Free Speech

National Review Not Liable for Mark Steyn's Blog Post About Michael Mann

The court doesn't decide whether the column was libelous, but just that the National Review wasn't liable for Steyn's post, because Steyn wasn't an employee.

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Libel lawsuits by public figures famously require that the plaintiff show that the defendant wrote with "actual malice," which is to say knowing that the statement was false or likely false. But of course most media libel cases aren't brought just against writers; they are also brought against the media enterprises that published the libel. How do you determine what an organization knows?

It turns out that, generally speaking (and in particular in libel cases), you focus on what its employees know. Thus, if a newspaper or magazine publishes a libelous article by its employee, and the employee knows the statement is false, then the publication is also on the hook. But if it publishes an article by a nonemployee third party (e.g., a syndicated columnist or an occasional op-ed writer), then it's only liable if some employee (e.g., an editor) knew the article was false.

Hence the result in Mann v. National Review, Inc., decided today by Judge Jennifer M. Anderson (D.C. Super. Ct.):

On July 15, 2012, Mark Steyn … posted an article titled "Football and Hockey" on National Review Inc.'s … website's blog section, The Corner. On July 23, 2012, Plaintiff Dr. Michael Mann's counsel sent a letter to National Review threatening to sue over Defendant Steyn's post. On August 22, 2012, Rich Lowry …[,] editor of National Review, wrote an article in National Review, addressing Plaintiff's threatened lawsuit. On October 22, 2020, Plaintiff filed suit against Defendants National Review, Steyn, Competitive Enterprise Institute ("CEI"), and Rand Simberg. Plaintiff alleged libel per se against Defendant National Review for the allegedly defamatory statements in Defendant Steyn's article and Mr. Lowry's article [though the lawsuit over the Lowry article was dismissed on appeal].

The court granted National Review's motion for summary judgment:

[1.] "Actual malice [i.e., knowledge that the post was false or was likely false] cannot be imputed to a company based on the state of mind of a writer who is an independent contractor. See Nader v. de Toledano, 408 A.2d 31, 57 n.15 (D.C. 1979)." Mann hadn't sufficiently alleged that Steyn was an employee of the National Review, though he was authorized to post to its blog, so the National Review can't be on the hook just because of the employer-employee relationship.

[2.] Mann had alleged that Steyn, as a blogger at The Corner, was the National Review's "agent," but that's not enough for imputing liability: "courts have consistently declined to impute actual malice to a defendant from another defendant if there is not an employer-employee relationship between them."

[3.] The National Review of course could be held liable if its own employees had the requisite knowledge of likely falsehood; but "Plaintiff has not alleged that any National Review employee was involved in the post that Defendant Steyn published on National Review's blog, The Corner, in July 2012, or knew or suspected it was false." (Note that, to my knowledge, Mann wasn't suing on a theory that the National Review had continued to keep the article up after learning that the article was false, so the arguments in my new duty-to-correct law review article don't seem applicable here.)

The lawsuit against Steyn and the other defendants appears to still be proceeding.

NEXT: Short Circuit: A Roundup of Recent Federal Court Decisions

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  1. Naturally Mann has used these law suits as a way to defend his political colored psuedoscience

    1. Acupuncture is pseudo science; Mann’s assertions are pure bullshit. Anyone who gets acupuncture is just wasting their money for a placebo. Mann is literally trying to spend trillions of tax dollars by scaring people with nonsense.

      1. “Mann is literally trying to spend trillions of tax dollars by scaring people with nonsense.”

        And I thought that you’d gotten it through your skull
        What’s figurative and what’s literal
        Oh but, just now, you said
        You literally couldn’t get out of bed
        That really makes me want to literally
        Smack a crowbar upside your stupid head

        1. Hahaha. The essence of Federalist law; stark raving mad drek from a judge who has completely lost it. Perhaps you’re feeling nostalgic for Bull Connor.

          1. Bull Connor would be too coherent and leftist for Behar.

            1. Connor was a registered Democrat, of course, as you are.

              1. The passage of time, how does it work?

                1. “The passage of time, how does it work?”
                  There is a question that I like. I’d love to read answers to that question as well as an explanation of time passing only in one direction

                  1. Study thermodynamics, then.

                2. It took the KKK 100 years to lynch 4000 black young men. Today’s Democrat Party has orchestrated an excess of 4000 murders of black people each year. Today’s Democrat Party is 100 times more lethal to black people than the KKK.

                  1. And yet there’s only one party working to defend monuments to *actual* KKK members/founders, and it ain’t the Democrat Party…

                    1. Robert Byrd?

                    2. The Democrat Party is the party of poverty and of crime. It makes Black Lives Miserable.

                    3. Queenie. Bump up the intellect level, or else I will start ignoring you. All lawyers are stupid, but try to persuade. I don’t think you are a lawyer. We really have no dispute. I wish you well.

                  2. “Today’s Democrat Party has orchestrated an excess of 4000 murders of black people each year. Today’s Democrat Party is 100 times more lethal to black people than the KKK.”

                    A right-wing blog that has been publishing the most vile racial slur weekly (and often gratuitously) seems a fine venue at which to launch that assertion.

                    Carry on, clingers. But only so far as your betters permit.

          2. He is on the bench. Where are you?

  2. Lost is whether Steyn/simberg/CEI/NRI knew the statement was false.

    There is ample evidence in the public domain that strongly indicates Simberg’s statement was true. Certainly it is reasonable for Simberg & Steyn to believe the statements were true based on the publicly available information. See climate audit.org

    Notice that in Mann’s January 2021 motion for partial summary judgment, he moved to have Judith Curry struck as a witness under the Daubert standard.

    1. Also note Mann’s frequent lies, misstatement and misrepresentations in his pleadings. For example in his January 2021 motion for partial summary judgment he stated ” the DC Court of Appeals hearing En Banc held ….” (the quotes are actually a paraphrase of the filing). The next page of the filing cited 4 cases in support of “state of mind”, yet only one of the 4 cases dealt with the subject matter he claimed. He repeated the false statement that 8 or so, independent inquires following climate gate had exonerated him, including the inquiries that did not investigate him.

      1. “Also note Mann’s frequent lies, misstatement and misrepresentations in his pleadings.”

        IIRC he had to file an amended complaint to remove a false claim that he was a noble laureate.

        1. One of the reasons the Slapp appeal failed the the DC court of appeals is due to the numerous misrepresentations in his pleadings. The DC court of appeals took his pleadings as true. One of the most obvious misstatements mistaken as true was the exoneration by the NSF. The NSF investigation only covered studies done with NSF funding. MBH 98 & MB99 were done before any NSF funding, therefore, that investigation did not cover the statements made by mann. Unfortunately, Carvin spent his time arguing the free speech issue instead of highlighting the each separate misstatement made by mann in the pleadings.

      2. The biggest lies were that he was personally “exonerated” by the Muir Russell Report and Oxburgh report which merely found that climate science as practiced by University of East Anglia was not fraudulent. These reports did not focus on the accuracy of Mann’s work, which could have been inaccurate even if East Anglia climate science research had been conducted properly.

        I wrote a post that went into detail with respect to the mistakes made by the Court of Appeals in handling this issue here: http://rankexploits.com/musings/2018/was-michael-mann-exonerated-by-the-post-climategate-investigations-as-was-decided-by-the-dc-court-of-appeals/

        (Hope citing my own blog post doesn’t violate any rules here)

        1. Mann’s February 2021 motion for partial summary judgment is likewise contains 2-3 distortions, misrepresentations and outright lies on virtually every page
          1) the court of appeals holding “en banc”
          2) citations of 4 cases holdings in his favor on “state of mind” when only one of the 4 cases even touched on the subject matter.
          3) the 9 famous investigations that all exonerated him, including the 7 that did not even investigate him.

          just to name a few

    2. Mann is a liar, knowingly hiding data that didn’t agree with his prognostications and arguments. Steyn apparently knew that and called him out for it.

      Mann is simply trying to maintain his grift for as long as possible, before the funding spigot is turned off.

  3. The legal conclusion is interesting, but probably not as interesting as the fact that it took six years to finally resolve an Anti-SLAPP motion to dismiss (filed December 14, 2012, amended order issued by appeals court December 13, 2018). That is too long for a special expedited procedure (like qualified immunity) designed to save certain defendants from going to trial.

    1. Yeah. The DC Circuit Court of Appeals said they’d perform an “expedited” review of the case. It was *years* between when the last brief was filed at that level and when they finally ruled. I’d hate to see how they handle cases that aren’t expedited.

      The fact that you can file a lawsuit in 2012 and have it still be going in 2021 is an indictment of our judicial system. No case should take this long. 9 years and counting, and I’m going to take a wild guess that we are nowhere near ready for trial for the other defendants.

