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Journal admits Lewandowsky paper retracted because it failed. Twice!

Relish this win.

Recursive Fury, the ideated paper that Stephan Lewandowsky, John Cook and Michael Hubble-Marriott tried to publish early last year, was of such poor quality that it was placed in the scientific limbo-land of being not withdrawn, not retracted, and not published for almost 12 months. Lewandowsky previously published an article claiming skeptics believed the Moon Landing was faked, based on only 10 anonymous internet responses gleaned from sites that hate skeptics.  Recursive Fury made out that skeptics who objected this previous paper were barking-mad conspiracy theorists with nefarious intent.

Finally, a  week ago, the journal issued a strange but brief official retraction notice. Bizarrely, despite the ignominious failure, Lewandowsky and many others played the victim card, fanning the idea that legal threats had stopped them from publishing a paper that was otherwise academically and ethically fine. The howls of faux-outrage grew, as usual, over-played to the point where they became self-defeating.

Now Frontiers, the journal, already suffering from being associated with such dubious work, has finally had to set the record straight and defend their reputation. They had not caved in to bullying, or legal threats from the evil denier machine. Actually there were no threats at all, and the  complaints they received from skeptics “were well argued and cogent”. (See below).

Furthermore the journal admitted it had taken a whole year to retract the paper because Frontiers asked Lewandowsky et al to resubmit, and they did, only to fail a second time to produce a paper worth publishing.

I’d like to thank the Frontiers editorial staff for choosing the right path (albeit a bit slowly), and just say “Welcome to the Climate Wars”. It’s fun isn’t it?

In my opinion Frontiers should have never published the profoundly unscientific work in the first place.

It boggles the mind that Lewandowsky (a Psychology Professor), and Cook (who is doing a PhD in Psychology) so misread the situation, and know so little about … you know, psychology. Lewandowksy either bragged or gloated and advertised his seemingly narcissistic views without realizing that he was drawing attention to his own grand failure, and hurting the very journal that had tried to help him. Cook evidently did not see the train wreck coming either. The pain-quotient for the journal finally reached the point where the journal had to act. It was so inevitable. Once again, Lewandowsky, Cook and Marriott have been shown to have little grip on what is reasonable. Lewandowsky was so delighted with the false fury in the media he listed it all again in his blog. Apparently The Guardian fell for the hyped up bullying claim. Elaine McKewon, a reviewer, tried to whip up sympathy on The Conversation, Scientific American and Socialscienceplace (the latter has already added the Frontiers clarification). Techdirt also got caught. Desmog obediently whipped up false angst. How many will correct their record? Are they even interested in truth?

In the end, remember, Recursive Fury is one of Lewandowsky’s proudest seminal achievements, one of his “most read papers“. This is Lewandowsky, below, framing the sensible objections to his work as cyber bullying, public abuse, trolling, vexatious, did I mention sadistic?

The strategies employed in those attacks follow a common playbook, regardless of which scientific proposition is being denied and regardless of who the targeted scientists are: There is cyber-bullying and public abuse by “trolling” (which recent research has linked to sadism); there is harassment by vexatious freedom-of-information (FOI) requests; there are the complaints to academic institutions; legal threats; and perhaps most troubling, there is the intimidation of journal editors and publishers who are acting on manuscripts that are considered inconvenient.

Such restraint. Marvel that he left out the pedophilia!

Credit for this unequivocal win goes to Stephen McIntyre, Barry Woods, Shub Niggurath, Geoff Chambers, Foxgoose, Brandon Shollenberger, Paul Matthews, Lucia, and Anthony Watts (see his letter). In Perth, James Doogue and Michael Kile have also applied calm relentless pressure. Thank you to everyone who helped.

Now we ought turn our focus to UWA, which is still hosting a copy of the failed paper and refusing to release data to Steve McIntyre. It’s time also to talk to the ARC which funded the entire fiasco, and to The Royal Society, and the University of Bristol, which both fund and endorse the naked ad hominem attacks of Lewandowsky.

Frontiers in Psychology issue new statement

(My bolding)

(Lausanne, Switzerland) – There has been a series of media reports concerning the recent retraction of the paper Recursive Fury: Conspiracist ideation in the blogosphere in response to research on conspiracist ideation, originally published on 18 March 2013 in Frontiers in Psychology. Until now, our policy has been to handle this matter with discretion out of consideration for all those concerned. But given the extent of the media coverage – largely based on misunderstanding – Frontiers would now like to better clarify the context behind the retraction.

 As we published in our retraction statement, a small number of complaints were received during the weeks following publication. Some of those complaints were well argued and cogent and, as a responsible publisher, our policy is to take such issues seriously. Frontiers conducted a careful and objective investigation of these complaints. Frontiers did not “cave in to threats”; in fact, Frontiers received no threats. The many months between publication and retraction should highlight the thoroughness and seriousness of the entire process.

 As a result of its investigation, which was carried out in respect of academic, ethical and legal factors, Frontiers came to the conclusion that it could not continue to carry the paper, which does not sufficiently protect the rights of the studied subjects. Specifically, the article categorizes the behaviour of identifiable individuals within the context of psychopathological characteristics. Frontiers informed the authors of the conclusions of our investigation and worked with the authors in good faith, providing them with the opportunity of submitting a new paper for peer review that would address the issues identified and that could be published simultaneously with the retraction notice.

The authors agreed and subsequently proposed a new paper that was substantially similar to the original paper and, crucially, did not deal adequately with the issues raised by Frontiers.

We remind the community that the retracted paper does not claim to be about climate science, but about psychology. The actions taken by Frontiers sought to ensure the right balance of respect for the rights of all.

One of Frontiers’ founding principles is that of authors’ rights. We take this opportunity to reassure our editors, authors and supporters that Frontiers will continue to publish – and stand by – valid research. But we also must uphold the rights and privacy of the subjects included in a study or paper.

Frontiers is happy to speak to anyone who wishes to have an objective and informed conversation about this. In such a case, please contact the Editorial Office at editorial.office@frontiersin.org.

Costanza Zucca, Editorial Director

Fred Fenter, Executive Editor

UPDATE: Part of the problem here is the conflict between the initial retraction statement and the update above. The journal should have issued the full reasoning at the start (or really, when the paper was put in limbo a year ago).

Lucia points out the authors (Lewandowsky etc) helped write the original vaporous retraction note — this is from Lewandowsky himself:

“The authors were involved in drafting the retraction statement and sanction its content: We understand the journal’s position even though we do not agree with it.”

You can’t make this stuff up…

NOT A REFERENCE

Lewandowsky, S., Cook, H., Oberauer, K., and Marriott, M. (2013) Recursive fury: conspiracist ideation in the blogosphere in response to research on conspiracist ideation, Front. Psychol. 4:73. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2013.00073   [Abstract]

RetractionWatch has of course covered this sordid unscientific story several times. Their latest.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 9.6/10 (97 votes cast)
Journal admits Lewandowsky paper retracted because it failed. Twice!, 9.6 out of 10 based on 97 ratings

Tiny Url for this post: http://tinyurl.com/kbt9uvq

144 comments to Journal admits Lewandowsky paper retracted because it failed. Twice!

  • #
    Streetcred

    Bravo, Frontiers … let’s see now whether UWA has any ethical balls and sanctions the liar McKewon and its hapless VC, Paul Johnson.

    We’re watching you, UWA !


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    • #
      Kevin Lohse

      With respect, not a hope. Lew has already excused himself by blaming evil deniers in the pay of Big Fossil Fuels forcing retraction of his paper, and the Gleike Effect will make a hero out of him. Noble Cause Corruption is now endemic in catastrophist academia on a global scale. How it can be removed without recourse to exactly those methods we rightly castigate the warmists for using is a question for people with much higher pay grades than I.


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    • #
      LevelGaze

      I really can’t go along with the Bravo, Frontiers bit.
      The journal appears to have resisted taking action until it’s nose was more or less rubbed into it by Watt’s excellent letter (which right at the end makes it clear that a copy has been forwarded to his lawyer).

      We’ve all known for a long time that noble cause corruption has polluted this little backwater and progressively spilled over into economics, “legitimate” science position statements, research funding and everyday politics, but now such despicable conduct is being openly ADVOCATED in mainstream scientific and ethical/psychological journals, and most shocking of all, large-circulation print media.


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      • #

        I think in this case the journal was reacting to things said by Lewandowsky’s fans like one of their own reviewers:

        Elaine McKewon, one of the retracted paper’s three independent reviewers, said Frontiers had been “spineless” in its response to complaints.

        Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/environment/climate-change/conspiracist-climate-change-study-withdrawn-amid-legal-threats-20140402-35xao.html#ixzz2xzM0GQip

        Watts excellent letter was April 2013. Not this year.

        But Frontiers was getting shredded by fans of alarmism in The Conversation, Scientific American, the SMH, etc.


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        • #
          cohenite

          I’ve just read the SMH report on this episode and it is astounding; it focuses on alleged legal intimidation by “deniers” as being the reason why the paper was withdrawn which the Journal itself states did not happen.


