Why "ClimateGate" Ain't Nothing

By Chris Mooney | November 23, 2009 10:58 am

By now you’ve probably heard (New York Times, Washington Post, RealClimate).  A server at the Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia was hacked; hundreds of emails from climate scientists are now public due to this despicable act. Global warming deniers are having a field day, because in some of the emails, the scientists are acting like, you know, people. They are also acting like scientists under fire, which is what they were and are. The Climate Research Unit is headed by Phil Jones, who has been involved in the highly public and seemingly unending “hockey stick” battle–and so peering into the emails lets the skeptics and deniers once again claim there was some kind of bad science involved in this one particular study, a claim they’ve been making for almost a decade now.

Of course, none of this is at all relevant to the climate issue today. It’s a nasty, ugly sideshow. The science of climate change doesn’t stand or fall based upon what a few scientists said in emails they always thought would remain private. And as for the “hockey stick”; well, fully four years ago, in The Republican War on Science, I explained why the right was using this as a distraction from the real issues:

…although it might create good publicity, the Right’s selective attack on [hockey stick study lead author Michael] Mann’s work ultimately presents a huge diversion for policymakers trying to decide what to do about global warming. Mann points out that he’s hardly the only scientist to produce a “hockey stick” graph–other teams of scientists have come up with similar reconstructions of past temperatures. And even if Mann’s work and all of the other studies that served as the basis for the IPCC [2001] statement on the historical temperature record are wrong, that would not in any way invalidate the conclusion that humans are currently causing rising temperatures. “There’s a whole independent line of evidence, some of it very basic physics,” explains Mann.

That’s even truer now than it was in 2004, when I interviewed Mann, or 2005, when The Republican War on Science actually came out.

The fact is that no matter what a few scientists may have said in emails, we have to go to Copenhagen and deal with our warming, melting planet. That’s what matters. The rest of this is hot air, and–unless it can somehow be channeled to power a few wind turbines–it doesn’t do us or the planet any good.

Comments (196)

  1. Sorbet

    The scientists are simply acting like scientists, voicing doubts and uncertainty that however does not invalidate the basic enterprise. The deniers don’t understand the nature of science or choose to ignore it, most often the latter.

  2. John Gibel

    You need to present a much better argument when there are so many more worth while environment causes that can be funded instead of wasting the money on a theory that cannot be proved.

  3. Jeff

    Was this written by Al Gore or a ‘journalist’? This isn’t about the emails, so much as the code and data which are already proving to be a mess. In a few weeks, this ‘article’ is going to look quite foolish indeed. Was this written by a 12 year old? It’s really quite pitiful.

  4. aszabo

    Is this post serious? The information leak proves beyond any doubt what was already suspected by many, that “climate change” science has been manufactured with fraudulent models and datasets, rather than based on sound scientific practices.

    Just read some of those emails… but if you really want to get to the meat of it, then also read the top secret [formerly] programming code they used to create their climate “models.” It is riddled with errors and comments which deliberately state they are leaving this data out or skewing this calculation to get the result they want. If the media performs their proper journalistic duty and attacks this story as they should, the “consensus” will swing wildly in the other direction and gullible people can stop losing sleep over drowning the polar bears.

  5. erika hedberg

    john, you seem to lack a basic understanding of what the word “theory” means in scientific jargon. from wikipedia: “A theory, in the scientific sense of the word, is an analytic structure designed to explain a set of empirical observations. A scientific theory does two things:
    1. it identifies this set of distinct observations as a class of phenomena, and
    2. makes assertions about the underlying reality that brings about or affects this class”

    so the fact that the earth *is* warming, is not a theory. that is observable and measurable, and is a fact. the theory is how this came about, and how this will play out in centuries to come. the evidence to support the current theory is overwhelming. THEORY is not the same as HYPOTHESIS.

    john, are you aware that gravity is a theory?

    global warming is happening. the earth is getting warmer, the oceans are getting warmer, there is more CO2 in the atmosphere than there used to be, and if we do not devote as many resources as possible to finding out just how this will affect our children’s children and their progeny, our planet could pay a grave price in years to come for the inaction we are *choosing* to take now.

    john, i’m curious – what environmental cause is more important than global warming? oil exploration?

  6. Sure. It’s completely irrelevant that scientists admitted to fabricating data. Uh-huh.

  7. aszabo

    quoting erika hedberg: “john, i’m curious – what environmental cause is more important than global warming? oil exploration?”

    I’ll answer that one. THE SUN! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MWP_and_LIA_in_IPCC_reports

  8. Jon

    …a theory that cannot be proved.

    Proof is the wrong word. You don’t “prove” science. Newton’s theory of gravity has never been “proved.”

    But the case for AGW is overwhelming. There are multiple smoking guns: http://tinyurl.com/heatisonline

  9. Hilton Gray

    Erika Hedberg – you need your head read. The earth is not getting warmer – actually thats what has become apparent in these leaked emails – even the pro AGW scientists are having great diffculty seeing any warming in the last 10 years – they say so in their emails to each other – wake up chick! And smell the coffee. Global warming IS OVER. It never was man made and now the planet is going to cool significantly over the next 30 years.

  10. Migz

    Oh! So it doesn’t matter that the science is completely flawed and that they’re continuously cherry-picking the data while ruining the lives of legitimate honest scientists?

    Your whitewash FAILS! We’ll call our politicians and cut your funding, you ELITIST TRASH.

  11. Get Real...

    Spin this how you wish; the e-mails are there for all to read.

    These were not just “some scientists.” These are the leading proponents of AGW who work closely with the IPCC.

    I’ve read a vast bulk of the leaked information and this reveals:

    – Unscientific manipulation of data.
    – Deliberate withholding of data.
    – Questionable legal practices: blocking FIOA requests and the encouragement deliberate deletion of e-mails.
    – Conflict within the ranks of these scientists demonstrates there is no consensus even within this narrow group.
    – Peer review process is manipulated and loaded to only include pro AGW and therefore completely undermined.

    In what World is this irrelevant? These e-mails ably demonstrate how the science around Climate Change has been politicised, manipulated and therefore is totally meaningless.

    That’s highly relevant in our cooling world.

    The Emperor has no clothes.

  12. Wil

    This blog article disturbs me greatly. Assuming that the e-mails in question have not been modified or faked, then these e-mails are a specific, detailed admission of scientific fraud, systematic extortion, and criminal suborning of the UK’s Freedom of Information Act (correct name?). If you doubt this, then simply read the e-mails for yourself. The only evidence that could have been more damning, would be if Dr. Phil Jones had videotaped himself in the act of doing these things, and then released the videotapes to the public.

    These e-mails directly and clearly indicate that Jones and others have been knowingly and intentionally cherry-picking climate data, inventing data, hiding data, and destroying data, for years.

    These e-mails also clearly indicate that Jones and others have been using systematic intimidation and extortion towards fellow scientists, politicians, and specific board members of scientific journals, all while they themselves were perpetrating their profoundly dishonest scam. Names, dates, reasons and methods of intimidation and punishment are specifically enumerated in these e-mails.

    These e-mails also clearly state that Jones intended to destroy raw climate data, rather than open it up to the general public, and he encouraged others to do the same. And voila, this data was indeed “inadvertently” destroyed. This is a felony criminal offense in the UK.

    These activities have nothing to do with science. Jones has clearly conducted a vicious and shockingly dishonest campaign of lies and fraud, for either financial or political reasons.

    This blog has occasionally but repeatedly stated that man-made global warming skeptics and conservatives are anti-science. This is childish silliness of course, and it does not deserve any discussion. But if one is to pose as champions of pure and honest science, then one should never have posted this blog article such as this, which encourages knowingly denying that the general public has been lied to for years, by Jones and others. I submit that telling the general public to ignore specific, open admissions of scientific fraud, intentional dishonesty, and criminal subornation, is the height of foolishness and is extremely anti-science.

    As far as Dr. Jones, and possibly others, he should be immediately fired and tried on criminal charges. A commission should be established to determine what climate data was hidden and destroyed, and what past scientific conclusions had been in error, due to this profound cheating and dishonesty. Climate science must be brought back into the realm of science, wherein people can actually trust the scientists.

    If there is such a thing as man-made global warming, then scientists should discover it without lying, cheating, or using campaigns of intimidation, extortion and punishment.

  13. Jon

    In a few weeks, this ‘article’ is going to look quite foolish indeed.

    I’m waiting with baited breath for all of these 90 scientific organizations to reverse their opinions.

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

    By the way, explain to me why the Cleantech stock index going *up*?

    http://www.google.com/finance?chdnp=1&chdd=1&chds=1&chdv=1&chvs=maximized&chdeh=0&chdet=1259004240000&chddm=12754&chls=IntervalBasedLine&q=INDEXAMEX:CTIUS.X&ntsp=0

  14. Artaban

    What I find despicable is this blogpost’s blase dismissal of falsehood. True scientists have the integrity to admit what they don’t know, and the existence of confounding variables or data. Correlation does not equal causation.

    Jones and others (including the authors of this blogentry) are guilty of presenting as irrefutable dogma that which is far from “fact”. Furthermore, rather than address the substantive science at stake, Mooney and Kirshenbaum make the professional error of hoping that an ad hominem attack on “skeptics” will divert attention from the e-mails themselves. How juvenile.

    FYI, Here is one of the damning e-mails, for anyone interested in true evaluation of data:

    From: Kevin Trenberth
    To: Michael Mann
    Subject: Re: BBC U-turn on climate
    Date: Mon, 12 Oct 2009 08:57:37 -0600
    Cc: Stephen H Schneider , Myles Allen , peter stott , “Philip D. Jones” , Benjamin Santer , Tom Wigley , Thomas R Karl , Gavin Schmidt , James Hansen , Michael Oppenheimer

    Hi all

    Well I have my own article on where the heck is global warming ? We are asking that here in Boulder where we have broken records the past two days for the coldest days on record. We had 4 inches of snow. The high the last 2 days was below 30F and the normal is 69F, and it smashed the previous records for these days by 10F. The low was about 18F and also a record low, well below the previous record low.

    This is January weather (see the Rockies baseball playoff game was canceled on saturday and then played last night in below freezing weather).

    Trenberth, K. E., 2009: An imperative for climate change planning: tracking Earth’s global energy. Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability, 1, 19-27, doi:10.1016/j.cosust.2009.06.001. [1][PDF] (A PDF of the published version can be obtained from the author.)
    ***

    The fact is that we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can’t. The CERES data published in the August BAMS 09 supplement on 2008 shows there should be even more warming: but the data are surely wrong. Our observing system is inadequate.***

  15. Rmoen

    ‘Climategate’ points out the need for the United States to have our own objective, transparent ‘Climate Truth Commission’ to think through global warming.

    For twenty years I believed in man-made global warming theory, but the evidence has changed. During that period we’ve had ten years of warming then ten years of little or no warming. I blame my confusion on the United Nations for getting ahead of their facts. When they claimed CO2 drives global warming, they were more concerned about politics and funding than science. One only needs to look at their track record: UN forecasts do not fit what actually happened.

    — Robert Moen, http://www.energyplanUSA.com

  16. njs

    erika wrote:”so the fact that the earth *is* warming, is not a theory”
    actually it seems to be more of a lie than a fact
    this email hacking side-side is a distraction from the real story-
    that the claim of human-caused warming is largely a hoax

  17. Mat C

    How can you defend these “scientists” emails, as just laymen not understanding science. Now I am no scientist, but I understand when one makes a conclusion, and then finds supporting evidence, be it real or imaginary. That is not science. It is fraud. For a refresher, the scientific method is make a hypothesis, test your hypothesis, review results against your hypothesis, and make any conclusions. These emails clearly show that cart was placed before the horse and the “scientists” already had a conclusion. They then either found or fabricated the data to support their conclusion. One also needs to look at how these “scientists” were being compensated for perpetuating this bad science.

    It is sad that a fellow “scientist” defends this behavior as “you laymen just do not know what your are looking at”. How may excuses (i.e. any change, in any discipline, from someone’s assumption is now blamed on global warming.) do people need to see before they really ask themselves what the truth really is.

  18. erika hedberg
  19. Gus Snarp

    @Get Real – You’ve read “read a vast bulk of the leaked information”? What exactly does that mean? Did you cherry pick the “leaked information”? Are you unemployed? There are 1075 emails at the source I’ve found. Exactly how many have you fully read?

