Constantinople has summarized the debate for me in private email. People in authority are reading the blogs, and acting on them, but we are seeing the warming alarmists making the “just one sexed up graph” argument – similar to the argument that Uri Keller only bent some spoons with his hands, but all the other spoons he bent with is mind shows he really is magical, and Chomsky only made up some citations, but hey, what about all his other citations. After all, everyone knows that the ice is melting, the polar bears are drowning, that the North West passage never opened before, that we are seeing unprecedented hurricanes, the seas are rising, and so on and so forth. What does one sexed up graph matter?
In its more sophisticated and rational form, this argument is the argument that even if peer review fails now and again and allows the occasional sexed up graph through, it still mostly works, which argument we see coming from Hansen and Tyler Cowen, and will soon see from government officials around the world. “OK,” they will say, “even if the peer review process is imperfect, nonetheless, the scientific consensus …”
My impression is that my paper ended the debate on Chomsky, not because many people read it, though many people did, but because a few people that mattered read it. I went through Chomsky’s most egregious publication line by line and examined every single citation, and every single citation was at best misleading, at worst a lie. Until someone did that fisking, it remained possible to argue that people were unfairly jumping on Chomsky for a few innocent mistakes and exaggerations here and there, similar to the mistakes and exaggerations that all of us make from time to time. After I fisked him, then and only then did that argument finally go away, after hanging around for forty years and surviving numberless rebuttals.
The equivalent for warmist alarmism will be to go through every single warmist article published in one particular high prestige journal such as Nature in one particular subject area such climate of the last millennium and show that each and every one of them was sexed up, that none of them provided the data that it is a scientists job to provide, that for lack of that observational and algorithmic data none of them should have passed peer review, and that the journal ignored all legitimate criticisms of these egregious papers over the relevant period.
Steve McIntyre has done the necessary work, and lots more goodies are coming out of the Hadley CRU readme file, confirming from inside what Steve proved from outside, but it needs to be organized and structured into a single cohesive hyperlinked document.
The killer argument is that
- Freedom of information inquiries were stonewalled.
- That they were stonewalled because the graphs of doom were all pulled out of someone’s @%$#, and freedom of information inquiries would have revealed this, would have revealed the readme file of the Hadley CRU files.
- That peer review is a lie, for real peer review would have demanded the data supposedly underlying the graphs of doom, and the method of calculation, which the readme file reveals to have been pulled out of someone’s @%$#.
- That because peer review is a lie, everything is a lie – that peer reviewers did not slip up once in a while, but systematically gave a free pass to theologically correct papers, and systematically rejected theologically incorrect papers
To prove that peer review is a lie, we have to not merely produce a few particular failures of peer review, not “just one sexed up graph”, but rather we have to do a complete cover of all papers on one topic in one maximally prestigious journal in one period – which fisking very few people will read in its entirety, but the fisking has to be written, which is a lot of work.
The point of the fisking has to be not that the elimination of the medieval climatic optimum was fraudulent, but that a maximally prestigious journal was complicit in the fraud. We have to take down, not just one powerful academic like Chomsky, but one powerful journal that helped empower them, one journal prestigious enough to stand for all journals, one topic important enough to stand for all topics. We have to utterly discredit the core institutions of science, because these institutions have been corrupted and used as a lever with which to destroy science, technological society, capitalism, and western civilization.
To address the argument that even though peer review slips up every now and then, it basically works for the most part, we have to provide a clear example of it not working, have to show not just that it passed one sexed up graph, but that for one journal and one topic, peer review passed only sexed up graphs and rejected all desexed graphs, that it was synod review for theological conformity with the holy doctrine of the synod, not genuine peer review.
It was a lot of work to do the fisking of Chomsky. It will be a lot more work to do the fisking of a high prestige journal, though most of the hard work has been done by Steve McIntyre, but the needed information is dispersed over a vast blog, and has to properly converted into one hypertext document with one argument, one conclusion, and links to all supporting information – that conclusion being that science was destroyed in a political and religious effort to remake western civilization into a scientifically, economically and technologically stagnant greenie theocracy that would only be capable of supporting a “sustainable” human population far smaller than our present population. If we push for any less grandiose conclusion, we lose the argument.