April 13, 2014, by Brigitte Nerlich
Climate realism: What does it mean?
During the publications of the various IPCC reports between September last year and today, I have increasingly come across the words ‘realism’ and ‘climate realism’. Here are just some examples: In a BBC report Roger Harrabin says about a draft of the IPCC WG3 report that it “adopts a new tone of realism”. This echoes a statement by Chris Field, co-chair of the IPCC’s WG2, who spoke of “cold analytical realism”. A tweet by Sheril Kirshenbaum led me to an article entitled “Climate change needs the politics of the impossible” which ends by saying: “This isn’t idealism. It’s a higher realism”. All these quotes seem to use the word ‘realism’ in the sense of “the attitude or practice of accepting a situation as it is and being prepared to deal with it accordingly” and use adjectives like ‘new’, ‘cold’, ‘analytical’ and ‘higher’ perhaps to demarcate this use from other uses of the word ‘realism’.
This made me curious: What does ‘realism’, and ‘climate realism’ in particular, actually mean in the context of climate change?
A dip into the Google pond
When I put ‘climate realism meaning’ into Google, just to test the water, the first hit (on my computer, on 9 April, 2014) led to a philosophical definition of ‘realist’, the second to a post on WUWT entitled “Shocker: Huffington Post carries climate realist essay”. The article referenced was written by Harold Ambler at the beginning of 2009 and argues against Al Gore and other ‘alarmists’. This indicates that, at least for some people, ‘climate realism’ seems to be an antonym (a word opposite in meaning to another) to ‘(climate) alarmism’ and a close synonym (a word or phrase that means exactly or nearly the same as another word or phrase) to ‘climate scepticism’ (itself a particular meaning of scepticism that has emerged in the climate change debate).
If you put in ‘climate plus realism’ into Google, the first few hits talk about the apparently new IPCC realism we have already encountered above. Hence, there seems to be a slight difference between the use of the noun-noun compound ‘climate realism’ and the use of the noun ‘realism’ in the context of climate change.
A more systematic approach
I then went on to see how the compounds ‘climate realism’ and ‘climate realist’ in particular were used over time. To do this, I searched the news database Lexis Nexis using the search terms ‘climate realism’ or ‘climate realist’ and ‘climate change’ or ‘global warming’. I found that the two phrases were used 412 times in ‘All English Language News’ (no time restriction; search carried out 8 April, 2014). Interestingly, half of this news output is in the form of blog posts. It should be noted that Lexis Nexis doesn’t record all blogs, only those aggregated by Newstex. The words were first used, it seems, in 2005, peaked in 2009, and then the usage drops off, but might be on the rise again – see figure below.
The 2005 article was published in UPI and is entitled “Climate: Hockey sticks and hobby horses”. Dan Whipple writes: “UPI’s Climate was reminded the other day there is a broad spectrum of interpretations of the science behind global climate change. Roger Pielke Jr. … took to task a recent column on adapting to warming, saying, ‘You equate ‘climate skeptics’ with those who support adaptation. Most climate skeptics do not support adaptation because it would mean admitting that there is a problem needing to be adapted to in the first place.’ Pielke added many who support adaptation are not skeptical of climate science at all. ‘Perhaps (they should be) more accurately described as ‘climate realists,’ he said. We don’t want to put words in Pielke’s mouth, but we may hazard to guess he considers himself a realist.” This is interesting in view of more recent discussions around adaptation and what some call adaptation realism.
The emergence of a special meaning
Let us now see what happened in 2009. 118 news items are recorded in Lexis Nexis, of which 87 are blogs (and one blogger in particular seems to have used the phrases quite vocally), 25 newspaper articles (mostly in Australian newspapers), 4 news wires, 4 web-based publications, 3 magazine articles and 1 tenders opportunities). This was the year of climategate and the Copenhagen summit – both events happened at the end of 2009. However, talk about climate realism began early in 2009 when a blogger wrote on 2 January: “Climate realists around the world have contended for years that the real goal of alarmists such as Nobel Laureate Al Gore and his followers is to use the fear of man-made global warming to redistribute wealth.” Here we see again an implied semantic distinction between alarmism and realism. This is indicative of the emergence of a new meaning or shade of meaning, as realism is normally used in opposition to, say, idealism (as in the article quoted in the first section of this post).
March and April seem to have been particularly important in promoting climate realism, partly through a conference at the Heartland Institute and partly through the formation of the International Climate Science Coalition (this was what the item ‘tenders opportunities’ referred to, where setting up such a coalition is discussed). The coalition has the aim to promote “public understanding of the realities of climate science”. This was seen as necessary, “[b]ecause of the strong vested interests of the press and politicians in maintaining climate alarmism” and because “skeptics media and government relations efforts have generally not resulted in more realistic public assertions about climate change”, TendersInfo, 18 April, 2009).
Throughout 2009 one climate sceptical blogger in particular (from Canada, it seems) used the words ‘realism’ and ‘realist’ most extensively, especially in headlines in which he named a series of well-known climate sceptics and called them ‘realists’. In a post from 19 March he wrote: “There are also a growing number of former AGW [anthropogenic global warming] believers that have studied the science and become climate realists. Last week, many of those signers joined about 800 other realists at the ‘International Conference on Climate Change’ sponsored by the Heartland Institute.” And on 7 April he reported the setting up of a climate realist news site. On 25 April he talked about Australia as a climate realist nation.
