Michael Mann Wins

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During the late 20th century, Michael Mann and colleagues published research showing that then recent warming, believed to have been caused by human caused changes in atmospheric chemistry, were indeed large and unique over a very long natural record of about a thousand years. The graph showed what looked like a hockey stick laying down, with the blade, sticking abruptly up, indicating the dramatic increase in average surface temperature of the planet. See this book for an overview of the climate science.

Over subsequent decades, a handful of individuals, organizations, and at least one media outlet decided to attack Mann over his research. These attacks falsely claimed that Mann had faked or altered data in order to show that global warming was real when it wasn’t. To be clear: Global warming is real, and Mann was not making up or faking data. See The Hockey Stick and the Climate Wars: Dispatches from the Front Lines for more on that. See also this book for just how crazy this can all get.

Mann, in an effort to defend the science, took these various and sundry entities to court, to compel them to retract their lies and apologize. Today, June 7th, one of those law suits ended with such an apology.

For historical context, I give you the aforementioned events superimposed over a graph showing the steady rise of the Earth’s surface temperatures:

Then, the retraction:

This isn’t over. The story of these law suits is complicated by several factors. At least one “think tank” changed its name a couple of times. Individuals or other entities have counter sued. Other things. There are still open cases. Eventually, it will all be settled. See this post for more information.
Well, the law suits will be settled. And, the science is settled. But we need to do a lot more work to decarbonize our economies and limit the effects of global warming.

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12 thoughts on “Michael Mann Wins

  1. So they were forced to apologized but they didn’t change their minds? They have their own “facts” perhaps?

    It seems very similar to anti-evolution creationists who, if you can get them to answer at all the question of what would convince them that evolution did and does happen, say “Nothing.”

  2. The real tragedy is that from 2011 on, these asshats and their ilk continued to so muddy the waters around the truth of climate change that we are now in full crisis mode. Apology?
    That doesn’t come close……

  3. From where I sit, this is a good apology. Should we expect more contrition from them? I doubt it, unless we should also expect reparations for slavery and the return of stolen lands to Native Americans.

    In my view, the best policy is to move ahead with developing policies for dealing with the effects of climate change while trusting that the holdouts — like Dr. Tim Ball — will in good time see the light.

    For those who doubt that Dr. Tim Ball is a holdout, I refer them to his Web site:


  4. That is just a hit piece: odious, yes, but bog-standard talking points. The byline is “Digital Management,” which I assume is Ball in disguise. Why he feels the need to comment on U.S. politics is a mystery.

    Claims that Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is ignorant or unintelligent crop up all the time. These claims are absurd.

    * “She came in second in the Microbiology category of the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair with a microbiology research project on the effect of antioxidants on the lifespan of the nematode C. elegans.[21]”

    * “She graduated cum laude from Boston University’s College of Arts and Sciences in 2011, majoring in international relations and economics.[12][27][28]”

    As for “barmaid,” I think “bartender” fits better.

    “After college, Ocasio-Cortez moved back to the Bronx and took a job working 18-hour shifts as a bartender and waitress to help her mother—a house cleaner and school-bus driver—fight foreclosure of their home.[31][13]”

    Her father had died while she was in college. I like to remind people that Abraham Lincoln was a bartender at one point in his life.

    Quoted information comes from Wikipedia:


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