Posted by Jim at Tuesday, July 29, 2014
By Laurence Lewis
28 July 2014
(Daily Kos) – When Nate Silver's new FiveThirtyEight blog hired climate disinformer Roger Pielke, Jr., there was a fierce backlash from climate scientists and activists.
As I wrote, in an extensive post:Climate change is the most important issue humanity has ever faced. On the questions of whether it is happening, whether humans burning fossil fuels are the primary driver, and whether the impacts are happening and will only grow worse, there is no credible debate. The scientific consensus is overwhelming. To promote disinformation and misinformation about climate change is inexcusable and unconscionable, but by hiring Roger Pielke, Jr., that is exactly what Nate Silver is doing. It would be bad enough if Silver had hired Pielke in conjunction with a credible climate scientist, to create the sort of false equivalency that the traditional media so loves to promote, but to have hired Pielke at all undermines the very premise of what Silver claims to be trying to do. It undermines the credibility of Silver's blog and of Silver himself. The question is whether or not this was a mistake that will be corrected, or whether it tells us something about Silver himself.When Pielke threatened legal action against two of his critics, climate scientists Michael Mann and Kevin Trenberth, Silver responded:"Roger is a freelance contributor and his private communications do not represent FiveThirtyEight," Silver said in a statement to HuffPost. "We had candid conversations with Michael Mann and Kevin Trenberth. We made clear that Roger's conversations with them did not reflect FiveThirtyEight's editorial values."Pielke then disappeared from FiveThirtyEight for a while, and when he returned began posting about sports. He never again had a post on climate at FiveThirtyEight. Now this: [more]