This is old in internet-time, but it is too funny to skip.

Last week, someone (the author is anonymous, but the site was owned by David Thorpe) created a fake scientific journal, the "Journal of Geoclimatic Studies." The lead paper was "Carbon dioxide production by benthic bacteria: the death of manmade global warming theory?" Reading the article, it is obviously a spoof. The equations are random latin and greek letters, the units don't make sense, several figures are pure sine waves, and the writing style sounds like an opinion piece instead of a scientific paper. There are a couple good posts about this on one of Nature's blogs: fake climate change paper and author of spoof paper speaks.

The best part is how many people thought it was real. Many bad-science bloggers fell for it. The best part is that Rush Limbaugh apparently spent a good bit of time talking about it on Thursday.

The spin by people who fell for it is great. One representative quote that has popped up in several places:

The global warming hoax is getting sophisticated enough to spawn subhoaxes intended to discredit the resistance. . . . Slick enough to temporarily trick even Rush Limbaugh, it claimed that global warming is caused by ocean bacteria.

Many of the posters quickly found their mistake:

I, along with a number of other bloggers, and even Rush Limbaugh, apparently, fell for what has turned out to be a complete hoax. A made up abstract published at the website of a fake science journal purports to explain global warming by monitoring bacteria emissions. As I stated in the post, I can't claim to understand the research which formed the basis of the argument in the paper, which is now obvious as it was totally made up.

They could have at least checked the source and looked up some of the terms before posting. This is a good reminder to evaluate evidence before making a conclusion instead of afterwards. Not that many of the people who believed the paper care about evidence. I wonder how long it will be until I hear someone that didn't get the message that this was a spoof.