Steve McIntyre – one of the top 50 people who matter

I wish to add my congratulations to the chorus of them. Steve has been an inspiration to many climate skeptics, yours truly included. I’m honored to call him a friend. – Anthony

A man for all (climate) seasons? Source:  UK Telegraph

by James Delingpole

Stephen McIntyre: total bloody hero.

Stephen McIntyre: total bloody hero.

Steve McIntyre has been named one of the 50 People Who Matter by the left-wing journal New Statesman. He comes in at number 32. (Below a motley crew including Osama Bin Laden, Hugo Chavez, David Cameron, Julian Assange, Barack Obama, and the like). (H/T Roddy Campbell)

Here’s what his entry says:

When the mining expert Stephen McIntyre challenged the basis of climate science on his blog, he became a figurehead for many climate-change sceptics.

His subsequent involvement in the 2009 “Climategate” controversy at the University of East Anglia (he was referred to in the hacked emails over 100 times) emboldened the sceptics further and changed global opinion: the number of people who believe man is responsible for global warming has fallen.

The influence might not be positive, but there’s no doubt he has shaped the debate.

But what’s much more interesting than the entry – because, let’s be honest, who really gives a toss what some dreary, ailing left-wing rag thinks  – is the response to that stupid, priggish suggestion at the end that “the influence might not be positive.”

I hope the moron who wrote it is now squirming with embarrassment. He/she/it certainly should be after reading the thoroughly disgusted comments below.

Says the first:

“The influence might not be positive…”

So, McIntyre is wrong? May I ask for your evidence? Oh do tell. Put your money where your mouth is. Put your reputation on the line.

And the second:

If, by challenging the basis of climate change science, Stephen McIntyre has been influential in changing global opinion on the HYPOTHESIS of anthropogenic global warming, then it is a very certain positive influence. For policy makers to take drastic action based on an unproven hypothesis is absurd and Stephen has shown, by auditing or attempting to audit the climate scientists’ work, that the science is not at the level of accuracy, repeatability, and certainty required as the bases for taking such actions.

And the third:

We all owe Steve a debt of gratitude for shining some light on the obfuscations of climate science, before even more millions are wasted on what may well be a non-problem.

On and on the comments go – all of them positive. If these are regular New Statesman readers – and presumably at least some of them must be – then it affords yet another fascinating insight into how even those on the left are decreasingly convinced by the case for Man-Made Global Warming theory.

Full story at A man for all (climate) seasons?

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59 thoughts on “Steve McIntyre – one of the top 50 people who matter

  1. Sometimes, without even being asked, a crusty old sheep dog or bedraggled, greyhaired, crusty old shepherd steps out of nowhere to save a flock of wayward sheep. A thousand thanks Mister McIntyre. Indeed, a thousand thousand thanks, Mister McIntyre.

  2. Now I know how to get in the main body of a Watts Up With That Post. 😉
    I wrote the second comment quoted. I was incredulous that the article asserted that Steve McIntyre’s “influence might not be positive,” but, then, to those who are basing actions on the unproven hypothesis of anthropogenic global warming, meddling by auditors is likely not seen as a good thing.

  3. “If these are regular New Statesman readers – and presumably at least some of them must be – then it affords yet another fascinating insight into how even those on the left are decreasingly convinced by the case for Man-Made Global Warming theory.”
    Some of them might be, but presumably the majority of commentators will have been unleashed from the echo chambers of Bishop Hill, Climate Audit and now, here.

  4. The comments at New Statesman say all you need to know about Steve McIntyre. A man of honesty, integrity, attention to detail, seeker after the truth and the patience of a saint.

  5. Going through the comments on the left-leaning New Statesman and over 90% are highly supportive of him. It seems there are a lot of leftist sceptics out there. In years to come he just might be nominated for a Nobel Prize having withstood ad hominems and vitriol poured on him despite denying he is a AGW sceptic – he’s just sceptical of data. Watts might also get a nomination. :o)

  6. Tim Williams says: at 1:25 pm “echo chambers”
    Such were the halls of the University of East Anglia until the hush fell over the place. Now the only echo is that of CAGW going over a cliff.

  7. This is what honesty and integrity get you.
    Dishonesty, lack of scientific integrity, working to derail the scientific process, screwing over the peer review process and attempting to deceive the public gets you the Hockey Team and CRU & Associates.
    Great work Steve.
    Now if only that rumour about you being a Leafs fan could be proven wrong 🙂

  8. Anthony – you are tops on MY list (my brain explodes of CA), but apparently #51 on theirs.
    It must be satisfying as hell to have such a huge impact on this ‘debate’ (which actually – due to your efforts – is turning INTO a debate). Without Surfacestations effort – we would be nowhere.
    Congrats to you too –
    Dave.