After climategate at the end of November 2009 things changed only slightly and a small number of mainstream news outlets used the the words ‘realism’ and ‘realist’ in the context of climate change, such as The American Spectator on 23 November: “Dr. Tim Ball said, via a phone conversation captured in a video by The Corbett Report and posted at Climate Realists, current alarmism represents the ‘hijacking of climate science by computer modelers and the IPCC’.” However, it should be stressed that bloggers, and one blogger in particular, seem to have appropriated the compounds ‘climate realism’ and ‘climate realist’ throughout 2009, not the mainstream press. After 2011 these compounds appear a few times in contributions to the Telegraph by James Delingpole for example.
(Climate) Realism: A tale of two meanings?
Overall, the results of this quick analysis seem to indicate a particular linguistic trend in word usage, where the noun-noun compounds ‘climate realism’ and ‘climate realist’ have been used in contra-distinction to ‘alarmism’ and ‘alarmist’ and in order to argue against, say, Al Gore or the IPCC. More recently, the noun ‘realism’ by itself seems to be used more positively with reference to IPCC reports and has even been adopted by some IPCC experts and communicators themselves, without focusing so much on the antonym ‘alarmism’. Can one therefore speak of the emergence of two slightly different meanings of ‘realism’ in the context of climate change debates. The question is: are these meanings diverging or converging? We’ll have to see.
Of course, this post can only provide a very cursory analysis, and the findings still need to be validated by a more in-depth analysis. I’d love to hear from people who would call themselves or others ‘climate realists’ for whatever reasons and also from people who would use or not use the phrase ‘climate realism’ for whatever reasons.
PS There may be a difference in meaning because some talk about realism in the context of science and some in the context of policy – thanks to gillott_john for that.
This post is also linked to our ESRC project on climate change which tries to study long-term fluctuations in climate change debates through linguistic analysis.
Image: I tried to think of an image for climate realism, which made me think about realism in art etc. and I just like this painting: wikimedia commons: Young girl reading by Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot (1868)
Posted in Climate ChangeClimate PoliticsLanguage
By William Walter Kay
TABLE OF CONTENTS
A British Libertarian Bristles Amidst Blustery Times
Delingpole on eco-Fascism
Delingpole on The Big Climate Lie
Delingpole's Typological Error
A British Libertarian Bristles Amidst Blustery Times
James Delingpole (b. 1965) has an MA in English from Oxford. His science education peaked at high school physics; a class he took as prep for fighter pilot training. His main career fantasy at the time was to be an SAS commander who would win a Victoria Cross fighting the Soviets.
Delingpole’s hostility to environmentalists does not extend to plants, animals, and countrysides. He and his wife rent a holiday cottage in Wales where they and their two children stride across near-deserted hills, forage for bilberries, and gawk at unspoiled views. He shudders at the thought of these vistas blighted by wind turbines. He claims rainforests are devastated by biofuel policies. He has a soft spot for whales and considers wildlife corridors sensible.
Delingpole is a libertarian; a SouthPark Conservative. His political coming of age occurred amidst Blair’s ‘New Labour’ government. (Blair became PM in 1997.)
Circa 2000 Delingpole retained faith in The Authorities (BBC, Royal Society, etc). However, around this time his hackles were raised by a spate of news articles telling Brits how they had never had it so good. Overabundance was so absurd it was time to re-examine lifestyles, to exchange the material for the spiritual. Delingpole was one of the unlucky few not in the lavish pay of a government bureaucracy. He had a mortgage to pay and kids to feed and a job to slave away at for next to no money.
He witnessed Britain’s metamorphosis into a nation of whiners with a refined sense of entitlement to state largesse. He watched a bureaucratic army spring up to police what Brits drank, ate, and said. In 13 years New Labour created 3,000 new offences, half carrying custodial penalties, such as: unlicensed church concerts, smoking in public, and the sale of grey squirrels.
He discerned a pattern in media scares. AIDS, Mad Cow, SARS, Y2K, and swine flu were each hyped by experts; each elicited vast government expenditure, and then were recognised to have been overblown. No one apologized. Excesses were justified with the precautionary principle. Delingpole recognized “global warming” as yet another scare designed to enlarge government through stealth.
Before ‘Climategate 1.0’ Delingpole wrote autobiographical novels and articles about cooking, fashion, TV, music, drugs, and motorbikes. He was Mr. Generalist. Now he is Mr. Climate Sceptic.
In early 2009 he became a blogger for the Telegraph. He made at least one climate sceptical posting before Climategate (‘How the global warming industry is based on a massive lie’ – September 2009).
In November 2009 he was alerted to the Climategate scandal by the ‘Watt’s Up With That’ website. He deleted some names (fearing libel suits), patched together a story, and posted it. His article was snapped up by the Drudge Report. When a story gets Drudged, there is no stopping it. When Climategate went viral, Delingpole’s hits spiked to 1.5 million.
Now he spends his time trawling the internet, boning up on climate research. Climategate brought fame but not fortune. His income in 2010 was $24,000.
British mainstream media is Warmist. Delingpole’s Telegraph is no exception. Its Environmental Editor and Environmental Correspondent (unlike Delingpole) are on salary. Both are committed Warmists who publish in print six days a week. Enviro-correspondents at the Telegraph, Guardian, Independent, etc. get their articles handed to them in the form of green organization press releases.
When Delingpole has a juicy climate story, few publications will pay for it. The Daily Mail, Mail on Sunday, Express, Sunday Express, and The Spectator occasionally run sceptical stories.
A deputy editor of the Independent on Sunday, a chum of Delingpole’s, used to run his articles. When Delingpole asked why he didn’t buy his stuff anymore, he responded:
“Well, if you insist on writing all that nonsense about Climate Change, dear boy, what do you expect?”
Delingpole earns $100 a throw appearing on TV or radio shows as the token ‘denier.’ For the same reason, he was interviewed for a BBC documentary and invited to debate eco-Brahmin George Monbiot.
