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Literary bits and pieces

A couple of snippets on the subject of The Hockey Stick Illusion.

Firstly I am told by my publisher that they have sold the Japanese rights to the book. This is the first foreign language edition and it's surprising to see it coming after such a long time.

Meanwhile the book got a mention in the New York Times last week.


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Reader Comments (20)

I like to think of it as water finding its way through a dam wall. Very slow at first and then whoooosh. Good to see the trickle has got as far as Japan. Well done.

Oct 20, 2015 at 9:39 AM | Unregistered CommenterTinyCO2

What a fine cultured chap Matt Ridley is. I was impressed by his candour, and the range of his reading. He is a bit hard on the King James though - it has some superb writing in it after all. As for the HSI, I think it really got more than just a mention:

If you could require the president to read one book, what would it be?

The prime minister? “The Hockey Stick Illusion,” by Andrew Montford. It’s a great piece of detective work on a key scientific blunder, based around the work of Steve McIntyre and Ross McKitrick, and it forensically dismantles the mistakes that led to people believing they had at last found evidence that current climate change is unprecedented in rate or scale in this millennium. It may yet prove to be so in the future, but it is not so yet.

I think that will get hear-heared and/or three-cheered by a long list of folks who come this way. And who knows, maybe some who have relied on the NYT for their guidance on climate matters will go and read it, and thereby, to quote the KJB, 'And immediately there fell from [their] eyes as it had been scales'.

Oct 20, 2015 at 9:40 AM | Registered CommenterJohn Shade

Also given a mention in the same NYT interview is Willis Eschenbach

Oct 20, 2015 at 10:13 AM | Unregistered CommenterColdish


Oct 20, 2015 at 10:18 AM | Unregistered CommenterColin Porter

The CAGW consensus being a largely Western creation, it would perhaps be a worthy side-project to try and track the ideas from elsewhere. I recently saw (here?) mention of a Chinese report actively welcoming the prospect of warmin in China.

Oct 20, 2015 at 10:34 AM | Unregistered CommenterPunksta


Oct 20, 2015 at 10:57 AM | Registered CommenterJohn Shade

The Guardian's experts on Climate Science never wrote good reviews of HSI, which is as good a recommendation to read the book as anyone could ask for. Even more impressive, as the Guardian's experts had not read the book, they were simply relying on their natural bias and prejudice, as that in their eyes is more worthy than science itself.

Certain OnLine retailers are carrying out a review of unusual patterns of opinions in OnLine reviews. It would be unfortunate if the Guardian was implicated in distorting confidence levels, to enhance the value of their opinions and climate science in particular, at a time when "climate science" and "fraud" seem to appear in the same sentence with increased frequency.

Oct 20, 2015 at 11:09 AM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie


Oct 20, 2015 at 12:18 PM | Unregistered CommenterColin Porter

"The last book that made you furious?

"Al Gore’s “An Inconvenient Truth.” It uses all the tricks of a fire-and-brimstone preacher to sell a message of despair and pessimism based on a really shaky, selective and biased understanding of the science of climate change." Matt Ridley

Oct 20, 2015 at 12:29 PM | Unregistered CommenterDon B

Matt Ridley in The Times:

"France’s leading television weather forecaster, Philippe Verdier, was taken off air last week for writing that there are “positive consequences” of climate change. Freeman Dyson, professor emeritus of mathematical physics and astrophysics at the Institute of Advanced Study in Princeton, declared last week that the non-climatic effects of carbon dioxide are “enormously beneficial”. Patrick Moore, a founder of Greenpeace, said in a lecture last week that we should “celebrate carbon dioxide”.

"Are these three prominent but very different people right? Should we at least consider seriously, before we go into a massive international negotiation based on the assumption that carbon dioxide is bad, whether we might be mistaken? Most politicians today consider such a view to be so beyond the pale as to be mad or possibly criminal."

Oct 20, 2015 at 12:42 PM | Unregistered CommenterDon B


"I think that will get hear-heared and/or three-cheered by a long list of folks who come this way."

'Absolutely. I've read and enjoyed 'The Rational Optimist', but I hadn't realised that Ridley was such a polymath. Most of his critics, including Yeo and Gummer, should go and hide in a corner.

He's polite about the language of the King James Bible (and how awful are the modern translations?) but it's still lipstick on a pig, IMO.

Oct 20, 2015 at 1:10 PM | Registered Commenterjamesp

"Your Japanese translation puts mine in the shade..."

Unfortunately, the kanji used literally mean "place a landmine in a shady place..."

Comment on hockey stick data, maybe?

Oct 20, 2015 at 1:51 PM | Unregistered CommenterMichael Remington

jamesp, Yeo and Gummer should not go and hide in a corner, but take part in a public debate with Matt Ridley, and let the public decide in which inaccessible corner of the world they should wall themselves into, for their own protection.

Their close former constituency parties may have some suggestions, if any of them can remember either of them.

Oct 20, 2015 at 1:56 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

"Ian McEwan, Willis Eschenbach, Stewart Brand, Deirdre McCloskey, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Niall Ferguson, Richard Dawkins, David Quammen, Sam Harris, Bill Bryson."

I can only imagine a lot of NYT readers who think they are well-versed in literature perusing that list and thinking "Willis Eschenbach, how did I miss him?"

Oct 20, 2015 at 3:38 PM | Unregistered Commenterrhoda

Anyone new to climate blogs should check out Matt Ridley's Angus Miller lecture:

Oct 20, 2015 at 4:11 PM | Unregistered CommenterCanman

Heh, rhoda; some thought Wolfram not Willis.

Oct 20, 2015 at 4:33 PM | Unregistered Commenterkim

I would echo Matt Ridley's endorsement of Tom Holland. His "In the Shadow of the Sword" is eye opening and got him into a lot of trouble with some Islamic fundamentalists.

Are there still trolls tracking positive Amazon Reviews the HSI?

Oct 20, 2015 at 7:18 PM | Unregistered Commenterbernie1815

I am grateful to Your Grace for far too many things to list here and now. For the moment, I am particularly thankful that you directed my attention to the delicious Matt Ridley comments.

Oct 20, 2015 at 7:52 PM | Unregistered CommenterDiogenes


Oct 20, 2015 at 8:33 PM | Unregistered Commenterosseo

i think this would be an indicator the book will stand the test of time andrew. i am certain in 30 years time it will be far more favourably reviewed than the work that sparked the initial controversy,as will you versus the hockey stick proponents.

Oct 21, 2015 at 10:59 PM | Unregistered Commenterbit chilly

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