer Reviewer’?”.

    ‘Elaine McKewon’ has literally announced and identified herself as definitively biased; not only biased, but willing to declare and publish fabrications defending her less than independent review and the review’s object, Lewandowsky’s “Recursive Fury”.

    There are now additional questions; both regarding ‘peer review’ and Elaine McKewon’s future as a peer reviewer.

    ‘Frontiers in Psychology’ should be very concerned about their ‘peer review’ process, how they choose ‘peer reviewers’ and how they intend to prevent similar debacles occurring because a ‘peer reviewer’ is biased. All journals should learn from ‘Frontiers in Psychology’s’ lessons learned and perhaps share information publicly regarding biased reviewers. Many employers routinely utilize knowledge gained online when selecting employees; perhaps it is time that journal’s desiring truly honest fair and even handed reviews when considering a paper for publication followed suit in this respect.

    Previously, the world had climategate emails for proof of ‘peer review’ gone bad now commonly referred to as ‘pal review’. Elaine McKewon’s public declaration of her avowed devotion toward anything Lewandowsky says, does or writes brings ‘pal review’ into further disrepute. Elaine McKewon may be termed a ‘pal’ of Lewandowsky but that fails to describe the extent she supports his paper publicly.

    Elaine’s university should carefully review any conclusions she reaches in her research especially as she espouses a prior belief in ‘climate consensus’ over legitimate scientific debate. One could get curious about which ‘climate consensus’ she believes in, but that is likely a deep abyss without knowledge or logic. Instead one should inquire how said university teaches open science?

    Given the size of many climate researcher egos, terming such prejudiced reviews as ‘devotion or devotee review’ wouldn’t be apt for many reviewers. Perhaps ‘incestuous review’ would be the best description as Lewandowsky’s ‘pals’ are definitely in bed with his advocacy motives.

    Anthony and Brandon’s articles along with Elaine McKewon’s acknowledged and very public bias clearly bring into perspective just how seriously compromised climate science and the climate science ‘Peer Review’ process is.

    All prior reviews under climate science’s peer review process must be viewed as suspect until cleanly reviewed and independently replicated.

    All data, code, methods and information needed for independent replication should be posted online.

    Previously ‘reviewed’ research papers that yet have not published complete replication information should be given timelines by the publishing journals for getting the necessary information online or face retraction.

    Following are portions of Brandon’s well correlated article.

    Guest essay by Brandon Schollenberger
    “Elaine McKewon, one of the peer-reviewers for Recursive Fury. Unfortunately, she does this by making things up.

    McKewon recently published an article you can find here and here. The article contains numerous errors, to the point it grossly misrepresents Recursive Fury. This can be seen in its very first sentence:

    Elaine McKewon “In February 2013, the journal Frontiers in Psychology published a peer-reviewed paper which found that people who reject climate science are more likely to believe in conspiracy theories.

    … (Read the original post for Brandon’s excellent analysis)

    Elaine McKewon “Recursive Fury was theoretically strong, methodologically sound, and its analysis and conclusions – which re-examined and reaffirmed the link between conspiracist ideation and the rejection of science – were based on clear evidence.”

    Elaine McKewon “Shortly after publication, Frontiers received complaints from climate deniers who claimed they had been libeled (sic) in the paper and threatened to sue the journal unless the paper was retracted.

    After taking the paper down from its website, Frontiers began its investigation and arranged a conference call so that the journal’s manager, legal counsel, editors and reviewers could discuss how to proceed.

    Before the call ended, three academics, including me, argued that scientific journals must not be held to ransom every time someone threatens litigation. In response to our concerns, we were assured by the journal’s representatives that the legal matter would be considered settled once the two sentences had been amended as agreed.

    Yet the paper remained in limbo while the journal’s investigation into the academic and ethical aspects of the study dragged on for more than a year.”

    The important part is where McKewon says “the paper remained in limbo.” Her portrayal holds “the paper remained in limbo” because of threats of legal action regarding two sentences which could be amended to address the complaints. That is a figment of her imagination. Here is what Brian Little, editor for the journal says happened:

    Frontiers in Psychology “The article was removed on February 6th because of a complaint about a factual error. We did due diligence, contacted the authors, had it corrected and it was put up again.

