Thursday, January 24, 2013

Donna Laframboise's Blind Spot... and the Manhattan Project

Open note to Donna Laframboise,
I don't understand how your attacks on the IPCC and it's authors have received so much mileage.  Besides dishonestly portraying the IPCC as something looked at like a "Bible" you ignore most of the IPCC process and misrepresent the rest.  

Worst is your venomous attacks on young scientists.

Here's how you put it in your "The Delinquent Teenager":

"But rather than being written by a meticulous, upstanding professional in business attire (aka the world’s top scientists & best experts), the Climate Bible is produced by a slapdash, slovenly teenager who has trouble distinguishing right from wrong (aka, activists, 20-something graduate students, people appointed due to their gender or their country).
The world needs to confront the folly that is the IPCC."

Your shrill derision of young scientists totally ignores the fact that young men and women have been the backbone of science through the generations.  

For example, the Atomic Bomb could never have been developed without those 20-something graduate students; scientists; mathematicians you show such dripping contempt for.

Here is a review and I ask Donna to consider where the Manhattan Project would have been without these fine young minds? 

This information was gathered mainly from 
Manhattan Project Heritage Preservation Association
and searches:
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 

Manhattan Project Major Participants

Sorted by "20-something graduate students" and scientists
{includes some who made major contributions in their 20s though in previous decades}:

Abelson, Philip H.
1913 –  2004
Pioneered Liquid Thermal Diff.
Philadelphia Navy Yard

At 26 Abelson was among the first American scientists to verify nuclear fission in an article submitted to the Physical Review. 

At 26, he collaborated with the Nobel Prize laureate Luis Alvarez in early nuclear research, and was the co-discoverer of neptunium with Edwin McMillan. 
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 

Agnew, Harold
Group Leader
Tinian Scientific Team

At 21 Agnew joined Enrico Fermi's Metallurgical Laboratory at the University of Chicago and helped construction the "Chicago Pile-1" and witness the first controlled nuclear chain reaction.

At 22 was recruited to work on the Manhattan Project at Los Alamos.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Alvarez, Luis
1911 - 1988
Group Leader - Detonation
Los Alamos, NM

In his 20s Alvarez worked concurrently in the fields of optics and cosmic rays. He is co-discoverer of the "East-West effect" in cosmic rays. For several years he concentrated his work in the field of nuclear physics. 

At 26 he gave the first experimental demonstration of the existence of the phenomenon of K-electron capture by nuclei. Another early development was a method for producing beams of very slow neutrons.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Allison, Samuel K.
1900 — 1965
Built CP-1 Pile
Univ. of Chicago (Met Lab)

At 23 Allison's performance in Harkin's laboratory earned him an appointment as a National Research fellow at Harvard. 

At 25 he went onto a fellowship at the Carnegie Institution in Washington 

At 26 faculty appointment at the University of California, Berkeley, where at 30 he advanced from an instructorship to an associate professorship. 
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Anderson, Herbert L.
1914 – 1988
Asst. to E. Fermi; 
Univ. of Chicago (Met Lab)

BS at 22, Anderson started working on Nuclear Fission.

By 26 years old he was assistant in Nuclear Chain Reaction Research.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Bacher, Robert
1905 – 2004
Weapons & Experimental Physics
Los Alamos, NM

At 30 Bacher assembled the plutonium core in an old farmhouse near the Alamogordo testing site. {close enough, he also did some good work in his 20s}
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Bainbridge, Kenneth
1904 - 1996
"Trinity" Test Director
Los Alamos, NM

At 28, Bainbridge developed a mass spectrometer with a resolving power of 600 and a relative precision of one part in 10,000.   He used this instrument to verify the equivalence of mass and energy, E = mc2.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Bethe, Hans
1906 - 2005
Chief - Theoretical Division
Los Alamos, NM

At 24 Bethe had a travel fellowship of the International Education Board to go to Cambridge, England.  

At 26, he held a position as Acting Assistant Professor at the University of Tubingen which he lost due to the advent of the Nazi regime in Germany.