  4. I hope Mann gets slapped down here and becomes liable for attorney fees from the defendant….

    1. And how do you foresee that happening?

      1. Not easily as he has likely scared his university’s admin from investigating him for academic misconduct.

        1. what in the world would his university’s administration have to do with him paying fees for his absurd lawsuit?

          1. Who said anything about paying. Academic misconduct – of which Mann is quite probably guilty of – is a very common reason for the firing of a tenured professor.
            What I said was that his litigiousness has likely scared the university off from making a proper and rigorous investigation of misconduct.

            1. Why do poorly educated, superstitious, stale-thinking bigots so dislike this?

              1. dislike what, fool?

      2. From the NR quoting Rich Lowery:

        “Mann may well appeal the ruling, while NR has the option of seeking attorney fees from Mann. It has already cost NR millions of dollars to defend against the litigation.

        “Let’s just say if I were him, I’d be very worried about this possibility,” Lowry said.”

        So I would say not only is there a clear path to attorneys fees but Lowery looks like he wants to pursue it.

        1. So I would say not only is there a clear path to attorneys fees but Lowery looks like he wants to pursue it.

          I guess my point is, in most American jurisdictions, attorneys fees would not be available in this situation. If that’s not the case in DC, I’d be interested to learn more. I don’t think a throwaway comment from one guy iMovies in the case (who is not himself a lawyer) is much of an indication.

          1. DC Anti SLAPP has a provision for awarding reasonable costs of litigation to a defendant that wins a motion under the law. Not automatic — Judge has discretion to award.

            1. mulched
              March.20.2021 at 8:52 pm
              DC Anti SLAPP has a provision for awarding reasonable costs of litigation to a defendant that wins a motion under the law. Not automatic — Judge has discretion to award.

              Question – since the plaintiff prevailed at the preliminary slapp dismissal stage, does the potential award of attorney fees survive when the defendant wins on the motion for summary judgment . This dismissal is under the standard rules for dismissal under summary judgement vs dismissal under the slapp statutes,

              FWIW – I am of the opinion that simberg’s & Steyns statements were substantially true.

              1. Question – since the plaintiff prevailed at the preliminary slapp dismissal stage, does the potential award of attorney fees survive when the defendant wins on the motion for summary judgment .

                The attorneys fees provision, D.C. Code § 16-5504, only applies to a special motion or dismiss under the anti-SLAPP law, so I would think not. But I don’t practice in D.C., so I would certainly welcome a better-informed answer.

            2. DC Anti SLAPP has a provision for awarding reasonable costs of litigation to a defendant that wins a motion under the law.

              Yes, but National Review lost the anti-SLAPP motion, which is why the case made it to the summary judgment stage.

  5. Given how long this is taking are the courts trying a variation of the horse thief’s gambit and simply hoping that the parties will die before they (the judges) are forced to render an actual decision?

    1. Isn’t the entire point of this post that a judge did render an actual decision?

      1. On a preliminary motion many years after the suit was first filed. There are other defendants still in the case and this is NOT a final decision on the merits.

        1. It seems to be a final, albeit appealable, decision as to one defendant anyway. A motion for summary judgement was granted; this implies that there was, in fact, a judgement.

          Maybe having one less defendant will help move the rest of the case along so it doesn’t take another 9 years.

    2. “horse thief’s gambit”

      Can you please explain this one, google fails me.

  6. Who would have guessed so many of our COVID and Biden victory denialists are also climate change denialists?

    1. Who would of thought that so many biden voters would have such a poor grasp of science and be so gullible due to lack of basic analytical and critical skills.

      1. Inductive logic, how does it work? Yeah, maybe the vast majority of thousands of scientists with education and experience around the world working in the relevant fields are wrong about climate change and strongly partisan amateurs without said education and experience are right. Sure!

        1. QA,
          You made many leaps from one claim to the next in this attempt at an indictment of critics of Mann. His law suits are a rather sleazy attempt to prevent an inquiry into the quality of his research methods and practices.

          1. Speaking of leaping to claims.

            1. A nothing comment, Nige.
              When you have something of content to say, let’s hear it.

            2. BTW, Nige, QA is perfectly able to defend herself with your dubious “help.”

              1. Oh, I agree, that was more of an observation. Carry on.

        2. Occam might also gently suggest that human beings who happen to be scientists and researchers are not beyond being influenced both in what they research and what they attempt to demonstrate by the distribution of grant dollars in the system. Concluding there’s no real evidence of a big problem that requires endless and dramatic adjustments to “fix” cuts off the gravy train. See also COVID.

          1. No, that’s not Occam’s Razor, it’s conspiracy thinking. There’s tons of money to made in denying climate change (there are huge moneyed interests that might suffer from some responses to it), it’s just that the vast majority of scientists realize their isn’t much case to be made in that. See also, Covid, yes.

            1. Sorry but you’re engaging in reductive thinking, this is about a lawsuit involving free speech and first amendment rights as prosecuted in a DC court. Your beliefs with regard to science, climate change, covid-19 viruses et al are irrelevant.

              1. I notice you made the some comment to all the commenters here who used the case to engage in broad climate change denialism. Oh, wait, you didn’t.

                Motivated reasoning undermines principled thinking so much.

                1. I think most of us aren’t really denialists.

                  I myself believe there has been modest warming, but it’s mostly run its course and nothing to be concerned about. Don’t forget we are still in an ice age, as evidenced by the 2 polar ice caps which are definitely not the norm over geologic history.

                  And as for claims of catastrophic global warming, it came out just this week that a million years ago, which is a geologic heartbeat the Greenland ice cap was completely melted. I might point out that’s just about the timeframe humans and a lot of modern mammals were evolving.

                  1. It’s present bias; Like being born in a flood, and panicking when the water starts receding. Whatever the weather was like when they were kids must be the global optimum! Ditto for atmospheric composition.

                    That almost all the life they see around them evolved under different conditions, and and the biosphere is actually suffering as a result of current low temperatures and CO2 starvation, is just an inadmissible thought.

                    1. And here we have an admission it’s real but some handwavey pseudo-psychological nonsense dispaaraging those paying attention to what’s going on.

                    2. Yes, Nige, the water is receding, though not remotely as fast as the hysterical predictions. No, it’s not a cause for panic, but instead rejoicing.

                    3. Sure, the hydrologsts are all telling you this has the potential to be really, really bad unless you take certain actions, but ignore them and keep rejoicing.

                  2. This is denialism, you’ve just adjusted in the face of overwhelming reality while still obstructing efforts of fix the problem, or even plan for its effects.

                  3. It was called Greenland because it was green. Or Vinland because of all the grapes growing there.

                    Hence no ice.

                    1. It was called Greenland as a marketing gimmick to entice Vikings to go settle there.

                    2. Greenland, no. Vinland, yes.

                      More scientifically stated, the “baseline” assumed by most climate change advocates coincides with the end of the Little Ice Age and is not necessarily consistent with larger measures of anticipated temperature trends. There is substantial evidence of a Medieval Warm Period, a Roman Warm Period and a Minoan Warm Period that are not easily distinguishable from the current Modern Warm Period yet which were obviously caused by something other than fossil fuels.

                    3. Was kicking myself because of course, yes, Vinland.

                    4. “Hence no ice.”

                      If you are suggesting that there wasn’t a Greenland Ice Cap when the Vikings were there, nope. It was a warmer period, enough that Viking agriculture was viable, but then and now the ice free areas are narrow strips on the coast.

                2. Queen Amalthea
                  March.19.2021 at 9:43 pm
                  I notice you made the some comment to all the commenters here who used the case to engage in broad climate change denialism. Oh, wait, you didn’t.

                  Climate denialist –
                  Denies the MWP
                  Denies the LIA
                  Mann’s current denial – the denial of AMO & AMOC

            2. “Your people are beholden to money — mine are pure as the driven snow and do things because they’re the Right Thing to Do and think things because they’re the Right Things to Think!!!1one!”

              Denial is clearly not just a river in Egypt.

              1. Notice I didn’t say any side was pure, just that there are moneyed interests that would be more than happy to support credible work undermining the consensus on climate change. But if I were defending a strange conspiracy theory I guess I’d want to digress into strawmen too.

                1. except that Mann’s work is not credible.

                  1. That seems to be the consensus among obsolete culture war casualties.

                    If only he had been more respectful of QAnon, birtherism, Pizzagate, and other things that right-wingers prefer to science.

                    1. Wow, another ignorant blah blah signifying nothing. Get lost.

                2. Notice I didn’t say any side was pure

                  No, you did not use that exact word. Therefore you win regardless of what you were actually communicating. Derp.

                  1. Pathetic. I didn’t even intimate anything in that direction, you made that strawman up entirely. But, again, if I were stuck with defending a kooky conspiracy theory I guess I’d have to use such subterfuges too.

                3. You know Mann was the one being funded by wealthy interests in this case, right? Not NR, not Steyn, who had to beg for money to defend themselves from this meritless suit. Mann had money given to him to sue them.