Delingpole asks: If climate alarmists possess solid evidence, why don’t they fight their critics with factual arguments? At all levels Warmists rely on ad hominem attacks. They play the man, not the ball:
“…every time I wade through the comments below my blog posts. ‘Maybe once, just once, one of the trolls will find it in his tortured, twisted conscience actually to engage with the arguments in my post rather than just telling me how stupid, evil, selfish, hateful, ugly, Fascistic, ignorant, and in-the-pay-of-Big-Oil I am’ I think. Never happens though. Never once.”
A member of the climate alarmist British Antarctic Survey bought the website address www.jamesdelingpole.co.uk to re-direct browsers to the alarmist RealClimate website.
Such antics are endemic. A popular British children’s TV presenter, after making climate sceptical remarks, discovered pornographic websites set up in his name and activists campaigning to have him kept away from children. Another children’s TV favourite saw his TV work dry up after he publically doubted global warming. A British Green Party activist ferociously censored sceptics off of Wikipedia.
In 1992 Prince Charles flew to Rio to proclaim there were 100 months left to prevent climate catastrophe. He then flew home, boarded the biofuel-powered Royal train, and toured Britain to lecture his future subjects on the need to live sustainably. To share the burden, he converted his vintage Aston Martin to run on biofuels.
Delingpole recently deprecated Charles as a spoiled and loony prat. The responses to his blog were along the lines of:
“Who are you, you disgusting little oik, to be calling our future King a prat?”
Delingpole deems Charles another green movement celebrity idiot – well-intentioned but ill-advised.
In 1660, to enshrine scepticism, Britain’s premiere scientific institute, the Royal Society, adopted the motto: Nullius in Verba (take no one’s word for it).
In 2009 the Royal Society issued Preventing Dangerous Climate Change to proclaim:
“…Climate science, like any other scientific discipline, develops through vigorous debate between experts, but there is an overwhelming consensus regarding its fundamentals…”
The document insists: “there is no such thing as ‘safe’ climate change”and warns of “heat waves, floods, droughts…”
This retreat from scepticism was commanded by the three most recent Royal Society Presidents – Lord May, Lord Rees, and Sir Paul Nurse – each fervent Warmists.
After complaints from 43 members, the Royal Society conceded:
“There is very strong evidence to indicate that climate change has occurred on a wide range of different time scales from decades to many millions of years; human activity is a relatively recent addition to the list of potential causes of climate change.”
The BBC is a pivotal British institution. Its huge budget comes from a $200 annual levy on every household. The BBC is more responsible for promulgating “global warming” to Brits than any other organization.
In January 2006 a day-long Climate Change seminar was held at BBC Television Centre. Keynote speaker was former national chief scientific advisor, Lord May, who had earlier declared:
“…there exists a climate change ‘denial lobby,’ funded to the tune of tens of millions of dollars by sections of the hydrocarbon industry.”
The seminar was co-emceed by a BBC environmental reporter and an Open University “action researcher.” In 1996 these two founded an NGO to promote environmental coverage in the media (funded by the British Government, WWF, and Climate Research Unit). Also helping at the seminar was a PR firm working for Friends of the Earth.
At the seminar BBC journalists were matched with equal numbers of pro-Kyoto climate specialists. The journalists evinced not the slightest professional curiosity. A BBC directive later affirmed:
“The BBC has held a high-level seminar with some of the best scientific experts and has come to the view that the weight of the evidence no longer justifies equal space being given to the opponents of consensus.”
Thus, the BBC confidently carries on marginalising sceptics and stoking alarmism in TV, radio, and internet reports and in documentaries like: The Truth about Climate Change; Climate Change: Britain Under Siege; Meltdown: A Global Warming Journey; Climate Wars; and Science Under Attack.
In Science under Attack (2011) Sir Paul Nurse spins Climategate. A pitiable Phil Jones complains of harassment by deniers. Nurse reads a letter from leading alarmists (Schneider, Ehrlich et al) that lumps deniers in with anti-GM protesters. (The documentary claims human CO2 emissions are seven times larger than natural emissions – in fact, natural CO2 emissions are 33 times larger than human emissions.)
The NoPressure videos demonstrate how deeply fascist instincts penetrate the cultural mainstream.
The videos were part of the “10:10” climate activist blitz endorsed by PM Cameron et al. The videos were produced by 50 film professionals and 40 actors under the direction of Richard Curtis. Each video shows people being murdered for not caring enough about Climate Change.
In early September 2010, the videos were previewed on the internet and met a wave of outrage. The cinema release was cancelled. Companies withdrew sponsorship from 10:10, and NoPressure’s producers apologized.
Warmist-brainwashing of Brits is not solely the media’s burden. In 2009 the Department of Energy and Climate’s $10 million “Bedtime” propaganda campaign incorporated extreme weather scares into nursery rhymes. The British Council recently set aside $4 million for ‘International Climate Champions’ to encourage youth climate activism and $2 million for ‘Challenge Europe’ to steer the climate debate.
Peak Oil is fashionable among British enviros. Peak Oil and Climate Change are the twin rationales for the all-consuming quest of energy reform.
Several previous Peak Fuel crises were taken seriously by experts of the day:
- In the mid-19th century PM Gladstone made dire prognostications of a coal crisis.
- In 1885 Pennsylvania’s State Geologist claimed oil was a vanishing resource that the youth of his day would see the last of.
- In 1902 Lord Kelvin queried: “When all the coal of the earth is used, what then?”
- In 1922 President Harding’s Coal Commission consulted 500 experts, then declared: “The output of our (natural) gas has begun to wane. Production of oil cannot long maintain its present rate.”
- In 1956 M. King Hubbert, the boiler-suit-wearing Technocracy cultist who considered democracy a sham and overpopulation a peril, claimed global oil reserves were nearing exhaustion and US oil production would “peak” before 1970.
