Trick or heat, continued

[BPSDB] 32,500,000 hits for ‘climategate’ on Google today, and I’m beginning to feel as if I’ve seen most of them. Lots of repetition there, but what I have yet to see is any actual evidence of climate data being suppressed or distorted to falsify conclusions. Only tendentious interpretations of selected quotes from emails that were themselves selected from what must have been ongoing conversations.

Possibly the scientists involved did not behave entirely correctly to other people, but I expect that will come out in the investigation.  I’m both a sceptical person and an old-fashioned believer in innocent till proven guilty, so I will wait for the results of the investigation before passing judgement on the scientists.

A  thousand emails out of a something like a decade and a half means that the emails have been drastically selected out of a very much larger number (and possibly redacted too). Whoever stole the emails is clearly manipulating his audience and rather a lot of commenters seem unaware of the possibility that they are being manipulated.

What is also clear that some people jumped to ‘obvious’ – just too obvious – and daft conclusions about what certain emails ‘meant’. For example, an email by Kevin Trenberth was widely taken to be a climate scientist expressing private doubts that global warming is happening, but it was actually a comment on short-term variability and was discussed openly in his publication here. Lots of people desperate to believe that global warming is  a hoax fell for this one, like Andrew Orlowski at The Register and the frankly begging-to-be-taken-to-the-cleaners James Delingpole.

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