“Infestation of Beetle Larvae”

From time to time, we hear from climate scientists that they are limited in their responses by the dignity of their profession. The dignity to which climate scientists aspire is nicely exemplified by the following remarks  archive of a prominent real_climate_scientist:

hey trolls who have been given marching orders to flood the comment threads here like an infestation of beetle larvae: Don’t bother! We’ve seen the mindless talking points before, and coming here to parrot them simply (a) pollutes the otherwise thoughtful discussion in the comment threads here, and (b) exposes the intellectual bankruptcy of your climate change denial zealotry.

Thoughts like the above are surely what the poet Thomas Gray had in mind when he wrote:

Full many a gem of purest ray serene
The dark unfathomed caves of ocean bear:
Full many a flower is born to blush unseen,
And waste its sweetness on the desert air.

From time to time, we here at Climate Audit have had the opportunity to draw attention to these sweet flowers and do so here once again.


  1. milodonharlani
    Posted Jul 24, 2012 at 5:55 PM | Permalink

    I am reminded of J. B. S. Haldane’s possibly apocryphal reply to a theologian who asked the British biologist what he had concluded as to the nature of the Creator from his studies of creation: “An inordinate fondness for beetles.”

    Of course pine bark beetles bore into trees, an activity for which the alarmist in question requires funding.

  2. Dave L.
    Posted Jul 24, 2012 at 6:00 PM | Permalink

    Beetle infestation of bristlecone pines is apparently a real problem. I wonder what happens to tree ring width when a tree has a non-lethal infestation?


  3. Michael Jankowski
    Posted Jul 24, 2012 at 6:07 PM | Permalink

    Flooding is expecting to become more frequent due to climate change. If Mr. Mann doesn’t want his comment threads to be flooded, he should start taking the high road once in awhile. He’ll find better ground there.

  4. Skiphil
    Posted Jul 24, 2012 at 6:09 PM | Permalink

    Such a nice guy, that Michael Mann…. as Bishop Hill notes, Michael Mann has had years of practice at nasty defamatory ad homs:


    @robinince Mind you, Mann does a pretty mean ad-hom attack himself. http://t.co/0PZKgxMp


    me: In that case (at link) he did not even pretend to address any of the issues!

  5. uknowispeaksense
    Posted Jul 24, 2012 at 6:55 PM | Permalink

    Speaking of pine beetles, it seems due to AGW, they are becoming more of a problem in that not only are they undergoing range extensions, but they are undergoing a change in their ontogeny as well, being able to reproduce more than once in a season. Couple that with the extra stress applied to their host tress from hotter drier conditions and you see the massive problems currently being experienced in North America

    • Ed Snack
      Posted Jul 24, 2012 at 8:00 PM | Permalink

      So I suppose these “hotter drier” conditions are why the trees grow so well that the rings getter larger and denser ? Or more arm waving as to why you can argue both ways at the same time ?

    • uknowispeaksense
      Posted Jul 24, 2012 at 8:45 PM | Permalink

      snip – blog policy discourages efforts to prove or disprove CAGW in a few sentences. The comment to which you were responding has been treated identically.

  6. zefal
    Posted Jul 24, 2012 at 7:28 PM | Permalink

    That link to Mann’s Facebook page should have a NSFW disclaimer. I can now cross off ‘view Facebook circle-jerk’ off my bucket list… that’s after I add it on.

  7. Posted Jul 24, 2012 at 8:00 PM | Permalink

    At least he didn’t threaten anyone with acute undergarment realignment, so let’s call it even and get back to matters of substance. 🙂

    • charles the moderator
      Posted Jul 24, 2012 at 8:43 PM | Permalink

      Re: Hu McCulloch (Jul 24 20:00),

      If you haven’t watched the youtube directly below the original wedgie comment you should Hu. When I posted that I was thinking of a one on one between Karoly and Mann.

  8. mpaul
    Posted Jul 24, 2012 at 8:47 PM | Permalink

    I know Mike’s been on sabbatical studying methods for more effective public communication of climate science. Apparently we are seeing the fruits of his research.

    • Steve McIntyre
      Posted Jul 24, 2012 at 9:22 PM | Permalink

      Re: mpaul (Jul 24 20:47),

      Nicely put. Let’s close this thread overnight on that note.

      A point that I may return to. Readers will undoubtedly recall the controversy over the Nature article about “deniers”. Ironically, in his day job, Paul Bain, the author of that article, writes about the use of “dehumanizing” language. Bain discussed the use of dehumanizing language to legitimize inhumane behavior. The Hutu use of the term “cockroach” for their opponent Tutsis is a prominent recent example – one that is almost immediately brought to mind by the use of the term “beetle larvae”.

2 Trackbacks

  1. […] I wonder, has Dr. Mann just libeled everyone whose comments he has been serially deleteing? The best part is Steve McIntyre’s response, be sure to read it here. […]

  2. By Thursday, July 26 | Denier Roundup on Jul 30, 2012 at 3:34 PM

    […] Mann compares trolls on his facebook page to “an infestation of beetle larvae.”  Watts and McIntyre are simply shocked at this breach of the dignity of the climate science […]

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