Anonymity

Unless you haven’t been paying attention, you’ll be aware that I’m writing this blog anonymously. There are a number of reasons why I’ve chosen to do so. I don’t enjoy some of the unpleasant exchanges that appear quite common when discussing climate change/global warming, so feel much more comfortable being anonymous (I don’t want to have to deal with unpleasant emails coming to my work address for example). You may think that sounds cowardly, but I believe that it is my right to remain anonymous if I wish to do so. I do try very hard, however, not to use my anonymity to attack those who are not and also try very hard not to say anything that I wouldn’t have said were I not anonymous. I may not have always succeeded, but I do try.

Another reason is that I’m not doing this to promote myself. I’d rather what was judged was what I said, rather than who I am. You could argue that, by the same token, I’m trying to avoid embarrassing myself. It could, however, be true that knowing something about me would be useful in order to judge my credentials. That doesn’t require that you know who I am though (although it does require that you trust what I say I guess). Just in case you don’t know, I’m a physical scientist with a PhD in physics. I work as an academic at what would be regarded as a good research university. I teach and do research. I have been publishing for the last 20 years and have a reasonably good publication record, and a reasonable number of citations. I am, however, not a climate scientist and my research is not related to climate science. Just for completeness, I also have no other form of income and do not benefit financially from writing about climate change/global warming.

So, why am I writing this now? Well, recently Dana Nuccitelli and Andrew Neil have been involved in a debate about Andrew Neil’s recent interview with Ed Davey. As part of the exchanges, Andrew Neil exposed who Dana worked for. This was then covered in a Watts Up With That (WUWT) post and covered in James Delingpole’s Telegraph blog. I appreciate that I am clearly on one side of the debate so can’t claim to be completely unbiased or objective, but my personal view is that this is a vindicative and malicious attack on an individual. Seeing such an attack has made me feel that my decision to remain anonymous was probably wise. I’m clearly not having the kind of impact that Dana has been having and don’t really have any desire to advertise what I write more than I have done, so I may well be safe from such attacks. I do, however, know that I would find what Dana is currently going through very difficult, even if I was convinced that nothing that I had done was in any way questionable.

You may argue that similar things have happened to others in the past. James Delingpole highlighted that Dana had mentioned in one of his Guardian columns that 40% of Patrick Michaels’ funding comes from the oil and gas industry. There is, however, a fundamental difference. Patrick Michaels works for the Cato Institute. The 40% presumably is the fraction of the funding that the Cato Institute is spending on Patrick Michaels’ research. This isn’t fundamentally about Patrick Michaels as an individual. This is about who funds the organisation that pays Patrick Michaels to do the work that he does. That is relevant as far as I’m concerned.

As it stands, Dana Nuccitelli writes on climate change and global warming in his own time. There is no evidence to suggest that his employer encourages, or funds, him to do so. Therefore, other than knowing something about Dana Nuccitelli’s background or his credentials, it’s not relevant. In some sense what I’m suggesting is that knowing about the employer is only relevant if there is some reason to suspect that the employer is benefiting from someone’s role in the climate change debate. Fundamentally, it’s about the employer, not the employee. It’s not even really fair on the employer who may want nothing to do – either way – with the climate change debate. It’s also not fair on the individual who now may feel that they’ve put their employer in an awkward position.

Unless someone can convince me that there is some reason why we should know who Dana Nuccitelli’s employer is, I have to conclude that the WUWT and James Delingpole posts are simply malicious attacks on someone with whom they disagree. It’s not even that we now know who Dana’s employer is (it wasn’t really hidden as far as I can tell), it’s what’s being made of it that is the problem. It appears to me, at this stage, that it is irrelevant and that some are making a big deal about it reflects more poorly on them than on Dana Nuccitelli.

To conclude, and for balance, I thought I’d finish with part of a comment made by Joseph Bastardi on the WUWT post.

who cares who pays him? I really don’t. If he is truthful and accurate, that is all we should care about, trusting the art, not the artist. So the pursuit of the truth as far as what is going on is what we should be after. I get accused of this krap all the time, but the only money we make is based on the merits of our ideas competing against other excellent meteorologists in the private sector, and yes in the government which is funded by the taxpayer. So the crucible is who is right and who is wrong. This whole demonization is a distraction.

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45 Responses to Anonymity

  1. I don’t care if someone is anonymous or not. Or even if they have the proper credentials to talk on a subject matter. What matters to me is what you’re presenting reflects the science accurately. That’s something basically anyone can do.

