Chinese philosophy describes the yin and yang as apparently opposing forces that are just as likely to be complementary. It applies to the claim that if you have God you must have a devil. Dostoevsky underscores the idea in his book “Crime and Punishment.” Crime without punishment effectively means there is no crime. Of course, you can also set the intensity of the juxtaposition by the limits you put on the range of difference. For example, in the University department where I worked the annual faculty performance assessment listed the lowest performance as average.
Punishment means people are held accountable for their actions. History is replete with examples of the power elite avoiding accountability. It is not surprising that with expanding democracy and a larger power group there are more people avoiding accountability. It is part of the “post-truth” or “post fact” society, exemplified by the view that you only broke the law if you got caught.
The list of people not held accountable grows every day with no evidence it will change in the future. People’s frustrations are manifest in the chant “Lock her up” whenever Hillary Clinton’s name is mentioned at a Trump rally. Virtually anybody else would be punished for a fraction of her transgressions, just ask General Petraeus.
(The following material produced by the author was originally published as an article on the web page WUWT).
The political power elite and those they often use and sometimes protect are rarely brought to justice. Accountability and punishment always only applies to ordinary citizens at the bottom of the economic and social ladder. Nowhere is that truer than in the complete and deliberate deception that humans are causing global warming perpetrated by the establishment. It is undoubtedly an original, longest lasting, and possibly largest, example of “fake news;” that is information designed to misinform with a false narrative.
It was “fake news” in the structure and procedures designed to produce a specific scientific result, but it went further. Maurice Strong and the gang at the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) built in mechanisms to restrict their discovery and exposure. As Elaine Dewar wrote in “Cloak of Green,”
“He (Strong) could raise his own money from whomever he liked, appoint anyone he wanted, control the agenda.”
A major part of this control included the creation of a separate (IPCC) group to produce a Summary for Policymakers (SPM). They limited and distorted what was examined by Working Group 1, The Physical Science Basis to human causes of climate change, but that meant their Report identified all the limitations of data, method, computer models, and analysis. They knew that very few people, especially those who understood the science and the limitations, would read the Science Report. Besides it was easy to marginalize the few by labelling them as skeptics, deniers, or paid shills of the energy industry. However, the more important goal was to present an alarmist message cloaked in certainty and to make sure it received all the attention from the media and environmental groups. They achieved this by releasing the SPM months before the Science report in a very heavily promoted press conference. David Wojick, an IPCC expert reviewer, explained
Glaring omissions are only glaring to experts, so the “policymakers”—including the press and the public—who read the SPM will not realize they are being told only one side of a story. But the scientists who drafted the SPM know the truth, as revealed by the sometimes artful way they conceal it.
What is systematically omitted from the SPM are precisely the uncertainties and positive counter evidence that might negate the human interference theory. Instead of assessing these objections, the Summary confidently asserts just those findings that support its case. In short, this is advocacy, not assessment.
They continued and maintained the deception despite the debacle of the hockey stick. It was a big story among the small group who knew what was going on. We foolishly thought that all this would change after the leaked emails from the Climatic Research Unit (CRU) appeared in 2009. Many of us thought this was the undoing of the deception. How could they survive the disclosure that Mosher and Fuller summarized as follows?
- Actively worked to evade (Steve) Mcintyre’s Freedom of Information requests, deleting emails, documents, and even climate data
- Tried to corrupt the peer-review principles that are the mainstay of modern science, reviewing each other’s’ work, sabotaging efforts of opponents trying to publish their own work, and threatening editors of journals who didn’t bow to their demands
- Changed the shape of their own data in materials shown to politicians charged with changing the shape of our world, ‘hiding the decline’ that showed their data could not be trusted.
Even if only half these charges are true, they are activities that would and should have resulted in academic, scientific, and legal censure, and even criminal charges.
But we are talking about politics here, and the spin doctors moved in to limit the damage. The University of East Anglia, which defended the CRU actions from the start, hired Neil Wallis of Outside Organization. University spokesperson Trevor Davies said they hired him because it was a “reputation management” problem that they don’t handle well. Instead, they chose to become part of the political cover-up. In fact, universities are more adept than most at cover up.
The favorite defensive cover-up vehicles for politicians are commissions of inquiry. Most people think they are good things because it implies the politicians are sidelined. In fact, they are the ideal weapon because the politician is off the hook but obtains much more power and control. All questions are eliminated by the answer that they cannot say anything until the inquiry is complete. The politician then works with bureaucrats to define the terms and set the limits on the inquiry. They knew how to do this in climatology because it is precisely how they organized and orchestrated the IPCC. The objective is to cover-up, and the CRU emails that undermined the IPCC was a classic example. They appointed five commissions of inquiry, all designed to misdirect, mislead. They were aided and abetted by the honed skills of academic institutions that are incestuous systems with the prisoners running the prison and the wardens being promoted prisoners to protect themselves at all costs. Even the media supporters expected some action. George Monbiot of The Guardian acknowledged the seriousness of the problem.
It’s no use pretending that this isn’t a major blow. The emails extracted by a hacker from the climatic research unit at the University of East Anglia could scarcely be more damaging. I am now convinced that they are genuine, and I’m dismayed and deeply shaken by them. Yes, the messages were obtained illegally. Yes, all of us say things in emails that would be excruciating if made public. Yes, some of the comments have been taken out of context. But there are some messages that require no spin to make them look bad. There appears to be evidence here of attempts to prevent scientific data from being released, and even to destroy material that was subject to a freedom of information request.