- In the mid-1970s “oil crisis” Hubbert was hailed as a seer.
- In 2003 Federal Reserve Chair Greenspan said of natural gas: “We are not apt to return to earlier periods of relative abundance and low prices anytime soon.”
New reservoirs are forever being discovered and new extraction techniques perfected. Shortages create higher prices that prompt drillers to explore challenging reservoirs. World oil reserves increased during 2009 despite the extraction of 93 million barrels.
Shale gas may be Britain’s saviour. Gas-powered electricity is one-third the price of wind power (one-ninth that of offshore wind). Lancashire’s Bowland Shale gas deposit may be Europe’s largest. Reserves beneath the North Sea, according to the British Geological Survey, are even larger.
Energy and Climate Secretary Chris Huhne (2010-12) denigrated the “dash for gas” because it conflicted with his commitment to renewables. Environmentalists are whipping up opposition to shale gas with tall tales about earthquakes and flame-throwing kitchen water-taps.
Brits never voted for Greenpeace, WWF, or Friends of Earth yet such groups dictate government policy.
Conservative PM Cameron wants his administration to be Britain’s “greenest government ever.”
Climate programs are deviously stashed in the Department of the Environment, Food, and Rural Affairs; the Department of Energy and Climate; and in innumerable agencies and quangos like Carbon Trust. Climate programs are an immense cash cow milked by biofuel farmers, carbon traders, solar panel installers, ethical investment managers, electric car salesmen, wind farm engineers, etc.
Economic studies show green subsidies so hobble the real economy that for every green job created, two to four jobs are lost elsewhere. Obama’s solar boondoggle bears this out. Oblivious to economic logic, in 2010 Energy and Climate Under-Secretary Lord Marland called for a $50 billion investment in wind power.
To decarbonize Britain, the Climate Change Act (2008) will bilk taxpayers $28 billion per year until 2050. The Act commits Britain to the world’s most severe CO2 cuts. This legislation will cause energy shortages, industrial disruption, mass unemployment, and fuel-poverty. Only five MPs opposed it!
In the BBC documentary, Doomed by Democracy, a former government climate advisor surmises:
“I suspect the public doesn’t realise how radical this legislation… These cuts are going to be very deep and they go long-term. And we are now going to see changes occurring over time which do impact very significantly on people and I’m not sure the public understands that yet.”
This documentary explores whether the climate crisis necessitates suspending democratic processes.
Delingpole on eco-Fascism
Delingpole parallels the 1930s fascist sweep to modern climate alarmism. He likens becoming a climate activist to joining the Nazis. He views the fascistic facets of environmentalism as un-severable. Anti-capitalism, suppression of growth, contempt for democracy, curtailment of liberty, misanthropism, world domination are as integral to environmentalism as lebensraum and death camps were to Nazism.
“What we’re seeing with the Climate Wars, writ large, is the phenomenon Hitler described in Mein Kampf when he talked about the Big Lie.”
Hitler and Mussolini were fans of socio-psychologist Le Bon who argued masses are only as clever as their dullest members; hence, propaganda must be simple and repetitive.
Delingpole is treated to displays of this technique at the Glastonbury music festivals. Greenpeace videos featuring ominous smokestacks and plucky activists confronting Japanese whalers are broadcast in a repeating loop on giant screens beside the stage to a sea of stoned youth.
Environmentalists admit lying.
Warmist supremo Stephen Schneider (1945-2010) was: founder/editor of the journal ClimateChange, an IPCC lead author, and an Enviro-biology prof at Stanford. (In the 1970s he was a global coolist.) Schneider told Discover magazine:
“…we are not just scientists but human beings as well. And like most people, we’d like to see the world a better place, which in this context translates into our working to reduce the risk of potentially disastrous climatic change. To do that we need to get some broad-based support, to capture the public’s imagination. That, of course, entails getting loads of media coverage. So we have to offer up scary scenarios, make simplified, dramatic statements and make little mention of any doubts we have.”
The Club of Rome is a driver of the environmental movement. The Club’s publication Limits to Growth (1972) sold ten million copies and debuted the scary computer model. In the early 1990s, Club leaders confided:
“In searching for a new enemy to unite us, we came up with the idea that pollution, the threat of global warming, water shortages, famine and the like would fit the bill.”
Greenpeace director Gerd Leipold admitted:
“We as a pressure group have to emotionalise issues and we’re not ashamed of emotionalising issues.”
The Third Reich was the first regime to pass national environmental laws and to champion organic foods (an obsession of Himmler’s) and vegetarianism (a fad of Hitler’s). Goring was an animal rights activist. The Third Reich was the first to attack overpopulation with rigorous planning and mechanised efficiency.
The Nazi idea of lebensraum (living space) came from ecological theory.
“…respect for divine creation is the measure of all culture. If therefore the new living spaces are to become a homeland for our settlers, the planned arrangement of the landscape to keep it close to nature is a decisive prerequisite.”
Nature and Nation were entwined in Nazi “blood and soil” ideology. The Nazi’s leading green, Agriculture Minister Walther Darre, sought an Eden where a small population would live in rustic, de-industrialized, organic bliss.
The current head of NASA’s Goddard Institute, James Hansen, refers to coal-fired power stations as “death factories.” He testified in court on behalf of Greenpeace saboteurs. His promo-blurb for ecologist Keith Farnish’s Time’s Up (2009) claims:
“Farnish has it right: time has practically run out, and the ‘system’ is the problem.”
The book advocates blowing up dams because:
“The only way to prevent global ecological collapse and thus ensure the survival of humanity is to rid the world of Industrial Civilisation.”
