Watching a conspiracy in action

You may remember the day when the Hockey Stick went poof. The story began when Steve McIntyre, the same researcher who was largely responsible for destroying Michael Mann's "hockey stick" graph, turned his attention to a paper by Keith Briffa of CRU. This paper analysed tree ring data, including rings from an area called Yamal in Siberia. And quite the coincidence: CRU found another hockey-stick graph. Bishop Hill had a good account of the controversy here. In short: McIntyre's work appeared to show that Briffa had cherry-picked trees in order to get the desired outcome.

Powerline has found the Climate Gate e-mail correspondence between members of the 'hockey team' with regard to the Yamal implosion. Excerpts and analysis are here. It is astounding to read how these 'scientists' decided a priori that McIntyres results were 'bogus' and did everything in their power (up to and including sliming their way into the affections of NYT correspondent Andrew Revkin) to uphold their narrative. Nowhere in their correspondence the question is asked: But is McIntyre correct?

They knew the Briffa paper was flawed, but did nothing but be defensive about criticism of the paper. The did not correct Briffa, they did not redo the analysis. They went after McIntyre and tried to dismiss other critical voices.

Can we call it a conspiracy yet?


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