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IPFS News Link • Climate Change

Mark Steyn ordered to pay $1 million to deter climate deniers from criticizing sacred scientists

•, By Jo Nova

For newcomers: Michael Mann's hockeystick graph was wildly different from hundreds of studies of other studies and instantly became the pet graph of the IPCC. It used the wrong proxy, the wrong tree, and the wrong type of averaging. Whole books were written on how bad it was. But when Mark Steyn called it fraudulent Mann sued.

Twelve long years after the case was launched, the six person jury decided that Mark Steyn and Rand Simberg have defamed Michael Mann, but awarded Mann one whole dollar in damages, because he hadn't been able to prove he suffered any damage at all. Remarkably, though, the jurors felt the skeptics had been so malicious they added punitive damages too. Usually these are limited to a mere four or five times the compensatory damage, but this time it was decided Simberg should pay $1,000 and Mark Steyn $1 million. It sets a new record.

According to punitive or exemplary damages are saved for truly dreadful acts:

exemplary damages n. often called punitive damages…  are damages requested and/or awarded in a lawsuit when the defendant's willful acts were malicious, violent, oppressive, fraudulent, wanton or grossly reckless. These damages are awarded both as a punishment and to set a public example.

So the jury agrees that Mark Steyn did no material harm to Mann but criticizing climate scientists is itself an unforgivably evil thing.

The point is to silence you
The lawyer for Michael Mann had pushed for these punitive damages in his closing arguments (since there weren't any real damages). John Hinderaker reported that Mann's lawyer specifically asked the jury to deter "climate deniers" who were apparently as dangerous as "Trump election deniers". And to a Washington D.C. jury, somehow that made sense. It took thirty years of televised propaganda to create this payday. Cheap namecalling on the news makes for a whole city of hate, ready to pass judgement.

The jury probably couldn't even imagine how anyone could believe a climate expert might be wrong.