Potty peer Chris Monckton’s complaint against VUW academics Jonathan Boston, David Frame and Jim Renwick has been roundly rejected by the university. An investigation carried out by a senior member of the academic staff found that Monckton’s allegations of fraud and libel were “not substantiated”. VUW vice chancellor Pat Walsh was unequivocal in his support of the VUW 3:
“I want to state clearly that I have faith in these academic staff. By speaking publicly in their field of expertise, they were doing exactly what we expect.”
It remains to be seen how Monckton will respond, but it will probably involve more empty threats. In a typically tasteless and intemperate article posted at WND last week, he fantasised about reporting VUW to the police:
If I do not receive a reply very soon, police will be asked to investigate not only the “professor” who had posted up the dodgy graph but also the vice-chancellor, the chancellor and the “university” itself as accessories during and after the fact of scientific fraud. Don’t send your child there, and don’t give it any money.
Despite hobnobbing with a High Court judge during his NZ visit, it appears that Monckton’s grasp of the law is as dodgy as his understanding of climate science and economics.
Monckton tried to blink. His eyes were gritty and he could barely focus on the scribbled formulae on the pad before him — his crucial contribution to the redesign of Britain’s nuclear deterrent. The tiny screen of his Osborne transportable computer blinked lazily at him. His back was sore. The air in No 10 was very dry, and there was a racket going on outside the Cabinet Room. It sounded as if the functionaries were running every vacuum cleaner in Whitehall over the new dark blue carpets the blessed Margaret had installed. The scruffy red shagpile left by Callaghan was in a skip in Downing Street, and the Laird was glad to see the back of it. He was rather pleased with the shade he’d chosen, and even happier that Margaret had liked it. The shining light of modern conservatism entered the room, her bright halo and blue crimplene dress throwing a magical illumination onto the oak panelling. She strode to Monckton’s side and put her hand on his shoulder. A frisson of almost erotic excitement coursed down his spine and disappeared down a trouser leg. He dressed to the right.
“Chris. Wake up.” He opened his eyes and the recurring dream turned into the stuff of nightmare. The whiskery face of Bryan “British” Leyland, his devoted minder on this barnstorming tour of New Zealand, leered beerily into his face. Every bump of the ageing Toyota ute brought Leyland’s face ever closer to the Laird’s nose. He recoiled, elegantly.
Continue reading “Monckton and the big waka”
Last night Radio New Zealand’s Nights programme — a show with a long-standing commitment to excellent coverage of science and scientists — for some strange reason decided to broadcast an interview with Christopher, Viscount Monckton of Brenchley. Quite why they bothered to give him a platform remains to be seen, but as you might expect, the discount Viscount gave a peerless performance — a veritable Gish gallop of untruths, misdirections, and straightforward misrepresentations of climate science and economics. At various points you could hear presenter Bryan Crump struggling with his disbelief at what Monckton was asserting — but Monckton is such a polished performer that he was able to brazen his way through even the most arrant nonsense.
Here’s the RNZ podcast of the interview (which can also be downloaded here):
I’ve gone through the interview with a fine tooth comb (so you don’t have to), and some of the more egregious errors, misdirections and deceptions are outlined below.
Continue reading “Monckton misfires on Radio New Zealand: a baker’s dozen of errors and deception”
Christopher, Viscount Monckton of Brenchley, has converted his recent threats against NZ academics and universities into a gloriously idiotic letter of complaint (pdf), sent to the vice chancellor of Victoria University of Wellington, professor Pat Walsh, last Friday. In the letter, Monckton accuses the head of the Institute of Policy Studies, professor Jonathan Boston, of academic fraud, professor Dave Frame, director of the Climate Change Research Institute of committing “a grave libel”, and professor Jim Renwick of “delivering gratuitous, baseless and childish insults”. He accuses all three of dishonesty and breaching the university’s code of conduct for academic staff, and demands letters of apology. The reaction from Wellington? Great amusement, as Stuff reported:
The formal complaint was met with hilarity by the accused academics yesterday, none of whom appeared concerned about disciplinary action.
In support of his complaint, Monckton offers two documents: an unpublished paper (pdf) that purports to demonstrate that mitigation of carbon emissions is not cost-effective, and a critique (pdf) of a graph that featured in the IPCC’s fourth report. Boston’s use of the graph in a 2008 presentation is what Monckton claims is “fraudulent”. He demands:
Professor Boston’s fraudulent graph should be removed forthwith from the university’s website. Otherwise, a complaint of scientific fraud may be made to the police.
Scientific fraud? I wonder who is really guilty of that charge — the head of the Institute of Policy Studies using a graph from a major international report, or a visiting fringe politician who has published nothing on climate in any peer-reviewed journal, who is happy to misrepresent the facts about climate change at every opportunity, and who believes the UN is hell bent on confining Americans to concentration camps?
Continue reading “Moaning minnie Monckton attacks academic freedom: Support The VUW Three!”
Poor old Chris. The discount Viscount has not been having a happy time with the New Zealand press, as my Sciblogs colleague Peter Griffin noted in Monckton’s nightmare week in New Zealand last week. According to the Waikato TImes, he may even be about to hang up his sceptic spurs. He was given a much more gentle ride by the SunLive news web site in Tauranga, who were pleased to give him a chance to continue to misrepresent and misdirect in a video interview posted yesterday. As ever, I watched it so you wouldn’t have to…
Continue reading “More Monckton invention: what Myles Allen didn’t say”