Quote of the week: The link between 'defending Michael Mann is defending climate science' seems to have been broken

Mark Steyn writes:

[Tuesday] marked a not unimportant court deadline in the upcoming Mann vs Steyn trial of the century, and I wouldn’t want to let it pass without comment. Ever since this tedious suit was launched by Doctor Fraudpants in defense of his global-warming hockey stick, Michael Mann’s supporters have insisted that it’s not, as I and my fellow defendants have insisted, about free speech. Instead, as they see it, it’s about science finally fighting back against a sustained assault by Koch-funded “denialists”. This sub-headline encapsulates the general line:

Michael Mann is taking a stand for science.

Gotcha. Michael Mann is not doing this for Michael Mann, or even for Michael Mann’s science, or even for climate science. He’s doing it for science. Mann is science and science is Mann.

A few weeks ago, you’ll recall, the ACLU, The Washington Post, NBC News, The Los Angeles Times and various other notorious right-wing deniers all filed amici briefs opposed to Michael Mann and his assault on free speech. They did this not because they have any great love for me, but because their antipathy to wackjob foreign blowhards is outweighed by their appreciation of the First Amendment – and an understanding of the damage a Mann victory would inflict on it. After noting the upsurge of opposition to Mann, Reuters enquired of Catherine Reilly (one of his vast legal team) whether there would be any amici filing pro-Mann briefs:

I asked Reilly if the professor would have any supporting briefs next month when he responds to the defendants in the D.C. appeals court.

“At this point, we don’t know,” she said.

Ms Reilly was a pleasant sort when I met her in court over a year ago, but she struck me as a formidable opponent. So I naturally assumed that the above was what what the political types call “lowering expectations”. As I wrote:

I would be surprised if Mann didn’t have any supporting briefs. I was in court when Ms Reilly’s genial co-counsel made his argument for Mann, which was a straightforward appeal to authority: Why, all these eminent acronymic bodies, from the EPA and NSF and NOAA even unto HMG in London, have proved that all criticisms of Mann are false and without merit. So I would certainly expect them to file briefs – and, given that Mann sees this as part of a broader “war on science” by well-funded “deniers”, I would also expect briefs from the various professional bodies: the National Academy of Sciences, the American Physical Society, etc. As pleasant as it is to find my side of the court suddenly so crowded, I’m confident Mann will be able to even up the numbers.

Well, yesterday was the deadline, and not a single amicus brief was filed on behalf of Mann. Not one. So Michael Mann is taking a stand for science. But evidently science is disinclined to take a stand for Michael Mann. The self-appointed captain of the hockey team is playing solo. As Judith Curry wrote last month:

The link between ‘defending Michael Mann is defending climate science’ seems to have been broken.

As yesterday’s deafening silence confirms. If you’re defending Michael Mann, you’re not defending science, or defending climate science, or theories on global warming or anything else. Defending Michael Mann means defending Michael Mann – and it turns out not many people are willing to go there.


More here: http://www.steynonline.com/6565/the-lonesomest-mann-in-town

This development is very telling, and is the moment that the tide of consensus receded and left Mann out standing in his field.



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This makes me smile 🙂

John Francis

Mark Steyn is a truly brilliant man with a ferocious interest in truth and freedom. The world will owe him glory when this is over, although he is well-admired by many already.

Tom in Florida

Even rats know when to jump off a sinking ship.

M Seward

That’s because rats are a higher order rodent compared to cagw alarmists. They are less of a pest generally and even likeable ( cunning as an outhouse rat etc). Hopefully the alarmists will all just go quietly and commit mass cultural suicide a la Disney Lemmings and just go get real jobs cleaning dishes and wiping geratiric arses in old folks homes or something closer to (but still way above) their true standing in the community. (apologies to dish washers and arse wipers everywhere).
I read a sci fi book recently which referred to a class of its characters as being educated above their IQ. Doesn’t that say it all about Dr Strangecurve and the rest of the alarmoswarm?

Historically speaking, they don’t kill as many either.


Historically speaking, they don’t kill as many either.
Of course you forget about the plague then?

