Watts Up With That (WUWT) has a new post by Lord Christopher Monckton called Sticking it to the Mann. In this post, Christopher Monckton responds to Michael Mann’s recent Richmond Time’s Dispatch article.
I would explain why what Christopher says is largely nonsense, but I’ve commented on his claims before and really can’t be bothered doing so again. If you’re uncertain as to why what he say is nonsense, feel free to leave a comment and myself, or one of the regular commentators, will be happy to explain. Collin Maessen, who regularly comments here, has a number of very good YouTube videos explaining the errors in Christopher’s thinking.
What I did find interesting is that the WUWT post finished with a brief summary of Christopher’s credentials. It starts with
Lord Monckton is an expert reviewer for the IPCC’s forthcoming Fifth Assessment Report.
Well, as far as I’m aware, one can register to become a reviewer, as explained in this WUWT post from 2011. Doesn’t sound like it is necessarily something for which one is selected. Rather, it can be something one volunteers to do. Commendable, maybe, but doesn’t necessarily imply anything particularly exclusive. The fourth assessment report seems to have had something like 2400 individual experts.
The WUWT post goes on to say
He has lectured worldwide in climate science and economics and has published several papers in the learned literature.
I notice it doesn’t say peer-reviewed literature. By the time most of my students have finished their PhDs, they’ve normally got a few peer-reviewed papers and a number of presentations at international conferences, and they wouldn’t think that gave them the credibility to stick it to one of the leading experts in their field.
Finally, we discover that
his passport says he is The Right Honourable Christopher Walter, Viscount Monckton of Brenchley.
So, just because his grandfather was made a Viscount after being a government minister we’re meant to take Christopher seriously when he criticises one of today’s leading climate scientists. Don’t make me laugh. Do Americans think those living in the UK still bow and scrape to the nobility?
To be fair, I’m always a little careful about judging someone by their credentials. Someone commented on Twitter recently (I forget who, but it might have been Marshall Shepherd) that if you need to use your credentials to win an argument, your argument probably isn’t particularly strong in the first place (or something to that effect). As an aside, anyone willing to guess who immediately sprang to mind when I read that tweet? So, just because you have the credentials (which Christopher really doesn’t) doesn’t mean that you necessarily know what you’re talking about. On the other hand, not having the credentials would normally mean that you probably don’t know what you’re talking about (or, rather, that you should be a little careful about what you say). That’s not to say that you don’t have the ability, just that you have not had the opportunity to become sufficiently experienced. However, if those at WUWT really think that credentials matter, why don’t they have a quick read through Michael Mann’s cv. Apart from the fact that he didn’t inherit a title from his father, I think most would agree that his credentials are somewhat more impressive (to put it mildly) than those of the Right Honourable Christopher Walter, Viscount Monckton of Brenchley.