the Air Vent

Because the world needs another opinion

Tough Times

Posted by Jeff Id on February 7, 2010

Ok, this is a bit difficult to blog on b/c it deals with a man so emotionally distraught but it’s very difficult to have sympathy for him. The same guy who would hide the decline, claim he didn’t, delete IPCC emials, claim he didn’t, write that he would rather delete temperature data than let people see it. He’s now had several death threats and was thinking of killing himself – all this occurred because he would not let people see the thermometer data. I doubt that a terrorist cell could create such loyalty.

I am sorry this cocky arrogant bastard is having such a tough time, but gee doc — all you had to do was share the damned data – and stop lying!

Those who have focused on Phil Climategate Jones, have misplaced their anger. Phil is guilty as hell for sure, but a lot of people around him knew it. They are also guilty. What’s more, I predict they will continue to be guilty over the coming years, having no remorse or punishment whatsoever for that which they fabricate. Instead the international climate business, which has been structured to reward exaggerations, will continue on unabated but perhaps more cautious. All that said, Phil can’t leave the group soon enough though, a few decades away from the stress of collecting and disclosing data would do him some good.

Click the headline below for the full article.


I thought of killing myself, says climate scandal professor Phil Jones

THE scientist at the centre of the “climategate” email scandal has revealed that he was so traumatised by the global backlash against him that he contemplated suicide.

Professor Phil Jones said in an exclusive interview with The Sunday Times that he had thought about killing himself “several times”. He acknowledged similarities to Dr David Kelly, the scientist who committed suicide after being exposed as the source for a BBC report that alleged the government had “sexed up” evidence to justify the invasion of Iraq.

In emails that were hacked into and seized upon by global-warming sceptics before the Copenhagen climate summit in December, Jones appeared to call upon his colleagues to destroy scientific data rather than release it to people intent on discrediting their work monitoring climate change.

Jones, 57, said he was unprepared for the scandal: “I am just a scientist. I have no training in PR or dealing with crises.”

71 Responses to “Tough Times”

  1. Must we assume Jones was thinking of killing himself, and that he survived because, as he says, he wants to see his granddaughter grow up? Or can we leave room for the possibility that this is just another lie from him? Celebrities do this sort of thing all the time in the press–they assume a sympathetic fallback position to obscure whatever it is they’ve actually done. When a scientist is criticized for his work, he’s supposed to offer evidence that he was right and that his methods were right. He’s supposed to provide detail and arguments. Instead, Jones goes tabloid.

  2. Keith MacDonald said

    I was tempted to feel a little sympathy for him until I read that

    Which sounds like the reporter was feeding him the suggestion to flatter him, and I find that distasteful. I’m willing to be corrected, but was Dr David Kelly ever accused of being refusing to reveal data or manipulating the results? I thought it was quite the opposite, and he was a threat to the Government’s position.

    The only way the comparison seems to stand up if is Jones is suicided as well and becomes a martyr to the IPCC cause.

  3. Keith MacDonald said

    Sorry, mis-typed the piece I was trying to quote….

    He acknowledged similarities to Dr David Kelly, the scientist who committed suicide after being exposed as the source for a BBC report that alleged the government had “sexed up” evidence to justify the invasion of Iraq.

  4. Peter B said

    This is the same man who referred to John Daly’s death as “cheering news”.

  5. FrancisT said

    In an odd way, this is cheering news!

  6. Jeff Id said

    #4 I think that was Santer

  7. As far as death threats to Jones are concerned, the people he really needs to worry about are the big-time AGW players who are looking at billions and trillions of profits or losses…as the whole “science” circles the drain. Those heavy hitters don’t take kindly to their minions who can’t execute a good cover-up and instead send damaging emails to their friends. On some level, I think Jones knows that. Being thrown to the wolves is a command that comes down from the top…

  8. Binned said

    In an odd way this is cheering news ! One other thing about the CC paper – just found
    another email – is that McKittrick says it is standard practice in Econometrics journals
    to give all the data and codes !! According to legal advice IPR overrides this.


    From 1075403821.txt.

  9. More spin from Mr Jones.

    FrancisT: although I saw that coming I still laughed.

  10. TinyCo2 said

    I do have some sympathy for Jones.

    Consider the early climate scientists. Quietly puttering along, producing temperature reconstructions that no one was interested in, but everyone thought were terribly clever. Trying to create weather predictions that didn’t work – but that was ok because nobody believed them anyway. Measuring the temperatures and if the data was a bit dodgy, you made it up. The best bit about your job was when you published your boring findings in a boring journal and your boring peers said what a great paper you’d written. Everybody was poor, unappreciated, but happy.

    Then BAM. A few of you decide that CO2 is going to warm up the planet and everyone wants your data. Oh boy, is it exciting. Interviews, conferences, MONEY all start rolling in. You forget that your data and theory aren’t exactly bullet proof and get caught up in the crusade to save the planet. It’s not just you, all your friends and colleagues are hitting the big time as well.

