Bullying as scientific misconduct

by Judith Curry

Updated AGU Ethics Policy available for member comment.  Proposed new language identifies harassment and bullying as scientific misconduct.

From AGU News:  Updated AGU Ethics Policy Available for Member Comment.  Excerpts:

The current policy is silent on the important issue of harassment and other types of negative behavior such as discrimination and bullying. With the updates, AGU would extend the ethics policy to members in general, rather than only to volunteers and to participants during meetings, as it currently applies.

Recommendations from the task force, which is chaired by past AGU President Michael McPhaden, include language in AGU’s code of conduct to explicitly define and address harassment. The new language defines harassment as a scientific misconduct issue.

The update expands the ethics policy’s coverage to include code-of-conduct implications for all AGU programs, including Honors and Awards as well as Governance. In addition, it identifies conditions under which the policy’s provisions may apply to actions that occur outside of AGU programs. It also outlines clear procedures for reporting and follow-up on ethics issues. In proposing revisions, the task force considered both the leading practices of other professional and scholarly societies and the needs of AGU members.

The complete document is AGU Scientific Integrity and Professional Ethics.  It says on the document ‘not for public dissemination’, but the News Release (which is being tweeted by AGU) includes a hyperlink to the full document.  So apparently it is fair game for public dissemination.

The document is long and thorough; the section of particular interest to me is:

  1. III. CODE OF CONDUCT TOWARDS OTHERS

AGU members work to maintain an environment that allows science and scientific careers  to flourish through respectful, inclusive, and equitable treatment of others. As a statement of principle, AGU rejects discrimination and harassment based on factors such as ethnic or national origin, race, religion, citizenship, language, political or other opinion, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, appearance, age, or economic class. In addition, AGU opposes all forms of bullying including threatening, humiliating, coercive, or intimidating conduct that causes harm to, interferes with, or sabotages scientific activity and careers.

Discrimination, harassment (in any form), and bullying create a hostile environment that reduces the quality, integrity, and pace of the advancement of science by marginalizing individuals and communities. It also damages productivity and career advancement, and prevents the healthy exchange of ideas.

We affirm that discrimination, harassment, sexual harassment, or bullying in any scientific or learning environment is unacceptable, and constitutes scientific misconduct under the AGU Scientific Integrity and Professional Ethics policy. Such behavior should be reported and addressed with consequences for the offender, including but not limited to AGU sanctions or expulsion as outlined in this policy. In addition, as part of AGU’s commitment to providing a safe, positive, professional environment, the SafeAGU Program has been created to provide trained staff and volunteers to meeting attendees if they need to report harassment, discrimination, bullying or other safety/security issues during an AGU meeting, or to request confidential support when dealing with harassment-related issues that may not rise to the level of a formal ethics complaint.

Each major AGU program—including Meetings, Publications, Honors, and Recognition, and AGU Governance—has or will have additional statements to address specific code of conduct expectations unique to their activities and consistent with this AGU Scientific Integrity and Professional Ethics policy. If no such policy yet exists, the principles and processes for reporting, investigating and addressing potential code of conduct violations  as outlined in this policy will prevail. AGU leaders are held to additional standards as outlined further in the AGU Volunteer Leaders Section of this policy.

Bullying is the use of force, threat, or coercion to abuse,intimidate, or aggressively dominate others in the professional environment that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. These actions can include abusive criticism, humiliation, the spreading of rumors, physical and verbal attacks, and professional exclusion and isolation of someone.

The policy seems to have some ‘teeth’:

If a finding of scientific misconduct has been made, the Board of Directors will decide the action to be taken. These may include appropriate sanctions, the period over which the sanction will be in effect, correction of the publication record, and/or recommendations for education or training. Sanctions, in increasing severity, may include but are not limited to the following:

  • Written reprimand or warning.
  • Removal from AGU volunteer position.
  • Publication of “errata” notices.
  • Withdrawal/retraction of presentations, publication, or posters.
  • Placement of an author or reviewer on an AGU Editor’s watch list.
  • Notification to other journals
  • Suspension from publishing in AGU journal(s) for a specific period, including permanently.
  • Suspension from making presentations at AGU sponsored meeting(s) for a specific period, including permanently.
  • Suspension of membership.
  • Permanent expulsion from AGU.
  • Revocation of honors and awards.
  • Notification to respondent’s home institution.
  • Publication/notification to members of incident in Eos or other AGU publication.
  • Public statement regarding the scientific misconduct.

When an AGU member is sanctioned by another organization for scientific misconduct or convicted of criminal activity, the AGU Board may consider its own sanctions related to membership, attendance at AGU programs, and publishing with AGU.

Test cases

Well this is certainly an interesting development, I would be very interested in hearing more about how AGU came to the decision to include this in its ethics statement.

Presumably any code violations made prior to formal adoption of the policy will not be influenced or eligible for sanctions.

Let’s take a look at three previous incidents that may be an ethics violation, and speculate how these transgressions might fare under the new guideline.

You may recall the ‘Gleick affair‘ whereby Peter Gleick created an elaborate web of deception to obtain proprietary Heartland Institute documents, in an attempt to discredit Heartland.

Ironically, Gleick was Chair of the AGU Committee on Ethics.

As a result of this incident, he was asked to resign his Chairmanship of this Committee.  But apparently there were no other sanctions from AGU, and I seem to recall that Gleick gave a big invited AGU Union lecture within the next year.

Does ‘others’ in the AGU guidelines include Heartland? It is my understanding that some scientists are involved with Heartland, but I don’t know if any of them are AGU members.

The second case is Michael Mann’s recent congressional testimony that included the following statements:

Bates’ allegations were also published on the blog of climate science denier Judith Curry

That includes the study28 led by Zeke Hausfather of the “Berkeley Earth” project—a project funded in part by the Koch Brothers and including29 as one of its original team members, climate change contrarian Judith Curry. (JC note:  footnote 29 is the source watch slime job on me )

So does being called a ‘denier’ in the Congressional Record count as bullying?  How about attempting to discredit me via a tortuous link to the ‘evil’ Koch brothers (who I have never had any interactions with and I never received a nickel from Berkeley Earth?)  Not to mention linking to the slime job source watch article on me.

Consider Michael Mann’s lawsuit against Tim Ball because of  an interview with Ball that was posted on the Frontier Center website. In the interview, according to court documents, Ball responds to an anonymous questioner regarding the “Climategate” scandal by saying “Michael Mann at Penn State should be in the State Pen, not Penn State.”

It’s interesting to compare the nature of Tim Ball’s statement about Mann, with Mann’s statement about me, and different venues in which the statements were made.

I’m sure there are many other cases to discuss, but these three were the first that came to my mind.

JC reflections

So, should the AGU be providing sanctions against scientists for their behavior towards other scientists?  It is easy to argue that this is the case at AGU meetings, for AGU officers, and others in appointed positions at AGU (this would clearly put Gleick in the AGU cross hairs).  But what about Mann’s behavior (who is an AGU fellow) and Tim Ball’s (assume for the sake of argument that Ball is an AGU member; I simply don’t know).

At the time of ClimateGate, I recall the argument (I think from Gavin) that Sir Isaac Newton was a SOB, and that did not make his science incorrect.  Well, in the 21st century, the whole system of peer review for publications and grant proposals, not to mention promotion and awards committees, and research assessment committees (e.g. NAS, IPCC) rely on ethical conduct towards others.

I suspect that this code of conduct towards others emerged from social justice concerns related to race, gender, sexual orientation, religion and national origin.  I have to say that other than some very subtle discrimination, I don’t think that bullying is a big issue in this context.  The bullying that I have seen relates scientific disagreements, with the majority (consensus) opinion being used a rationale for bullying, plus politics and policy preferences regarding the social consequences of the research topic.

Defining bullying when an issue such as race and gender is involved seems fairly straightforward, it is less straightforward when the bullying is related to scientific and/or policy-political disagreements.  Where do you draw the line?  I would say the line should be drawn when the actions of the bully causes harm to, interferes with, or sabotages scientific activity and careers.  Lets take a look at some examples and ponder where this line might be in terms of the bullying behavior of scientist A towards scientist B:

  1. Bullying tweets
  2. Bullying blog posts
  3. Op-eds published in the mainstream media
  4. Statements to journalists in the mainstream media
  5. Direct communications to a scientist’s employer
  6. FOIA requests (I don’t know of an examples of scientist A making FOIA requests of scientist B?)
  7. Statements made in Congressional testimony

Based on my own experience, I would say that #1, #2 doesn’t matter, it’s just noise.  Tweets, in particular, are fairly ephemeral and typically spur of the moment.

Bullying op-eds and statements to journalists do matter, these are read by my employer and have shown in up in Georgia Tech’s daily news roundup that is circulated to the entire population of administrators, faculty members and students.

Direct communications to my employer (e.g. the Grijalva inquisition) definitely matter, but to my knowledge  the communications from bullying scientists  have been fed to my employer via several sympathetic faculty members at Georgia Tech.  These definitely matter(ed).

Regarding statements made in Congressional testimony.  Well the dynamics have changed in the last year, with my retirement and Trump’s election.  I may actually benefit from that in some circles, whereas in other circles it will harm me.  Remains to be seen.

I don’t know if the AGU is prepared to confront the bullying/tyranny of scientists from ‘majority’ perspective versus scientist with minority perspectives.  Not to in any way dismiss the problems of racial, gender, etc. discrimination, I mainly see bullying as being associated with minority scientific and policy perspectives.

In any event, I regard this as a welcome development.

321 responses to “Bullying as scientific misconduct

  1. Pingback: Bullying as scientific misconduct – Enjeux énergies et environnement

  2. Two comments:

    1). In the words of British culture and colloquialisms, “Bully for AGU.” :-)

    2). Judith, I recommend you file a bullying/ethics complaint with AGU against Michael Mann for those offensive, “bullying,’ inaccurate, loaded, and personally-motivated comments he made about you to Congress? The outcome would be most interesting and telling.

    George Devries Klein, PhD, PG, FGSA

    • Judith, it is not bullying if it is the truth. You said you had no problems with Scott Pruitt’s comment that CO2 is not a primary contributor to global warming. That is climate science denial. The fact you stand up for the Heartland Institute, and mention the importance of integrity is truly remarkable.

      • Tripp Funderburk–what a nice, euphonious name. What a convenient shield to hide behind. What a clue to the nature of future comments we can expect from you.

      • What do you mean by “a convenient shield to hide behind”?

      • Tripp Funderburk: That is climate science denial.

        No it isn’t. It’s a dispute of one of the questionable inferences proffered as “fact”. “Climate science denial” is to deny the complexity of the accumulated evidence and the complexity of the inferences involved.

        A fuller quote goes thus: “I think that measuring with precision human activity on the climate is something very challenging to do and there’s tremendous disagreement about the degree of impact, so no, I would not agree that it’s a primary contributor to the global warming that we see,”

        “But we don’t know that yet,” he continued. “We need to continue the debate and continue the review and the analysis.”

      • thomaswfuller2: What a convenient shield to hide behind.

        Look him up on LinkedIn, and then apologize.

      • Tripp Funderburk is not a shield. It is my name. I work in coral restoration. I used to work on Capitol Hill for a conservative Republican. Corals around the world are bleaching and dying due to climate change and global warming caused by man’s activities. 22% of the corals on the GBR died last year due to too much heat. The GBR is bleaching again this year with no El Nino, just AGW. Denying this is happening, or providing Jim Steele a platform to spout foolishness to try and pretend global warming is not killing reefs is despicable. There are consequences for denying the consensus science that CO2 is causing the world to warm. You are part of the problem for why the United States is not leading on reducing CO2 emissions. When the evidence presents itself as in one of the world’s greatest ecological treasures bleaching and a large percentage dying, then you probably need to re-evaluate your denial of basic climate science and the overwhelming consensus that climate change and global are real, are happening now, and man’s activities are the leading cause. Hiding behind uncertainty only prolongs and prevents implementing solutions. The Florida Keys experienced back to back coral bleaching events in 2014 and 2015. This was because the water was too hot. See a trend here? Is it a coincidence that we had the 3 hottest years on record, which coincided with the worst coral bleaching and death on record? Forgive me if I am not fond of Heartland Institute’s efforts to undermine solutions to climate change, or those make up spurious and silly reasons for why the GBR is bleaching and dying to try and pretend that climate change is a hoax, or we don’t know enough to act.

      • Tripp, your skill in assigning attribution requires a dazzling upgrade.

      • Tripp,

        For someone who works on reefs it is rather surprising that you choose to focus on climate change as a primary threat to their welfare. It is well known that human activities are a significant threat to reefs around the world. However climate change is nowhere close to being a significant impact compared to other factors. Even such a conservative, fossil fuel funded organization such as WWF places it last – almost as an after thought, because you know, everything is because of climate change.

        So when you start spouting about climate change deniers and how despicable they are for placing the entire planet at risk all you do is identify yourself as someone not qualified to participate in intelligent debate. But at least you have lots of company. A nephew who I think very highly of and who is a marine scientist, goes off the same deep end as you when the subject matter turns to climate change. In both cases I’ll chalk it up to passion. Passion is good. Until it overwhelms good sense.

      • “22% of the corals on the GBR died last year due to too much heat.”
        What a bunch of crap. Go to the 2014 Great Barrier Reef Outlook Report. http://www.gbr.qld.gov.au/documents/gbr-outlook-report-2014-brief.pdf
        Turn to page 21, and look at the first four items in the chart of the left. The first item is bogus; the second item is too: corals can adjust to temperature changes and bleaching is including in those adjustments; healthy corals bounce back. The third item, acidification, is a hypothetical future concern. The fourth item, sea level rise, has about zero relevance to corals today. If you want to know what’s wrong with the GBR, forget the first four items and look at the following items: those are the real causes of GBR decline, which the warmists appropriate for their own cause.

        Let’s not forget Ampou et al 2017: http://www.biogeosciences.net/14/817/2017/bg-14-817-2017.pdf

      • timg56,

        Wow. You sound mighty sure of yourself. You write, “climate change is nowhere close to being a significant impact compared to other factors.” Forgive me, but that is just foolish and incorrect.

        I understand the multiple stressors damaging coral reefs including overfishing, disease, sedimentation, poor sewage treatment, overdevelopment, loss of mangroves and sea grass, pollution, sunscreens, flushed pharmaceuticals, African dust, anthropogenic breakage, storms, reproductive allee affects, invasive species, ocean acidification, and other stressors.

        However, the marine biology science community and experts in the field agree that climate change and global warming are currently the gravest threat to coral reefs, and it is not even close. For you to say that it is nowhere close to being a significant impact identifies (how did you put it?) yourself as someone not qualified to participate in intelligent debate.

        In 2010, Bruno wrote an important study showing that coral cover remained steady inside Marine Protected Areas, while it declined outside of MPAs. However, in 2016, Bruno had to retract those findings and found that local management had no impact since climate change was the overwhelming factor.
        http://www.nature.com/articles/srep29778

        ” These findings indicate that local management alone cannot restore coral populations or increase the resilience of reefs to large-scale impacts. They also highlight the truly global reach of anthropogenic warming and the immediate need for drastic and sustained cuts in carbon emissions.”

        The recent comprehensive study in Nature by Hughes and 28 other top scientists found that the bleaching in the Great Barrier Reef was correlated to the number of weeks of elevated temperatures. They added, “Water quality and fishing pressure had minimal effect on the unprecedented bleaching in 2016, suggesting that local protection of reefs affords little of no resistance to extreme heat. Similarly, past exposure to bleaching in 1998 and 2002 did not lessen the severity of bleaching in 2016. Consequently, immediate global action to curb future warming is essential to secure a future for coral reefs.”

        http://www.nature.com/articles/nature21707.epdf?author_access_token=4so7-Gu6CqUuB42UK6hKVtRgN0jAjWel9jnR3ZoTv0NYcseJcueSDf5mFE1OHwy-cGaJ3e9TQ3xjkYQu2fRCG7IHQ9-sk_kPZwCW64dSYiRzZU5_nnJ112tNo5iNyXSn

        When 22% of the Great Barrier Reef dies due to bleaching caused by heat stress, you must see that climate change and global warming is not just significant, it is the dominant threat to coral reefs around the world, despite your ignorant statement.

        Finally, skepticism is good. Until it overwhelms good sense.

      • I agree that large temp increases are a primary cause of coral bleaching. Now we have the attribution question mark. Which you seem confident is not a question mark at all. Because model outputs. Nice try

      • Don132,
        What does a 2014 explanation of coral stress have to do with documented, widespread coral bleaching and death in 2016, and further bleaching in 2017? But congrats for propping up a strawman and beating the crap out of it.

      • This is some of the best and comprehensive analysis of the sham hearing conducted by Lamar Smith.

        http://climatefeedback.org/scientists-reactions-us-house-science-committee-hearing-climate-science/

        Climate scientists provide some straight truth to illustrate that Judith Curry does deny basic climate science. Gavin Smith: “Curry’s claim that no one knows the attribution of this to human impacts is not a valid description of the state of knowledge.”

        This is excellent reading. Does Judith consider this bullying when all they are doing is describing the consensus science and specifically outlining where Curry’s statements contradict the understanding of current warming and its causes?

