Chronicle of Higher Education Allows Smear-Job on Climate Scientist
“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.” (Edmund Burke)
Appearing below is my letter of complaint sent to Philip Semas, President and Editor in Chief of Chronicle of Higher Education. I urge all of you to also send a letter or email message (CHE contact information). We must not allow scientists to be attacked, especially in a highly respected venue such as CHE. Consider the words of Edmund Burke above and act.
Why has Chronicle of Higher Education (CHE) allowed one of its bloggers, Peter Wood, to smear noted climate scientist Dr. Michael E. Mann? Woods’ latest post, “A Culture of Evasion”, quite inappropriately compares Penn State’s handling of the Jerry Sandusky child rape case with that of its investigation of stolen emails that included messages from Dr. Mann. (Previous posts by Wood also maligning Dr. Mann include “Bottling Up Global Warming Skepticism” and “Climate Thuggery”.) Multiple international investigations, including one from the National Science Foundation, have carefully reviewed Dr. Mann’s email messages and have found no misconduct whatsoever. (For more on these investigations see
It is clear that Peter Wood finds addressing human-caused climate change inconvenient to his world-view and he hopes that somewhere in Dr. Mann’s emails there might be proof that the world is not rapidly warming so we will not need to dramatically reduce our carbon emissions. I wonder if Peter Wood also thinks a careful perusal of Sir Isaac Newton’s personal letters might end up disproving gravity thus allowing us to fly without spending money for an airplane ticket?
I have no issue with CHE allowing him to display his lack of understanding of well-understood science on CHE’s blog. After all, we are all entitled to our own opinions no matter how wrong they are and commenters on his blog have repeatedly tried to educate Mr. Wood about the settled fact of global warming. Isn’t that what the E in CHE is all about?
What is not acceptable is for CHE to allow Peter Wood or any other author to smear a well-respected scientist because of the writer’s political beliefs. It must be quite embarrassing to CHE that one of its bloggers is using a child rape case to achieve political ends and doing so under the mantle of CHE. CHE can repair the damage by immediately removing the article, admonishing Peter Wood, and issuing a public apology to Dr. Mann.
Scott A. Mandia, Professor/Asst. Chair – Physical Sciences
T-202 Smithtown Science Bldg.
Suffolk County Community College
533 College Road
Selden, NY 11764