    Everyone tells you what an important job you’re doing and suddenly there’s no time to go back and tie up the loose ends. Politicians and reporters encourage you to exaggerate and your conscience is ok with that because the public have to act NOW.

    Then along comes a few pesky bloggers, asking to see the proof. Oh cripes! A bit like your mother turning up when your underwear is strewn across the floor. You know you should let her in but you really, really don’t want to. So you delay, hoping the sceptics will go away and leave your stinky data alone. The sensible thing would be to start getting it in order but there are too many important conferences and lunches and Nobel Prizes to attend to actually get down to the job.

    Oh dear, then along comes FOI. Sooner or later you’re going to have to open up. Unless… that’s it, refuse them all. That buys you a bit of time. Now you grumble and whine about the pesky bloggers. Don’t they know that even if your data is in a mess, you are RIGHT and they should just leave you alone to get on with the important job of being IMPORTANT.

    But you start to really look at your data and OMG! Key parts of it are missing or obviously wrong. You can’t show them that, they’ll laugh and the world won’t think that you’re a hero anymore. So you panic and start to actively fight against the bloggers. It doesn’t matter how reasonable they are, these are your enemy and you’ll fight them regardless.

    Then game over.

    It would all be forgivable except… even an idiot should have seen that once trillions of dollars were at stake, sooner or later, the data and theory would have to be beyond reproach and Phil Jones isn’t an idiot, is he?

    No more than the other climatologists currently shoving their dirty laundry under the sofa.

  11. Ian said


    A very trenchant and readable analysis. It fairly summarizes the human aspect of the situation.

    I think we would do well to avoid being clever about another person’s personal trauma, even if it’s self-created (and arises from circumstances where he has behaved badly, at a cost to others).

    Let’s stay focussed on the data, the methods, the results (and the FOI requests!) – and do our best to keep the MSM similarly concentrated, now that they are finally starting to pay some attention.

  12. Garry said

    He is a scientist who’s been nabbed doing everything that a scientist should not be doing. He should be distraught. Very much so.

    One would suppose that Jones’ condition might be the same as a lawyer caught embezzling client escrow funds, or a physician working under falsified credentials. Or any random academic caught fudging his data. All are (and should be) professional catastrophes.

    So what that he’s lost 15 pounds in 10 weeks; is taking blood pressure medicine (beta blockers); and sleeping pills. Big deal. So too would the thieving lawyer, the lying physician, or the random dishonest academic.

  13. per said

    I think the interesting thing about this story, and the accompanying one, is the tone of the commentary. It is almost entirely one-sided, and almost all of it is very critical of Jones. He gets very little sympathy, and the top comment has been recommended 470 times.

    Strangely enough, Jones is complaining about being caught, not for his behaviour. He still doesn’t understand.


  14. Bryan H. said

    Criminals are human, and unless completely sociopath, show emotion, that doesn’t lessen their responsibility of the crime. Yes we can feel sympathy for the poor soul of Jones, but that doesn’t make him any less responsible for what he did. So while in his own words he has “… no training in PR or dealing with crises” he obviously is now working with those that do (either a PR firm, or image consultant) whereby his careful first “exclusive” appearance is of making himself appear as a poor human crushed by the burdens of the world will soften the public response to his acts as one of the most powerful and influential scientists in climate change research.

  15. An Elegant Chaos said

    When PJ temporarily stood down he said this:

    ‘In the frenzy of the past few days, the most vital issue is being overshadowed: we face enormous challenges ahead if we are to continue to live on this planet


    Is this a dispassionate comment from someone who is observing changes to the climate? I read it as a closed mind who is not observing but instead pontificating (forget the fact that what they are observing is self written computer programs and reconstruced data from tree rings).

    I’m an interested layman only, my position comes from my own understanding of what I read. They are correct about one thing, they are terrible at communication because, if things are as dreadful as they seem to believe, no one is listening really.

  16. My sympathies are with Phil Jones at this point. But not my sentimentality. I am more concerned about Paul Dennis becoming the target of hate mail. But I DO NOT CONDONE VIOLENCE AT ANY POINT IN THIS GAME. In fact I would really love it if all the big skeptics blogs put out this message. Care to lead, Jeff? Of course, Phil Jones is not the only scientist who has had death threats, but who cares about “denialist” Tim Ball?

    If I were to single out anyone else it would be Ben Santer, bully as well as a conspirator to defraud (the IPCC Summary for Policymakers was altered by his hand, from straight to “our fault”); Michael “fat ego” Mann; Maurice Strong the twisted inspiration, hiding in China because he faces prosecution at home; Jim “apocalyptic showman and nutter” Hansen who kicked off all the shenanigans in 1988; and “fat Al Baby” Gore the oil baron who winds people up and then fleeces them, who never got over the toy he lost (the Presidency). In comparison with these, Phil Jones is the soul of gentlemanly.

  17. Ed said

    So sad for Prof Jones.

    However on a personal note, I well recall voicing the opinion in a well-researched paper about a decade ago that information about pollution levels in London was being exaggerated by green activists. That published opinion elicited threats of personal violence and death. Green “Believers” are not nice people and are certainly rarely open to debate.

