No. The title of the post is "Evidence that Global Temperature Trends Have Been Overstated". It might have been more accurate to write "global atmospheric temperature trends" but it clearly does not say "surface temperature trend"...
What this starts to remind me of is the recent De Freitas and Co. paper, in which the co-authors began recanting their own result before other climate scientists while at the same time pushing that result to folks like Watts, Morano, and others of the same ilk.
In other words, is the purpose of the paper the paper, or is the paper merely a trigger for a dustup in the blog world, leading (hopefully?) to another "Global Warming is Enviro/Nazi Garbage" piece on the Glenn Beck show and in other friendly media outlets?
Which brings us to the so called "threats". I would not speak for Michael Tobis (whose a bit ticked at me this morning), but his point, that there should exist
...a mechanism to prevent authors from promoting public misinterpretations of their publications. That sort of behavior should have consequences.
...is well taken, although the odds of creating a rule that would prevent an author from publishing junk and selling it through the blogosphere as diamonds is vanishingly small. America has no law against bullshit, and will not for the foreseeable future.
My point, though, is that such behavior already does have consequences. If Pielke Jr. insists on treating the real actors in the scientific debate as mere walk-on players in a drama in which he is the star and the audience includes the Limbaughs and Beck's of the world, then he will find, if he has not already, that this stage will soon be the only one upon which he can play. His work will be ignored by the scientific community while simultaneously embraced by birthers, truthers, Ron Paul supporters, young earth creationists, people that think Jesus is coming in a UFO, and the like--America's right-wing fringe, in other words. Barring a catastrophe during next year's mid-term elections, this will be a impoverished and lonely place for scientists for a long, long time to come. Mr. Pielke risks consigning himself to the dust-bin of history.
And that's my advice to Mr. Pielke. If he thinks its a threat, then he is incorrect.
Oh, and Mark Bahner asks me in the comments: What do you see as scientifically incorrect about their paper?
Well, for one thing, even if the analysis proposed is 100% accurate, the use of the term "bias" is hugely misleading, and assumes that satellite readings are the gold standard to which surface readings must conform (or else be dismissed). But if you reverse that assumption without changing a single other thing in the paper, you could just as easily argue that that the satellite readings show a cool bias. In fact, neither line of reasoning is valid. If the paper explains anything--and it may not--it shows why the two sets of readings are different. No more or less than that.