Anyway, reading hostile critiques of one’s efforts is very much like being in that hall of mirrors. All the bits are there, but grossly distorted. We could dismiss overt politically motivated character-assassination sites such as Sourcewatch and the Australian Adhominator, except that they are then quoted by less obviously biased sources.
As usual, Brignell calls me names instead of addressing my arguments. He continues:
They see everything through their red-green spectacles. It is inconceivable to them that anyone else can write a critique of a scientific claim from a detached point of view. If he is not one of us he must be one of them. This is demonstrated by the selectivity of their targets. They will ignore a thousand items of dissent and only home in on the ones that they regard as politically sensitive:
In particular, he has disputed the reality of anthropogenic global warming, the relationship between second-hand smoke and lung cancer and the existence of a hole in the ozone layer caused by emissions of chlorofluorocarbons.
The red-green transformation is something that is still not widely understood. It is exemplified by Danny Cohn-Bendit, scourge of the old establishment and leading light of the new. The collapse of the Soviet empire left the old fashioned Marxists without a spiritual home, so they found a new one in the environmental movement. The Marxist critics, who were once well established in most universities, could only look at anything (arts, literature, science etc.) through their red spectacles, and could not conceive of anyone taking an apolitical view. They are still there, but with slightly different spectacles.
Apparently Brignell cannot conceive that he might be criticised because he gets the science on those issues badly wrong. Instead, he concludes that his critics must be commies and their arguments can be ignored.
His outburst has prompted a Brignell supporter, Jim Smith, to try to rewrite Brignell’s wikipedia entry, adding some odd defences of Brignell.
For example, Brignell claimed that the hole in the ozone layer “was probably always there”. The graph on the left shows ozone levels in October at Halley Station in Antarctica (from this page). Clearly the hole was not present in the 50s and 60s, but despite seeing this, Brignell would not admit that he was wrong. Smith wants to add this defence of Brignell to the wikipedia page:
It’s hard to understand how Lambert can be so sure that the hole in the ozone layer did not exist prior to 1955, given that there is no data available on ozone levels from that time. Simple examination of this graph which shows ozone levels in October at Halley Station in Antarctica, would suggest that the data is sinusoidal with a period of about 105 years. Lambert fails to explain why the level of ozone in Antarctica prior to 1960 was rising despite the fact that the use of CFCs had been increasing since their introduction in 1934. In fact we simply do not know whether the hole in the ozone layer is a recent creation or the latest incarnation of a cyclic phenomena.
Did you notice how he replaces the claim Brignell made with a different one? And you have to have a fairly active imagination to spot a cyclic pattern in the curve above.