At 29 Bethe was appointed Assistant Professor at Cornell University, Ithaca, N. Y. U.S.A., within two years he was promoted to Professor.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Bohr, Niels
1885 - 1962 
Consultant to the Project
Los Alamos, NM

At 23, the announcement by the Academy of Sciences in Copenhagen of a prize to be awarded for the solution of a certain scientific problem, caused him to take up an experimental and theoretical investigation of the surface tension by means of oscillating fluid jets. This work, which he carried out in his father's laboratory and for which he received the prize offered (a gold medal), was published in the Transactions of the Royal Society, 1908.

By 28 Bohr carried out a theoretical piece of work on the absorption of alpha rays which was published in the Philosophical Magazine, 1913, he passed on to a study of the structure of atoms on the basis of Rutherford's discovery of the atomic nucleus.
That same year he held a Lectureship in Physics at Copenhagen University followed by a similar appointment at the Victoria University in Manchester.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Bradbury, Norris
Interim Lab Director
Los Alamos, NM

In his mid 20s Bradbury built up a reputation as an expert on the subjects of conduction of electricity in gases, properties of ions, and atmospheric electricity.

At 36 Norris replaced Robert Oppenheimer as director of Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Critchfield, Charles
1910 - 1994
Group Leader - Ordnance
Los Alamos, NM

By 28 Critchfield wrote a paper with Hans Bethe that analyzed the nuclear fusion of protons into deuterons.

At 33 joined the Los Alamos Ordnance Division.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Dallas, Nick
1921 - 2007
Made 1st Button of Plutonium
Los Alamos, NM

At 23 Dallas, together with Ted Magel, fabricated history's first gram-scale sample of plutonium metal (weight 520 milligrams).
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Dunning, J. R.
1907 - 1975
Director of Lab
Columbia University

At 28 promoted to assistant professor at Columbia where he became the central figure at Columbia on neutron research, and his activities complemented those of Enrico Fermi in Italy.  He was able construct a cyclotron using many salvaged parts to reduce costs and funding from industrial and private donations.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Einstein, Albert
1879 - 1955
Consultant to the Project
Los Alamos, NM

At 26 Einstein had what came to be known as his “Annus Mirabilis” — or “miracle year”. It was during this time that the young physicist obtained his Doctorate degree and published four of his most influential research papers, including the Special Theory of Relativity. In that, the now world famous equation "e = mc2" unlocked mysteries of the Universe theretofore unknown.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Fermi, Enrico
1901 - 1954
Group Leader - Theoretical
Los Alamos, NM

At 25 Fermi discovered the statistical laws, nowadays known as the «Fermi statistics», governing the particles subject to Pauli's exclusion principle (now referred to as «fermions», in contrast with «bosons» which obey the Bose-Einstein statistics).
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Feynman, Richard
1918 - 1988
Group Leader - Theoretical  (at 24 years of age)
Los Alamos, NM

At 15, Feynman taught himself trigonometry, advanced algebra, infinite series, analytic geometry, and both differential and integral calculus.

At 21 he joined the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he received a bachelor's degree in 1939, and in the same year was named a Putnam Fellow. While there, Feynman took every physics course offered, including a graduate course on theoretical physics while only in his second year.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Frisch, Otto
1904 -1979
British Mission
Los Alamos, NM

At 29 Frisch produced novel work on the diffraction of atoms (using crystal surfaces) and also proved that the magnetic moment of the proton was much larger than had been previously supposed.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Goudsmit, Samuel
1902 – 1978
Scientific Head of ALSOS Mission

At 28 Goudsmit co-authored a text with Linus Pauling titled The Structure of Line Spectra. 
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Kennedy, Joseph
1916 - 1956  
Chemistry & Metallurgy
Los Alamos, NM

At 24 Kennedy was on the team that produced the first Plutonium button.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Kistiakowsky, George
Director - Implosion Program
Los Alamos, NM

 At 26, Kistiakowsky came to the United States and taught at Princeton University for two years.  
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Kolodney, Morris
1911 - Nov. 29, 2009
Manager - DP Site
Los Alamos, NM

At 31 Kolodney joined Los Alamos Laboratory where he produced the first plutonium used in making the first atom bombs. {a touch old but hey.}
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Lawrence, Ernest O.
1901 - 1958
Director - Berkeley Lab
U. C. - Berkeley

At 24 after receiving his Ph.D Lawrence's research centered on nuclear physics. His early work was on ionization phenomena and the measurement of ionization potentials of metal vapours. 

