Oxburgh and Organ Grinders

Over at CA, much hay is being made over the comments of Judith Curry about the Oxburgh Report. Curry has become the denialiati and contrarian favorite because she plays right into their hand.

It’s sad, really.

Here’s McIntyre:

The majority of the climate science “community” appear to be so desperate for affection that they’ve proclaimed wind utility chairman Oxburgh’s love to the rooftops merely because of a few sweet nothings whispered in their ears. (Words of love so soft and tender.) Their gratitude is so great that they are willing to overlook the embarrassing brevity of Oxburgh’s report, Oxburgh’s negligible due diligence and failure to address any of the questions that were actually at issue.

Judy Curry has not compromised her standards.

Here’s Curry in an interview over at Collide a Scape:

So in summary, Jones, Briffa et al. can be relieved that they have been vindicated of charges of scientific misconduct.  Even with the deficiencies of the Oxburgh report, I don’t disagree with their conclusion about finding no evidence of scientific misconduct:  I haven’t seen any evidence of plagiarism or fabrication/falsification of data by the CRU scientists.  Sloppy record keeping, cherry picking of data, and inadequate statistical methods do not constitute scientific misconduct, but neither do they inspire confidence in the research product.  Further, the “bad apple” issue is still out there, but this is something that is impossible to assess objectively.  And the behavior of these scientists (sloppy record keeping, dismissal of skeptical critiques, and lack of transparency) has slowed down scientific progress in assessing and improving these very important data sets.  Therefore I have been proposing that we move away from the focus on individual behavior, and shifting focus to issues related to the IPCC assessment process, addressing issues related the availability of data and transparency of the methods, and to improving the temperature data and proxies.  Once these issues are addressed, the “bad apple” issue becomes mostly moot.

What McIntyre and Curry fail to realize or refuse to, is that no one feels a need to respond fully to the so-called ‘critics’ of the CRU because it’s clear they are for the most part just a bunch of contrarians and denialist lackeys who don’t really deserve the time of day let alone a substantive response.

Seriously, looking at what the ‘critics’ have done since the start of their disinformation campaign, one comes up with a big fat ZERO. A few boo-boos that everyone makes from time to time. NO evidence of fraud or deliberate deception or manipulation of the data and thus the temperature record.

So why should the reports respond in detail to these self-styled critics? I don’t believe their project is genuine.

I’m sad to say Curry has become just a pawn of the denialist and contrarians. She is either politically naive or worse. No amount of inquiry is going to satisfy them for they are no out for the truth or facts — they want to deny and delay. Period.

I say, investigate the critics.

Then we might get at something useful.

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46 Responses to “Oxburgh and Organ Grinders”

  1. Agree it’s time to do more investigation of the critics.

    Before she came clean yesterday I was willing to think Curry was just being naive. I don’t think so any longer, although its not clear what has driven her to this. She is clearly disaffected and for some reason has formed an alliance with McIntyre, whether at his or her instigation or that of a third party. I’ve summarised some on Stoat.

    http://scienceblogs.com/stoat/2010/04/curry.php#comments

  2. The problem, unfortunately, is one of trust in science. Trust is not regained by refusing to engage critics, even if you do not like them or think they are really beneath you. Judith Curry has recently recommended that, for instance, Montford’s book The Hockey Stick Illusion should be reviewed and his claims refuted (if found wrong) with evidence that they are wrong. Labelling people in any way (denialists, contrarians, warmists, alarmists) does not advance any useful argument. McIntyre or Montford present arguments (allegedly rational) and facts (allegedly documented), and these allegations should be responded, irrespectively of the person making them. Argumentum ad hominem is no argument at all.

  3. Hector, this has nothing to do with trust in science needing to be regained through the efforts of scientists. It is about the efforts of different people to try to destroy efforts to elucidate what the impact of climate change is going to be. If anyone has new facts they can publish like anyone else. To try to ‘respond to’ books, blogs etc is what takes time from research. It’s a pointless exercise. The anti-humanity crowd just come up with a new angle or recycle an old one as soon as a claim is debunked.