    Funding is another matter I don’t put much stock in. If someone uses due diligence and works as a true and honest scientist this shouldn’t matter. At the most funding might explain motivations and cause for biases in research. But that comes after showing that the research is flawed and should never be the main argument. It’s important in understanding the current public dialogue, but shouldn’t matter for anything else.

    What I find annoying about this whole kerfuffle is that for example WUWT cares about anonymity if it’s an opponent, but has no problem whatsoever publishing posts on their website from anonymous contributors (for which we often have no idea who they work for or what their credentials are). Yet they have no problem whatsoever turning on Dana for working for a company that provides services to the fossil fuel industry. This isn’t okay, especially since it’s clear from his writing that this doesn’t influence him.

  2. Strange WUWT post.

    Dana’s colleagues could already easily find out about his blogging.

    And working for the oil industry makes Dana’s message about climate more credible, as it goes against his own economic interests. In Dana’s case working for a solar firm would have been more suspicious.

    For what it is worth, blogging under my own name sometimes leads to surreal e-mail discussions, but everyone has been polite up to now.

  3. Wotts, a technical point, your blog is extremely slow, which sometimes makes me hesitate to click on the link. If I do, I often first read something else before going to your tab.

  4. Rachel says:

    I don’t really understand how Dana has a vested interest? Wouldn’t his vested interest be the profitable continuation of the fossil fuel industry? From what I can tell, he is advocating for a shift away from the fossil fuel industry and so essentially the loss of his own job. Someone who argues for something that is not in their best interest would seem to me to be unbiased. Or am I missing something here? If he was employed by a company operating wind farms then this might be a vested interest.

    On anonymity, I agree with what you say. I think it’s perfectly acceptable to blog with anonymity and can understand why people do. It’s true that what you say should be judged on its own merits and not on the basis of who is saying it. JK Rowling understands this and has tried, unsuccessfully to write anonymously.

    If someone does have a vested interest that is in conflict with what they write, like suppose Anthony Watts receives large sums of money from oil and gas companies, then I do think this should be disclosed. It doesn’t necessarily mean that everything he says is wrong, but it should still be disclosed for accountability and transparency. George Monbiot has a full registry of interests on his website where he declares all his sources of income – http://www.monbiot.com/registry-of-interests/ – and I think it gives him extra credibility and integrity.

  5. I have good friends who head up serious energy assets for the majors – and friends and family who work in the oil industry. We are addicted to the stuff and I want bright people extracting it – and bright people to cure our addiction. This isn’t a contradiction at all, it is a good thing. But everything in Watts world is a conspiracy. Hey ho.

    As for trolls, when they lose they get personal. They lose a lot.

  6. Interesting, I’ve no idea why. I am just using the most basic wordpress platform. Maybe they want me to pay for something better 🙂

  7. Yes, I largely agree. At the end of the day what matters is whether or not what someone has presented is, to the best of their abilities, honest and truthful. It is useful to know something about their background and their funding, but that shouldn’t be the basis on which you judge what they say. As you quite rightly say, WUWT does seem to have rather a double standard. The most ironic was the anonymous post arguing that peer-review should be banned because the reviewers were anonymous 🙂

  8. Indeed. What you say about “curing our addiction” is something I agree with very strongly. I’ve always been surprised that people haven’t perceived the move away from fossil fuels as something that can be of benefit to our economies and our societies. Given that many fossil fuel companies are big and have lots of assets, they’ve also been the obvious ones – in my opinion – who should be involved in developing the technologies that we need for the future. It is a pity that we aren’t all working together on this and that it is still such a polarised issue.

  9. As with you, I find it all very strange. Knowing something about someone’s background and where their finances come from is not unreasonable, but we shouldn’t read too much into it. I applaud what George Monbiot has done and it does add credibility. Hiding such information would reduce credibility but, one can’t assume that not having a register of interest automatically means that you have a vested interest. Also, as far as I’m aware, Dana was not hiding who his employer is, he simply wasn’t advertising it as what he was doing was not related to what his employer is paying him to do. He probably had no right to use his employer’s name when writing about climate change/global warming as that (apparently) was not what they were paying him to do.