                  1. 1. My point isn’t about this legal case but about research on climate change in general.
                    2. It’s cute you think NR is only funded by subscriptions and not, say wealthy donors (including folks like the Koch’s who…surprise! are wealthy from an industry that might not like climate change science-my overall point is that there’s plenty of sources of support for those producing credible anti-climate change science, the fact that there’s not much points to the conclusion that it’s hard to produce such research because it’s not true).

                    1. QA,
                      There are certainly several highly credible atmospheric science professionals who have not gone overboard to the Greta Thunberg extreme. However, once they make these views public they find great difficult getting manuscripts published despite their being members of national academies of science.
                      There are “mafias” that work in both directions in this business just as there are charlatans on both sides.
                      The sad fact i that far more attention shuld be paid to adaptation to climate change because of the extreme inertia (50 year or longer time constant of the Co2 and global circulation system).

          2. But first Occam would point to scientists working for the petrochemical industry which has poured vast quantities of money into denying something they’ve known was real all along, sacrificing the well-being of everyone on the planet for profit. Evidence fot this disparity and the money exists. Evidence for your assertions about non-oil-company scientists is non-existant.

            1. Of course all you have is an ad hominem accusation of conflict of interest. In reality, those companies have been rebranding themselves as energy companies and ill make money by selling even you energy produced from whatever source.
              When you have actual evidence lay it on the table.

              1. A (factual) accusation is invalid if it’s ad hom? (Case dismissed! Get back to me, counsellor, when you can accuse this man of being a murderer without it also being an ad hom attack!) They’ve known about climate change since the sixties and are old hands at greenwashing. They’ve engaged in predatory obstruction and delay for decades and they’re only shifting incrementally now.

                1. You’re just weasel wording. If you have the facts, you present the facts. Clearly you betray no knowledge at all of the quality of Mann’s scholarship. Instead you attribute to him the quality of the work of highly recognized, non-controversial experts (for example Prof William Collins of UC Berkeley).
                  As I said councilor, present substantive evidence.

                  1. You don’t know about the petrochemical industry knowing about climate change back in the sixties and funding a pseudo-scientific campaign to discredit and disprove it, a la the tobacco industy’s scientific proof that smoking didn’t cause lung cancer? You really don’t know about this?

                2. A factual statement with a defamatory predicate.
                  You defense of and ad hominem defamation is pathetic.

                  1. It’s pretty well documented. Look it up. It’s a staggering amount of corporate malfeasance.

        3. “Vast majority” is quite the overstatement.

          1. Is it now? Nearly every professional association of scientists in the relevant fields have endorsed climate change theory. Are they all in on it?

            1. “Nearly every” is overtly vague. Please cite any contrarian research.

              1. I can’t recall seeing one major professional organization of scientists in the relevant field taking a contrary stance.

                1. And that doesn’t strike you as strange? You wouldn’t have seen much research contradicting Lysenko in the USSR at one time, either.

                  1. Oh my God, you’re right Brett! You know, now that you’ve pointed it out, I can’t think of seeing any professional organization of scientists in the relevant fields who have not endorsed evolution, or that the world is not flat! The conspiracy runs so deep!

                    Your conspiracy thinking disorders your thinking in general my friend.

                  2. Now absence of evidence is evidence that we live in the USSR circa 1930.

            2. It is not so much of a theory as part easily provable science, an average of model models many of which are not completely consistent and general observational data.
              That does not say that the phenomenon of anthropogenic climate change is false as much as it says the the predictions are highly uncertain as to the global mean temperature rise.

              1. Yeah. Once you acknowledge the ongoing phenomenon, lack of capacity to predict means big problems. Results could be not much worse than what everyone can see today, or they could be catastrophic, and no one can say which with much scientific certainty. Prospects for high-level predictive accuracy going forward don’t look much better.

                So much-needed predictions are inherently unreliable, and will probably stay that way. What can be shown with good accuracy are facts about what has happened already. Compared to good-quality scientific evidence about previous eras—going back millions of years—the present rate of climate warming is off the charts. Way too fast.

                That is an undeniable fact, and ought to draw everyone’s focus. Mindfulness about history and limitations of scientific prediction points toward reasoning which may not furnish basis for policy reliant on accurate foresight. It points instead toward policy based on defensive speculation which can balance responses against colorable risks and their relative probabilities.

                The worse a scientifically colorable worst-case scenario becomes, the less likely it has to be to justify large policy changes to counter it. Sensible people are willing to pay more to offset low-probability catastrophic possibilities than more-likely ones which would prove merely inconvenient. Even relatively low-probability scenarios of very bad outcomes—unless the odds are vanishingly small—justify a great deal of defensive effort.

                None of that is legitimate support for denial. More the opposite.

                Given uncertainties, what sensible policy might emphasize are policies which mix unavoidably vague probabilities with prospects for results likely to prove beneficial, even if the low-probability event to be defended against does not occur. Renewable energy is the principal such candidate in view.

                That approach applies alike to another target for investigation—revamped nuclear power development. As always, that technology promises utopian outcomes. Because of that, realistic concerns need to be satisfied first, about prospects for making nuclear sufficiently safe and inexpensive.

                Everyone should acknowledge going in that nuclear energy has an almost-unparalleled bad record with regard to realism. Nothing much should be attempted until policy finds a way to fix that problem, if it can. Trying to fix it would be worthwhile only if it promises to open the door to a realistically foreseeable alternative to fossil fuels. That means almost the entire structure of accustomed management for nuclear power would have to be thrown out and rebuilt from scratch. Probably worth trying. The stakes do look very high.

                1. “Compared to good-quality scientific evidence about previous eras—going back millions of years—the present rate of climate warming is off the charts. Way too fast.”

                  “Going back millions of years”; Do you have any idea how SHORT a period of time “millions of years” is, on a planetary scale?

                  We’re currently in an ice age, the late Cenozoic period. Very fortunately for us, we’re in an inter-glacial period. That doesn’t mean we’re not in an ice age, look at the polar ice caps and glaciers; You wouldn’t see those except during an ice age. There’s actually more ice present at the moment than during most of the late Cenozoic period, we’re merely enjoying a brief respite from the worst of it.

                  Basically, going back “just” millions of years, only looking at the planet when it’s locked down in an ice age, is cherry picking.

                  1. Do you really think all those people across the world with many different institutions and lots more training, experience and accomplishment in the relevant fields have just missed this, to you, conclusive point but you just happened to hit on it? Does your conspiratorial thinking know no bounds?

                  2. ‘Do you have any idea how SHORT a period of time “millions of years” is, on a planetary scale?’

                    Yes. Everybody who’s paying attention does. The point is we have to prepare our societies to live through the next few hundred.

                    1. The point is, humanity actually does better when it’s warmer, so, we should prepare to enjoy the good times.

                    2. I don’t know about ‘always,’ especially if areas along the equator become effectively uninhabitable, and all the droughts and the wildfires and the severe weather events causing environmental damage like topsoil erosion and destroying agricultural areas, but there’s no reason we shouldn’t muddle along with, y’know, preperation and planning, all that’s needed is acknowledgement of the reality, less consumption, cleaner energy sources, restored biodiversity and careful husbandry of essential resources.

                    3. “especially if areas along the equator become effectively uninhabitable”

                      Not very likely. You are aware, I hope, that most of the warming consists of milder nights and winters, not hotter days. And humans are evolutionarily adapted to high temperatures, deaths from excessively LOW temperatures are much more common than from excess heat; Cold will kill anybody, heat generally only kills the sick and elderly.

                    4. Even when arguing for complacency, you’re still racking up a hell of a body count if you confine it to the sick and ellderly. But, no. Heat waves are becoming more frequent, along with droughts and, when the storms do come, extreme flooding. ‘Milder nights and winters.’ Oh dear.

                2. Lanthrop statement – “Compared to good-quality scientific evidence about previous eras—going back millions of years—the present rate of climate warming is off the charts. Way too fast.”

                  The resolution of the data is way too low to make that statement. Your comparing high resolution data using modern day instruments with proxy data that is best only 50%-60% accurate. Your statement may be true, but the data simply doesnt exist to make the statement that the present rate of warming is off the charts.

            3. Just like every professional medical association scoffed at the idea that ulcers were caused by bacterial infection 20 years ago.

              Scientific consensus is meaningless, especially since the consensus can’t even produce a climate model that can predict the climate a year into the future. And every dire prediction over the last 30 has failed to materialize.

              1. It’s amazing how many people don’t understand basic inductive logic. I guess they don’t teach that in the required gen ed class for non-graduate school education while they do deductive logic such as the appeal to authority so you’ve got people running around misapplying the latter and ignorant of the first thinking they have an ‘a-ha’ moment. It points to the overall problem of the arrogance of thinking you, with comparatively little experience, education or accomplishment in the relative fields, have stumbled upon the ‘truth’ that all those with those things have somehow missed.