The Nazis’ craving to cull populations is an ancient and persistent impulse. In 210 AD Carthaginian priest Tertullian surmised:
“…our numbers are burdensome to the world, which can hardly support us from its natural elements… pestilence and famine and wars have to be regarded as a remedy for nations as the means of pruning the luxuriance of the human race.”
In 1789 Thomas Malthus said the same in Essay on the Principle of Population. (Between the essay’s publication and 1914, Britain’s population swelled fourfold while her economy grew thirteen-fold.)
Harrison Brown’s The Challenge of Man’s Future (1954) likened an overpopulated earth to a dead cow covered with maggots. Brown wanted a global government to tackle overpopulation.
Although ostensibly about pollution, Rachel Carson’s epoch-founding SilentSpring (1962) was a Malthusian tract. Movement leaders feared the pesticide DDT had the potential of wiping out mosquito-borne diseases which in turn would lead to a population explosion. (Alexander King, a DDT developer and Club of Rome founder, reminisced: “My chief quarrel with DDT in hindsight is that it has greatly added to the population problem.”) Thus Carson’s SilentSpring erroneously argued DDT should be banned because it could cause a cancer pandemic among humans and could wipe out bird life.
After reviewing 9,000 pages of evidence, EPA Judge Ed Sweeney concluded:
“DDT is not a carcinogenic hazard to man… The use of DDT under the regulations involved here do not have a deleterious effect on freshwater fish, estuarine organisms, wild birds or other wildlife.”
Ignoring Sweeney, EPA Administrator William Ruckelshaus banned DDT in 1972.
Malarial mosquitos kill a million people a year. Carson is responsible for more deaths than Hitler.
Thirteen prominent environmentalists lauded Carson in an essay collection, Courage to the Earth (2007). Several parks, a school, a bridge, a hiking trail, and three enviro-prizes bear her name. Her birthplace, now on the National Register of Historic Places, is the venue for an annual dinner in her honour.
Paul Ehrlich’s The Population Bomb (1968) asserts:
“The battle to feed all of humanity is over. In the 1970s and 1980s hundreds of millions of people will starve to death…”
Soon after, Ehrlich predicted that within a decade oceans would be emptied of fish and American life expectancy would be 42. (He won a MacArthur Foundation “Genius Award.”)
Ecologist magazine was founded in 1970 by Teddy Goldsmith – brother of billionaire financier Sir James, uncle to eco-billionaire Conservative MP Zac Goldsmith. Teddy’s inaugural editorial describes humans as: “parasites”, “a disease” and “swarming masses.”
In 1979 ‘Robert Christian’ (Ted Turner) commissioned the placing of five 20-foot-high granite slabs on a Georgia hill. Each stone has an engraved commandment. One reads: “Maintain humanity under 500,000,000 in perpetual balance with nature.” Eco-billionaire Turner has elsewhere said:
“A total world population of 250-300 million people, a 95 per cent decline from present levels would be ideal.”
Prince Philip, in a forward to the book If I Were an Animal, stated:
“In the event that I am reincarnated, I would like to return as a deadly virus, in order to contribute something to overpopulation.”
David Attenborough, doyen of nature documentary presenters, is a trustee of the Optimum Population Trust which seeks to reduce the world’s population by 2 billion.
Obama’s “Science Czar” is John Holdren. In 1986 Holdren edited/co-wrote Earth and the Human Future: Essays in Honor of Harrison Brown, wherein he claimed:
“Thirty years after Harrison Brown elaborated these positions, it remains difficult to improve on them as a coherent depiction of the perils and challenges we face.”
Holdren and Ehrlich’s Ecoscience (1977) calls for state-imposed abortions and the pouring of birth-control drugs into public water supplies.
Fears of overpopulation are hysterical. New York City’s density is 26,000 persons per square mile. Other cities are more crowded. At New York’s density levels, the world’s entire population could live in Texas (268,581 square miles).
Fascism’s enmity toward democracy lives on.
Here’s the Club of Rome’s take on democracy:
“Democracy is not a panacea. It cannot organise everything and it is unaware of its own limits. These facts must be faced squarely. Sacrilegious though this may sound, democracy is no longer well suited for the tasks ahead.”
Maurice Strong: (a) chaired the UN Conference on Human Environment (1972), (b) directed United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) from 1972 to 1976, and (c) chaired the Earth Summit (1992). Strong argued:
“Our concept of ballot box democracy may need to be modified to produce strong governments capable of making difficult decisions, particularly in terms of safeguarding the global environment.”
Connected to anti-democracy is the imperialist-fascist pursuit of global dominion. The contemporary axis of this pursuit is a matrix of UN agencies, EU bureaucracies, and international environmental NGOs. This UN-centered system between 1972 and 2004 launched 60,000 enviro-projects.
The UN labyrinth comprises dozens of agencies with environmental operations like: International Council of Scientific Unions, World Meteorological Organization, and, most importantly, UNEP. There are also obscure green outfits like Economic Commission of Europe ($30 million annual budget). The Economic and Social Council umbrella group prioritises renewable energy and oversees the Committee for Sustainable Development, which monitors Agenda 21 implementation.
Agenda 21 is implemented mainly through the lobbying of municipal councils by local enviro-groups. This campaign is coordinated by the UN-funded NGO Local Governments for Sustainability. 1,200 municipal councils have signed onto Agenda 21 (600 in the USA). After signing on, councils are pressured to demonstrate their commitment by converting public transit to biofuels, raising parking permits, etc.
The book How Green Were the Nazis concludes:
”The green policies of the Nazis were more than a mere episode or aberration in environmental history at large. They point to larger meanings and demonstrate with brutal clarity that conservationism and environmentalism are not and have never been value-free or inherently benign enterprises.”