    As his friends have regularly dealt out the same treatment to DENIERS it is hardly surprising that it comes back home to haunt him.

  18. Jeremy said

    Killing himself is the easy way out. Shame on him for thinking that. Own up to what you’ve done! It seems like we have a generation in this world that just refuse to put ownership in what they do, so many just mail it in.

  19. rephelan said

    “I am just a scientist. I have no training in PR or dealing with crises.”

    See, Jeff? This is just a perception problem. If we were to just SAY it the right way, find the right image, set the right tone, the ignorant masses would recognize the rightness and importance of what we are doing and let us get on…. but because they are ignorant, they cling to religion and guns, refuse to give up quaint notions like individualism and continue to engage in self-destructive materialism and acquisitiveness. They need to be manipulated and led for their own good.

    Phil Jones is only a minor part of the problem. The real problem is that we have allowed the development of an elite that possesses a world view and set of values that are inimical to those of Western Civilization. It despises Western Civilization. This elite does not occupy only climate science… they are in all the key sectors: art, literature, entertainment, science, academia, law, government, big business… even the churches…

    In 1956 the American Sociologist C. Wright Mills wrote “The Power Elite” which presaged Eisenhower’s warning of a “Military-Industrial Complex”. The point is that the elites in each sphere of life: business, government, artistic, scientific, financial, legal…. are not separate, competing elites, they are a unified elite with a unified world view and vision of human nature. They attend the same schools, sit on the same boards…. they marry each other. Left-wing, right-wing, Democrat, Republican… these are illusory categories, an example of what Marx and the later Frankfurt School would have called “false consciousness”. The partisan fighters of the left and right hate each others guts and send death threats to tools like Phil Jones while failing to recognize the commonality of their interests and the identity and nature of the true enemy.

  20. […] Alaskan glacier melt overestimated, FOI request reality, Malicious minds of alarmist smears, Perpetrator casting a victims shadow, Journalistic […]

  21. bob said

    To Dr. Jones:

    Just publish the freaking data, dude! You will feel better about yourself, your wife will return your affections, and your children will not be bullied by toughies anymore. Just do the right thing.

  22. Ron H. said

    Jones put aside thoughts of suicide out of love for his 5 year old granddaughter? Hold on – I’m still wiping away tears over that one. Give me a break. It sounds like, despite his assertion to the contrary, he has plenty of experience in PR.

    I’ll bet Steve McIntyre felt suicidal plenty of times over the years out of sheer frustration at the stonewalling from Jones group. We just haven’t heard about it because Mr. McIntyre isn’t a big crybaby like Jones.

  23. You can be sure that, behind closed doors, discussions are going on about which heads need to roll, in order to save the AGW fiction. Resignations are the preferred method. Jones or Patch-Patch will stand up and say, “I wasn’t wrong, but in order to put an end to this storm of controversy, I think it’s better to step down and let the science go on. The planet IS in dire jeopardy, and we cannot lose this moment to partisan bickering…”

    Jones can also cite “health reasons.” His interview with the Times was possibly a set up for that.

    During the last week or so, advisors have been telling Algore to keep his big mouth shut. There’s enough trouble already. Gore’s in deep muck, because he doesn’t know how many other lies IPCC has told, and anything he says could suddenly turn out to be a sinkhole.

  24. Ron H. said

    By the way thanks, Jeff, for the chance to rant about Jones. I know it’s not very professional, and not exactly climate science, but it feels good, and I think he certainly deserves it.

  25. Larry Sheldon said

    Somebody famous should have said “If you can take the heat, stay out of the kitchen.”

  26. Tony Hansen said

    It is unclear what his ‘incident’ is precisely.
    Details of the death threats should be passed on to relevant authorities.
    Did the death threats prompt the thoughts of suicide?

  27. Peter of Sydney said

    jon rappoport, I agree that’s a very likely scenario. That’s another reason why they shoul dbe taken to court ASAP. If they are not punished for their alleged illegal behavior, they will effectively win the debate and continue the AGW scam. Time is on their side, not ours. I fear they will win the longer the escape the courts.

  28. Jandke said

    As I read thru ALL the sordid details of this and the many other appendages of this decades old caper, I can’t help but think about the poor — the REALLY indigent peoples of the world — the tiny children and weak, infirmed, desperate families affected by “do-gooder” thieves. The hucksters and carpetbaggers thought nothing of the food and energy prices multiplying; of truly wasted resources. All of this endless scheming and tail chasing… for what?

    Sorry! I have NO sympathy. One would have thought there would have been a collective global sigh of relief once it became clear that were visible cracks in the “science.” But instead, there is “whoa is me” — “look at what you’ve done to me.”

  29. Matt Y. said

    “I am just a scientist.” — well that is self-serving B.S. He long ago crossed over the line to advocate. The fact that he tried to disguise his advocacy as science is why he is in the position he is in. The man made his own bed.

