Rip her to shreds

Shamelss fanboy stuff I’m afraid.

The great Klotzbach wars have been playing for a little while now ([1], [2], [3], [4] etc etc), but the arbitrator has spoken and its time for the Dark Side to stop digging and throw in the towel.

Now you can settle down to enjoy a nice video and wonder what the moral might be.

Meanwhile, for a little light geek relief, try this.

Comments

  1. #1 Steve L
    2009/11/16

    I’m not sure I know why James Annan is “the arbitrator”, but that was a pretty damning review. Annan links to McKitrick’s comments at Pielke Jr. It’s pretty depressing that Pielke Jr doesn’t seem to understand that McKitrick’s comments are damning too.

  2. #2 James Annan
    2009/11/16

    Thanks for likening me to a middle-aged out of tune screeching has-been :-)

    [Why, can you sing in tune? -W]

    Can I be the Terminator next time?

    [If I cross you with Myles, you can be the Sperminator (first sense) if you like :-) -W]

  3. #3 Mark
    2009/11/16

    I love the “You can’t parse [X]HTML with regex” link. Who said Stoat never has anything interesting?!

  4. #4 Phil Hays
    2009/11/17

    Yea, just sing along with me;

    You can hack anything thing you want, with TECO and DDT…

    http://www.hactrn.net/sra/alice/alices.pdp10

  5. #5 dhogaza
    2009/11/17

    Oh, lord, OS/8 TECO actually has my real name embedded in the source.

    I must be old …

  6. #6 James Annan
    2009/11/18

    [Why, can you sing in tune? -W]

    Come and listen to our 9 lessons and carols if you are passing by… :-)

  7. #7 Luke Warmer
    2009/11/19

    The breaking story at CAudit, WuWT and Lucia looks bad (for science, I mean):

    http://rankexploits.com/musings/2009/real-files-or-fake/

    http://www.climateaudit.org/?p=7801#comments (see further down)

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/11/19/breaking-news-story-hadley-cru-has-apparently-been-hacked-hundreds-of-files-released/

    should be an interesting day – hoax or implosion or what?

  8. #8 Tom Fuller
    2009/11/19

    I have come into possession of electronic files that appear to include email correspondence between climate scientists, attachments to those emails and apparently some software code. I am not the only one who has or has seen the files.

    From what I’ve read so far, if the emails are all factual representations of correspondence, it will not change anybody’s opinion about global warming, although it may sully the reputations of a number of working scientists.

    I’m not going to publish the files. I hesitate to even write about what’s in them, other than in the most general terms. Let me tell you why.

    The Citizen Journalist’s Dilemma

    Because I have been a journalist in other incarnations, and have even broken stories using material from whistleblowers, I sort of know what I should do in this case. But as a citizen journalist I do not have the time or resources to do what I need to do–interview the people involved, verify as much as possible the information provided, create a data description of the information included and a timeline that walks through the period in question. It’s pretty important that this happen, because the livelihoods and career paths of people may prove to be at risk. Sadly, I have a day job and have been working night and day on that day job for about six weeks. And I’m not done–but this story won’t wait. There are 1,003 emails and several file folders full of documents.

    I was involved in a blog spat a couple of weeks ago, and I was truly offended when my counterpart in the disagreement published my email to him without my permission and removed context important to understanding the point I was making in the email.

    The few emails I’ve read are pretty much like any series of emails you would expect to read between professionals working on a project together–meeting schedules project proposals, etc. They do get snarky about people they consider on the other side–but as yet, I haven’t seen language that I probably wouldn’t have used myself in similar circumstances. When it gets published (and I have no doubt it will be published), it will prove embarrassing to those concerned, especially if it’s published in snippets and without context. I don’t really want to play that game.

    However, there is also information in the emails that is of public interest. So what’s a glorified blogger to do?

    What actually interests me is what’s in the attachments to the emails–but I’m not even opening them until I get legal guidance. That stuff is somebody’s work product, and they do have rights.

    Now, it would be easy for me to get on a white horse and refuse to engage with this issue at all. I know other people have this information and will publish it, after all. I could let them do what I feel squeamish about and then jump into the discussion with a clear conscience, all indignation and fire. Seems a bit too easy.

