Richard Tol first came to my attention when he publicly criticised the consensus project. For reasons quite hard to understand, he tried very, very, very, hard to get his commentary published, eventually succeeding.
At the same time, it became quite clear that there were a number of errors in one of Richard’s papers on the economic effects of climate change. Richard Tol submitted a correction to his paper, suggesting that it was Gremlins wot made him do it. The significance of this was discussed by Andrew Gelman (who suggested that maybe Richard Tol should try harder) and by Grant McDermott. It now appears that the IPCC has changed the wording in one of its recent reports as a result of these errors/corrections.
If, however, you read Richard Tol’s response to this, it appears that his critics are all wrong and that it is all some kind of left-wing conspiracy. At this point I’m probably supposed to make some comment about Richard’s behaviour, but I really can’t be bothered. As Joshua would say, it’s just the same ol’ same ol’. It would probably be nice if people engaged constructively with their critics, but I guess there’s no rules to say that you have to and – I guess – if you don’t trust your critics then I suspect that you won’t feel that any engagement would be of benefit.
I’ll also note that Judith Curry has responded in a similar fashion to those critical of her Wall Street Journal Op-Ed. So, all-in-all, just another couple of episodes in the never-ending game of ClimateBallTM.