Re: [asa] Climate Progress

From: John Walley <>
Date: Wed Dec 16 2009 - 16:39:27 EST

Iain, Geez, don't you think this might be a little overdramatic?  You said that someone else on the list called you hypersenstive, do you think there might be a little truth in that? Yes I said the example of moral clarity of leaking the emails was like that of Bonhoeffer, later qualified to say it was an extreme example. I never compared Jones to Hitler however and even never thought of that. The point was and which I still defend is that there comes a time when conscience compells one to expose wrondgoing and I think that is clearly the case with CRU (assuming it was an inisde job which I think it was). I think the majority of public opinion worldwide agrees with me. I think it is unlikely that Jones will be exonerated but if it happens justly, surely I will admit I was wrong. But this goes both ways. You know he was already asked to step aside and if the current trajectory plays out and he is not exonerated and ultimately convicted by the evidence, would you be willing to admit you were wrong?  It all comes down to judgment and where we each choose to draw the line on reasonable guilt. We differ on this and we have had this discussion before. Further my mention of bearing false witness was hardly an accusation, in fact I believe I said you should consider that. Regardless if you choose to leave the list, I would regret that as I was sincere when I said I appreciated your efforts to help validate the Eschenbach data and I know others agree that was a very worthwhile contribution to the list. But I do think we all have to be prepared to give and take some smarts in these highly volatile and emotionally charged discussions. John ________________________________ From: Iain Strachan <> To: John Walley <> Cc: Christine Smith <>; Sent: Wed, December 16, 2009 7:35:18 AM Subject: Re: [asa] Climate Progress On Wed, Dec 16, 2009 at 11:55 AM, John Walley <> wrote: I would like to add some more to my reply to this yesterday after having some time to cool down. > > >"Yes, but stealing is violating GOD's laws.  It is to that point that you seem impervious.  Furthermore you are implying that you have already tried and condemned Phil Jones in your mind as being as guilty as Hitler was. I think you really need to get some sense of perspective here.  Some sleazy hacker who knows all the devious tricks for breaking into secure computer systems is hardly a Bonhoeffer." > >I agree that if it was an outside hack job then that would be wrong. But I don't think it is and the evidence points to it being an inside job because it was filtered to be only emails pertaining to their work. In fact, I suspect they might be concerned that there may be other emails that may still be released. Plus an outside hacker is not likely to get access to mail files and all the program code since they are likely stored in different places. > >Yes I have arrived at the conclusion in my mind that Phil Jones is guilty of ethical and professional lapses of judgment and possibly way more. And I think that should be obvious to anyone that is not in denial. But I did not make a comparison with him and Hitler nor did I say that the leaker was Bonhoeffer. On the contrary I said both Bonhoeffer and slavery were extreme examples and a closer to home example would be gov't sponsored whistleblowing. > >So for someone that likes to qoute the commandments to people you should consider yourself and not bear false witness. Dear John, I strongly reject your accusation that I am bearing false witness over this and am deeply offended that you should say so. (a)  It was you, and not I, who made the Bonhoeffer/Hitler analogy.  I remind you about what you wrote: No I don't agree. I think it was an act of conscience and a superb display of moral clarity. just like Dietrich Bonhoeffer's unfortunately unsuccessful attempt to assasinate Hitler. When this is over he should be awarded some whistleblower award by Congress or our new President. He could have saved civilization. (Emphasis mine) Evidently you wished to make a direct comparison between the two situations - I was responding to your comparison.  So in your comparison, the whistleblower/thief/whatever is directly analogous to Bonhoeffer, and Phil Jones (and other scientists implicated) are directly analogous to Hitler. (b) Even given the above, I took care to phrase what I wrote so as NOT to say you were comparing Phil Jones to Hitler.  What I said was you had made up your mind that Phil Joneswas as guilty as Hitler.  This subtlety of the text may have missed you, and maybe it wasn't the best way of putting it, so I shall explain precisely what I meant, which is this:  there is absolutely no doubt that Hitler was guilty of genocide/persecuting and killing Jews, etc etc.  Not the slightest doubt.  However, the jury is still out on whether Phil Jones is guilty of professional misconduct, pending an enquiry during which he has inevitably had to step down from his post. Now in my country the rule is "innocent until proved guilty".  But you seem to already have made up your mind that there's no doubt about his being guilty.  That is what I meant by "as guilty as Hitler".  Now it is of course possible that this is not the case for you; that given a thorough and neutral investigation, if Jones gets exonerated, you might be prepared to say "I was wrong". I am left thinking it is high time to leave the list.  However hard I try to qualify what I write, none if it gets noticed; what I write gets twisted (this is the second time you have done this), and being accused of lying is just about the last straw. A retraction of your accusation might help me to decide to stay, but at the moment, carrying on the battle for reasoned debate in this atmosphere seems pointless. Iain

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Received on Wed Dec 16 16:39:48 2009

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