Wednesday, 20 October 2010


"Mike, all of this is bullshit. Moreover, you know perfectly well it is bullshit. I have zero respect for people who argue in bad faith for wholly anti-science positions."
That was Turton yesterday after I had made reference to problems with the coding of the CRU data as evidenced in the emails under the "Harry Read Me" file and also in the leaked code itself:
"...the organization writing the code did not adhere to standards one might find in professional software engineering. The code had easily identified bugs, no visible test mechanism, was not apparently under version control and was poorly documented. It would not be surprising to find that other code written at the same organization was of similar quality. And given that I subsequently found a bug in the actual CRUTEM3 code only reinforces my opinion."
That's John Graham-Cumming, a professional computer programmer, in his submission to the UK parliament in March earlier this year. Prior to that, he also took part in an interview for the BBC which you can watch here (the introduction to the interview starts at 1.35 with Susan Watts standing outside Parliament). The part of my statement Turton was responding to was this:
"To say nothing of last year’s Climategate scandal, in which the coding of surface temperature records was shown to have been done in such a way that the original data is practically irretrievable – hence CRU's denial of FOI requests."
Where is the falsity in that statement? Is the word "irretrievable" too strong? Whatever, I cannot see how it warrants Turton's furious plunging.

A charitable view of that "bullshit" remark would be that he made the unwarranted inference that I saw the coding problems as evidence of a CRU conspiracy. But that implication is simply not there - all I said was that the coding was a mess (this seems to me incontrovertible) and that that explains why CRU sought to deny the FOI requests made of them. I rather think that is a damning enough comment in itself - irrespective of the plays some journos may have made for "respectability" in the months after the story first broke.

Anyway, upshot of that thread is that Turton has asked me not to comment on his blog any more - here's his little variation on that classic leftist argument:
"Stay off my blog. I don't have time to waste on flat-earthers, creationists, and agw denialists."
In other words: "shut up". It's the same response I got from David Reid earlier when I asked him to back up his claims about rising sea levels around Taiwan: "shut up." It's the same response I expect to be encountering again and again, but I will not shut up.

Turton: my absence will be your loss whether you appreciate it now or not.

1 comment:

  1. Jesus. They sound more like thugs than "scientists." Lol!


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