“Nazi Germany did not represent some grotesque perversion of green values; rather, it represented their purest, most honest form of practical expression.”
“…to all those Warmists who claim to be upset when nasty, cruel deniers like me call them on their appalling behaviour, here’s a tip: if you don’t want to be called Nazis, then try to stop acting like Nazis.”
Delingpole on The Big Climate Lie
In the 1970s, catastrophic anthropogenic climate change believers were a tiny cult of tousled eccentrics. In the 1980s Climate Change became a global concern. By the mid-1990s it was a crisis. Now it is the world’s dominant religion.
In September 1988, PM Thatcher declared:
“…we have unwittingly begun a massive experiment with the system of the planet itself… the increase in the greenhouse gases – carbon dioxide, methane, and chlorofluorocarbons – which has led some to fear that we are creating a global heat trap which could lead to climatic instability… a warming effect of 1 C per decade would greatly exceed the capacity of our natural habitat to cope. Such warming could cause accelerated melting of glacial ice and a consequent increase in the sea level of several feet over the next century… the five warmest years in a century of records have all been in the 1980s…”
At Thatcher’s instigation, the UK Meteorological Office created the Hadley Centre for Climate Prediction, which Thatcher personally opened in 1990. Under the leadership of ecstatic Warmist Sir John Houghton, the Hadley Centre selected lead authors for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s scientific working group and provided the IPCC with meteorological data.
Since 1990 the UK government has given $360 million to the Met Office’s climate prediction programme. Another $20 million went to East Anglia Universities’ Climatic Research Unit.
Two theories are offered concerning the Iron Lady’s motives:
- After the 1984 miners’ strike she wanted to disempower the National Union of Mineworkers. Framing coal’s phase-out as an environmental issue deflected resistance. CO2 reduction was a pretext for unpopular nuclear expenditures.
- Thatcher was mesmerized by Sir Crispin Tickell. She was ill-advised. Delingpole contends this motive is consistent with passages from Thatcher’s Statecraft (2003) wherein she reverses her position and accuses climate alarmists of distorting science to further an anti-capitalist agenda.
In the 1970s Tickell took a sabbatical from the civil service to study climatology at Harvard. This inspired his Climate Change and World Affairs (1977) about the perils of global cooling. In 1988, as Britain’s UN Ambassador, Tickell’s proposed remedy for global warming was a new UN agency missioned to persuade national governments to tax fossil fuels and subsidize renewable energy.
In November 1988, the IPCC was formed by the UNEP and the World Meteorological Organization. IPCC’s first chair was Swedish Professor Bert Bolin (1925-2007).
In 1959 Bolin had gone to Washington to alert the National Academy of Sciences about the CO2 emissions threat. Bolin sowed the acorn that if CO2 atmospheric concentrations exceeded 450 ppm, climate catastrophe would ensue. A 500-page paper by Bolin set the alarmist tone for the seminal 1985 UN-sponsored climate conference in Villach, Austria.
Sir John Houghton chaired the IPCC’s scientific working group before assuming Bolin’s position as top dog. In 1995 Houghton received recommendations from Tim Wirth (US Under-Secretary for Global Affairs and an ally of Vice President Gore) that: “authors should be prevailed upon to modify their text in an appropriate manner.”
These recommendations were relayed to Ben Santer, lead author for the key science chapter in IPCC’s 1995 Assessment Report and the final reviewer of its Summary for Policymakers.
Santer arbitrarily deleted passages from the draft Summary wherein the scientific working group had expressed doubts about anthropogenic global warming. Santer added passages such as: “The balance of evidence suggests that there is a discernible human influence on global climate.”
The 1997 Kyoto Protocol was based on Santer’s doctored Summary.
From his mansion in Delhi’s most exclusive neighborhood, Houghton’s successor atop the IPCC, Raj Pauchauri, manages a web of enterprises which represent a clear conflict of interest. Pauchauri is a director of The Energy Research Institute (TERI) whose glaciology unit received funds from Carnegie Corp. to study Himalayan glacier melt. TERI people concocted the infamous vanishing Himalayan glaciers scare. (TERI’s golf course daily squanders 300,000 gallons of water in a parched district of India.)
Under Pauchauri’s watch the IPCC issued its Fourth Assessment Report (2007). Of 18,531 cited sources, 5,587 are enviro-organization propaganda. The Report’s ballyhooed 2,500 experts boils down to a much smaller number that includes many recent grads and persons affiliated with enviro-organizations.
Climate alarmists accuse dissenters of being mercenaries in the pay of Big Oil. Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth asserts that the very idea of disagreement among climate scientists is misinformation from oil and coal companies.
A Guardian series provided “shocking” examples of Big Oil’s funding of sceptics – four grants over 15 years totalling $3.3 million.
According to Greenpeace, in the decade following 1997, $50 million from Koch Industries and around $20 million from ExxonMobil went to climate sceptics. These figures actually refer to sums given to multi-issue pro-free market think-tanks, not specifically for climate scepticism. Moreover, ExxonMobil gave $100 million to the climate alarmist Stanford Global Climate and Energy Project.
So labyrinthine is climate alarmist funding we will never know its total.
The US Federal government has maintained a “climate” budget of about $4 billion per year since the late 1980s. This has bought a bandwagon of support and elicited a rain of alarmist press releases from NASA, NOAA, Climate Change Science Program, and Climate Change Technology Program.
To date the EU has spent $100 billion on climate projects.
Climate alarmists receive thousands of times more funding than do climate realists.
Climategates 1.0 and 2.0 involved two dumps of e-mails hacked from East Anglia U’s Climatic Research Unit (CRU) – one of the world’s chief climate institutes and a primary IPCC data provider.