My dad used to refer to them as “educated fools”. My association with many PhDs in science (let alone in English departments) confirms his diagnosis. Some fellow JDs also qualify!

Would the EDs also qualify? But the “educated” part may not for them.

Nope. Just included charlatans of all stripes. They’re always the same type.


Every rat has its Fleas

Observation from one who would know (not me):

Many wearers of Harvard MBA rings are stupid. Yet they have high paying jobs and continue to be obstacles to real managers.


Will everybody stop blaming the rats for the Black Death that killed untold millions in Europe and Asia. Firstly, the Black Death was not bubonic plague. This is a 20th century myth devised after an outbreak in Hong Kong circa 1900. The description bore a superficial similarity to those given by 14th century eyewitnesses. Other than that, the epidemiologies are totally different – the gestation periods, the fatality rate, the geographical distribution, the available vectors, etc. The Black death was a hemorrhagic virus that left its mark on our DNA. It was humans who spread it to each other, not rattus rattus.

Especially rats know when to jump off a sinking ship.

Evan Jones

They get a tingly feeling in their tails.

Thai Rogue

That causes them to go hockey stick in structure.

Evan Jones

(Well that’s what the rat told Dr. Dolittle.)


People talk about canaries in coal mines, but not many know that in underground mines, rats are the first to leave when the ground starts to become unstable, and moreover, miners are told to follow them because they always know the quickest way out.


Let us hope the judge is as intelligent as the defendant 🙂

That is GREAT news!


Me too!


(To the tune of “Brother Can You Spare a Dime”)
They used to tell me I was building a dream
And so I followed the mob
When there were graphs to fake or bucks to take
I was always there, right on the job
They used to tell me I was building a dream
Saving the Earth just ahead
Why is everyone telling me
My theory is dead?
Once I built a model, ignored the sun
Showed heat was going to climb
It failed outside the computer run
Brother, can you paradigm?
Once I saw it coming all undone
Colleagues said it’s a crime
Since loss of funding is no fun
I need a new paradigm
Once before the cameras, we looked swell
Full of that AG Warming shtick
There wasn’t a thing we couldn’t sell
And I was the kid with the Stick
Say don’t you remember? They called me ‘Man’
It was ‘Man’ all the time
I’m a believer, I’m still a fan
Say Buddy, can you paradigm?

Gary Pearse

Man oh man, inMAGICn what a quick study you are!! bravo!


The graft of grafting trees into graphs.


inMagic, thanks for a moment of laughter. Way to go!

Gunga Din

For those unfamiliar with the original…http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eih67rlGNhU

popcorn anyone?


comes to mind.


Although there appears to be no one willing to stand with Mann in this xase, there were so many climateers who were very quiet during the height of Mann’s version of science and through his smears. There were so many who sat back knowing what was going on and said nothing!
Thankfully, the internet has a long memory, despite attempts to change this.

Mr Bliss

“Thankfully, the internet has a long memory, despite attempts to change this.”
I wonder how many climate scientists will be making applications to Google, in order to have their climate histories removed?


Brings to mind the old saying, “To make a friend you have to be a friend.”
It seems suing the pants off anyone with the slightest of rise of an eyebrow at your work is not a successful strategy for making friends.

Jeff Alberts

I don’t recall McIntyre or McKitrick being sued.


They might just be his buds, then.

Gunga Din

But they spotted the cracks in the hockey stick before it became an established political lever, before Catastrophic Anthropomorphic Global WARMING was fully used used as a PR tool.
Now Mann and his lawsuits are cannon fodder used to silence the science.

I do not recall who posted the link first – But whoever you are, thank you! It was well worth the read. (I read it earlier when someone posted a link in a comment).


