Marohasy’s misrepresentation

Jennifer Marohasy has written a rather self-referential response to my criticism of the sixty scientists’ letter. Rather than deal with the substance of my criticism, Marohasy, who works for the Institute of Public Affairs, predictably tried to attack my credibility, writing:

Rather than deal with the substance of the letter, Lambert, a computer scientist, predictably tries to attack the credibility of the scientists.

Of course, I did deal with the substance of the letter. When challenged in the comments, Marohasy claimed that there was some substance that I had not dealt with but would not say what it was.

Coby Beck also has some criticism of the substance of the letter
here, though presumably Marohasy would claim that he did not deal with the real substance or something.


  1. #1 Paul Crowley
    April 11, 2006

    But the whole *point* about this letter is that it’s an appeal to authority. That’s why it has sixty signatories. That’s why each signatory has a little micro-bio explaining why their opinion matters. But when you point out that the authority is bogus, you’re making an ad hominem attack? Sheesh.

  2. #2 Kevin Donoghue
    April 11, 2006

    … Marohasy would claim that he did not deal with the real substance or something.

    That takes me back. I haven’t heard about the Real Substance since I was an altar boy. I couldn’t even remember exactly what that was all about, but these days it’s not hard to find a theologian if you need one:

    Using Aristotelian philosophy, in 1215 the Fourth Lateran Council defined the doctrine of transubstantiation, which stated that the real substance of the bread and wine were actually transformed into Christ’s body and blood, even if the outward appearances remained unchanged. While having the benefit of placing a high view of extreme importance on the Eucharist, the doctrine had its drawbacks when Aristotelian philosophy fell into disfavor, which was certainly the case by the Reformation of the sixteenth century.

    I’m sure the thinking of global warming sceptics, Lancet denialists, creationists, sound science hacks and related species would become much clearer to us if we just went back to that good ol’ Aristotelian philosophy. The trick is to ignore the outward appearances and see the real substance.

  3. #3 David Heidelberg
    April 11, 2006

    Tim, It’s not a nice feeling to be misrepresented, however, I think you need to look at the source. Marohasy, is a shameless corporate shill, and should be ignored.

  4. #4 Dano
    April 11, 2006

    Kevin Donoghue, I’m quite sure that today I won’t read a better comment than yours. Lots of things rolled neatly into a tidy package.



  5. #5 Jeff Harvey
    April 12, 2006


    Ditto what Dano said. You have captured the essence of the denial lobby perfectly.

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