“A Disgrace to the Profession”: The World’s Scientists on Michael E Mann, his Hockey Stick and their Damage to Science
by Mark Steyn
Defend Free Speech
September 18, 2015
One of the most malodorous and disreputable aspects of American jurisprudence is the way laws intended to have very narrow application metastasize to target almost anyone the government is minded to stick it to. Thus, the 1970 Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization Act – RICO – which, as its name suggests, was originally aimed at racketeers, but by 2007 was being deployed against, for example, my old boss Conrad Black. US Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald decided to deploy RICO against Canadian newspaper publishers he’d taken a dislike to because he could. That’s how federal law works.
Why shouldn’t others get a piece of the action? Frustrated at the failure of global-warming alarmism to shift an apathetic public, Big Climate could do several things. Most obviously, they could resume public debate with those who disagree with them, win the argument and thereby persuade the people – which is how change is effected in self-governing societies.
Instead, twenty of them have written to the President to demand that the most powerful government on earth use the RICO laws to prosecute climate “skeptics” and “deniers”. Instead of winning the debate, it’s easier to criminalize it.
Just for the record, here are the 20 climate scientists eager to jail those who disagree with them:
Jagadish Shukla, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA
Edward Maibach, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA
Paul Dirmeyer, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA
Barry Klinger, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA
Paul Schopf, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA
David Straus, George Mason University, Fairfax, VA
Edward Sarachik, University of Washington, Seattle, WA
Michael Wallace, University of Washington, Seattle, WA
Alan Robock, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ
Eugenia Kalnay, University of Maryland, College Park, MD
William Lau, University of Maryland, College Park, MD
Kevin Trenberth, National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder, CO
T.N. Krishnamurti, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL
Vasu Misra, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL
Ben Kirtman, University of Miami, Miami, FL
Robert Dickinson, University of Texas, Austin, TX
Michela Biasutti, Earth Institute, Columbia University, New York, NY
Mark Cane, Columbia University, New York, NY
Lisa Goddard, Earth Institute, Columbia University, New York, NY
Alan Betts, Atmospheric Research, Pittsford, VT
On that last name, I wasn’t aware that Pittsford boasted any world-class scientific institutions, but it is apparently home to “Vermont’s leading climate scientist”.
I’ve put all the signatories here so I can find them in one convenient place when I come to write a sequel to my new bookcalled Twenty More Disgraces to the Profession. Judith Curry quotes Peter Webster, who wrote to one of the above named thus:
You have signed the death warrant for science.
Granted (as I know from my trial preparation of the last three years) that scientists can be a little unworldly, there is still no excuse for any of them not knowing perfectly well the appalling implications of what they were signing. It is a euphemism to call them, as Dr Curry does, “advocates” – because the intolerant totalitarian nature of what they want makes plain that they are dissatisfied with mere “advocating” and would rather advance to demanding and ordering, and with the full power of the state behind them.
On page xii of the introduction to my new book, I write:
“Mann is suing me for defamation. I’d like to win that case – because losing it would be the worst setback for free speech in America in the half-century since New York Times vs Sullivan.”
But as important a goal for me is lifting the climate of fear that Mann and his fellow enforcers have imposed on a critical field of science and in the broader sphere of public policy. The ugly retaliation that the climate mullahs use against anyone who steps out of line – as we’ll see later in the hockey-sticking of distinguished Swedish scientist Lennart Bengtsson – ought to appall any real man of science. You shouldn’t have to be a Nobel Laureate like Ivar Giaever or as well-connected as Michael Liebreich to be able to speak out without suffering bloody reprisals. So I’d like to end the protection racket of the Clime Syndicate and put them out of the intimidation business.
That’s why I wrote the book, that’s why I’m sticking with this Mann vs Steyn case all the way to the Supreme Court, if necessary. The 20 additional disgraces to the profession above have, alas, made it clear that they’re not going to change their ways. And so climatology’s embrace of Lynsenkoism – science subordinate to ideology – grows ever more shameless.