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An inconvenient lame excuse

David Adam on controversy over leaked climate change emails | Environment |

I am reserving my view on the "climategate" emails. Frankly, I am still finding it hard to believe that the University of East Anglia is as important as the furore suggests. Would anyone really jeopardise the global economy on the basis of research from such a - let's be polite - backwater of academia? Shouldn't someone from a proper university be checking this stuff, at least?

More seriously, while there was clearly unscientific zeal to suppress inconvenient evidence, it seems to have been driven by a conviction that the Anthropogenic Global Warming theory is true, rather than merely a good source of government funding. Scientifically, that's no excuse. I don't see how the academics in question can possibly stay in their jobs. They have been caught rigging their own data and conspiring to suppress or rubbish that of others. They are very clearly not fit to keep their salaries or the letters after their name. They are not worthy of the noble title of "scientist." Still, I have not yet seen the "smoking gun" the conspiracy theorists hoped for. They were zealous idiots, not frauds. The analogy is with over-enthusiastic policeman planting evidence on a guilty man to "make sure" of a conviction. Indefensible, but the man's still guilty.

Still, Environment Correspondent David Adam's explanations/excuses in the linked Guardian podcast are remarkably lame. They do seem to justify a much more critical stance in future when evaluating press coverage of Anthropogenic Global Warming theory. If AGW theory is true, we are therefore in real trouble now. The public had already sensed the dishonesty of the coverage. Having cried "wolf" so often, a real wolf could now stroll right in. Our press is just as much of a disgrace as East Anglia's academics. If we suffer all the horrors AGW theorists suggest, our last bitter thoughts may be of such fools as David Adam.