  10. I thought the best bit of Watts’ post was finding Dana’s employer on LinkedIn. Drat, is nothing beyond Watts’ sleuthing abilities? 🙂

    It’s probably good you stay anonymous, frankly. I posted on this a week or so ago. I’m retired. Others may not have that luxury. http://gramachree.wordpress.com/2013/07/12/when-trolls-lose-it-gets-personal/

  11. To be fair, my discussions with others who have opposing views to mine has also generally been fine. Maybe trying to remain civil can actually work. So, I’m optimistic that I can avoid truly unpleasant exchanges. Only time will tell.

  12. Yes, I enjoyed that post of yours. It may actually have partially influence my writing of this post.

  13. Skeptikal says:

    but my personal view is that this is a vindicative and malicious attack on an individual.

    I’m sure your personal view would be a lot different if a skeptic were to be exposed as being on the payroll of big oil… in that case it would be nothing short of an outrageous scandal and the exposure would be completely warranted.

    Hypocrite!

  14. Thanks for that. You’ve called me a hypocrite even though you’re only sure it would be different if a skeptic were exposed. You have no evidence to assume that it would be true. If anything, if someone who worked for big oil were to be attacked as an individual simply because they worked for big oil, I would find it equally repugnant. I don’t even object to the Cato Institute funding Patrick Michaels using money obtained from the oil and gas industry, I just think that in that case it is more obvious that knowing this is relevant (it’s a direct link, rather than indirect) – in fact that’s the only case I make in that regard in this post. If you read my other posts, I don’t think you’ll find anywhere where I’ve judged (or attacked) someone on the basis of their employer or funder. I don’t think I’ve actually attacked anyone personally anywhere. I’ve restricted myself (I believe) to discussing what they’ve said publicly and generally restricted myself to commenting on the science.

    I don’t even think it’s that relevant that people know who Dana works for. It wasn’t hidden and is simply some extra information. You can certainly use it to assess the validity of what he writes, there’s just no obvious reason why it should be a significant factor in determining his credibility. What I object to is that some are making a big deal of this. As somehow it implies some hidden vested interest that is motivating his writing and views (Andrew Neil definitely claimed it as a vested interest). There’s no evidence to suggest that this is true and given that there is no evidence to suggest that Dana’s activities are in any way encouraged by his employer it is, in my opinion, a personal attack on him.

  15. Geoff Harris says:

    As is common with skeptics, you seem to have a limited understanding of English prose. As others have pointed out, if Dana worked for a wind or solar company, then anything he wrote would be suspect because of the potential conflict of interest. This is analogous to the situation you describe, not Dana’s position.

  16. Skeptikal says:

    How about this for a description of the company he works for….

    It’s a consulting firm that just got a $50 million contract from the EPA and a $100 million contract from the Navy It also does work for the wind, solar, and “emerging renewable” energy industries. It also offers “climate services” — whatever they are.

    Ironically, Tetra Tech is also helping to develop fossil fuels in the Bakken shale play.

    http://junkscience.com/2013/07/23/revealed-guardian-climate-blogger-works-for-epa-wind-solar-contractor-without-disclosure/

    I suspect that it is you who has limited understanding…. of the company that he works for.

  17. Yes, but explain how it is relevant. Does his company encourage him to engage in the climate change debate so as that it can benefit somehow? Does Dana benefit within his company by engaging in the debate? There is no evidence to suggest that either of these are true. As I said before, knowing who he works for may be fine – although not obviously relevant. Assuming that it implies some vested interest (or that he or the company benefits in some way) and therefore that it has an influence on his credibility is where I have an issue. Explain that and maybe you’ll have a point.

  18. Outing? Your tabloid journalese course is paying off. A man puts his entry on LinkedIn. A so-called sceptic finds it and thinks he’s pulled off a journalistic coup? Wow. It’s here, http://www.linkedin.com/pub/dana-nuccitelli/7/a44/661, It’s the first place I look for someone’s details.

    Now, do go ask that nice Lord Lawson to update his GWPF site with his funding details. He needs outing too.

  19. Skeptikal says:

    The company he works for “does work for the wind, solar, and “emerging renewable” energy industries”… and you don’t see a vested interest there?… you don’t see how he, and his employer, benefits from his activist activities?

  20. I’m saying that there is no evidence to suggest that they are encouraging or funding these activities. There is no evidence that Dana actually works for a section that is involved in these activities. That’s the fundamental point.

    It’s clear that there are all sorts of vested interest in this debate. Companies involved in the renewable sector would like more investment in renewables. Oil, gas and coal companies would probably rather that we continued using fossil fuels as we are. The issue is not whether or not such companies would benefit if one thing were true or another. The issue is how are they influencing the debate and are they doing so openly and honestly. If Dana’s company has not been encouraging or funding his activities and if Dana does not benefit from his activities, then I don’t see the relevance.