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          • #

            The journal fueled that fire with its short description in the initial retraction. They should have listed the reasons in full right from the start (who wrote this retraction note below?). But equally Lewandowsky et al surely knew the deep ethical and scientific questions skeptics raised, and ought to have realized that the journal had been preposterously kind in this statement. When Lew and friends tried to build a castle on this vaporous statement, that’s when it all fell apart.

            http://journal.frontiersin.org/Journal/10.3389/fpsyg.2014.00293/full
            In the light of a small number of complaints received following publication of the original research article cited above, Frontiers carried out a detailed investigation of the academic, ethical, and legal aspects of the work. This investigation did not identify any issues with the academic and ethical aspects of the study. It did, however, determine that the legal context is insufficiently clear and therefore Frontiers wishes to retract the published article. The authors understand this decision, while they stand by their article and regret the limitations on academic freedom which can be caused by legal factors. – See more at: http://journal.frontiersin.org/Journal/10.3389/fpsyg.2014.00293/full#sthash.T0F7U2z3.Ii9gUUeM.dpuf


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            • #

              Lucia points out the authors (Lew etc) were the ones who wrote the original vaporous retraction note — this is from Lewandowsky himself:

              The authors were involved in drafting the retraction statement and sanction its content: We understand the journal’s position even though we do not agree with it.

              You can’t make this stuff up…


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              • #
                Kevin Lohse

                Jo. I read it that Frontiers originally tried to let Lew et al down gently, as it doesn’t do for a journal to upset contributors or potential contributors. Lew then came over all hurt and drew a little blood, when the pirañas piled in. This case is an extension of Warmist SOP when the Narrative is questioned in any way.
                The next stage, if it hasn’t already happened will be for the Warmists to boycott the journal.


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              • #
                Rod Stuart

                Barry Woods appears to be back from retirement, and he has been trying hard to communicate with the UWA.
                This VC Johnson appears to be a first class twit.


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              • #
                speedy

                Jo

                We understand the journal’s position even though we do not agree with it.

                Beeeautiful!

                I’m sorry if I’m a bit obtuse in picking this up, but it seems that the Lew’s supporters are saying that while they agree with the logical criticisms leveled at the so-called Professor, they can’t accept them???

                Are they are rejecting logical argument? In favour of what, pray tell? And in which case, what do they base their own arguments upon?

                The can of worms has been opened…

                Cheers,

                Speedy


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            • #
              cohenite

              This is strange. In the retraction published above the Journal speaks about cogent complaints but no threats and what else can a legal objection be but a threat and then says the Paper’s methodology implied psychopathological characteristics in the subjects of the study [sic] by Lewandowsky.

              Psychopathological characteristics are mental or behavioural disorders which you would think would ground some sort of legal action in any person who could identify as being a subject of the study.

              I guess the context of someone having a right to sue after being called in effect mad would constitute a legal threat but since the Journal has said no one made a threat it must have been their own conclusion of the possibility of or potential for a legal threat which prompted them to withdraw the paper.

              What a mess!


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              • #
                HAS

                cohenite if Frontiers is to be believed it was the unethical nature of the paper (diagnosing identified subjects without their consent) that caused them to dump the paper, not the potential litigation. But in the end who knows.

                Perhaps it was, as I think our hostess is suggesting, the fact that a peer reviewer who could have been part of their defence in a legal action (“we’d followed due process, your honour”) went feral on them.

                Anyway what are you West Ozzies doing about that second-rate technical college in your midst?


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              • #
                Streetcred

                HAS … as one commentator at BH observed, peer reviewed by one with an interest in prostitution (so fitting in this case) and the other with the female derriere. One could not class these two, McKewon and Sami, as “peers” in the true sense of the word as reviewers.


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              • #
                Greg Cavanagh

                cohenite; “what else can a legal objection be but a threat”.

                From a legal point of view, it’s procedure. From a personnel point of view, I suppose you could view it as a threat. The paper didn’t take it that way.

                “…and then says the Paper’s methodology implied psychopathological characteristics in the subjects of the study [sic] by Lewandowsky.”

                The subjects where named and identified; and following the conclusions of the paper itsself, could be said to have the psychological conditions implied by the paper.

                Every other paper I’ve ever heard of keeps the identity of the subjects a close secret.


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            • #
              Andrew McRae

              Just trying piece together who said what and when. Is this the essence of it?
              LAST WEEK (27 March 2014), Frontiers said:
              >> This investigation did not identify any issues with the academic and ethical aspects of the study.
              THIS WEEK (4 April 2014), Frontiers said:
              >> it could not continue to carry the paper, which does not sufficiently protect the rights of the studied subjects.

              Protecting someone’s rights is firstly an ethical issue, and is secondarily a legal issue to the extent that right is protected by law. So last week there were no ethical issues, then this week there were ethical issues, and from a paper submitted a year ago.

              If that interpretation is correct then Frontiers didn’t just omit or obfuscate about the reasons for retraction, they lied about the presence or absence of ethical issues. Takes two to tango.


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              • #

                This is interesting. I participated in a study for someone going for a Master’s degree. My actual name was never used, only one assigned by the writer. There were papers to sign saying that I clearly understood I was a participant and an opportunity to check out the finished paper online. Every effort was made to keep the identities of the participants known only to the researcher. All of this for legal protection, I would guess.

                While comments on the internet are in the public sphere, there should be questions about using statements in a research paper without the knowledge of the writer. For one thing, the interview for the paper I participated in lasted nearly an hour. Every effort was made, including recording and taking notes, to make sure my viewpoint was correctly represented. Using random comments from totally strangers on the internet should not even be considered “psychological” research. It’s plain, outright fraud and unethical in every way.


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        • #
          LevelGaze

          Fair points, Jo, but on this occasion I am less forgiving than you.

          It’s a galling thing for a journal to retract a paper and it doesn’t happen all that often. It generally is an admission, as in this case, that its internal audit system (peer review by any other name) is incompetent. Watt’s letter landed on the editor’s desk almost a full year ago, but the journal pussy-footed around trying desperately to get the authors to clean it up, to no avail.

          So, it was withdrawn to, as you say, limbo-land but managed to stay visible, read, and commented on in many of the usual places. Only now is it finally retracted – a formal admission by the journal that in their opinion it’s junk.

          But the face-saving weasel words and phrases are still there in the retraction notice:

          “Frontiers will continue to publish – and stand by – valid research”

          The journal is trying to minimise the damage to itself. “Continue to” indeed!

          Lysenko gained control of USSR agricultural planning about 1930 and was responsible for millions of deaths. He wasn’t denounced until 1964.

          Half a century on, will it still take those in power decades to denounce the shoddy “science” that has again started killing humans through food shortages, energy restrictions, personal poverty and economic turmoil?

          All guilty parties should be exposed, as well as their hangers-on. That especially includes incompetent journals.

          You got a thumbs up from me. – Jo


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          • #
            Brad R

            A minor quibble: I think Watts’ letter was to Psychological Science, about the “Moon Landing” paper, not to Frontiers about “Recursive Fury.” But McIntyre’s excellent letters were definitely addressed to Frontiers and date back to April 2013.

            —-
            True. But I think Anthony Watts point was that Frontiers needed to know some of the history, and I think sending them a copy was a very good idea. – Jo


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        • #
          tony thomas

          I cover various aspects about McKewon in Quadrant Online: http://quadrant.org.au/opinion/doomed-planet/2014/04/climate-papers-without-peer/#_edn2. I’ve just added an update:
          The Recursive Fury paper was edited by Viren Swami, University of Westminster. Strangely, he was also one of the two peer reviewers of the paper, along with McKewon. http://journal.frontiersin.org/Journal/10.3389/fpsyg.2013.00073/full
          The Sydney Morning Herald on April 2, said (strangely) that McKewon was one of “three independent reviewers”.

          http://www.smh.com.au/environment/climate-change/conspiracist-climate-change-study-withdrawn-amid-legal-threats-20140402-35xao.html#ixzz2y9AeBzNp

          Dr Swami’s Ph.D was on body size ideals across cultures. His papers include:
          Female physical attractiveness in Britain and Malaysia: A cross-cultural study; Female physical attractiveness in Britain and Japan: A cross‐cultural study; The missing arms of Vénus de Milo: reflections on the science of attractiveness; A critical test of the waist-to-hip ratio hypothesis of women’s physical attractiveness in Britain and Greece; and Unattractive, promiscuous and heavy drinkers: Perceptions of women with tattoos.
          http://scholar.google.com.au/citations?hl=en&user=uGoJwWcAAAAJ&view_op=list_works&cstart=20


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          • #
            tony thomas

            Frontiers has changed the list of reviewers on three occasions., says Steven McIntyre. The reviewers were originally said to be Elaine McKewon and Michael Wood. This was changed to McKewon and editor Viren Swami. Then the list of reviewers was changed to McKewon, Swami and Prathiba Natesan, Then Natesan was removed from the list of reviewers, returning the list to McKewon and Swami again.