    I think there’s a misunderstanding: the manuscript was accepted for publication by Frontiers on Feb 2, and the provisional (i.e. non proof-read) PDF was made available immediately, as we do in most cases. Because there was subsequently identified a need for authors, reviewers, editor and associates to review and Chief editors to agree on the modification of one specific line in the text, the provisional PDF was hidden on Feb 6 while this modification was agreed. The paper was then published in the agreed form on March 18, and as you know was subsequently unlinked while we deal with all the complaints and allegations.”

    Elaine McKewon “Just how clear would the legal context need to be for Frontiers to stand up to intimidation and defend academic freedom? First, the two sentences discussed in the conference call had been amended as agreed, which satisfied the journal’s lawyer even under the former libel laws.”

    Frontiers in Psychology “Retraction of Recursive Fury: A Statement

  95. “We remind the community that the retracted paper does not claim to be about climate science, but about psychology.”

    Odd that they would need to remind anyone about this. Why the need to remind? Perhaps people think the Koch brothers are behind the retraction.

  96. Posted this a little while ago at retractionwatch.com

    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    John Whitman
    April 5, 2014 at 2:33 pm

    There are many journals of psychology in the world, which I am sure is well known to the authors of the ‘Recursive Fury’ paper retracted by ‘Frontiers in Psychology’ for ethical*** and legal*** issues.

    If the authors of the retracted ‘Recursive Fury’ paper think ‘Frontiers in Psychology’ has made an error in retracting their paper, then of course the authors should seek a journal that is less stringent about the professional capability and integrity of researchers.

    Then a new journal agreeing to publish the retracted version of the paper can explain why it is ethical, legal and academically acceptable.

    *** there is a problem with not listing academic issues as well, because ethical and legal issues are integrally bound to academic behavior in psychology.

    John

    http://retractionwatch.com/2014/04/04/journal-that-retracted-conspiracy-ideation-climate-skepticism-paper-says-it-did-not-cave-into-threats

    John

  97. pokerguy says:
    April 4, 2014 at 11:01 am
    Interesting that none of those identifiable individuals who were basically called screwballs have sued.
    ==============
    Proving that they are not screwballs.

  98. Lewandowsky authors had agreed to all revisions sought by Frontiers.
    =============
    Judge, give me just one more chance and I promise I’ll go straight. I promise I will.

  99. The authors agreed and subsequently proposed a new paper that was substantially similar to the original paper and, crucially, did not deal adequately with the issues raised by Frontiers.

    To me, this quote is even bigger. They proposed a new paper that didn’t cut the mustard either. Lewserdowsky.

  100. Frontiers disgraced itself by publishing such a trashy piece of work, and, it would seem, by their choice of reviewers ahead of publication.

  101. May I humbly suggest that those who have the Frontiers in Psychology contact details make every effort to contact them and congratulate them on their ‘taken a responsible action’ against papers which lay ‘unfounded’ claims and judgments. They need to be applauded for the action they have taken. They made a mistake and are at least making moves to rectify it. More than I can say about some publications. To me this shows the tide is turning!!! Thanks.

  102. dbstealey: gotta feel for you mate, thought you succinct and to the point without any name calling or abuse. The way I see it, you’ll be vindicated when this scrag of a rag goes bankrupt. Todays consumer demands better than this and if this organisation cannot deliver factual or handle factual information, rest assured the owners will lose their house and everything they have put up for collateral. The shareholders and other stakeholders should be quite active in forcing the board to rethink its approval of the strategies put forward by the management, only time will tell!

  103. I think we are missing the most salient point to com out of this sorry saga. It is even more important now that well qualified person in the field be given full access to all data and follow up investigations for the purposes of submitting their own academic paper or papers as on the face of it there is ample material to form a basis for a series of papers. One to do with unethical procedures. the second to do with the Psychological projection and bias of the “researcher”, a third on the of the use of a Psychological paper to create group think, a fourth on the failure of the University heads to follow their own ethical and moral path in this “How a University joined the forces of academic corruption and bias”. Ample material on show now, just needs the pressure of researchers to access the inner workings, and that is legitimate academic work.