At 28 Lawrence invented the cyclotron, a device for accelerating nuclear particles to very high velocities without the use of high voltages.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Magel, Ted 
1911 - 2008 
Los Alamos, NM

At 29 Magel was on the team that made 1st Button of Plutonium.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Manley, John H.
1907 – 1990
Asst. to J. R. Oppenheimer
U. C. - Berkeley

At 24 Manley received his PhD in physics from the University of Michigan.
Appointed professor at the University of Illinois by 30, Manhattan Project at 35.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

McMillan, Edwin
1907 - 1991
Group Leader - 
Los Alamos, NM

At 23 was on the team that produced the first Plutonium button.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Morrison, Philip 
1915 – 2005
Tinian Island

At 27 Morrison was recruited to the Manhattan Project to head the Fat Man Pit Team
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Neddermeyer, Seth
1907 - 1988
Implosion Research
Los Alamos, NM

At 29, he and Anderson discovered the muon, using cloud chamber measurements of cosmic rays.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Neumann, John von
1903 – 1957
Theoretical Division
Los Alamos, NM

In his mid 20s von Neumann did groundbreaking work on quantum mechanics and computing theory.  Also, on various forms of operator theory; on the ergodic theorem.  Along with Teller and Stanislaw Ulam, von Neumann worked out key steps in the nuclear physics involved in thermonuclear reactions and the hydrogen bomb. 
{before reaching 30}
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Nier, Alfred O.
1911 - 1994
Pioneered Electro-Magnetic Meth.
University of Minnesota

At 25 Nier's spectroscopic skills won him a fellowship and substantial grant at Harvard University.  His work there led to the 1938 (at 27) publication of measurements of the relative abundance of the isotopes of uranium, measurements that were later used to estimate the age of the Earth.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Oliphant, Mark
1901 – 14 July 2000
British Mission
Los Alamos, NM

At 26 Oliphant earned a position at Ernest Rutherford's Cavendish Laboratory at the University of Cambridge.

Still in his 20s Oliphant worked on the artificial disintegration of the atomic nucleus and positive ions, and he designed and built complex particle accelerators, being the first to conceive the concept of the proton synchrotron.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Oppenheimer, J. Robert
Scientific Director - Project "Y"
Los Alamos, NM

During Oppenheimer mid 20s Oppenheimer published more than a dozen papers, including many important contributions to the new field of quantum mechanics. 

At 23 he and Max Born published a famous paper on the Born-Oppenheimer approximation, which separates nuclear motion from electronic motion in the mathematical treatment of molecules, allowing nuclear motion to be neglected to simplify calculations. It remains his most cited work.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Peierls, Rudolf
1907 - 1995
British Mission
Los Alamos, NM

At 22 Peierls studied solid-state physics in Zurich under the tutelage of Werner Heisenberg and Wolfgang Pauli.

WIKI: "His early work on quantum physics led to the theory of positive carriers to explain the thermal and electrical conductivity behaviors of semiconductors. He was a pioneer of the concept of "holes" in semiconductors. He actually established "zones" before Léon Brillouin, despite Léon's name being currently attached to the idea, and applied it to phonons. Doing this, he discovered the Boltzmann equations for phonons and the Umklapp process. 
{all this in his early 20s}
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Perlman, Isidore (Iz)
1915 — 1991 
Chemistry Division
Univ. of Chicago (Met Lab)

At 22 Perlman became interested in the use of radioactive tracers in physiology and began graduate studies under Professor Israel L. Chaikoff at the University of California, Berkeley. 

In his mid 20s he participated in pioneering work on radioactive tracers to study metabolism

From age 22 to 28 Perlman published nineteen papers in this field and demonstrated the usefulness of radioactive tracers of phosphorus, bromine, and iodine to physiology. 
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Rainwater, Leo J.
1917 - 1986
Asst. to J. R. Dunning
Columbia University

At 22 Rainwater began graduate study in physics as a teaching assistant at Columbia University.