  9. To be recognized by those that would be your enemy can be the sincerest form of recognition.
    Congratulations Steve.

  10. James D. is probably mistaken that the comments in support of Steve M. came from their regular readers. Many I suspect followed the link from Climate Depot and then were so incensed by the snide final comment that they were moved to immediately defend one of our heroes.
    How could anyone ‘in the know’ even suggest that Steve is anything but a force for a positive influence in open science?

  11. Tim Williams says:
    September 28, 2010 at 1:25 pm ………………………..
    Did you notice the strenght of this echo?
    I won’t even try to compare it with the noise (or echo if you will)created by the ” hockey team” having practice on the hockey ring without spectators ( you know……, these top secret hockey tricks)

  12. Perhaps it is that certain people have been a little pre-occupied of late…
    Nonetheless, as a very occasional poster here and at CA & BH, may I heartily congratulate Steve on his attainment of such a position in the class of 2010.
    Well Done!
    KJ

  13. What’s great about Steve is that he has absolutely no stake in the matter, save the desire to see something done correctly. He’s managed to effectively create an exposed argument for sloppiness with a concerned and educated member of the public from the people who are supposed to be the ones setting the standard. That is difficult to do.

  14. paulw says:
    September 28, 2010 at 12:54 pm
    James Delingpole is an extremist (note also typo in his name).
    Oh Paul…surely you can do better than name calling….JD is apparently in good company with somewhere north of 120 extremists giving accolades to Mr McIntyre in the New Statemen comments section – many times more than anyone else on the Top 50 list.

  15. It takes a great man to stand out against the tide and speak the truth. Fortunately Steve hasn’t had to go through quite as much as men like Gallileo. Very well done Steve.

    • Dr. A. Burns: The juxtaposition today of two articles on WUWT says a lot. On one hand we have Steve’s recognition as a bearer of truth, on the other we have James Hansen’s recognition as an arrested scientist. Both are speaking out for what they believe in. The dichotomy is ironic.

  16. Steve McIntyre was / is one of my first inspirations into being a skeptic. I’d started to look to see ‘what caused the global warming’ and only slowly realized my assumption that it existed was wrong. Then hit writings by Steve McIntyre, Chris Horner, Ross McKitrick, Lomborg. Found WUWT. Then the die was cast…
    The leveraged impact of those folks, and this blog, is incredible.

  17. The paean of praise and the wide recognition of the significance of McIntyre’s contribution renders any further addition redundant.
    Nevertheless I’ll add both my praise and admiration for him and his co-author, McKitrick; both are true gentlemen of honour and integrity.
    “Cometh the hour, cometh the man” and aren’t we all glad that this has proven to be so.

  18. Parliamentary politics in the UK is pretty much left of all the US mainstream political parties. Even the Conservatives would probably be positioned in the US as somewhat-libertarian Democrat. What you might call extreme left is, I suspect, fairly middle of the road here. I am making some assumptions here but I’m sure you’ll correct me if necessary!
    So, probably, a good proportion of Brit sceptics are left of centre in their broader political views – I am and so are other sceptics that I know. Our system is very different from yours but that doesn’t stop us thinking rationally or mean we are any the less interested in truth, scientific integrity, probity in public service, honesty in politics, Enlightenment values or, because we like the National Health Service, are thus somehow prepared to be led by the nose by the narcissists and psychopaths who dominate politics and, apparently, science policy all over the world.
    I’m sure many of the commenters were pointed to the article by Jim Delingpole but that doesn’t make the scale of the comment response any less significant. First, the supportive comments haven’t been modded out. What’s *most noticeable though is that there are almost none of the usual CAGW trolls (at least so far). This is very unusual, as anyone who tries to enter debates at the Guardian will know. That is what surprised me the most – have they been moderated or have they run for cover? The New Statesman has its full share but they are silent, which is a refreshing change. Viva Steve!

  19. OT (but relevant to British msm science reporting ).
    A nice parody of science articles here (at the Grauniad no less). Amusing and ironic, as are many of the comments. Most unusual to find a scientific (or any for that matter) sense of humour at the G.
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/the-lay-scientist/2010/sep/24/1
    From the comments:
    ‘AdamRutherford
    27 September 2010 10:38AM
    This is a quickly fired off ill-thought-out-comment after reading the standfirst, in which I state an ignorant but unshaekable belief of mine that is only partially related to the article, which I haven’t read, and a passive aggressive ad hom to the author.’

