The new contract sport: Foilball

It seems that doing maneuvers to foil Freedom of Information Act requests has become the new contract sport of both sides of the pond. UEA and Sir Muir Russell have the British team, while Mann and UVA have the American team.

In England, we have revelelation from David Holland that appear to demonstrate that UEA and Sir Muir Russell’s “independent inquiry” wasn’t so independent after all, and that even though what looks like a solid basis for a contract, and thus FOI actionable due to public funds being used for the contract, got sidestepped by the magic of “appointment”. The emails that were not destroyed at the request of Muir Russell suggest otherwise.

Bishop Hill has the details here: http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2011/4/14/when-is-a-contract-not-a-contract.html

Meanwhile back in the USA, Mann and UVA are starting their own Foilball team, bringing in other team members such as:

Alliance for Justice

American Association of University Professors

American Civil Liberties Union of Virginia

Center for Inquiry

Climate Science Watch

Council of Environmental Deans and Directors

National Coalition Against Censorship

National Council for Science and the Environment

People For the American Way

Robert O’Neil, Director of the Thomas Jefferson Center for the Protection of Free Expression

The Ornithological Council

Union of Concerned Scientists

Story here:

UVA: Climate research investigation raises 34,000 documents, call for academic protection

by Brendan Fitzgerald, April 14th 02:43pm

In a letter sent to UVA President Teresa Sullivan—during her inauguration week, no less—a group of civil liberties and science organizations urged UVA to preserve the academic freedom of its faculty while it deals with requests for former climate scientist Michael Mann’s e-mails and research. [Timeline here.] 

The letter here: Letter-to-UVA-President-FOIA (pdf)

Let the games begin.

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22 thoughts on “The new contract sport: Foilball

  1. Amazing, isn’t it how all the usual suspects are attracted to the side of the folks most likely to be on the wrong side of the law…

  2. go with the obvious…..
    They said their science is robust, and then won’t let anyone see it………….

  3. “In England, we have revelelation from David Holland ….”
    A small point, but….
    Whilst the UEA is in England, that should start “In the UK ….”
    It’s the national (UK) gummint that’s involved.
    I know it’s confusing, but England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland make up the UK.
    Each of those countries sends members to the UK parliament (legislature).
    Then it gets complicated. Scotland, Wales, NI have their own parliaments, each of which has different powers. (Don’t ask)
    Note that England doesn’t. Which is a source of annoyance to an increasing number of people.
    Referring to the UK as England frequently upsets many of the non-English inhabitants.

  4. Funny they where not concered about civil liberties when pro-AGW organisations came asking for e-mail details from their staff , I guess that was ‘different’.

  5. It’s a lovely irony that, “Robert O’Neil, Director of the Thomas Jefferson Center for the Protection of Free Expression,” is on record plugging for Michael Mann, who has been consistent in suppression of information, persistent in obscurantism and blockade, immediate in accusatory rhetoric, and all-around violator of scientific ethics.
    To coin a folksian neologism, Robert O’Neil’s participation is like the hen guarding the foxhouse.

  6. Solent, there is no government in the UK. All you’ve got now are EU administrators. They happen to be elected by people living in the European province of Great Britain, but even that may change.
    It’s a huge tragedy in the making. The UK has been the font of civil democracy, personal freedom, and rule of law. Its culture is unique and is now under threat of foreign extirpation. Its loss would be a terrible and its piecemeal erosion is awful to behold.

  7. Back in the day, at certain nerdy get togethers the game used to be: spot the federales.
    Apparently they went to great length to, at least, try and look inconspicuous and not the fool.
    Now, at, so called, political get togethers, we try and spot the climatic ologists, but it is no fun, when, from out behind a cloud comes, the sun blinding everyone, because of the apparent inclusion of non-invited, and now very easily spotted, death ray self-protected-by-tin-foil challenged people who, of course, starts shrieking about, wait for it, evil oil empire and global warming, and should it be this warm in direct sunlight??!

  8. There’s something VERY WRONG with the science when they have to hide things from their critics.
    True science should be open to both friend and foe for review.

  9. Fraudsters and felons who have shown a flagrant disreguard for the law, the rules and the rights of others are most zealous and adroit in the pursuit of their rights and are shamelessly indignant that they might be called to answer for their behavior. Such an august and complete list of defenders reflects the severity of one’s malfeasance. A mere murderer just calls in his lawyer.

