Publishing Review Comments – the Crowley Incident

In order to respond to Nielsen-Gammon’s comments about the morality of publishing review comments and/or speculating on reviewer identities, I think that it would be helpful to review a couple of other incidents.

Today I’ll review an incident involving Tom Crowley’s publication of a farrago of falsehoods in EOS (as well as in contemporary interviews) concerning our previous correspondence. In an effort to defend myself, I published both the underlying correspondence and the review comments on my attempt to reply at EOS.

In an unexpected byproduct of O’Donnnell et al 2010, Crowley recently (Jan 4, 2011) apologized unconditionally both for his initial article and his failure to apologize previously.

Let’s review these events under Nielsen-Gammon’s moral compass.

Crowley’s original EOS editorial is online here, reported at CA at the time here, rejected reply here, apology here.

In my original decision to publish the correspondence online, I believed – and this remains my belief – that Crowley had forfeited any expectation that the correspondence would remain private by making untrue and damaging statements about the correspondence.

EOS had made no attempt to obtain my side of the story or apparently made any effort at due diligence to verify that Crowley’s allegations were true. When I attempted to defend myself by publishing a reply at EOS (rejected reply here), the journal submitted my reply to peer review, which dragged on and on. The peer reviewer conceded that my objections seemed valid. However, the editor of EOS ruled that the matter was no longer topical and rejected my reply. I asked EOS to retract the article to no avail.

I posted the review comments and rejection letter as an update to the original post, showing that the reviewer had conceded the validity of the points in my reply and that the EOS rejection was unjustified. (I posted these up only in October 2009 a month before Climategate; I do not recall what prompted me to do so then.)

In the aftermath of O’Donnell et al 2010, Crowley challenged the veracity of 88 pages of review correspondence with Reviewer A, conceding that we might well have a point if this were true. Crowley offered to adjudicate. This led to emails between Ryan, Crowley and me, in which the past history was noted. Out of the blue, Crowley admitted that the statements in his EOS article were untrue and apologized (see here.). There can thus remain no doubt as to the rights and wrongs of the original article.

Under my understanding of Nielsen-Gammon’s moral compass, Crowley’s publication of untrue statements would only be “sub-optimal” communication, while my publication of the EOS review comments would be a serious offence against the sanctity of the review process. I submit that this is not a sensible disposition of the incident.

My original question about the provenance of a possible duty of confidential for an author in respect of review comments was a more technical one than most readers have assumed (on either side). Here’s why. Some journals have authors’ guides or reviewers’ guides which state that an author agrees to maintain the review correspondence confidential. (AMS doesn’t.) If an author submits an article to a journal and a journal agrees to review it, it seems to me that the author and the journal have, in effect, entered into an agreement and that the terms of the various guides are implied terms of the agreement. (I think that the analysis is helped by framing it in this way.) If a journal’s guide says that an author agrees to keep the review correspondence confidential, then it seems to me that an author by submitting an article to that journal agrees to comply with that term of the agreement. We may disagree as to whether it’s a good policy or not, but that’s a different issue.

Disputes over agreements arise all the time. It’s what keeps lawyers busy. A key principle of contract law is that there needs to be consideration for an agreement. Another principle is that parties cannot pick and choose which clauses of a contract are in effect.

In the Crowley example, it was my view that Crowley’s publication of untrue statements about our correspondence was a fundamental breach of any implied agreement that the correspondence was private, thereby terminating whatever agreement we might have had. I was therefore entitled to publish the correspondence in my own defence. Similarly with EOS. They published false statements about me and had an obligation to deal fairly with me to mitigate the damages. They breached that obligation and, in my opinion, could no longer insist on that the review comments were confidential.

Under Nielsen-Gammon’s world, the offence was the publication of the correspondence and review comments, not the original publication of false statements. Perhaps in the bizarro world of climate academia, but not in the real world.


83 Comments

  1. Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 6:08 PM | Permalink | Reply

    “Perhaps in the bizarro world of” ClimateAudit, my statement

    What I told you about making reviews publicly available is correct. There’s no AMS policy against, nor any formal objection to, an author making the contents of anonymous reviews and responses public.

    means

    my publication of the EOS review comments would be a serious offence against the sanctity of the review process

    This is getting stranger and stranger.

    • Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 6:39 PM | Permalink | Reply

      Re: John N-G (Feb 18 18:08), This is getting stranger and stranger.

      Not really. After several days of reading of this saga I still do not know what to expect of an academic review in the area of climate science. Well, maybe the word “anything” sums up my best guess.

      I get a lot of stuff across my desk. It must be very similar to that which passes over the desk of Mr. McIntyre… When I am asked what I think about the latest proposal I often reply that it should be good for “about 20 yrs or so — depending on the mood of the judge”. Then I have to deal with the puzzled inquiries as to the problem. I often find myself stretching for analogies and similar situations to help people understand where the issues and problems lie and hopefully to point out the locations of the ugliest traps. Many of the situations have analogues of those discussed here, except that like Steve I am usually looking at the actions (antics?) of those involved in Public Companies. Many times I am asked if it is “Ok to just not mention certain embarrassing facts” — which point out the ill intentions of the parties involved. I like to think that my answers are consistent.

      I guess if I had to determine what to do in a situation and I wanted a second opinion I would go with the moral and ethical judgment of Mr. McIntyre. I feel I would always know where he stands as well. Would I want to submit to a review by “The Team”? I don’t think so. Would I be willing to submit my work to a review by Steve McIntyre? — I shudder at the thought. Al those i’s all those t’s — all those dots and crosses — it boggles the mind. Maybe if it was something in the NP space — and then I could pray that he didn’t know what say… :-) That could work!

      John N-G — You are nice guy, articulate, and have the appearance of being forthright — but I still don’t know what to expect if I sent you a paper — and I have written a few. Maybe you are constrained by the venue and the topic of discussion. I think I will leave it at that.

      • Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 7:20 PM | Permalink | Reply

        WillR – My critique of Seager et al. 2010 is probably the closest thing I can find to a review that I can share with you. I think it’s representative.

        • Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 7:39 PM | Permalink

          Re: John N-G (Feb 18 19:20), Why thank you. You are a scholar and a gentleman. :-) It’s not just an expression!

        • Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 7:56 PM | Permalink

          Re: John N-G (Feb 18 19:20), …and I found it a pretty measured response. BTW — I case my vote with yours and maybe even Cold Air from Canada meets Overly Charged Over Heated hot moist air from the south… As tempted as I am I won’t even crack a joke.

