John Mashey analyses emails from Wegman and Azen and yes, Wegman’s defence against plagiarism charges is to say that he and his students plagiarized from Denise Reeves. Multiple times.

Andrew Gelman says it best:

The major conclusions [of the plagiarised paper] are that there are different styles of research collaboration; the methodological flaws are that the entire data analysis is based on four snippets of the collaboration network. There’s no evidence or even argument that you can generalize from these four graphs to the general population, nor is there any evidence or justification of their normative recommendations. The trouble is that the authors didn’t seem to know what they are doing; one piece of evidence of this is that they plagiarized part of the their paper. It’s not that the plagiarism automatically discredits the social network analysis; rather, the plagiarism is consistent with the general hypothesis that Said, Wegman, et al. didn’t know what they were doing. It’s fine for them to present graphs of four collaboration networks, but I don’t see these graphs as really adding any support to the authors’ normative claims.

Via Richard Littlemore.

Comments

  1. #1 Lotharsson
    May 25, 2011

    On p4 is there a typo? Should the bolded text read “Reeves”?

    > Reeves‘ previously-unclear role in creating 5 pages of
    text incorporated into the WR, but leaves 30 more remaining to be attributed to specific other people. Reese had nothing to do with them

  2. #2 Lotharsson
    May 25, 2011

    And another on p12:

    > … and apologize for publishing a low-quality, baseless attack on another discipline‘s quality of peer review. Azen is That would have been painful

    And p13:

    > …as best they could, even labeling Rees the most
    SNA-knowledgeable.

    And p16:

    > Background Material Povided by Peter Spencer…

    p17:

    > The FOIA materials resolved questions about the WR‘s a vague, never-cited, but extremely important reference,…

  3. #3 John Mashey
    May 25, 2011

    thanks, close reading!
    yes, typos all, except “Povided”, which is marked (sic, directory) at end of line. I’ll make that clearer.

    I’m accumulating typos and a quote I’d left out, will update when the dust settles.
    I’ve been fighting the worst headcold in years, so I suspect a few more will turn up.

    I do warn folks: put your coffee down before you go into Wegman’s email explanation.

  4. #4 Lotharsson
    May 25, 2011

    > …which is marked (sic, directory) at end of line…

    Ah, right, IIRC I thought that “sic” only referred to an instance of “Spence” instead of “Spencer”.

  5. #5 Alex Harvey
    May 25, 2011

    Hi Tim,

    Not to split hairs but when you write, “…and yes, Wegman’s defence against plagiarism charges is to say that he and his students plagiarized from Denise Reeves. Multiple times” the emails from Wegman don’t say that at all. He says he had one student who did this without his knowledge.

    Alex Harvey

  6. #6 Tim Lambert
    May 25, 2011

    >He says he had one student who did this without his knowledge.

    No, he says he gave it to Sharabati who put it in his thesis and in the paper. Obviously he was aware of what was in the paper he was corresponding author for.

  7. #7 Alex Harvey
    May 25, 2011

    Hi Tim,

    No, he says he gave it to Sharabati who put it in his thesis and in the paper. Obviously he was aware of what was in the paper he was corresponding author for.

    I don’t follow you here.

    Wegman’s email explicitly denies that he knew he had published plagiarised material:

    I am most happy to explain what had happened. Let me say at the outset that we would never knowingly publish plagierized (sic) material.

    Later:

    At the time [of the Wegman Report], I had two Ph.D. students working with me, Denise Reeves and later Walid Sharabati. Denise worked (and still works) for the Mitre Corporation. Denise worked (and still works) for Mitre Corporation. Her company sent her to take a short course on social network analysis from Kathleen Carley, a professor at Carnegie-Mellon University. Dr. Carley is an internationally recognized expert on social network analysis. When Denise returned from her short course at Carnegie-Mellon, I took her to be the most knowledgeable among us on social network analysis, and I asked her to write up a short description we could include in our summary. She provided that within a few days, which I of course took to be her original work. Neither Yasmin, Walid Sharabati, John Rigsby nor I did know that she had basically copied and pasted this into her MS Word file. We included her boilerplate in our Congressional testimony and acknowledged Denise’s contribution in that testimony.

  8. #8 SteveC
    May 25, 2011

    Meanwhile, Steve McI thinks Wegman’s hypothesis and Said et al 2008 are corroborated, since…

    the Climategate documents provided conclusive evidence of the hypothesis originally advanced in the Wegman Report about paleoclimate peer review – that members of the Mann “clique” had been “reviewing other members of the same clique”

  9. #9 chek
    May 25, 2011

    Hardly surprising, given that when Wegman goes down, he takes the Great (self appointed) Auditor and his fiddled “results” with him.

  10. #10 Jeremy C
    May 25, 2011

    Alex,

    Thanks for that piece of evidence that Wegman was undertaking a hatchet report.

    The social network analysis was central to the Wegman report’s charge that the Hockey stick came about through a bunch of like minded guys and gals who knowingly or unknowingly formed a network that excluded, according to Wegman’s sponsors, data and analysis that would influence their work i.e. hockey sticks shapes (or La Crosse if you want a bit of a change).

    That Wegman seems to be saying that he did not engage in this piece of work central to the report but that the grunt work was based on someone attending a short course on social network analysis is to me, shonky, very shonky.

    However, it does seem that Wegman is seeking to distance himself from any fall out be cause, hey, it was all a political exercise anyway and once this is out in the open and various institutions have to react to this then its just not worth his job. I bet Wegman is not one of these fanatical deniers we see in this whole issue whole would gladly see civilisation destroyed than their worldview and ego checked. So he is not going to joyfully commit hari kari.

  11. #11 Lotharsson
    May 25, 2011

    > …the Climategate documents provided conclusive evidence of the hypothesis originally advanced in the Wegman Report about paleoclimate peer review – that members of the Mann “clique” had been “reviewing other members of the same clique”…

    Except that wasn’t the hypothesis, IIRC. It was that such an occurrence inevitably *corrupted* peer review, and furthermore that Wegman’s own collaborative style – working primarily with his current and former students – was better/less likely to lead to corruption.

    But (presumably) McI can’t say *that* because this fiasco rather seems to undermine it…

  12. #12 Jeremy C
    May 25, 2011

    Does any one want to take bets as to when the denialsphere will stop defending Wegman and start to react by saying that his report was never significant in the whole scheme of things, “he was a bit player”, “never really noticed his work anyway”, etc, etc, etc, etc.

  13. #13 Alex Harvey
    May 25, 2011

    Jeremy, it probably won’t come as a surprise to you that I do not much agree with anything you have written. But if we restrict ourselves to issues that are black and white I am still waiting to hear why Tim Lambert is claiming that Wegman admits to doing plagiarism himself and all the time.