      • No i just consider it a pointless ‘rah rah consensus’ statement. I’m thinking of doing a post on this, will see if i have time (i’m SWAMPED)

      • Tripp, you want to lawyer away your bad behavior. “Denier” is an unwelcome term and it is beneath you to use it

      • Worse for a career in science than being bullied is a completely referenced scientific takedown of someone’s views like was handed out in the article linked by Tripp.

      • Jim D, everybody enjoys a good takedown; but does including the “denier” label strengthen or weaken the prose?

      • You can ignore the ones who use denier, if you prefer, but you should try to answer to the ones who don’t, and this article did not use that term. That is not an excuse for not answering anyone.

      • Oh, thanks Jim. I didn’t read Tripp’s link; I admit I thought it would be just a hit piece or something like that. Did anybody else read it? I’m still not going to read it. It’s probably still a hit piece. Am I right?

      • These are the invited opinions of scientists who do the studies and speak from that perspective, not people just talking about seat-of-the-pants stuff like you see on blogs. So it is worth a read just to get a view of the subject that is more prevalent out in the real world.

      • Jim, I read the linked piece. I can’t agree with the selected scientists who were invited to respond to the HSC. Many of the statements offered demonstrated opinions similar to those shared by Tripp. The evidence for a catastrophic anthropogenic signal is at best unconvincing and entirely model based.

      • They mainly refer to the misstatements by Curry and Christie on the current state of the climate. I don’t recall them saying anything about impacts or future projections because the panel didn’t really get into that territory. The first step in the debate is always shredding their misconceptions about the data itself and there are many of those.

      • Jim D, I don’t think the data supports high sensitivity.

      • Depends what you mean by high. It supports over 2 C per doubling as a transient rate, consistent with the consensus 3 C equilibrium rate. Perhaps that is not high to you.

      • Christie and Curry did not make misstatements on the current state of the climate. The commenters cited model results on attribution, which I have argued at length include much circular reasoning.

      • It is not the truth. Your position is the projection of superstitious guilt onto statistical noise. Your position is lower brain stem Salem Witch Trial human behavior at its most abject.

        If you will be a scientist, you must get beyond bad. Bad happens. Hot happens. It is not automatically our fault.

      • Tripp, when scientists say global warming is a threat to coral reefs, I can accept that. That does not mean that global warming is currently harming coral reefs. What is damaging coral reefs now is dynamite and starfish. If global warming continues it may indeed be harmful in the future.

        Just get your time zones straight. Past… present..; future.

      • I was so astounded by your comments that I quoted them:
        “Tripp, when scientists say global warming is a threat to coral reefs, I can accept that. That does not mean that global warming is currently harming coral reefs. What is damaging coral reefs now is dynamite and starfish. If global warming continues it may indeed be harmful in the future.”

        Current global warming is unequivocally harming coral reefs. Despite your best wishes, the future is now and global warming is harming coral reefs as we speak. The denial here is impressively strong.

      • First, the IPCC uses a Bode formula in electronics as a feed back, which requires additional energy. They term 0.66 w/m^2 from additional co2. The actual is 0.22 w/m^2 and is quite possibly lower to 0.15 w/m^2. They account for no negative feedbacks.
        Second, in the dissemination of information, they left out a very critical piece of information about co2, it lags temperature. And it has followed temperature for at least the last 60 years. Those are facts and not speculation. The chart showing total co2 with temperature anomolies is misleading. You haven’t seen a chart showing the co2 ppm per year with the temperature anomolies for that same year, have you ?
        There is so little co2 that to extract it is not cost effective. Man has added about 1tenth of 1 %. An incredible small amount. Unless there is a unity coefficient inherent in co2, we should be using it in all kinds of things. Unfoutanely, there isn’t.
        You may consider the science settled in favor of global warming by co2. There probably has been some warming, co2 however is not the vector.
        Further, every model and every prediction has failed. Adjusting the temperature record multiple times and more recently the co2 record in order to keep this myth alive, that isn’t science. It’s a belief system to continue believing AGW. They are fabricating the data to fit a model.
        I’m not in denial, C/AGW is just wrong.
        You know what the real problem is ? When the cold comes back we are totally unprepared.
        Don’t bother responding… I’m not going to get into an endless twisted discussion. .

      • Tripp, what is your response to the fact that sea levels have fallen, causing the recent bleaching. https://wattsupwiththat.com/2017/04/05/falling-sea-level-the-critical-factor-in-2016-great-barrier-reef-bleaching/

      • Tripp, I think your tone is out of place. Bullying is not acceptable as long as the victim “deserves it”

      • Tripp Funderburk:

        Judith Curry does not deny basic climate science. If you have some specific accurate quotes, they would be helpful.

      • Thanks Jim D for your characterization of the quotes from several scientists as”……a completely referenced scientific takedown of someone’s views….”

        I had a different take on their perspectives. Judith and those in the link are on different planes. There are structural limitations to human knowledge. Those other scientists show such confidence in their mathematical representation of reality that they apparently are unable to distinguish between truths and estimates of truths. Do they really believe that the global temperature without human influence of any nature is knowable. If we had a twin earth and one was used as a control then maybe. But doing a counterfactual analysis on what might have been without human activities over the last 5000 years makes as much sense as suggesting that Sergio would not have won the Masters if he had eaten Cocoa Puffs instead of his preferred Cap’n Crunch. Or maybe they could enlighten us on what the US GDP would have been if Adlai had beaten Ike in 1952.

        I have no problem with predicates that someone believes the facts are such. But these situations are never represented as beliefs but always as unassailable truths. They fail just on the epistemic logic and never seem to get out of their own way. It seems as if the entire establishment is in a Jonestown type situation and they all share the same treadmill, ensconced in confirmation bias.

        There are some things that are unknowable. They, along with their consensus colleagues have never quite reached that elevated level of understanding about the human mind and its relationship to knowledge.

      • Tom Harly,
        The Jim Steele theory that sea level falling is the main cause of bleaching is laughable, and almost embarrassing that the skeptics eat up his fiction with such relish in hopes to pretend that hot water and global warming are not killing the Great Barrier Reef. Jim wants so badly to prove that climate change is not happening that he will throw up any other possible cause besides the obvious and confirmed truth that hot water caused, and is causing, the bleaching. Jim is a bird call expert and not a marine biologist. He has never published anything that required peer review.

        Just a few thoughts about Jim Steele’s latest piece of fiction:

        1. Jim comically says that, “bleaching without mortality is not a worrisome event no matter how extensive.” When corals bleach they lose their symbiotic algae that provides 80% to 90% of their food. They are starving. While bleached, corals stop growing, stop reproducing, and they are more susceptible to disease after bleaching. Jim thinks that all those things are “not worrisome”?!?! This single ignorant, massively incorrect statement provides all you need to know about Jim Steele’s knowledge of coral science. It is sort of like saying, “Cancer without mortality is not a worrisome event no matter how extensive.”

        2. The Hughes study found corals bleaching 4 meters and more below the surface. Why would Jim’s proclaimed 15 centimeter fall in sea level cause bleaching 4 meters below the surface?

        Jim is the king of conflating unrelated issues, and dreaming up omissions from factual studies to imply they missed some insight only Jim could discover. Jim states, “For example, the Indonesian researchers found the extent of dead coral tissue was mostly relegated to the upper 15 cm of coral, which correlated with the degree of increased aerial exposure by recent low tides. Unfortunately Hughes et al never carried out, or never reported, such critical measurements.”

        Jim found a study which documented an area with a couple of abnormally low tides that exposed the top 15 centimeters of coral out of the water where it baked in the sun. Jim postulates that since the tops of some reefs died in Indonesia due to abnormally low tides, then all the bleaching along the 1500 mile Great Barrier Reef was all due to abnormally low tides. Never mind that that the 28 researchers who confirmed all the coral bleaching in the Hughes study never mentioned that it was the top 15 centimeters that bleached and died. Basically, Jim Steele makes up stuff and uses misdirection to try and undermine the obvious evidence of global warming and climate change.

        3. The Hughes study shows remarkable correlation between temperature and bleaching. This is from the summary: ” Here we examine how and why the severity of recurrent major bleaching events has varied at multiple scales, using aerial and underwater surveys of Australian reefs combined with satellite-derived sea surface temperatures. The distinctive geographic footprints of recurrent bleaching on the Great Barrier Reef in 1998, 2002 and 2016 were determined by the spatial pattern of sea temperatures in each year.”

        NOAA and marine biology community understand how much heat causes bleaching. They can predict it and confirm it. It is not subject to Jim Steele’s made up tales of lower sea levels. This is the description from NOAA: “Corals experience thermal stress, the main cause of bleaching, when sea surface temperatures exceed 1°C (1.8°F) above the maximum summertime mean. This stress worsens as the heat anomaly persists. Degree Heating Weeks (DHW) shows how much heat stress has accumulated in an area over the past 12 weeks (3 months) by adding up any temperature exceeding the bleaching threshold during that time period. When DHW reaches 4°C-weeks (7.2°F-weeks), significant coral bleaching is likely, especially in more sensitive species. When DHW is 8°C-weeks (14.4°F-weeks) or higher, widespread bleaching and mortality from thermal stress may occur.”

        The Hughes study found that bleaching occurred more severely where it was hotter for longer (not related to sea level despite Jim Steele’s hopes): “We conclude that the overlap of disparate geographic footprints of heat stress explains why different reefs have bleached 0–3 times, that is, the repeated exposure to unusually hot conditions is the primary driver of the likelihood of recurrent bleaching at the scale of both individual reefs and the entire Great Barrier Reef (Fig. 1a, b). We found a similar strong relationship between the amount of bleaching measured underwater, and the satellite-based estimates of heat exposure on individual reefs (Fig. 3). Low levels of bleaching were observed at some locations when DHW values were only 2–3 °C-weeks. Typically, 30–40% of corals bleached on reefs exposed to 4 °C-weeks, whereas an average of 70–90% of corals bleached on reefs that experienced 8 °C-weeks or more (Fig. 3).

        No amount of Jim Steele’s word salads or unrelated comparisons to others studies that study other things can refute the simple fact that hot water caused, and is causing, bleaching and death on the Great Barrier Reef.

        4. Jim blames the lower sea level that caused all the bleaching on El Nino. However, the GBR is bleaching again this year without the influence of El Nino. So, if El Nino causes lower sea level, and lower sea level was the main cause of bleaching (according to Jim), then why is the GBR bleaching again this year without El Nino?

        Bottom line, corals on the Great Barrier Reef are bleaching and dying due to excess heat. Period. Skeptics can postulate where that excess heat comes from, but they cannot responsibly trot out Jim Steele’s fiction to pretend that the bleaching was not caused by heat.

      • Comparing skeptics of CAGW to Holocaust Deniers is despicable, and says FAR more about you than it does Judith Curry or anyone else who puts the Scientific Method ahead of the lies of Michael Mann, Al Gore, or the rest of that ilk.

      • Comparing skeptics of CAGW to Holocaust Deniers is despicable

        Sure, but I’m struggling to find where this was done. Maybe you could point out where?

      • ATTP (Ken Rice):
        ” ‘Comparing skeptics of CAGW to Holocaust Deniers is despicable”
        Sure, but I’m struggling to find where this was done. Maybe you could point out where?”

        Rice, who do you think you are fooling? It has long been POLICY for promoters of CAGW to compare skeptics to Holocaust Deniers. Anyone with a shred of honesty and the ability to do Internet searches can find that out. Your question is as phony as you are.

      • Bottom line, corals on the Great Barrier Reef are bleaching and dying due to excess heat. Period.

        This sounds quite dogmatic.

        Coral bleaching is caused by:
        – increased temperatures
        – decreased temperatures
        – oxygen starvation
        – increased solar irradiance
        – increased sedimentation
        – bacterial infections
        – changes in salinity
        – herbicides
        – low tide and exposure
        – cyanide fishing
        – elevated sea levels
        – mineral dust
        – four common sunscreen ingredients!

        When individuals claim that it’s global warming, I tend to think they are trying to confirm a bias.

        Coral die. That’s how we get all those white beaches that tourists like ( and then kill more corals by squirting sun screen on them ).

        But coral also live. They’ve been with us for half a billion years, so exaggerations about their current status reflects more on you than reality.

      • Andrew,
        I was asking where it had happened here. Given your response, and that I can’t seem to find any example here, I take it that it didn’t.

      • Tripp, I don’t know much about corals. Did they bleach badly during the MWP or the Roman Warm Period or during the other hot times in the past? Apparently they didn’t die off, and have been around for millions of years. So why should we be worried?

        Your comments that accuse people of “denial” of global warming are clear indicators of your biased opinion. So who cares what you think? About anything?

        Do you know which model is the ONLY one to accurately model the past temperatures back to about 1800? It’s one that has NO impact of CO2. Dan Pangborn’s. That doesn’t make it right, but it is more accurate than all those 103 that are off by more than 2 sigma (all in the same, too hot, direction) after a mere 39 years of data.

      • captdallas,
        You ask good questions. Sometimes I feel that all is lost. But I don’t think that those that care about coral reefs and the planet should surrender to frauds like Jim Steele.
        I do want there to be an understanding of basic science that will lead to solutions to problems related to climate change. First, I think we have to convince policy-makers and the public that climate change is real, it is a problem, and it is caused primarily by human activities. The Heartland Institute, aided and abetted by a small minority of skeptic scientists, and other misinformation groups have effectively convinced the public there is too much uncertainty to do anything. Note that we have an EPA Administrator that says CO2 is not a primary contributor to climate change, and an OMB Director who says,” As to climate change, I think the President was fairly straightforward saying we’re not spending money on that anymore. We consider that to be a waste of your money to go out and do that.” That is shockingly blind, irresponsible, and dangerous. This policy direction was enabled by the climate denial movement and “skeptic” scientists who emphasize uncertainty, which enables and gives cover to the freaking House Science Committee to tweet out ridiculous lies told by Breitbart.
        The physical evidence of climate change is growing daily. The arctic is melting as predicted. Corals around the world are bleaching and dying as predicted. Temperatures are rising as predicted. Go read Exxon’s memos from 1982 – they predict all this. We knew it would happen, and it is happening. Therefore, deniers like James Delingpole and Jim Steele write lies about everything being fine on the GBR, and that it was not AGW that is causing bleaching, it is lower sea level? What absolute BS. This needs to be refuted and explained as purposeful lies to undercut the truth about climate change and its devastating impact on the GBR and coral reefs around the world.
        If the public and policy-makers were aware of the truth, and the reality of global bleaching and widespread death of coral, they may decide that something should be done to reduce emissions of GHG.
        In the meantime, we are working in the Florida Keys to preserve the remaining genetic diversity of endangered coral species. Restoration of any kind must address the threats of genetic bottlenecks and inbreeding. Our nurseries hold and protect every genetic strain of coral that we have collected. Some of the genotypes in our nurseries have become extinct in the wild and now exist nowhere else but in our nurseries. We are genetically testing all genotypes of corals in our nurseries and monitoring which genotypes are more heat and disease resistant. We will give endangered corals the best hope of survival until we come to our senses and reduce GHG emissions. Maybe it is futile, but we are educating the public and doing what we can to protect what is left and give reefs a chance to recover if we can implement the more ambitious goals from the Paris agreement.

      • Tripp Funderburk: I do want there to be an understanding of basic science that will lead to solutions to problems related to climate change. First, I think we have to convince policy-makers and the public that climate change is real, it is a problem, and it is caused primarily by human activities. The Heartland Institute, aided and abetted by a small minority of skeptic scientists, and other misinformation groups have effectively convinced the public there is too much uncertainty to do anything.

        As you know, I basically disagree with you.

        As to the last sentence, I advocate lots more preparation for the oscillations between wet and dry, hot and cool, that will continue. The California strategy of trying to reduce CO2 emissions while neglecting its flood control and irrigation infrastructure is exactly backwards. And I advocate ongoing research for the foreseeable future, even continuation of the efforts to build reliable accurate models.

        As to your specialty corals, they have survived warmer seas in the past. What makes you think they will not survive again? Large populations of small rapidly reproducing animals and plants have adapted regularly as humans have intentionally changed their chemical environments by large amounts; now we have even produced glyphosyte-resistant broadleaf weeds in the regions that grow corn and soybeans, multi-drug resistant HIV, extensively drug resistant TB, and malaria that is resistant to artimisenin.

        Seven years ago I would have agreed with you, but my readings and debates since then have changed my mind.

      • The role of external forcing and internal variability in regulating global mean surface temperatures on decadal timescales

        Abstract

        Global mean surface temperature (GMST) shows considerable decadal variations superimposed on a pronounced warming trend, with rapid warming during 1920–1945 and 1977–2000 and warming hiatuses during 1946–1976 and 2001–2013. The prevailing view is that internally generated variations associated with the Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation (IPO) dominate decadal variations in GMST, while external forcing from greenhouse gases and anthropogenic aerosols dominate the long-term trend in GMST over the last hundred years. Here we show evidence from observations and climate models that external forcing largely governs decadal GMST variations in the historical record with internally generated variations playing a secondary role, except during those periods of IPO extremes. In particular, the warming hiatus during 1946–1976 started from a negative IPO but was later dominated by the eruption of Mount Agung in 1963, while the subsequent accelerated warming during 1977–2000 was due primarily to increased greenhouse gas forcing. The most recent warming hiatus apparent in observations occurred largely through cooling from a negative IPO extreme that overwhelmed the warming from external forcing. An important implication of this work is that when the phase of the IPO turns positive, as it did in 2014, the combination of external forcing and internal variability should lead to accelerated global warming. This accelerated warming appears to be underway, with record high GMST in 2014, 2015, and 2016.

