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Peter Ridd Update

March 8, 2019

By Paul Homewood



You should all be familiar with the case of Dr Peter Ridd, who was sacked by James Cook University for daring to challenge “settled science” about the Great Barrier Reef.

He has penned the letter below, to update his upcoming court case:



Dear All,
Just letting you know that my court case is scheduled for 26-28th March in Brisbane. The main arguments of both sides have been submitted to the court and the James Cook University arguments will certainly make interesting reading when they become public during the hearing. My legal people have been excellent and I am confident that if this can be won, then they will do it.

On a philosophical note, in my opinion JCU will lose the ethical argument even if they manage to win on some narrow legal definition. If they win, it will mean that a judge has decided that a university has set up legally binding contracts that give them the power to effectively take away the right to intellectual freedom of an academic and silence him/her. That would be something of a pyrrhic victory. The university hierarchy may feel vindicated but the general public, especially those in North Queensland who are most affected by the questionable Great Barrier Reef science, will take a different view.

But without getting over-confident, I reckon the chances of us winning are considerably above average, so we will see.

For me the last few months waiting for the court case has been productively spent writing a book on the Great Barrier Reef. It documents why it is actually in excellent shape, looks at all the supposed threats to the reef, and with one exception shows that they are massively exaggerated. It documents some of the appalling “science” and explains how our science institutions, especially those of the Great Barrier Reef, have become so untrustworthy.

Thanks again for all the help, and we will let you know how it all develops. For those living close to Brisbane you would be most welcome to come to the proceedings.

Kind regards

  1. tim leeney permalink
    March 8, 2019 10:23 am

    Thanks Paul, I have been wondering how matters are progressing.

  2. Mike Jackson permalink
    March 8, 2019 10:35 am

    Great Barrier Reef. Status of polar bears. Reliability of wind-generated electricity. Is there nothing these pseudo-scientific charlatans can’t “interpret” (=lie about) in order to keep their scams going and their prestige intact (for as long as lasts)?

  3. madsadbob permalink
    March 8, 2019 10:42 am

    Best of luck with this, Peter.
    I used to think that Universities were havens of Free Speech in a highly partisan world. Sadly, it seems that when it comes to speech and thought , the opposite of diversity is University.

  4. jack broughton permalink
    March 8, 2019 10:46 am

    Glad that it is proceeding towards court, hard to see what the Uni grounds are though. In my experience few of these cases actually get into the court and he will probably be paid-off to save embarrassment. These pay-offs usually come with a silencing order to prevent publicity.

    While I’m sure that we’d all like to see visible justice, Peter must look after his own best interests.

    • Mike Jackson permalink
      March 8, 2019 3:03 pm

      I think they’ve tried that trick already and he refused to be shut up. I’d need to check to be sure but I think that’s what the court case is about.

  5. Bloke down the pub permalink
    March 8, 2019 11:06 am

    Glad that the contributions to the fighting fund have been spent well.

  6. March 8, 2019 11:50 am

    The following quote is from author of the Declaration of Independence and former President, Thomas Jefferson. It is carved at the University of Virginia which HE founded and designed.

    ““This institution will be based on the illimitable freedom of the human mind. For here we are not afraid to follow truth wherever it may lead, nor to tolerate any error so long as reason is left free to combat it.”

    Today’s institutions would do well to discover it again instead of employing tactics of the Spanish Inquisition.

    • Gamecock permalink
      March 8, 2019 12:34 pm

      But we don’t know what Dr Ridd’s case is. Will he argue that his statements were correct, or that as a professor he can say any damn thing he wants to?

      • March 8, 2019 12:47 pm

        There is a difference between a careful scientific rebuttal or difference of opinion and saying “any damn thing he wants to.”

        Increasingly the saying of “any damn thing he wants to” is the pervue of the scientific left. You might want to investigate some of the lunacy pronounced at institutions of “higher learning.” You are witnessing the tyranny of the authoritarians where no dissent is allowed.

      • Gerry, England permalink
        March 8, 2019 2:09 pm

        He will be defending freedom of speech such that in a private capacity he is able to put forward a view contrary to those held by his employer.

      • Gamecock permalink
        March 9, 2019 3:28 am

        That doesn’t answer the question, Joan. What is Dr Ridd’s position? He doesn’t tell us.

  7. March 8, 2019 12:55 pm

    So this makes 2 Orwellian trials at the end of March,
    where someone is charged with ‘wrongspeak’
    not conforming to metro-Liberal groupthink on a topic.

    His ‘real name’ is Peter Yaxley-Ridd ../sarc

  8. It doesn't add up... permalink
    March 8, 2019 2:00 pm

    Best wishes to Peter Ridd in his case. We can only hope that the judge is adequately impartial.

  9. John Batt permalink
    March 8, 2019 3:09 pm

    Best of luck in your defence of academic freedom.

  10. Tony Budd permalink
    March 8, 2019 4:33 pm

    The ultimate irony is that James Cook famously thought outside the box and came up with a way of preventing scurvy on long sea voyages that was not the received wisdom at the time! I think the university may have shot itself in the foot. Good luck Peter – we’ll all be watching what happens.

  11. EnergyGuy permalink
    March 8, 2019 4:40 pm

    I would like to read your book. When will it be available?

  12. Coeur de Lion permalink
    March 8, 2019 5:17 pm

    What was remarkable was the large sum raised so quickly by crowdfunding. 97% of people are ready to spitcher AGW if given the space.

  13. Jackington permalink
    March 8, 2019 5:30 pm

    Yet another case of an ecofacist organisation vs the little guy who has the temerity to challenge their ideology.with “it’s not as bad as you’re making out”.One would think they would welcome some good news..

  14. Jeremy permalink
    March 8, 2019 8:32 pm

    “a judge has decided that a university has set up legally binding contracts that
    give them the power to effectively take away the right to intellectual freedom”

    Let’s hope that Australian courts do a better job with Ridd than they did with Salby.

  15. March 13, 2019 9:09 am

    Reblogged this on ajmarciniak.

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