Lubos calls for an apology in his new post Sir John Houghton is a liar
"I urge Sir John Houghton, the Independent, and all those blogs to apologize to Benny Peiser whose quote was inaccurate in its wording but certainly not in the content."
All I can say is PHEW! At Denial Depot we've been up late the last couple of nights in a kind of panic situation as the John Houghton incident (not a scandal, definitely not a gate) developed. We recognized immediately that the incident was nothing but a commie plot to embarrass the Dear Leader, The Honorable Sir Lord Monckton who had prominently displayed the quote in question on one of his famous lecture slides:
The incident was sparked when Sir John Houghton, former head of the IPCC, decided to haphazardly deny he ever uttered the quote attribued to him, "Unless we announce disasters, noone will listen"
Then to make matters worse an IPCC cheerleading backwater gossip rag had the audacity to publish the headline Fabricated quote used to discredit climate scientist.
So we were frantically trying to figure out a response - a way of spinning it back to make John Houghton the criminal again. As an early attempt we pointed out that skeptics had been citing the quote for years. Why had it taken John Houghton so long to raise an objection? Hasn't he been reading our blogs?
Next we planned to provide the original source and show them where John Houghton had said those words. Being skeptics we of course keep meticulous notes and have a thorough auditing system in place so we were confident that the quote was genuine and our ace journalists had the source. But something odd transpired, it turned out we had lost the notes. Not in a climategate crime-against-humanity way, just that we couldn't find the original source which we based our claims on. This isn't a big deal. Mistakes happen. And anyway it's just one error in such a lot of slides. It happens. Sometimes you lose things. Sometimes you make mistakes. Move on is what us skeptics say. I don't see the big deal anyway, we are only smearing the reputation of a scientist by accusing him saying something that amounts to dishonesty. Ok the quote happens to not have been made by him at all. Is that really a big deal?
We were aghast at the possibility that we would have to apologize. Apologize? No way! We're not apologizing to some commie new world order. In flies Lubo on his white horse and shining armor to save the day and craftily spin the story back onto John Houghton. The answer was simple: Just call him a liar.
So our story now is, OK, John Houghton didn't make the claim "Unless we announce disasters, noone will listen". But he could have done. In some alternate reality he could of said that. And look in our own reality he has said other stuff OK? And now we think about it, we could have quoted that other stuff instead. Yea. But by chance we quoted the false quote, just a coincidence. But the other stuff is just as good OK? And that alone means we shouldn't need to apologize. Oh and it also means that logically John Houghton is a liar.
Look what John Houghton did say. Look at the scandal that Lubos has uncovered:
"If we want a good environmental policy in the future, we'll have to have a disaster. It's like safety on public transport, The only way humans will act is if there's been an accident."
It sounds very much like he's justifying the London terrorist attacks in 2005. So next headline for Lubos:
John Houghton is an Al Qaeda terrorist
And that's the memo.