  20. Let me see if I have this right …. Emails surface demonstrating that the individuals most responsible for the “consensus view” about AGW have been in conspired to destroy and/or hide information subject to FOIA requests, organized efforts to block publication of contradictory scientific papers, conspired on concealing data sharing with critics and put the accuracy of their own unverified/unvalidated computer models ahead of empirical data and all you have to say is “nothing to see here”?

    And from the author of “The Republican War on Science” no less. What a joke.

  21. anon

    Colluding to delete data that is subject to a Freedom Of Information Request is both a grave violation of academic honest and actually a C-R-I-M-E.

  22. DW

    REPLY TO: “Of course, none of this is at all relevant to the climate issue today. It’s a nasty, ugly sideshow. The science of climate change doesn’t stand or fall based upon what a few scientists said in emails they always thought would remain private. And as for the “hockey stick”; well, fully four years ago, in The Republican War on Science, I explained why the right was using this as a distraction from the real issues.”

    THE REAL ISSUE IS THIS: I HAVE YET TO HEAR ONE GLOBAL WARMING ADVOCATE EXPLAIN TO ME HOW MAN-MADE ACTIVITY IMPACTED THE ICE AGES AND THE GLOBAL WARMING THAT TOOK PLACE CENTURIES AGO. THE UGLY SIDESHOW IS THIS INSANE ATTEMPT TO SUBSTITUE COAL FIRED POWER PLANTS AND COW FARTS FOR THE POWER OF THE SUN, VARIATIONS IN THE EARTH’S ORBIT, ETC. THIS ARTICLE IS AN INSULT TO CRITICAL THINKERS EVERYWHERE.

    WITH REGARD TO PRIVATE CONVERSATIONS, I BET RICHARD NIXON ALSO THOUGHT WATERGATE WAS “PRIVATE,” AND BILL CLINTON THOUGHT HIS BJ’S FROM LEWINSKY WERE PRIVATE. THEIR PRIVATE CONVERSATIONS SIMPLY ALLOW US TO SEE THEIR TRUE COLORS SHINE THROUGH.

  23. Richard

    The real issue is the code. Read the HARRY_READ_ME.txt file. It exposes the code written by CRU to be a fatally flawed abyss of utter chaos. The results generated by it are utterly unreliable.

    Any person who cares for truth in science will join together to DEMAND a professional review of all the code used to generate the graphs used by the IPCC. The sin-qua-non of science is transparency and reproducibility.

    We are talking about changing the world economy! We must not base our conclusions on confused and unverified code written by amateurs.

  24. Sir Franklin Humphrey

    Here’s my thing. Even if global warming isn’t “as bad” as it’s hyped up to be, what’s the big deal? So we spend all this time and money on new technology that decreases pollution, that’s a good thing even without global warming. So, really, no harm no foul.

    It’s kind of like paying bills a month in advance. Even if you didn’t need to, it’s good to have the security.

  25. hmmm.. wow

    Here’s a direct link to the Leaked E-mails: http://www.anelegantchaos.org/cru/

    Time to do some reading…

  26. Eric

    Erika – Let me see if I have this right….you ask me to “step back and look at a larger chunk of time,” by referring me to the NOAA information which is based on the work of who? Oh yes….Mann, Jones, Briffa, etc….the very scientists whose credibility is now under suspicion. Have you got any more, uh, reliable sources?

  27. Gus Snarp

    @anon – Hacking into a server and stealing files is a crime too.

  28. Doug

    Damaging information about corporations, politicians or the military is leaked and it’s called “whistle-blowing.” When damaging information is released about activists, universities or UN agencies it’s called “hacking” and constitutes an “illegal crime.”

    Let me ask you this: If instead someone had accessed the email system of Exxon-Mobil and found evidence that Exxon scientists were deliberately cherry-picking data to show argue that a distillate blend was safe for the environment, would you argue that we should ignore it because the email leak constituted a crime? Answer honestly please.

  29. Doug

    Warning, the following comment is snarky in nature, and I’m sure it will be awaiting moderation in about five minutes’ time.

    I find it amusing that, by using a double negative in his post title, Chris Mooney intimates that “ClimateGate” is something. While these emails may well have been (read: almost certainly were) surfaced by someone with an agenda counter to the author’s, if the data have been manipulated in any way in order to show a desired result, the results as published are subject to a great amount of skepticism. I find myself wishing that I didn’t have a job so that I could pore over them in detail.

    Ain’t nothing, indeed.

  30. Guy

    I think all this is just going to backfire on the deniers. It goes to show that they have no real science to back up their denial-ism so they have to stoop so low as to commit a crime of hacking/stealing information. They are cherry picking through these emails just like they do the climate data.

    I’m sure if a professional, non-biased auditor went through them one by one and put each in context they would show mostly scientific integrity and cross referencing to verify results. It’s not some grand conspiracy for people to work together to solve problems.

  31. Doug

    Hey, no fair having another Doug posting. The two preceeding comments are by different Dougs. Guess I’ll be Doug2 from now on.

  32. kingpablo

    Ericka-

    You are generating circular references, as you keep referring to articles created by people within this node. Thats another major problem with this IPCC / CRU group. NONE of their work has been peer reviewed beyond the group. NONE of their work has ever passed scrutiny of ANY statistical department in ANY university. NONE of these guys are statisticians, yet they’ve extrapolated global warming based on a handpicked sample of 12 trees on a remote russian peninsula. Mann has been beat up for years by PHD statisticians, yet still refuses to admit his extrapolation techniques are incorrect.

    This is the greatest amount of groupthink ever perpetuated as science.

    It’s just this simple. Release the raw data. Release the mathematical models used to generate your results. Have someone OUTSIDE YOUR GROUP test your methodology and results. IF they aren’t able to duplicate your results, or your methodology is flawed, then you don’t really have a result. Thats always been the issue. If these guys believed in their facts, they’d be releasing the data as fast as they could. INSTEAD they have “Lost” data, hidden results, tinkered with the data and so on. Science should be about the facts, not the opinions.

    The real problem here is that none of these results have ever been tested, BUT they are using untested results to write GOVERNMENTAL POLICY. Thats the problem.

  33. anonymous

    The Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change is the leading body for the assessment of climate change, established by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) to provide the world with a clear scientific view on the current state of climate change and its potential environmental and socio-economic consequences.

    The IPCC is a scientific body. It reviews and assesses the most recent scientific, technical and socio-economic information produced worldwide relevant to the understanding of climate change. It does not conduct any research nor does it monitor climate related data or parameters. Thousands of scientists from all over the world contribute to the work of the IPCC on a voluntary basis. Review is an essential part of the IPCC process, to ensure an objective and complete assessment of current information. Differing viewpoints existing within the scientific community are reflected in the IPCC reports.

    The IPCC is an intergovernmental body, and it is open to all member countries of UN and WMO. Governments are involved in the IPCC work as they can participate in the review process and in the IPCC plenary sessions, where main decisions about the IPCC workprogramme are taken and reports are accepted, adopted and approved. The IPCC Bureau and Chairperson are also elected in the plenary sessions.

    Because of its scientific and intergovernmental nature, the IPCC embodies a unique opportunity to provide rigorous and balanced scientific information to decision makers. By endorsing the IPCC reports, governments acknowledge the authority of their scientific content. The work of the organization is therefore policy-relevant and yet policy-neutral, never policy-prescriptive.

  34. kingpablo

    I also believe that NATURE is doing itself a disservice by not acting like a scientific journal in this case, and acting like a political TOOL. IF lying about data sets and setting world policy is not “relevant to the climate issue today” then you guys are clearly not interested in science as well and this should be a magazine of religion, and not science. The planet has been heating and cooling forever. Extrapolating man caused warming from conifers and tree rings is dubious at best. AND the models that were predicting massive warming have failed with the new cooling trend.

    Perhaps we need to step back and look at the whole thing again before we write world policy based on modern day phrenology.

  35. Fishy

    I’m not going to read the all the emails, and I’m not a programmer so I can’t accurately go through their code, but the the email copied above says nothing to me… because one place is colder, the whole Earth is colder? Honestly you believe that? Changing temperature (lower or higher) will change wind patterns, is that really so hard to imagine?

    As for people saying it’s been warming up since the ice ages, that is true, no doubt. The problem lies in the rate it has been warming, specifically in the ice caps.

    Even if you don’t go for global warming, what about the increased CO2 that has caused huge alge blumes the size of Texas in our oceans? Is changing the acidity of our oceans? Making certain weeds grow faster (read allergies and poison ivy-the last 5 years have been getting wrose for allergies)? None of these thing mean anything or make an economic impact?

  36. toasterhead

    26. Eric Says:
    November 23rd, 2009 at 1:00 pm

    Have you got any more, uh, reliable sources?
    __________

    Have you?

    I’ll wait.

    Didn’t think so.

  37. erika hedberg

    i already posted the link, did you not bother to read it?? here it is again: http://ipcc-wg1.ucar.edu/wg1/Report/AR4WG1_Print_SPM.pdf

  38. DW wrote:

    THE REAL ISSUE IS THIS: I HAVE YET TO HEAR ONE GLOBAL WARMING ADVOCATE EXPLAIN TO ME HOW MAN-MADE ACTIVITY IMPACTED THE ICE AGES AND THE GLOBAL WARMING THAT TOOK PLACE CENTURIES AGO. THE UGLY SIDESHOW IS THIS INSANE ATTEMPT TO SUBSTITUE COAL FIRED POWER PLANTS AND COW FARTS FOR THE POWER OF THE SUN, VARIATIONS IN THE EARTH’S ORBIT, ETC. THIS ARTICLE IS AN INSULT TO CRITICAL THINKERS EVERYWHERE.

    WITH REGARD TO PRIVATE CONVERSATIONS, I BET RICHARD NIXON ALSO THOUGHT WATERGATE WAS “PRIVATE,” AND BILL CLINTON THOUGHT HIS BJ’S FROM LEWINSKY WERE PRIVATE. THEIR PRIVATE CONVERSATIONS SIMPLY ALLOW US TO SEE THEIR TRUE COLORS SHINE THROUGH.

    Hi, DW. Welcome to the Internet. Writing in all caps is called ‘shouting’. It diminishes the readability of text, and therefore the likelihood that the arguments contained therein will be persuasive.

  39. erika hedberg

    @ kingpablo:

    the IPCC is the leading body for assessment of global climate change. It is a scientific body that reviews and assesses the most recent scientific, technical, and socio-economic information produced worldwide relevant to understanding climate change. It does not conduct any research. Thousands of scientists from all over the world contribute to the work of the IPCC voluntarily. Review is an essential part of the IPCC process, to ensure objective and complete assessment of the current information. Get your facts straight.

  40. erika hedberg

    Kingpablo, the IPCC is the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, it is a scientific organization to which thousands of scientists worldwide contribute their research. It is peer-reviewed. You are apparently living in the dark ages!

  41. Jon

    Thats another major problem with this IPCC / CRU group. NONE of their work has been peer reviewed beyond the group.

    Almost not worth the keystrokes to debunk. But, off the top of my head, the US National Academy of Sciences reviewed it in 2001. Not that there aren’t plenty of others.

  42. Jon

    By the way, this game is called “say anything.”

  43. Jon

    Because denialists appear ready to blurt out anything, no matter how baseless.

  44. TTT

    Whenever any news of any kind from any source whatsoever discusses AGW, the tinfoil-hatted conspiracy kooks say that of course it firmly disproves global warming and is the final nail in the coffin, and what about the Little Ice Age and growing figs in Greenland, and Algore is fat. Rinse and repeat.

    This latest nontroversy is just more of the same. Despite the typically over-emotive hysterics of the denial crowd, these emails show no trace of scientific fraud, falsification, or corruption of the peer-review process. We see Dr. A ask Dr. B how he thinks the policy community would react to a certain technical development, then they go back and forth on how different axes values can best present their data, then Dr. C calls right-wing bloggers a dirty word. Somewhere in all that, global warming is disproven forever, again, but only until the next time anybody writes anything about it. The deniers have no understanding or data necessary to discuss this topic, but in their every action they have vindicated Pavlov.

  45. Jon

    Still waiting for the Cleantech stocks to crash on this “news” –NOT.

  46. Doug2

    Here, let’s throw some gasoline on the fire:
    http://wattsupwiththat.files.wordpress.com/2009/07/tremonton-ut-looking-south.jpg?w=510&h=381
    This is a climate monitoring station, and the quality of data that it provides is germaine to this discussion as well.

