RealClimate has the complete scoop on how scientists have responded to efforts to intimidate scientists by Rep. Joe Barton (R-TX) over a particular detail (the now famous hockey stick) in the climate science. I think that Thomas Crowley summes it up in EoS (a weekly newspaper of the geophysical sciences):
At some point, one must ask why should a member of the U.S. Congress get involved in this matter which may have been raised by a Canadian? I believe the purpose is twofold: (1) to send a signal of intimidation to researchers who produce results that are not consistent with some political preferences; and (2) to continue to dwell on the hockey stick "hot button" by raising questions and fomenting uncertainty, with the aim to discredit greenhouse science so skeptics in government and their supporters can continue to claim that there are too many uncertainties to proceed with any action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Deeply disturbing (although I really want to say how pathetic and disgusting)!