Spent his 20s doing uranium enrichment work including helping in the development of pulsed neutron spectroscopy using the Columbia cyclotron.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Ramsey, Norman
1915 - 2011
Deputy Director - Project "Alberta"
Los Alamos, NM

At 25 Ramsey was recruited to the MIT Radiation Lab where he spent the next two years heading up the group developing 3 cm wavelength radar.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Schwinger, Julian
1918 - 1994
Asst. to J. R. Oppenheimer
U. C. - Berkeley

At 16 Schwinger debuted as a professional physicist. Although his thesis had been written some two or three years earlier, it was in 1939 at 21 that he received the Ph.D. degree.

While in his 20s Schwinger first approached electromagnetic radar problems as a nuclear physicist, but soon began to think of nuclear physics in the language of electrical engineering... leading to the effective range formulation of nuclear scattering... then electron accelerators, which led to the question of radiation by electrons in magnetic fields.  Making significant contributions to the development of quantum electrodynamics.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Seaborg, Glenn
1912 – 1999
Chief - Plutonium Separation
Los Alamos, NM

At 17 Seaborg graduated from Jordan at the top of his class and by 21 he received a bachelor's degree in chemistry at the University of California, Los Angeles. 
While in his 20s Seaborg contributed to the discovery of more than 100 isotopes of elements. 

At 25 using a advanced cyclotrons Seaborg helped created a new isotope of iron, iron-59 (Fe-59). Iron-59 was useful in the studies of the hemoglobin in human blood. 

At 26, Seaborg and Livingood collaborated to create an important isotope of iodine, iodine-131 (I-131).
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Serber, Robert
1909 - 1997
Group Leader - Theoretical
Los Alamos, NM

At 25 Serber received his Ph.D. at University of Wisconsin.

At 32 became Oppenheimer's assistant
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Szilard, Leo
1898 – 1964
Group Leader - Met Lab
Univ. of Chicago (Met Lab)

At 26 Szilard was appointed as assistant to von Laue at the University of Berlin's Institute for Theoretical Physics.  

At 30 he submitted a patent application for the linear accelerator and, 
at 31 he applied for a patent for the cyclotron. During that period, he worked with Einstein to develop a refrigerator, notable because it had no moving parts. 

At 31 Szilárd's paper: "On the Reduction of Entropy in a Thermodynamic System by the Intervention of Intelligent Beings"  introduced the thought experiment now called Szilárd's engine and became important in the history of attempts to understand Maxwell's demon.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Teller, Edward
1908 – 2003
Thermonuclear Research
Los Alamos, NM

At 27 Teller was invited to the U.S. to become a Professor of Physics at the George Washington University
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Tuck, James
1910 – 1980
British Mission - Implosion
Los Alamos, NM

At 27 Tuck received an appointment as a Salter Research Fellow at Oxford University, where he worked with Leó Szilárd on particle accelerators.  Later joining the Manhattan project.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Ulam, Stanislau 
1909 – 13 May 1984
Hydrodynamics of Implosion
Los Alamos, NM

Between the age of 26 to 32 Ulam made major contributions to mathematics as highlight by "The Scottish Book". Of the 193 problems recorded between 1935  and 1941 Ulam contributed 40 problems as a single author, another 11 with Banach and Mazur, and an additional 15 with others.  

At 34 he was recruited into the Manhattan Project.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Wahl, Arthur C.
1917 –  2006
Chemistry Group
Univ. of Chicago (Met Lab)

At 24 as PhD student of Glenn T. Seaborg at UC Berkeley, Wahl was first to isolated plutonium.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Weinberg, Alvin
1915 - 2006
Theoretical Physics under Wigner
Univ. of Chicago (Met Lab)

At 30 Weinberg was appointed Director of Physics Division of the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL).
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Weisskopf, Victor
1908 – April 22, 2002
Theoretical Division
Los Alamos, NM

At 23 Weisskopf earned his doctorate.

While in his 20s Weisskopf made major contributions to the development of quantum theory, especially in the area of Quantum Electrodynamics.

At 29 he was appointed Professor of Physics at the University of Rochester. 
Earned his doctorate
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Wheeler, John A.
1911 – 2008
Consultant to the Project
Princeton University

At age 26 Wheeler introduced the S-matrix, which became an indispensable tool in particle physics. Wheeler was a pioneer in the theory of nuclear fission, along with Niels Bohr and Enrico Fermi. 

