The “Craziness” of the Climate Science Echo Chamber by Mark Steyn

I spent much of Wednesday guest-hosting America’s Number One radio show. You can find a few moments from today’s show here – including a reference to the story of most personal interest to me, the news that the distinguished climate scientist Judith Curry had decided to resign from her position at Georgia Tech:

The superficial reason is that I want to do other things…

The deeper reasons have to do with my growing disenchantment with universities, the academic field of climate science and scientists.

Dr Curry elaborates:

A deciding factor was that I no longer know what to say to students and postdocs regarding how to navigate the CRAZINESS in the field of climate science. Research and other professional activities are professionally rewarded only if they are channeled in certain directions approved by a politicized academic establishment — funding, ease of getting your papers published, getting hired in prestigious positions, appointments to prestigious committees and boards, professional recognition, etc.

How young scientists are to navigate all this is beyond me, and it often becomes a battle of scientific integrity versus career suicide (I have worked through these issues with a number of skeptical young scientists).

By “career suicide”, Dr Curry means that, if you dissent from the Big Climate orthodoxy, thug enforcers like Dr Michael E Mann will take the hockey stick to you until there’s nothing left. As Roger Pielke Jr, another scientist forced out of the field by the climate mullahs, said today:

No one has worked harder than Michael Mann, in public or behind the scenes, to destroy academic careers of those w/ views different than his

Naturally, Mann responded to her resignation with his characteristic gracelessness:

For his part, Mann said climate science would be stronger without Curry. He said she routinely engaged in character attack, “confusionism and denialism” and eroded scientific discussion.

“She has played a particularly pernicious role in the climate change denial campaign, laundering standard denier talking points but appearing to grant them greater authority courtesy of the academic positions she has held and the meager but nonetheless legitimate scientific work that she has published in the past,” he said. “Much of what I have seen from her in recent years is boilerplate climate change denial drivel.”

By “meager” scientific work, he means Judith Curry is the co-editor of The Encyclopedia of Atmospheric Sciences and the co-author of Thermodynamics of Atmospheres and Oceans and a member of the National Research Council’s Climate Research Committee – as opposed to running around falsely claiming to be a Nobel Laureate and playing Jessica Alba’s personal climatologist on a James Cameron crockumentary.

In my book on Mann – “A Disgrace To The Profession”: The World’s Scientists – in Their Own Words – on Dr Michael E Mann, His Hockey Stick and Their Damage to Science, Volume One – I mention that I had trouble finding female climate scientists to quote:

There are fewer women than one might wish [in the book], but it seems to be a male-dominated field and indeed there is a palpable misogyny in the way some of Mann’s defenders attack his female critics.

And at that point I included a footnote:

Diehard Manniac blogger “Tamino”, for example, condescendingly refers to the aforementioned and distinguished Dr Judith Curry as “Aunt Judy” (see, which appears to be a derogatory porno term for an older woman one would be willing to have sex with if no one younger was to hand. Given that Mann enthusiastically facilitated the reduction of scientific dispute to name-calling, it would be unreasonable to expect his Mannboys to confine themselves to merely the Holocaust echoes of “denier”.

Indeed. So Mann, among his many contemptible acts, still enthusiastically promotes his pal Tamino. And if supposed “respectable” persons like Mann are okay with dismissing eminent scientists as porno milfs, don’t be surprised if it catches on:

Curry is as dishonest as they come. Shes an attention seeker, whoring her credentials for adulation from angry old white men.

Another Mann-boosting climate activist takes it a step further:

Curry, however, is a supposed scientist who has (perhaps) literally gotten into bed with slime like Steyn.

As I commented at the time:

The ugly slug sock-puppet who wrote that would be of no importance – except that Michael E Mann has enthusiastically linked and reTweeted him all week long.

That’s from a column headlined “The Ugly Misogyny of Big Climate“:

Professor Sir Tim Hunt, FRS, who unlike Mann is a real Nobel Laureate, made some harmless remarks about “falling in love” with “girls” in the lab – and had his career ended instantly. But the most prominent woman in climate science worldwide is routinely compared to a whore – and Michael E Mann links day after day to the guy who does it. And David Appell uses the Aunt-Judy-is-a-whore expert as a source.

