One of the more amusing things about the climate change deniers, the way they seize on marginal developments with fanatical zeal, while simultaneously and CONVENIENTLY ignoring swaths and swaths of legitimate information. It's actually pathetic in one sense, the selective hearing and the manipulations to support a pre-determined bias, rather than an objective view of the facts at hand. As a matter of fact, the reaction of the denial camp to these emails, highlights why these emails probably exist in the first place. I'm here to defend "climate gate", and send out a heartfelt yawn to all the knuckledraggers who've found their holy grail.
At this very moment, there is a legal request being made to have NASA publicly release all of their climate related data. Fair enough on one level, if the theory is correct, the science will speak to it. Scientists should never be afraid of critical inquiry or dissent, that's actually part of the model that cements theories. But, here's the rub on the legal demand- it's EXXON that is making the request. If you look over the past few years, you'll find much of the counter global warming arguments have some tie to vested self interests. On top of that, the denial "industry" and their rabid followers SCOUR the global for any counter opinion, and then ELEVATE said dissent, so much so that it warps the discussion. One paper is waved in the face of global warming supporters, you'll see it everywhere, and yet hundreds of others that disagree are basically given equal billing. Never a fair argument, but because of the vested interest pushing, the attempt to confuse and undermine is underway.
I have news for people (or maybe not), we are at WAR on global warming. The scientific community is under siege by a small rogue subset, and their input is having an impact. I've actually heard commercials on a Hamilton radio station, telling people that global warming is a hoax, they need to educate themselves and resist the propaganda. Shocking that this crap gets aired, but really a testament to what we're up against- a CO-ORDINATED attempt to muddy the scientific waters and erode public support.
In one sense, you can't defend some aspects of this "climate gate" story. Any suppression of evidence is offensive, it's simply wrong and can't be tolerated. But, as far as the sentiment of the scientists goes, I completely and utterly understand the mentality. These scientists are a symptom of the war at play, a realization that people are trying to undermine scientific inquiry. If I knew that certain geologists, with big oil ties, where demanding this and that, I'd resist too, because their MOTIVES aren't pure, it's not the normal honest scrutiny, it's really people that want to bastardize information to support their own self interest. Can't say I blame the lack of openness, considering how this debate has evolved.
This story is a PERFECT example of this entire debate. How many times have you heard the "sun spot" argument from the denial camp? The more sophisticated will site this rogue study or that, and it becomes a sheltered bay to avoid all the other information bombarding the validity. I guarantee you, that the link above will never be acknowledged or cited by a denialist. It will be ignored, and people will cling to the DEBUNKED theory, because they refuse to cease. The denialist camp isn't interested in scientific inquiry, or open discussion, they only want to hear what satisfies their pre-determined point of view, or in the larger sense, JUNK that validates their toxic ways. About all you can criticize this small group of "climate gate" scientists, is for acting in a similar manner to THEIR ACCUSERS. So, get off the soapbox anti-intellectuals, you're actually pointing to behavior you endorse EVERY WAKING HOUR, OF EVERY DAY. This is your modus operandi. You could give these emailers pointers.
I'm all for scientific debate, and I think there is plenty of room for revision, as we learn more about a complicated circumstance. It isn't about suppression, it's a question of motive and BALANCE. If people want to debate, with the TOTALITY of the information available, have at it. If people want to ignore 97% of the data, and focus on 3%, as though a formidable empirical counter, I say tell them to pound salt when they ask for co-operation, because it's clearly a one way consideration. We're at war with a concoction of industry interests, politically motivated pushback, simpletons who lack the basic intellectual capacity, cranks and agitators. However, do not compromise the science, or ignore evidence, don't do what denialists routinely do.