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Gleick confesses

Extraordinarily, Peter Gleick has confessed to being the person who blagged emails from the Heartland Institute.

In the latest revelation, Peter Gleick, a water scientist and president of the Pacific Institute who has been active in the climate wars, apologised on Monday for using a false name to obtain materials from Heartland, a Chicago-based think tank with a core mission of dismissing climate change.

Crucially, he seems to be denying the faking, although he doesn't appear to be letting on who did.

In the piece, Gleick made the odd claim that he carried out the hoax on Heartland as a means of verifying the authenticity of a document that appeared to set out the think tank's climate strategy. Heartland declared the two-page memo a fake.

"At the beginning of 2012, I received an anonymous document in the mail describing what appeared to be details of the Heartland Institute's climate programme strategy. It contained information about their funders and the Institute's apparent efforts to muddy public understanding about climate science and policy. I do not know the source of that original document but assumed it was sent to me because of my past exchanges with Heartland and because I was named in it," Gleick wrote

I have to say I don't know whether to be more stunned by Gleick's foolishness or the blogosphere's ability to deduce that it was him what dunnit.

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Reader Comments (251)

Thank you Hilary Ostrove and others for examples of Gleick's pathological narcissism.

In all this hoop-la, I'd forgotten how August Pter Gleick is in the AGW-Believer pantheon. Somewhere close but below James Hansen?

[OTHERS, please weigh in!]

I stopped following or even noticing Gleick maybe when he got his MacArthur "genius" grant, was elevated to the US National Academy of Science, and had been found out falsifying sea-level data to the California Coastal Commission authorities to conform to AGW-diktats.

The latter nailed him as a pathological narcissist, someone in it for inflating his damaged ego, not for anything as low as "the science."

Here's my scenario for what follows for Gleick - others, please fill in some fun details.

First, the scandal eventuates in lawsuits with various parties: Gleick contributes to Heartland Institute is the funnest part.!

Second, his career at Pacific Institute ends. Didn't he found it? Nice! Just deserts.

Third, Gleick is offered a post at some very leftist college in the Bay area so he can keep teaching and have a platform for advocacy. Or else he's promoted to the Sierra Club, Union of Concerned Scientists, or another advocacy place where he's a useful tool to keep money flowing from the aggrieved, blind, and wacko-environmentalist Left.

Fourth, the next non-Leftist Presidential administration passes, and Gleick will be considered rehabilitated enough to resume a non-teaching post at Stanford University or another suitably gullible Leftist higher-ed institution in the SF Bay area. (What can I say - the man likes it there - his kind are BIG there - it's a lot like Boulder, Colorado where I'm from, only bigger!)

Fifth, Gelick publishes a paranoid and persecuted account of his travails as a best-selling memoir.

ANYONE want to weigh in on alternative future Gleickistry?

NOTE: I believe he will duck all criminal liability but not tortious (ie, monetary, "civil damages" in American legalese) fault.

Feb 21, 2012 at 12:09 PM | Unregistered CommenterOrson

"Gleick made the odd claim that he carried out the hoax on Heartland as a means of verifying the authenticity of a document that appeared to set out the think tank's climate strategy. Heartland declared the two-page memo a fake"

I am going to play a hoax on my bank today and get them to transfer a few thousand pounds into my bank account.
I have not done this before because I thought that it was theft.
Thanks for putting me right on this Peter.

Feb 21, 2012 at 12:12 PM | Unregistered Commenterpesadia

Orson do you think a federal judge will go easy on a high profile climate scientist and activist as Peter Gleick or will he make an example of him when sentencing?

Federal judges have a history of making examples of other high profile law breakers.

Feb 21, 2012 at 12:16 PM | Unregistered CommenterMac

TT they don't infact need Gleik to confirm the emails he recieved from HI, they themselves will have a record of what attachements were sent which is why they can confirm the fake document.

Feb 21, 2012 at 12:19 PM | Unregistered CommenterJace

Ross McKitrick shows how climate scientists should respond;

Mr Gleick:

I will not comment on the substance or implications of the materials; others have and are doing so.

