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Climate Hustle

Nil Illegitimi Carborundum

Posted on 1 July 2012 by Glenn Tamblyn

We have probably all heard reports of the abuse climate scientists have been subjected to for just doing their job and reporting what they find; the climate blogosphere has generated a very dark underbelly.

Few people have received more vitriol and unjustified abuse than Dr. Phil Jones at the University of East Anglia, but until recently few of us knew just how vile the threats and malice had been.  Recently the content of some of these emails was released by the UEA as a .pdf file here (warning, the content contains very crude language, and the sentiments are far, far worse).

Phil Jones: don't let the bastards grind you down

Nobody should have to endure such abuse just because they go to work and do their job! And such extremely personal abuse would take an emotional toll on any of us.

So the Author Team at Skeptical Science would like to offer Phil Jones all the moral and emotional support we can (and all his colleagues who may have experienced similar abuse).  To this end we will shortly be sending Phil a letter of support from all of us here at SkS.

An Invitation to Our Readership

If you want to add your name to this letter, please do so by indicating your willingness by a simple entry in the comments section of this post (your name and country will suffice).  We will send this letter one week after we put this post up; all reader additions up to then will be included.

If you wish to comment under an online pseudonym, we fully understand why you may prefer to do so.  However a real name is more personal.

If you wish to use your real name but maintain online anonymity (reading the contents of the emails to Dr. Jones clearly shows why one might wish to do so) then simply send us an email at info[at]skepticalscience.com indicating your willingness to add your personal name and country. We will add you personal details to the email then delete from our system any further reference to who you are.

The letter will be sent privately to Dr. Jones and  your email will not be made public.

The text of the letter will be as follows:


Dear Prof. Jones.

Phil,

Recently the content of some of the abusive and threatening emails you have received over recent times were made available online. They are utterly appalling!

We here among the author and reader community at SkepticalScience.com would like to offer to you, your family and colleagues our whole-hearted, unconditional and sympathetic support.

The language of the emails was very offensive but the intent of them was far, far worse. It is very telling how limited the vocabulary of cowards can be.

It has been reported previously what the emotional toll upon you may have been. Never doubt for a moment that a supportive and protective community of friends who hold you and your colleagues in the highest esteem surrounds you.

Many disciplines in science advance human knowledge; few disciplines of science are trying to make such a profound contribution to actual human wellbeing at this moment in history as climate science.

The threat of climate change is arousing some very primal and often very dark emotional forces. Never doubt that what you and your colleagues are engaged in is valued, deeply and profoundly, today and into the future.  The words of the cowards who have threatened you will vanish into history's dustbin where they belong.

We at Skeptical Science are trying, as best we are able, to bring reasoned analysis to this discussion. We cannot be there when the next hateful letter appears.  But as far as is possible, you have our support - if there is anything we can do, just ask.

Warmth, happiness and gratitude to you, your family and colleagues.

- The team and readership at SkepticalScience.com.


 If you have the stomach for it, go back and read what Phil has had to endure. Then add your support with your name.

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Comments 51 to 100 out of 327:

  1. I applaud your evidence based conviction Dr Jones. May it shield you from the fear and ignorance of those who seek to dissuade you.

    Mark Coles, Western Australia
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  2. Peter Milovanovic
    Ontario, Canada
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  3. Bernard J., Australia
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  4. Massato Hirai, Brasil
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  5. Bruce Steele California
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  6. Jim Goodridge
    Saskatchewan Canada
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  7. Nigel Franks, UK
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  8. Paul Tremblay, USA
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  9. Max Wright, USA
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  10. Ian Forrester, Alberta, Canada
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  11. Sapient Fridge, England

    (Real name sent by E-mail)
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  12. Thanks for your great work--humanity is blessed to have skilled scientists, such as yourself, to warn us of the potential consequences of our actions--Keep up the good work. Kirt Williamson Utah, USA
    0 0
  13. Rick Baartman, Vancouver Canada
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  14. Garrett Van Cleef, Ph.D., USA
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  15. Ethan Vishniac
    Sasketchewan, Canada
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  16. To add to my 35

    Hampshire. UK.
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  17. I'm appalled at the threats made and the use of expletives in messages to you, Professor Jones. Do, please, keep up the good work.
    Ken Dunstan, Essex
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  18. Richard Powell
    Ohio, USA
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  19. Karsten Haustein, Germany
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  20. ...another one sent by email.
    0 0
  21. Paul Klemencic, Seattle, Washington
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  22. Dave Leaton - Misery, USA

    What a bizarre world this is.
    0 0
  23. Kevin Boyce
    Maryland, USA
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  24. Paul Vincelli, University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky
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  25. Daniel Bacon
    Chattanooga, Tennessee. USA
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  26. Chris Parker, UK
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  27. Kevin Brown, South Wales
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  28. Hear, Hear!

    Cheers - John
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  29. I hate to put a bit of a dampener on this worthy cause but be aware that this email to Prof Jones when sent would in all likelihood be open to an FOI request so I would urge you to reconsider including anyone on the message that clearly wants to remain anonymous (i.e. has submitted their name to you via email).
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  30. P.S. By FOI request, I meant to Phil Jones, not to Skeptical Science - the 'anonymous' names would therefore be exposed indirectly.
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  31. Jos Hagelaars, Netherlands
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  32. When the history of climate science in the late 20th century is written your work will stand out as a great contribution. I am sorry for your troubles. Keep up the good work.
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  33. Keith Pickering, USA
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  34. Ben Shepherd, Sydney
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  35. Hank Roberts, California
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  36. David Watkins, USA
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  37. Susan Anderson, Boston and Princeton, USA
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  38. Malcolm Parks, UK
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  39. Hang in there, Dr. Jones! God rewards those who tell the truth. You've got friends. Contact me if I can help in any way.

    -Barton Paul Levenson
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  40. Of course you may use my real name.
    Oliver Perkins, Haskell, Texas, USA
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  41. Rick Brown, USA
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  42. Paul D, UK
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  43. Sandy Hauserman, VT, USA
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  44. Jim Bowron
    Canada
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  45. Gordon Parish, Ohio, USA
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  46. Thomas Gray, VT, USA
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  47. Hang in there, Dr. Jones!
    Donaldg

    Donald G., California, USA
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  48. I once did an article explaining the concept of a temperature anomaly, and wanted to use data from an article Dr. Jones had worked on. He was extremely helpful and nice in our communications.

    Charlie Soeder, USA
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  49. Vladimir M., USA
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  50. Chris McCall, UK
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