Later in the column Steyn notes:

We incline more to the Judith Curry way of doing things here, so I’m happy to post Mann’s latest feeble legal pleading at SteynOnline. There’s not much of interest in it, except in the section on page 21 headed “Jurisdiction”, where Dr Mann has withdrawn his objection that “an appeal of the denial of a motion to dismiss under the Act does not meet the stringent requirements of the collateral order doctrine”. If that makes your eyeballs bleed, it’s to do with the fact that, at the time the District of Columbia passed its anti-SLAPP law, it was not clear whether a ruling under the law was immediately appealable. If that still makes your eyeballs bleed, well, join the club: we’re essentially a test case for a new law whose full scope the DC Appeals Court has yet to pronounce on. But I read Mann’s reversal of his earlier position this way – that he’s desperately hoping the DC judges will rule that the anti-SLAPP is immediately appealable and then they’ll toss the whole case out, and get him off the hook of his own vanity before he has to spend any more time holed up with M J Murphy [Big City Lib] and David Appell.

He adds further that no matter what the outcome of the above legal argument, his countersuit will still be in effect.
Is Mann losing his resolve?


At 1:52 PM on 17 September, pottereaton had asked:

Is Mann losing his resolve?

Why not? And it’s about time he did. After all, it’s been more than seventeen years since he lost his scientific integrity.
Sold his birthright for a pot of “message.”

Evan Jones

Sold his birthright for a pot of “message.”
Har! Har!

Gunga Din

Perhaps his supporters forget to set their alarm clocks?
Or maybe all the other alarms they’ve got going drowned it out and that’s why he’s now adrift?

In my best Don Rickles voice:
“First you destroyed the hockey stick and now you go after the hockey puck!”
Friends of Science are no friends of Mann.


Bully for Mr. Steyn.
Mann has been conspicuous in the many tells of his behavior.
Winding his version of climate science-as-political hardball will be a tough. His suit should have been tossed from day one, and the fat lady has certainly not started singing. But maybe she is warming up.

Shawn from High River

Here is a chance for all the do-gooder scientist types and organizations to finally come out and destroy all of us “d” words with their sciency stuff ! Bring it!!!!


When does he try on the bloody glove?

If Obama had a son, he would look like little man?


But I thought there was a consensus. I wonder why Al Gore didn’t file an amicus brief.


Pamela Gray

I sang along! Badly…but I did it. Graduated from HS in the early 70’s so you must be patient. It was hard not to say “sleepy Jean”. Don’t even try to write a song and replace the lyrics in “Yellow Submarine”.

Ben U.

In the town where I was born
Lived a Mann who wailed at seas
And he told us of his life
In the land of climate dreams
So we wailed for the UN
Till we swelled the ranks of Greens
And we lived above the plebes
With our green tambourines
Listen while we flay
Our green tambourines!
Climate change, song change, course change!
Whence this antarctic ice?
Where’s that confounded warmth?

Ben U.

Nice! But Mark Steyn rhymes with wine (as the WSJ informed an inquiring mind many years ago).

The Mighty Quinn

Will no one stand with Piltdown Mann?

Mike Smith

I almost feel sorry for Mann.
Oh wait, he’s 100% responsible for bring this grief down upon himself. On reflection I don’t feel sorry for him at all.


For people as malicious, dishonest and self-serving as Mann is, it is impossible to feel sorry for. It would be like feeling sorry for rats that carried plague.

In defense of the rats, it was not their intention to harm to the vast majority mankind.

Jon P

Not even Nick Stokes?


Nope, not even Nick Stokes. Seems that our former poster-boy is a lost cause (which would not deter our good friend Nick but there are simply too many lost causes to pursue)

Evan Jones

Hmm. He is no worse than most, and better than some.


He still post over at Climate Ect. Seems a lot more reasonable the he was a few years ago. More willing to hear other peoples arguments and better at making his own from scientific facts rather then appeals to authority. Certainly better then many of the ‘climate faithful’.

There is plenty of data available to generate amicus briefs in support of Mann using RegEM.

The fact that Mann is not in jail for the great harm to science and people that he has done makes me very sad and disappointed. But this suit gives me a little hope. (yes I know it is only a civil case — but still)


He should be in jail for misappropriation of public funds – for producing fraudulent science.

Richards in Vancouver

You’d like to see him in Mannicles?