  104. Sorry for the misspelling and punctuation. Also the “why this could be allowed to happen” as a psychological subject is also a topic that could be explored. So full of “compartments”, but so predictable. A cracking research project.

  105. one small step forward, two “companion papers” backwards:

    5 April: eScienceNews: Scientists unmask the climate uncertainty monster
    Source: University of Bristol
    Scientific uncertainty has been described as a ‘monster’ that prevents understanding and delays mitigative action in response to climate change. New research by Professor Stephan Lewandowsky of the University of Bristol, and international colleagues, shows that uncertainty should make us more rather than less concerned about climate change. In two companion papers, published today in Climatic Change, the researchers investigated the mathematics of uncertainty in the climate system and showed that increased scientific uncertainty necessitates even greater action to mitigate climate change.
    The scientists used an ordinal approach — a range of mathematical methods that address the question: ‘What would the consequences be if uncertainty is even greater than we think it is?’…
    Professor Stephan Lewandowsky, Chair in Cognitive Psychology and member of the Cabot Institute at the University of Bristol, said: “We can understand the implications of uncertainty, and in the case of the climate system, it is very clear that greater uncertainty will make things even worse. This means that we can never say that there is too much uncertainty for us to act. If you appeal to uncertainty to make a policy decision the legitimate conclusion is to increase the urgency of mitigation.”
    Co-author, Dr James Risbey of Australia’s CSIRO Marine and Atmospheric Research, said: “Some point to uncertainty as a way to minimize the climate change problem, when in fact it means that the problem is more likely to be worse than expected in the absence of that uncertainty. This result is robust to a range of assumptions and shows that uncertainty does not excuse inaction.”…

    http://esciencenews.com/articles/2014/04/05/scientists.unmask.climate.uncertainty.monster

  106. 4 April: All Voices: Robert Myles: Mathematically speaking, uncertainty on climate change no excuse for inaction
    The researchers used an ordinal approach in their analysis — a method of mathematical analysis often used to weigh the preferences of consumers when it comes to choosing different goods and services — posing the question, “What would the consequences be if uncertainty is even greater than we think it is?”…
    Never too much uncertainty for action
    Commenting on the findings, Professor Lewandowsky said: “We can understand the implications of uncertainty, and in the case of the climate system, it is very clear that greater uncertainty will make things even worse. This means that we can never say that there is too much uncertainty for us to act. If you appeal to uncertainty to make a policy decision the legitimate conclusion is to increase the urgency of mitigation.”
    In the debate on climate change, climate change skeptics demand ad nauseam proof of man-made or anthropogenic climate change. The absence of such cast-iron, bullet-proof “proof” is often voiced as a reason for carrying on much as before, extracting and burning fossil fuels into oblivion.
    Co-author of the study, Dr. James Risbey of Australia’s CSIRO Marine and Atmospheric Research, countered such an approach, adding, “Some point to uncertainty as a way to minimize the climate change problem, when in fact it means that the problem is more likely to be worse than expected in the absence of that uncertainty. This result is robust to a range of assumptions and shows that uncertainty does not excuse inaction.”…
    The authors findings are likely to find a ready audience anywhere from the Somerset Levels in England, recently flooded for months after years of inaction on flood prevention despite pleas from residents, to the New Jersey shore, pummeled by Superstorm Sandy in 2012…
    The research is published under the titles “Scientific Uncertainty and Climate Change: Part I. Uncertainty and Unabated Emissions’” and “Scientific Uncertainty and Climate Change: Part II. Uncertainty and Mitigation.” It was conducted by a team including scientists from the University of Bristol, University of Western Australia, CSIRO Marine and Atmospheric Research, Australian National University, University of New South Wales and the Antarctic Climate and Ecosystems Cooperative Research Centre.

    http://www.allvoices.com/contributed-news/16827187-mathematically-speaking-uncertainty-on-climate-change-no-excuse-for-inaction

  107. I’ve tried unsuccessfully several time to log into shaggingtomorrowsworld. Is it really worth it?
    /sarc

  108. Earlier on I labeled “Recursive Fury” — junk science.

    I am sorry. The poet in me now realizes I should have labeled it — crap science.

