Climate change deniers wallets threatened

By Ken Perrott 22/04/2010 12


Apparently climate scientist Michael Mann has threatened legal action* against Minnesotans for Global Warming (M4GW) over their  video “Hide the Decline.” This used the comment from the “climategate” emails to portray a dishonest and slanderous picture of Mann. The video has been heavily promoted by climate change deniers and conservative  groups, news outlets and blogs internationally. Several conservative NZ bloggers promoted the video.

So far I have only seen the M4GW press release which is somewhat cavalier. However, they have taken the video down from YouTube. When asked why he removed the video, M4GW’s Elmer Beauregard said “Right now, the last thing I need is a lawsuit. I can barely afford my electric bill.” The fact that they have replaced it with another revised one, “Hide the Decline 2,’ suggests they had something to fear from Mann’s “cease and desist” order.

Science confirmed sound

All the inquiries into the “climategate” affair are confirming that, despite questions over freedom of information requests,  there was no inappropriate scientific behaviour involved. In fact, it was rather silly to believe that any had occurred given that this is one of the most scrutinised and reviewed areas of science.

So, if this legal threat develops further courts would likely find in Mann’s favour. These irresponsible climate change denial campaigners may face the financial reality of their slanderous behaviour.

Legal action by scientists is unusual. Perhaps we are naive but the usual response to criticsm is to present evidence. However, the “climategate” campaign has brushed aside evidence and reason. It has been basically hysterical and nasty. Honest scientists have been abused, misrepresented and defamed with seemingly no conscience.

NZ denial campaign

We have seen the same situation in New Zealand. A conservative cabal of climate change denial conspiracy theorists (eg. Ian Wishart and Richard Treadgold), conservative bloggers, the ACT Party and right wing political groups such as The Climate Science Coalition, the Climate Conversation Group , and the Centre for Political Research have coordinated their activity recently. They attacked New Zealand NIWA scientists by producing and circulating a dishonest  report. This claimed that scientists ’created a warming effect where none existed.’ That ’the shocking truth is that the oldest readings were cranked way down and later readings artificially lifted to give a false impression of warming.’ And ’we have discovered that the warming in New Zealand over the past 156 years was indeed man-made, but it had nothing to do with emission of CO2 — it was created by man-made adjustments of the temperature. It’s a disgrace.” (see New Zealand’s denier-gate).

So, perhaps this is the future. Now that the “climategate” hysteria is settling, now that inquiry after inquiry shows no evidence of scientific misbehaviour, perhaps the chickens can come home to roost. Perhaps those responsible for the nastiest aspects of this hysterical campaign can face the financial consequences of their behaviour.

I say – bring it on! And wouldn’t it be nice if some of those in New Zealand who participated and encouraged this nasty campaign faced similar threats to their back pockets.

*Update: Here is the letter sent by Mann’s lawyers.

See also:

Climategate Figure Threatens Lawsuit Over Satirical YouTube Video ‘Hide the Decline’.

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12 Responses to “Climate change deniers wallets threatened”

  • You fool. Haven’t you noticed that finally all the big time skeptics have acted together to bait Mann into going so far he has to file now or lose his reputation – because of his own bluster about suing? Have you not seen what National Review Online, Mark Steyn, the Competitive Enterprise Institute, Investors’ Daily and Climate Depot are are saying – and refusing to retract?

    . Do you really think the “climate scientists” want a law suit, which enables the skeptics full discovery – access to Mann’s data, records, communications and finances? Do you think they want the CRU emails and programmer’s notes dragged into court? You think the CRU crew and Hansen are thrilled at this development? You think the University of Pittsburg is thrilled have revealed, at a time when universities are raising tuitions, how much money is spent on expensive junkets to Rio, Bali, Cancun, Copenhagen, etc?

    Under American defamation law, the Supreme Court ruling New York Times v. Sullivan, Mann is a “public figure.” He can only win by showing that defendants deliberately lied or showed reckless disregard of the truth or falsity. “Mikes’ Nature Trick” from the CRU email’s should take care of that. And if that email isn’t admissable, there is plenty of other stuff. Check out Climate Depot.

    Finally, the skeptics are saying: “Bring it on.” And that means they have funding in place. Someone is also funding Mann, who has already run up a hefty legal tab, but I can’t imagine why, as having him litigate is in the worst possible interests of the so-called climate scientists. I do not think Jones or Hansen welcome this development.

  • Msher, if you are going to use the word skeptic could you at least put climate change in front of it. Most skeptics around the world have weighed up the evidence on climate change and are supporting the climate change scientist not those who purport to be skeptics while pursuing a less than scientific agenda

  • Yes I agree the Mark Steyn vs Michael Mann law suit should be entertaining.

    I am with msher here. Mann has too much dirty laundry to hide and won’t want full disclosure.

  • Actually, I thought I was the only one suffering from senior moments. Andy and msher seem oblivious to the fact this post is two and a half years old!

    Must be a recurring problem.

    But thanks for regurgitating my old posts.

  • msher is referring to the Steyn vs Mann court case.

    This is current, (August 2012)

    I hadn’t noticed the date on your blog post. I didn’t bother reading the post, for the obvious reasons)

  • I’ll give you a clue Ken.
    There’s a list of comments on the front page of Sciblogs. It shows the latest comments.

    I read the comment and responded to it.

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