  14. #14 toby
    May 25, 2011

    Andrew Gelman’s words seem to me to be particularly damming. Wegman’s reputation will take a long time to recover, if ever. His grad students’ careers may be over before they begin. How will “Post-doc to Professor E. Wegman” or “Thesis Adviser: Professor E. Wegman” look on a resume?

    A plagiarised report could still have “good” science. Apparently, it was crap science anyway, so the whole thing is a nasty, smelly crock.

  15. #15 Marco
    May 25, 2011

    Alex, the admitted plagiarism is in the fact that Wegman knew it was REEVES who wrote the section, and he let his PhD student put the same stuff in his thesis and in the article anyway. Wegman’s defense that he didn’t know Reeves had plagiarised isn’t a defence of his own failure to acknowledge Reeves’ contribution to the article. Copying that section without attribution was already plagiarism. The fact that Reeves plagiarised it also merely adds to the problem, rather than provide an excuse.

  16. #16 P. Lewis
    May 25, 2011

    Marco, without seeing what Reeves wrote and how the material written was attributed (she may have had a line to the effect of “Sources: Wikipedia; last week’s course”), or not, we can’t say that Reeves plagiarised, surely.

    On the more general points raised elsewhere…

    The incorporation of accidental plagiarised material is not a defence against plagiarism. The authors have a duty; they sign off on the paper. Accidental or not, if plagiarism is proved then the authors of the paper are individually and collectively culpable. Publishers take a very dim view on plagiarism, especially as there might be copyright issues that result.

    Professors in particular have a duty to educate their pre- and post-grad students in what is acceptable and what is not in this regard, and GMU has very clear guidelines on this, guidelines that Professor Wegman seemingly gives scant regard to given the prima facie examples uncovered by DC in this retracted paper, the WR itself and at least one other paper (along with instances in students’ work IIRC).

    The impression one is left with is that Wegman has short-changed his students and that “institutionalised” plagiarism abounds in his department, despite GMU’s probable best efforts as presented in their code of ethics on this matter.

    The great stupidity in all this is it is wholly acceptable in academia to make use of appropriate source material when properly referenced — even if the reference is to Wikipedia IMHO, which by and large is a decent reference on many topics (after all, it gives references to primary sources which can be consulted and checked!).

    Whether Wikipedia would have been a suitable reference in this instance I don’t know (probably not), but the editorial/review process could have formed a considered opinion on the matter (or not, as it appears in this instance of rapid transit through to publication) if the source had been cited.

  17. #17 Wow
    May 25, 2011

    > we can’t say that Reeves plagiarised, surely.

    However, it doesn’t matter.

    a) Wegman plagiarised.

    b) Wegman says Reeves took it.

    If b is true, then Wegman knew it was plagiarised TWICE. Not good. If b is false, then Wegman plagiarised from Reeves but lied about Reeves, casting nasturtiums on his good name.

    > The incorporation of accidental plagiarised material is not a defence against plagiarism.

    Indeed, mere copyright infringement (less bad because plagiarism includes copyright infringement ALONG with fraud) has in the USA a statutory damages of up to $150,000 per incident (recently taken to mean “one for each copy made”, quite a few copies of Wegman’s report have been made…), and, IF DELIBERATE AND KNOWING, triple damages apply.

    Since breaking-and-entering or criminal negligence leading to death can have a much lower penalty, this hardly seems like plagiarism, even if innocent of malice, is no crime.

  18. #18 Bernard J.
    May 25, 2011

    John Mashey.

    I’ve said it previously, but I’ll say it again – your efforts and DC’s in this have been extraordinary. The two of you have demonstrated a remarkable patience and tenacity in finding and piecing together the mess of academic misbehaviour that is this whole tawdry affair.

    Of course, given the blatant incompetence, ignorance and misbehaviour that the Wegman team obviously display, it is more remarkable that they ever thought that they would get away with the nonsense in the first place. I have no sympathy for them, because it is patently clear that the whole enterprise was based upon ideological witch-hunting rather than upon any objective analysis. Those folk who persist in supporting them had better seriously reconsider their allegiances, because any further support will automatically taint their own reputations, and quite likely their work.

    There is one person for whom I still have sympathy and concern, and that is Reeves. The work that she collated hasn’t been proven to be plagiarism in and of itself, has it? How do we know that she didn’t simply copy it verbatim under Wegman’s instructions in order to summarise the material, rather than to pass it off to Wegman as her own?

    And quite frankly, as so many people have already pointed out, even if she had presented it to Wegman as her original work, it shows that:

    1. Wegman himself is grievously ignorant of the field and its literature, if he can neither summarise the field himself, nor check his student’s work for both accuracy and originality
    2. Wegman as leader of his group is, despite his failings as detailed in the previous point, prepared to pass other people’s work off as his own, whether it be his students’ or that of other workers in the field, through lack of appropriate cross-checking and referencing
    3. Wegman is happy to shuck off to an unknown student his responsibility as leader, once it all went pear-shaped, when previously he was happy to maintain the misapprehension of the world that it was his own work and that he was expert in the field.

    This is quite apart from all of the other dissembling that has occurred in the process of trying to tease out the truth once the scam was exposed.

    Another thing that deserves to be emphasised is that if he so thoroughly fooled the Republicans who accepted his report, and if he so completely fooled the many other deniers of the hockey stick that instigated the whole affair, and if he did so when the scholarship is so patently bad, how then can those very same deniers of the science underpinning contemporary global warming claim that they are qualified to analyse and dismiss any other science? Seriously? They bought Wegman’s snake-oil hook, line and sinker, but they still know better than the real professionals?

    “I was fooled by a pseudoscientific liar, but I still know better than the actual experts. Trust me.”

    What a crock.

  19. #19 Bernard J.
    May 25, 2011

    I see that P. Lewis made the same point about Reeves that I did, only better.

    One final observation: Wegman’s own social network will need to be a strong and partisan one (Azen’s actions would seem to hint that it might be), because I doubt that he will move forward professionally under any professional credibility of his own after this affair. GMU may bravely keep him on into the future, but any impartial academic institution would have to have rocks in its head to take Wegman on after this, if he and GMU part company.

  20. #20 John Mashey
    May 25, 2011

    0) Bernard J: thanks for the kind words.

    1) Reeves was coded orange or green in SSWR, unlike the red of the others. That ambiguity still seems accurate.

    2) Wegman threw Reeves under the bus, but she refused to stay there. Too bad she’s stopped talking.

    3) It wasn’t that Wegman fooled Barton & co, this was the report BARTON WANTED, both key memes.