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  • #
    pat

    congrats to all involved, including Frontiers.

    ***not even a loaded para such as Neuhauser’s below will win back the trust of the public, i’m glad to say:

    4 April: US News & World Report: Alan Neuhauser: Poll: Americans Still Unconcerned About Global Warming
    Most Americans are not greatly concerned about climate change, a Gallup poll finds.
    Just 34 percent of adults said they worried “a great deal” about “global warming,” about the same as last year. Meanwhile, 35 percent said they felt the same way about “climate change,” just a 2 percentage points more than last year.
    “A major challenge facing scientists and organizations that view global warming as a major threat to humanity is that average citizens express so little concern about the issue,” Gallup said…
    ***The poll was conducted in early March, yet the results were released Friday – just one week after a comprehensive report by a United Nations climate panel reasserted that not only is climate change a man-made phenomenon, but its effects are already being felt around the world, they’re worse than previously predicted and no matter what actions are taken, they’ll persist for centuries to come…
    http://www.usnews.com/news/blogs/data-mine/2014/04/04/poll-americans-still-unconcerned-about-global-warming

    the warming they predicted isn’t happening, and cold, hard facts such as the one below haven’t helped the CAGW-enforcers’ cause, either:

    4 April: CBC: It’s official: Winnipeg’s winter the coldest since 1898
    Environment Canada says it was also one of the snowiest – and it’s not over yet
    “It was 116 years ago,” he said. “And think about it. In 1898, there was no talk of global warming or urban heat islands, no cars or pavements and the population was a twentieth of what it is now in Winnipeg.”…
    “Just keeping your home and your business warm has cost you about another 17, 20 per cent more so, not a lot of good things we can say about it except the fact that you survived it,” Phillips said.
    He said on average, temperatures during the period of December through March were 6 degrees colder than normal.
    Phillips also said the past winter was one of the snowiest since 1898. ..
    http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/manitoba/it-s-official-winnipeg-s-winter-the-coldest-since-1898-1.2598530


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  • #
    bobl

    I have already written to the WA attouney general and education ministers about the UWA VC’s inexplicable decision to violate his own policy and scientific best practise. I see Bolt picked it up too… Bravo.


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  • #
    pat

    Australia carbon credit issuance slumps
    April 4 (Reuters) – The number of carbon credits issued under Australia’s carbon offset programme fell 72 percent in the first quarter of 2014 from the previous three months, data showed on Friday…
    https://www.pointcarbon.com/news/reutersnews/1.4755103?&ref=searchlist

    EU carbon slips 3.7 pct on weak power, gas
    LONDON, April 4 (Reuters) – EU carbon prices fell 3.7 percent in thin trade on Friday, following power and gas markets lower…
    https://www.pointcarbon.com/news/reutersnews/1.4769295?&ref=searchlist


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  • #
    pat

    the full 2 pages for pt carbon link posted previously:

    2 pages: 4 April: Reuters: EU carbon slips 3.7 pct on weak power, gas
    “(Carbon) volumes have been pretty weak so it hasn’t taken much to move prices lower,” a carbon trader said….
    Many large utilities sell power forward several years in advance, buying the fuel and carbon units needed to generate the electricity at the same time to lock in margins.
    However, if power prices drop, those companies may choose to buy the power back, earning them a profit but meaning they are also likely to sell the fuel and carbon permits back into the market…
    Firms regulated by the EU Emission Trading System will get 6.6 billion free allowances between 2013 and 2020 to help them compete with rivals in other regions which have looser environmental regulations.
    Seven countries, including Poland and Romania, have still yet to award the 2014 allowances, the Commission data showed.
    (Reporting by Susanna Twidale; editing by Keiron Henderson)
    http://af.reuters.com/article/energyOilNews/idAFL5N0MW37A20140404


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  • #
    Graeme No.3

    Joanne:

    I take it the bold print is your highlighting. I would suggest these excerpts are also important.

    Frontiers informed the authors of our investigation (&) worked with the authors in good faith, providing (an opportunity of) a new paper that would address the issues identified. The authors agreed (but provided a similar) paper that did not deal with the issues raised by Frontiers.

    In other words we (Frontiers) wasted out time on these rat bags and any further papers from them have (insert Swiss for Buckley’s and None) hope of making it past the front door.

    —–
    Fair point, I’ve added “my bolding”. – Jo


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  • #
    Popeye

    Jo – my favorite part of yur post is at the bottom:

    NOT A REFERENCE

    Laughing my head off – thanks heaps

    Cheers,

    :-) :-) :-)


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  • #
    speedy

    Afternoon all!

    I was reading Jo’s piece (and all the erudite comments, of course), laughing like a drain, until a terrible thought struck me.

    We’re the ones who are paying these clowns!

    Cheers,

    Speedy


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    • #
      PeterC

      Sadly Yes!

      And that is the reason for OUR OUTRAGE at the performance of:
      1. People who call themselves scientists and get PAID BY US to produce utter rubbish,
      2. Media who repeat the false messages
      3. Universities who sponsor the faux scientists and protect them.
      4. Governments and Political parties who fall for this and TAX US for wrong policies and for all of the above.


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      • #
        speedy

        Peter C

        Precisely! And it all comes down to such a shoddy definition of “science” which is so clearly produced by UWA!

        People who are paying for all this (e.g. Us) have a right to be [insert expletive here] off.

        While those who seem to live it up on the gravy train continue to award each other baubels for their dubious endowments to society.

        Tends to make one grumpy…

        Cheers,

        Speedy.


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  • #
    ianl8888

    IMO, Lewanclownsky appears to have decided to try and gatecrash the CAGW funding party through notoriety. Up till now, psychologists have not had much of a look in on the hard sciences, fluid mechanics, statistics etc that comprise climate-related arguments

    He has certainly achieved said notoriety. I’m unsure about “sustainable” funding


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    • #
      Bruce

      The Royal Society is supporting his research?!!

      The alarmists protect their own and I am sure his funding will continue.

      You are right; he was looking for the main chance when he moved into CAGW.

      What’s new, there is a whole army of academic third raters making good embracing CAGW?


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  • #
    pat

    5 April: Bloomberg: Alex Morales: U.S. Seeks Changes to ‘Skewed’ Data in UN Climate Draft
    U.S. President Barack Obama’s administration is concerned that a crucial United Nations report on climate science may be too harsh in assessing the cost of fighting global warming.
    Such a finding may lower the incentive for the world to reduce fossil fuel pollution and feed the arguments of those skeptical about whether it’s worth spending money to curtail rising temperatures.
    The report will be completed by hundreds of scientists and government officials at a UN meeting in Berlin next week…
    “The discussion of the economic costs of mitigation is too narrow and does not incorporate co-benefits of action,” U.S. officials wrote in a submission to the UN, according to a document obtained by Bloomberg. They said including only one side of the equation “unnecessarily skews the information.”
    The comment refers to “global consumption losses” identified in the report of as much as 4 percent in 2030, 6 percent in 2050 and 12 percent in 2100 as a result of action to protect the climate, according to a draft leaked in January…
    *** A draft of the study and a 222-page document containing comments from government officials was obtained by Bloomberg from a person with official access to the documents who asked not to be further identified…
    Jonathan Lynn, a spokesman for the IPCC, said that the report’s wording will “certainly be improved” during a week-long session starting April 7 in Berlin to review the text line-by-line…
    Sweden and Norway were among other nations seeking to include in the report data on the benefits of cutting emissions. Those include the avoided damage that would result from a lower amount of warming, and consequently lower sea levels as well as less melting of glaciers…
    The U.S. was among several governments to question why the panel isn’t using GDP instead of the less-understood term consumption losses…
    Japan said it “would appreciate if cost of mitigation is measured in percentage of global GDP.” Canada said the term consumption losses “is not understood by the reader,” and the European Union said “the choice of consumption losses as a metric seems to be unclear and misleadingly suggests relatively higher impact than other metrics.” …
    Rosen (Richard Rosen, executive vice president at the Tellus Institute, a Boston-based nonprofit policy research group) also questioned the validity of trying to calculate costs and benefits so far into the future.
    “None of the costs or benefits of mitigating climate change can be forecast to any scientifically credible level of accuracy over the long run,” Rosen said. That’s because of “the fundamental uncertainties associated with all the hundreds of key assumptions that need to be made.”
    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-04-04/u-s-seeks-changes-to-skewed-data-in-un-climate-draft.html


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  • #
    King Geo

    I suggest that Prof Lewandowsky, formerly of UWA (Dept of Psychology), should stay on secondment at the Uni of Bristol in UK indefinitely. As a former UWA graduate (PhD in Geology), I would be appalled that a “so called scientist” named Prof Lewandowsky would return to be on the UWA payroll some time in the future, and pass on his “crap ideas” to Psychology undergrads.


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      handjive

      “and pass on his “crap ideas” to Psychology undergrads.”

      Not to mention all the other UWA faculties who supported this rubbish.

      Not one of them spoke up.

      All are accessories.