          Now can you find more reviewers like yourself? Maybe that is the test of your abilities…

      • sam mccomb
        Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 12:36 PM | Permalink | Reply

        WillR and others
        Do you think this is how reviewing the work of others ought to be done?

        Those taking part in peer review should:
        apply rigorous objectivity in all assessments;
        review in accordance with the guidance provided for by the process, complete the review as specified and on time;
        respect the confidentiality of any information sent for review and not disclose any information provided, any opinions given, or the details of the invitation to review;
        report any conflicting interests as required by the requesting organisation and University policy;
        not allow vested interests or personal bias to influence their impartial assessment of work to be reviewed in either a positive or negative way;
        only accept assignments for which they have the expertise, returning any which are outside their expert knowledge;
        not take advantage of any new data or privileged information they have had access to during the review process either in the capture of ideas to further their own research and/or activities;
        conduct a fair assessment of the work and not deliberately disadvantage a competitor in the field;
        review objectively work that challenges accepted views, crosses traditional boundaries and/or is wholly innovative;
        be aware that the review may identify practice which falls below good conduct (which might be genuine error or malpractice) and whicch should be reported as concerns.

        As regards those who submit work for review:

        Researchers should not take actions, directly or indirectly, to influence the review of their own work or that of others, positively or negatively.

        Where work is reviewed the authors usually respond to reviwer comments. Authors should accept comments and respond to the factual points made. Where an author suspects an infringement of the principles outlined above this should be reported to the appropriate authority (e.g journal editor, grant manager).

        Where an author considers there might be reasonable grounds for appeal he or she should first discuss the details with colleagues within the University.

        This is part of a university’s policy and procedure. It does not mention anywhere the need for anonymity of a reviewer or speak of the ethics of respecting such anonymity. It adopts the sensible course of advising the reviewer to follow the guidance provided for the process.

        This policy is administered by university professionals. They usually know what they are doing, in my experience. They expect all staff to follow the rules, for these are rules. University administrators do not take the view that some staff are expected to behave honestly in theeir dealings with their colleagues, and others they meet professionally, while others can be dishonest. If the rules are breached the individual in breach of them may be subject to disciplinary procedures.University administrators are unlikey to be swayed by arguments about ethics if these arguments have no connection with the policies and procedures it is their job to ensure are followed and are applied consistently and fairly.

        Some of the rules drafted by universities for their employees are incorporated into the terms of the contracts of employment adding further weight to their application.

        Some of you might be interested enough to check whether, in the matter under discussion, the reviewer of O’Donnell et al 2010 has acted in accordance with this procedure.

        Other universities may require that principles of conduct such as honesty inform behaviour in the review process.

        • Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 2:16 PM | Permalink

          Re: sam mccomb (Feb 19 12:36), Sam:
          On the face it looks reasonable. From what I see it looks like “idealistic” — at least in Climate “Science”. It makes you wonder what papers would and would not have been published and whether the “Climategate” scandal would have existed had such policies had been followed.

          So assuming I accept what you say… then all that has to be dealt with is “Science by Press Release” — and the appropriate standards of conduct.

          Is that what you wanted to hear?

        • sam mccomb
          Posted Feb 20, 2011 at 12:43 PM | Permalink

          WillR

          The policy I posted is from Oxford University. It is simple, straightforward and practical. If the policy is subject to abuse or it is suspected that it is subject to abuse, it should be reported. That is a part of the policy.

          Universities want their staff to behave well. They will take disciplinary action against those who infringe their rules and they may eventually kick out the bad staff. Or, if the single infringement is serious enough they will dismiss the offender for that single offence. Using university procedures is not difficult. It is the way to deal with misbehaiour in climate science. All Climategate participants will have had their cards quietly marked by senior university administrators.

          Nielson-Gammon has nothing useful to say, in my view about the conduct of reviews.

  2. Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 6:12 PM | Permalink | Reply

    SteveMc–
    I sympathize with much of your views of the Crowley episode– and given the fact pattern you describe, I agree with you.

    But I’m not sure I would assume I can guess precisely JNG”s judgment on the issue given the exact fact pattern. I also think maybe too many people (Eli, Eric, you, me, others in comments) are clamoring for JNG to make proclamations on too many fact patterns. Even if he does have a judgment, and even if you guess correctly, I think JNG has the right to keep a certain number of his thoughts to himself until such time as he might wish to share him.

    • Steve E
      Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 8:29 PM | Permalink | Reply

      Lucia,
      In your words lies a great deal of wisdom!

      …Although I can understand Steve’s dog-on-a-bone determination. When someone from the other side engages, the impulse is to right all the wrongs. JNG should be commended for patiently engaging–and though I am taking liberties–I’m optimistic from what he has engaged in here and in other threads that his point of view may have (privately) shifted, if only slightly.

      …Of course, what Judith Curry discusses here http://judithcurry.com/2011/02/18/epistemology-of-disagreement/#more-2435 may well prevent anyone from reaching any kind of agreement.

    • Jon
      Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 1:12 PM | Permalink | Reply

      Lucia writes:

      But I’m not sure I would assume I can guess precisely JNG”s judgment on the issue given the exact fact pattern.

      That’s not what’s going on here. JNG has previously pronounced not a judgment on a particular fact pattern but what purported to be a general rule of ethics. Steve is challenging that rule with respect to its sensibility against different fact patterns.

      The result is damning for the rule of anonymity. JNG’s rule is clearly drained of its moral force and appears to be nothing more than special pleading, and that’s the point Steve has made.

      So yes, we’ve learned that we cannot “assume [we] can guess precisely JNG”s judgment on the issue”. That’s the point that has made. Rather than Steve having gone too far here; he’s gone just far enough to make the point.

  3. glacierman
    Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 6:42 PM | Permalink | Reply

    It’s simple Steve. You were not from the “community”.

  4. Bob Koss
    Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 7:03 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Steve,

    The link to Crowley’s EOS editorial doesn’t work.

  5. Bob Koss
    Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 7:38 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Heh.

    I found a copy of the Crowley EOS editorial at RC.
    Here is the link if anyone is interested.

    http://www.realclimate.org/Crowley_EOS_2005.pdf

  6. Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 8:15 PM | Permalink | Reply

    I for one appreciate the two pronged approach going on here w/r to the ethics questions and the scientific plumbing at tAV and the Blackboard.

  7. RDCII
    Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 8:41 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Dr. N-G, please let me know if I have any of the below wrong.

