UPDATE: Joe Romm contributes generously to the rent party, with many links, Steve Easterbrook serendipitously at the very same time, crashes the party, and Eli, Eli, as you can see below, is a very moderate bunny. Read it all for many details and excellent analysis.
In commenting on the well
verneer veneer footnoted** "Heaven and Earth" Michael Ashley concluded that
Plimer's book deserves to languish on the shelves along with similar pseudo-science such as the writings of Immanuel Velikovsky and Erich von Daniken.but Eli sadly notes that neither Velikovsy's nor von Daniken's book have languished on the shelves, and, regretfully, Plimer's book has found an audience in spite of being demolished root and branch. To paraphrase Mary McCarthy, every word is a lie, including the binding, but buyers there are aplenty, or at least enough, and Plimer has reaped invited lectures, TV interviews and round the world travel.
Eli asks himself why is this so?. Simply there is money to be made and fame to be reaped. There are lots of ways to make money in the megaphone game. There is the little kid way, get your daddy to pay you to write. Many "think tanks" are happy to play mommy and act as honest brokers in that game. Among our friends, Fred Singer and Pat "Satanic Gassy" Michaels (RTFR bunnies) lead the way.
But this is the INTERTUBE age, and new methods are being invented as we suck down our Sunday morning coffee. A character by the name of Tom Fuller is earning a living over at the Examiner using a get paid for eyeballs strategy. His income is generated by the number of pageviews. To push his peanut forward, Tommy is the climate champion blogwhore. Raising the rent requires confrontation and noise. Fuller has both under control.
Which, in the Rabett's usual go around the circle way, brings us to Andy Revkin. Andy, you may recall, was a science reporter for the NY Times who took a buyout about a year ago (Eli being too lazy to go look the date up), retaining the rights to DotEarth. In essence he is trying to set himself up as the thinking hare's Tom Fuller, but even with the best of intentions, he has to play to the crowd. He blames every climate scientist for not knowing everything
A prime problem with climate science — related to peer review — is that it is implicitly done by very small tribes (sea ice folks, glacier folks, modelers, climate-ecologists, etc) so real peer review — avoiding confirmation bias — is tough, for sure...
Do I trust all climate scientists, research institutions, funding sources, journals and others involved in this arena to convey the full context of findings and to avoid sometimes stepping beyond the data? I wouldn’t be a journalist if I answered yes.Of course, there are members of the tribe who are used to pow-wowing with others at the IPCC meeting, but they, of course, are guilty, guilty, guilty. Yet just to make sure that everyone knows he is an honest broker, Revikin says that he trusts climate science
Do I trust climate science? As a living body of intellectual inquiry exploring profoundly complex questions, yes.Andy does make sure to point to a report of the error on Himalyan glacier melting in the AR4, one of the few, like even a Rabett could count them on one paw, in a huge report. But in journalist calculus, this outweighs everything. Fair and balanced is our Andy. Eli's response was not hopeful (it's number 2)
A really depressing post, which just about kills any remaining credibility you ever had and it comes right above another one which shows how your ilk jumped on the bandwagon to libel Pachauri. That the original source has been forced to retract is cold comfort, the damage was already done.True, that was the Sunday Times, but what the heck (and Eli posted an immediate follow up pointing out his error).
In the huge IPCC report, only a few mistakes were found. Most of those that you blew hot air into have now been shown to be fabrications (see, for example
the Amazon story, where the Telegraph was forced to take down it's article)yet you have the gall to claim that it is the scientists who are behaving badly.
Revkin is playing the Pielke game, providing excuses for the wrong side of the street, the one he knows is wrong, and then, coyly lifting his leg to do you know what, while insisting to those who object that his heart is in the right place.
Do journalists have hearts? No, they have sources. More to the point, do they have ethics? Is their job simply to play telephone, distorting what others say to them, or to inform. Rabetts inquire.