I was distracted from my upcoming trial of the century by my comrade Ezra Levant's trial of the century in Ontario Superior Court last week. However, in my few moments outside court, I did have a chance to catch up with both legal and scientific friends in Toronto to help prepare for serving discovery requests on Michael E Mann, deposition of Dr Mann, my counterclaim against Mann, and various other matters. I also found Ezra's performance in court yesterday hugely inspiring. (You can read more about it here and here.) If you'd like to make a contribution to what I think of as my legal offense fund, you can do so by purchasing one of our new SteynOnline gift certificates (they never expire, so they're good for Christmas presents this year or next decade) or, alternatively, a personally autographed copy of my free speech book Lights Out or one of our other fine products. You won't regret it. This is a big battle in a sclerotic "justice" system, but we will win it.
While I've been cooped up in that Toronto courthouse, there have been several interesting developments on the warm front. Nic Lewis and Marcel Crok have published a report arguing that climate may be less sensitive to CO2 than models suggest. That's too un-alarming, of course, to be the Big Climate Headline Of The Week, so, courtesy of ThinkProgress, how about this?
Chipotle Warns It Might Stop Serving Guacamole If Climate Change Gets Worse
What next? Arugula?
As all responsible people are aware, global warming is responsible for everything. This week we also learned that AGW will lead to a massive increase in ADHD. What's that? Anthropogenic Denialism Hyper Disorder? No, apparently it's something to do with Attention Deficit...
Where was I? Oh, yes. Insofar as that CO2 news made the papers at all it was only so that the settled-science enforcers could club them to a pulp with Dr Mann's tree rings. My fellow Guacamolocaust denier Victor Davis Hanson considered the long history of the unsettling of science:
Until 1982 "settled science" decreed that stomach ulcers were a result of bad diet, too much gastric acid, or undue stress. Then Australian scientists Barry Marshall and Robin Warren shocked the medical community with an unlikely thesis: The real culprit for peptic ulcers more often was infection by the Gram-negative bacterium H. pylori, a common but sometimes dangerous agent in the gut that could be treated with antibiotics. The practice of gastroenterology was turned upside down...
In similar fashion, the vast majority of the 19th-century medical community insisted that postoperative infections were due to bad air. Surgeons once prided themselves on their filthy bloody gowns as proof of their industriousness, convinced that airing out hospital miasmas would alone stop gangrene and other wound-related diseases. Then the surgeon Joseph Lister proved that Louis Pasteur's theories of micro-organisms causing disease also applied to wounds — and that the use of antiseptics amid sterile conditions in the operating room and in hospitals generally could vastly curtail postoperative deaths. Soondek hospital whites, bleaches, and chronic washing became the new orthodox protocols, and Lister became canonized whereas he had formerly been dismissed as eccentric.
A man (or Mann) who keeps screeching "Shut up!" is many things but he is not a scientist. Dr Hanson:
I do not know whether there is such a thing as deleterious man-made global warming, but I do know that it has become the new orthodoxy to such a degree that its adherents are now trying to silence their critics and would make the grand inquisitors of the past proud. Recent examples include a campaign to censor a Washington Post column by Dr. Charles Krauthammer, a Los Angeles Times protocol of not publishing letters skeptical of global warming, and a lawsuit to discredit the brilliant satirist Mark Steyn, who, as humorists are wont to do, mocked a pompous proponent of global warming.
Alarmism having flopped in the wake of the 17-year warming "pause", the more prudent AGW promoters are now trying to recalibrate their message. But the easiest thing to do would be to clamp down on bullying one-tree-ring-to-rule-them-all hysterics:
Perhaps Mann being tossed overboard is just the thing that climate science needs.
Judith Curry again:
For the past decade, scientists have come to the defense of Michael Mann, somehow thinking that defending Michael Mann is fighting against the 'war on science' and is standing up for academic freedom. Its time to let Michael Mann sink or swim on his own. Michael Mann is having all these problems because he chooses to try to muzzle people that are critical of Mann's science, critical of Mann's professional and personal behavior, and critical of Mann's behavior as revealed in the climategate emails. All this has nothing to do with defending climate science or academic freedom.
A final thought from The Prussian:
One piece of evidence that I can add to this is that Michael Mann is definitely a megalomaniac. If you look at his list of publications, there are a whole lot of first-author ones and very few last author ones. This stinks to high heaven, because a professor should have many of the latter, and not so much of the former, because he is supposed to be supporting his students, helping them get established. I've dealt with such people before, sadly, and my advice to any up-and-coming climatologists is: Do not, if you value your career, accept work under someone like Mann.
~Click here for how you can help support Steyn's pushback against Mann.