The e-mails expose a tightly-knit cabal of paranoid, insecure, pathologically vindictive climate Pooh-Bahs (Phil Jones, Keith Briffa, Tom Wigley, Ben Santer, Michael Mann) fudging data, suppressing information, and squeezing sceptical scientists out of the peer review process.
One thread of e-mails shows Wigley and Mann discussing how to slander and punish academics involved in the sceptic-tolerant journals: Climate Research and Energy and Environment. They plot telling publishers that these journals deliberately spread misinformation. They discuss organizing a mass resignation from one journal’s board and circulating a “no cite” policy regarding the other journal.
Another thread of e-mails betrays the cabal’s lack of confidence in their own theory. One scientist bemoans:
“Observations do not show rising temperatures throughout the tropical troposphere unless you accept one single study and approach and discount a wealth of others. This is just downright dangerous.”
“Basic problem is that all models are wrong – not enough middle and low level clouds.”
Another thread reveals the cabal criminally suppressing information:
“But for GODS SAKE please respect the sensitivity here and destroy the file immediately when finished and please do not tell ANYBODY I sent this.”
“If they (sceptics) ever hear there is a Freedom of Information Act now in the UK, I think I’ll delete the file rather than send it to anyone.”
After Climategate 1.0, the Warmists fought back with panel-rigging. Three biased inquiries exonerated the CRU crew. One panel was headed by Lord Oxburgh – vice-chair of a cryptic worldwide network (GLOBE International) which lobbies governments to take drastic action on environmental issues.
The trumpeted scientific consensus on catastrophic anthropogenic global warming is multifarious mendacity:
- Science is not based on consensus.
- There is no consensus on catastrophic anthropogenic global warming.
- There is a near consensus that global warming stopped in 1998.
- There is a clear consensus that global warming is preferable to global cooling.
A letter from 141 scientists asked UN Secretary General Ban ten pointed questions about global warming and reminded him where the burden of proof lay. No response.
Hal Lewis, Emeritus Professor of Physics at the U of California, resigned from the Warmist-infiltrated American Physical Society (APS). His resignation letter denounces:
“…the global warming scam, with the (literally) trillions of dollars driving it, that has corrupted so many scientists and has carried APS before it like a rogue wave. It is the greatest and most successful pseudoscientific fraud I have seen in my long life….”
Delingpole's Typological Error
Watermelons’ thesis is that “greens” are crypto “reds.” Environmentalists are repeatedly called socialists, leftists, etc. In 40 passages Delingpole gratuitously wedges in references to: Stalin, Lenin, Mao, Kim Jong-Il, Soviet commissars, Marxism, neo-Marxists, closet Marxists, etc. He thrice claims “abolition of private property” is an environmentalist aim. A complete statement of the facts Delingpole musters in support of his green-on-the-outside-red-on-the-inside thesis follows:
Delingpole contends green groups used to be humble, grassroots “three men and a dog outfits.” Sadly, environmentalism’s old hippies were supplanted by zealots less interested in saving Earth than in destroying capitalism.
The solitary kernel of truth upon which this romantic novella develops is an obscure Friends of the Earth document titled, Profit before Planet. Delingpole keeps a tattered print-out of this on his desk because it “does his work for him.”
Delingpole believes disciples of Italian Marxist Antonio Gramsci (1891-1937) undertook a “long march through the institutions” (academic, media, art) as part of a covert culture war. For “evidence,” he points to the academic popularity of Foucault and Derrida (neither of whom are particularly green or Gramscian) whose anti-empiricism undermines Western intellectual traditions. He also points to the prevalence within academia of the “whole ragbag of Structuralist, Post-Structuralist and Marxist thinkers.”
Delingpole confuses post-modernism with academic Marxism and connects neither school to environmentalism. The main effort to beatify Gramsci was an explicitly neo-fascist endeavour led by Alain de Benoist.
A 2007 Guardian article by Climate prof Mike Hulme contains this sentence:
“Self-evidently dangerous climate change will not emerge from a normal scientific process of truth seeking, although science will gain some insights into a question if it recognises the socially contingent dimensions of a post-normal science.”
From this sentence Sherlock Delingpole induces:
- “Without PNS (Post-Normal Science) the whole AGW (Anthropogenic Global Warming) scare might never have happened.”
- PNS formulator Jerry Ravetz (“Communist Party fellow traveller”) is: “possibly the man who made the whole AGW scam possible.”
Delingpole claims Ravetz developed PNS in the early-1990s when, by Delingpole’s own timeline, global warming was already in full bloom.
Delingpole is nearer the mark when he calls Ravetz a classic pseudo-academic obfuscator. In reality, PNS was such of a dud it fails to rank as a pseudo-academic fad. The 83-year-old associate prof Ravetz carved a rather under-whelming career for an Illuminatus. His commie creds derive from his truck-driving father having been a union organizer in Pennsylvania in the 1940s.
A scouring of the internet fetched Delingpole six supporting quotes:
- The blog-troll ‘ScientistForTruth’ calls PNS a “tool in the hands of socialists.”
- A Chicago libertarian think-tank boss thinks Mike Hulme is a “socialist” or a “liberal/socialist.”
- A. Wildavsky thought the global warming campaign was aimed at“realising the environmentalist’s dream of an egalitarian society.”
- A NewStatesman article mentions Paul Nurse’s “undergraduate socialist spirit.”
- A ‘Green Agenda’ website posting argues environmentalism, medicare, and welfare are parts of a “socialist scheme.”
- A ‘Big Government’ website posting claims “sustainabledevelopment”is a mantra “Marxists”use “to insinuate all their socialist fantasies into our legal code.”
Of course, Delingpole trots out the conspiracy barkers’ show ponies: Mikhail Gorbachev and Maurice Strong.
