Since Dr Michael Mann announced his intention to sue over my Corner post, I've had a few queries on this and that aspect of the case:
1) Several readers have asked if there's a legal defense fund to which they can contribute. No, but, if you want to help out, you could always send a few bucks National Review's way. Since Dr Mann's lawyer, John "I don't bluff" Williams, has assured us he doesn't bluff, it seems prudent to budget for a full-length trial.You can donate to NR here. Or better yet, subscribe to the magazine, and enjoy a fortnightly frolic with yours truly plus Rob Long, Jay Nordlinger, Jonah Goldberg and the rest of the gang.
2) Other readers have asked questions about the principal subject of my post - the Penn State inquiry into Dr Mann. If you want to read the full report, you can find it here. Alternatively, you can read this assessment of it from that notorious right-wing nest of climate-change denialists at The Atlantic Monthly.* This excerpt from the conclusion is especially choice:
This level of success in proposing research, and obtaining funding to conduct it, clearly places Dr. Mann among the most respected scientists in his field. Such success would not have been possible had he not met or exceeded the highest standards of his profession for proposing research...
Had Dr. Mann's conduct of his research been outside the range of accepted practices, it would have been impossible for him to receive so many awards and recognitions...
Why, it's simply "impossible" to suggest that a person of such eminently eminent eminence could ever behave improperly! The very notion is nearly as fantastical as suggesting that, say, the NCAA's most respected football coach, a man who has received even more awards and recognition than Dr Mann, might ever behave improperly.
3) Finally, some readers have wondered what restrictions Dr Mann's threat of a law suit imposes on me. Among other things, there's this, from his Big Oil lawyer's letter:
We further demand that you take all steps to preserve any and all documents relating to these publications and to Dr. Mann.
Oh, don't worry. We're preserving all documentation with the same care and diligence as the Climatic Research Unit:
OH F–K THIS. It's Sunday evening, I've worked all weekend, and just when I thought it was done I'm hitting yet another problem that's based on the hopeless state of our databases.
Hope they did a better job filing all those awards.
*UPDATE: Laura Rosen Cohen has also been prowling through Penn State's "exoneration" of Mann: Three Strikes You're Out?