  47. Sorbet

    All denialists on this site; if tomorrow you hacked into private correspondence between evolutionary biologists who expressed their skepticism about certain fine details of evolution, for instance those related to exact classification of species or the Cambrian explosion or whatever else, would you claim all of evolution was therefore wrong and the basic premise was fundamentally flawed? I think not.

    Grow up and learn some science. Healthy skepticism is its hallmark.

  48. Jon

    I think troll feeding is over, Doug. Play with your fire elsewhere.

  49. erika hedberg

    doug2, your photo is the back entrance to a building… what on earth is that supposed to prove?

  50. TTT wrote:

    This latest nontroversy is just more of the same. Despite the typically over-emotive hysterics of the denial crowd, these emails show no trace of scientific fraud, falsification, or corruption of the peer-review process.

    Really? From the emails I’ve read online, there were concerted efforts to delete information subject to a FOI request, data alteration to “hide the decline” in temperatures, a “Nature trick” to falsify published data, and a decision to block global warming skeptics from publication in peer-reviewed journals. Are you saying that these emails are forgeries or misinterpreted?

  51. Sorbert wrote:

    All denialists on this site; if tomorrow you hacked into private correspondence between evolutionary biologists who expressed their skepticism about certain fine details of evolution, for instance those related to exact classification of species or the Cambrian explosion or whatever else, would you claim all of evolution was therefore wrong and the basic premise was fundamentally flawed? I think not.

    I’m not a denialist, but if major evolutionary biologists admitted to fabricating data and hiding contrary data from public inquiries, then I’d say that the case for evolution would be impaired.

    Grow up and learn some science. Healthy skepticism is its hallmark.

    My point exactly. Which is why scientists on both sides of the debate should make all data publicly available, and the work of people who engage in academic fraud should be regarded with great skepticism.

  52. Richard

    I am astounded that the alarmist do not find the HARRY_READ_ME file alarming!

    It is a 700KB text filed filled from beginning to end with alarming statements about the absolute corruption of the CRU database and codebase. Here is a TYPICAL example:

    The problem is that the synthetics are incorporated at 2.5-degrees, NO IDEA why, so saying they affect particular 0.5-degree cells is harder than it should be. So we’ll just gloss over that entirely ;0)

    ARGH. Just went back to check on synthetic production. Apparently – I have no memory of this at all – we’re not doing observed rain days! It’s all synthetic from 1990 onwards. So I’m going to need conditionals in the update program to handle that. And separate gridding before 1989. And what TF happens to station counts?

    OH **** THIS. It’s Sunday evening, I’ve worked all weekend, and just when I thought it was done I’m hitting yet another problem that’s based on the hopeless state of our databases. There is no uniform data integrity, it’s just a catalogue of issues that continues to grow as they’re found.

  53. DW

    John from #39. I understand the internet ediquette, I just stare at computers so much my eyes hurt and it’s easier to more quickly distinguish between quoted text and mine. I’ll add a disclaimer; guess I’m an internet rebel LOL.

    RESPONDING TO:

    41. erika hedberg Says:
    November 23rd, 2009 at 2:28 pm
    Kingpablo, the IPCC is the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, it is a scientific organization to which thousands of scientists worldwide contribute their research. It is peer-reviewed. You are apparently living in the dark ages!

    AT LEAST ONE LEAKED EMAIL FROM THE GUARDIAN UK TALKED ABOUT IPCC AFFILIATED SCIENTISTS BLACKBALLING A CERTAIN JOURNAL BECAUSE IT DIDN’T TOW THE ANTHROPOGENIC GLOBAL WARMING LINE. THE FACT THAT THEY ARE CONNECTED WITH GOVERNMENTS MEANS ONLY THAT THEY’RE EVEN MORE SUSSEPTIBLE TO POLITICAL PRESSURE.

    I’M NOT SHOUTING, MY EYS JUST HURT.

  54. toasterhead

    51. John Says:
    November 23rd, 2009 at 3:25 pm

    Are you saying that these emails are forgeries or misinterpreted?

    __________

    Yes. When you take small pieces of a conversation out of context and spin those quotes to fit your agenda, that’s “misinterpretation.”

  55. bilbo

    Wow. The denialism is strong with these commenters.

    I’m with Mooney – this is much ado about nothing…well, actually much ado about a very, very illegal nothing. On the several sites I’ve seen where this is touting as some kind of death-blow to climate science, I’ve yet to see any actual damning evidence from the emails. Michael Mann’s methodology in his Nature paper is referred to as a “trick.” So what? The methodology stood the test of peer-review and hasn’t been retracted since. Non-argument. Another scientist waxes poetic about predicted and observed data not matching exactly. So what? Welcome to the world of science, denialists. Even cancer research is full of such contradictions.

    Until we start seeing published, peer-reviewed science retracted because of this hack, there’s nothing to it.

  56. toasterhead, from what larger context to you interpret the emails to be innocent of academic fraud?

  57. Richard

    In response to 36. Fishy Says: November 23rd, 2009 at 2:17 pm

    Even if you don’t go for global warming, what about the increased CO2 that has caused huge alge blumes the size of Texas in our oceans? Is changing the acidity of our oceans? Making certain weeds grow faster (read allergies and poison ivy-the last 5 years have been getting wrose for allergies)? None of these thing mean anything or make an economic impact?

    ======

    This is a perfect example of the imbalanced view propagated by AGW alarmists. Nature does not distinguish between “weeds” and all other plants. CO2 is plant food – it will GREEN THE PLANET. It may also cause temperatures to rise – maybe a lot, maybe less, or maybe not at all depending on other feedback mechanisms such as clouds formed by water vapor (far and away the primary greenhouse gas). The point is that any intelligent discussion must include BOTH the positive and negative possibilities. I do not see any healthy balance or skepticism in the AGW crowd. It looks like pure brainwashed one-sided religion to me in which all dissent is squelched by any means necessary. And this conclusion is greatly confirmed by the knee-jerk rejection of the overwhelming mountain of evidence of corrupted data and code revealed in the HARRY_READ_ME file.

  58. toasterhead

    56. bilbo Says:
    November 23rd, 2009 at 4:02 pm

    On the several sites I’ve seen where this is touting as some kind of death-blow to climate science, I’ve yet to see any actual damning evidence from the emails.
    __________

    Because there isn’t any. Like every science denier argument, it’s all spin and no fact.

  59. Wil

    We should not be debating man-made global warming here (for the hundredth time), especially since the e-mails in question put all scientific pronouncements on this topic in very serious doubt.

    Our focus should be on the issue at hand, which is the profound dishonesty and brutal tactics that many of Dr. Phil Jones’ e-mail flat-out admit. The damning statements in these e-mails are crystal clear and unusually specific. There is no question about his meaning or intent (unless the e-mails have been faked).

    It is also very clear that some of the above comments were made by people who have not read these e-mails. They could not possibly have read these e-mails, and still believe what they apparently do believe.

    I would think that even people who are completely convinced that man-made global warming is real, would take some interest in proof that they have been cynically lied to and used like chumps, for several years now. And I wonder how they would feel if a group of scientists secretly (and successfully) conspired to ruin their career (or their parent’s, or their spouse’s), just because they disagreed on some scientific issue.

  60. bilbo

    Wil –

    Let’s consider the extreme case that Dr. Jones’ emails (specifically, your interpretation of them) are true, and he has falsified data.

    How does that even begin to disprove the (literally) [b]thousands[/b] of peer-reviewed scientific articles – most by completely independent authors that have never met or corresponded with one another – providing proof and evidence for AGW that now span over two centuries?

    I’ll answer that for you: it doesn’t.

  61. bilbo

    Excuse my terrible HTML-ing.

  62. bilbo

    And replace “centuries” with “decades.” i’m on a roll today….

  63. K

    I am stunned by the apologists at this site. Is this a science magazine or a website for donating to Al Gore?

    The IPCC projections have been wrong. The data feeding their models has clearly been manipulated. The scientists involved conspired to defy a FOIA request and pervert the peer-review process. They have hidden their data and their techniques. Could there be a reason?

    Exactly what will it take for you AGW believers to begin to think that there just might be an issue here?

  64. Passerby

    -Because there isn’t any. Like every science denier argument, it’s all spin and no fact

    A point of honesty Toaster and others. Have you seen those emails? Has Mooney seen those emails? How many on this site have seen the evidence? Then how do you know there’s no evidence? The same goes for the shrill deniers on this site who also haven’t seen the evidence. All you gentlemen (and a few ladies) are clamoring without looking at the evidence yourself.

    A good scientist withholds judgement in the absence of evidence. That is why I have refrained from commenting on these matters. I simply don’t know if the evidence is enough to cast doubt on climate change because I haven’t read the emails. However I do suspect (and merely suspect) that the deniers are wrong, since a few emails should probably not debunk a lot of other consensus.

  65. toasterhead

    57. John Says:
    November 23rd, 2009 at 4:05 pm

    toasterhead, from what larger context to you interpret the emails to be innocent of academic fraud?
    ____________

    The preponderance of evidence behind the science of climate change. A couple of scientists from one institution deciding how to respond to a media inquiry is not fraud.

  66. Sorbet

    John, “fabrication” is a very strong word. It basically means you have made up stuff. How do you know the data has been fabricated? All I can see until now is skepticism about certain parts of the data and some debate about its exact nature. Such things happen in science all the time. It’s hardly tantamount to “fabrication”.

  67. The preponderance of evidence behind the science of climate change. A couple of scientists from one institution deciding how to respond to a media inquiry is not fraud.

    One could argue that there’s a clear preponderance of evidence for anthropogenic global warming, but it does not logically follow that such evidence stands against charges of scientific fraud by these scholars. These are two separate issues.

    If a scientist fabricates data that happens to be correct, it does not mean that he has not engaged in fabrication.

  68. toasterhead

    68. John Says:
    November 23rd, 2009 at 4:49 pm

    If a scientist fabricates data that happens to be correct, it does not mean that he has not engaged in fabrication.
    __________

    Kindly point out which of the hundreds of released emails provides proof that data was fabricated.

  69. toasterhead

    65. Passerby Says:
    November 23rd, 2009 at 4:40 pm

    -Because there isn’t any. Like every science denier argument, it’s all spin and no fact

    A point of honesty Toaster and others. Have you seen those emails?
    ___________

    I’ve read a few dozen of them, on the site linked above and quoted in the comments at RealClimate. So far I haven’t seen anything damning – just people expressing opinions and deciding how to respond to inquiries.

  70. Rmoen

    anonymous and others-
    The IPCC limits their mission to “understanding the risks of human-induced climate change” (see p. 34 2007 IPCC Report). In other words, they didn’t consider the role of Mother Nature in climate change.

    America needs our own ‘Climate Truth Commission to help us understand how natural causes and man-made GHG work together to cause climate change. Since the issue is so darn important I would think everyone who has made comments here would welcome such a commission.

    — Robert Moen, http://www.energyplanUSA

  71. Jon

    It you cherry pick years worth of emails, you’re bound to find something. Whether its worth hyperventilating over is another matter.

  72. John Kadi

    Those with no agenda are rejoicing the fact that the earth may not be in trouble.

    True scientists are realizing theories based on tainted data need to be reexamined and assumed wrong in the meantime.

    Those still pushing the typical AGW nonsense are revealing their politics/funding/agendas; they are certainly not acting like scientists.

    I am relieved and happy. Not ready to buy a hummer, but certainly not rushing to swap lightbulbs for the inferior curly-qs.

    Smile!

  73. Guy

    It seems like every once in the while the deniers will find something that they think is definitive proof of AGW being a hoax, scam, conspiracy, etc. So far every time it just went to show that they are way off base. I don’t expect this to be any different.

  74. Kindly point out which of the hundreds of released emails provides proof that data was fabricated.

    Certainly. Here‘s one:

    I’ve just completed Mike’s Nature trick of adding in the real temps to each series for the last 20 years (ie from 1981 onwards) amd from 1961 for Keith’s to hide the decline. Mike’s series got the annual land and marine values while the other two got April-Sept for NH land N of 20N. The latter two are real for 1999, while the estimate for 1999 for NH combined is +0.44C wrt 61-90. The Global estimate for 1999 with data through Oct is +0.35C cf. 0.57 for 1998.

    Ethical scientists do not replace data that contradict their hypotheses.

  75. Jon

    If this is the worst stuff they’ve got (in how many years of emails?) it’s not very much.

    “Trick” could mean doing something bad. Or, it could just be a slang term for solving a problem with a statistical data set.