    I read John N-Gs response to my comment in another thread as an agreement to my assertion that a) revealing confidential reviews and naming the reviewer is, by itself, unethical, but b) it should be viewed within the larger picture in order to determine whether it is the ethical thing to do in a particular situation.

    As nearly as I can tell from other writings of his, he thinks it was unethical in this particular case because in the bigger picture he views the events and motivations of Steig as different than many folks here. If so, Steve, I think you’re mistaking his “moral compass” for something other than it is. I don’t read him as an absolutist.

    If I understood him correctly, then I don’t understand why polite but aggressive questioning of him is still going on. He’s not a judge or arbitrator. He doesn’t seem to want to declare an opinion on any particular event other than the narrowly defined one that started this discussion, and…why should he? It could become his life’s work. :)

    Honestly, I think you’d find him in disagreement about some situations you’ve been involved in, and in full agreement about others…

    • Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 1:34 AM | Permalink | Reply

      RDCII-

      (a)Yes, although revealing confidential reviews while preserving confidentiality of the authors is fine, as I said back in December.

      (b)Absolutely

      In the O’Donnell et al. case, I think the action of revealing the author’s identity was unethical given the competing considerations, my own understanding of the situation, and possible alternative courses of action. But I understand why O’Donnell thought it was an ethical choice so I respect his decision and absolutely do not consider him unethical for making it.

      I would not be comfortable making this judgment and announcing it publicly without the benefit of substantial communication with O’Donnell, both publicly and privately. So yes, don’t expect me in general to make similar sorts of judgments based on limited information in the absence of frank conversations with the parties involved. It’s not really my job.

      I think I’ve mentioned this before, but I’ll say it one more time: I think Steve has been right in some cases and wrong in others, based on the limited information available to me. The case he describes in this entry is one in which I think he was right in his actions and assessment based on the limited information available to me. The case he speculates about in “Speculating Privately” is absurd…if you want the help of someone who likes iridge, just contact someone who’s actively publishing papers using it, don’t try to find someone who’s advocated it anonymously!

      For other cases, anyone who seriously cares about the ethics can themselves take into account the four considerations I listed and anything else germane and come to their own decisions. My biggest hope is that I have helped make people aware that these considerations exist.

      • Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 1:37 AM | Permalink | Reply

        Clarification: by “author” above, I meant “author of the review”.

      • bobdenton
        Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 5:52 AM | Permalink | Reply

        “In the O’Donnell et al. case, I think the action of revealing the author’s identity was unethical ———- I respect his decision and absolutely do not consider him unethical for making it. “

        Sadly, you can’t eat your cake and have it. The act, separate from the man, can have no ethical quality.

        You’re conflicted in your own mind: or, maybe you just see some advantage in running with the hare while hunting with the hounds: or, maybe you’re just too nice to reason to an uncomfortable conclusion.

        • Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 11:02 AM | Permalink

          On this, I disagree.

        • bobdenton
          Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 12:54 PM | Permalink

          We can disagree.

          However, I hope this doesn’t compel the conclusion that you agree with J N-G, though the third alternative isn’t obvious.

          You can’t have overlooked the fact that he (and others) have consistently accused you of acting unethically, and his subsequent words do not unsay that allegation, he merely thinks you’re basically sound, just fallen in with a bad lot and acted out of character in a moment of madness. Have no truck with that line. He may be an unwitting stalking horse. The others, standing in the shadows behind him will be less lenient.

          You can’t simultaneously have acted ethically and acted unethically, just as you can’t simultaneously act lawfully and unlawfully.

          Personally, if I were in the dock, I would’nt admit to acting unethically and hope the jury would ovelook it. Indeed I wouldn’t let any accusation that I acted unethically go unchallenged in case the jury gained the impression I was mounting only a fig leaf defence.

          I would strive for a verdict of Not Guilty. To settle for Guilty but Nice would be too collegial. Remember you have co-authors.

        • Derek H
          Posted Feb 20, 2011 at 12:15 PM | Permalink

          Dr. N-G’s stance is perfectly clear for many of us. He wouldn’t have chosen to act the same way O’Donnell did but he understands why O’Donnell did. As an analogy, I would consider providing an active defense claiming innocence to be unethical when the defense lawyer KNOWS his/her client is guilty but many lawyers would disagree and I understand why they choose to defend their clients with claims of innocence rather than arguing about the just sentence.

          I happen to believe O’Donnell was entirely justified in his actions given Steig’s misleading public statements at the time but I can understand why Dr. N-G protects a “sanctitity” of anonymous peer review in general.

  8. Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 8:46 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Just to address the 88 page review/reply, I added this up for someone on another blog accusing ME of exaggerating the truth. I told him I had not added it up but trusted Ryan. After endless stupidity, I put the 3 minutes in that the critic wouldn’t and this is what I found.

    response to review A 47
    second response to review A 7
    Third response to review A 10
    Review A 14
    Review A 2 6
    review A 3 4

    47 + 7 + 10 + 14 + 6 + 4

    88

    There you go.

    • Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 8:51 PM | Permalink | Reply

      by ME, I mean Ryan wrote it. Turns out Ryan was fairly close.

    • Ale Gorney
      Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 8:57 PM | Permalink | Reply

      Single or double spaced ?

    • Boro Nut
      Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 9:15 PM | Permalink | Reply

      “Stieg made 88 pages of comments about O’Donnell’s paper”

      “88 pages of comments and obfuscation, 10 times longer thgan the actual paper”

      “Steig wrote 88 pages of objections, while the original paper had only 8 pages! This is utter madness”

      “As ‘Reviewer A’, Stieg made 88 pages of comments about O’Donnell’s paper”

      Looks like plan A is working perfectly, defame Steig again for something that you did. Looks like you (the authors) wrote the majority of those pages, yet it’s all Steig’s fault.

      And who was it that first mentioned anything about how many pages there were? I expect it was Steig again was it? Serves him right.

      Don’t worry I already know. “Your comment is awaiting moderation”. Gotta silence the critics somehow Steve.

      Steve: none of those quotations are from me. The review correspondence is 88 pages.

    • Boro Nut
      Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 9:21 PM | Permalink | Reply

      “47 + 7 + 10 + 14 + 6 + 4″

      So correcting your chronology, Ryan wrote 47 pages in response to Steig’s 14, 7 pages in response to Steig’s 6, then 10 pages in response to Steig’s 4.

      Who does he think he is? Steig?