    4) For everybody: Strange tales and Emails is dense, but a close reading may be useful, including carefully looking at Appendix B.1. This wasn’t just some one-off accident.
    Of course, one must be amused at Wegman’s complain that people were scrutinizing the work :-)

  21. #21 dhogaza
    May 25, 2011
    …the Climategate documents provided conclusive evidence of the hypothesis originally advanced in the Wegman Report about paleoclimate peer review – that members of the Mann “clique” had been “reviewing other members of the same clique”…

    Except that wasn’t the hypothesis, IIRC.

    No, it wasn’t, and no need to “IIRC” either, read Wegman’s defense, in which he quite bluntly states that their work shows significant manipulation of the peer-review process within what he calls the “pro-anthropogenic climate change community”…

    And that climategate showed them to be correct …

    Followed by a steady stream of the boilerplate denialist drivel seen so frequently elsewhere.

    Read closely … the ideological framework within which Wegman works is fairly openly put forward. Someone this smart doesn’t parrot such stupidity about a field with which he’s totally unfamiliar and unqualified to judge unless blinders are intentionally donned and evidence viewed through a very narrow, ideologically-driven world view.

    As to McI this misstatement of the “hypothesis” is just more evidence that he is pathologically unable to tell the truth about the simplest of matters regarding climate science. His misstatement is obvious to anyone who reads the original document …

  22. #22 John Mashey
    May 25, 2011

    Nature editorializes…

  23. #23 MartinM
    May 25, 2011

    Does any one want to take bets as to when the denialsphere will stop defending Wegman and start to react by saying that his report was never significant in the whole scheme of things, “he was a bit player”, “never really noticed his work anyway”, etc, etc, etc, etc.

    In fact, Wegman himself has already had a go at it. Take a look at his email to Elsevier, where he states that the Wegman report “…was all but forgotten until the so-called Climategate emails were made public…”, which is, of course, unadulterated bollocks.

  24. #25 James Haughton
    May 25, 2011

    I’m truly heartened that Nature has editorialised on this (though it’s a shame they didn’t acknowledge John Mashey’s work). When the most prestigious journal in the world says that your university and research have problems, I think it will ratchet the pressure on GMU and Wegman up fivefold.

    McIntyre’s contribution is laughable as always. Smear, innuendo, climate change isn’t happening because people who are coauthors emailed one another!!!.

  25. #26 Hank Roberts
    May 25, 2011

    Dagnabbit, markdown hoists me on the underscores again.

    These work:
    http://sinfest.net/comikaze/comics/2011-05-24.gif
    http://sinfest.net/comikaze/comics/2011-05-25.gif

  26. #27 Michael
    May 25, 2011

    On Wikipedia;

    Yes, in theory, one can reference Wikipedia.

    But there are good reasons not to.
    1. It displays a certain laziness, which is not really in keeping with academic standards.
    2. It’s not a primary source. Yes, much of the material is properly referenced….so why not just go to the source.
    3. It’s anonymous. The idea of referencing is that you know the source – it’s explicitly identified, eg(Reeves 2007), you know where to find it etc.

    Using Wikipedia is poor practice.

    ‘Academics’ who choose to use it need to accept that this will lead others to make judgements on the quality of their work and their capacity.

  27. #28 Bernard J.
    May 25, 2011

    John Mashey:

    3) It wasn’t that Wegman fooled Barton & co, this was the report BARTON WANTED, both key memes.

    Yes, you’re right to emphasise the nature of the Barton and his cronies in this, which indeed is different to the more passive of the players.

    Of course, the non-objective attitude of Barton et al then begs the question of their culpability in terms of acceptable and expected behaviour, and whether such partisan culpability is in any way actionable…

  28. #29 John Mashey
    May 26, 2011

    As I say in SSWR, “Wikipedia is helpful for quick topic introductions, but is never considered authoritative.”

    I often use it for subsidiary topics, where it’s the handiest quick introduction for somebody, often where I’ve looked at dozens of relevant references besides those in the article, and where they are very useful for ameliorating the citation explosion that happens. SSWR had something like 40.
    Sometimes they are used to show that something is common knowledge.
    As an exercise, search SSWR for wikipedia.org and see which ones seem sensible or not.

  29. #30 John Mashey
    May 26, 2011

    re: 25
    “I’m truly heartened that Nature has editorialised on this (though it’s a shame they didn’t acknowledge John Mashey’s work).”

    Thanks for the kind words, but don’t worry, it is *just fine*.
    I’d much rather they wrote what they did than spend words thanking more people, and if there was just one, it had to be DC.

  30. #31 John Quiggin
    May 26, 2011

    It seems to me that McIntyre has already thrown Wegman under the bus. Until now, McI was vigorously rejecting the plagiarism charges. But CA went silent for a week after the news of the retraction, then he came out with what reads as a “fake but accurate” line – without defending Wegman’s work, he says the hypothesis was right. Judith Curry is similarly silent, leaving it up to Watts to mount a very confused defence.

  31. #32 John Mashey
    May 26, 2011

    McI calling it Wegman’s hypothesis is amusing.

    I speculate as follows:
    Read Strange Tales and Emails carefully, specifically pp.16-17.

    See direct PDF of the PPT Wegman was sent.

    See pp.32-36, which lead directly to WR page 46, Figure 5.8, whose contents seem exceeding unlikely for Wegman to have generated by themselves.
    MM were already talking about peer view issues, Wegman and co knew enough SNA to get the the idea to generate some graphs … which precede p.46.

    Hopefully, at some point, certain people will be asked under oath where that material came from, and if the answer is McIntyre, it may get interesting.

    See also Strange tales, p.6 on
    “Because of our suspicions about manipulation of peer review”

    That didn’t arise from SNA or any other research, it was one of the two main goals from the beginning, as MM, Inhofe & co, and the thinktanks had been discussing and pushing this meme since ~2003.

  32. #33 GWB's nemesis
    May 26, 2011

    It will be very interesting to watch the response of GMU to the Nature editorial. In my own institution, such a critical editorial in such a venerable journal would cause very major consternation, almost certainly resulting in a discussion at the level of the governing council as to why there had been such a long delay. We have always held the view that all institutions will occasionally have such incidents; the real reputational damage comes when the university is perceived as mishandling the case.

    There can be few excuses for allowing this to drag on. It is unfair to all concerned, including Wegman and his students.

  33. #34 P. Lewis
    May 26, 2011

    AFAICT, GMU still hasn’t issued a press release on the CSDA retraction.

    I can’t imagine that’s because they only issue press releases that shed positive light on GMU. Perhaps it’s because the “physical retraction” is yet to take place?