                To put it in another way, yes, there are cases where scientific consensus is temporarily wrong. But do you know how many times amateur yahoo dissenters are wrong? Lots more. The odds are not in your favor, and this is exacerbated greatly when you really want the dissent to be true for political reasons.

                1. Queen Amalthea
                  March.20.2021 at 7:56 am
                  It’s amazing how many people don’t understand basic inductive logic.

                  Its also amazing how many people dont understand basic rules of math. With algebra – you solve for the similtanious equation, then plug the solution back into the equation to see if you get the same answer to prove the solution was correct. That is not done with mbh98, mb99 or any of the other HS’s.

                  There are far too many pieces of evidence that do not reconcile with the conclusions of the HS’s. Higher tree line elevations throughout the andes, tree stumps dating from the mwp being uncovered from retreating glaciers in the andes, Alaska, and the columbia ice fields, the alps, etc, Tree lines 100km north of the present day tree lines in the yamal area, contemporaneous written records of citrus crops growing 300km north of the present day range in china. The deficiencies and errors in the HS’s (pages2k, gerges, marcott, Mann Jones2003, mbh98, mb99 ,etc are well documented in the professional literature. (climate audit dot org for example)

                  1. joe, here’s a math probability issue for you: what’s higher, the probability that your facts are inaccurate or that you are mistaken in your conclusions drawn from them or that the vast majority of thousands of scientists with much more training, experience and accomplishment in the relevant fields are mistaken?

                    It’s March Madness, so consider this analogy: you’re a fan who watches lots of basketball games and you watch SportsCenter a lot. You have lots of facts on hand about who has the best ranked defense or which players had big games this year.

                    But let’s say there’s a committee of coaches with years of proven success in the NCAA tournament. The predict the outcome of a series of interesting matchups and you do too.

                    What kind of third party fool would bet on you being correct? I mean, let’s say that you would start spouting off basketball facts, who has the number one ranked 3-point defense and which players averaged double digit rebounds. These would all be facts, let’s even say they turn out correct.

                    But in a real sense you literally don’t know what you’re talking about. There’s an incredible amount of nuance involved in every game, and even if you know a ‘bunch’ of actual basketball facts you may have no concept of how weak side defense works or how important screening is etc. So you’d be, like here, throwing out this or that fact you got off the internet and drawing your conclusions, but as a matter of inductive logic you are far more likely to be wrong versus those who have lots more experience, knowledge and accomplishment in this area. It’s just a general truism.

                    Why don’t you see that? I’ll bet its because you politically don’t like what’s pushed under the name of climate change. Motivated reasoning can lead to some very warped conclusions. But no one who doesn’t share your same ideological strong positions is going to find that compelling, nor should they.

                    1. Queen Amalthea
                      March.20.2021 at 9:08 am
                      “joe, here’s a math probability issue for you: what’s higher, the probability that your facts are inaccurate or that you are mistaken in your conclusions drawn from them or that the vast majority of thousands of scientists with much more training, experience and accomplishment in the relevant fields are mistaken?”

                      Queen – you missed my point – The HS simply dont reconcile back to other lines of evidence. As I previously stated, evidence which is ignored.
                      There are far too many pieces of evidence that do not reconcile with the conclusions of the HS’s. Higher tree line elevations throughout the andes, tree stumps dating from the mwp being uncovered from retreating glaciers in the andes, Alaska, and the columbia ice fields, the alps, etc, Tree lines 100km north of the present day tree lines in the yamal area, contemporaneous written records of citrus crops growing 300km north of the present day range in china. The deficiencies and errors in the HS’s (pages2k, gerges, marcott, Mann Jones2003, mbh98, mb99 ,etc are well documented in the professional literature. (climate audit dot org for example).

                      Add the upside proxies, add the law dome, add dome c, etc,

                    2. Queen – an example of credible data blowing holes in Mann’s science
                      Pages2k temp reconstructions.

                      https://climateaudit.org/2021/03/02/milankovitch-forcing-and-tree-ring-proxies/

                2. QA,
                  You have a very strange and incorrect concept of deduction and induction. Neither have much to do with appeals to authority.

                  Do you really understand how wrong public health agencies were a year ago about the influence of co-factors in increasing the risk of covid fatality? Almost none of these warnings were accurate.

              2. Yeah, there’s always an excuse for people who declare themselves driven by science and reason and logic to suddenly declare science and reason and logic rubbish when it’s overhwelmingly describing a problem they are completely unequipped to provide solutions for.

                1. Nige,
                  It is likewise true that the claim, “Trust the science” is also political rubbish.
                  If I were to pick a completely non-political topic, such as the nature of type 2 superconductivity, you will find distinct disgreements among expert condensed matter physicists.

                  1. Yes, you might, you still wouldn’t want Mark Steyn handling your superconductivity issues just because he singled out a condensed matter physicist to attack and landed a few real zingers on him.

                    1. You not only might you would. The disagreements would be quantitative and absent the ill-will generally found in exchanges here.
                      You seem to have difficulty agreeing at all with people you have selected to debate.

                    2. Why would I agree with people I disagree with? I have no grounds for accepting Mark Steyn as an authority on climate change or superconductivity, though some people seem to think his ability to insult people marks him out as such. Disagreement between experts is one thing, a political faction tackling the subject by denying its very existence because they’re trapped in culture war mode is a whole other.

      2. If I have my dates right (and I may not), Michael Mann was a graduate student at a university (UM Amherst) whose Chancellor (David K. Scott) believed in multiple dimensions of scientific fact.

        In other words, if a Black Lesbian dropped a lit match into a pail of gasoline, something different would happen than from what happened when I did it. No one was ever able to tell me WHAT the difference would be — and I understand things like at -30 degrees, the lit match will go out as if dropped into water — but then it happens for me too, I’ve actually done it.

        And once you accept this, science is out the window…

        1. You of course do not have your completely-irrelevant facts right. Mann was a postdoc, not a graduate student, at UMass for a couple of years.

      3. Everyone could have guessed that. Biden voters are mostly shallow and care about mean tweets. Policy isn’t something most of them think about and when they say “science” they mostly mean whomever leftists choose to hold the “science” flag has authority and must be obeyed without question.

        1. Most of the lefties who follow science do not accept GMOs, and they still believe that the Earth will follow Venus in a runaway greenhouse if CO2 rises much more, even though it was 15 times as high during Dinosaur times. So much for science.

          1. ‘do not accept GMOs’

            The actual equvalent to what righties are doing would be declaring that GMOs don’t acually exist, as opposed to having concerns about them, some spurious some not.

            ‘they still believe that the Earth will follow Venus in a runaway greenhouse if CO2 rises much more,’

            If you have to make shit up like this, you MUST know you’re talking rubbish.

            1. Another non-substantive reply that is mere whataboutism and an ad hominem attack

              1. If you can’t stand the heat get out of the Arctic.

                1. Wow, you are a piece of work. You just think insults are bona fide answers.
                  Someday, when you have substantive evidence, give that a try.

                  1. I’m sorry I’m still highly amused by your assertion that people think climate change means Earth will turn into Venus. Or possibly break orbit and go trailing after Venus like a puppy.

        2. “whomever leftists choose to hold the “science” flag has authority and must be obeyed without question.”

          Again, you can tell the right wing climate deniers don’t know much about logic (they can’t tell the difference between deductive [appeal to authority!!!] and inductive [it’s far more likely that most people with expertise on a subject are correct than that partisanly interested yahoos are]), much less science.

          1. You led with “right wing”, therefore you are a partisan and your beliefs aren’t subject to gradation or validation.

            1. Lol, every accusation is certainly a confession with folks like you.

            2. Yeah, partisan FOR SCIENCE instead of partisan for SCIENCE IS MEAN BECAUSE IT IS INCOMPATIBLE WITH OUR CURRENT POLITICAL MODE OF CANING SAY WHATEVER WE WANT AND YOU HAVE TO BELIEVE US OR ITS OPPRESSION.

            3. Also she can’t explain how climate models work but she’s apparently a true believer in whatever the climate priests tell her.

          2. Why do you call deductive logic appeal to authority? and your concept of inductive reasoning is generally far off the mark. In fact what you write about induction sounds an awful lot like appeal to authority.

            1. Don Nico, in this kind of discussion it’s about the difference between reasoning from axioms and reasoning from experience.

              Ideologues—more common on the VC than in scientific circles—tend to suppose they can start with axioms and from there reason their way to facts. Experience which embarrasses the axioms has no place in that process.

              Likewise, in this context, inductive reasoning is not appeal to authority, it is appeal to experience—with a big fudge factor allowed to accommodate unmeasurable accounts.

              My sympathies tend to lie with the latter group, but both groups have problems.