At 28 Wheeler collaborated with Bohr on the liquid drop model of nuclear fission.
Earned his doctorate
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Wigner, Eugene
1902 - 1995
Group Leader - Met Lab
Univ. of Chicago (Met Lab)

In his 20s Wigner laid the foundation for the theory of symmetries in quantum mechanics. 

At 25 he introduced what is known as the Wigner D-matrix.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Williams, John
Deputy Test Director
Los Alamos, NM

In his 20s Williams published important early work on the widths and intensities of x-ray lines.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Wilson, Robert
1914 - 2000
Cyclotron Group
Los Alamos, NM

At 27 Wilson's team produced the "Isotron," which, unlike the Calutron,  it used an electrical field to separate the uranium instead of a magnetic one.

At 29 Robert Oppenheimer hired Wilson to head of the Cyclotron Group (R-1)

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


MieScatter said...

Nuclear bombs aren't man-made, atoms are perfectly natural and the Manhattan project was a government vanity programme led by twenty-somethings that had no idea about real science.

In point of fact, these scientists were working BEFORE blog science even existed. How can we trust them if there was no Anthony Watts around to prove that their measurements were wrong? They only thought that nuclear bombs were hot because they tested them in the DESERT, everyone knows it's hot in the desert.

And Hiroshima was bombed in August, its hottest month. As expected from natural cycles, August was warmer than July and then it cooled into September. The nuclear bomb had nothing to do with it.

citizenschallenge said...

I'd like to share a link to a great letter written by Brooke LaFlamme, before earning her Ph.D.

"An open letter to Donna Laframboise"

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

It begins
"Dear Ms. Laframboise,

I read with interest an article about your new book about the Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change (IPCC), “The Delinquent Teenager Who Was Mistaken for the World’s Top Climate Expert.” Because I know, from reading your Google profile, that you are a constantly evolving person, I thought I might help to speed up the process a little in one important aspect.

You write that the people performing much of the research relating to climate science are graduate students, people in their twenties. In fact, it is much worse than that: much of the research in all of science is performed by these people whose “experience of the world,” you write, “is neither broad nor deep.” You seem upset by the fact that these young scientists are called upon as experts to aid in the writing of the IPCC’s reports. . ."

It really is a letter worth reading and pondering if you are worried about young minds doing science.

(PS congratulations on receiving your Ph.D. Brooke)

Pete Ridley said...

Hi Peter,

I hope that you’ll excuse me commenting off-topic but I did want to bring you up-to-date on another Catastrophic Anthropogenic Climate Change sceptic who you discussed last July and have mentioned since – John O’Sullivan of th eblogging group Principia Scientific International. I also wonder if you or any of your readers can update me on the status of the Mann v Ball defamation case in BC. Apart from John O’Sullivan making wild claims that Mann is about to lose I have seen nothing credible about it.

In July last year you wrote an article “Principia Scientific Int'l versus Dr. Michael Mann” ( in which you kindly quoted from and linked to my article “SpotlightOn – Principia Scientific International”. Your article attracted a comment from blogging group PSI’s “CEO & Legal Consultant” John O’Sullivan in which he referred to Dr. Michael Mann as a liar, a fraudster and a sue-happy narcissist ( It is interesting that as well as using the words liar and fraudster John O'Sullivan should also use the word "narcissist" to describe Dr. Mann but it seems that he is not the first to do so ( I’ll return to the “narcissist” allegation later after looking at the allegation of “liar”.

John has repeatedly made claims about his own achievements which conflict with other evidence and examples can be found in the article "Curriculum Vitae for John O'Sullivan (2010)" ( Semi-retired investigative journalist Andrew Skolnick submitted several affidavits to the Supreme Court of British Columbia which make for interesting relevant reading and Brendan DeMelle's article "Affidavits in Michael Mann Libel Suit Reveal Astonishing Facts About Tim Ball Associate John O'Sullivan" ( provides links to two of them.

That article mentions that " .. Skolnick's evidence shows that O'Sullivan made a series of false claims, including that he was:
- an attorney with more than a decade of successful litigation in New York State and Federal courts;
- employed by a major Victoria, B.C. (Canada) law firm that is representing Ball in the libel action .. ".