    Curry has stuck her neck out on this one and taken on some of the science greats, including the Royal Society, Lord Oxburgh and others of high repute. Not sure whether to think of her at gutsy, delusional or just declaring her politics. I doubt too many will notice. She has simply repeated accusations blogged by others. She has offered nothing new and no evidence for her claims.

  4. As Phil Jones said, the grant funding doesn’t cover for time to be spent on refuting every allegation on the worldwide web. Can you imagine an actual audit on where the scientists have been spending their time, but this time audited by the people and organisations who are actually spending their real hard cash on the science?

    It’s not as if McIntyre isn’t averse to the same attitude:

    Jones wants McIntyre to produce a global temperature record. “Science advances that way. He might then realize how robust the global temperature record is”, says Jones. Asked if he would take on the challenge, McIntyre said that it’s not a priority for him, but added “if someone wanted to hire me, I’d do it”.

    http://blogs.nature.com/climatefeedback/2009/08/mcintyre_versus_jones_climate_1.html

  5. Hector M. :

    The problem, unfortunately, is one of trust in science. Trust is not regained by refusing to engage critics, even if you do not like them or think they are really beneath you. Judith Curry has recently recommended that, for instance, Montford’s book The Hockey Stick Illusion should be reviewed and his claims refuted (if found wrong) with evidence that they are wrong.

    The science was put in doubt by the contrarians and denialists — that is their purpose and goal. They want their shoddy science to stand on equal ground with the existing science and to the extent that anyone gives them an audience and demands equal time (as in the press) and in inquiries, they have succeeded. The only constituency that has lost faith in science is that of the denialists and contrarians and they are largely right wing. TROTW still accepts the science.

    Labelling people in any way (denialists, contrarians, warmists, alarmists) does not advance any useful argument. McIntyre or Montford present arguments (allegedly rational) and facts (allegedly documented), and these allegations should be responded, irrespectively of the person making them. Argumentum ad hominem is no argument at all.

    It is useful for denialists and contrarians to not be labelled so they can appear to be on equal footing with scientists and science advocates. Labelling is necessary to ensure we all know what is a pawn and what is a rook. The science stands on its own — it’s the politics that needs to be clarified for that is what this is really all about. Not science but poliitics and economics.

  6. I think the main point made by Judith Curry is that the kind of dismissal applied to denialists and contrarians does not apply to the “new breed” of informed criticism that has arisen in the blogosphere and other milieux, exemplified by McIntyre. He is not a denialist, he has generally not gone into climate projections or GCM. He rather makes very specific enquiries about the precise statistical method used, say, to process dendrochronologies or to assess the effect of using one particular set of trees instead of another, and so on. These are not the kind of Velikovskian claims made by solar-spot denialists and suchlike. And the effect of the whole process unleashed by so-called Climategate is mostly a loss of confidence in the science of climate, in the eyes of the public at large and in the eyes of the scientifically informed people outside the restricted community of climate scientists. I am afraid this is not going away by mere dismissal.

    • I think the main point made by Judith Curry is that the kind of dismissal applied to denialists and contrarians does not apply to the “new breed” of informed criticism that has arisen in the blogosphere and other milieux, exemplified by McIntyre. He is not a denialist, he has generally not gone into climate projections or GCM. He rather makes very specific enquiries about the precise statistical method used, say, to process dendrochronologies or to assess the effect of using one particular set of trees instead of another, and so on.

      I reject the whole “citizen auditor” meme and claim. Sorry — people go to university for a dozen years and do research for a dozen years to fully understand the science and its intricacies. I do not trust citizen auditors to understand the issues and do an audit justice. I came to this debate with a mind to giving the critics and skeptics a fair shake because I know it is possible for there to be fraud and error in science paradigms that can be overturned when new evidence is brought to light, etc. I have so far seen no evidence that this is the case in the matter of climate science and global warming. The skeptics — real skeptics — are few and far between and I do not count McIntyre among them. I really don’t know where to place him but I do not accept his claims about who he is and what his goals and motives are. Nor do I think his work has made an important contribution to climatre science and the understanding of climate change. Others who claim the title of skeptic do not deserve it — they use it as a cloak to hide behind and are really political opponents (libertarians) or shills for economic interests in the fossil fuel industry.

