The anger of the climate community
May 29, 2014
Bishop Hill in Climate: Sceptics, GWPF

Whenever I hear Thomas Stocker speak I am reminded of Tony Blair or David Cameron: too slick, too polished, too insincere. So when I see that he has been expounding his thoughts on the climate debate in the Irish Times I am not exactly inclined to give him the benefit of the doubt. 

He has, however, something of a point:

Prof Stocker, who has avoided using social media, agreed that several colleagues such as Phil Jones and Michael Mann had been “vilified” on Twitter and other forums, and some of them had even received death threats for daring to speak out.

Phil Jones and Michael Mann have undoubtedly been vilified on social media, and death threats are always beyond the pale. The problem is that these two were undoubtedly miscreants whose behaviour - data torturing, hiding the decline, journal nobbling, that kind of thing - warranted a strong reaction and should have brought them ostracism from the climatologicial mainstream. The decision of that mainstream to stand by the two men and even to celebrate and honour them has undoubtedly angered many and has almost certainly made the response on social media stronger than it might have been. How different things might have been if climatology had "done the decent thing".

However, it seems that the climatological community reserves its anger for people who ask awkward questions or who involve themselves with people who do so. Ostracisation is for the Bengtssons of this world, not the Manns or the Joneses.

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