Nice cop-out. Having spread false and inflammatory material, it is the coward’s way out now to retreat into silence. You should be out there trying to repair the damage you have done by pointing out that the documents you obtained offer no support for the claims that Heartland is being paid by the fossil fuel industry to undermine the IPCC or dissuade teachers from teaching science, and that the only disinformation campaign going on here is the one you launched.

I only note that the scientific understanding of the reality and risks of climate change is strong, compelling, and increasingly disturbing, and a rational public debate is desperately needed.

To which end you distributed fraudulent and stolen material in order to provoke derision and hostility against people you disagree with. Spare us the high-minded lectures about the need for rational debate.

My judgment was blinded by my frustration with the ongoing efforts — often anonymous, well-funded, and coordinated — to attack climate science and scientists and prevent this debate, and by the lack of transparency of the organizations involved.

Stop trying to mitigate your own guilt by making scattergun accusations of actions you imagine, without evidence, others to be engaged in, when the reality is, you are the one doing these things. You were the one who engaged in an anonymous and coordinated campaign to attack other scientists and destroy the atmosphere of debate, and yours were the actions lacking transparency. You only deepen your disgrace by trying to hide behind even more innuendo and slander.

Nevertheless I deeply regret my own actions in this case. I offer my personal apologies to all those affected.

At last, the beginnings of an apology. It might be more persuasive were it not preceded by so many self-serving excuses, and if it were accompanied by efforts to rectify the distortions you have spread. But, no doubt, in due course you will have the opportunity to make more tangible amends.

Feb 21, 2012 at 12:25 PM | Unregistered CommenterMac

Sorry if this comes up twice, my previous comment is held up in moderation. I repost without the links /shich you all already are aware of):

I would like to add some more thoughts to the Gleick-scandal, because pretty it isn’t, and I am quite certain we haven't seen the end of it.

Firstly, Gleick alleges that "At the beginning of 2012, I received an anonymous document in the mail". This is quite hard to swallow (and Judith Curry states flat out "hard to believe that he didn’t write this"). And even if he didn’t pen this himself, I would be surprised if he didn’t know who, or had a good hunch.

Secondly, the fake Strategy-memo looks as if it was written after the other documents had been read and searched. It is crafted around tidbits found in the authentic ones. In a rather clumsy way trying to inflate common activist talking-points and conspiracies (and making gross errors about Koch-money). It is hard to believe that that creation of the fake memo preceded the reading of the authentic ones.

Thirdly, as is somewhat indicated in Gleick’s confession, there seemed to be a wider group informed of (at least) the existence of those documents before. The immensely quick reaction from DeSmogBlog, only an hour after that (alleged first, and fake) strategy document ‘leaked’ to Gleick was scanned one final time?

Moreover, I was somewhat surprised at how quickly both blogs, some journalists, but more importantly ‘The Team’ and other organizations had ready and condemning statements about Heartland prepared. Most noticeable, the Team response (incidentally not penned by them, but by Aaron Huertas from one of the worse climatescare astroturf lobby groups, the misnamed ‘Union of Concerned Scientists’) and some Climate and Health Council, both with many signatories from all over the world.

The noticeable things is that these more ‘official’ responses to the alleged leak made no reference at all to the, by then, well known information that the most ‘juicy bits’ all came from one by Heartland strenuously contested (and quite obviously) fake fabricated document. Not one reservation even about any authenticity.

Reading these puff-pieces give the strange impression that they were written beforehand, or at least that they addressed a situation that had already passed. It is hard to rid oneself of the suspicion that these signatories had prior information of at least the upcoming ‘leak’. That this ‘strikeback’ was a ‘coordinated attack’ (incidentally, one of Michael Mann’s favorite phrases since 2009)

Feb 21, 2012 at 12:36 PM | Unregistered CommenterJonas N

They say that Americans don't do irony, but we are looking at the probability that the major funder of the Heartland Institute will become the Pacific Institute.

Will we see such headlines in the Guardian: "New Documents Show Big Eco Funds Climate Scpeticism"

Feb 21, 2012 at 12:41 PM | Unregistered CommenterMac

I agree Jonas N there is more to Fakegate than first meets the eye.