              1. Perhaps so Stephen. But the preponderance of experimental science is about deduction from a reductionist treatment of observation and experiment. In any case it has zero to do with appeals to authority.

                1. So, pointing to the people who have done the science is appealing to authority, and that is bad, and has nothing to do with science.

                  1. Point that out has nothing to do with the accuracy or precision (learn the difference) of the the statement that purports to be scientific.

            2. Don, aren’t you an academic scientist? If so, how can you be so ignorant (I mean this in a descriptive not pejorative sense) of the differences in inductive and deductive logic?

              Deductive logic has to do with the logical validity and soundness of claims. The appeal to authority just says that an argument supported solely by an appeal to authority hasn’t ‘done the work’ to be satisfying to deductive logic.

              Inductive logic works differently. It asks questions like, what’s more likely be the case, that most of the people who are trained and educated in relevant fields are wrong or that a bunch of people lacking those experiences and trainings and who are strongly politically motivated are wrong? The answer is pretty clear, isn’t it? Even if you say ‘well there have been times in the past where most of the people who are trained and educated in relevant fields are wrong, so I, lacking those, could have found the truth here’ then you are *compounding* your inductive logic fail because for every time the expert consensus has been wrong there are a multitude more where those lacking those things have been wrong. And you’re back where you started: it is *much* more likely that the experts are correct and that the dissenters are wrong.

              Note the difference: saying the experts must be correct because they are experts is indeed a deductive logic fail. But saying the experts are very likely correct because of their expertise is compelled by inductive logic.

              1. Queen – would it be inductive reasoning or deductive reasoning that the climate scientists would conclude the MWP was colder than the present day.

                Consider the number of retreating glaciers exposing tree stumps dating from the mwp
                Consider the number of higher elevation tree lines in NA, russia, Yamal, Andes,etc dating from the mwp vs present day,
                Consider the number of forest lands extending 100-150km further north dating from the mwp than the present day range.

              2. QA,
                I am highly trained in physical science and mathematics and know completely what deductive and inductive reasoning are. Those who are ignorant are those in political discourse who do not undersatnd the rigors of observational or experimental science or of mathematics.
                Your description of inductive reasoning is at best a means to producing hypotheses that may or may not be correct. Expert “consensus” – by which you mean a preponderance of views – has nothing to do with the validity of the hypothesis. I am an empiricist. Until the hypothesis is tested, it is no more than an opinion.
                Public health officials had a preponderance of agreement at year ago about risks of co-factors in covid mortality. That agreement has not held up to empirical examination. It doesn’t matter that many MDs contributed to that earlier judgement.

                1. Yet we were still better off listening to the MDs and scientists who were studying the issue and updating us on their findings than to the raving comment section weirdies who wanted to squirt UV light up our bums.

                  1. Another meaningless attempt at a snark.
                    I and colleagues have done just such studies. The guesses a year ago were grossly misleading and far more characteristic of influenz than of corona virus. When you have a reply based on physiology, immunology or epidemiology. Let’s hear it. Otherwise you’ll drag your credibility even lower.

                    1. They were wrong because the disease was new and still being studied.

                  2. Big deal Nige. Your reply to a substantive point is that Trump was worse. Well, bully for you. I sure would not want the likes of you defending me in court.
                    Facts, man, let’s hear facts from you not snarks and insults,
                    and learn something about a topic before you comment on it instead of speaking out of ignorance.

                    1. But that’s the dichotomy. We can believe the experts, who get things wrong and disagree but that’s how science works after all, or believe people who voted for Trump because they loved the idea of someone who would say literally any old thing and just not care.

              3. “Note the difference: saying the experts must be correct because they are experts is indeed a deductive logic fail. But saying the experts are very likely correct because of their expertise is compelled by inductive logic.”

                As a highly trained experimentalist, I’d say that is dead wrong. It has absolutely nothing to do with deduction. Opinions of anyone are NOT observational or experimental evidence.

                What the categories of induction and deduction, as you have used them, has done is the politicize science and reduced the credibility of scientists.

                1. ‘Opinions of anyone are NOT observational or experimental evidence.’

                  She didn’t say they were.

                  1. Sorry but she actually claimed that the “consensus” was evidence for inductive logic.

                    1. She claims that accepting the consensus of scientists is the logical thing to do, or that’s my reading of it, it’s not very compliacted not matter how hard you try to muddy the waters. I note that we only need to make this appeal to scientific consensus so much because a political faction has staked out the position that climate change is a fraud, or, at the more ‘rational’ end, exists, but is not really that much of a problem, actual world events to the contrary.

        3. ‘whomever leftists choose to hold the “science” flag has authority and must be obeyed without question.’

          Thermodynamics don’t are about your feelings.

          1. I c your point

          2. Repeating stuff you heard the science-flag-holder say isn’t science. It’s something a parrot can learn to do.

            1. Coming up with excuses not to listen to scientists isn’t science either.

    2. Queen Amalthea, do you have a problem (in general) with the concept of the IRS auditing tax returns?
      Why not?

      Now as to politically-motivated audits, I hope you agree with me that those are bad — but as to things like consistency with generally accepted accounting standards???

    3. That doesn’t necessarily follow. You can’t be, say, a strong supporter of climate change policies and still be a COVID denier.

      Take John Kerry, for example.

      1. Why can’t you be both? I can’t even imagine a ridiculous reason

      2. If you can either deny climate change or deny covid why would I expect any sort of coherence across your range of other views?

    4. You know, QA, one can fully accept the science behind human activity influence climate change and still find Mann to be a charlatan.

      1. That’s true, but it doesn’t seem to be the position most people here are espousing.

        1. I never expect any scientific sophistication in comments here.

          1. This is the place where the world learned that most of our highly educated lawyer friends thought an order of magnitude meant “times two”, after all

          2. Don Nico, science is a method, not a virtue.

            More generally, it is an activity, with characteristics by which it can be recognized, and distinguished from other activities.

            The same can be said for history. The best practitioners in either field deliver profound insights. The others, not so much.

            1. Stephen,
              I would not say that the physical science are a method. They are delimited bodies of knowledge within understood measurable errors that have an associated method.
              The same can be said about history; it is a delimited body of knowledge with its own recognized methods.

        2. There are like four people in the comments you’re talking about. The fact that they’re posting a lot does not make them numerous.

      2. We also get to see the opinions on the current and projected state of the global climate of those who think Mann is a charlatan and good God they are in no position to judge.

        1. Nige,
          ” good God they are in no position to judge.”
          Pretty damned presumptive I’d say. Analyses of Mann’s work have shown substantial flaws.
          Don’t attribute to Mann the highly competent work of others.

          1. Meh. Show me the scientists in an area of ever-growing knowledge whose work doesn’t contain flaws. Then show me the guys who exploit those flaws to denounce an entire field of scientific study purely for political reasons. Then show me the guys who turn that politicisation into culture war theatre of denouncement and insult of selected figures across public media platforms. Then show me the commenters who denounce that figure for talking legal action when they are slandered and villified. Then show me the comment section on a libertarian/conservative law blog that’s been posting items on the subject since it began and where conservative/libertarian comments make the most absurd statements on climate science and and continue to villify the scientist. And here we are.

            1. What about those Red Sox.
              Meh!
              That is what I have to say about every thing that you post.
              Nothing that you say shows that Mann’s work is at best misleading.

              1. ‘Nothing that you say shows that Mann’s work is at best misleading.’

                Likewise.

            2. Nige
              March.20.2021 at 3:52 pm
              Meh. Show me the scientists in an area of ever-growing knowledge whose work doesn’t contain flaws. ”

              The difference is Mann continues to defend those errors – instead of acknowledging and correcting those errors. Some of the most vile comments goes to Judith Curry & Steve McIntyre.

    5. Typical alarmist misinformation.

      No one denies that climate changes. What most (of us) claim is that life must be pretty damned robust after spending several billion years evolving in a climate that has changed considerably over that time, that CO2 during the dinosaur age was 6000 ppm, that plants will die if CO2 falls below 200 PPM, the 250 PPM level 150 years ago was pretty damned low, and if puny humans have only managed to raise it to 400 PPM, there is no risk of any climate tipping point resulting in a runaway greenhouse a la Venus, that CO2 is plant food and is greening the earth far more than your feeble imagination will admit.

      1. Typical denialist misinformation. You quite literally don’t know what you’re talking about. You have a strong ideological reason not to find climate change to be correct and a lack of expertise in the relevant fields. Combine this with arrogance and you actually think you know something that thousands of scientists with lots of education, experience and accomplishment in the fields somehow missed. This is classic conspiracy wackiness.

        1. You led with “denialist” therefore you are engaging in hateful and degrading behavior.

          1. Oh, you wound me sir! Lol, actually I do hate and love to see degraded terrible lapses in inductive logic in service of partisan conspiracy wackiness.