    In any case it doesn’t matter. AGW does not stand or fall on proxy data.

  76. Daniel J. Andrews

    Loads of words, no evidence provided. E.g. At K: how have the IPCC projections been wrong? Which projections are you talking about? Are these projections underestimating or overestimating? What level of probability did the IPCC set on these projections? What probabilities did they assign these projections? 66% likely, 95%, 99%? Which scenario are you referring to? The low ones? High ones? Middle ones? What about the error bars?

    Please tell in what section these errors are located so we can look for ourselves. Are these errors based on recent data that came in after the report was written, or did they do something wrong with the old data. If so, provide proof that a contingent of experts made mistakes with the data they had. Or provide proof that new data alters the IPCC report—be sure to do a lit search because if this new data does alter things then the climate folks will have already written about it.

    Basically, all you (and many others) are doing is parroting what someone has told you, and you (and others) haven’t even checked for yourself.

    How many have actually read the emails? How many of you have just read what someone tells you the emails say? Maybe they posted a line or two. What was the context?

    Which studies were compromised? How were they compromised? What data has been fabricated? Be specific—you will want to cite papers and data sets. What is the evidence? Where can we find it? What work is affected by these fabrications and compromises and how?

    How does any of this affect the work of the 3,000+ others whose work makes up climate science? Many of these were around and working on the problem long before the ones in the email were done school. Of the 30,000(ish) studies (peer-reviewed journal articles) that make up climate science, which ones are undone? Be specific and show us how.

    If you are certain these emails topple climate science, then again you need to show how and where and which studies. Then if AGW is a hoax you also have to come up with an explanation for phenological changes in plant (earlier bloom dates, leaf out, migration) and animals (earlier migration, spawning times, etc), glaciers melting, ice breakup earlier, earlier thaws in the arctic, arctic amplification, stratospheric warming, ocean warming. Perhaps you can explain the divergence problem for us too?

    Head on over to realclimate.org. There are two posts on the subject. First one has over a 1,000 comments and is now closed, but the second one is still open. You’ll find it is a real education just reading the comments. Follow the links that are posted. Read the comments because chances are someone has already asked your question and it has been answered.

    Many of the emails are quoted in a greater context (there, and in links) that is not given elsewhere…ask yourself why your favourite “no global warming” site would quote just a few sentences to make it sound like the email says one thing when you can read the rest of the email which indicates a completely different meaning.

    If you’re still not convinced this is more noise than substance, then please try to answer the questions above. If you can’t then you don’t have the knowledge needed to understand even the basics of climate science, so what makes you think your opinion on the subject is worth anything at all? See you over on RC.

    [hat-tip Greenfyre for questions]

  77. Daniel J. Andrews

    P.S. John…that “trick” email has been discussed many times at RC. As they point out, if it is a trick to hide data then they did a poor job of it because they published it Nature, a prestigious science journal, where anyone can see what they did. Also check what decline they were talking about. Head on over to realclimate.org and do a search for “trick” in the post with over a 1,000 comments (I’m sure someone will bring it up yet again in the new post). There are also links to other bits of info about this “trick”—you may need some math background in those instances.

    Basically, John, Jon is right. Go and see for yourself.

  78. I swear, this is going to even more damaging than the fossil of the human footprint next to the dinosaur’s.

    Or that you can’t see any stars in the Apollo 11 pictures on the moon.

    Or that Buzz Aldrin punched me in the face when I tried to debate him !!!

    You just wait …

  79. News Item: A scrawled note found wrapped in the Shroud of Turin alleges that Galileo couldn’t grind telescope lenses worth a damn. One of Jupiter’s moons may have been a double image.

    THE EARTH IS FLAT !!!11!!!

  80. If this is the worst stuff they’ve got (in how many years of emails?) it’s not very much.

    No, that’s just the email that deals with fabrication. Others involve the deliberate destruction of evidence subject to a FOI request. And others call for manipulating editorial procedures to prevent dissenters from publishing in peer-reviewed journals:

    The attachment is a very good paper – I’ve been pushing Adrian over the last weeks
    to get it submitted to JGR or J. Climate. The main results are great for CRU and also
    for ERA-40. The basic message is clear – you have to put enough surface and sonde
    obs into a model to produce Reanalyses. The jumps when the data input change stand
    out so clearly. NCEP does many odd things also around sea ice and over snow and ice.
    The other paper by MM is just garbage – as you knew. De Freitas again. Pielke is also
    losing all credibility as well by replying to the mad Finn as well – frequently as I see
    it.
    I can’t see either of these papers being in the next IPCC report. Kevin and I will keep
    them
    out somehow – even if we have to redefine what the peer-review literature is !

    Suppressing contrary views — even to the point of redefining peer review? That doesn’t sound like good science.

    “Trick” could mean doing something bad. Or, it could just be a slang term for solving a problem with a statistical data set.

    It was a trick, as the email says, to “hide the decline” in temperatures. The statistical problem that they were trying to solve was data contrary to their hypothesis. That hardly seems like sound scientific reasoning.

    In any case it doesn’t matter. AGW does not stand or fall on proxy data.

    It’s certainly true that AGW does not stand or fall on this particular scandal. But scientific fraud should not be ignored.

    Here’s a selection from another email that I just read:

    The fact is that we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can’t. The CERES data published in the August BAMS 09 supplement on 2008 shows there should be even more warming: but the data are surely wrong. Our observing system is inadequate.

    So if one encounters data contrary to one’s hypothesis, then the observation system must be wrong? That doesn’t sound like good science.

  81. John Kadi

    How COOL! A death match in the octogon! The Deniers versus the Debunked!

    It is so much fun to watch the talking points come out of the debunked. It never ceases to amaze how many ways they have of saying that looking behind the curtain is stupid.

    Oh Holy Consensus, were it not so that you were based on faked data we might all sleep a little WARMER tonight…

    Yay! the deniers have won! Mother Earth is safe!

  82. Jon

    And others call for manipulating editorial procedures to prevent dissenters from publishing in peer-reviewed journals

    Infighting at our institutions of higher learning? Over peoples’ competence at their work? What a scandal!

    Remember, these were confidential emails. If someone’s work is known to have problems, you have to handle that. If you were at a doctor’s office, and you thought there were problems with someone’s professional work, talking with your colleagues is a normal thing to do.

    You might say in some cases, it would be malpractice not to.

    Or it could be the professional was wrong in this case. But it’s hardly scandalous behavior in confidential emails, even if he was wrong about the other professionals in question.

  83. MartinM

    It was a trick, as the email says, to “hide the decline” in temperatures. The statistical problem that they were trying to solve was data contrary to their hypothesis. That hardly seems like sound scientific reasoning.

    Let me pull out the relevant passage for you:

    I’ve just completed Mike’s Nature trick of adding in the real temps to each series for the last 20 years (ie from 1981 onwards) amd from 1961 for Keith’s to hide the decline.

    Now, hoe exactly is using real temperature data to replace a temperature proxy known to contain a spurious trend over the period involved in any way unscientific?

  84. Jon

    Over 10 years in my career, I’m sure you could find emails where I had trouble with someone else’s professional work–where, say, I thought someone was wrongly promoted to a senior position. You’re even more likely to do this if the promotion took place at another organization that your organizations works with. I’m not saying it’s always right. I try to avoid this in my work and accentuate the positive. But it’s not outside the normal behavior of professionals.

  85. Suppressing contrary views — even to the point of redefining peer review? That doesn’t sound like good science.

    Actually, it is very good science. Real, actual scientists need time to do real, actual science or the science does not get done. It does not serve the advancement of knowledge if scientists have to spend most of their work-time trying to “refute” a barrage of papers from people claiming positive proof of perpetual motion, or that evolution violates the second law of thermodynamics, or the lack of “transitional fossils,” or that DDT doesn’t kill bald eagles, etc. As Monty Python said in “The Argument Clinic” — that’s not an argument, that’s just gainsaying. Gainsayers deserve no place at the scientific table, unless they can produce extraordinary evidence to support their extraordinary claims. Price of admission, bub. And this does not even touch on the more mundane but much more commonplace issue of scientists who actually have done their homework but have not produced results significant enough to merit publication and inclusion in a specific journal. That happens all the time.

  86. Nothing makes me miss the New Atheist – Accomodationist debate more than reading the idiotic, paranoic, ALL-CAPS comments of the global warming deniers.

    I don’t suppose Chris would mind telling Jerry-Coyne he’s an idiot to get the ball rolling again?

  87. Wakeup

    Now I know the very mention of Beck will send everyone frothing at the mouth, but seriously, a lot of the statements from the emails which he mentions simply cannot be interpreted differently. Delete the data?? Use a trick to hide the decline?? A scientist himself admitting that lack of prediction of stagnation in temperatures is a “travesty”?? In what possibly way can these statements be interpreted “alternatively”?

    Stop drinking the kool aid people, just accept the statements for what they are, wake up and and realize that there needs to be serious debate on this at the very least.

  88. bilbo

    A point of honesty Toaster and others. Have you seen those emails?

    Just spent quite a bit of time browsing through all those “damning” emails.

    And there’s nothing “damning” there, unless you consider questioning another person’s intelligence “damning.”

    The “‘trick’ scandal” is really nothing – as another poster has already pointed out, Mann did a pretty bad job of hiding his “trick” since it was reviewed by a set of his peers and published in one of the world’s highest scientific journals. Nothing damning there.

    The “‘redefining peer review’ scandal” is nothing, either….unless you deem joking in an email to your colleague scandalous.

    Seriously, there’s nothing in any of the email that I’ve seen (and I’ve seen all of them) that doesn’t require the reader to read into what is being said a little too much.

    And finally, even if we throw caution to the wind and say that this is some huge scandal, climate science does not rest on the shoulders of these six or seven scientists. There are (literally) thousands of other papers published by completely indpendent, different researchers using different data sets and different methods that say the same exact thing – climate change is happening, and humans are to blame.

    Anyone looking to debunk AGW with a “scandal” will have to look much, much harder than this.

  89. Brad

    erika@50:
    “doug2, your photo is the back entrance to a building… what on earth is that supposed to prove?”
    That can on a post is a weather station…in a paved parking lot…a few meters from an air conditioner exhaust. Don’t you think it might be reporting that things are a bit warmer than if it was out in a grassy field?

    Locally radio stations report two temperatures, the airport on the outskirts of the city and a downtown location. In the mornings the downtown weather station is often two to five degrees C warmer than the airport. The urban heat island is real, to use weather station data over decades as urban areas are built up a correction factor is applied to account for the urban heat island. But the correction factor is probably an order of magnitude larger than any decades-long trend in temperature fluctuation (degrees vs. tenths of a degree.)

    It’s not obvious to me that you can generate an accurate correction factor for these situations unless you have an unperturbed nearby weather station as calibration (in which case you don’t need the correction factor – just use the good data.) And lots of surface stations are almost as bad as doug2’s example.
    http://surfacestations.net/

  90. MartinM

    Delete the data?? Use a trick to hide the decline?? A scientist himself admitting that lack of prediction of stagnation in temperatures is a “travesty”?? In what possibly way can these statements be interpreted “alternatively”?

    Had you bothered to read the comments here, you’d know.

  91. Brian Too

    Tempest in a teapot. Even if every single thing that the University of East Anglia has ever done is tainted and/or wrong (truly the worst case scenario), they are but one institution among hundreds.

    When that Korean scientist was busted for fraudulent publications and evidence concerning genetic research, did that disprove the role of DNA in heredity? Nope. Did it fatally undermine stem cell research? Nope. Did it discredit every biologist who ever hung his Ph.D on a shingle? Hardly.

    Science is self-correcting. Did you know that Isaac Newton studied Alchemy for years? Did that destroy his work on gravity? Did it matter that Charles Darwin got glaciation wrong and thought crustal uplift explained some Scottish landscape?

    http://discovermagazine.com/2009/nov/darwin.s-great-blunder-why-good-for-world/?searchterm=charles darwin

    When special pleaders find even the slightest support for their case they shout their triumph to the heavens. Ironically their publicization of the situation at the University of East Anglia will simply accelerate the existing academic imperative to publish, defend and replicate evidence. Independent review and impartial oversight corrects even egregious problems, given time.

  92. bilbo

    If there’s anything that this comment thread is highlighting, it’s that the denialists here have several silly misunderstandings in common:

    1.) They think that the only evidence supporting AGW is a handful of papers published by six or seven guys from one institution. Without these papers, they seem to think that climate science falls apart.