    So I am going to try and do what a journalist will do, without the resources of a news department. Here’s my cunning plan. I am going to crosspost this on sites frequented by some of the people involved in this correspondence and ask them to contact me. I will try at the very least to get a response from them about anything I do choose to publish. I will also give them every opportunity to provide context for statements in the emails that might otherwise be hurtful. With their permission, I will publish their reactions and comments alongside anything I discuss here. If they consent to act with me on this, I will give them a publishing schedule and a chance to prepare for material that I do decide to discuss.

    I’m open also to suggestions. If you can help me act ethically and responsibly in breaking a story on a shoestring budget, I will welcome your assistance. This story will probably go on for months–there’s a lot in there. But it’s important that we start well on this journey.

    [Wild excietment; it will be fun to see how this plays out -W]

  9. #9 dhogaza
    2009/11/19

    When it gets published (and I have no doubt it will be published), it will prove embarrassing to those concerned, especially if it’s published in snippets and without context. I don’t really want to play that game.

    It’s interesting how denialists – including yourself – discuss how the contents might be embarrassing to the victims of this serious theft.

    Rather than concentrate on the seriousness of the crime of theft … hack into a government server in the US, and you’re looking at some serious time playing in federal prison recreational leagues. I doubt the UK’s any different.

    However, there is also information in the emails that is of public interest. So what’s a glorified blogger to do?

    Play concern troll …

  10. #10 dhogaza
    2009/11/19

    If you can help me act ethically and responsibly in breaking a story on a shoestring budget, I will welcome your assistance.

    The story’s been over the internet all day, now. You’re not “breaking” anything.

    It is obvious how McI, Watts, etc are using this – they’ve attempted to ruin the careers of scientists in the past, they’re hoping this will provide the final evidence they need to do so.

    They don’t care about science or knowledge, their goal is to prevent any action on climate change, and to make doing climate science a personal risk with a potential cost so high that people will be discouraged from doing so.

    Cracking servers and stealing correspondance, data (including data which CRU has no right to release), etc is not only a crime, it’s vile. You can prove to us that your a better person than Watts, McI, etc by very vocally and publicly condemning this crime on your blog.

    *That* is what an ethical person would do.

  11. #11 Kevin
    2009/11/20

    Re: #9 doghaza -

    Yes, none of the blame should be placed on the “scientists” who–if these emails prove to be accurate–have betrayed their public benefactors and colluded with one another to misrepresent data that is crucial to an important debate. Now that’s vile.

    [You should pause long enough to see this verified before you start throwwing insults around -W]

  12. #12 Luke Warmer
    2009/11/20

    William – you have to recognise that the skeptic blogosphere is proceeding with extreme caution.

    [That doesn't sound especialyl plausible -W]

    In case you’re not parsing the 60MB file as I write, there’s a few bits here being updated regularly.

    http://blogs.news.com.au/heraldsun/andrewbolt/index.php/heraldsun/comments/hadley_hacked/P80/

    “The men who glare at stoats” are coming…

    [Rumour has it that there are some emails from me in there. Who will win the first prize? -W]

  13. #13 James Annan
    2009/11/20

    First prize for what? Learning how to use grep on a directory of text files?

    There are twice as many Annans as Connolleys, does that mean I win? :-)

    [First prize for finding something inciminating from either of us -W]

  14. #14 Adam
    2009/11/20

    I notice that lots of people don’t know the difference between a university and a government agency, even ones with very different names.

  15. #15 William
    2009/11/20

    OK, I admit, I’ve been unable to resist the temptation to download this pile o’ shite. Some of it is certainly fun: there are some wonderfully harsh reviewer comments about what a pile of poo McLean et al is. It would be even more fun if I could remember which paper that was :-)

  16. #16 Maurizio Morabito
    2009/11/20

    First prize for finding something incriminating from either of us -W

    it depends on the meaning of “incriminating”…I have already seen what appears to be “perfectly legit” text being presented as “scandalous”. Guess it depends on how one wants to read it.

    Am afraid unless a hugely incontrovertible smoking gun will be found, the whole episode will only mess things up, even more than before.

  17. #17 Maurizio Morabito
    2009/11/20

    dhogaza (#10): Cracking servers and stealing correspondance, data (including data which CRU has no right to release), etc is not only a crime, it’s vile. You can prove to us that your a better person than Watts, McI, etc by very vocally and publicly condemning this crime on your blog.

    Surely an ethical person would wait to find out what exactly has happened?