  34. #35 James Haughton
    May 26, 2011

    Agree with GWB’s nemesis; all people, institutions and systems are fallible, the mark of an enduring system is its capacity to auto-correct. I also feel sorry for the presumably innocent other students at GMU (not so much for the faculty who chose to work there) who’ve just seen their degrees devalued.

  35. #36 Jeremy C
    May 26, 2011

    Re @ 31 and @ 32.

    Everyone pay up now! (see @ 12)

  36. #37 Donald Oats
    May 26, 2011

    Damn, should have put my coffee down first…

    If Nature have you in the editorial, but not in a good way, then as an institution the reaction should be to go into “circle the wagons” mode—NOT. GMU must finish this committee inquiry (or whatever it’s called) ASAP, or their own scientists are going to start pressuring upper ranks at GMU to take action. However, my admittedly low expectations now are that a letter to the editor will be sent by GMU officials, saying everything is hunky-dory and at hand, etc. In the finest tradition of University PR Department function.

    PS: Thank you, John Mashey, for the patience and persistence to pursue this to the end. If not for you it doesn’t seem likely that the alleged plagiarism would have a) been uncovered; and b) GMU wouldn’t have initiated an inquiry into the serious issues behind the Wegman et al paper(s) and report. Given the incredible level of minute forensic examination of climate scientists whose research corroborates AGW (ie Anthropogenic Global Warming) as an actual event in progress, it is about time the quite transparent flaws in the methods of those criticising these scientists is subject to a similar examination. The asymmetric nature of the political debate has been a frustrating factor up to now. Good on you, John, for bringing symmetry to the equation.

  37. #38 Martin Vermeer
    May 26, 2011

    USA Today’s Vergano wasn’t mentioned either, and should perhaps have been… investigative journalism like we haven’t seen for a while. But I agree with John: if only one name should stand out, let it be Deep Climate.

  38. #39 caerbannog
    May 26, 2011


    because I doubt that he will move forward professionally under any professional credibility of his own after this affair. GMU may bravely keep him on into the future, but any impartial academic institution would have to have rocks in its head to take Wegman on after this, if he and GMU part company.

    The sad thing is, should Wegman and GMU part company, the Heritage Foundation, Cato Institute, the AEI, etc. will be falling all overthemselves to offer Wegman a highly-paid/no-work position as a wingnut “statistics expert”.

    That being said, the incompetence surrounding the entire McIntyre/Wegman/Barton attack on Mann is just breathtaking. Any analyst with half a brain could look at the “red-noise” eigenvalues vs. Mann’s “hockey-stick” eigenvalues and tell them apart in about two seconds. There’s no way that anyone with any reasonable level of competence could confuse a noise eigenvalue spectrum with an eigenvalue spectrum produced from valid paleoclimate data.

    Whip up a matlab/scilab script that generates “hockey sticks” via short-centered PCA from red noise and compare the eigenvalues with Mann’s tree-ring eigenvalues and see for yourselves — there’s no way that any competent individual would confuse the two cases.

    Unless, that is, there’s a difference between “conservative” eigenvalues and “liberal” eigenvalues.

    Come to think of it, there just might be: I suspect that conservative eigenvalues would tend to be purely imaginary.

  39. #40 John Mashey
    May 26, 2011

    re: #37 Donald
    “If not for you it doesn’t seem likely that the alleged plagiarism would have a) been uncovered; and b) GMU wouldn’t have initiated an inquiry into the serious issues behind the Wegman et al paper(s) and report.”

    Thanks for the kind words, but you give me too much credit.
    a) DC found the 10 pages of the WR, and the CSDA paper, and the Wiley color stuff all by himself. I found the other 25 pages in the WR (but they were easy to find, as Summaries, the main work was finding the specific text antecedents.)
    Some other people found other things, like the Said(2005) dissertation. There are actually a few helpers whose names I don’t even know.

    b) GMU was (slowly) doing whatever it was doing without me, Strange Inquiries @ GMU.

    c) But it might be true that I helped this come to light with Dan Vergano. Mainstream media has a hard time doing much with anonymous bloggers or even citing blog-based sources.

    Dan checks everything carefully and calls people. When he called me (I think to see if I might be credible enough to spend time on this), it probably helped that I started going down a list of very credible people that knew me and that he might know, and after the first 3 I mentioned were all people he talked to, we stopped.

    It also helped that he’d followed the Wegman hearings while they were going on, so he wasn’t totally new to this.

  40. #41 Jonathan
    May 26, 2011

    I wanted to post this at Nature but they are having problems with their comments system.

    Speaking as a former journal Editor, my reaction to the appallingly slovenly investigation by GMU would be to start rejected any further submissions to my journal from their institution and to encourage other Editors to do likewise. Given that there is a blatant breach of publishing ethics in the WR, vis a vis outright plagiarism, I simply could not trust the output of anyone working at the institution any longer as the university clearly does not take this seriously. It is a case that should have been resolved in months, if not weeks, and most definitely does not warrant over a year of heel-dragging. If this is their attitude to such obvious plagiarism by their staff, then they can’t be trusted to ensure that all their other researchers are behaving correctly either.

    Harsh on the other researchers at GMU who are not plagiarists I know, but they too should not be accepting of their institutions disgraceful approach to this. Either publicly voice your disapproval or get out.

  41. #42 richard
    May 26, 2011

    re #39: “That being said, the incompetence surrounding the entire McIntyre/Wegman/Barton attack on Mann is just breathtaking. Any analyst with half a brain could look at the “red-noise” eigenvalues vs. Mann’s “hockey-stick” eigenvalues and tell them apart in about two seconds.”

    And yet Richard ‘I Stick to the Science’ Muller says (in June 2011 Scientific American): ‘A few years later, McIntyre came out and. indeed, showed that the hockey-stick chart was, in fact, incorrect.’

    I guess ‘sticking to the science’ does not help when you are way outside your area of expertise. Muller still has not learned that, I guess. Likewise for McI and Watts.

  42. #43 Lotharsson
    May 26, 2011

    > I suspect that conservative eigenvalues would tend to be purely imaginary.

    caerbannog FTW!

  43. #44 Eli Rabett
    May 26, 2011

    To repeat what Eli often says on this, there is a difference between formally correct statistics and useful statistics. Formally correct methods can stand up to any pathological data set, useful statistics not, but you don’t meet a whole lot of pathological data sets on the street, and certainly the data sets Mann used were not pathological

    What McIntyre and McKitrick did in their analysis was use different data, they included, for example some very dodgy data in the Central England Temperature record from before 1730 which was well known to be dodgy, but they waved their hands like crazy. Mann, Bradley and Hughes cut the series off in 1730 to be safe. You could make a good argument that it would have been better to cut it off in 1760 or so, but what the heck. What you could not do is argue that it was justified and honest to extend the record back before 1730 for an instrumental data set, if for no other reasons that a) it was not instrumental back then for most of the time and b) when it was instrumental it was not for data in Central England.