        The divine wind… not coming back any time soon.

      • Tripp, I was just following your trippy trip tip toeing thru the tulips over at WWUT chronicling your close to bizarre behavior in trying to convince your adversaries of the righteousness of your beliefs.

        Do you realize what a delight it is to see passion overtake rationality and completely destroy any chance you had of making a persuasive case for your views? The people change but the circumstances are always the same. Warmist behavior makes it so easy to dismiss their arguments even when they might have merit. Who wants to align themselves with a ding-doing.

        Colleges pay big money for top notch football recruiters. Your acumen for recruiting clear thinking skeptics is unparalleled.

      • Tripp Funderburk: Gavin Smith: “Curry’s claim that no one knows the attribution of this to human impacts is not a valid description of the state of knowledge.”

        Judith Curry is closer to the truth than Gavin Schmidt on this one. Confident claim that the attribution is “known” requires confident dismissal of all other mechanisms that might be affecting climate concomitantly with any CO2 effects. Each alternative (cosmic rays, TSI, UV fluctuation, an unknown periodic mechanism [whatever it is that is responsible for the evidence of periodic warming/cooling], deforestation, UHI,) receives some support in the evidentiary record. (Perhaps we can confidently say that UHI and TSI effects are not large.) Occam’s razor is little help in this case: there is no universal agreement on how much evidence necessitates generation of an “entity”, but confidently dismissing all of them is unwarranted.

        Confidently dismissing entities (e.g. Rutherford’s false assertion that an energy source sufficient to separate the continents did not exist) is not warranted in the face of perplexing evidence.

        Scott Pruitt said it is not known that all other factors account for the apparent CO2 effect. That is not a provably false statement. He also said that he did not believe that the case favoring action against CO2 was sufficiently established. He seems to have independently arrived at a position close to mine.

        I have read Gavin Schmidt’s comments at RealClimate, though obviously not all. He could perhaps in the long run be proven correct. For now, I think there is much evidence against supporting Judith Curry’s disagreements with him. She is not a “climate science denier”..

      • MRM meant, I am sure, “much evidence supporting” Judith Curry.

      • Tripp, “Maybe it is futile, but we are educating the public and doing what we can to protect what is left and give reefs a chance to recover if we can implement the more ambitious goals from the Paris agreement.”

        Since the Paris negotiations are a failure with respect to eliminating any more warming or acidification to tropical ocean, that is a big “maybe.” The more activists climate science types have generally over sold disaster in order to inspire urgent action. The more activist “deniers” under sell the danger to avoid expensive political action. That is how the real world works.

        The Keys just finished installing central sewer systems in an effort to “save” the reef. SPA areas have been set aside to “save” the reef. You are working with funds from somewhere to “save” the reef. The more effort made to “save” the reef increases the number of sun screen slathered tourists that seem to be helping kill the reef. Perhaps making allies with people that believe the reef can be saved in spite of “climate change” would be better than joining either fringe.

        Until then, I vote no until some one can convenience me it is not a waste of time and money. Get to work Tripp.

      • Words to the effect of, don’t blame climate change, rather reduce runoff pollution and overfishing. “Climate change is an excuse for doing nothing.”

        At about 3:50.

      • ostrich alert:

      • David Springer

        Hey Tripp… people who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones.

        Australia produces 500 megatons of coal each year and $1.3 trillion in GDP. 500 / 1.3 = 384. Let’s call that the “Dirty Coal Polluter Index”.

        The US produces 800 megatons of coal and GDP of $19 trillion. Its “Dirty Coal Producer Index” is 42.

        The United States is indeed leading the world in this regard and is almost 10x better than Australia, home of the Great Barrier Reef!

        Adding insult to injury US net export of coal is 50 megatons or 6% of production. Most of it is consumed inside the US where there are strict smokestack emission controls in place. Australia on the other hand exports 80% of its coal to Asia where there are no smokestack emission controls.

        So next time you go looking for a scapegoat for the GBR problem look no further than the country a few miles closer to shore.

        Let me know if any of the math above is too complex for you and I’ll recommend a remedial 3rd grade math tutor for you.

    • There are very few places left in science where skepticism is celebrated. This blog should celebrate scuttling international action to address climate change. What a great victory to stand up to science, the world community of nations, and temperature readings to promote denial of climate science.

      http://www.politico.com/story/2017/04/trump-fossil-fuels-g7-tension-237129

      • As a liberal democrat and a regular reader of this weblog, I find your comment… confused. Last time I looked, most of the globe has not scuttled their actions on climate change. The US has elected a president who is against such action. I disagree with Trump on this in the same way I disagree with Trump on everything. Just as many regulars at this blog disagree with me.

        In this the land of Trump, CO2 emissions fell 1.7% last year. Shall we wait and see what happens this year before lamenting the end of civilization?

        International action on climate change has resulted in three years of flat emissions. That’s only a start, of course. But it’s a good start.

      • Tripp Funderburk: What a great victory to stand up to science, the world community of nations, and temperature readings to promote denial of climate science.

        What can you possibly mean? Would you like to try a few discussable propositions?

      • Thomas: Don’t forget, as signed the Paris Agreement allows China and India to continue with emission growth until they want to change. Considering that between the two countries, if they fulfill their goal of 50% of US per capita that in as little as 15 years they will be responsible for more than 50% of CO2. At that point we will have an agreement that will not address in any meaningful way human emissions of CO2. The US stance that all CO2 emissions should count WAS the only workable platform. Trump may be doing the world a favor to ditch it the PA. That way it would be possible to make the previous US stance of CO2, the world’s stance.

      • What part of “climate science” isn’t science do YOU not understand. It is the demonstrated policy of the leading lights of “climate scientists” to refuse to follow the Scientific Method. Why should we believe anything spouted off by the likes of anti-science, anti-human cretins who promote CAGW – or anything repeated by their admirers like you?

      • Trip,
        I have a few questions for you. You say:
        “Climate scientists provide some straight truth to illustrate that Judith Curry does deny basic climate science. Gavin Smith: “Curry’s claim that no one knows the attribution of this to human impacts is not a valid description of the state of knowledge.””
        Who is Gavin Smith?

        You also say:
        “Jim (Steel) is a bird call expert and not a marine biologist.”
        I researched Jim Steel to find that he was a college biology professor at San Francisco State University with nearly 25 years of experience . To call him a “bird call expert” is a low blow and just a way to belittle him. I also researched your back ground to see that you are a MBA grad and work as a director for Coral Restoration Foundation International. I don’t think having a MBA is anything close to being a “marine biologist”.

        Since you apparently think it so important, have you had any formal education in science at all? I’ll bet your MBA sure does help your foundation raise lots of money from government grants which pay your salary. I would say as far as the coral reefs are concerned, you have a conflict of interest.

        I think we can all dismiss most of what you say.

      • Tripp, radical policy based on non-validated IPCC models, speculating about an uncertain future, is not science.

        Please list real climate changes over the past 100 years or so.

      • Donn Armstrong,
        I got Gavin’s name wrong. His name is Gavin A. Schmidt and he is a climatologist, and Director of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS).
        If you think I belittle Jim Steele, then you undercount how little I think of this fraudulent science and climate denier. He was a Jr. high science teacher and he was head of a satellite camp for adults to take nature walks and learn about bird calls. Let me repeat myself, he is a liar and a fraud. He has a long history of attacking legitimate scientists while posting lie-filled climate denial propaganda on climate denial websites. Those are just facts whether you like them or not.
        I have an MBA, I worked on Capitol Hill for 8 years for a conservative Republican, and I have worked in coral restoration for 3 years. I have devoted my life and attention to understanding why coral is dying around the world, and what we can do to save and restore coral reefs. Jim Steele is a science denial fraud that makes stuff up to pretend the world is not warming due to man’s emissions of greenhouse gases. You are free to draw your own conclusions, but just google how Jim posts on climate denier websites and attacks established scientists. Sometimes there is just objective, rational understanding of motivations and facts. Jim Steele is factually a science denier who pretends to be a scientist.
        You are free to trust me, who cares deeply about coral reefs, has read nearly every study about the causes of coral reef decline, and has devoted my life to improving the health of coral reefs, or trust a fraud who is dedicated to undermining climate science to deny climate change and global warming.
        You say, “as far as the coral reefs are concerned, you have a conflict of interest.” Well, that is true, I have dedicated my life to finding solutions to coral reef decline. My interest is finding policies, practices, and interventions to restore coral reefs. Yes, I have a conflict of interest. I want to protect and restore valuable ecosystems. I find it interesting/disturbing that you think I have a conflict of interest because I care about the health of coral reefs. Coral reefs will not exist if temperatures continue to climb due to man-caused climate change. That is why I post here. This is the skeptic hang-out. I want the skeptics to understand that there are real negative impacts from denying basic science about climate change. AGW is killing coral reefs. That is just the truth, no matter how much the skeptics want to pretend that climate scientists are manipulating data, or lying about the objective truth of man-caused climate change. The evidence is in the fact that 22% of the GBR corals died last year. And the GBR is bleaching again this year due to heat. It is not bleaching due to sea level falling as Jim Steele pathetically asserts.
        Jim Steele wants to pretend that the GBR is not bleaching due to global warming. He does not care about the reefs. He cares about refuting the consensus around climate change. He will lie about bleaching to advance his agenda that climate change is a hoax. Believe what you want, but what I tell you is the objective truth.

      • Tripp, ” I want the skeptics to understand that there are real negative impacts from denying basic science about climate change.”

        Shouldn’t you be wanting to show how an understanding of basic science will lead to solutions to problems related to climate change? For example you have spend three whole years helping to restore parts of coral reefs which would be a complete waste of time if “climate change” is destine to destroy the reef anyway. If “carbon pollution” stopped magically this second, there would still be 8 to 20 years of warming, so if the oceans are at a tipping point, all is lost.

        Why should we buy your product if it is an exercise in futility?

      • Trip,
        I did as you suggested and read what Steele wrote. You called him a liar and denier in ad nauseam but from what he wrote I’d say you’re the one who is in denial and a liar.

        You say: “Jim Steele wants to pretend that the GBR is not bleaching due to global warming.” I believe he wrote that warming isn’t the only or “most critical factor. Therefore you’re the liar. The Hughs paper even acknowledges that warming was not the only factor and I challenge you to find where it refers to “warming due to man’s emissions of greenhouse gases.”

        What you call facts are nothing more than opinions. To say they are facts is untruthful.

        You boast about working on “Capitol Hill for 8 years” but it apparently made you an expert on politics and we all know that politicians are liars and know little about “objective truth” even Republicans.

        I’ll quote Jim from what you call “climate denial websites”.
        “Trip is now calling my house, dropping F bombs and launching insulting rants…….
        It would be a shame if Trip’s low life behavior threatens the foundation’s good work. Perhaps a few emails or calls to the foundation would alert them to Trip’s detrimental behavior.”

        You give a perfect example of bullying so I guess we can at least thank you for that.

      • Bird calls or Bob Livingston? Our past may define us if we let others push it. Do you consider working on coral reefs for three years adequate expiation for your work furthering the agenda of a very bad man?

      • Tripp,

        Did you read this from an article for The Australain?

        “Activist scientists and lobby groups have distorted surveys, maps and data to misrepresent the extent and impact of coral bleaching on the Great Barrier Reef, ­according to the chairman of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, Russell Reichelt……

        Dr Reichelt said the authority had withdrawn from a joint ­announcement on coral bleaching with Professor Hughes this week “because we didn’t think it told the whole story”. The taskforce said mass bleaching had killed 35 per cent of corals on the northern and central Great Barrier Reef…..

        Dr Reichelt said maps accompanying the research had been misleading, exaggerating the ­impact. “I don’t know whether it was a deliberate sleight of hand or lack of geographic knowledge but it certainly suits the purpose of the people who sent it out,” he said.

        “This is a frightening enough story with the facts, you don’t need to dress them up. We don’t want to be seen as saying there is no ­problem out there but we do want people to understand there is a lot of the reef that is unscathed.”

        Dr Reichelt said there had been widespread misinterpretation of how much of the reef had died.”

        Is Dr Reichelt who has a Ph.D in Marine Science a “deiner” too?

      • The Australian Research Council’s Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies confirmed on Monday only the southern third of the reef had not been affected by consecutive bleaching events in 2016 and 2017.

        Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority chairman Russell Reichelt said survey results would be used to “refine a support strategy” to help improve the health of the ecosystem.

        Mr Reichelt said the reef had suffered a second straight year of mass coral bleaching, largely due to ocean warming.

        “In addition, the impacts of recent severe Tropical Cyclone Debbie, and resulting flooding in the catchment, have placed greater pressure on the reef potentially adding to coral loss,” he said in a statement.

        Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies’ marine biologist James Kerry said the reef was not necessarily dead but it would take at least 10 years for “even the fastest growing corals” to recover.

        “So mass bleaching events 12 months apart offers zero prospect of recovery for reefs that were damaged in 2016,” he said.

        Dr Reichelt said the aerial surveys showed the 2017 bleaching occurred further south than the year before, but also that it was patchy and some coral was “largely unaffected”.

        “These reefs will help seed recovery. Bleaching is not the equivalent of a death knell,” he said.

        “Reefs and individual coral colonies do have the ability to recover, depending on the severity of the bleaching and whether other pressures are reduced.”

        Dr Reichelt said GBRMPA would continue to improve the resilience of the reef, but the international community needed to implement the Paris Agreement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

        – See more at: http://www.skynews.com.au/news/national/qld/2017/04/10/severe-bleaching-killing-great-barrier-reef.html#sthash.XGYwAXgY.dpuf

      • Dr. Reichlet, a coral reef expert, has an opinion that CO2 effects global temperatures. He just HAD to throw that unfounded reverence for the Paris Accord on the end of an otherwise reasonable discourse. Just like other academic types, he seems to genuflect to the CAGW enforcement cabal to avoid possible negative career consequences.

        He seems to have ignored many recent scientific studies that minimize CO2-equivalent sensitivity. Additionally, has he even read any of a plethora of studies that bunk IPCC climate models?

      • Tripp Funderburk: What a great victory to stand up to science, the world community of nations, and temperature readings to promote denial of climate science.

        It is true, is it not, that large acreages of coral stands have been killed in the last 10 years by unusually cold winter weather?

        more than 1 acre?

        more than 10 acres?

        more than 100 acres?

        etc.

        You write as someone who would know.

      • Matthew

        I note that some corals can grow in temperatures as high as 40c for short periods.

        http://oceanservice.noaa.gov/facts/coralwaters.html

        Has it been established whether the corals Tripp has been referencing have got a temperature tolerance range as high as that! because I thought the die back had been happening in temperatures around 30c?

        Reading the information it is apparent that corals are susceptible to a variety of issues including salinity, as well as high sea water temperatures

        Tonyb

    • catweazle666

      Tripp Funderburk: “First, I think we have to convince policy-makers and the public that climate change is real, it is a problem, and it is caused primarily by human activities.”

      And you think you are going to achieve that with bullying, name-calling and conflating AGW scepticism with Holocaust denial, do you?

      You really are a particularly nasty, thuggish piece of work, Thunderberk, and even more profoundly stupid and lacking in self-awareness than I initially thought.

  3. This is the language of social justice warriors. It opens the doors to the silencing of dissent, and the elimination of contrary ideas. It is the concept of the “safe space” applied to science and is about the worst possible thing the AGU can do for its credibility.

    • dougbadgero

      Yup

    • Amen!

      George Devries Klein, PhD, PG, FGSA

    • My thoughts exactly, charles.

      SJW-ing got many professional societies into the business of politics, not science. Injecting themselves into the debate to declare “winners” and bruiting unscientific “truths” in politics and the popular media will, over time, lead to massive loss of credibility.

      IPCC climate models are proven bunk. Any scientific society that supports political action based on them is doing a severe disservice to science. There will be costs to those institutions.

    • My thought, too.

    • If it is just used to prosecute name-calling, that would be silly. What names can and cannot be used? If someone is accused of being “fringe” by Judith, is that bullying?

      • I’m careful to never name names. The only two individuals that I’ve called out for what I regard as ethical lapses are Gleick and Mann

      • Steven Mosher

        The never naming names is perhaps the most pernicious form of bullying.
        it basically sanctions others to do actually bullying of actual individuals, and one can always say “well I didnt mean Her, when I said science d*niers”

        You basically slam the vague group and then others do the dirty work of singling out people.

      • Roger Knights

        Steven Mosher | April 9, 2017 at 10:51 pm |
        The never naming names is perhaps the most pernicious form of bullying.
        it basically sanctions others to do actually bullying of actual individuals,

        Nonsense. Unnamed criticisms of Judith’s views would not have caused this:

        Bullying op-eds and statements to journalists do matter, these are read by my employer and have shown in up in Georgia Tech’s daily news roundup that is circulated to the entire population of administrators, faculty members and students.

        Direct communications to my employer (e.g. the Grijalva inquisition) definitely matter, but to my knowledge the communications from bullying scientists have been fed to my employer via several sympathetic faculty members at Georgia Tech. These definitely matter(ed).