Worse still, some of the emails suggest efforts to prevent the publication of work by climate sceptics, or to keep it out of a report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. I believe that the head of the unit, Phil Jones, should now resign. Some of the data discussed in the emails should be re-analysed.
Jones resigned briefly but was soon reinstated; meanwhile, he conveniently ‘lost’ the relevant data. To my knowledge, there has been no official “re-analysis” of the data. Monbiot continued,
“Why was CRU’s response to this issue such a total car crash?”
He partially justified the action by writing,
“Climate sceptics have lied, obscured and cheated for years.”
However, he tempered that by taking the high ground.
“That’s why we climate rationalists must uphold the highest standards of science.”
In the Foreword to Andrew Montford’s analysis, Lord Turnbull supported Monbiot’s list when he wrote,
- that scientists at the CRU had failed to give a full and fair view to policymakers and the IPCC of all the evidence available to them;
- that they deliberately obstructed access to data and methods to those taking different viewpoints for themselves;
- that they failed to comply with Freedom of Information requirements;
- that they sought to influence the review panels of journals in order to prevent rival scientific evidence from being published.
Only four of the five inquiries, three in the UK and one in the US produced reports. They were
1. The UK House of Commons Science and Technology Committee.
2. The Oxburgh Inquiry appointed and directed by the University of East Anglia (UEA).
3. The Muir Russell Inquiry, technically The Independent Climate Change Emails Review (ICCER),
4. The Penn State Inquiry.
Here is a summary of these investigations itemizing the distinct pattern I recognize from personal experience with politically appointed commissions of inquiry.
The people appointed to the inquiries were either compromised through conflict or had little knowledge of climatology or the IPCC process.
- They did not have clearly defined objectives and failed to achieve any they publicized.
- Interviews were limited to the accused.
- Experts who knew what went on and how it was done, that is understood what the emails were saying, were not interviewed.
- Validity of the science and the results obtained as published in the IPCC Reports were not examined, yet the deceptions were to cover these problems. This was particularly egregious for the Oxburgh Inquiry that ignored specific instructions to examine the science.
- All investigations were seriously inadequate in major portions to essentially negate their findings. It appears these inadequacies were deliberate to avoid exposure of the truth. They all examined only one limited side of the issues, so it was like hearing only half of a conversation and what you hear is preselected.
All the panels failed to reflect Hans Von Storch’s admonition.
“We have to take a self-critical view of what happened. Nothing ought to be swept under the carpet. Some of the Inquiries – like – in the UK – did exactly the latter. They blew an opportunity to restore trust.”
The truth is they all did the latter. Fred Pearce, also of The Guardian noted,
“Secrecy was the order of the day at CRU. “We find that there has been a consistent pattern of failing to display the proper degree of openness,” says the report. That criticism applied not just to Jones and his team at CRU. It applied equally to the university itself, which may have been embarrassed to find itself in the dock as much as the scientists on whom it asked Russell to sit in judgment.”
Clive Crook, a Senior editor at The Atlantic, wrote,
The Penn State inquiry exonerating Michael Mann – the paleoclimatologist who came up with the hockey stick – would be difficult to parody. Three of four allegations are dismissed out of hand at the outset: the inquiry announces that, for lack of credible evidence, it will not even investigate them. (At this, MIT’s Richard Lindzen tells the committee, “It’s thoroughly amazing. I mean these issues are explicitly stated in the emails. I’m wondering what’s going on?” The report continues: “The Investigatory Committee did not respond to Dr. Lindzen’s statement. Instead his attention was directed to the fourth allegation.”) Moving on, the report then says, in effect, that Mann is a distinguished scholar, a successful raiser of research funding, a man admired by his peers- so any allegation of academic impropriety must be false.
Later Crook wrote;
“I had hoped, not very confidently, that the various Climategate inquiries would be severe. This would have been a first step towards restoring confidence in the scientific consensus. But no, the reports make things worse. At best they are mealy-mouthed apologies; at worst they are patently incompetent and even wilfully wrong. The climate-science establishment, of which these inquiries have chosen to make themselves a part, seems entirely incapable of understanding, let alone repairing, the harm it has done to its own cause.”
George Monbiot wrote,
But the deniers’ campaign of lies, grotesque as it is, does not justify secrecy and suppression on the part of climate scientists. Far from it: it means that they must distinguish themselves from their opponents in every way. No one has been as badly let down by the revelations in these emails as those of us who have championed the science. We should be the first to demand that it is unimpeachable, not the last.
In fact, they were far from “unimpeachable,” as they remained silent or participated in the orchestrated cover-up. The entire corruption of climate science orchestrated through the IPCC, national weather offices, and government agencies like NASA GISS continue. Many of the people involved at CRU and other agencies cite the five commissions of inquiry as proof of their innocence.
I am unaware of any person who has been held accountable in any way for the biggest deliberate deception in history that has created completely unnecessary social and economic upheaval and wasted trillions of dollars. None of this is surprising because a lack of accountability is a pandemic among all politicians and the power elite. It parallels the destructive change in thinking associated with the belief that a person only broke the law if they got caught. Crime without punishment is no longer crime.