  20. Steve has been an inspiration to many climate skeptics
    I’m sure you meant to say “AGW skeptics”. Right? Isn’t that what we’re skeptical of?

  21. Because of people like Steve McIntyre, we (Down Under) have narrowly avoided the most economy-threatening legislation ever.
    Because of people like Steve McIntyre, we have hope in the goodness of humanity.
    Because of people like Steve McIntyre, we continue to fight…daily…in the hope that goodness and right “can and will triumph over might.”
    Thank you Steve McIntyre! (And the people like him.)

  22. Very refreshing read after the piece on NASA’s very own narcissist, who is, at least, not on the list.
    OTOH, that list also includes Lady Gaga.

  23. His role was pivotal and a stitch in time. To think of the damage that could have been done, had he not put his best foot forward, and called the rigged game out on the rug.
    I tip my retired hard hat to you, pard. They won’t be keeping us in the dark and feeding us garbage anymore.

  24. “a crusty old sheep dog or bedraggled, greyhaired, crusty old shepherd [that] steps out of nowhere to save a flock of wayward sheep” can also be hot, hot, hot!

  25. Joshua Corning says:
    September 28, 2010 at 5:15 pm
    I am still upset one of my living heroes is a friggin Canadian.

    Believe it or we will pickle you! We are fighting the good fight up here and will brook no detractors.

  26. Hi Anthony. I just took Judith Curry to task for using the term: what the heck is a climate skeptic? At face value it’s someone who isn’t sure whether there’s something such as climate, perhaps? I don’t think Steve M qualifies, in any case, for this classification. He may be a data skeptic, or a method skeptic, or a political skeptic, but I think he would prefer data auditor.
    I guess his site, “climate audit”, isn’t quite named right either. He doesn’t audit climate, he audits those who presume to audit climate…

  27. I would agree that comparing Steve with Martin Luther is an appropriate one. It may seem a little extreme, but I think history could mark his work as being the major “tipping point” not only in climate science, but also science in general.
    He is not a climatologist and yet probably knows more about this topic than many self described experts and has successfully held his own. Probably the most important lesson to learn here is not to be intimidated by experts that don’t have answers to uncomfortable questions. KEEP PRESSING FOR ANSWERS!

  28. One of the best mining experts I ever met was a Canuck, one Mike Henrick.
    Learned a lot, but like all good things, the time was shorter than I knew.

  29. I suspect the good Mr McIntyre does will outlive that done by Lady Gaga!
    (Nice to see the boss in at number 15 though)

  30. In the not-so-distant future, the lexicon will change.
    Whenever a malfeasant group is exposed by diligent and unerring analysis, they will find themselves to have been “McIntyred”.

  31. As he did for E.M. Smith, Steve McIntyre lighted my way to WUWT. I was already a mild skeptic, but reading (or rather, attempting to decipher) his articles in the Financial Post was like a gulping a glass of water after crossing a desert. I’m a huge fan of his stoic and unwavering quest for scientific truth, and will forever cherish his discovery of the Enchanted Larch of Yamal, the Upside Down Graph, and other treasures unearthed from the netherworld of CAGW. Forget the Nobel – a new prize should be created to honour him – perhaps a “Galileo Prize” for perseverance in keeping science honest in the face of adversity.

  32. Us mere mortal sceptics will never know the difficulties Mr Mac has been, and is, going through.
    Books will be written about him once the dust settles.
    I hope he has a long long healthy life to see the fruits of his labours, though I suspect he doesn’t care about that. I for one will surely get great satisfaction in seeing his vindication and elevation to global hero status.

  33. McIntyre is irrelivant in the grand scheme of things in the world.
    LOL at him having even an iota of influence approaching that of our Lady Gaga.
    He is worshiped by a small minority of people who inhabit obscure blogs on the internet.
    Just dust in the wind.