    2.) They think that if you have an abnormally cool July at your house in Hoboken, NJ, AGW is debunked.

    3.) They seem to think that science operates in a magical dream world, performed by people who are devoid of opinion.

    4.) They seem to have no idea what science is.

    and

    5.) They seem to think that science is evil.

  93. Reverend Willie

    The blaspheming climat divil worshippers are cursed by the Lord! Whooblebooble! Oh sowabba dobba bling bloing swabba bom bobblie baloo! Jeezus is coming an’ all them doubters are gonna go to the only Hot Place in God’s creation, Heyull, that is! Goomba boomba bing bpoing balloopawoopa hallemoofla!

  94. Wakeup

    MartinM, there’s no alternative interpretation because it’s the scientists themselves who are saying all that stuff. When someone himself says that something he cannot do is a travesty, the least we can do is consider his opinion an honest one and take his word for it.

  95. toasterhead

    94. bilbo Says:
    November 23rd, 2009 at 8:30 pm

    If there’s anything that this comment thread is highlighting, it’s that the denialists here have several silly misunderstandings in common:
    ____________

    All those misunderstandings were well known long before this thread or this manufactured “scandal.” If you start from the premise that the entire scientific establishment is perpetrating a hoax, you’re going to conclude with that premise, no matter what the evidence.

  96. MartinM

    MartinM, there’s no alternative interpretation because it’s the scientists themselves who are saying all that stuff.

    Let me introduce you to a little-known concept known as ‘context.’ By its use, the same phrase can actually take on different meanings, thus rendering communication considerably more efficient.

  97. Pierce R. Butler

    Further proof of a massive global conspiratorial cover-up: in all the megabytes of hacked e-mail, there is still no sign of Phil Jones’s or Michael Mann’s birth certificate (long form)!

    (As we all – we in the know, that is – know, PJ & MM arranged to have their real birth certificates destroyed by storing them in filing cabinets in the World Trade Center on 9/10/01.)

  98. Jon

    The Beck video is a nice touch.

  99. Daryl

    Why would they keep their data secret. Republican war on science?! Science is objective, the data should be open. I stopped buying discover magazine when I got fed up with political activists (in my view fanatics like the author) masquerading as science writers.

  100. toasterhead

    101. Daryl Says:
    November 23rd, 2009 at 9:54 pm

    Why would they keep their data secret.
    __________

    Which data set are you looking for?

  101. JimR

    I’m amazed at the many comments that see nothing wrong contained in these E-mails. I suspect most of you haven’t bothered to look afraid to see what is there.

    One of the most troublesome issues is Phil Jones coordination of deleting E-mails for an active FOIA request. The FOIA request was for E-mails and documents relating to the latest IPCC assessment AR4. Jones was aware of the FOIA request, he was copied on an E-mail two days prior to E-mail Mike Mann requesting E-mails be deleted. That is the context of this E-mail that many have seen.

    “From: Phil Jones
    To: “Michael E. Mann”
    Subject: IPCC & FOI
    Date: Thu May 29 11:04:11 2008

    Mike,

    Can you delete any emails you may have had with Keith re AR4?
    Keith will do likewise. He’s not in at the moment – minor family crisis.
    Can you also email Gene and get him to do the same? I don’t have his new email address.
    We will be getting Caspar to do likewise.
    I see that CA claim they discovered the 1945 problem in the Nature paper!!

    Cheers
    Phil”

    Mike Mann acknowledged that same day that he would get with Gene Wahl. This is a clear violation of the UK FOIA of 2000.

    And for those like Erika that try to hold the IPCC up as the authority as if to end the discussion – what is so damning in E-mail communications between these IPCC authors that they felt compelled to violate FOIA laws to keep it from being seen? The IPCC is supposed to be an assessment of the state of climate science. From other Emails we know this group tried to exclude views that didn’t align with their own. From Phil Jones to Mike Mann:

    “I can’t see either of these papers being in the next IPCC report. Kevin and I will keep them out somehow – even if we have to redefine what the peer-review literature is !”

    They aren’tt about evaluating and dismissing this research, it’s about colluding to exclude peer reviewed science from the IPCC process. With the deletions of E-mails in violation of FIOA we may never know all the dirty tricks among these scientists.

    And this is touching on just one issue. The E-mails cover many issues and the data files such as the Harry_read_me.txt file are eye opening into data handling and fudging that can hardly be called science.

  102. Even if you don’t go for global warming …

    Even if you don’t go for the Earth being round …
    Even if you don’t go for Uranium have 92 protons in its nucleus …
    Even if you don’t go for that whole angles of a triangle equalling 180 degrees thing …
    Even if you don’t go for the square root of two being an infinite, non-repeating decimal …

    Hey, let’s talk about something really wacky and totally unproven: imaginary numbers !!!

    They want us to believe something is real that they admit is imaginary.

    Get it? Belief in something imaginary?

    Watts Up With That ?

  103. Lurker

    89. Wakeup Says:
    Stop drinking the kool aid people, just accept the statements for what they are, wake up and and realize that there needs to be serious debate on this at the very least.
    ————————
    OK, let’s have a debate: On one side we have an overwhelming number of independent, peer-reviewed studies, published over many years in numerous journals, all of which support AGW. On the other side we have Glenn Beck’s “gut” and some cherry-picked comments extracted from hacked e-mail correspondence.

    Debate over.

    Geez – even Dubya’s case for WMD’s in Iraq was more compelling than the hollering that’s going on here. And we all know how that turned out.

  104. Jon quoted me and then wrote in comment #84:

    “And others call for manipulating editorial procedures to prevent dissenters from publishing in peer-reviewed journals”

    Infighting at our institutions of higher learning? Over peoples’ competence at their work? What a scandal!

    Remember, these were confidential emails. If someone’s work is known to have problems, you have to handle that. If you were at a doctor’s office, and you thought there were problems with someone’s professional work, talking with your colleagues is a normal thing to do.

    I don’t follow your argument. Are you saying that subverting editorial processes is acceptable so as long as it’s kept secret?

  105. Martin M wrote in comment #85:

    Let me pull out the relevant passage for you:

    “I’ve just completed Mike’s Nature trick of adding in the real temps to each series for the last 20 years (ie from 1981 onwards) amd from 1961 for Keith’s to hide the decline.”

    Now, hoe exactly is using real temperature data to replace a temperature proxy known to contain a spurious trend over the period involved in any way unscientific?

    That’s a good point, Martin.

    I’d also like to know why the author thought it proper to “hide the decline” in his publication. That sounds a bit dishonest.

  106. bilbo

    JimR,

    Is there are reason that your “FOIA email” from Phil Jones reads absolutely nothing like any of Jones’ other emails in the hack – completely different diction, a wholly different voice, and grammar/style about 5 years less intelligent that any of the others? It reads so differently (and seems so blunt), in fact, that I question its source.

  107. Leon

    I just happened to stumble across this site and have read most of the comments. If i could throw in my 2 cents , it would be to say , what is going on here? The undertone i pickup is that if you aren’t convinced of the global warming theory that you are some kind of nut. If you go with the theory then you are o.k.
    Haven’t any of you wondered why this is? It seems the whole world is going to hell over this stuff! Why doesn’t this decision to spend trillions of dollars go to a global vote? Why dont we have any say over what our respective governments are deciding for us? I personallly feel like i’m being railroaded by my government. I for one am sick of being told whats good for me , especially due to the release of these emails , by people who have their own agenda.
    If you ask me , i think these scientists need to have a good look at themselves , the arrogance to their fellow man/woman is astounding. Good luck with the debate of the subject , i don’t think any one of you can honestly say conclusively wether or not climate change is happening and to take a stance one way or the other is the ego at work .

  108. Dave

    “Now, hoe exactly is using real temperature data to replace a temperature proxy known to contain a spurious trend over the period involved in any way unscientific?”

    It undermines the validity of the proxy that is used to reconstruct past temperatures. If you know for a fact your proxy methods are demonstrably wrong, the scientific method tells you that then you change your hypothesis/methods rather than keeping a “spurious” data source. This for instance could mean that tree rings under-report warm weather so that it was warmer in the past than the tree rings methodology used estimates or it could mean something else, but what you don’t do when faced with proof of flawed data/methodology is keep what you want in and toss what you don’t want in order to have a scientific report match what you want the results to be. What I see in both the emails as well as the explanations of the emails is that there is a desired result to be a achieved and then data/methods are used to fit that rather than changing hypothesis/methods based on the evidence. Dendroclimatology for instance might not be sufficiently accurate to make a definitive analysis or alternatively the current formulas used to analyze tree rings is wrong and needs to be changed. Another thing that I found disconcerting that again relates to flawed methods was the comment that global temperatures were seen as cooling over the past ten years based on global thermometers so therefore the methodology used must be wrong, which was again having a preconceived desired result and then wanting to ignore what didn’t match that preconceived desired result. All this is bad science. Also from multiple standpoints (scientifically and otherwise) it looks bad destroying files to dodge a FOIA request and otherwise not open up data to scientific inquiry…if the data supports the claims based on the data, far from hiding the data, there should be a desire to show the proof as hiding stuff away gives the appearance of a lack of confidence that the raw data when put under scrutiny will not back the claims made with it (I look at the earlier claims of cold fusion and how much of a role independent analysis played in debunking the claims).

  109. bilbo

    Are you saying that subverting editorial processes is acceptable so as long as it’s kept secret?

    Are you saying that editorial processes were actually subverted, John? If so, then out with it, man! Let’s see the proof! If the editorial process was really subverted, as you claim these emails show, then let’s see your proof! I mean, surely if you’re going to make such charges against someone, you have more than a simple email talking about what one “might” have to do! Even if those scientists would willingly subvert the editorial process, how do you know it was carried out? Do you have the editors at each journal in as co-conspirators (because the editorial process cannot be subverted without going through each journal’s lead editor)…and there are over 15 journals in the field of climate science!!! This must be quite the far-reaching scandal!

    In case I’m not being blunt enough: this is a direct challenge to you – I’m calling you out. Let’s see the evidence you have. Surely as someone who claims to know so much about science, you’ll value evidence over unsubstantiated hearsay. We’ve seen the email; now let’s see the other evidence you have to back this up.

    Let’s see it, John. I’m waiting.

  110. Doug Watts quoted me and then wrote in comment #87:

    “Suppressing contrary views — even to the point of redefining peer review? That doesn’t sound like good science.”

    Actually, it is very good science. Real, actual scientists need time to do real, actual science or the science does not get done. It does not serve the advancement of knowledge if scientists have to spend most of their work-time trying to “refute” a barrage of papers from people claiming positive proof of perpetual motion, or that evolution violates the second law of thermodynamics, or the lack of “transitional fossils,” or that DDT doesn’t kill bald eagles, etc. As Monty Python said in “The Argument Clinic” — that’s not an argument, that’s just gainsaying. Gainsayers deserve no place at the scientific table, unless they can produce extraordinary evidence to support their extraordinary claims. Price of admission, bub. And this does not even touch on the more mundane but much more commonplace issue of scientists who actually have done their homework but have not produced results significant enough to merit publication and inclusion in a specific journal. That happens all the time.

    Normal peer review should keep crackpot science out. But that’s not what the emailer is writing about. He’s not proposing that editorial processes keep bad science out, but the opposite: that the peer review process should be deliberately and secretly subverted to keep a dissenting voice out.

    Now you might like to compare global warming skepticism to rejection of the second law of thermodynamics, but unless global warming skepticism is treated to the normal rigors of peer review, then your comparison is not a testable hypothesis. It’s simply assumed that if a person expresses such skepticism, then that person cannot be a scientist, and therefore should not be subjected to peer review. That’s a fine example of the No True Scotsman fallacy.

    Maybe this happens all the time, as you say. But that the practice is popular does not make it sound.

  111. WakeUp

    MartinM, you are dancing around the issue. Please tell me how the word “travesty” and the fact that a researcher himself uses that word about his and his colleagues’ research can be taken “out of context”. The least we can do is trust the scientists’ words and take them for what they are.

    The point is that global warming or not, Beck or not, the authors of these emails are accountable for their unambiguous words and need to explain them.

  112. Lurker wrote in comment #105:

    OK, let’s have a debate: On one side we have an overwhelming number of independent, peer-reviewed studies, published over many years in numerous journals, all of which support AGW.

