Here’s the clearest explanation of Climategate I have encountered, with charts showing how one can create global warming:
while reconstructions — as past temperature interpretations from proxy data are called – can differ greatly from one source to another, those generated by the CRU have often been accepted as the de facto temperatures of the past.
This is largely because the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) proclaims them to be.
I am not saying global warming or, anyway, climate change is not happening. Always has, always will. And some of it may be due to man. But, based on events at East Anglia, I just do not trust the people in charge of interpreting the data any more. For all I know, lots of other data has been fudged too.
If it were a bank, I would withdraw my savings immediately. Wouldn’t you? It’s no use the board of directors trying to tell me that only one branch is corrupt. Before, they told me all branches were honest.
The least useful thing I could hear is that man-caused global warming is “consensus science.” I’d expect to hear that if the scandal is widespread. Anyway, you will doubtless find Mark Sheppard’s explanation helpful. Also: In “Scientists Behaving Badly: A corrupt cabal of global warming alarmists are exposed by a massive document leak,” Steven F. Hayward for The Weekly Standard offers a basic outline of the scandal here.
Canada’s Rex Murphy, for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, is an honourable exception to a wearisome pile of legacy media sludge vendors, attempting to assure us mushrooms that there is nothing to see here instead of doing their job. Here’s Murphy:
Here is the transcript of his broadcast.
Murphy sees what the climate lobby doesn’t: The issues are trust, accountability, and transparency. Lines like
“Trust me, I’m an expert”, “You just fell off the turnip truck, whereas I am a famous scientist,” and “Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain” have been heard before by all kinds of people in all kinds of situations – and those lines are wearing very thin indeed.
Why does it all matter? Why can’t we just be more ecological? But what does it mean to be more ecological? What if we are doing the wrong things? For example, the mascot for global warming in these parts is the polar bear on the vanishing ice flow. But the bear himself is not vanishing, rather increasing in numbers, perhaps due to more sources of food.
While we are here anyway, other comments and links:
Here is a window into legacy media reactions to the big Copenhagen climate change conference. Have a look at the spin reassuring us that nothing happened at East Anglia, which reporters will be encouraged to communicate to the public worldwide. Also spun by New Scientist (“Why there’s no sign of a conspiracy in hacked e-mails”, 04 December 2009), whose writer, Michael LePage demands,
Forget about the temperature records compiled by researchers such as those whose emails were hacked. Next spring, go out into your garden or the nearby countryside and note when the leaves unfold, when flowers bloom, when migrating birds arrive and so on. Compare your findings with historical records, where available, and you’ll probably find spring is coming days, even weeks earlier than a few decades ago.
Well, I have gardened in the same locale in Toronto, Canada, for twelve years, and I have noticed no significant change, except that recent cold snaps killed several of my Rose of Sharon trees. But I do not plan to make a theory of that. Rose of Sharon is doubtfully hardy in my zone anyway.
Britain’s Gordon Brown thinks that anyone who doubts climate change is a flat earther. The trouble is, the climate is always changing, but, given Climategate, who or what should we believe?
In “Hacked e-mails and journalistic tribalism, Curtis Brainerd for Columbia Journalism Review, notes (December 03, 2009),
The editorial board of the journal Nature, which has worked with some of the scientists involved in the e-mails, has argued that accusations of either scientific or procedural misconduct are irresponsible because they could delay legislative action on climate change. Perhaps. But there is more to be gained here by fleshing out the details of this controversy than by simply accepting that all is well.
Now is a good time for journalists to reassess their coverage of climate change, weed out any bias from their reporting strategies, do what they can to disentangle politics from science, and be more aggressive about covering what many scientists, business figures, policymakers, and activists think is the most important climate story of this still-new millennium. If the science stands up to the test, it will emerge even stronger than before.
Well, yes, exactly. Paying no attention to the man behind the curtain is just not human nature and is not helpful either.
Here’s a whistleblower report.
Here’s Pajamas Media, with many links.
“Climategate: Science Is Dying: Science is on the credibility bubble” says Daniel Henninger in Wall Street Journal (December 2, 2002):
Global warming enlisted the collective reputation of science. Because “science” said so, all the world was about to undertake a vast reordering of human behavior at almost unimaginable financial cost. Not every day does the work of scientists lead to galactic events simply called Kyoto or Copenhagen. At least not since the Manhattan Project.
What is happening at East Anglia is an epochal event. As the hard sciences—physics, biology, chemistry, electrical engineering—came to dominate intellectual life in the last century, some academics in the humanities devised the theory of postmodernism, which liberated them from their colleagues in the sciences. Postmodernism, a self-consciously “unprovable” theory, replaced formal structures with subjectivity. With the revelations of East Anglia, this slippery and variable intellectual world has crossed into the hard sciences. This has harsh implications for the credibility of science generally. Hard science, alongside medicine, was one of the few things left accorded automatic stature and respect by most untrained lay persons. But the average person reading accounts of the East Anglia emails will conclude that hard science has become just another faction, as politicized and “messy” as, say, gender studies.
Mark Steyn dismisses the “peer review” mantra (OC Register, November 27, 2009):
Here’s what Phil Jones of the CRU and his colleague Michael Mann of Penn State mean by “peer review”. When Climate Research published a paper dissenting from the Jones-Mann “consensus,” Jones demanded that the journal “rid itself of this troublesome editor,” and Mann advised that “we have to stop considering Climate Research as a legitimate peer-reviewed journal. Perhaps we should encourage our colleagues in the climate research community to no longer submit to, or cite papers.”
So much for Climate Research. When Geophysical Research Letters also showed signs of wandering off the “consensus” reservation, Dr. Tom Wigley (“one of the world’s foremost experts on climate change”) suggested they get the goods on its editor, Jim Saiers, and go to his bosses at the American Geophysical Union to “get him ousted.” When another pair of troublesome dissenters emerge, Dr. Jones assured Dr. 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!”
Which, in essence, is what they did. The more frantically they talked up “peer review” as the only legitimate basis for criticism, the more assiduously they turned the process into what James Lewis calls the Chicago machine politics of international science. The headline in the Wall Street Journal Europe is unimproveable: “How To Forge A Consensus.” Pressuring publishers, firing editors, blacklisting scientists: That’s “peer review,” climate-style. The more their echo chamber shriveled, the more Mann and Jones insisted that they and only they represent the “peer-reviewed” “consensus.” And gullible types like Ed Begley Jr. and Andrew Revkin of the New York Times fell for it hook, line and tree-ring.
But those guys get a living from preaching eco-catastrophe. Millions of the rest of us might find our living endangered if governments were to take Copenhagen seriously, beyond the, doubtless, exceptional food. And if this is all a big scam … pull up a window blind, somebody. We need transparency.