    It does make a huge difference it it’s all been the work of an outsider, something to condemn it wholeheartedly (as it places each and every one of us in danger about our privacy and work); or the result of an internal whistleblower, something to judge rather less forcefully (as the role of whistleblower is important in an open society, and by definition it will involve the breaking of some rule).

    From an ethical point of view, the intent of a whistleblower and the circumstances around their action have to be considered as well, while even a well-meaning external hacker simply cannot be tolerated under almost any circumstance.

  18. #19 Maurizio Morabito
    2009/11/20

    Here’s a good example I have read at LuboŇ°’s.

    From: Gary Funkhouser
    I really wish I could be more positive about the Kyrgyzstan material, but I swear I pulled every trick out of my sleeve trying to milk something out of that

    Not sure how many people will believe me, but there is nothing wrong in trying to pull every trick out of one’s sleeve in order to milk something out of a bunch of data.

    Otherwise there would be no point in writing articles and discussing results. Once you set upon a path towards a “discovery”, you’ll try whatever means to gather evidence that will solidify that path. As a matter of course.

    On the other hand, those words will hopefully put to rest the whole fantasy of results being incontrovertible, and skepticism only the result of evil corporations funding people of ill repute, a fantasy I am sure no serious scientist has ever tried to sell (but plenty of bloggers, journos and politicians have).

  19. #20 dhogaza
    2009/11/20

    I notice that lots of people don’t know the difference between a university and a government agency, even ones with very different names.

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but in the US “public research university” implies a government university (such as one of our state universities).

  20. #21 dhogaza
    2009/11/20

    It does make a huge difference it it’s all been the work of an outsider, something to condemn it wholeheartedly (as it places each and every one of us in danger about our privacy and work); or the result of an internal whistleblower

    The university says it’s been hacked. The files are on a russian server. In the US, at least, whistleblower legislation only protects certain types of actions, stealing and making public contents of a server that includes proprietary data from third parties, etc, ain’t one of them.

  21. #22 Adam
    2009/11/20

    “Correct me if I’m wrong, but in the US “public research university” implies a government university (such as one of our state universities).”

    They are state controlled to some extent, but they are very different from a government agency, such as the Hadley Centre, which many people are conflating CRU with. The UKMO itself used to be part of the MOD, but I think it’s status changed somewhat when it became an agency, and the Hadley Centre was tacked on (almost literally when they were both in Bracknell) by the Thatcher government in the late eighties/early nineties (I forget which) and even then received most funding from a different department.

  22. #23 Maurizio Morabito
    2009/11/20

    dhogaza (#21) – out of respect for your own concern to see people behave ethically, it’d sure help if you would avoid jumping to conclusions as well. Don’t you think?

  23. #24 dhogaza
    2009/11/20

    dhogaza (#21) – out of respect for your own concern to see people behave ethically, it’d sure help if you would avoid jumping to conclusions as well. Don’t you think?

    Jumping to conclusions about what? Please be specific.

  24. #25 Maurizio Morabito
    2009/11/20

    dhogaza (#24): Jumping to conclusions about what? Please be specific

    What about claiming it was an act of “stealing”? And considering the actions of whoever did it, “vile”? And claiming that McIntyre and Watts are in this “hoping this will provide the final evidence” to “ruin the careers of scientist”? And stating that “they don’t care about science or knowledge, their goal is to prevent any action on climate change, and to make doing climate science a personal risk with a potential cost so high that people will be discouraged from doing so”?

    I am not saying you shouldn’t state what you believe. What I am saying is that you shouldn’t lecture others into doing what you don’t want to do yourself.

  25. #26 dhogaza
    2009/11/20

    What about claiming it was an act of “stealing”?

    The university has already been to the police about the matter. Perhaps you’re vague on the law regarding breaking into other people’s computers. I’m not.

    And considering the actions of whoever did it, “vile”?

    Stealing is vile. I’ve personally contributed to someone caught stealing from my car having served jail time and three years supervised probation, and don’t feel in the least bit bad about it.

    And claiming that McIntyre and Watts are in this “hoping this will provide the final evidence” to “ruin the careers of scientist”?

    It is consistent with past behavior by McIntyre.

    And stating that “they don’t care about science or knowledge, their goal is to prevent any action on climate change, and to make doing climate science a personal risk with a potential cost so high that people will be discouraged from doing so”?

    I think their actions speak to their motivations.