      • Luis Dias
        Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 12:06 AM | Permalink | Reply

        So according to you, a query should have been longer than the reply it demands?

        Perhaps you think that the replies were tailored to be 47 pages long because they felt like it, and that Steig’s particular demands for explanations haven’t had any influence on it?

        I’m still wondering if I can take your shots seriously.

        • Boro Nut
          Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 5:03 PM | Permalink

          It has nothing to do with who wrote what, or when. I have no issue with the number of pages used. I have this quaint notion that thorough = good. So who was using the number of pages as a criticism? It wasn’t Eric Steig was it? He was the one being criticised for it, even though he never came close to writing them. So was it:
          Jeff ID?
          Steve McIntyre?
          Ryan O’Donnell?
          Every Tom Dick and Harry denialist on the internet?
          All of the above?

          No prizes I’m afraid.

        • RomanM
          Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 5:28 PM | Permalink

          It has nothing to do with who wrote what, or when.

          No, it’s just all about you. You just can’t post a comment without being abusive either, can you?

        • John M
          Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 6:01 PM | Permalink

          Roman,

          Maybe you can set up a separate thread/depository for troll comments.

          You can call it the “boro hole”

        • Keith W.
          Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 8:28 PM | Permalink

          Boro, the correspondence with Steig was significantly longer than that with any other reviewer, or even all of them combined. The other three reviewers of this O10 wrote a grand total of 7 (SEVEN) pages of review comments. Reviewer B wrote two reviews, one that was one page long, and the other was two pages. Reviewers C & D both wrote only one review, both two pages in length. In reply to those reviews, Ryan’s replies came to 21 pages. But inn those responses, he duplicated the reviews. So, his 21 pages of response was actually only 14 pages.

          In comparison, Steig wrote 24 pages (3.5 times more than the other reviewers in toto)to which 40 pages of reply was required. Ryan actually wrote less proportionately to Steig than he did the other reviewers. But the other reviewers did not require the entire rewrite of the paper.

      • Derek H
        Posted Feb 20, 2011 at 12:19 PM | Permalink | Reply

        Have you never had someone make a short but stupid critique that took a long essay to disprove? I can easily understand why it took so much data and reasoning to respond to Steig’s comments and criticisms.

  9. Carrick
    Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 9:46 PM | Permalink | Reply

    JeffID:

    Just to address the 88 page review/reply, I added this up for someone on another blog accusing ME of exaggerating the truth

    Technically this is a de-exaggeration (deflation?) of the truth… You guys also generated two major revisions to your paper in. So yeah, 88 pages isn’t fully accurate.

    Shame, Jeff. Shame. (I’m sure that was his point.)

    • Boro Nut
      Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 10:09 PM | Permalink | Reply

      How come your comment didn’t get canned like mine? Is it because you never pointed out that Ryan wrote 47 pages in response to Steig’s 14, 7 pages in response to Steig’s 6, then 10 pages in response to Steig’s 4? Or was it that you didn’t draw attention to the hypocrisy of criticising how many pages Steig generated? I’m puzzled by the double standard being applied. (No I’m not).

      • Steve McIntyre
        Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 10:23 PM | Permalink | Reply

        Please discuss the Crowley incident on this thread. Please discuss 88 pages on a thread related to that issue.

        • Boro Nut
          Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 10:32 PM | Permalink

          I’d be delighted Steve. Could you point me in the right direction please. Where is this fabled thread of which you speak?

      • Boro Nut
        Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 10:30 PM | Permalink | Reply

        Can I just add that I think the editing of someone’s comments without highlighting which parts have been edited to make it look like the authors own words is pretty low. You’d be better off just canning the whole post like normal and have done with it.

  10. Boro Nut
    Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 10:35 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Where can we discuss the 88 pages debacle Steve?

    [Okay have it your way. This thread is now about the 88 pages.]

    • JamesG
      Posted Feb 20, 2011 at 1:20 PM | Permalink | Reply

      Boro

      You made your point. I think we all get it.

  11. Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 10:47 PM | Permalink | Reply

    re: protecting reviewers, etc.

    Perhaps there needs to be another standard established for the polling of a community for a consensus opinion (when the results are likely to influence policy, something in the political domain, be arguably self-serving, or likely to limit-the-future of heretics (often the young, galileo-like researcher).

    And it’s not hard, nor well known. Use a secret ballot.

    Else (the current process) looks like card-check, an opportunity for abuse.

  12. Tom C
    Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 10:56 PM | Permalink | Reply

    I think the argument Steve is developing in these posts and in his usual, highly detailed, annotated, structured style, is that climate scientists can’t have it both ways. They can’t use the inside knowledge they glean from the review process to launch public attacks against critics and then hide in the skirts of “anonymous review” ethics. It’s really pretty simple.

    • Boro Nut
      Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 11:04 PM | Permalink | Reply

      Yes, it’s far better that their comments just be ignored in the review process and then they be gagged after publication to avoid anyone suspecting there may be outstanding issues. That sounds fair. Apparently to some people at least.

      • Andrew Krause
        Posted Feb 18, 2011 at 11:37 PM | Permalink | Reply

        Whose comments were ignored in the review process? I did not see that and I’d like to reread the part I missed.

        • Luis Dias
          Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 12:10 AM | Permalink

          Surely 64 pages of reply to “outstanding issues” should be considered as “gagging” and “ignoring”.

          Much better to utter simple statements in the lines of “We find this claim rather bizarre.” There. Much much better.

        • Carrick
          Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 12:29 AM | Permalink

          LOL, well played Luis. 64 pages of rebuttal sounds just like completely ignoring the reviews to me too!

          Of course guy performing the thread-jack did say he was a nut, so there is that. And so I do find his claims to be rather bizarre…

        • Boro Nut
          Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 6:25 AM | Permalink

          I think you’ll find that both Ryan and the journal editor already on record as confirming that Steig’s last round of review comments were ignored in the final paper. Apparently

          O’Donnell makes too many assumptions about what information Steig had and when, clearly doesn’t understand the peer review process, hasn’t got the nous to ask the editor to explain it to him, then castigates Steig for adhering to it to the letter. LOL. Apparently that is all Steig’s fault. And now that Ryan has thrown himself under the bus the claims have morphed into “He should have known”.

          And to compound it all, in his glee to out Steig as Reviewer A, Ryan conveniently misses that it was him and not Steig who introduced any reference to iridge. You lot have absolutely no sense of irony.

          So now we have the sorry spectacle of the editor of the journal being harangued to redefine the peer review process to make it all go away. LOL.