One false claim identified subsequently was a claim on John O’Sullivan LinkedIn page that he had been " .. Lecturer, University of Northampton .. September 1987 – August 1999 (12 years) .. ". The article ""Curriculum Vitae for John O'Sullivan (2010)" tells a different story and Note 4) provides further details, including the content of an E-mail to Andrew from the University of Northampton. John’s LinkedIn page has since been amended to simply say " .. ORGANIZATIONS Nene College (University of Northampton) Lecturer .. " ( That is closer to the truth but is still misleading because any lecturing that he undertook at Nene College appears to have been only a minor part of his patchy career as an art teacher in several different high-schools in the East of England.

More to follow.

Pete Ridley said...


In the "SKILLS & EXPERTISE Most endorsed for" section of John’s profile there are endorsements from Ken Coffman, Derek Alker, Dr. Oliver K Manuel, Dr. Nasif Nahle and Alan Caruba. All of these have affiliations with PSI, the first two being named as members or "friends". I find it surprising that the other Nahle and Caruba are prepared to give their endorsement and puzzled as to how Alan Caruba and Derek Alker can endorse "Teaching", considering that John O'Sullivan's teaching career appears to have come to a sudden end in 2003. That was acknowledged in his E-mail of 12th Dec. 2011 " .. the matter had ruined my teaching/lecturing career .. " ( - also search for "teaching career" at

I am not aware that Derek Alker (from Manchester, NW England) had any involvement with John during his teaching career (in Eastern England) and Alan Caruba lives in NE USA (

Of the many things that are surprising about John O'Sullivan is how he has been able to win the support of others in pursuing his "vision" of leading his team of bloggers at Principia Scientific international. Blogger "Bryan" expressed similar sentiments on Professor Judith Curry's "Letter to the dragin slayers" blog in Dec. 2011 when he said " .. Its indeed a strange world where folk with genuine scientific qualifications and credibility like Postma, Peirs Corbyn and Claes Johnson seem to need a front man without any formal scientific training and who requires name changing from time to time .. " (

What could be even stranger is that if, as has been suggested by Richard Cumming (, that "Bryan" is Brian Leyland of the New Zealand Climate Science Coalition. Bryan Leyland is now a member of PSI ( From comments that "Bryan" made on "Letter to the dragon slayers" it seems that Richard Cumming may well be correct but if I am mistaken then I apologise to Bryan Leyland.

More to follow.

Pete Ridley said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
citizenschallenge said...

Pete, I almost didn't post these and then I decided the third one was getting way too far afield and too much of it was just a long quote from O'Sullivan's trash book.

PS. I don't mean to be rude, but your write up seems cluttered and confused and I'm afraid without a familiarity with the O'Sullivan drama, that most won't get much out of it

But, I invite you to put together a writeup, from the approach of explaining this sorted O'Sullivan affair to someone for the first time... lay out a timeline and fill in details.

I'd be happy to consider posting.
citizenschallenge {at} gmail

Pete Ridley said...

Hi Peter,


Thanks for deciding eventually to post at least the first two parts of my submission. As for your comments, I don’t take umbrage at constructive suggestions. I can understand your reaction and at some stage will have “perfected” my article “SpotlightOn – Principia Scientific International” ( which is presently a “work-in-progress”. I am still undertaking the “due diligence” exercise on PSI and its members that I started in Dec. 2010 and the more I continue my research the more fascinating I find them.

My research in Dec. 2010/Jan 2011 led me to conclude that I would not be contributing any of my hard-earned money to help the founding members set up PSI as a private company. The reasons should be clear from the numerous E-mail exchanges that took place at that time (, starting with one of 23rd December 2010 @ 3:43 AM from PSI’s “CEO & Legal Consultant” John O’Sullivan. In that E-mail John talked about how “ .. Hans, Joe and I are progressing well with the development of a new independent international science association that we intend to launch in early 2011 .. ”. The other two are Johannes (Hans) Cornelis Schreuder and Joseph A Olson and some details of their backgrounds are given in Section 3 of SpotlightON – PSI.