  10. What worries me about this is that this is also delaying the release of the FOIA information because if the FOIA should get fulfilled someday, there might have been some ‘sanitizing’ of the information.

  11. As we all learned with Watergate (funny how the ‘…gate’ nomenclature has taken off over the decades) – “follow the money”.
    Nothing has changed from that adage. The irony is those on the left are now the crims.
    If you follow the money you see it leads every time to a paid research fellowship or departmental grant to investigate warming (never to investigate the climate or weather) as a first stage. The granter is always a government agency wanting support for their big new tax – eliminating the evil of Carbon. Carbon being an element absolutely essential to life – be it the tiniest mono-cellular life form or the largest trees and mammals – talk about a conspiracy is way underplayed?

  12. A an Englishman with a brand new Green Card, I find it hard to know which nation is the worst. Same old crap. Still, it will all come out in the end.

  13. DocMartyn says: April 14, 2011 at 5:53 pm. Same old crap. Still, it will all come out in the end.
    Doc, might you rephrase that? As mess cooks used to say in the Services, when offering an unpalatable meal, “If you don’t eat, you don’t crap and if you don’t crap, you die”.

  14. When the political pendulum swings back the other way far enough, the foilballers will be playing thier new game Under the Bus.
    The Politicians who used them will disavow any knowledge of their actions.

  15. View from the Solent says:
    April 14, 2011 at 3:29 pm
    Sorry, old chap, but it is your own fault (using “England” instead of “UK”).
    Even though the Union Jack etc. was adopted in 1801, Nelson’s flag signal in 1805 was “ENGLAND expects that every man will do his duty”.

  16. That they work so hard to make sure no one they do not approve reviews the documents tells us all we need to know: they are hiding a scam.

  17. @Pat Frank (April 14, 2011 at 4:00 pm):
    Well said. It’s not the country I wanted to grow old in.

  18. Alexej Buergin says:
    April 15, 2011 at 1:02 am
    Sorry, old chap, but it is your own fault (using “England” instead of “UK”).
    Even though the Union Jack etc. was adopted in 1801, Nelson’s flag signal in 1805 was “ENGLAND expects that every man will do his duty”.

    Not only Vice Admiral of the White Lord Horatio Nelson, 1st Duke of Bronté in 1805, but even in 1938 British Foreign Secretary Sir Robert Anthony Eden, 1st Earl of Avon, used the E-word.
    “Let our first thought be of our duty to England. Let it be our desire and determination …that we shall so acquit ourselves that the name of England shall be honoured and respected. …England would wish, I believe, to see prevail throughout the world those conditions which she has tried and is trying to create in her own land, an equal opportunity for all to develop to the full their own individuality without let or hindrance. We have found that one essential condition of such progress is the rule of law. This being so, what must be our aim? We must first wish to see the rule of law between nations acknowledged. We must wish this because it is a condition of civilized life between countries. We must, therefore, also wish justice to be done by just means. This must make us readily accept, as trustees of a great part of the earth’s surface, the duties of trusteeship, the need of understanding, of toleration, and of generosity. The England of to-day stands for something positive, the creation at last of a comity of nations in which each can develop and flourish and give to their uttermost their own special contribution to the diversity of life”.

  19. Pat Frank says:
    April 14, 2011 at 3:53 pm
    I just sent this to the Thomas Jefferson Center for the Protection of Free Expression:
    The fact that your institute is lobbying for UVA to fight against the FOIA requests for Michael Mann’s data, e-mails and anything else related to his “science” while at UVA is enough to make Thomas Jefferson turn in his grave. Science is about transparency and sharing all details with other scientists so that they can try to prove you wrong. If they can’t, they bolster your case and help prove you correct. Denying others access to that information is something Thomas Jefferson would have fought against. In fact, it was because the “establishment” was fraught with this kind of corruption and misuse of power that Jefferson and his cohorts became the founders of America. Shame on you. In supporting Michael Mann, you are deliberately tarnishing Thomas Jefferson’s name. Your support is unwarranted, truly disgraceful, completely wrong, and morally bankrupt.

  20. Bob Diaz says:
    There’s something VERY WRONG with the science when they have to hide things from their critics.
    How very true – something that should be shouted from the rooftops.

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