      As such, their complaints do not deserve serious response. It is a waste of time because they are not about the science however much they may claim the opposite.

  7. Shewonk:

    Your argument is mind-boggling in its partisanship.

    • Shewonk:

      Your argument is mind-boggling in its partisanship.

      I am merely citing polling results that show that support among Republicans is declining. In this debate, partisanship is a signficant factor if you want to understand the dynamics at work. You can find this discussed in more detail at Climate Progress:

      The partisan divide on climate science has been growing for a while, as I discussed in a 2008 review of the Gallup polling. No surprise, really, since the anti-science disinformation campaign uses “experts” that are more credible to conservatives, and that disinformation is repeated to death on conservative media outlets.

      Now Gallup has updated its polling and just now released its own analysis, “Conservatives’ Doubts About Global Warming Grow,” with this fascinating ideological breakdown that shows how the divide has grown in the past 2 years:

      I think for a while, scientists and their supporters were concerned about the effects of “Climategate” aka “Climatefizzle”, worrying that it would lead to a loss of credibility among the public, and while there has been a slip in the attitudes of the public towards the issue of global warming, it is chiefly among a certain constitutency.

      So it’s not my partisanship, but the partisanship of the public that is being cited.

  8. Hector M. :
    I think the main point made by Judith Curry is that the kind of dismissal applied to denialists and contrarians does not apply to the “new breed” of informed criticism that has arisen in the blogosphere and other milieux, exemplified by McIntyre.

    Care to tell us where his analysis of McLean and de Freitas, or Wegman and Said, or Lindzen is? How about Spencer? You gotta be kidding, Hector.

    Shub Niggurath :
    Shewonk:
    Your argument is mind-boggling in its partisanship.

    Who gives a stuff about partisanship? At least she’s honest and a damned sight more non-partisan than your breed of ersatz “honest brokers” who seem a lot less than non-partisan when their blog posts are looked at bit more closely than they’d like.

    The worst kind of troll is a concern troll.

  9. J Bowers :
    Care to tell us where his analysis of….

    Sorry, my bad. I used the wrong word.

    Where’s his “AUDIT” of the contrarians?

    I forgot that he doesn’t do “analysis” unless he’s paid for it,… these days.

    Once the data become publicly available, Jones wants McIntyre to produce a global temperature record. “Science advances that way. He might then realize how robust the global temperature record is”, says Jones. Asked if he would take on the challenge, McIntyre said that it’s not a priority for him, but added “if someone wanted to hire me, I’d do it”.

    http://blogs.nature.com/climatefeedback/2009/08/mcintyre_versus_jones_climate_1.html

    Funny that, isn’t it.

  10. Hector:
    Some skeptics (not quotation marks) are worthy of a reply because they raise valid points and do that in the appropriate forum. Some others are simply not worth the time, because their claim to fame is the attention. McIntyre initially fitted in the first category, but has now rapidly descended in the second. Just see his long string of posts about Briffa’s work, making a wide variety of allegations, several of which shown to be wrong (or containing at the very least the same cherry picking as he accused Briffa of).

  11. I am not defending McIntyre’s specific allegations. The point I make is that some serious points have been raised, by him or others, that have never been properly addressed. In a recent post, concurrent with this view, Judith made the same point about Montford’s book:

    Judith Curry on Real Climate, comment #378 at http://www.realclimate.org/?comments_popup=3846, posted 18 April, 2:57 PM:

    “I agree, it is difficult to sort through all the crazy statements and identify the substantive arguments. So I will help you out. I have seen no mention on RC of Andrew Montford’s (Bishop Hill) book “The Hockey Stick Illusion.” If Montford’s arguments and evidence are baseless, then you should refute them. They deserve an answer, whether or not his arguments are valid. And stating that you have refuted these issues before isn’t adequate; the critical arguments have not hitherto been assembled into a complete narrative. And attacking Montford’s motives, past statements or actions, etc. won’t serve as a credible dismissal. Attack the arguments and the evidence that he presents. I for one would very much like to see what RC has to say about this book.”

  12. Shewonk says of McIntyre: “Where’s his “AUDIT” of the contrarians?”. Well, I am not him, but he has repeatedly said he is not a denialist. We may assume he dismisses their arguments, such as other scientists do. He has addressed the serious science, pointing out some apparent problems, always in a polite way.

