06 December 2009

Climate Scientist Threatens Boycott of NYT Reporter

Michael Schlesinger, a climate scientist at the University of Illinois, sends an message to Andy Revkin of the New York Times (via his widely circulated email distribution list) threatening some sort of boycott -- whatever that means -- of Revkin among climate scientists, for having the gall to mention my views and those of my father. The reference to prostitutes in the email presumably comes from this post at Dot Earth where Revkin mentioned a funny news story in his Twitter feed, (emphasis added).

Copenhagen prostitutes?

Climate prostitutes?

Shame on you for this gutter reportage. This is the second time this week I have written you thereon, the first about giving space in your blog to the Pielkes.

The vibe that I am getting from here, there and everywhere is that your reportage is very worrisome to most climate scientists. Of course, your blog is your blog. But, I sense that you are about to experience the 'Big Cutoff' from those of us who believe we can no longer trust you, me included.

Copenhagen prostitutes?

Unbelievable and unacceptable.

What are you doing and why?

You'd think that after the actions of certain activist scientists to suppress certain perspectives was revealed in the CRU emails that there would be a little bit more self-awareness in this community. Ironically enough, the public editor of the NYT today cites my father to help justify why the CRU email story is "a story, not a three-alarm story." The irony is that my father is trying to help restore some lost credibility to the climate science community even as these activist climate scientists continue their attacks.

Real Climate also put up a post criticizing Revkin for citing my views. Revkin responded there (emphasis added):
As for Roger Pielke, Jr., he’s absolutely not a climatologist and noted at the outset that he’s an interested observer. You’re right that he’s not the ideal choice to be commenting on climate sensitivity issues, but to imply that he doesn’t deserve a seat at the table is troubling. Here’s why. He has been an author on dozens of peer-reviewed papers related to climate change, with a particular focus on the climate/hurricane/disaster losses arena. Just go to http://j.mp/PielkeGoog for a sample. Given how many climate scientists have begun speaking out about policy choices (Pielke’s realm) hard to see how he can be excised from discussions.
In response, Eric Steig, the post's author, tries to explain (emphasis in original):
I in no way intended to suggest that Roger should be excluded from the table. . . . getting an opinion in addition to Pielke's is particularly important, given that he has repeatedly demonstrated a remarkable ability to mislead readers about the facts.
UPDATE: Lucia discusses the substance of Eric Steig's complaint, and finds it pretty weak.

Haven't these guys gotten into enough trouble in trying to stage manage discussions of climate issues? Rather than complain about the fact that people who they may disagree with are being heard in public discussions, why don't they just stick to arguing the merits of particular arguments, including their political views and opinions?

If Eric Steig feels that I have misled anyone about facts (he offers nothing in support of his assertion) he and his colleagues are welcome to a top line, unedited guest post here on my blog making such a case.