According to NYU journalism professor Charles Seife and Paul Thacker there is a ‘backlash’ against transparency in science. ‘Backlash’ implies reaction from a multitude of independent parties against an initial threat. However the basis for Seife and Thacker’s claims rests largely on one source: protests from the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS). Their unfamiliarity with their subject leaves them at sea: UCS’s contradictory position on transparency in science is almost entirely a product of their support of Michael Mann’s actions. That does not constitute a ‘backlash’. One swallow does not a summer make. Seife and Thacker should realize this whole drama surrounds just one scientist’s attempts to withhold his email and data from disclosure.

H/T harkin1:

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  1. omanuel

    May AGW contradictions and hypocrisy continue and unity increase among bickering climate skeptics, so we may be able to repair damages after WWII to constitutional governments and to these fields of government-sponsored science by STALIN’S CONSENSUS SCIENCE:

    1. Astronomy
    2. Astrophysics
    3. Climatology
    4. Cosmology
    5. Nuclear physics
    6. Particle physics
    7. Planetary physics
    8. Solar physics and
    9. Theoretical physics

  2. harkin1

    Even more amazing (or maybe not, considering the lack of real journalism in the past decade) is that this story is almost nowhere to be seen.

    I think I’ll link to it at the Climate Etc. science weekly roundup.

    Always appreciate your input Shub

  3. Shub Niggurath

    Yes, even the author Paul Thacker was clueless about the retraction. Among the candidates potentially responsible, I can think of Mann, Soon and Folta. I spoke to Folta – I don’t think it’s him. I don’t think it is Soon either. Soon’s proxy response amounts to a comment left by Monckton asking that the comment not be deleted. Monckton frames his comment in quasi-legal threat language but then he always does that so it’s hard to know. The only other candidate is Mann.

  4. omanuel

    Thank you, Shub, for posting this information about the Union of Concerned Scientists, PLOS, and backlash about transparency.

    The current mix of politics and science is the result of events in Asia that changed the course of world history during a news blackout in Aug-Sept 1945. The events were unreported at the time but influenced the decision to unite nations and national academies of sciences on 24 Oct 1945.

  5. omanuel


    The flow of federal funds to science begins with NAS review of budgets of research agencies for Congress. Past experience suggests NAS Presidents have a powerful influence in directing government science through scandals.

    In 1972, thirty-seven years before the Climategate emails surfaced in 2009, a Solar-gate scandal emerged when xenon isotopes in meteorites showed “strange xenon” (Xe-2) from the Sun’s supernova birth of the solar system:

    “Xenon in carbonaceous chondrites,” Nature 240, 99-101 (1972)

    University of Chicago scientists said superheavy element fission explained the observations [Science 190/b>, 1251 (1975)], but their measurements confirmed a supernova origin of “strange xenon” (Xe-2): Primordial helium accompanied only “strange xenon” (Xe-2) in their analysis.

    See also: “Elemental and isotopic inhomogeneities in noble gases: The case for local synthesis of the chemical elements,” Transactions Missouri Academy Sciences 9, 104-122 (1975) Cited in the 1979 Lunar Science Conference.…10.1961F

    In 1976 the origin of “strange xenon” (Xe-2) was scheduled for debate at the national AGU meeting in April. But Dr. Frank Press, the AGU President, allowed the published schedule of speakers to be changed at the meeting, Harvard’s astro-physicist, A.G.W. Cameron, inserted to speak before us (without abstract) on the coincidental explosion of a nearby supernova making “strange xenon” just as the solar system was forming. He did not explain why “strange xenon” was associated only with primordial helium:

    In 1976, analysis showed that 7% of the heaviest xenon isotope in the Sun, Xe-136, came from the supernova [“Xenon record of the early solar system,” Nature 262, 28-32 (1976)].

    The origin of “strange xenon” was debated in Science in 1977: Superheavy element fission versus
    Supernova explosion of the Sun [Science 195 208-210 (1977)]

    The fission hypothesis lost the debate so soundly, Nature published the “Demise of standard dogma on the formation of the solar system”[Nature 303 (1983) 286].

    But Dr. Frank Press became NAS President in 1981 and managed to avoid collapse of consensus dogma, despite evidence from an analysis of lunar soils that the interior of the Sun is mostly iron (Fe) [“Solar abundances of the elements,” Meteoritics 18, 209-222 (1983):

    Xenon from the 1995 Galileo probe of Jupiter confirmed the 1975 conclusion “strange xenon” was made in a supernova explosion of the Sun and the 1983 paper on the Sun’s iron-rich interior.

    NASA hide the data until 1998, when CSPAN news recorded the NASA Administrator finally releasing the incriminating evidence.

    That is why we still have Stalin’s science today:

  6. omanuel

    Climate-gate surfaced in 2009 and continues after six years.

    Solar-gate started in 1972 and lasted eleven years, until an editorial in Nature finally admitted the “Demise of Standard Dogma on Formation of the Solar System.”

    But the Standard Dogma survived
    because the National Academy of Sciences continued to approve budgets for research agencies to support Standard Dogma on Formation of the Solar System, to the point of NASA hiding experimental data from the 1995 Galileo probe of Jupiter that confirmed the Standard Dogma for Formation of the Solar System died in 1983.

    If you want, I will post part of the 1998 CSPAN news clip showing the NASA Administrator releasing the 1995 data after being publicly asked to do so.

    Frank Press was President of the American Geophysical Union when evidence of local element synthesis was ambushed at the 1976 AGU meeting in Washington DC, and later as President of the National Academy of Sciences

  7. omanuel

    I.e., skeptics won the AGW debate long ago, but the controversy will contine as long as Dr. Ralph Cicerone, a climatologist, serves as NAS President and continues to direct public funds to federal research agencies to deceive the public.