When we announced the results of the lawsuit between Michael Mann and Tim Ball, one of the commenters, Serge Wright, came up with this witicism that was a twist on the old phrase “Play the ball, not the man”, applicable when it comes to arguments. Wikitionary says:
To object to someone’s argument by attacking the argument itself instead of them or a facet of their personality; to avoid or make the opposite of an ad hominem attack.
Too often in the climate debate, people get attacked personally; such is the case of Mann vs. Ball.
When I sent the play on words to Josh, he found humour in it, as always:
Be sure to buy him a beer for his work (Josh, not the Mann).