  34. Now as to why he was nominated for this distinction, is more due to his association with influential think tanks in the U.S. who probably had *cough* some input into his being placed on the list 🙂

  35. Why he matters,
    Stephen McIntyre, B.Sc. Mathematics, University of Toronto (1969), Graduate Scholarship, Mathematical Economics, MIT (1970), PPE, Oxford University (1971)
    Corrections to the Mann et al (1998) Proxy Data Base and Northern Hemisphere Average Temperature Series (PDF)
    (Energy & Environment, Volume 14, Number 6, pp. 751-771, November 2003)
    – Stephen McIntyre, Ross McKitrick

    The M&M Critique of the MBH98 Northern Hemisphere Climate Index: Update and Implications (PDF)
    (Energy & Environment, Volume 16, Number 1, pp. 69-100, January 2005)
    – Stephen McIntyre, Ross McKitrick

    Hockey sticks, principal components, and spurious significance (PDF)
    (Geophysical Research Letters, Volume 32, Issue 3, February 2005)
    – Stephen McIntyre, Ross McKitrick

    Proxy inconsistency and other problems in millennial paleoclimate reconstructions (PDF)
    (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Volume 106, Number 6, February 2009)
    – Stephen McIntyre, Ross McKitrick

  36. I’ve met Steve three times (twice in London, once in Toronto). He’s an old math nerd who wants to find out for himself how climate science is done. And it turns out to be worse than previously thought.
    Steve wouldn’t have had nearly the impact that he had if his opponents had been competent or ethical.
    I’m not sure about the Nobel Prize, but recognition by mathematicians and especially statisticians is overdue.

  37. I remember when I first heard of the McIntyre and Mckitrick paper. Steve has come far since then. Truly a great man standing out amongst us regular men. He has always been very humble, and amazingly persistent.
    He has really raised the Skeptical movement up.
    Thank You Steve.

  38. In fact I think if you graphed the population of the skeptical movement it would be a hockey stick.
    With the blade of the stick happening right after Steve came on the scene.

  39. I’m not sure I understand the focus on temperature reconstructions. It seems like it was always a relatively minor part of the evidence supposedly supporting AGW. If you really want to take down AGW, you need to do a lot more than fixate on tree ring data. For example, find another explanation for the warming that has occurred in the historical record since the 70s.

  40. “Cliff says:
    September 29, 2010 at 12:49 am
    I’m not sure I understand the focus on temperature reconstructions. It seems like it was always a relatively minor part of the evidence supposedly supporting AGW. If you really want to take down AGW, you need to do a lot more than fixate on tree ring data. For example, find another explanation for the warming that has occurred in the historical record since the 70s.”
    How about perfectly natural variation for starters? You know, the stuff that’s been happening since the earth had weather and causes such things as ice ages and interglacial warm periods that were warmer than the 20th century ones (Roman, medieval etc)

  41. Steve’s recognition as a bearer of truth, on the other we have James Hansen’s recognition as an arrested scientist. Both are speaking out for what they believe in. The dichotomy is ironic.
    Anthony,
    The difference is that one has the ears of politicians and media reporters and paid by government support and the other (Steve) is not.

  42. Truth indeed rather alleviates than hurts, and will always bear up against falsehood, as oil does above water. – Miguel de Cervantes

  43. I’m not sure I understand the focus on temperature reconstructions. It seems like it was always a relatively minor part of the evidence supposedly supporting AGW. If you really want to take down AGW, you need to do a lot more than fixate on tree ring data. For example, find another explanation for the warming that has occurred in the historical record since the 70s.

    The reason is the Hockey-Stick graph was the prominent graphic in the IPCC Third Assessment Report and it appeared in Al Gore’s movie,
    1. IPCC TAR Summary for Policy Makers
    2. Al Gore’s ‘An Inconvenient Truth’
    Prior to this it was widely accepted that the MWP was warmer than present, thus undermining the claim that the recent warming is unusual. If the argument is not important than the proponents of hockey stick reconstructions would not waste so much time desperately trying to defend it.
    Alternate explanations have been proposed,
    Unstoppable Solar Cycles (Video) (10min)
    Cosmoclimatology: A new theory emerges (PDF) (Danish National Space Center)

  44. Harvey says:
    September 28, 2010 at 10:38 pm
    McIntyre is irrelivant in the grand scheme of things in the world.
    LOL at him having even an iota of influence approaching that of our Lady Gaga.
    He is worshiped by a small minority of people who inhabit obscure blogs on the internet.
    Just dust in the wind.
    ————————————————————————————
    Dust in the wind? How apropos!
    The smallest speck (Steve’s cogent analysis) can make the mightiest machine (AGW) fall. The editors of the New Statesman seem to sense this.
    But “obscure blog on the internet?” Surely you jest? Currently number 3 on Wikio Science blogs – ahead of the paid blogger at Climate Progress and the paid scientists at Real Climate?

  45. Perhaps real praise via tip jar might be appropriate. McIntyre and Watts have donated much to our good.My thanks to both

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