  30. […] hecho mejor de lo que yo pueda hacerlo, así que  lo robo. Viene de The Air Vent, de TinyCO2, en este –> comentario. […]

  31. JAE said

    A true example of “victimology,” the Left’s favorite ploy. Don’t EVER be responsible for anything, just claim to be a victim. Makes me want to puke.

  32. timetochooseagain said

    The message here is supposed to be “They ought to be ashamed of themselves, nearly driving a man to suicide”

    I remember when we used to look down upon killing yourself. Well, I don’t remember, but I did read that it gets you into the seventh circle.

    To be honest, rather than any pity, I feel like Jones has merely proven that he is not a coward. He may not have to face his problems, but he didn’t take the easy way out, either.

  33. Gary P said

    My uncle liked to tell a story about a bartender friend of his. There was one patron of the bar who was a morose and complaining type. One day he was especially despondent and crying over his beer. He told the bartender he felt like going home and shooting himself. My uncles friend had about enough of gloomy Gus and told him, “Wait a minute, I got just what you need.” He went to the back room and came back and put a 30-30 Winchester round on the bar and said, “Here you go.”

    Gloomy Gus got a little upset and kind of stormed out of the bar. He never did kill himself. I’ve always wondered if a little sarcasm and ridicule wasn’t the perfect treatment for this guy. Given this happened in the U.P., I am sure the bartender didn’t give a damn either way.

    In light of that story I would like to send Phil Jones a little present. Given Europe’s motto of “Making life safe for Dictators for 200 years” any type of firearm related thing is illegal. I do however, do have a reel of 3/4 in rope and can spare Dr. Jones 30 feet. Anybody have his address?

  34. Wasn’t there a rare word of wisdom out of the Guardian somewhere just now, about the need for scientists to learn it’s ok to say sorry – something like that?

    It’s not just saying sorry, it’s deprogramming from a whole cult. I got such a nice email today from someone who liked my inclusion of the 12-Step Program in my Climate Science primer (click my name) and I got that from… eh, who was it? but it’s reminding me, these folk need something like that.

    Something else about Phil Jones. He seems to fit Stanley Milgram’s picture of the gentle soul, likes to get on with people, wouldn’t hurt a fly, but when pressured to conform to “authority” becomes the worst torturer – while rough mavericks recognize and reject unreasonable authority.

    Who was Phil Jones’ authority figure? Tom Wigley was mistrusted by Hubert Lamb IIRC. We have Wigley agonizing “why, why, why”. Was Phil mesmerised by Mann’s and Santer’s non-ethics?

    Funny thing Science. For 400 years it has tried to get rid of the emotional human in the scientific process – and now that emotional human has returned with weapons. Best to re-include us. This is NOT being post-normal, just applying those wonderful human attributes, commonsense, courtesy, and thinking, subject to appropriate scientific method.

  35. Chriscafe said

    Tiny CO2’s comments contain an important message. When Phil and Keith and all their mates started to work in climate science (or whatever it was called then) it was a scientific backwater inhabited by the guys whio could’nt make it in the ‘hard sciences’, which were then fashionable and were where the really able scientists went. (No wonder that these latter are in the vanguard of the criticism of bodgie climate science: they’re now independent and they live by rigor.)

    So Phil, Keith et al toddled along doing whatever with nobody taking any notice of them, until bang! they’re in the centre of it. Little wonder they can’t cope – they’re not intellectually up to it. However, Mosher and Fuller’s book shows him willing to swap data until the (Michael) Mann hits the scene. I don’t know whether the Mann realised early on that these guys were an embarassment or whether they eagerly grasped his advice not to cooperate. But whatever happened, their work would some day be blown out of the water. McIntyre and others were pretty close even without Climategate.

    As McKitterick has pointed out, economically important ststistics such as cost of living figures are complied by professional data managers and statisticians in dedicated organisations, yet here we have temperature series, on which the future of economies is now based, put together by bumbling amateurs. Amazing!

  36. Pearland Aggie said

    It seems that a little truth would go a long way for him in this instance…

    When in doubt, tell the truth.

  37. artwest said

    Jones’ whining self-pity is typical of corrupt politicians and white collar criminals in general when they suddenly realise that the law might actually apply to them too, not just the unwashed masses.

    Sadly, of course, as we will probably find with many of the guilty parties of the climate scam, the law curiously doesn’t apply quite as much to them as it should.

    I wonder if he is now at least appreciating what the trashing of other peoples work and reputations in which he colluded, just because they dared questioned his work, feels like for the victims.

  38. Chris in Tropical Australia said

    I’m as mad as all hell !
    I’ll keep this story short.
    This is my first time on the Air Vent or any blog for that matter and I’m using Chris’s Account here. Didn’t know these things existed.

    I am and investor and property developer along with a small group of partners.

    We have a large parcel of land on the central Queensland (Australia) coast partially developed for residential, commercial, resort and golf course etc. Adjacent to the Great Barrier Reef.

    Months back, Local Government put the brakes on, for seemingly crazy reasons which we addressed but the project is still being stopped. Official approaches gave no answers.

