The latest attempt by the climate auditors to smear a scientist comes from Ryan O’Donnell who accused Eric Steig of “blatant dishonesty and duplicity”. According to O’Donnell, as an anonymous reviewer Steig forced O’Donnell to use a particular method (‘iridge’) in his analysis and then, as himself, criticized O’Donnell for using that method. But as a fair-minded reading of the review comments reveals, and Steig himself explains this is not true. Steig as reviewer did not force them to use iridge, rather, he said that it seemed reasonable but there were problems with the method that the authors should address. Steig’s criticism of the published paper for not addressing those problems was entirely consistent with his comments as a reviewer.
O’Donnell has, in e-mail exchanges between the combatants that I’ve been copied on, said he recants the worst of them and plans to post an apology.
So far there has been no apology. Is O’Donnell going to break his word again?
O’Donnell’s false charges were embellished by folks such as James Delingpole and Lucia Liljegren. Delingpole is outraged because
The mystery peer reviewer was none other than Eric Steig. Even in the monstrously corrupt world of “climate science” this was clearly a breach of protocol. Certainly, in no other scientific discipline would a reviewer with such a clear conflict of interest be invited to review a paper whose main purpose was to criticise one he’d written himself.
Oddly enough Delingpole earlier wrote that Geoffrey Lean should:
Try reading AW “Bishop Hill” Montford’s superb, gripping The Hockey Stick Illusion
And on page 205 of that book:
As the CC paper was critical of his work, McIntyre was invited to be one of the peer reviewers
Where was Delingpole’s outrage about this?
Lucia Liljegren called Steig the “Rod Blagojevich of climate science” and posting a mean spirited cartoon and saying that Steig should be red with shame. Steig’s crime, according to Liljegren was this comment where he wrote that he was glad the paper had been published and:
Ryan, if you don’t mind sending me a preprint, and a link to your reconstructed data, I’d appreciate it.
I will presumably have more to say after I get a chance to read the paper, but it’ll be a month or more as I’m simply too busy with current projects.
Now you might think that Steig was asking for a preprint of the published paper (which he didn’t have) and letting people know he wouldn’t be able to comment on it for a month or more, but Liljegren calls it a “deceptive mealy mouth comment”. According to her, Steig was a “two-faced weasel” because by asking for a preprint (which he didn’t have) he was deliberately misleading readers by making them think that he wasn’t a reviewer because, umm, readers would think that reviewers would already have a preprint. Liljegren thanks that Steig should have emailed O’Donnell asking for the preprint to avoid creating the impression that he didn’t have a preprint (which he didn’t). I AM NOT MAKING THIS UP.
Wait, there’s more. Liljegren:
Steig wrote a number of other comments that would suggest he was, well, not reviewer A. Here are two:
At RC December Post
P.S. For those actually interested, yes, I’ll have more to say about O’Donnell et al., but overall, I like it.-eric
No, I don’t see how that suggests he wasn’t reviewer A, either. Liljegren’s second example is:
At RC — February post
At the end of my post last month on the history of Antarctic science I noted that I had an initial, generally favorable opinion of the paper by O’Donnell et al. in the Journal of Climate.
Aha! You see, reviewer A’s initial opinion on the draft paper (not the one published in the journal) was that it was a mess. Of course, if Steig had written that their first draft was a mess but that his initial opinion on the published paper was favourable, Liljegren would have been brimful of outrage at Steig for breaching the confidentiality of the review process. Liljegren knows full well that Steig is not allowed to take advantage of his knowledge of the draft paper.
I’m reminded of Aesop’s fable of The Wolf and the Lamb.