Leon Brozyna

One day Dr. Mann will vanish into the obscurity he so richly deserves … meanwhile, we’re still stuck with his wit and wisdom …

Gary Pearse

“the tide of consensus receded and left Mann out standing in his field.”
This is precious! When I had a farm near the tiny town of Bearbrook, Ontario, the local store was owned by a wag that could split you up laughing on every visit. He told me one day that my neighbour Bill had won the Nobel Prize. Going along with it I asked what he got it for and he replied: “Because he was outstanding in his field!” I’m sure Steyn intended this very fine crack.

Peter Miller

Some people, especially those with something to hide, like the UK’s infamous Robert Maxwell, cannot help themselves from being serial litigants.
Somebody states the truth and immediately out come Sue, Grabbit and Runne with their legal writs to suppress that truth.
Not surprisingly, no one wants to stand by Mann in this case. Why should any real scientist want to be associated with him?

D.J. Hawkins

Well if they’re not available, there’s always Dewey, Cheatum, and Howe.

I think Dr. Mann has employed Kickham, Harter, and Indagroyne.

Steve R

Mann is toxic. Seems that everyone understands except Mann.


Not everyone, Pennsylvania State University doesn’t seem to understand.

Research dollars and football revenues.

But even they did not file a brief.


If John Grisham needs a plot idea for his next law- based best seller……..


This post prompted me to check to see what Mann was saying on his Facebook page. I wish I hadn’t. His latest show of heart-warming humility and self-effacement was this keeper:
“Honored to be named by Science as one of “The top 50 science stars of Twitter” ”
Surely “/s” is not needed?

Mann has to self-promote and self-congratulate because no one else will do it for him.


Wow a star of Twitter, that certainly proves his science is correct. Maybe soon we will see his papers published in TMZ.

bit chilly

my refusal to become a twit has been vindicated.


Science star of twitter??????
That would be any science that can be done in 120 characters or less?


hes a really GOOD example of a TWIT!

Have a look at the twitter hashtag #AskDrMann
– Mann and Penn state seemed to think it would be a great idea to encourage people to ask him questions in public on twitter. It didn’t go very well for them.


Almost makes me wish I had a twitter account to ask Mann what he believes an acceptable carbon footprint is and what his carbon footprint is. Would that get me blocked?


He has created another hockey stick, this time a skeptical response one, with #AskDrMann already at almost 3,000 skeptical Tweets!


I am so glad that Steyn shared this heartwarming news and put it in perspective with his earlier fears that various Mann-supporting organizations would come out of the woodwork at some point.
Is Mann still supposed to give a talk in Bristol in the near future? I’ve been away from WUWT due to work pressures lately and am wondering if there are any plans afoot for an informal gathering of climate realists in Bristol?

Henry Galt

Next Tuesday. See you there 🙂
Hopefully Anthony also.


Thanks, Henry, but bad news for me as I’m en route to Norway on Tuesday. So close and yet so far….


Henry, I should clarify my response below – I’ll be in Bristol from Saturday through to Monday night or Tuesday morning before continuing on to a conference in Norway. I’m sorry I’ll be missing the rest of you in Bristol. I would have enjoyed meeting fellow skeptics.

Henry Galt

Dear vigilantfish,
Have fun wherever you are. This saga has become similar to all ‘end of the world’ scenarios. Most folk have a sneaking suspicion it could happen on their watch but, the odds are very much against it (based on our history. YMMV)
I expect it to run and run so we may have many chances of meeting at meetings 😉
Until then, take good care.


That graphic is priceless. I hope parents are aware of it and keep it to show him later in life.


You do not celebrate your win until you crossed the line , although Mann being throw under the bus, in an attempt to save themselves and their pay cheques, will be a good site to see . Its not happened yet. Like his other court cases , I expect some form back down followed by a ‘poor me out gunned by the evil fossil fuel conspiracy’ claim but I hope I am wrong and his massive ego finally gets the better of him.
Meanwhile the real high stakes game is now the 21st , if they bust on this one the alarmists will have little hope for Paris which may be the last times one of these UN ‘parties ‘ of this size which has any hope of any impact at all. Although I understand the loss that would be to the high end hotel and restaurant trade and the bottom line of private plane charters , I am sure ‘something ‘ will be found that requires their services ,at tax payers expense, again .
Meanwhile the IPCC, like all UN bodies, can carry on living long after its purpose or head has been cut off , has nothing really dies in UN land it merely changes the name of its sub-group committees policy report.