    I was un-officially told by a junior clerk in the pub that since a once member of the rock group “Midnight Oil” got up in the Australian Parliament and said the “sea will rise by 7 meters by 2050” , the local government has put all development on hold until they get “clarification”. ! (what ever that is)

    Now I find this clown professor in the UK, 15,000 miles away, has in effect scuttled our project by lies and fraud.

    Now that I have seemingly become a “blogger”, and have gathered much information from around the world with Chris’s help, I will be instructing our attorneys to investigate what our legal recourse may be.

    No sympathy for this man.

  39. Chris S said

    I know he’s been under a lot of pressure, but why would he want to kill himself “several times”?

  40. R Shearer said

    Johnny Cash made a song for the likes of Phil Jones (a long tongue liar who can run on for a long time) but…

  41. Don said


    kinda neat

  42. Noodlehead said

    I can feel something for a person who has found himself caught up in something wherein he has compromised his standards for what he may have considered to be the greater good, provided he has now realized his error and in good faith attempts to set things aright.
    I am not seeing this in Jones.

    Jones should be experiencing these tremendous anxieties because they are what normal people should expect once exposed for having perpetrated such massive wrongdoing upon the world. I have no sympathy for him on this point, he has it coming.
    I would have great sympathy for those who love him if he had followed through with suicide.

    I am hoping that whoever put the emails out also gets the just reward befitting his contribution to the world, for he has done a great service.

    I have been watching a great movie this evening, and one of my personal all time favorites, “The Sound Of Music”
    Will the world ever be free of those who desire to take control of the world? Hopefully it will never be free of those who would desire to prevent such people from achieving success.
    I salute the leaker of the emails, and others of his ilk, like Steve McIntyre; my hat is off to every such person.
    Thank you all and keep up the good works, we need you!

  43. Margaret said

    two thoughts

    1. There are many ungracious comments above. The reflect badly on this community, and equally importantly they are unwise. They reinforce the “redneck” view of Professor Jones’ questioners.

    2. I hope Professor Jones has the courage to go back to his data and be the one to help sort this out. Because the data is in a mess we don’t know whether there is global warming or not. How on earth can you come to any conclusion on bad data? We need to know — and if he can be part of the solution, it will go a very long way towards absolving him from being part of the problem.

  44. Dr. Robert said

    Tell Phil Jones he’s going to burn in hell for all of eternity unless he comes clean. That slimy bastard.

  45. […] Apparently Phil Jones, former head of the Climatic Research Unit at East Anglia University is contemplating suicide. […]

  46. Keith said

    Attention seeking Phil got more that he wanted.
    However, if there are death threats, then I totally disapprove.
    Perhaps, in Phil world, his thoughts of suicide constitute a death threat. Who knows.

    Chris in Tropical Australia : that threat of legal action is the best news I’ve heard today. There must be some sort of accountability. I hope you find some solid legal basis to have a real go at these con artists, that seem to be above the law, yet destroy progress with a few words.

  47. Rob R said

    Chris in TA.

    Thats not Laguna Whitsundays is it?

  48. more help is on it’s way…..
    looks like more snow for W.D.C. (3rd this winter)
    you gotta love this warming we have had lately!!!
    Phil don’t know the trouble he is really into if we are in global cooling
    I’m just saying the s&*t to hit the fan very soon.
    maybe I am wrong, God knows I should be, I pray I am.

  49. Peter Whale said

    How is his mental health going to stand up when he is thrown to the wolves as a scapegoat and prosecuted for fraud and conspiracy.

  50. J. Peden said

    My god, Margaret, you want to let Jones near data – so he can redeem himself? Sober up.

    Letting anyone not sceptical enough to have questioned ipcc “Climate Science” anywhere near any kind of science whatsoever would be a gigantic mistake – and I do mean anyone. It wasn’t that hard to see.

  51. Kondealer said

    Professor Jones will soon be having company in his black despair.

    Met Office Accused Of Suppressing IPCC Information
    Mail on Sunday, 7 February 2010

    The Meteorological Office is blocking public scrutiny of the central role played by its top climate scientist in a highly controversial report by the beleaguered United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
    Professor John Mitchell, the Met Office’s Director of Climate Science, shared responsibility for the most worrying headline in the 2007 Nobel Prize-winning IPCC report – that the Earth is now hotter than at any time in the past 1,300 years.
    And he approved the inclusion in the report of the famous ‘hockey stick’ graph, showing centuries of level or declining temperatures until a steep 20th Century rise.
    By the time the 2007 report was being written, the graph had been heavily criticised by climate sceptics who had shown it minimised the ‘medieval warm period’ around 1000AD, when the Vikings established farming settlements in Greenland.
    In fact, according to some scientists, the planet was then as warm, or even warmer, than it is today.
    Early drafts of the report were fiercely contested by official IPCC reviewers, who cited other scientific papers stating that the 1,300-year claim and the graph were inaccurate.
    But the final version, approved by Prof Mitchell, the relevant chapter’s review editor, swept aside these concerns.
    Now, the Met Office is refusing to disclose Prof Mitchell’s working papers and correspondence with his IPCC colleagues in response to requests filed under the Freedom of Information Act.
    The block has been endorsed in writing by Defence Secretary Bob Ainsworth – whose department has responsibility for the Met Office.
    Documents obtained by The Mail on Sunday reveal that the Met Office’s stonewalling was part of a co-ordinated, legally questionable strategy by climate change academics linked with the IPCC to block access to outsiders.
    Last month, the Information Commissioner ruled that scientists from the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia – the source of the leaked ‘Warmergate’ emails – acted unlawfully in refusing FOI requests to share their data.
    Some of the FOI requests made to them came from the same person who has made requests to the Met Office.
    He is David Holland, an electrical engineer familiar with advanced statistics who has written several papers questioning orthodox thinking on global warming.