    As others have pointed out, his employment wasn’t hidden. Now you know, you can use it as you see fit (within the law I would hope) but to accuse him or his employer – without evidence – of somehow benefiting directly from his activities is, in my opinion, wrong.

  21. Sorry to burst your bubble, but have you seen the comment sections on my videos? 😉 And that’s after me enforcing the civility rule I have.

  22. I have seen some. I realise that I’m maybe being horribly optimistic 🙂

  23. Comments regularly escalate. And people that have become the focus of a hate post at WUWT also regularly seem to get unpleasant mails.

    I was only referring to my own small sample, people going to the trouble of finding my name and email, were up to now honestly interested in my opinion. And all of them were, like typical “sceptics”, not to be convinced by arguments. Even in these cases, it is like talking to a wall. Very, very weird. That is a bubble.

  24. > This whole demonization is a distraction.

    Joe sums Willard Tony’s blog quite well.

    See also:

    https://www.eff.org/issues/anonymity

  25. dana1981 says:

    There is no question whatsoever that these attacks are 100% malicious. I should clarify a few points. First on Pat Michaels, he volunteered the information.

    “ZAKARIA: Can I ask you what percentage of your work is funded by the petroleum industry?

    MICHAELS: I don’t know. 40 percent? I don’t know.”

    He could have just said “I don’t want to reveal that information” if he didn’t want people to know about it.

    Second, that is his direct funding for his climate-related activities. My day job has nothing whatsoever to do with my climate-related activities, which I do on my own time. My boss was aware of them, but didn’t care (until yesterday), because it has nothing to do with my day job.

    Third, my job has nothing whatsoever to do with oil and gas. The company does some sort of oil and gas work (to be honest I don’t even know exactly what) and does some climate-related work (again, I don’t really know what). My job and salary have nothing whatsoever to do with either. I get paid for the work I do, which in turn is funded by the contracts of the projects I work on. I’m not going to give any more detail than that, except to say it’s not even remotely related to oil and gas or climate.

    The Watts post was stupid and malicious, but should have been harmless. Except that Watts’ vindictiveness whipped his readers into a frenzy, like he often does, and one sent a harassing email to my employer. Again, I’m not going to go into any more detail than that, but it’s not surprising that Watts’ mindless minions would act on his vindictive lead. I certainly understand why climate bloggers would want to remain anonymous – if you have a big enough impact, it’s only a matter of tiem before the deniers come after you.

  26. Dana, thanks for commenting and clarifying a few things. I was slightly concerned about writing this post as I certainly didn’t want to make anything worse than, I imagine, it already is. Tried to write it carefully, so hopefully have done so. You’re right that most of this should have been harmless, but I can imagine that companies won’t be too pleased about getting unsolicited emails complaining about their employees. They’ve got better things to be doing than dealing with irrelevant complaints and dealing with unwanted, and unwarranted, publicity.

  27. I find it funny that Bastardi should say this just as the tide of precedent, evidence, and public opinion is vastly turning against those who have denied evidence for human caused climate change. He was on the front lines of the fake ‘Climate Gate’ scandal when it emerged and jumped on the Mann demonization bandwagon for years and years. But if mounting evidence of harm due to human caused emissions is enough to make Bastardi relent, like a bully who’s been tagged on the nose by a surprisingly ferocious victim, then so be it.

    For our part, we are not the ones who’ve witch hunted scientists. We haven’t even witch hunted the deniers. Name me one legal investigation of the climate denial activities of Anthony Watts. Name me one major publication that is aimed specifically at defaming his personal character and repeatedly aiming false and unproven legal allegations and suits of fraud against him. Critics may rightfully point out that the oil industry does benefit from his activities or that he is related to Fox News and the big money conservatism with deep oil industry ties that go along with it. This is relevant to the discussion in that is shows a conflict of interest. If an individual funded by CATO makes climate change denial claims, we have yet one more conflict of interest. Pointing out such matters is a moral obligation on the part of anyone concerned about the problem of climate change — because climate change denial has direct political, policy, and in the end climate impacts.

    An independent writer or a scientist making a living off the study and investigation of human caused climate change is an entirely different matter. These people’s careers don’t depend on human caused climate change being real. The science would go on regardless of climate change and people would keep writing about weather pheonomena regardless of human caused warming. So there is no conflict of interest on the part of such scientists. In fact, if such scientists and writers were proven to be frauds, as Bastardi and others have claimed, then their careers would be a shambles. So it is in their best interest to be as truthful and direct as possible.