    As for payment for analysis, I suppose one single individual is not able to do the extensive reconstructions made by score of scientists with adequate funding at CRU or other institutions. CRU scientists, as all of us, get a pay check and have some budget for research, mostly covered by taxpayers money, and –to my knowledge– McIntyre has neither (he’s retired, so I assume he has a Canadian pension). On the other hand, he and others are still asking (through FOIA and other means) for specific data and analytical routines that are not available for crosschecking or replication. I suppose that under such conditions no-one could do the necessary work in such a complex endeavour, but at least (so Judith argues, and I concur) they are entitled to transparency and responsiveness on the part of publicly funded science that is so important for policy purposes as climate science is.

  13. “Who gives a stuff about partisanship? At least she’s honest and a damned sight more non-partisan…”…”look at blog posts closely…”

    Mr Bowers, I think you interpreted the word ‘partisan’ purely in the American political sense, which is not what I meant.

    I’ve followed Ms Policy Lass for some time. She seems to be going off in the deep end. I cannot understand her concerns, which is what prompted the comment.

    Whose blog posts are you looking at closely to analyse their political partisanship, by the way? :)

  14. Shub Niggurath :Whose blog posts are you looking at closely to analyse their political partisanship, by the way?

    Oh, I dare say you know who I’m talking about.

  15. Hector M. :
    Shewonk says of McIntyre: “Where’s his “AUDIT” of the contrarians?”.

    That would have been me who said it.

    McIntyre finds the time and money to do his “audit” of mainstream scientists, yet when we get to the contrarians we find nothing doing and plenty of people to act as apologists for him. By the way, Lindzen and Spencer are not outliers. Spencer has been coming up with the same results as Jones in his analyses of temperature, though, so you never know, McI may just suddenly find it in him to do the same for Spencer as he has for Jones.

  16. You looked at McIntyre’s blog and deduced his political affiliations?

  17. Did I mention his politics at any point? No. Why, can you tell us?

    By the way, Judith Curry describes herself as being more Libertarian if anything.

  18. Stoat has some revealing comments on Curry’s interview.

    http://scienceblogs.com/stoat/2010/04/curry.php

    I see Sou covers this above.

    Note that when pressed for details, she responded with more vague insinuations lacking substance, which somehow, was not a surprise. I suspect if she tried to go into much further depth and back her assertions, she’d inevitably be referencing CA blog posts, which is where we know it would all break down.

  19. Mark8, she has asked specifically that climate scientists address questions raised in Montford’s book on the hockey stick, which are mostly based on McIntyre investigations of course. What I do not understand is why merely “referencing CA blog posts” would be such a nasty thing to do. It is not like citing Mein Kampf as a source, is it? McI has insisted that using certain specific statistical devices would produce hockey stick curves, no matter what data are used; he in fact fed Mann’s algorithm with random data and obtained a hockey stick graph. Moreover, he has explained why this is so. Besides he has criticised some of the long-term tree-ring reconstructions, for specific reasons (number of trees, kind of trees, cherry picking of specific series while disregarding others for the same area, chiefly the Urals, and so on). These do not seem the rantings of a disgruntled ignoramus, and IMHO should be addressed. Others may disagree with this opinion, of course.

  20. Hector M. :
    Mark8, she has asked specifically that climate scientists address questions raised in Montford’s book on the hockey stick, which are mostly based on McIntyre investigations of course.

    I guess when Montford stops spreading it about on comments sections of news sites that “trick” is not a simple old “trick of the trade” he’ll be taken seriously by those same scientists. He even did it recently on PhysicsWorld.

    Look, they’ve explained and addressed all of that made up and second guessed nonsense, and are being asked to explain themselves again.

    They owe Montford et al nothing. Nothing whatsoever. If Curry doesn’t like then I guess it’s tough.

  21. Shewonk says of McIntyre: “Where’s his “AUDIT” of the contrarians?”. Well, I am not him, but he has repeatedly said he is not a denialist. We may assume he dismisses their arguments, such as other scientists do. He has addressed the serious science, pointing out some apparent problems, always in a polite way.