        Judith’s critiques of unnamed persons in blogs and tweets would not have been reposted for viewing by their colleagues and employer.

      • Mosher: The never naming names is perhaps the most pernicious form of bullying.

        As you should well know, being a master of the form. I laughed out loud when I saw who posted this.

      • Roger Knights

        Steven Mosher | April 9, 2017 at 10:51 pm |
        The never naming names is perhaps the most pernicious form of bullying. it basically sanctions others to do actually bullying of actual individuals, . . .

        That proves too much. By that logic, it amounts to bullying for a person to criticize the views espoused by members of any faction.

      • Roger Knights

        Steven Mosher | April 9, 2017 at 10:51 pm |
        The never naming names is perhaps the most pernicious form of bullying.

        No, the most pernicious form is that which affects the target’s career (by being directly communicated to his/her employer) and that becomes known to many of his/her colleagues (by being published in a periodical that they read). Tweets and blog posts, which is what you’re alluding to, aren’t in that category.

      • Steven Mosher

        Thanks for willardsplaining me .
        I’ll regard that as a micro bully

      • Steven Mosher

        “No, the most pernicious form is that which affects the target’s career (by being directly communicated to his/her employer) and that becomes known to many of his/her colleagues (by being published in a periodical that they read). Tweets and blog posts, which is what you’re alluding to, aren’t in that category.”

        huh?

        I think you never looked up the word pernicious. there is nothing Subtle about direct communication.

      • Steven Mosher

        I fear I have met my match.

      • Roger Knights

        Steven Mosher | April 10, 2017 at 12:44 pm |
        “No, the most pernicious form is that which affects the target’s career (by being directly communicated to his/her employer) and that becomes known to many of his/her colleagues (by being published in a periodical that they read). Tweets and blog posts, which is what you’re alluding to, aren’t in that category.”

        huh?

        I think you never looked up the word pernicious. there is nothing Subtle about direct communication.

        My lookup reads, “having a harmful effect, especially in a gradual or subtle way.” So you’re mostly right.

        However, if that implies that whatever is “most pernicious” is therefore “most gradual,” then it would seem that it is also least harmful. E.g., if global warming is so gradual that it will only raise the temperature 1 degree by 2100, then it is not harmful at all.

      • Steven Mosher

        Roger that was nice of you . Thanks

      • Mosher: Seriously?? Not naming names the most pernicious form?? Do you sit around just twisting thoughts in your head?

      • I have found the ‘not naming’ to be a very interesting exercise. The people who shout ‘not me!’ the loudest or claim victim status are the ones that the shoe clearly fits.

      • “The never naming names is perhaps the most pernicious form of bullying.” I don’t think one can dream up more vague thought than this.

    • This is the language of freedom fighters. It opens the doors to all kinds of slippery slopes.

      Let’s make the Internet great again!

      • David Springer

        If you delete your account that will help.

      • You’re opening the door to these alternative realities Willard. Good luck living in them. I don’t really care what you do in them. Your goals and aspirations of living as a third world enslaved citizen isn’t mine.

      • > You’re opening the door to these alternative realities

        What about the magnificent You Made Me Do It?

      • If you are on here commenting Willard, I’m not making you do anything. Obviously, you are living in a free society. If it wasn’t, one of our views wouldn’t be allowed.

      • > I’m not making you do anything

        Neither am I making you do anything, Rish.

        Yet you excuse your stupid pet trick with a “you opened rhe door” which means you’re playing the You Made Me Do It card.

        You do realize that women’s abusers use that card to justify their violence, right?

    • I agree. There may be some instances where the policy is positive, but only if applied with an impartiality which the AGU has sadly lacked in recent years. Identity politics driven by both left has been a very divisive factor in Australia, cheered along by the so-called Human Rights Commission, which has a terrible record and whose head has several times lied to Parliamentary committees. No HRC rights for people like me, fair and tolerant as I am.

    • I agree.

      There is a problem associated with behaviors of some participants in the climate/science debate, but for the AGU to adopt the Progressive bullying meme to address it is fairly ludicrous.

    • russellseitz

      Very like WUWT & Breitbart, and come to think of it, such other blogs as emulate the clulessly Orwellian maintenance of black and white lists.

    • Oh yes.
      In Oz, Human Rights Commissioner speech trials, ‘hate speech’
      Law 18C, show how fraught are evaluative, ‘subjective’ practices
      re free speech. Orwell’s Oceania, what we may say prescribing
      what we may think. Pray, who guards the guardians?

  4. Are they still using the term ‘ deiner’ ? Or do they mean skeptics violate the code by disagreeing with the settled science? Or perhaps it was written to eliminate any dissent.
    As if AGW hasn’t used character assassination to quell opposing views.

    • GROOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOooooooooan

      The current popular climate theory ONLY RELATES TO 1% OF GW.
      The current popular climate theory ONLY RELATES TO 1% OF GW.
      The current popular climate theory ONLY RELATES TO 1% OF GW.
      The current popular climate theory ONLY RELATES TO 1% OF GW.
      The current popular climate theory ONLY RELATES TO 1% OF GW.
      BS (Bart Simpson).

      Denying an unproven theory which relates to only 1% of the problem (AR4 & 5) is not denial – it is wasting time mincing with irrelevance. If you are going to be bullied please make it an issue worth fighting over – like denying how the oceans (which are 93% of GW) are getting warmer. OOPs – first one has to invent a theory first – so it can be denied.

      • If the oceans are getting warmer, where’s the thermal expansion? I was assured that by now from the year 2000 SLR would be 1 1/2 meters. I did the math and it’s true. If the math was correct on retained heat, the SLR would indeed be 1 1/2 meters higher. SLR shouldn’t be measured in millimeters if the oceans were warming.

      • rishrac I know nothing of the SLR but have been tracking equatorial SSTs. All info points to increased insolation due to reduced ITCZ cloud mass. No hint of any human emissions being involved with this process. SLR in my mind appears to be more linked to how much H2O is locked up in ice rather than ocean thermic expansion.

    • russellseitz

      “Are they still using the term ‘ deiner’ ”

      Only in reference to the Prince of Wales.

  5. I have my doubts this will make that big a difference. The AGU seems to be itself onboard with “consensus” science and thus may view “fringe” scientists outside that mainstream with disdain and may not come to the defense of unpopular ones. There are no courts to administer justice in these matters, so the enforcement may not be impartial. Any AGU committee on the matter would have to take personal risks unless they felt confident the vast majority of the profession agreed with them. Self policing rarely works without independent 3rd parties administrating the process. Usually those 3rd parties must be employed by an outside body to be independent.

  6. Defining bullying when an issue such as race and gender is involved seems fairly straightforward, it is less straightforward when the bullying is related to scientific and/or policy-political disagreements. Where do you draw the line?
    I would say the line should be drawn when the actions of the bully causes harm to, interferes with, or sabotages scientific activity and careers.

    “When the actions cause harm to a scientific career”? This seems uselessly broad.

    Say you do a really bad bit of research, just straight-up bad methodology, data and conclusions. And say that I do my own research, prove yours wrong. And say my work is replicable by other groups, and yours is not.

    Now, simply going around and citing my paper and the disagreement between our research groups will “cause harm to your scientific career”.

    Basically, you’ve defined “bullying” so broadly that it limits legitimate disagreement, including discussions about a scientist’s skill and competence.

    • Generally, discussions of competence are already usually avoided in my experience except behind closed doors. Generally these things should be discussable and people should be able to act on them. The problem I would say is when this is done publicly in an orchestrated smear campaign. This did happen to Roger Pielke Jr. by the Center for American Progress and apparently was directly asked about by Steyer, a politically involved malefactor of great wealth. Such campaigns sometimes involve other scientists doing the smearing. That should be actionable by professional societies if indeed the disagreement is genuine.

      I remember when Linus Pauling was selling the Vitamin C snake oil. Generally other scientists immediately did double blind studies to check the hypothesis and published those in journals. Pauling never saw the light but there was a gradual sharpening of the science. I don’t think there was anywhere near the level of public venom as we see today.

      This may be a cultural thing too. The desire to stamp out heresy is a pretty fundamental human characteristic. The senior members of a field should be responsible for making sure that doesn’t happen. In climate science, that has never happened. Senior scientists actually joined in the witch hunts. That’s where the blame lies.

  7. Quote”AGU members work to maintain an environment that allows science and scientific careers to flourish through respectful, inclusive, and equitable treatment of others. As a statement of principle, AGU rejects discrimination and harassment based on factors such as ethnic or national origin, race, religion, citizenship, language, political or other opinion, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, appearance, age, or economic class. In addition, AGU opposes all forms of bullying including threatening, humiliating, coercive, or intimidating conduct that causes harm to, interferes with, or sabotages scientific activity and careers.”
    Most of the above with the exception of the last 3-4 lines is nothing more than “politically correct gobbley gook” which has little to nothing to do with the current state of our science, especially in the “climate science” field. Inserting this mush into a serious situation simply serves to dilute any serious discussion or action to deal with the real problems.
    The government-funded groups with their own political direction are much more of a problem. Trying to shut down opposition, belittling and threatening those with opposing positions or those asking serious questions are much more serious concerns which require immediate attention.
    If science is to maintain integrity (or regain its lost integrity), the real problems must not be mired in or diluted by extraneous fluff and misdirection. This issue is simply too important…

  8. “Discrimination, harassment (in any form), and bullying create a hostile environment that reduces the quality, integrity, and pace of the advancement of science by marginalizing individuals and communities. It also damages productivity and career advancement, and prevents the healthy exchange of ideas.”

    The first sentence really needs investigation to establish validity. The second sentence is true and is in fact the primary infighting technique within academic departments. The success of the latter seems to come from people with too little academic accomplishments who preoccupy departmental offices and departmental space because of their innuendos. Usually, these bullies are the mouth-pieces of higher ups who both condone and encourage these assaults by not addressing them. Higher ups including Department Chairpersons want to shape departments for their own agendas; ie, read, allocation of resources. The bully then serves the leadership. There is no “public good” to come out of such machinations.

    I wonder, and now I am wondering aloud, would there be any actions taken by leadership if the bullying were serving the purposes of the leadership? I think not. I don’t think bullying will stop, even with a college/university ombudsman.

    What happens within the societies may be different. Personally, I don’t think my favorite big three targets will endure sanctions of any kind.

    I have been successful in altering someone else’s behavior by having a “connection” at the top of an organization, discussing on a personal level my dismay, and, altering my referral patterns. The object of my ire years later told me of his difficult situation that I had created for him. I then took the time to address with him what it was about his behavior to which I objected, vehemently. Further on, this researcher had addressed my perspective and demonstrated that his original position was in error and that I was “partly” right. His still prestigious position allowed him to make a significant change in the science and standard narrative. The narrative changed for the better, less harm to more people.

    So, I did engage in a form of academic bullying. Who is right?

    • RiHo08 ==> Reporting bad behavior of colleagues — behavior that violates the rules and standards of their employment — to the proper authorities is not bullying by any standards. It is, in fact, your responsibility — if you have attempted to correct the behavior my first approaching the offender and pointing it out in an acceptably collegial way. If the behavior continues, then your must resort to reporting it.

      The biggest problems develop in organizations and work places where there are unspoken rules against reporting offenses by colleagues. Doctors failing to report doctors who operate under the influence of alcohol or drugs risk patients lives — yet this is almost the rule rather than the exception at most hospitals. Lawyers failed to report lawyers for egregious violations of professional standards. Almost no one complained about known crimes and misconduct of certain climate scientists.

      • Yes Kip, you are right about the peer pressure to not report abuse or unprofessional conduct. People don’t want to start a personally damaging war with a possibly powerful peer. I’m not sure how to fix that. I would argue that its the job of senior people to police these issues and to be a source of impartiality for younger and more vulnerable colleagues.

        I’ve experienced it personally myself particularly where funding is involved, people tend to misrepresent or stretch the truth. I have found however that generally the best management appreciates the debate and challenge that is needed to arrive at the truth. Often senior people just want to rest on their laurels and not do much hard work. That’s human nature but they especially who have benefited immensely from the field’s successes should feel some responsibility to be better leaders.

      • Kip, I found to my great cost that in Queensland Treasury there were unspoken rules about developing policy in the public interest rather than pursuing avenues which met Minister’s biases and sectional interests and which feathered the nests of insiders. When I sought to respond to two false and professionally damaging comments by the head of the department, I was warned by my division head, Treasury’s HR and their external referral agency that I would be destroyed if I did so. I suspect that this is common in bodies which do not face the discipline of the market. There is some evidence that this applies to the AGU.

  9. Judith ==> Your comments to the AGU on the proposed policy should include an itemized list of past instances of bullying against you by known AGU members and the effects these attacks have had, as part of your statement in support of the new policy and why you agree that it is needed.

    News of your comments — or, if comments are live and online, the comments themselves — will filter back to the offenders and may influence them to cease such behaviors.

  10. What about the treatment of the lesser beings than us?

    I’m thinking specifically about the microorganisms at the base of all our food chains being poisoned by our pollutants. When they decline and disappear, aka, die, how much longer before we do?

    That “Collapse” was expected NLT 2024 when the 40th anniversary update to Limits To Growth was published in 2012. Not enough time to include the fallout from Fukushima.

    That might make it a bit sooner, don’t you think?

  11. David L. Hagen

    Lysenko’s bullying
    Such bullying on a large scale was epotimized by Lysenkoism
    Bullying Editors?
    Is it bullying to force editors to resign by climate alarmists?
    BREAKING: Editor-in-chief of Remote Sensing resigns over Spencer & Braswell paper

    It has been brought to my attention that as a result of all the hoopla over our paper published in Remote Sensing recently, that the Editor-in-Chief, Wolfgang Wagner, has resigned. His editorial explaining his decision appears here.

    How about coverup of the malfeasance?
    Climategate & Investigations of IPCC and CRU: Was There a Pattern of Cover Up? Tim Ball

    How about favorable fastracking alarmist papers while preventing opposing papers?
    What about funding coersion by favoring the politically correct and denying funds to challengers?
    Forcing scientists to resign/withdraw?
    Roger Pielke Jr testified:

    I experienced an organized effort of delegitimization by members of Congress and the White House, supported by their political
    allies in the media and in well-funded advocacy groups. These efforts were successful in that they resulted in me re-orienting my academic career away from climate-related research.
    Despite being ultimately vindicated about the integrity my research and my funding sources, as well as receiving the strong support of my University’s leadership, the investigation proved extremely harmful to my ability to work in the field of climate.

  12. Ulric Lyons

    “So does being called a ‘denier’ in the Congressional Record count as bullying?”

    It does count as casting aspersions as he didn’t specify exactly what you are supposed to be in denial of. That should not be tolerated in a hearing.

    • It has long been policy of the anti-science, anti-human CAGW crowd to compare skeptics to Holocaust Deniers.

      “By every measure, the U N ‘s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change raises the level of alarm. The fact of global warming is “unequivocal.” The certainty of the human role is now somewhere over 90 percent. Which is about as certain as scientists ever get. I would like to say we’re at a point where global warming is impossible to deny. Let’s just say that global warming deniers are now on a par with Holocaust deniers, though one denies the past and the other denies the present and future.” [1].

      Ellen Goodman, “No change in political climate”, Boston Globe, 9 February 2009:

  13. Bullying is the use of force, threat, or coercion to abuse, intimidate, or aggressively dominate others in the professional environment that involves a real or perceived power imbalance.

    Such as, shall we say, senior Republican members of Congress, a state Attorney General, billionaire owners of oil and gas companies, and right-wing media moguls such as Rupert Murdoch vs. a then-untenured assistant professor?

    You tried to break Mann, and he broke you instead. (To be fair, he had also had science and an battalion of scientists with him.) Stop complaining, and retire from the field with whatever dignity you can muster.

    • Magma | April 9, 2017 at 9:19 pm |

      You [Judith] tried to break Mann, and he broke you instead.

      And here I was thinking that the SETI project hadn’t heard from other universes …

      w.

    • This thread is about what scientists do to each other. The people that are attacking Mann are not other scientists (with the minor exception of Tim Ball). Mann is attacking other scientists.

      • davideisenstadt

        This is the beauty of running a blog; you get the chance to exchange ideas with people like “magma”…
        If it wasnt so sad, it would be funny.

      • That depends how you define “scientist”. If it means those who have endured government sponsored academia, you are right. If it means those who have succeeded on their own so that they can pursue science independently in the Renaissance tradition, you are not.

    • ” Battalion of scientists… ” like 97 % ? And science ? Like every model including the hockey stick, has failed ? Like every prediction failed ? How do you define science ? Leaving out a critical detail in the ” in convient truth ” that co2 lags temperature by 800 years ” as we go back in time ” . That kind of science ?
      By the way, none of the people you mentioned support me. In fact it seems the biggest supporter of your group is a Rockefeller. So , much for your feeble attempt at mud slinging. Neither have any of the aforementioned people called for CAGW ers to be held for crimes against humanity, or jailed. Skeptics have been threatened for expressing an informed opinion on climate change which is in opposition to blosjivk majority mentality. The RICO lawsuit was just one such example.