  44. #45 Lotharsson
    May 27, 2011

    > What you could not do is argue that it was justified and honest to extend the record back before 1730 for an instrumental data set, if for no other reasons that a) it was not instrumental back then for most of the time and b) when it was instrumental it was not for data in Central England.

    Aren’t at least some of those folks ALSO arguing that “hide the decline” demonstrates deceptive and corrupt science because it’s never valid to eliminate known-dodgy data and splice in known-good data instead when you’re preparing an illustration – even for a non-journal document aimed at summarising the state of play for laypeople?

    Sheesh, it must be a lot easier to “argue” for your position when you have exactly zero commitment to intellectual integrity (and the same commitment to factual accuracy).

  45. #46 john
    May 27, 2011

    For anyone interested in communication, the GMU ‘statement on plagiarism’ linked to comment 16 is a shocker.

    This isn’t a guideline ¬ it’s 1,000 words of pompous waffle. It has the strong smell of something composed by a keen type sadly ignorant of his/her lack of communication skills, then rubber stamped by a similarly handicapped committee.

    The idea that this inept 20 year old ‘statement’ is a current policy document of a major institution (which is the implication of its presence on their website) is gobsmacking.

    Oh sorry – just noticed that the statement does not actually purport to be a guideline – it exhorts professors to ‘work to ensure that their universities and professional societies adopt clear guidelines’ on plagiarism. Classic bureaucracy – after wasting ten minutes reading the head document all you learn is that if you want useful detail you have to look elsewhere. Perhaps someone more patient than me can find a link to the implied additional ‘clear guidelines’.

  46. #47 Chris O'Neill
    May 27, 2011

    What you could not do is argue that it was justified and honest to extend the record back before 1730 for an instrumental data set, if for no other reasons that a) it was not instrumental back then for most of the time and b) when it was instrumental it was not for data in Central England.

    These are also the same folk who say that the “easiest” thing to do is to not use certain high-altitude, western North American tree-ring proxies because, well, the easiest thing to do is just throw out data that they don’t like.

  47. #48 Wow
    May 27, 2011

    So, Chris, when you agree that QA is being applied, it’s “the easiest thing to do is just throw out data that they don’t like.”. When you say that QA isn’t applied, it’s “GIGO”.

    Two faces. Both being sat on.

  48. #49 Wow
    May 27, 2011

    Denialists insist that the “pink noise” “hockey stick” analysis that McI and Wegman did should throw away any “pink noise” analysis that didn’t show a “hockey stick” and that when they’ve done this throwing away of *99%* of the data is done, this “proves” that pink noise always produces a hockey stick.

    They’ll argue ANYTHING as long as they can keep themselves deluded.

  49. #50 John Mashey
    May 27, 2011

    Here’s is another tidbit, related to SIGMU.

    p.10 quotes Dan Vergano’s first story in Oct 2010, of which I wrote:

    ‘His story included a later comment that has confused some people:
    “Walsch clarified on Sunday that Bradley’s complaint is under a formal investigation by the university, and has moved past a preliminary “inquiry” to a committee effort.”

    GMU policies say: preliminary assessment, inquiry committee and investigation committee, A.1. Stough had many times specified inquiry not investigation. Perhaps he and Walsch were not communicating.’

    Then the Nature editorial this week had:
    ‘Daniel Walsch, spokesperson for George Mason University, says that an internal review of the matter began in the autumn. He cannot estimate when that review will be complete, and, until it is, he says, the university regards it as a “personnel matter” and will not comment further. He adds that the review is still in the “inquiry” phase to ascertain whether a full investigation should be held. “Whether it is fast or slow is not as important as it being thorough and fair,” says Walsch.’

    Vergano checks things, and updated his story:
    ‘Update: GMU spokesman Dan Walsch clarified in the May 26, 2011, Nature journal that the year-old investigation is still in its preliminary “inquiry” stage, rather than a full investigation.

    “In terms of my comments this past fall, my understanding of the internal procedure was not as clear then as it is now,” Walsch says, by email.]’

    Stough had claimed (p.31) that the inquiry committee was formed April 2010, but in email (p.32) first meeting didn’t happen until August. At least Walsch’s current comments are consistent with that.

  50. #51 Chris O'Neill
    May 27, 2011

    He adds that the review is still in the “inquiry” phase to ascertain whether a full investigation should be held.

    If it takes this long to have an “inquiry”, how long will it take to have a full investigation? This would be a great process if delay was their objective.

  51. #52 John Mashey
    May 28, 2011

    re: #15
    See SIGMU p.6 on this.
    The nominal timeline is within 88 elapsed days (3 months, as nature says), followed by up to 294 days for investigation, appeals, etc. So, modulo loopholes, they should have been done 04/1/11. So, one create several models:

    1) Suppose inquiry were done tomorrow, that would be +294 days, 9-10 months.

    2) Suppose it were done tomorrow, but the investigation expanded by a similar factor: 3 months becomes 14, so we could add another 45 months.

    3) But it isn’t done and they don’t seem to know when it will be.

    The oddity is that between Wegman’s Facebook lament (p.33), and his late Email to Elsevier, he’s been blocked from mentoring grad students and they have had computers seized.

    I can imagine that after a quick inquiry report that recommended investigation, but before? Odd.

  52. #53 Steve Bloom
    May 28, 2011

    They may be worried about pissing off the Republican powers that be. Perhaps the hope was that Wegman would solve their problem by resigning.

  53. #54 Martin Vermeer
    May 28, 2011

    Hmm, could it be so that there has been an interim report by the inquiry on part of the charges, e.g., on Wegman’s work as a grad student teacher, but that the inquiry continues on the other charges, with the aim of exhaustiveness? We outsiders wouldn’t necessarily be told about this. But yes, it’s a bit odd.

  54. #55 P. Lewis
    May 28, 2011

    Do we know whether is it GMU foot-dragging on investigating Wegman or whether it is that the initial inquiry found multiple possible problems requiring further analysis of third parties (other than Reeves) before proceeding with GMU’s Wegman investigation phase?

    A second publication retraction would make the pressure on GMU unbearable I would think. So, are other Wegman et al publications being actively looked at by journal publishers does anyone know?

  55. #56 P. Lewis
    May 28, 2011

    Ah! Between composing and going away to make my morning tea and toast and then reviewing before posting, I see Martin has a similar point.

  56. #57 Lurker
    May 28, 2011

    I wonder how Elsevier is feeling about Stanley Azen.