I said when this thing started that Mann’s supporters would evaporate. It is one thing to throw out one liners to the media, quite another to state fact in a court of law where being held accountable for what you say (perjury, counter suit etc) has potentially serious (and direct) consequences. The rats are not yet deserting the cagw ship, but one of their own is overboard and the rest are going to avoid falling in the drink with him by stretching out a paw… er, hand.

Alan McIntire

Nit pik:
“The link between ‘defending Michael Mann is defending climate science’ seems to have been broken” is bad English- It’s not a complete sentence . You should have worded it
“The link between defending Michael Mann AND defending climate science seems to have been broken”, or
“The link between Michale Mann and climate science has been broken, you can defend climate science without defending Michael Mann”.
[Remember: The writer here (WUWT) is quoting Mark Steyn who is quoting J. Cuury’s remark in her blog. .mod]


The “is” in “defending Michael Mann is defending climate science” is a linking verb…and that link is broken. 😉


What I found repugnant about ‘Mann’ was his legal threat against the satirical video released just after “Climategate” by the “Minnesotans for Global Warming”.
Allthough they had made satirical videos of other notable people like Al Gore,’Mann’ was the only one threatening Legal Action. Just being a bunch of ‘Music Makers’ with no money They had to ‘Pull’ the video to avoid litigation.
The original Is here,Enjoy.

Kenneth Simmons

Thanks D.I. for sharing, I never got to see the video until now.


“I would be surprised if Mann didn’t have any supporting briefs.”

I’m sure he’s confident he won’t need any supporting briefs. What good are they when they’ll just be hidden underneath the suit of new clothes he borrowed from the emperor?


Sorry old chap you meant you wanted that amicus curiae document THIS October?


Oh my, things did not go well for the good Dr. today on Twitter. Not only does he have no Amici, it appears he also has no friends!

Alan McIntyre:
No, it is correct as written and it would not convey the same content otherwise.

Does Michael E. Mann in his lawsuit have delusional perceptions of himself as a heroic modern day Spartacus freeing CAGW advocating scientists from oppression? He appears to imagine that he is a modern Spartacus who is out to single handedly free CAGW scientists from any criticism by those he thinks of as evilly oppressive skeptics. In search of amicus briefs his lawyers were in search on anyone standing up for Mann. His lawyers surely asked among past supporters the equivalent of “WHO IS SPARTACUS?”.
In response to Mann’s lawyer’s search for amicus briefs no one stood in a gesture of support or protection of Mann to say “I AM SPARTICUS”.
Notably none of his ‘noble’ cause’s intellects stepped forward. Nor did any of the groups*** that Mann imagines have investigated and exonerated him step forward with amicus briefs.
Nor did even the Union of Concerned Scientists, with its legal funder Mandia, give an amicus brief.
*** The groups Mann imagines investigated and exonerated him are:
– the NSF
– the EPA
– the Muir Russell Inquiry (commissioned by UEA)
– the Oxburgh Panel Inquiry (commissioned by UEA)
– not HMG’s DECC
– not HMG’s House of Commons Science and Technology Committee
Reply: Well PSU did exonerate him, they just skipped the investigation part. ~ ctm, violating mod policy by identifying myself. D’oh! Good to see yah. I’ll be here all week.

: )
Nice to know you still do duty all along the watchtowers.
Re: PSU – In a certain sense, very ineptly done whitewashing impugnes whoever was whitewashed.

Evan Jones

That was the movie version, of course. Spartacus died bravely fighting in the front lines. He received some grudging admiration for this from contemporary historians.

James Schrumpf

Re: the Spartacus comparison, it’s as if the other rebel slaves said nothing, but everyone rolled their eyes in his direction and silently pointed.