I am sure that federal prosecuters and civil lawyers will be investigating how this leak and the ready response to it came about.

Feb 21, 2012 at 12:47 PM | Unregistered CommenterMac

Assume for a moment that Gleick received the strategy document from an anonymous source, as he claims.

Now that strategy document actually contains text along the lines "here's some super stuff we'll keep secret even from our own board".

If Gleick wanted to verify the strategy doc, the last thing he would want to look at would be he board papers, because the strategy doc supposedly contains info that even the Heartland board don't know.

So why would he then go do ID theft, or whatever you want to call it, to get the board papers?

It doesn't make sense... he stole completely the wrong papers to test the authenticity of the strategy document.

Feb 21, 2012 at 12:54 PM | Unregistered CommenterCopner


"TT they don't infact need Gleik to confirm the emails he recieved from HI, they themselves will have a record of what attachements were sent which is why they can confirm the fake document."

Yes of course, but the alarmist response to Heartland's insistence that the doc is a fake so far has been "well they would say that, wouldn't they?"

Gleik is in a position to prove Heartland is lying about the document.

Feb 21, 2012 at 12:54 PM | Unregistered CommenterTurning Tide

It's a shame none of this is impacting the public consciousness. Thanks to censorship by Black and his ilk, peopel see the 'bad skeptics' heqadline, but not the debunking which follows.

Luckily, 'the public' don't give a hoot either way, these days.

Feb 21, 2012 at 12:57 PM | Unregistered CommenterTheBigYinJames

A quote by James Gleick, author and brother of Peter Gleick, on the origins of the word "information" and what it originally meant.

Originally—and by originally I mean in the fourteenth century, when the written record begins, as far as the OED can tell—the word {information} had a sinister flavor. It budged its way into the old gruff Anglo-Saxon as part of the Norman invasion. It meant something like “accusation” or “incrimination.” The earliest citation comes from the Rolls of Parliament for 1386: “Thanne were such proclamacions made‥bi suggestion & informacion of suche that wolde nought her falsnesse had be knowen to owre lige Lorde.” For centuries thereafter, informations were filed, or recorded, or laid, against people.

Feb 21, 2012 at 12:59 PM | Unregistered CommenterMac


They can't hide a jail sentence nor a large amount of compensation.

Feb 21, 2012 at 1:01 PM | Unregistered CommenterMac

Gleick's future is secure.

He has now fulfilled all of the requirements for a seat on the Suzuki Foundation board.

Feb 21, 2012 at 1:03 PM | Unregistered CommenterPolitical Junkie

Hi Mac

Thank you for re-posting my comments, including the bits where I said

"assuming these are genuine"
"However, we don't seem to have had a response from Heartland yet..."

On another BH thread I already acknowledged that Heartland have said that document is a fake, and that as far as I'm concerned that's the end of the matter unless someone proves otherwise.

Peter Gleick has clearly not done himself any favours here, and his actions simply act to further inflame the so-called "climate wars" which some people appear to actually enjoy and don't care about the rest of us being collateral damage just as long as they can get their political point across.

In my view, Gleick and those who style themselves as "Climate Hawks" actually undermine trust in climate science by their bullish, politicised, single-issue agenda. I am happy to distance myself from them.

Feb 21, 2012 at 1:14 PM | Unregistered CommenterRichard Betts

What PG should have done...

By stealing the docs PG obviously thought the risk reward ratio was in his favour. These guys really did believe their own propaganda.

He believed when the docs would be published the public interest would make him a martyr. Name to go down in history.

So when the docs proved less than hoped for he should just have sat on them. Using them for background information in the bigger game.

His mistake was not to alter the plan based on change of content.

Ps. I believe PG was not alone.

Feb 21, 2012 at 1:23 PM | Unregistered CommenterJiminy Cricket

Feb 21, 2012 at 10:02 AM LC

It's my view that Gleick had already been contacted by the FBI or the police. I think this is what may have caused him to feel boxed in enough to make the confession. He, or someone on his behalf, has now retained the services of the apparently well known criminal attorney John Keker. What Gleick has done would seem to breach several federal laws. If so, jail time is almost mandatory. Whilst I agree with all you say, it does look though as if they might get their martyr.

