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Environment

Stuck in the Middle with Them

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Andy Revkin must feel like a wind dummy  everyone's punching bag. Last week, he had the temerity to say that "climategate" 2, like the 2009 episode, couldn't be easily dismissed. So of course he got slapped around by all sorts of people in the climate concerned community, including some prominent scientists:

You are claiming that the emails 'raise questions' and that they are 'disturbing'. This is not journalism, Andy, it's tabloid journalism. It's equivalent to the kind of thing the mainstream media did in the 1950s around communism, the kind of thing many outlets are doing now around muslims (remember how quickly everyone jumped on the assumption that it was some muslim or other, not Tim McVeigh, in Oklahoma?). I'm disappointed and sad, and once again you should be ashamed.

This week he's taking hits from frothy climate skeptics and conservative bloggers, who have charged him with being biased (against them), based on their reading of the new batch of emails, some of which contain communications between Revkin and climate scientists. One blogger at Commentary, now retrospectively assessing Revkin's coverage of climategate 1 (when he was on NYT staff as a reporter) somehow concludes that he "ended up doing all he could to snuff it [the controversy] out." Really? This must have been a funny way to go about it. Well, Revkin has ended up doing an interesting Q & A with that Commentary blogger, which is posted here at Dot Earth. At this point, given the charged emotions and politicization associated with climate change, any mainstream media reporter or blogger writing about this latest "climategate" flare-up should expect to be put through the paces. Or, in Revkin's case, a buzzsaw. And given his special talent for displeasing the polar ends of the climate spectrum, perhaps this song is appropriate.

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