I have been putting pressure on Dr. Peter Gleick to address the issue of the authorship of the most significant document that he presented to the world two weeks ago, the fake strategy memo purporting to show the Heartland Institute’s plans for the coming year. Specifically, I’ve asked that he admit to being the author, if he can. This presumes that he is the author, which I do.
Toward that end, I have e-mailed Dr. Gleick a handful of times requesting comment. I also wrote an open letter to Dr. Gleick. With time, I have come to be increasingly interested in the fact that Andy Revkin and the New York Times have failed to publish any substantive reporting on this last remaining piece of the Fakegate puzzle. And I have asked Revkin whether he was looking into the fake document’s authorship.
Revkin responded in a direct Twitter message: “ideas welcome (re/ investigating the doc).” I brought up the fact that he might want to ask Gleick directly. I brought it up more than once, in fact. It turned out in the end, that ideas were welcome in order to then be dismissed out of hand. That led to this post: “The Sound of Silence.”
In comments to that post, RayG mentioned that he had followed up on my queries to Revkin with his own. Here is RayG’s first comment:
I just posted this in Andrew Revkin’s DotEarth thread on Jonathan Foley. I will check back later to see if it makes it through moderation and, if so, if he responds.
“Mr. Revkin, I realize that what I am about to ask is off-topic but consider it to be a question that warrants a response. Have you contacted Dr. Peter Gleick directly and asked him, in plain language, if he is the author of the “Strategy Document” that he forwarded to at least 15 recipients as a part of the package that included the documents that he obtained from the Heartland Institute?”
Six and a half hours later came this: RayG had news of a response from Revkin on Dot Earth Blog:
I answered this when Harold Ambler asked. Folks can interpret the silence any way they please. There’s still silence from the Norfolk Constabulary, as well, and plenty of interpretations of that lack of noise.
Apparently, Revkin is suggesting a moral equivalence between Climategate and Fakegate. In the way that he intends the equivalence, this is appalling. More on that in a moment. Perhaps more appalling still, he is also comparing his role in not pursuing the Fakegate story to its logical conclusion to the Norfolk police’s inability to show that an external climate skeptic hacked the University of East Anglia’s computer system prior to the 2009 release of documents that came to be known as Climategate. He seems to be saying, “Yes, I am on the side that found Climategate to be morally abhorrent, and it has been very hard not to see justice done in that case. How do those of you on your side like it when the self-appointed moral police that I am part of do not effectuate justice in this case?”
What Revkin fails to see is that in both Climategate and Fakegate it is climate scientists who have been shown to be acting in less-than-upstanding fashion. There is a link between the two sagas, and it is the corruption of science and the corruption of scientists. Period.
I think there are other ideas embedded in Revkin’s words here. But it’s getting late on the East Coast, and my thinking is notoriously less-than-average at this hour. So, I reserve the right to re-tool my post here in the next 24 hours. In the meantime, enjoy! And buy my book. I wrote it to feed my children, not just to save the world.