  57. #58 John Mashey
    May 28, 2011

    All an inquiry is supposed to do is look at the complaint and decide if it is worth investigating, not actually do an investigation and assign responsibility.
    People might review SIGMU which annotated the GMU policies and derives the nominal intervals.

  58. #59 John Mashey
    May 28, 2011

    And there is another new one, start at andrewt’s comment (way to go!) and go from there.

    At first glance, this looks like
    (famous article from Science) to
    (2007 presentation @ JSM (likely) to
    Sharabati (2008) dissertation to
    Said, Wegman, Sharabati (2010), mosto f hwich looks derived from the dissertation.

  59. #60 John Mashey
    May 28, 2011

    And there’s more:
    andrewt )(another unsung hero) came though with another find, start at this post.

    I am afraid that Appendix B.1 will need another spot, making 4 that are known but not yet documented. I’d left room only for k, l, and r.
    It never ends.

  60. #61 Bernard J.
    May 29, 2011

    I wonder how Elsevier is feeling about Stanley Azen.

    Probably very much the way that GMU is feeling about Wegman – similar to the feeling that one has after stepping in canine fæces.

  61. #62 Vince Whirlwind
    May 29, 2011

    Yeah, I was going to say – they would have that sinking feeling you get when at a meeting somebody in your team makes a promise you know they can’t deliver themselves….

  62. #63 Ted Kirkpatrick
    May 29, 2011

    Editorial supervision for CSDA is not so much by Elsevier (only the publisher) as it is by the International Association for Statistical Computing, the scholarly society sponsoring the journal. And yes, IASC are likely having questions about CSDA’s editor-in-chief.

  63. #64 Rattus Norvegicus
    May 30, 2011

    For a bit of hilarity, check out this. I especially like the doubling == 1.2C, but hey, you ignore negative feedbacks! Brilliant.

    You know, if you ignore positive feedbacks your are more likely to be wrong, at least in this case.

  64. #65 spyder
    May 30, 2011

    And now the Aussie climate denialists are stomping their feet and waving their hands over an advertisement starring Cate Blanchett: http://www.smh.com.au/opinion/politics/carbon-cate-is-just-fodder-for-coalition-campaign-20110530-1fczz.html

  65. #66 bill
    May 30, 2011

    further to the above – I trust we’ve all seen this?

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2011/05/30/3231077.htm

    “Most of you in the media are either too stupid to realise it or you don’t care about children,” he said.

    Dick Smith, quite rightly giving the Murdochracy and its media allies a serve.

  66. #67 Bernard J.
    May 31, 2011

    I’m a bit reluctant to go too far from the topic of this thread, but as the Cate Blanchett storm in a teacup has already been mentioned here, I’ll direct people to [last night’s episode of Q and A](http://www.abc.net.au/tv/qanda/txt/s3224649.htm).

    It worth watching to see how:

    1. George Brandis is completely unable to acknowledge that the underlying problem of global warming necessitates that carbon pollution is priced
    2. Fran Kelly is as scatty and as clueless as ever, and it is no surprise that she was [shown the door under amazingly ludicrous circumstances](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jackie_Kelly#Political_scandal)
    3. Guy Rundle deserves the tweet of “thinking man’s super villain”, and also muchos kudos for providing some intelligent discourse in an otherwise largely purile panel
    4. Joe Hildebrand is actually a smart guy, but so grown in the light of his News Limited overlords that he leans almost horizontally toward their corporate interests.

    If you haven’t already seen it, watch it and despair at the state of Australian politics and media. It is apparent that the conservative side of politics will sell the souls of all their decendants for immediate electoral gain, and that most of our media will do the same for a simple headline.

    [Lindsay Tanner had the right of it](http://www.smh.com.au/national/rudd-was-beheaded-and-it-was-all-for-nothing-tanner-laments-20110429-1e0th.html).

    If the Liberal/National parties succeed in their politcial attempts to prevent our country’s proportionate action on global warming, Australia will carry a disproportionate load of future guilt. Newcorp will be no less guilty.

    ‘Lucky country’ be damned, when we are governed (by ransom, in opposition) and informed by so many stupid and selfish people.

  67. #68 Chris O'Neill
    May 31, 2011

    ‘Lucky country’ was always meant to be ironic.

  68. #69 bill
    May 31, 2011

    Ironic yes. But it’s a pity it drifted into moronic

  69. #70 Vince whirlwind
    May 31, 2011

    I didn’t think “Lucky Country” was ironic – I thought it was internal PR aimed at the tyranny of distance and Australia’s cultural cringe, two problems which largely evaporated, respectively, by the late 1970s and during Paul Keating’s time in office.

  70. #71 FrankD
    June 1, 2011

    I’m not sure “ironic” is quite the right term, but it was not meant to be flattery. When Horne coined the term he was contrasting those countries who were generating their own wealth and social improvements through innovation with Australia, mired in Menzies-era conservatism, lack of innovation and simply relying on our abundance of natural wealth.

    “Australia is a lucky country, run by second-rate people who share its luck.”

    Not much has changed really – we remain conservative, unenterprising and riding our luck. And run by Bernard’s stupid and selfish second-raters.

  71. #72 Marion Delgado
    June 1, 2011

    I got an email from GMU and my first thought was, why would they email ME?

    I do think the Climate Communicators Awards being at Denial U is pretty darned ironic.

    Anyone else agree?

  72. #73 Bernard J.
    June 1, 2011

    Marion, you do but jest, surely?

    Who was it with the sense of humour who organised that?

  73. #74 John Mashey
    June 1, 2011

    Actually, Ed Maibach and co at GMU’s Center for Climate Change Communication are *OK*. I’ve met one at AGU, and have traded some emails with Ed.

    See the authorship list of this letter to Science.
    “Thomas E. Bowman, Edward Maibach, Michael E. Mann, Richard C. J. Somerville, Barry J. Seltser, Baruch Fischhoff, Stephen M. Gardiner, Robert J. Gould, Anthony Leiserowitz and Gary Yohe.”

    Recognize any names? Do you really think Mann and Somerville would be on this with Maibach if he were like Wegman?

    GMU actually has some reasonable departments and reasonable people. I know some, so does my wife, so do some climate scientists we know. Lots are just regular academics doing normal academic things.

    In my opinion, the issues are around the administration, institutes and a few departments that seem to pursue GMU’s other missions on behalf of the Kochs & co. I think that most departments are normal academic departments. I have heard a few interesting stories I cannot repeat, but the skeletons in the closet seem to be banging harder on the door to get out.

    Do *not* make the bad mistake of tarring the whole place with the Wegman brush.

  74. #75 Bernard J.
    June 1, 2011

    John.