    So it is entirely disengenuous of Bastardi to talk about demonization. Further, it is entirely inaccurate that Bastardi does not benefit from industry-related sources. He’s a paid speaker for Heartland and a paid pundit on Fox News. He’s in the business of denial, is a part of the industry of denial, and is paid for denial.

    Further, to say that he is not interested in demonization isn’t entirely true. In 2010, Joe Bastardi also posted an Accuweather video that was potentially libelous of NOAA:

    http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2010/12/05/207122/joe-bastardi-accuweather-cooks-the-books-nsidc/#comment-311043

    In it, he accuses NOAA of outright fraud.

    Accusations of fraud must have some reasonable expectation to be proven true to not be malicious, since fraud is a statement of untruth with an intent to deceive in full knowledge that what is said is untrue.

    Yet, in the scientific understanding, individuals like Bastardi repeatedly appear to make knowingly untrue statements despite being presented with full evidence that what they say is incorrect.

    In short, it is entirely possible that the establishment of climate change denial is guilty of fraud, and we are finding evidence of this in the numerous court cases now being waged on behalf of climate scientists who have been the butt of personal attacks by the denial establishment, the most prominent of whom is Michael Mann.

    In such an environment, it is highly understandable why anyone would want to remain anonymous, especially if they are one who vocally defends the science which has come under such unwarranted and egregious attack by sources that are reasonably suspected of acting on behalf of a monied special interest.

  28. Rachel says:

    I think this is a sign that you are a powerful voice Dana. They’re not going to bother with a malicious attack against someone unknown and without influence. So you must be having an impact which is a good thing.

  29. Andy Skuce says:

    What has got the contrarians all riled up is that they like to think that everyone who blogs on the reality and urgency of climate change must do so because they are in the pay of Mammon, read Big Government. Otherwise, they may have to concede that the other side has beliefs that are reasonable. It galls them to think that a smart and talented guy like Dana blogs out of conviction, in his own time, while he earns his living in the private sector.

    So, naturally, they are frustrated and feel the need to lash out.

    As it happens, I have made my living in the private sector, too. Unlike Dana, I worked entirely in the oil and gas business. I blog on climate change, not because of my background but despite it. I have been convinced by the evidence that we need to change course with our use of fossil fuels, even though that’s tough personally when it comes to relations with friends and colleagues who haven’t yet looked hard or dispassionately at the data.

    I think that the recent attacks on Dana have been low and shameful. He’s a decent and very smart guy who has my full respect.

  30. Andy, thanks for the comment. I find it hard to disagree with anything you say. From what I’ve encountered Dana is indeed a decent and smart guy who deserves respect and certainly doesn’t deserve malicious attacks by those who simply disagree with what he says.

  31. dana1981 says:

    Thanks guys. I’d gotten used to denier smears, but this one really got out of hand. I’m not sure if it’s because they’re starting to see me more as a threat, or because they’re starting to feel like they’re losing the ‘debate’, or some combination of the two, or something else entirely. Whatever the reason, maybe I should have seen the smears coming, but they really blindsided me. I have a newfound respect for people like Michael Mann who have had to go through a lot more of this than I did.

  32. The new post about Dana on WUWT is really ugly.

  33. Fragmeister says:

    The other day Anthony asked that they argue the science, not the man, during a discussion on Roy Spencer’s religious beliefs. Hypocrisy is Willard Anthony Watts real middle name.

  34. Now I’m curious, where on WUWT did he say that?

  35. Latimer Alder says:

    Yeah right. No doubt you will all be calling on Mr. Mann to cease his idiotic remarks about the Big Oil Funded Denier Conspiracy as well?

    Or at least to produce some definite evidence that all who do not adhere to ‘the narrative’ are gullible fools motivated only by bribes.

    BTW – my paycheque from BigOilConspiracy Central (Fry the Planet) has gone missing yet again. Any of you guys got it?

  36. But you’re missing the point here. It is reasonable to want to know who is directly funding these kind of activities. For example, I’m unaware that anyone is actively campaigning for the Cato institute to stop getting funding from oil and gas, but people do want (justifiable so) to know who funds these activities. Given that there is no evidence that Dana’s employer funds him to carry out his climate change writing, nor encourages him to do so, means that knowing about his employment is irrelevant – it’s not the same as knowing who funds (for example) the Cato institute.