    Eugene WR Gallun

  109. 5 April: UK Daily Mail: David Rose: Green ‘smear campaign’ against professor who dared to disown ‘sexed up’ UN climate dossier
    Richard Tol claims he is fighting a sustained attack on his reputation
    Professor from Sussex University is a highly respected climate economist
    Criticised by campaigners after saying report summary was ‘alarmist’
    In his opinion, it focused on ‘scare stories’
    The source of the alleged smear campaign is Bob Ward, director of policy at the London School of Economics’s Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change.
    Mr Ward – neither an economist nor a climate expert – claimed on the institute’s website that he was waging ‘an ongoing struggle’ to force Prof Tol to correct ‘errors’ in his work.
    Mr Ward had earlier sent an email disparaging Prof Tol’s research to several leading IPCC scientists and officials.
    They included Prof Tol’s fellow co-ordinating lead author, Doug Arent, director of America’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory; and Professor Chris Field of Stanford University, the overall chairman and editor of the IPCC report…
    How IPPC report was ramped up to predict wars, extreme weather and famine… while its authors slept on the job
    By BEN PILE
    High profile commentators, including the Energy and Climate Change Secretary Ed Davey, often describe climate change sceptics as ‘deniers’, on a par with those who reject evidence of the Holocaust.
    One Sunday columnist recently insisted the parallel was exact, because the evidence of global warming is as strong as that for Auschwitz.
    Academics who deviate from the perceived ‘correct’ line risk vilification…
    The emissions cuts agreed by the EU and other countries at the 1997 Kyoto Treaty and imposed by our own Climate Change Act have made energy more expensive, and exported jobs and prosperity to countries such as China – which adds billions of watts of coal fired power to its grid each year. CO2 emissions have continued to rise.
    The architects of such policies know they have failed, but they have no alternative except more of the same. Maybe it’s because their argument is weak that they resort to climate McCarthyism. The cost, apart from higher energy bills, is to democracy, and free speech.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2597907/Green-smear-campaign-against-professor-dared-disown-sexed-UN-climate-dossier.html

  110. ACTING DISHONESTLY UNDER THE FALSE FLAG OF ETHICAL BEHAVIOR

    The editors of FRONTIERS IN PSYCHOLOGY had it thrown in their faces that Recursive Fury was a personal rant and not science. Let me repeat that — a PERSONAL RANT and not science.

    Needing to exhibit at least some integrity for their journal to maintain any credibility whatsoever, they realized the paper had to be retracted — but scared of the frothing that retraction would create in the manic warmist community they could not openly state what were the real reasons for the retraction. (That would hurt the reputation of one of their own wouldn’t it.) So they made up this fiction that the paper did “not sufficiently protect the rights of the studied subjects”.

    In other words they found a way to retract the paper under the false flag of a minor methodological ethical breach that their overly worried lawyers felt created a potential for UNJUST LEGAL HARASSMENT of the journal.

    So the liars found a way to lay all the blame on the “denialists” and not expose the real reasons for the retraction.

    I am sure the editors at FRONTIERS IN PSYCHOLOGY are all sitting around congratulating themselves that they found such an “ethical” reason to cover up their dishonesty and bias.

    Eugene WR Gallun

    .

  111. they have to fight back against the well funded oil shills. or is it kochs? or is it still bush’s fault?
    i can’t keep the conspiracies straight any more. . .

  112. I see McKibben wants to flog us all with a feather-

    http://blogs.news.com.au/dailytelegraph/timblair/index.php/dailytelegraph/comments/strike_strike_strike/

    “At this point it’s absurd to keep asking the scientific community to churn out more reports. In fact, it might almost be more useful if they went on strike: until you pay attention to what we’ve already told you, we won’t be telling you more …”

    Somehow I don’t think that will win you a lot of friends and influence among Big Climate but you did use the weasel word ‘might’. Go on mate you tell em long and loud! One out all out Bill?

