CCD Editor's Note: For a good overview, start here:
PART I Lewandowsky – Shows “skeptics” are nutters by asking alarmists to fill out survey
PART II 10 conspiracy theorists makes a moon landing paper for Stephan Lewandowsky (Part II) PLUS all 40 questions
PART III here Lewandowsky hopes we meant “Conspiracy” but we mean “Incompetence”
PART IV Steve McIntyre finds Lewandowsky’s paper is a “landmark of junk science”
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Stephan Lewandowsky is rattled. Not surprisingly. Right now, his blog has gone from a steady run of zero-to-three-comment-posts up to 200, and the skeptics are armed with cutting questions.
But the more he writes, the worse it gets. Skeptics have picked apart his methods, his data, his transparency, and his conclusions. His latest responses are childish taunts with variants of name-calling. What place does an unrelated smear have in a science debate? It’s an effort to distract people.
His paper, in press, has been shown to have a misleading headline, with worthless conclusions based on statistically insignificant number of responses, using a clumsy one-sided test — the aim of which was obvious to most readers. When asked for data he provided answers to 32 questions but still hides the results obtained to a quarter of his original survey, including the basic demographics. He changed the order of questions depending on the blog he sought replies from — effectively putting different versions of the survey up (see below for his explanation). He himself emailed or was named in emails to alarmist anti-skeptic bloggers, while he used an unknown assistant to email skeptical blogs. These non-standard methods were not described in his paper.
It’s an unusual professional demeanor to write as a professor of science in a genre of attempted-parody. The dismissive, puerile efforts to mock those who are seriously dissecting his work are not contributing much to humankind’s knowledge. For a man too busy to answer questions vital to his work, why try his hand at comedy?
Shame about those public funds eh?
The man is supposed to be an expert on the topic of conspiracies, yet can’t define them scientifically, espouses conspiracies himself, and is blind to that because he thinks his conspiracies are proven facts. (Where are all those cheques from Big-oil that have more effect than the billions that are documented as vested interests for the case-for-alarm?) Furthermore, he made the unlikely claim that questions from skeptics about his methodology amounted to proof of “conspiratorial thinking” — despite there being no conspiracy or co-conspirators postulated, just his own incompetent work. If this is how the man defines “conspiracies”, no wonder he has so much trouble writing surveys on the topic. Skeptics asked which blogs he had contacted for his research. He behaved as if it were unreasonable to expect him to back up his statements, or provide emails done for publicly funded work.
UPDATE: A day after we skeptics figured out who four of the five bloggers were, and I updated the page here, Lewandowsky finally gives up the names still claiming (improbably) that he needed special approval to release emails that were never private, and never under an ethical question in the first place. He admonishes skeptics for “outing” his assistant, and says they should have searched their inbox instead — except they did, they searched under “Lewandowsky”, “Oberauer” and “Gignac” (as any rational person would). Lewandowsky still hasn’t explained why he personally contacted the anti-skeptic blogs, but not the key skeptical ones. Stephan claims skeptics do shoddy record keeping, yet he’s the one who didn’t bother searching the internet to find his own survey was hosted by junkscience.