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      Peter Miller

      My little experience with the University of Bristol is that it is a politically correct place; please do not confuse this with the obviously more desirable description of being factually correct.

      One of my sons applied for an engineering course there and after the interview he told me, “the only thing there were interested in was the fact I was born in South Africa and wanted me to meet some kind of quota.” I am pleased to say he turned their offer down

      I suspect Lew will feel totally at home in Bristol, nevertheless as a geologist and someone who abhors bad science, I would respectfully suggest the University of Western Australia takes this high profile purveyor of quackery back. The Vice Chancellor there has already demonstrated he is publicly willing to defend the indefensible and that is exactly what Lew needs.


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      Kevin Lohse

      We stopped sending you our recalcitrants years ago. You can take yours back and deal with them. Thanks Awfully in advance. :)


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      Bryn

      And as a PhD (in geology) from Bristol, I object to UWA passing off their secondhand rejects to that excellent institution.

      —————–
      Commiserations from we grads of UWA. – J


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    scaper...

    More grist for the mill.


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    Maggie1954

    Reading the above statement, there was something that struck me, because it is yet another example of what could be considered unscientific. That something is the statement linking trolls to sadism. I would suggest that such research and conclusions might be considered as false.

    The way in which the statement was written above, I got the impression that the “trolls” in this instance are conservative, yet most of the trolling is done by leftists. Lewandewsky is himself a typical example of a troll. I will point out that the statement was written by Lewandewsky.

    For several years I have noticed a disturbing trend, a trend that is related to the antics of a specific movement (aka Greens, Leftists and Marxists). What is disturbing is the level of false claims being pitched at their political enemies. For example, some practitioners, many with high qualifications, will make things up and claim that what they are saying bears out with their research. The idea that trolls are sadists is ludicrous. Yes there are cyber-bullies and some of them do it for fun. However, we know nothing about the psychological make-up of the trolls and bullies.

    A lot of trolls are paid by political parties to leave messages. I have personally seen this on Australian political blogs such as Andrew Bolt’s site. They are obvious because the wording of the comment is usually the same with a little bit of variation. I have also seen it on MichaelSmithNews and in one case the troll gives his political leanings away (plus most of what he says is usually total rubbish – and that does not include his gloating comments about Climate Science which is usually nothing more than gobbledy gook anyway). There is nothing sadistic about that particular troll or any of the trolls that gather on Bolt’s site of Tim Blair’s site.

    It seems to me that Lewandewsky is in the habit of making things up to try and bolster his own left-wing views. His research methods are substandard and he gives academia a very bad name.

    [Edited comment to depersonalize - J]


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      Hmm!

      I wonder if linking trolls with, umm, sadism works the same for people who leave comments of a trollish nature at blogs for both sides of the argument.

      You know, good trolls and bad trolls, sorta like good CO2 and bad CO2.

      Tony.


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        Kevin Lohse

        Another keyboard covered in coffee. You’ve made my morning.


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          speedy

          Kevin

          I’ve yet meet Tony personally, but am sure, firstly, that it would be a pleasure, and secondly, educational.

          One day, perhaps…

          Cheers,

          Speedy


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        Bulldust

        It is a shame that the term troll is completely misused these days. In the original context it was attributed to people who would point out weak arguments by responses which were satcastic amd/or cynical and designed to deceive noobs. These days people interpret trolling as angry ranters or flamebaiters … ironically this is usually the behaviour of victims of trolling.

        But language changes over time I guess…


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      • #

        Tony, also, good or bad CH4 -http://cementafriend.wordpress.com/2011/10/14/methane-good-or-bad/
        Now the chain has been pulled to flush down the Lew someone should give the chain a pull on Cook and his mates at UQ


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      Yonniestone

      I believe most trolls that venture here are more masochistic considering the scientific bitch slaps and bum smacks dealt out, the mind boggles.

      “Yes give me some more recursive fury you conservative skeptical denier ooooohhh….”


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      vic g gallus

      I’ve seen TonyN out himself as one of the Mr Jordons on Andrew Bolts blog. The writing style varies so much that I suspect a few people write under that screen name. I called him out on it a couple of weeks ago (suggested that Mr Jordon’s writing was so poor that he should take himself off the roster). I’m guessing that the accusation was flung back at me somewhere.

      That is the most annoying thing about dealing with these people. I might be out of place suggesting that he has regurgitated the psychopathalogical characteristics from his own sessions and projected them on to his enemies, but such behaviour is par for the course in the more dodgy areas of science.


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        Maggie1954

        There is one on Michael Smith’s site where we have thought the same – that it is more than one person using the name. The comments vary too much to be just the one person who graduated in basket weaving.


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          scaper...

          I’ve been abused at Smith’s site, was called a leftie for cautioning Michael on going down the wrong track in regards to a WA company.

          I don’t see any difference to a right/left flamer.


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      Rod Stuart

      I think you are too kind. While some of the trolls of which you speak may well be paid, I believe most of them have simply been conned into the Church of Climatology.
      As for the likes of McKibbin, Lewandowsky, Cook, Nuttercello; [SNIP]


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      Andrew McRae

      Maggie, welcome to JoNova’s blog.

      I have seen the word “troll” become overused at this site, even by the Good Host Herself on one occasion.
      Over previous years at a variety of web sites (and way back in usenet!) I have only seen the word troll used to describe someone who posts messages that they don’t necessarily believe simply to get an angry response out of the audience.
      One of our formerly regular warmist readers here, Catamon, has a username that practically announces their trolling intention of “putting the cat amongst the pigeons”. Their ad hominems would sometimes take centre stage with no other content in the message, which is certainly aiming to insult as the prime goal and not as some unintended side-effect of terminology and misunderstandings. That’s trolling in my view.

      When I check the Cambridge online dictionary, their meaning is similar.

      So in that sense, trolling is always sadistic because it’s the motivation behind the behaviour that makes it trolling, not the outcome. Just because someone says something false or you get upset at someone’s speech does not mean they were trolling, it has to be intentional on their part. Intention is difficult to prove, which is why it can only be inferred over a number of interactions, particularly if the offender repeats previous statements without showing any sign of resolving previous counter-arguments to those statements.

      Another dear account “Michael The Realist” (and again there’s the blatant announcement of trolling intentions in their username) was frequently suspected of such behaviour. In his case I don’t think he was trolling, he really believed what he said, but others may have a different opinion. It’s difficult to prove.

      That’s why I dispute your use of the word “trolls” to describe people paid to comment in particular ways in the media. If they are paid directly to do it, or have an income which is secured by arguing in the way they do, they are not trolling in the traditional sense of the word. I acknowledge the word is being used more broadly these days but I wish it weren’t because it dilutes the meaning.
      In the case of a paid shill who conceals their employer we already have another word for that: astroturfing.

      As to whether astroturfers exist online in significant quantities to steer public opinion in a certain direction is now beyond dispute; the existence of such astroturfing programmes is not even hidden any more. Samsung, miscellanous private companies, the USA Air Force, the Turkish government, the Russian government, and the Canadian government have all been found to be running professional astroturf teams.
      In a historical context this is just an electronic extension of tactics that have been used for years in more tangible forms such as fake letters of support and industry-funded front groups, some examples being coal industry subcontractors in 2009 and two major USA telcos in 2005.

      All very intriguing.


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        vic g gallus

        True but “you’re just an astroturfer” is like being slapped with a wet lettuce.


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        Maggie1954

        Andrew I have been around here for several years, I just do not post a lot.

        Yes, I have seen Catamon’s posts, but I would disagree about the label of “sadistic” for that type of troll. He might try to put a cat among the pigeons, but Catamon failed to impress, if you know what I mean.

        Most of us have been accused of being a troll and usually because someone else disagrees with what one has to say. I have been accused of that myself, but I am not a troll, just opiniated :)

        On conservative sites the trolls are somewhat obvious because they tend to be extremely abusive in their comments. I have seen that on many occasions. However, being abusive like that does not make them sadists.

        My original point is that I believe that if Lewandowsky had anything to do with the research on trolls you can bet it was unscientific and that the conclusions are based upon his biases not upon the reality of who is being labelled as a troll.


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          el gordo

          ‘On conservative sites the trolls are somewhat obvious because they tend to be extremely abusive in their comments.’

          On leftoid blogs the ‘trolls’ are mild mannered and intelligent, while the local watermelons are brainwashed and abusive, this is no coincidence.


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      Kevin Lohse

      Mr McIntyre has been doing this for years, which is why Warmist reaction is now reduced to,”Don’t let the nasty man upset you”.


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    Dave Broad

    Stephan Lewandowsky is “Retraction man”


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    thingadonta

    Lewandowsky and his associates Cook and Washington have lost the plot.

    They are [snip] unwilling to effectively evaluate different arguments, and are [snip] intolerant and dismissive of any criticism if it doesn’t fit their agenda. This isn’t science, it’s bullying. Such behaviour gets worse when it links up with emotionally based beliefs such as AGW. The emotionally based belief, plus an intolerant personality to begin with, creates [snip] a dismissive mindset well exhibited in Lewandowsky’s rejected paper and behaviour.

