Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Anthony Watts lynch mob of mindless louts attack another university professor

Sou | 11:10 PM Go to the first of 14 comments. Add a comment

A few days ago I wrote about a couple of pretty dreadful articles at WUWT.  They were a distortion of an article in The Conversation by Lawrence Torcello.

The WUWT articles misreprented Lawrence Torcello's article. They went further than that.  As I wrote in that previous article, WUWT organised a hate mail campaign - led by Christopher Monckton and Anthony Watts.

It worked.  Graham Readfearn at deSmogBlog reported that Dr Torcello received upwards of 700 hate emails and telephone calls.  Some examples:
“DIE you maggot"
“Fortunately, your kind will be marched to the wall with all the other leftist detritus”
...Others accuse Torcello, an assistant professor at Rochester Institute of Technology’s Department of Philosophy in the west of New York State, of being a fascist, Stalinist and a Nazi.
...At one point, he says he picked up his phone to be told that soon he would be “paid a visit”.
One email told Torcello — in customary all-caps angriness — that he was a “FAGGOT” and that global warming was “A LIE STRAIGHT FROM THE JEWS”.

Oh I don't imagine it was just WUWT that caused the barrage of hate, however this is not atypical of what you can read on Anthony Watts' blog.  WUWT certainly played its part.  The overall tone there is one of antagonism towards anyone who argues that something needs to be done to mitigate climate change.  Anthony likes to organise a lynch mob from time to time.

In his article, Lawrence Torcello wrote: "an organised campaign funding misinformation ought to be considered criminally negligent."  An organised campaign of harassment and vilification against climate philosophers and climate scientists should also be against the law.

One more thing. In my article I surmised that Anthony wrote his piece without reading Lawrence Torcello's article. Otherwise he was admitting to being part of an organised campaign funding misinformation. In the deSmogBlog article, I noticed that Lawrence Torcello is quoted as saying:

Now it is clear that the bloggers misrepresenting my views knew exactly what they were doing with the scandalous headlines and crafted misquotations. Even when they linked to my article, they felt secure in the judgement that their audience wouldn’t read it.

The sort of people that Anthony Watts aims to attract to his blog are mindless louts who'll use any excuse to fire off hate mail. You can see this tendency daily in the comments at WUWT - sometimes overtly, sometimes more muted but always there in the background. See the comments archived here and here for examples.


  1. Next week on WUWT, another post that there is no evidence for death treats directed at scientists.

    Like there is no evidence that greenhouse gasses warm the surface.

  2. I think any possibility that the typical climate change denier was a decent, but misguided, individual evaporated with Climategate. You didn't need to understand any science, just plain English, to see that the emails were being misrepresented to stoke up an online lynching. Has anyone ever met a climate change denier who has apologised for that?

    1. Doesn't happen, ever. Goes with the type climate revisionists are.

  3. Several times I have suggested running language sentiment software analysis against the comment streams of climate skeptic sites. I'd bet they rate quite high on the scorn, mockery and insult index.

    Does anyone know if there is a good free analysis site anywhere?

    1. http://breakthroughanalysis.com/2012/01/08/what-are-the-most-powerful-open-source-sentiment-analysis-tools/

    2. Thanks. it looks like the Stanford NLP project referenced there has a free online tool for sentiment analysis for up to 200 lines of text at a time, rating text strongly positive to strongly negative. Much depends of course on the systems training, and some of the other open source software requires you to build a training set of terms and phrases.

  4. Does Obamacare cover hurt feelings for skeptics?

  5. During the Catlin polar stuff there were some really nasty posts on WUWT All approved by the censors on the site.

    Chemist says:
    April 28, 2009 at 4:48 pm
    I’ll be the one to say it: I hope they die so that their deaths will draw attention to the truth of this issue. If they succeed, then it will be just another propaganda

    Daniel L. Taylor says: May 5, 2009 at 6:51 am
    …Maybe I’m just a cold hearted SoB, but in my opinion they need to freeze to death on that ice. The world needs to see the headline “Global Warming scientists …
    I’m sorry, but if the deaths of everyone on that ice survey team helps raise awareness of and opposition to the global warming political train wreck then so be it. It needs to happen

  6. Porf Torcello nailed it : "secure in the judgement that their audience wouldn’t read it."

    We can be sure they won't be reading that comment either, in their self-contained world.

  7. Has anyone read the copy of the magazine called New Scientist for the day 28th October 1982? Look at the article starting on page 220 It will stop all stubborn warmists in their tracks.


    1. Wow. You deniers are getting to be complete clowns these days!...a news report about a correlational study published by 2 Chinese scientists that won no general acceptance at then or ever after!!!

      You sir have overturned all accepted current knowledge climate change and man-caused global warming!!! It is interesting to note that the final sentence of the news report clearly acknowledges greenhouse warming. Don't suppose you missed that sentence, now could you have?!

      The ads bring back my early computing days, too. Thanks.

      For those interested in this clear demolishment of current science here is a nonpaywalled link. https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=k5gNPz8j_HYC&printsec=frontcover&source=gbs_ge_summary_r&cad=0#v=onepage&q&f=false

    2. It stopped me in my tracks. I needed to stop and wonder how stupid a climate change denier would have to be to post this.

    3. To paraphrase Dr. Pauli, I think I would say that Anon may have demonstrated that he/she isn't even stupid but rather in a whole other category which I shall label "anonymous brainpower".

    4. Well, that was another failed prediction I missed - a little ice age was meant to start 35 years ago because "planets". Instead it just keeps getting hotter and hotter and hotter.


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