    I suspect that Marion, like myself, was being a little ironic in the banter!

    It’s good to have the names of decent academics publicised though, as they certainly do not deserve to be tarred with Wegman’s brush.

    I just hope that the administration considers its responsibility to its other employees, as well as to the whole concept of academic integrity, when it decides what to do about Wegmanand his group.

  75. #77 John Mashey
    June 4, 2011

    re: #76
    Yes, see pp.93-95 of CCC. Templeton shows up moderately often, although well below the Kochs and Scaife.
    It does fund Heartland.

  76. #78 John Mashey
    June 4, 2011

    And BTW, if you want to see another interesting “handling” of a grad student, there’s more.
    See (sources) to Sharabati(2008) to Said, Wegman, Sharabati (2010).

  77. #79 Marion Delgado
    June 5, 2011

    John:

    Good to hear they have good people still doing good work. I call em denial U not just because of Wegman, believe me. A very substantial amount of their work is doing freebies for the Kochs, Moranos, etc. Really, any RW think tank can get free research tailored to their needs via George Mason. My father went to the GMU School of Law while he was in the Capitol police and he said it was a very conservative U even then.

    But thanks for the letter and the other stuff that’s the other side of the coin.

  78. #80 SC (Salty Current)
    June 5, 2011

    Thanks, John Mashey.

    I left a short response to you at the other site, but, by way of connection, should note that the person I was responding to in my first post about Templeton happened to be Josh Rosenau of the NCSE (also a blogger here at Sb), who was arguing that the case for the Foundation’s climate-denial/antiscience activities was weak or nonexistent.

    It does fund Heartland.

    What’s the source for this?

  79. #81 John Mashey
    June 5, 2011

    By funny coincidence, I had lunch with Eugenie&Josh Friday.
    In some sense, you’re both right. Unlike certain foundations, where climate anti-science is one of the pervasive themes, it’s not with Templeton, but they certainly fund organizations that do it. Money is fungible, so it is hard to say where it goes.

    but in #77, I pointed to the master table I had, which was derived from MMAN,
    but now that I rerun and look, I don’t see it, so I withdraw the Heartland comment. I’ll have to figure out where the $623K came from on p.93 of CCC came from. With ~3,000 cells in that spreadsheet, there are bound to be a few errors. Thanks.

  80. #82 SC (Salty Current)
    June 5, 2011

    By funny coincidence, I had lunch with Eugenie&Josh Friday. In some sense, you’re both right. Unlike certain foundations, where climate anti-science is one of the pervasive themes, it’s not with Templeton, but they certainly fund organizations that do it. Money is fungible, so it is hard to say where it goes.

    Well, I’m not sure if you went to my posts and read the exchange (such as it was) but I don’t think he’s right at all. As I’ve shown, they’ve given more than $4 million to Atlas over the past several years (the majority of it for Atlas’ think-tank seeding efforts), independently funded denialist organizations, and the Templeton “Freedom” Awards, though given out by Atlas, are funded by them entirely and frequently go to explicitly denialist organizations for explicitly denialist projects. They’ve certainly tried in other contexts to conceal their connection with these activities and present themselves as pro-science, but I can’t see how anyone could look honestly at the evidence and find that at all plausible. That they’ve been able to fly under the radar as they have to a great extent is part of the problem.

  81. #83 John Mashey
    June 5, 2011

    Oh, I don’t think they are pro-science, the issue is that some of the other guys fund entities whose *only* or primary mission seems to be climate anti-science, and I hadn’t seen that from Templeton. Atlas funds all sorts of stuff.

    I’ve been to buys with other things, like Strange Falsifications in the Wegman Report, which I managed to keep to 12 pages, but I got to use red in the color displays.

  82. #84 SC (Salty Current)
    June 5, 2011

    Oh, I don’t think they are pro-science, the issue is that some of the other guys fund entities whose only or primary mission seems to be climate anti-science, and I hadn’t seen that from Templeton. Atlas funds all sorts of stuff.

    Their primary mission is to seed, groom, and support conservative think tanks around the world, and it looks like Templeton is currently their major funder. That Atlas is doing Templeton’s bidding as well as its own in funding not just neoliberal entities around the world* but specifically denialist think tanks is evident from the fact that Templeton specifies Atlas’ think-tank seeding in the 2009-12 $4 million grant description, that this talks of building on the success of the Templeton Freedom Award program, and that all but one of [the known Templeton- and Atlas-funded organizations that were sponsors of the Heartland** conference](http://saltycurrent.blogspot.com/2011/05/more-on-templeton-atlas-and-climate.html) (not to mention the Globalization Institute) have also been Templeton Freedom Award (or grant) recipients. So we have an organization funding awards with its name going to denialist think tanks and projects and the organization that funds them, then so approving of the award-giving and funding organization’s efforts that it not only continues to fund the awards to denialist groups but gives it another $4 million for its think-tank work. They can’t hide behind Atlas. The notion that they just give Atlas funds with no intent for them to go to denialism just isn’t tenable.

    I’ve been to buys with other things, like Strange Falsifications in the Wegman Report, which I managed to keep to 12 pages, but I got to use red in the color displays.

    Off to read it now. Great work on this, btw. Now back to not commenting here. Cheers.

    *And of course even without having a primary denialist mission, organizations that work for unfettered corporate power are promoting ecological harm.

    **I think Templeton may have donated to Heartland as an individual.

  83. #85 John Mashey
    June 5, 2011

    SC: the general problem is that money is fungible, and when it goes through the money-laundering network shown in CCC,Section 2, it’s hard to prove much. Put another way, I’d guess it very likely that Templeton money flows to climate anti-science, but it isn’t easy to prove.
    So, Templeton gives big money to Atlas, but so do Scaife and Earhart, as well as some from ExxonMobil.

  84. #86 SC (Salty Current)
    June 5, 2011

    Put another way, I’d guess it very likely that Templeton money flows to climate anti-science, but it isn’t easy to prove. So, Templeton gives big money to Atlas, but so do Scaife and Earhart, as well as some from ExxonMobil.

    But, again, it’s not just that they give a lot to Atlas (which itself is suggestive – as I said in my post, the amount they’ve given 2009-2012 alone is greater than the other foundations combined that DSB considered over a very long period. Their money is bound to influence Atlas’ priorities, and thus we can to some extent read back from those priorities to theirs, or at the very least judge that theirs aren’t contrary). The circumstantial evidence that they give it with specific purposes that include denialism in mind is very strong especially from the Templeton “Freedom” Award recipients and the grant description re think tanks and the bit about building on the success of the award program. If it “proof”? No. But the idea that none of their money goes to this is seriously implausible, and certainly their support and promotion in terms of their name and recognition does.