    For more of the same kind of rubbishy pseudo-science and [snip] bullying as the Lewandowsky papers, just try reading Washington and Cook’s Climate Change Denial-Head in the sand book, if you can stomach it. It’s a testament to emotionally based belief and a dismissiveness, which is now coming out in their papers. But fortunately enough there are those in the scientific community who can see through such nonsense, and so the harder they try to push their agenda, the more and more rational people start waking up, the more they then get dismissive [snip] in turn, and the more they just shoot themselves in the foot.


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      Yonniestone

      Lost the plot? they never had it or found it!
      A future paper from these two should be “The recursive being of Nucking Futs and how furious it makes normal people”


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      Eddie

      Not that I expect to be taken seriously after that last comment, but for such repeated behaviour from the miscreants (or ‘authors’ if you prefer), I blame the parents – or should we say the institutions who nurture them and the journals who published them – for not correcting them early on. When children learn what bad behaviour can be gotten away with, well do they even realise it’s bad ? Why do the Universities and Journals need to have it so spelled out for them ?
      They are responsible for the falling standards, for letting it come to this. Who runs these places any more ?


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        PeterK

        “Why do the Universities and Journals need to have it so spelled out for them? They are responsible for the falling standards, for letting it come to this. Who runs these places any more?

        Eddie: [snip speculation]. It is the hard work of the people with common sense and true understanding of the issues who are trying to fight…or should I say expose and stand up to and rebut and challenge all the junk science of the Communists / Socialists / Greenies / Progressives. It’s a slow process but I do believe all the hard work being done will prove positive. My only concern is how much longer before we see even bigger successes with the waking up of the masses. The masses overall are not stupid, and when they do wake up, which I believe is slowly happening, and hopefully I will live long enough to see some extremely positive changes.

        Quote: The trouble with our Liberal friends is not that they’re ignorant; it’s just that they know so much that isn’t so.
        Ronald Reagan


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    PeterC

    In my opinion Frontiers should have never published the profoundly unscientific work in the first place.

    I absolutely agree

    It boggles the mind that Lewandowsky (a Psychology Professor), and Cook (who is doing a PhD in Psychology) so misread the situation, and know so little about … you know, psychology……. . The pain-quotient for the journal finally reached the point where the journal had to act. It was so inevitable.

    Disagree. It was not inevitable. It should have been inevitable. Indeed it should never have happened.
    It was the result of determined and dogged pursuit of the truth by Steven McIntyre and others that has seen the unravelling of this particular piece of malfeasance exposed and now rectified.

    This a particularly important victory and it has been brought about by people like us!


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    Peter Miller

    When you say: “…..there is harassment by vexatious freedom-of-information (FOI) requests,…….”

    That just means there is some important information, which you should have already made public, but did not because you knew it was: i) clearly faked, and/or ii) obviously wrong, and/or iii) non-existent.

    There might be an excuse if the matter was strategic or commercially sensitive, but not even the goofiest of ecoloons would ever claim that for climate science.

    If you are “trying to save the planet” then you damn well better disclose all your data, methodology and code. If you don’t, it just means your conclusions are garbage and you know it.


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      vic g gallus

      Someone who argues in public (The Conversation) that lying is allowed for a good cause is going to see the request for the data to be vexatious. A bit like defense layers doing there job is just to get back at the prosecutors. The bastards must be stopped!


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        Kevin Lohse

        “…A bit like defense layers….” visions of chooks in trenches, tin helmets on looking determined….


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          vic g gallus

          Have you ever been pecked by an insane chook? I wouldn’t be so blasé about it.


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            Kevin Lohse

            I actually keep a few chickens and was violently attacked yesterday when I tried to clean the coop round a laying chook. Nature red in tooth and claw :)


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              Byron

              I keep Old English Game bantams , They have a simple philosophy that there are few problems that cannot be resolved by a beak driven at both sufficient speed and at a suitably high number of PPM (pecks per minute ).


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              vic g gallus

              We had an insane rooster when I was five. My brother goaded me into trying out karate on it. It was not a good idea except it made my parents finally realise that he would make a good coq-au-vin.


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              Mark D.

              Attacked by your birds? That must be why chicken soup is so “good for the soul” :)


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          Maggie1954

          that is some visual :) . There is probably a good Donald Duck cartoon or something from Looney Tunes that covers your particular optic! :)


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  • #
    Another Ian

    Jo,

    Maybe from that old song

    “The times they are a-changin”


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    Richard

    So this is how psychologists operate? Frighting. And they can charge some of their consultations to Medicare? That needs to be reviewed. At the least, all Medicare benefits for psychologists should be terminated immediately while their activities are investigated.


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      LevelGaze

      Most clinical psychologists, in my experience, are reasonably sensible and sometimes useful.

      Because I was doing weekend GP work (about 20 years ago) I decided to take a certificate course in clinical psychology to try and figure out what made people with nothing physically wrong with them turn up in surgery.

      What I learned was:

      Me: Hello.
      Patient: Hello.

      Me: What’s YOUR problem?
      Patient: Blah blah blah blah.

      Me: What do YOU want to happen?
      Patient: Blah blah blah blah.

      Me: So, what are YOU going to do about it?
      Patient: Blah blah blah blah.

      Me: And are YOU going to do that?
      Patient: Umm… YES!, it’s obvious now. Thank you so much.

      Me: That will be $18.

      Worked a lot of the time, so yes, clinical psychology can be of some use, sometimes.


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    Eddie

    To think of the politicians, the Government Ministers & the elected Presidents who have quoted the ideas from popularised by these clowns papers recently..
    The UK Energy Minister, Ed Davey, referring to the 97% of scientific papers, the Deputy PM Nick Clegg referring to Moon Landing deniers and the US President, putting his foot in his mouth with other people ‘s words repeatedly.
    When it comes to pass, it is not the authors they will blame, but the institutions that let them publish, for bringing the institutions themselves into disrepute.


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      Kevin Marshall (Manicbeancounter)

      For non-Britain’s Nick Clegg is the British Deputy Prime Minister, and leader of the Liberal Democrats. The party are very pro-EU and believe strongly in climate change. Last week Clegg had a televised debate with UKIP leader Nigel Farage. UKIP were founded to obtain withdrawal from the European Union and are the only party who are climate skpetics. In an outburst Clegg said.

      I wouldn’t be surprised if Nigel Farage soon tells us the moon landing was fake, that Barack Obama is not American and Elvis is not dead.

      Now consider what Lewandowsky and Cook said in the opening to “the DEBUNKING handbook“:-

      It’s self-evident that democratic societies should base their decisions on accurate information. On many issues, however, misinformation can become entrenched in parts of the community, particularly when vested interests are involved.

      Lewandowsky knew what he was doing in making false statements about “conspiracist ideation” and “extreme beliefs in free markets”. The pernicious effects of his work will go on. That is why I am looking at the follow-up article on US citizen’s. The differences with the “hoax” paper are striking, despite the questionnaire being very similar.


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    handjive

    Quote: “Science is about weeding out bad ideas.”

    Lead researcher, Professor Stephan Lewandowsky, from the University of Western Australia in an interview about the paper, titled “NASA faked the moon landing – Therefore (Climate) Science is a Hoax: An Anatomy of the Motivated Rejection of Science”.

    And so it goes.

    And what if Obama quotes “bad ideas”?
    And then creates a taxpayer funded website about a conspiracy called: Call Out the Climate Change Deniers
    A list of ‘deniers’ to be persecuted that will be continually updated.
    . . .
    Welcome to the future, and the weather is the same, but …


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    Barry Woods

    star comment
    I haven’t posted my Frontiers complaint yet (though some of it is in the UWA’s released Frontiers FOI material)

    I wrote to Professor Maybery (head of School of Psychology), for the ‘Moon Hoax’ paper’s data and reported an error, which resulted in the Vice Chancellor of University of Western Australia, replying to me: (my bold)

    From: Paul Johnson

    Sent: Friday, March 28, 2014 8:08 AM

    To: barry woods Cc: Murray Maybery ; Kimberley Heitman

    Subject: request for access to data

    Mr B. Woods

    Dear Mr Woods,

    I refer to your emails of the 11th and 25th March directed to Professor Maybery, which repeat a request you made by email dated the 5th September 2013 to Professor Lewandowsky (copied to numerous recipients)in which you request access to Professor Lewandowsky’s data for the purpose of submitting a comment to the Journal of Psychological Science.

    It is not the University’s practice to accede to such requests.

    Yours faithfully,

    Professor Paul Johnson,

    Vice-Chancellor

    —————————————–

    This has to be nearly as bad as Phil Jones’ response to Warwick Hughes
    (worse in fact?) as it is the VC of the University, not a mere Prof and the request was to be able to submit a comment for peer review

    University of Western Australia has I think 2 problems now.