  113. cross-posted at Climate Audit:

    re: Dana N., SkepticalScience, and Lewandowsky

    When examining the Lewandowksy/SkepticalScience nexus, has it been noticed that Lewandowsky provided the SECOND review (in temporal order) to Michael Mann’s 2012 screed when it was published Jan. 28, 2012? So before Lew got publicly involved in publishing his pseudo “studies” of climate psychology he was already a self-identified polemical ally of Michael Mann, vehemently attacking critics of Mann et al.

    Lewandowsky provides rave review for Michael Mann’s polemic on Amazon, Jan. 28, 2012

    i.e., after John Cook’s then-secret campaign with Michael Mann to provide digital review copies to SkS allies in order to open the astro-turf campaign, Lewandowsky weighs in immediately with a detailed (fawning) review once the door opens at Amazon. Did Lew rely upon an advance copy from SkS?

    One can see the temporal order of reviews posted on Jan. 28, 2012 at Amazon by going to “all reviews” of Mann’s book, ordering by “Newest First” — and then going to the far end of the list, the oldest. Lewandowsky’s hagiography is number 2.

    p.s. Curious, more than 4 years later this remains the only book review that Lewandowsky has ever published at Amazon.com

    The facts that (1) it appears to have been part of the SkS “astro-turfing” operation, and (2) John Cook and Dana N. of SkS emerge as close polemical allies of Lewandowsky over the past few years, puts Lewandowsky’s subsequent “scientific” studies of his perceived adversaries in some interesting context. Maybe Frontiers has finally realized that Lew is in no way a dispassionate, disinterested academic providing them with scientific research.

  114. I suppose I shouldn’t really call Lew’s review of Mann “detailed” — it has no intellectual or scientific detail or merit — but I meant that it is relatively long for an Amazon review and does provide indications of access to the book, whether or not Lew had read it with any care…..

  115. Dana N. (with personal knowledge of Cook-Lewandowsky??) claims Frontiers story is “far from over”

    [Dana N.]

    Come on guys, I know you’re not this dense. Stop playing dumb.

    This is really simple stuff, so I’ll spell it out for you in the simplest terms possible. Frontiers said “We’re concerned about legal liability so make ‘X’ changes to the paper to alleviate those concerns”. Lewandowsky et al. made ‘X’ changes. Frontiers decided to retract the paper anyway, and now is saying “Lewandowsky et al. did not adequately deal with the issues raised by Frontiers.”

    So whose fault is that? You all are grossly biased against Lewandowsky et al., so you want to blame them. But if you set your biases aside, it’s easy to see that it’s Frontiers who’s at fault here, at least when it comes to the revised paper supposedly not addressing Frontiers’ concerns. That’s BS.

    I’ll also say this story is far from over. I guess you might as well celebrate this perceived victory while you can. It won’t last very long.

    • @Skiphil 9:55PM

      Just like they do at Skeptical Science with comments, it looks like Dana revised his comment post facto

  116. Skiphil says:
    April 5, 2014 at 9:13 am

    Dana N. on Lewandowsky et al.

    “I happen to know the authors agreed to all the revisions requested by Frontiers”

    The only way to know that would be to have previewed the changes. The only way he could be sure that these changes were communicated to Frontiers would be an addressee on the same email or to have lodged it himself.

    Otherwise it is supposition.

  117. Dana’s suppositions are inconsequential. Journals routinely reject papers after revisions are made.

  118. The Impaired Peers
    When I came first into climate change, one of my first really eerie feelings I got was when I realized that so much money, or sinecure, is behind it. And everyone with such a sinecure tried to silence critics by saying that this or that was „peer-reviewed“, thus insinuating that it ist scientifically sound.
    So, well, I thought, there is money involved, but hey have had at least their work crosschecked by someone who ist at par with them, who can act as some sort of referee and sees the standards are met. Everything was yet OK with me.
    I now have to realize that Peer Review is often, not always, a hoax. It seems to be worst in matters relating to climate sciences. This may be due to the unholy influence of the consensual science concept of the IPCC and its various „reports“.