          2. That depends on how much you are personally and emotionally invested in not being called a denialist when you spend your time denying that climate change is a thing, I suppose, but that suggests you have picked a side in a political culture war, not a scientific debate.

        2. QA, after your ad hominem you fall back on an appeal to authority.
          There is no evidence of a tipping point in the climate system at any time in after Pangaea broke apart

          1. Don Nico, I’m beginning to wonder about you. You were dead certain about a point of optics which you got wrong just yesterday. Now you’re telling me stuff about climate which suggests there can’t be any tipping point between tropical climates at the poles, and an ice age.

            1. Stephan,

              You ask a serious answer. You deserve a serious answer. From the early frames of the film, we can see that the focal plane of the camera lens is at or behind Biden’s head. We also see that the boom mikes (about 10 feet in front of Biden) are beyond the depth of field of the lens at that aperture. I did not get facts of optics wrong yesterday. (I’d be happy to hear a detailed physics explanation of how object in front of a the focal plane and more distant from it can become in focus.)

              However, I did neglect one thing. Something that no other commenter noted except to say that the film images looked ‘wonky’. In the telecamera system, the camera can change the focal plane can change from frame to frame depending on the points in the viewfinder used to compute the image. If for the “wonky” frames the cameraman focused on Biden’s hands rather than his face, the hands could come into focus while the mikes and Biden’s face moved out of focus.
              Note that I did not say the the film was faked, only that it was manipulated. Editing certainly is manipulating and may be done for entirely innocent motive.I did say that there was no reason to show a fake video.

              One could determine exactly what happened if one were to examine the film frame by frame. For a camera filming the scene for , say, from a 30 degree angle, there would be no reason for the camera to be shifting focus in that way.

              As for my comment of a tipping point, I did not say that there cannot be a tipping point in what is clearly a chaotic system. I did say that the climate history of the earth as registered by ice core measurements of CO2 levels and by temperature proxies shows no evidence of a tipping point after Pangaea split apart. That is a very different statement.

              I can also tell you that politicians and activists use a mathematical term incorrectly to promote their political agendas. I don’t buy it. I do buy that the US (and everyone else) better start investing much more into adaptation because the temperature rises and ocean rises for the next 50 years are close to being locked it.

              1. “I’d be happy to hear a detailed physics explanation of how object in front of a the focal plane and more distant from it can become in focus.”

                Here’s an example photo. That’s linked from the wiki article on the ‘Scheimpflug principle’, which was pretty easy to find after Mr. Lathrop mentioned it in the earlier thread.

                (I haven’t seen the controversial video, don’t have an opinion, and know bupkis about optics, but had to go look up anything with a name as funky as that)

                1. Thank you for the reference and the example. In the image you reference only the immediate foreground is in focus. While the remainder is out of focus, the far field does look a bit sharper than the midfield.
                  Wikipedia explains that the effect comes from the fact that the focal plane is not parallel to the image plane in the camera. Tilt-optics (as used for architectural photography use tilt optics for correcting perspective.
                  Video cameras generally don’t have such optics. Of course, you could buy a tilt-optic form Nikon and put it on a D-850 and film, but I doubt that is what the cameraman had.
                  As I explained to Stephen above, the camera’s autofocus might produce a similar effect that is made more acute by editing. One would have to study the images frame-by-frame.

                  Again thank you for the example.

              2. Problem is a lot of modern cameras either use multiple lenses, or the computer rapidly changes the focus and exposure and can combine multiple shots in a single image in a 30 frame per second video.

                Which is why I didn’t claim the video was fake, but it did have some hard to reconcile artifacts.

              3. I’d be happy to hear a detailed physics explanation of how object in front of a the focal plane and more distant from it can become in focus.

                I will not give you a detailed explanation. I will give you a simple one. Optical tilt adjustments are complicated to understand, but can be mastered when considered in isolation. Practical focal plane management depends on multi-factor interactions too complicated to explain readily. I will hint at that part.

                But first, look it up (Scheimpflug principle). Probably, a detailed explanation will do you little good until you try it out to get practical experience. Intuitive feel for tilt/shift optical adjustments comes slowly.

                Real-world focal plane results are determined by interactions between multiple factors. Those include at least, f/stop, lens axis angle, lens length, focal adjustments to the lens, the relative angles of the camera’s imaging plane relative to an adjusted focal plane, camera elevation above or below subject, and sometimes other factors, depending on the equipment used.

                Here is a simplified explanation:

                Tilt optics empower an adjustable, non-vertical focal plane. Most photographers are accustomed to fixed focal planes, which behave the way you describe. With a fixed vertical focal plane, and other factors held constant, distance becomes the variable which determines sharpness. In front of, or behind the focal plane (short of a critical focal distance which enables infinity focus behind the plane) objects appear less focused with distance from the plane—that is horizontal distance from a vertical plane.

                Tilt lenses give the option of hinging the focal plane at the camera, and laying the focal plane down at any angle, including horizontally, parallel to the ground. In an image of that sort, blurry out-of-focus areas might generally appear above or below the focal plane, which is to say they vary by vertical elevation instead of by horizontal distance. But everything along the tilted plane of focus can look sharp, from inches in front of the camera out to the horizon. In a carefully composed image, viewers may not notice that objects vertically higher in the image are out of focus, as would be objects under ground, if you could see there. It is an effect similar to the horizontal distance effect for a vertical plane, but vertical elevation above or below the tilted plane becomes the analogue of distance in front of the plane or behind it.

                You can thus imagine a focal plane upward-tilted away from the camera, cutting through nearer-placed hands to render them sharp, passing above a lower-placed microphone behind the hands to render it blurry (beneath the plane), and then catching the head and face of the subject above and behind the microphone, and rendering it sharp.

                That’s the simple part. After that, you manipulate those other variables I mentioned to get near-infinite possibilities for distributing sharp focus through a composition. Interactions among the factors mean the actual shape of the sharp field within the image can be more complicated than a single tilted-plane analysis would suggest. With so many choices to make, there could be out-of-focus areas somewhere. The trick is to compose the image so unwanted out-of-focus objects do not appear, or go unnoticed. Maybe clouds high above a focal plane running flat along the ground aren’t sharp. Who can tell if a cloud isn’t sharp?

                Make a mistake in either your adjustments or you composition decisions, and the out-of-focus bits get noticed. If their soft appearance does not support the composition, it’s a bad image.

                You also mentioned architectural photography, and perspective. That is a different subject. In general, perspective distortions are a result of non-parallel relationships between the imaging plane in the camera, and the planes of the object pictured. Tilt your camera back to get an image of a tall building from top to bottom, and the imaging plane in the camera is out of alignment with the building facade—which appears to taper upward unnaturally in the resulting image. Shoot downward from the top, and the taper reverses, with verticals converging toward the base. Shift adjustments are tools photographers use to deal with those perspective distortions. Tilt and shift adjustments can be used together, to combine their various advantages.

                Some of these results—especially perspective corrections—can be simulated fairly well electronically. Focus failures are harder, because out-of-focus image areas omit detail information. For those, convincing-looking electronic corrections may be only that—they may be mistaken electronic guesses about what was there.

          2. I find it hard to argue aganst that. Because I can’t make head or tail of it. Why are you all so utterly incoherent, but also so utterly confident in your incoherence?

            1. The incoherence is in the brain of the reader. Study some physics before you comment on the topic.
              Absaroka seemed to comprehend perfectly well.

            2. Nige,
              You didn’t understand because you do not know the difference between a focal plane, an object plane and an image plane not do you seem to grasp the implications of depth of focus.
              Study your old physics textbook and come back later

              1. I wasn’t referring to the FAKE BIDEN VIDEO1111! but the replies are stretching out so confusion is understandable.

        3. That’s disinformation? Here is a peer reviewed paper with the graph:
          https://www.researchgate.net/figure/Global-Temperature-and-CO2-levels-over-600-million-years-Source-MacRae-2008_fig1_280548391

          Don’t flaunt your ignorance. Besides plants and algae pulling carbon out of the air, rock weathering and limestone formation are all sequestering vast amounts of carbon. Our little intervention recycling some of that carbon back in the atmosphere so plants can breath is the least we can do for them after all they do for us.

          1. You’d better sit down while I break it to you about global biodiversity loss.

            Also about the limits to plant carbon sequestration.

            Also about the effects of elevated CO2 levels on human intellect.

            On the other hand, you seem to be the sort of person who would, logically, support ending deforestation, funding for reforestation, rewilding, restoring wetlands, and changing agricultural practice to be more biodiversity friendly.

            1. Reforestation is happening on it’s own via CO2 fertilization says not some rando but Nasa.

              “From a quarter to half of Earth’s vegetated lands has shown significant greening over the last 35 years largely due to rising levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide, according to a new study published in the journal Nature Climate Change on April 25”

              Search on NASA greening of earth, it will take you to NASA’s website so you can see it from them.

