Big Picture News, Informed Analysis

Canadian journalist Donna Laframboise. Former National Post & Toronto Star columnist, past vice president of the Canadian Civil Liberties Association.

Peter Gleick – Then and Now

Back in 2001, water specialist Peter Gleick was quoted by a journalist writing about climate change for the US News & World Report. His pearls of wisdom?

The debate is over.

That was his message 11 years ago. It’s a direct quote (backup link here).

Earlier this week, when Gleick issued his non-apology to innocent third parties whose privacy he invaded by making confidential documents public, he sang a dramatically different tune:

a rational public debate is desperately needed…

he declared. Indeed, the word debate appeared three times in his 385-word statement (backup link here). He also said:

Given the need for reliance on facts in the public climate debate, I am issuing the following statement.

…My judgment was blinded by my frustration with the ongoing efforts — often anonymous, well-funded, and coordinated — to attack climate science and scientists and prevent this debate… [bold added]

Right. So after more than a decade of declaring that the debate is over Gleick now claims he’s all in favour of it. He also has the chutzpah to suggest that it’s those on the other side of the fence who are preventing such a debate from taking place.

Now let’s add one more detail to the mix. In late January Gleick turned down an invitation to debate a climate skeptic even though a $5,000 donation would have been made to a charity of his choice.

What is any reasonable, rational person supposed to conclude? Does Gleick really, truly cherish open debate – the kind in which people treat opposing perspectives with courtesy and good grace?  Or is he the sort of individual who’ll say anything to make himself look good?

How very sad.


h/t Real Science


read the background story here



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This entry was posted on February 24, 2012 by in activist scientists and tagged , .
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