    • Magma, You are just so intent at false analogies aren’t you? Politicians do a lot of bullying. It’s an equal opportunity occupation. Obama of course was a master at the art as was Eric Holder. Bullying innocent policemen was his speciality for political gain. Are you so partisan that you think this gives cover to scientists to trash other scientists? If so, you are a political hack and nowhere near the mental attitude of a scientist.

      Your suggestion to Judith is just so arrogant and unhinged. She will make her own decisions with out the help of stupid outsiders such as yourself.

    • David Springer

      Bald Mann wins fight with girl by pulling her hair. Film at 11.

    • I lieu of Boadicea, Joan of Arc or Princess Amidala we have JC. Still carrying the torch for enlightenment and dignity in the face of the empires oppression and cyclopean morality. Always remember that 95% of human history involved hunter gatherers – it was the minority view that planted crops.

      • Maintenance of her sense of propriety and dignity throughout her ordeals is one of the reasons JCurry is one of my heroes!

    • No, JC was not broken. Mann has been, and his behaviour of attacking others demonstrates a breakdown of his credibility and composure. I for one suggest JC continue to maintain a watchful and discerning eye.

  14. Pingback: Bullying in Climate Science???!! AGU Policy. Enforceable? | Friends of Science Calgary

  15. The proper use of scientific boundary work is appropriate and should never be considered to be bullying. Scientific boundary work is necessary to weed out bad science, an must be done in a civilized manner. Good challenges to poorly supported conclusions, improperly acquired data, mathematical errors, bad mathematical formulations, poorly constructed models, etc., are crucial to proper scientific progress. This is not bullying.

    The inappropriate use of peer review by entrenched scientists enforcing scientific dogma is usually career limiting, and should be considered to be a form of bullying. Inappropriate use of peer review is used to suppress research into minority concepts that are supported by good science. That approach is bad for science in general.

    • My climate research, which is entirely outside the confines of the so called relevant academic community, contains all of the idiosyncrasies you had mentioned – ””Good challenges to poorly supported conclusions, improperly acquired data, mathematical errors, bad mathematical formulations, poorly constructed models, etc””. Never the less the research is ABSOLUTLEY correct. The world has change in that individuals and lay experts have access to more information that has ever existed, thus persons such as myself from outside the academic community can provide valid input – but the problem is that a passe pedantry is used to block real world contributions to the scientific pool of knowledge – My mathematical formulations are more like a accountants balance sheet since part of my background is business. Some of my arguments and models are sketch – because I really need to pass on the knowledge to the experts so I can return to neuropsychology.
      Conclusions: Beware of using irrelevant criteria and cute arguments to dismiss information or perspectives. 95% of human history involved living in caves, despite them having the same brain as now. Beware of inventing criteria which would have dismissed, Galilei, Snow, Fleming, Einstein, Watt and Wright Bros.

      • > My climate research

        Citation needed.

      • Steven Mosher

        ” because I really need to pass on the knowledge to the experts so I can return to neuropsychology.”

        Whew, and here I thought you were going to quit your day job.

      • Thanks, Conor, but that’s just a video. Moreover, it sounds like you’re rehearsing Koutso’s stuff to correlate the Nile will all climate things, and then finish up by acknowledging GW but by handwaving to some evidence that GW, once properly diagnosed, can be controlled. I’m not sure how a diagnosis can control anything, or what control you’re talking about. Are you really suggesting that all we have to do is to control the water level of the Nile?

        All this would be way clearer with a citation I can read and link in my Contrarian Matrix:

        https://contrarianmatrix.wordpress.com/

      • Since other (unnamed) persons have volunteered your knowledge on the subtleties of bullying, a subject that I admit most all can claim qualifications to understand, I will share my opinion also.

        One of the perhaps most pernicious form of bullying is to pick a weak spot in someone’s presentation, like admitting their original field of expertise was different than the one they are claiming to have recently studied.

        Conor was apparently trying to demonstrate he was a scientist in the statement: …because I really need to pass on the knowledge to the experts so I can return to neuropsychology.

        Science is not about how many medals in your regalia. It only took a common C-clamp and a glass of ice water to show how the Challenger’s O-rings caused a historic engineering disaster.

        I have seen people attack a particular Climate Etc blogger because his formal education was in English, not science or math. I say this is wrong. One should look at the work being presented and apply critical analysis to it and nothing else.

        Conor’s theory that flood control has had unintended consequences of reducing evapotranspiration is not out of the question. The next thought should be `is there any evidence to support the theory.’

        Conor’s video shows considerable research and impressive correlations that seem to have few alternative explanations than the correctness of his hypothesis. Does this mean I accept his hypothesis simply based on that? No. Doing so would be show poor respect for the difficulties of discerning scientific validity.

        I am interested in the idea and hope Conor and others keep investigating such ideas, whether or not flooding large areas or creating massive spouts would promote cloud caused cooling, (if cooling is in fact desirable).

        Conor’s charts showing historic tropical Atlantic warming (continuing over the Central American isthmus to the Pacific) correlated with reduction in clouds, correlated with flood control of the Nile, are very interesting.

  16. I am so tired of people whining and moaning that they are being bullied over the internet, poor them, boo-hoo, we must take action, blah, blah …

    Since according to the AGU definition “Bullying is the use of force, threat, or coercion to …”, that means it is not generally possible to force, threaten, or coerce anyone over the internet.

    Anyone who doesn’t believe that is welcome to try to bully me over the internet into recanting that statement. Go for it …

    w.

    • Steven Mosher

      “that means it is not generally possible to force, threaten, or coerce anyone over the internet.”

      http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/2017/03/22/gif-counts-deadly-weapon-seizure-inducing-tweet-case-grand/

      http://gizmodo.com/supreme-court-online-threats-legal-as-long-as-you-dont-1708190038

      You can threaten in person. you can threaten in mail, you can threaten in a post or comment.

      Now, whether YOU respond to the threat, doesnt make it any less of a threat. I warrant that you cant be bullied on the internet or in person. That says little about the matter

      ‘generally’ of course was your weasel word.

      • It appears that both rulings are correct.

        The person who is facing jail time did a conscious act according the article. He sent a strobe GIF to someone who he knew had epilepsy. That is a predetermined act.

        The one freed from jail was a real jerk, but did not do any actions, so intent to harm was never observed. But at least he advertises his feelings as we can all learn his character, as displayed by the rants.

      • Neuropsychology of how we attach an empirical value to a memory circuit – the level of stress at the time of a new memory inception appears to denote the speed and clarity with which a memory circuit is processed, thus can distort the rationalisation process – all very relevant in the climate arena. Those with a cynical or divergent disposition may be less influenced by the media in their portrayal of GW and CC, thus better equipped than a trusting person to dissect the information to calibrate its true value. The nature of the beast in the whole climate thingy may not be the information itself, but the personality of the Padawan and their faith in the institutions and media from which they receive input. Grasshopper – trust, but verify.

    • A certain eminent meteorologist of advanced years was so harassed and intimidated by the barrage of hate mail when he announced that he would be joining the GWPF, that he withdrew his support. In this case the hostile act covered a whole strata of intimidatory and bullying definitions.

    • David Wojick

      Willis: If you can threat in writing then you can threat in email, one of the earliest Internet services, circa early 1970s. Are you claiming that one cannot be threatened in writing? That is a very strong claim, against modern law I think. Or perhaps you do not mean the whole Internet.

  17. It’s time everyone stood up to the
    hockey stick bullies:

    My whole involvement has always been driven by concerns about the corruption of science. Like many people I was dragged into this by the Hockey Stick. The Hockey Stick is an extraordinary claim which requires extraordinary evidence, so I started reading round the subject. And it soon became clear that the first extraordinary thing about the evidence for the Hockey Stick was how extraordinarily weak it was, and the second extraordinary thing was how desperate its defenders were to hide this fact. The Hockey Stick is obviously wrong. Climategate 2011 shows that even many of its most outspoken public defenders know it is obviously wrong. And yet it goes on being published and defended year after year. Do I expect you to publicly denounce the Hockey Stick as obvious drivel? Well yes, that’s what you should do. It is the job of scientists of integrity to expose pathological science. It is a litmus test of whether climate scientists are prepared to stand up against the bullying defenders of pathology in their midst. (Jonathan Jones)

    • The hockey stick was used by the IPCC only once and was not used in later reports, that supports that it is not valid even with the IPCC alarmists. Mann still promotes it even to congress. His alarmism is only valid to liberals who want to believe the junk science.

    • In the UK criminal code it is complicit to fraud if you fail to inform the police of an occurrence which you believe may be fraudulent. Failing to act against the hockey stick fraud it in itself a criminal act.

      • Moderator – I have already intimated my concerns to a number of legal authorities in respect to the actions of a number of individuals and institutions that suppose to act in an aledged scientific capacity.. I would throw a party if they ever chose to meet me in court.

  18. Before advocating for measures to deal with your opponents (in this case the miscreants giving science a bad name), always consider how the measures will be used against you when you are declared an enemy of science. Once you are so declared, calling you a bully in order to apply sanctions against you is only a step away.

    Remember than Mann is the one who claims he has been bullied!

  19. “It’s interesting to compare the nature of Tim Ball’s statement about Mann, with Mann’s statement about me”
    At the time of Mann’s suit against Ball, as I noted here, the headline story on Ball’s website was
    “Evidence Points To Mann’s Criminal Misconduct”

    I’m not sure what the point is here. Mann said nastier things than Ball? Mann should not have sued Ball?

    It seems to me that having your emails stolen and then spread all over sites like Climate Etc is bullying.

    • Right Nick. Stolen emails. As proven by a police investigation.

      Oh, wait. The investigation failed to prove anything.

      • > As proven by a police investigation.

        As in released by someone who failed to take advantage of the UK Whistleblower Act, as hinted by the Auditor at the time.

        The Miracle Worker did something illegal. Deal with it.

      • I’m not sure, but I speculate that the police found no problem with releasing public information.

      • > I’m not sure, but I speculate that the police

        Ask teh Tall Bloke about that.

        In return, I’d speculate that Willard Tony’s lawyers warned against releasing CG III.

      • Willard,

        surely a guy as smart as you knows the difference between stolen and leaked. Had Nick used the phrase “illegally released” then you might have a point.

      • TimG,

        Even cheerleaders could understand that until the Miracle Worker takes refuge under the Whistleblower Act, the leak is illegal.

        Of relevance to this thread is the fact that harassment is not covered by whistleblowers acts.

      • Willard, AFAIK release of public information in one’s possession to the public is not illegal in the U.S. If it were, the entire Fourth Estate would grind to a halt.

        Hell, want to bet Susan Rice’s unmasking and release of confidential personal information will get a pass? She is the Obama/Dem go-to-gal to dish dirty political disinformation. There is plenty of money in the Obama/Dem PACs to keep her in style forever. The Clinton machine will probably throw her some dough for past services.

      • > want to bet Susan Rice’s unmasking and release of confidential personal information will get a pass?

        I like how you beg an evidence-free question without even whincing:

        Some reports said that Rice did request a review and receive names, but she adamantly denied leaking any names, saying that this would have constituted releasing classified information.

        https://www.reviewjournal.com/opinion/commentary-donald-trump-susan-rice-and-obfuscation/

        Not that this matters much in the #AlternativeFacts world of #FreedomFighters, Charlie.

      • 1. Rice is a political operative for Obama. [Fact.]

        2. Rice is a proven liar. [Fact.]

        3. Rice is shown to have unmasked U.S. citizens, after her initial public lie. [Fact.]

        4. Names miraculously get in the public arena. [Fact.] [Nothing to see here; move on folks.]

        5. Prior experience could predict future results. [Not a whole lot of sarc.]

        As evidenced by his extreme twisting of factual events, Willard appears to be an alt-Left operator. [Fun supposition.]

        Charlie Skeptic went home after helping defeat the CAGW monster. [An evolving reality.]

      • Charlie Skeptic might still need to work on 3.

        That’d help teh Donald’s deflections from Kutschner’s fiasco.

        Best of luck.

      • Weak, Willard. And deflection doesn’t work.

      • > deflection doesn’t work.

        Wait. Which part of “Charlie […] might still need to work on 3” Charlie doesn’t get?

      • Oh, and that’s President Trump to you, wee Willie.

      • Steven Mosher

        “In return, I’d speculate that Willard Tony’s lawyers warned against releasing CG III.”

        1. He released selected mails from it.
        2. There are zero legal issues with releasing it all, redact a bit here and there
        3. There is very little new stuff in CG III

        A smart guy would check the blockchain for the transaction history to the address provided for donations. I’ll assume Mr FIOA was smart enough to use a change address

      • t’were a leak. Sorry willard.

    • Nick ==> Honestly, now you are defending the ClimateGate gang?

  20. If someone has a theory, it can be right or wrong. If you have a different theory, it can be right or wrong. When you disagree, how do you separate debate and bullying? What one considers debate may be considered bullying by the other. Clearly, Mann considers any disagreement to be bullying.

    • If we are walking at the edge of a cliff and I say I will push you off – this presents a real and present danger. If we are 200 meters from the edge and the same thing is said, it becomes a logistical hypothetical issue. Mann walks far closer to the edge of the cliff then most people have realised, thus the imminent danger posed by comments relating to his actions present ( to him) a far more precarious prospect than for so many others. I get called a fraud and liar constantly with my research – its not a problem since I know it is very firmly rooted into solid ground. Mann has no such reassuring comfort.

      • David Wojick

        On the contrary, I think that Mann thinks that he is rooted in sold ground. The cliff is yours, not his. Assuming that an ideologue is a liar is a serious misconception. The two are world’s apart, perhaps even opposite extremes.

      • David Wojick
        I’m just using data from NASA, Met office, IPCC, GRDC, NCAR, NOAA and a few others. If I can get 4 independent datasets using completely different parameters (such as SST, Rain, River Flow and Satellite imaging) to provide a common variable, consistent with known factors relating to ocean currents, ocean heat transport, and prevailing meteorological systems, then I can happily and confidently address the nations as to the nature of events.

  21. Climate science is not the only place where bullying occurs. Napoleon Chagnon, anthropologist and ethnologist of a remote Amazonian tribe, the Yanomamo (the fierce people) found that out when he reported that an early society without contact with western “civilization” was actually extremely violent (which went against the countervailing Meade-ian belief that such societies should and would be pacific). His autobiography : Noble Savages: My Life Among Two Dangerous Tribes — the Yanomamo and the Anthropologists.

    Interesting and sad, but it is how things tend to work.
    Also, @popesclimatetheory, technically the distinction is the ad hominem attack. But that still will not stop the bullying. As has been mentioned, merely arguing against the majority opinion may be considered bullying by the majority, and as with the SJW’s, any contrary opinion will be considered invasion of their safe space and thus attacked as making THEM the victims.

    • Climate science is not the only place where bullying occurs.

      Of course not. Science is a human endeavour and therefore subject to human conditioning. Good luck at changing that.

  22. I don’t know if the AGU is prepared to confront the bullying/tyranny of scientists from ‘majority’ perspective versus scientist with minority perspectives.

    Unless those from the ‘majority’ perspective are actively trying to force those with ‘minority’ persepectives to change their minds (or are threatening them in some way) I don’t see how anything could, or should, be done. Publicly criticising someone else’s views is a perfectly acceptable thing to do and – as far as I’m concerned – the onus should be on those with the ‘minority’ views to present a compelling argument, not on others to stop pointing out the issues with the ‘minority’ view.

    We could encourage less namecalling, and labelling, but sometimes you need a label in order to describe the group you’re referring to. If someone objects, for example, to being described as being on the fringe, then maybe they should stop saying things that make it seem that they’re on the fringe.

    • You’d know about bullying because you defend the bullies on your blog.

    • Problem is, as RPJr points out, the evidence as accumulated by the IPCC, is that global warming to date has not meant increases in extreme events. This is erroneously labeled fringe and insinuations otherwise are false.

      • > This is erroneously labeled fringe

        “This” is unclear.

        Here’s something clearer:

        Having said that, I’m not comfortable with [Junior’s] assertion that climate change has played no role in the observed increase in damages from natural hazards; I don’t see how the data he cites support such a confident assertion. To begin with, it’s not necessarily appropriate to normalize damages by gross domestic product (GDP) if the intent is to detect an underlying climate trend. GDP increase does not translate in any obvious way to damage increase; in fact, wealthier countries can better afford to build stronger structures and to protect assets (for example, build seawalls and pass and enforce building regulations).1 A grass hut will be completely destroyed by a hurricane, but a modern steel office building will only be partially damaged; damage does not scale linearly with the value of the asset.

        More seriously, a casual inspection of both graphs (normalized and non-normalized damage over time) presented by [Junior] leads me to question the statistical significance of either. This is hardly surprising, since 23 years is not a very long time to detect trends in natural hazard damages, whether such trends are caused by demographics or by climate change. A 2012 study2 by London School of Economics researchers Fabian Barthel and Eric Neumayer looked at damage trends normalized by GDP, a measure they used because others are not universally available. For Germany and the United States, with 29 and 36 years of data, respectively, they detected “statistically significant upward trends in normalized insured losses from all non-geophysical disasters as well as from certain specific disaster types,” but for the globe as a whole, with 19 years of data available, they could find no significant trends.

        https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/mit-climate-scientist-responds-on-disaster-costs-and-climate-change/

        Junior did lots of little contrarian things like that.