    Hector’s a threat to displace faux-conservative stephen colbert on comedy central.

    Oh, wait, there’s a problem … Hector actually *believes* this stuff.

    Always in a polite way? What’s polite about trying to get Lonnie Thompson disciplined by his university for not following McIntyre’s orders, Hector? What’s polite about insinuating that Mann, Jones, Thompson and others are guilty of scientific fraud, Hector? What’s polite about trying to destroy the careers of several prominent scientists, Hector?

    Gotta repeat this snippet:

    We may assume he dismisses their arguments, such as other scientists do.

    McIntyre is not a scientist, Hector. He’s a business man specializing in penny stocks in the mining industry.

    And you may assume no such thing. The reason he doesn’t go after those whose results he cherishes is obvious.

    I suggest we simply ignore hector from now on. He can’t possibly seriously believe what he posts. And if he does, he’s beyond help.

  22. Shewonk: I called you partisan, as I pointed out before, not for political reasons. I used the term in a broad sense.

    You say things like:
    “I came to this debate with a mind to giving the critics and skeptics a fair shake because I know it is possible for there to be fraud and error in science paradigms…”

    and yet you keep bashing on McIntyre all the time.

    That is being partisan.

    Bowers – you are saying regarding whom that “your politics are showing”? You’ve managed to post quite a few times without answering this simple question.

  23. Folks, if it is not already apparent. Shub is a troll. S/he was over at Bart’s trolling a little while ago.

    As for troll Hector claiming that McIntyre is ‘always polite’. What a load of utter and complete BS. Honestly, you guys must be delusional and/or ignorant and/or naive to buy onto McIntyre et al’s nonsense. Who came up with the reference to “crack cocaine” and saying that James Hansen and his disciples adopt a jihadist approach? Steve McIntyre. Who lied about having the Yamal data since 2004 all the while persecuting Briffa et al on his blog and McKitrick (echoing the falsehoods in the media) for refusing to share the data? McIntyre. Steve’s conduct since circa 2005 has shown him to become increasingly obsessed with the attention, and completely disinterested in the science. And so it seems has Dr. Curry. Moreover, McIntyre has openly admitted that he needs to feed his blog lieu of auditing. And McIntyre does not “audit” contrarian papers. And that does not bother the contrarian trolls here…..so right there the trolls’ partisanship and asymmetric ‘skepticism’ are revealed. Yet, they keep coming back with more distortion and the same contrarian speaking points. Why? Because they have nothing and the entire basis of the ‘argument’ is manufactured and based primarily on falsehoods. That is why Lewis and Weaver are taking certain contrarian elements in the media to task for being the echo chamber for the contrarians. Trolls, you are so blionded by your partisanship, and your own ideology that you can’t see that McIntyre is engaging in nefarious activities, at all of our expense.

    My vote, investigate the contrarians, including McIntyre. Then again, he might love the attention….then again, he might not once it exposes his true agenda.

    Dr. Curry has been hoodwinked by McIntyre’s facade of “good faith”. She forgets though that McIntyre is an ambiguous dog. Nowadays she sounds more like a concern troll when she enters in her missives– can’t we all please get along and play nicely; except Steve is smiling at you while holding a knife behind his back. It is most unfortunate, but the contrarians are delighted of course to abuse here naivete, and/or is simply, for some reason, showing her true disingenuous colours. Maybe she has been a closet contrarian all along, and the email hack emboldened her. I don’t think she honestly knows herself, but she sure does seem to be enjoying the attention and fawning of the CA acolytes. I wonder if she is going to the Heartland Conference? maybe she should, it might shock her back to reality.

    Hector ” If Montford’s arguments and evidence are baseless, then you should refute them. They deserve an answer, whether or not his arguments are valid.”

    So each and every crankpot dying for attention must be entertained by world class scientists? NO. Because even when one refutes Montford’s nonsense, he will just move the goal posts and create another faux argument. Just like contrarian trolls do. Montford also knows damn well that the HS saga is long over, that the science has moved on and that the theory of AGW has nothing to do with the HS. But he has to feed the deniers who keep touting the alleged broken HS as proof that AGW is all a scam/fraud. I

    One think for sure, Curry’s reputation is going to go to tatters for this, and that is most unfortunate.