Gorbachev is: “involved in this conspiracy. Big time.”
Strong is: “the man most responsible for turning the green agenda into a world changing reality.”
Gorby, the 81-year-old has-been, oversaw the dissolution of the Soviet Union. No one considers him a socialist hero. His foray into environmentalism began in 1993 with the founding of Green Cross International (GCI). Even with 31 “affiliates” and honorary board members like Robert Redford, GCI is not a top 500 environmental movement organization.
Chairing the 1992 Earth Summit was not just Strong’s finest hour; it was his final hour. Strong is a house-bound 83-year-old holed up in a Beijing high-rise. He has not been a significant actor on the movement stage for 20 years.
Proof of Strong’s “socialism” rests entirely upon his cousin having been a Comintern member feted in Mao’s China. According to Dewar’s Cloak of Green, Anna Louise Strong was a Hearst writer and US military intelligence political instructor who was delivered to China by the US Navy and denounced as a spy by the Soviets. Leaving aside the question of whether Maoism qualifies as Leftism, there is no indication Anna influenced her distant cousin Maurice, or if they even met.
Delingpole inadequately defines “conspiracy theory” as:
“The attribution of deliberate agency to something that is much more likely to be accidental or unintended.”
In this context “conspiracy theory” means the mis-describing of a massive, centuries-old socio-political movement as though it were a small cabal.
Delingpole wrongly defines the Climate Change campaign as:
“…a mass hysteria on a scale unprecedented in human history. It was cooked up over a period of decades by an unlikely cabal of scientists, politicians, ecological activists, corporate fat cats, newspaper editors, diplomats and quasi-Marxist ideologues. Its ultimate goal… is the destruction of Industrial Civilisation, the end of national sovereignty and democratic government, and the governance of the world by faceless technocrats and shadowy plutocrats.”
Climate Change is a colossal misinformation campaign with ample precedents cooked up by the usual suspects: oligarchs, aristocrats, activist scientists, rent-seeking businesses, media managers, and crypto-fascist ideologues. Their ultimate goal is the subordination of industrial capitalists and the foreclosure of democratic republicanism.
Delingpole refers to a “shadowy plutocracy,” then labours to keeps them in the shadows.
He neglects to mention that Maurice Strong was throughout his career a Rockefeller operative. Likewise, Club of Rome founder, Aurelio Peccei, was a lifelong servant of the Agnellis – another crucial plutocratic family Delingpole deletes.
Delingpole is aware of the protagonistic role Rockefellers play within the Movement. He mentions a 2010 dinner Paul Nurse hosted in his New York home for “Warmist prominente” David Rockefeller. He mentions the Rockefeller Foundation’s 2007 launch of a $70 million climate change initiative.
Delingpole plucks 18 names from the Club of Rome’s 100-name membership list:
Peter Gabriel, Bianca Jagger, Al Gore, Jimmy Carter, Vaclav Havel, Romano Prodi, Kofi Annan, Dalai Lama, Jean Chretien, Mikhail Gorbachev, Bill Clinton, Paolo Coelho, Mary Robinson, Deepak Chopra, Daisuka Ikeda, Aung San Suu Kyi, Jacques Delors, and Guy Verhofstadt.
Club members Delingpole prefers not to highlight include:
Liz Mohn, King Juan Carlos (Spain), Queen Dona Sophia (Spain), Crown Prince Philippe (Belgium), Queen Beatrix (Netherlands), Baron Daniel Jannsen (Belgium), Lord George Weidenfeld, Jose Berroeta, and Peter Blom.
This betrays a mind-set blinded by the Movement’s resplendent core. Similarly, while Prince Charles seems fair game, Delingpole dares not criticize Queen Elizabeth, who is also a climate activist.
Referring to fascists as “leftists” does fascists a favour. Historically fascist movements sought to masquerade as socialist. The raison d’etre of fascism arises from hereditary landlords’ inability to mobilize support in the streets and polling booths. They had to use deceptive populist fronts. Environmentalism is a mercenary movement directed by the wealthy few, not a mass rising of levellers.
Calling ecofascists “Reds” aids ecofascism because it discredits the basic thesis of environmentalism being a self-conscious elite-based social movement and not merely an unfolding of scientific truths and “great awakening” as enviro-propagandists would have us believe.
Delingpole complains how difficult it is to convince his countrymen that David Cameron, Zac Goldsmith, Prince Charles, David Rockefeller, Chris Huhne, Lord Oxburgh, and Ted Turner are conspiring to abolish private property and usher in an egalitarian utopia. His countrymen think his tinfoil headband is twisted on too tight.
Delingpole appears subconsciously aware of the eternal tectonic grind between land and capital. He criticizes biofuels policies’ subsidization of rural landowners. He is outraged that PM Cameron’s stepfather, Sir Reginald Sheffield, is being taxpayer subsidized $1,500 a day for wind farms on his estate. He does not point out that, across the board, enviro-energy policies (biofuels, wind farms, solar farms, energy-conserving building retro-fits, etc) transfer national income from the general public to the landed estate.
Delingpole misinterprets land-use restrictions as an attack of property rights. Zoning and wilderness restrictions are merely Big Land disciplining Little Land. Agricultural and real estate markets would be tossed into a tizzy if any ole’ Farmer Brown could chop his land into residential lots or plow into yonder forest.
Political stances branch out from the question of whether socialism and fascism are distinctive or common political tendencies. If they are common then one may support or oppose “it.” If they are distinct then one may support one of the two or reject both. Delingpole views them as common and opposes it. The correct position acknowledges their distinctiveness and rejects both.
Delingpole, James; Watermelons; Biteback Publishing; London 2012
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