Michael “Hockey Stick” Mann hides atop the climate change ivory tower

Shortly after climate scientist Michael “Hockey Stick” Mann got word that a panel of his Penn State colleagues had cleared him of misconduct in the so-called “climategate” scandal, Prof. Mann was quoted in the British media as saying he believed that his little graph had gained undue attention.

The “hockey stick” graph, which purports to show a sudden uptick in global temperatures during the industrial age, should not have become a “central icon of the climate change debate”, Mann told the BBC. And yet it did, thanks to its appearance in Al Gore’s movie “An Inconvenient Truth,” as well as in the U.N. report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change — both of which employ it to advance the theory of anthropogenic [man-made] global warming.

With the pressure of Penn State’s internal ethics investigation removed, it seemed like a good time to ask Mann what he meant by the remark. My attempt to give him an opportunity to explain his comments, however, wound up reinforcing the public perception that climate scientists, like Mann, don’t see their tax-funded grants, or public university employment, as making them accountable to the public. It paints a picture of an ivory tower academic slinging mud on the little people down below, even as the tower sinks into the mire.

After several phone messages went unanswered, I sent him the following email.

Dear Dr. Mann,

I’m sure you have more important things to do than respond to interview requests from reporters. But as a Penn State-trained journalist (’83), I’m hoping you can invest a few minutes with me on the phone to help our readers at DailyCaller.com understand your recent remarks about the “hockey stick” graph. I know it’s hard to convey complex concepts in a culture accustomed to simplistic talking points, but I hope to do justice to your thoughts on this subject.  Can we talk for a few minutes on the phone soon?

Thank You,

Scott Ott

Although previous emails to Mann had elicited nothing but autoresponders — “I cannot provide individual responses to all emails” — this time he wrote back.

hi Scott,

thanks for asking about this. Always happy to talk w/ a former Nittany Lion :)

I actually responded to this in an interview last week: http://www.climatesciencewatch.org/index.php/csw/details/michael-mann-interview-penn-state-final-report/

the specific bit is at the end of the interview:

Mann then included three paragraphs of transcript from the interview he linked to in the email. I told him I would watch the interview and send him any questions.

I reviewed the video of his interview with the “reporter” from Climate Science Watch several times, and read the transcript, which oddly enough diverges from the video periodically. I felt relieved that Mann didn’t get beaned by the softballs from the friendly interrogator. If being probed by his Penn State water cooler colleagues proved stressful, being interviewed by a groupie must have been positively grueling.

But Mann’s interview raised more questions than it answered. So, I wrote back.

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  • mndasher

    Shouldn’t Mann’s work have the following familiar disclaimer on it; “Past performance is no guarantee of future results.” Possibly modified to read “Past temperature data can in no way can predict future temperatures.”

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  • rubicon

    So you thought Dr. Mann would respond? Still believe in the tooth fairy too, huh? Dr. Mann & even Dr. Jones at the Climate Research Unit of University of East Anglia, cannot respond to actual questions & especially when details are questioned. Those computer models the world is basing its future on, can never be revealed because to do so would mean people would be able to see that the basis of their assertions, are total bunk.
    AGW or Climate Change is a political tool & only a political tool. As Maurice Strong of Canada once said, global warming can be used to install global governance & to create the socialist state we all want for the world, under a UN led government. The UN wants global taxation so they have a lucrative & independent funding stream for their global operations, that member nations cannot with-hold. Right now member nation dues can be with-held. The taxes they want would come in w/o any strings attached. We would have global government whether we wanted it or not.
    Senator Imhofe has been characterized as evil & stupid. Yet when we see evidence of data manipulation & falsification of data by climate scientists (sic), we are told its all about evil oil companies. Its not. Its all about evil people who seek power & wealth at the expense of the lives of millions of average people.
    Look at the UN IPCC evidence that has been discredited in just the past three years alone. The Un based their forecasts on this evidence, but now we are told its not really important but the totality of evidence is. The totality of evidence is corrupt. The basis of computer models is corrupt. The fantastic prognostications of the alarmist Al Gore are corrupt. Gore will make billions trading in carbon credits whose paper is worthless & he knows it. The entire European system has been a failure because carbon trading does NOTHING AT ALL for the environment. Its a scam to make money. Its also a scam to put some uber wealthy people, into positions of global government power!
    Too much “evidence” has been proven false. Too much has been shown to have been contrived. Surface temperature readings alone have been so corrupted & based on 80% of the locations being scientifically faulty, temperature readings alone can no longer be trusted as accurate. Over 3,000 surface temperature stations were abandoned over the past ten years. The majority of them located in, ‘cold’ climates. Wonder why we kept the warm readings but discarded the cold ones? Siberia is no longer represented in the readings. Why?
    Sorry folks, there is mounting evidence the evidence has bee corrupted, manipulated, & omitted. Sooner or later actual evidence will be surfaced & the public will find out this has been an orchestrated effort by many socialist types to create a one world government or governance.

  • moira1987

    Hockey Stick Mann looks like a *Russian gangster. lol No wonder he’s a fraud.

    *I want to offer my sincere apologies to any self-respecting Russian gangsters for comparing you to a lying POS like Michael Mann.

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  • libertyatstake

    Mann won’t be able to hide behind an email responder when he receives Chairman Inhofe’s subpoena next year.

    http://libertyatstake.blogspot.com/
    [For a light hearted take on our present peril]

  • truebearing

    Before I add my two cents worth, let me say: Great job, Scott. Very focused, respectful, and thorough. Your membership as a “journolist” is now revoked!

    If Mr. Mann honestly feels his “little graph had gained undue attention” and should not be held up as a “central icon of the climate change debate”, why didn’t he announce this before the scandal? What scientist would stay mum when he knows his work is being misrepresented? Well, Mr Mann, obviously.

    Why was he apparently quite willing to allow the “hockey stick” to stand as an icon of global warming truth when he now admits, kind of, that he knew it wasn’t?

    Why, when he was being showered with attention, praise, and money, did he not show his scientific integrity and admit that it was at best a theory unproven?

    Why did he allow the “hockey stick” to be used as a tool of intellectual violence on other scientists who legitimatly disagreed with his theory.

    Why did he stand back and allow sincere difference of scientific opinion be treated with scorn, ostracization, condemnation, vilification, and even physical threats?

    Could it be that neither he, nor his theories have any integrity, scientific, or otherwise?

  • Taxpayer

    JournoListers: This is how a REAL journalist does his job.