    Emphasis added. Since the emails indicate a deliberate effort to keep dissenting views out of published journals, this argument is a bit less persuasive now.

  113. WakeUp

    And seriously folks, just imagine a similar thing happening with emails between Exxon Mobil or between Richard Lindzen and some of his supporters. No matter how much you deny it, I can imagine in a heartbeat how the same commenters on this site including Mooney would have been hollering about it and flashing it as damning evidence.

  114. bilbo wrote in #110:

    Are you saying that editorial processes were actually subverted, John? If so, then out with it, man! Let’s see the proof! If the editorial process was really subverted, as you claim these emails show, then let’s see your proof! I mean, surely if you’re going to make such charges against someone, you have more than a simple email talking about what one “might” have to do! Even if those scientists would willingly subvert the editorial process, how do you know it was carried out? Do you have the editors at each journal in as co-conspirators (because the editorial process cannot be subverted without going through each journal’s lead editor)…and there are over 15 journals in the field of climate science!!! This must be quite the far-reaching scandal!

    In case I’m not being blunt enough: this is a direct challenge to you – I’m calling you out. Let’s see the evidence you have. Surely as someone who claims to know so much about science, you’ll value evidence over unsubstantiated hearsay. We’ve seen the email; now let’s see the other evidence you have to back this up.

    Let’s see it, John. I’m waiting.

    Um, that would be the email itself. That’s solid evidence. That’s no unsubstantiated hearsay, that’s the direct writing of someone involved in the editing of a peer reviewed publication.

    To argue that a direct quotation is unsubstantiated hearsay is not only goalpost-moving, it’s definitionally false.

  115. bilbo

    In other words, John: you have nothing. That’s about what I thought.

    The email is clearly talking about a future occasion. One future occasion. So, assuming that the scientists in question would even resort to subverting peer-review, you have to prove the following to show that this is a far-reaching conspiracy that subverts climate science:

    1.) Prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that any – any – single submitted article was rejected due to a subversion of the peer-review process….even the article in question from that email (remember: that email is talking about a future event).

    2.) Prove that this “subversion of the editorial process” has occurred multiple times at multiple journals (this would assumingly require #1 to be proven first).

    3.) Prove that this reaches beyond the several scientists in question here (after all, there are far many more peer reviewers out there in climate science besides these guys, and they are not in charge of any peer-review process).

    You have a lot of dot-connecting to do, my friend.

    While you’re hurriedly trying (or not trying) to do so, let me paint this situation in another context, one that doesn’t play into your prejudices, to show you how silly you’re being. Pretend that I say to friend, “I hate Bill so much that I might just have to kill him.” You overhear me. Then, five months later, Bill ends up dead. What you’re saying is that what you overheard me say is cause to strap me to the electric chair and execute me for Bill’s murder.

    Forgive me for not laughing in your face.

  116. Curious

    I say that these scientists should become casualties of global warming, the sacrifical goats that would save the cause. Let the great field of global heating show that it has the moral conviction and honesty to sacrifice its own children when they indulge in transgressions of the highest degree.

  117. Jon

    Are you saying that subverting editorial processes is acceptable so as long as it’s kept secret?

    What I’m saying is that–

    “That guy again? His work quality stinks. I don’t know how he got promoted. Let’s make sure he gets adult supervision.”

    Is a very different statement from–

    “That guy again? His results are inconvenient. He got promoted. Let’s make sure he gets adult supervision.”

    But again, to reiterate, a few questions about the work of a few scientists do not call into question AGW. It’s very unlikely that it even throws out the conclusions of their work.

    If there *was* misconduct, and I’m not denying there could be, then there was misconduct. But you have to read the whole context of the situation. Cherry picked (and possibly edited) emails taking place over umteen years have to be read carefully and in context.

    The perverse thing is that what people want is a headline that calls into question AGW, just like tobacco companies wanted to produce “doubt as their product.” That’s why someone hired the Russian hackers to do this. All of these scientists’ careers could go down in flames, and it would have no effect whatsoever on the fact that CO2 is heating the planet. But you’d get a lousy freaking headline. To try to produce an illusion of a question with all of the other studies out there is, frankly, perverse.

  118. bilbo wrote:

    While you’re hurriedly trying (or not trying) to do so, let me paint this situation in another context, one that doesn’t play into your prejudices, to show you how silly you’re being. Pretend that I say to friend, “I hate Bill so much that I might just have to kill him.” You overhear me. Then, five months later, Bill ends up dead. What you’re saying is that what you overheard me say is cause to strap me to the electric chair and execute me for Bill’s murder.

    If you send an email stating in print your intention to murder Bill, and Bill ends up murdered, then it’s not hearsay to use the email as evidence against you.

  119. bilbo

    So, in other words, an overheard conversation of a future event that may or may not happen, without any other corrborating evidence, is justification for guilt and execution. Wow. Just, wow.

    I’m still waiting for your evidence of points 1-3 that I posted above, by the way. If you have it, let’s see it and I’ll give you credibility.

    If you don’t, that’s fine. I’ll paint you as another silly moron jumping to hasty conclusions.

  120. MartinM

    I’d also like to know why the author thought it proper to “hide the decline” in his publication. That sounds a bit dishonest.

    Because the decline isn’t real. When you’re putting together an accurate reconstruction of historical temperature data, and for one section of your graph you have two possible data-sources, one of which is known to be much more accurate than the other, you’re going to use the one that’s accurate. Nothing dishonest about it.

  121. Jon quoted me and then wrote:

    “Are you saying that subverting editorial processes is acceptable so as long as it’s kept secret?”

    What I’m saying is that–

    “That guy again? His work quality stinks. I don’t know how he got promoted. Let’s make sure he gets adult supervision.”

    Is a very different statement from–

    “That guy again? His results are inconvenient. He got promoted. Let’s make sure he gets adult supervision.”

    I would argue that peer review constitutes adult supervision in this analogy. The emailer in question rejects peer review and proposes instead to keep the article out even if it means redefining peer review.

    But again, to reiterate, a few questions about the work of a few scientists do not call into question AGW. It’s very unlikely that it even throws out the conclusions of their work.

    I’d say that it calls AGW into some additional doubt, but it’s certainly not a crushing blow against the position.

    What the emails show more than anything else is a distressing mentality among the scientists, who seem to have reached a preordained conclusion about AGW, and now engage in vigorous confirmation bias.

  122. MartinM

    It undermines the validity of the proxy that is used to reconstruct past temperatures. If you know for a fact your proxy methods are demonstrably wrong, the scientific method tells you that then you change your hypothesis/methods rather than keeping a “spurious” data source.

    Which is exactly what happened here, and what the deniers are complaining about.

    This for instance could mean that tree rings under-report warm weather so that it was warmer in the past than the tree rings methodology used estimates or it could mean something else, but what you don’t do when faced with proof of flawed data/methodology is keep what you want in and toss what you don’t want in order to have a scientific report match what you want the results to be.

    Nobody is hiding the problems with tree-ring proxies. It’s common knowledge.

  123. MartinM

    Please tell me how the word “travesty” and the fact that a researcher himself uses that word about his and his colleagues’ research can be taken “out of context”.

    At the risk of stating the blatantly obvious, you just did it.

  124. MartinM

    I would argue that peer review constitutes adult supervision in this analogy. The emailer in question rejects peer review and proposes instead to keep the article out even if it means redefining peer review.

    The background to this discussion is that one of the editors of Climate Research allowed the publication of a crap paper, as a result of which three other editors resigned in protest. The e-mailers in question are discussing how to handle a subversion of the peer-review process, not how to subvert it themselves.

  125. Curious

    -When you’re putting together an accurate reconstruction of historical temperature data, and for one section of your graph you have two possible data-sources, one of which is known to be much more accurate than the other

    MartinM, what’s the evidence that the decline was not as accurate as the other temperature increases? For crying out loud, scientists have even faithfully reported the declines in temperatures in the 1940s (clearly visible even in the famous hockey stick graph). Being a good scientist simply means reporting all data, not only that which supports your favored conclusions.

    The real point is, if the researchers had nothing to fear from temporary declines, then why HIDE them?? This is clearly dishonest and is a serious issue that deserves investigation.

  126. bilbo

    The emailer in question rejects peer review and proposes instead to keep the article out even if it means redefining peer review.

    Yet John cannot show that such an event (or such a “redefinition”) ever happened.

    It sounds like there’s more than one “distressing mentality” here. This is one that doesn’t need evidence to make sweeping generalizations. Somehow, I’m not shocked.

  127. bilbo

    The real point is, if the researchers had nothing to fear from temporary declines, then why HIDE them?? This is clearly dishonest and is a serious issue that deserves investigation.

    Go read Michael Mann’s Nature paper, Curious. (In case you didn’t notice, that’s the subject of the email you’re arguing about). Then come back and tell us if anything is being “hidden.”

  128. MartinM

    MartinM, what’s the evidence that the decline was not as accurate as the other temperature increases?

    Thermometers.

    The real point is, if the researchers had nothing to fear from temporary declines, then why HIDE them?

    Once again, you’re missing the context. We’re talking about not including spurious trends in a graph, not dumping a dataset at the bottom of an ocean. The decline in various tree-ring proxies is common knowledge.

  129. bilbo

    The decline in various tree-ring proxies is common knowledge.

    …common knowledge that climate denialists would have no knowledge of, because they deal in the currency of conspiracies and half-assed science – not knowledge.

  130. MartinM

    …common knowledge that climate denialists would have no knowledge of, because they deal in the currency of conspiracies and half-assed science – not knowledge.

    Indeed. Those cunning climatologists hid the data in the one place they knew the denialists would never find it; in the scientific literature.

  131. Jon

    John: I’d say that it calls AGW into some additional doubt, but it’s certainly not a crushing blow against the position… What the emails show more than anything else is a distressing mentality among the scientists

    Man, that’s carefully put. “Some additional doubt” translates to “practically speaking, no additional doubt” among scientists, but definitely “additional doubt” for the public, who will not be able to gauge the significance and just hear the headline.

    But clinically, it’s a correct sentence. (As in, a law writing clinic.)

    Also, “a distressing mentality among the scientists” translates to “a distressing mentality among *a small handful* of scientists” (if the emails are indeed not edited or taken out of context) but the way you put it sounds a lot like “a distressing mentality among scientists” period.

    Fun with rhetoric.

  132. bilbo

    Good point, Jon. “Fun with rhetoric” could easily become the motto of climate denialists (and science denialists, in general).

  133. Curious

    The problem is that there should be total, and I mean absolute, transperancy in methods; that is the hallmark of the true scientist. In the Mann paper they in fact did not mention the previous authors’ recommendations of not using the post 1960 declines. What does that say? Shoddy penmanship at the very least.

  134. JimR

    bilbo #108

    Spin, spin, spin there friend. While Phil Jones E-mail conspiring with others to delete information subject to a FOIA was rather stupid, this is the same man that found the death of a prominent Australian skeptic “cheering news”.

    Denial is the first step, but most are coming to grips with the fact that there have been some very unethical and in some cases illegal activities among the world’s most prominent climate scientists.

  135. bilbo

    From the Mann paper: “Although such hypotheses (presented by Mann et al.)are speculative given the given the limited spatial distribution of the present dataset, they can be tested more rigorously…”

    Wow! What dirty tricks from these scientists! Just look at them trying to hide the flaws of their study! I mean, if they had only mentioned somewhere that some of the stuff they were recommending was speculative…. *rolleyes*

    With regards to Curious’s (quite strong) accusation that Mann et al. “did not mention” some of their methods – try again, Curious. The methods in a Nature paper come at the end of the article, and Mann et al. clearly state that they discuss their methods in great detail in the online Supplementary Material (which they did). And that material is freely available to the public…

    …or in other words: complete transparency.

    Care to lie about some more peer-reviewed articles for us? It’s doing wonders for your credibility…

  136. Dave

    “Which is exactly what happened here, and what the deniers are complaining about.”

    Yes, it undermines the validity of the reconstructed temperatures.

    “Nobody is hiding the problems with tree-ring proxies. It’s common knowledge.”

    Then how can you be positive one way or the other when your proxy temperature data is shown to be invalid? A great deal is being made about proxy data showing trends and if there is “problems” with you data, shouldn’t that mean that you take your data with a grain of salt? Just selectively picking parts of proxy data (that is proven to under-report warm weather) looks like bad science – you either start over or you work on the methods used so that you aren’t selectively using bad data. It would be unscientific to take seriously the reconstructed temperatures without thermometers readings if the reconstructed temperatures with thermometers readings aren’t supposed to taking seriously.