              Also do some geologic research on the rock carbon cycle and you will see normal aging process of rocks sequesters massive amounts of carbon, as do the oceans.

              1. ‘Significant greening’ where? Forestry and jungle is being burnt and felled at a furious rateLivhens and moulds previously arcticareas aren’t a substitute for ceomples ecosystems.

                Yeah, that’s why the seas are warming and plant life is dying and fish species dwindling. I’m not sure the rocks are aging fast enough to help much, but they sure are being quarried and mined, and all that sequestered carbon released.

                1. ‘Livhens and moulds previously arcticareas aren’t a substitute for ceomples ecosystems.’

                  The hell? That should be: ‘Lichens and moulds in previously arctic areas aren’t a substitute for complex ecosystems.’

            2. “you’d better sit down while I break it to you about global biodiversity loss. ”
              More wallowing in whataboutism.

              1. It directly related to his misnomer about plants and fungi. Calling things whataboutism and ad hom so you avoid talking about them doesn’t make them go away, you know.

        4. Don’t you kind of need to identify something wrong, if you’re going to accuse somebody of misinformation?

          1. I have, repeatedly. As a matter of inductive logic you are extremely likely to be wrong about so much here because you’re not qualified to know what you’re talking about. In most circumstances with normal people that gives them *great pause* before making conclusions. With conspiracy kooks they start tensing to leap to conclusions right away.

            I mean, look at yourself the other day about the ‘fake Biden video.’ You bought it hook line and sinker and went on to then vigorously proclaim it as truth and then walked it back within *hours.* Don’t be so gullible, which comes from laziness combined with arrogance (I’m a smart guy and I read some stuff on the internet that seems convincing, so surely those scientists pushing that stuff that those I don’t like politically keep pushing are wrong and I’m right!) and you can avoid that kind of thing.

            1. https://www.politico.com/news/2020/10/19/hunter-biden-story-russian-disinfo-430276

              What did inductive logic suggest a few months back? The 50 signers certainly had far more expertise regarding intel than your average person. While devotees of indictive logic might have been convinced the laptop was fake, the average person could determine the letter was propaganda. Average persons were able to ascertain this not because they had any special knowledge of intel or of the detailed working of computers, but because they weighed other information that flatly contradicted the claim being made by the intel experts.

            2. You still didn’t counter any of my points, instead switching strawmen to Biden’s video.

            3. What a load of bullshit.

              I get my science based on peer reviewed literature, and climate experts like Richard Lintzen, Will Happer, Judith Curry, Roy Spencer, they have collectively and individually more credentials and experience that charletans like Micheal Mann, who is reduced to suing people to shut them up because he can’t prove them wrong in his published work.

              It’s just ridiculous and embarrassing and unscientific that Mann claims to know what the temperatures have been over the last 1000 years to .10 degree based on tree rings, when it can’t even tell us what temperatures have been in the last 50 years when we can correlate it.

          2. The comment QA is responding to doesn’t really qualify as any kind of ‘information.’

        5. I notice you didn’t counter a single thing I said. Typical proggie non-reply.

      2. The really funny thing is how “climate denialism/ist” became a popular thing to call people. It was in that fake Heartland memo Peter Glieck wrote, where his use of the term (supposedly Heartland referring to *themselves* as climate denialists) was so obviously his writing that it exposed him as the author, and he later had to admit to releasing the documents (although lied about writing that one)

        1. wait, this is totally wrong. Sorry. Gleick was using “anti-climate”

          1. I’m anti-climate too, it caused nothing but problems.

        2. Since you brought up Glieck – It was surprising the number of people who lacked the intellectual capacity to recognize an obvious forgery, yet somehow possessed the superior intellectual intelligence to ascertain the validity of climate science.

      3. Holy crap. Holy crap. This is painful.

  7. Global warming is a Blue Anon sham and just another example of the clown world we currently live in. We are supposed to believe elections can’t be rigged, but to “save our planet” we have to adopt every liberal wet dream ever concocted.

    1. Jimmy — haven’t you read the memo?

      It’s not “global warming” anymore — it’s now “climate change” which (somehow) concurrently includes more intense storms (which include precipitation) and drought — in the same areas at the same time.

      And these idiots somehow forget that yesterday (in geologic times) there was a mile-thick glacier over NE/NY and as granite is flexible on a large scale, the coastline is sinking like footprints in wet sand on the beach do. Maybe the sea level is rising, but the coast you measure it against is sinking…

      And Boston gets about 6 high tides a year that are over 13′ — it has to do with gravity from the earth & moon and the shape of the coastline and this has been known for centuries. But throw in a relatively tiny spring storm with a couple more feet of storm surge and people freak out because dumpsters start floating down Atlantic Avenue. Well, what idiot built Atlantic Avenue that low to the high tide line. Same thing with a couple of the MBTA’s Blue Line subway stations — if you are less than three feet above the astronomically-expected high tide line, are you *really* that stupid?!?

      1. The sea level rise data they cite always cracks me up — it shows cities just a couple hundred miles apart on the Atlantic coast experiencing vastly different sea level rises. Amazing stuff, their science. So much more flexible than the regular variety.

        1. They are calling land subsidence sea level rise, there is a big difference. It’s like saying the Titanic was a climate disaster because sea levels rose over the ship.

          Sea level rise has been a steady 3mm a year for the last century, but a few thousand years ago the sea level was 18 feet higher.

          1. Yeah, imagine you’re on the Titanic and someone says ‘The water’s rising!’ and you’d be all ‘LOL no we’re sinking there’s a big difference!’

            1. I don’t know who may or may not be confusing sea levels rising with land subsiding, but it is an important distinction to make. The subsidence in New Orleans isn’t a result of CO2 levels, for example:

              “Scientists have proposed several causes for subsidence in New Orleans. These causes range from natural ones, such as settling of coastal sediments and movement of the Michoud fault, to human ones such as draining wetlands, diverting sediment-bearing floodwaters from the Mississippi River, and pumping ground water.”

      2. It’s actually gravity from the sun and the moon…

        1. Ed,
          Those are called the tides.

      3. ‘(somehow)’

        Dude, you can’t rely on appeals to your own ignorance like this, it’s fallacious logic. Well, okay, strictly speaking you CAN. Okay strictly speaking you do it all the time. Never mind.

    2. “Blue Anon?” Hahahahahaha.

      1. IKR? On the one hand is QAnon, a wacky conspiracy theory out of a Dan Brown book laughed at by nearly all but a bunch of Trump’s beloved ‘poorly educated,’ on the other is a theory that the vast majority of highly trained and accomplished scientists in the relevant fields endorses. Totes the same! Both Sides!

  8. “But if it publishes an article by a nonemployee third party (e.g., a syndicated columnist or an occasional op-ed writer), then it’s only liable if some employee (e.g., an editor) knew the article was false.”

    It is the job of the editors to know if the article is false or not. How in hell can they claim with a straight face to NOT know what they are publishing? They are supposed to follow up each and every source to determine the validity of the story. They are supposed to cross check with multiple reliable sources to double check it all.

    (OK, I am not keeping a straight face, but it really is what should be happening. The fact that it does not is the difference between “journalism” and “propaganda”)

    1. Of course they can. Just make all the efitors ondependent contrctors, not employees.

      Short of that, it’s amazing how ignorant people can be when it’s in their financial interest not to know.

    2. longtobefree comment – “It is the job of the editors to know if the article is false or not. How in hell can they claim with a straight face to NOT know what they are publishing? They are supposed to follow up each and every source to determine the validity of the story. They are supposed to cross check with multiple reliable sources to double check it all.”

      You raise a good point – my observation is that the media frequently passes on false stories via the claim that “they are reporting what someone else said ..” thereby skirting their liability for defamation – I would like Adler or Volokh to comment on that point.

      The other point you raise is whether the editors should have known Simberg statement was false. With regard to MBH98 & MB99, a large segment of climate scientists regard the HS as solid ie the gold standard, consensus, proven, etc. Another large segment of scientists, math experts and statisticians , along with some of the leading experts on paleo proxies regard the HS’s MHB98, MJones2003, pages 2k Gerges etc as being so rife with errors (post ante selection, etc ) as to provide no meaningful insight into past temperatures.

    3. So Reason should be liable for something you post here?

    4. NR did not publish Steyn’s post, anymore than Reason published your post. He clicked the publish button on his own post, just as you clicked the submit button when you published your comment.

      You see the difference there right?

      1. Not sure implying a lack of editorial oversight, or even interset in, the actual writings of their paid contributers is much of a defence.

