A science presenter, writer, speaker & former TV host; author of The Skeptic's Handbook (over 200,000 copies distributed & available in 15 languages).


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Rupert Wyndham ponders the wanton hypocrisy of Paul Nurse and The Royal Society

Rupert Wyndham is an eloquent treasure. For those who have not already seen this (and I’ve received many emails about it) — Enjoy! — His turn of phrase is something to behold: the damning indictments carefully understated, yet laid bare. That the Royal Society President has been reduced to ad hominem attacks “… demonstrates more clearly than anything else the loss of dignity it has endured and depths of corruption to which it has been reduced under your stewardship and those of your two predecessors. “

  — Jo

The Royal Society in better days: Boyle, Newton, Franklin, Jenner, Babbage, Wallace, Lister, Rutherford, Hodgkin, Shackleton. (From The stamp collection).


31 March 2013

Sir Paul Nurse, President, The Royal Society

6-9 Carlton House Terrace

London SW1Y 5AG


Dear Sir Paul Nurse,

Your reply to Lord Lawson dated 8 March has come to hand. It goes without saying that I make no claim to be responding on his behalf; he is more than capable of doing that for himself. Your letter, however, is such a singular juxtaposition of barely suppressed personal antipathy (malice even), blatant mendacity and [...]

Compulsive namecallers: nutter, conspiracy theorist, anti-semitic, denier — trying to censor through denigration

Got no evidence? Can’t hold a rational discussion? Just call people names — smear them.

David Evans (my other half) pointed out that anyone who opposed the regulating class gets called a racist sooner or later (see those quotes at the end). Now it’s happened to him. Two weeks after getting a mention of climate “feedbacks” into The Age, he’s being called antisemitic. And on what basis? Wait for it… two years ago, on a different topic, Dr David Evans wrote the word “Rothschilds”. Then those who can’t think, but were keen to do a character assassination, leapt to use their psychic abilities, crack secret codes, and drew on their best kindergarten reasoning to call that “antisemitic”. The essay was about banking history and systematic flaws in our currency system, and there was no mention of any religion or any race. But no matter, it’s just another variation of the pathetic Holocaust denier meme. It’s what a smear-artist does — denigrate speakers to try to stop people hearing their message.

As usual, a lack of evidence doesn’t stop the rabid conspiracy-theory-spotters from writing reams of speculation about something that isn’t there and never was.  David has never mentioned anything about [...]

Oreskes, the Queen of Climate Smear, ignores the big money, has no evidence, throws names

You’d expect a professor to have done the basic research.

Naomi Oreskes

Naomi Oreskes is famous (of sorts) for the book: Merchants of Doubt — it seeds doubts about skeptics by saying that skeptic’s “seed doubts” about climate change.

The skeptics seed doubts by questioning the evidence and pointing to contrary results (isn’t this known as “discussion”?). Oreskes seeds doubts by digging through biographies, analyzing indirect payments of minor amounts, hunting through unrelated topics and tenuous associations from 20 year old contracts.

The hypocrisy of saying that skeptics attack the messenger is lost on Oreskes who specializes in …  attacking the messengers.

Oreskes’ work is based on a logical fallacy, inept research, and incompetent reasoning.

What is remarkable is that so many “intellectuals” or journalists can’t or won’t see through her thin rhetoric.

Oreskes can name virtually no significant funding for skeptics. Skeptics are almost all unpaid volunteers, working out of professional and patriotic duty, appalled by the illogical, anti-science sentiments of people like Oreskes. The enormous “vested interests” are well over a thousand to one in favor of alarmism as measured by funding, yet Oreskes has not even considered them. The largest proactive skeptical organization (Heartland) has [...]

Blast Deniers into space eh?

Frustrated cult members know they can’t explain their faith to the rational. [See Grist]

They bombarded us with glossy brochures, with full feature documentaries, and awarded people on their team with Nobels for nothing. They spend billions of dollars of our government funds and investment monies, and, once upon a time, the full support of the EU, UK, US, Canadian, Australian, and New Zealand governments, all the major financial houses of the world, and of course the supertanker of governments – the UN. They had 70% of the Western population convinced and a $144 billion dollar global trading scheme with all the patrons that engenders.

So now that it’s all going to rot and ruin, they have no ammo left. Their arsenal is reduced to namecalling and jokes that reveal the Christmas wish-list of the inner totalitarian.

Those with billions of dollars attack the mostly unpaid volunteers who are beating them. It’s emblematic that in this meeting of the “ruling class” where the joke is funny, the only people not represented in the audience of politicians and businessmen are the taxpaying citizens:

Our biggest problem is to deal with the skepticism and denial of the cult-like lemmings who would take [...]

Big-Oil money fund warmists, confusing attack machine

Pew Charitable Trusts is an influential “progressive” think-tank with $5 billion in assets. What was the The Pew Center on Global Climate Change has lost the Pew name and funds, and become the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES).

Pew used to supply $3.5 million of the center’s current $4.4 million annual budget. Instead, in complete green purity, Royal Dutch Shell PLC, Hewlett-Packard Co. and Entergy Corp. will be the principal founding sponsors for the new C2ES.

DeSmog immediately denounced them and declared that all of their pronouncements are automatically biased since they are now oil-funded deniers:

Or maybe not. If Shell had sponsored a skeptic, Desmog would have turned it into a high rotation ritual chant.


Now we are not even allowed to doubt?

It’s Naomi Oreskes reasoning which is scary.

Some people just can’t think.

Naomi Oreskes “reasons” by Remarkable Parallels, which is as bogus a way of thinking as any tea-leaf-incantation that we thought we left behind in the caves. She thinks that because she can find parallels between Tobacco and Climate Skeptics, therefore skeptics are wrong about climate sensitivity due to a trace gas. Go figure why anyone struggles to analyze ice cores when they could have just done a Google search?

I can find remarkable parallels between Lysenko and modern climate science, but I don’t bother writing a book on it. If I want answers about the climate I look at the data from the planet, not data about personalities.

Mike Steketee (Some sceptics make it a habit to be wrong) has learnt a new way to throw names from Oreskes. Nick Minchin (recently retired Senator from the conservative opposition) is just the latest target of this effusion of confusion.

Now anyone who raises points against a policy can be called a “doubt-monger” and the Orwellian destruction of our language advances one more notch.

Naomi Oreskes IS the Merchant of Doubt

Ponder the irony of what Oreskes herself [...]

Pitman: paid $190,000 a year to throw baseless insults

Last week a paid public servant spoke untruths, but instead of being exposed by the media, he was aided by our taxpayer-funded public broadcast network. Andy Pitman spoke about the socio-economic position of a group he avoids, and let down UNSW, abused the title “Professor”, and misled the public.

The journalists allowed the baseless smears to be broadcast without question, not just once, but twice.

Professor Andy Pitman on ABC Radio: Eleanor Hall interviews Andy Pitman on glaciers.

Robin Williams thought it was so “useful” he rebroadcast the same factually incorrect, irrelevant material on his “science” show. Oops.

It’s hard to cram more anti-truths into one declaration:

“My personal view is that climate scientists are losing the fight with climate sceptics. That the sceptics are so well funded, so well organized, have nothing else to do, they kind of don’t have day jobs, they can put all of their efforts into misinforming and miscommunicating climate science to the public, whereas the climate scientists have day jobs and this isn’t one of them. All of the efforts you do in an IPCC report is done out of hours, voluntarily, for no funding and no pay, whereas the sceptics are being [...]