Yes, unless he's mad [which is not impossible] he would only admit getting the emails by pretexting if it were advantageous to him to make such an admission. I am guessing that it was made clear to him that he could either announce immediately that he did it, or run the risk being carted off in handcuffs with a virtual certainly of being convicted anyway.

Feb 21, 2012 at 1:24 PM | Unregistered CommenterMartin A

Mac, I'm sure the sympathetic media will portray this as Evil Big Oil pursuing a virtuous scientist through the courts with a scurrelous lawsuit as just one more facet to the harrassment of the Good by the Bad.

What I hope comes out of this isn't so much any lawsuit, guilt or whatever. I hope this is just another drip, drip, drip for the majority of general Scientists who are beginning to wonder what it is they've been roped into. If he can play fast and loose with those facts, why can't he do the same with scientific facts too? And the answer is.....

Let's not alienate scientists - they are the ones we need to wake up and devour the cancer within their ranks.

Feb 21, 2012 at 1:25 PM | Unregistered CommenterTheBigYinJames

O/T: the authors of the "No Need to Panic" letter to the WSJ have responded today to the Trenberth et al letter - see post at 11:53 AM on "Unthreaded" for the link. This is particularly relevant for those who are attending the Lindzen talk at the HoC tomorrow.

(I tried to post to post this here - with the link - over an hour ago, but it's stuck in moderation.)

Feb 21, 2012 at 1:25 PM | Unregistered CommenterRobin Guenier

Dr Peter Gleick will be in Oxford on April 24 to give a lecture on human rights. Details at

Feb 21, 2012 at 1:27 PM | Unregistered Commentergeoffchambers

Feb 21, 2012 at 7:26 AM | lapogus

Absolutely spot-on comment.

Feb 21, 2012 at 1:35 PM | Unregistered CommenterJustice4Rinka

Jonas N:

It is hard to rid oneself of the suspicion that these signatories had prior information of at least the upcoming ‘leak’.

That was my sense too when I left this comment on WUWT on 17th February:

The unknown ProtaGonist (‘PG’, henceforth) has been reading Mitnick as he flies around the country. Eureka! He will do a Kevin on the crazies at Heartland. He notifies DeSmog that he will soon have the ultimate scoop, one that will destroy denial forever. DeSmog, in turn, alerts Blackshirt, Hackman and others about the existence of amazing stuff that will shortly be delivered to them. PG does his Kevin (successfully! how did that happen?) and begins to read. There’s nothing there. It’s all as dull as ditchwater. What to do? PG’s reputation and even that of DeSmog itself is at risk. Then PG has another eureka moment. ..

Feb 21, 2012 at 1:40 PM | Unregistered CommenterJane Coles

Richard Betts

Thank you.

Feb 21, 2012 at 2:07 PM | Unregistered CommenterMac

Why do I have a feeling Mr Glieck will be head of PR for WWF or FOE real soon.

Feb 21, 2012 at 2:16 PM | Unregistered CommenterShevva

Feb 21, 2012 at 9:50 AM | The Leopard In The Basement
Who could have thought Gleick would have been that stupid? I certainly didn't.

Are you sure about that, though?

Thing is, I hadn't heard of Gleick until I read the US Amazon reviews of Donna's book, and found that Gleick had reviewed it. Predictably he gave it one star, but equally predictably, he reviewed it before it he could plausibly have read it. When challenged, he failed to provide evidence that he had read it. He could easily enough have said what the fourteenth word of the second sentence of chapter 3 was, for instance.

This alone planted doubts about his integrity, so it was interesting that he was so quickly named as the likeliest buffoon in the frame. Nobody that I read insisted that Gleick wouldn't do such a thing.

We now have it on record that he is deceitful and a liar. Every piece of work he's ever done would now appear to be at least suspect and possibly entirely worthless.

Along with Greg Laden, David Viner and Phil Jones, Gleick bears out my oft-aired contention that climate scientists are simply a bit thick.

Crimate science indeed.