    The Met Office’s first response to Mr Holland was a claim that Prof Mitchell’s records had been ‘deleted’ from its computers.
    Later, officials admitted they did exist after all, but could not be disclosed because they were ‘personal’, and had nothing to do with the professor’s Met Office job.
    Finally, they conceded that this too was misleading because Prof Mitchell had been paid by the Met Office for his IPCC work and had received Government expenses to travel to IPCC meetings.
    The Met Office had even boasted of his role in a Press release when the report first came out.
    But disclosure, they added, was still rejected on the grounds it would ‘inhibit the free and frank provision of advice or the free and frank provision of views’.
    It would also ‘prejudice Britain’s relationship with an international organisation’ and thus be contrary to UK interests.
    In a written response justifying the refusal dated August 20, 2008, Mr Ainsworth – then MoD Minister of State – used exactly the same language.
    Mr Holland also filed a request for the papers kept by Sir Brian Hoskins of Reading University, who was the review editor of a different chapter of the IPCC report.
    When this too was refused, Mr Holland used the Data Protection Act to obtain a copy of an email from Sir Brian to the university’s information officer.
    The email, dated July 17, 2008 – when Mr Holland was also trying to get material from the Met Office and the CRU – provides clear evidence of a co-ordinated effort to hide data. Sir Brian wrote:
    ‘I have made enquiries and found that both the Met Office/MOD and UEA are resisting the FOI requests made by Holland. The latter are very relevant to us, as UK universities should speak with the same voice on this. I gather that they are using academic freedom as their reason.’
    At the CRU, as the Warmergate emails reveal, its director, Dr Phil Jones (who is currently suspended), wrote to an American colleague:
    ‘[We are] still getting FOI requests as well as Reading. All our FOI officers have been in discussions and are now using the same exceptions – not to respond.’
    Last night Benny Peiser, director of the Global Warming Policy Foundation, said the affair further undermined the credibility of the IPCC and those associated with it. He said:‘It’s of critical importance that data such as this should be open. More importantly, the questions being raised about the hockey stick mean that we may have to reassess the climate history of the past 2,000 years.‘The attempt to make the medieval warm period disappear is being seriously weakened, and the claim that now is the warmest time for 1,300 years is no longer based on reliable evidence.’

    Despite repeated requests, the MoD and Met Office failed to comment.

    Copyright 2010, Mail on Sunday

  52. Tom Reid said

    Kilted Mushroom
    Second time posting. Hope I am doing it right. As a “clinical depressive” diagnosed I can say that if Phil was at a true “suicidal level” he would not be able to function at this time. He would be on “prescribed” medication after an intensive period of assesment. He would not be capable of turning up for work each day. It would be hard enough to get up out of bed.

  53. CarlGullans said

    #53: I think that anybody, whomever they were, who had 30 years of work become a source of shame instead of pride, would think about suicide. Maybe not seriously think about it, but one would certainly think about it. That being said, he hasn’t done it, and nobody should feel bad that he is getting the scrutiny that he and CRU need to get.

  54. Bob Kutz said

    First, it’s too easy to make such claims to evoke sympathy. There needs to be a ‘mea culpa’ from Phil ( regarding the corruption of science. Then and only then can he/they begin to atone. Save that, his and their academic career(s) should be over.

    Next; As to the suicide? I think my first comment would go a long ways in relieving his conscience, and maybe, just maybe those thoughts would go away.

    Finally; as to the death threats issue; There is absolutely no excuse on Earth to justify that behavior, on either side. It shouldn’t be tolerated, and those who are guilty of making such threats ought to be exposed and prosecuted. If you are guilty of such behavior, you are not helping anything and need to stop and seek help. If you are aware of it, you should make every effort to get those responsible to stop, and/or to be held accountable, regardless of which side of the issue of AGW you are on.

    Just my thoughts.

  55. Jason Calley said

    Well, as someone who has been a vegetarian for 40 years, and who does not believe in the initiation of violence, it would be difficult to accuse me of being cruel or hard hearted — but, am I sympathetic toward Professor Jones? Nope.