        ***

        Speaking of which, a Denizen mentioned “Mann 2006” the other day. Somehow the second author’s name has been omitted. Let’s wonder why.

      • David Springer

        A demolished grass hut is less financial damage than a slightly damaged modern building.

        See what I did there?

      • > See what I did there?

        What about asking leading questions to one’s audience?

      • TE: How do you incorporate those charts into your post?

      • Conor, simply post the url of the image ( must end in a known image format, .jpg or .png, or .gif ). Not sure if too many are problematic, but a picture worth 1,000 words and can keep things data focused.

    • TE,

      that global warming to date has not meant increases in extreme events.

      Except this is not a definitively true statement. For at least two reasons. One being that we have detected trends in some extreme events and are even starting – in some cases – to be able do attribution analyses. Secondly, the lack of a detectable trend is not the same as there being no trend. Furthermore, we probably don’t expect – in many cases – to yet be able to detect trends, and so someone continually pointing out that they don’t yet exist (without providing some kind of context) is very likely to end up with someone being regarded as sorta in the fringe.

      However, the key point – in my view – is that if people don’t like how they are judged by others, they should either own it, change how they conduct themselves, or ignore it.

      • One being that we have detected trends in some extreme events and are even starting – in some cases – to be able do attribution analyses.

        Such as?

        Secondly, the lack of a detectable trend is not the same as there being no trend.

        Science tends to be about measured phenomena, not imagined.

        Furthermore, we probably don’t expect – in many cases – to yet be able to detect trends, and so someone continually pointing out that they don’t yet exist (without providing some kind of context) is very likely to end up with someone being regarded as sorta in the fringe.

        In contrast to this, Mann in his testimony, certainly implied just the opposite. (‘Cows burning alive’).

      • Such as?

        I have to go out, but how’s this and this. Just two, I realise, but it’s a start.

        Science tends to be about measured phenomena, not imagined.

        On the other hand, if our understanding of a system suggests that we might expect there to be some kind of trend, but we can’t necessarily find it – given the noise – claiming that there isn’t one would be regarded as somewhat overstating the analysis.

      • No apparent accounting for mitigation

      • I have to go out, but how’s this and this. Just two, I realise, but it’s a start.

        Not sure you can claim a trend from the precip data.
        Lots of incoherence ( adjacent increases and decreases ):

        The Mann paper is speculation on what may happen to the jet stream ( in direct contrast to Hansen, we may note ).

        But were, as is postulated, the jet streams to weaken, and so decrease kinetic energy, this implies less destructive severe storms.

        And that’s just it, there’s uncertainty, but there are many physical bases for reduced extremes with global warming.

        Reduced kinetic energy of jet streams -> less intense severe storms, fewer strong tornadoes ( which is observed in the US ), fewer damaging wind events.

        Arctic amplification, reduced kinetic energy of jet streams, and/or increased water vapor -> less variable and less intense temperatures.

        Hot Spot -> reduced convective potential for tropical cyclones.

        Increased water vapor certainly should mean increased precipitable water which could contribute to flooding from heavy precipitation. But this also implies an increase in moderate precipitation events, certainly a benefit to a thirsty world already withdrawing groundwater at a rate near the global annual precipitation mean.

        Very difficult to make any case for decreased precipitation on the basis of temperature or increased precipitable water. This probably stems from an erroneously inversed syllogism: drought causes high temperatures ( reduced surface cooling by latent heat of evaporation ) , but the inverse is not so for the global mean.

      • and Then There’s Physics: Secondly, the lack of a detectable trend is not the same as there being no trend.

        No, but lack of a detectable trend is evidence that there is no trend, especially when there has been a serious attempt to find the trend where it is predicted (upon a hypothesis) to be. In the post-WWII era, when human CO2 is hypothesized to have the greatest effect, and during which time warming has occurred, there has been no detectable trend in annual total cyclonic energy. If such a trend has actually occurred while evading detection, it must be small; the best inference from the evidence to date is that there is no such trend.

      • and Then There’s Physics: I have to go out, but how’s this and this.

        Thank you for the links.

      • > The Mann paper […]

        You mean the Michael E. Mann, Stefan Rahmstorf, Kai Kornhuber, Byron A. Steinman, Sonya K. Miller & Dim Coumou paper:

        http://www.nature.com/articles/srep45242

        What about personalizing?

      • It is nice to see the Climate Team joining the contrarians arguing about timelines. From Influence of Anthropogenic Climate Change on Planetary Wave Resonance and Extreme Weather Events Michael E. Mann, Stefan Rahmstorf, Kai Kornhuber, Byron A. Steinman, Sonya K. Miller & Dim Coumou “”Both the models and observations suggest this signal has only recently emerged from the background noise of natural variability.””

      • jfpittman,
        Not quite sure what you’re getting at, but one issue with the continual claims that there are no trends in extreme events is that – in many cases – we would not necessarily expect such trends to have emerged yet. Therefore, not finding them is not some kind of challenge to AGW. Having said that, there are now indications that some trends are indeed starting to emerge and that we are starting to be able to both detect, and attribute, such trends.

      • Well, …aTTP, for years academics, bureaucrats, and politicians have shouted out the meme that climate extremes are already here. Are you now saying that there have been no reasons for their alarming statements?

        Get real, apologist.

      • Yes to your comment, and thus the trend, if real, is very short. In explanation, short trends tend to be validated then invalidated, until the trend becomes established to the point there is little to argue about. In particular, Pielke, Jr’s trend is measured with a long baseline such that for a trend to show it will take a long time. In viewing the testimony by Pielke and Mann, who is supporting using short trends as being correct? And stating it so unequivocally. Welcome to team contrarian.

      • – we would not necessarily expect such trends [increases in extreme events ] to have emerged yet.

        Then such ideas are untestable.
        There are numerous physical considerations for which we might expect decreases in extreme events. Reality seems to be not much change at all for the warming we’ve observed. It’s reasonable to question these untested ideas.

        Therefore, not finding them is not some kind of challenge to AGW.
        Right – in fact, it doesn’t speak to AGW at all – global warming is real.
        What it does is indicate that AGW is not necessarily significant to climate change ( CAGW). And it indicates some amount of confirmation bias that popular ideas gravitate toward harm or extremes in association with AGW.

      • TE,
        It’s always reasonable to question things. However, context is important. There are some trends that we would be very surprised if they didn’t emerge (warming, precipitation) and there are others that are less certain, but that we might still expect to see emerge (increase in intensity & frequecy of extreme TCs, for example) and others that are less certain (droughts/flooding). If someone goes around continually highlighting the lack of any trends, in such a way that it is interpreted as suggesting that we would not even expect them to emerge, they might be regarded as being on the fringe. If they don’t like it, they can always provide more context so that they are less easily misinterpreted.

      • – global warming is real.
        Oh wait, that’s assertion.

        Perhaps better: The radiative imbalance imposed by increased greenhouse gasses is calculable and can be reversed by increasing global atmospheric temperature.

      • > The radiative imbalance imposed by increased greenhouse gasses is calculable and can be reversed by increasing global atmospheric temperature.

        That’s still assertion.

      • There are some trends that we would be very surprised if they didn’t emerge (warming, precipitation) and there are others that are less certain, but that we might still expect to see emerge (increase in intensity & frequecy of extreme TCs, for example) and others that are less certain (droughts/flooding). If someone goes around continually highlighting the lack of any trends, in such a way that it is interpreted as suggesting that we would not even expect them to emerge, they might be regarded as being on the fringe. If they don’t like it, they can always provide more context so that they are less easily misinterpreted.

        So, let’s consider these phenomena: warming, precipitation, TCs, droughts, flooding. You don’t mention servere storms and severe thunderstorms, though they’re much more frequent in the US than elsewhere in the world, so perhaps that’s reasonable. There is a physical basis for decrease in all of these events.

        warming – in the global mean, an increase seems likely, but the subject is extremes. As I have cited, Manabe and Wetherald 1979 found that warming coincided with a decrease of temperature variability. Fringe? There are physical bases for this (1. arctic amplification, warming in winter, forces destructive interference to the seasonal cycle, 2. reduced gradient means reduce advective accumulations of extreme air masses, 3. increased water vapor means increased efficiency of given motions exchanging thermal energy and thus eroding extremes ). These same forces contribute to the fact that summer time temperature variability in mid latitudes tends to be about half of winter time variability.

        Tropical cyclones On what basis do you imagine an increase in intensity? Decreased stability? Recall that the ‘Hot Spot’ implies dramatically increased stability! On the basis of stability, models indicate a reduction extreme TCs. Now, as I’ve pointed out, the ‘Hot Spot’ hasn’t occurred, at least for the satellite era, so who knows. But this would be because of a failure of understanding, not because of established theory. And it’s a misunderstanding of tropical cyclones to assume them constrained by stability. The Convective Available Potential Energy (CAPE) of tropical cyclones is rarely very high ( at least compared to central US thunderstorms ). The background tropical atmosphere is most often conditionally unstable, dependent on lifting convergence to achieve convection. The energy of TCs comes from conservation of momentum from that convergence. The whole idea of TC extremes was one promulgated by Trenberth over the fervent rejection of the actual tropical expert on the IPCC, Chris Landsea.

        precipitation & droughts/floodsThere is a relatively sound basis of water vapor feedback leading increased potential precipitable water. At the same time, precipitation is dynamic, determined by atmospheric motion which is unpredictable beyond a week or so. Most GCMs, though, do indicate an increase in the global mean of precipitation. They cannot, however, predict the actual discrete individual precipitation events which also means the extremes. Droughts are particularly unsupported by the arguments of increased water vapor. This is certainly one of the more likely extremes – on the high end, not the low end – to watch.

        So, many of the physical ideas of extremes are either contradicted or mixed.

      • TE,
        If we were 100% certain as to what would happen, then we would make far more certain claims. Since we aren’t 100% sure, it is clearly possible that what might be expected won’t actually happen, and it is clearly possible to present an alternative scenario. That someone can present such an alternative doesn’t, however, mean that they aren’t on the fringe. If the general view is that something will happen, then those who suggest that it won’t are probably on the fringe, even if what they suggest is technically possible.

      • Well, you’re on about ‘fringe’.

        Let’s focus on veracity, not popularity.

      • ‘Tropical cyclones On what basis do you imagine an increase in intensity? Decreased stability? Recall that the ‘Hot Spot’ implies dramatically increased stability! On the basis of stability, models indicate a reduction extreme TCs. Now, as I’ve pointed out, the ‘Hot Spot’ hasn’t occurred, at least for the satellite era, so who knows. But this would be because of a failure of understanding, not because of established theory. And it’s a misunderstanding of tropical cyclones to assume them constrained by stability. The Convective Available Potential Energy (CAPE) of tropical cyclones is rarely very high ( at least compared to central US thunderstorms ). The background tropical atmosphere is most often conditionally unstable, dependent on lifting convergence to achieve convection. The energy of TCs comes from conservation of momentum from that convergence. The whole idea of TC extremes was one promulgated”

        Sorry that is not correct.
        Look at the Tephigram here…

        And plot a environment curve for a parcel rising from 1000mb at 27C and then at 28C.
        (essentially go up the SALR).
        See how much extra CAPE the higher temp confines.
        No – energy driving TC’s (Cb cloud within) IS provided by LH ( condensation and fusion).

        Yes, TC Cb’s are intitiated via conditional instability.
        This is because TM air is ALWAYS conditionally unstable. It continually overlies a constant temp source, and land based convection is not. Furthermore, and crucially, many US storms – the tornadic ones especially – are driven by potential instability (an overlying cooler and/or drier region). Hence CAPE would be much greater.
        The fact remains though that a greater Specific hum of the surface air will give rise to greater CAPE within TC Cb cloud, and hence drive a more vigorous storm.
        Convergence is but one trigger for Cb formation, however the initial and primary drive comes from SST’s with greater CAPE then driving greater surface convergent/colliding wind fields (up/downdrafts), further driving intensification.
        Oh, and you can see from the Tephi that the THS is easily overcome by increased CAPE.

      • Sorry that is not correct. Which?

        The modeled Hot Spot ( more warming aloft than at the surface ) implies increased, not decreased stability. In this way, model results do not support increased TC intensity.

    • As in calling for criminal RICO investigations Kenny?

    • …and Then There’s Physics ==> “If someone objects, for example, to being described as being on the fringe, then maybe they should stop saying things that make it seem that they’re on the fringe.”

      Morally, you have this absolutely backwards.

      The whole point of the anti-bullying and anti-harassment policy to to prevent folks (in this case AGU members) from describing the ideas of colleagues (other AGU members) as “being on the fringe” — which is an intentionally denigrating description of their scientific views based on nothing other than “a lot of people, my people, don’t agree with them” and, in my view. far to often comes down to “failing to fall in line with the prevailing bias is bad and we will label and bully out of of your job and do our best to wreck your reputation unless you agree with us” (without addressing a single scientific idea.)

  23. Bullying in respect to witness and jury tampering? I have tried many times to have the GW and CC issue brought into the criminal justice sphere where the criteria for evidence is beyond reasonable doubt, instead of the current ‘balance of probability’ as used for the human-emissions climate fraud. The world is being bullied into accepting a far lower burden of proof as is normally required in the scientific and criminal codes. Concurrently there is a constant ridicule of individuals who do not accept opinion or gossip or hearsay or theories as being of any value, yet such persons relegated to intellectually or morally untenable. With much of my previous psychology research venturing into the criminal justice spheres, I have noted that there is far more behavioural activities which have strayed far beyond the line and into the realm of criminality.

  24. The bigger problem here is that science is not the people – it’s a process. So whilst it may be an issue for the organisations, bullying is clearly not a “scientific issue” – unless it happens to be the subject of someone’s research.

    You don’t make better science by humanising it – by forcing it to comply with social norms or rules, You make better science by ignoring social conventions and social norms and rejecting any social influence – whether well intentioned or not – over science.

  25. DENIER?????? Since more than 93% of GW is in the oceans and the emissions theory only relates to the 1% in the atmosphere – it some insult to be marginalised for denying the 1% unproven and irrelevant theory????

  26. Lawyers instead of Leaders.

    • This is probably the result of the end of the draft.
      No adulthood rituals, no adults.
      The precious elite don’t need therapists, they need platoon sergeants.

  27. Warning to scientists blurring the line between science and political advocacy: –

    Scientists currently enjoy high levels of public trust (80% trust them to tell the truth according to a recent UK IPSOS-Mori poll), whereas politicians enjoy VERY low levels of public trust (15% in the same poll).

    Being more like politicians and less like scientists seems like a very bad move long term. Advocacy-inclined scientists with consensus views taking comfort from the backing and encouragement they receive from similarly-minded journalists should reflect on the low public trust in journalists (24%).

    They might also reflect that trust once lost is very hard to win back.

    Source: https://www.ipsos-mori.com/Assets/Docs/Publications/Mumsnet-trust-report-FINAL.pdf

  28. The most applicable language in the proposal seems to be:

    …discrimination and harassment based on factors such as ethnic or national origin, race, religion, citizenship, language, political or other opinion, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, appearance, age, or economic class.
    In addition, AGU opposes all forms of bullying including threatening, humiliating, coercive, or intimidating conduct that causes harm to, interferes with, or sabotages scientific activity and careers.
    We affirm that discrimination, harassment, sexual harassment, or bullying in any scientific or learning environment is unacceptable, and constitutes scientific misconduct under the AGU Scientific Integrity and Professional Ethics policy.
    Bullying is the use of force, threat, or coercion to abuse, intimidate, or aggressively dominate others in the professional environment that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. These actions can include abusive criticism, humiliation, the spreading of rumors, physical and verbal attacks, and professional exclusion and isolation of someone.

    Reading at the AGU site harassment seems to concentrate almost exclusively on sexual harassment and the currently mandatory language to cover the sexual behavior spectrum (LGBT[QIAPK]…). Not a single word about the pervasive bullying of those holding less popular scientific opinions.

    But, like a lot of rules and laws, once established, the new policies can cover a lot of ground. If I were a bullying repeat offender, I would fight the new rules or demand changes to exclude what is common everyday behavior by certain well-known climate scientists, including some who comment here.

  29. Roger Knights

    AGU members work to maintain an environment that allows science and scientific careers to flourish through respectful, inclusive, and equitable treatment of others. . .. In addition, AGU opposes all forms of bullying including threatening, humiliating, coercive, or intimidating conduct that causes harm to, interferes with, or sabotages scientific activity and careers.

    Discrimination, harassment (in any form), and bullying create a hostile environment that reduces the quality, integrity, and pace of the advancement of science by marginalizing individuals and communities. It also damages productivity and career advancement, and prevents the healthy exchange of ideas.

    But what if a scientist behaves in an egregiously bad way? Shouldn’t a hostile environment be created for him, in order to protect/advance science? Examples: the doctor who wrote an article claiming that mercury in vaccines caused autism; the Dutch social psychologist who wrote up dozens of non-existent studies he’d supposedly done? Don’t they deserve to be called names and have their careers retarded?

    And what if a scientist who behaves badly (e.g., Phil Jones) is part of a consensus and is “cleared” by a white-washing review board? Do his accusers thereby deserve punishment? (An example: the New Zealand scientist who pointed out that Margaret Meade’s informants in Samoa had misled her, leading her into grave error. The establishment rushed to her defense and (if it had had the option) might well have officially condemned her accuser for bullying because he refused to accept her excuses and kept up the criticism, and because his charges weren’t 100% justified.)