  137. bilbo

    Spin, spin, spin there friend. While Phil Jones E-mail conspiring with others to delete information subject to a FOIA was rather stupid, this is the same man that found the death of a prominent Australian skeptic “cheering news”.

    Denial is the first step, but most are coming to grips with the fact that there have been some very unethical and in some cases illegal activities among the world’s most prominent climate scientists

    How exactly can I “spin” something for which there is no evidence to begin with?

    I’ll tell you what, Jim. Show me some evidence that what was said in these emails actually happened (deleting of data, subversion of peer-review) and I’ll never comment on this blog again. I’m sure you would make several people happy if you could.

    Ready? GO!

    I’m waiting.

  138. Steviepittsley

    Hacked , or what ever …. It’s despicable when a whistle blower is NOT on the left , they are heroes when they are …. Expose fake Climate changes , BAD … Expose hidden risks of cigarettes , GOOD … Which
    is it , Whatever YOU decide ? …
    Global Warming ( nonsense I think , I’ll state up front … Warming ? Yes , but a natural occurrence which has happened many times in the past , and will again .. )
    These scientists ( just a few , as you say , or a few that got caught ? Which is it ??.. HOW are we, the public supposed to trust them now ? ..
    That is the Real Crux of the problem .. Why would they feel the need to falsify results, unles they have an agenda, which might well remain hidden ? …
    These Hackers , They are HEROES .. Exposing these phonies,

  139. Mike

    “emails they always thought would remain private” …. Everyone knows that emails arent private .. Never send and email if you dont want everyone to read it.

  140. bilbo

    Steviepittsley has autoerotic punctuation syndrome.

    John and Jim:

    I’m still waiting – I’ve noticed neither of you ha made the slightest attempt to provide me with the evidence I asked for.

    This should be easy! I can’t believe it’s this simple to blow you denialists away….

  141. Now, Chris, honey. “Our warming, melting planet”?

    Good grief!

  142. JimR

    bilbo #139

    Show me some evidence that what was said in these emails actually happened (deleting of data, subversion of peer-review) and I’ll never comment on this blog again.

    I think everyone here realizes that no matter what evidence is presented you will remain in denial. The E-mails show the conspiracy to evade a FOIA by deletion of the requested E-mails. Now you are raising the bar where we need a specific admission that data was deleted or they actively subverted the peer review process. Criminal conspiracy and a criminal act are two different things.

    The E-mails show the criminal conspiracy to evade disclosure of information covered by the UK FOIA of 2000. I suspect that in light of the release of these E-mails and the calls for investigation you will have more evidence than you want of the act of deletion with the intent of avoiding FOIA disclosure.

  143. HeyDude

    From your book here is an interesting review:

    “If it were up to me, this book would be required reading for all undergraduate science majors, along with Sagan’s The Demon-Haunted World. Only when we begin training scientists to understand the relationship between science and society, and their crucial role in that relationship, will be begin to solve the dilemma so eloquently described in Unscientific America.”
    — Michael Mann, RealClimate.org

    __________________________________________________________________
    Wow. You have the audacity to tell us after knowing Michael Mann is at the heart of this deception to “don’t look behind the curtain”?

    I hope you go down Trenberth and Mann.

  144. william knowles

    So its OK for “good scientists” to lie, deceive, distort data and conceal evidence? And the other guys are guilty of a “war on science?”

  145. John Kadi

    We should be kind to the newly debunked warmers – they were just told the earth isn’t flat – it will take time to sink in.

    C’mon AGW’ers, pick your knuckles up off the ground and rejoice, mother earth is safe!

    Be happy!

  146. Your game is up, the fraud has been exposed, you’ve dug yourself into a ditch no amount of propaganda will get you out of. You will not have your new world order, you will not have your global government, your finished.

    Real news:
    http://infowars.com
    http://informationliberation.com

  147. hmmm.. wow

    Everyone, watch this BBC debate on climate change & the hacked e-mails.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/programmes/the_daily_politics/8374523.stm

    Half way into the video they discuss the hacked e-mails.. very interesting coming from the BBC.

  148. Curious

    Bilbo, I did look at the Supp Info and I cannot find any mention of the post 1960s decline and the qualifiers about not using it. Sorry.

  149. Steviepittsley

    Bilbo ….
    Auto – Erotic ? …. NOT towrads you, twit ….
    What the hell is a name like bilbo ? sounds like dildo to me … Erotic …
    Bilbo , you are not …. A twit, Yes ……..

  150. Steviepittsley

    ” Everything is Fixed , and you can’t change it … “

  151. Mhu Cao

    Ostensibly, one who attends MIT is intelligent. Apparently, the author is the exception. An apologist for ManBearPig and his hocus pocus?

    OK, instead of anthropogenic global warming, how about climate change due to a stark, non-linear weakening of the magnetosphere for at least 150 years?

    The temperature of Earth’s surface would vary with solar activity, with the “recent” weakening of the field leading to an increased warming during periods of increased solar activity? No? Doesn’t fit into your hockey stick hooey, eh?

    That would more “settled science” than the farce being perpetrated by the “warmers.”

    It’s gotten (almost) to the point where, if you wanted to get a grant for array nulling, you need to tie in climate change in order to get funding. Global warming has polluted science, not the Earth. It’s come a long way since it was merely a gimmick to promote nuke power. Nevertheless, it still is a gimmick.

    Sorry, spud, you’ve become a zealot without a god. The man behind the curtain is … Al Gore.

  152. Talon

    Mhu Cao hit the nail on the head when he wrote, “Global warming has polluted science, not the Earth.” We are all being sullied with this fuzzy, agenda-driven drivel.

  153. Jim

    You sound like “Baghdad Bob”.

    “They’re not even [within] 100 miles [of Baghdad]. They are not in any place. They hold no place in Iraq. This is an illusion … they are trying to sell to the others an illusion.”

    You accurately depict some of the email, while completely ignoring the rest. It is clear that you are willfully ignorant of the most damning sections.

    With this fluffy piece, you will fool only the most devout Warmists. The rest of us are baffled and not amused.

  154. Coke

    This “news” article is government propaganda.

  155. Bilbo, I’ve offered you clear evidence. That you don’t consider it evidence isn’t my problem.

  156. GlennC

    Found a comment (sorry, no name to attribute) on another site that sums up well what these “scientists” have been up to:

    “I see these experts bickering over the fact that they don’t have enough data to make their models work properly. The proof is their predictions didn’t come true. They have been committed to this for years, decades perhaps, and they can’t let it go. Their careers depend on it. They delude themselves into thinking their claims are true and only look for data to back that up rather than being open minded enough to try to figure out what is really going on. This also proves to anyone with a brain that still works that this, like all science, is not settled.”

    This is precisely what Kevin Trenberth said:

    …In one of the leaked emails, respected US climatologist Kevin Trenberth admits that scientists cannot account for the lack of global warming to date.

    “The fact is that we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can’t… Our observing system is inadequate.”

    Unbelievable.

  157. John

    The emails and the data are very bad indeed.. This isnt about opinion or politics or even being a environmentalist.. Its about fraud and the public trust.. We trust NASA and the UN IPCC to provide us with accurate information.. We expect the people in charge to conduct themselves with a even hand.. Its never ones moral duty to commit fraud.. Passion and commitment in bed with lies and deceit is no way to rework our society.. We deserve a full inquiry where the evidence meets a basic standard of truth.. No games or hollywood glitz.. This is far to important for fiction to be part of the solution..

  158. John

    This whole… in my opinion I think the fraud is a minor detail.. The are only human caught up in such a important job.. We just dont understand the language.. its taken out of context.. Is quite simply a reaction of denial from people who cant take their eye off of their goal.. They cant fathom that they have been dooped.. So sure that they are moral giants in a room full of moral midgits that it just wont compute..

    Im sorry your passion has been tapped into.. Im sorry you felt in control.. but thats what cons are all about.. Taking avantage of good will or greed that blinds people to the truth.. Im not telling you to wake up.. Im asking you..

  159. BobH

    The sad thing about the AGW “discussion” is that AGW is not important as an argument to why we should be moving away from fossil fuels.
    National Security:
    1.We cannot be dependent on other countries for our energy
    2. we must maintain a domestic source of fossil fuels to deploy our military into the foreseeable future.
    3. we must decentralize our energy generation sources to make them less vulnerable
    4. Most of the current active supplies of oil are in countries with unstable or potentially unstable governments.
    Economics:
    1. A “new” energy economy could create many new skilled jobs that by their nature cannot be exported.
    2. The countries that lead in the new energy technologies may well be the strong economies of the future – the U.S. is lagging.
    3. We cannot have any stable economy with energy prices that change dramatically in short time frames through speculation and real or artificially created shortages.
    4. The finite supply of fossil fuels should be conserved long term for uses for which we can see no substitute in the near future: aviation, military (as already mentioned), plastic/petrochemical industries)
    Environment:
    1. Burning fossil fuels generates many hazardous chemicals, not just CO2, that can create unhealthy air quality (just look at Bejing in the last Olympics) and adversely affect vegetation and water quality.
    2.Whether or not we humans are heavily impacting the climate, reducing usage of fossil fuels will at least reduce one of the greenhouse gases, which could moderate any change.

    From my own point of view, it seems clear that some dramatic warming changes are taking place in the polar regions and thus there is some significant change in the long term weather patterns at least in those areas and anyone who has experienced an “Alberta Clipper” coming South knows that the weather at the poles will affect the more temperate latitudes. Certainly measurements taken in these isolated regions are less vulnerable to some of the site specific errors/deviations that can occur with measurements taken close to human habitation.

  160. Rol

    Mr Mooney does not understand why this is such a big deal. It is not primarily the emails, though they report gross malpractice on the part of a number of the most influential people in the global climate issue, including trying to remove a well-qualified scientist from editorship of a journal and seeking to set up a boycott of another peer-reviewed journal.

    It is the withholding of data and computer programs that is the real issue.
    Jones and the other people involved could never have gotten away with their fraud if they were developing large data sets in any other scientific field. Most data, for example of gene sequences or protein structures, must be promptly deposited in international databases open to all. This allows other scientists to check the original data and determine whether the conclusions drawn from them are valid. No scientific field allows indefinite withholding of data, as the East Anglia group and their collaborators have done.

    And it turns out that at least one key program that was used to generate much of the published statements and conclusions in IPCC reports is totally worthless, and would never be used by genuine scientists. If the East Anglia group had allowed other scientists to review their their computer programs, they would have been told that they were unacceptable for scientific work and needed urgent action to replace them.

    Mr Mooney has reacted too quickly to what he has read in selected news articles and should have consulted scientists instead of relying on non-scientific media reports.

  161. bilbo

    John –

    There’s an interesting trend with the Silly Little Denialists here. They say things like the following…

    “These emails are bad stuff.”

    “This is terrible – the biggest fraud in history.”

    “AGW is dead.”

    “You’ve been duped.”

    “This is very bad, indeed.”

    …but then the examples that follow don’t live up to the over-hyped hyperbole I just quoted above. Does anyone – and I mean anyone – in the Silly Little Denialist Camp wish to provide us with an example (email + corrboration) where:

    1.) A paper was clearly rejected from publication with a clear connection to fraud

    2.) Where data were clearly doctored in a published article

    3.) Where a published paper was shown to be a lie

    4.) Where a conspiratorial plot beyond three to four individuals was exposed.

    Give me evidence (from the emails + a second form of corroborating evidence outside of emails/stolen server info) and I’ll officially deny AGW myself. That’s a challenge.

  162. Brian Too

    @BobH, #168.

    Well stated.

  163. Ben Rabb

    Both sides need to calm down.

    1. Calling someone a “Denialist”; calling someone an “Alarmist” is unscientific and chills debate.

    2. Most people I know want to generally sustain the environment ie, we want clean water, clean air, clean parks, clean mountains.

    3. Most people I know need jobs to earn money to pay their bills, feed and clothe and educate their kids.

    4. Some industries have inherent conflicts between 2 & 3. Finding the right balance is more art, than science.

    5. To proponents of AGW, I would ask: What evidence would falsify your conclusions?

    6. To opponents of AGW, I would ask: What evidence would you need to see, before you would make changes in your life?

    Since proponents have more of the research dollars, the scientific clout, and more supporters in academia and the journals, I would think the onus would be on their side to provide proper fora for critics to express their scientific views.