          “Perhaps, as the author’s suggest,…. …So a couple of additional sentences justifying it might not be too much to ask for” Or perhaps not eh?

        • Carrick
          Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 9:36 AM | Permalink

          boro the nut, hijacker of threads, not only did they not ignore his final comments, they responded to his comments in depth. If Steig did not see those comments, it was not the fault of the authors, something for you to think about, when you regain your ability for objective reasoning.

          I also think you’ll also find that had they not ignored Steig, the paper would have remained in review until long after Steig’s retirement from ewe dub. It was the editors decision to not to continue endless modification of the manuscript, after two major revisions to a paper, revisions driven primary by not ignoring Steig.

          Steve is wise to allow you to talk. You are precisely the type of help that Steig probably wishes he had less of. You have no case at all. Indeed you were given an audience here, even though more appropriate threads were available for your bellicosity. Steig would have done far less, and you know it (on RC, like almost any comments critical of the Band of Heros, your comments would end up in the /dev/null bit bucket).

        • Layman Lurker
          Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 10:03 AM | Permalink

          Ryan conveniently misses that it was him and not Steig who introduced any reference to iridge.

          Whether or not O10 introduced iridge is a straw man. O10 introduced iridge work to demonstrate that the results for TTLS kgnd=7 were robust. Steig siezed on this and insisted that the ‘most likely’ (iridge) results replace TTLS as the feature reconstruction.

        • Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 11:05 AM | Permalink

          Ryan has clarified explicitly in several threads that those who were claiming that Steig made first mention of iRidge were wholly wrong.

          Boro Nut conveniently misses that it is not Ryan who is spreading disinformation with respect to this, and that Ryan has made effort to stop the disinformation from propogating.

          BTW, writing in the third person is weird. I feel like Joe Horn.

        • Boro Nut
          Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 1:00 PM | Permalink

          Ryan has clarified explicitly in several threads that those who were claiming that Steig made first mention of iRidge were wholly wrong

          But you still haven’t clarified in a single thread anywhere that those claiming Steig specifically proposed using iridge in his second review are wholly wrong have you Ryan? Because you’re still making that claim yourself as far as I can see. And without that blatant error, compounded with your misconceptions about the peer review process, topped off with your false assumptions about what Steig knew and when he knew it, nothing about what you subsequently did can possibly be justified can it? And it sticks in the craw too much to have to retract it.

          “Boro Nut conveniently misses that it is not Ryan who is spreading disinformation with respect to this, and that Ryan has made effort to stop the disinformation from propagating.”

          Erm… that’s your problem right there Ryan. You’re projecting again. I don’t recall having said you were spreading disinformation. Just like you projected your own opinion that iridge was the best method to use onto Steig, when he was clearly unsure which method was the best.

          And it doesn’t look like you have done anywhere near enough to stop the disinformation spreading, or it wouldn’t be spreading would it? You could always try bolting the stable door again. That might help.

          Nobody but you made the errors of fact and judgement that you have made. You and you alone cast the stone into the pond, and all the growing ripples of disinformation come right back to you.

        • Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 2:29 PM | Permalink

          Steig did specifically propose elevating iRidge to our main results. You can read that for yourself. Since you choose to interpret creatively, there is not much more to say.

        • Luis Dias
          Posted Feb 20, 2011 at 10:56 PM | Permalink

          Boro, it is plainly evident that Steig endorsed iRidge, despite any kind of “unsureness” from him. Your attempt to blame Ryan on other people being stupid or lazy is also a little… heck, stupid/lazy. Surely Ryan is not to be blamed for the whole internetz debacles.

          If people don’t know how to behave, bad for them. And that goes to you too, I’m afraid.

          Nobody but you made the errors of fact and judgement that you have made

          Really. Having seen what Eric has done in recent past, I’ll take Ryan’s “errors of fact” any day. At least here’s a man of honor who tries to do his best under a storm of torment and bad faith.

      • geronimo
        Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 2:29 AM | Permalink | Reply

        @boronut: “Yes, it’s far better that their comments just be ignored in the review process and then they be gagged after publication to avoid anyone suspecting there may be outstanding issues. That sounds fair. Apparently to some people at least.”

        boro, I thought this whole business was about the fact that Reviewer A’s comments were not ignored, but taken on board. Then Reviewer A, being the author of the paper being critiqued instead of writing a rebuttal paper dealing with the outstanding issues, produced a post on realclimate criticising the use of iridge in the paper. Since the authors had not ignored his comments and changed their original method to the method suggested by Reviewer A, they took umbridge and revealed his identity as none other than Eric Steig the author of the paper they were critiquing.

        The discussions on this paper are whether it was ethical for the authors to reveal Steig as a reviewer given the vow of silence required, or in this case, not required, by the journal.I believe John N-G is making an important contribution to the discussion but believe that in natural justice a vow of silence applies to both parties. Steig had plenty of opportunity to rebut the paper but chose instead to criticise the use of iridge when it was clearly used by the authors at his suggestion. He had broken his vow of silence and, in my view at least, had opened the door for others to do the same thing.

        What has followed had been the classic behaviour of the schoolyard bully who has been hit back. Outrage followed by denial that he ever did it, followed by (metaphorical) tears.

      • Derek H
        Posted Feb 20, 2011 at 12:21 PM | Permalink | Reply

        That would appear to the normal modus operandi at Real Climate and espoused in the Climategate e-mails.

  13. Jit
    Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 5:02 AM | Permalink | Reply

    This is my first look at the Eos article. This sentence jumped out:

    “McIntyre and his co-author, Ross McKitrick,
    an economist at the University of Guelph,
    Ontario, Canada, subsequently published a
    rebuttal paper [McIntyre and McKitrick, 2003]
    without showing Mann, the provider of the
    data, a prepublication “courtesy” examination
    to screen for any possible errors.”

    Maybe Crowley could have done a similar courtesy.

    Also this:

    “McIntyre is a semi-retired mineral trader with
    an interest in mathematics…”

    …which is relevant how? Merely to show he wasn’t a proper academic and therefore not to be treated equally?

    @Boro Nut
    Ever hear tell of the twelve labours of Hercules? In the second one, Eurystheus sends Hercules off to kill the Hydra (hoping never to see Hercules again, of course).
    Hercules: Job done. Hydra dead
    (Hercules a man of few words)
    Eurystheus (smirking): That job doesn’t count. Your nephew helped you. I have another task for you…
    (Eurystheus turns to the audience)
    Eurystheus: Hopefully this will be the last I shall see of the great Hercules… mwah hah hah

  14. Jean Demesure
    Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 6:37 AM | Permalink | Reply

    boro nut : “Yes, it’s far better that their comments just be ignored in the review process and then they be gagged after publication to avoid anyone suspecting there may be outstanding issues. That sounds fair. Apparently to some people at least.”