Feb 21, 2012 at 2:22 PM | Unregistered CommenterJustice4Rinka

With all eyes on Gleick's 'heroic' confession, which tries to muddy the waters even further as to the fake document, let's not overlook the fact that Gleick actually did confess to having obtained the authentic HI documents by impersonating someone else.

This is 'wire fraud', and cannot be waived away by lenient californian judges:

"18 U.S.C. § 1343 provides:
Whoever, having devised or intending to devise any scheme or artifice to defraud, or for obtaining money or property by means of false or fraudulent pretenses, representations, or promises, transmits or causes to be transmitted by means of wire, radio, or television communication in interstate or foreign commerce, any writings, signs, signals, pictures, or sounds for the purpose of executing such scheme or artifice, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than 20 years, or both. If the violation affects a financial institution, such person shall be fined not more than $1,000,000 or imprisoned not more than 30 years, or both."

IIRC, the Feds get involved when a crime crosses state lines. Gleick is in California, the HI isn't.
Not a lot of wriggle room there ....

Feb 21, 2012 at 2:23 PM | Unregistered CommenterViv Evans

Feb 21, 2012 at 11:13 AM | Hilary Ostrov

Yes I am beginning to see a special brand of narcissistic behaviour from these "climate hero" types that is beyond anything I could have considered possible from people at this level. I sometimes try and pull back from dwelling on the clear cut empty headed posturing that wins raturous sighs from the press and acolytes because this is one of the things that pushes my buttons and motivates my scorn. And I know being too emotional and scornful makes you lose some judgmental skills. As has been adequately proven by Gleick in this episode.

Feb 21, 2012 at 2:27 PM | Unregistered CommenterThe Leopard In The Basement

It shows that climate scientists are quite happy for eco-zealots to control and manipulate this debate, with the scientists throwing in their tuppence worth only when it suits them.

Feb 21, 2012 at 9:52 AM | Mac

@ Mac:

Indeed. I am reminded that the most popular story in The Independent is the one from 10 years ago about how children won't know what snow is.

The main authority cited was David Viner of UEA. In just the way you indicate, not a climate scientist was to be seen, pointing out that the whole story was utter bunkum. Although clearly shoddily written and grossly misleading, the crimate psyence establishment was quite happy for it to remain out there uncontradicted and unchallenged, because it suited their agenda. It was crap, but it was right-on, on-message, helpful supportive crap, so they left it alone.

Feb 21, 2012 at 2:28 PM | Unregistered CommenterJustice4Rinka

"What ultimately makes Gleick a truly pathetic figure is that what he did, even if it had been successful, would have had no discernible effect on the final outcome of the war, except possibly hastening it. There’s simply no way that a vitriolic squabble between a cabal of activists and an institute the ordinary person had never heard of, was going to reverse the declining belief in the threat of global warming. The Heartland Institute extracting huge sums of money in punitive damages from prominent media outlets will however, have a huge propaganda impact."


Feb 21, 2012 at 2:37 PM | Unregistered CommenterPointman

Viv Evans

IIRC, the Feds get involved when a crime crosses state lines. Gleick is in California, the HI isn't.
Not a lot of wriggle room there ....

You are forgetting Eric Holder's record as Attorney General.

Interesting to watch the warmistas swarm like rats leaving a sinking ship. At least DeSmog is standing proud on the bridge. Stupid but brave.

By the way, I have to assume that Peter is taking the fall to take the heat off of DeSmog and Laden. And yes, that "confession" was very carefully crafted by a lawyer. I wonder who Soros hired.

Should be interesting to see if we go back to a Kabuki dance or continue in "epic battle" mode where the defeated Samurai warrior performs seppuku . Would somebody kindly lend Peter a tantō. I doubt that the Epson scanner is sharp enough.

Feb 21, 2012 at 2:44 PM | Unregistered CommenterDon Pablo de la Sierra

@ Feb 21, 2012 at 1:14 PM | Richard Betts

That seems fair enough, Richard.

I have always thought the idea of a "consensus" of the great and the good about climate change was undermined by the fact that it is also supported by some really nasty scrotes: Enron, the Mafia, VAT criminals, Osama bin Laden, Sting / Bono / Billy Bragg, and phishing fraudsters.