James Schrumpf on September 17, 2014 at 4:54 pm
Re: the Spartacus comparison, it’s as if the other rebel slaves said nothing, but everyone rolled their eyes in his direction and silently pointed.

– – – – – – – –
James Schrumpf,
: )
. . . and also maybe they winked at each other then checked WUWT on their smartphones to see the latest Mannian follies.

Kenneth Simmons

Next up, Al Gore-justice will be served!

Ten Reasons Global warming suits fisher men.
1) The seas are rising. = More water means more fish Yee-ha!
2) Higher sea levels will mean more turbulent seas. = I’ll need a bigger boat. Yee-ha!
3) There will be more rain events= I’ll need a bigger boat with an enclosed bridge. Yee-ha!
4) There will be more droughts on land. = No droughts at sea so I can still go fishing. Yee-ha!
5) We will have to cut production and reduce to a four day week = Three days a week fishing. Yee-ha!
6) Cost of diesel fuel goes up. = With the three day weekend I’ll switch to a bigger slower boat with smaller engines and still save fuel. Yee-ha!
7) The prices of homes will increase as more land is flooded. = I’ll live on the boat. Yee-ha!
8) The climate will get hotter. = I’ll get a bigger, slower, boat with smaller engines an enclosed bridge and air-conditioning. Yee-ha!
9) Unemployment will increase. = More fishing buddies with free time on their hands and crew who work for nothing. Yee-ha!
10) With a shorter working week the wife and her friends will spend more time on the boat. = OK there are only nine reasons. Bugger!

“1) The seas are rising. = More water means more fish Yee-ha!”
And, the fish being higher means you don’t have to bend over to pick them up.

We will see. His lawyers are up for sanctioned for false pleadings. . Him,, not so much yet, depending on how he responds in court. So Steyn needs to get him there. I imagine Mann will use every possible legal wiggle not to land there. And, I will gladly contribute legal knowledge and finances to those who will essay that Mann does not evade that ultimate comeuppance, ever. Endgames have cost consequences, Always. Right. Let the endgames begin.


It’s worse than Mann probably realizes. Not only is he falling back to earth with a thud, when Gore, Obama, Hillary, Kerry et al are standing around naked when their AGW cloaks fall off they’re going to need someone to blame their humiliation on. They are never going to say “I was deliberately deceiving you”, best they’ll be able to muster is “I was wrong, but I was the victim of a certain scientist’s fraud”.


“It’s worse than Mann probably realizes. Not only is he falling back to earth with a thud, when Gore, Obama, Hillary, Kerry et al are standing around naked when their AGW cloaks fall off they’re going to need someone to blame their humiliation on. They are never going to say “I was deliberately deceiving you”, best they’ll be able to muster is “I was wrong, but I was the victim of a certain scientist’s fraud”.”
LTJ, I believe the first aggrieved party will be Branson. It’s his money, not the public’s, and I don’t believe they are going to shame him into throwing it into a fraudulent hole. They will be lucky if he just fades away from AGW, instead of hitting back – hard.


Stop it !! Can’t bear to imagine Hillary Clinton standing around naked. “I did not have sex with that woman!”

mark l

It comes with great pleasure to see Mann pay the price for being a bully and his arrogance. I hope this case plays out to the fullest. The warmist crowd has been sticking their feet in their mouths for 20 years with proof readily available so they all are watching.

Pamela Gray

When this stuff ends up on the Late Night talk show circuit, you know the end is near. Fortunately Obama is turning out to be every bit as material rich as the opposite end of the spectrum was. The answer to the Idiot who beat the drum of “Americanistickismness”: I give you Dumbo, complete with ears, the author of “Hopinessistickness”. Where DO we find these leaders??????

Chicago! Doncha know.


This is GREAT news! Fighting the CAGW alarmists in the “court of public opinion” has always been tough because the lefty pols and the sycophantic press and the Hollywood libs and academia and the late-night talk-show blabbers were working in concert to ridicule the skeptics.
But now it’s time to stand in court, under oath, and put reputations on the line
No one deserves this lonely, silent ovation more than Michael Mann.
Hooray! Go Steyn! My favorite “undocumented alien honorary Yank”!