This week, climate-change deniers have been making a great ruckus after hackers broke into a computer system at the University of East Anglia in the U.K. and downloaded a welter of emails exchanged over the past decade or so by scientists studying climate change.
At the very least, the correspondence raises troubling questions about the motivation, the ethics and the science of at least some of the researchers involved.
But climate-change skeptics have seized on the documents as more than just an embarrassment for their adversaries. They are hyping the correspondence as nothing less than a smoking gun – proof positive that global warming is a hoax and that the jig is now up.
Al Gore's word, they say, is finally mud.
But if in fact, as reported, the "science" of "at least some of the researchers" at CRU is now subject to "troubling questions," "at the very least," then the skeptics have been right all along. So: they're not deniers of something that's beyond question for sane people; they're skeptics.
That wasn't so hard, was it? Al Gore is probably not a pathological liar, but he is also probably not a martyr for the truth. Somewhere in between.