To this unedifying list we must now add Peter Gleick, although perhaps he's just a named phishing fraudster?

Feb 21, 2012 at 2:47 PM | Unregistered CommenterJustice4Rinka


They don't see themselves as a cabal of activists. They actually do believe they are not succeeding in their crusade ONLY because of organised big money playing against them. So for them, the HI is the absolute enemy without which there would be no opposition.

It all comes back to this mistaken belief (started by Mann, but taken up by the rest) that only an organised well-funded organisation could engender support for scuppering their plans. It never crosses their mind that they could JUST BE WRONG, and the vast majority of ordinary sceptics are jus that - non-funded, ordinary thinking people, with no ther agenda than the truth. To them, it MUST be an organised enemy, and the HI is an outpost of that.

Feb 21, 2012 at 2:47 PM | Unregistered CommenterTheBigYinJames

ha couldn't make this stuff up.

oh, hang on....

Feb 21, 2012 at 2:48 PM | Unregistered CommenterFran Codwire

questions, questions, questions......

Gleick's "modified, limited hangout" (infamous phrase from US Watergate scandal long ago) raises more questions than it answers. Among the as yet unanswered questions might be:

1) Is it plausible to believe that Gleick did not create the "strategy" document himself?

2) Is there any evidence that Gleick received the "strategy" document from a 3rd party?

3) Isn't it curious that it was specifically the language of the "strategy" document that caused Mosher and then others to focus upon Gleick as it's potential author?

4) Isn't it interesting that only the fabricated juicy quotations in the "strategy" document gave the story its "legs" to begin with?

Which leads me to my main question for the moment: can one really believe that Gleick has come clean and acknowledged the full range of his transgressions in this affair?

Feb 21, 2012 at 2:51 PM | Unregistered CommenterSkiphil

When you read that confession, you have to understand what is going on from Gleick's perspective.

His lawyer has asked about everything. They went through all the details and know that Gleick was caught. Sooner or later it will be proven that he did the phising from his own computer and own phone.

So they have to confess, that Gleick stole the documents and sent them forwards. However, they hope that there's not enough hard evidence to link Gleick to the forgery. So they confess to the stuff that's impossible to dodge and hope and pray, that they get lucky with the rest. It's all to minimize the damage and the jail sentence.

Feb 21, 2012 at 2:55 PM | Registered CommenterVieras

From Judith Curry:

Gleick’s strategy has failed on all counts. I don’t think this is from the Art of War, but I read it somewhere and it seems apt: When fighting a war, don’t waste a bullet on yourself (ouch).

Feb 21, 2012 at 2:55 PM | Unregistered CommenterThe Leopard In The Basement

I wish the Team would stop treating this as a war. The war is with the inhospitable universe which wants to fry or freeze us and will do so no matter who 'wins' a poxy argument, so can we concentrate on that?

Feb 21, 2012 at 2:58 PM | Unregistered CommenterTheBigYinJames

I agree Pointman, Gleick could well be the first of many casualties concerning Fakegate.

I would imagine that legal counsel is being saught, employed and briefed as we speak.

There is also another quest - who funds the fakers?

Will these funders be willing to pay legal costs, compensation or continue with funding. They have reputations to protect as well - they certainly cannot be seen supporting illegality and defamation.

For example the Roddick Foundation's funding of human rights campaigns could well be damaged by it's association with DeSmog.

Feb 21, 2012 at 3:00 PM | Unregistered CommenterMac

@ skiphil

Indeed. Gleick is certainly going to have make a second, fuller, frank confession in which all the above emerges.

If what I have read of US law is correct I can't see how he stays out of jail.

Feb 21, 2012 at 3:00 PM | Unregistered CommenterJustice4Rinka


Well if others are involved he may make a plea bargain to incriminate those who took part in the plan to steal and fake the said documents. You cannot rule out that possibility at present.

Feb 21, 2012 at 3:18 PM | Unregistered CommenterMac

The interesting thing about Peter's confession is that he claims to have received the faked document in the mail -- i.e. the post. Now what I find really, really interesting is that it is two pages long and while there are shadow marks on the edges from the scanning, there are no shadows from the FOLD MARKS that should have been left on the paper when folded to put into the envelope.