    1 UWA have refused data for a legitimate request for data to submit to a journal

    2 UWA has a Vice Chancellor silly enough to put it in writing? ;-)

    and it is now nearly all in the public domain,

    I was very annoyed my request to Prof Maybery for data, met with a response from the VC which copied a UWA’s Legal Counsel, which I felt was intimidating, which is why I published it. Especially as Professor Lewandowsky and co (Dana, Elaine, Guardian, The Conversation, SciAm, etc), have been stating in the international media that complainants had made threats, and were bullying and intimidating (Lew even made a 40 minute video!)

    my correspondence with Maybery/Lewandowsky here:
    http://unsettledclimate.org/2014/04/05/i-requested-data-from-the-university-of-western-australia/


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    Thanks Jo, that is a good summary.
    It’s a relief that the journal has at last acknowledged the obvious truth.
    I have put part of my letter to them on my blog.
    —-
    FWIW I’ve added this link http://ipccreport.wordpress.com/2014/04/04/frontiers-in-psychology-vindicates-lewandowskys-critics/ to your name in the post. Thanks! – Jo


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    Eliza

    I don’t know of any other issue that is causing massive harm to Australian Higher Education Institutions than the global warming scam. Its time to fire or retire all “Climate Scientists” from these institutions. Leave meteorologists, Physicists etc alone!!


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    Jonathan Cook

    Ultimately Lewandowsky crashed and burned thanks to his “Recursive Pomposity”.

    He is clearly [snip] though.

    [we want to be very careful about unsubstantiated allegations] ED


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    Keith L

    Has anyone else noticed that even if Lews ‘study’ had been 100% by the book and above board on all counts it would still have been an utterly pointless and inane contribution to the ‘science’ of psychology and an utterly ridiculous and unjustifiable waste of taxpayer dollars?

    ————————————-

    Yes. I did. I thought it was profoundly unscientific and naively thought (and still think) that ought to be the first reason to not ever have published it, not to have started it, and not to have funded it either. STrangely logical fallacies are not that important to journals. – Jo.


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      HAS

      Actually I’m not quite so sure.

      I think if the sample had been representative of the population under consideration; the questionnaire robust and properly validated; and the statistical techniques appropriate and properly applied, we could well have found that the theory being tested was not supported.

      But no more grant money down that route (and no more global headlines).


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      Roy Hogue

      Yes. I did. I thought it was profoundly unscientific and naively thought (and still think) that ought to be the first reason to not ever have published it, not to have started it, and not to have funded it either. STrangely logical fallacies are not that important to journals. – Jo.

      Absolutely!


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    Mark D.

    Didn’t Prez Obammy quote or reference this paper?

    I wonder if he’ll be forced to apologize?


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    Mark, you are thinking of the Cook 97% paper I think, the one that Obama tweeted. Except it wasn’t Obama, it was an activist group who he gave his account too. Schmuck.


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    Tim

    STOOGE: One who allows oneself to be used for another’s profit or advantage; a puppet.


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    Kevin Lohse

    A bit OT. Apparently, that nice Mr. Abbott has made the EU very unhappy. he’s left climate change off the G20 agenda as he doesn’t want the agenda cluttered with things that would take the focus off economic growth. Words cannot describe my joy at finding a world leader who is prepared to give the warmists and the undemocratic, unaccountable warmongers of the EU as much attention as they deserve. More power to Mr. Abbott’s elbow!
    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/policy/eu-unhappy-climate-change-is-off-g20-agenda/story-e6frg6xf-1226873127864


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    Fox from Melbourne

    Well one pointless and hopelessly wrong Scientific paper retracted, many, many more to go. I would like to nominate the Climate Change effect on Coral reefs paper as another paper that should have a spot light on it. Sorry I forget who authored it but I think it came form University of Queensland. You know the one were they used Hydrochloric Acid on Coral samples and said the results of their test provide that Climate change will harm the Coral Reefs. How you may ask because of all the Carbonic Acid that is made when Carbon Dioxide dissolves in Sea water. Ocean Acidification is what its called. Figured out already whats wrong with their test and the paper that goes with it. Let see they wanted to know what effect higher levels of Carbonic Acid would have on the Coral Reefs. So you use Carbonic Acid don’t you? Well they didn’t, they used Hydrochloric Acid instead. Which when added to water turns into free Chlorine and a small amount of Hydrogen Peroxide if my Chemist is correct. Please Correct me if I’m wrong on that. Ya Chlorine like the stuff you use in your Pool, yes that stuff. But both of these Chemicals are used to kill small live things in water aren’t they. Their test and paper has nothing to do with Carbon Dioxide. So why did it get though the Peer review process. Sorry I forget its about Climate Charge what peer review process. But wait there’s much, much more about the way they stuff it up and there hundreds of millions of year worth of proof the the Coral Reefs of the world have nothing to fear from more Carbon Dioxide in the Atmosphere. They must of forget all of that. Just one of many paper worthy of retraction.


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      vic g gallus

      You need to react it with a strong oxidiser which is not going to happen in such an experiment. The extra chlorine ions are not a problem either.

      What is a problem is that the carbonic acid is a very weak acid and only a small portion of the dissolved CO2 will combine with water to give carbonic acid.

      Rain water will be about pH 5.6 if only pure water and carbon dioxide from air are in it, and even <5.7 pre-industrial times. The reason oceans aren't because they are buffered and you couldn't pump enough carbon dioxide into the sea-water sample to bring the pH down to a harmful amount.


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        Fox from Melbourne

        Thanks Vic for your reply to my question. Do you think the using Hydrochloric Acid instead of Carbonic Acid was a fair proxy in that experiment? After all the Experiment was all about the effects that the Carbonic Acid was going to have on the Coral Reefs wasn’t it. An acid formed from the dissolved Carbon Dioxide in sea water.


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          vic g gallus

          You can’t add a spoonful of carbonic acid (H2CO3) to an experiment, but you can do the experiment under an atmosphere of higher CO2 so there is no excuse for adding another acid. The latter allows you to drop the pH further than would happen in nature. I’ve seen it justified as only speeding up the reaction.

          It is important because the extra carbonic acid is expected to affect the incorporation of carbonate in the shell differently to adding just an acid. Remember that the oceans have a high concentration of hydrogen carbonate, HCO3- that is the conjugate base.


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            Fox from Melbourne

            Thanks Vic just as I thought. Different Acid different out come. A messy or sloppy experiment I thinks is called Also that the experiment could be done with the actual Carbon Dioxide in question and produce a valid outcome in the format that you described or similar. What a shame the authors of the paper didn’t know about Chemistry as mush as you my friend. When will it be retracted your guess is as good as mine. Thanks.


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          michael hart

          Fox, using hydrochloric acid is definitely NOT a fair proxy when claiming the system is exquisitely sensitive to carbon dioxide. It perturbs the chemical and biochemical equilibria in different ways. It is lazy, shoddy science.


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            Fox from Melbourne

            Thanks Micheal my point exactly. Which why I raised this experiment and the paper that went with it as a good paper to be retracted too. Queensland University should retract it don’t you think.


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    john robertson

    Same old play book, nothing original in Lewandowsky’s little effort.
    The man is regurgitating the old lines; “All enemies of the state (cause) are mentally deficient.
    Using his imaginary credentials to launch a hate filled attack upon all who challenge his intellectual deficit.
    CAGW is an Intelligence Test, Lew will live in history as another hysterical refugee from academia who failed this test.
    Common sense ain’t so common.Especially amongst the posers in the halls of government,which includes the institutions funded by govt.

    VC Johnson is stuck, how can he release data that does not exist?
    How can he admit that under his watch a professor used the institutions apparatus to launch a rabid slanderous attack upon named individuals and none of his underlings saw fit to stop this abuse of ethics,truth and sanity?

    For Johnson its the classic; Were you on crack, or are you stupid? question, this simpering place-holder is damned either way, hence his instinctive rush to defend the indefensible.

    CAGW an intelligence test that is really working.
    Revealing far too many of our government minions to be fools, bandits or both.


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    Kevin Lohse

    There IS a Santa Claus!
    http://www.thetimes.co.uk/tto/arts/books/non-fiction/article4052719.ece

    Remember boys and girls, when a sinner repents, all Heaven rejoices. Don’t be mean-spirited.


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    Carbon500

    How come Cook is working on a Ph.D. in psychology when his first degree is (from I’ve read) in physics?
    Back in the nearly forgotten hazy days of my youth here in the UK, a first degree (at 1 or 2:1) level in a relevant subject was a prerequisite, for obvious reasons.


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      Kevin Lohse

      This is Climate Science. It is possible to have a 1st degree in Meeja studies, a Masters in Feminist Studies, and a PhD in Climate Science. All that is required is that you believe!


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    Neville

    This is out there, but Anthony Green thinks that the WA senate result will be Libs 3, Labor 1, Palmer 1, Greens 1.
    This early summary is from the Bolter.
    But that sixth seat will take a time to confirm the result.

    http://blogs.news.com.au/heraldsun/andrewbolt/index.php/heraldsun/comments/abbott_dodges_bullet_labor_shot_greens_and_palmer_rise/#commentsmore


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    Roy Hogue

    From the retraction statement giving the actual fault uncovered by their investigation:

    It [the investigation] did, however, determine that the legal context is insufficiently clear and therefore Frontiers wishes to retract the published article.