  85. #87 SC (Salty Current)
    June 5, 2011

    Put another way, I’d guess it very likely that Templeton money flows to climate anti-science, but it isn’t easy to prove.

    The Templeton Freedom Awards, many of which have gone to denialist organizations including explicitly for denialist projects, are fully funded by the Templeton Foundation, so there can be no doubt whatsoever that Templeton money has flowed to antiscience.

  86. #88 John Mashey
    June 5, 2011

    Climate anti-science is a subset of anti-science.
    Again, I am happy if there are clear direct links, I just haven’t seen them yet and there are too many things ahead of it. Some of this, the only way to really find it is to have a reason for somebody with subpoena power to get reasons to ask.

  87. #89 SC (Salty Current)
    June 5, 2011

    Climate anti-science is a subset of anti-science. Again, I am happy if there are clear direct links, I just haven’t seen them yet and there are too many things ahead of it. Some of this, the only way to really find it is to have a reason for somebody with subpoena power to get reasons to ask.

    With all due respect, I don’t know what you’re talking about. I have to wonder if you’ve read the posts in question.

    1) The Templeton Foundation is, as far as I know, the sole and entire funder of the Templeton Freedom Awards.

    2) Poland’s Globalization Institute won a 2009 Templeton Freedom Award – $10,000 – “for publishing ‘The Mythology of the Greenhouse Effect’, right before the 2008 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Poznán.”*

    3) This is but one blatant example, but you wouldn’t need a subpoena here to see the clear direct link between Templeton money and (climate) antiscience. And in addition to the award money generally, the circumstantial evidence is overwhelming.

    Come on.

    *I provide more details [in my first post](http://saltycurrent.blogspot.com/2011/04/yes-templeton-is-antiscience.html)- an interested reader can check my links and determine if the Wikipedia entry is correct. (The 2009 page might have been disappeared…)

  88. #90 SC (Salty Current)
    June 5, 2011

    I link to it in my post, but it doesn’t get much clearer or more direct than [this](http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-xLSF3TRaLg).

  89. #91 John Mashey
    June 5, 2011

    SC: I didn’t say it wasn’t there, I said I hadn’t seen it. Trust me: if I listed the things I *have* to work on right now, you would not want me to drop them and go off and look at a new topic. You want me to do that. I can’t right now.
    But don’t worry, I won’t forget, I have a long list of such items and I come back to them when I have time.

  90. #92 SC (Salty Current)
    June 5, 2011

    SC: I didn’t say it wasn’t there, I said I hadn’t seen it. Trust me: if I listed the things I have to work on right now, you would not want me to drop them and go off and look at a new topic. You want me to do that. I can’t right now. But don’t worry, I won’t forget, I have a long list of such items and I come back to them when I have time.

    What? My link wasn’t for you specifically. I don’t doubt that you have more, but this information isn’t secret. It’s in the posts I’ve linked to. Anyone who’s read them has seen it.

    I’ve no doubt that when you turn your considerable skills to this specifically you’ll unearth much, but it’s not necessary to make the basic points (vs. Rosenau) that I’ve made. It’s right there – Templeton money has gone to denialism. And more.

  91. #93 Wow
    June 6, 2011

    > Do you really think Mann and Somerville would be on this with Maibach if he were like Wegman?

    Well, yes.

    If only because until someone proves themselves a cad, you ought to work with them (even if they are a cad) honestly.

    And at the moment, there’s still no proof of caddishness.

    But a little bit of wariness may be in order.

  92. #94 John Mashey
    June 7, 2011

    Wow: well, since I know Mann and have met Somerville,
    and have traded emails with Maibach, I think innocent-until-proven-guilty is in order. There turn out to be a bunch of people who have been associated with Wegman who turn out to be really good-guys appalled by what he’s been doing, but I never would have found that if I assumed otherwise.

    For more real caddishness,in some circles, “just plagiarism, no big deal, conclusions stand” is popular, which is nonsense, anyway, but…

    Once found, near-verbatim plagiarism is the easiest to prove and explain, since a colored side-side-side is obvious even if one knows nothing of the field. Falsification/fabrication (the other pair of the FFP academic Big Sins) are harder to show.

    However, it helps when someone plagiarizes big chunks of text, then methodically weakens, contradicts and even inverts its conclusions, with no justification.

    See 12-page PDF @ Strange Falsifications in the Wegman Report.

  93. #95 John Mashey
    June 8, 2011

    DC has 2 more articles.
    These were 2 of the missing letters in STaE, B.1.

  94. #96 Wow
    June 8, 2011

    > Wow: well, since I know Mann and have met Somerville, and have traded emails with Maibach, I think innocent-until-proven-guilty is in order.

    That, however, is my point. In both ways.

    I think “innocent unless proven guilty” (note the change: “until” gives the impression that there will be a guilty verdict, “unless” means the option of never having been guilty is forefront) is correct for calling someone a cad and treating them as such.

    But the “until” you used (and is so common in the phrasing of that statement) shows that there’s a wariness. “You may be guilty, but we have to prove it”. If someone is innocent, you aren’t looking for proof, surely. Therefore indicating wariness. A contingent “innocent” rather than a concrete standard of innocent.

  95. #97 John Mashey
    June 8, 2011

    Wow: you can word-split all you like, but I will point out that I more likely have spent a lot more time than you have researching GMU and finding things that make me nervous…
    but also, have run across perfectly reasonable people who are appalled. You have yet to add a single concrete fact to make me want to worry about Ed Maibach … and your argument is isomorphic to the “Climate scientists write papers together, so we should all be wary of bad peer review among these guys, even if there is no objective evidence.”

    Some people love guilt-by-association, but sorry, I’ve spent too much time on this already.

    Now, back to something useful.
    Andrew Gelman is a serious statistician, and his latest is Another Wegman plagiarism, referencing DC’s latestMining new depths of Scholarship, Part 1.

  96. #98 John Mashey
    June 11, 2011

    re: 25, 30 to finish that
    “re: 25 “I’m truly heartened that Nature has editorialised on this (though it’s a shame they didn’t acknowledge John Mashey’s work).”
    (me):
    Thanks for the kind words, but don’t worry, it is *just fine.* I’d much rather they wrote what they did than spend words thanking more people, and if there was just one, it had to be DC.”

    Again, Nature was *just fine* as it was, as DC deserves a lot of credit, and it’s hard for MSM to mention anonymous bloggers.

    But by odd coincidence, just yesterday (on-line), print next week, another fine journal was kind enough to mention me, see DeSmogBlog summary and link to it (subs req, sorry).

    I urge anyone who reads the actual article to read very carefully and think about what’s going on.

Current ye@r *