    PS: Joe Romm has a good take down of Currys’ latest bizarre missive over at CP.

    PPS: I just had a thought, maybe Curry is a young earth creationist. Just like Christy, Spencer, Michaels, Ball and McKitrick……and other infamous contrarians.

  24. If I recall correctly, Montford has submitted evidence to all of the inquires thus far. His arguments clearly did not get traction because they are the same old contrarian speaking points that have been addressed ad nauseum. Montford is stuck in 1998, he needs to move (as the science has done) on and stop harassing people and libeling them. His mendacious behavior, if of course, of no concern to contrarian trolls…. inconvenient truths it seems must be ignored at all costs.

    The only legitimate topic which is still up for debate is climate sensitivity, and on that question the science is not quite settled. Although data from multiple independent lines of evidence point to a climate sensitivity for doubling CO2 is +3C. Maybe Dr. Curry should invest some time tacking that problem.

  25. “PPS: I just had a thought, maybe Curry is a young earth creationist. Just like Christy, Spencer, Michaels, Ball and McKitrick……and other infamous contrarians.”

    I would say that’s going rather overboard.

    Here’s what we know:

    Most of what Curry is asserting in her recent interviews and essays is either incontrovertibly (provable) incorrect or unsupported with reliable evidence or a rational argument. Stoat pokes some gaping holes in her claims, but the comments section of the Kloor interview is probably most revealing. No need to repeat any of it here. There are pages of details and her dodgy responses, revealing there is no substance behind her assertions and a profound amount of apparent ignorance on a variety of topics.

    So that leaves us wondering why she is incorrect. What motivates her? I propose some reasons:

    1. She likes the attention. Certainly, any remotely qualified individual claiming corruption and nefarious behavior of scientists and scientific organizations stands to become an instant celebrity. She enjoyed some of that status during what she describes as the “hurricane wars” a few years ago.

    2. She’s got a personal grudge against a few scientists. Maybe some rubbed her the wrong way. Stoat believes she’s got a grudge against Mann.

    3. She’s got an inherent denialist streak (motivated by ideology/politics). Since most individuals engaging in her rhetoric are motivated by this sort of thing, it can’t be ruled out entirely.

    4. She’s simply naive and easily duped.

    The options above are not all mutually exclusive. If we assume good faith on her part, #4 seems to be a strong possibility, although there’s the notion that a qualified scientist should know better. I suppose there are always a few exceptions, and so far, Curry seems to be the only real exception – an anomaly you could say. Most other scientists who have engaged in her type of rhetoric fall into some combination of 1 through 3.

    The whole hacked email incident really confirmed something for me. Until then, I held out hope that a large amount of climate science skepticism was genuinely done in good faith. Their almost collective reaction to the hacked emails was revealing. When this whole crowd decided to descend into dishonest “corruption”, “fraud”, and “hide the decline” rhetoric, publicly slandering every climate scientist they could get their hands on, it confirmed to me why they are so fringe within the scientific community.

  26. To cite an example of being so obviously wrong, as William Connolley noted from the Kloor interview comments section, Curry makes this assertion:

    “Wegman is very unpopular with the warmists because his 2006 NRC report”

    “[Wegman] was asked to chair this effort by the NRC since he was Chair of NRCs Committee on Applied Statistics.”

    This is stunning. Curry is blatantly confusing the Wegman Report with the NRC report. This is something one would expect from a WUWT commenter, not from a qualified scientist.

    To dig a further hole, when confronted with the nature of the Wegman report and his demonstrated shoddy scholarship, as detailed by DeepClimate, she responds with “outrage” (feigned?).

    “To see such a respected academic accused in this way (with the accusations so obviously baseless) is absolutely reprehensible.”

    Yet she makes and gives credence to all sorts of baseless accusations.

    Later in the comments thread Curry backs off her claims about Wegman, acknowledging she doesn’t know much about the Wegman situation. Then why the vehement rant on DeepClimate’s critique and confident assertions about the Wegman report?

