My last post was the first in a series discussing significant examples of Michael Mann behaving in… questionable ways. The example in that post was the stupidly named “Excelgate.” There was a related issue I wanted to discuss because it’s hilarious, but it didn’t seem important enough to include. As such, I’m making this post as Mann’s Screw Up #1.1. Or 1.5. Or something.
You’ll remember in the last post I showed Mann told multiple lies about a spreadhseet. The most important for this post is in his book he claimed Steve McIntyre and Ross McKitrick’s criticisms of his work:
were false, resulting from their misunderstanding of the format of a spreadsheet version of the dataset they had specifically requested from my associate, Scott Rutherford. None of the problems they cited were present in the raw, publicly available version of our dataset, which was available at that time at ftp://holocene.evsc.virginia.edu/pub/MBH98/.
This contradicted other stories he told about the same issue, one of which said Mann’s co-author “unintentionally sent an incorrectly formatted spreadsheet” and another which said the file sent “was essentially useless.” It’s pretty silly.
What’s more silly is something Mann wrote in the same section of his book. The note that story came from is given for a paragraph on page 123 of Mann’s book. That paragraph has the amazing claim:
The fact that their critique rested on what could most charitably be desribed as a misunderstanding of the data used in our study hardly mattered, though. For the time being, climate change deniers had everything they needed to do immediate damage. They had a published study purporting to call into question the basis of the scientific evidence for human-caused climate change
McIntyre and McKitrick’s paper criticized Mann’s hockey stick. According to Mann, McIntyre and McKitrick questioned “the basis of the scientific evidence for human-caused climate change.” That means, according to Michael Mann, his hockey stick was the basis of the scientific evidence for human-caused climate change.
I won’t begrudge an ego in someone whose work is that important, but I must say, I cannot imagine a more damning argument for the global warming cause than saying Michael Mann’s work was the entire basis for it.