    What I am saying is that you shouldn’t lecture others into doing what you don’t want to do yourself.

    Since when is stating my opinion unethical? If you think that stating of one’s opinion has the same moral standing as breaking into and stealing information from someone’s computer system, we’ll find nothing to agree upon now or in the future, I’m sure.

  26. #27 MarkB
    2009/11/20

    Tom Fuller writes:

    “I was involved in a blog spat a couple of weeks ago, and I was truly offended when my counterpart in the disagreement published my email to him without my permission and removed context important to understanding the point I was making in the email.”

    Perhaps you should then re-evaluate your high level of respect for the individuals publishing those emails.

    RC makes a good point. What’s revealing is what’s NOT in the e-mails. This is the chance for global warming deniers to sift through thousands of personal emails and finally expose the global warming hoax. Although it would be shocking if, with all that material, there isn’t something embarrassing, they can’t seem to find much more than a few quotes and phrases out of context to support a conspiracy theory. This is very telling.

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2009/11/the-cru-hack/

  27. #28 Vinny Burgoo
    2009/11/20

    Redhogaza #9: ‘Rather than concentrate on the seriousness of the crime of theft … hack into a government server in the US, and you’re looking at some serious time playing in federal prison recreational leagues. I doubt the UK’s any different.’

    As the Kingsnorth trial showed, crime is crime in the UK except when there is a lawful excuse for its commissioning. The Kingsnorth defendants somehow managed to convince a jury that their lawful excuse was that their (admitted) criminal damage to property somehow prevented a greater damage to property around the world. All things being equal, a clever lawyer shouldn’t have much trouble convincing a British jury that the theft of the CRU e-mails etc. prevented a greater theft – perhaps the theft of Western prosperity, perhaps the theft of reason or the scientific method: it doesn’t really matter. Any bigger theft will do. Just get the right jury and fly in a politician masquerading as an impartial scientific expert, all expenses paid and carbon emissions be damned, and Bob’s your uncle: true British justice. Easy peasy.

  28. #29 Maurizio Morabito
    2009/11/20

    dhogaza (#26): I specifically wrote “I am not saying you shouldn’t state what you believe” and still you reply “Since when is stating my opinion unethical?”

    ???

    By all means jump to any conclusion you like…who’s going to prevent you from doing that…but why would you think the right to do so is only yours, I really can’t understand…

  29. #30 Maurizio Morabito
    2009/11/20

    MarkB (#27): What’s revealing is what’s NOT in the e-mails

    Since there is no need to think of a global conspiracy in order to explain the extraordinary popularity of catastrophical AGW even in scientific circles that should know better, so what if there’s no global conspiracy

  30. #31 Carl C
    2009/11/21

    it would seem to me it shows UEA isn’t so hot on computer security, and I guess they had some crap Microsoft product/server that had a known (easy) exploit. I think the emails & the “crime” shows that basically academia is lazy; but we all knew that didn’t we? ;-)

    I haven’t seen any “smoking gun” — just the usual “circle the wagons” and “Sir Humphrey” sort of obfuscation (although CA readers & authors will screech this is shocking). The most shocking thing was a joke about the death of John Daly. Which sounded more “Sopranos” than academia; but I guess that will just cause a chuckle to the usual Oxbridge toffs that think UEA is a shite institution anyway.

  31. #32 pough
    2009/11/21

    William, your emails are dull! Phil Jones, on the other hand, is amusing from start to finish. I found a bit in one of his emails that you might like:

    PS. Britain seems to have found it’s Pat Michaels/Fred Singer/Bob Balling/Dick Lindzen. Our population is only 25 % of yours so we only get 1 for every 4 you have. His name in case you should come across him is Piers Corbyn. He is nowhere near as good as a couple of yours and he’s an utter prat but he’s getting a lot of air time at the moment. For his day job he teaches physics and astronomy at a University and he predicts the weather from solar phenomena. He bets on his predictions months ahead for what will happen in Britain. He now believes he knows all there is to know about the global warming issue. He’s not all bad as he doesn’t have much confidence in nuclear-power safety. Always says that at the begining of his interviews to show he’s not all bad!

    The response he gets is pretty good, too:

    Could you please define “utter prat” for me? Sometimes I think we speak the same language, and sometimes I’m not so sure.

    [Ah Piers. Well, I've commented on him here on occaision -W]

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