David M Hoffer comment's
September 11, 2011 at 10:11 pm
I had been ignoring the whole Spencer-Dessler episode as it seemed so far off-track relative to my interest in natural climate variations. My initial instinct is reaffirmed.>>>
Your instinct is wrong. Spencer-Dessler may not have anything to do with YOUR specific interest but it has EVERYTHING to do with the corruption of science for power and money. Is your specific interest of so much importance that you feel it is OK to ignore:
1. A properly peer reviewed paper (by his own admission) being slagged by the Editor-in-Chief of the journal it was published in.
2. The Editor-in-Chief, one Wolfgang Wagner, resigned when he failed to get the paper blocked or recalled on the excuse that it was actual data but should not have been published without first consulting…modelers.
3. The resignation letter was a virtual apology to modelers for allowing Spencer’s work to be published, and his resignation was followed by his personal apology to Kevin Trenberth, who promptly bragged about receiving the apology, and making it clear that it was he who prompted the resignation of Wagner.
4. Trenberth went on to brag that Spencer’s work, which heavily contradicts his own, was full of gaping scientific holes that would be exposed by Dessler’s paper. When Dessler’s paper was rushed through peer review and published with blinding speed, it turned out is was Dessler’s paper that was riddled holes and Spencer exposed those in a single day, prompting changes by Dessler to his own work.
5. Wolfgang Wagner is responsible for the program at Vienna University of Technology that seeks to integrate the disciplines of remote sensing, physical modeling, and environmental modeling. It takes very little digging to figure out that Wagner’s credibility and ability to do his job both as that coordinator, and as the head of the global soil moisture database, was directly and/or indirectly beholden to Kevin Trenberth, chair of the global science committee of the body over seeing multiple precipitation and drought indexes,including Wagner’s soil moisture index.
If you do not see the importance of one scientist using his personal position to destroy the career of another scientist, for failing to block the publication of science contrary to his own by yet a third scientist, let me spell it out for you:
“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.” ~ Edmund Burke
“The spread of evil is the symptom of a vacuum. whenever evil wins, it is only by default: by the moral failure of those who evade the fact that there can be no compromise on basic principles.” Ayne Rand
“Don’t let us make imaginary evils, when you know we have so many real ones to encounter.” Oliver Goldsmith
” Evil when we are in its power is not felt as evil but as a necessity, or even a duty.” Simon Weil.
“No man is justified in doing evil on the ground of expediency.” Theodore Roosevelt
If you still believe that the fuss over Spencer-Dessler is not meaningfull to you, then ask yourself this question:
If Kevin Trenberth decides that your research, or you, should be discredited for daring to differ with him… will you ask others to come to your defence? How will you feel if they reply…sorry, not my area of interest?
It is our attitude toward free thought and free expression that will determine our fate. There must be no limit on the range of temperate discussion, no limits on thought. No subject must be taboo. No censor must preside at our assemblies.
–William O. Douglas, U.S. Supreme Court Justice, 1952