    I do not approve of any death threats toward him, but quite simply, he deserves his misery. Remember, his current unhappines is a direct result of his own unethical (and un-scientific) behavior. Jones’s manipulation of data, denial of fair peer review processes to those who disagree with him, and violation of scientific standards by preventing access to coding and raw data, has worked to prevent an honest study of climate. Regardless of the actual truth in the matters of global warming, and more specifically in the matter of man-made global warming, Jones’s actions have endangered the lives and well being of literally billions of people.

    When will I have some sympathy for Jones? When he makes a clear and unequivocal admission of his errors, and admits that his actions were unethical, un-scientific, and unacceptable.

    Remember that when someone is dealing with studies that will influence global energy usage — regardless of where the truth lies — that person is dealing with an issue that profoundly affects billions of lives.

    No sympathy without repentance!

  56. P Gosselin said

    Phil Jones needs to learn from RJ Pachauri.
    Like Jones, he’s as crooked and rotten as they come.
    But unlike Pachauri, Jones runs and cries to his mommy like a little spoiled brat who finally got the deserved one on the nose. Yes, he’s runnning and shouting “mommy! mommy! he hit me!” like a big sissy. Yes, he wants mommy to thrash the kid who had the nerve that smack him. Of course it doesn’t hurt to ham it up in front of his dumb “mommy”.
    Pachauri at least is stubborn and hangs in there tough. Of course, we all know that they’re both gonna lose in the end. But the difference is that Pachauri will do so looking like a man at least, and not a complete sissy.

    Stop your whining Jones, and take it like a man. You’re embarassing Britain!

  57. P Gosselin said

    Bob Kutz said
    “It shouldn’t be tolerated, and those who are guilty of making such threats ought to be exposed and prosecuted.”

    Well, you’re right. But you’re a little late with your words of moral wisdom. This advice should have been heeded long ago when we were at the receiving end. I don’t recall anyone reining them in, do you? Oh no – we were branded, tarred, feathered and open season was declared on us.
    In fact, I remember some nutjobs labelling us “deniers”, and calling for “civil disobedience”.
    I don’t have any sympathy for that spoiled brat Jones. He made his own bed and sown his own seeds. Enjoy the harvest!

  58. dribble said

    Its hard to feel any sympathy for Phil, although one hopes that his health improves.

    I think the main issue for Phil and the gang is the problem that power has a tendency to corrupt and absolute power a tendency to corrupt absolutely. Consider that these individuals found themselves in the centre of an ideo-scientology movement that had suddenly become hugely successful and politically extremely important virtually overnight. This movement was in the process of forcing changes to world energy systems, investment and CO2 regulatory polices on a massive scale. The system was falling like nine-pins before them. Phil and the Data Massagers at center stage were not just Important, they were the Chosen Few. They were secular Messiahs in the vanguard of an army of green disciples marching to save the world and usher in the heavenly New Age of Clean and Green.

    Its no wonder therefore that Phil wanted to hoard his data. The data was his power. Giving it away would be giving away part of his messianic virtue. If he no longer fully controlled the data he would no longer be the top turkey in town. So its no surprise that he’s feeling poorly at the moment. His ego has to come down from its former messianic pedestal to some more ordinary level. This would be a painful psychosis recovery process for anybody.

  59. Jimchip said


    Lucy, I would suggest “empathy” not “sympathy”. He did it to himself. Also, I agree, NO VIOLENCE. Those are probably from highly politicized wackos but he might was well trot them out and blame the evil ‘skeptics’.. Or, they could be Phil typically over-reacting to that “nasty” ‘hate-mail’ from those “prats”, with his lawyer’s PR approval– “can’t we just all get along and let me have my throne back?”

    I like the rest of your ‘single-out’ list 🙂

    And, if phil is rightfully depressed, who’s prescribing beta-blockers and sleeping pills? Argh.

    Anxiety-Depression? Because of the threats? Argh.

  60. Jimchip said


    Gosselin, I was thinking that Phil and Mann, travel partners for ENSO/Tahiti, should write a Pachy-like novel. They could collaborate via email and it would help to take their minds off their problems…Good therapy.

  61. “Okay, Phil, this is the way we see it. Start out with an interview. Play the sympathy card. You were thinking of suicide, but you can’t desert your fmaily. Something like that. We’ll hone the message for you. Nothing about science, except to say AGW is real. No details. No comments about the emails. Think about it this way. You’re a marketable celebrity now. Could be a book deal later on.”

    “Yeah, but what if I really have been thinking about suicide?”

    “Well, that might work. I mean, if you kill yourself, the outpouring of feeling would be tremendous. We’d punch up the angle of the mistreated hero. The crazy denialists drove you to it. You’d have to leave a note to that effect. We don’t want people imagining you offed yourself because you lied about warming. That would be a disaster.”

    “Hey, wait a minute! I’m not saying I’m actually going to kill myself!”

    “Sure, Phil, we know. I was just musing on the possibilities. We have to cover all the bases.”

    “What the hell is that supposed to mean!”

    “There is a scenario in which we suicide you. Right now, it’s not high on the list.”

