New SLAAPstick Courtroom Capers as Michael Mann Falls Foul Again
Media war of words erupts in anticipation of another global warming courtroom battle. We take time to see how latest events connected to Climategate’s controversial scientist Michael Mann stack up alongside Mann’s legal shoot out versus Dr. Tim Ball.
Last week Pennsylvania State University (PSU) popped back up on the notoriety radar thanks to lingering fallout over their jailed child sex felon, football coach Jerry Sandusky. PSU’s other alleged bad boy, climatologist Michael Mann, came out with all legal guns blazing after popular right-wing writer, Mark Steyn and the National Review wrote of the parallels in the “whitewashes” PSU investigations performed separately on Sandusky and Mann. The recent and hard-hitting Freeh Report is damning of PSU’s hierarchy.
With talk of more lawsuits flying, observers are now wondering how an earlier Michael Mann face off with Tim Ball is shaping up one year on. Readers may recall that Ball’s whimsy that Mann belongs in “the State Pen., not Penn. State” triggered the first of what now may become a series of desperate SLAAP lawsuits.
You might imagine plenty must have transpired by now up there in the British Columbia Supreme Court. But you would be wrong. Mann’s zeal for pressing home his action against his fellow climatologist appears to have waned. Some observers are even of the opinion that Mann is delaying the inevitable until Ball slaps one home between the pipes.
Today – despite being duly served with legal notices – Steyn and the National Review are taking a leaf from Ball’s book and not caving over their “Football and Hockey” article. Steyn has a reputation for being a tough enforcer capable of lighting the lamp in any SLAAP face off. So is Mann skating on thin ice with more time wasting dangles and dekes?
Steyn and others will no doubt take note of how Mann’s prevarications over Ball suggest he has finally realized he’s dug himself a humungous hole. I’m one of many who believes the Mann-v- Ball case will turn out to be a watershed moment for Mann. It’s most likely he will be compelled by the court to disclose his “dirty laundry” (as Mann, himself, refers to his hidden data in his Climategate email). If the hidden numbers are as bad as skeptics suggest then none of his friends in high places can save him.
So Steyn should take with a pinch of salt the “warning shot” from Mann’s lawyer claiming that a slew of official investigations “cleared” Mann of any wrongdoing in the 2009 Climategate scandal. Such claims are not what they seem.
Andrew Montford (read his ‘Caspar and Jesus’ paper) is one such expert who deftly explains that those (non-judicial) “Climategate” inquiries fell well short of robust exoneration. This is because they all skirted around the unscientific behavior concerning Mann’s key hidden data. Unfortunately, for Mann he has made himself the plaintiff in this Canadian libel suit and cannot now duck the issue.
In the B.C. Supreme Court Ball’s attorney, Michael Scherr, has a clear run to perfectly demonstrate how climate “scientists” have been (and still are) withholding data that would help to resolve the climate controversy; we may say unscientific behavior, because hiding data makes it difficult or impossible for independent scientists/statisticians to replicate the claimed results.