    You just went wild, even paranoing that Steve would censor your, about the 88 pages in which 64 were replies to Steig’s comments, then claim the comments are “just ignored”. More coherence would help your points, if any.

  15. Craig Loehle
    Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 9:01 AM | Permalink | Reply

    “stranger and stranger” well, as an editor, I handled a sceptical climate paper and a comment and reply to that paper. The comment was unprofessional, sloppy, and accompanied by threatening emails by the author, that if we did not publish his attack we would be…something. The original authors were reviewers, but confined to matters of fact about their paper. I published the comment and reply and then we did in fact get calls from two news meda about how scandalous it was that we published a contrarian article. The one I talked to, I lectured him that editors should not censor work but just enforce standards, and he actually published what I said. Editor in chief handled the other one and was badly misquoted.

  16. stan
    Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 12:04 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Steve,

    Can’t recall ever seeing “farrago” before. I like it.

    Glad to see the reference to contract law. The idea that a material breach of a contract constitutes a repudiation of it and thus excuses performance by the other side is one which most people understand and accept implicitly, even if they aren’t lawyers. It just makes sense.

    I’ve been surprised that the RC supporters don’t seem willing to engage with this idea. (no really) So we get the absurd kind of arguments that have swirled in the comment sections of so many of our favorite climate sites.

    I’d like to point out that the general principle of material breach applies in contexts far broader than contract law. It is understood by people in a variety of contexts. What goes around comes around. You get treated the way you treat others.

    One of the best known instances involving extremely stringent expectations of confidentiality is the attorney-client privilege. But it has exceptions. Breach your agreement to pay your lawyer and he can reveal confidences in the course of suing to recover. And try to hid behind attorney-client privilege for the purpose of perpetrating a fraud and it doesn’t apply. This last one is similar to the situation Ryan found himself in with Steig. Steig was using confidentiality to mislead people about his role.

  17. Boro Nut
    Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 4:05 PM | Permalink | Reply

    If you don’t there is much more to say Ryan, you don’t understand the internet. I couldn’t care less about you trying to redefine the peer review process. It’s your attempt to redefine the English language I take issue with. I’m using it and I’m happy with it the way it is.

    For instance, when Steig wrote “Perhaps, as the authors suggest…” what exactly did you take that to mean Ryan? What is it about the specific words or their juxtaposition that makes you conclude that the author actually means “Absolutely definitely, as I myself specifically propose…”? Because when I read those words, the two things that spring to my mind are:
    A – He isn’t sure one way or the other.
    B – He thinks it’s you who is suggesting it.

    I’d like to get to the bottom of it otherwise we might not be able to progress to addressing why the mere suggestion that you should use the best methodology that you can, could possibly be construed as an attack? Why would it even need to be suggested? Did you submit the paper with the explicit proviso that it was only going to be your 2nd best go at it?

    And what is it about someone requesting a copy of a document that makes you believe they already have a copy? In a hypothetical situation, if I were to say to you, oh I don’t know, for instance “Ryan, if you don’t mind sending me a preprint, and a link to your reconstructed data, I’d appreciate it. I will presumably have more to say after I get a chance to read the paper…”, why would you immediately assume that
    A – I already had a copy?
    B – I wouldn’t thank you for another?
    C – I won’t say a dicky-bird more about it?

    Steve: this has nothing to do with the Crowleyt incident. Please discuss on an appropriate thread.

    • RomanM
      Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 4:52 PM | Permalink | Reply

      Bozo Nut says:

      For instance, when Steig wrote “Perhaps, as the authors suggest…” what exactly did you take that to mean Ryan?

      Why don’t you quote the entire paragraph from which the snippet you place so much of your misinterpreted faith in?

      (Bold mine)

      My recommendation is that the editor insist that results showing the ‘mostly likely’ West Antarctic trends be shown in place of Figure 3. While the written text does acknowledge that the rate of warming in West Antarctica is probably greater than shown, it is the figures that provide the main visual ‘take home message’ that most readers will come away with. I am not suggesting here that kgnd = 5 will necessarily provide the best estimate, as I had thought was implied in the earlier version of the text. Perhaps, as the authors suggest, kgnd should not be used at all, but the results from the ‘iridge’ infilling should be used instead. The authors state that this “yields similar patterns of change as shown in Fig. 3, with less intense cooling on Ross, comparable verification statistics and a statistically significant average West Antarctic trend of 0.11 +/- 0.08 C/decade.” If that is the case, why not show it? I recognize that these results are relatively new – since they evidently result from suggestions made in my previous review – but this is not a compelling reason to leave this ‘future work’.

      Did you read that. It says recommendation. Given that on the first page Steig says

      Unfortunately, the revised manuscript retains several important flaws in the original version, and I cannot support its publication in the Journal of Climate until these are addressed.

      Steig is making more than mere suggestions here.

      By the way the ‘most likely’ in the first sentence is not a quote of anything that Ryan et al said in response to the first review nor did they even use the word “likely” in respect to the trends in this fashion. Also, with regard to the sentence:

      Perhaps, as the authors suggest, kgnd should not be used at all, but the results from the ‘iridge’ infilling should be used instead.

      You might be interested in knowing that the authors NEVER suggested that “kgnd should not be used” or that “the results from the ‘iridge’ infilling should be used instead”. These words are the invention of Steig which are falsely attributed to Ryan by you. I guess it is too much for you to actually read the whole paragraph to figure out the context or to check your “facts”.

      I would be happy for you to show me exactly where in the the response to the first review either of these are stated, but frankly you are the sort of person who argues by unsupported assertions and then proudly proclaims that his winning point has been made through abusive bluster.

      [Self-snip]

      Try using reasoned thought and evidence instead… and a little common courtesy and politeness would be nice, but I guess that that would be too much to expect.

      • Boro Nut
        Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 7:03 PM | Permalink | Reply

        “My recommendation is that the editor insist that results showing the ‘mostly likely’ West Antarctic trends be shown in place of Figure 3

        Did you read that. It says recommendation.”