It is worth noting that in that E-mail John made mention of “ .. Kent Clizbe, a valued and trusted contact .. ”. Kent made a very sensible contribution to the exchanges 10 days later (Jan 02 2011, 02:27 PM) when saying to John QUOTE: .. It seems pretty clear that the whole "business" idea springs from the need to provide you with a living. If that is the objective, I'd guess that there are not many people who are willing to "subscribe" for that end .. For your own income, create a website that sells products, including your book, tshirts, hats, posters, coffee mugs, related to ending the AGW scam. Put your energies into promoting that website. Encourage those who agree with you to support you by buying those products .. In the meantime, get a part-time job .. UNQUOTE.

Anyone who is interested can read all about it and much more on my blog, which is something that I would recommend be done by anyone who is contemplating joining PSI. Anyone so inclined should look beyond the fine words such as those used by John O’Sullivan when trying to sell his proposal to the group in Dec. 2010/Jan. 2011:
- “ .. we now need you to help recruit the thousands of paid up members necessary to turn noble words into actions .. our future intentions are to also provide member services to pursue other noble causes .. we explicitly agree to serve a noble cause .. supporting a noble cause .. aiding the noble intention of aiding the greater community ..

As I said to the group on 4th Jan 2011 “ .. I respectfully suggest that PSI drops claims of pursuing a noble cause. Disciples and supporters of “the doctrine” will successfully exploit as nothing other than capitalist posturing .. ”.
More to follow

Pete Ridley said...


More such fine words are provided on the PSI promotional web-site, such as “ .. enshrined charitable interests for the benefit of the broader community .. a social purpose .. Principia Scientific International about transparency and truth .. the pursuit of truth ought to be our abiding goal .. ”.

In my opinion the most revealing words are John’s during March and Dec. 2010 and Jan. 2011:
“ .. Frankly, I need to make some income for all my efforts .. Personally, I have no time to not earn a living .. allows us to earn income from our hard work .. Members of the board of a CIC can be paid for their work .. The directors can be paid .. Personally, I'm barely scraping by financially as I've spent the last year working on skeptic advocacy full-time, unpaid. I cannot maintain my current level of commitment without some kind of financial remuneration .. we wish to be paid .. authors and directors will get paid fairly for their efforts ..

Aligned with those are these words on the PSI promotional web-pages “ .. it is essential for us to seek to form a large, international subscriber-based association whereby those of talent and merit in this cause may receive this association’s technical, financial and moral support .. Join Principia Scientific International Today! It's free until Summer 2013! .. But if you are a non-scientist/engineer and have an interest in being part of us you are also welcome, although we do ask for a nominal donation of £20 to join .. Throughout 2013 joining PSI is free. But we recommend a voluntary donation of Euros 30. So please join and give a little to grow a lot .. ” (

In my opinion Kent Klizbe’s advice to John O’Sullivan was worth heeding “ .. get a part-time job .. ” and it shouldn’t be too difficult for someone with his qualifications and experience (

Best regards, Pete Ridley

citizenschallenge said...

Why are you doing this to me. I have four posts regarding O'Sullivan and PSI - 3 out of the four have nearly 300 views and the fourth is trying to catch up.

Why not post some of this over there, where it's more appropriate.

While you're there you might give us an update.

Saturday, July 28, 2012
John O'Sullivan, master manipulator - A Closer Look

Wednesday, July 25, 2012
Principia Scientific Int'l versus Dr. Michael Mann

Wednesday, July 25, 2012
John O'Sullivan: My Hidden Muse

Thursday, May 24, 2012
John O'Sullivan: "Hansen, Sagan and Venus with magellan probe" > Examining The Art Of Deception

citizenschallenge said...

I received an interesting Email from someone who prefers to remain anonymous - but who did want to share the following observations:

"With reference to Donna Laframboise, what are her credentials really?

She has an undergraduate degree from the University of Toronto in Women's Studies. But has she ever held down a full-time job?

Credentials usually mean listing employment, but she's never listed a job as part of hers.

And that's because she's never had a job, apart from writing a weekly column, for about a year, for the Canadian newspaper, the National Post. Her husband's income is such that he supports them both.

There's nothing wrong with that, but it is still ironic that she is assailing others for their credentials when hers are flimsier than most."