    So what to make of this? Which of the categories above might this sort of thing fall into? A denier would not have even hinted at the possibility of being wrong, and would have simply ignored everyone and changed the subject. Curry acknowledged she doesn’t know much about it…before dropping the subject and moving on. So #4 perhaps?

    But it’s clear that Curry is not applying the same standards uniformly. DeepClimate’s detailed analysis of Wegman’s scholarship are vehemently and quickly labelled as “baseless accusations” by someone who later admitted knows little about it. Yet she seems to accept and parrot whatever McIntyre or any contrarian asserts regarding alleged bad behavior by a climate scientist. If every accusation is not immediately addressed by scientists, it must be right. With climate scientists: guilty until proven innocent. With contrarians: innocent until…well…always innocent.

  27. MarkB @27, yes my PPS was probably over the line. Sorry Dr. Curry, that was uncalled for.

    There is one hypothesis that has not been listed. Maybe Dr. Curry has ambitions for being remembered as the person who united the warmers and the contrarians? Alas, she if off to an awful start though and is burning bridges here, there and everywhere.

  28. What’s the secret to success? There isn’t one.
    What’s the secret to failure? Trying to please everyone.

  29. Susann,
    Did you happen to read this? http://www.collide-a-scape.com/2010/04/27/curry-the-backstory/

    Just out of curiosity, what do you think of the decision by the Virginia Attorney General to investigate Michael Mann under Virginia’s Fraud Against Taxpayers Act? I thought it was long overdue. I just do not know why the man is not already in prison. Evidence of Mann’s academic misconduct is available for anyone to read in the English translation of the Natuurwetenschap & Techniek article. http://www.uoguelph.ca/~rmckitri/research/Climate_L.pdf

  30. Ron, your assertions that Mann is a criminal is as dumb as the other regualr denier canard that Hansen said in 1998 that New York’s West Side highway would be underwater in 20 or 30 years. Utterly groundless and based on no more than “somebody says so”.

  31. Ron Cram :
    Just out of curiosity, what do you think of the decision by the Virginia Attorney General to investigate Michael Mann under Virginia’s Fraud Against Taxpayers Act? I thought it was long overdue. I just do not know why the man is not already in prison. Evidence of Mann’s academic misconduct…

    Bzzzt… WRONG!

    BzzztOne grant</b? was funded by the state of Virginia.

    Bzzzt… Mann was not the PI.

    BzzztAll other funding came from Federal sources which the Virginia Attorney General has no authority over.

    Bzzzt… Ron’s been had again.

  32. Ron, I have a very simple challenge to you:
    Please explain to me, in your OWN words, what academic misconduct has been ‘proven’ in the NWT article. Fabrication of data? Plagiarism? Falsification of data? Regarding the latter, you’ll have to show that it is falsification of data, and not just a difference of scientific opinion.

    I can’t see evidence for any of these three issues that the ORI considers research misconduct in the NWT article.

    That you support the umptieth fishing expedition is no longer a surprise to me. You are showing all aspects of the tribalism that Judith Curry so laments in climate scientists (and which she is much more careful to call out on the other side…).

  33. Marco,
    Simple. Mann ran a verification statistic his research did not pass. He did not disclose that fact in his paper. According to the magazine article I linked, the fact Mann ran it and the fact it failed was inside the CENSORED folder. In my view, this is academic misconduct plain and simple. I do not know of any academic outside the field of climate science who would disagree.

  34. This is McI’s commentary:

    MBH is this big famous study that says that it has remarkable statistical skill, is “robust” to everything under the sun, has the world’s best proxies etc. etc. Our take on this is that: the statistical skill does not exist when usual statistics are considered; the “robustness” does not exist; and the key proxies are contested by the specialists.

    That’s where I started. I found it amazing that these claims were false. Of course, all kinds of local color was added into these issues in terms of detective work and all the other nonsense. But the main point for me was that the representations in the prospectus were false. Also that there was evidence that the authors knew that the representations were false.

    …In the aftermath of our articles, it seems that nobody in climate science seems to care whether the representations were true or false or honest or dishonest; but only whether they can “get” a HS in some other way or not. In this environment, allocation issues become relvant and I’ll deal with them.