    Uh… How could you get past the smell far enough to look at any legal questions?

    This is a cop out, folks. The paper was moron level nonsense. Maybe there were legal ramifications but they pale in comparison with the quality of the work.


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    Ross

    The Bishop Hill thread on this issue is worth reading. Some of the comments bring up some “great” facts like the qualifications / areas of study of the reviewers of the paper

    http://www.bishop-hill.net/blog/2014/4/5/the-lew-letters.html#comments

    You could not make a bigger circus of this.


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    jorgekafkazar

    Never underestimate the power of projection.


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    pat

    unbelievable!

    5 April: eScienceNews: Scientists unmask the climate uncertainty monster
    Source: University of Bristol
    Scientific uncertainty has been described as a ‘monster’ that prevents understanding and delays mitigative action in response to climate change. New research by Professor Stephan Lewandowsky of the University of Bristol, and international colleagues, shows that uncertainty should make us more rather than less concerned about climate change. In two companion papers, published today in Climatic Change, the researchers investigated the mathematics of uncertainty in the climate system and showed that increased scientific uncertainty necessitates even greater action to mitigate climate change.
    The scientists used an ordinal approach — a range of mathematical methods that address the question: ‘What would the consequences be if uncertainty is even greater than we think it is?’…
    Professor Stephan Lewandowsky, Chair in Cognitive Psychology and member of the Cabot Institute at the University of Bristol, said: “We can understand the implications of uncertainty, and in the case of the climate system, it is very clear that greater uncertainty will make things even worse. This means that we can never say that there is too much uncertainty for us to act. If you appeal to uncertainty to make a policy decision the legitimate conclusion is to increase the urgency of mitigation.”
    Co-author, Dr James Risbey of Australia’s CSIRO Marine and Atmospheric Research, said: “Some point to uncertainty as a way to minimize the climate change problem, when in fact it means that the problem is more likely to be worse than expected in the absence of that uncertainty. This result is robust to a range of assumptions and shows that uncertainty does not excuse inaction.”…
    http://esciencenews.com/articles/2014/04/05/scientists.unmask.climate.uncertainty.monster


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    pat

    4 April: All Voices: Robert Myles: Mathematically speaking, uncertainty on climate change no excuse for inaction
    The researchers used an ordinal approach in their analysis — a method of mathematical analysis often used to weigh the preferences of consumers when it comes to choosing different goods and services — posing the question, “What would the consequences be if uncertainty is even greater than we think it is?”…
    Never too much uncertainty for action
    Commenting on the findings, Professor Lewandowsky said: “We can understand the implications of uncertainty, and in the case of the climate system, it is very clear that greater uncertainty will make things even worse. This means that we can never say that there is too much uncertainty for us to act. If you appeal to uncertainty to make a policy decision the legitimate conclusion is to increase the urgency of mitigation.”
    In the debate on climate change, climate change skeptics demand ad nauseam proof of man-made or anthropogenic climate change. The absence of such cast-iron, bullet-proof “proof” is often voiced as a reason for carrying on much as before, extracting and burning fossil fuels into oblivion.
    Co-author of the study, Dr. James Risbey of Australia’s CSIRO Marine and Atmospheric Research, countered such an approach, adding, “Some point to uncertainty as a way to minimize the climate change problem, when in fact it means that the problem is more likely to be worse than expected in the absence of that uncertainty. This result is robust to a range of assumptions and shows that uncertainty does not excuse inaction.”…
    The authors findings are likely to find a ready audience anywhere from the Somerset Levels in England, recently flooded for months after years of inaction on flood prevention despite pleas from residents, to the New Jersey shore, pummeled by Superstorm Sandy in 2012…
    The research is published under the titles “Scientific Uncertainty and Climate Change: Part I. Uncertainty and Unabated Emissions’” and “Scientific Uncertainty and Climate Change: Part II. Uncertainty and Mitigation.” It was conducted by a team including scientists from the University of Bristol, University of Western Australia, CSIRO Marine and Atmospheric Research, Australian National University, University of New South Wales and the Antarctic Climate and Ecosystems Cooperative Research Centre.
    http://www.allvoices.com/contributed-news/16827187-mathematically-speaking-uncertainty-on-climate-change-no-excuse-for-inaction


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    Alexander K

    The VC of the UWA is a Sociologist, a discipline that was once described to me by a physicist that ‘ specialises in producing obscure glimpses of the perfectly bloody obvious!’ I thought the epithet included lent his statement a lively emphasis.
    In my view (as a lowly Arts person) much of Lewendowsky’s ouvre is nonsense on a stick flavoured with malice and bile. It doesn’t take an advanced degree in mind or brain stuff to deduce that Dr Lew is not only [snip], but reacts with rage against anyone who laughs at him and his silly cohort. Judging by the UWA VC’s response to requests for the data that he is bound to supply under the legal and moral protocols Australian universities have signed up to, he is as far out-of-bounds as Lew and his cohort.


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      Carbon500

      Alexander K: There’s no need to describe yourself as a ‘lowly arts person’ – I’ve long subscribed to the view that no matter what your background, any scientist should be able able to explain what’s going on without hiding behind jargon and needless complexity.
      As I’ve mentioned here before, an elderly family friend who was a retired ex-army officer with no knowledge of molecular biology wanted to know what my Ph.D. work was about. Out came pencil and paper, and five minutes later it was clear from his further questions that he’d understood fully.
      For some years, I worked as a Registered General Nurse (RGN) here in the UK. I never encountered a patient who didn’t understand their condition when an explanation was given. There was no need to hide behind medical jargon or assume that a patient couldn’t possibly comprehend – in my view a condescending attitude to take.
      So – just keep asking the questions!


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      Carbon500

      Another thought Alexander: Many years ago, I studied English Literature as a General Certificate of Education (GCE) subject at school.
      By analysing and explaining ‘MacBeth’ (amongst other books and plays) over a year, that teacher enriched my life forever. I certainly wouldn’t have understood without the explanation!
      The arts are fuel for the human spirit – I’ve had many, many years of pleasure and upliftment from music, painting and drama.
      Truly wonderful.


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    Brendan

    Whilst Lewandoswky’s behaviour has been appalling, whats more galling for me is the pathetic efforts by UWA. Is this the standard we now have in our Universities?

    If this was a PhD thesis, would it be acceptable to UWA ?

    I’m reminded of that saying “the standards we walk by are the standards we accept”. UWA should be ashamed that they not only have stood by this academic farce, but seem all too willing to endorse and defend it.


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    pat

    5 April: UK Daily Mail: David Rose: Green ‘smear campaign’ against professor who dared to disown ‘sexed up’ UN climate dossier
    Richard Tol claims he is fighting a sustained attack on his reputation
    Professor from Sussex University is a highly respected climate economist
    Criticised by campaigners after saying report summary was ‘alarmist’
    In his opinion, it focused on ‘scare stories’
    The source of the alleged smear campaign is Bob Ward, director of policy at the London School of Economics’s Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change.
    Mr Ward – neither an economist nor a climate expert – claimed on the institute’s website that he was waging ‘an ongoing struggle’ to force Prof Tol to correct ‘errors’ in his work.
    Mr Ward had earlier sent an email disparaging Prof Tol’s research to several leading IPCC scientists and officials.
    They included Prof Tol’s fellow co-ordinating lead author, Doug Arent, director of America’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory; and Professor Chris Field of Stanford University, the overall chairman and editor of the IPCC report…
    How IPPC report was ramped up to predict wars, extreme weather and famine… while its authors slept on the job
    By BEN PILE
    High profile commentators, including the Energy and Climate Change Secretary Ed Davey, often describe climate change sceptics as ‘deniers’, on a par with those who reject evidence of the Holocaust.
    One Sunday columnist recently insisted the parallel was exact, because the evidence of global warming is as strong as that for Auschwitz.
    Academics who deviate from the perceived ‘correct’ line risk vilification…
    The emissions cuts agreed by the EU and other countries at the 1997 Kyoto Treaty and imposed by our own Climate Change Act have made energy more expensive, and exported jobs and prosperity to countries such as China – which adds billions of watts of coal fired power to its grid each year. CO2 emissions have continued to rise.
    The architects of such policies know they have failed, but they have no alternative except more of the same. Maybe it’s because their argument is weak that they resort to climate McCarthyism. The cost, apart from higher energy bills, is to democracy, and free speech.
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2597907/Green-smear-campaign-against-professor-dared-disown-sexed-UN-climate-dossier.html


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    Seth

    Now Frontiers, the journal, already suffering from being associated with such dubious work, has finally had to set the record straight and defend their reputation.

    This isn’t close. The journal has been clear that the article is good scientifically.

