The Annals of Thoracic Surgery has its own notions of transparency

I don’t think journal editor L. Henry Edmunds is quite clear on how the scientific method should work: we’re supposed to have the free exchange of information. His journal recently retracted a paper (from other sources, it was apparently because the authors, um, “recycled” data from another study), and when asked why, his answer was “It’s none of your damned business”, ranted a bit against “journalists and bloggists”, and then made an interesting comparison: “If you get divorced from your wife, the public doesn’t need to know the details.”.

Hmmm. Except that details of your relationship with your wife aren’t part of your professional interactions with colleagues, aren’t usually presented as data in papers and talks, aren’t part of an institution of collaboration and research that relies on those details, and your relationship isn’t going to someday maybe crack open my chest or the chests of thousands of other people, who are going to depend on the information about your divorce to improve the quality and duration of their lives.