    5. The article wasn’t false. They withdrew it to try to avoid being hassled.

  9. So basically always use independent contractors and never employees, and you’re never on the hook for libel.

    I see a big business in agencies that supply all of the personnel in a media business to the media company, so no employee of the media company ever knows any details about the comtent. You just contract with the agency, lay all your hands-on employees off, they get rehired by the agency, they come back in as contractors, and off you go doing exactly the same thing you did before, with exactly the same people, except that they are now getring paid less and have fewer benefits and protections. But the lawyers made me do it!

    1. I find the rationale of dismissing the case against NRI to be weak – or better said to be a cop out of the basic question.

      Either the dismissal should be based A) on the statement was true or B) the defendant believed it to be true and (had a reasonable basis to believe it was true.

      In this case – Both pleadings for summary judgement by NRI/CEI/Simberg and Steyn, all cited numerous facts, studies to show the statements made were true. Likewise Mann’s motion for partial summary judgment cited many facts that alleged the statements were false and that the defendants knew or should have known they were false. (these motions were filed in Jan & Feb 2021) .

      The difficult part for Mann is that he has the burden of demonstrating that the defendants knew the statements were false. Mann’s motion for summary judgment never provides evidence that he met that burden, but instead relies on the theory that Everyone knows the hockey stick is true, therefore Simberg’s statement is known to be false by simberg.

      1. National Review made a motion for summary judgement; the judge had to rule on the claims in the motion. The judge can’t simply rule on whether the statement is true. That’s a disputed fact, and a summary judgement can’t rely on whether the judge thinks a disputed fact is true. Facts have to be decided at trial by a jury – that’s in the Constitution.

    2. Steyn clearly was a contractor here, but having a stable of writers who are required to turn in a minimum of pieces to retain employment is necessary to keep a publication thriving.

      You can’t have a publication entirely by freelance writers. It’s not manageable and you can’t sell advertising Or subscriptions based on “well, we don’t employ anyone and can’t guarantee content.”

  10. I was hoping that this trial would force Mann to release his source material, including all the emails from colleagues critical of his “hockey stick trick” — he was a UMass graduate student about the same time I was, and I wasn’t allowed to get away with that type of research.

    Maybe this isn’t true in law schools, but elsewhere in academia, it isn’t uncommon for political view to establish legitimacy of research data, outside of traditional research methods.

    *IF* Mann can actually prove his case, with a public release of all of the relevant data, fine — I might even actually believe him. But right now Global Cooling/Global Warming/Climate Change/Something Something is very much a religion which we are expected to accept on faith — and I don’t…

    1. The judge said he was not going to make the trial about global warming, that he didn’t care who was right or wrong, he also ruled the hockey stick can’t be defamed, it’s not a person.

      The only issue is whether Mann was defamed by being compared to a child molester. I don’t think he was defamed by Steyn or NR because they compared parallels between Penn States investigation of Sandusky with Penn States investigation of Mann, if anything was defamed it was Penn State, but they can’t legally be defamed either.

      1. The suit was about being called a liar and had nothing to do with children.

    2. There is a lot of misinformation regarding Mann’s release of data. Steve McIntyre who has detailed most of multitude HS’s errors has stated that Mann has released most all his data from MBH 98 and MB99, Possibly MJ2003. What Mann’s has not released is his R2 verification data which shows MHB98 is not robust.

      https://climateaudit.org/?s=r2

  11. What the heck is The National Review?

    1. The ghost of William F. Buckley doubtless cracked a refined smile at this pedantry.

  12. Mann has lost many a lawsuit in the US and Canada. Abuse of the legal system based on hurt feelings (aka mean tweets) is not a valid argument.

    1. His hurt feelings are just a pretext, what he wants, and the David Suzuki foundation which is probably funding the Lawyers is to make people afraid to criticize Mann and the IPCC.

      1. Maybe he thinks his research is solid and about an important topic and that inaccurate statements about it undermine both it and policies that he thinks might be important? Nah, can’t be. He’s bound to be motivated by bad motives and part of a conspiracy.

        Is this really the norm for how people think around here?

        What gets me is, it’s so unnecessary. If I were a congresscritter I would vote against most Green New Deal measures twice if I could. I don’t think thousands of scientists around the world in various fields are part of a conspiratorial cabal to usher in socialism, I think they are probably correct and that there are going to be problems from what they’ve found. BUT, then the question is, is any proposed solution going to do good that is worth the pain it itself will cause. I doubt that about most solutions I’ve seen offered by left politics.

        But just denying the science behind it is kooky conspiracy thinking. Sadly, this is becoming the norm on the right in general (see Covid, evolution, etc.,).

        1. For the record, my chief problem with what’s offered by the left re climate change is that it amounts to a type of unilateral disarming. If we enter into an agreement to reduce carbon emissions I doubt we can monitor and enforce it with other nations, especially fast developing ones, and if we enact restrictions on ourselves unilaterally industry will just flow to those other places, the net output of emissions will be the same and we will have hamstrung our economy.

          But again, I’m not going engage in the sloppy, arrogant reasoning of thinking that I did some internet research on climate audit.com and I’ve stumbled onto a truth that all those scientists out there just can’t see. Good lord.

          1. Best thing for those developing countries is for cleaner technologies to be available to them to take advantage of so they don’t make the same mistakes. That’s my Hail Mary, anyway.

          2. Queen comment – “But again, I’m not going engage in the sloppy, arrogant reasoning of thinking that I did some internet research on climate audit.com”

            A) its climate audit. org, not com
            B) compare and contrast the quality of the analysis at climateaudit.org with how climate scientists address the errors.
            C) Steve Mcintyre was a peer reviewer until, he kept pointing out the errors in the climate scientists work – something having to do with the renegade peer reviewer wanting the climate scientists to show their work before he signed off on their studies
            D) numerous HS’s studies have not published or have been retracted due the errors he has found.
            E) Steve McIntyre is one of the leading experts on the individual proxies used in all the HS reconstructions.

        2. That sounds ideal – realistic evaluation of the science combined with skepticism about the grandiose proposed policy fixes, the likely defects of which include a tragedy-of-the-commons cycle of actions and reactions across the globe with no net reduction in emissions.

          But if that’s your approach, you should be celebrating any legal defeat for the likes of Mann, who repeatedly has attempted to use litigation to silence and intimidate his critics. Mann is by no means on the side of “science.” His work is held in low esteem by fair-minded experts across the political spectrum. If you’re against conspiracy theories and tribalist thinking, you should welcome Mann’s exit, stage left, from the mainstream of the climate science debate.

          Speculating as to whether NR or Steyn are being funded with by Koch brothers money is just the kind of conspiracy-mongering you say you’re against. They’ve been supported as amici in the Mann lawsuit by the Washington Post, ACLU, LA Times and others. I’m pretty sure the Kochs haven’t infiltrated those organizations.

        3. The biggest flaw of the GND is that if falsely assumes that all can be solved by renewables with precious little spent on large scale energy storage and very little devoted to adaptation to the inevitable temperature increases and sea level rises.

          1. Don Nico
            March.20.2021 at 5:13 pm
            The biggest flaw of the GND is that if falsely assumes that all can be solved by renewables with precious little spent on large scale energy storage

            Skeptical Science and other Greenies endorse the GND, along with studies by Williams2021, Jacobson, etc who believe the US can successfully convert to 100% renewables by 2050. Including All home heating converted to electricity, and electrical vehicles. Those studies estimate the needed electric usage will icrease by 2-3x during winter time.

            Everyone knows about the failure of gas electric generation in Texas for those 2 days in February, What is forgotten is that Wind and Solar electric generation dropped by 70%-90% for the 9 day period across the entire US. 3-4 days of little or no electric generation from wind and solar during the winter is quite common across the entire US.

            Yet somehow the greenies lack the intellectual capacity to grasp some of the basic engineering hurdles.

  13. I defer to EV to say what the law is. My comment is that if what he says is true, then legacy publishing is now pushing into Section 230 territory with regard to libel. That is not the same as before the internet. Independent liability for publishers was a thing. It was the basis for private editing which prevented the vast majority of would-be libels before they got published. That does not happen on the internet, because of Section 230. Under the regime EV describes in the OP, there is little reason to see why legacy media would continue to do better.

  14. “On August 22, 2012, Rich Lowry …[,] editor of National Review, wrote an article in National Review, addressing Plaintiff’s threatened lawsuit. On October 22, 2020, Plaintiff filed suit against Defendants National Review, Steyn, Competitive Enterprise Institute (“CEI”), and Rand Simberg. ”
    Eugene: I see the Scriveners error in the original Court Document but, I’m sure the Case was filed October 22, 2012. Not 2020! Otherwise, the Motion to Dismiss was filed 8 Years before the Suit was Filed.

  15. Eugene: I see the Scriveners Error in the original Court Document but, I’m sure the Case was filed October 22, 2012. Not 2020! Otherwise, the Motion to Dismiss was filed 8 Years before the Suit was Filed. It’s amazing, no one else noticed this error. So much for, attention to detail.

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