        Yes. It says recommendation. We are in agreement at last. Where we clearly part company again is with the definition. I take it to mean recommendation, in the sense of recommending or being recommended. I don’t take it as a synonym for demanding or insisting, because it’s not. I take it to mean Steig is ‘recommending’ that the editor insists that the most likely trends be used. That is what I take it to mean, because that is exactly what it says. I don’t project my grievances against Steig onto it. I don’t imagine words to be there where none exist, adding a bit here, trimming a bit there, sculpting it to my preconceived notions of what I want it to mean. I take it as it is. Nowhere in that sentence do I see Steig demanding or insisting on anything, nor do I see any mention of iridge being proposed, recommended, or insisted upon. It is mentioned elsewhere. They are non existent phantasms.

        Let’s pretend for the sake of argument, minus the context you snip, that Steig isn’t merely recommending that Fig 3 be consistent with the text (obviously). Let’s pretend instead that he said “My recommendation is that the editor insist that results showing the ‘most unlikely’ West Antarctic trends be shown in place of Figure 3″. Would that be more to your liking?

        “You might be interested in knowing that the authors NEVER suggested that “kgnd should not be used” or that “the results from the ‘iridge’ infilling should be used instead”…

        Then you’ve misjudged me again Roman. No I’m not particularly interested in knowing that. But I do. I can read. I’m interested in knowing why Ryan took what was said and made it into something that wasn’t.

        These words are the invention of Steig which are falsely attributed to Ryan by you

        You’re projecting again. The words I attribute to Ryan are “…Steig acting as Reviewer A, in his Second Review, had asked the editor to “insist” that we present the “most likely” West Antarctica trends, specifically proposing iridge“. The words I attribute to Steig are “Perhaps, as the authors suggest, kgnd should not be used at all, but the results from the ‘iridge’ infilling should be used instead”.

        The reason I attribute those words to them is because that is what they wrote, verbatim, copy & pasted, no adulteration. You can read them yourself on this very blog. The fact that I impute any truth into any or all of those statements is yet another projection on your part. They are clearly erroneous.

        [Self-snip]
        Ooooh. That’s going to hurt in the morning.

        “Try using reasoned thought and evidence instead… and a little common courtesy and politeness would be nice, but I guess that that would be too much to expect.”
        Ha!. Some hope. My chief weapons are ridicule, ruthless efficiency, and an almost fanatical dedication to irony.

        • Craig Loehle
          Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 7:15 PM | Permalink

          Perhaps it is not clear to you that the editor is making the authors respond to the reviewers, and by respond, I mean obey. And where the authors objected to points by the reviewers, they were overruled. They were not free to ignore reviewer A. Have you ever gone through peer review? Doing what reviewers request is not optional except in minor cases or where you already have done/said what was asked of you (and point it out by line number).

        • Doug
          Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 8:09 PM | Permalink

          During peer review the authors *must* respond to all the reviewers questions, a good editor will not let authors get away with ignoring any questions the reviewers ask. However the way in which the authors respond is down to the themselves (they do not have to automatically obey the reviewer).

          For my last paper we had a reviewer who took the everything but the kitchen sink attitude to their questioning – for a number of their points we did follow their suggestions, *because* we agreed that these improved the paper – but equally for many of their comments we demonstrated why the suggestion was unimportant for the study, and declined to make the changes they suggested. The editor accepted our reasons for not making those changes, and accepted the paper for publication.

          As long as the authors demonstrate to the editor’s satisfaction that they have good reasons for not following the referees suggestions then the paper will be published (as happened here for Ryan after the 3rd iteration of their paper).

        • Boro Nut
          Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 9:04 PM | Permalink

          “Perhaps it is not clear to you that the editor is making the authors respond to the reviewers, and by respond, I mean obey”

          You’re right. It’s not clear to me. It’s yet another figment of someone’s imagination (ie yours) being passed off as what happened, in direct contradiction to the written statements of O’Donnell, Steig, and Nielsen-Gammon to the contrary.

        • Luis Dias
          Posted Feb 20, 2011 at 11:01 PM | Permalink

          Oh my, so you are really here just trolling us?

          Are you dr. Steig in disguise or something?

          That would be incredibly amazing, btw.

        • RomanM
          Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 10:14 PM | Permalink

          What utter BS! I guess you work on the principle that if you repeat something often enough it becomes true in your own mind.

          My bad. I guess that there were too many words in between, so I will put the relevant sentences together to make it easier for you to actually relate them to each other:

          ALL of these sentences (true or false) were written by Eric Steig:

          1. Unfortunately, the revised manuscript retains several important flaws in the original version, and I cannot support its publication in the Journal of Climate until these are addressed.

          2. My recommendation is that the editor insist that results showing the ‘mostly likely’ West Antarctic trends be shown in place of Figure 3.

          3. Perhaps, as the authors suggest, kgnd should not be used at all, but the results from the ‘iridge’ infilling should be used instead.

          4. I recognize that these results are relatively new – since they evidently result from suggestions made in my previous review – but this is not a compelling reason to leave this ‘future work’.

          Here is what they mean:

          1. I am going to make recommendations to the authors. If they don’t listen to what I say, I will recommend that the paper not be published.

          You do know because of your extensive expertise on the review process, the job of the reviewer is to make recommendations. This is as strong an opinion as he can put forward. The editor makes the decisions on whether to publish the paper based on those recommendations..

          2. I am telling the editor to put strong pressure on them to make this a specific change.

          3. That change is to substitute iridge for the method they had planned to use previously.

          4. Yes, I know, they only brought it up to provide extra evidence because of my previous objections, but that is what they need to do.

          Now, just link them together one after the other. Go ahead and try it.

          Ha!. Some hope. My chief weapons are ridicule, ruthless efficiency, and an almost fanatical dedication to irony.

          But quite obviously not intelligence or logical reasoning.

        • mark t
          Posted Feb 21, 2011 at 1:37 AM | Permalink

          Not surprisingly, in an obvious display of irony with the word… irony.

          Mark

        • sierr117
          Posted Feb 20, 2011 at 7:27 AM | Permalink

          OK Boro Nut,

          So your doctor recommends that you quit eating food X cos its making you sick, what are you going to do?

          Or the local fire brigade recommends you clear the trees from around your house cos they are a risk to you and yours during fire season, what are you going to do?

          Or your teacher recommends you read text X in preparation for an exam, what are you going to do?

          Recommendations made by those with insight, know how and relevant experience are generally worthy recommendations.

          Criticizing O’Donnell and co for accepting the recommendations of “Reviewer A” is pretty narrow minded.