    “Hey! Come on!”

    “Eventually, monuments would be built to you. You remember a guy named Galileo? Bruno? The Church burned Bruno at the stake in Rome.”

    “What? That’s not the same thing!”

    “With PR, Phil, we can make anything into anything. You ought to know that by now.”

  62. PhilJourdan said

    Sorry, I have not had time to read all the replies, so if this is a duplicate, my apologies.

    Jones is playing the victim card. It is a classic ruse when all else has failed. Blame the victim and become the victim. In that, he is getting desperate. He needs somethign to distract from his malfeasance and that is his last option.

    And I have no sympathy for him because I do not believe he was ever serious about it. It was calculate.

  63. J. Peden said

    Death threats? Obviously death would be too good for Jones. But don’t anyone panic, I’m not advocating torture, only that we help the “authorities” find a just and instructive solution for the problem Jones, et al, represent. Getting anywhere near that would be a major accomplishment.

    By now, claiming death threats is only a propagandistic tactic until proven otherwise.

    ancillary tactic: even an apparently designated spokesperson to defend the AGW Climate Science “tribe”, Judith Curry – among her panoply of subrational diversions – has already officially played the similar, “oh look how mean they are to me behind the scenes”, card [“Stan’s” email to her, for example] as some kind of justification or exculpation for her failing to uphold the methods of real Science which occasioned the “mean” comments and emails in the first place. She even resorted to falsely accussing one sceptic of making a sudent of her’s cry. Oh my, I guess we “sceptics” should start crying and use that as proof that Climate Science is not real Science?

    So pretty soon a lot of these other noble “Climate Scientists” will be alleging “death threats”, too. After all, that’s nearly the exact way their “science” worked anyway: “do what we want or you’re all gonna die.”

  64. Tony Hansen said

    I am reminded of a quip from Lubos (?) along the lines that every now and then somebody would find that they could not cut the mustard in the hard sciences and would move to climatology.
    The result being an increase in the average IQ of both groups. 🙂

  65. menard narko said

    Professor Jones would do well to follow the example of John Profumo, a man who disgraced himself in the early part of his life, never apologized, never complained, never gave interviews, but thoroughly redeemed his early disgrace by devoting his life to charitable works, and died recently. the object of universal affection and respect.

    The first step is keeping quiet. The second step is quietly atoning. Speech is not one of the steps.

  66. BarryW said

    As ye sow so shall ye reap . Jones had no problem trying to destroy the careers of others so why does he deserve any sympathy? Let him appoligize to those he’s wronged first.

  67. Confused said

    Hmm, some pretty unedifying reading on this thread. For some reason I expected more. Disappointing. At least Steve McIntyre, who unlike most on here actually was affected by some of this, has acted with grace.

  68. […] Tough Times Ok, this is a bit difficult to blog on b/c it deals with a man so emotionally distraught but it’s very difficult […] […]

  69. J. Peden said

    Confused said

    February 8, 2010 at 7:09 pm
    Hmm, some pretty unedifying reading on this thread.

    Or is it instead pretty impossible for someone confused to be edified? Hard to tell, eh?

  70. John said

    Because of all the climate change lies, millions have died due to crap policies such as growing corn for biofuel, leading to higher food and energy prices. Look at the recent weather, because of lack of warning thousands had to suffer through the snowstorms and freezing cold. And this SOB has the shamelessness to shed crocodile tears, claiming mental distress — he doesn’t even address the fact that the authorities stated that he BROKE THE LAW.

    Mr Jones, you know what. You don’t have the balls to kill yourself, just like you don’t have the balls to tell the truth. You want something good to come out of all this? Then tell the truth and expose the whole fraudulent climate change charade, including how all your corrupt buddies like Pauchari, Gore, Mann, et al have been cooking the science so that a handful of elites can profit from the next speculative carbon trading bubble.

    Why is the whole world just keeping silent while a handful of politicians and banker buddies are running riot in creating the biggest scam in human history? As always, its the middle class who will end up paying for all this elitist shennanigans. This time, I really fear for my kids. The elites are hellbent on driving through this carbon-trading one world economy.

  71. George Kimball said

    As a scientist with credentials in the basic physics of radiation and gases, I have known for years that this whole AGW thing was a fraud. It has long seemed like the whole AGW story was dreamed up by some DC spin factory, carefully tuned to appeal to the leftist greens. It has all the things they hold dear – man as the intruder, destroying the planet, the need for world authority to stop it, the self-righteousness resonant with the enviro-zealot…

    Whatever the future of Phil Jones, he and his like can rot in prison to the end of their days. The amount of damage they have done pursuing what was a scientific ego trip is staggering. For me personally, first on the list is the disrepute and ignominy they have brought on the scientific community. The world we live in is enormously complex and few have much understanding of the science or technology that drive it. Making science look like another piece of carny deception does an enormous disservice to the entire world which ultimately has to make decisions with or without scientific truth. A.h.’s like Jones and his cohorts should all be ‘given a fair trial and hung from a tree’.

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