  37. andrew adams says:

    Why is it somehow surprising or shocking that someone who takes a strong interest on a particular issue should find employment with an organisation whose business has a connection to that issue? I’m sure there are many of us who feel a slight regret that we don’t have more personal engagement with the industries we work for.

  38. andrew adams says:

    One of the depressing things about the skeptiks’ arguments is that they so often rely on a view of human nature that essentially assumes that people are motivated by nothing other than narrow self-interest.
    So all politicians are crooks and liars, scientists only only interested in their grant cheques, organisations such as the IPCC concerned only with self-preservation.
    Being wary of potential conflicts of interest is one thing, seeing them everywhere you look is someting else.

  39. Latimer Alder says:

    You’d better add Mike Mann to the list of people missing the point, too then. Because (despite his many acccusations to the contrary) there is no evidence that BigOil is funding me or any fellow UK sceptics to carry out our climate change activities.

    I have no knowledge of, nor much interest in, US arrangements. Maybe the Cato Institute are a big noise, maybe not. But they’ve never been mentioned in our self-funded sceptic socials in various pubs in London and Oxford. (Confession – I once went to see Steve McI speak at a GWPF do and there was ‘free’ coffee and biccies. I had two cups and a chocolate bourbon).

    And perhaps you might also ask him why he is so keen to dismiss sceptics on this imaginary basis rather than engaging directly with them. He seems to feel that such fals accusations exonerate him from any questionning about any aspect of his work.

    ‘I refuse to answer that question because I judge you to be a Bad Person’ is not in the finest traditions of science

  40. Well, what you’re getting at differs from what I’m saying. I don’t know enough to know who’s been accused of what by whom. Also, accusing people of something without evidence, or trying to make a big deal out of something that isn’t relevant is objectionable (hence why I think what is happening to Dana is not malicious). However, there are cases where knowing who is funding an activity (directly) is relevant. It doesn’t mean that it makes the funding of that activity wrong. It just adds context. That’s really all I’m saying. If you’ve been falsely accused of something, then I would agree that that wasn’t something that should have happened. If I see evidence of that happening, I will endeavour to remember this conversation and will comment accordingly.

  41. chris says:

    Latimer, you’re missing the point again. It’s perfectly appropriate that individuals/institutions should highlight funding of anti-science organizations and request companies not to do this. The Royal Society made such a request to Exxon some years ago. Of course that doesn’t mean that your “sceptic socials” are necessarily funded by “BigOil” or that anyone is suggesting such a thing.

    Professor Mann is continually being questioned about his work and responding to this. It’s the nature of being a scientist. Additionally he’s responded to a great deal of spurious criticism of his work and has done this with admirable patience and scientific rigour. Not sure what else you want – I hope you’re not suggesting that he should be attending your “sceptic socials”!

  42. Latimer Alder says:

    @chris

    Anybody is welcome to come to our socials. They are widely advertised. The only prereq is that you are prepared to discuss and debate. If Mr. Mann were to attend we’d make him welcome – as we do everyone. And we’d press and probe his remarks – also as we do everyone.

    What wuld not endear him would be casual references to ‘anti-science’ organisations or ‘Big Oil Denier Conspiracies’ which are seemingly his stock-in-trade judging from his media interviews – especially when promoting his book.

    But I’m glad that you agree our socials are not funded by Big Oil (or indeed anybody else). Perhaps we can hear the end of this spurious excuse for avoiding questions that has been so popular in recent years.

    In next week’s instalment:

    ‘Why should I show you my data when you’re only going to find something wrong with it?’. And why it, too, is not in the finest traditions of science.

  43. Andy Skuce says:

    I agree that most of the accusations of Big Oil money corrupting denialists miss the mark and only serve to polarize and divert the conversation. (There are some exceptions; for example, paid lobbyists and people like Mark Morano, who merit the charge.) If I were to be cynical, the reason that oil and coal companies do not fund the likes of McIntyre and Watts is not because they wouldn’t want to, but because they don’t need to. To paraphrase what Humbert Wolfe wrote about British journalists:

    You cannot hope
    to bribe or twist,
    thank God! the
    climate denialist.
    But, seeing what
    the man will do
    unbribed, there’s
    no occasion to.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Humbert_Wolfe

  44. Pingback: Real Sceptic » Anonymous Opinion “Not Worth Bucket Of Warm Spit”

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