    Manus manum lavat
    Scientific articles are published in scientific magazines and on the internet, paywalled of course. These publishers and their staff make a living from that.
    So they have to see that they sell well. The more reputable the authors are who submit their articles, the better.
    How can these magazines attract authors of high reknown? They have to pamper that clientele at the first place.
    Therefore, the editors make it easy for them. Do you need Peer Reviever? Who is on top of your list? Are there any reviewers you don’t want at all? Consider your wishes fulfilled.
    Ah, you know your reviewers pretty well? Invite them to submit their publications here. And let them know that you’ll be glad to review their papers occasionally. There is still some honour among thieves…

    Publish or Perish
    It is obvious that scientists who do not publish will perish, rather sooner than later. I think that this is the reason why articles of dubious content are submitted. They go to the press without much questions asked. Hey folks, these are peer reviewed papers, that should do, shouldn’t it?

    Who checks the checkers?
    Actually, nobody seems to do that on a regular basis. And nobody actually can but the public on the internet(thank you, Anthony, for providing such a platform), where citizens with some knowledge can exchange thoughts and opinions. But better than knowledge is common sense and logical thinking. That alone can stop many of the weirdos in science in their tracks.
    What we need are really independent critics who don’t take evil crap at face value. One great example for that is Lord Mockton, once an editor himself, and a Viscount to stop the Peers.

    It is time to look behind the scenes of academic behaviour and misdemeanour. Scrutinize the CV of every Peer Reviewer. Search for hidden connections of personal or financial matter. Make research transparent by giving unconditional free access to the databases. And get peer reviewers expelled from academic grounds that do not stick strictly to the rules. Hirelings of the like of McKewon are, in my opinion, far too many.

    Special thanks go to Tony Thomas for

    http://quadrant.org.au/opinion/doomed-planet/2014/04/climate-papers-without-peer/

  119. Levandovsky is a failure for the same reason Mann is a failure. They don’t heed the basic scientific principles:
    It’s a kind of scientific integrity, a principle of scientific thought that corresponds to a kind of utter honesty ­­ a kind of leaning over backwards. For example, if you’re doing an experiment, you should report everything that
    you think might make it invalid not only what you think is right about it: other causes
    that could possibly explain your results
    ; and things you thought of that you’ve eliminated
    by some other experiment, and how they worked ­­ to make sure the other fellow can tell
    they have been eliminated.

    Details that could throw doubt on your interpretation must be given, if you know
    them. You must do the best you can ­­ if you know anything at all wrong, or possibly
    wrong ­­ to explain it. If you make a theory, for example, and advertise it, or put it out,
    then you must also put down all the facts that disagree with it, as well as those that agree
    with it.
     There is also a more subtle problem. When you have put a lot of ideas together to
    make an elaborate theory, you want to make sure, when explaining what it fits, that those
    things it fits are not just the things that gave you the idea for the theory; but that the
    finished theory makes something else come out right, in addition.
    In summary, the idea is to try to give all of the information to help others to judge
    the value of your contribution; not just the information that leads to judgment in one
    particular direction or another.
    Richard P Feynman”

  120. Non Nomen: There is something rotten in the State of Denmark. When an Editorial Board has admitted a paper, they cannot say at a later moment that they just regret their decision and retract the paper. Like in court proceedings new evidence is needed, e.g. shown beyond reasonable doubt that it is Stapel-work (Stapel is a former Social Psychology Professor and by this word the moderation queue can be avoided). In Lew’s case we already have Stapel-work in disguise: there is no need to make up data if you can fish everything you want from the internet. For me and some others here the question remains why Frontiers initially did not return the paper. Why did it survive peer-review?

  121. @Mindert Eiting
    Thank you for that “Stapel-Work” hint. Obviously, ithose frauds happened before, and I presume that there are many more scientific icebergs in the seas of science with 90% still under water. I am particularly satisfied that the Lewtanic has hit one of them.
    I think that lack of control makes such dubious papers possible: they do not disclose their database. Hey, Mann, keep up with the Joneses! So it is pretty difficult to prove inconsistencies or even that it is a complete phoney job. With respect to the Stapel-proceedings it is absolutely rediculous to let him go with 120 hours of community service.
    Some people -they do not deserve being called scientists- are so thirsty for fame that they’d do everything. Honesty in science? Well, I suppose McKewon, Mann et al know better…

  122. Some AGW-believers tried to defame all skeptics – for believing in conspiracy theories – with Lew’s ‘recursive fury’. In order to defend the ‘recursive fury’, the same pro-AGW-believers are seeking for a refuge in conspiracy theories, which the Frontiers in Psychology declared now unsubstantiated? Oh, the irony.