Nice girls in the lab you fall in love with=repellent misogyny that has no place in science.

Female climate scientists “literally” whoring and slutting around=perfectly respectable talking points in the climate-change debate.

For what it’s worth, on the one occasion we’ve met, I found Dr Curry shrewd, insightful, very funny – and vivacious and attractive. But, best of all, she’s fearless and resilient. Because you’d have to be.

She was certainly so, when I had the honor of appearing with her before the United States Senate. Like Mann, Senator Ed Markey of Massachusetts is a small, contemptible bully, albeit bulked up by the usual bloated retinue of staffers feeding him his talking points from behind his chair. But he too had imbibed the sexist condescension that attends Mann and his groupies. So, after blithely insulting her, the know-nothing senator was astonished to find that she was disinclined to sit there and take it:

Markey must have been a little shocked when climatologist Judith Curry demanded to be able to respond to his testimony trying to discredit her views on climate science.

I did not ask you a question,” Markey, a Democrat, retorted when Curry asked if she could respond to his testimony during a Senate hearing Tuesday on the science behind global warming.

Why can’t she respond senator?” Conservative author and columnist Mark Steyn shot back at Markey. “You impugned her integrity. I think she’s entitled to…”

“I was basically called a ‘denier’ — that I’m denying science,” said Curry, a climate scientist at Georgia Tech University. “Did you read my written testimony?”

Markey sought to discredit Curry in his testimony by framing her as ignoring the evidence humans are putting the planet at risk. Curry was not happy with essentially being labelled a global warming “denier” and pushed back against the senator’s remarks.

“Are you aware the IPCC and the consensus has no explanation for the increase of ice in the Antarctic?” Curry said. “Are you aware that they have no explanation for the fact the rate of sea level rise from 1920 to 1950 was as large, if not larger, as it currently is?”

“Are you aware that temperatures have been warming for more than 200 years, and, that in the 20th Century, 40 percent of the warming occurred before 1950 when carbon dioxide was not a factor in the warming?” Curry continued.

Curry highlighted even more uncertainties among climate scientists many Democrats and environmentalists are loathe to admit. For example, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has trouble explaining the recent “hiatus” in warming as well as the warming trend before the 1950s.

“Doctor, as I just said in my testimony — corroborated by Dr. Titley [another witness on the panel] — this is the warmest year ever recorded,” Markey shot back. “Last year was the warmest year ever recorded until this year. This was the warmest November ever recorded. October… was the warmest ever recorded.”

“You do not have an answer for that,” Markey said before going on to site Galileo and claim Curry was relying on “something that is perhaps God-made rather than dependent upon something that is man-made” and backed by science.

“Are you saying there’s no natural variability senator?” Steyn cut in. “There were alligators at the North Pole. What was that? Was that you in your SUV?”

Markey was forced to acknowledge the planet does in fact warm and cool on its own, but said natural variability is regional and the warming trend “is straight up.”

“Do you know what the little ice age was senator?” Steyn said to which Markey responded by claiming Boston’s record levels of snow are a product of global warming.

You can see the exchange here:

Unlike us media blowhards, Judith Curry did not sign up for this. All she wanted to do was to be free to follow where the science leads. And, because the science leads away from Michael E Mann and his cartoon climatology, she has been subject to a vile campaign of character assassination by him and his creepy little coterie. Were she to demand the same right he asserts – to sue over insults – Mann would be in deep water. Fortunately, unlike him, she understands the concepts of free speech and open debate.

As to my own little legal difficulties, Judith Curry cautioned Mann back when it all began:

Mark Steyn is formidable opponent. I suspect that this is not going to turn out well for you.

I despise Michael Mann for many reasons, not least for the damage his peculiar insecurities have done to honest inquiry and scientific integrity. But his disgusting treatment of Dr Curry ranks high on my list. And, however long it takes, I will ensure that her prediction from 2012 comes true.

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