          So is trying to pretend that anyone in their position wouldn’t have done exactly the same thing given the reviewer’s comments. Why do you think they got so angry?

          Finally, be thankful that here at CA you have a voice. Cos let me tell you, when I tried to post messages at RC questioning Dr Steig’s credibility I couldn’t get past the moderator. Right there in broad daylight, Dr Steig is lying about events; its just that no one is allowed to point it out.

  18. Ninth Stage
    Posted Feb 19, 2011 at 9:14 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Excuse me. My company is on the cusp of an IPO. I’m wondering if there any real climate scientists willing and available to produce graphs for the prospectus.

  19. harry
    Posted Feb 20, 2011 at 4:56 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Steig wrote: “My recommendation is that the editor insist”

    This is stronger than Steig insisting, he is trying to impose his will on the editor.
    He is saying “I insist and you should insist too”.
    Boro needs to take some comprehension classes.

  20. sierr117
    Posted Feb 20, 2011 at 6:52 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Steve

    Congratulations on allowing Boro Nut to have his say. Two thoughts come to mind.

    Firstly, Boro Nut is doing a sterling job of showing just how unbalanced some of the proponents of AGW theory can be. His vitriol and twisted interpretation of the O’Donnell-Steig affair are in my experience representative of the difficulty in dealing with The Team and their proponents.

    Seriously, anyone in O’Donnell et al’s position would have made the same decisions they did to switch to iridge given “reviewer A’s” remarks. Anyone. To say anything else is highly delusional.

    Secondly and more importantly, this is a demonstration/lesson for those over at RC that practice in “newspeak”.

    What I want to tell all those RC readers that believe in AGW theory is that The Team cannot tolerate criticism or scrutiny. They always believe they are right.

    My personal experiences with RC is that any comment which questions their opinions is simply SNIPPED. Actually, its worse than that. At least if one’s post gets SNIPPED here or at WUWT, any entry indicating a post had at least been attempted and the reasons for being SNIPPED are provided. At RC, there is absolutely no trace left behind. The moderators at RC behave like childish Gods. They decide what their readers should and shouldn’t read.

    Its the behavior of a group of highly insecure individuals.

    Keep up the good work Steve…you too Boro Nut.

  21. Craig Loehle
    Posted Feb 20, 2011 at 10:13 AM | Permalink | Reply

    One of the obligations of reviewers is to be honest about the limits of their expertise. Editors can not know exactly what a reviewer knows or does not know. The journals I prefer to submit to find reviewers who give detailed, tough reviews, but do not say idiotic things or make false statements. When I review (about 600 manuscripts so far career total) I may say “method X seems suspicious to me in this context, but I am not able to verify this” or “please ask the authors to provide evidence that Y is not simply a sampling artifact”. It seems to me that Steig went way beyond his expertise in asserting that the methods were wrong based on his prefered result. This is unethical in my view and constituted obstruction (even at the end he was recommending rejection).

  22. Derek H
    Posted Feb 20, 2011 at 12:34 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Getting back to the Crowley incident (as Steve has stated many times in comments), it seems to highlight the need for some kind of formal policy when a reviewer is makes public statements inconsistent with his/her review. I can understand why academia likes the anonymous peer review process but it’s clear that it has been misused in some cases to stifle “opposition” and this won’t get cleared up unless or until there’s a process to admit “evidence for the defense”. At a minimum, EOS should have allowed your to present a response to Crowley rebutting his attack — had you been engaged for non-anonymous review and been able to provide him the detailed correspondence he may well have retracted — or at least made substantial changes prior to publication.

  23. Björn
    Posted Feb 20, 2011 at 1:14 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Mr McIntyre.

    There seems to be some trouble with the link from the last word (== here) in the sentance

    “Crowley’s original EOS editorial is online here, …..”,

    I copied the reference url to the address line in my browser it shows up there as

    http://www.climateudit.org/pdf/news/crowley.2005.EOS.pdf

    so I put in the obvious missing a in the url ( it says climateudite.org/… instead of climateaudit.org/..)

    and clicked the goto arrow.

    The climateaudit page returned by that query stated that it could not find the requested pdf-file.

    Steve – in the switch to wordpress, the fixed files got changed from climateaudit,org to climateaudit.info. There are hundreds of links and many remain unfixed..

    Can you fix, please ? :-)).

  24. TAC
    Posted Feb 21, 2011 at 7:17 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Steve, when I read your posts I bristle at your unflattering comparisons between scientific debate and securities offerings. At the same time I am overwhelmed by the clarity of your thought and the intellectual horsepower you apply to each issue; despite having searched as carefully as I know how, I have never found a fault with your analyses.

    It makes wonder what’s going on. Is the “Team” approach nothing more than a “scientific” Ponzi scheme? Rewarding early “investors” — themselves — by selling a fraudulent story to an expanding and increasingly gullible audience of participants, constantly devising ways to prevent truths from emerging?

    In any case, the Team’s behavior is frightening and disheartening. Their malfeasance has already discredited the entire climate-science discipline, at least for those paying attention.

    This cannot be good for science.

    • oneuniverse
      Posted Feb 22, 2011 at 2:27 PM | Permalink | Reply

      “Scientific fraud resembles financial fraud in that it can bring undeserved remuneration and power, a salient difference being that in scientific fraud the ill-gotten gains are automatically institutionally laundered.”

      Herbert N. Arst, Jr., Imperial College School of Medicine, London. Nature 403:478, 2000. [from the Office of Research Integrity (ORI) website]

  25. Unscientific Lawyer
    Posted Feb 22, 2011 at 12:34 PM | Permalink | Reply

    “In the Crowley example, it was my view that Crowley’s publication of untrue statements about our correspondence was a fundamental breach of any implied agreement that the correspondence was private, thereby terminating whatever agreement we might have had. I was therefore entitled to publish the correspondence in my own defence. Similarly with EOS. They published false statements about me and had an obligation to deal fairly with me to mitigate the damages. They breached that obligation and, in my opinion, could no longer insist on that the review comments were confidential.”

    This is a fair description of what’s called the “offensive use” doctrine in law. The privilege of keeping some communication confidential is to provide a shield against disclosure (attorney-client communications, for example). However, when someone uses the privilege as a sword, such use is considered offensive and waives the privilege. Therefore, whenever a former client sues an attorney, the client cannot keep the attorney from disclosing what was once confidential communications if confidential communication could be used by the attorney to defend against the client’s suit.

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