Having read the post (and not being able to read the rest of the letter), I'm not sure Mann has much of a case here. Steyn's primary contention is that the Penn State investigation was not particularly rigorous, and that's a statement of opinion -- and filing suit against Steyn would inevitably result in massive discovery requests against Mann and PSU, as to prevail Mann would have to show that Steyn's contention was false (among other things).
Having read Steyn's piece, from what I could see it compares Penn State's presumed investigation into the allegations of scientific fraud on Mann's part with Penn State's presumed investigation into the Sandusky case and Paterno's handling of it. The focus was on an alleged culture of hiding problems, rather than confronting them, on the part of the PSU administration at that time. David, you really think that is libel? Mark Steyn has an intelligence, and focus, and toughness, that I doubt Prof. Mann understands. I would be very amused to see this case go to court, and even more amused to see all those issues on that remarkable "hockey stick", and the even more remarkable gimmickry on the data that we are told to accept lay behind it, be justified before other than the usual gaggle of allies. East Anglia West, is that how PSU wishes to be known? Great.
Hit these small-p*nised little punks back. I like it. Mann is playing their game back at them, and he was smarter than all of them at twelve.Now, where's the popcorn?Best,D
Arlecao: Are you kidding?? Here is what Steyn wrote:"Michael Mann was the man behind the fraudulent climate-change “hockey-stick” graph...." That's directly about Mann, not any investigation. Steyn may write "tough," but intelligence and toughness in the world of political punditry doesn't hold a candle to the rigor and standards of science. I doubt that Steyn -- or you -- have any idea what you're talking about regarding "remarkable gimmickry."
For example, many of Steyn's commenters seem completely unaware that the "hockey stick" has been found using mathematical methods (Bayesian statistics) that are completely different from Mann et al's approach (Principle Component Analysis):"Still Hotter Than Ever," Scientific American, November 2009, pp 21-22.http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=still-hotter-than-ever
David, interesting that you would doubt I know anything about statistical gimmickry. It is not as if Prof. Mann has been exactly circumspect as to his challenges with statistics. Steyn, I would presume, will be able to fully speak for himself should this case get to the court stage. I won't presume to speak for him. But you might perhaps start, quietly and soberly, thinking through what sort of dedicated manipulation it took construct that "hockey stick". If you presume fair intent on Mann's part, so it was simply a concatenation of honest errors on science transparently done which led to the appearance of "hockey stick", then you are faced with at least two questions: [i]first, what the heck is going on with all that gameplaying with refusal of data?[ii] what is the probability of such a fine tuned concatenation of errors arising out of "chance"? It is fine to find an intricate and difficult study involving so many variables heavy going. Science advances over a field of errors made before the challenges of making sense of Nature. It is not fine to protect bad scientific practice [and any attempt at hiding data or the technical details involved is very bad practice]. I'll assume that you care more about discovering what is true than you care about protecting colleagues or speeding up the acceptance of a favored notion. Then I am sure you will welcome, as will I, a full and transparent evaluation, away from a circle of allies, of the work that led up to the "hockey stick", and, equally as important, of the "work" intent at masking what led up to the "hockey stick".
As to "Bayesian Statistics", a method I admire greatly, it is, of course, limited by the quality of the data upon which your prior is to be improved upon. That has always been the significant issue with Mann, the quality and handling and transparency of that data. I'd be curious to see what "Bayesian analysis" would do with data from Prof. Muller's study. Global warming, and the history of climatic change in general, is far too important a phenomenon to be distracted by Mann and his highly dubious 'hockey stick'. Its reality, what drives it, and its implications, needs good hard science, and it needs a fully open discussion between investigators. The politicking that came out of Penn State is the last thing we need to have something reliable to work with.
If you want to know what "Bayesian statistics" does with paleoclimate data, why don't you read the Tingley and Huybers papers? All you're doing is making vague accusations based, it seems, on little specific knowledge of what actual science has been done.
>> Global warming, and the history of climatic change in general, is far too important a phenomenon to be distracted by Mann and his highly dubious 'hockey stick'.<<There is little controversy in the actual scientific community about the hockey stick. And the case for manmade global warming does not depend on it.
Uh huh, sure. That's rich.Bayesian statistics has been fruitfully used in paleoclimatology, in paleontology, in paleoarchaeolgoy, and in, by this time, all science, all disciplines, involving analysis of long-term data. You mentioned a Scientific American article on Bayesian analysis applied to the "hockey stick" data. And when I raised the direct, pertinent, issue as to what is suspect in Mann's work, the data that is to be used for this Bayesian analysis, and pointed out my curiosity as to what Bayesian methods would be able to draw out of Muller's study, the best you could do is to huff that there are papers out there using Bayesian methods in climatology? Just.....Magnificent.
As I said, I very much hope Prof.Mann goes to court. It will be a richly informative exercise. As for you, David, we'll be discussing this science in future days. No doubt you have full trust in your own understanding of things.
"There is little controversy in the actual scientific community about the hockey stick. And the case for manmade global warming does not depend on it" The last part is exactly the point, David. The evidence and arguments for, or against, global warming, do not depend on "hockey stick". More importantly, "hockey stick" is so badly bungled that it has nothing meaningful anymore to say about global warming. The science in the end must rely on good science. Now, was that so hard to fess up to?
Here come the spam bots! Right on cue!Best,D
Arelcao, I've seen no evidence that you understand the underlying science, nor have you given any specific reasons why you think it is "badly bungled." You should spend less time reading blogs and more time reading science.
Mann's lawyers will never take this to court. They'll review the Climategate emails, the Dr. Tim Ball's lawyers' discovery requests that Mann is reluctant to hand over, the research contradicting Mann's Hockey Stick papers, and all the other skeletons in Mann's closet and tell him to just be quiet and take his hits.
Entertaining dialog between Akleos and Appell. But what Mr. Appell about removing the Medieval Warming Period and Little Ice Age don't you find "bungling" and/or "fraudulent?"
What do you mean by "remove?"
Shelly: have you actually read some of Mann's work? If so how did you miss the part where he says:"Our reconstruction thus supports the notion of relatively warm hemispheric conditions earlier in the millennium while cooling following the 14th century could be viewed as the onset of the little ice age"Regards,John
John Cross gives the "Rhetorical Question FTW" of the week:Shelly: have you actually read some of Mann's work?Dessert at Chuck Hughes' restaurant in Montreal on me!Best,D
Can we all agree, regardless of our view of the science involved, that Dr. Mann needs to take this to court if he does not get his apology from Steyn and NR, and if he doesn't then Steyn will have won and Mann will be culpable? Come on, don't let him give them their victory!
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