    The goal is truth first, then public policy.

  164. LogicalUS

    Bahahahaa!

    The jig is up! Look I know that your ego as the “smartiest” people in the room is going to be hard to overcome in the realization that you fools fell for such a silly scam.

    More bad news is on the way. New Zealand is the next as it was revealed today that their institute has been changing their data for nearly every measuring station and period to “prove” a warming trend when the raw data shows NO SUCH TREND. The Institute reduced earlier temps and increased later period temps at every single measuring station. The raw data which took years of FOI to finally get because the “scientists” refused to let people look.

    Truly the entire fraud should have ended when NONE of the models could “predict” current conditions when fed with historical data.

    Standing in the corner with your fingers in your ears isn’t going to improve your image.

    The only question remaining is how much jail time should Albert Gore get for his scam, Bernie Madoff got a ton so I think Albert deserves a least a decade.

  165. Ivan

    Heh. Nice try chump. The gig is up. As common sense thinkers new all along: Global Warming is a massive fraud. The fact that CNN, CBC, MSNBC and all the other lefty news outlets refuse to cover this, only proves it all the more. They were in on it. Here in Canada the CBC touts Global Warming over anything else. They are complicit, and now look at best the fools, and at worst, complicit in this massive steaming pile of dung scam.

  166. dave

    the gig is up .. they are digging further into the code now and it appears all this so called “science’, is based on a database thats completely forked

  167. Dante

    You the environmentalists, you the activists, you the campaigners.

    You who have watched with growing concern the ways in which the world around us has been ravaged in the pursuit of the almighty dollar.

    You who are concerned with the state of the planet that we are leaving for our children and our grandchildren and those generations yet unborn.

    This is not a message of divisiveness, but cooperation.

    This is a message of hope and empowerment, but it requires us to look at a hard and uncomfortable truth:

    Your movement has been usurped by the very same financial interests you thought you were fighting against.

    You have suspected as much for years.

    You watched at first with hope and excitement as your movement, your cause, your message began to spread, as it was taken up by the media and given attention, as conferences were organized and as the ideas you had struggled so long and hard to be heard were talked about nationally. Then internationally.

    You watched with growing unease as the message was simplified. First it became a slogan. Then it became a brand. Soon it was nothing more than a label and it became attached to products. The ideas you had once fought for were now being sold back to you. For profit.

    You watched with growing unease as the message became parroted, not argued, worn like a fashion rather than something that came from the conviction of understanding.

    You disagreed when the slogans–and then the science–were dumbed down. When carbon dioxide became the focus and CO2 was taken up as a political cause. Soon it was the only cause.

    You knew that Al Gore was not a scientist, that his evidence was factually incorrect, that the movement was being taken over by a cause that was not your own, one that relied on beliefs you did not share to propose a solution you did not want. It began to reach a breaking point when you saw that the solutions being proposed were not solutions at all, when they began to propose new taxes and new markets that would only serve to line their own pockets.

    You knew something was wrong when you saw them argue for a cap-and-trade scheme proposed by Ken Lay, when you saw Goldman Sachs position itself to ride the carbon trading bubble, when the whole thrust of the movement became ways to make money or spend money or raise money from this panic.

    Your movement had been hijacked.

    The realization came the first time you read The Club of Rome’s 1991 book, The First Global Revolution, which says:

    “In searching for a common enemy against whom we can unite, we came up with the idea that pollution, the threat of global warming, water shortages, famine and the like, would fit the bill. In their totality and their interactions these phenomena do constitute a common threat which must be confronted by everyone together. But in designating these dangers as the enemy, we fall into the trap, which we have already warned readers about, namely mistaking symptoms for causes. All these dangers are caused by human intervention in natural processes, and it is only through changed attitudes and behaviour that they can be overcome. The real enemy then is humanity itself.”

    And when you looked at the Club of Rome’s elite member roster. And when you learnt about eugenics and the Rockefeller ties to the Kaiser Willhelm Institute and the practice of crypto-eugenics and the rise of overpopulation fearmongering and the call by elitist after elitist after elitist to cull the world population.

    Still, you wanted to believe that there was some basis of truth, something real and valuable in the single-minded obsession of this hijacked environmental movement with manmade global warming.

    Now, in November 2009, the last traces of doubt have been removed.

    Last week, an insider leaked internal documents and emails from the Climate Research Unit of East Anglia University and exposed the lies, manipulation and fraud behind the studies that supposedly show 0.6 degrees Celsius of warming over the last 130 years. And the hockey stick graph that supposedly shows unprecedented warming in our times. And the alarmist warning of impending climate disaster.

    We now know that these scientists wrote programming notes in the source code of their own climate models admitting that results were being manually adjusted.

    We now know that values were being adjusted to conform to scientists’ wishes, not reality.

    We now know that the peer review process itself was being perverted to exclude those scientists whose work criticized their findings.

    We now know that these scientists privately expressed doubts about the science that they publicly claimed to be settled.

    We now know, in short, that they were lying.

    It is unknown as yet what the fallout will be from all of this, but it is evident that the fallout will be substantial.

    With this crisis, however, comes an opportunity. An opportunity to recapture the movement that the financiers have stolen from the people.

    Together, we can demand a full and independent investigation into all of the researchers whose work was implicated in the CRU affair.

    We can demand a full re-evaluation of all those studies whose conclusions have been thrown into question by these revelations, and all of the public policy that has been based on those studies.

    We can establish new standards of transparency for scientists whose work is taxpayer funded and/or whose work effects public policy, so that everyone has full and equal access to the data used to calculate results and all of the source code used in all of the programs used to model that data.

    In other words, we can reaffirm that no cause is worth supporting that requires deception for its propagation.

    Even more importantly, we can take back the environmental movement.

    We can begin to concentrate on the serious questions that need to be asked about the genetic engineering technology whereby hybrid organisms and new, never-before-seen proteins that are being released into the biosphere in a giant, uncontrolled experiment that threatens the very genome of life on this planet.

    We can look into the environmental causes of the explosion in cancer and the staggering drops in fertility over the last 50 years, including the BPA in our plastics and the anti-androgens in the water.

    We can examine regulatory agencies that are controlled by the very corporations they are supposedly watching over.

    We can begin focusing on depleted uranium and the dumping of toxic waste into the rivers and all of the issues that we once knew were part of the mandate of the real environmental movement.

    Or we can, as some have, descend into petty partisan politics. We can decide that lies are OK if they support ‘our’ side. We can defend the reprehensible actions of the CRU researchers and rally around the green flag that has long since been captured by the enemy.

    It is a simple decision to make, but one that we must make quickly, before the argument can be spun away and environmentalism can go back to business as usual.

    We are at a crossroads of history. And make no mistake, history will be the final judge of our actions. So I leave you today with a simple question: Which side of history do you want to be on?

  168. bilbo

    You the environmentalists, you the activists, you the campaigners.

    You knew something was wrong when you saw them argue for a cap-and-trade scheme.

    We also know that cap-and-trade will probably be an amazing way to reduce CO2 emissions, since it kicked the hell out of acid rain-causing emissions when a strikingly similar cap-and-trade plan was successfully implemented decades ago.

    Do I need to remind you that the same kind of Silly Little Denialists such as the ones we’re seeing today (including yourself) said that acid rain was a hoax “hijacked” and fabricated by scheming scientists and politicians, and that cap-and-trade would destory the world? We idealism-blinded “environmentalists” just couldn’t see the truth.

    Oops. Acid rain turned out to exist, and cap-and-trade worked like a charm.

    Try again, Stupid Little Denialist.

  169. todd

    To understand this blog post, one need only know Mooney is polemicist. He’s not interested in the truth.

  170. Red Green

    NO, NO, NO! They’re all wrong, Climategate is the conspiracy!!! You deniers will try anything to prove us wrong. Don’t you see? Even if Al Gore admitted it was all a scam we still wouldn’t believe. Global Warming is our faith. Gaia is our deity!

  171. Elise

    You can’t demand world wide changes based on anything less than Scientific Law *(definitions below). Even science can be corrupted and it expects the average Joe not be able to catch the inconsistencies. Let a non-biased, politically neutral think tank have at it-lets see if it will stand the scrutiny. This is the way real science works-it can take the heat if it is real-Changes based on anything less will not work and will not be accepted.

    Lets make this elementary*:

    THE WHOLE PROCESS
    There are different terms used to describe scientific ideas based on the amount of confirmed experimental evidence.

    Hypothesis
    – a statement that uses a few observations
    – an idea based on observations without experimental evidence
    Theory
    – uses many observations and has loads of experimental evidence
    – can be applied to unrelated facts and new relationships
    – flexible enough to be modified if new data/evidence introduced
    Law
    – stands the test of time, often without change
    – experimentally confirmed over and over
    – can create true predictions for different situations
    – has uniformity and is universal

    http://www.biology4kids.com/files/studies_scimethod.html

  172. Mike

    I honestly hope that Mooney, Gore and his minions die horrifying deaths, and burn in hell. That is not hyperbole. Mooney is EVIL incarnate, and a bullet in his head would be too good for him. The damage these now proven LIARS are doing to our country, and our future cannot even be measured. They should be given the punishment deserving of the most heinous scoundrels in history. The gloves should come off. This is no longer about just opinion or ideology. This is criminal. These bastards must be SEVERELY punished and made an example of to send a message to the rest of these fucking “scientists” to stop legislating from the lab.

  173. Joe G

    …woah. Mike is scary.

  174. Markle

    Wow. The freepers hopped on this one didn’t they?

  175. tour86rocker

    This article did nothing to disprove the “Climategate” issue. You merely shrugged and went back to presupposing AGW as an article of faith.

  176. Jimi

    I agree that the emails don’t discredit all the recent work paid for by the IPPC and NASA(with Billions of our tax dollars) to support the AGW hypothesis, BUT when you combine the emails with the data fabrications, IT DOES!

    Since ALL reports produced by 2500 IPPC ‘scientists’ depend on four data sets, two ground based and two satellite based (calibrated to the ground data set), corrupting one of those ground based datasets clearly puts a large portion if not all their work into question.

  177. Independent Thinker

    If this Mooney piece is the official “Discover” position on this scandal, my respect for this great institution has diminished as surely as it has for East Anglia and it’s so-called “scientists”. A piece like this shows you are far from searching for truth and knowledge objectively and dispassionately regardless of where the search may lead. To borrow from Chris Mooney’s title – this type of article constitutes “Discover’s War on Science”.

    Can anyone of intelligence possibly believe that altering, falsifying, deleting or hiding scientific data “ain’t nothing” . . . Can we actually accept that data manipulation will “not in any way invalidate the conclusion” of that data?

    The integrity of the CRU has been deeply damaged. Why would “Discover” also compromise it’s integrity with such an article as this?

  178. STBro

    >the fact that the earth *is* warming, is not a theory. that is observable and measurable, and is a fact.
    > #5 — erika hedberg

    No, your statement is an assertion. It’s not even a testable hypothesis. The “earth warming” is an estimate based on “a method of estimating global temperature change.”
    http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/

    If you bother to read NASA’s page, you will find that they advocate using the anomaly estimates based on models rather than the factual absolute temperature data.

    The real issue here is a widespread and organized pattern of scientific misconduct over a long period of time. These people get government funds to carry out their activities. That makes the activities subject to inquiry regarding ethics and fraud.

  179. You nailed it, Independent Thinker. This really is “Discover’s War on Science”. I wonder what the following mean to Mooney:

    Glaciergate
    Pachaurigate
    Hurricanegate
    World Wildlifegate
    Amazongate
    Greenpeacegate
    Studentdissertationandmagazinearticlegate.

    Climate Science was corrupt from the very beginning, and pushed down our collective throats by “environmental reporters” like Mr. Mooney. It’s amazing how far they got with it but the house of cards is coming down hard now. I no longer trust sources that I used to, like Discover and even National Geographic. They’ve been corrupted by “environmental reporters” and as a result their credibility is gone.

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About Chris Mooney

Chris is a science and political journalist and commentator and the author of three books, including the New York Times bestselling The Republican War on Science--dubbed "a landmark in contemporary political reporting" by Salon.com and a "well-researched, closely argued and amply referenced indictment of the right wing's assault on science and scientists" by Scientific American--Storm World, and Unscientific America: How Scientific Illiteracy Threatens Our Future, co-authored by Sheril Kirshenbaum. They also write "The Intersection" blog together for Discover blogs. For a longer bio and contact information, see here.

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