    The AGU itself would not be a trustworthy judge, based on its dismissive and “irregular” handling of the minority report of its committee on AGW and on its invitation to speak to bad boy Peter Gleick; it would quite possibly hold kangaroo courts for dissenters and whitewashes for establishmentarians; or at least it would tend to shade its findings to favor persons holding establishment views.

    So I dunno whether or not to support the AGU’s statement that cases of bullying should be officially condemned. There are dangers. I suggest getting into it in a tentative way by initially examining cases that involve specific harms (e.g., Pat Michaels being in effect forced out of the U. of Va. for his minority views). (This is implied in the AGU qualifier that begins, “that causes harm,” fortunately.) IOW, proceeding cautiously, keeping in mind and stating explicitly that bullying is problematic mostly when it is conducted against a minority. (The Academy recognizes this in other contexts.) Also, I suggest that cases of collusive bullying be treated more seriously than those involving only an individual hothead.

  30. FLAME TEST

    In previous comments, I have offered practical proof of the inability to know the actual source of climate variability and asked for a re-consideration of the possibility that we can have an honest, civilized discussion of the MANY potential causes of climate variability…

    To follow up on this interesting string, without reading the last several months of comments…

    When uncivilized attacks (bullying) are messing with the livelihood of people who have invested their entire career getting a PHD in Climate Science, this is threatening them at an existential level.

    Does the quote from Martin Luther King apply in this case?*

    “It is true that behavior cannot be legislated, and legislation cannot make you love me, but legislation can restrain you from lynching me, and I think that is kind of important.” — MLK

    In a Speech delivered in Finney Chapel at Oberlin College (22 October 1964), as reported in “When MLK came to Oberlin” by Cindy Leise, The Chronicle-Telegram (21 January 2008)

    * Properly quoted honest question. Does any flaming on this comment is PROOF bullying exists in the GW discussion?

  31. I’d say it’s overorganized by political forces all around. Now there’s a punishment committee.

    Science left the building long ago, when curiosity left as a motivating factor.

    People noticing that and paying no attention to what the scientists think now is the reason for the mollification attempt. Maybe we can get the public’s attention back, is the idea.

    It won’t work.

    The same guys are in charge.

  32. Policing the Climate Police

    You may recall the ‘Gleick affair ‘ whereby Peter Gleick created an elaborate web of deception to obtain proprietary Heartland Institute documents, in an attempt to discredit Heartland. Ironically, Gleick was Chair of the [American Geophysical Union] Committee on Ethics. As a result of this incident, he was asked to resign his Chairmanship of this Committee. But apparently there were no other sanctions from AGU, and I seem to recall that Gleick gave a big invited AGU Union lecture within the next year.

    * Judith Curry, Climate Etc.

    • Non climate scientists just won’t understand climate gate emails. And how can scientists work if they have to provide the details of how they got there results ? They might have to immigrate to France or north Korea.
      Or snitches get stitches.

      • > They might have to immigrate to France or north Korea.

        What about our Freedom Fighters’ counterfactual thinking?

      • Counterfactual, as in adjusting the temperature record and forming a theory around it ?

      • rishrac: Non climate scientists just won’t understand climate gate emails.

        Maybe. I think everyone understands that in context “… Mikes trick to hide the decline” describes an intention to deceive, not merely a clever technical detail. (In my reading, claims that the sentence loses its true meaning when taken out of context have neglected to provide the full context.) The most embarrassing of the ClimateGate revelations were easy to understand in context. [I’d like to punch &&& in the face] isn’t an arcane scientific detail.

        As in surveillance tapes, most of the activity was ordinary, and only a little was objectionable, but the objectionable passages can be understood.

      • > Counterfactual, as in adjusting

        As in:

        Counterfactual thoughts have been shown to produce negative emotions, however they may also produce functional or beneficial effects. Ideas that create a more negative outcome are upward counterfactuals and those thoughts that create a more positive outcome are considered downward counterfactuals. These counterfactual thoughts, or thoughts of what could have happened, can affect people’s emotions, such as causing them to experience regret, guilt, relief, or satisfaction. They can also affect how they view social situations, such as who deserves blame and responsibility.

        https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Counterfactual_thinking

        Strawmen can involve counterfactual thinking, like when MattM asserts “I think everyone understands that in context” and then shove in everybody’s minds what he himself sees.

        I think everyone understands that such distanciation can conceal abuse.

      • willard: Strawmen can involve counterfactual thinking, like when MattM asserts “I think everyone understands that in context” and then shove in everybody’s minds what he himself sees.

        Did I write something counterfactual, known to be false?

      • > Did I write something counterfactual, known to be false?

        Why, of course: not everyone agrees that the word “trick” indicates an intention to deceive in that context. I certainly don’t.

        Counterfactuals also extend beyond what runs contrary to facts. The most simple case is when they refer to scenarios that are unlikely to happen, e.g. if we could interview every human being, everyone would agree with MattStat on the “trick.” The important part of that counterfactual is not that it runs contrary to facts (there are cases where we simply don’t know), but that it entertains an implausible and self-serving possibilia.

        In more general terms, counterfactuals are important to analyze causation. I doubt that Rish’s “scientists might need to go to France” (paraphrasing) was of that kind.

      • Willard: The important part of that counterfactual is not that it runs contrary to facts (there are cases where we simply don’t know), but that it entertains an implausible and self-serving possibilia.

        “counterfactual” is certainly a misnomer for something not known to be contrary to fact.

      • It’s not a misnomer if you consider negative facts (if such and such had not occured) or facts that extend beyond our actual world, Matt:

        The first explicit definition of causation in terms of counterfactuals was, surprisingly enough, given by Hume, when he wrote: “We may define a cause to be an object followed by another, and where all the objects, similar to the first, are followed by objects similar to the second. Or, in other words, where, if the first object had not been, the second never had existed.” (1748, Section VII). It is difficult to understand how Hume could have confused the first, regularity definition with the second, very different counterfactual definition.

        https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/causation-counterfactual/

        My emphasis. I can concede that the notion of counterfactual is far from being obvious.

      • Willard: I can concede that the notion of counterfactual is far from being obvious.

        Here is a counterfactual conditional for your entertainment: What if the writer had instead typed “… Mike’s trick to display the decline clearly”?

        Are you thinking that perhaps some denizens can be persuaded that the two strings, one of which was and is factual and one counter-factual, are nearly or practically synonymous?

      • Turning a counterfactual into a loaded question doesn’t erase the counterfactual, Matt.

        When will CG III be released, BTW? I’ve heard that Willard Tony has the password.

      • Willard: Turning a counterfactual into a loaded question doesn’t erase the counterfactual, Matt.

        The question is not loaded, it is illuminating.

        Which counterfactual of the previous discussion are you referring to?

    • The Nile problem ended up in the IJSER because you did not have the choice. Having the stuff in the public domain before my heart attack seemed to be more prudent than after. On a more serious note, all of us have to avoid becoming part of the problem in that our background chatter might be drowning out the voice of reason. In this respect you inadvertently have joined the chattering classes. GW is 93% (plus) in the oceans – thus we have to focus upon how this event is happening. Chattering about the 1% in the atmosphere is distracting from the real problem.

      • Try arxiv.org next time.

        Cancer usually starts with a tiny amount of cells. Ink is mostly water. Appeals to small numbers may be invalid.

  33. rishrac “And how can scientists work if they have to provide the details of how they got there results ?”..
    errrm if they want their results to be believed they HAVE TO provide the details of how they got their results so that others can REPRODUCE those results and confirm them. It’s called SCIENTIFIC METHOD

    • The sarc was implied. Of course they have to provide the details. I did put in there the freedom loving country of North Korea. (Sarc) And France which has opened its doors to the oppressed climate scientists working in the US. ( another sarc, as long as you agree with the climate change meme )
      Does anybody really doubt the reason they aren’t complying with the FOIA requests ? Does anybody doubt why the original records of temperature from all over the world are in a landfill ? On the one hand, it’s ok to file a lawsuit under the RICO act against a company that didn’t use public money, but not ok to ask government scientists who use public money.

      • I think I’m beyond being just a skeptic on C/AGW. They trot out graphs that are misleading. You’ve never seen a graph showing co2 ppm per year increase with the changing temperature anomolies per year. Co2 follows the temperature. If I know it, C/AGW people have to know it.

  34. FOIA requests

    ???

    Clearly requires some standard other than “I don’t want to give it to him/her and I feel bullied by these repeated requests”; or “All they want is to find errors in my work”.

  35. Steven Mosher

    Next up..

    The war on data

    • “Next up..

      The war on data”

      Yes, commander. You’ve got a lot of battle experience.

      Andrew

      • Steven Mosher

        Hmm where were you when I FOIA CRU to get data?
        Where were you when I FIOA NOAA for data.

        So ya, been in the war to Open data, share data,

        And Yes, I’ll fight my own team if they try to withhold data and your TEAM when they try to destroy fundamental observation platforms

      • Mosher,

        How about when your team has “to make adjustments that can render several years of data useless” and then still uses the data?

        Andrew

    • Wrong.

      The was is on spending more than is generated in revenue.

    • “researchers have to make adjustments that can render several years of data useless”

      An absolute gem from the article.

      Andrew

      • russellseitz

        ““researchers have to make adjustments that can render several years of data useless””

        Witness Christy & Spencer’s 1990 Science op-ed hailing the demonstration of a cooling trend by satellite microwave radiometry , and their retraction of the claim a decade later.

        It’s the sort of thing even a Congressman can notice.

      • russellseitz It was pointed out that they had not taken sufficient account of orbital drift, and some of their resulting data was spurious. They eventually accepted the criticism and made the necessary adjustments to their algorithm which resulted in a small change. They retracted their prior statements even though the change went against their general argument. Sounds like normal science to me. In fact, I would say that it gives them greater credibility as scientists. So why do you find fault in their willingness to listen to counter arguments, and adjust their theories to take them into account. And yes, I hope even Congress Persons understand that and take note.

    • Mosher ==> Thanks for the Fake News alert. Now I don’t have to read it.

      Yet another, “Climate Scientists” push false scare….NY Times reacts with fawning echo-chamber article.

      • Steven Mosher

        Budget terminates 4 satellite programs

        Page 43.44

        PACE OCO-3 DSCOVER , CLARREO

        I’ll take your apology off the air

      • “Budget terminates 4 satellite programs”

        Assuming this is true… so what?

        Andrew

      • I believe the term the NYT and Mosher are looking for is “prioritize”. The headline should read: Trumps Budget Prioritizes National Security over Satellites. When one’s spending far exceed’s one’s income something has to be prioritized to be cut. Trump chose, among many other things, to cut satellites. Seems like a reasonable choice to me.

        What the NYT and Mosher are trying to do, ironically given the subject of the original post, is “bully” Trump into capitulation by painting him as “anti-data” and “anti-science” because he chooses to prioritize the country’s limited spending. Right out of Alinsky’s book.

        Well played Mosher.

      • Mosh ==> 4 planned future satellite programs — none of them have satellites in space — all four are duplicative of other programs or incremental “improvements” to existing programs.

        That’s what Fake News is — little factoids that are “true” yet are deceptive because of omitted other facts and context that don’t support the advocacy narrative.

        Journalists publish fake news for two reasons: 1) They are too busy, lazy, or simply don’t give a hoot — so don’t bother to find out any more than the proposed budget “eliminates 4 satellite programs” and/or 2) They have a political/social agenda and intentionally only use factoids that advance their agenda.

      • Budget terminates 4 satellite programs

        Reality check – things like this will continue because we (society) want our entitlements:

      • Steven Mosher

        No guys.. you are killing the very kind of observations that you’ve been demanding all these years..

        Take this one..

        https://clarreo.larc.nasa.gov/about-pathfinder.html

      • “Take this one..”

        Reads like a waste of money to me.

        Andrew

    • Truthfully, the cost of the satellites is small. The data cannot be generated well if the data is not taken in the first place. It does make me wonder if those who point out about the temperature data problems will be claiming the same problems with satellite data years from now. As one who thinks transient climate sensitivity is relatively low, I want the data to confirm this. Whether it is or not, having good data reduces uncertainty and tends to lead to better decision making. IMO, there are other areas far less useful, and much more expensive that need cutting.

    • Don’t like budget cuts? Then start a collection.

      Apparently seeing the Trump administration cutting budgets is a news flash for you Steven. Should have paid attention during the campaign. When you are trillions upon trillions in debt and you have a fairly limited portion of government spending that is discretionary, you can be assured most people’s ox’s will be gored and rice bowls over turned. Why don’t you write your Congressman and tell him NASA is far more important than say Planned Parenthood. People have done fine without the government paying to advise them on how to have (or not have) babies.

    • New york times, nuf said

  36. “I don’t know if the AGU is prepared to confront the bullying/tyranny of scientists from ‘majority’ perspective versus scientist with minority perspectives.”

    You don’t?
    Really?
    Seriously?
    After all these years?

    Sigh.

  37. Sounds like communism.

  38. I’ve been told by liberal climate warriors of the pro-nuclear variety (so not ‘deep greens’, nor Bernie followers) that Joe Romm is a climate science expert but JC and RPJr are ‘deniers’. They actually believe it. This character assassination is centrally directed just like a political campaign. That’s the same Joe Romm at climate progress who hasn’t a scientific bone in his body despite his degree(s); who spent all his adult life propagandising for green organizations.

  39. “So does being called a ‘denier’ in the Congressional Record count as bullying?”

    It certainly qualifies as “abusive criticism,” but I think “a real or perceived power imbalance” is not necessarily present. On the other hand, if Mann is part of the infallible “97% consensus” as he claims, then perhaps there is a a real power imbalance.

  40. Bullying,
    I am old enough that I can’t help but associate it with child behavior.
    That rumbling sound is from the graveyards.
    All the rolling over.

  41. As suspected before this post developed its comments thread, a prototypically revealing set of perspectives from known denizens on various shades of the belief spectrum.
    Does academic/scientific bullying happen. Yes; Pielke Jr and Judith are exhibits A and B. Does the AGU bullying definition cover those facts? Arguably not. Does the AGU have clean hands? Definitely not based on the Gleick affair. Is this an honest attempt at AGU redemption? Dunno. Certainly Not if the intent is to create safe spaces for snowflakes like Mann who allege bullying when legitimately criticized and they are the bullies. McIntyre as bully of Mann is a VERY bad outcome, and possibly intended.

    In my opinion, AGU should stick to policing conventional scientific academic misconduct: falsifying data (Marcott), knowingly misrepresenting data (O’Leary, Fabricious) , plagiarism. The rest is a slippery slope to safe places capable of abuse by snowflakes.

    Its a tough world. Some humans are just not nice. Response Choices range from turning the other cheek to smacking the bully down hard. Re Mann, Judith chose the former (except not really, her recent amicus brief on behalf of the NR appeal for an en banc rehearing In DC is a thing of beauty), Steyn chose the latter with his book ‘A Disgrace to the Profession’. Both are highly recommended reading for all denizens of all persuasions.

    • > Certainly Not if the intent is to create safe spaces for snowflakes

      In a comment thread where the author of this very post seeks such measures.

      You can’t make this up.

      • Willard, i dont think “snowflake” is a respectful or a productive label. Its not as nasty as “denier” but its beneath us to use those labels

      • Thank you for your concerns, Genius. If you look at the origin of the “snowflake” meme, you’ll see it’s nastier than the D word, which you misrepresent. It has been used way before WWII.

        Also note that my “snowflake” was a quote. I do sometimes use it when Freedom Fighters play victim bullies. But you may have missed that this time it’s Sir Rud’s.

      • Willard, Ok. I break out in hives when confronted with victim bullies, so get the urge to hit back. Believe me I’ve said worse.

      • Willard, you responded to a rational and reasoned response to the article.

        Your response supports Rivstan’s points.

      • Forrest,

        Sir Rud is just rationalizing his preference for one form of bullying over another. Moreover, his point goes against the one behind the whataboutism of the post. So all he needed is to shifr the blame in the website’s new whipping boy.

        There’s nothing very reasoned about that.

      • Willard, there is much which can be said but a useful analysis would include discussions of two major forces namely force and persuasion. Neither is ultimately effective without the other.

        Whether you realise it or not, your response supports Rivstan’s points.

      • Forrest,

        Everything confirms what contrarians knew all along. Everything else is readily forgotten. That’s why they always win

        Like spermatozoids.

        Sir Rud’s “analysis” contradicts the main point of the post. His way of hiding it is to make it about MikeM.

        It’s not complex. Ask PhilJ if you need more help.

        MarkS’ fans may like this newsie:

        http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2017/03/14/inside-the-collapse-of-the-mark-steyn-show.html

        Seems that his staff did not enjoy him much.

      • Can’t think of a better term than ‘snowflake’ for the side that required puppies, play-doh and coloring books to deal with the results of an election.

      • > Can’t think of a better term than ‘snowflake’

        Here’s one of you clients, Genius. Tell him about the past usages of the S word.

