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Climategate: Part Deux
Posted: 25 November 2011 11:19 AM   [ Ignore ]
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Two years ago, someone hacked into a University of East Anglia server and anonymously posted thousands of emails from climate scientists. Quickly dubbed “Climategate”, global warming deniers jumped on this, trying to show that these scientists were engaging in fraudulent activities. However, it was clear to anyone familiar with how research is done that this was complete and utter bilge; the scientists were not trying to hide anything, were not trying to trick anyone, and were not trying to falsely exaggerate the dangers of climate change.

I wrote about this when it happened and then again quickly thereafter, showing this was just noise. Accusations of fraud were leveled at climate scientist Michael Mann, but time and again he was exonerated: like this time, and then this time, and then this time, and of course this time, and then my favorite, this time.

Climategate was widely denounced as a manufactured controversy, except, of course, by denialists. Because they denied it. That’s axiomatic.

However, like a bacterium festering away someplace dank and fetid, Climategate is poised to infect reality once again: The Guardian is reporting that a second cache of stolen emails has been released anonymously, and once again the cries of conspiracy are being heard. However, it looks like these emails aren’t really new, and were simply from the original stolen batch, but were held back until today. Mind you, the emails from the first Climategate were released right before a big climate conference, in an obvious attempt to derail it in the media. This new batch was released days before a similar conference, in what appears to be a similar propaganda move.

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Posted: 26 November 2011 12:17 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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My other half mentioned this last night. She’s sort of a climate change denier. Not actually confident enough to deny it, but in spite of all the evidence and droves of experts stating the same thing, if one guy says he doesn’t think climate change is real she’ll proclaim his testament as indisputable proof that it’s just a liberal conspiracy.

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For every expert there is an equal and opposite expert - Arthur C Clarke

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Posted: 28 November 2011 07:35 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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The really sad thing about the original “Climategate” was that the people arguing against the idea of global warming could have used the e-mails to bolster their case in a legitimate way.  I actually read through about four-fifths of the e-mails (until my computer crashed one day and I lost all of my data and I didn’t feel like trying to find my place in the thousands of e-mails again), and while the scientists weren’t faking things, they were complaining about how the politicians at the various climate conferences were sometimes taking their unfinished data and misusing it when presenting it.  So if the deniers had said that the politicians were making sensationalist claims and misusing the scientific information, then they might have had an actual case.  Instead, they went with the whole “the scientists are lying and faking data!” claim, which was just a lie itself.  They never mentioned the complaints made by the scientists against the politicians, which is kind of stupid really.  I suppose that they would have had to actually read the e-mails to have caught on to that aspect of it all, though, rather than just skim them or read the edited excerpts.

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