On Reading Michael Mann's "The Hockey Stick and the Climate Wars" As the Year Without a Winter Segues into a Freakishly Warm Spring

So I’m now reading Michael Mann’s book The Hockey Stick and the Climate Wars, which is an inside look at the so-called “Climategate,” or perhaps more accurately the Right Wing/Big Oil Specious Attack on Climate Scientists. For those not familiar with this whole embarrassing intersection of science policy and ugly politics, here’s a few paragraphs from the prologue, that establishes Mann’s role:
“On the morning of November 17, 2009, I awoke to learn that my private e-mail correspondence with fellow scientists had been hacked from a climate research center at the University of East Anglia in the United Kingdom and selectively posted on the Internet for all to see. Words and phrases had been cherry-picked from the thousands of e-mail messages, removed from their original context, and strung together in ways designed to malign me, my colleagues, and climate research itself. Sound bites intended to imply impropriety on our part were quickly disseminated over the Internet. Through a coordinated public relations campaign, groups affiliated with the fossil fuel industry and other climate change critics helped catapult these sound bites onto the pages of leading newspapers and onto television screens around the world. A cartoon video ridiculing me and falsely accusing me of “hiding the decline” in global temperature was released on YouTube and advertised through a sponsored link that appeared with any Google search of my name. The video eventually even made its way onto the CBS Nightly News. Pundits dubbed the wider issue of the hacked e-mails “climategate,” and numerous investigations were launched. Though our work was subsequently vindicated time and again, the whole episode was a humiliating one—unlike anything I’d ever imagined happening. I had known that climate change critics were willing to do just about anything to try and discredit climate scientists like myself. But I was horrified by what they had now stooped to. . . .
“For more than two decades, in their efforts to inform the public about climate change and its potentially disastrous consequences, scientists have run up against powerful vested interests who either deny that such change is occurring or, if it is, that human activity plays much if any role in it. I have been privileged to be part of this scientific effort and, indeed, at times singled out in the ensuing conflict. My story is that of a once-aspiring theoretical physicist, driven by a curiosity about the natural world, who wound up as a central object of attack in what some have characterized as the best funded, most carefully orchestrated assault on science the world has known.”
Meanwhile the chorus of climate-change deniers echoes down the halls of the Republican-controlled House of Representatives (who have just passed a Feed the Rich/Screw the Poor budget proposal), here are some freaky links about what has been unfolding the last month:
As is no doubt obvious, if one must take sides, I’m on the side of science, intelligent inquiry, and of acknowledging that we must take steps now to try to preserve the world for our children’s future. Here’s my daughter’s face after I explained to her the effects of Global Warming:

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