Updated: With complete list of Mashey Papers
Computer scientist, entrepreneur, periodic DeSmogBlog contributor and “one of the good guys” John Mashey is the subject of an extremely favorable profile this week in Science.
Science writer Eli Kintisch looks back over the last couple of years at the research and reports that Mashey has produced. Calling Mashey “an amateur” (which, on the question of climate science, he freely admits to being), Kintisch then looks for some journalistic “balance,” interviewing one person who is defensive and critical in the face of Mashey’s work (the confused and compromised physicist Will Happer) and one who is reassured and delighted (“hockey stick” co-author and director of the Earth System Science Center at Penn State, Michael Mann).
“Both sides can agree on one thing, however: Mashey has become one of the most visible of a new generation of climate warriors.”Kintisch canvases the reason that Mashey got involved in the first place – why he spends his retirement from designing computer systems by feverishly documenting “climate anti-science.”
“Mashey became upset that they (friends in the climate science community) were being attacked by bloggers and lawmakers and subjected to anonymous threats. ‘(Science historian) Naomi (Oreskes) is a friend, and she gets death threats. Mike Mann’s a friend, and he gets death threats. It pisses me off,’ Mashey says. ‘They get harassed and discouraged for doing a good job for everybody’s grandchildren.’”
So, with a computer programer’s zest for detail, Mashey wades through the flawed and contradictory material that constitutes the attack on climate science, producing voluminous and carefully credited reports that, in at least one recent case, result in the embarrassment of warriors on the other side of the argument and in a restoration of accuracy in the published record.
The Science article concludes:
“Mashey believes that vanquishing scientists’ foes will serve a higher purpose. ‘It’s up to some of the rest of us to help get these guys off your backs so you can do the science,’ he tells his scientist allies. He thinks discrediting their opponents also allows society to focus on the biggest problem: the need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. ‘Goal number two is, try to help lessen the impact of climate antiscience on public policy before it commits the U.S. to be an increasingly bad place to live,’ he says.”
The Mashey Papers
1) Another Attack on Global Warming’s Scientific Consensus – A Case Study of Personal Harassment and Amplification of Nonsense by the Denialist PR Machine, DeSmogBlog, March 23, 2008, 40p.
2) Science Bypass – Anti-science Petition to APS from folks with SEPP, George C. Marshall Institute, Heartland, DeSmogBlog, Nov. 11, 2009, 128p.
3) Crescendo to Climategate Cacophony – Behind the 2006 Wegman Report and Two Decades of Climate Anti-Science, DeSmogBlog, March 15, 2010, 185p. (CCC)
4) Strange Scholarship in the Wegman Report – A Façade for the Climate Anti-Science PR Campaign, DeepClimate, Sept. 26, 2010, 250p. (SSWR)
5) “Strange Inquiries at George Mason University …and even stranger comments, DeSmnogBlog, Jan. 04, 2011, 45p. (SIGMU)
6) Strange Tales and Emails: Said, Wegman, Sharabati, Rigsby (2008), DeSmogBlog, May 26, 2011, 17p. STaE.
7) Strange Falsifications in the Wegman Report, DeSmogBlog, May 27, 2011, 12p. SFWR
PRESENTATION AND VIDEO
The Machinery of Climate Anti-Science, April 7, 2011, University of Victoria, B.C., Canada.