    McI claims that the method was incorrect (mines noise for HS due to incorrect centering of the PC), that the findings weren’t robust (removal of 20 North American series eg, BCPs (the censored file) and that the method overweights BCPs, leading to a HS that is not valid.

    I don’t know if I agree with these comments. It may be true that the methodology is incorrect and that the conclusions drawn from it are wrong as a result. It may be that Mann did run a verification test which failed and that he did not note this in his paper, but we do not know what his motives were.

    Where you see criminality, I see a mistake. I don’t see that this rises to the level of criminal behavior.

    It could argued that this is all nothing more than a methodological debate — which are common in science. Indeed, debates over methodology and conclusions and data are the mainstay of scientific advancement. I might agree the decentered PCA was not the best approach to take, but scientists take risks and look at new areas, using new methods and data sources and there are bound to be mistakes and wrong turns taken. It’s possible that this paper was overplayed because of confirmation bias, but since HS have been found in other data sources, perhaps that’s understandable.

    As I say, I see nothing that rises to criminal. I wasn’t aware that making a mistake in methodology or in analysis is criminal. I think you and those who hope to find something criminal are wrong and that this is nothing more than a witch hunt.

  35. shewonk :
    I wasn’t aware that making a mistake in methodology or in analysis is criminal.

    If that really were the case then Ron would be locked up for life.

  36. Ron, what you consider academic misconduct the ORI would consider a difference on opinion.

    It isn’t even close to criminal. Now, McIntyre providing false evidence to the House of Commons, and knowing he had done so…what does Ron Cram consider that? Or how does Ron Cram consider the outright plagiarism of Said et al? (Just so you know, that IS on the list of research misconduct of ORI). Or how does Ron Cram consider the misrepresentation of the conclusion of Esper 2002 and Moberg 2005 in the Wegman report? If not showing all results is “criminal”, surely misrepresenting and plagiarism is a “directly to jail” card in Ron’s opinion?

    No? How surprising…

  37. You should also be aware that Steven Mosher openly has openly stated that he co-ordinated an FOIA spamming of CRU (his words, not mine) and submitted a FOIA request that was intentionally created to probably be rejected (hmmm, haven’t the people at UEA got better things to do with their publicly funded money?), over at the Keith Kloor discussion on Judith Curry.

    http://www.collide-a-scape.com/2010/04/23/an-inconvenient-provocateur/#comment-4219

    WRT FOIA spamming I actaully orchestrated making sure that each country was covered.

    the FOIA requests were consolidated into ONE request. CRU responded. Jones took less tha 18 hours to write a 1000 words document.

    requests that went into cru that took more than 18 hours were rejected
    I know, because I tailor my request to take MORE than 18 hours to see how they would handle such a request. They refused to work on it because it would have taken more than 18 hours.

    They dealt with the spamming as I knew they would, by consolidating the requests into ONE request. In fact, I predicted they would do this..

    Oops, bang go the claims that the FOIA requests were not frivolous/vexatious, spam, or non-academic, in one fell swoop. Own goal, referee.

    You should read on from there, especially Phil Clarke’s smackdowns of other aspects to the CRU matters and Mr Mosher’s take on reality.

  38. That’s interesting. I wonder if Muir Russell, the University of East Anglia and the British authorities are aware of that admission. If it’s genuine, it seems to corroborate the Unit’s complaints of an orchestrated campaign intended to damage the research program of the Unit by tying up resources.

    If I had not already witnessed copious instances of the malice and stupidity of these time-wasters, I would be quite surprised.

  39. Oh, I’m sure they know.

  40. Good to have Mosher on record admitting harassment of CRU, wasting their time and resources in order to conduct his little experiment. Can such comments be used in court?

  41. Fuller & Mosher are no Woodward & Bernstein, that’s for sure.

  42. Gavin's Pussycat Reply May 9, 2010 at 1:52 am

    What Ron Cram writes about a “suppressed” validation statistic, is an old lie that has been debunked many times. See Wahl & Ammann 2007 appendix 1 for a clear explanation. Pearson r^2 is INAPPROPRIATE. It tests for linear dependence, NOT faithful reconstruction which is what we want. I don’t know any statistics-literate scientist in any field (and being one myself, that’s quite a number) that fails to grasp this.

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