That, of course, could be explained by the "real culprit" sending Peter the document flat in an 10 by 12 envelope like you would ship photographs. Oh, sure thing!

I certainly hope Peter saved the envelope.

Looks like there is a hole in Peter's little tale .

Feb 21, 2012 at 3:18 PM | Unregistered CommenterDon Pablo de la Sierra


I see the confession as a retreat to a defensible position.

As with all such retreats it's a compromise between giving up ground unnecessarily and not giving up enough so the position isn't defensible.

Feb 21, 2012 at 3:24 PM | Unregistered Commentercosmic

Don Pablo,

His butler ironed it when he was ironing the newspapers.

Feb 21, 2012 at 3:26 PM | Unregistered Commentercosmic

Feb 21, 2012 at 11:13 AM | Unregistered CommenterHilary Ostrov

The Robin McKie piece was thoroughly dishonest. Note that Nina Fedoroff said nothing about Big Business. That came from Naomi Oreskes and Francesca Grifo of UCS. Fedoroff's experience with the 'anti-science movement' is with the anti-GM crops lobby, but no-one would claim that they were funded by Big Business. Or would they? Big Organic anyone?

I see that the article has been amended. I could have sworn that it said that Fedoroff's remarks were in response to a question by journalist. Now it gives the impression that they were made in an ex-cathedra statement. But I could be wrong.

Feb 21, 2012 at 3:29 PM | Unregistered CommenterDreadnought


"It never crosses their mind that they could JUST BE WRONG, and the vast majority of ordinary sceptics are jus that - non-funded, ordinary thinking people, with no ther agenda than the truth. To them, it MUST be an organised enemy"

Could not agree more.

Feb 21, 2012 at 3:36 PM | Unregistered CommenterStuck-record

Hi all,

Rushed off my feet today, organising public engagement event (Discover 2012, part of National Sci &Eng week), writing a paper for deadline this week, trying to make quick progress on some work after last week's ice2sea meeting...and trying to get through The Hockey Stick Illusion before meeting Bish tomorrow :)

I tweeted about Gleick early this morning:!/flimsin/status/171836488068251648

I categorically don't agree with deception. I have no idea about the illegality versus "blagging" aspects, don't have time to look into it, and wouldn't wish to speculate on what will happen to PG. But I don't condone gaining information with deception at all. We are not supposed to be tabloid hacks (no offence to tabloid hacks...), or steering an agenda, we are meant to be trustworthy scientists.


Feb 21, 2012 at 3:44 PM | Unregistered CommenterTamsin Edwards

I think you're all being horrid to Peter Gleick - and his backing group Scott Mandia & the Desmoggers.

What we could be seeing here is the dawn of a complete new discipline in post-modern science:-

"Ethical Fakery"

I foresee a "Chair of Ethical Fakery" being established shortly at centres of advanced scientific thinking - like The Pacific Institute and UEA.

Feb 21, 2012 at 3:45 PM | Unregistered CommenterFoxgoose


Don Pablo,

His butler ironed it when he was ironing the newspapers.

Ah, yes, the "Butler did it" defense. :)

I think Soros needs to hire more technologically savvy lawyers for his enfant terribles

Throughout history, it was the coverup and not the actual crime that did the most harm. Instead of coming off as a "Cool Hand Luke" who cleverly outwitted the evil HI power elites, he will come off as a sniveling fool who can't get his own story straight.

Can't say that I am sorry about that.

Feb 21, 2012 at 3:49 PM | Unregistered CommenterDon Pablo de la Sierra

+1 to Richard Betts.

Am I the only one to think that this might not be the first incident in Prof Gleick's career where all was not what it seemed?

And how long will be have to wait for a comment from the AGU on the issue?

Feb 21, 2012 at 3:50 PM | Unregistered CommenterDead Dog Bounce

Well it looks like that Peter Gleick, the AGU's Scientific Ethics Chair, will be the first one to face new sanctions to be proposed by the AGU's Task Force on Scientific Ethics.

Oh the irony!

Feb 21, 2012 at 4:16 PM | Unregistered CommenterMac

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