  42. Geoff Sherrington

    Bullying is an emotional concept.
    It has no place in considerations of hard science.
    It should be ignored, like statements based on belief are or should be.
    Science branches that admit emotion like bullying and belief can risk losing the status of hard science.
    Geoff

  43. Steven Mosher

  44. Importantly Gleick was Chair of the AGU Committee on Ethics.
    In any event, I regard this as a welcome development.
    Beware of what one wishes for.
    You could have a cabal of Gleik, Mann and Mosher sitting in judgement on you because of bullying, Judith. Result a line ball call of 3-0 against, 97% certainty.
    Sorry panel, I meant panel.

    • Indeed angech. Be very wary of granting any power to anybody lest they use that same power against you.

      Let the AGU first establish a track record for speaking out against alarmism dressed as science, for denouncing Gleick and Mann. That is the most powerful use of the authority of the organisation.

      Oh, and Mossshhher who?

      • Let the AGU first establish a track record for speaking out against alarmism dressed as science, for denouncing Gleick and Mann.
        Will not happen.

  45. There’s a distinction between bullying and gate-keeping.
    It’s the latter that’s the more harmful to science.

  46. [End of thread thoughts]

    Is policing bullying necessary?

    Perhaps.

    But I think ( hope? ) that most of those aware of Gleik were both amused and cognizant that lying and fabricating tends to speak to the weakness of the argument.

    Similarly, Mann, with the questionable procedures of hiding the decline, the comical prevarications before Congress, and the need to exaggerate, to the discriminating, is one of the best spokesman against his ’cause’.

    Alas, we are all subject to irrational tribalism, and emotion tends to whitewash Mann and Gleik among the predisposed.

  47. I would say it is a bit over the top. It would be sufficient to state that members are supposed to behave gently, discuss issues and not persons, and refer to the Universal declaration of human rights:

    «Now, Therefore THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY proclaims THIS UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS as a common standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations, to the end that every individual and every organ of society, keeping this Declaration constantly in mind, shall strive by teaching and education to promote respect for these rights and freedoms…

    Article 1.
     
    All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood…

    Article 2.
     
    Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status…

    Article 12.
     
    No one shall be subjected to arbitrary interference with his privacy, family, home or correspondence, nor to attacks upon his honour and reputation…

    Article 18.
     
    Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance…

    Article 19.
     
    Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers…”

    I assume it would not violate human rights to disagree with stated opinions and expressions. If not, the human rights need a revision.

    • Strange isn’t it that those lofty words are more honoured in the breach than in the observance. By the very organisation which claims to be based on those articles I mean.

  48. What should be cut is the climate modelling budget. Because in the current state of the art it is a waste of time and resources. The more data the better. Satellites are a wiser investment.

  49. I seriously cant believe we are having this discussion.

    Bullying? as a form of SCIENTIFIC Misconduct?

    To be sure the AGU as a body can establish rules for it’s members.
    Luckily Nature bats last, and she decides who is scientifically correct while ya’ll quibble about what’s polite and impolite.

    There is a great bully story Here

    http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/physics/solar-neutrinos.html

    “I remember a meeting in Toledo, Spain—I think it was in 1991—where, based on these measurements of what we call helioseismology, I said it was time for us to declare the solar neutrino problem solved. It was time for the astronomers to declare a victory, that it was clear that our models were in sufficient agreement with the sun that that could not be the source of the discrepancy.
    And that was a big mistake on my part, because the summary speaker at that conference was a very eloquent, humorous speaker who also had the ability to make very beautiful and very humorous drawings. He made several caricatures of me which he showed in the viewgraphs in the summary, and he had the whole auditorium, including me, laughing at the bravado, the hubris of this guy claiming that he could say something about particle physics based on this complicated sun. I tapered down my comments for a few years based on that rather humiliating personal attack. It wasn’t a scientific attack, but it was a very, very effective attack.”

    Think about the cartoons in the climategate mails, Josh’s cartoons,
    Guess what… Folks been arguing this way like forever.

    In the end, nature took a bat to the cartoonist.

  50. David Springer

    There are a lot of problems in the world.

    Academics who are catty, mean, disrespectful, ruthless, predatory, power hungry, lacking hubris, conspiratorial, bigoted, less than honest & forthright and other unsavory adjectives are undoubtedly one of those problems.

    Don’t most of y’all just do your jobs and play well with others?

    Out of all the world’s academics how many names are actually ever in the news for crap like this? Probably less than 100 out of some 7 million worldwide university faculty. That comes out to 0.0014% of all academics. You know who you are.

    • The main problem, Dave, is the silence of 7,000,000-100 scientists if the 100 are important/powerful/influential.

      There was a great book out a few years ago called ‘Wilful Blindness: Why We Ignore The Obvious At Our Peril’ by Margaret Heffernan that documents various outrageous institutional failures, usually involving abuses of power.

      The normal explanation when such things come to light is that the problem was hidden and it took some whistleblower/leak/audit/extraordinary circumstance before it was discovered. What Margaret Heffernan showed is that this isn’t normally the case. Usually the ‘scandal’ is in plain view to lots of people within the institution, sometime to pretty-much everyone in the institution, but they each find their own reasons to not draw attention to it. The motivation is almost invariably cowardice.

  51. Don, radicalized eco terroists, I’ve made a mental note to myself to avoid talking to them. They are not in the business of knowing anything other than what they believe. … I mistakenly engaged them sometimes when the statements they make are out there in the realms of fantasy. It’s like talking to someone that has a mental disorder, you wish you didn’t. You don’t have to wander too far to think, who pulls up the spikes in railroad tracks to cause oil trains to derail, or who sets forest fires to cause more forests fires, or dumps iron oxide to bleach coral. They just want to protect the environment, and if a few eggs get broken to make an omlet, oh well, it serves the greater something, really can’t say good.

  52. steverichards1984

    It is easy to see why leading academics, can at times, resort to disreputable behaviour. If you examine their life course: BSc, MSc, PhD, post Doc work, then early years researcher, then if lucky, the award of a professorship.

    Their whole adult life has been spent researching, experimenting, writing about a narrow topic in extreme depth and detail.

    It should be easy to put yourself in their position when a young interloper come along with a new idea that implies *ALL* of your life’s work is wrong in some significant way. As a Prof. you would have had a rolling group of PhD students learning from you about your core topic and moving your research forwards. Are these PhDs demeaned in some way because you got it wrong all those years ago?

    So, you fight, you heckel at conferences, you produce more papers refuting the interlopers papers etc.

    Eventually the new truth will come out, but it can take a long time to overcome entrenched opposition to new ideas.

    Thats academia.

    We have seen demonstrated on this thread, the Tripp effect, where a non-academic, or should I say someone who demonstrates zero academic ability, drives by with insults and bullying.

    I do not think bullying by ‘zero academics’ is in the same class as that by true academics.

  53. What’s clear is the slime in this entire business, particularly from the chief bullier Mann.

  54. The likely reason the AGU is taking a dramatic stand over bullying due to sex, race, etc , is merely to distract attention away the very real issue of the bullying of minority scientists by the alarmist majority, an activity it fully supports.

  55. Pingback: Weekly Climate and Energy News Roundup #266 | Watts Up With That?

  56. Harry Twinotter

    Hmmm. I wonder if stealing people’s personal emails, sorting them, then publishing them on websites counts as “bullying”. But everyone with any sense has now dismissed ClimateGate as a hoax, so it is probably a moot point.

    • Harry: “I wonder if stealing people’s personal emails”

      If the emails were to/from a .AC.UK account then they were not “personal emails” because .AC.UK accounts are institutional (i.e. they are hosted by the institution for people employed by that institution to communicate on behalf of that institution concerning work of/for the institution). As such, they belong to the institution, just as any other activity performed by people in that institution in their capacity as employees of that institution belongs to the institution. If the emails were to/from a AC.UK account then the institution in question is a public institution paid for by the public through taxation. In other words, the emails belong to the public. You cannot steal something that already belongs to you.

      • The Miracle Worker said he wasn’t from UK, André.

        Next time you see a police car, try to take it for a ride. It’s public property so it’s yours to use, right?

        Good luck with that.

      • Willard: “Next time you see a police car, try to take it for a ride. It’s public property so it’s yours to use, right?”

        Yes, a police car is public property so I expect it to serve the interests of the public. To the extent my interests are public, rather than private, I expect it to serve my interests.

        I have encountered many police officers in my life. It is no disrespect to them to say that most are not very bright. Not being very bright is not a disadvantage to most police officers because they can entirely fulfil their obligations without it. Despite not being very bright, the question that you consider on their behalf that asks whether they can fulfil their public duties without providing a public taxi service can be easily answered by even the stupidest police officer. Indeed, they don’t even need to think about it in order to come to the right conclusion – which confirms that the need to think is barely necessary in police officers. It seems, then, that they have an advantage over you – their natural lack of intelligence limits their capacity for stupidity. Willful stupidity will always be greater than natural stupidity and so by-and-large I trust police officers to know what to do if I ask for a ride.

        “Good luck with that.”

        Luck is about concurrence. Luck for me in the scenario you describe would be for the police officer to tell me to go f*ck myself. I expect I would be lucky.

        It seems to me that luck abounds in certain places, just as stupidity abounds in certain places.

      • > Despite [policemen] not being very bright, the question that you consider on their behalf that asks whether they can fulfil their public duties without providing a public taxi service can be easily answered by even the stupidest police officer.

        The Miracle Worker did not “ask” for anything, André. He just took. And of course that’s not my question. It wasn’t even one.

        If you want to move the goalposts without me noticing, you may have to write longer and more obscure sentences than that.

        Are you a freeman of the land by any chance?

      • Harry Twinotter

        Lame!

        Dude, the subject of this blog post is bullying. I presented a sample of bullying. Do not try and change the subject.

      • Willard: “The Miracle Worker did not “ask” for anything, André. He just took.”

        I agree that simply taking things that are in someone else’s possession without a ‘by your leave’ is not very commendable, even if you have a reasonable claim of entitlement to what you took. In the case in question the issue was whether information should be in the public domain. If it should have been then the person who placed it there was performing a public service regardless of the rightness or otherwise of the means, which is an entirely separate issue.

        “Are you a freeman of the land by any chance?”

        We are all that, to a greater or lesser extent, because we are all moral agents. Being a moral agent includes recognising the social utility of following laws, rules, norms, etc., but does not preclude occasionally breaking them. The onus is on the person to understand fully what they are doing and why, and why a greater good is being served. I think the freemen of the land you have in mind are entirely motivated by selfish aims, but rule-breaking can also have entirely unselfish ones.

        In my opinion the leaks revealed wrongdoing. They revealed a distinct ‘ends justify the means’ ethos in people who were supposed to be ruled by an ethos of pure scientific enquiry, which should give no consideration at all to ends. That is what it means to be disinterested.

        In any event, I was mostly objecting to your description of the leaked emails as “personal.” I have had several .AC.UK email accounts in my life, and lots of .CO.UK accounts. As a matter of prudence and professionalism, I made sure I never wrote anything that I wasn’t happy to be subject to external scrutiny, including, potentially, public scrutiny. One of the most valuable pieces of advice I received from an early boss of mine concerning the use of emails was to always review what I’d written, and if I felt the slightest uneasy about any of it to hit “Save” rather than “Send” and then revisit the text the following day. Email as a method of communication strongly lends itself to injudiciousness. By following the advice of my boss I learned the truth of this – the proof being the extent of the next-day edits that often resulted.

        Harry: “I presented a sample of bullying.”

        Bullying requires harm. Having something I wrote quoted back at me cannot harm me unless I wrote something that reflects badly on me.

        “But everyone with any sense has now dismissed ClimateGate as a hoax”

        I consider Judith Curry to be an eminently sensible person, and by her own testimony ClimateGate shook her to the core. She had higher expectations of her fellow climate scientists and their institutions than were justified, and coming to that realisation was shocking and painful. Many sensible people had a similar reaction. Of course people who expected nothing better or didn’t care had no such problem.

      • > If it should have been then the person who placed it there was performing a public service regardless of the rightness or otherwise of the means

        I thought you said something about how ends don’t justify means, André, and portraying the Miracle Worker as someone who did a “public service” does not cohere with his own manifesto. It should be treated as a political act, and motive still has relevance in judging an action. In any event, that Denizens still pretend the miracle was legal is beyond me.

        Even assuming that what is “public” belongs to every citizen, it does not follow that every bit of public property is for everyone to use as one sees fit. The police car example shows that it would indeed possible to steal what belongs to the public. (A fact that could disputed by a freeman of the land who sees citizen sovereign until they relinquish that righr, hence my question.) Roles matter here: the Miracle Worker wasn’t to decide what fell under the FOIA laws, but FOIA officers.

        Your testimony regarding your own email discipline is duly noted.

      • Ya put it out there, Willard, people are going to access it.

        A legal act or not, the Climategate malefactors were thereby shown to be acting in manners not consistent with science, nor even law. Unmasking the criminal thwarting FOIA laws, hiding public data and publicly funded methods, conspiring to harm others, etc. is a good result.

        It is similar to the hacker’s unmasking Democratic Party unethical conduct.
        Activists keep screaming about Russia hacking our election in order to hide the tawdry facts.

      • Willard: “I thought you said something about how ends don’t justify means”

        I referred specifically to an attitude of ends justifying means in a scientific context. In politics ends can sometimes justify means, but science and politics are different domains that serve different purposes, and therefore require different rules and a different ethos from practitioners.

        In politics you are pushing to achieve a prefered outcome out of many possible alternative outcomes. You decide in advance the outcome you want based on value judgements and then work to achieve that goal. Everyone engaged in the political domain, even as an observer, knows that these are the rules, and that the contest is mostly between one set of value judgements against other sets of value judgements. In other words, it is a bunch of people arguing about what is ‘best’ based on their own personal notion of what constitutes ‘best’. At heart it is about preferences.

        Science should not be about trying to achieve a particular outcome (i.e. ‘result’), even though this is entirely proper in politics. The right conclusion of a scientific investigation is the discovery of what is objectively true in nature, and the investigators shouldn’t be ‘motivated’ by any other concern. However, because the investigators are still human beings, no matter how encultured they are in ‘the scientific method’, they must actively guard against personal preference intruding in some manner because that would contaminate their work (as science, rather than politics, that is). If they are conducting science as politics then the end can sometimes justify the means because that circumstance can sometimes appertain in politics. However, that circumstance can NEVER appertain in the scientific domain without the science ceasing to be science. The duty of scientists, therefore, is to purge themselves of politics. If they do not diligently pursue this objective they disqualify themselves as scientist by definition.

        The University of East Anglia exposed itself to political attack because it was suspected of engaging in politics; and politics, for the reasons I’ve cited, is corrupting of science. One of the important ways scientific practice – public science in particular – distinguishes itself from political practice concerns openness and transparency. Scientist who want to discover what is objectively true in nature, rather than having other non-scientific wants, are open and transparent because openness and transparency are necessary ingredients for the discovery of objective truth. If scientists are not open and transparent we are right to suspect the principles under which they are operating because their practice is at variance with that necessary to advance science. If they are interested in science then the needs of science should outweigh all other considerations. To say that was not the case at UEA and at other important institutions at the time of ClimateGate is an understatement. Because the scientists involved were engaging in politics as much as in science they opened themselves up to political attack. Had they been acting like scientists rather than politicians that wouldn’t have been possible.

        “Roles matter here: the Miracle Worker wasn’t to decide what fell under the FOIA laws, but FOIA officers.”

        Actually, the government FOI officer external to the institution ruled that the UEA wasn’t responding appropriately to FOI requests. The scientific misconduct revealed by the leaks was accompanied by revelations of institutional misconduct in the handling of FOI requests. That’s the problem with politics infecting a supposedly scientific institution – it corrupts everyone, including the administrators responsible for processing FOI requests. Basically, behaving like a crook had become the norm. I agree that the Miracle Worker also behaved like a crook. That’s the thing about norms – they licence certain behaviour – including behaviour that although compliant with that norm, can be threatening to one’s political objectives. The only certain protection against this is not to have political objectives.

        What ClimateGate revealed to me was that some climate scientists weren’t really scientists at all. This is not unprecedented in our universities – social scientists are also not scientists at all in the main. We live in an age where every discipline affixes “science” to itself knowing that that lends respectability. In exchange they are even prepared to incorporate some kind of parody of scientific practice into their discipline, and probably sincerely believe it is the real thing. That is very much tied in with the danger of allowing politics to encroach on science because in politics there is no reality other than parody – i.e. it is about pretending better than the next guy that you possess a truth that neither of you could possibly possess. As a politician you cannot enact science as anything other than a performance, with the objective being to perform it so well it is indistinguishable from the real thing. The best people to recruit into this game are scientists. The duty of scientists, therefore, is to purge themselves of politics.

        “Your testimony regarding your own email discipline is duly noted.”

        lol. Yes, I freely admit to being human, and that I take practical measures to ensure this doesn’t become a failing where it matters. If climate scientists universally did the same, none of the problems I’ve detailed above would have arisen.

  57. I recall the argument (I think from Gavin) that Sir Isaac Newton was a SOB, and that did not make his science incorrect.

    Ironically, Newton appears to have spent the large majority of his working time on the pseudoscience of alchemy.

    Of course Gavin also maintains the temperature record is accurate to .1 degrees even though he keeps changing many-decades-old reported temperatures by more than that, so perhaps his analogy is apt.