  123. I predict that Lewandowsky will write a “peer reviewed” paper attacking Frontiers using an internet survey.

  124. Anthony, good catch — wow that’s wild, looks like Dana N. really trimmed down his comment! I approve of him wanting to avoid the more adolescent and whiny elements he likes to vent, although there should be an indication that the comment has been edited. I didn’t know that users could edit their comments at RetractionWatch?? Maybe he asked the Mod. to do it when he realized he had embarrassed himself (again). Maybe RW edited the comment to conform with their comments policies?? (still, it should be indicated when that has been done)

  125. Lewandowsky has now issued a response on some points in a blog article at Shaping Tomorrow’s World:

    Revisiting a Retraction

    Revisiting a Retraction

    By Stephan Lewandowsky
    Professor, School of Experimental Psychology, University of Bristol
    Posted on 7 April 2014
    ============================================================
    ============================================================

    I’m not going to enter any speculation on the accuracy of his narrative or the legal points regarding a document that is not (yet) public. Right now it’s still in a “he said, he said…” impasse without sufficient information in the public realm.

    All I can say is that if Lewandowsky’s account is accurate then the journal may well need to scramble to defend its behavior. On the other hand, most of us have learned not to rely upon anything that issues from Lewandowsky, so we will have to see what other information emerges.

  126. Stephan Lewandowsky post here

    http://www.shapingtomorrowsworld.org/rf3.html

    ends with the words


    This brings into focus several possibilities for the reconciliation of Frontier’s contradictory statements concerning the retraction:
    First, one could generously propose that the phrase “did not sufficiently protect the rights of the studied subjects” is simply a synonym for “defamation risk” and that the updated statement therefore supports the contractually-agreed statement. This is possible but it puts a considerable strain on the meaning of “synonym.”
    Second, one could take the most recent statement by Frontiers at face value. This has two uncomfortable implications: It would imply that the true reason for the retraction was withheld from the authors for a year. It would also imply that the journal entered into a contractual agreement about the retraction statement that misrepresented its actual position.
    Third, perhaps the journal only thought of this new angle now and in its haste did not consider that it violates their contractually-agreed position.
    Or there are other possibilities that we have not been able to identify.

    This lengthy post of apologetic character makes things worse, not better. It seems to be a red herring.
    Quote Lewandowsky: >>the phrase “did not sufficiently protect the rights of the studied subjects”<<, who himself quoted the Frontiers.
    A mere „threat“ is not enough. If every threat to search justice in court would become real, the courts would be completely booked out until kingdom comes.
    But it means that means someones right(s) must have been infringed in a manner that might carry the risk of some successful legal action against the Frontiers. That's the legal reason. Bad enough. But if there is only a risk, how large is that risk, what are the chances of getting away scot free in court or, lets say, with a black eye? The Frontiers must have sought good legal advice to come to a conclusion. The conclusion, obviously, was that the infringements are so severe, that the chances of losing in court are larger than those of winning.
    A. There was an infringement of the rights of others. Responsibility for that is with Lewandowsky et al . There are the legal reasons
    B. The control mechanism in form of peer reviewing were circumvented or did not work. There are some academic reasons
    C. In consequence, that means a considerable risk for the publishers of losing if it goes to court. Frontiers was negligent, to say the least.
    Result: bad science plus bad peer review plus editorial incompetence means heavy trouble. Or Frontiers had been the obedient, willing servant of a man who had an axe to grind with somebody. It took some time to realize that…
    Consequence: opuscule retracted and Lewandowsky now obfuscating and bumfuzzling with all his waning might but still with considerable trouble ahead. It serves him right.

  127. no – probably not Dana revising it.. one or 2 comments have been adjusted by the blog owners……
    (without any notification) , toned down sensibly?-

    my – oh that’s enough, is that you Rob Painting of sceptical science,

    turned into “Rob’s bio from Skeptical Science”

    that sort of moderation is a little unwise (despite good intentions, I feel) , as one person has pointed out

Comments are closed.