    The objections were to the naming of people classified by the paper as displaying various types of thinking, that in done cases was defamatory. It isn’t that the classification is scientifically incorrect, it’s that it should really have been de-identified before publication.


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    John Coochey

    Elaine McKewon has her own blog I hope people will enlighten her and make comments on The Conversation Article it is a few days old now but worth scrolling down The Conversation page to find it.


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    Ross

    From the Bishop Hill blog. The 2 reviewers of the paper

    1. ” The University of Westminster might also take note. This is the current listing on the paper on the Frontiers website:

    Edited by: Viren Swami, University of Westminster, United Kingdom

    Reviewed by:Viren Swami, University of Westminster, United Kingdom
    Elaine McKewon, University of Technology, Sydney, Australia

    Swami’s doctorate was on body size ideals across cultures.”

    2. “Apart from the UWA, the Sydney University of Technology (world ranking 300-350) might not come out of this smelling of roses either. Ms McKewon (for a Dr she isn’t) is a postgraduate journalism student there with academic publications on prostitution. For some incomprehensible reason she was chosen to peer review Fury. And since the original retraction has been been filling the interwebs with articles and tweets about how disgraceful it all is. See the Conversation, SciAm etc.”


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    kuhnkat

    In their explanation they state:

    “We remind the community that the retracted paper does not claim to be about climate science, but about psychology. The actions taken by Frontiers sought to ensure the right balance of respect for the rights of all.”

    Apparently if it had been a Consensus Climate paper the comments would have been ok and no retraction would have happened?!?!?!?!

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH


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    fromdownunder

    Wow, climate change alarmist are coming up with their own conspiracy theories about a retracted paper, along the same lines as the “Moon Landing was faked”. I never saw that one coming..


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    Lorne50

    Streetcred
    April 6, 2014 at 9:10 am
    HAS … as one commentator at BH observed, peer reviewed by one with an interest in prostitution (so fitting in this case) and the other with the female derriere. One could not class these two, McKewon and Sami, as “peers” in the true sense of the word as reviewers.

    WTF? I as a man with normal thought’s would like to know what all that crap above this comment means ;>)


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    Backslider

    Another viewpoint from the UK Telegraph: How did the IPCC’s alarmism take everyone in for so long?

    Was nice to see Google bring that one up alongside yet another alarmist rant from Peter Hannam (SMH).


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    Alexander K

    I just visited The Conversation for the first time, curious to see the quality of the many Lewsupporters rumoured to be there – wow, what a nasty bunch of full-on name callers! It seems to be a haven for the hard-line shouty warmists (such as J Bower of Guardian CiF notoriety) mostly spitting and snarling at ‘denialists’ and the ‘denial industry’ like a sackful of cats.
    I saw a surprising number of excisions, too, as to why I would not hazard a guess!
    It was an interesting excursion, but I won’t bother going there again!


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    Nathan

    Popcorn gold!!!


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    Alice Thermopolis

    CHECK MATE

    Thanks Jo. Well said.

    The irony of it. Within hours of his post last Friday at STW:

    Recursive Fury: A Summary of Media Coverage

    By Stephan Lewandowsky
    Professor, School of Experimental Psychology, University of Bristol
    Posted on 4 April 2014

    The journal Frontiers retracted our “Recursive Fury” paper some time ago not for academic or ethical reasons but owing to legal fears. The paper can now be found at uwa.edu.au/recursivefury because the University of Western Australia has come to a different risk assessment and sees no reason not to host the paper.

    There has been quite a flurry of media activity since the retraction, and a complete listing can be found over at Skepticalscience. This post highlights some of the mainstream coverage and provides some of the more notable quotes:

    Contrarians bully journal into retracting a climate psychology paper
    Blog Post published by The Guardian on 22 March 2014

    etc etc

    in Lausanne Switzerland, Frontiers posts its damning Statement.

    A watershed moment in the psycho-climate farce.


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    [...] JoNova has a post Journal admits Lewandowsky paper retracted because it failed twice. [...]


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    [...] The Recursive Fury story has undergone a sea change. In one quick motion, senior Frontiers editors turned the carefully stage-managed Lewandowsky narrative upside down. Rarely does a succinct statement get so many key elements of a complex dispute, right on the mark. [...]


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    Eugene WR Gallun

    If the editors at FRONTIERS IN PSYCHOLOGY continue
    to publish trash like “Recursive Fury” then their
    journal will be tossed into the garbage can.

    Eugene WR Gallun


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    A. Scott

    Several have commented on Dr. Swami’s credentials. While it is fun to make fun of his interest in female anatomy, Swami IS qualified as Editor and while here it raises other ethics concerns, he would be qualified as a peer reviewer for the LOG12 or Fury paper’s as well.

    Swami’s other work directly involves conspiracy ideation, and in fact the heart of the Lewandowsky LOG12 paper – the conspiracy questions – are directly repeated from Swami’s prior work.

    It is highly important to make sure claims on issues like this are accurately made and portrayed. Ridiculing based on incomplete or inaccurate information only fulfills the stereotypes.


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      I would note that if Dr. Swami published a paper as truly bad as Lewendoski’s, that should be sufficient evidence that he is not qualified to be a peer reviewer for a science journal. It actually calls into question if he is a scientist at all. I did look up some of his other work. I can only access the abstracts, but it appears he used a large number of real people in his studies, and may have had questions and a structured reponse analysis, none of which existed in Lewendoski’s work. Why anyone with a doctorate would even entertain the idea that Lewendoski is a legitimate researcher makes me question what the point of paying attention to degrees at all is. Obviously, education is severly lacking in this whole arena. If Swami is qualified, then peer-review is surely just another name for “my pal in the publishing business” and has nothing to do with the quality of the work.


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    A. Scott

    Sheri – here is the Swami 2010 paper, there is a Swami 2012 update as well. This paper, agree with the conclusion or not, is legitimate scientific work. There is plenty to criticize Swami over, but attacking as you do, without basis – or worse inaccurately, simply feeds the “skeptic” stereotype. Attack the science, not the scientist.

    http://www.readcube.com/articles/10.1002/acp.1583?locale=en


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      A. Scott: “it appears he used a large number of real people in his studies, and may have had questions and a structured reponse analysis”. I don’t see that I am attacking Swami’s work (I can’t access the article through ReadCube without paying–or I have yet to find a way, shall I say). How is saying his worked looked fairly scientific “attacking Swami”. I did say his publishing the paper by Lew definately drew into question his ability as an editor and as an extension, as someone who is a scientist. He may well do good work on his own papers, but he failed completely in peer-reviewing Lew’s paper. A first year psychology student could have seen that. My objections are based on his apparent inability to recognize bad work, not for doing bad work. Perhaps that was not apparent.
      If you don’t understand what was wrong with Lewendoski’s work, i have a blog post explaining what he would have done if he was doing actual, scientific research. Maybe that will help.
      http://watchingthewatchersofdeniers.wordpress.com/2013/04/11/if-lewandosky-were-a-real-scientist/


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    Berthold Klein

    Having read though some of the posts ,it time to give references to a very important issue, that is the “acidification of the oceans” by CO2. The IPCC is up to it’s hockypuks of word games. AS was pointed out in #32. you can not add enough CO2 to sea water to lower the pH below about 8.3 because CaCO3 buffers the pH at this value. The paper titled “Water,CO2,and pH” created with Wolfram Mathematics shows a lot of info.
    The misuse by IPCC is that CO2 lowers the alkalinity of sea water but it never becomes acidic-pH below 7.0. There are many scientific reports being published that document that many forms of corral and sea life have thrived when atmospheric CO2 was up to 20 times current level.
    The next important point is that there is no credible experiment/test that proves that the Hypotheses of greenhouse gas effect exists. There are several true peer reviewed experiments that prove that the GHGE does not exist. Thus Man-made global warming can not be occurring. There is natural global warming because the world is in an interglacial period that based on geological data could last about 1000 years more. The problem is that there is credible geological and historical data supporting the probable recurrence of a New MINI ICE AGE. This is supported by reports from many astrophysicists that the sun is going into hibernation.


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    A. Scott

    No Sheri … I think I perfectly understand how to do a proper survey. I prepared and executed the LOG12 replication survey that was disseminated thru WUWT.


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      Beings it was 18 months ago, I cannot recall for certain, but the only difference I remember in the “replication” survey was who took it. I checked WUWT, your blog, Retraction Watch (where you commented), SkS (which had some very interesting discussions) and Climate Audit but cannot find anywhere if the survey was ever actually finished and tabulated. Did find a fascinating paper by Lew et al. on the “Subterranean War on Science”. Learned a lot (I actually like learning things and always check out things that people post). Since I cannot remember if the original survey’s problem was in content or lack of actual data collected, I suppose posting a replication of it would correct the lack of actual data. I am still unsure of the actual content and whether or not the wording of the questions created problems (one blog noted that certain phrases found in the questioning could lead to answers that supported Lewendoski’s position if actual skeptics answered). So I will continue to look for the survey and study it for proper construction and abscence of leading questions. I am happy you so perfectly understand surveys.


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